THE TRUTH ABOUT TRUTH:

All truth passes through three stages.
First, it is ridiculed.
Second, it is violently opposed.
Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.



Saturday, November 24, 2012

“MAGNIFICENT SEVEN”, I’M REALLY THANKFUL FOR Y-O-U

.
Here in Airheadzona, where I live, Thanksgiving Day – “the gateway to the Christmas Season” – will end in a matter of minutes.
.
.
And I need to get this blog bit posted quickly ‘cause I gotta hit the sack. Yep, I’m working tomorrow, starting at 9 AM.
.
So, I’m going to compose this as quickly as I can, right off the cuff, off the top of my mind, on the fly and stream-of-consciousness spontaneously combustion-y. (Please overlook the typos! I’m workin’ fast here and without a net.)
.
I acknowledge that I’ve got a lot to be thankful for. First and foremost, as always, I’m grateful for what is R.E.A.L.
.
Q: What is R.E.A.L.?
A: The “Real, Eternal, Active Love” 
and His Son, Jesus Christ. 
.
I thank God for His Love and His Forgiveness that is mine through the voluntary Atonement of perfect Yeshua on The Cross. The Holy King and Savior, Jesus, has been saving my sorry ass since April 6, AD 32!
.
I’m also thankful for my family (two-fifths having gone Home to God). My Pa, from whom I got my work ethic and my silly sense of humor. My Ma, from whom I got my sense of justice and feisty attitude. My Brother, Napoleon, who is my best friend (one fist of iron, the other of steel; if the right one don't get ya then the left one will). And my Sister, who is fun and understands the GoldenShadow.
.
.
And as much as I despise what has happened to my country, I’m even thankful that God saw fit to have me “borned” here. There but for the Grace of God, I could be living in a plywood or tin shack built over a mud puddle in some Third World country and feasting on cats and rats. Yep, I get xtremely-mad at America, but I know my own living conditions could be much, Much, MUCH worse!
.
But right now, I’m thinking mostly about how thankful I am for my friends. I’ve had so many really good friends in my 53 years. Sadly, some are no longer here – like my acting buddy Marty, and Kelly who, literally, was as loyal a friend as it is humanly possible to be. Some of my friends I rarely see, nor do I get to speak with them often – like The Countess and Pooh, Cranium, Big Al, and The Flying Aardvark – but I still greatly appreciate them and hearing from them from time to time.
.
However, at this moment, I am thinking most about my “Blogging Buddies”. And even a few of them are no longer with me. A-DogG was the first person to really become an A-list commenter on my first blog back at the BigBitch.com site (read: Amazon.com). A-DogG and I had incredible discussions in the comment sections of my blog installments. It was like Jimi Hendrix and Eddie Van Halen trading licks and riffing off of each other until the amplifiers exploded and the stage burned down. Although he’s years in my past, I still credit 
A-DogG for making me aware of the possibilities of comment section discussions.
.
OL’ WP was one of my earliest blog buddies as well, but he has moved on, and I wish him nothing but da best o’ da best (even though he never did tell me “The Witch Story”).
.
And then there was Linda Haley (a.k.a. Anniee McPhee and Anniee451). She and I had some fantastic comment section discussions until she died very unexpectedly and very young. (Incredibly, Linda’s physical body may be “dead” but she’s still very much alive in the spirit realm and has proven to me that she is still aware of what’s going on in my life. Yes, she has “made contact” with me from “the other side”. Right, Nitro? Wink!-Wink!, Nudge!-Nudge!)
.
But a few days ago, my friend Arlee Bird (Lee) posted a blog installment in which he publicly honored some of his favorite blog readers/commenters. He wrote the following about me:
.
Since I've given Stephen T. McCarthy a lot of time in past blog posts I'll just add him to the list of bloggers who actually have a discussion in the comment section.  To see what I mean just check out some of the comment sections on his posts at his blog Ferret-Faced Fascist Friends.  Sure, you might not agree with Stephen and you might even be offended, but you have to admit that this guy knows how to carry on a conversation in his comments.  That's my blogging dream.  Thank you, Stephen, for showing the way to establishing good blog dialog.
.
I’ve been thinking about what Arlee Bird wrote. And you wanna know what I’ve been thinking? It’s not ME who is truly responsible for the great dialogues in some of my blog installment comment sections! What if no one submitted a comment? The first comment appearing in my comment sections is NEVER one of my own! How could it be? I can’t start the conversation, and I can’t carry on conversations by myself in my comment sections! (Well, I could, but eventually the proverbial “they” would take me away to a nice, well-padded room where I couldn’t hurt myself.)
.
I’ve often said that I have only 6 regular readers of my blog, and when I’ve wanted to make a joke of that, I’ve sometimes referred to my blog readers as “the two of you”.
.
But I’ve just completed an inventory and discovered that in fact I have seven (count ‘em: 7) regular readers and A-list commenters here at ‘Ferret-Faced Fascist Friends’. And although you are few in number, I greatly appreciate and value every one of you. And I think you’re “The Magnificent Seven”. I’m serious! I ain’t bullshittin’ in the least when I say I feel proud of the fact that I have probably the seven smartest, most informed, and most fun-loving readers (and commenters) of any blog at Blogspot.com.
.
A quick shout out now to my “Magnificent Seven” (in alphabetical order) . . .
.
ARLEE BIRD of the blogs . . .
.
LEE is the creator of the now-famous Blogosphere sensation, ‘A To Z April Challenge’ Blogfest. Analytical and insightful, Lee is one of my most loyal blog buddies, going all the way back to my BigBitch.com days. And you should definitely check out his ‘A Faraway View’ blog about the mystery of dreams. Of all the blogs I regularly ‘Follow’, it’s one of my very favorites. Arlee Bird also posts brief bite-sized words of wisdom taken from The Holy Bible every Sunday morning at his ‘A Few Words’ blog. Very good stuffs from one of the most diligently devoted and eclectic bloggers in Blogland. But Lee is more than a blogger. Lee is a McBuddy. He acknowledges that my writing is not for everybody” and yet he has still done more to promote my blogging activities than has anybody else. I am tremendously grateful for his friendship.
.
BR’ER MARC of the blogs . . .
.
BR’ER also goes back to my BigBitch.com days. He is a very good Christian man and the originator of one of the best political analogies of all time: When will people understand they [the Democrat and Republican parties] are the same party? Socialist extreme and Socialist light. Do you want non-filtered or filtered cigarettes, sir? Either way they’re both going to kill you.” In my opinion, that is one of the most accurate and quotable political analogies ever made! My buddy Br’er has been a great friend and loyal ‘Follower’ of my writings for a long time. I feel it’s an honor to have such a fine and insightful man on my short list of friends. I only wish he had time to blog more often and had the number of readers his wisdom warrants.
.
BRYAN and/or BRANDON of the blog . . .
.
I’m not sure if it’s Bryan or Brandon who often comments on my blog installments. Maybe it’s both Beer Boys but at different times. Regardless, they operate one of the funniest blogs in town. Yeah, it’s often crude, lewd, raunchy, and insanely insane, but it’s also frequently ‘Laugh-Out-Loud Funny’. Very often I will go to read their newest blog installment which is far less than a day old, and already it has accumulated 20 to 40 or more remarks in its comment section. There are very good reasons why their ‘A Beer For The Shower’ blog is one of the most popular here at Blogspot.com. These dudes are outrageously creative, and if I ever had the opportunity to share a table with them at the '10 At 2 Kennel Klub Saloon', I know we'd hit it off famously! [Keep up the funny stuffs, Beer Boys, ‘cause I definitely needs me a good laugh often.]
.
DISCCONNECTED of the blogs . . .
.
DiscConnected is the only person I know who knows more Classic Rock era trivia than I do. (And believe me, that’s really sayin’ sumpin’!) His ‘Discconnected’ blog is all about music, and his ‘Back In The USSR’ blog is one of the very best political blogs I’ve found – it’s often wickedly funny and cuts right through all the socialistic shit and exposes it! Of course we’ve all been conditioned to believe in the “Separation Of Church And State”, but DiscConnected obviously does not believe in the “Separation Of Entertainment And Politics”. Really, every time my Dashboard shows me that a new blog bit has been posted at ‘Back In The USSR’, I go to it immediately, salivating like one of Pavlov’s Dogs. If Dr. Disc’s ‘Back In The USSR’ isn’t my very favorite of all the blogs I ‘Follow’, it’s damned close to it. He isn’t as active on his sports-themed blog but that one’s a lot of fun too; he sometimes combines social commentary with his sports views from the 50-yard-line seats.
.
FARAWAYEYES of the blog . . .
.
FarAwayEyes is unquestionably one of the most interesting individuals I’ve known in this lifetime. She is very spiritual and has a “re(a)lationship” with God and Christ. Although she often refers to herself as “a dumb blond”, there ain’t NUTTIN’ dumb about her! (Even if she doesn’t always know “where the commas go”.) Heck, she was aware of the semi-secret shadowy political reality years before I was. She doesn’t discuss that on her ‘Far Away Series’ blog, but she does tell some really cool and heartwarming stories. FarAwayEyes doesn’t often take her “clothes off in public”, but when she does, it’s something to see. Jim Morrison of The Doors asked, “Did you have a good world when you died? Enough to base a movie on?” Well, FarAwayEyes certainly does. These days it seems as if everyone believes they have a memoir to write. Although she may never write one, FarAwayEyes probably owes the world her memoir. Considering all of the places she’s been, the variety of people she’s known, and the experiences she’s had, I can say with the fullest confidence that any memoir she wrote would be one exhilaratingly wild E-Ticket Ride! (Move over, Mr. Toad!) I’d tell you more about her but she’d probably get mad at me if I did.
.
SHEBOYGANBOY 6
Unfortunately, Sheboyganboy 6 doesn’t do any blogging – but he SHOULD, in my opinion. He is one of the most intelligent persons I know. This dude was reading Ayn Rand books when he was fourteen years old! (When I was 14 years old, I was still reading ‘Encyclopedia Brown’ books and was still utterly mystified by how detectiveboy Leroy Brown was solving the crimes.)  Sheboyganboy Six has owned and published newspapers and I have learned many fascinating facts from him in the years he and I have been friends (which also goes back to my BigBitch.com days). He knows a lot about music, literature, and politics, including the U.S. Constitution and the principles upon which this country was founded. (Not surprisingly, he’s no fan of Liberalism.) In fact, Sheboyganboy 6 is SUCH an American patriot that he collects authentic, original signatures of our Founding Fathers! [Sixgun, was it alright for me to reveal that fact? If not, let me know right away and I’ll delete the offending phucker! Ha!] Sheboygan-BRO 6 has been one of my most devoted readers and commenters for a long time. He’s a good man, a believer in Christ, and he hates injustice. For his many excellent comments, and for having turned me onto the comedy of Bob & Ray, McSix makes my personal ‘Hall Of Fame’. [Start a blog, Punk Six!]
.
SIG-TOO of the blog . . .
.
I don’t even know how long SigToo (a.k.a. Super-Sig Also and Master Sig II) has been following my blogging endeavors. He just started commenting one day, but he clearly had knowledge of some of my pre-Blogspot.com stuffs. So, apparently he was “watching from the balcony” for awhile before making his presence known. I don’t actually know a whole lot about Sig on a personal level, so he remains something of a ‘Mystery Man’. I know he’s married and possesses an A-list intelligence. But I have been able to ascertain some other things about him from the comments he leaves.
.
For one thing, Sig is one of my most complimentary commenters, which proves he has exquisite taste. : ) What is also clear is that Sig has a really great sense of humor and an expansive knowledge of many topics. (Also, he could probably pick me out in a M*A*S*H episode even faster than I could find myself.) “I gamble in the stock and options markets”, Sig says, describing how he supports himself. 
Uh . . . hel-looo! Are we yakkin’ smarts here, or what?! He has even devised a system that calculates how to invest in the stock market whether Bullish or Bearish. Sig’s knowledge of market movement led him to write the following: It's one thing to try to prove that the [World Trade Center towers were] brought down by other means such as explosive charges, or that missiles were used instead of passenger planes, etc., but when you are staring at documented proof that an obscene number of "bets" in the form of options were placed against the airlines a day or two before 9/11 . . .   Anyway, if I did that, every gov't 'acronym' would have busted down my front door the next day.
.
Yep, this is one exceptionally bright guy who knows about the Wizards behind the curtain. No flies on him (“Whatever that means” – to quote David Addison). It’s a true honor to have someone as bright as Sig reading my stuffs! [I’ve never said this to anyone before but I’ve been thinking it for quite some time: I believe Sheboyganboy Six and Master Sig II ought to get to know each other. Something tells me that these couple of brainiacs would become fast friends!]
.
Three days ago, the King of Bloggers, Arlee Bird, posted an installment titled ‘My Thankfulness To Bloggers Post’. That post of his was the inspiration for this blog bit of mine. On that same day, I also left a comment on Arlee Boidman’s post in which I said in no uncertain terms just what I think of 
Y-O-U, my “Magnificent Seven”. Mine is comment #32, and you can read it by clicking HERE and scrolling down. 
.
Magnificent Seven, again I thank you for giving me a reason to blog. I appreciate you all. Every one of YOU is unique and “smarter than the average bear”. (I really WOULD put you up against any other blogger’s Top 7 commenters, knowing full-well that y’all would kick blogger booty!)
.
Oh, me name is MacNamara, I'm the leader of the band
Although we're few in numbers, we're the strongest in the land . . .

.
Magnificent Seven, May You Bless And Be Blessed, 
And may you stay . . . 
.
Forever Young
.
.
['The Last Waltz' - Thanksgiving Day, November 25, 1976.]
.
.
May God bless and keep you always
May your wishes all come true
May you always do for others
And let others do for you
May you build a ladder to the stars
Climb on every rung
And may you stay forever young 
.
~ Stephen T. McCarthy 
.
YE OLDE COMMENT POLICY: All comments, pro and con, are welcome. However, ad hominem attacks and disrespectful epithets will not be tolerated (read: "posted"). After all, this isn’t Amazon.com, so I don’t have to put up with that kind of bovine excrement.
.

42 comments:

  1. Stephen-

    I am honored, my friend-and come to think of it, it's been too long that we've only been friends through the blog-we're really gonna have to connect one of these days.

    Your blog is also a must-read for me, although yours usually requires a little more concentration than mine, for while you still inject humour, you start with a point that you want to get across and layer in the humour.

    LC

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks for the nice words, McBrother!

    Perhaps we should ALL get together? If so, somewhere warm, please. Maybe FAE's locale?

    ReplyDelete
  3. DR. DISC ~
    Rams 31 - Cardinals 17
    What's with this "my friend" stuff?

    You think YOUR team can beat up on MY team and we can still be friends?

    (Just kidding, of course. The Cardinals haven't REALLY been "my team" since Warner left and they ceased being The Kurtinals.)

    I don't think there's really that much of a difference between our blogs. Except that you get straight to the point (with humor) and I tend to yak everyone to death.

    But your blog has proven to me that my blog wouldn't have been any more popular than it is if I had made my posts shorter.

    The fact is - whether brief or lengthy - most people just don't want to hear the truth.


    SHEBOYGANBOY 6 ~

    >> . . . Perhaps we should ALL get together? If so, somewhere warm, please. Maybe FAE's locale?

    A nice idea, but until the TSA (Totalitarian Sexual Abusers) are gone, I ain't flyin'. I'm in full TSA boycott mode.

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    ReplyDelete

  4. Stephen,
    That is a very unique and extremely nice thing you said about all of us. Two kiddos keep me from blogging most of the time now. That, my lack of a "hurry up and get to it" approach to anything, employment, and getting back into writing music again for the first time in over a decade. Plus I think I'm better at commenting than blogging. Blogging requires more research, which takes time, which is a commodity I don't have.

    Love ya brother,
    Marc

    ReplyDelete
  5. OK, I hear ya. I let TSA grope the naughty bits rather than take my nude photo, as it is clearly a violation of my rights. They always ask if I want a private screening, and I say "no, let everyone see it."

    But it is warm in "Airheadzona", so we can come to you instead of the Caribbean.

    I forgot to add two things in my previous comment:

    1) "dibs on the James Coburn character!" He was always my favorite.

    and

    2) "May God bless and keep you, too." And I am grateful to KNOW he does, even if it may seem otherwise sometimes.

    You are as good a friend as one could hope for. In a battle you'd be the first guy I'd pick for my team, because you are really loyal to your friends, and you NEVER give up. (Nappy second, based on his reputation. My tough friend Woody third. In D&D terms, he has an 18:00 Strength, but only a 9 Constitution, so he'd kick butt for only a short time.)

    Your beautifully crafted tribute to Anniee McPhee was one of the most moving things I've ever read. I hope you will write my own epitaph. WAIT... instead, let me out-live ya and write yours.

    DOH! I forgot we are all goners in about another month! Well, let's just say we'd each write a good one if given the chance!

    ReplyDelete
  6. I too am thankful for good friends, both offline and online. You included. Where else could I complain about 'Murica when all the other blogs are talking about how peachy things are? Sunshine and roses and puppies farting rainbows... that's not the America I live in, dammit!

    And thanks for the mention! Part of the mystery is not knowing which of us comments. Hell, sometimes I don't even know which of us I am. I'll just say I'm the talented one. We all need a good feud sometimes, don't we?

    ReplyDelete
  7. BR'ER MARC ~
    I fully understand why you aren't able to blog like you used to. But best o' luck with the music. It's good that you still have SOME creative outlet, Bro.


    SBB 6 ~
    Thanks for all the kind words. (It's really early AM right now, so I'm afraid the "James Coburn" remark went over my head... or under my bed. Somewhere else, anyway.)

    Yeah, the good news is that in 25 days the ancient Mayans are going to remove us from this f'ed up world. This is the most I've ever looked forward to a Doomsday Prophecy! I hope this one turns out to be more successful than the others did.

    Oh! Almost forgot to tell ya... I got the last Email, 6. Thanks! A reply will be "flying in" soon.

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    ReplyDelete
  8. Ah, you’re very kind Mr. McCarthy. Thank you for the recognition. I love how you love your friends and I’m grateful to be counted one.

    I had no idea that quote from the Lizard King had to do with me. Thanks again for the kind words and most importantly your friendship. You my friend are truly ‘one of a kind’.

    A memoir, eh? I wonder how many people I could have running for cover if I named names, dates, and places. Ha, ha, ha. Then there is always the chance it would be published after I died (neither ‘word’ nor I can spell that other word correctly). Actually I’m not that interesting or dangerous, I’m just drawn that way.

    You coming to my little island could be interesting. What do we have to do STMc, put you on a cruise ship? I’ll tell you my best TSA story in the next comment box, that way if you don’t want it here, you can delete it.

    ReplyDelete
  9. On November 30, 2010 I boarded a plane in STX (St. Croix) bound for Idaho Falls, Idaho. At that time it took four flights to get there. My mistake was flying through San Juan. If there is going to be trouble it will happen in San Juan. The plane is full, we are all boarded in San Juan, Puerto Rico and something broke. We sat in the plane for almost two hours while they fixed it. Nobody with the airlines considered that maybe I didn’t want to fly on a plane that broke down so easily.

    We landed in Dallas, about thirty minutes after my flight for SLC took off. The airline wanted me to stay the night in Dallas and I said no way. They told me the last flight of my connection from STC to Idaho Falls would take off in about thirty minutes and there was no way I was getting to my final destination that night. I told them, I didn’t care; I wanted to go onto SLC.

    They had a seat available but they really didn’t want to send me First Class. They did and told me that in SLC I should go to the ticket counter and they would arrange for hotel accommodations at the airlines expense. My flight finally did arrive in SLC at about half past midnight. When you consider the time change I had been traveling for about twenty hours. In SLC there wasn’t a soul around, no one at the ticket counter. I was wandering around looking for any American Airlines personnel when TSA asked if they could help. I told them the story and they got on their radios and had a A/A attendant there is about five minutes. They A/A employee told me this was not their area, and there was nothing they could do. TSA started giving them a hard time, so they got on the phone, and lo and behold, they had a shuttle there in about ten minutes to take me to a pretty nice hotel, they gave me their complimentary overnite bag (toothbrush, toothpaste, comb etc.) and at the hotel I was informed there was a complimentary full breakfast.

    About this time, I’m thinking this isn’t too bad and those guys from TSA really saved me. I was wearing jeans and a t-shirt and carrying my only winter survival gear (a bright red oversized hoodie sweatshirt). I opted to sleep in the t-shirt and in the morning stuffed it in my purse and put the sweatshirt on. When I got back to the airport and received a stand-by boarding pass I headed straight to the TSA check-in.

    The agent looks at me and my sweatshirt over and says, “can you take that thing off?’

    Me, ‘no’.

    Agent, ‘well, we’ll have to pat you down”.

    Me, ‘Are you kidding me?’ a few decibels above a dog whistle.

    ‘No ma’am ‘ Agent says with a smirk. “We’ll get you a woman agent.’

    He walks away behind a screen and comes back with a person following him, but I could not have vouched for the person’s sex. Now, Broomhilda, the very butch TSA agent tells me to follow her.

    Me, ‘What for and where’.

    Broomhilda, “I’ll take you in a private room to pat you down.”

    For once I didn’t say what I was thinking ‘like hell you will”. Instead I suggested we do ‘it’ right here in front of everyone. Broomhilda doesn’t look too pleased, but I’m figuring my chances are better in public.

    End of the story. I finally got to Idaho Falls after about twenty-eight hours of traveling, very little to eat, being felt up by Broomhilda and my luggage was nowhere to be seen. I suppose that does nothing to encourage you to fly. In my case, when you live on an island, you just have to take your chances, and wear tight fitting clothes.

    ReplyDelete
  10. A BEER FOR THE SHOWER BOY ~
    If I were required to bet a large sum of money on which Beer Boy you be, I'd bet you be BRYAN!

    How'd I know?
    Well, let's just say I have these psychic visions. I got it from my "Grammy Moon" - she was psychic too.

    Thanks for your support here at F-FFF.

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    ReplyDelete
  11. FAE ~

    >>...I had no idea that quote from the Lizard King had to do with me.

    Yeah, I knew it would surprise you when you found out.

    >>...Actually I’m not that interesting or dangerous, I’m just drawn that way.

    That you are, J.R.

    As for the TSA...
    I wouldn't give you two cents for any one of 'em. Only a demon would work for the devil!

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    ReplyDelete
  12. StMcC ~

    It must have been early morning for you to have missed the James Coburn reference, since you know more about movie westerns than any four people I know!

    It was a silly comment. Since you were calling us "The Magnificent Seven," I just was claiming dibs on being the cowpoke Britt. He's the guy with a knife that out-draws and kills a smart ass with a gun. My favorite character in the movie, and it was too bad he was killed off.

    ReplyDelete
  13. McSIX ~
    Oh, sheesh, man! Right you are. Color me EMBARRASSED! I use the "Magnificent Seven" name and then I'm absolutely clueless when you mention an actor from the movie.

    Well, in my (still embarrassed) defense I'll say that it WAS too early in the morning for thinking, AND I haven't actually seen 'The Magnificent Seven' in 23 years. I couldn't have even told you that James Coburn was in it. I knew that it had a big-name cast, but the only actors I could still remember being in it were Yul Brynner and Steve McQueen.

    I'm "a bad man"!

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    ReplyDelete
  14. You must be thankful that you do not have 700 (instead of 7) regular commenters otherwise that would have added another 154,539 words to your post... although I don't think that would have been a problem for you.

    That was a generous post, and a good reminder that spending a few moments at the beginning of each day reflecting on seven things for which one is grateful for can give an entirely new perspective to the day. In a world where we are continually bombarded by negativity, and where it seems that one little mistake can wipe out a hundred good deeds, a little thankfulness goes a long way.

    That's a sharp family photo. The young gent with the bowtie steals the show. Not sure if that's you or your brother. Reminds me of a similar photo of my sister and me. One of my wife's friends recently commented how cute I was back then. Translation: "What the hell happened?" I know that my physical appearance and academic achievements peaked when I was eleven but do I need to be reminded?

    With that said, I'm still grateful.

    And that reminds me of your comment, "Shit Happens to our appearance!" in ROCK ‘N’ ROLL.A. (Or, “The Return Of Warren Zevon’s Pioneer Chicken Stand”) which, by the way, is another brilliant piece in your "travel guide" series. I still think you should compile all the posts written about your various excursions to L.A., Las Vegas, favorite saloons, etc. The writing and photography in those posts are worthy of at least coffee table book status. (That may not sound like a compliment, but it is.)

    Rock-N-Rolla-or...

    SigToo

    ReplyDelete
  15. MASTER SIG II ~

    >>...That's a sharp family photo. The young gent with the bowtie steals the show.

    Ha! Yeah, that would be me. Thanks! Of course it makes "stealing the show" easier when you are planted dead-center in the photo. Then again, you suffer a couple of "dings" for the bow-tie. (Is there ANYTHING nerdier than a bow-tie? Well, if there is, it's suspenders.)

    My all-time favorite family photo (also black and white but which includes my Sister) I do not have scanned or in a format I could have posted. But as soon as I've got the time, I'm going to see if I can get it posted here, replacing the one we've been talking about. The one in this blog bit I posted previously (at 'STUFFS'), and I really only put it in here as a kind of "place-holder" until I can get the one I really like in its spot.

    >>...Translation: "What the hell happened?" I know that my physical appearance and academic achievements peaked when I was eleven but do I need to be reminded?

    Yep, that's precisely how I would have translated that remark also, if it had been directed to me. I couldn't say about your physical appearance, but somehow I have a hunch you didn't peak academically at age eleven.

    >>...I still think you should compile all the posts written about your various excursions to L.A., Las Vegas, favorite saloons, etc. The writing and photography in those posts are worthy of at least coffee table book status. (That may not sound like a compliment, but it is.)

    [;-)}
    I thank ya! I know that Sheboyganboy 6 and Ol' WP have also stated that they always particularly enjoyed my "travelogue" blog bits.

    With this new job, it looks like my next major trip is a long, long way in the future. Either that or this coming December 21st. Next month or next decade, I guess.

    Hey, quick note to let ya know that the McCarthy book did not get mailed last Saturday as I'd planned. (Life and What Not interfered.)

    HOWEVER, 'Blacklisted By History' DID get mailed to you this morning. It's coming "Priority Mail" and the woman at the post office said she expects you'll receive it Thursday. Which means, of course, that with a good tailwind and a lotta luck, you MIGHT get it as early as Friday.

    I think I'd put my money, though, on Saturday. Which should not be interpreted as any sort of indictment on my part against the Federal workforce.
    ...Oh, wait. Yes, it should! What was I thinking?

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    ReplyDelete
  16. SJM,

    Just received the book. Thanks again for the gift and inscription, and the paid shipping fee (not cheap). 'Blacklisted by History' now ranks higher than my "Arnold" autographed 'Pumping Iron' book in the bookshelf chain of command.

    I've viewed 'American Graffiti' with full attention this time, and am halfway through the first reading of 'The Creature...' so I'm cruisin' now.

    Speaking of cruisin', if you happen to be holding that $500M Powerball ticket, word has it that Barrett-Jackson is auctioning off the original Batmobile in Scottsdale soon.

    Holy Batmobile

    SigToo

    ReplyDelete
  17. Just noticed I've been using the initials SJM instead of STM. Apologies to both you and Thoreau.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Just trying out that tag thingy for the links. See if you get this, you had asked for us earlier.

    Obama on Osama in Jamaican

    Hope it works!

    ReplyDelete
  19. SUPER-SIG ALSO ~

    >>...'Blacklisted by History' now ranks higher than my "Arnold" autographed 'Pumping Iron' book in the bookshelf chain of command.

    Ha!-Ha! Well, Arnold has me beat all to hell in the 'Fame' Dept., but I'm confident that 'Blacklisted' beats 'Pumping' in the 'Importance' Dept.

    'American Graffiti' - Good, Bad, or So-So? (Even if you didn't like it overall, ya gotta admit that entire scene with Toad trying to obtain booze - "hard stuff" - from the liquor store is a total classic, right?)

    I'm not too terribly materialistic but, boy, wouldn't I like to own the real Batmobile! I actually got to see it once. When I was a kid, it was on display when my parents took me on the Universal Studios Tour. "Holy Cool Car, Batman!"

    SJM - no problem. (I think Ol' WP used to do that too.) I wondered about it a few times but never bothered to axe about it. I've often used the middle initial J. when making up fake names (it comes from 'Rocky & Bullwinkle') and I thought maybe you were just following suit.

    Glad the book got to you, and I hope you enjoy it. Not an "exciting" read, but it's the truth about Senator McCarthy, and well past time the American people knew it.

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    ReplyDelete
  20. OK, what did I do wrong. I got no linky on the clicky.

    I did hear that somebody from AZ had a winning ticket on that big Powerball. Hopin' it's you.

    ReplyDelete
  21. FAE ~
    Unfortunately, your link didn't work quite right. It's strange in that it WANTS to be a link (notice when you put your cursor over it, the phrase becomes underlined), but it doesn't allow one to actually click on it and be transported elsewhere.

    See Sig's link above your post. The words "Holy Batmobile" appear blue, and when you touch 'em with your cursor, the words become underlined, but also allow you to click 'n' go.

    Not sure WHY yours didn't work. It seems like it "half-worked". Kinda odd. Are you sure you didn't leave any spaces between characters when you shouldn't have?

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    ReplyDelete
  22. You sayin' I got no 'Blues'. I'll try again in the morning, right now I'm too tired to get it right.

    ReplyDelete
  23. FYI FAE from SIG

    Clicky Link

    You won't know it actually works until the comment is posted.

    _____________________________

    ReplyDelete
  24. sTm,

    I feel like I'm becoming a Blog- Hog here. Just been on the computer a lot lately so I make my rounds a little more often.

    I thought American Graffiti was a unique movie to say the least. I didn't see it in 1973 but I remember how the epilogue describing the fate of the four main characters affected the people I knew who did see it. It seemed so out of the place but sort of gave closure with a little shock value thrown in with the Vietnam reference.

    Seems like there were a lot of scenes where the actual script wasn't followed unlike 'Wall Street' for instance where Oliver Stone wouldn't even let veteran actors deviate from the script. When Mackenzie Phillips got hit by the water balloon her reaction seemed totally real, and Toad's hilarious motor bike scene at the very beginning of the movie was priceless. I think his character got the most laughs, but Phillips was a close second.

    How many other movies prior to this one used music in every scene to guide the story? I'm not sure if any movie since has had such a humongous soundtrack.

    I don't know much about the different types of film used to shoot movies although I often wonder why certain movies or television shows look different. Some look live, some look more...movie-like. How's that for expert analysis? This movie had a different look to it. Not sure if it was film or lighting or both. I recently watched 'Glengarry Glen Ross' and it was obvious that high-contrast colors and lighting were used to highlight the film’s tension. Whatever it is that I can't seem to describe set this movie apart somehow.

    If this movie was as original as I think it was, it deserves more credit than I'm giving it. My over-stimulated brain from watching 'Happy Days' and other copycats probably affect my judgment a little.

    I'm willing to bet that 'American Graffiti' would have been a favorite of mine back in the 70's. Now it seems like an interesting 'snapshot' of history, which might have been the whole point of making it in the first place.

    I don't know the 'business' like you do so I am sure you can appreciate certain aspects of the movie that I don't even know exist.

    SigToo

    ReplyDelete
  25. SIG-TOO ~

    >>...I feel like I'm becoming a Blog-Hog here.

    Not AT ALL, man! You know how I love a good discussion.

    Gotta hit the sack NOW ("work" calls early in the A.M.) But I'll return soon with 'More American Graffiti' yak.

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    ReplyDelete
  26. SIG ~

    I know it was for FAE, but... THANKS for the "clicky link" info! I have not known how to do that, so I just have expected everyone to cut and paste if they want to view the fine selections I've posted. I'll get more takers this way.

    To horn in on the American Graffiti discussion: I love that film. I remember that it was big deal to my circle of friends, and we were anticipating its release. We had watched and loved THX-1138 and knew who Lucas was. To me, it had a pace and flow that were visceral and which defines the movie and makes it feel real... except for the very funny parts. The period of time depicted is before my age bracket, but it is set when I would have been about 7, so I remember the feel of that period as I watched my older cousins and neighbors cruising and trying to get girls.

    Our town in SOCAL had a cruisin' circuit and a remote, straight road that served as the drag strip. Some kids were killed there, racing.

    I always thought that I'd be doing that cruising stuff(s) too when I got to be that age, but it all changed in a flash.

    Anyway, great movie. Probably in my top 25 or 30.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Hey, Fellas, I'm back. Sorry for the delay in replying...

    Part 1 Of 2:

    SUPER-SIG ALSO ~

    >>...I didn't see [AMERICAN GRAFFITI] in 1973 but I remember how the epilogue describing the fate of the four main characters... seemed so out of the place but sort of gave closure with a little shock value thrown in with the Vietnam reference.

    Yes, definitely. I would say the dominant theme of the movie was "transitions". On the micro level, most of the characters were on the cusp of their various individual life changes. And the era portrayed was that last moment of macro "innocence" (so to speak) just before the rise of the counterculture, the Sexual Revolution, and the Vietnam War which ultimately divided the people.

    >>...How many other movies prior to this one used music in every scene to guide the story? I'm not sure if any movie since has had such a humongous soundtrack.

    Was music really used in EVERY scene? If so, I didn't even realize that. (Even the scene where the Pharaohs tie down the police car?)

    The soundtrack is great (I have it), 41 songs on two CDs. I love the use of Booker T And The MGs' 'Green Onions' as the kids are all driving to the drag strip to see the race. That was a PERFECT song selection for that shot, even though the song didn't actually exist yet in the year that the movie takes place.

    >>...I don't know much about the different types of film... why certain movies or television shows look different. Some look live, some look more...movie-like. How's that for expert analysis?

    Ha!-Ha! Well, I know exactly what you mean. I haven't studied the actual "technical" side of the making of AG, but I'm sure it was shot on 35mm film.

    There are probably a few different things that give AG that "loose" sort of "semi-documentary-like" feel it has. One is that it was a low-budget movie and filmed primarily on location (rather than on studio sound stages) and at night.

    The relatively small budget meant that key lights would be used but Lucas wouldn't be able to fully control the overall atmosphere. Also, it probably meant fewer takes of each shot, and you're right that it seems the performers were allowed to ad-lib some of their dialogue.

    All of these things helped to give it that "spontaneous" or "naturalistic" mood we often find in documentaries where a film crew just sets up and shoots, without a great deal of control over the setting.

    Continued Below...

    ReplyDelete
  28. Part 2 Of 2:

    There's a Western movie I saw once called 'THE BALLAD OF GREGORIO CORTEZ' (1982). I would love to see it again sometime but I'm not sure it was ever released on DVD. If you ever get a chance, check it out. Although it was a scripted story, the movie-making technique employed in 'BALLAD...' made it often seem as if the viewer is watching a genuine documentary with spur-of-the-moment dialogue, hand-held cameras, etc. A very unique Western in many ways.

    Yeah, that awful TV show 'Happy Days' may have affected your judgment of AG.

    The sequel, 'MORE AMERICAN GRAFFITI', also had a great soundtrack and was underrated in my opinion. It was nowhere near as good as the original, and it was not directed by George Lucas. I think the comparisons unfairly tainted the public's opinion of it.

    MAG is far more slickly produced than AG, even using split-screen images at times. It picks up maybe a couple years after AG ends and shows the things that happened to the characters as briefly described just before the end credits of AG.

    We learn how Toad wound up MIA in Vietnam, what happened to John Milner the day before the night he was killed by a drunken driver. We see the characters played by Ron Howard and Cindy Williams having relationship problems and how they get pulled into the Vietnam War protest situation.

    MAG is no AG, but it's well worth seeing. Even if only for the girl from Iceland that John Milner falls for. HOO-WEEE! I'll take two - one for now and one for later. That girl gives me unclean thoughts, and when she says "Mickey Moose", I pretty much fall in love with her.

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    ReplyDelete
  29. SHEBOYGANBOY SIX ~
    Hey, I had no idea you didn't know how to make LINKS in the comment sections. I figured you just posted URLs to copy and paste because it's easier (and it REALLY is!)

    I didn't read all of the article that Sig linked to about how to do that (since I already knew), so I don't know if what I'm about to tell you was also covered in that article. But just in case it wasn't...

    Here's how to make words BOLD or ITALICIZED in comment sections:

    Before any word, sentence, or paragraph you want to appear bold, type your arrows < > putting the letter b in the middle, with no spaces between the arrows and the letter b. At the end of the word, sentence, or paragraph, you do the same thing, only this time it should be slash b, surrounded by the arrows, like this: /b

    BOLD becomes BOLD.

    Do the same thing but use the letter i instead of b and...

    ITALICIZED becomes ITALICIZED.

    You can use BOTH at the same time and...

    BOLD ITALICS becomes BOLD ITALICS.

    About 'AMERICAN GRAFFITI', Bro...

    If that movie isn't Brother Nappy's all-time #1 favorite, it's damned close to it! For decades I have considered AG one of my Top 30 Favorite Films, but if I were to rearrange my list today, I would HAVE TO find a place for it in the TOP 25. (The only question would be what to remove to make way for AG on that list?)

    >>...I always thought that I'd be doing that cruising stuff(s) too when I got to be that age, but it all changed in a flash.

    Actually, in Los Angeles, while I was still a teenager in the 1970s, that "cruising" scene was still going pretty strong in a few places. Some friends and I did it regularly on weekends in Westwood Village for some years before the cops finally cracked down on it by making all the streets in the heart of the Village 'pedestrian only'. But even then, cruising continued around the Westwood Village outskirts for a couple more years, I believe.

    SSB-6, I've been working on a reply to your last A-list E. I hope to get it sent this weekend. Also, I'm going to send you a cassette tape of something I think you'll really dig. I'll want it returned to me though, as it's the only copy I have and the original is gone or misplaced.

    I'll tell you more about it in an E, but just to give you an idea, it's my Pa and me (about 12 years old) doing a very, very BOB & RAY-like skit on audio tape, with fake show sponsors and everything. I can't believe it. I'd forgotten all about it but ran across it earlier in the week and listened to it while driving "on the clock". My Pa is pretty darn funny in it.

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    ReplyDelete
  30. 'BALLAD OF GREGORIO CORTEZ'starring Edward James Olmos looks like VHS only but I'll dig a little deeper. It's based on a true story; sounds interesting.

    _____________________

    Was music really used in EVERY scene? If so, I didn't even realize that. (Even the scene where the Pharaohs tie down the police car?)

    Right, probably not every scene, and not much music in that scene. Just some train whistle and a hint of The Dell Vikings 'Come and Go With Me'.

    A better choice with the more appropriate titled song would have been The Fleetwood's 'Come Softly to Me' as Curt slowly and quietly approaches the police car.

    So that would be...

    Dom dom dom dom
    domby dooby dom...

    versus

    Dahm dahm, dahm do, oooby do.

    SigToo-Dooby-doo

    ReplyDelete
  31. Sorry I never got back to try that Linky thing again. It will have to wait until I return from FL.

    Great flights, but what is it with TSA and my butt. I got 'patted down' again leaving the VI. Sheesh!

    ReplyDelete
  32. SigToo-Dooby-doo ~

    HA!-HA!
    Ya see? Ya see? THIS is why I say I may have only SEVEN commenters, but they are MAGNIFICENT!

    I'm not sure what the moon looked like the night Curt "Pharaohed" the police car - I'd have to pop my DVD copy of 'American Graffiti' into the player to see for sure. But if it happened to be a "blue moon", a good background song choice would have been 'BLUE MOON' by The Marcels, giving us...

    Bom Ba Ba Bom
    Ba Bom Ba Ba Bom
    Ba Danga Dang Dang
    Ba Dinga Dong Ding


    What's a poor filmmaker to dooby-da-doo?

    ~ D-FensDogg
    ‘Loyal American Underground’

    ReplyDelete
  33. FAE ~

    >>...Great flights, but what is it with TSA and my butt. I got 'patted down' again leaving the VI. Sheesh!

    No disrespect meant to yer butt, but... THAT'S what I done been bitchin' 'bout on my blog! THAT, Sister, is now Standard Operating Procedure for the TSA.

    As an airline customer, you have two choices: either A) federal hands on yer privates, or B) federal fotography of yer privates.

    Nice butt, bad butt, or so-so butt, THOSE are yer choices! And that's why...

    I AIN'T FLYIN' NOWHERE!

    Ain't nobody grabbin' my butt but me!

    Well, anyway, glad to know you got there... here... safely.

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    ReplyDelete
  34. Nice butt, bad butt, or so-so butt, THOSE are yer choices! And that's why...
    I AIN'T FLYIN' NOWHERE!
    Ain't nobody grabbin' my butt but me!


    Blue Moon

    ReplyDelete
  35. Yep, that's the punk!

    Some of those '50s and early '60s songs were so goofy, but danga-dang-dang if the singers didn't sound like they were havin' great fun recording them.

    I still haven't run across my Chuck Berry autograph. Maybe Santa will locate it and put it in my stocking this Christmas.

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    ReplyDelete
  36. MASTER SIG II ~
    What with all the butt-grabbin', perhaps the song title should have been 'BLACK AND BLUE MOON'?

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    ReplyDelete
  37. Next post-- TSA theme song contest?

    Winner gets the Batmobile?

    ReplyDelete
  38. SUPER-SIG ALSO ~
    Ha! I like that. A TSA theme song... Hmmm... nothing leaps into my mind, but given enough time to consider it... the possibilities are probably endless (and likely quite entertaining).

    Hell, I'd participate in ANY contest where the Grand Prize was the original Batmobile!

    The next post though will hopefully go up tonight, and it's a review of a fellow blogger's book. (Well, actually, she's a she, so can I really call her "a fellow" blogger?)

    Anyway, it's an amusing book and I hope my review does it justice. We shall see.

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    ReplyDelete
  39. I've made it and what a great tribute post it is. Thanks for the kind words.

    The comment section here in this post is a great illustration of what I was saying and what you were saying. Good comments and an ongoing conversation maintained by your responses. So many times on other blogs I have left a lengthy comment that begs for a response and nary a word do I get. It makes me wonder if the blogger even checks the comments. You do it right my friend.

    We need more bloggers like you and more commenters like the ones you have. Good blogging everyone.

    Lee
    Wrote By Rote (One of my blogs that you forgot to mention)

    ReplyDelete
  40. Thanks, LEE ~

    Yes, I think you're right that a number of bloggers don't even bother to check their Comment Sections.

    And then there are the (MANY!) people who leave comments but never bother to return and see whether or not the blogger replied to them (i.e., whether or not an actual dialogue has been established).

    I'm lucky in that the small handful of "Followers" my blog has are well above average in intelligence and often seem to enjoy a genuine back-and-forth exchange of ideas.

    There are so many bloggers who never or rarely respond to comments left for them on their blogs, and I wonder why they don't just completely close down their comment sections if they are so disinterested in what readers have to say.

    Plus, as I've said many times, I think it's flat-out RUDE for a blogger to ignore a comment that someone has left for them. Ninety-eight out of 100 times, I have a reply to the comment left for me.

    I've lost count of how many blogs I've stopped "Following" solely because the blogger never or rarely found the time to respond to comments I had left for them. I don't require a response to EVERY SINGLE COMMENT I leave, but if the blogger ignores me too many times, I'll delete their blog without a second thought - even if it was a blog I really enjoyed reading! (Sadly, your friend K. Robinson's blog is a case in point.)

    Boidman, I received your Email (Thanks!) and will reply tomorrow, Bro.

    And you're correct that I forgot to mention your WROTE BY ROTE blog. I do "Follow" that one but I'm not as diligent in reading it as I am the others, so it just kinda slipped my mind. Sorry 'bout that.

    Yak Later . . .

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    POSTSCRIPT: Did you notice that your quote about me has now become a permanent fixture in the left column of this blog? I told ya I was going to find a way to use that quote, Brotherman.

    ReplyDelete
  41. So sadly true about the commenters who probably never see responses that are left for them. I leave responses most of the time and often quite lengthy, but usually those responses go unacknowledged.

    One thing I'll agree about your followers who comment is that they do know how to hold a good ongoing conversation. I think many people who blog may be totally oblivious to the possibilities of having conversations in the comment section. Then again, a lot of them are probably so self-absorbed that they don't give a chitlin'.

    Love what you did with the quote. Very creative and it evoked a hearty laugh from me. Thanks

    Lee
    Wrote By Rote

    ReplyDelete
  42. ARLEE BIRD ~
    Yes, you are very good about acknowledging comments left for you and responding to them.

    I consider the maintenance of the 'Comment Section' to be an integral aspect of the blogging experience. To me, it's just as much a part of 'blogging' as is the composing and posting of a blog installment.

    Glad you liked the way I used your quote on the blog. There was no way I could let that remark get away, never to be seen again. It's almost like an official stamp proclaiming this blog to be Very Politically Incorrect, and I like that. Thanks again for it.
    :-)

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

    ReplyDelete

NOTE: Comment Moderation is activated. All submitted comments that do not transgress "Ye Olde Comment Policy" will be posted and responded to as soon as possible. Thanks for taking the time to comment.