Monday, October 31, 2005


When I was a kid Halloween was one of my favorite holidays. It was the first time that as kids my brother and I were given more freedom. We lived in trailer parks as kids, so the neighborhood was pretty confined, so it wasn't like we were going to be able to hike miles from home. It was the first night that we were pretty much able to go out on our own, with just our friends and go trick or treating. There were probably about two hundred or more trailers in the park and I bet we hit every one. Maybe twice.
It was that taste of freedom, that first taste of being a grown up at the age of ten or so, being trusted enough to go out on our own. Nowdays kids spend the night out on their own at that age, back than it was a little different. We would march from trailer to trailer, collecting as much candy as we could. Than coming home we would dump our backs on the living room floor and check our loot out. There was always more candy than we were ever going to eat, though try as hard as we could to eat it all we would.
To me Halloween will never be the costume parties as we got older, that rolling people's houses, whatever grown up fun we attempt on this night. It'll always be that venturing out in the darkness with just me and my brother, with no grown ups, being able to go where we wanted. (Ok, I know it wasn't quite that much freedom, we were limited to the trailer park and we had to be home before it was too late, but to us it felt like real freedom.) To me Halloween will always mean freedom.

Thursday, October 27, 2005


The word is spelled out with the names of the 2000 soldiers that have died in Iraq.
This is copyrighted by Mike Luckovich from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Monday, October 24, 2005

My Grandparent's Home

Memories are strange things. When I was younger, many years ago, this house seemed to be huge to me. I spent many a summer here. This was the home of my grandparents on my mother's side of the family. My mother grew up here, not in this exact house, but one that grew into this house eventually. Bathrooms were a later addition to this house, there used to be an outhouse in the back. Off to the right where I was standing when I took this picture, farther down the road was the root cellar. Just like in The Wizard of Oz, a room built into the ground, where my grandmother kept her perserves and where they rode out tornados.

The porch in front of the house was always full of people. To the left hung a porch swing, where my grandfather used to sit in and swing back and forth. When my sister was small, like five or six, he would sit with her and swing. He would walk all around with her, he doted on her. My grandfather was one of the kindest and gentlest men I have ever known.

After dinner everyone would come out on the porch and sit and talk. All us kids would sit around listening to the grownups and trying to act like we knew what they were talking about.

When we needed to find someplace to bring Blackie, our dog this is where we brought him. He lived another five years here, following after my grandfather on his morning rounds checking on the cows and pigs. This was a working farm, my grandfather kept cows, chickens, pigs and of course his hunting dogs.

This was the first time I've seen the house in over two decades. I haven't been back to Memphis since my last year of high school. My grandparents have been dead for a long time. My mother and her brothers and sisters have split the land up and each have their own part of the farm. But the house sits unused and vacant.

It is rundown and weeds have grown all around it. The door looks like it would fall down with a hard breath. It was a shame. I know no one lives in the house anymore, but one of my cousins even mentioned it to me, if they had kept up the house it could have been used for family members that needed it. It could have been a place to gather the family around. Maybe I'm not the one to talk of things like that, since I haven't been up to the family in over twenty years.

It was just sad seeing the house in such a state of disrepair. It held such a large part of my growing up.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005


Once again we're faced with a hurricane out there threatening us. I know it's not supposed to come this far north, the track has it heading towards Florida. Which is somewhat similar to what Katrina was supposed to do if I remember correctly.

And I really hate for it to hit Florida too. There is no good wishing it to turn and good somewhere else, somewhere else is someone else's family and friends and lives.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005


You know, I've realized that a lot of my posts lately have shall we say it? Kind of depressing. A lot has been going on in the past few months. Two hurricanes, an unexpected brush with death and a hospital stay, the death of a friend...not the most upbeat type of news.

But you know what? I really consider myself a very lucky person. Yeah, we had two hurricanes but I survived. My home made it through without a lot of damage. I might have been in the hospital, but the alternative would have been a lot worse. So many people don't have homes. So many people lost loved ones. This place is still torn up and it's not going to get better over night. But every day it gets a little better. Everyday there are more signs of things returning to something resembling a normal life.

I'm going to continue to post news that is not all happy and cheerful. I'm going to continue to rant and rave about what is going on. I'm going to continue to feel overwhelmed sometimes.

But I just wanted everyone to know...I am one lucky s.o.b.! I have my home, my family, my friends. (Yes, I lost one recently but I would rather honor his life than belabor his death. I mourn him, but he lived a good life and that's the best we can ask for.) What more can someone ask for?

Monday, October 17, 2005

Paul Stewart R.I.P.

The last time I talked to him was through voice mail. It's been awhile since we actually talked. Once we were very good friends. When he moved to Californai and got married I was supposed to be his best man. It happened too quick for me to get off work and go out there. But somewhere along the way the calls slowed and we seemed to stop talking as much, than not at all. I don't think anything was wrong, our friendship just drifted away, as they sometimes do with distance. But I still considered him a friend and I hope he did me too.

Right after the hurricane I had a voice mail from him. He was calling to see if I was still alive, how bad things were. He sounded bad on the phone. Out of breath. I figured it was the cigarettes he smoked all his life. I called back but got his voice mai. I left a message that I was ok and that I would call him soon.

I never did make that phone call.

The other day I got a call from another good friend that he was dead. From cancer.

That's Paul on the left in picture. The one on the right is Mark, another good friend, the one that passed on his death to me.

Sometimes life sucks.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Deja Vu

It seems like I keeping having to say this...I'm Back!

Katrina didn't keep me off the internet this long. Rita who barely affected us around here did knock me off the internet and it's taken this long to get back on line. Hopefully I'll be online for awhile this time.

I miss not being able to get online. I miss not being able to write in my blog and check everyone else's out.

So everyone leave lots and lots of comments here, so I'll feel good. I hope to get to everyone's blogs in the next few days and leave my normal wonderful witty comments.

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