Sunday, February 27, 2005

Rulers & Rednecks

Okie Dokie. I almost didn't get to the blog today. I finished up both of my targeted resumes today and began searching the job banks for places to post them. Got real caught up in that, forgetting also to stop for lunch. Too late now.

Found out yesterday that putting ear drops in your eye, even accidentally, sucks most heinously. Verily.

I got my book today. BORN FIGHTING HOW THE SCOTS-IRISH SHAPED AMERICA by James Webb. Hardback, like I said, for reading and re-reading. Here's the opening page:

Rulers and Rednecks

Of all the different racial strains that mingled their blood with the earlier English - Irish, Huguenot-French, German, Scotch-Irish - the last was by far the most important... They were desperately poor; the available lands near the coast were already preempted; so armed with axes, their seed potatoes, and the newly invented rifle, they plunged into the backwoods to become our great pioneering race. Scattered thinly through a long frontier, they constituted the outposts and buffer settlements of civilization. A vigorous breed, hardy, assertive, individualistic. thrifty, trained in the democracy of the Scottish kirk, they were the material out of which later Jacksonian democracy was to be fashioned, the creators of that western type which in politics and industry became ultimately the American type.
- Vernon Louis Parrington, Main Currents in American Thought

Friday, February 25, 2005

Debris from a cluttered mind

Good old Dr. Phil. There is hardly a family problem he can't fix in about 7 1/2 minutes using only a down home Texas simile and the suggestion that you look inside yourself for the answer. In fact, as I was watching him yesterday, I came to the inescapeable conclusion that his wife is really hot.

Yesterday I microwaved my MasterCard. Yep, sure did. I thought it would melt but it hardly got soft. Still,it was kinda cool. There were a few sparks at first, then about 1 1/2 minutes later a kinda burning smell. When I pulled it out to examine it the hologram had been burned out of it leaving a neat hole in the card and a pile of charred dust in the plate. The card was otherwise really none the worse for wear. Neatly enough, the charred hologram hole also neatly removed the last 4 digits of the account number.

I don't think that the Survivor Palau show is rigged. Last night it was between Kim and Ashlee as to who the tribe would vote off. Ashlee had her torch extinguished and Kim stayed. Speaking strictly from a "good TV" standpoint, Ashlee had 2 rather compelling, um, reasons to keep going and yet now she's gone. Healthy women in a damp t-shirts never hurt any show's ratings. Ergo, it must not be rigged.

We get AFN [American Forces Network] instead of regular network TV. We also don't get any commercials, which sounds better than it is. Instead we get defining moments in military history, presidential trivia, and the like. Anyway, last night during a "commercial break"
the Air Force weather guesser made me go "Huh??" He stated tha Misawa would be recieving several inches of lake effect snow. Lake effect snow? We live in Japan. It is an island. It is an island surrounded completely by, say it with me, the Pacific OCEAN. Wouldn't it be Ocean effect snow?

The local Japanese company that will come and clean your house for you when you move has an ad in the paper saying that they are looking for more "English speaking stuff in their Yokosuka branch". Unfortunately my stuff doesn't talk...but if it did it would probably say, "I feel so cheap." I believe that they are actually looking for staff.

A big shout out to a stealth reader out in Honolulu. Welcome aboard, Cliff. Tell Junko hi. You are welcome to make comments.

OK, That's it for today. The wife got up with me today. Her theory, which is "you're up so you may as well worship me", is not conducive to blogging. Or anything else.

Peace, out
Travelin' Ed

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Fun with Toolbars...a little geeky, a little Greeky

This is easy. Go to any out of the way folder on your c: drive, open it and make a new folder inside of it. Don't mess with anything else and no need to put anything in the new folder, you just need it there. Now give it a cool name. Close everything back up. Now go down to your task bar, right click an empty place and choose TOOLBARS from the menu. In TOOLBARS choose NEW TOOLBAR. Now navigate to the folder you just built and named, choose it and that text will appear in your task bar whenever your machine is lit off. Cool. Now for the "fun" part.

I went on to a co-workers computer while he was away and set it up to display "I LOVE Analingus". I snickered all the way back to my desk and waited.

Long story short, he found it but was only mildly pissed off. Less so than I had expected. I found out why, though. The moron thought Analingus was an Irish guy.

OK, I'm just fooling with you. That last part wasn't true. The truth is he thought it was a Scottish guy.

Rimshot, out!
Travelin' Ed

Joining the navy

Well, it wasn't the Village People song that inspired me, for sure. I was already in by then. 1979 and I was 19 years old, possessing great knowledge already....and broke! Let me 'splain.....

As I grew up Dad always told me that, "When you turn 18 I'm cutting your end of the table off and shipping you off to the navy." Buffett's songs like Son of a Son of a Sailor, He Went To Paris and A Pirate Looks at Forty mesmerized me. I was living in a trailer in Seffner, Florida, working in a liquor warehouse in Tampa for 15 cents over minimum wage, trading stolen booze for pot, cigarettes and the occasional frozen pizza. I routinely ate 1 meal a day during the week and on the weekends I had to steal lunch from the local supermarket. All of this is true. I was what they call working poor. I worked my butt off but couldn't make enough to live on.

I knew that I couldn't keep going like that, so I talked to the Navy and the Air Force recruiters. I could never shake the feeling that the Air Force recruiter wanted to see me naked so I went Navy. Actually, truth is I could have joined either but the AF had bases in West Texas, Cheyenne, and several other places that I already knew were remote and/or cold and/or sucked. The Navy had bases in San Diego, Key West, Honolulu, Phillippines and Italy. I went Navy.

I went to Boot Camp in San Diego. It was nice. Then up to the Chicago area for some schoolin' . I wasn't overly fond of the area, although I enjoyed going into Chicago itself quite a bit. I escaped just before winter hit and headed down to Virginia Beach for some more schooling. Then it was back to Dan Diego for my first ship. The Lynde McCormick. An Adams Class destroyer. Hot Damn!, I'm gonna be a tin can sailor.

Here's a poem to commemorate that decision. It's pretty true. I have a good life. I can tell true stories and they rhyme, too. Here goes:

By the way, sk are you still reading these things? Show me a sign.

Rebel Heart (No Regrets)

In North Carolina where I was born
the southeast swamps where I loved to stomp as a rebel child.
I carry the memories.

I learned about work when I learned to sweat
cropping tobacco in the sandy dirt of them long ass rows.
As far as the eye could see.

But I left all that behind me.
Took off down that lonely highway.
No regrets.

Well I guess I was born with a rambling bone
'cause I ain't never satisfied with where I am.
I just know that I've gotta go.

A smooth talking man in a crackerjack suit
said "it looks to me that the seven seas is your calling,son.
Have I got a deal for you."

And the pier was longer than the boat was large.
When the sea spray hit me it went right straight to this rebel heart.
And I knew I was home, y'all.

So if home is where the heart is
then God knows that my home ain't got no street address.
From midnight on the ocean
comes round daybreak in a cheap hotel.
And no regrets.

I have crossed the ocean on a typhoon's tail.
Spoke my mind. I've woke up in the province jail.
Don't need to try that twice.

Spent my life in Bangkok one fine night
Sweet thing whispered "I'll sure miss ya" and killed the lights.
Don't gotta tell me twice.

Son, if home is where the heart is
my home is somewhere on that old South China Sea.
Where the warm trade winds are blowing
on the good times this old boy's been knowing.
No regrets.

Where the warm trade winds are blowing
on the good times this old boy's been knowing.
No regrets.

Shoalwater Bay, Australia

Then we hit the Western Pacific.....

Yep. Then we left San Diego. This is one of many that were inspired from my stomping around the backwaters of Asia. Actually, this is pretty daggone good, too.

If you get the chance to travel, 2 words: DO IT!!! And none of this sissy, tour package, nametag wearing, 1 day in each of 7 "destinations" either. Nope. Go meet people. Ride taxis and jeepneys and tuk-tuks. Eat from a sidewalk cart. Wander the provinces. Take a bus somewhere. Experience the place. Otherwise you missed the boat. Can I get an amen?

Here's the poem:

In a Simple Dress (Barrio Girl)

Well I found me down
in a province town
near a muddy river.
Laid my money down
when she'd come around
'cause I had to see her.

She was young and free
in the Philippine
barrio I met her.
And we danced all night
in the smokey light
that I swear caressed her.

In a simple dress
on the day we met
I stood there frozen.
Like an angel came
and called my name
lost in the moment.

I must have known
my honey-ko
was a pleasure stolen.
Her eyes found mine,
I lost my mind,
I was explodin'.

To say I've roamed
so far from home
would put it simply.
From what I've found
to settle down
ain't my best interest.

In the tropic heat
on a dusty street
now what I'm seeing.
Is a pretty girl
in a quiet world
is what I'm needing.

In a simple dress
on the day we met
she drove me crazy.
She stole my heart,
I fell apart,
she called me baby.

I must have known
my honey-ko
was a moment stolen.
But just one kiss
and I'll admit
I was explodin'.

Well I found me down
in a province town
by a muddy river.
A million miles
from the noise and lights
back in Manila.

My honey-ko
if you have to know
is here beside me.
You know I'll write
but I guess my flight's
going home without me.

In a simple dress
on the day we met
I stood there frozen.
The way she smiled,
for my whole life
I'll hold the moment.

She'll stay with me,
my honey bee,
she keeps me buzzin'.
She stole my heart
and I'm on fire
and I'm explodin'.

The way she smiles
and I'm on fire
and I'm explodin'.

Yokosuka, Japan

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Job search follies-or-(No, but Yes)

Dang!, I ought to keep this job. Except they're forcing me out. The whole interview process for this job was easy. Are you breathing ?(Yes) Are you retarded or deformed in any way? (Not so you can tell) Are you drunk? (Again, not so you can tell) Are you gay, and if so can you keep a secret? (No, but Yes) OK, sign here. Viola!, I had me a navy job.

So now I'm looking for another job, a civilian job, and I don't have a clue. I finally wrote my resume and sent off to some good friends for honest critiques. I thought it was pretty impressive, covering a lot of jobs in a lot of places. A lot of technical and management training. It was, I thought, smokin'.

Joe Mama* down in Gautier, Mississippi wrote back saying basically, "I know the tech sector in Tampa has a lot of people vying for the jobs, but I've read the resume you sent me and I'm sure that after a couple of weeks knocking on their doors you'll realize that this resume is only going to have you pumping hi test at the Cargo** station." Well, I suppose that's honest...constructive...BRUTAL. But he did give me detailed pointers that I took aboard. After all, he GOT a job using his resume.

And mmg1 is too scared to write back, presumably gridlocked in the whole "if you can't say something good..." conundrum.

One company in Tampa does technical training for the Air Force (All them AF boys can keep a secret,if you know what I mean), and I posess all of the requisites but one. It says I need to be familiar with the Beechcraft aircraft. I said "what the heck", and applied for it anyway. I plan on telling them that we fly those Beechcrafts off our carriers if they ask. I meet all the other requirements, chiefly that I'm (soon to be) unemployed and in the area.

Just to hedge my bets I applied to Home Depot for about 9 different poisitons in 7 different area stores. I applied for everything but corporate whore, and that's just because it wasn't listed! I was going to apply in the same fashion to Lowe's, since they seem to have roughly the same policy on hiring military. I only hesitate because the main difference between a job with them and a job with Home Depot is fairly significant. And not in a good way, either. If I go to work for Home Depot, if anyone asks me what I do I can say, in all honesty, "I'm a Homeboy". Yeah, that's what I'm talking about. If I go to Lowe's I would become a "Loweboy". I'm sure you can see my dilema.

OK, enough crying. Like Gloria Gaynor, I will survive. But just in case, if you own a place what pumps gas I'll be glad to send you my resume.

* Yeah, that's his name. It's how I do things. Stop questioning me.
** I worked there before. What a stupid name and a stupid company. Get some gas here to make your Car-go. Sheeesh, Marie.

Pimped, out
Travelin' Ed

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Homer Erotic....DOH!!

Smithers made you suspect, well a little more than just suspect, that some Springfield residents are, as we say, a little light in the loafers. Now there is poof, er, proof of it.

Springfield is for Gay Lovers

Travelin' Ed

Monday, February 21, 2005

TCNC -- Hey, App Intel

This post is for Appalachian Intellectual, if you are in fact still reading this. All y'all others can take this post off and pick up with the next one. Domo arigato.

OK, A.I., what is this place:

County land area 379 sq. mi.
National Forest land area 136 sq. mi.
Lowest elevation 1,265 feet
Highest elevation 6,045 feet
County Seat elevation 2,200 feet
Annual avg. temperature 54.9 degrees
Avg. January temperature 37.9 degrees
Avg. June temperature 71.9 degrees
Annual avg. rainfall 80 inches
Annual avg. snowfall 6.2 inches

Hint: The County Seat is Brevard.

Sorry, cuz, I was just doing some homework on the world wide sized web. I also found out TC is a little North of Dillard, SC which is merely an interesting tidbit in reference to an earlier comment thread.

Travelin' Ed

Whut zup wit dis?

Oooh, catchy title. They're words that ain't really words. Except wit is a word, but it's not right the way I used it. Still, it's some pretty radical stuff. Like spelling cash with a K for the Kash and Karry store. that. Just call me edgy, man. Also, I really wish that I was good at graffitti. Yeah. There's an overpass with my name on it. So too speak. Anyway....

Have got a few things rambling around on my brain. Let's share them, shall we?

I got up at 0245 to watch Duke-Wake Forest play basketball. WFU must stand for "What's Freaking up, You?" since they are higher ranked in conference, higher ranked nationally and are deeper on the bench and yet got spanked , giving up 102 points to the Dookies. Sorry I skipped sleeping for that.

I find it kind of funny, i find it kind of sad/ The dreams in which I'm dying are the best I've ever had
What song do these lyrics come from? I remember the lyrics but can't get a tune, song title or band name in my brain to match up with it. Your help would be apprieciated. And if it turns out to be Supertramp just imagine me slapping my forehead in the classic Doh! manner because that keeps coming to me and I keep slapping it back and saying "No!...that's not right."

Ass backweirds
Haps spelled backwards is Spah. Weird, huh? Especially given that I don't think "haps", as in "what's the haps", is really a word.

This is true, and truely scary. There is a blog out there with a spinning pentagram .gif on it. I think it's called a pentagram. You know, that star that devil worshipers paint on the floor just before they summon up demons. The scary part is that it has the word "giraffe" in it's title. What kind of mind associates the two?

2 Movies
Watched 2 movies yesterday in honor of a couple of dead presidents. The first one, SAW, was very, very demented. And worse, it made you think about what you were seeing and your imagination just made a bad scene badder. Worserer. Whatever. The second movie was EVITA with Madonna and Antonio Banderas. Pretty doggone good for a movie that has nothing to offer besides Madonna and a bunch of singing Argentine politicians.

Well, I believe you are now up to speed. Thank goodness I live a life less mundane or I'd be boring you right now. Check in again later this morning. I have a lot more to say about less, but not right now. There's an apple just a'calling my name.

Pace (yourself), out
Travelin' Ed

Sunday, February 20, 2005

Illinois Blues

When I first joined the navy I ended up in Great Mistakes, IL (aka Great Lakes...or in navy lingo, GLAKES). It took only a very short time for me to realize that I hadn't lost anything there. So, after graduating Basic Electric and Electronics course I promised myself that I wouldn't go back. Ever. Not even if they asked nicely.

Except for switching planes at O'hare Int'l (a necessary evil if you fly on a United international flight) and spending a few extra minutes or hours sightseeing on O'Hare's tarmac (a necessary evil if you are going to fly out of O'hare on ANY flight) I have been true to my promise.

One night in Pusan (or Busan, depending on how recent your map is) I had a little of the local distilled spirits in me, though not enough to make kimchee seem like a good idea, and for some reason I got to thinking about my few months in Great Mistakes. Here's the poem I wrote on that sojou buzz:

Illinois Blues (Time Loves a Rambler)

I've got old home on my mind
I've got no reason to be here
Got no job and no scratch
And as a matter of fact
This ain't no place I could love.

Too many cars on the road
But I'm not going that way now
If they was headed down South
Then it might help me out
Of this here Illinois mud

Now don't you worry for me
Baby, time loves a rambler
And the Lord, he takes care
Of us hard headed fools

You know, I was lost
Til I quit thinking about it
Through the thick and the thin
Some you lose, some you win
By rightly bending the rules

I miss the smell of the pines
I left behind me in Dixie
Down an old country road
That let me carry my load
As far as I cared to go

Them old weathered gray porches
From my boyhood are calling
Say, "Fool, you know what I think?
Sit and pour you a drink
Then let it mellow down slow"

Now don't you worry for me
Baby, time is a healer
The good Lord just smiles
At all us hard headed fools

I couldn't make a good point
If it would save me from dying
But here I'm standing again
Some I lose and I win
Always bending the rules

Here I'm standing again
With my back to the wind
And the Illinois blues

Pusan, Korea

Seacrest, out. Oh, wait, the other punk already uses that.
Travelin' Ed

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Southern Culture on the Skids

Sounding like a cross between Jethro Bodine and the B-52's ...with numerous sidetrips into the surf music of the '60's, S.C.O.T.S. (Southern Culture on the Skids) is a fun listen. Out of NC, the Raleigh area, I do believe, these 2 guys and a big haired girl are wa-a-ay over the top with albums like "DIRT TRACK DATE" and "LIQUORED UP AND LAQUERED DOWN". I really got into them in Hong Kong and Australia, but they're home grown musicians fer sure.

They're not for everybody, and like the B-52's, they are certianly not for everyday use. I mean, Love Shack is an awesome song, but everyday?? I think not. Same with SCOTS. But if you're curious....then give 'em a shot. Go to their home page from the link above and under the "THE BAND" tab open the "DISCOGRAPHY" page. There you will find 8 or 10 sample mp3's, including "SHOTGUN", "BANANA PUDDING", "SWAMP FOX" and one that I am particularly fond of (since I went to Soul City, NC when they opened it up as a social experiment and also because it's a funky, sleazy song) "SOUL CITY".

Give them a listen. I've done the legwork for you. So c'mon. You've got broadband. So, you know, use it.

Skidding, out.
Travelin' Ed

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Some stuff I thought of

We had lectures all morning. They were written at the home office and then distributed to us and all of the other detachments. They are a schoolhouse in Virginia. We're shipboard trainers in Japan. To semi-successfully combat the mind numbing boredom I counted all of the items that were either not applicable or contridicted something already put out. It was, as they say, a target rich enviorment.

Here's some things I thought of during the attempted lecturecide:

1. Internet viruses should be subject to Islamic Law. Write and release one and you get stoned to death on a dusty street in front of a jeering mob. Knowingly pass one along and you get a hand chopped off at the wrist. Preferably the hand you use to strike the shift key so you would be forced afterward to reach completely across the keyboard everytime you wanted to capitalize.

2. Hoedown: When your sister falls

3. The NCIS agent* lecturing us kept stressing that we should try to be a hard target so I put my hands in my pocket.**

* They're not at all like the ones they've got on TV...but you knew that, didn't you.

** Think about'll come to you.

Cheese, out

Hamdog cheeseburger w/ cayenne

OK dudes and dudettes. Appalachian kinfolk and Idahosers. Take note, all. I made a cool sandwich yesterday. I do not know that it has never been made before, as it was itself inspired by another sandwich I read about and also it seems to me SOMEBODY else would have tried this by now. But I had never heard of or seen it before so when I thought of it I went ahead and made it a reality. It goes like this here:

I took ground beef and made a round, very thin patty. I laid 3/4 of a hot dog on top of it. Alongside the hot dog I laid a goodly sized rectangular piece of swiss cheese. I sprinkled it liberally (I know, the L word, but in this case "conservatively" would not be the right way to go) with crushed cayenne peppers, although cursed cayenne peppers may work just as well. I covered it over with another very thin patty. [Ed. note - I almost called it a "meat hat", but that sounded kinda gross.] This made for a fairly good sized burger, oh I'd say about a 1/4 pounder size.

Then I struck that sucker on the ol' George Foreman for 12 minutes until it was good and cooked and the cheese was starting to ooze out. Mmmm-mmmmm...good eating.

You're welcome. You may all benefit from my selfless rersearch.

Mmmmmeat, out.
Travelin' Ed

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

The Scots-Irish

I am Scots-Irish. My family as far back as I know, which is Great-grandma Abernathy and Great-grandma Dillard, and a way lot of distant uncles, aunts and cousins, all came from mountianous Virginia and rural North Carolina.

This article, excerpted from the book Born Fighting, How the Scots-Irish shaped America, was enough to really whet my appetite. I have ordered the book. Hardcover, for I intend to keep it and re-read it often.

Enjoy the article above. Pay special attention to the sections A CULTURE OF CONTRASTS and REDNECKS. Neither is cliched or derogatory, and both made me start to understand more about myself, my family and our upbringings. Like I said, for me this was strong stuff and made me want the book to get the full story, unabridged.

Travelin' Ed

A monkey a day.....

I am adding a new link over on the right. I really hope I don't get out of control with the linkages, but this one serves my purposes well. It tracks monkey sightings. Rules are simple, no internet sightings are allowed, but print stories, TV, print pictures, advertisements, etc are all allowed.

The theory behind this dude's site is simple. You never go a day with seeing, hearing or speaking the word monkey and here is where he proves it. See, I told you this internet thing would enhance all of our lives.

Here's a quick link to the MONKEY SIGHTING WEB SITE and, like I said, there will also be a permanent link over yonder under the Appalachian's link.

Hot monkey lovin', out
Travelin' Ed

Monday, February 14, 2005

DBT Review (Bring on the corpse-eating pigs.)

This is for an album that's been out a while. But it's well written. And I truely am on a mission. I want to turn as many people into this band as I can. OK, now that I have your attention, I want to turn as many people on to this band as I can. One unreconstructed red neck at a time.

Read the review here at


Their homeland is full of poverty, guns, jail, whores, cursing and death; add some corpse-eating pigs, and you’d have an episode of Deadwood.

Last year, the Truckers began their great album Decoration Day with songs about incest and tornadoes, and they start this slightly less great follow-up with songs about moonshine and tornadoes — the trio of singing guitarists play with Southern stereotypes the way rappers play with African-American stereotypes

If a northerner wrote these songs, he’d be lynched at the Mason-Dixon line. But the Truckers, as backwoods philosophers, want to figure out where masculinity goes wrong and leads straight to jail.

“Lookout Mountain,” a Neil Young–style stomper with guitars that reek of petrol, is gloriously cathartic. When the unemployed narrator in “Puttin’ People on the Moon” starts dealing drugs to pay the rent, you know his story won’t end happily. Bring on the corpse-eating pigs.

Let's play: Stump the Band

Help me out. I've been playing with band's names for fun, but can't seem to think of too many bands off the top of my head. Oh where's a copy of BLENDER or ROLLING STONE when you need it? Please, feel free to add your own to this list.

Band's Names

* Hooters on a Blowfish
* The Velvet Underwear
* Ailen Persons Project
* You're a Heap
* The Backdoor Boys
* Jefferson Starbucks
* Doo Doo Dolls
* Gwen Step On Me
* Jean Wy Me?
* Flatboy Slim
* Tom Waits for No Man

OK, OK...then YOU show some freakin' inspiration. This stuff ain't easy, greasy. Now I gotta go. I found a great Drive By Truckers review I want to post for you. Like Sports Center on ESPN, it's coming up next.

Well, well well. Truth is, unlike Sports Center, the post will be coming up previously. Apparently things will post in the order of the time tag no matter what. Huh. So, um, look up, dawg*.

* I keep tellin' ya, I'm all about the street.

Peace, out.
Travelin' Ed

Sunday, February 13, 2005

Pardon me sir, but you're listing again

10 real blog names...Just keep clicking "NEXT BLOG" and you'll see. Yeah, you will see.

10. fatwhitegeisha
9. Diary of a Plutocrat (A selection of musings and letters to my disolute son)
8. Cereal Serial (My name is Jay and I am the foremost authority on mixing breakfast cereals)
7. The Inflatable Peacock of Doom
6. Pink Confessions (by a dude named trey wesley-velmont)
5. The dude with no hat!
4. mollyblogger (Bridget Jones ain't got nothing on me...)
3. mö'cüz-türkcə mö'cüz şəbistərli (çöstərli) (Uh....whatever)
2. Speaking Bullets
1. them chickens is ash and i'm lotion

The first 8 disks in the CD wallet I keep at work (All are home mix discs)

8. Hank Williams III & Fred Eaglesmith
7. Toby Keith
6. Pink Floyd
5. David Allan Coe #1
4. Fred Eaglesmith & Drive By Truckers
3. Hank Williams, Jr #1
2. Kid Rock #2
1. Ryan Adams #1

6 Things that could stand changing

6. How much it costs to take a taxi
5. The whole insurance con game. You know, "Give us money every month with out fail. If, after 13 years and the untold thousands of dollars you have given us, you are repaid any amount of that money (no matter how small of an amount) we will have to raise your rates to punish you." Yes sir, I'm sure it is all my fault. Bastards!
4. The internet. It should be completely free. Completely anonymous. Germ & virus free.
3. US law. Common sense should be required in all aspects of our public life and judicial system.
2. We should all get as much vacation as Europeans do. Then we could travel more. Then we might know something about something more than just what we see on TV. Well, wait. That might be wishful thinking. See #1 below.
1. Europeans, and they know who they are (Hint: You 2 French guys at Jomtien Beach and the German lady at Koh Chang), should be required to either a) get a clue or, b) shut the hell up and get out of my face. I don't actually make U.S. foreign policy. I'm not even consulted.

4 words randomly pulled from Meriam Webster's Collegiate Dictionary (yes random. Open book. Stick finger on the page. Read the word. It's how you learn new stuff)

4. double genitive
3. hoarding
2. obstinacy
1. sloganeer

2 Things I learned to do today (Neccessity...schmeccessity. I was on a mission.)

2. If your blog does not include a "Links" section, here is the code that you can copy and paste to create one.
1. The "a href" stuff must be enclosed in these kind of brackets <>. That lets the computer know you're entering HTML and not just typing stuff to be displayed.

1 Song I am listening to right now

1. Shine on You Crazy Diamond by Pink Floyd ("Well you wore out your welcome with random precision....")

Sorry for the lazy post. I'm not all wrapped around the axle about anything today. Saw a good Maryland-Duke ball game this morning and taped North Carolina-UCONN, which I'm hoping will also be a barnburner. Just gotta get out of here to go watch it. I'm mellow. Gumby-like, even.

Imported cabbageworm, out
Travelin' Ed

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Army dudes

Been corresponding (commentsponding?) with a dude calling himself Appalachian Intellectual. Seems a pretty good guy, after reading on his blog some I see he's definately more of a thinker than me. Really, that's pretty rare in one o' them Army Guys. But I think he's also a sensitive guy. And he has friends with names like Jello you gonna top that?

I asked if he wanted me to add a link to his page but I don't think he did. So you can find his blog using the link above, but it will soon fade into the archives. Because for what I lack in profundity I make up for in verbosity (and yes, I spelled those both off the top of my head), so posts tend to get pushed down the page pretty quickly. Whether you love him (or not) you'll need to bookmark him, or his page, if you want to go back again.

While my life is an open book...well, comic book....well, tragi-comic book....he's kind of mysterious. That's good in a way because it keeps you off balance. You really never know if he might be Special Forces or Special Olympics. I guessing he's not Special Olympics though. He don't come across as being all that athletic.

He's the second Army Dude (hereafter to be referred to as AD because it's easier on me, and making things easier on me is what I'm all about) to make it onto my radar screen this year. My favorite Pittsburgher* (hold the pickles, hold the relish), The Beckster, wrote me that her son had joined the army, thus becoming the first AD in my life. Since I've know him since he was young enough to enjoy a trip to the swing set, and since I'm a sage old goat with 26 years of service, I wrote him expressing my pride and confidence in him. Basically, I told him I was handing the watch over to him and to do us proud. He agreed to the terms.

Poor little dude, though. Still figuring out the army life. And he hates the base (Fort? Post? Camp? Village? I'm not real current on my ground pounding lingo) where he's at. He's hoping Fort Bliss, his next stop, will be better.

Now I can't take anything away from the good Mr. Disney who, of course, created and patented "The Happiest Place on Earth**". I won't even try. But I'm thinking that they couldn't call it Fort BLISS if it wasn't one doggone happy place, right? I mean, obviously not the happiest, 'cause Disney has that slam dunked. But still, gotta be right on up there, right? Maybe second or third happiest place on earth?

So there you go. Army Dudes, oops, I mean ADs abound.

Watch for a new post tomorrow. If there is none it's probably safe to assume that Appalachian Intellectual
a) didn't find any humor in this post, and b) I was correct...he IS Special Forces and I've been terminated.

*Sorry sk, but technically you're not in Pittsburgh and anyway you're moving. Soon you'll become my favorite Idahoser as we discussed earlier.

** Which I really, truely thought I had found one night in the Phillippines, but obviously I was wrong. A pitcher of Mojo and a lbfm is close, but apparently no cigar.

Blissfully, out.
Travelin' Ed

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Freethinker's Paradise

Love this site, Freethinker's Paradise, although most posters are way too smart for me to try to engage in debate. Well, usually. So I just watches. Follow the comment threads for a while. They'll just kill ya.

It can get a tad liberal, but hey, what is life if not looking at both sides of the issue and making your own decisions? I have never trusted, and never will trust, anybody who supposes to relieve me of the cumbersome need to think for myself and will try to spoon feed me my "correct" opinion. Includes, NPR, CBS News, Rush Limbaugh and any of Fox News' talking heads. And anybody who believes that it "is simple, really".

Dad calls me a "Flaming Libertarian". Guess that fits well enough. Been called worse. And correctly so.

Anyway, a sample of postings [with my commentary in red]:

if you live in the US profanity is a must. how else you ever could discribe the nasty mofos there. [This is the initial truth that caught my eye]

Posted by: mark February 1, 2005 09:45 PM
Right on, Mark! Your intelligence and thoughtfulness came through despite spelling and grammatical errors. [See, a little kindness goes a long way]

Posted by: Youdontsay February 2, 2005 12:04 PM
Most of you sound stupid. " Figure out who you are" [BOOM-YOW!! A warning shot right across the bow. Good going, dude]

Posted by: Mel February 1, 2005 08:47 PM
One further thought. Did anyone ever tell you that you sound just like Dubya himself? Even if you claim to be opposed to repealing the first amendment, one more Bushism from you and I will assume you are either one of his speechwriters or a child left behind. [This was stupid, except I really liked the "a child left behind" reference. HaHa. Short bus, too.]

Well, I gotta go. Friday...short day. Gotta catch the short bus home. Bwhaa-haa-haa.

Sneakin', out.
Travelin' Ed

Startling proof that I may be, ummm, confused

No more trusted site than itself ran the Marcia Cross story. And it includes refrences to Barbara Walters. That's pretty heavy duty, so you gotta take it serious.

Myself, I was dumbstruck (not an easy feat, although I'm often stupid struck) at the news. But soon I realized that this just may shine a little light into some of the darker corners of my life. No one likes admitting that they're lesbian, but still....I mean it's CNN. And Bobwa Wawa* .

Here's a summary of the facts, as they were presented:

NEW YORK (AP) -- Marcia Cross is making it clear that while she's no desperate housewife, she's not gay, either.
The "Desperate Housewives" star said she wasn't a lesbian after "The View" co-host Barbara Walters questioned her Wednesday on rumors regarding her sexuality.
"I'm not," said Cross.
She wondered how the rumors had gotten started.
"Well, it was very odd," said Cross. "And I, I just assumed this is what comes of being 42 and single. I don't know if they just needed to find a reason why I wasn't married."

That could be me. There are so many similarities it's spooky. Well, except I'm not a red head. But maybe she isn't either, you know. That kinda stuff comes out of bottles sometimes. So you never know.

Trying to come to grips with my possible lesbianism I kept asking myself, "How could I miss all the signs?" Seeing poor Marcia was like looking in a mirror. She could be me and me could be she. Well, of course I'm not actually 42 anymore. Or female. Or single. (Although a few $$ to the right people and a single redheaded female is doable. Eewwwwww!) Anyway, I'm holed up at the house, eating chocolate and trying to sort out a few things about my life. Please don't stop by, okay? I'm not feeling very pretty right now.

* If you remember Gilda Radner's character on SNL. Old timer. Fossil.

Wonderin', out
Travelin' Ed


Welcome aboard, G! Hope you find everything here to your liking.

Try the archives. (They're dee-licious.) Like I said before, and of course will be saying again: You've got broadband. Use it.

Don't reckon I'll roll through your zip code again, at least not on purpose, but the pleasure has been all mine. And now we're just gonna have to be e-mail buddies.

Segway into: I apprieciated the e-mail today. Especially where you called me unique. Sounds a little better than idiot, which I have heard often enough that I actually answer to it now.

Pome chu aouen, kob.*

Later daze,
Travelin' Ed

* Find a Thai speaker and you'll laugh. Maybe.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Been writin' up a storm

Those of you doing a drive-by blogging don't know this about me, but I like to write. I write poems but I always try to throw a chorus in because I have 2 really good friends who write songs...and they're really good lyricists in their own right and don't need me... who sometimes turn them into really good songs if I make it easy on them. There is really nothing quite so cool as listening to a stomping good song and knowing that you wrote the words. Like a junkie, or perhaps more like a hamster seeking alfalfa pellets as a reward, I try to make that whole lyric/song/euphoria thing happen as often as possible.

Been putting out nearly 2 poems a year for the past couple of years, but recently I've been writing up a storm. When on a roll I can be pretty prolific (and now my profile is prolific also. "Quick, Robin! Bring me larger Bat Pants."**) and am now doing about 3 poems a week. Some suck, but most will appear here since I suppose this is as good a place as any to put them. Just finished the following one about 10 minutes ago. Hope it be pleasing to you.

** To which Robin replied, "Holy Lard ass, fatman, I mean Batman, push away from the table occasionaly."

Jeez, out
Travelin' Ed

write you something

Yes, I did call you a liar
after I called for support
and you told me all the things I didn't ask
'Cause I did not wave my lantern
search the darkness for the truth
and anyway, I didn't want it quite so fast

If the pockets worn and empty
were someone's other than my own
And the wrong roads were a few more miles between
I would love to shrug my shoulders
point a finger now and then
and not always have 'em pointing back at me

Settle down and mellow easy
We'll get through this you know
Been down rough roads and easy
But we always seem to carry the load

I'd sure love to write you something
that you'd hear and know was yours
But I'd really want to know it made you blue
I believe that meloncholy, girl
Is when we both are at our best
yeah, I'm pretty sure I bring that out in you

Settle down. Take it easy
We'll get through this you know
Been down rough roads. Been down easy
But somehow we seem to carry the load

Bring yourself on over here
and pull up a piece of floor
We've been beating these hurt feelings half to death
There's a promise on the winds
that blow across Lake Ponchatrain
That I could not share with anybody else

Settle down. Take it easy
We've been through this before
Been down rough roads and easy
But we always seem to carry the load
Don't we always seem to carry the load

Yokosuka, Japan

Things gettin' done

You've heard of the good ol' boys network. You know, a nod and a handshake. Not what you know but who you know and all that jazz. Well I never thought about it before, but I guess I'm in it. I mean, I know everybody everywhere. This is an actual e-mail I sent out to a friend of mine. It's concerning a GS job in Tampa:


Good to see you and spend a few minutes the other day. Emancipation seems to suit you well.

How ‘bout coming off that resume info long enough for me to read it and/or make a copy. I think a little legwork on this end may be preferable to eating tangerines and living in a Buick when I return to FL. And I could go for some more government work, heh heh heh.

This is obviously my office e-mail. My phone is 243-8924 so if you cannot deliver I can pick up. Just let me know. I’m easy.

Sorry for the delay in doing this. I came in after Super Bowl Monday and the bastards were chomping at the bit to see some productivity out of me. Say what??!! Did I already call ‘em bastards?


FCCS (SW) William E "Ed" Abernathy
Center for Surface Combat Systems Detachment Yokosuka, Japan
Life is painful, suffering is optional

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Greasy, sleazy, dark side of town thing


doesn't make you friends

Sticky night and damn the heat
might kill myself to find relief
another dark spot on the street
shadow on the wall

Kicking out the motel door
splintered shards and dusty floor
Hell, I was wrong and you were sure
to point it out and all

Thinking 'bout you.
Thinking 'bout you.
How darkly the night conspires

Tramp is as a tramp has done
A cheap smile that soon comes undone
love weilded shaking like a gun
pointed at my head

Sweaty sheets and alabis
neon buzz and greasy lies
danger ratchets up so tight
but doesn't make you friends

Thinking 'bout you.
Thinking 'bout you.
How darkly the night conspires
Thinking 'bout you.
Thinking 'bout you.
The darkness a heart inspires.

Right on course to crash and burn
across the night we twist and turn
Nothing lost but nothing learned
a zero end sum game

Taxi called I step outside
waiting in the lonley light
the streets are empty as my life
And I'll be back again

Thinking 'bout you.
Thinking 'bout you.
The darkness a heart inspires
Thinking 'bout you.
Thinking 'bout you.
The darkness a heart requires.

Yokosuka, Japan

I don't want to.... you a pretentious person, but c'mon. Really dude, you posted this faux profundity for the world to see. And you call it your profile, no less. Whatever. Happy life trails and leaf paths and all that.

Call me, if you must call me anything, Spinner of Tales. My name does not matter, nor can I give you direct knowledge of myself. I offer something better: words spun out like leaves on the current, some fashioned in sunlight, some from the dark of the moon. Once I have cast them forth, I can know nothing of their journey, nor can they return. These are my words, then--and yours.

Gaaaggggg me. Oh, and as always, anything I consider to be too fairy boy is posted in pink.
Travelin' Ed

Monday, February 07, 2005

Shooting the breeze, pontificating, scuttlebuttin' and swapping sea stories.

We was sitting around, sucking down black coffee and yakking. Shooting the breeze, pontificating, scuttlebuttin' and swapping sea stories. It was a typical day.

Talk got around to all of us old goats that retired or are a'fixing to retire. Heading out to greener pastures where likely as not we will be responsible for both regular and hi test automobile fuels, and the dispensing of both (into approved containers only, of course).

Some wanted a big shindig when they left. They wanted side boys and bos'n whistles and everybody decked out in their fanciest uniforms. Flags a'waving and guest speakers gushing praises. Others wanted a ceremony, but with a good deal less fanfare (good dudes to think of the rest of us). And then there was me.

I told them, in all honesty, how I see my departure going down. And to those of you who know me well, you will know this is most appropriate for me and who I am. It is truely my style. I told the group this:

"I want to get a shadow box and a parting gift from the command. I'll pack those off with my household goods. Then one day soon after that I will just not be around. No fanfare, just gone. I mean, I just kinda wandered into the navy and I'll just kinda wander on out".

Word, brother man. Word up, monkey boy.

Catarrhine, out
Travelin' Ed

F.J.E. Quote

How true. We rue but it be true. Yo.

Fred sez:
"I think the bottom of the barrel is where the answers are."

One unique mofo - Fred J Eaglesmith

I love this guy. Singer songwriter, skewed world view, troubador's weary voice. Man he has it all. Yep, Fred J Eaglesmith out o' Canada.

Here's a profile of him. He's a simple fellow with a wicked pen. Like Buddy Miller.

I'm running short on time and that sucks. I wanted to link you to some of his lyrics and, hope of hopes, possibly some mp3 downloads. I could only find lyrics tabbed and chorded for learning to play on the git-fiddle. Nothing just plain and simple.

If you have KaaZaa or LimeWire or something, do a keyword search on him. He shows up with regularity. He's been around 20+ years and, like John Prine, he's someone you never heard of that has a sizable and ardent fan base.

His 2001 double live album is quite the kick-ass recording. You can get it right here.

What a crappy post I've done for such a unique talent. Please, go forth and investigate some on your own. You have broadband. Use it.

Cheese, out.
Travelin' Ed

Pretty nice guy

I'm a pretty nice guy. Read that correctly. I did not say pretty, nice guy. If I did I would say handsome. Off to a rough start already, aren't we?

The guy I bought my house from is a decent dude. Fair and honest like people in the south used to be all the time. Maybe it was the great yankee influx after air conditioning was invented and maybe things just changed with the passage of time. Either way, this guy didn't change.

It is time for him and his wife to move in with their daughter. Everyone agrees to that so there's no real drama there. She's having work done that effectively turns her house into a duplex so that when they move in they have a bit of privacy and independence. But that work is not yet complete.

We close on March 10th and he is so-o-o worried he'll be out on the street, even though both my dad and me have assured him that it's not the case. So I wrote both him and his daughter myself again. Here is an excerpt from what I sent to the daughter. It's a bit easier to post, since I had to write her father a letter longhand:

I will not do anything whatsoever, with the exception of making mortgage payments, with your folk's house until mid- to late August. Please rest assured that your folks can stay on there as long as they need to. I feel better the longer it is occupied, actually.

As for the whole rent thing, I need things to be legal. However, if letting them stay there rent free for a couple of months is legal in the eyes of bankers and lawyers, then I am all for that. They have been very gracious to me and the least I can do is return the favor.

If it turns out that a rent payment is in order, please help dad figure out the minimum that they can pay and let's do it. It doesn't sit well with me that your father should pay to stay on there a few months.

See, I told you I'm a pretty nice guy.

Peace,love and understanding (What's so funny 'bout?), out
Travelin' Ed

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Mmmmm Mmmmm Good

I don't know why more of my friends don't cook. It's so easy. Well, there's hard stuff, too, but a lot of stuff is easy.

I get in there like a regular Dr. Frankenstien. "Hmmm.... well, I like cheese...and I like pepperoni...and chicken and sliced new potatoes. Yep, there you go, my new Chickaroni Chesatoes. With hot dogs." Look, I'm not feeding anyone else, so who cares? I just take a regular recipe and add everything else I like to it. And I, of course, leave out a lot of the unneccessary vegetables and other crap. I mean, c'mon. Meat is neat and veggies, not.

Now you wanna talk about simple and good, here's one for chicken I found on the internet a couple of months back. I use it a lot and always add a little something else like djon mustard, or bacon, or pepperoni (although that may be more of an acquired taste. I have built up a high tolerance for sausage of any kind. OK, potty mouth, except that) or just about anything else that sounds good. And I normally add a little of both black pepper and crushed cayenne pepper too, but I don't really suggest that to you.

I'm a nut for kitchen implements, too, but don't feel like listing a bunch of them. Let's just say I'd love to have a large, open kitchen with a huge island that includes a chopping block and range top and good French pans and utensils hanging from a suspended rack overhead. And one of those giant, stainless steel refrigerators. Yeah.

Feel free to donate towards making my dream come true. I cheerfully accept both cash and currency.

Effendi, out
Travelin' Ed

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Insipid little twit

I was blog-hopping, seeing if anybody was putting out anything decent and, in a word, not really. Found a site from somebody either at the university or working for the unversity and I paused to peruse. He seemed to have a good grasp of English and was not afraid to use it. Coming on the heels of a Bangladeshi and a Chinese blog, I was intrigued and thinking it may have potential.

OMG!! He should have named the site: "Whining and feeling sorry for myself: Life here in neutered city". I mean, the dude needs to grow a set. Think I'm dogging him? Think I need to walk a mile in his ballet slippers? Seriously, his caterwauling makes Alan "does my butt make these pants look big" Alda seem like Grizzly Adams. And to prove it, here's a quick cut n' paste from his blog:

On an objective scale, things are doing very well, but for my peronsal subjection I feel squandered opportunities and flat-out evil. I don't want to hurt people anymore; I don't want to breath the smoke of burnt hopes. I want to love, to live for others, and appreciate the subtleties of a mindful existence..

OK, The pink was my idea, but only because Miss Mopelina didn't think of it first. It makes you want to want to dress up Barbie as a dominatrix and see if you can make him cry, doesn't it? Makes you want to shave his ass and call him Martha. Whoa there Martha...didn't mean nothing by that last, er...crack. HehHehHeh, I said crack.

Testicles, out
Travelin' Ed

LGoLF. I know, I know!

Yes I owe apologies for this one. But I ain't admitting nothin'. But just so you know, if you know then you know I know, too. And you're admitting your age. So there.

Kiss Me Crazy, Hold Me True

Ridden waves that crashed and winds that wailed
Drunk off my ass half the time we sailed
That's living. Hard living.

I've seen the lights of Nice off my starboard bow
Pissed a barkeep off and had them lights go out.
Living. Hard, hard living.

I've been from Spain down to Venezuela
Dodging women, skirting hurricanes
Rum for warmth, take any port in a storm
What can I say? It's the way I was born.

If you want me back home soon
Howlin' at the old moon
Kiss me wild
but hold me true

Had some painted women, had some women who cried
And a couple I know was just along for the ride
Living. Hard living.

Stolen hearts that were crooked, broken more than a few
There ain't no regrets when your course runs true
That's living. Hard living.

I've been from Bangkok on up to Pusan
run a few roads in between
A cheap cigar in a back street bar
Life is good, so be where you are

Girl, if you want me back home soon
Howlin' at your old moon
Kiss me crazy
Baby, hold me true.

Travelin' Ed

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Image search: cheeky monkey

Back in Nippon & some airport blues

Made it home OK. Tired and feeling rode hard, but otherwise fine. I had stopped in the airport and gathered up a few grossly overpriced refrigerator magnets which always ensures an enthusiastic welcome home.

I wrote the following sitting in the airport in San Diego waiting to fly to Tampa. Might be a bit rough around the edges, but I'm not real big on revisions. I feel that revising your work too much stifles your rise to mediocrity.

Bleats, out
Travelin' Ed

+++++ +++++ +++++ +++++ +++++ +++++

Swirling Blue

Now that you know that I still love you
It's not something that I meant to do
But it slipped and it got to you
What can I do, girl?

I thought we could be friends and I tried
Keeping in the shadows all the time
keeping with the rhythm's tiny lies
Baby love doesn't have no pride

Don't worry darling, I'm a big boy
I know that your heart doesn't beat with mine
Don't worry darling, it's an old story
But I carry you with me like a fire

I don't remember why you had to go
I just remember that it hurt me so
How the bourbon whispered soft and low
"She's running away, boy"

"Catch her if you can", but I could not
Just stood there like a fool as you moved on
Slow and easy as a fog...
and then you were gone, girl

Don't worry darling, I'm a big boy
I think of you sometimes. It brings me a smile
Don't worry darling, it's an old story
I carry you with me like a fire

You cut me very deeply and I bled
Swirling in my blue the crimson red
Dripping down my fingers, from my hands
Guess that's how it ends, dear

I thought we could be friends and I tried
But you had another by your side
I was dying deep inside
My love doesn't have no pride

Don't worry darling, I'm a big boy
I know that your heart doesn't want to be mine
Don't worry darling, it's an old story
I carry you with me like a fire.

Lindbergh Field, San Diego