On Improvement

Unknown“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.”

Anne Frank

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Same Words, Different Meanings

Earlier this week, I wrote a post entitled “Archie.”

I ended that post with the sentence, “Lucky Me.”

It took a day or so, but it came to my attention that those two words could be interpreted at least two different ways.

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That’s me, in “Time-out”

 

The first was was that I was lucky I didn’t get attacked or robbed by Archie.  That was surely not my intent and never entered my mind until someone commented to me that they thought that was what I was implying.

The second interpretation and the thought I hoped to convey was that I was lucky and thankful that I had the opportunity to help Archie.  I was having a bad day and it ended on a positive note because I was able to assist a man I never met before.

My late friend,  Bill Bates taught me, “in life, all the goodies go to the giver, not the receiver”

Now that I’ve cleared that up . . .

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Trop Tard Sera Le Cri

One of my favorite Tull songs. This was quite a departure for Ian and the boys and the album itself was not one of their standouts.

“Heat”, from the Under Wraps Album,

***

When the rats are running

And the boys are gunning

For heads on a tin plate-

You can hear the footfall

softly in the backyard.

And the Blackjack is called

Face up on the last card.

You can hear it here:

 

The complete lyrics:

When the rats are running
and the boys are gunning
for heads on a tin plate —
you can hear the footfall
softly in the back yard.
And the black jack is called
face up on the last card.

You’d better call your witness
in your dirty business.
Trop tard sera le cri.
Better run while you can —
better set the tall sail.
Better make deep cover
before the boys have you nailed.

There’s just one chance to get away —
I’ll catch up with you another day.
I’ll close my eyes and count to ten
and come right after you again.

Grab your credit cards —
cash in on your resources.
Take your passport from the drawer,
don’t stop to change the horses.

Get out of the heat.

Now can you feel the pressure?
Have you got the measure
of being a wanted man?
Cold drink in your hand —
hot sweat on your brow.
And there’s no understanding
going to help you now.

Grab your credit cards —
cash in on your resources.
Take your passport from the drawer,
don’t stop to change the horses.
Notify all parties
of an earlier vacation.
No use trying to board the train
after it’s left the station.

Get out of the heat.

 

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Archie

Tonight, I did something that I haven’t done in decades. I can’t even remember the last time, but tonight I picked up a hitchhiker.

I was driving home after a long day on the sales trail and was feeling somewhat frustrated. As I was making my way Southbound on US 1, winding through one of South Carolina’s peach orchards, I spied a man on the side of the road and as I passed him, I saw his thumb out.

What was he doing out here at nightfall?  He was several miles away from any semblance of civilization and there was no disabled car on the side of the road. How did he get there? Driving this stretch of road often, I have never seen anyone walking there. I passed him, remembering my advice to my daughters. . . never pick up hitchhikers as the world is not a safe place. th

I was maybe a quarter mile past him. I looked in my rearview mirror. The were no cars behind me as I came to a stop. I put it in reverse and backed up to where he stood.

I asked him where he was going and he tried saying “Aiken”.  Well, it was 9pm, he was a mid-60’s, dark-skinned man wearing dark clothes, walking down a poorly lit country road, fifteen miles North of Aiken on a cloudy, moonless night.  What could go wrong?

He got in and told me his name was “Archie” and that he had a stroke last year. A friend was supposed to have come to pick him up, but didn’t and he could not reach him by phone, nor could he reach his wife. So, he started to walk. I told him my name was Ray and that I would take him home.

He tried telling me about his lawyer and disability claim after his stroke.  He used to have a small, lawn care business, but the stroke inured his right side and his voice. I could only pick out small pieces of what he was saying.

Two strangers, sorting each other out.

We got to his house, we shook hands and he thanked me. I doubled back towards my wife and dogs, reminding myself that while I had a bad day, it could always be worse.

Tonight, I did something that I haven’t done in decades. I can’t even remember the last time, but tonight I picked up a hitchhiker.

Lucky me.

 

 

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Monday Music Trivia

Monday Music Trivia

Trying something different.  th-1

What band set a record in 1978 by having seven #1 singles in a six month period?

Reply with your answer and then read the story here: Tales of Rock.

Thanks to @phicklephilly

 

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Sunday Pipes #27

 

Rumored to be the biggest pipe organ in the world.

Who am I to argue?

From Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, NJ

Please stand and men, please remove your hats for our National Anthem.

Here is a bit of an explanation of the organ, by Dr. Steven Ball that is very easy to understand.

 

 

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Eating Healthy

I’m having fruit salad for dinner.th

Well, it’s mostly grapes actually.

OK, all grapes.

Fermented grapes.

I’m having wine for dinner.

Lifted, with appreciation from @sarcasm_only

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We Have Assumed Control, We Have Assumed Control

I was preparing a very serious post this evening and I accidentally came across this video while I was looking for something else.

An amalgam of side-one of what is arguably one of the best rock albums of all time (in my humble opinion) “performed” by Charlie Brown and his gang.

Yes, the meek shall inherit the earth. . . and if you can watch this and aren’t smiling, you might need to make a Passage to Bangkok.

Bravo Garren Lazar, Bravo!

 

 

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Risk Taking Time

I’m taking a risk here.

It’s not the first time and probably will not be the last.

Years ago, I worked in Hudson County, NJ. Just across the river from New York City, Hudson County has always been a Democratic, political stronghold.  There was also a large Cuban population in Union City (where I worked) and some of my fondest memories are those of going up on Bergenline Ave. and buying cigars from the Cubans that rolled them in the shop windows.

I digress.

It was during those years (late-1980’s -90’s) that I started making the transition to my current political views,  but still subscribed to The Village Voice when you could only get it in print.

It was not unusual to hear the saying “Vote early, vote often” or to hear comments made about the biggest voting block in Hudson County being the tens of thousands of folks buried in the 25 or so,  cemeteries scattered around this small county. That’s how politics worked there and no one seemed shy about it.

When I saw this entry on Instagram, I had to post it, hoping that my friends of varying, political persuasions will chuckle along with me.

I await the arrows.

Thanks, Mark.

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A Good Day Indeed

 

A new sign in our kitchen

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Believe it and make it true.

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