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I’m not in the Big Easy today, but I wish I were there for Fat Tuesday – the Grand Finale to the 150th Mardi Gras celebration.

I love New Orleans. Newscoma and I have had many a fine time down there by the Mighty Mississippi. Anyone who has been there likely holds a fond place in their heart for NOLA. The food, the fun, the people – both tourists and natives alike – that make every visit to Nawlins something to remember.

And we will again someday make our way back there, no matter what damage Katrina may have wrought. The city is rebuilding and adapting.

To all those folks from along the Gulf Coast who’ve struggled through the last six months – Good luck to you and I’ll raise a Hurricane glass for a toast to you tonight.

‘Laissez le bon temps rouler’ loosely translated to “Let the squirrely good times roll.”

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sounds and music

Trolling around the Internet today I came across a site, Rummage Through The Crevices, that offers links and downloads of interesting tunes, what they call “Musical Curiousities, Obscurities and Unearthed Treasures.”
There’s a lot of ambient music made from everyday common sounds and events.

I especially enjoyed the song that involved toothbrushes, dental hygiene and a balloon. You can download it on Rummage.

If you want, check out more of that artist’s ambient music here at Naing-Naing.

Bode blah, blah, yada, yada

The Olympics aren’t quite over yet, but I’m definitely “over” Bode Miller and all the hype and hoopla surrounding him in the past few weeks.
If I have to watch another Nike commercial where he waxes on and on about how his perfect Olympics would be not winning a medal but performing some Zen-like runs down the mountain, I think I’ll fling myself off the Matterhorn or at least Lookout Mountain.
His failures at Torino have left him with one last shot at a medal after not even finishing two of his events and managing a fifth-place finish and a sixth-place finish in his other two.
He’s had equipment issues and attitude issues.
We’ve all heard the term ski bum. Now, he’s got a bum ankle after an accident while playing basketball in Torino. I’m not going to give him grief for that, because according to some, hoops is one way the athletes blow off steam. They’re athletes, you can’t keep them under glass while they wait for their next event.
But a swollen ankle certainly can’t help Bodacious Bode in his final chance at a gold medal in 2006.
I think all the pre-Olympic Hype has certainly worn down what good will he had. That and his quote about skiing while inebriated and then the sort-of backpedalling to please sponsors and the U.S.Olympic committee followed by his blah, blah in the Nike commercials which were omnipresent in the opening week of the Games.
Nike, who has spent the last 20 years or so laughing at Reebok for their Dan vs. Dave commercial debacle, now has their own advertising albatross.
Oh well, I’m still celebrating the US men’s curling bronze medal.
Woo hoo.
And if you want to cheer for a US skiing medalist, raise a glass for Julia Mancuso, who earned a gold this morning.

Tag hag via Newscoma

It appears I’ve been tagged.
I’m guessing this is a good thing. Whereas, in the lexicon of graffiti artists I would have someone’s spray-painted “tag” on my broad arse in a rainbow of colors in a font that strains the eyes to read. I’m all about the street culture.
Any way, here’s how this works, as I understand it (or at least as I copied and pasted.)

Remove the blog in the top spot from the following list and bump everyone up one place. Then add your blog to the bottom slot. (1)(insert name here) (2)Rex L. (3) Aunt B. (4) newscoma (5) squirrels_on_snark.

Next, select people to tag:
squeegee monkey,
Batesville USA
cravensworld

What were you doing 10 years ago?
I was going through a great deal of upheaval. I’d just changed careers and started a new relationship. After several years in radio as an air personality, radio was undergoing a radical transformation as live on-the-air talent was rapidly being replaced by canned liners.

I took a job with a sign company that was opening up a shop. It was my first job that involved a computer on an extended level and my first 8-5 job after working overnights for years as a DJ and the only person in the building. (It gave me a great appreciation for solitude.)
That job only lasted a couple of years as the boss was kind of a wack job who had no idea what he was getting into with this sign shop. At least it got me a trip to Montana to train on the software.
As for the relationship, it’s still flourishing, growing and changing and I couldn’t ask for a better partner.

What were you doing 1 year ago?
The same thing I’m doing this year – grinding through another high school basketball postseason, chasing teams all across West Tennessee as they try to earn a berth in the state tourney.


Five snacks you enjoy:
* Tortilla chips and rotel dip

* Mountain trail mix
* buttered-up movie popcorn combined with double-dipped chocolate-covered peanuts with a giganormous Diet Coke big enough to swim in
* Cheese quesadillas
* grapes

Five songs to which you know all the lyrics:
* Psycho Killer by Talking Heads

* Take me out to the ball game
* Harper Valley PTA by Jeanie C. Riley
* Proud Mary by Ike and Tina Turner
* Big Rock Candy Mountain

Five things you would do if you were a millionaire:
* Pay off all my family’s bills so everybody gets a fresh start

* Set up trust funds for my nieces and nephews
* Buy season tickets to all my favorite sports teams and then get swingin’ pads in the cities where they’re located so I have a place to lay my weary head after each game
* Travel with my girlie to old favorite locales and new exotic sites
* Buy my sweetie the Porsche she loves to dream about and then hang on as we ride around squealing the tires from coast to coast

Five bad habits:
* Procrastinating (that’s why it took me two days to get this filled out

* Bottling up my emotions
* Not telling the people I love how much I care about them often enough
* Not keeping a tidy and clean abode
* Speeding

Five things you like doing:
* Watching sports

* Sharing a good meal with my girlie
* Spending an afternoon at the movie theater watching a matinee and then buying a second ticket and watching another flick and then debating and analyzing the thumbs up/thumbs down attributes of the viewing menu
* losing myself in pop culture crap like Survivor and Seinfeld and My Name is Earl
* nothing, absolutely nothing, reaching a vegetative state as my arse melds into the weave of the upholstery fabric that covers my couch

Five things you would never wear again:
* tight clothes (I’m all about the baggy, saggy, not-so-form fitting fashion. Ultimately, my clothes should only touch me at the top of my shoulders and around my waist)

* flip flops
* jumpsuits (unless I’m pulling off some sort of elaborate Halloween Elvis impersonation involving a cape, a giant belt buckle and lots and lots of rhinestones and sideburns)
* a foofy prom dress
* toe socks

Five favorite toys:
* My dashboard hula dog

* My juggling balls
* My photoshop software (It’s time to make the squirrels)
* My collection of flickers/lenticulars
* My glowing brain light

Bag full of hearts (not the bloody variety, though)

I’ve spent a quiet Sunday morning lazing on the couch, one eye cast upon the TV (Something About Mary, still hilarious) and one eye focused on ye olde laptop. I bounced here and there on the World Wide Web and eventually landed upon my new favorite diversion cockeyed.com

I’ve read about science projects involving frozen shaving cream and others centered around gi-normous pumpkins. One extensive post involved the results of one solid month of dining out in Sacramento. Other diversions there include very involved pranks.

But with Valentine’s Day approaching on Tuesday and me being all mushy about my girlie after her extended absence this week, what caught my attention was their scientific research on Sweetheart Conversation Hearts.

Light-hearted fun.
Be sure to check out the list of sayings on the hearts. Note some of the entries in the list have zeroes next to them. They’re bogus sayings created by the “scientists”.
Check it out and send it to your loved one for V-Day.

I thought bowling shoes were bad

Now I’ve seen it all.
I thought renting bowling shoes was a hygienic nightmare, but even the communal use of shoes has been dropped way down on the ick list.

A story on Fark.com tells the tale of a “sporting” goods store somewhere in “The GULF” (not of Mexico; think Middle East) that has been renting blow-up dolls. It seems their interpretation of “recreational activities” is subject to interpretation.

Yes, you read that correctly, not selling, but RENTING.

Apparently, I know this may seem hard to believe, teens are the most frequent customers of this booming bidness.

But as often happens to entrepreneurs who are ahead of the curve, they are shut down and shunned. The boom has gone bust. It happens to the best businessmen. Just ask the good folks at ENRON.

Hoops H-E-Double-Hockey sticks

Ta da.

It’s here. When I type it, I mean the high school basketball postseason.

It looms at the end of every regular-season schedule. The teams anxiously play their way to it. Each game preparatory in their pursuit of a shining gold ball, their ultimate goal, representing a state championship.

I’m giving up my life for the next month or so in order to traipse across West Tennessee and eventually, potentially all the way to the ‘Boro in order to follow area high school hoop teams.

So long Newscoma. So long hounds. We’ll get reacquainted later. Oh, say, the middle of March.

Potentially, there are a pair of girls teams who could earn their way to the state’s elite 8. The Westview girls will be making a return trip, should they earn it. It would be their third in four seasons. The Gleason girls will be building on their school’s own rich tradition if the Lady Bulldogs get back to the state tourney. The Greenfield girls are trying to build a foundation of success after many seasons of mediocrity at best.
As for the boys, the county’s best shot rides on the sneakers of the Westview Chargers. The Dresden boys are a dark horse. In total contrast to the girls in the area, boys basketball in West Tennessee (barring a couple of phenomenal squads) is on a downturn. There are several teams on the same competitive level, but that level is well below par.

So right now, I’ve got several road trips in my future in the next few weeks. Some of them will be of the 180-mile, round-trip variety for the regional level. Substate and state trips will be longer.

Despite the wear and tear on me, it is gratifying to see the hard work these kids put into their team come to fruition. As a mediocre high school player on a team that was usually below .500 in a completely different generation, I have no clue what they are experiencing. But it must be amazing or they wouldn’t pursue it with such sacrifice.

So, I’ll keep providing the scrapbook material and pumping gas into my vehicle as long as they provide the wins.

Toss up the basketball for the tipoff and let’s get this thing started.