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    Discovery July 27th, 2005

    Space Shuttle Discovery

    Space Shuttle Discovery

    If you are really interested about Space Shuttle Discovery and would like to track it online, NASA has a very nice graphic that will give you its location updated constantly. I also was informed that it is possible to briefly see the shuttle at dawn or dusk from many locations. NASA even has an online list of cities that you can click on which will give you the information on when to look and where in the sky to look. Tallahassee, Florida, for example, has four possible viewings running from August 5th to August 9th. Each viewing being early in the morning and lasting from one to three minutes.

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    James Doohan – Rest In Peace July 20th, 2005

    James Doohan
    James Montgomery Doohan
    March 3, 1920 – July 20, 2005

    I found out this morning of the death at 85 of James Doohan. I had the honor and pleasure of meeting Mr. Doohan on multiple occasions at various science fiction conventions in the 80’s. He was truly a gentleman and a fine human being as well as an accomplished actor. The immediate impression I had upon meeting him for the first time was how incredibly warm and friendly he was. And it was no public relations act. James Doohan was, by all accounts a very nice person to all. He will truly be missed.

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    Dennis (Pt. 6) July 10th, 2005

    Hurricane Dennis making landfall

    Hurricane Dennis making landfall

    Hurricane Dennis came ashore on the Florida Panhandle just before 2:30 p.m. CST on Santa Rosa Island and the Gulf Breeze peninsula near Oriole Beach. The storm center went into Escambia Bay, with the eyewall pushing over the Escambia Bay Bridge on Interstate 10 and western side of the eyewall scraping along Scenic Highway 90.

    My Dad called me a little while ago from Pensacola to report that they made it through the storm with minor damage to their home. They still are without power and reports state over 40,000 people without power in the area. My parents’ home is on the western side of Escambia Bay so they experienced the western portion of the eyewall and according to my Dad there was a period of time that the wind and rain was so bad that they could not see out of any window.

    Hundreds of support vehicles of various types (Florida National Guard, various electric companies, food & water carriers, etc.) made Tallahassee their staging area and now are beginning to move out to the areas affected by Hurricane Dennis. Convoys of vehicles will be traveling westward along Interstate 10 and U.S. Highway 90.

    One worry local officials had was how the repairs made on the Escambia Bay bridge would stand up to Hurricane Dennis’ assault. Preliminary reports indicate the tidal surge was less than ones that damaged the bridge during Hurricane Ivan so officials are optimistic that any damage will be minimal. However careful inspections will take place before they allow the bridge to reopen to traffic.

    Already another tropical wave has appeared in the central Atlantic Ocean which more than likely will soon become “Emily.” Hurricane experts have explained that water in that area very warm for this time of year and they expect this to be the trend for years to come. This condition in the Atlantic promises to generate more storms the remainder of the 2005 hurricane season.

    Hurricane experts predicted the 2005 storm season would be more active than usual, but it seems that it may exceed even their expectations.

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    Dennis (Pt. 5) July 10th, 2005

    Hurricane Dennis is closing in on the Pensacola area as I type this. Most likely it’s between an hour to two hours of coming onshore. Pensacola TV station WEAR now has plenty of information online. The Pensacola New Journal already has many pictures online and will add to that as their photographers come in with more.

    My parents live in Pensacola and are riding this mess out. They lost power early Sunday morning. I hope and pray they will be okay. My Aunt lives over in Fairhope, Alabama and is riding it out there as well. They all rode out Hurricane Ivan with some damage but all reports are saying Hurricane Dennis is worse that Ivan and is the strongest hurricane to ever hit the Florida panhandle.

    I really feel sorry for all those people in the Pensacola area whose homes have not yet been repaired after sustaining damage in 2004 caused by Hurricane Ivan. They have been living in FEMA trailers on their properties while their homes are protected from the elements by blue tarps on the roofs. From what I was told all of them have to evacuate those trailers. Plus many of them have PODS containing most of their possessions on their properties as well. With sustained winds of 135mph as I type this, it is going to be catastrophic for those people.

    Around here things have been much less dramatic. We’ve have continous rains since Saturday evening and several confirmed tornadoes in the Big Bend region but nothing like they are getting westward.

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    Dennis (Pt. 4) July 10th, 2005

    Hurricane Dennis 3-Day Tracking map

    Hurricane Dennis 3-Day Tracking Map

    Hurricane Dennis just was upgraded to a Cat. 4 hurricane.

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    Dennis (Pt. 3) July 9th, 2005

    Hurricane Dennis

    Hurricane Dennis

    Fortunately for us, Dennis appears to be heading far enough west and we’ll get only residual thunderstorms. However what’s good news for us is bad news for those west of here. It’s still forecasted to make landfall somewhere in the Pensacola, Florida/Mobile, Alabama area. It also may strengthen to a category 4 storm before making landfall sometime Sunday.

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    Dennis (Pt. 2) July 8th, 2005

    Hurricane Dennis

    Hurricane Dennis

    The Pensacola, Florida area might be the destination for Dennis. This would be devestating both physically and psychologically for the area if it hits as a major storm. The Tallahassee area where I live is getting ready for the possibility of effects from the hurricane. Sunday seems to be the date most experts agree that Dennis will make landfall.

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    Dennis (Pt. 1) July 6th, 2005

    Hurricane Dennis

    Hurricane Dennis

    Here we go again. Let’s see where this one heads. Stay tuned kiddies.

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    sk8lap July 2nd, 2005

    sk8lap lap steel guitar

    The sk8lap lap steel guitar

    It’s a skateboard! It’s a lap steel guitar! It’s the sk8lap!

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    FlipOut Guitars July 2nd, 2005

    FlipOut Guitars

    Dewey Decibel’s FlipOutâ„¢ Guitars

    No, you’re not imagining things. These are guitars from Dewey Decibel Inc. and are very playable. I found out about the FlipOut Guitar from a NAMM Show website. If I get some “fun money” (not “funny money“) I would love to purchase one not only to play but for the uniqueness of it. I can’t find any user reviews online but am still looking.

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    New Christmas CD Addition July 2nd, 2005

    Huey

    I just received a Huey “Piano” Smith CD titled “Twas The Night Before Christmas” which has Christmas music unavailable since 1962. Yes, I look for Christmas music year-round. I love Christmas music. This CD is a collection of fantastic New Orleans music. I got mine via a British ebayer and apparently this is a British release. I don’t know how rare it actually is but I don’t remember seeing it before on ebay. The release date given on the CD is 1998. It has 18 total tracks (the first ten are from 1962 remastered from vinyl and the final 8 have the vocals electronically removed to make them instrumentals). According to musicologist Cub Koda “Six of the ten songs from the original album were written by Smith, and tracks like ‘Happy New Year,’ ‘Almost Time For Christmas’ and ‘White Christmas Blues’ closely mirror the melodies and arrangements for some of his better known hits like ‘We Like Birdland,’ ‘For Cryin’ Out Loud’ and ‘Little Liza Jane.’ ” This CD has become one of my favorite Christmas CD’s and is definitely full of New Orleans yuletide cheer!

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