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    50 Greatest Conservative Rock Songs Of All Time Pt. 2 May 31st, 2006

    Gibson SG Special

    In response to John J. Miller’s article in the National Review where he lists his picks for the 50 greatest conservative rock songs of all time, Dorian Davis picks his top 10 conservative songs of all time. I’m beginning to be inspired to go through my rather extensive collection of eclectic CD’s and come up with my top 10 list of conservative songs as well. Or maybe a top 20? Top 30?

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    A Footnote From The Memorial Day Weekend May 30th, 2006

    Sometimes, in opposition to better judgment, I read some of the more radical liberal blogs. I usually avoid them because in many instances, they are full of nothing but unintelligent vitriol unworthy of my time. However on Memorial Day I ran into a couple of references of an article on Daily Kos written by someone calling themself “Darksyde” entitled “Requiem for a Nightmare.” I expected it to be the typical extreme leftist rant and I can honestly say Darksyde did not dissapoint. Typical hatchet piece that seems to be commonplace with writers on the Kos blog. However, I came across references to a very well-written rebuttal to “Darksyde”‘s opinion written by Mark Coffey entitled “When Partisanship Overcomes Decency.” Now when I compare “Darksyde”‘s words versus Mark Coffey’s, I have to give the advantage to Coffey for many reasons, chiefly that Coffey writes from a more objective stance than “Darksyde.” Granted Coffey isn’t completely objective since he is coming from a conservative viewpoint while “Darksyde” is coming from the extreme left. However Coffey tempers much of what he wrote with intelligent discourse rather than vile attacks a la “Darksyde.” I can appreciate and even respect the views from the left if they are presented in a mature, intelligent and logical manner but “Darksyde” fails miserably to present his viewpoint in any manner remotely close. I recommend reading both articles to see that which I refer.

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    Pachelbel’s Canon In D May 30th, 2006

    JerryC playing Pachebel's Canon

    Check out JerryC playing Pachelbel’s Canon on his guitar. Amazing talent. More videos of him here. If you’d like to learn how to do the same, here’s an online tutorial. Apparently this guitar slinger also has an official website as well.

    50 Greatest Conservative Rock Songs Of All Time May 30th, 2006

    Gibson SG Special

    The National Review Online has an article on what author John J. Miller considers the 50 greatest conservative rock songs of all time. But no Ted Nugent?.

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    Hurricane Preparedness: A Dave Barry Instructional Guide May 30th, 2006

    Dave Barry

    Humorist Dave Barry has a unique take on hurricane preparedness.

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    Memorial Day 2006 May 29th, 2006

    Arlington Cemetery

    Please keep those who served in the military in your thoughts and prayers on this Memorial Day 2006. And also remember those veterans who served in the military as well as those currently serving.

    Some links in regards to the Memorial Day observance:

    America’s North Shore Journal
    Black Five
    Blogs For Bush
    Fine Dry Wit
    La Shawn Barber’s Corner
    Lest We Forget: A Tribute
    Michelle Malkin
    Outside The Beltway
    Rightwing Nuthouse
    A Rose By Any Other Name
    Sister Toldjah
    Six Meat Buffet
    Soul Of A Sailor
    Uncommonly Sensible
    Wizbang!

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    Memorial Day 2006 May 29th, 2006

    Memorial Day 2006

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    One More Photo May 28th, 2006

    Canopy road at J. Lee Vause Park in Tallahassee, Florida
    Canopy road at J. Lee Vause Park in Tallahassee, Florida.

    I took this photograph earlier today at one of the city’s parks. My wife and I were out and about and I brought along my camera. It was a lovely day albeit hot and we had a fine time.

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    500! May 28th, 2006

    This is my 500th post!!!

    Wow! I’ve made it to my 500th entry. And on the day the 90th Indianapolis 500 is to be raced incidentally. My wife set this up for me a couple of years ago on her domain as a Christmas present. She knew I desired a creative outlet and this was her wonderful way of creating one for me. At first I really didn’t know how to go about it and kind of sputtered with it at first, creating only a handful of entries. However as time went on, I grew more inspired to write about things that interested me at the moment; politics, life, sports, entertainment, etc. This blog has indeed become a great creative outlet for me and to the love of my life, my wife, I thank you for giving me the opportunity to blog.

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    Ringers: Lord Of The Fans (The DVD) May 28th, 2006

    Ringers

    Recently my wife and I picked up a couple of used DVD’s at a local video rental establishment which happened to be having a “buy 3, get one free” sale. Something to thin out the inventory. One of the DVD’s purchased was an indie documentary entitled “Ringers: Lord Of The Fans” which is about fans of J.R.R. Tolkien’s works especially the Lord Of The Rings trilogy. If you are a fan of Tolkien’s works and have a thin skin, then perhaps you really don’t want to see this DVD since it does, at times, present some of the more…unusual…side of Tolkien fandom throughout its history. Probably one of the funniest points in the DVD is the video of Leonard Nimoy singing “The Ballad Of Bilbo Baggins” from a 1960’s replacement TV series on ABC called “Malibu U.” However the majority of the documentary is a well told tale of how the trilogy came to be and how it affected multiple generations through books, music, television and movies. Many of the stars of “The Lord Of The Rings” movie are interviewed and LOTR co-star Dominic Monaghan not only narrates but provides interview material as well. Other notables interviewed include Geddy Lee of Rush, Lemmy Kilmister of Motorhead, David Carradine, director Peter Jackson as well as many diehard fans affectionately called “Ringers.”

    A couple of stories about myself being a Tolkien fan:

    First, when I was 12 years old, we moved from the Mississippi Delta 111 miles south of Memphis, Tennessee to rural southern Mississippi. The school I attended in the Delta emphasized reading to a huge degree and since I grew up with my parents and both sets of grandparents always encouraging me to read, I was reading well ahead of my age. I started the eighth grade at a new school in rural southern Mississippi and found out early on that reading wasn’t as big of a thing as it was in my former school. One of the first assignments our English teacher had for us was for us to pick out any book we wished to read (approved by her of course) and write a report about it by the end of the week. I assumed at that time that most everyone would be picking what I considered “normal” books for our age group to read. For example, I was thinking along the lines of “Robin Hood” or “Black Beauty” or “White Fang,” all of which I had read multiple times years earlier. However I was surprised to witness all of my classmates bringing in the thinnest, large-type books they could find. Mostly what I considered kindergarten stuff. “Dick & Jane Go To Summer School” crap. So when it came my turn to present my choice, I walk up to my teacher’s desk with my already well-worn and well-read Lord of the Rings trilogy. “Which one do you want to read?” she asked me, already somewhat surprised at my choice. “All three books,” was my nonchalant reply. After all, I had read them all before on several occassions. She was pretty much taken aback and at that moment I had unintentionally become a “teacher’s pet” of sorts because I actually liked to read! In my five years at that school, it became commonplace to see me reading books at just about every opportunity I had, even on the bus for away games. I was an odd combination of a jock AND a nerd. Go figure.

    Second story. When I was a junior in college, I found out through my girlfriend at the time (she’s my wife now) the English Department held an annual book collection contest with two divisions: undergraduate and graduate. I entered both in my junior and senior years and became the first and as far as I know only person to win the undergrad division two years in a row. One of those wins came with my personal J.R.R. Tolkien collection which I had started collecting when I was a little crumb-cruncher. Now you have to understand, this was well before the internet and ebay and also confined to limited trips to a handful of places from my home in rural Mississippi. I was unable to travel abroad to exotic locales to discover a rare signed copy of The Hobbit or anything like that. Rather, I took advantage of summer trips to visit relatives in Florida to scope out the local used book shops. Or weekend trips to New Orleans to explore the cool book shops there. Plus I would keep my eye out in stores I knew about on our weekend daytrips to places like Mobile, Jackson and Meridian. It was through those long years of constant searching that I amassed a huge collection of Tolkien memorabilia. And this is what I entered into that university-sponsored book collecting contest. And won. It wasn’t just the collection that you had to present. If it was only that, then I wouldn’t have won. In both years, there were people with more impressive collections with pieces rarer than anything I had. For example, one person had a very impressive collection of Sherlock Holmes books and memorabilia which I knew was better than mine. However each contestant goes through a rather lengthy and detailed interview with a panel of professors. My knowledge of J.R.R. Tolkien, his works and my collection in general plus my passion for Tolkien outweighed all others in the contest, undergraduate or graduate. So although in regards to history, my two-year winning streak isn’t even a blip on the radar, it’s one of the few proud moments I have in my life.

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    Military Surplus Paramedic Bags: A Good And Cheaper Alternative To Doc Kits May 27th, 2006

    Paramedic Bag

    Like most men, I have a travel kit I use on trips to contain various toiletries. For as long as I can remember I’ve always known this as a “doc kit.” However it never seemed to be large enough so I use two on trips. Upon a recent trip to a local military surplus store I came across a paramedic bag made from heavy duty canvas and is larger than typical travel kits plus it’s cheaper. It has several pockets both on the outside and the inside. It also has heavy duty canvas handles, something most standard travel kits don’t have. I recommend checking one out at your local military surplus store. Plus they often come up on ebay as well and can be found on online military surplus shops.

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    The Borg…er…Microsoft Assimilating ebay? Perish The Thought! May 27th, 2006

    Microsoft and ebay logos

    Amit Agarwal writes on Digital Inspiration blog about the news and rumors of Microsoft acquiring ebay. This would be devastating if this indeed happens.

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    A Couple Of Photos May 27th, 2006

    Vintage Light Fixture At The Old Train Depot In Thomasville, Georgia
    A vintage light fixture at the old train depot in Thomasville, Georgia.

    Tommy's Smokehouse In Metcalfe, Georgia
    Tommy’s Smokehouse in Metcalfe, Georgia.

    My wife and I were rambling about the area pretty much all day Saturday. The purpose was to take photographs of various places for use as graphics at the television station for which I work. It’s an excuse to not only get out of the house but also a chance to get a little creative (something I rarely can exercise at work anymore – I miss that). During the rambling I took almost one hundred photos with my simple point-and-shoot digital camera (boy, I would love to have a Canon EOS digital camera and a couple of good digitally-compatible lenses). The two above are a couple of things I found interesting. The top photo was taken at the old train depot in Thomasville, Georgia and it’s my feeble attempt to be more artsy fartsy. I think it turned out quite well and I made it into wallpaper for my computer. The second one was just something interesting I came across in a tiny community named Metcalfe, Georgia. Metcalfe is so tiny it doesn’t even have a single traffic light. There’s a lumber yard, train tracks and a row of old buildings along an old road. Most of the old buildings are empty but for some reason I find visually appealing. One of the buildings is apparently still in use as “Tommy’s Smokehouse” which was closed for the day by the time I took the photograph. I don’t know if it sells tobacco or smoked meats (or both) to qualify as a smokehouse and frankly I don’t even know if it’s still in business (that “closed” sign could have been in the door window for years as far as I know).

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    “Doctor Death” Nearer To Death May 27th, 2006

    Jack Kevorkian
    Jack Kevorkian

    Mayer Morganroth, the attorney representing “Doctor Death” Jack Kevorkian, filed application with the Michigan Board of Parole and Governor Jennifer M. Granholm Friday seeking the pardon, parole or commutation of Kevorkian to time served. According to the attorney, Kevorkian’s health is declining.

    “Dr. Kevorkian is 78-years-old,” Morganroth said via telephone. “Jack doesn’t have very many days left. For God’s sake, he’s been locked up for more than seven years for an offense that not one doctor in the United States has spent even one day in prison. It’s time for compassion … it’s past time.” What? Did he actually say “for an offense that not one doctor in the United States has spent even one day in prison”? Does Morganrath really expects us to believe that the offense of second-degree murder for which Kevorkian was convicted is something “not one doctor in the United States has spent even one day in prison”? What a disingenuous and foolish thing to claim! Morganroth is intentionally being misleading.

    Only seven years, eh? Does anyone else see the bitter irony in this? Do all other convicted criminals get released because they are too old? No. Allow Kevorkian die in prison. He shouldn’t get early release because of age. And Morganroth’s claim that Kevorkian is in prison “for an offense that not one doctor in the United States has spent even one day in prison” is patently absurd and disingenuous.

    It’s a matter of consistency in enforcement of punishment duly handed out by the courts. Either release all convicts who are too old or make them serve their complete sentences even if it means they die in prison. If we start releasing due to health issues and/or age issues then the questions start. What constitutes “too old”? What constitutes “too frail”? What constitutes “too ill”?

    In my view, convicted felons, including Kevorkian, should, with very few exceptions, be required to carry out their complete sentences even if it means they die in prison. I still support early release in certain circumstances as judged by parole boards and state clemency hearings. But I don’t support granting early release with illness or age as the primary reason. For example, I don’t care how old, ill or frail Charles Manson becomes, he should not ever be released from prison.

    Personally, I couldn’t care less about Jack Kevorkian. I think he was arrogant scum back then and my opinion hasn’t changed. I have mixed feelings on assisted suicide but the interviews I saw back then with Kevorkian disgusted me because he seemed to take a gleeful pride in what he was doing. I found Kevorkian dishonest, hypocritical, misleading and someone who actually got a sick and twisted rush from helping people die. That bothered me about someone who took the Hippocratic Oath which states, in part, “I will neither give a deadly drug to anybody who asked for it, nor will I make a suggestion to this effect.” I trust no physician who violates that tenet including Jack Kevorkian.

    Jack Kevorkian

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    Once Upon A Morning Dreary… May 27th, 2006

    An aggressive cardinal.

    Last Thursday morning (quite a foggy one), I was leaving to go to work when I noticed a raucous sound coming from the direction of my wife’s car. When I looked, I noticed a male cardinal perched on the bottom of the passenger-side window just pecking like crazy its own image in the side mirror. I froze in place to not spook the bird and continued to watch. It would alternate from the side mirror to a spot on the windshield where it could see its own reflection. It was fascinating to a point. Turns out its mate was in a nearby tree and the male was protecting its territory. I quietly called my wife to the front door to watch. The cardinal was so engrossed in defending its territory from its own reflection that it hardly noticed us watching. And when it did notice and would fly away it was only for a few moments only to return to the car and its own reflections.

    About to attack its own reflection.

    The next day I made sure I had my digital camera ready in case it was doing the same. Sure enough it was out there but this time it had more reflections to fend off. I had brought my own car back from the auto repair shop Thursday afternoon so Friday morning that cardinal was back bouncing from sideview mirror to sideview mirror to windshield to windshield and all combinations thereof. It probably was wondering in that tiny little brain where all those other cardinals came from. I managed to sneak over as close as I could on my front porch to take pictures with my camera. Please pardon the graininess of the photos. I zoomed in as best I could with my point-and-shoot digital camera and cropped those pictures via Photoshop.

    “Where did he come from?” the bird thinks to himself.

    Once I got several shots, I decided to go ahead and go to work. This time, the male cardinal spooked and flew across the street to land in the grass at the edge of a neighbor’s yard. Its mate followed him only a few moments later. Just for the heck of it, I stood as still as I could to watch to see if it would come back yet again. After about thirty seconds another male cardinal swooped from a nearby tree and attacked the first cardinal to drive it off from its territory. It was entertaining. Sometimes you don’t need to tune into some nature-based TV show to witness fascinating things in real life.

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