Saturday, July 2, 2011
In early 1940, Kate Smith, a fiercely patriotic American, and the biggest star on radio, was deeply worried about her country. She asked Irving Berlin if he could give her a song that would re-ignite the spirit of American patriotism and faith. He said he had a song that he had written in 1917, but never used it. He said she could have it.
She sat at the piano & played it and realized how good it was. She called Mr. Berlin and told him that she couldn't take this from him for nothing. So, they agreed that any money that would be made off the song would be donated to the Boy Scouts of America. Thanks to Kate Smith and Irving Berlin, the Scouts have received millions of dollars in royalties.
Frank Sinatra said that when Kate Smith, whom he considered the greatest singer of his age, first sang this song on the radio, a million guys got 'dust' in their eyes and had to wipe the tears the 'dust' caused.
I know I am putting this up early but I just want to wish everyone a very Happy 4th of July. I was thinking of what to write about and it is the weekend of the 4th of July so that is why I am writing this.
I was just reading about it on the the computer about the day of Independence and the signing of the Declaration. I just found out the declaration was not signed on this day it was signed on August 4th. It was actually a month later. The only ones that really know the truth are Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and Benjamin Franklin and they are gone. So no one will ever know the truth about this.
Everyone celebrates this day by going and seeing parades, cookouts, visiting family and friends then going to see fireworks. Yes I know some of you have your own fireworks also to shoot off. I remember going up north to my parents land and my dad shooting off the fireworks. We use to enjoy this so much. If you are shooting off fireworks please be very careful and please watch out the the little kids with the sparklers because those can hurt them too.
My dad was in the Army and I have had family and friends in the Armed Forces. My ex husband was in the Army also. I have cousins that are still in the Armed Forces and this is why I put this picture up also. I am just praying they are very safe today. I pray everyday for the safety for each and every man and women in the Armed Forces.
I hope everyone has a very safe Holiday and I hope you enjoy you Holiday with your friends and family. HAPPY 4TH OF JULY to all you!♥
At Summerfest tonight, it was no exception...Styx blasted off the night with one of their signature hits with Blue Collar Man (Long Nights), setting the tone for a wonderful evening of classic blasts from the past. Followed by the rousing "The Grand Illusion" the entire audience was standing on the aluminum bleacher benches of the M&I Classic Rock Stage like drunks on skateboards. Nevertheless, I did manage a few good shots of the band. Anyways, my attention was turned towards the band itself.
Styx, a band that's a shell of it's former self, relied on Lawrence Gowen to tackle the vocal and keyboard void left by original member Dennis DeYoung. Taking the calling of the 12 year veteran he is, Gowan, showcased the multi-talented force off he is on "Lady" and "I'm O.K." He has that unique ability to fuse constant energy with vocal brillance. Kinda made you forget about DeYoung....
James Young, the guitarist and the only original member left, kicked in his two cents worth. Hovered the stage with his towering pose on "Lorelei" and "Miss America", his distinctive vocals and his fingerwork on his axe shined brilliantly!
All eyes were on Tommy Shaw as most of the Styx's popular material is from this talented guitarist/singer. Charged with charisma, Shaw bounced around from one side of stage to the other, with his long blond mane flowing. Recalling his days of joining Styx after the Equinox album, Shaw leads the band into a moving version of "Crystal Ball".
The real surprise of the night was the special appearance of original bassist, Chuck Panozzo. Sidelined at times due to health issues concerning his struggles with HIV, Panozzo received a warm welcome as strapped on the bass to jam with his bandmates on the Grand Illusion hits, "Fooling Yourself (An Angry Young Man)" and "Come Sail Away".
When I was shouting out the chorus to “Come Sail Away” at the top of my lungs, and considering the absurdity of the lyric “I thought that they were angels, but much to my surprise, they climbed aboard their starship and headed for the skies,” I cracked a giant smile. At this point, I realized that the people who make fun of this band, or others like it, have no rock n’ roll soul, and their opinion doesn’t matter. It was a night for rock and roll anyways...
Blue Collar Man (Long Nights)
The Grand Illusion
Too Much Time on My Hands
Man in the Wilderness
Fooling Yourself (An Angry Young Man)
Come Sail Away
I Am the Walrus
Friday, July 1, 2011
I have been negligent in blogging but want to get back into the groove. As luck would have it, the International Space Station (ISS) is making a series of bright passes over the United States for the Fourth of July weekend.
You don't need a telescope to see the ISS as it is frequently the brightest object in the sky. You just need to know where and when to look. My favorite site is Heavens Above. You can type in your city name, zoom in on your location on a map, or enter your latitude and longitude. You will then be presented with a screen that has customized information for your location. Click the 10 Day Predictions for the ISS and you will see when and where to look. At this time of year in the northern hemisphere, you can sometimes get two or even more passes per night depending on how far north you are. Heavens Above has a nice free app for Android phones you can check out as well (don't know about iPhones for sure).
Heavens Above also gives you the magnitude, or brightness of the pass. On this scale, smaller numbers mean a brighter pass. A -1 is brighter than a 0, a -2 is brighter than a -1, a -3 is brighter than a -2, etc. For reference, the brightest star in the sky is Sirius at -1.44. I get a -3.5 tomorrow night, so that is significantly brighter than the brightest star in the sky!
Simply go outside at the appointed time and look in the appropriate direction. Heavens Above gives the elevation above the horizon to look (in degrees). There is a simple trick to estimating elevation: the diameter of your first held at arms length is about 10 degrees. If you want an elevation of 20 degrees, that is about two fists above the horizon.
The ISS is a very steady light (as opposed to the blinking lights of planes) with a distinctive pale yellow color. Once you see it a couple of times, you will be able to pick it out very quickly. Most satellites have similar colors since they are all illuminated by sunlight!
I would love to see a pic of an ISS trail with fireworks in the foreground. Unfortunately, the pass on the 4th of July here takes place at 8:38pm, well before the fireworks start. If anyone can figure out how to pull off a pic like that, please post it!
Reprinted with permission from the Half-Astrophysicist Blog.
Waves off Lake Michigan at the lighthouse
Downed tree on Four Mile Road by the lighthouse
Downed tree near English and Green Streets
1) Would you rather live in a desert or in a tropical rain forest?
2) When was the last time electricity was interrupted at your place?
3) What brand names do you swear by?
4) What side of your family do you resemble the most, you father's of your mother's?
Enjoy your three day weekend!
This is sad, and the guy is not even from Racine.
These days, almost anything can get caught in the blender of Wisconsin's union politics.
It can even happen to a Fourth of July parade float honoring firefighters and cops killed on Sept. 11, 2001.
"Back then, the public wasn't saying, 'How sad for the union' - they were saying, 'Those were firefighters who died,'" said Matt Gorniak, a Milwaukee-area fire lieutenant who is the driving force behind the float. "That's what this is about. It's above union, nonunion."
Or at least it should be.
The same float - a re-enactment of the famous photo of three firefighters raising the American flag amid the rubble of the World Trade Center - created a rush of emotions as it passed through three parade routes in Milwaukee County back in 2002. Crowds spontaneously rose to their feet, offering thunderous applause.
With the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks coming up later this year, Gorniak and his church's youth group decided to revive the float in Racine's upcoming Independence Day parade, one of the biggest in the area.
Unexpectedly, the request set off a debate among the leaders of the Racine firefighters union.
The problem: Gorniak had recently invoked a little-used provision in his union contract and opted out of membership in the Wisconsin State Firefighters Association.
Members of the executive board of the Racine firefighters union ultimately decided not to support or march with his float.
This week, the head of the union declined to discuss the decision.
See the full article at - Racine Firefighters Union
Maybe it’s because the guy is from Oak Creek that the Journal Times doesn’t have anything about this in their paper!
All I can say is wait for the Firefighters Union call me for a yearly donation. I use to give them $20.00 every year...that just came to a screaming halt!
Thursday, June 30, 2011
Surprising modern and upscale isn't it... so how do you like the real Africa now? And......why aren't their rich helping their poor, instead of us !
Every school I have taught at, soccer was the big sport (none of them had football teams) and all the school have had pretty good soccer teams. I have several former students who went on to professional careers (most successful one was on the Canadian National men's team for a while) and have always loved the game. I went to a lot of Mutiny games when they were in Tampa. One of the real highlights in Florida was in '96 when many of the women's Olypmic teams were training in Bradenton. They played several friendly matches that were free and open to the public to attend at a local field. There were no stands, bring your own chairs/blankets. This was world class international soccer and I had seats that were better than the front row...heck, you were sitting mere feet from the sidelines. It was more like sitting on the player's bench than in the stands. To be that close to world class players is something else.
The U.S. is ranked number 1 in the world, but a lot of soccer fans think they are overrated. I want to see them bring the cup back home to the U.S. for the first time since '99.
Wednesday, June 29, 2011
Are you going? I'm not.
This coming Monday is the 4th of July, a day of celebration and/or debauchery in Racine, depending upon how you look at it. I am glad that I do not have to look at it as a police officer on that day. Oh dear. Our men and women in blue have their hands more than full on the 4th of July. Thank you so much, Racine Police, and Sheriff, and Mt. Pleasant and Caledonia police, and firefighters and paramedics and staff and everyone who works so hard to keep the rest of us safe on the holiday. May you be blessed with abundant patience and tolerance. May the day pass without serious incident. We are grateful to you all.
For some reason, Senor Zanza has no interest in the festivities in Racine on the 4th. In fact, he says he’s leaving town Friday, and will return “when things get back to normal.” Fine. Suit yourself. Junior and I will watch the parade near Mr. OrbsCorbs’ place. (He doesn’t know it yet, but he’s inviting us over for the 4th again this year.) I heard that Charlie received a 6 foot tall cat tree and we want to see him playing on it. Junior loves that cat. He also loves the girls walking around at the parade, so I have to keep an eye on him. The real problem is the fireworks. I don’t have much interest in that mob scene on North Beach, but Junior insists upon seeing them. I can’t blame him. I was the same way when I was his age. Last year, the crowd got so tight and close as everyone was leaving after the fireworks that I astral-projected Junior and I right out of there. As usual, we landed in the shrubbery outside home.
There’s so much more happening in our area this weekend that I can’t list it all. See for yourself at the Journal Times’ “Your guide to summer fun in Racine County:” http://www.journaltimes.com/lifestyles/leisure/article_ff8c2baa-7672-11e0-88b9-001cc4c03286.html
I wish Junior would just settle for watching this:
Thank you for reading my blog, my dears. The pleasure is all mine. I’m so lucky to be the JTI’s psychic. The most wonderful group of people calls me their friend. I am honored.
Who put the bomp in the bomp, bah bomp, bah bomp? Find out here: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Enjoy the hazy, crazy, lazy days of summer, my sweets. Have fun on the 4th, but be careful. (I’m such a mother.) I love you all. Lalochezia!
Tuesday, June 28, 2011
As some of you know, I lost my big iguana, Sly, early in June.
I was crushed. He was my cuddle buddy (I KNOW, some folks don't understand it but it's true).
I didn't think I would be ready to replace him this soon but I thought I should start checking adoption sites for what is out there. I only wanted to adopt a rescue lizard, as there are many out there in need of homes. Through Petfinder.com, Flash was listed. Flash is the bright green, super adorable little ig in the picture above. He was at an avian rescue and education place in Hubertus.
The more I read about Flash (which wasn't much), the more I felt drawn to him.
Maybe it was how out of place he must feel being kept, tho safe, in a place filled with loud birds. I called my sister and we took a road trip the very next day, and on June 14th, Flash became one of the family.
The 21st of this month, my neighbor's granddaughter (and a friend of ours), sent a message to me through facebook asking if there was any way I could take in their bearded dragon. This is actually the kind of lizard I was looking for, knowing 'froglover' was also interested, as we've had them before. They are docile, and cuddly, even though they are prickly. I told her we could, and as of June 25th, Titus became one of the family as well. His 1st day here was spend checking everything out, and looking for trouble. I kept the window of the enclosure open to see what he'd do, and sure enough, he was checking for an escape route - booger! He has since settled in and settled down. Both transitioned well to us, which is always a good thing. I went from lizardmom to lizardlessmom to dual lizardmom :) Life is good :)