Follow by Email

What is it about nice people that attract total idiots?Nice people are martyrs. Idiots are evangelists.


Friday, August 22, 2014

Time Machine week 18

This is August 22, 1972- the original Dog Day Afternoon.  A trio made up of John Wojtowicz, Salvatore Naturale, and Robert Westenburg (who bailed when he saw police cars in the area) tried to rob the Chase Bank- but turned into a 14-hour hostage situation.  The robbery was sparked (allegedly) by Wojo's desire to pay for the operation for his "wife" Ernest Aron (who wanted to become Elizabeth Eden) to become an actual woman, and Naturale's wanting to get his two sisters out of foster home.  The whole thing fell apart at JFK airport in the limo they were given to escape, Naturale was killed.   The story became first a book, and then a movie with Al Pacino.  Wojo got $7500 + 1% of profits from the movie, Ernest/Elizabeth got his/her surgery, and everyone (except Sal) learned it would have been easier to just write a screenplay.

Welcome to this week's Time Machine, the week that featured the first chart appearances of Elvis' Burning Love, Rod Stewart's You Wear It Well, Curtis Mayfield's Freddie's Dead, Bill Withers' Use Me, AND Leon Russell's Tightrope.  And this week I have to start out with a MAJOR bleary eyed mea culpa.  Last week on the Top Top Ten, I named the Righteous Bros' Just Once In My Life as the #7 song that week- but it was actually Stevie Wonder's FOR Once In My Life.  If he bumps into you, please send my sincere apologies, as Blogger hasn't come out with a braille app yet.

And you think I'M blind...

Okay, now that the self-depreciation's done, let's get going!  I think this week I'll lead off with my latest feature- the "One Hit Wonder's Next Song."  (basically because I lost the list in plain sight once and figured I'd better get at it before I do it again!)  David Soul was a star on the police drama Starsky And Hutch, and in early 1977 hit the tops on the national chart (and on my own top ten) with Don't Give Up On Us.  When I recently heard the follow up, which peaked at #52 later in the year, I thought it might even be better.

I love the part about "the Indiana wind..."  But I must admit to a certain error here as well.  This was a song that came onto my list late, and ACTUALLY this is my #6 favorite on the list.  But this is kind of an informal thing, so here it stays.  Maybe next week I'll actually play you #14... if I don't screw something else up.

This week's top 40 debuts start off with Harold Melvin and the Bluenotes, featuring the late and more-than-great Teddy Pendergrass with I Miss You, moving up one to sneak into the top 40 (BB peaked it at 58, which was far too low).  Eric Carmen and the Raspberries were next with their classic Go All The Way, moving up 5 to #38.  At #37, up 8, is Chicago- and the Bronze Man who still can tell stories his own way- with Saturday In The Park.  The Bee Gees leap ten to #32 with one of my top five tunes of theirs, Run To Me.  At the highest debut- along with the fastest climber within the countdown for a second straight week, up 23 spots- is Three Dog Night at 25 with Black And White.

In the other direction, our You Peaked featurees this week are Joey Heatherton's Gone, which stopped at 26, and Candi Staton's In The Ghetto, which made it to 36 before it was also "gone".

I still maintain if they had given her more good ORIGINAL songs (like Young Hearts Run Free), she'd still be talked about.
That brings us to this week's Top Top Ten, and it is actually from THIS VERY WEEK in 1969- and has a top four that is absolutely iconic!  Here we go with the best top ten of 1969:

10- Get Together, The Youngbloods.  This song had an interesting evolution.  First recorded by the Kingston Trio in '84 (but not released) it next became the follow up for the We Five for You Were On My Mind in '65, topping out on BB at 31.  Both Judy Collins and Joni Mitchell included it in their live sets in the timeframe, and the Youngbloods initially released it in '67 where it peaked in the 60's.  But it became the music to an ad for a call for brotherhood by the National Conference of Christians and Jews.  That got it re-released and into the top ten.

9- Polk Salad Annie , Tony Joe White.  Thought a failure by the record company, it was out for nine months before "some guy in LA picked it up" and it finally charted.

8- Laughing, The Guess Who.  THE GUESS-FREAKING-WHO, boys and girls!!!!

7- Ruby (Don't Take Your Love To Town), Kenny Rogers and the First Edition.  If you can find more melodic guitar, let me know.  One of the last songs to enter my Mom's repertoire of "songs to sing while doing housework", so careful how you answer that.

6- Sugar Sugar, The Archies.  The hot song this week, making a 20-notch jump to get here.  Tangentally mentioned in the classic work by Kenneth Lynch, Shag Carpet Toilet,  which I am about 2/3 of the way through and enjoying every line.  Don't just stand there, ORDER IT!

5- Put A Little Love In Your Heart, Jackie DeShannon.  This was one of the handful of singles I bought when the Zulu grocery store was selling a boxful of old jukebox records.  Ah, childhood memories...

And now, the iconic four...

4- Sweet Caroline, Neil Diamond.  Tell me that's not iconic the next time we're in Yankee Stadium, okay?

3- A Boy Named Sue, Johnny Cash.  Maybe the first time I heard a record with a "bleep" in it.  Remember bleeps?  That's what they used to cover cuss words with.  Rap songs would likely sound like a test of the Emergency Broadcast System back then.

2- In The Year 2525, Zager and Evans.  "God's gonna shake His mighty head and say, "Guess it's time for the Judgment Day..."

Annnnnnnnnnnnnnnd at #1 this week in 1969...

 1- Honky Tonk Women, Rolling Stones.  In his book Up And Down With the Rolling Stones, "Spanish" Tony Sanchez claimed that the night the Stones had a party to celebrate it's release, John Lennon came and played "an acetate of our new single"- and blew the room away with Hey Jude.  Since Hey Jude came out in '68, one of two things happened here.  Either Spanish Tony was full of it (Keith Richards said he wasn't smart enough to "write his name, let alone a book"), or I got my songs mixed up and it was one of their other songs they were celebrating.  Given my track record this week and last, and the fact I lost the book 25 years ago, I'd say the latter.  Maybe Jumping Jack Flash.

Before we get to the "greatest sellers of all time" for this week, here are the two songs that drop out of this week's top ten:  Where Is The Love falls from 7 to 13, and Day By Day falls from 10 to 22.

And now, onto the just mentioned feature where we highlight the next five of the songs that sold the most physical records in history.  The first three are on the 11 million plateau.

George McRae, Rock Your Baby, 1974.  Written by Harry Casey and Robert Finch of KC and the Sunshine Band, it was an instrumental track being laid down by a guitarist for the Sunshine Band when George wandered in and asked to try the vocals. The result hit #1 in 13 nations.

Cher, Believe, 1998.  Her vocal was run by producer Mark Taylor through an Antares Auto-tune at "play correction speed too high for audio track being processed" as an experiment.  Cher loved the results, and when the record company wanted to remove the effect, she told them, "Over my dead body."  I also learned that the beginning was a "sampling"  (We used to call it stealing) of tracks off ELO's Time lp.

Carl Douglas, Kung Fu Fighting, 1974.  This was the hastily thrown together, almost jokingly, B-side to a song called I Want To Give You My Everything, which Carl had just spent two hours working the vocals on.  The song is mentioned as "popularizing disco", but only hit #3 on the 2-month-old BB dance chart.  BTW, I recently listened to part of the follow up Do The Kung Fu as part of my research on the "one-hit-wonder's next hit" segment.  The relevant phrase here is "part of..."

Band Aid, Do They Know It's Christmas, 1984.  Rather than go through the litany of the big British acts that performed on this charity gig, let me just point out that in the UK, this was the biggest selling song ever for 13 years, until Elton John's Lady Di Candle In The Wind broke its record.  The funny story was a) Culture Club showed up minus the invited Boy George, prompting organizer Bob Geldof to call him in New York and tell him to get his pansy ass out of bed and hop a Concorde to London.  He arrived that evening, just in time to be the last man (?) to record vocals- and began bitching about Wham's George Michael, whom he didn't like.  He claimed he thought Michael's vocal was actually Allison Moyet, and when corrected, said, "God, he sounded camp. But then he is."  The story on wiki claims 11.89 million for the song by 1987... but the chart (also from wiki) puts it at 11.7.  Either way, a bunch.

YMCA, The Village People.  Yes, seriously.  And at 12 million!  Ironically, in the US of A it was kept out of #1 on both the hot 100 and the dance charts by- Do Ya Think I'm Sexy by Rod Stewart.

And the real YMCA threatened to sue... until they saw their memberships going up...


And now, this week's top ten.

Argent climbs to 10, up 4 with Hold Your Head Up.

Donna Fargo is probably The Happiest Girl In The Whole USA since her song moves up 2 to #9.

Mouth and MacNeil begin their down slide, falling from 5 to 8 with How Do You Do.

Former top dog Daddy Don't You Walk So Fast continues to walk the other direction, dropping from 4 to 7.

Alice Cooper holds at 6 with School's Out.

Long Cool Woman moves 8 to 5 for the Hollies.

A five-notch jump for Al Green with I'm Still In Love With You, from 9 to 4.

And holding at:

Number three- Luther Ingram's If loving you Is Wrong...

Number two- Looking Glass' Brandy...

And at #1.......

(He's already had his picture, so here, visit a nearby tower...)
Gilbert O'Sullivan and Alone Again Naturally!!!!!!

That is a wrap!  See you next week!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Thoughts on Age Of Deceit

A bloggy friend concluded what he says will be the last post of his political-blogging career with the YouTube version of the documentary Age of Deceit.  This isn't going to be a review, or a request for you to get involved in what many call "conspiracy theory".  I just wanted to share a few things about my take after watching the video (over three sit-downs- it's a 2 1/2 hour video).

First, the thumbnail on the show is that the makers wanted to discuss how the various "conspiracy threads" you may hear in vague terms in the land of mainstream media begin to make a sense ONLY after they looked at them from the perspective of a Biblical, prophetic world view.  They went about then discussing various subjects in this area based on what the Bible predicts in various places, especially Revelation.  Do I buy it all?  Not my point.  I just want to share some of the things that made me think.

One of them revolves around Genesis 6:

Gen 6:1 And it happened, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and when daughters were born to them,
Gen 6:2 the sons of God saw the daughters of men, that they were good. And they took wives for themselves from all whom they chose.
Gen 6:3 And Jehovah said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, in his erring; he is flesh. Yet his days shall be a hundred and twenty years.
Gen 6:4 There were giants in the earth in those days. And also after that, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of men, and they bore to them, they were mighty men who existed of old, men of renown.
After having read the Book of Enoch and other non-Biblical scriptures, I had learned long ago that the reference here was to a band of fallen angels known as the Watchers.  They had descended, apparently with God's permission at first, and were there to teach mankind various skills.  But they soon became corrupted, and began to teach black arts and warfare.  And, as you could see from the above verses, they seemingly combined with mortal flesh to conceive the men and monsters that we know as "myths."  The gods of Olympus, Asgard, Nirvana, if you will.  And it was the existence of such beings that caused God to unleash the Flood.

Now, later on, I had heard Hank Hentegraf of "The Bible Answer Man" show deny that this was what was meant, bringing up the point that angels were spirit beings and thus not able to procreate with mankind.  They did not have bodies of flesh, he argued.  And yet, we have many examples of angels eating with men- including  the Angel of the Lord, AKA the pre-manifestation Jesus.  Point being,   I didn't- and don't- see where Hank's argument holds up based on anything Biblical.  However, there might be a biological catch- would an angel taking flesh be a different species?  There you might have a problem.

And one of the speakers recorded on the video discussed that very thing.  That we are talking about a civilization so advanced we are just now catching up to it before the Flood- "Atlantis", if you will- that would be able to use recombinant DNA to "mix and match" not only their genes with man, but with beasts as well- and this seems to be born out in the non-Biblical stories as well.  In fact, he went a step further and speculated that the Anti-Christ, using tech that we have pretty much developed now, might himself be a cross of mortal and Luciferian genes.  Way out there?  Maybe.  But there is plenty of circumstantial evidence for a more highly advanced science than we realized being washed away by the Deluge.  Include in this the vivid recounting in the most ancient Hindu holy books of what can only be described as a nuclear air-war, and the mysterious radioactivity reportedly found in the excavations of Mohenjo-Daro.

Another of the items that caught my interest was the possibility that supposed UFOs and alien kidnapping and "probing" of people may well be daemonic.  One particularly interesting part of this was the fact that one researcher looking into these encounters found out that a handful of these alien "examinations" had ended abruptly when the name of Jesus Christ was called upon- in fact, the ONLY examples of these events being halted occurred this way.  No, why would daemons be interested in making men believe in aliens?  Well, for one thing, if a "New World Order" was able to "manufacture" an alien visitation, it would seem to be the final proof needed against the existence of God- and most NWO type conspiracies look at Christianity as the one major obstacle to their success.

Do I think aliens and UFOs are daemonic?  Look at it this way.  Christ died once for all, correct?  He came to earth to be "tempted in all ways like us, yet without sin", right?  If there is sentient life, thinking life, on other worlds, the logical assumption is that God would want to give them the chance at salvation, too.  If this is so, then either Jesus would have had to die for EACH of these races on each of their worlds, or else He would have to die once on a world most of them would never know.  Faith in Christ cannot be consistent with belief in alien sentient life.

Once upon a time, a little boy named Chris asked his mom, "Is there life on other planets?"
"How do you know?"
"It's In the Bible."

And she was right.  You just have to know where to look.

Another point I mused about briefly was the contributor who explained that since Adam was "of the earth,"  when he fell, the earth felt the effects.  And the more sinful man becomes, the more violent and corrupt the earth beneath them is.  Maybe global warming is man-made, after all!

But the upshod to me of the whole thing is, I'm not going to worry.  For one thing, I fail to see, if all these forces are working at creating this NWO, what's stopping them?  If it were truly possible to do, why hasn't it been done by know?  But it is being done, you say?  Everything is being orchestrated for the coming of the Anti-Christ?  So it is.  But keep in mind that even with all this set up, even with the Christians being raptured away prior to his ascendance-

- According to Revelation, he will still fight a war with three of the provinces of his own kingdom;
-He will still, it seems, fight a war with Russia;
-He will still try (and fail) to stamp out the Jews and late-convert gentiles;
-and even after being recognized as "god", not only will he have to deal with the supernatural attacks and the Two Witnesses, but he'll also be facing a war with China right before the Second Coming!

So whatever comes to the Anti-Christ, it won't be easy.

One last part as I close:  the makers also mentioned that , amidst all the lies and delusions the NWO use to deceive people into their plan, "they are the most deceived of all... because they believe Satan will share his glory with them."  So let 'em play.  I have a better place to be.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Martin World News

ITEM:  Rather than start with the fun stuff, I am briefly step back on my soapbox to touch on a trio of legit news stories.

Ferguson, Missouri.  So let's get this straight.  A young punk whose right to purchase drugs and malt liquor and perhaps Newports because he was strong enough to shake down a store owner is more important than the livelihood and health of said store owner.  This does not make said punk a "bad guy", just misunderstood.  Because he is black, he experiences stresses not common to civilized man and must be excused if he commits a crime or acts suspiciously enough for a policeman to notice.

A policeman, on the other hand, should always consult the Pope, a oijia board, and get signed letters from the boy's pastor (who the punk probably couldn't pick out of a one-man lineup) before daring to say so much as "Excuse me, might you be the bandit that pilfered money at the nearby store?"  And should he step past those strictures to actually do his job, he should expect the death penalty from the local African American Justice Society, and other cops should be obliged to take abuse, bricks, bullets, molotovs, and what have you being hurled at them with a smile.  And of course, the black community should be so moved by the plight of the young punk that, with all those same stresses being endemic to this poor, so-recently-enslaved community, they should be excused if they spend the next month tearing down every business they can find for the crime of being so bold as to provide them a service.  That about the situation?

Now, I'm not saying that the cop didn't do something wrong, I don't know.  I do know that community-wide stupidity has all but eliminated any chance at finding the truth or any real justice.  I do know that the supposed "national AAC" leaders, Sharpton, Jackson, et al, have predictably settled like vultures on the scene, stirring up people too blinded by their rhetoric to notice it is their bones those vultures have been picking clean all these years.  I do know that I have no problem whatsoever with what happened to the punk, and would have been just as content if he'd have ran from the store he robbed and got hit by a bus.  And I would say that if he were black, white, purple, green, or polka-dotted.  What I am is sick to death of black communities standing up for the worst of "their own" without fail, and playing the race card every time a punk gets caught breaking the law.  Laurie brought up that, "If the cop gets acquitted, it'll be worse than Rodney King with the rioting."  I replied, "If they riot, they should send in the National Guard and shoot every last one of them."  I might soften on THAT part later, but for now, that's how I feel.

Rick Perry.  So let's get this straight.  An assistant DA in charge of a department whose job is to check into the INTEGRITY of state government gets pulled over.  She blows a POINT TWO THREE-  enough to kill approximately five Scrappys- has to be strapped to a chair so they can take her statement without her oozing onto the floor.  And now, she is suing the Governor for vetoing funding to this department because that's an abuse of HIS power.

Seriously?  Is she still drunk, or just has alcoholic amnesia and thinks her arrest was just some friends gaslighting her?    I think Perry should give her department $1.50 and let her investigate herself.

Mo'Ne Davis.  If you haven't seen this girl pitch in the Little League World Series yet, you owe it to check her out.  How a 12-year old girl is so focused, so mechanically correct, so two-pitches-ahead of the batter is way beyond me.  I don't know if she's going to be able to beat the big bats of the Nevada team Wednesday or not, but she is something I have never seen at this level before- and I don't mean because she's a girl.  And anyone who answers a reporter asking, "How do you deal with the media attention?"  with, "I can always say no- that's my secret weapon against the media", is great in my book!

ITEM:  You see the latest promo poster for the BBC hit show Downton Abbey?

The series is currently set in the 1920s- which makes it rather amusing that there is a plastic water bottle on the mantle of the fireplace.  But the hardy lot that they are, they have turned the misadventure to the advantage of mankind.  They took a photo of the entire cast with water bottles and posted it on instagram- with just a little more.

A link posted with the Instagram photo refers clickers to the website for WaterAid, a British-based charity that works to get clean water to impoverished communities. 

See what I mean?  You don't like something? Blame slavery.  You attack someone, rob someone, throw a brick at someone, blame slavery.  Ignore the fact that everyone in your family tree is 150 years removed from slavery- or the fact that Professor Boris just assumes their are slaves in Prof. Miller-Young's family tree just because she's black.  But, as we have a woman in Congress who claimed a Native American exemption because her grandma was pregnant when they drove past a reservation, I guess this is one stereotype that blacks and liberals DON'T mind.

Professor Boris- But where are moose and squirrel???

ITEM:  As much as I hate to screw with a serious story like this one from the BBC, I just had to share with you my chuckle at "the rest of the story":

(Newly elected Indian Prime Minister) Narendra Modi said India had been shamed by a recent spate of rapes, as he made his first Independence Day speech as prime minister.
He called on parents to take responsibility for their sons' actions, saying parents must teach their sons the difference between right and wrong.

Mr Modi also pledged bank accounts for all and toilets in every school.

Wonder why Obama didn't try that one?

ITEM:  According to this e-mail, I'm somebody's soul mate:

I believe you are the one i'm searching for
I am miss zainab from the country Iran, your profile caught my attraction,
please reply to my email address (zainabhassan011 so we can
communicate easily to know each other the more, i promise to also send you my
photo for you to know me. Remember that distance, religion or tribe does not
matter in life but true affection is everything we need to live our life and be
Yours new found friend,
Miss zainab.

Okay, let's look this over.  The salutation Assalamu alaikum turns out to be not Persian, but Hausa for "dear"- and that means it's from Benin, and not Iran.  However, the e-mail is probably hacked from an Iranian lady named Zainab Hassan.  Who I am sure has been looking for a fat, 50+ Christian with no money or position all her life.

But if you really wanna have fun, how's this for irony?  If you put Zainab backwards (baniaz) into Google translate, you get Basque for "Bani".  So I says to myself, "If I take ate "az" off, will I find out what "bani" means?

Sure enough.  It was Romanian for "money.  Go figure.

Speaking of money, the old "UN trying to get your money out of Benin" trick has grown a new method:

From: Ms. Carman L. Lapointe.
United Nations Under-Secretary for Internal Oversight Services and Chairperson Scam
Victim Compensation implementation Committee

Dear Fund Beneficiary

(Blah blah blah, on to paragraph 2)

Having seen your file and my further questioning to the officials of the central bank
and ministry of finance as to why your payment is still pending reveals  the rot and
corruption in the system. The bank officials told me that the reason why you haven’t
received payment is due to your inability to pay for the required charges for transfer
of your funds into your bank account. When I asked them why they didn’t deduct the said
charges from your principal sum, I was given the flimsy excuse that you never authorized
them to do so. When I put the question across to them if they ever advised you that such
charges could be deducted from your principal fund,the answer I got was no. Now, if you
do not tell this beneficiary that such charges could be deducted from his or her
principal fund, how will he or she know that such options are available for  such

From my investigation I discovered that these bank officials deliberately refused to let
the charges be deducted from your principal fund because they want your fund to remain
trapped in the bank, while they continue to extort money from beneficiaries under some
flimsy excuse. (Blah blah blah, come to Benin, swear out an affidavit, pay NO money now)

Carmen Victoria Garcia Bitar
Personal Assistant to
Ms. Carman L. Lapointe.
United Nations Under-Secretary for Internal Oversight Services.
Reply to her private e-mail:(

I was going to lob off the "private e-mail"  But if you take a good look you'll see why I left it.  I mean, that's what MY personal e-mail would look like if I were a UN official.

ITEM:  Tha-tha-tha-that's all folks!

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Sunday Message: To bless or not to bless

This week, my Bible reading schedule took me into the lives of four characters- Samson, Naomi, Ruth, and Saul.  Each of them had a similar experience in receiving blessings- and whether they accepted them or not.  I am going to tell this as a story of sorts, so you can look up their individual stories in Judges, Ruth, and I Samuel.

Start with Samson.  Almost everyone knows he's the one with the great strength and the weakness for evil woman, and that is part of the story.  But the story starts before he is born, with a woman of Israel who believes (as 99% of the Biblical women did) that childbirth is the highest calling that a woman can have- and like most of the women God moved through, she was barren.  She prayed for a child, and the Angel of the Lord told her she would have one- but he would be special.  Even while he was in the womb, she was to have no drink or even grapes; once born, he would be given to perpetual Nazrite vows, dedicated to the Lord from the start.  In addition, he would be gifted with tremendous strength, in order to break the Philistine hold on Israel.  And both of these things led to his downfall.

See, he knew from the start he was special;  he was strong, handsome, respected by the people as a Judge.  As a result, he had an arrogance about him that led away from God and towards fallen women.  While God blessed him with the ability to carry out His purpose, Samson himself had no real relationship with God.  As a result, he finally found himself stripped of his gifts, through his own fault, and chained and blinded before his enemies in the temple of THEIR god.  But his fall finally brought him clarity, and he finally turned to God in his extremity.  And God blessed him with the ability to destroy more Philistines at his death than he had in his whole life.  Now, mind you, he might have done even more if he had used his gifts AND a relationship with God to lead Israel against Philistia, rather than wasting his time bedding their women.  Think of a God-blessed army of Israel led by a man stronger than any ten men.  But turning to God at the end of his rope changed him from a mockery to his foes to their greatest bane.

Next, look at Naomi and Ruth.  Quick synopsis:  Naomi was an Israelite woman, and during a famine her husband, two sons, and she moved to Moab.  The two sons married Moabite women, one of them Ruth.  But then, Naomi's husband dies, and both sons thereafter.  The famine ends and Naomi decides to go home and live as a widow on what passed for Hebrew welfare.  She sent the two daughters-in-law back home to their families- but Ruth refused, saying, "Your people will be my people; Your God shall be my God."

So back to Israel they go and Naomi- who had not only a husband but ALSO two sons to her past credit- forgot about the blessings she HAD had.  "No longer call me Naomi (which means "joy").  Call me rather Mara (which means "bitter")."  IOW, I'm not going to appreciate that I still have family in Israel- or that I am unshamed before women in having had two fine children- or that I have a daughter not of my flesh who won't abandon me.  Nope, I'm going to spend the rest of my life moping, because I don't have all my blessings NOW.

Ruth, on the other hand did not fall victim to bitterness.  She also lost a husband, she as yet HAD no children, and now she was leaving the only land she ever knew to live among strangers in Israel.  And she had nothing but obedience to the Lord, obedience to Naomi, and joyfully she went about the task of keeping her and her mother-in-law from starving.  And because she "counted it all joy" , she was blessed beyond her dreams, or even her knowledge- as God brought her to her future husband Boaz- and would be, a Moabitess, the great grandmother of David King of Israel- and part of the lineage of Jesus Himself!

And then we have Saul.  Gifted with stature, gifted with beauty, Saul became the first King of Israel.  Not only did he have the blessing of God, he had one of the greatest mentors in faith he could have asked for in Samuel.  Had he been obedient, he would have been the King to at last bring Israel to glory, enslave the Philistines, be the lineage from which the Messiah would spring.

But, he had to take things into his own hands.  Instead of putting it into the hands of the Lord that raised him up, instead of abiding by the instructions of Samuel, he had to try to do things in his own strength... and lost his son's loyalty, lost his anointing, lost the help of Samuel, lost his Kingdom.  Eventually, he even lost his life... and even that he decided to do himself.

So in the end, we have one who counted on his own joy and almost lost it all; and one who counted her trial as joy and gained more than she could have realized.  When you need a blessing and wonder why you aren't getting it, ask yourself- what are you counting?  And also, we had one who only looked at what HAD happened to them, not on what could happen; and another  who gained everything without raising a finger for it, and lost it all because he had to do it himself.  When you want or need that blessing, what- or who- are you looking to?

Saturday, August 16, 2014

That's why he's a Boofus

Last night I was finishing up some blog reading/responding as Scrappy finished dinner.  He came up and put front paws in my lap with that "time to go out" look.  So I said to him the magic words:

"Do you wanna go out, or would you rather.."

At this point, the ears came to attention.

"...go for a walk?"

Have you ever seen a cartoon where a character kinda circles his head before dashing away?  This is just what he did- like a doggie double-take.  He then began barking at such a rate that the next bark was almost coming out before the last one was finished.

That would be a "yes".

So, off we go, and wouldn't you know:  the very day I told Bobby G how rare it is to see rabbits around here what with the cats and foxes and such,  What do we see on Ground Hog Road?

We were about 50 feet downwind, and we took several steps towards him before he took off, and Scrappy caught the scent.  And as usual when we got to where he was, Scrappy thoroughly sniffed the place he sat... and then tried to track him back to where he came from, instead of where he went.  Hence the title of this post.

He got redemption, though, as we moved south to the path between soccer fields.  As we approached one of the main den areas, he caught a whiff of something and charged full speed ahead.  It was hidden to me for a few seconds as it had been sunning on the other side of a patch of tall grass, but not from Scrappy- and soon he was in hot pursuit of a ground hog heading for his hole.  Perhaps if Scrappy was unleashed (which would be stupid in the extreme on my part) or I could move faster (like that's gonna happen), Scrappy would have certainly caught him.  But since I've seen him get in a stare-down with a ground hog and go "duh..."  (See "Once Upon A Time In The Forest" on the stories and poetry page), I have my doubts he'd know just what to do with him when he got there.

Soon later we're walking the loop trail in the woods when we see our two bucks disappearing towards the High Woods.  For those of you that haven't seen the horrible pictures of the "High Woods", here's the thumbnail:  it's a partially detached square of woods on the northwest corner of our woods.  Built on an old garbage dump, it sets above main woods level and basically is the separation between the medical park and the additon to our west.  It has no natural openings, no natural trails, and about double the fallen sticks the main woods has.  But we decided to take the trail down to where it leaves our woods, and double back along the edge of the medical park, to see if we could spot them in the High Woods.

Why not just go straight through, like the deer did?  Well, where the two woods touch, the north 1/4 is guarded by the wettest of the dry stream beds that lace that end of our woods- and it was pretty wet.  The remainder of their adjoinment is guarded by "that which man cannot pass through"- at least without a tank.  As it turned out, it was in just those thickets that they had found their shelter, and we ended a fruitless expedition by slogging through the far-from-dry stream bed.

Here are some more pics of earlier in the week adventures:

Another dip in the creek.

Yep, I crossed it successfully.

One whacked out bug... or was it two?  I never got close enough to figure it out.

And the day before with Laurie joining us, I saw something move way up at the other end of Dead Tree Road...

...and when I blew it up big enough, it was a deer!  I figured a fox from where we were...

Friday, August 15, 2014

Time Machine week 17

It's August 15th, 1972.  Deep Purple tonight starts the first of the three-day series of concerts that would make up their live Made In Japan lp, from which came the definitive Smoke On The Water.  And unless you're from India (who began their version of the postal zip code) or a big Ben Affleck fan (born this date), not much else happened.

Sorry, I'm just not that into you.

Welcome to Time Machine for the week that Elton John's Honky Cat and Rick Nelson's Garden Party first hit the charts.  This time, we continue rolling out the Top Top Ten with the best set from 1968; the top selling hits of all time with the next five from that list; yet another new feature (which is gonna kinda nuzzle a pre-existing feature out of the way); a new #1; and a couple of questions about this post I'd like you all to answer (if it is at all in your interest frame).  Climb aboard, and we'll start right out with-


I have struggled at times with posting a video for the "song I didn't know until TM".  So what I found in thinking up something else is a new angle.  Way back in late May of last year, I did a one-shot on one hit wonders- songs that were the act's only top forty.  You can see that here.  Well, I got thinking, why were they one hit wonders?  Some just got unfairly airplayed, some totally changed styles, some did novelties... and some just weren't very good.

Well, what I did on this occasion is looked at the next-highest charting hit for the Martin-Era one-hit-wonders that made top ten.  I made me a list, checked it twice, bent my own rules a time or two, because it is all in fun.  So what we have at the end of the day is, I'm going to play 15 videos- one a week.  They will be a bottom-up top 15 of the best songs I found on this journey IMHO.  Hopefully you will enjoy a brief listen at a song you may never have heard before, from an act you MAY have heard from.  I'll also be letting you know the hit that was the "one hit".  Mind you, this is taken off the Wiki list of one hit wonders, which has some accuracy issues- glaringly, the Knack's My Sharona, when the Knack not only had 2 other top 40s, but one of them (Good Girls Don't) was a top ten!  So if my list is a bit sloppy, at least I didn't screw THAT up!

Nice to know SOMEONE remembers us!

So this week I start with the #15 song on my list.  The "one hit" for this lady was one of the Bee Gee era songs I never have got sick of.  With a heapin' helpin' of Barry Gibb vocals, Samantha Sang took Emotion to #3 in 1978.  This one, however, peaked at #56 later in the year:

That leads me to question #1 I'd like to ask.  Do YOU have a one-hit-wonder you'd like to hear about- or the "next highest" that came with it?  Put it in the comments, and I will do my best to do it justice.  Just one of the many services we at TM provide without charge for you!  Now, onto this week's top 40.

Five songs hit the top 40 for the first time this week.  First is Mac Davis with Baby Dont' Get Hooked On Me, climbing 8 to #40.

Chris, why do you only put pictures of hot chicks on your blog?  Well, duh.  But this week you get Ben and Mac.  Don't expect it every week.

Up 7 to #39 are The Who with Join Together.  The Tower Of Power comes in with a pretty melody called You're Still A Young Man, up 7 to 38.  The Isley Brothers move up 7 to #37 with Pop That Thang.  And we've mentioned the song that comes in at 34 (up 8) a few times in the recent past- mainly in regards to it's charting overseas.  It hit #1 for 10 weeks in April-June in South Africa, for 5 weeks in May and June in Germany, 2 weeks in New Zealand in June (where he hit with HIS version of last week's top dog, Daddy Don't You Walk So Fast, earlier in the year), and will hit the top next week in Norway.  Oh, the song?  Daniel Boone's Beautiful Sunday.

Some gotta climb, some gotta fall, part one.  The biggest climber in the countdown logs a meager 13 spots from 61 to 48- Three Dog Night's Black And White.

Now, the Top Top Ten for 1968!  The penultimate year of the sixties finds it's best top ten on the very last week of the year, and starts with:

10- Cloud Nine, The Temptations.  Amazing how good a straight soul group was at doing psychedelic.

9- I'm Gonna Make You Love Me, Supremes/Temptations.  Each group has it's own song in this list, plus they share this one.

8- Both Sides Now, Judy Collins.  I remember how much I loved this as a wee one.  It's charm has faded just a hair over time, but still my favorite from Judy Blue-Eyes.

7- For Once In My Life, Righteous Brothers.  Not my favorite from them, but a bad Righteous Bros. song beats most anything else.

6- Love Child, Supremes.  One of my sixties top ten.

5- I Love How You Love Me, Bobby Vinton.  He sings this as if an audio dream.

4- Abraham, Martin, And John, Dion.  And here we have a top 5 sixties for me.  Cannot make it through without a tear.

3- Wichita Lineman, Glen Campbell.  And a top 15 of the sixties for me.

2- Stormy, Classics IV.  "Yesterday's gone, just like a warm summer breeze..."

ANNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNND the top song for this top ten:

I Heard It Through The Grapevine, Marvin Gaye.  Hey, it's Marvin!

Some gotta climb, some gotta fall, part two.  The You Peaked gang this week have the Stories' I'm Coming Home, making it to 26 before dropping;  Derek and the Dominoes stop at 14 with Layla last week; and Grass Roots' The Runway taxied to 29 before sailing back down the chart.  And, with one new top ten, one will drop out.  That one is Too Late To Turn Back Now, from 5 to 12.

Before we hit the top ten, it's time for the next five on the biggest hits of all time.  If you missed last week, there are 32 singles that sold over 10 million physical records.  We're featuring five a week, and this is week two.  the first two are in the ten million range, the last three in the 11 million category.

Elvis Presley, Hound Dog, 1956.  As I've featured various other parts of the Hound Dog story in the past, here's another part I found interesting:

While Presley was performing "Hound Dog" on television and his record was scaling the charts, (Mike) Stoller (one of the original writers), who had been on vacation in Europe, was returning on the ill-fated final voyage of the Andrea Doria. On July 26, 1956, (Jerry) Leiber (the other) met the just-rescued Stoller on the docks and told him, "We got a smash hit on Hound Dog," Stoller said, "Big Mama's record?" And Leiber replied: '"No. Some white guy named Elvis Presley." Stoller added: "And I heard the record and I was disappointed. It just sounded terribly nervous, too fast, too white. But you know, after it sold seven or eight million records it started to sound better."

Britney Spears, Baby One More Time, 1998.  Seriously?  Yes, it hit #1 in every one of the seventeen nations it charted in, which I suspect is also some sort of record.

Roger Whitaker, The Last Farewell, 1975. This was a very unlikely hit, and not for it's classical sound.  Whitaker ran a radio show, and one year he asked listeners to send in original poems to the show, and he would turn the best into songs he would sing on the show.  Out of a MILLION responses, he chose 26-one a week for a year- and The Last Farewell was one of them, written by Ron Webster.  An album of the songs was recorded, and the story might have ended there, in 1971.  But the wife of a program manager heard the song, got her hubby to play it in 1974, and by 1975 it hit #19 in the US of A.  It would go on to hit #1 in 11 nations.

The Mills Brothers, Paper Doll, 1943.  The Mills' career had slowed a bit from their beginning of 12 top 5's from 1931-37- they'd had none from 1937 to 1943.  But Paper Doll hit the top for 12 weeks in '43, and they were back in the swing.  After listening to the tune, about a guy who's considering getting a paper doll to love since other guys kept stealing his real girlfriends, it might only make the charts now in Weird Al changed the title to "Blow Up Doll".

(Prepare to cringe...)

Los Del Rios, Macarena, 1996.  The famous Bayside Boys remix is actually one of SIX versions of the tune Los Del Rios recorded, including a rumba and a samba.  The Andalusian band hit #1 in 12 countries.


And, before the top ten, a second question.  As much as I've struggled with the videos, I've struggled even more mightily on the lead in news stories.  I am considering a new format, and want to know your opinions, please.  I'm thinking about finding the BEST Martin Era news story for the date, and using THAT year for that week's top forty.  I realize there are bugs to this (such as having to go to the SECOND best news story the next year), and I'd really, REALLY like some input.


And now, this week's top ten:

The Godspell crew slips a spot to 10 with Day By Day.

The latest "Let's Stay Together clone" from Al Green, I'm Still In Love With You, climbs a pair to enter the top ten at #9.

The Hollies move up a pair to #8 with Long Cool Woman.

Then we have a pair of tunes that are stalled in their spot this week.  The first Is Where Is The Love, holding at 7 for Roberta and Donnie.

The second is Alice Cooper with School's Out at 6.

Mouth And MacNeil climb 3 to #5 with How Do You Do?

Wayne Newton slips from the top, landing at #4 with Daddy Don't You Walk So Fast.

Luther Ingram keeps chugging along, up another spot to #3 with If Loving You Is Wrong, etc.

Looking Glass sails up one more to #2 with Brandy (You're A Fine Girl).

And the #1 song this week....

...Gilbert O'Sullivan with Alone Again Naturally!!!!!!!

Be sure to comment with your answers, and we'll see you next week!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

And now, what I was GOING to say...

...before death interrupted, was about the walk Scrappy and I got in on Saturday.

We were sticking to the woods since the trail was being inundated by runners of every stripe.  To me, you wanna run, run on the streets and bike paths, you aren't paying attention to your surroundings anyway.  Leave the woods to those who live in it and those who appreciate their beauty.  ANYway, we were following the dry bed on the northwest side and were just about to recross the trail, when the runners came through- and Mama fox came tearing past, escaping the selfish thoughtless runners and coming right past us.  Long story condensed, Scrappy followed his nose and soon we had lost the fox but found were we came into the woods at in the first place.

Then it was down along Stony Run for a rest and a quick dip.

So we disengaged from the woods and crossed the empty field towards Coliseum Blvd.

Something dead at the Coliseum?

Still wet from swimming.

From here, we cut across to the river, and took the path down to Johnny Appleseed to see if the boardwalk had been repaired.

Turns out the damage wasn't on the path to Appleseed, but on the spur to North Anthony.  And no, not fixed yet.

Chillin' at the dam.

All kinda fishermen there.  Even Kingfishermen.

After a nice long rest on the far side of the boat landing, it was time to head home.  Including backtracking after the fox, 3 hours and a shade under 4 1/2 miles.  Thus, it wasn't a surprise that scrappy was willing till today for another jaunt.

Today, though, we were under a threat of rain, so we were going to make it a short one along the north canal trail.  We ran into a nice gentleman and had a short chat, when I said, "Look, on the bridge..."

Yup, Mama fox yet again!  Our new friend got some shots on his laptop, too, hope he got some good ones!