Thursday, June 28, 2007

Heading for Estill Springs!

We're heading out tomorrow for our cabin in Estill Springs, Tennessee. I'm heading out before dawn in the morning in order to be in court in Murfreesboro tomorrow at 9:00 a.m. central time, and I'll head for the cabin after that. I'm hoping to have lunch with my cousin Jim Simpson, since I expect this will be my last court appearance in Murfreesboro. Sherry, Les and the Boong are going to join me at the Camp tomorrow afternoon because Sherry's got a meeting during the lunch hour tomorrow at the Knoxville News-Sentinel. I'm ready to put my toes in the creek!

Red Cross Meeting

Sherry and I had an enjoyable time yesterday at the annual meeting of the Blount County Chapter of the American Red Cross, where I got to see a lot of old friends and got to meet some new ones. I rejoined the local board of directors for a three-year term yesterday, and got a plug in the local paper. Roger Campbell, who was chair of the board when I first joined Red Cross years ago, was elected chair for the coming year.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Prodigal Cat Comes Back

After being missing for a week, Louie the tuxedo cat reappeared last night, much to our relief and happiness. He seems none the worse for his adventures.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Invasion of the June Bugs

We are surrounded by fields in the back of our present home, and the owners have just cut several acres of grass that has gone untended for months. This resulted in a bumper crop of June Bugs fleeing to our backyard. I'm surprised we don't already have a flock of birds picking them off.

White Neck

I had my hair cut pretty short yesterday morning after allowing it to get pretty shaggy. Sherry informs me that I need some sun on the area on the back of my neck that was formerly shielded from the sun by my overgrowth. I'll be back to redneck before you know it.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Mom and Her Boys


We love this photo of Sherry and Joey and Jake. The boys are growing up!

One More Post on Neckties


Sherry ordered me a Boong necktie for Fathers' Day, and I love it! It features this image of Sarah, which I've posted before, and which our entire family now has as desktop background on their computers. I wore the tie this morning to juvenile court, and it was a hit.
There's nothing quite as beautiful as your little girl laughing.

Coastal Confessions


I'm ready to go back to the beach! Here are a few of our photos from our week down in Seagrove Beach. This shot was taken at A.J.'s in Destin. It wasn't nearly as overcast as this photo might lead you to believe. Actually, Sherry had to seek the shade that afternoon to avoid baking.

Hair (and hat) so big, you can tell they're from the South before they open their mouths.

I miss my sand pit!

Sarah at Mighty Oak


This is a photo from the cove at Mighty Oak from when we went out there several weekends ago. Biff is piloting his boat, and I'm holding Sarah after a quick run to Bartlette's mom's lake house.
When I asked her Saturday about going out on the boat, she replied, "Never, ever, ever, ever, ever again!" She didn't fare as badly on this trip as she did on the sailboat with Captain Randy last summer, but she is not a big fan of water travel at this point.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Iraqi Bloggers

There are three Iraqi bloggers I check in on from time to time. Their websites were in an article in the Tennessean, and Nashville is pretty cosmopolitan and includes a large Kurdish population. I thought it would be an interesting way to learn about what's going on in Iraq, from someone else's perspective. Of the three, two of these bloggers have announced this week that they are leaving family, friends and homes in Baghdad to take refuge in Canada.

Petting Zoo



These are some photos from our recent trip to the petting zoo in Clinton.


We had to walk a mile for this camel.

Petting goats
Sarah loved the pony ride!

Mountain Blogs

I haven't looked in on a couple of mountain blogs I like in a while. Blue Ridge Blogger and the News Sentinel's All Smokies blog both have some nice photographs from their respective parts of the Appalachian Mountains. The All Smokies blog is more newsy, but has plenty of photos as well. BBB is a lady photographer up in the North Carolina mountains, and she always has really nice photos on her site. I didn't include links, but you can find them on Google easily enough.

Sarah's Imaginary Friends

Sarah has been watching James and the Giant Peach, which Sherry just bought for her on E-Bay. Written by Ronald Dahl, the Author of the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory tale of which Boong is so fond, the Giant Peach story is about James and his imaginary friends, which are bugs and an earthworm. Sarah has accordingly generated James and his imaginary friends for herself, and she likes for them to swing on her swingset with her. She makes me push them on the swings, which is most embarrassing. I'm sure the neighbors must wonder when I stopped taking my medication.

In the car yesterday, Sarah also said "cats are my friends," leading Sherry and me to believe she needs to spend more time with other kids.

Truth Comes Out About Steve and the Red Cross

I talked to Kathy Bowers this week about her invitation to me to become a member of the local board of the American Red Cross. She revealed the real reason they want me back on the board. They don't have any board members who will inhale helium and sing.

We all have our special talents.

Where, O Where, Has Louie Gone?

Louie the cat is AWOL again. We haven't seen him in several days and figure someone must be feeding him somewhere. Either that, or coyotes have a special taste for tuxedo cats. (We figure we lost my tuxedo cat, Bessie the Foul, to coyotes several years ago in Nashville.) Emma the Skittish, our calico, is too much of a weenie to get far enough from the house for anything to eat her. Perhaps being a weenie is a trait that benefits her from a natural selection point of view.

I just saw her eating a double helping of cat food, and I think I even heard her snickering under her breath.

Mighty Oak/Tiki Bar/Slumber Party at Wannie's

We had a busy Saturday. I talked to Biff Byrd earlier this week, and he said he was going to invite himself out to Bart Yancey's place, Mighty Oak, on Melton Hill Lake for the weekend. I called Bart Friday and invited us out as well. We got out there around noon or so and enjoyed hanging out around the cove. I tied a bobber to a stick so Sarah could "fish." Without a hook, I figured she wouldn't catch anything, but she would have fun without us having to worry about her hooking herself (or someone else).

The Fuzzies had a cook-out at their place yesterday afternoon, so we left the lake for South Knoxville and enjoyed visiting on their back deck and checking out their new tiki bar. Al and Jane Barron joined us, as well as Frazier's son, Greg. Sherry and I refused a dart rematch on the theory that we'd prefer to remain undefeated. Sarah went home with Wannie in the new Wanniemobile, so Sherry and I had a night to ourselves last night. I reckon we'll meet Mom and Boong for breakfast a bit later this morning.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Atlantis Returns to Earth

The space shuttle Atlantis finally landed yesterday. I hope Sunnita Williams got her pizza when she got home.

Gracie Cuts Some Fangs

We got to see Grace's first teeth yesterday. Her two lower incisors have cut the gum, which explains a lot of her recent fussiness and drooling. La's trying to start the process of getting Grace to sleep throught the night in her crib, though the first attempt resulted in hours of crying Thursday night. She's also started introducing her to apple juice and baby cereal.

New Scanner/Printer/Copier/Fax

Sherry and I finally invested in a much-needed scanner/printer/copier/fax machine for our home office. I've managed to limp along without a copier or fax machine since bringing my law office home in November, but it will be a real convenience to have this new machine. We bought a Lexmark X5470, which replaces the Lexmark printer that we'd been using for Sherry's Mac downstairs.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Wannie's New Cad

Mom bought herself a 2001 Cadillac to replace her aging ride. Boong and I met her for breakfast this morning and got to take a ride. Sherry's been working on ads for Skirt! magazine, which goes to press in the next day or so. We're back at the house now, and we're expecting Wannie, Les, La and Grace in the next little while for a Friday evening cook-out.

A Few More Spins

Bad weather down in Florida prevented the shuttle Atlantis from landing at Kennedy Space Center yesterday, so they had to take a few more spins around our globe. They'll try it again tomorrow.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Shuttle Atlantis to Return to Earth Today

The space shuttle Atlantis is scheduled to land in Florida this afternoon, weather permitting. The crew deployed a new array of equipment to gather solar energy for the operation of the station, and they helped to fix a computer problem that troubled the mission, though NASA still doesn't know what caused the problem in the first place.

I was a little concerned earlier in the mission when a thermal blanket that protects the shuttle as it makes the dangerous trip back through the Earth's atmosphere came loose. They solved that problem by sending an astronaut out on a space walk to staple it back in place with a staple gun. If they'd used duct tape, I would have really been worried.

U.S. astronaut Sunnita Williams, who has been on the International Space Station since shuttle Discovery delivered her to the ISS in December 2006, has been continuously in space longer than any other woman. I saw a spot on television about her this morning where she said she's looking forward to a walk on the beach with her hubby and her dog. She also said she's looking forward to a good slice of pizza.
HAPPY FIRST DAY OF SUMMER!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Black Sabbath/Alice Cooper to Tour This Fall

I just read an E-mail from Caveman which states that Black Sabbath will be touring this fall, and Alice Cooper will be one of the warm up acts. Ozzy will not be with Sabbath, but it appears that Ronnie James Dio will front the band for at least some of their shows. I have seen the Dio version of Sabbath in Charlotte way back during the Mob Rules tour, but I have never seen Alice, who was one of my favorite rockers as far back as my high school days. One of my first vinyl albums was Welcome to My Nightmare.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Louie's Cat Fight

Louie the tuxedo cat got into one hell of a cat fight this morning just before dawn. It sounded like they had it out on the back porch, where we've been feeding the cats (including, apparently, the Jesus Saves neighbors cats) until a couple of days ago. They made such a ruckus it knocked boxes off of the shelves in the garage. At first I thought Louie was injured, but he seems okay.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Goodbye, Ol' Red

Uncle Fuzzy's boss, Theresa, came over to have a look at Sherry's car, a maroon 1997 Civic sedan, this morning. This afternoon, she bought it. She and Fraz just picked it up and left us a check a little while ago, and it's kind of sad to see it go. This was the car Sherry was driving when we met, and seeing it arrive in my driveway has always made me smile.

Visit from Les and Mom

Mom and Les came over for a visit yesterday afternoon. We had part of a chicken, as did Mom, so we picked both of them to make a batch of our yummy chicken salad. We pretty much just lazed around the house, though Sherry and Sarah went out to Target yesterday afternoon. In honor of Fathers' Day, I slept.

Sherry and the kids got me a very cool UT garden gnome, which is now presiding on our back porch.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

More on Neckties

On Friday I left home without a dress shirt to wear with my suit to court that afternoon, so we stopped by the T.J. Maxx in Bellevue so I could find one. They were loaded up with merchandise for Fathers' Day, and I found not one, but two shirts I could buy. This is good, because last week I didn't make it to the outlet in Destin where I like to purchase my Lawyer Steve shirts.

Since neckties are the cliche for Fathers' Day, I checked out the tie racks and found four ties I liked. My friends and family know that I'm basically a slob when I'm off work, but I am pretty picky about how Lawyer Steve presents himself to the world, since he brings home the cashola. I look through a lot of tie racks out there in the world, and I always find it difficult to find a tie I'll actually buy. Finding four was a treasure trove, and I'll enjoy having the new ties to change things up a bit.
HAPPY FATHERS' DAY!
Today is Fathers' Day, which always makes me think about my dad, Phillip E. Ogle, who died in 1993, and his father, William "Ellis" Ogle, who died in 2000. I also remember my maternal grandfather, Harvey Isenhour, who died when my sisters and I were children. I found it very sad after my Granddaddy Ogle died that I no longer had anyone to buy a card or gift for anymore. I am thankful for my sires, who on the Ogle side are historically long-lived. It all starts with the DNA.

I should also say Happy Fathers' Day to Sherry's dad, John C. Hester, to whom we affectionately refer as Papa John, and to Jake and Joey's dad, Mark Ferrelli, who will be enjoying this Fathers' Day with his loving sons.

Happy Fathers' Day, and neckties for all!

Frazier's Mom in Hospital

When we got home from Nashville yesterday we learned that Fraizer's mom was hospitalized Friday night with pneumonia. She's around ninety, so we're very concerned. Fraz spent the night with her Friday, and it was about 1:00 p.m. when he told us she was in Baptist Hospital. I suspect we'll learn more today.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Edge of Seventeen

Not too long ago, pretty much out of the blue, Sarah started singing a song that we figured out was "Edge of Seventeen" by Stevie Nicks. She likes "It's a Long Way to the Top If You Want to Rock and Roll", which she also heard on the movie School of Rock. Sherry and I wondered what the lyrics to the Stevie Nicks tune are, and I found them on Lyricsfreak.com:


Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song...
Sounds like shes singing...
Whoo... whoo... whoo...
Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song...
Sounds like shes singing...
Ooo baby... ooo... said ooo

And the days go by...
Like a strand in the wind...
In the web that is my own...
I begin again
Said to my friend, baby...
Nothin else mattered

He was no more... than a baby then
Well he... seemed broken hearted...
Something within him
But the moment... that I first laid...
Eyes... on... him... all alone...
On the edge of... seventeen

Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song...
Sounds like shes singing...
Ooo baby... ooo... said ooo...
Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song...
Sounds like shes singing...
Said ooo baby... ooo... said ooo

Well I went today... maybe I will go again...
Tomorrow
Yea yea well the music there well it was hauntingly...
Familiar
Well I see you doing...
What I try to do for me
With the words from a poet...
And a voice from a choir
And a melody... nothing else mattered

Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song...
Sounds like shes singing...
Ooo baby... ooo... said ooo
Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song...
Sounds like shes singing...
Ooo baby... ooo... said ooo

The clouds... never expect it...
When it rains
But the sea changes color...
But the sea...
Does not change
And so... with the slow... graceful flow...
Of age
I went forth... with an age old...
Desire... to please
On the edge of... seventeen

Oooooooooaaaaaaaaaahhhhhh.

Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song...
Sounds like shes singing...
Ooo baby... ooo... said ooo
Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song...
Sounds like shes singing...
Ooo baby... ooo... said ooo

Well then suddenly...
There was no one... left standing
In the hall... yeah yeah...
In a flood of tears
That no one really ever heard fall at all
Well I went searchin for an answer...
Up the stairs... and down the hall
Not to find an answer...
Just to hear the call
Of a nightbird... singing...
Come away...

Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song
Sounds like shes singing...
Ooo... baby ooo... said ooo
Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song...
Sounds like shes singing...
Ooo... baby ooo... said ooo

Well I hear you in the morning...
And I hear you...
At nightfall...
Sometimes to be near you...
Is to be unable... to hear you...
My love...
Im a few years older than you...
My love

Just like the white winged dove...
Sings a song...
Sounds like shes singing...
Ooo baby... ooo... said oo



Bonnaroo

The Bonnaroo music festival is underway in Murfreesboro, and the reunited Police are playing there this evening. I still think the idea of the Police playing the 'Boro is rather surreal, but it certainly speaks to the popularity of Bonnaroo. In another bit of news that is sure to make Bonnaroo even more popular, at least with healthy red-blooded American males, the Tennessean is reporting this morning that the latest fad at the festival is chicks going topless.

New Neighbors

We are sad that our neighbors at our Lively Road duplex moved this week. Rick and Anita were very nice, and were the kind of neighbors who liked to bring food next door. They had to move because Anita's job got transferred to Dandridge, which is about an hour drive from Lively Road.

The good news is that Rick's daughter, Carlene, and her husband, who is also named Rick, took over the lease. They are about our age and have a nine-year-old son named Beau, and Joey and Jake and he hit it off. He was sad to learn that we were taking J&J back to Nashville yesterday.

The Boongmobile

I don't think I've posted a photo of the toy car that Fuzzy brought Sarah. This is her machine, which she obviously enjoys. The photo was taken in our backyard at Lively Road.

Stoney River Restaurant

Sherry and I had supper last night at Stoney River Restaurant on Nashville's West End last night. I had a veal chop, and Sherry had steak tenderloin, both of which were delicious. While I was in court yesterday afternoon, Sherry took the kids to our old neighborhood pool, where Sarah wore herself out swimming. She was asleep by the time we got to the restaurant, and she slept through about half of our time there.

Stoney River was nice, with low lighting and jazz music. I commented to Sherry that it was the kind of place my dad would have loved. It was expensive though, with entrees ranging from $20.00 to $30.00. Fortunately, we had a $40.00 gift card that the secretaries at my old law firm here gave us for Christmas, so it didn't break us too badly.

Afternoon in Davidson County Juvenile Court

I had a good afternoon trying a case in Davidson County Juvenile Court yesterday. Referee Griffin was absent from his Court, and attorney Jan Simmons presided as Special Referee, which turned out to be a good thing for my client. Besides Jan, I saw several lawyers I've known during my tenure in Nashville, and though I didn't get to visit much, it was nice to see some friends and to let them know how we're doing back in Maryville.

Friday, June 15, 2007

La, Stew, Andrew and Grace Fly to Vancouver

Laura, Stew, Andrew and Grace flew out of the Knoxville airport yesterday morning to Vancouver, where there is a wedding in Stewart's family this weekend. La and Grace are going to fly back to Tennessee after the wedding, but Stew, Stew's mom and Andrew are going on a cross-country adventure to visit the town in Canada where his ancestors settled after immigrating from Russia. Les and Fuzzy are keeping an eye on Graham Manor for them while they are abroad.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Trial in Nashville Tomorrow

I have a trial in Davidson County Juvenile Court tomorrow before Referee Bill Griffin, and it is the conclusion of a case I've been involved in for over a year and a half. We're going to hit the road by 8:00 a.m. tomorrow, eastern time, so we should be in Nashville in plenty time for me to get to the nearest phone booth, turn into Lawyer Steve and charge off to do battle with the Forces of Evil and Oppression.

Sherry and I have a gift card to a fancy restaurant in Franklin, so after the Forces of Evil have been defeated, we're going to have a nice dinner, with the poor Boong in tow. I think Jake and Joey have had a good visit with us, but I know they will be happy to see their daddy tomorrow. Sherry and Sarah and I will head back to Maryville after breakfast Saturday.

Parrothead


Aunt Leslie would be proud!

Gator in the Chattahoochee River in Atlanta

I just got an E-mail from Dave Myers with a CNN article with a photo of a full-grown alligator that some dude spotted in the Chattahoochie River in Atlanta. I've floated the 'Hooch on several occasions, and would hate to think that there might be a 'gator lurking beneath the surface. Scary!

Steve to Rejoin Red Cross Board

I received a voice mail during our vacation last week from Kathy Bowers, Chair of Volunteers for the Blount County Chapter of the American Red Cross. I served on the local Board of Directors for several years, and was Board Chair for two years, which included September 11, 2001. I don't think I'll ever forget watching the towers fall at the justice center and then realizing that I was the Chair of the local Red Cross and that my place was at the Chapter House, where I spent most of the rest of the day watching news coverage of the tragedy.

Kathy asked me if I was interested in again becoming a Board member. I, of course, am delighted and flattered to be asked. I am looking forward to again becoming involved in the Red Cross, a tradition in our family since Grandmother Ogle served in her community Red Cross decades ago.

Muddy Water, Take Me Home

South Blount County Utility District, which provides water service to our residence, did some work on the water lines earlier this week. This resulted in our water running a sickly gray color, so although we've had washing water, we haven't had drinking water for several days. Sherry called them while I was at the Blount County Bar Association meeting yesterday, and they came out and flushed out the line up the street from us, so we again have clear drinking water at our house. Hurray!

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Look Rock Camping Photos

Here are a trio of photos from the Look Rock campout several weeks ago. According to the Daily Times, the cool fireflies just started showing their stuff up there this weekend.



What the Fark?

I learned a new word today. I've been complaining for some time now about the crap on television and other media that passes for news. Who the hell cares if Paris Hilton is in jail? Why do the people whose job it is to provide the public with information that is important to help us govern our lives give us this rubbish as news? There are many other examples of fark, and there's an interesting article on the phenomenon in the Metro Pulse. I also enjoyed checking out fark.com, where I got the cool bear cavalry image posted below.

George Family Photo

I just looked through the rest of the photo album Karen sent last week via E-mail, and they are all delightful, and very orange. Here's their family photo.

Southern Foods Restaurant Changes Hands

We like to stop in Brantley, Alabama, on our way to the beach for lunch at the Southern Foods Restaurant, and we did so last week to find that it has been purchased by a new owner. They still serve up a good lunch buffett, and I had an interesting meal of cabbage roll, rutabaga and peas. The cabbage roll was stuffed with ground beef and reminded me of meatloaf, which I love. I don't know that I'd ever had rutabaga before, but it was pretty good. The texture was like cubed pototoes, and the taste was just a bit sweet. Sarah got fried okra with her lunch. She wasn't interested in it, but I ate hers. It was wonderful and reminded me of Grandmother's fried okra. Yummy!

Monday, June 11, 2007

Beach Report

I spent today dealing with correspondence and calls that piled up while we were enjoying Floridays last week, and I'm feeling caught up enough to call it a day and report on our vacation. We headed down there last Friday after attending GG's funeral the day before. Randy and Dawn were kind enough to put six of us up at their place Friday night, and we had chesseburgers in paradise and a dip in the pool by the intercoastal waterway that afternoon.

Randy and I would up spinning yarns and singing Buffett songs badly on his sailboat until about 10:30 that night, which is unheard of for me. We didn't take the boat out of the dock, but it was sure a fun way to hang out with an old buddy after a long day in the car. Dawn was a wonderful hostess, despite being invaded by a herd of three kids intent on jumping on her furniture and chasing her beloved kitties.

Randy took Jake and Joey and me out on the sailboat the next morning for a breakfast of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on a sandbar he affectionately calls Gilligan's Island. We actually had enough wind that morning to get under sail, and had a nice little cruise around the intercoastal near R&D's place. It was quite nice.

We stayed at a condo called Beachfront II, and we liked it. Mom and Grams and Les and Fraz stayed in a three bedroom unit at Beachwood Villas, which was where we had originally reserved our unit. We decided to upgrade to a two bedroom place, which gives the kids a room and allows me to have the living room during the 2-3 hours I am awake before everyone else wakes up in the morning. La and Stew and Gracie had a really nice place in a condo called Emerald Hill, which was right on the gulf with a wonderful view. We used the beach in front of La and Stew's condo, which was very convenient.

For the most part, it was a typical Destin trip. I missed out on the outlet mall, though I'd hoped to pick up some shirts at the Van Heusen outlet. We did the obligatory trip to A.J.'s to have lunch by the marina, and Grams was kind enough to babysit all three children so that Sherry and I could get out for some adult time. Mostly we enjoyed the beach and the pool and the downtime, which we all needed.

Randy and Dawn are planning a cruise this fall and want us to come down and stay at their place and care for their kitties, so we're looking forward to visiting the gulf again in a few months.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Pretty Boong

Need I say more?

Fuzzy Manor Victimized by Burglar

Les and Fraz had an even more unpleasant homecoming than we did. When they got home, they discovered that someone had invaded their home and stolen from them. They have been the victims of burglary twice now. It is time for a community watch on Berry Road.

Cool House

We ended up camping out over at Mom's last night. The landlady, her husband and the air conditioning repairman were here when we left, and the house was cool when we got home this morning.

Sherry and the kids went to swim at Vicky and Rick's place. I'm enjoying a cool, quiet house.

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Teddy George is 8 Months Old!


Wonder where all that orange stuff came from?

Good God, I'm Tired -- And It's Eighty Degrees at My House

We're home after a week at the beach, and after nine or ten hours on the road we've come home to a house that is 80 degrees. To make matters worse, I turned on the hose for the kids, and Sarah pointed it into the garage for ten minutes or so, which soaked a bunch of Grandmother's antiques, my stereo equipment, my legal files, and plenty of other stuff. Instead of relaxing, we've been roasting, moving the aforementioned soaked items and mopping water out of the garage. This was not the homecoming for which I'd hoped.

It is still hot as hell in here, and we're waiting for a visit from our landlady and God knows who else. This sucks!

Friday, June 1, 2007

On the Road Again

In the immortal words of Dennis Miller, "We are outtahere!" As soon as I can load these young-uns in the car, we're heading south. Florida, here we come!