Saturday, June 30, 2012

Carolina Parakeet

Wouldn't it be cool if we had parrots in these parts?  Back in the 1800's we did.  It was the Carolina Parakeet, pictured above.  We killed them and made hats out of them.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Battle of Sullivan's Island

On June 28 and 29, 1776, American forces commanded by Colonel William Moultrie and Colonel William Thomson successfully defended the harbor of Charleston, South Carolina, from attack by a British naval fleet.  The Americans defended the harbor from a palmetto fort erected on Sullivan's Island, and the British ships became stranded on sandbars in the entrance of the harbor so that their cannon could not be completely effective.  Cannon balls bounced off of the flexible palmetto logs, and the Americans were able to claim an early victory in the American Revolution.  The battle is known as the Battle of Sullivan's Island.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Almond Chicken Casserole

I found a recipe for an Almond Chicken Casserole on IChef, but it did not have a picture of the dish to post.  I would probably add cheese, and perhaps something else like Dijon mustard to spice it up a bit.  I've been looking for a new casserole to add to our repertoire.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Changes in What Is Acceptable

I recently read an article on the Atlantic's website that I found interesting.  The author points out that fifty years ago cigarette smoking in all manner of places was socially acceptable.  In my day kids smoked in high school and only got in trouble if they did so somewhere other than the "smoking pit," which was the area designated by the school for student smokers.  Over the years, society kicked smokers outside, and smoking is generally frowned upon, although it was once an accepted part of everyday life, whether one smoked or not.

The article goes on to wonder if today's society's acceptance of behavior associated with our present use of mobile computing and communicating devices will be tolerated fifty years from now.  I probably notice it more than most because I gave up my cellular telephone as soon as I no longer needed it for professional use, and although I find computers to be useful tools, I am still rather old fashioned in a lot of ways.  I regard drivers on their telephones as hazards, and I assume that anyone on a phone arriving at an intersection at the same time I am is more interested in his or her conversation than they are in not killing me. 

Every now and then I pass through the campus of the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, and most of the students are talking on phones, listening to I-Pods or operating some mobile application as they walk to their classes.  It seems everyone has their gaze fixed upon some screen, as I do now.  It has its place, but I like to unplug from time to time.  Maybe it wouldn't be so bad if all this fancy technology were to become a bit more unfashionable as time passes.

Monday, June 25, 2012


This image of Saturn was taken by the Hubble Space Telescope.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Restaurant Review -- Burger Up, Franklin, Tennessee

I have read good things about Burger Up, an upscale hamburger joint with locations on Twelfth Avenue South in Nashville and on Cool Springs Boulevard in Franklin.  I also read about the suicide of one of the co-founders inside the 12 South location associated with his divorce from the other co-founder.  Sad.

I had lunch at the Cool Springs location when I was in Franklin for my clerks conference.  I had their basic burger, the Bear Creek Burger, and it was fresh and delightful.  I wasn't very impressed with the fries, which were served in a metal cup and were rather limp.They had a variety of exotic burgers on the menu, and I was tempted to try the bison burger.  Maybe next time.

My meal, including iced tea and tip was $15.00.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Chief Justice Warren E. Burger

On June 23, 1969, Warren E. Burger was sworn in as Chief Justice of the United States.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Gouldian Finches

These are Gouldian finches from Australia, and scientists believe that their personalities differ according to their plumage.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

No-No Nona and No-No Nita by Laura Ogle-Graham

My entrepreneurial sister, Laura, is now a published author.  Her first effort is a children's book entitled No-No Nona and No-No Nita, which she wrote and illustrated.  She asked me to post the following:

Dear Family and Friends,

Please help me by forwarding this to as many family and friends as possible! Please also post it on your blogs, Facebook pages, Twitter accounts, or any other social media that you use! I am so excited to have my first published children’s book! I would be delighted and overjoyed if you would purchase a book (or two)! 

Thanks for helping make my publishing dreams come true! :)


Anyone interested in ordering the book can use this order form.

Carspotters on Car Lust

I don't really consider myself a car guy, at least compared to the motorhead friends I grew up with.  I've always driven modest automobiles, and some were more modest than I like to admit.  What I want in a car is a reliable means of transportation with few requirements beyond a good stereo.  Nevertheless, I enjoy admiring nice automobiles, especially old cars.

 Car Lust is doing a Carspotters' Challenge.  They post old photographs like this one, and the car buffs talk about the various cars via comments.  I picked out the gold Oldsmobile Cutlass on the right side of the picture because it looks like the car one of my aforementioned motorhead friends drove in high school.  His is a Cutlass 442, and I've been nagging him to restore it for years.  I noticed the yellow Corvette only after seeing it mentioned in the comments at Car Lust.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

First Day of Summer

Today is the summer solstice, which is the first day of summer, though we've had summer weather here in East Tennessee for many weeks.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Nathanael Greene

Nathanael Green, the "Fighting Quaker," died on June 19, 1786.  He rose from the rank of private to major general during the American Revolution, and George Washington appointed him to command American forces in the South in 1780.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Aurora Borealis

This is a photograph of the Aurora Borealis taken at Point Barrow, Alaska, back in March.  (Via Earth Science Picture of the Day)

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Happy Fathers Day!

Sarah was up early this Fathers Day morning to prepare me a breakfast of frosted flakes with milk.  The cats were apparently busy last night inasmuch as I found several notes this morning from them wishing me a pleasant Fathers Day, though I suspect they would kill me in my sleep but for my providing them with kibble each day.  My child has promised to perform laborious tasks for me as a Fathers Day gift, to include washing my automobile.  I am pleased.

This is the tenth anniversary of my first Fathers Day as stepfather to Joey and Jake.  I married their Mom on Valentine's Day 2002, and moved from Blount County to Nashville two months later.  The boys were only six years old that Fathers Day, and they would soon have a baby sister with which to contend.  Life's changes are wonderful, and I am still amazed that I have become a father and have the joy of raising such fine children.  There was a time when I thought it would not be so.

I salute and remember my Dad, Phillip Ellis Ogle, on this Fathers Day, and my grandfathers, William Ellis Ogle and Harvey Isenhour.  I was fortunate to have been fathered by good men.  I aspire to be the kind of fathers they were to their children, and I continue to love my fathers, though they are no more.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Restaurant Review -- Colonel's Cafe, Knoxville, Tennessee

I recently attended a funeral in West Knoxville, not far from the house I grew up in, and before I drove back to the office I decided to have something West Knoxvillian for lunch.  I first decided to go to the Smoky Mountain Market on Northshore Drive for a Rooster, a chicken sandwich that fueled my teenage years.  To my disappointment, there were chains on the doors of the Smoky Mountain Market.  To my knowledge it was the only place in town that still sold Roosters.  Sadness.

I got back in my car and decided to go to Colonel's, a reliable sub sandwich shop at 4809 Newcom Avenue.  I first experienced Colonel's in junior high school when my friend Jonathan, who lived within walking distance of it, took me there.  I had heard that the couple who operated the restaurant had retired and that the new owners were calling it Colonel's Cafe and serving breakfast, but I figured everything else would be as it was.  Again, I was disappointed.  Don't get me wrong.  I had a delicious gyro, complemented by a generous serving of fresh hot fries, and they kept my iced tea filled.  I highly recommend the new establishment, but the old Colonel's is no more.  Again, sadness.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Bacon Kebabs

The blogger at the Noble Pig blog has changed her format, but she keeps dishing up wonderful recipes, like these Breakfast Kebabs, which also feature ham and sausage.  As she says, "Meat on a stick; it's what's for breakfast."  I may try and pull off an East Tennessee version of this dish.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Flag Day

Happy Flag Day!  We try to fly our flag every day, weather permitting, and have done so for many years.  I'd love to get another flag pole holder installed so we can fly the Tennessee flag as well.  I like this painting, by Edward Percy Moran, depicting Betsy Ross presenting the first American flag to Washington, though Wikipedia debunks Betsy as the maker of the first flag.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Basil Rathbone

On June 13, 1892, British actor Basil Rathbone was born.  He is most famous for his portrayal of Sherlock Holmes.  More here.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

The Helix Nebula

Hoskins Drug Store in Clinton Restores Sign

Beginning the summer after my first year of law school I worked as a law clerk in nearby Clinton, Tennessee.  Hoskins Drug Store is right down the street for the firm I worked for, and I had many lunches at their diner.  I am pleased to learn that they have had their neon sign repaired, with help from a program called "Save Our Signs" that started with a grant from JFG Coffee, which has a historic sign in Knoxville.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Nashville Weekend

We spent the weekend in Nashville and got back yesterday afternoon.  We ate breakfast Saturday morning at the Loveless Cafe, which is the first time I have done so in a couple of years.  I ate so much I was full for two days.  We spent Saturday afternoon hanging out with Joey and Jake and their friends at our erstwhile neighborhood's pool, which made for a restful and fun day.  The people at the pool still treat us like regulars.  We also made a stop by U.S. Border Cantina, a Bellevue favorite, for supper.

I've been onto Sherry to bring us back some Purnell's "Old Folks" Smokehouse Sausage from Nashville.  It is what they serve at Cracker Barrel, and you can buy it there for six dollars a pound.  The Brentwood Kroger had an advertised shelf price of $4.99 a pound, but it was on sale for $3.19, so I loaded us up with eleven pounds.  Sadly, I haven't been able to find it in East Tennessee.

Vehicular Archaeology

I found this post on Car Lust to be interesting.  An archaeologist seeks the assistance of car buffs to help date a couple of dump sites with discarded automobiles.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Spicy Coconut Chicken

Foodista has a recipe for this dish, Spicy Coconut Chicken with Mango Basil Salsa.  This might be a good dish to make at the beach.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Studious Molly

Molly the calico cat enjoys the sun and a good book.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

1955 Desoto Firedome

Ellingston Classic Cars just sold this shiny, red wagon. The asking price was $29,950.00.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Pocket Protectors

Things I Think Are Kinda Cool has a post about pocket protectors, which vanished due to their geekiness.  It features images of a bunch of them, including this one.  When I was in high school there were some kids in my class that used pocket protectors and carried their calculators, which were much bigger then than they are now, on their belts.  I bet they are all mega-rich now.

Monday, June 4, 2012

We Shall Never Surrender

Winston Churchill delivered an important speech to the House of Commons on June 4, 1940. His conclusion:

Even though large tracts of Europe and many old and famous States have fallen or may fall into the grip of the Gestapo and all the odious apparatus of Nazi rule, we shall not flag or fail. We shall go on to the end, we shall fight in France, we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our Island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender, and even if, which I do not for a moment believe, this Island or a large part of it were subjugated and starving, then our Empire beyond the seas, armed and guarded by the British Fleet, would carry on the struggle, until, in God's good time, the New World, with all its power and might, steps forth to the rescue and the liberation of the old.

The New World would soon step forth, after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harblor, Hawaii, on December 7, 1941.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Swimming Hole

My friend Johnny was in town this weekend from Georgia with his two kids, and we took them and Sarah up to Abrams Creek yesterday to let them play in the water.  It was breezy and a shade on the cool side, but the kids had fun carrying tubes upstream and floating back down on the current.  After playing in the water, we ate sandwiches at a picnic table under a big pine tree.

We brought the kids back to town after lunch and visited at the house for a while, and then Johnny and Sherry took the kids over to John Sevier Pool for another swim.  Johnny loaded his crew up this morning in order to visit with his grandmother and aunt in Knoxville, and then they'll head back down to Atlanta, if they aren't already on the interstate.  Sherry, Sarah and I went out for breakfast, did our grocery shopping, and are enjoying some down time.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Date Night

Sherry and I had a date night last night after dropping Sarah off at Mom's for the evening.  We started with supper at Nama Sushi Bar, and then took in the Styx show at the Tennessee Theater.  We walked by what we assumed to be the band's tour bus, and I had to drag Sherry back out onto the sidewalk to keep her from stalking Tommy Shaw.  It was a fun night, and a great show.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Happy Birthday, Tennessee!

On June 1, 1796, my home state of Tennessee became the sixteenth state in the Union upon President George Washington signing the legislation creating the State of Tennessee out of the Territory Southwest of the River Ohio.