Month: May 2006

A Commentary Worth Repeating….

Being a Vietnam Veteran commentaries surrounding such days as Memorial Day and Veteran’s Day always seem to, for the most part, go in one ear and out the other since they tend to be the same old rhetoric, many from commentators who don’t really have a clue. But they always have much more meaning for me personally when they come from a veteran. Yesterday evening I happen to catch Andy Rooney’s closing commentary on “60 Minutes” and thought it more than worthy of not only remembering but also repeating.

Andy RooneyAndy Rooney

If you did not happen to catch his commentary last night I hope you take time to read his commentary “A Memorial Day Worth Remembering” via the link below.

“A Memorial Day Worth Remembering”

Thank you Mr. Rooney for your heart felt comments and indeed, telling it like it is.

Greeting cards with attitude!

With all this time on my hands as a retiree and with the continued development of a blogger’s attitude I am thinking perhaps a part-time greeting card designer might be in my future. I think I like the kind of cards that seem to fall into the “Cards With An Attitude” category. Here is a preview of my latest design.

Cards With Attitude - FrontFront of Card

Cards With Attitude - InsideInside of Card

It’s a bit naughty – but not vulgar. It certainly seems to convey the sender’s intent. I am thinking at this point that I will definitely add it to my collection.

Thanks Lew…. May you rest in peace.

Bozo the Clown

Lew Anderson as Clarabell

Just as the kids these days have their Big Bird and Barney, my generation had their Howdy Doody. The show was the first network weekly television show directed at a children audience. At the time it was certainly an odd semblance of characters that made up the show, but they defined a generation. There was Buffalo Bob, his wooden puppet Howdy Doody, Clarabell the Clown, and a few other characters of some renown. A popular mix that would all go in to making up The Howdy Doody Show. The passing of Lew Anderson (Clarabell the Clown) will certainly not go unnoticed by my generation and many of those who followed I’m sure.

Lew Anderson was actually the third ‘Clarabell’ to appear on the show and followed Bobby Nicholson, who later played Doodyville’s J. Cornelius Cobb. Doodyville by the way is where all the characters lived. The first to play the mute clown was none other than Bob Keeshan, who later became known as Captain Kangaroo.And primarily based on the popularity of The Howdy Doody Show, it wasn’t long before television clowns were popping up all over theBuffalo Bob & Howdy Doody USA with their own shows on local television stations. I recall here in central Arkansas that our first live TV show featuring a clown and catering to the kids was “Bozo the Clown”. And the creation of that clown has touched each and every generation since 1960 and continues to this day in one form or another. Here’s a true story by the way…..

After breaking up with my high school sweetheart a few months into attending college (yea – you all know the story) I came home one weekend some weeks later and called her up for a date only to find out that she was dating someone new. Imagine that! Anyway, it turns out that the guy she is dating is named who has a TV show on one of the local stations (KATV) called “Bozo the Clown”. Well, this turn of events more or less pissed me off of course. But in hind-sight I could always chuckle at how fitting my future comments would be when referring to this turn of events. When someone would ask if I was still dating so-and-so I would sarcastically reply, “No! She is dating some ‘bozo’ now!” As a side note – no, she didn’t marry either one of us if you were wondering. It’s rather obvious however why she didn’t marry that ‘bozo’. (See how that works!)

Those of my generation will certainly be a little bit sadder this day with the passing of Lew Anderson but may God bless him generously for the laughter that he brought to the hearts and the souls of the children whose lives he touched as he passed through this world.

Here are links to today’s newspaper report and biographies noted on Wikipedia:

Washington Post – Final Clarabell the Clown Dies at 84

The Museum of Broadcast Communications – The Howdy Doody Show

Wikipedia – Lew Anderson (Clarabell)

Wikipedia – Bozo the Clown

…. and then the memory goes!

Laughing - 005

An 80 year old couple was having problems remembering things, so they decided to go to their doctor to get checked out to make sure nothing was wrong with them….

When they arrived at the doctor’s office they explained to the doctor about the problems they were having with their memory. After checking the couple out, the doctor tells them that they were physically okay but they might want to start writing things down and make notes to help them remember things. The couple thanked the doctor and left.

Later that night while watching TV, the husband got up from his chair and his wife asks, “Where are you going?”

He replies, “To the kitchen.”

She asks, “Will you get me a bowl of ice cream?”

He replies, “Sure.”

She then asks him, “Don’t you think you should write it down so you can remember it?”

He says, “No, I can remember that.”

She then says, “Well, I also would like some strawberries on top. You had better write that down cause I know you’ll forget that.”

He says, “I can remember that, you want a bowl of ice cream with strawberries.”

She replies, “Well, I also would like whip cream on top. And I know you will forget that so you better write it down.”

With irritation in his voice, he says, “I don’t need to write that down, I can remember that.” He then fumes off and into the kitchen.

After about 20 minutes he returns from the kitchen and hands her a plate of bacon and eggs.

She stares at the plate for a moment and says, “You forgot my toast.”

The Infamous European Wels Catfish….

Being raised in the South and having caught and eaten my share of catfish – well when I ran across photos and information a couple of years back on a monster catfish called the Wels Catfish that is quite common in many of the European countries I was quite taken back. At first glance the back half of the fish looks ‘eel-like’ while the front portion looks pretty much the same as our catfish species. And they commonly grow to well over one hundred pounds and several feet long. There is also an “albino” of the species which seems to be a mix of white and pale yellow in coloring.

Not being familiar with this particular species of catfish myself, I thought I would post a couple of photos of an informational nature to others who may be likewise uninformed. Of course, I had to add what I hope are a couple of humorus captions to keep things light. Here are just a couple that seem quite interesting…..

Wels Caatffish 1Looks good to me…..Let’s paint the next one red!

Wels Catfish 2Lookin’ for love in all the wrong places…..

Hope you enjoy the photos and I plan on posting others that I find educational and interesting later on down the line…. 🙂

Who’s Your Favorite TV Mom?

One of our local television stations put out a poll on their website this past Friday soliciting their visitors/viewers to vote for their favorite TV mom in observance of Mother’s Day this coming Sunday. Now who ever picked the choices that they made available did an extremely poor job in my opinion. I thought that their choices they listed might be based on network affiliation but a double check confirmed that was apparently not the case. The following are the TV moms they chose for soliciting a “favorite” vote.

The Brady Bunch – Carol Brady (Florence Henderson) – ABC

Leave It To Beaver – June Cleaver (Barbara Billingsley) – CBS & ABC

The Cosby Show – Claire Huxtable (Phylicia Rashad) – NBC

The Simpsons – Marge Simpson – FOX

Now if I had to vote for one of those I suppose it would be Claire Huxtable, who by the way did do the best in the TV station’s poll. However, I would not have voted for her if any one of a number of other moms had been listed including my favorite TV mom who was not listed on the poll. I’m guessing there have probably been some twenty-five to thirty TV shows over the years where a “mom” has had a prevalent role. Here are just a few major ones that they didn’t mention that come to mind including my favorite.

Married With Children – Peg Bundy (Katey Sagal)

Roseanne – Roseanne Conner (Roseanne Barr/Arnold)

The Waltons – Olivia Walton (Michael Learned)

The Little House On The Prairie – Caroline Ingalls (Karen Grassie)

Happy Days – Marion Cunningham (Marion Ross)

All In The Family – Edith Bunker (Jean Stapleton)

The Addams Family – Morticia Addams (Carolyn Jones)

One Day At A Time – Ann Ramano (Bonnie Franklin)

That 70’s Show – Kitty Forman (Debra Jo Rupp)

Everybody Loves Raymond – Debra Barone (Patricia Heaton)

Good Times – Florida Evans (Esther Rolle)

Seinfeld – Estelle Costanza (Estelle Harris)

The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet – Harriet Nelson as herself

Family Ties – Elyse Keaton (Meredith Baxter)

The Partridge Family – Shirley Partridge (Shirley Jones)

The Donna Reed Show – Donna Stone (Donna Reed)

Everybody Loves Raymond – Marie Barone (Doris Roberts)

As far as my personal favorite – well nothing comes close. By a wide margin I choose Kitty Forman from That 70s Show. She loves her family, works as a nurse, and has been known to sip the schnapps from time to time. Now that’s a real mom.

Kitty Forman - 03My Favorite TV Mom – Kitty Forman

And let’s face it for those who may propose or suggest that the “perfect” mom has somehow been portrayed on one of our television shows, either past or present. Fact is, there are no perfect moms – only perfect children. This, of course, is what makes a mom so special and endearing to us who are their children.

Happy Mother’s Day…. 🙂

Retirement Is A Bitch – Blog Mission Statement

If you have encountered me and my previous Internet escapades then you know they have included a musical website of little renown “The Electric Key Orchestra” and an associated blog of perhaps even less renown, “The Electric Key Orchestra Journal”.

Given the fact that “retirement is a bitch” and I have worked very hard at making it so – I have had to re-evaluate my endeavors to accommodate my new lifestyle of trying to comply with the requirements of ‘retirement’ as defined by Mr. Webster and documented in my previous blog entry. It would seem I continue to think up projects to get involved in – ultimately defeating the whole purpose of retirement. After all, it is one thing to enjoy a hobby or two or participate in certain outdoor activities – totally another when you have managed to make work out of it. The longer you chew on something – the bigger it will get. Hmmm….the wisdom of the elders – will it never cease!

So it has been determined that the Electric Key Orchestra is retiring and moving to Florida or maybe even to Mexico. I, on the other hand, am going condense all of my Internet activities into one source of enjoyment and that is to be this blog. So whether it is documenting a bowfishing expedition, composing a classical masterpiece, or cussing out the Bush Administration with regard the Medicare Part D along with the infamous weapons of mass destruction – these activities for future generations to ponder will be documented and recorded here. So neither the website “The Electrical Key Orchestra” nor the blog “The Electrical Key Orchestra Journal” will be updated and active any longer. The “Electric Key Orchestra Journal” will eventually be shutdown altogether and the “Electric Key Orchestra” website will eventually be renamed and accessed through a new domain name.

Okay – ‘nough said! Even the new “retirement” card conveys my latest profound revelation…..

Retirement Is A Bitch - Business Card 03