Leavin' on a jet plane...

But we know when we'll be back again.

The past couple weeks have been CRAZY here in Nashvegas for John and me. Between work holiday parties, gigs, work, shopping and church events / meetings...we've been completely covered up.

We're finally starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel this week as we finalize preparations to head home for the holidays

Here's the plan as of today:

12/23: 6 p.m. flight out of Nashville, passing through Chicago on our way to Omaha. We'll land at around 11 p.m. Sometime between 11:30 and Midnight, we'll be on the road to the Richardson's in Sigourney, IA (3.5 - 4 hours depending on the weather).

12/24 - 12/26: Christmas and fun in Iowa.

12/26: Depart for the Petersen's in Nebraska (6.5 - 7 hours depending on the weather) in the afternoon.

12/27 - 12/29: Christmas and fun in Nebraska. We hope to take in "Meet the Fockers" with the Petersen gang if possible.

12/29: Depart for Sioux Falls (about 2 hours away) in the afternoon. If we can, we're going to try to hook up with Ronnie on our way there, too.

12/30: Hang out with Denice, Kenny, Shannan and as many friends as possible in Sioux Falls.

12/31: Get up really early to drive to Omaha, return the car and make our flight back to Nashville at 10:20 a.m. We'll get back to Nashville at around 2:30 in the afternoon. Then, John has a gig with Blue Mother Tupelo at 3rd & Lindsley. After that, we'll listen to a little Paul Thorn. Then, I'm heading over to The Basement to Jonell Mosser New Year's eve gig to help with her merchandise. It's going to be a CRAZY day.

We can't WAIT to see everyone.


Bluebird Cafe Annual Christmas Party

Monday night I went to the Bluebird Cafe's annual Christmas celebration. It was great. Met and saw some great songwriters: Michael Johnson, Nanci Griffith, Jonell Mosser, Vicki Carrico, T. Graham Brown, Lari White, Pat McLaughlin and more.

It was GREAT.

AND...our friend Rick Lonow (he plays with Crystal Gayle, Burrito Deluxe - formerly "The Flying Burrito Brothers" and tons of cool people. Great drummer.) was playing the skins with the band that was backing all the artists throughout the night. That meant that Ellen, his partner and our friend, was also there hanging out. Whoohoo.

One of the highlights of the night was getting to meet Michael Johnson and visit with him. I'd seen him play in Sioux Falls a couple times before we came to Nashville and really enjoyed it. (Remember "Bluer than blue" and "Give me wings"?) Anyway, he was great. Says he's going to be in Sioux Falls at the Nitwits Comedy club ...so watch for it!


Baptist walks into stolen keyboard

LA MESA, Calif. (AP) - A Baptist church music director who needed to replace equipment that was stolen days before a scheduled holiday performance is thankful for a case of good fortune. >>Read more at USAToday.com

He's finally tattooed

DuBOIS, Pa. - Ralph Bonebreak was born to be wild - in 1910. The 94-year-old DuBois man recently got his first ink at the Tainted Flesh tattoo parlor in his hometown. Bonebreak emerged from under the needle with a locomotive on his right arm and an eagle on his left. >>Read more at USAToday.com

Twins deliver twins at same time

ATLANTA - Two twin sisters are seeing double - or make that quadruple - after delivering two sets of twin boys Tuesday. The women were six months pregnant when they found out they were both going to have twin boys due on the same date - Jan. 1, 2005. >>Read more at USAToday.com

The Eye Has Spoken

CBS has renewed Survivor for an 11th and 12th season, keeping Jeff Probst off the unemployment line at least through May 2006. The 10th edition bows in early February. (TV Guide Online)




OK...my friend Linda had a link to this posted on her blog.
I thought it was pretty cool...but don't know how I managed to get a PG-13.
How boring is that?!

My life is rated PG-13.
What is your life rated?

Politician won't shake hands

SOUTHBURY, Conn. (AP) — No matter what the deal, don't expect this city official to shake on it. First Selectman Mark Cooper held a news conference Thursday to announce that he won't be shaking hands with anyone until flu season is over sometime next year. >>Read More at USAToday.com

Cat a little thinner after month long adventure

RICKARDSVILLE, Iowa (AP) - No one at the Bahl home noticed when their precious pet, Pierre, jumped aboard a truck making a furniture delivery in October. >>Read more at USAToday.com

Charlie's Web Site


The Sheen is off Fans of CBS' "Two And a Half Men" know that Charlie Sheen's character, Charlie Harper, is a helpless womanizer who's left a trail of angry women in his path. Well, on this Monday's episode, Charlie becomes the object of a bilious Web site, www.charlieharpersucks.com, on which his past conquests compare notes about him.

CBS has established an authentic charlieharpersucks.com site, which is a replica of the one that'll be featured on Monday's show - with show contests, FAQs and live message boards.

On the side of the opening page of the site reads a message, illustrated with a picture of Charlie's head super imposed onto a red convertible:

"Look Familiar? Beware of Charlie showing up in the rented red convertible with a gourmet lunch for a surprise picnic in the park. It will appear to be a very romantic gesture. But this is his typical third date. He is going in for the kill, ladies!"

The site will be up and running 12/10.


Satirist Jon Stewart's Book Named Year's Best

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Political satirist Jon Stewart's mock look at a political science college textbook "America (the Book), a Citizen's Guide to Democracy Inaction," was named on Sunday the book of the year by Publishers Weekly, the trade publication of the book industry.

The magazine said, in its issue to be published on Monday, that, "in a year defined by political polemics, it seems fitting that PW's Book of the Year be one in which the authors survey the entire political system and laugh."

The book is written by Stewart, the host of the "The Daily Show" on comedy Central with colleagues Ben Karlin and David Javerbaum. It is currently number one on the New York Times best-seller list.

Publishers Weekly said, "'America (The Book)' offers more than just humor, however. Beneath the eye-catching and at times goofy graphics, the dirty jokes and the playful ingenuousness shines a serious critique of the two-party system, the corporations that finance it and the 'spineless cowards in the press' who 'aggressively print allegation and rumor independent of accuracy or fairness."'

The book is filled with satirical jabs, including tips for TV news reporters including mastering the "reporter reaction shot cutaway. You've got half a second tops to overshadow your subject. Make it count.

In its annual review of the year, Publishers Weekly listed notable books in other categories ranging from sex to politics to religion but did not give them in order of preference.


Did you miss me?

Wow...where to begin?
The past week has been WILD.
I tried to post a couple things to the blog via e-mail, but they didn't come through. I'll have to report that to Blogger...in the meantime...here's some info to catch you up:

Monday, 11/29:
--Work - Prep for conducting usability tests at the end of the week; Prep for Webtrends consultant who arrived on Tuesday.
--Focus group observation after work.
--Anthony Gomes at Bourbon Street after the focus group. (Our friend JC from Sioux Falls plays B3 with Anthony. Johnny The Clock got to sit in. He rocked...as usual.) We didn't get home until 1:30 a.m. and both of us had to get up at 5:45.

Tuesday, 11/30:
--Work - Consultant for new web traffic servers (Webtrends) in for the first day of three. This new system, even at it's most basic use, is going to be 100 times better than our current system. And, after we've had time (6 months or so) to reconfigure a few things and put some new processes in place, the information is going to be 1000 times better.
--Practiced for Wednesday night's writers round w/JTC.

Wednesday, 12/1:
--Work - Day two of Webtrends Consultant; More good stuff...but my brain was mush.
--6 p.m. Writer's Round at The Commodore w/ Steve C, Cat and Johnny the Clock on percussion. It went pretty well. I played piano for two of my songs...adequately. (I guess I just have to keep doing it so I get better at letting my fingers do the walking in front of an audience!)
--Linda and Laura (friends from NFIB) came to hear the round and made my night!

Thursday, 12/2:
--Work - Day three of Webtrends consultant; More good stuff and a long list of things to do!
--Rehearsal - JTC had rehearsal in the AM for his gig with the Coasters, Drifters and Platters on Sunday. Then he worked the late shift at Grassmere.
--Arabella jewelry party after work. Mandy (NFIB co-worker)makes jewelry (it is really good). She has a "Christmas" shopping party each December to help people with Christmas shopping.
--Prime-time - When JTC got home we ate baked chicken and sweet potatoes while watching Survivor and The Apprentice. Then we turned in early!

Friday, 12/3:
--Work - I conducted the first day of usability testing for NFIB.com. We had NFIB members come in and observed them using the site so we could troubleshoot and determine areas to improve. Good stuff. Long day.
--Macaroni Grill / Jeffrey Steele - JTC and I took a trip in the new Element out to Opry Mills for supper at Romano's Macaroni Grill and a Jeffrey Steele show at The Gibson Cafe. We didn't get home until about 1:30. We were wiped out!

Saturday, 12/4:
--AM - Church meeting for me. Errands for JTC.
--PM - Went with JTC to pick up the rental van the band would be using to travel to Indiana Sunday.
--Night - JTC went to bed (he had to be out the door by 5:30 on Sunday morning.) and I went to the Bluebird to hear Bob Dipiero, Al Anderson, Tony Mullins and Leslie Satcher perform in the round. Wow. Incredible show. Got home around 2 a.m.

Sunday, 12/5:
--AM - Woke-up at 5 a.m. with JTC to send him off to Indiana. After he left, I went back to bed and didn't wake up until 10 a.m. Boy did that feel good. Then I ate some leftover tacos, talked on the phone with Jim and then Denice for a while. Watched some TV.
--PM - Had a songwriting appointment with Eric Dout. We wrote a fun 12-bar blues song called "Quit Your Bitchin'" You'll probably never hear it on the radio, but it sure was fun to write.
--Night - Believe it or not, I turned in at around 8:00 or so. My thought was to watch TV for a couple hours in the bedroom and then go to sleep. Well...I think I was asleep by 8:15. Boy did that feel good.

That brings us to today.
--JTC gets home around noon.
--JTC has BMT rehearsal tonight.
--And...I may just go to bed early again.

Hope your week was GREAT.
Catch you soon.


It's one drum-haulin' machine.

Here it is...the newest edition to our family. We finally put our money where our mouth is this morning and got ourselves a new Honda Element. It is a 5-speed, front wheel drive, 5-door durable car. The color is called "shoreline mist" (basically a beigie-silver color). We've been pining over one for about three years...so it is about time! We worked a great deal (about $320 over dealer cost) and our excellent credit earned us 1.9% interest rate to boot. Can I get a WHOOHOOOOOO!?!? John can fit TONS of drums in it. The Element is very functional...it is "all business." IT ROCKS.
Posted by Hello


Come out tomorrow night and call Lightning 100...

Hey...if you're looking for something to do that will work off that big Turkey-Day indulgence...Have I got THE show for you.
Tom Hambridge CD Release Party
(followed by Jeffery Steele.)
Saturday (TOMORROW)
Nov. 27
1 Cannery Row (off 8th Ave. S.)

Count on at least four hours of non-stop, great music
with Tom and Jeffrey takin' turns at the wheel!

Also, PLEASE help Tom get the word out about his new CD. CALL Lightning 100 to request "Milk And Honey." The request line # is 615-777-5100. OR...use this link to E-mail your request.

Hope to see you tomorrow night.


TOM HAMBRIDGE is a Grammy Nominated Singer, Songwriter, Producer and Drummer. Tom has just released his new CD "BANG AND ROLL" featuring the single "Milk and Honey." This is the follow up to his "BALDERDASH" CD that produced two hit singles "Long Way Home" and "Opposites Attract"

So far this year Tom has produced, performed or written songs on Disks that have included 3 Gold records, 2 Top 10 CD's, one Grammy nominated CD, and Two Greatest Hits CD's one of which went to number one on the Billboard Blues Charts. He also Produced the new Johnny Winter record for EMI/Virgin including writing Johnny's new hit single "Lone Wolf." Tom's work can be heard on new CD's by Nora Jones, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Montgomery Gentry, Susan Tedeschi and George Thorogood and the Destroyers.

Tom who has won numerous awards for his drumming has performed and or recorded with over a hundred artists including: Chuck Berry, James Taylor, Boston, Ben Orr (The Cars), Jimmy Buffett, Del Shannon, Roy Buchanan, Jonatha Brooke and Bo Diddley to name a few.

Tom's new CD "Bang and Roll" will be available at the performance.
Visit Tom at


ATTENTION: Cell phone talking drivers

Just picked up this e-mail message from Denice:

"...I had a really bad day yesterday. I was driving to the office in the Stanza and was broad-sided at 43rd and Minn. by a Dodge pick-up truck, driven by a cable guy who was talking on his cell phone. He hit the driver’s side front left and hood it’s smashed up pretty bad, so it’s probably totaled as it’s worth less that what it would cost to fix it. He got a ticket for failing to yield. "


I'm really pissed at this guy for smacking into D.
But, let's face it.
We all do it (talk on the phone while we're driving).
I mean it.
Encourage everyone you know to do the same.
It is just NOT SAFE...
(yes...I am yelling.)


Research on cell usage while driving.

The Fatal Analysis Reporting System (FARS) is a census of police-reported fatal accidents occurring in the US.

In one analysis of fatalities involving cell phone use, the cell phone-using drivers were all in the striking vehicle. That is to say: they struck something stopped in front of them, or left their lane of traffic and struck a vehicle or object.

In these crashes:
75% of the drivers were engaged in conversation

13% were dialing their cell phones
13% were hanging up

Of those engaged in conversation, one third were using mounted phones in the hands-free mode.

In the case of collision, according to a University of Toronto study, "Association Between Cellular-Telephone Calls and Motor Vehicle Collision":
  1. The risk of collision when using a cell is 4 times higher regardless of the age or the driving experience of the driver
  2. Hands-free cellular phone units offered NO SAFETY ADVANTAGE over hand-held
  3. Note, in all cases the driver wasn't necessarily "at fault" but it still slowed their ability to avoid a collision caused by someone else.

Please don't "cell phone" and drive.
The life you save may be your own.

NFIB Communications Retreat was GREAT.

The NFIB Communications retreat in Boca was excellent. While we really didn't get to see much more than the hotel, we did get to spend time with the DC communications team and the five regional media people (who we rarely get to see face-to-face). Good stuff.

Wednesday, 11/17:
Wednesday night we had an open bar, a yummy dinner and then we all went bowling. What a hoot! AND...believe it or not (with no help from me...my score was 68) my team won overall! ROCK.

Thursday, 11/18:
We had information / communication sessions all day to talk about the plans for 2005. We also got to see the plans for upcoming research. Good stuff. With the exception of a new media person being a little negative and disruptive, the day went well.

Then, Susan (VP of Communications) gave us a cool team building assignment that was due on Friday. She divided us into "Apprentice" teams to make 'faux' NFIB awareness commercials. Each team was given a prop budget of $60, an outline of rules and a video camera to shoot the spot. And, like the show, each team elected a project manager (me...whooohooo!) and created a name for their "business." We were Risky Business Productions.

Most people hadn't planned to have to work on something Thursday night...so there was a little dissention in the ranks at first. But, once we settled on a concept, everyone figured out the plan and specific tasks were assigned to each team member, things went a little smoother.

Our concept: Go ahead...Take the plunge! Join NFIB.

Most everyone on our team was able to go out Thursday night while four of us stayed behind to write the script. We finished writing at around Midnight or so. Then, everyone went to their rooms and I went to the business center to type up the script and create a shot sheet. (This whole exercise made me miss TV terribly.) It was crazy, but I ended up not getting to sleep until 2 a.m. Craziness.

Friday, 11/19:
The Risky Business Team met at 7 a.m. to walk through the script, determine prop needs and finalize tasks. At around 7:30 we broke to get things ready to shoot at 9 a.m.

Basically, Erin (DC media guru) volunteered to "take the plunge" in our hotel pool. The script talked about how she was living the American Dream by owning her own business. However, until she got into it, she hadn't realized all the pitfalls (taxation, regulations, etc.) of owning a business. She joined NFIB to have a voice for small business. The whole time the script is talking about this, we are showing a tight shot of clothes being dropped onto a pile near the pool. (no skin...yet.) At the end of the spot you see Erin in her bathing suit as she runs and jumps into the pool. "Go ahead...Take the plunge! Join NFIB."

We had a blast pulling it all together. Erin deserves an Emmy for her performance!

A 11 a.m. we met up with the other team in the meeting rooms to watch each others spots. Of course both teams ended up using the pool as the setting. Their concept was about "drowning in government regulations" and their "small businesses were on main street not Wall Street." Both turned out pretty well. Susan (otherwise known as "The Donna") declared the effort a "tie" and everyone is getting "You're Hired" T-shirts from "Apprentice."

Most of us had 2 p.m. flights back to Nashville on Friday, so we all hopped in our rental cars and headed to the airport in Ft. Lauderdale. I was home by 7 p.m. and asleep by 8:15. Didn't wake-up until 8 a.m. on Saturday. I was WIPED OUT.

Overall, it was a great trip.
Feels good to be home.


The Thanksgiving Parrot

A young man named John received a parrot as a gift. The parrot had a bad attitude and an even worse vocabulary. Every word out of the bird's mouth was rude, obnoxious and laced with profanity.

John tried and tried to change the bird's attitude by consistently saying only polite words, playing soft music and anything else he could think of to "clean up" the bird's vocabulary.

Finally, John was fed up and he yelled at the parrot. The parrot yelled back.

John shook the parrot and the parrot got angrier and even ruder.

John, in desperation, threw up his hand, grabbed the bird and put him in the freezer.

For a few minutes the parrot squawked and kicked and screamed. Then suddenly there was total quiet. Not a peep was heard for over a minute.

Fearing that he'd hurt the parrot, John quickly opened the door to the freezer. The parrot calmly stepped out onto John's outstretched arms and said, "I believe I may have offended you with my rude language and actions. I'm sincerely remorseful for my inappropriate transgressions and I fully intend to do everything I can to correct my rude and unforgivable behavior."

John was stunned at the change in the bird's attitude.

As he was about to ask the parrot what had made such a dramatic change in his behavior, the bird continued, "May I ask what the turkey did?"



Boca Raton...here I come...

I should be in bed, but have a few things to wrap up for a trip to Boca Raton for work. Leave this morning and will be back on Friday evening.

Never been to Boca...but I've heard it is cool. I'll tell you all about it and maybe even post some pics this weekend.

Have a GREAT week.
Catch you again this weekend.

Tonight's round at The Commodore

Just got home from a writer's round with Steve C and Cat Miller at The Commodore. It went well. (Love playing with those guys.) And, I even mustered up the courage to play piano. Didn't do too bad. May have to try it again sometime.

AND, as I was walking out the door, another songwriter asked me for my number. She said she wants me to do some demo work for her. Hope she calls! WHOOHOOOOO.


Carville Cracks Up To 'Press'

The yolk's on Clinton political guru James Carville - who shocked everyone on "Meet the Press" Sunday morning by smashing a raw egg on his head.

The point?

To dramatize the fact that he had egg on his face after wrongly predicting that Democrat John Kerry was going to win the presidential election.

"Meet the Press" host Tim Russert and Republican strategist Mary Matalin, who is Carville's wife, jumped out of the way to keep from being drenched by the flying egg white.

Carville - known as the Ragin' Cajun for his fiery partisanship - predicted Kerry would get 52 percent of the vote and President Bush 47 percent.

That projection was really scrambled because, in the end, the final tally turned out to be eggs-actly the opposite of the eventual vote tally. (New York Post)

Cleveland reporter becomes part of the story.

Sharon Reed's Body of Art

(Online Promo for Monday's WOIO newscast)

What do you get when you combine a beautiful Sunday morning, a Downtown Cleveland venue, a world-famous photographer and over a thousand Clevelanders ... completely naked?

How about art?

It all happened recently, and 19 Action News (WOIO, Cleveland) anchor Sharon Reed was there.

But Sharon didn't just report the story, she became part of it -- posing nude with over a thousand others for a groundbreaking and controversial photo that all of Cleveland will be talking about.

Our cameras were rolling as the unbelievable scene took place.

So, YOU be the judge. Is it art? Or is it something else? See it to believe it. (Action News 19 - Cleveland)


The Incredibles is INCREDIBLE.

John and I took in "The Incredibles" this weekend. It was so good I wanted to go back and see it again on Sunday. There were times I laughed so hard that I missed the next scene.

Definitely worth the price of the ticket and worth seeing in the theatre.


JTC Performs for the Troops

JTC played for the troops in Mississippi last night with the Coasters, Drifters and Platters. He said it was a great show...but very rainy.

Somehow coverage of the performance even ended up on Nashville TV stations: WTVF - Channel 5 and WSMV - Channel 4.

Here are some of the reports I found on Google about the event from other news sources:
Hattiesburg American
Newsday, NY
Sun Herald

Found my way to San Jose...

And returned from San Jose yesterday.

The "Don't Make Me Think" Workshop was INCREDIBLE. I'd recommend it to anyone who designs, programs, markets or pays for websites.

It was a great idea to host the workshop at the Improv...somehow not having to sit in a stuffy conference room really helped me sponge up the information.

AND, the hotel I stayed at was DIVINE. I would recommend the Hotel Montgomery and its restaurant to anyone visiting San Jose, business or pleasure. I seriously think I'm going to try to imitate the feel of the hotel in our house...THAT's how cool it was.

Reality of it all:
I'm glad to be home.

Can't wait to see John tonight. Haven't seen him since early Monday morning. Whoohooooo!


BB's Christmas Wish List

OK...it's getting close to Christmas. Every year Gertie asks us, "What do you want for Christmas? Send me a list..."

And, every year I'm at a loss for what I want. So, I've been compiling a wish list at Amazon.com that will hopefully help out.

I'll add more items as I think of them.

HELPFUL TIP: If you click the link to look at the list, note the drop-down menu sorting options above the items. You can sort the wish list by priority, price, etc.

Denice Visits Nashvegas

Halloween weekend we had a not-so-scary visitor: Denice.

It was GREAT.

She arrived Thursday afteroon. Thursday night we went out to BB Kings to see our friend JC play with Anthony Gomes

Here are some shots of the fun:

It's a little dark...but here's a shot of JC playing with Anthony Gomes.

BB and Nicie...so happy to see each other.

JC and Denice during the band's break.

Anthony Gomes

We had soooo much fun. Met some cool people and didn't go to sleep until 2 a.m. or so.

I took Friday off from work so Denice and I got to spend the entire day together. We woke up and talked for a couple hours...just hung out on the porch. It was great.

Then, we went to RuSans (sushi) for lunch. We had a BIG time there. The food was GREAT and we laughed sooo hard. Can't even remember what we laughed at...but it sure felt good. (I forgot my camera...so I'll post pics of that when I get a copy of Denice's photos.)

After lunch we went to a paint-it-yourself ceramics place in Hillsboro Village to get creative.

BB & Denice's masterpieces from our "All Fired Up" adventure.

After eating and painting...there was only one thing left to do. We went to Fido's for a cup of joe. We definitely needed a pick-me-up to get us through the night's plans.

At 6 p.m. we headed over to Frist . These women can ROCK.

The girls of Kentucky Thunder performing at the last Frist Friday of the season.

Jonell singin' her heart out with KY Thunder.

Somewhere around 9 p.m. we met Johnny the Clock at Douglas Corner to see the Jamie Hartford Band. I took some photos there, but they didn't turn out. It was fun... but needless to say...we were all wiped out. By 11:30 we were sleeping like babies.

SATURDAY (Halloween!):
JTC, Denice and I went on a road trip to Brackin's Blues Club in Maryville, TN. JTC was playing with Blue Mother Tupelo that night so we decided to make a little overnight adventure of it. The gig was good and it turned out to be a very interesting night. There were all kinds of people dressed up and acting crazy. There was a well-endowed monk, the devil, a kitty cat, MiMi (from Drew Carey Show), "Death Man," and a VERY drunk angel. Of course, I was having such a good time people watching that I completely forgot to take photos of these FREAKS...so you'll just have to use your imagination.

Here are a couple of the pics we did get:

BMT on Halloween.


It was a really late night...not only because the gig went late but also because we turned the clocks back an hour...so BMT played an extra hour for all the freaks at Brackin's. YIKERS.

We left Maryville to return to Nashville around 10 a.m. CT. Stopped at Quizno's for lunch along the way and ended up back at home around 1:30 or so.

Then...we all decided to take a nap. HA.

After the nap...JC and Tessa came over for supper. (Tessa was visiting from Sioux Falls, too.) JC and JTC bonded while Denice, Tessa and I laughed and told stories out on the deck. It was a good time.

Denice and Tessa.

Ultimately...once JC and Tessa took off...it was the end of the weekend. Denice went home bright and early Monday morning. The time went entirely TOO FAST.

Best Friends.

Thanks for coming to visit.
(When are you moving to Nashville?!)

Love you, Denice.


Do you know the way to San Jose?

I'm going to San Jose for a web usability workshop next week. (Leave early afternoon on Monday, 11.08, and return late afternoon on Wednesday, 11.10)
Can't wait.
It's gonna be GOOD.

Here's a link to the workshop:
Don't Make Me Think: The Workshop

It's actually being held in the San Jose Improv.

And, I'll be staying at the Hotel Montgomery a couple blocks away. From the looks of it on their site, it looks like a pretty cool hotel. (There are CD players in the room! Whoohooo.)

Anyone want to come along?!


Never hold your farts in.
They travel up your spine,
into your brain,
and that's where you get those shitty ideas.


The Sync That Sank Ashlee: '60 Minutes' Has It Covered

By Lisa de Moraes
Washington Post

About 36 hours before the polls open on Election Day, CBS News's "60 Minutes" will release a report that blows the lid off the Ashlee Simpson lip-syncing scandal.

When Simpson ran off the "Saturday Night Live" stage last week after her lip-sync flap, "60 Minutes" cameras were there to record her embarrassing exit and the reactions of show creator Lorne Michaels and other shocked staff members, the newsmag announced Thursday afternoon.

"The exclusive behind-the-scenes footage of the incident will be part of a Lesley Stahl report about the making of the venerable comedy program" set for Halloween night, CBS News said.

It reports that Stahl and her cameras also caught the dress rehearsal of Simpson's performance when she also ran offstage "because her voice failed her."

"SNL" had allowed "60 Minutes" at Saturday's show to tape one of those pieces about how the show is conceived, written and produced each week, because we've never seen that before.

Simpson has claimed that acute acid reflux disease left her without a voice the night she was the musical guest on the live late-night show, leading to the decision to use a recording of her voice while performing. (In her letter to fans posted on her Web site, she called it "acid refux," but you can't expect a faux pop star to also be a medical expert.)

That leaves unexplained why she was able, at the end of that program, to shout boisterously to the studio audience, and to viewers at home, that her band was to blame for the snafu, in which her voice could be heard singing "Pieces of Me" while her microphone was at her side and her mouth was closed, causing her to panic and walk offstage.

"I feel so bad!" she said loud and clear and with no sign of hoarseness as the show was wrapping. "My band started playing the wrong song! I didn't know what to do!"


We went to Graceland

Last weekend we had visitors from Iowa, Tom and Gertie. The time went entirely too fast. We had a blast.

Friday night John grilled pork chops. Mmmmmgood.

Saturday we drove to Memphis to visit Graceland. Below are a few snapshots of the adventure.

Tom, Gertie and Johnny the Clock in front of Graceland on Saturday.

John and Gertie with Elvis' music room in the background.

Tom and John...thinking about making a break for the second floor of the mansion. (It's off-limits to the public.)

JTC mugging for the shot in Elvis' raquetball court.

Damn...JTC forgot his suit. Guess he'll have to swim in Elvis' pool next time.

The look of patience as we waited for our food at the Rockabilly Grill.

They tried to jump this car in front of Elvis' Auto museum. No luck. So, they decided to have their photo taken with it instead!

Potential to become Elvis impersonators...don't you think?!

The Pancake Pantry ROCKS.

After church on Sunday, we made a bee-line for the Pancake Pantry. Good food. Celebrity sightings.

Waiting in line at the Pancake Pantry on Sunday. Little did we know that in a few minutes we'd get to meet Keith Urban (and his mom) and see Lyle Lovett inside. And, apparently, before we arrived, LeAnn Rimes had also been there. (Cool.)

Johnny the Clock and his Dad...wishing I hadn't interrupted their French toast and pigs-in-a-blanket for a photo!

"Pancake cheers!" from Gertie and BB.

Tom Hambridge & Jeffrey Steele

Sunday night, we all went to 3rd & Lindsley for supper and to see two of our Nashville favorites.

Tom Hambridge and his band played at 8 p.m. Jeffrey Steele went on at 9 p.m. Both shows were also live radio broadcasts on Lightning 100.

Hambone singin' his heart out.

Extreme close-up of Steve C. layin' it down.

Steve C and Jeffrey Steele rockin' out together.

Jeffrey singin' "Oh what a night..."

Steve C burnin' up his red guitar.

Country music royalty on keys...Rusty Golden. (His dad is "the mountain man" of the Oak Ridge Boys.)

JS singing his ballad about his 94 year old aunt, "She Must Be So Happy".

What a GREAT way to end an INCREDIBLE weekend.

Thanks for coming to visit us Tom & Gertie!
(Let us know when you're ready to move to Nashville.)



Why can't we all just get along?!

Here is a video clip of John Stewart confronting the hosts of Crossfire.

If you're on a dial up modem, I wouldn't recommend clicking the link to watch the video. Here is a rough transcript of the conversation.

I hate to say it, but I really agree with the overall point John Stewart is trying to make.

What do you think?

Spell check the art

LIVERMORE, Calif. - A Miami artist has agreed to correct the spelling errors on the ceramic mural she assembled outside the new library in Livermore, Calif. Maria Alquilar, who originally refused to fix the misspellings despite being paid $40,000 for the project, said Assistant City Manager Jim Piper persuaded her to rethink her decision. >>Read more at USAToday.com


Positive Power

Researchers explore link between good health and good attitude
10/14/2004 -- The NIH this year spent an estimated $149 million to fund 44 grants for research into the connection between positive thinking and physical health, USA Today reports. Research previously has focused on how "negative feelings," such as anxiety, depression, and stress, affect physical health; the most recent NIH grants, however, encourage researchers to specifically explore optimism's impact on patients' physical well being. Although some researchers have noted that the research is difficult because there are no "defined scales" for measuring happiness, one grant recipient at the University of Wisconsin-Madison already has reported that individuals with "higher levels of well-being have lower cardiovascular risk, lower levels of stress hormones, and lower levels of inflammation." USA Today notes that the NIH is expected to award $153 million for such research in 2005. >> Read More at USAToday.com

Check out the facts today...


Electoral Vote Predictor 2004


In case of bad day...click this link:





Friday Night Lights

John and I went to Friday Night Lights this weekend. It was pretty good, although I must admit that most of the football stuff went right over my head. (No surprise to most of you!) John really enjoyed it, too.

Saturday night / Justin Thompson

John and I went to see our friend Rick Lonow play with Justin Thompson on Saturday night. This kid is GREAT. He's got really smooth vocals, interesting original jazz material and incredible guitar skills.

He has actually arranged jazz / swing versions of Curt Cobain's "Teen Spirit", a Snoop-doggy-dog song and Britney Spears' "Hit me baby one more time," too. You wouldn't have recognized them...they sounded really good. (ha.)

My favorite part of the night is getting to watch Rick play. He's an INCREDIBLE drummer / session player and also plays with several other artists: Jason White, Crystal Gayle, Burrito Deluxe and Jamie Hartford. He used to be a member of Poco as well as The Bellamy Brothers. John and he really connect. I could sit and watch them talk about drums for hours.

Ellen Crandell (singer / songwriter, Rick's girlfriend and our friend), sat with us. She is great. We had a blast talking and enjoying the tunes. In between sets we got to hang with the Rick, too.

Afterwards, we all met Dave Pomeroy for a night cap at Bosco's in Hillsboro Village.

Good music.
Good friends.
Good fun.


IM Acronym decoder link...

This site makes sense of those instant message / e-mail abbreviations that you can't figure out.

Darrel Worley and Jackie Mason Sightings

Last night, after our writers round at Hair of the Dog, I met Micol and Ricky Davis for a bite at South Street. While we were there we saw Darrel Worley eating at a table just down from us.

Then, as we were sitting in the open porch area, a guy walked by who looked really familiar. We figured out that it was a famous comedian...but couldn't think of his name. Then he walked by again...said hello (probably because we were staring at him trying to remember his name!). Still couldn't remember it.

This morning Ricky sent me an e-mail. As he was lying in bed last night, the name came to him. We saw Jackie Mason. And, sure enough, according to his website, he's in Nashville this week.

You just never know what you're going to see around Nashvegas.


Photos of Madisen Elizabeth Petersen

Introducing...Madisen Elizabeth Petersen.

Madisen hangin' out at home with Mommy and Daddy.

Daddy holding daddy's little girl.
Posted by Hello
I've got some pics of Gma and Gpa Petersen, too...but they didn't upload right. :(
Since I can't upload photos from my work computer...long story...I'll add them tonight.


My Brain Usage Profile

My Brain Usage Profile:

Auditory : 42%
Visual : 57%
Left : 38%
Right : 61%

Here's what they said these numbers mean:

You possess an interesting balance of hemispheric and sensory characteristics, with a slight right-brain dominance and a slight preference for visual processing.

Since neither of these is completely centered, you lack the indecision and second-guessing associated with other patterns. You have a distinct preference for creativity and intuition with seemingly sufficient verbal skills to be able to translate in any meaningful way to yourself and others.

You tend to see things in "wholes" without surrendering the ability to attend to details. You can give them sufficient notice to be able to utilize and incorporate them as part of an overall pattern.

In the same way, while you are active and process information simultaneously, you demonstrate a capacity for sequencing as well as reflection which allows for some "inner dialogue."

All in all, you are likely to be quite content with yourself and your style although at times it will not necessarily be appreciated by others. You have sufficient confidence to not second-guess yourself, but rather to use your critical faculties in a way that enhances, rather than limits, your creativity.

You can learn in either mode although far more efficiently within the visual mode. It is likely that in listening to conversations or lecture materials you simultaneously translate into pictures which enhance and elaborate on the meaning.

It is most likely that you will gravitate towards those endeavors which are predominantly visual but include some logic or structuring. You may either work particularly hard at cultivating your auditory skills or risk "missing out" on being able to efficiently process what you learn. Your own intuitive skills will at times interfere with your capacity to listen to others, which is something else you may need to take into account.

Do you think this describes me?
Not sure myself...tell me what you think.

If you want to take the test yourself go to:

Then...tell me what it says about YOU.


October guests!

October 15 - 18:
All the way from the great state of Iowa...Tom & Gertie Richardson!

October 21 - 23:
Traveling from hurricane spared Tampa...Lynn Black & Emily Rutledge!

October 28 - November 1:
Dakota winds are blowin' her in...Denice Faltinson!

October is going to be a GREAT month.

Questions to ponder...

Just received these in an e-mail from my friend Braker and had to post it.

1. Does a clean house indicate that there is a broken computer in it?

2. Why is it that no matter what color of bubble bath you use, the bubbles are always white?

3. Is there ever a day that mattresses are not on sale?

4. Why do people constantly return to the refrigerator with hopes that something new to eat will have materialized?

5. On electric toasters, why do they engrave the message "one slice"? How many pieces of bread do they think people are really gonna try to stuff in that slot?

6. Why do people keep running over a string a dozen times with their vacuum cleaner, then reach down, pick it up, examine it, then put it down to give the vacuum one more chance?

7. Why is it that no plastic garbage bag will open from the end you first try?

8. How do those dead bugs get into those closed light fixtures?

9. Considering all the lint you get in your dryer, if you kept drying your clothes would they eventually just disappear?

10. Why is it that whenever you attempt to catch something that's falling off the table you always manage to knock something else over?

11. Is it true that the only difference between a yard sale and a trash pickup is how close to the road the stuff is placed?

12. In winter why do we try to keep the house as warm as it was in summer when we complained about the heat?

13. How come we never hear father-in-law jokes?

14. If at first you don't succeed, shouldn't you try doing it like your wife told you to do it?

15. The statistics on sanity are that one out of every four Americans is suffering from sort of mental illness. Think of your three best friends, if they're okay, then it's you.


Troops in survey back Bush 4-to-1 over Kerry

An unscientific survey of U.S. military personnel shows they support President Bush for re-election by a 4-to-1 ratio. >> Read More at USAToday.com

Mount St. Helens lets off more steam

MOUNT ST. HELENS NATIONAL MONUMENT, Wash. (AP) - Mount St. Helens belched steam thousands of feet above the volcano's crater Monday, apparently the largest burst yet as days of tremors and low-level earthquakes have raised fears the volcano will blow at any moment. >>Read more at USAToday.com

A couple weeks ago they said there might be some activity but it wasn't really likely. Last week, they were saying the same thing the day it "hiccupped." Not sure I believe them when they say if it erupts, it won't be as big as 1980.

So...whatcha think?
Will it blow?
Will there be lava?

I'm so curious.

"Friday Nigh Lights" Premiers in Franklin, TN

FRANKLIN - OK, all you movie buffs and Tim McGraw fans. Here are the ground rules for the local premiere of McGraw's first big movie, Friday Night Lights, at the Franklin Cinema tonight. >>Read More on Tennessean.com
Pretty cool stuff. This is a little town about 15 minutes south of our house. And, the Franklin Theatre is one of the few theatres in the country that hasn't succumbed to corporate ownership. I'm impressed that Tim McGraw requested to have the premier there.


Musical Happy Hour Tuesday?

Tom Hambridge Band
6 pm - 7 pm
Tuesday (Oct. 5 - this coming Tuesday!)
3rd & Lindsley

Please, come out and have a little happy hour with Tom Hambridge and his band Tuesday night. They will be doing a showcase for record labels in Nashville, free to the public at 3rd & Lindsley (818 3rd avenue south; 1/2 mile off Broadway on the south side. 615-259-9891)

The band features:
Steve C. - guitar
(Steve also plays w/Jeffrey Steele...and...oh yeah...he graciously helps me out when I perform on writer's nights, too!)
Jack Silverman-guitar
Kevin Rapillo-drums
Tom MacDonald-bass

If you don't know who Tom Hambridge is...you probably know his work. Here's a little information that will help you understand why you'll want to make time for this showcase on Tuesday:
  • Tom produced, arranged and played on Susan Tedeschi’ s Grammy nominated and critically acclaimed Just Won't Burn CD. The CD was on Billboard Top Ten Blues album charts for over 70 weeks as well as spending over fifty weeks on Billboard's Heetseekers chart. Tom also wrote both singles from the CD that became huge radio hits going top 15 at Rock Radio. The singles also went Top Ten at Triple A radio. and won Gavin's Triple A Record of the Year.
  • His song "I Want to Get You Back" is on Bernard Allison's (Son of the late, great Luther Allison;) HOT new release "Across the Water" and his song "It Hurt So Bad" is on the new Farmaid Volume One on Redline and on the The New Millennium Blues Party CD on Rhino Records which includes tracks by Eric Clapton, B.B. King, Stevie Ray Vaughn and Jonny Lang, to name but a few!
  • Tom has also been collaborating with other writers like Jeffrey Steele, Al Anderson, Gary Nicholson, Gwil Owin, Jim Lauderdale, Delbert McClinton and Kevin Gordon among others and composed two songs for Susan Tedeschi's newest release as well as writing for Film and network TV.
  • Recently he was invited to sing and play percussion on the forthcoming Norah Jones release. In addition, Tom did production work, performed and wrote material on the new George Thorogood and the Destroyer’s release “Ride Til’ You Die”. He is also producing, playing drums and writing songs on Johnny Winter’s forthcoming Virgin release and doing the same on legendary Andre Williams forthcoming release. Tom also has his songs on new records by NRBQ and Leslie West, of Mountain fame. This year, Tom has toured as opening act for George Thorogood, ZZ Top, Jonny Lang, KISS, Black Crows and Willie Nelson to name a few.

OK...enough rambling.
You get the point.
Come out for an hour Tuesday night.
You won't regret it!

Let me know if you'll be there...I'll call and reserve some seats!


Faster than a humming bird and able to leap tall buildings...here's a pic I took of Tom Hambridge choppin' some wood w/Jeffrey Steele back in August. He's a man of many, many talents.
Posted by Hello




Surfer takes brief ride on whale that surfaces below him

SAN CLEMENTE, Calif. (AP) - A surfer says the swell he was riding on a recent trip turned out to be more than just a wave - it was a whale. >>Read more on USAToday.com


U.S. cybersecurity chief abruptly resigns

By Ted Bridis, Associated Press
WASHINGTON - The government's cybersecurity chief has abruptly resigned after one year with the Department of Homeland Security, confiding to industry colleagues his frustration over what he considers a lack of attention paid to computer security issues within the agency. >>Read more at USAToday.com


Mia is outta there...

OK...I admit it. John and I are both Survivor junkies. Last night, both tribes had to vote someone off and I must say...I'm happy Mia is gone. She was a little...well...you know.

Top 10 Trends from Internet's First 10 Years

From today's e-Marketer newsletter -- The face of the US Internet user has changed over the past 10 years, significantly. What's more, the way the Internet is being used has certainly evolved and will continue to do so. Herewith, a review of the top 10 Internet trends highlighted by the recently-released USC Annenberg Center for the Digital Future report. >>Read More

Trek Trick

From today's TVSpy Shoptalk e-newsletter -- Last week, TV Guide reported that William Shatner was shooting an indie film in Riverside, Iowa, the home town of his Star Trek alter ego, Capt. James T. Kirk. Turns out, it's just a hoax! On Tuesday, Shatner revealed to Riverside's residents that he's really been making a Spike TV reality show about a small town playing host to a Hollywood film shoot. "Everything in front of and behind the cameras was faked," Shatner admitted. "The only thing that was real is the love we have for Riverside." To soften the blow, he donated $100,000 for community projects. Another $50,000 and the town can hire a hit man. (Michael Ausiello - TV Guide Online)


W Ketchup


The Law is the Law

Received this concept in an e-mail from a friend today.
Point taken.


So if the US government determines that it is against the law for the words "under God" to be on our money, then, so be it.

And if that same government decides that the "Ten Commandments" are not to be used in or on a government installation, then, so be it.

And since they already have prohibited any prayer in the schools, on which they deem their authority, then so be it.

I say, "so be it," because I would like to be a law abiding US citizen.

I say, "so be it," because I would like to think that smarter people than I are in positions to make good decisions.

I would like to think that those people have the American Publics' best interests at heart.


Since we can't pray to God, can't Trust in God and cannot Post His Commandments in Government buildings,

I don't believe the Government and it's employees should participate in the Easter and Christmas celebrations which honor the God that our government is eliminating from many facets of American life.

I'd like my mail delivered on Christmas, Good Friday, Thanksgiving & Easter.
After all, it's just another day.

I'd like the US Supreme Court to be in session on Christmas, Good Friday,

Thanksgiving & Easter as well as Sundays.
After all, it's just another day.

I'd like the Senate and the House of Representatives to not have to worry about getting home for the "Christmas Break."
After all ~ it's just another day.

I'm thinking that a lot of my taxpayer dollars could be saved, if all government offices & services would work on Christmas, Good Friday & Easter.

It shouldn't cost any overtime since those would be just like any other day of the week to a government that is trying to be "politically correct".

In fact....

I think that our government should work on Sundays (initially set aside for worshipping God...)
because, after all, our government says that it should be just another day.

What do you think?

If this idea gets to enough people, maybe our elected officials will stop giving in to the minorityo pinions and begin, once again, to represent the majority of ALL of the American people.

'Amen' and 'Amen'

People over 30 should be dead.

According to today's regulators and bureaucrats, those of us who were kids in the 40's, 50's, 60's, or even maybe the early 70's probably shouldn't have survived.

Our baby cribs were covered with bright colored lead-based paint.

We had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, doors or cabinets.

When we rode our bikes, we had no helmets. (Not to mention the risks we took hitchhiking.)

As children, we would ride in cars with no seat belts or air bags.

Riding in the back of a pickup truck on a warm day was always a special treat.

We drank water from the garden hose and not from a bottle.

We ate cupcakes, bread and butter, and drank soda pop with sugar in it, but we were never overweight because we were always outside playing. We shared one soft drink with four friends, from one bottle, and no one actually died from this.

We would spend hours building our go-carts out of scraps and then rode down the hill, only to find out we forgot the brakes. After running into the bushes a few times, we learned to solve the problem.

We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were back when the street lights came on. No one was able to reach us all day. No cell phones. Unthinkable!

We did not have Playstations, Nintendo 64, X-Boxes, no video games at all, no 99 channels on cable, video tape movies, surround sound, personal cell phones, personal computers, or Internet chat rooms. We had friends. We went outside and found them.

We fell out of trees, got cut and broke bones and teeth, and there were no lawsuits from these accidents. They were accidents. No one was to blame but us. Remember accidents?

We had fights and punched each other and got black and blue and learned to get over it.

We made up games with sticks and tennis balls and ate worms, and although we were told it would happen, we did not put out very many eyes, nor did the worms live inside us forever.

We rode bikes or walked to a friend's home and knocked on the door, or rang the bell or just walked in and talked to them.

Little League had tryouts and not everyone made the team. Those who didn't had to learn to deal with disappointment.

Some students weren't as smart as others, so they failed a grade and were held back to repeat the same grade. Tests were not adjusted for any reason.

Our actions were our own. Consequences were expected. The idea of a parent bailing us out if we broke a law was unheard of. They actually sided with the law. Imagine that!

We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility, and we learned how to deal with it all.

This generation has produced some of the best risk-takers and problem solvers and inventors, ever. The past 50 years have been an explosion of innovation and new ideas.

And you're one of them!

Feel free to pass this on to others who have had the luck to grow up as kids, before lawyers and government regulated our lives, for our own good.

Kind of makes you want to run through the house with scissors, huh?

Can you say "neck cramps?"

Good night sweetheart
NAGAREYAMA, Japan - After a long night at work as a radio DJ, Junko Suzuki likes to snuggle at bedtime - and she says she's found the perfect partner: a man-shaped pillow. About 1,000 of the pillows, which are shaped like a headless torso, arm and hand, have been sold since th product went on sale in December. >>Read more.
OK...there might be somethin' to this...and I appreciate a creative idea...but c'mon. Does anyone ever sleep the entire night like this? I mean really? Can you say "neck cramps?"

Are you registered to vote?

In many states, the deadline to register to vote is fast approaching.


If you haven't registered to vote, want to vote absentee vote or find your polling place, we've got a great resource at NFIB.com

NOTE: You'll have to shut off your pop-up blocker to use the registration / absentee links on this page. The very last step of the process is a pop-up PDF of a form. It will not load if you have a pop-up blocker.

Look Who's Online Now!

Amazingly, the total number of Americans who use the Internet is over 75%. >>Read more.

Stolen identities; stolen money...

Phishing Increases, Consumers Still Getting Hooked
From e-Marketer.com -- Apparently, the online scammers known as "phishers" are not afraid of overfishing the consumer waters - a new study released by TRUSTe finds that consumers are getting more phishing e-mails than ever. >>Read more

If you receive an e-mail from a bank or credit card asking you to e-mail them your PIN or social security number ... anything that is personal information ... DO NOT respond. These are typically hacks trying to get your information so they can steal your identity and/or steal your money.

For example, about two weeks ago, the son of a friend of mine responded to a "US Bank" e-mail requesting his pin and ss# to verify his account. Within an hour of responding to the e-mail, $900 was taken from his bank account ... it was wired to an offshore account.

Be careful out there people!


Bedding Officials Demand Thread Recount

From The Onion's weekly update...
BEDFORD, TX-Alarmed by reports of incorrect thread counts in the nation's blankets and sheets, bedding officials demanded nationwide thread recounts Monday. >> Full Story



Holding politicians accountable....

Wanna know the unbiased facts about today's politics / politicians?
Go to Factcheck.org .

My friend / colleague, Laura Creekmore, hipped me to the site over lunch today. And, I must say...it is JUST what I needed! It is very enlightening.

Now...you have it, too!

If you use this site, be sure to click the "more news stories" link to see all the fact-checking archives. If there are more current / topical news stories about one candidate or another, the home page can appear biased. Once you get into the archives you'll be able to see the hype is pretty even on both sides.

Very interesting.

If you had access to only two types of media...which would YOU choose?

Online Media Gaining in Popularity
A new study from the OPA and Frank N. Magid Associates finds that the Internet and television are the top two media choices among 18 to 54 year-olds. >> Full Story

Sounds about right to me.

American Red Cross Benefit

We went to an American Red Cross Benefit last night. Saw some rising stars, some musician friends and one of my favorite songwriters.

Brad Cotter and his band played. (Brad is the winner of this year's Nashville Star.) He was pretty good...a little drunk...but good. (I'd love to catch him when he's sober.)

Jamie Garner, another Nashville Star contestant, was also in the line-up. He and his band were GREAT. He's definitely someone to watch.

Then, of course the real reason we were there at all, Steve C (my friend and favorite guitar player) along with the other cool guys in the band (Tom Hambridge, KK, Scott Baggens and Rusty Golden) were playing with Jeffrey Steele (one of my favorite songwriters). They were on fire as usual. Biggest bummer of the night was that they only played for 30 minutes.

Good stuff.
I LOVE that about Nashville...that national acts feel local.

FINALLY...we know who "they" are...

One man becomes 'They'
BRANSON, Mo. - A Branson man has put a face to the anonymous references people often make to "they" by changing his name to just that: "They." The former Andrew Wilson, a 43-year-old self-employed inventor, was granted legal permission last week by a circuit judge to change his name. >>Full Story

Can dogs sniff out cancer?

LONDON - It has long been suspected that man's best friend has a special ability to sense when something is wrong with us. Now the first experiment to verify that scientifically has demonstrated that dogs are able to smell cancer. >>Full Story

Very interesting.

MN Biker gets 205 MPH Speeding Ticket

Motorcycle enthusiasts question 205 mph ticket
WABASHA, Minn. (AP) - There's little doubt that a Stillwater motorcyclist could wind up his Honda sport motorcycle past 180 mph, but members of the motorcycle racing world question whether the State Patrol was correct to cite him for 205 mph last weekend. >>Full Story

The original story was printed in the St. Paul's Pioneer Press last Tuesday. (NOTE: If you click the original story link more than once, the Pioneer Press will ask you to register free on their site before you read any more content.)

Mt. St. Helens hears wake-up call

From USA Today -- Swarm of small earthquakes has scientists worrying that volcano south of Seattle might erupt again. >>Full Story
Better watch this one.


WHOOHOO...Conan replaces Leno in 2009

Conan to replace Leno in 2009
NEW YORK (AP) — NBC announced Monday that Conan O'Brien will take over from Jay Leno as host of the Tonight show. But he'll have time to write his jokes — the planned succession won't happen until 2009. >>Full story.


Today's birthdays...

As per today's USA Today, these stars were all born Sept. 24:
  • Sportscaster Jim McKay is 83.
  • Singer Gerry Marsden of Gerry and the Pacemakers is 62.
  • Actor Gordon Clapp (NYPD Blue) is 56.
  • Actor Kevin Sorbo (Hercules: Legendary Journeys) is 46.
  • Singer Cedric Dent of Take 6 is 42.
  • Actress-writer Nia Vardalos (My Big Fat Greek Wedding) is 42.
  • Country drummer Marty Mitchell of Ricochet is 35.
  • Singer-guitarist Marty Cintron of No Mercy is 33.
  • Actor Kyle Sullivan (Malcolm in the Middle) is 16.
OH YEAH...and the BIGGEST STAR OF ALL (in my eyes anyway):

Cassy Petersen turns 17 TODAY.

Wow. I am so old excited!

Aunt BB

Can't get much by a blogger.

Blog Justice (from e-Marketer.com)
Blogs have had a rising profile throughout 2003 and 2004, to the point that some bloggers were given media seats at the Democratic and Republican conventions. But it was the blogs' persistent questioning of documents provided by CBS in a story about President Bush's National Guard service that made them the toast of the media-town this week. >>Read more.

Spinach. It's not just for Popeye anymore.

MIT works to power computers with spinach
By Mark Pratt, Associated Press Writer

BOSTON — "Eat your spinach," Mom used to say. "It will make your muscles grow, power your laptop and recharge your cell phone... " OK. So nobody's mom said those last two things. But researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology say they have used spinach to harness a plant's ability to convert sunlight into energy for the first time, creating a device that may one day power laptops, mobile phones and more. >>Read full story

Hurricane Jeanne...

I realized yesterday morning as John and I were watching the news...that because of Hurricane Jeanne people will finally know how to say my name!



All the best search engines wrapped into one.
Interesting idea.


ShopTalk article...validation.

This article was in today's "Shoptalk" e-newsletter from TV Spy. Many of you have probably heard me rant about this a time or two. So, when this showed up in the newsletter this morning, I thought I'd share it with you as well. I feel validated! ; )

Stop the Media Mergers
By Frank A. Blethen
The writer is publisher of the Seattle Times

Democracy is in crisis -- not in far parts of the world but right here in the United States.

As with most democracies, the greatest threat to ours is internal. The danger within is the loss of our Fourth Estate -- an independent and free press that is essential if Americans are to be knowledgeable and engaged in the democratic process.

Walter Lippmann said that a free press "should consist of many newspapers decentralized in their ownership and their management, and dependent for their support . . . upon the communities where they are written, where they are edited and where they are read."

From thousands of independent media outlets during Lippmann's heyday in the middle of the past century, media ownership dropped to only 50 companies by 1983.

Today what was a concern has become a nightmare: The majority of our media are controlled by just five companies.

Consider the frightening loss of diversity in media voices:

  • Less than 20 percent of our newspapers are independent and locally owned.
  • In just the past decade, the 10 largest owners of local television stations have tripled the number of stations they own.
  • About one-third of the population now listens to radio stations owned by a single company.
Bad things happen when media conglomerates swallow up independent voices: Quality is diminished, local news and investigative journalism disappear, differing points of view vanish, community service becomes an afterthought, and jobs are eliminated. All are sacrificed in an incessant drive for ever-higher profits.

I've been speaking out against consolidation of media ownership and the loss of an independent press since 1988. It is a sad irony that my family now finds itself struggling to preserve the 108-year-old local independence of the Seattle Times in the face of an effort by our Joint Operating Agreement partner, the New York-based conglomerate Hearst, to gain ownership.

The relentless march of media consolidation has largely gone unreported in the mainstream press. After all, why would newspaper and media companies that already have control, and seek more, want their own outlets reporting stories that run counter to their financial interests?

The 1996 deregulation of radio virtually ended local ownership in that medium. Clear Channel now operates 1,240 radio stations nationwide and has gutted what once was an important network of independent, community-based stations generating news and information.

The Federal Communications Commission began its current review of broadcast rules in 2001, working quietly with the big media companies. Media behemoths such as Tribune Co. and Gannett were touting increased stock value to analysts on the assumption the FCC would enable further unbridled consolidation. The mainstream media didn't report the story, and the FCC refused to engage the public -- holding only one public hearing, and that very reluctantly.

At the darkest moment, with the FCC poised to unleash the next great wave of destructive newspaper and media consolidation, a national grass-roots effort materialized. Nearly 2.3 million people sent messages to the FCC and Congress opposing FCC rule changes. Senate Commerce Committee Chairman John McCain (R-Ariz.) called it the greatest spontaneous outpouring of citizen reaction he had seen. But the FCC went ahead and posted new, less restrictive rules designed to help the media conglomerates.

A June victory in a lawsuit led by the Media Access Project has at least temporarily helped protect our democracy by preventing these rule changes from taking effect.

Both the unprecedented outcry by citizens and the court victory have awakened Congress to the need to act. It's a bipartisan awakening that reflects the public's broad and passionate understanding that the loss of a free, independent press and diversity of media voices is antithetical to democracy.

Members of Congress and key committees are beginning to express interest in hearings and legislation to stop this dangerous consolidation. Next year the Commerce Committee is required to revisit the Telecommunications Act of 1996. This will be an important review, and a critical opportunity to set new public policy.

In the meantime, Congress should begin hearings to engage the American people in discussing and seeking solutions to this vital national issue. The goal should be to create an environment where we can again look to America's newspapers and other media for diverse ownership and journalism that isn't driven solely by profit margins.

Specific areas of focus should include exploring all legal avenues to ensure diverse newspaper ownership, including our antitrust laws; keeping and vigorously enforcing current FCC broadcast rules; re-regulating radio; prohibiting same-market ownership of more than one type of medium (newspaper, television, radio).

We are at a critical juncture. We can allow the media moguls to keep aggregating and let American democracy erode. Or we can take action to end this march of consolidation and save independent newspapers and other media for the citizens of this country.


Down the Line & Low Millions

Last night I went to an early show at 3rd & Lindsley to see a group based out of Chicago: Down the Line.

Love them. I would definitely recommend buying a CD and/or checking out a show if you have the chance. They're goin' somewhere.

Another group, Low Millions played after them. Also very good.

John's sick, too.

On Friday John woke up with a sore throat...which is how my sickness started. So, knowing he was leaving on Saturday for two days, he spent the day downing orange juice. Then, after supper, we made a quick trip to Walgreen's to stock up on zinc, cold medicine, vitamin C, cough drops and tissue.

On a recommendation from a friend (Heidi) at work, one of the products we bought was "Airborne." (Heidi swears by it!)

John took some (along with a little of everything else we bought) and he seems to have stemmed the tide a little...not sure if Airborne is what did it...but sounds like he thinks it just turned into a head cold instead of all out croup.

According to the package, Airborne├é® was developed by a school teacher who was sick of getting sick in the classroom. It can be taken 2 ways: at the first sign of a cold symptom, or before entering crowded, potentially germ-infested environments, like airplanes and offices.

So...next time you're starting to feel that little sick tingle...check it out. You never know. There just might be something to it.


Jim is a DADDY! Whoohooo!

Oh my goodness!!! I just realized that I completely missed blogging about this! What a doofus!

Madisen Elizabeth Petersen was born on Tuesday afternoon to my "little" brother Jim and his wife Sara. She weighed 7 lbs. 5 oz and is 19" long.

As soon as I have some photos...I'll post them here.
Can't wait to see the new little Petersen!


JC Visits / Country Ribs / BB gets sick

We had a visitor from up North this week. John Coleman (JC) was in town Sunday night through today. It was great seeing him. He was here because he plays keys / B3 with Renee Austin who performed at Bourbon Street on Tuesday night in Nashville.

Monday night, John and I invited the whole Renee Austin Band over for country ribs, creamed potatoes and corn on the cob. Good stuff. Johnny the Clock cooked the ribs...excellent as usual.

Tuesday, JC played with Renee. John got to sit in with the band. I have it from a reliable source that he kicked butt...of course.

The downside of this week is that I've been sick since Tuesday. Sore throat, congestion, coughing and itchy everything. Missed work on Tuesday and Wednesday. Went to the doctor yesterday. He told me it was allergies and gave me some meds. I'm still not so sure that is all that it is going on. Today, I feel worse than I did yesterday! I may have to give him a call to see if he can give me something stronger!


Betty Ladas, Wayland Patton and BMT

Wednesday, after choir, I went to see my friend Betty Ladas at The Sutler. She was performing for a taping of a radio series, Americana Tonight. It was great.

After the Sutler, Betty, Patricia (founder of a new publishing group Next Number 1 Music Group) and I went to the Bluebird to catch the last half of a writers round with Wayland Patton, Billy Ray Cyrus, Eric Heatherly and Susan Haynes. Very cool.

Wayland is good friends with my friend Donna Ulisse. They write together and their voices sound great together as well. I'd met Wayland and Emily, his wife, at Donna and Rick's house in April when Paige, Denice and Brenda were visiting. What I didn't know at that time was that Wayland has quite a bio. He's worked with some biggies: Garth Brooks, Emmylou Harris, Kathy Mattea, Ricky Skaggs, Tanya Tucker, Don Williams, Glen Campbell, Patty Loveless, Eric Heatherly, Neal Coty, Lee Greenwood, Anne Murray, Rebecca Lynn Howard and Chris LeDoux (just to name a few)

He's also got this song called: "My dog at my last Prozac (and the liquor store is closed)" It's pretty funny and definitely catchy. You would get a kick out of it. It's on his latest CD, Mother of All Heartaches and there is a sound clip at his site if you want to check it out.

Well...not much else to tell. Yesterday I was in meeting hell. Last night I didn't do a darn thing!

Tonight I'm going to help Jonell Mosser sell T-shirts at her gig at BB Kings.

Tomorrow, I think I'll be cleaning and cleaning some more!!!

Hope all is well.
Have a GREAT weekend.



BMT Tours Missouri

Wednesday, September 8

About The Martini Bar:
Shake and Stir with Live Music and Dancing! The Martini Bar refines and redefines upscale nightlife in Columbia, Missouri. The Martini Bar presents high quality live music in an environment that is warm, comfortable and inviting. Combined with the finest service in the industry, The Martini Bar is perfectly suited for a night out on the town, or a casual drink with friends. The Martini Bar - Nightlife... Refined.

The Martini Bar
4004 Peach Court
Suite G Peachtree Plaza
Columbia, MO 65203

Thursday, September 9
There are several ways to purchase advance tickets to the Grand Emporium BMT Show:
Go to the Grand Emporium--box office opens at 12 Noon daily.
Go to Ticketmaster outlets online http://www.ticketmaster.com/venue/49191/
OR, Charge by phone at 816-931-3330.

Located at 3832 Main St.
(One block north of the 39th & Main intersection)

A little about The Grand Emporium:
The Grand Emporium nightclub and upstairs suites were built in 1912 and are on Kansas City's historical register. Through the years, the building housed a hotel upstairs and various taverns on the first floor. During prohibition and the heyday of the Pendergast Era, bathtub gin was drunk underneath the tin ceiling. At one time the venue was a card room called the Golden Nugget. The upstairs housed a brothel through the 1950's.

Since July 1st, 1985, the Grand Emporium has been Kansas City's premier live music venue. The Grand Emporium features both national and regional blues, reggae, rock, zydeco, jazz and swing seven nights a week! The Grand Emporium is the first and only club honored twice as "Best Blues Club In America" by the Blues Foundation in Memphis, TN. Located in the heart of the city, the box office opens at 11 a.m. daily and 1 p.m. Sunday.

Amazing Grace dishes up her award winning barbeque for weekday lunches and before and during the shows, Tuesday through Saturday. The Grand Emporium's jukebox is loaded with 100 rare blues 45's from Howlin' Wolf to James Brown. With its "wall of fame" historic photos and posters of all the greats who have graced the Grand Emporium stage, the ambience is second to none.

Dress and dancing are optional, but you must wear something!

Grand Emporium
3832 Main Street
Kansas City, Missouri 64111
Business Phone: (816) 531-7557
Concert Line: (816) 531-1504

Friday, September 10
w/ Black Diamond Heavies opening

Open for visitors every Monday thru Saturday 5 pm - 1:00 am (You must be 21 or older to participate in the festivities, bring your I.D. or stay home.) Frederick's Music Lounge provides a perfect alternative to the overpriced and oversnooty venues that sometimes seem to be the norm in St. Louis. There's never a cover during the week, and a pitcher of Stag costs less than parking at Riverport. Factor in a lovely patio and you've got perhaps the most patron-friendly live music club in St. Louis. Just put any money you may have left at the end of the night into the tip jar or the "exit charge" box by the door, and leave, karmically right with the world, to return and drink another day.

Frederick's Music Lounge
4454 Chippewa St.
St. Louis, Missouri 63116
Ph: (314) 351-5711

Saturday, September 11

The 2004 Greater Ozarks Blues Festival will take place Friday, September 10 through Saturday, September 11 in Downtown Springfield, Missouri. The festival will get started at 6 p.m. on Friday at the Main Stage at the corner of Campbell and College.

In addition, over a dozen Downtown clubs will participate in a Blues Crawl on Saturday night. This year’s festival features an outstanding array of legendary blues artists including: The Cate Brothers, Renee Austin, Deanna Bogart, Bobby Rush, Delbert McClinton, Blue Mother Tupelo, Levee Town, Mary Bridget Davies Group, Jennifer B & the Groove Kings, Mike Zito Band, John Gaar Band, Scott Keeton & the Deviants, Jeff Scheetz Band, Kyle Daniel Band, DJ Imperial, Oreo Blue, Cate Brothers Band and the Back Alley Band.

Ticket pricing is as follows:
Friday only: $20.00
Saturday only: $30.00
Both days in advance: $35.00
Both days at the gates: $40.00

Tickets are available at Stick It In Your Ear, Kaleidoscope, Springfield Brewing Company, Springfield Little Theatre, the Springfield Symphony or at the gate on each day of the festival or Call 417-864-6683.

Please Note: The festival cannot refund or exchange tickets. Line-up subject to change. Proof of age will be required at the gate, but all ages are allowed in to the festival.

For map & directions, please see the Greater Ozarks Blues Festival website:
OR, Trolleys Downtown Bar and Grille website:

Trolley's Bar & Grille
214 Park Central Square
Springfield, Missouri
ph: 417.799.0309



On Friday night, John and I went out to supper at Anatolia, a Turkish restaurant off of White Bridge Road in Nashville. It was soooooo good. It is very much in the Mediterranean food vein and yuuuummmy.

To start we ordered some hummus. Mmmmmmgggoood. Best I've had so far!
Shepard's salad w/feta cheese, cucumbers, peppers, tomatoes, onions and olive oil.
Then we ordered a platter with a little bit of everything: Kabobs (chicken, lamb and beef).
For dessert, we had rice pudding sprinkled with pistachios and some Turkish coffee.

We definitely recommend it!