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!

Jonell, Jeffrey and Billy Ray

After our Turkish feast, John and I went home. Since John had to work at 7 a.m. on Saturday, he wanted to catch some zzzzzz's. Both Jonell Mosser and Jeffrey Steele were playing on Friday, so I decided to go out to see both of them!

First was Jonell at 3rd & Lindsley. She was appearing with Dan Baird (Georgia Satellites) and Bob Brit (Wynonna, Dixie Chicks, John Fogerty) on guitars and Etta Brit. It was GREAT. They were all on fire and I had a hard time leaving after the first set!

Then, I went to the Bluebird to see Jeffrey and the guys. Earlier Friday night, I wasn't planning to go see Jeffrey at the Bluebird because I thought it was going to be just him and his guitar...which would be cool, but I wasn't in the mode for that. Then I talked to Steve C. (Jeffrey's guitar player and my friend) as I was driving to 3rd. He was in the parking lot of the Bluebird trying to find a place to park. Jeffrey was playing with the whole band. Whoohoo. (Steve C is an incredible guitar player.) Anyway, I ended up getting to the Bluebird at around 11:20. As per usual, Jeffrey and the guys played until past 1 a.m. The show was incredible. Plus, Gwen was there...and oh yeah!!!...I almost forgot...she was sitting with Billy Ray Cyrus. What a hoot! He was there with his wife and really diggin' it. He LOVED Steve C's playing, too. Watched him like a hawk and was very complimentary to him at the end of the night.

It was definitely a good night for music.

Hurricane Frances: Emily & Lynn

Talked to Emily & Lynn several times this weekend. They haven't blown away in Tampa...yet! While there were some pretty strong winds and flooding everywhere, they are safe and sound with power. They don't live too far from Bayshore Drive. (That's the area they've been showing footage of on the news and the Weather Channel quite a bit.)

We haven't heard the latest, but John and I are hoping that his Aunt Marion and the gang are dry and well in St. Petersburg, too.

Our prayers go out to everyone in Florida. And, we're keeping our fingers crossed that Hurricane Ivan poops-out over Cuba. Florida doesn't need another one!

The Frothy Monkey experience.

Wow...I just realized that I almost missed telling you about Saturday night. John made tacos. (mmmmmmggood.) Then we went over to the "Frothy Monkey" for a cup o' Joe before we went to see Victor Krauss at The Basement.

Frothy Monkey:
First, let me say that John and I hadn't been there before. We knew we wanted a cup of coffee but didn't want to stay home...and we didn't want Starbuck's. Originally we were planning to head over to Bongo Java's "Fidos" and hang. It's usually pretty crowded there, especially on the weekends. So, as we were driving, we were trying to think of somewhere else we might try. Thinking we would see if Portland Brew was open on 12th street, we took a detour. John also mentioned that there was a new place called the "Frothy Monkey" but we weren't sure if that was open or if it was what we were looking for.

Well, as soon as we saw the sign, John and I both knew we wanted to pull in. It is a little refurbished house with an expanded porch. Inside, it was also very inviting with low, warm lighting and a comfy atmosphere. We ordered a couple cups of coffee and sat out on the porch for a visit. It was great. We'll definitely go back again.

Victor Krauss (bassist for Lyle Lovett; Alision's brother.)

After the Frothy Monkey "experience," we went to The Basement to see Victor Krauss.

Originally we'd talked about going to see The Fabuloso's (w/Raul Maulo from the Mavericks) at the Mercy Lounge, but opted out of that when we found out it was going to cost $15 each. After the cruise last week, we'd decided we didn't want to go overboard (no pun intended!) with spending over Labor Day weekend. The same reason we didn't go to see Sting and Annie Lennox last night...$80 is too much to pay when you're going to have to sit a long way away on the ground.

blah blah blah...

Instead we opted for $5 cover to see Victor Krauss (bassist for Lyle Lovett and Alison Krauss' brother...which I'm sure he gets tired of hearing!) It was good stuff. All instrumental and very groove oriented. Victor is an amazing bassist. As he played his upright, it looked like he and the instrument were all one unit. Very cool.

Nashville Zoo

John and I spent some time at the Zoo on Saturday and Monday. We got some great exercise and were able to see all the cool animals, too.

This summer a new section was added called "The Bamboo Trail." Clouded leopards, red pandas, ring-tailed lemurs, Schmidt's guenons, cassowaries and rhinoceros hornbills are all part of the new bamboo habitat. It is VERY cool and the bamboo is huge.

My favorites in the new trail are the lemurs, clouded leopards, guenons and the red pandas. Outside of that, my favs are the gibbons, the otters, the tigers, cougars and the cheetahs.

Animal Planet actually aired a "Growing Up Clouded Leopard" series in August that followed the lives of the two clouded leopards at the Nashville Zoo. Pretty cool.

Right now, the Nashville Zoo is also in the process of adding a new Elephant habitat that will eventually include giraffes, too. That won't be complete until the end of next year (I think). It is going to be incredible.

While we were there on Monday morning, we met a docent named Barbara. She was really cool and told us all about the docent program at the Zoo. John even gave her our names to have someone give us a call about possibly becoming docents. As you all know, John would be GREAT at this! He already knows everything about practically every animal at every zoo we've ever visited. So, I hope he does it. We may even consider participating as a team. I'll keep you posted on what we do.

Open Water: The sharks are REAL.

On Sunday, John and I went to a matinee of Open Water. It was eerily great. While the movie is only 79 minutes long...it really packs a punch. John and I both agreed that we were glad that we didn't see it before we went on the cruise!

It is a story about a couple who go on an island vacation. While there, they take a scuba diving adventure. The dive master miscounts the number of people on the boat, and the two are left behind in "open water." Yikers.
The sharks in this film are not mechanical. The actors are really surrounded by actual sharks throughout the shoot. The fear on their faces was VERY BELIEVABLE...for obvious reasons.

It's the latest movie to come out of the Sundance Film Festival and the review made us want to see the movie. It is based on a true story. A few years ago an American couple disappeared of the coast of Australia, never to be found.

I love the way it was shot and all of the nat sound. You feel like you're in the water with them. Very unnerving.

So, not only is this a great movie, but it is also a movie made for less than $200,000 by a husband / wife team. How cool is that!

The Village: It's not what you think...

On Monday afternoon, John and I went to another movie we've been wanting to see for a long time: The Village.

It was also eerily spectacular. Written, produced and directed by M. Night Shaliman (He also wrote, produced and directed "Signs" and "Unbreakable"), it seems to be about an early settlement plagued by creatures who come out of the woods to kill. But it is not what it seems. You won't believe the twist. That's all I'm going to say.

If you get a chance, you should definitely go see it.


Mr. Tamborine Man...playing with Sonny Geraci (Sonny had his own drummer...so Johnny the Clock was kickin' booty on the tamborine instead.) You should have seen it. John was throwing the tamborine up in the air and catching it, twirling around and jumping up and down. It was GREAT!

Sonny Geraci was the first in the line-up Sunday night. He's known for the songs: "Time Won't Let Me" and "Precious and Few."

Sonny and the whole band. (Mr. Tamborine is on the right by the background singers.)

Jim Yester was second in the line-up. He's known for songs like "Windy," "Cherish" and "Along Came Mary." Johnny the Clock took to the drum kit for this. When JTC started playing, the energy level on stage went up 1000%. It was wild! (JTC Rocks!)

Here's a good shot to show how big the room was where the concert was held. It was like a Vegas showroom and held about 1,500 people.

Andy Kim was the third act in the line up. He's known for "Sugar Sugar," "Baby I Love You" and "Rock Me Steady." He's also the best friend of my choir director, Kerry Chater. Small world.

Andy got a bunch of people up on stage to sing Sugar Sugar with him. It was a riot.

Jim Yester dancing with our dinner waitress on the last night of the cruise. Very fun.

This is the deck of the ship on the last night of our cruise. It was very quiet and relaxing out there at night.

On my flight back from Tampa, we flew over the Gulf for awhile. I had to take a photo because the water and the horizon just melted together. It was sooooo cool.


More pics tomorrow...

Below are a few of the photos through Saturday. I'll post pics of John's gig with Sonny, Jim and Andy tonight (09.02.04). Watch for them in the morning!

Miss you.
Love you.

The Cozumel coastline from the deck of the Sensation.
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JTC catchin' some rays.
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Wow. Look at how blue the water is...isn't it amazing.
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A representation of where we spent most of our time.
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JTC in the streets of Cozumel.
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BB in front of the cool blue water of Cozumel.
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Johnny the Clock in front of the cool blue water at Cozumel.
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The beach at Cozumel. It was so beautiful and clear.
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Big ship from the front.
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When we docked at Cozumel, our ship's sister ship was parked next to us. These things are HUGE. With the crew, there were almost 3,000 people on the ship. Look at the tiny people on the dock. Wow.
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Day 2: Nothin' behind the wake of the boat...as far as you could see...except water. Very very blue water.
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A shot from our cabin window of the ship going under the Skyway Bridge. Wild.
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John & BB...pre-cruise tan (a.k.a. "white"). ; )
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The Tampa skyline from the deck of the ship before we took off last Thursday.
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Emily & Lynn's new loft...still a work in progress but very cool.
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Emily and Lynn in front of a palm tree at their new loft in south Tampa.
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