Dahlias thrive

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

I remember the laughter.

Todays Tids Issue 3,473
Opening Stuff:

I’ve been writing a bit about thanksgiving, maybe more than you all need. Yet with all of the thoughts, I have not talked the about all of the people no longer at the table. Those beautiful people we all can still see sitting in those spaces now empty. We hear the laughter they always brought; the sharp wit and endless conversation; the pleasant praises. The uncles who at too much, the parents who helped you fit in to the big people’s table a little better each year. The siblings and friends who were always with you – when all was good and when you needed a lift. Your stomach may get filled beyond capacity, but your heart can never be stuffed too much.

Here’s a quickie recipe that people (except me) seem to enjoy. Open a bag of your favorite prepared stuffing and follow directions. But, to the stuffing add diced carrots, sweet potato and butternut squash. To the chicken broth whip in two eggs. (I’d add a little butter) Scoop finished mixture into cupcake pan and bake. Stuffing cupcakes!

Personally, I like sugar Maples best of all the trees God planted on our mountains and upon te grassy fields on rolling hills drifting down to the ocean

The Question:
Name six of the giant balloons in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Bonus:  Forbes Has released its new list of the Most Valuable NHL Franchises. Which of the Original six teams do you think is not among the top six listed?  (Hmmm – Microsoft word must have had a Black Friday deal on the number “Six” today>)

The Headlines:
--Market Up Ahead Of TDay.
--Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov Says Jet Shoot Down Was Planned Provocation By Turkey Government; Russia Says We Still Like Turkish People.
--Costco Chicken Salad Pulled Off Market.
--Russia Sends Air defense Missiles To Turkey To deter Turkey.
--Blacks In Chicago March Again Against Death By Cops, But  Not About Murder in The Neighborhoods.
--Nobody Marching Over Blatant Murder Of Indiana Pastor’s Pregnant Wife

This just in – McDonalds is donating 10,000 bacon, egg and cheese sandwiches on a bagel to help the FBI test for terrorists among Syrian refugees.

17 Americans were awarded the “Medal of Freedom” yesterday, but when watching CBS News last night you only learned of 4 or 5, mainly those related to liberal movements or NYC (Not good reporting for all of USA). Actually it looked like the James Taylor program, and it put me to sleep like most of his songs do. This morning I could also not find the full 17 named in the morning paper. So it comes down to the Tids once again to give you all the news – The 17 are Bonnie Carroll (wife of deceased recipient Brig General Tom Carroll), Peggan Frank (daughter of deceased recipient social activist Billy Frank Jr.), Black NASA mathematician Katharine Johnson, Yogi Berra, Willie Mays, Barbara Mulkowski, Lee Hamilton,  Shirley Chisholm, Barbara Streisand, James Taylor, Stephen Spielberg, Itzak Pearlman, Stephen Sondheim, Gloria and Emilio Estafan, William Ruckleshaus and and another social activist Minora Yasui. It looks like the A list for an NYC cocktail party.

If you watched the opening of the “Dancin’…” finale or an numbed of TV events, you would think that tomorrow is Christmas day. By 2022, Santa will be leading the 4th of July parade to the pulled pork stand and salsa.

It was encouraging to see the new Top Four as selected by the NCAA football playoff committee. It was nice to see Iowa, a team that has done nothing but win convincingly, finally sneak into #4. And national draw ND, which committee members like to promote for the playoff series, didn’t deserve being there after watching that questionable effort against BC.

Say anything to get elected Hillary now promises never to say “Illegal Immigrants” again. But Hillary, that’s better than saying US Benefits Thieves.

Gots to do the NFL picks a day early. There are three games tomorrow and I have to pick the Lions (Always good on TDay) over the disappointing Eagles. Is a Tony Romo team capable of giving Carolina its first loss. Difficult, but I have to stick with the Panthers. The Pack looked like the Pack last Sunday, so I’m going with them over the Bears. The Texans are confident and the Saints ain’t. I like the Bennies to bounce back over the Rams and Vikes to do the same against the Falcons. The Giants are going to beat the Skins, and the Bucs will take Indy. One of the tougher picks is KC against Buffalo. KC at home is tougher. I like Oakland over Tenn and Jax over the SD. The Jets- Miami is another pickum’, but I go Jets. The Cardinals will overwhelm the Niners. The Steelers will make it tough for Seattle at home, but home team survives. The Broncos beat the Pats? Nah! In the No QB Bowl I’m going with my heart and picking the Browns. A decent 10-4 last week gets Tod's Sports to 105-58.

In pop music, it’s all about the screams. I thought the voting on The Voice was a little odd as it related to talent. It is becoming obvious that teen girls have taken over the twitter machine. This kid Sunshine must have received the 2nd most votes Monday night and that seems incredible to me. Young girl fave Zach also was near the top and above the best singer of them all Jeffery Archer. Of note, Amy Vachal, Jordan Smith and Emily Ann Roberts were 4, 6 and 8 on the ITunes Top 100 downloads.

The Parking Lot: Interlude:
As Jeremiah lay quietly in the next room appearing better, but very weak, the Hicks family joined together with all of the brothers and sisters and aunts and uncles, and with the members and now relatives in the Wampanoag Tribe for a huge Thanksgiving Dinner, They thanked God for getting them through wars and climatic hardships, and for the support and guidance of the family’s friend and adviser for so many years – Squanto. Richard released Howland to his familty for the day, but didn’t expect to see him return, voluntarily.

Reading Between the Lines Midweek Movie Reviews:
--The Family favorite Wizard of Oz has been re-released fro the season. As you kow it follows the adventure of a young girl transported to a surreal landscape where she kills the first person she meets and then teams opup with three strangers to kill again. Children will weep.
--On the other hand, Brooklyn looks to be a favorite for all. An Irish lass comes from Ireland to NYC in the mid fifties and makes a life for  herself,  including falling for a a nice Italian boy. But family needs call her back to Ireland where she meets a nice Irish lad. Yet this well written flick is not about these love tales and possible conflict, but of the life a nice woman with her feet on the ground. It is well done and interesting.

The Answer:
The new balloons are Red from Angry Birds, DINO, Ice Age’s Scrat and his acorn, and Ronald McDonald. Some returnees are Spongebob, Snoopy and Woodstock, Doughboy, Paddington, Pikachu, Toothless, Mighty Morphin Power Ranger and Thomas the Tank. Bonus: The top five were of the Original NHL six – 1, New York Rangers 2. Montreal 3. Torinto 4. Chicago 5. Boston. Theother member of the first six was Detroit which came ina #8. The rest fothe top ten were 6. Vancouver 7. Philadelphia 9. LA Kings and 10.Washingtn caps.

Let the youth remind us of the goodness for which we give thanks:

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

I’m getting Hungry.

Today's Tids Issue 3,472
Opening Stuff:

It’s time to peel potatoes, and break apart the bread,
For this mammoth meal, you can’t be too far ahead!
Dump cranberries into jello to make the colorful mold
Have plenty of butter, to make sure big bird turns gold,
Create a wonderful cheese sauce to douse the cauliflower.
Make the pies, set the table, patiently wait for the hour,
When you boil potatoes and whip them smooth and wavy.
Then load your plate, meat and veggies; slather it with gravy.
Bow your heads, look around at all the beautiful faces there,
Then thank God for them all with a Thanksgiving prayer!

I see where Turkey wants to get into the act for T-Day week, but there has to be a more productive way than shooting down a Russian jet. Figure Putin is thinking now about squashing them gobbling up a couple of acres of Turkey territory.

Dancing with the Stars is coming down to those precious few last moments before the awarding the 21st Mirror Ball Trophy, and a lot of fans are very upset at the surprise ouster of Carlos PenaVega and partner Whitney Carson (Two consecutive weeks of perfect scores). It now comes down to Brindl Irwin and Alek Skarlatos. My sense is that Irwin will take it. But, after last night’s upset, who knows.

The Question:
Name all of the members of the Wyeth family who are painters.

The Headlines:
--Turkey Shoots Down Russian Plane They Say Violated Their Airspace.
--Turkey Lira Drops; Wall Street To Open Lower After News Of Shootdown; Lower tiffany Profits Spooks Investors; Consumer Spending Growth Below Expectations.
--US State Department Issues Travel Warning To Americans.
--Putin In Turkey Neighbor Iran Chatting With Ayatollah.
--Brussels Continues In Lockdown As Terror Rumors Sprout.
--GOP Money Men Funding Ad Blitz Against Trump.
--4 Crew Members Killed In Fort Hood Helicopter Crash.
--Pats-Bills Game Includes Weirdest Referee Error Of The Year; Blowing Whistle For No Reason May have Cost Pats A TD.
--Cranston RI’s Elizabeth Hasselbeck Announces This Morn She Is Leaving Fox and Friends For Time With Children.

Device charging stations have became a natural part of modern home d├ęcor.

The Voice last night had a couple of very good performances namely, to me, Jeffery Austin whose voice and control is amazing, and Emily Ann Roberts, who really does the country thing like a country gal should. I also liked Zach Seabaugh and think he will do well even though critics don’t seem to like him. Technically, Madi Davis and Jordan Smith are outstanding, but I didn’t like their songs last nght and found them a little underwhelming. Korin Bukowski looked better with dark hair again and sang pretty well most of the Time.  Amy Vachal is unique and quite good at what she does. As the contest winds down, the demo that likes her style will be too small to push her along. Evan McKeel opened well and was pretty much flawless with a pretty tune. Barrett Baber, on the other hand, was all over the place with Delta Dawn and a disappointment. I think Shleby Brown is a powerful singer who should have had a better song last night. It became a shouting match, thought she shouted well. And then there is Braden Sunshine who doesn’t appeal to me, but who has a voice that can be pretty good. So who goes? If it was just me, it would be Barrett or Sunshine. But, unfortunately, it may be Korin, mainly because somebody has to go, and cute guys go last.

For young men, there’s a shirt company called “Untuckit.
Which grows money like on trees, so you can pluck-it.
Now that men wear garments hanging outside
The owner is building a great house on Nantucket!

That poem also rhymes with suck it. Sometimes I try too hard.

Personally I am a tucked in guy.

Lose your identity on Social Media, Department:
A Weather Woman on a Dallas TV station found a great $23 deal on Amazon for a dress she thought was cool. She wore it on camera, then tweeted out to her network of Meteorologists across the country, and over fifty of them also bought it and wore it. Now it has become a hot item for the obedient masses and is on back order until after Christmas. Personally I think it is real ugly, but who cares as long as you can be part of a trend.

I hear a lot of people saying, “I wish Christie was making more headway in the polls.” I guess there aren’t enough of them.

The worst traffic jam in the country is in Chicago. The next five worst places are in LA. While those places are real in terms of ongoing long time tie-ups, much about traffic messes is generally in the eye of the beholder. I remember once after my wondeful sister from Metro NYC was up here in Providence driving her son to look for an apartment, came back to my house and her first words were, “You have a radio traffic reporter here? Why?”

The Parking Lot: Chapter 30 continues…
   Jeremiah eyes opened momentarily after the slap, but he quickly slid back into the lifeless gaze. Massatta began to perspire herself as fear for her husband began to overtake he normally calm demeanor. She was now looking around for comfort for herself, as she ran along side the men carrying her husband, never releasing the pressure from the wound.
    As the men lay Jeremiah on the bed, three women came over with hot wet compresses and pressed them down on the wound after removing Massatta’s near paralyzed arm and the blood drenched cloth. Her mother-in-law pulled her aside and held her in her arms. The two women who shared the love of this son, this husband, now were consoling each other, with Eliza offering encouragement to a stunned Massatta.
   Richard ran in carrying Jeremiah and Massatta’s satchel of papers, and quickly stowed them on the upper room shelf, “How does he look,” he half grunted lifting the heavy bulk upward over his head.
   “He doesn’t look great, “whispered Massatta.
   “But, it is too early to tell anything, because it has been all panic so far,” added Eliza, who gave her husband an encouraging look.
   Richard walked over and put his arms around both of the women, “He’s tough. We just have to wait and hope.” He looked at them  and he could see they were worried, as was he. “Howland is in the locked shed, and old Ned is watching him just in case word gets back to some of the Howland people.”
   Massatta was thinking of her ftaher’s reaction.

The Answer:
NC Wyeth was then first of the Artistic family. He and his wife Carolyn Bockius produced several talented children of whom Andrew was the best known, but the sisters Henriette (Hurd), Carolyn, and Ann (McCoy) became successful artists. Another brother Nathaniel became an engineer and worked on the Dupont team that invented the plastic soda bottle. Andrew’s Son Jamie is the other great Wyeth painter.

Well, it is nice and sunny and wonderfully chilly here. It’s about time. I was getting tired of all that comfortable warmth.

Monday, November 23, 2015

1, 2, 3, 4 – Stir the gravy.

Today's Tids Issue 3,471
Opening Stuff:

How do you write a upbeat column for the beginning of this week of thanks and family and not forget about the anguish among those in Paris and Mali? How do you move away from the demonic when all you want in the world is love? I think you bring your family closer and latch onto them like never before. In this new world of spreading turmoil, the stability of the smallest unit becomes the glue upon which positive broad foundations are built. You hear of petty family disagreements yet how small are they in this new grand scheme of ugliness. Let them go. Love a little harder this week!

I have to agree with the Dems who are proposing banning the sale of guns to terror groups. It seems to make sense on the surface, except that you have to wonder which group some admin in the future would define as terrorist. It is a conundrum. For instance, 0-Man seems to think Repubs are borderline.

When assassins have cocktail parties they serve glockamole.

I tried to type this Tids to the tempo of the first movement of Tchaikovsky’s 4th symphony. It didn’t work out so well. I saw lines of typos that looked like the Russian alphabet!

The Question:
Triple header and Bonus too! 1. What is the well known other name for Edward Teach? 2. 52 years ago yesterday, JFK was murdered. What was the name of the other man riding with him in the limo that day? 3. Who were Jamie Lee Curtis parents? Bonus: Name the Top Ten All Time “Winningest” Tennis Players?

The Headlines:
--FTSE, European Shares Down; Asia Up And Australia Raging; US Futures Flat.
--Brussels Lockdown Enters Third Day; 16 Arrested In New Terror Raids.
--3 Syrians With Fake Passports detained In St. Maartin; Sword Wielding man Panics Shoppers In NYC Apple Store.
New Fox Poll Among Registered Voters: Voters Pick Rubio Over Clinton 50 – 42; Bush Wins 45-39, Carson 47-42, Trump 46-41, Cruz 45-41, Christie 46-43 and Forina/Clinton Tie 42-42.
--Iowa Conservatives Seem To be Moving Away From Carson In Favor Of Cruz.
--Dems Win One In Louisiana; John Bel Edwards Beats Out ® David Vitter.
--Putin Arrives In Teheran For First Meeting There In 8 Years.; Assad Says His Troops Advancing On All Fronts Thanks To Russian Air Strikes.
--Niki Minaj Big Winner At AMA; Other Winners – One Direction Arianna Grande, Nick Jones, Luke Bryan, Carrie Underwood, Beyonce, Chris Brown, Ed Sheeran.
--Trump Talking Indy Run; Clinton Foundation Jumping For Joy.
--Ukrainian Tower Explosion Cuts Off Power To Crimea.

Did you hear about the guy who hired a bounty hunter to get back his missing paper towels?

While it is easy to say that the states going after the Football fantasy companies is just another effort for governments to get their economic portion of private enterprise sweat, there is in fact a bigger issue here. With the advent of big investors throwing money into two major players, Draft Kings and Fan Duel, funds are now available to support high risk, no questions asked loans to bettors similar to those that triggered the mortgage crisis. I could be wrong on this, but that’s what I’m hearing about AG actions in Cal, NY and Mass. “Honey, I just sold the kids for a sure thing on Peyton Manning making a comeback.

One of the small comforts in life is knowing that you can always find the Tids on your smart phone.

A small local Newport RI poll has 64.7% of citizens saying no to Syria refugees in RI. (Note: It was more of an indicator poll than a scientific study. But, I have found this weekly varied subject poll to be quite accurate over time.)

If you are a golf fan, this is a good time to start getting a handle on the up and comers. Jordan Spieth will not be the last of overnight sensation as the young talent pool widens. Number one for having a break out year could be the charismatic Kevin Kisner now leading the Fed-Ex. Or perhaps Argentine Emiliano Grillo. Spieth’s pal Justin Thomas is on the cusp and Patrick Rogers maybe one to start following. Some of the big names are resting up for the new year, but there are plenty of terrific newcomers to latch onto right now.

Many knowledgeable people were disappointed when Bobby Jindel through in the towel because they knew how good he was, how much he accomplished, especially in education. The operative word here is “Knowledgeable”, if you get my drift.

A lot of football people will be watching the Pats-Bills game tonight to see how Brady operates without Lewis…and Edelman. ( Interesting – Tonight’s 2 QB’s Tom Brady and Tyrod Taylor are rated # 1 1nd #2 in quarterback passing rating – 110 - 106. Taylor, noted as a runner too, has completed 70% of passes with only 4 Interceptions, three of which were in one game against the Pats.) Maybe I should call Draft Kings to enrich my retirement plan.

One thing I learned years ago was never to drive on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving. I’m sure a lot of other wise parents learned the same thing and passed it along to their children. But, the roads are more crowded than ever. The youth always think they are indestructible or impervious to the truth.

Teens seem to be getting something right – Retail stats are saying that they are shunning clothes with big brand logos across the front. I never understood why I should pay to wear logos. Of course, the teens are gobbling up Under Armor with a logo that seems to grow larger every day.

Then, I tried to type to the staccato beat of the third movement of the Tchai-4th and failed even more miserably. This is probably why I was always rejected by the school orchestra.

I called my printer Bob Marley, because it was always jammin’.

Some people were saying that the answer to the imponderable questions about a universe with no ending is a parallel universe. Which, raises the question -- What is on the other side of the first parallel universe? Every time somebody denounces God or belief, just ask them what’s on the other side of the end of the universe.

Repubs say that the two main things they are looking for in their nominee are 1. Somebody who can beat Hillary and 2. Someone who will shrink government. Know anybody?

I always liked Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, so last Friday I ended the Tids with an old Beatles version of it. After watching, I decided it didn’t sound or look so hot anymore. Am I being acclimated to Lady Gaga and not knowing it? Shoot me.

Police were called to a day care center where a 3 year old was resisting a rest.

When Tchai’s 4th ends, the silence is deafening.

The Parking Lot: Chapter 30.
   Elizabeth, eyes wide, stood in the doorway watching Richard and several men wrestling Howland to the ground. She then fixated on Jeremiah, a lump laying in the middle of the barren now ethereal appearing barn. She ran to him, quickly covering him with her body. She had to hold him first, to let him know that he was not alone.
   She raised her self and gently turned him over. Immediately she saw blood on the floor where he had been, and more trickling from his shirt, now an ugly and spreading brown stain. She ripped open his shirt and took the hem of her flowing dress, wadding it up, pressed to the opening, applying pressure to the wound. “Bring water and alcohol,” she shouted so loud that she could have been heard two villages apart. Massata knew from the years growing up in her tribal home that pressure could stem the flow of blood. She also knew that he could be safe depending on what the knife would have hit inside. Other than that, she knew that positive result needed a lot of luck. She knew she and to keep the wound clean and covered, and the fever away. She would stay with him every hour until he healed.
   Massatta was cleaning the wound as two of the men came over and said they would lift and carry him to his bed in the main house. Massatta rose as Jeremiah did, so the pressure from her hand never left the gash. She looked down at his face, now for the first time and her heart cringed. Her stomach turned. He was white and lifeless. “Jeremiah, Jeremiah,” She shouted. Then she slapped his face.

The Answer:
1. Edward Teach was a pirate better known as Blackbeard. You all knew that. 2. I know you all remembered that 52 years ago yesterday Governor John Connelly of Texas was riding with JFK. 3. Tony Curtis and Janet Leigh were the parents of Jamie Lee. Bonus: Number Ten was the wonderful Bjorn Borg followed by the great Rod Laver and then Roy Emerson. Rafael Nadal and Pete Sampras are next at 7 and 6. The top five are Serena Williams, Chris Evert, Martina Navratilova, Steffi Graf and #1 a man still playing today Rodger Federer.

Since I talked about it so much, here’s a taste of the Fourth: