grizzlydan: Artist's rendition of me with mountains in the background. (Default)
Going into this weekend, I was stressed out because there was so much going on that I feared I would miss out on whatever was most fun, or lose the weekend for regret of making other choices. In the end, I sent one reluctant message of regret and opted to spend Saturday with my lovely wife at a festival. We needed the couple time. We chose a Civil War-oriented festival organized around the unveiling of a statue of Patrick Ronayne Cleburne (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patrick_Cleburne), the Hero of Ringgold Gap, in Ringgold, GA. We got to the festival in plenty of time for the unveiling, but what really excited us was the Highland Games going on in town at the same time that we saw on the way in. It was a very small Celtic Festival in its first year, but the sight of all those kilts milling around town with a throng of Civil War re-enactors made me smile. Bought an "American by Birth, Scottish by Blood" T-shirt to celebrate the occasion.

Then it was back to the Civil War festival. We sat through an intensely detailed account of the battles of Lookout Mountain and Ringgold Gap and Gen. Cleburne's role in both by a park ranger, then found a replica of the Confederate submarine Hunley, and got an education in the mystery surrounding that boat. The guy answering the questions had built the replica and was encyclopedic in his knowledge. I filed away more ACW geekery in my gray matter, but it was only beginning.

As I was on the way to get a refill of cream soda for Tammie, I happened to notice what was going on in the other speaker's tent, The speaker was in a Union uniform and speaking in the role of someone from that time frame. It was a Civil War Dinner Theater (without the dinner)based in Whitwell, TN: http://buttonwillowchurch.com/. I want to put together a group to go see the full show. If you like 19th century period American chow and history presented in an entertaining, funny way, you gotta sign on and come with us. I have even more politically incorrect data in my head. People really should NOT get me started on Civil War issues. I may burst a vein.

When the show was over, we felt satisfied with our day in Ringgold and headed back south to what we thought was going to be gaming night, but the game was canceled. It turned into a very pleasant evening with a Mexican dinner with friends. I also did my first voice-work gig. My friends wanted me to be the intro voice on their World of Warcraft podcast. Maybe someone will hear it and a career will be launched. Who knows?
grizzlydan: Artist's rendition of me with mountains in the background. (Default)
Body of an American (Live), The Pogues
Black Friday Rule, Flogging Molly
The Valley Of The Shadow Of Death, The Tossers
Ashley Falls, The Young Dubliners
Hush Little Baby, The Men They Couldn't Hang
20th Of April, Oysterband
Galway Girl, The Fenians
Let's Go Dancing, Drivin N Cryin
Song Of The Chanter / Rakes Of Clonmel , Danu
Bare In The Basin, Gaelic Storm
O'Sullivan's March, The Chieftains
Second Figure (Live), Natalie McMaster
Drunken Lullabies (Acoustic), Flogging Molly
Beggarman, Gaelic Storm
The Boatman, Levellers
(Wreck of) The Julie Plante, Mustard's Retreat
God Will Thank You, Lori McKenna
Don't Slit Your Wrists For Me, Oysterband (Most excellent and bouncy, considering its title)
I Am Stretched On Your Grave, Kate Rusby
I'll Tell Me Ma, The Young Dubliners
William Francis, Chumbawumba
Fish And Get Fat, Gaelic Storm
Nova Scotia Farewell, Schooner Fare
When I Paint My Masterpiece, The Band
These Exiled Years, Flogging Molly
Molly O'Malley's, Peter Mayer
Gridlock, The Pogues
D-Train, The Washington Squares
MaCahills Reel/Doherty's/Reel Gan Ainm, Danu
Selfish Man, Flogging Molly
The State of Massachusetts, The Dropkick Murphys (no thumb, they're a little TOO harsh.)
(Shifting to Charlie Daniels when it begins to repeat itself)
Play Me Some Fiddle, Charlie Daniels
Free Ride In The Fast Lane, Montgomery Gentry
Don't Rock The Jukebox, Confederate Railroad
What's On The Bar, Hank Williams Jr.
(What This World Needs Is) A Few More Rednecks, Charlie Daniels
Luckenbach, Texas, Waylon Jennings
Stranger In My House, Ronnie Milsap
Okie From Muskogee (Live), Merle Haggard
Lay Down Sally, Red Sovine
Can't You See, Charlie Daniels
Struttin' Blues, The Black Crowe
Next Thing Smokin', Joe Diffie
Waymore's Blues, Waylon Jennings
Simple Man, Charlie Daniels
I Think I'll Just Stay Here And Drink, Merle Haggard
Only In America, Brooks & Dunn
Whiskey Bent And Hell Bound, Hank Williams, Jr.
Have You Forgotten?, Daryl Worley
Roll On, Alabama
Whoop And Ride, The Lonesome River Band
Ring Of Fire, Johnny Cash
Finally Friday, George Jones
I'm A Ramblin' Man, Waylon Jennings
All My Rowdy Friends Are Comin' Over Tonight, Hank Williams Jr.
God Blessed Texas, Little Texas
If I Fall (You're Goin' With Me), Trace Adkins
Six Days On The Road, Steve Earle
Drive (For Daddy Gene), Alan Jackson
Just To Satisfy You, Waylon Jennings
I Walk The Line (Live At Asbury Park), Johnny Cash
grizzlydan: Artist's rendition of me with mountains in the background. (Default)
In the mix: Brass Masters, Call Me The Breeze, Celebration Station, The Celtic Project, Delbert McClinton, Georgia Satellites, Get The Led Out, Hard Rock, Harp Attack, Jimmy Buffett, Outlaw Country, Rolling Stones, SRV, Three Dog Night, Train, Train, and Without You

Highway Song, Blackfoot
Best of Both Worlds, Van Halen
Twice As Hard, The Black Crowes
Movin' On, Triumph
Photograph, Def Leppard
I'd Love To Change The World, Ten Years After
Look But You Can't Touch, Poison
You Fool No One (2004 Remix), Deep Purple
I'm So Glad, Traffic Sound
What Is Soul, Simon Dupree & The Big Sound
Circus, The Sights
Run Through The Jungle, CCR
Sweet Home Alabama, Lynyrd Skynyrd
"Hank", Jason Boland & the Stragglers
Down And Dirty, Y&T
Crosscut Saw, Otis Rush
Sweet Child O' Mine, Guns 'N Roses

Then Tammie came home!
grizzlydan: Artist's rendition of me with mountains in the background. (Default)
I generally dread working Saturdays, because they tend to be more brutal than the other days of the week, in general. But yesterday was not too bad. I was already headed for leaving work in a good mood when Thomas (TheGreyMan here) popped up on Plurk (http://www.plurk.com/. . .try it, it's easier to follow than Twitter, and all the cool kids are doing it)and asked if anyone was up for some BBQ at Fat Matt's. That's automatic, folks. That's the closest thing I have to church right now. So I told him I was in, and BTW went to the website for Fat Matt's to find out who was playing, since it's an every-night Blues joint in addition to being ribs mecca.

You gotta be kidding me. Blues Cat? I have a 12-year-old T-shirt from when I was following them back in the day. I even did a DJ gig with them back in the day. So my mood went orbital and I went charging home to change clothes, kill a little time, then head south. I get out of the van in front of the joint, and there's two guys doing a double-take at me and complimenting me on my T-shirt, the likes of which they haven't seen in years. It turns out the lead singer is the only remaining original member. The original bass player even died a few years ago of a heart attack days after a Fat Matt's gig. Jeff, the lead singer, was so psyched to see and re-meet me that he offered to pick up the tab on my group's first pitcher of beer. Good times.

So then Thomas and his Pocket-Size Kat showed up, along with some acquaintances I had not seen in a while and some new friends and the 'wench and too many LJ-types to list. The band purely rocked. The performance included Jeff's 12-year old daughter bravely singing Blue Suede Shoes with her Dad's help, and a guest harmonica player.

Side note from my profile, if you haven't read it:

"All musicians want to speak through their instrument which is what makes the harmonica such a valuable tool for playing the blues. Its tonal capabilities are unique, so that you can make it sing, speak, talk, moan, cry, bark, growl, beg for mercy or just about anything else." -Jerry Portnoy

So yeah, transcendent evening. Note to self: stick to the ribs, it's what they are famous for. The custom of the combo including the chicken is to be shelved. More ribs, please.

Oh, also: I won a free NEW style Blues Cat T-Shirt out of the tip jar raffle. The cherry on top of an excellent evening.

Determined

May. 29th, 2009 09:23 am
grizzlydan: Artist's rendition of me with mountains in the background. (Default)
Last night was my second full hapkido class. I can feel that I will be sore over the weekend. It kicked my butt. Tumbling is not as easy and natural as it used to be. I don't quite know my kick range yet, so I kicked a classmate right in the gut, after another classmate stepped on my broken right toe. I learned some nifty escape tricks and a "secret" handshake. My center of gravity is FUBAR courtesy of my gut, ditto my wind. 270+ pounds is unacceptable. My short term goal is 250. The next class is Monday night, which means there will be much walking and flailing about tonight, tomorrow, and Sunday. I used to run every morning. Now I've got to work back up to that.

To do that I've got to quit quitting.

I have a D&D fanfic bouncing around in my head that I must sit down and commit to my word processor between workouts/working/family time/good luck with that.

Lunch now. Peace.
grizzlydan: Artist's rendition of me with mountains in the background. (Default)
Sometimes I get into discussions with people who like to remind me of what I am missing by living in Small Town, USA, instead of Metro or, God help us, ITP in the ATL. The restaurants, they say. You don't have any great ones. (Smiles and wags finger)NOT YOURS!

Tucked away behind a Stallion gas station in a strip mall in a middling part of town is a delightful nugget of epicurean civilization called The Sassafrass Grill. It's like stepping into an alternate universe from the mundanity that is Rome, GA. The decor is classy, tasteful, and warm, the music coos Norah Jones and Etta James at you, and the waitstaff is courteous and professional. And then there's the food.

I hadn't had Snapper in years and now I know why. The executive chef, a somewhat swarthy Mr. Clean type, explained to me that Snapper doesn't do well if it has to be frozen, so most restaurants won't stock it. They get theirs fresh, never frozen. I had forgotten how amazing Red Snapper was. They make their own sauces, and each was a revelation. Even the Tartar sauce was one of those "So that's what tartar sauce is supposed to taste like" moments. And what truly won my heart was the shrimp bisque, which Tammie had persuaded me not to have but they offered it to me on the house anyway as a sample as a first timer. Oh. My. God. Hot, creamy, delicious, and would be the ideal winter soup for its warming effect.

The meal came with brown & white rice pilaf, asparagus and a salad. I chased the Snapper with sweet tea and a Guinness. There was bread. Tammie had London Broil, and we got out for around $50.

Beat that, ATL.
grizzlydan: Artist's rendition of me with mountains in the background. (Default)
I haven't explored this at all yet, but it seems to be popular, so at least I have staked out the username. So here I am at Dreamwidth.

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October 2009

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