Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Fact is Stranger than Fiction

A couple of weeks ago I was carrying on and writing about fads and trends and mentioned the MIA/POW bracelets that were worn in the late 1960's and early 1970's.

Out of curiosity I looked on the Internet to see if one could still find those bracelets.
In a nut shell, yes you can. I even found a guy selling a cache of the original bracelets from 1970. He had squirrel them away after trying to return the lot to the organization that distributed them. They did not respond to his request to return the unsold portion.

I assume everyone knows what a MIA/POW bracelet is, and if not a brief history. During the Viet Nam era some of the returning service men wore bracelets given to them by hill tribesmen as "friendship" bracelets. The idea was transformed into a way to show support of the soldiers and to demand humane treatment of those in captivity. In other words, for those men who were taken as Prisoners of War by the Viet Cong or who were Missing in Action. The group was called VIVA, a couple of college kids from LA, and they sold thousands of bracelets on simple metal stating the soldiers name, their rank and the date they disappeared.

I found some startling statistics. In WWII over 78,000 are MIA. Mind boggling! But I have heard first hand from my father, a WWII USAAF veteran, that the man next to you would be blow up in the blink of an eye. Gone from the face of the earth. Korea some 8,000 MIA and Vietnam has over 2700 MIA, POW, or KIA unaccounted for. It is a fact that every year these number go down as bodies are recovered or found and turned over to the US.

I found a web site that lists the dates that remains are identified and returned to the US. It's unbelievable to me that they can be identified let alone found! There is a military site that is dedicated to the "Recently Accounted-For". One lost September 15, 1918 found and identified on March 2, 2010. Almost 100 years waiting to come home.

So, with all this information about how there are still groups searching and negotiating for the Lost it was a simple step to purchase a POW-MIA bracelet and help a justified cause.

The bracelet was shipped on March 22nd, I received it a few days later. SFC Donald M. Shue, USSF, 11-03-69 Laos,(from)NC.

I've been wearing the bracelet ever since. Heavy and warm and way too big for my puny wrist, it slides up and down making a sharp clink against my watch and clanking on the desk. It's strange how at home it feels on my arm and I hesitate to remove even when I must.

Today I thought to look SFC Donald M. Shue, USSF from NC up on the Internet and see his story....

His remains had been found and identified on March 22nd. He is being returned to the US and will be in Hawaii until he is officially returned to Charlotte NC and to his family on April 30th. The Rolling Thunder will escort him to his final resting place, as he was a motor cycle enthusiast.

I wonder if when they choose one of the 2500 names of the Lost if they knew? Or if something else happened? Whatever it was, what ever it is, it is a hero has been lost and now found. I will continue to wear his bracelet for the other 1549 who are still waiting to come home.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Blame it on the Moon

That moon! It was awesome. When I walked out Saturday night I felt like I could reach up and touch it. It was as big as a Moon Pie!

On the other hand, I am very weepy. Even this morning, thinking about the enormous task ahead of me to pack up and move to Memphis, made me tear up and I felt like climbing back under the covers. So many things to do and this procrastinator has only made a list. This procrastinator has only moved some stuff around in the house, like shuffling a deck of cards.

My daughter called with a problem and I slipped back into old behavior and got very upset because there was not a chance in hell I could solve the problem. And I felt like she needed to ride out the consequences to ensure she would never stumble down this particular path again. It will not kill her, it will certainly inconvenience her for several days, but it will be OK in the end. I felt like crying in my frustration.

When I was shuffling things around and hiding stuff in the closet and calling it rearranging the closet I came across the bag of my fathers hats.

I opened it and breathed deeply. The familiar smell of him was still there.

And then I cried.

I blame it all on the Moon.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Just EWWWWWWW!!!!!!!!1

For some odd reason I was doing that never ending search on the Internet about Fad's. And I was informed that fad's are usually started by teenagers because they are the first ones to discover something new (always looking for ways to be hip) and it if sticks it becomes a trend.

One step further I found a discussion thread about "which fad do you hate the most" and naturally it was teenagers who commented with everything that disgusted them. Some of the response were very funny. Typical teenage stuff.

Teenagers are just fun! That is unless you are raising one, then they are a pain in the keister. I know, I raised one. And before that I was one!

When I was a preteen we had quite a few fads that I remember. In other words, thank God they did not stick. We use to get these little plastic rings from the hardware store, they were called chicken rings and available in many bright colors. I never had any, though I wanted one badly. My parents never went into a feed store. Ever! I was deprived.

And there was this wild fad called collecting Fruit Loop's. It consisted of tearing the loop off the back of a guys shirt! Back in the day the back part of a shirt had a small tab in the form of a loop that people would virtually hank off each other! It made them very angry therefore great sport. It was mainly girls yanking off guys loops. From moving school buses.

God forgive me for admitting to this, but we wore saddle oxfords and bobby socks in high school! Sometimes for a break, we wore bass weejuns, referred to as penny loafers, and knee high socks. Blue. The reason being I had to wear a uniform to High School. Everybody wore the same damn thing. A blue sweater and a white short sleeved shirt with a peterpan collar and a pleated skirt. We rolled them up at the waist because wearing mini shirts was wildly fashionable at the time. The nuns made us kneel down and the hems of our skirts must touch the floor. After we were made to roll them back down we would rush to the bathroom, grab a quick smoke and roll them up.

In college bell bottom's were all the rage. Dr. Scholl sandals too, but I didn't like them very much. The wood was too hard and once I slipped and banged myself up pretty good, so I excused myself on that one. Those cute little Indian moccasins everyone had! And Indian beaded belts. Oh I would love one of those right now. Everyone wore MIA bracelets. I hung out with a very cool hippie crowd. When they let me.

Ah, the good old days when the fads were relatively cheap.

What those teenagers were saying about today's fad's.............. (too funny!)

"Guys in skinny jeans. We already know you have chicken legs that'll snap if you get kicked, no need to show us all.I just find it disturbing."

"hate short - ish tops that dont cover your butt of anything with leggings or jeggings. EWW i mean its bad enough on skinny girls but when big girls wear them!! i mean theres nothings to hold the jiggle back, it just doesnt look good"

"was gonna say those bags! They look like my Gramma would find them cute. Sorry, but those things are just... bluch."

"People that still walk around looking cheap .Wearing crap from rocawear,cooqi, ed hardy,baby phat, phat farm, & anything with baby girl on it. That was like the 90's please stop.-Fake Uggs(Fuggs)lol. Just Ew.!"

Thursday, March 17, 2011

It's Thursday 13 again and in honor of St. Paddy Day I am listing 13 of my favorite libation concoctions!

1) Blue Moon beer - I can remember the first time I had this delightful orange color wheat beer. I don't remember where, I tend to think it was in Boston, but it could have just as easily been Chicago or Cincinnati as I have bellied up to a lot of bars. But that first time, with the errant orange slice floating in the foam, it was love at first sip. Where ever I go and feel like a beer I ask for it. On tap.

2) Bahama Mama - The first time I had this most refreshing drink was with my friend Debbie in Tampa. (I even think I have a picture of me gazing at in in awe as it was served smoking!!). I immediately asked the bartender for the recipe. It was 99% alcohol with a splash of sour mix and pineapple juice. When I got home I ran to the liquor store and bought everything! I think it cost about $80 worth of booze! Let's see if I remember it all, coconut rum (my subsequent downfall), 151 proof rum, white run, creme de banana and creme de cacao, Galliano, grenadine and the pineapple juice and a splash of the sour mix. Oh baby!

3) Yellow bird - Sort of a sophisticated version of the Bahama mama with Vodka and OJ. I like mine served straight up.

4) Chocolate martini - need I say more?

5) Rattlesnake - in a shot glass. Joe and I once tried to make these and ended up on the floor. End of story. I called them a Snake Bite!

6) Margarita Cocktail- Frozen please. This one time Joe and I went to a Mexican restaurant in Frankfort (one of my all time fav's) and they had a dinner special. Two meals and a pitcher of Frozen Margarita's $14. It must have been a very special special because they never did it again!! A pitcher of Margarita's is about $16. So we basically ate for free. Anyway, I love me some frozen margarita's and the subsequent brain freeze. It's worth it.

7) A tequila sunrise - I no longer drink these. I will say no more.

8) Mary's Mayhem - my own creation! You take some coconut rum, preferably some higher alcohol content brand, and pour a good slug (I don't need no stinking shot glass!) into a cocktail glass filled with ice and add (diet) cream soda. OMG. I have hooked many a person on this vanilla soda coconut concoction! Maybe throw a cherry in there if you are trying to impress someone.

9) Crossfield Punch - Got this fabulous punch recipe from some Baptist teetotalers (and named in their honor) at a birthday party. It was so good. All it needed was a little vodka! Here is the recipe, a can of lemonade, a can of oj, a big can of pineapple juice and some ginger ale. Mis first three ingredients and freeze. Take out and pour in punch bowl and and add ginger ale. Then add vodka when no one is looking - lol! We make batches and then scoop into highball glasses and add the last two ingredients.

10) Strawberry daiquiri - Kind of boring, but when made by my BFF Gayle with fresh strawberries - oh God, I want one now!

11) Egg Nog - Once again my BFF Gayle led me down the road of sin (Lol - hi Gayle) and mixed up one killer Egg nog at her Mother-in-Laws. I had no idea I loved those things! Must have been the good bourbon. And the nutmeg on top. Since then I have discovered Southern Comfort Vanilla Spice Egg Nog Mix, which is only sold from Thanksgiving until New Years. And thank God for that.

12) White Russians - What does the Dude and I have in common? White milk mustaches. I have not had one of these for 30 years. I once thought I might be an alcoholic and blamed it on the White Russians. But I wasn't (I think - I guess you might wonder by this post!) but I have carefully removed the words from my vocabulary.

13) Irish Coffee - Hooray for coffee and bourbon and Irish Cream with whipped cream on top. The only way!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!!

Read some other Thursday 13's here!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Is it Drafty in Here?

I have started many a Thursday-13 that has petered out and left behind in the "draft" section of my edit grave yard. It is really is a waste land because so many of those topics sound really interesting and worth a go. For example ....

Girl For Hire - This was s series I was planning and upon closer inspection, I might run with it! I describe all the jobs I have had in my life time. And some career's thrown in there too.

What I want to be when I grow up - This little jewel explained how I wanted to marry a celebrity when I was young. Preferably Richard Chamberlain! I was shocked to tears when I found out he was gay!

The lemonade theory - Interesting. I do come up with some good titles every so often! This one is naturally about "life is never what you expect it to be" sort of ramble.

Potty Mouth - I don't even know where this one was going! It seems I was upset and not allowing myself to shout out curse words.

Pulling Up Roots - another try at a Thursday-13 about all the places I have lived. One of my friends commented that where ever I plant my roots I will blossom. I really needed that. Especially right now when I feel a little panicky about the move and finding a job. It's not as easy as it use to be.

Confessions of a Cook Book Junkie - I loved this series, but unfortunately I had to abandon the series because I never cook anymore! Last week I made a huge chicken pot pie. When I got to the part of making the crust I found I had very little all purpose flour! So I made it with canned biscuits! It was good. Good enough that I ate on it all week! Last night I made my Simple as can be Chili and will eat it all week. Simple but so good. . So good I have sort of an ache in my gut today. It's either my liver, an ulcer or that damn good chili.

15 minutes to Blow - these were some of my best little "write like no one is reading!" After years of blogging I feel like I have so little left. I find myself drawn to Facebook where I do not write much but get to keep up with everyone else. I would have quite a bit to write about if I felt like boring you all along with myself. Every time I work at the Bucket there is a story to tell. The Mall has ended up to be the worst job ever - but I hate to dwell on such negativity and I can make it three more weeks.

To tell the truth, I don't know what is wrong with me. Maybe it's because I never get to air out head anymore. Back several years ago when I was a Road Warrior and always driving some where exotic (not) for the Beverage Company my mind would wander as I drove to some great creative places. Mainly memories triggered by some Zen Like Hypnotic Trance brought on by the country side.

Maybe I just need to take a Road Trip?

Monday, March 14, 2011

H is for.....

H is for Hot Air Balloon!

This is from the 2007 Festival that is held at Bowman Field in Louisville every September. It was a little chilly and the sky could not have been more beautiful and brilliant that morning. I took so many photo's that were spectacular (if I do say so myself) but this one I had reprinted and made note cards! Truly a wonderful keepsake of a remarkable day. (Notice the full moon decending?)

Sunday, March 06, 2011

G is for Green!

First time I have been able to catch my breath for a week so here is my submission for ABC Wednesday. Letter for the week "G". G is for GREEN.

This picture was taken quite some time ago when I bought my first digital camera. I took a walk in the Lexington Cemetery one brilliant spring day and this picture was one of the results. The Cemetery itself is a botanical garden besides the resting place for such notables as Henry Clay, "King" Solomon who in the summer of 1833 a cholera epidemic killed 500 Lexingtonians in two months, and half the population fled the city in fear. "King" Solomon remained to dig the graves, an act which earned him the lasting respect of the town. And a fantastic grave and monument at the Cemetery, and Coach Adolph Rupp.

I just realized this is the second time in five letters I have used the Cemetery! It is a beautiful place and I am certain I will use several more photo's I have taken there.