Category: Family

Looks Like I’m “It!”

Jason over at Already & Not Yet and Scott at Free Thoughts have “tagged” me in what looks like the opening move of some sort of chain blog, phishing scam. Next thing you know they’ll be offering to send me 100 million dollars like Princess Fayad Bolkiah if I’ll just send them my bank account and social security numbers. Yeah right. Listen boys, I wasn’t born in Alabama, ok?

Oh well, against my better judgement, here goes nothing.… Read the rest

Thoughts on Lessons and Carols

Several of us Church of Christ folks snuck over to the Episcopal Church of the Nativity in Huntsville last night for A Festival Service of Nine Lessons and Carols. The Church of the Nativity is one of the oldest churches in Huntsville and has an interesting piece of history attached to it. During the Civil War, the Union Army occupied Huntsville and began commandeering area churches to use as stables for their horses. One Union officer was sent with a detail to Church of the Nativity for that purpose. However, when he saw the words “Reverence My Sanctuary” (still seen today) above the front entrance, he had second thoughts and gave orders to his troops that the church was to remain untouched.… Read the rest

Holy Mondegreens

Mondegreen (noun)–a series of words that result from the mishearing or misinterpretation of a statement or a song lyric, e.g. I led the pigeons to the flag for I pledge allegiance to the flag. —

When I was a child, I sometimes didn’t hear things the way I was supposed to. Of course, this may have been partly due to the heavy ear wax which plagued me back in those days. Like most boys, I had more than my share of the greasy stuff, and every Saturday night my mother would subject me to a weekly ear cleaning. This was performed with a Q-tip moistened with Johnson’s Baby Oil.… Read the rest

Pearl Harbor Day Reflections

Today is December 7th, the day that FDR so famously said would “live in infamy.” Over the years, I’ve been privileged to meet many who were there that day and been honored by hearing their stories. If you’re interested in getting the point of view of some more Pearl Harbor survivors click here as well as the U.S.S. Arizona site.

I remember my Dad’s Pearl Harbor story too. He was 8-years-old when he heard the news that the Japanese had attacked Pearl Harbor. Sunday afternoon after the assault, he and his sister were playing outside when a private plane passed overhead.… Read the rest

Sean, That Was a Flippin’ “Suweeeet” Shot!

While it may not have the ramifications of Hill to Laettner in 1992, McRoberts to Dockery will still go down in the annals of Duke basketball as a play for the ages.

With 1.6 seconds remaining and down 75-74 in Sunday night’s game with Virginia Tech, freshman Josh McRoberts threw a long inbounds pass and connected with senior guard Sean Dockery. Dockery took one dribble past the midcourt line and launched a last-second prayer. Forty feet later, the Cameron Crazies shouted “Amen!” while the despondent Hokies fell to their knees in disbelief. Having lost the ACC Football Championship game the night before to Florida State, Virginia Tech fans felt the fickle wrath of Lady Luck as she thumbed her nose and turned her back on the noble Fighting Gobblers for the second night in a row.… Read the rest

Go Ahead, Make It My Day!

Hopefully by now your Thanksgiving bird is safely simmering away in a pan in preparation for the feast–and hopefully you have lived to tell the tale. As this disturbing image shows, turkeys are not the docile, lovable birds commonly depicted in popular literature and movies. No, they are fierce warrior fowl who would just as soon take an eye out with a razor-edged talon than to simply lie down in a pan and wait for everyone around the table to sing a paeon of praise about how juicy and tender this year’s “special guest” looks.

Having grown up in Southwest Virginia near the campus of Virginia Tech, I have known about the existence of these “fighting gobblers” all my life.… Read the rest

Catching the Beat of a Different Tune

Like many of you, most of my days are defined by the rhythm of work. I rise, prepare, go forth, do the deed, retreat to my lair and collapse. If you had asked me twenty years ago what my typical day would look like, I think that I would have probably painted a picture with a little more glamour and adventure. Rather than merely do a few ordinary eye exams, maybe I would also slay a dragon or two who might wander into the clinic, make a life-saving diagnosis at least every other day, and perhaps stop an armed robbery in progress at the local convenience store when I stop by to pick up a gallon of milk on the way home.… Read the rest

A Pox on Both Their Houses

Do you live in Alabama and desire a nice drive with congestion-free traffic, a good tee time or a short line at Wal-Mart? Then come the 3rd Saturday of each November–the day that Alabama stands still–venture out to recreate or run your errands during the annual Iron Bowl between Alabama and Auburn and you’ll have free run of the “Yellowhammer State.”

Iron Bowl weekend is now history, and Big Al is crying in his beer while Aubie is strutting tall and talking trash after Auburn’s 28-18 thrashing (it wasn’t as close as the score indicated) of the Crimson Tide on Saturday.… Read the rest

A Veterans Day Special–“My Very Dear Sarah”

When I first heard those words, “Dear Sarah,” I was chasing my young first born son around our Nashville apartment trying to diaper the boy before he could do any further damage. The light from our TV cast an eerie glow in our small, darkened living room as a new PBS series on the American Civil War by a young filmmaker, Ken Burns, played in the backgound.

Suddenly, the scratch of a lone fiddle commenced, and soon the beautiful and haunting strains of Ashokan Farewell filled the room. Paul Roebling, with his resonant voice, began: “Dear Sarah,” and what followed were some of the most beautiful and soaring words that I had ever heard spoken in the English language.… Read the rest

What Happens in Pensacola, Doesn’t Stay in Pensacola

Number One son and I made a mad dash south on I-65 Friday afternoon. Destination: Pensacola, Florida. Reason: a season-ending soccer tournament whose name I don’t care to mention for reasons soon-to-be-apparent.

I’ve always enjoyed our little confabs in the car during soccer trips, although I’m not sure that the feeling has always been mutual. Since I gave each of the boys “The Talk” on a soccer trip, it’s a running joke in our family that time alone in the car with Dad invariably means some new words of wisdom regarding sex and/or girls. This is not quite fair, however, as we have also covered other important topics, such as how to politely address fellow drivers who cut us off in traffic and how to talk on the phone, read a road map and fiddle with the CD player while traveling at 70mph (ok, maybe an occasional 75mph when going down a hill).… Read the rest

Bleeding Blue Devil Blue, Part II

As I consider how I came to bleed Blue Devil Blue, it occurs to me that it was about much more than basketball, although that’s where it started.

Growing up in Southwest Virginia in the 1970s, it was a rite of passage to develop a reliable jump shot because you never knew when a pick-up game would break out on some dusty, country court near you. In those days you didn’t run down to Wal-Mart for a prefabricated, adjustable, pop-up goal. My Dad fashioned mine from wood the old-fashioned way–very slowly, by hand–and set it at the regulation 10 feet.

At first, I was so small that my only hope of making a basket was to stand directly beneath the goal and fling the ball upward in a desperate Rick Barry-style underhand heave.… Read the rest

Bleeding Blue Devil Blue, Part I

At the stroke of twelve on a crisp mid-October night, madness ensues–the fanatical screams of blue-blooded partisans comingle with the metronomic thump of leather on a freshly waxed hardwood floor…

College hoops is in the air and just in the nick of time, babyyyy! Having endured the most boring World Series in recent memory (told you so) and the inauspicious debut of the “new” NHL, many are restless for a more adventurous journey in sport. The road to the 2006 Final Four will be long and arduous, ending in April in Indianapolis in what will surely be (because it always is) the most closely contested and nailbiting finish to any sport in America.… Read the rest