Friday, October 26, 2012


Wife is a people person.

That is no more evidenced than by the fact that six of her old friends have descended upon our home for the weekend. Two arrived yesterday (Thursday) and the rest today.

These are the "girls" with home Wife has gone through thick and thin. Four of them were in our wedding. All of them became moms back in the 80s and early 90s and all are now parents of adults.  One is now a grandmother.

Wife has all kinds of things planned for them -- shopping, eating, going to a concert. She'll herd them around, not unlike cats, and they won't move very fast, but that won't matter to them.

I worked upstairs this afternoon and I could hear the hum of female conversation downstairs -- peppered with hysterical laughter, stopping and starting, oohing and ahhing at this thing or that. These ladies have a history and although there might be months, or even a year, between visits, one would never know it. They pick up right where they left off.

I know and love them all just as Wife does, but I am not needed here. They're happy enough to have me but they know as well as I that it would be better for me to make my exit.

So tomorrow morning after a meeting, I'll head east and go visit some friends of my own.

And the laughter and good times will continue while I am gone.

That makes Wife happy so, consequently, I'm happy too.


I have decided it is a good thing to not live in a so-called battleground state. Because when one lives in a state that the candidates and/or his people have decided has already been painted red or blue, they ignore you.

I have already voted (love, love, love early voting) and I am so glad I don't have to endure non-stop commercials telling me how bad either Barack Obama or Mitt Romney is, when I think they're both decent men who just have a number of differences of opinion.

Because I'm not in a battleground state, I can relax. I'll tune in with interest on election night, but not with the sigh of relief that a person living in Ohio or Florida might. Those folks are still being courted and sucked up to big-time.

Here in Tennessee, we're supposedly red and we're a done deal, so not worth anyone's time and energy. And that's fine with me.


I've never been a big one for commemorating days.  I'm good at remembering the important ones like birthdays and anniversaries (usually) but days on which significant events might have happened usually pass right by before I know it.

About 4 p.m. yesterday I realized it was the day my mother died 16 years ago -- Oct. 25, 1996. So when it came to mind I could not help but think of her.

She was diagnosed with breast cancer in April and died in October -- a brief but fierce battle. She scarcely had a good day from the time of her diagnosis. Chemotherapy probably did more harm than good.

One of the things I most remember is how my dad went into total denial. He just refused to believe she would die and wouldn't even discuss it up until just a few days before she did. I remember her wanting to talk about it with him, and with my brother and me, and how uncomfortable it made me. I would listen to her but I offered little in response.

Wife, on the other hand, had a couple of poignant conversations with her.  She loved her, but I think because she didn't have the lifelong connection, she was a little more willing and able to talk to her and provide the sounding board my mother needed.

I think I learned from that whole experience -- and this is not profound -- that people who have terminal illnesses need to talk about it and we don't do them any favors acting like they aren't dying. It's self-preservation, of course, because those of us who are being left behind don't want to accept it and have this unreasonable belief that if we don't talk about it, it won't happen.

Anyway, I thought about my mom a lot after I remembered the date yesterday.  I like to think about her the way she was before she got sick -- a warm and funny person who always had something good to say to me.

I could not have asked for much more than that. 

Monday, October 15, 2012

Music City On Screen

Did anyone catch the premier of the the new ABC show, "Nashville" last week? 

It's a night-time soap, with a rather predictable storyline, but hey, it's being filmed right here in Music City with shots of the skyline and icons that make our city great. We're all excited about it here. Had I been more on my game I would have tried to be an extra. Maybe it's not too late.

I thought they just filmed a few outdoor shots around Nashville and the rest on a Hollywood set but I was wrong. Apparently there is a sound studio just north of the city where production has been taking place. An almost exact replica of the famous Bluebird Cafe, the songrwiters' Mecca where many a star has gotten his/her start and where stars and starlets are known to just show up from time to time, has been built, as well as sets replicating some of the rooms in the mansion where the show's fading country star (played by Connie Britton) lives.

The actual house is in Nashville's tony Belle  Meade neighborhood and is reported to be about 20,000 square feet. Some inside scenes have actually been shot right inside the house and the owner says all the production folks have just been swell to work with.

We already have the tour buses that travel around Nashville pointing out the stars' homes and other landmarks. Dolly Parton is a resident of our suburban community and her home is featured prominently on the tours.

Not long after we moved in our first house here, just a few doors down from our current one, we noticed one of the buses nearby and asked around regarding what famous person might be lurking among our neighbors. We learned that "Little Jimmy Dickens," of Grand Ole Opry fame, lives in a nearby subdivision not far from ours and his modest ranch-style home is included in one of the tours.

Should the "Nashville" TV show catch on, I'm sure other landmarks will be added to the tours.  City coffers have already been increased due to production of the show and local movers and shakers are hoping that will continue.

So tune in and get a glimpse of our fair city. And if you want to visit in person, just let me know. I'm sure I can cut you a better deal than the tour buses.

Friday, October 5, 2012

At the intersection . . .

Well it's been a while.

Fall is definitely our busy season and October is that month where two of our favorite pastimes intersect -- college football and post-season Major League baseball.

Unfortunately things are a bit dismal this year for our teams. Auburn is 1-3.  The Atlanta Braves lost their "play-in" wild card game tonight and the Texas Rangers are on the verge of doing the same as I write this (I'll update if anything changes).

For some reason the MLB powers that be decided the top two non-divisional winners would have a one-game playoff for the wild card spot.  That sounded like a good idea until these two teams blew it and lost to the Cardinals and Orioles, respectively.

A rare infield fly ruling figured heavily in the Braves game and I'm none too happy about that. But that's baseball and that's post-season play.

In the AL, I'll be pulling for blogger friend Steve's Detroit Tigers, although I have a bit of a soft spot for the Orioles after a 15-year absence from post-season play. In the NL, well, just not too excited about any of them. 


I watched the presidential debate this week and found it surprisingly interesting. It was definitely Mitt Romney's night as he took command of things from the very start. This was the universal consensus among almost all the pundits.

I thought it was a good debate overall. There was a good discussion of the issues and the candidates and their families had civil exchanges with each other. I understand it's all for TV but I like that anyway.

Veteran PBS anchor Jim Lehrer moderated the debate and I thought he did a good job. He got a lot of criticism but I don't get it. I thought he handled both candidates well, especially when they went over their alloted times. He was respectful and gracious to both and I don't quite understand what else he was supposed to do? 


Wife and I went to Dallas to see Older Son and DIL last week. We were gone almost a week. Wife was able to incorporate a HR seminar with our visit there and I was long overdue a few days off. Enjoyed every minute with Older Son and DIL.

We drove, as we were taking them a piece of furniture and other odds and ends. We made overnight stops in Little Rock both ways.

We rented a mini-van, the vehicle from which we graduated years ago as our little birdies began to leave the nest. These vans have progressed a great deal from the time we owned one, with "stow and go" seats that are a lot easier to handle than the ones that weighed a ton if they weighed a pound. I remember sweating buckets when I would remove them when needing to haul big items.