On Tributes

I have to set aside the normal weekly Satire Bits to dedicate this post (#1256) to the many of have come and gone to my little corner of the world.

To bloggers as Larry (Nutball Gazette) and Stone (Third Stone from the Sun) who are no longer with us … Larry from heart ailments in his 60s and Stone from a stroke and aneurism in his 40s. Both were genuine and far too young to leave life.

To the bloggers I list as Pioneers on my sidebar as they helped me get started; thus special thanks to David, Mo, Beeze, Lester, Chris, and others. We connect back to the days when The Sporting News hosted sports blogs, and they remain avid sports bloggers today.

To Joe, a photographer from Arkansas, who Sunday journeys through rural Arkansas, brought together nature and humanity.

To bloggers as Starla, Les, Melissa, Rachel, Rita, Mags, Izzie, Sekan, Rosie, Rantonit, and Mckenzie who frequented these pages; but (to my best knowledge), no longer blog. I occasionally wonder about McSmall k’s health status. These names represent those who vanished from blogging or here for one reason or another.

Others move on, which is common in blogging, so cheers to Paulette, Spinny, Keith, Randel, Scott, Al, Meesh, Dragonfae, Hat, Don, and others who have stopped by my little corner of the world.

To Maxi, a Filipino living in Sweden who was one of my first global visitors, which now has greatly expanded.

To Nonnie, whose cake-ball business limits her posts, as does Kellie due to work. To Tim Valentine, a man with a deep soul who still posts, but doesn’t interact as he once did. Interacting with him was outstanding!

Cheers to my current visitors!

I don’t have the humorous touches as El Guapo or Leo, nor write fiction like Rich, Jackie P, Amy, Ryan, Hudson, and Tom M. I certainly can’t weave a tale like Eleanor or Lame. I know I don’t write from deep within my soul as Val or Le Clown, or have the sassy wit as Elyse.

I don’t dive into the philosophical depths as Shimon, or rant like Weebs. I certainly don’t have a sense of style like Kay or Gull.

I have neither Archon’s clever wit or John Erickson’s crazed wit. (Has anyone encountered him?) No way do I know as much about space as Alex, or physics as Jim. I can’t garden or compose music as Lynn, and gathering puns like Fasab is against my constitution.

I don’t write creatively like Ginger Fightback, Soma, and White Lady in the Hood, or humorously like Kayjai, Vanessa, Jiggy, and Sandy, nor as editorially clean as Renee, Patti, or Red.

I don’t write with joyful spirit as Debra, Colline, Java Girl, RoSy, Sunshine, or Georgette; or in Mouse’s unique way of making a point. I don’t write poems or haikus like Audra, Kimberly, Errin, or Shrinks.

I won’t even attempt to draw like Hansi, paint like Marina or Jots, create like Mobius and Buddahkat, or cook like Viveka or Spiced. Besides, my photography skills don’t come close to Robin, Otto, Bulldog, Nia, Suzanne, Cindy, Cathy, Victoria, Dink, and Mimo.

I don’t approach bliss like LouAnn, or reach the Alisha’s intellectual depths. I don’t follow music like this Calgary John, provide daily humor like this Athens John, and certainly can’t write like this Seattle John. Besides, I’m not even close to Nancy’s understanding about Christianity.

I wish I had travel experiences as Sylvia, or spent as much time in Tuscany as Debra. The thought of writing a fictional book as Carrie, Rose, TBM, John Howell, Maddie, and H.E. Ellis is outside of my scope. I certainly won’t attempt a story of my life like Kathy, or get published as much as Christine.

I’m not an Australian living in Finland like Kanerva, I don’t write political commentary through three beagles like Kellie, I’m certainly not a political junkie like Moe, and I’m unquestionably not the master of marching band like Tim … nope, I wouldn’t call myself a hiker as Frank or a camper like Catherine.

I know I lack the passion of Snoring Dog, the surreal nature as Winsombella, the emotion of Noeleen, the hope of Tazein, and the prolific manner as Rarasaur. If ever needed, I sure hope I face health issues with Angela’s courage and positive determination.

Given all the skills that I lack, you and others continue to visit and comment – and I’m very grateful and consider myself very lucky to be in contact with so many good people.

This place is not a blog where people quickly gather after a new post, but I’ve learned to accept that. This is not a blog with big numbers, and I accept that, too. After all, I publish this blog because I enjoy writing, learning, and interacting with nice people from all over the world … and that helps me hold on to my belief that the majority of people throughout the world are good.

Yes, thanks to all of you for what you do, and in short, thanks for allowing me to be me, whoever I am here.

No – this is not my last post – just my way of celebrating my fifth year on this WordPress site and saying Thanks – and one more thing – Happy Birthday Shania!

On Blogging Versatility

Patti, the mind behind Learn More Everyday, passed along this Versatile Blogger Award to me. I discovered her blog this past spring and quickly learned that Patti and I share the same philosophy about visitors: if they take the time to comment, take the time to respond.

A month or so later, my work project started, thus I have not visited her blog as often. Yet to my surprise, she continues to give me some of her reading time to this place, thus a reason why I am touched by her recognition.

The rules behind The Versatile Blog Award are simple.

  • Post a link to the Versatile Blogger who gave you the award.
  • Share seven things about yourself that is not widely known.
  • Nominate at least five other bloggers.
  • Send an email to those you choose to nominate

AFA Nominees
I’m ever so grateful to Nonnie, Spinny, Beagz, and John who have faithfully stayed with me during my work project as each of you have kept me going. Plus, there are other excellent blogs in my sidebar. However, with the nominations below, I aim to broaden the community of readers, thus more hits.

Keith is the twisted mind behind Tyranny of Tradition, the place where he integrates history and humor. I think this next statement best describes this blog: John fits right in!

Kim is the kindness behind Journey Towards Epiphany. She gives me the impression that her adult life has been full of twists, turns, and challenges, yet her blog is a tribute to the positive influence of her faith while on this Journey. Once John discovered she is from Chicago, one would frequently see his wit and wisdom there too.

I discovered Kellie at Spinny’s, and her infusion of politics into her three beagles (who have different personalities) makes The Beaglez a delight. Of course, I am partial to Buddy, but Belle makes me laugh. Yet, I just cannot figure out why John has not appeared there.

Nancy is the intellect behind the Conversation in Faith Weblog. Although the two of us have a common interest in the interchange between science and theology, Nancy uses her great insight and knowledge about faith to challenge my thinking. Hey Kellie … you would love it here! Besides, so far this has been a John-free zone.

Dragon Fae is the free spirit at Among the Dragons, Crystals, and Fae. From crystals to chakras to nature and life in general, D-Fae (as I call her) provides unexpected opportunities. Yep – she knows John too.

Scott is a newcomer here at AFA, so thought I’d show his Batshite site a little appreciation. It appears that he’s lean toward being a contrarian regarding different topics (both of which is right up my alley). Meanwhile, since I’m still on my work project, I’ll send the leader of my search party to his site. John – give me a full report.

John found me at another great site, Padre Steve’s, a great site about military, Christianity, life, and even some baseball. OK … I’ve just endorsed the Padre’s site as well.

Last but not least, a special recognition to John Erickson, who saw that I’m in Ohio, and I haven’t been able to rid him ever since! He loves to share wonderful sense of humor ( that probably is sicker than mine) through history and sci fi – although he is much more demented than I. John does not have his own blog, but he travels around several blogging circles spreading his wit and wisdom over a variety of topics. Therefore, John, this award is for you too. By the way, I can share your response with others here (if you wish).

The About Me Obligation
When it comes to personal information, a blogger’s personality is throughout the many posts. Since I have written a few posts specifically about me, I invite readers to read those. Some day when you are bored, see Categories > About Me in the sidebar. Nonetheless, I must not skirt my obligation for this post.

1) After my high school’s basketball team beat a rival on a shot at the buzzer of the fourth overtime, a group attacked five of us in a parking lot several blocks from the school. None of us was hurt, but they totaled my car. On a visit to my hometown several years ago, I saw one of the guys from that night. Out of the clear blue, Dave said to me, “We didn’t do anything wrong that night.” He’s right – yet he and I have stewed about this for almost 40 years.

2) I was in college marching band. Somehow, an artist used a picture of me to creature the image for the band’s album cover. I’ll tell this story in a future post – and maybe with the images.

3) I have stood at both the world’s longest bar and the world’s longest candy counter.

4) Except for my first three months, I have lived in Ohio my entire life. Interestingly, I associate with all four corners of the state: I grew up in SE, went to college in the NW where I met my wife who is from the NE, and spent my adult life in SW.

5) I unquestionably prefer to own a white car.

6) The first concert I added of a national act was either the Fifth Dimension or Three Dog Night. OK – I’m showing my age.

7) I attended first and second grade in this school built in 1870.

On 25 and Me

Since Beeze and others recently did a post like this, what the heck … I can join in. After all, I did a similar post in January 2009. I have an About Me in the Categories, and as a tab; plus you can learn more about me in the Numbers category.  So here goes. Besides, it’s time to lighten up a little.

1) I did not go to school with many people, but here are a list of 25 and another 25 people not in my graduating class.

2) I like to travel, and when I do, I prefer to eat at local establishments. Italian neighborhoods in cities are a must love.

3) I regularly attend church, but I don’t agree with the religious right theological and certainly not politically.

4) Ballroom dance is harder than it looks – but hey … waltzing is a special feeling.

5) In my college years, I could use the fingers on one hand to count the number of home hockey games I missed during my 5 years at BGSU.

6) Politically I am an independent moderate. I explain what that means in this post from September 2008.

7) I not sure what the last fiction book I read, so I prefer nonfiction. For the past two years I have read of good bit about the interface between religion and science. See the sidebar for some posts and more should be on the way. I want to publish a paper in the future somewhere.

8] I duplicated a recipe Rachel Ray did on Iron Chef. Consider trying this.

9) Not only do I prefer briefs to boxers, but they must also be Hanes.

10) I used to love roller coasters, but I can easily get motion sickness now. I have not been on one since the Magnum at Cedar Point put me out of commission for the entire day by destroying my equilibrium. Yep – people walking past me while sitting on a bench made me dizzy.

11) Speaking of equilibrium … I wear a medication patch while on a cruise – and I’m in a small percentage of people who gets motion sickness symptoms 36 hours after removing the patch – but I’ve learned how to beat the side effect.

12) Watching Roy Hobbs hit the homer at the end of The Natural chokes me up every time. Here’s the short and long versions.

13) Before the 1972 season started, and to the laughing of my friends, I not only predicted the Miami Dolphins would win the Super Bowl, but they would do so undefeated.

14) I attended (and stayed to the end), the coldest NFL game on record – the AFC Championship game in Cincinnati known as the Freezer Bowl. But it is difficult or stupid to be a Bengals fan today.

15) I enjoy blogging as writing helps me think; and I enjoy the dialogue with others.

16) I can only recall praying to the porcelain god once – after too many gin and tonics at a college party. I can still recall, “Move your head Frank, I’ve gotta go.”

17) I do not like raw onions on food … but cooked onions are OK … and caramelized onions are awesome. But no onions on a pizza for me.

18) I like finding interesting recipes (as from Food and Wine) and trying them. If my wife knows I’m cooking dinner, I answer her “what’s for dinner?” question with “It’s a surprise.” Here’s my spaghetti sauce recipe.

19) Ice cream is wonderful … but being lactose intolerant (plus watching my fat intake) limits my tasting experience.

20) Speaking of tastings, attending wine tastings that are treated as a class are great fun for me!

21) I truly believe that good people exist all throughout the world, thus a reason why I enjoy meeting good people from different cultures.

22) I prefer a toilet paper roll unfolding in front, and wet my toothbrush after putting on the toothpaste before brushing.

23) I enjoy many different genres of music, but I have a difficult time with bluegrass and opera.

24) I am a contrarian by nature, and if you are familiar with True Colors personality profiles, I am a Green: “an expression of the logic – the system of existence and the abundance of this color in nature. Greens are concerned with the world’s challenges, such as preserving the wisdom of mother earth for the future. Psychological research has shown the color Green to have a calming effect and many Greens demonstrate a composed demeanor using mind over emotion to orchestrate and solve the mysteries of life.”

25) Sagan’s Pale Blue Dot is powerful, and this video to his words is awe inspiring.

26) As a bonus, I plug fellow bloggers. This also means I like a variety of topics … and most of these people visit me.

  • Beeze is grounded crazy who has been called worse.
  • David has more connections across the world than anyone I know.
  • Both Meesh and Al are extra nice (yet mooshy mooshy to each other).
  • Tim is challenges each of us, but I miss him stopping by.
  • Joe’s simple pics of life are the best.
  • Jud (?) is incredible thorough with sports at 3rd Stone from the Sun and Canton Crazy Cuts
  • Chris loves baseball cards, but were bonded by the Cincinnati Reds.
  • Luke is about archeology during biblical times, and happens to be a former student of mine.
  • Larry loves his Yankees and J-E-T-S – plus has a sense of humor.
  • Emma delivers her passion on British and American issues by researching to back her thoughts.
  • Newly-discovered Noonie is funny with her political satire.
  • I’m scared of Melissa at WriteChic … but I enjoy her blog and she’s a hoot.

On Missing Learning from Others

Good news is that I have been involved with a full-time project since October. Bad news is that it has taken me away from reader my favorite blogs and discovering others. Besides, these are also people who reciprocate comments. A tip of the cap to those I miss.

I miss reading Beeze as he just gets to the point, and makes me laugh.

I miss reading Brad mixes sports, life, and humor with a few rants.

I miss reading Canton Crazy Cuts as he does unbelievable research about past football stars who are deserving for the Hall of Fame.

I miss reading Chris because it’s baseball season and he is a fellow Reds fan.

I miss reading Dave as he really knows how to generate traffic and loves his blog wrestling entertainment.

I miss reading Joe whose photographs about nature, structures from our past, and people are always special … and he loves a good general store.

I miss reading Larry and his mix of predictions, spoofs, and reality.

I miss reading Ryan who gives great sports updates – especially regarding fantasy sports.

I miss reading Luke who shares his passion about biblical archeology.

I miss reading Maxi as I miss her genuine and positive stories about daily life.

I miss reading Mo because he does not post as often, and he has a way of intertwining life and wit.

I miss reading Rad who integrates his young daughter into sports.

I miss reading 3rd Stone who is unbelievably thorough in his research about sports.

I miss reading Tim as he always stimulates my mind and challenges all of us.

I miss reading my favorite columnist as Kathleen Parker, Peggy Noonan, David Brooks, David Broder, David Avalon, and George Will.

I miss the unknown because I haven’t had a chance to discover them as I like to learn.

On Tags and Awards

Communities as Facebook and MySpace, along with blogging, are loaded with tags containing a variety of questions allowing everyone to become better acquainted. Although they aren’t really my thing, I do enjoy reading them and occasionally participate – and this is one of those times.



Maxi, thanks for the Blogger Award. Maxi is a Philippino who is hoping to go to Sweden to continue her studies toward becoming a licensed pharmacist. She actively blogs through two sites, HealthnBeyond and Ovah’ Coffee – the latter is her eclectic site with a great title. Her tag line says it all: Let’s Talk About It Ovah’ a Cup of Coffee as she, like I, enjoy a variety of topics.

dscn3018From Lester’s Legends I received a Friendly Blogger Award while I was on vacation. (Sorry, I’ve take so long.) Ryan is a prolific sports blogger, especially with fantasy sports. More importantly, he is respectful, friendly, and thankfully, when who comments here when he gets a chance. So here’s the pic.

From Basic Blaganomics I received a Smart Blogger and others. David is very creative and knows how to build a following. To me, his demeanor is very similar to Ryan’s, thus one of the reasons why I appreciate him.

In the spirit of Maxi, Ryan, and David, I pass any of these to the following bloggers who’ve helped me grow:

To Tim, who’s insight into one’s mind and soul continues to push the envelop to help us create a better world. Agree with him or not, he makes a strong case. Thoughts, Ideas and Suggestions

To Joe, thanks for using beautiful pictures to tell a story and allow my mind to reflect and grow. While most of us shovel in food without noting the taste, to Joe it’s about taking time to look to notice what he can see. Weekly Grist for the Eyes and Mind

To Paulette and her passion for current events and the White House help give me a perspective at Let Us Talk. Although an admitted partisan, we respectfully find common ground – besides, she loves golf!

To all the employees at American Heartland Bar and Grill, thanks for keeping me informed and speaking from the pragmatic center.

To JRod and Chef, the Two Big Boobs, for their blogging on a variety of topics. Get your mind out of the gutter as their topics are not in reference to their title.

So to you above, feel free to take any of these awards and pass them on to others.