Monday, June 27, 2016


JUNE 13, 2016

Our country is at a crossroads. There has not been a more divisive time during my life, and that includes the Vietnam War. We have a Congress that is paralyzed by people who care only about themselves and their agendas. They don't care about the common folk, the commonweal. They won't compromise for the sake of the common good.

We have a presidential candidate who doesn't offer solutions to our problems but instead insults opponents. The mark of a bully is someone who doesn't argue a point with logic and reason, but who resorts to name calling and tries to belittle the opposition.

The time has come. In Bob Marley's words, 'Get up! Stand up! Stand up for your rights!'

Many innocent people died over the weekend because one person opened fire with an assault rifle. There needs to be a background check on anyone who buys a gun, regardless of the seller. US citizens should be allowed to own guns. However there is no sane reason why that gun should be an assault rifle. They should be banned. If Congress won't do it, then individual states must. Get up! Stand up! Stand up for your rights!

We, the people, must defend ourselves against prejudice. Prejudice towards race, religion, and sexual orientation. We need tolerance not hate. We can't stand by and allow prejudice to permeate our society. We need to be united or we shall surely fall.

When the elections occur in November, vote. Don't stand by and do nothing.
Get up! Stand up! Stand up for your rights!

Yesterday, Victoria and I took in the PawSox game against the Louisville Bats (Cincy's AAA team). You don't get to see many 1-0 games. The Bats had 4 hits and the PawSox 3. The PawSox starter and winner was 27 y/o RHP Aaron Wilkerson (now 2-1, 2.25 ERA). The signee from the independent league Grand Prairie Air Hogs went 6 innings and gave up the 3 hits, but won because of superb relief from LHP Robby Scott (another independent league signee) and RHP Noe Ramirez (2nd save).

Wilkerson attended Cumberland University and helped them win the NAIA championship. He set an NAIA record by pitching 54 consecutive scoreless innings. His career was short circuited by Tommy John surgery. After working stocking frozen foods in a freezer for a Texas grocery store, he joined an independent league and bounced around 4 of them before being signed by the Red Sox in July of 2014 (Sources:the Boston Herald's Evan Drellich - 4/24/16 and's Aaron McFarling – 7/13/15).

OF Bryce Brentz doubled in the 2nd and was plated by C Ali Solis' single. Solis, just up from Portland, had 2 of the PawSox's 3 hits. And it was a beautiful if windy day.

R.I.P. Gordie Howe, one of hockey's greatest. Howe led the Detroit Red Wings to 4 Stanley Cup championships, led the NHL in scoring 6 times and was MVP 6 times. 'Mr. Hockey' played more games than any other player who ever laced them up. I'm told he was as gentle a man off the ice as he was ferocious on it.
And in the NHL, they call a Gordie Howe hat trick a goal, an assist and a fight.

The Red Sox drafted high school LHP Jason Groome with their 1st pick in the MLB draft. He reportedly has one of the best curve balls of this year's high schoolers. The draft is unpredictable (in terms of who makes the Bigs). Case in point – Casey Kelly – drafted by Boston in the 1st round in 2008. He was a prime piece in the trade to SD for Adrian Gonzalez. Kelly ended up having Tommy John surgery. He is now a reliever for Atlanta (4.86 ERA). 1B Anthony Rizzo, also in that trade, became a star with the Cubs.

According to the Boston Herald's Michael Silverman, Jackie Bradley Jr. had T shirts made up for the outfielders that read 'Soul Patrol'. And that dance that the 3 outfielders do at the end of the game is called 'Hit Dem Folks'.

Regarding Emmylou Harris' biggest commercial success:
Wrecking Ball, but I liked both Pieces of the Sky and Luxury Liner better.
Roger Boudreau
Good guess, but no. Luxury Liner is my favorite LP. Emmylou was the first to cover Townes Van Zandt's Pancho and Lefty which is on it. And another Townes' song If I Needed You, which is on her Duets album (sung with Don Williams), is a favorite - Z

Emmylou. Saw her four times over 30 years and wish I could attend the Fiddler's Green (a nice, small venue in Denver) concert next month that she is sharing with Lyle Lovett and the Large Band. 300 miles is just a bit far these days; last saw her at a honky tonk in Grand Junction, Colorado with about 300 other shitkickers.
"Ballad of Sally Rose" is Big White's response; though I don't think it's her best.
Bill LaPlante
Also a good guess, but not correct. - Z

Excellent edition, Jim! Very informative analysis of pitching situation. BTW, I finally made it to the Hot Spot on Memorial Day weekend w/ GF. Very cool. It were jumpin’! Dave Burlingame
Thanks for the kind words Dave. If you visit the Hot Club on a Wednesday or Friday night, ask the bartender to point me out. - Z
Had not been to a concert at Great Woods in many moons. But the chance to finally see and hear Paul Rodgers (Free, Bad Company, The Firm), one of the great rock 'n' roll voices of all times, made my attendance mandatory. Fortunately my brother Brad was able to fly in from Asheville, NC to join me. It was all that I hoped for and more as both Walsh and Rodgers were in great voice.

An aside here. I will not mention the corporate name that is affixed to Great Woods now. As Joe Walsh was doing his encore and final song – Rocky Mountain Way, I got up to prepare to head for the men's room. I was on the concourse between the lower seats and the uncovered seats (where there used to be grass). Making sure I wasn't blocking anyone's vision in the uncovered seats, I danced to Rocky Mountain Way. An usher came up to me and said, “You can't dance.” I looked at him in disbelief as he shooed me away. So I went down a ways farther and continued dancing. Another usher made me leave. When I returned to our seats, I told Brad what had happened. He couldn't believe it. Then a guy behind me, who had overheard me, said “Maybe he meant you couldn't dance.” I replied, “No, I can dance. I know how to keep a beat.” So if you go to Great Woods, you can't dance. This from an outfit that charged $15+ for a 24 oz. Sierra Nevada and $15+ for a Wormtown IPA (out of Worcester). Tanz? Nein! Schweinhund!

Joe Walsh was backed by a great band headed up by the legendary Waddy Wachtel. Walsh was aided by 4 female singers. He did a great tribute to the recently departed Glenn Frey and then launched into Take It to the Limit. Other highlights: Life's Been Good, Funk #49, Walk This Way, In the City and Life in the Fast Lane.

When Paul Rodgers came out with Bad Company, it didn't take him long to get the crowd singing along. He was backed by original drummer Simon Kirke (also with him in Free). Original guitarist Mick Ralphs (also in Mott the Hoople) stayed home and was replaced by The Black Crowes' Rich Robinson. Feel Like Makin' Love was one of the first numbers. The band did almost all their hits including Ready for Love, Can't Get Enough and Rock 'n' Roll Fantasy. A highlight for me was Shooting Star and Bad Company, which they did during their 2nd encore. A great concert. But you can't dance.

The Herbster visited the HC last week with his pal Sal. There are 10,000 stories in the Naked City and Herb knows them all and will tell you a few. He was wearing a tie and I asked him if it were a Narragansett beer tie. Yes it was. He wasn't sure of the vintage (it looked brand new), and it had on the back. Herb reminded me that Captain Quint (Robert Shaw) in Jaws is shown drinking from a can of Narragansett and then crushing it in his hand just before the shark shows up.

I was talking about how I love spicy foods and make a jabanero meatloaf. I mentioned that spicy foods contain capsaicin which is an anti-carcinogenic (Ed.: capsaicin is in red chili peppers. It has not proven to be an anti-carcinogen) . One of Captain Jack's friends, Tom, then told me that Dodger great Sandy Koufax used capsaicin on his left arm. A check shows that Koufax did indeed use a capsaicin based ointment (capsolin) on his arm before a game. Players called it 'atomic balm'.

So I told a few people about the Bad Company concert at Great Woods and the usher saying that I couldn't dance. I then quoted H.L. Mencken's definition of a Puritan: Someone who can't stand to see someone else have a good time. I looked up the quote
and it's: “Puritanism: The haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy.”

We were talking about the late, great Rodney Dangerfield. Dr. John recalled Rodney saying that he played a room that was so tough that they served broken leg of lamb.

So what was the biggest commercially successful album on which Emmylou Harris appeared? A bit of a trick question – the answer is Trio which she did with Linda Ronstadt and Dolly Parton.

This musician was part of a very successful American band that was often on TV. However he got his start in a Saturday morning TV show under a name different from his name in the band. Who was the musician and what was the show? Extra credit if you know the name he went by for the Saturday show. Thanks to my brother Brad for suggesting I use this bit of trivia.


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