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December 7, 2012 by Big Fat Daddy on STONEYEND
 

It is December 7th and something is strange.  I have seen numerous references to Pearl Harbor today.  This is as it should be; it was a horrendous event, a terrible sneak attack.  It marked a crisis point in our history.  In literature, the crisis point of a novel is the point at which something happens and nothing can be the same again.  In our history, the attack on Pearl meant a change in our thinking, our policies, and our place in the world.  No more ...
December 3, 2012 by Big Fat Daddy on STONEYEND
How many Beatles compilation and/or tribute albums have been recorded, do you think?  I own several.  One of my favorites is from a group called "Pickin' On".  The group is a loosely-formed bunch of bluegrass musicians who convert the music of popular groups: rock, punk, country, hard rock, etc, into bluegrass format and sound.  The line-up varies from album to album but the music is always great.  They have done two albums on the Beatles, that I know of.  I rea...
November 25, 2012 by Big Fat Daddy on STONEYEND
 

I walked into the main PX on Fort Huachuca yesterday and immediately began chuckling to myself ( I am sure several of the shoppers thought I was some doddering old fool lost in a long-ago memory...wait!  I was!).  I looked around and was reminded once again at what a genius I am married to.  I will explain the reason for the chuckle but have to set it up first.

 

There I was:  Stuttgart, West (at the time) Germany in the last throes of my military experie...
November 24, 2012 by Big Fat Daddy on STONEYEND
 

I live in a "suburb" of Colorado Springs.  Our house is on a hill.   Down the hill from us, a mile or so away, is a railroad track that is   moderately busy most of the time with coal trains:  empty northbound and loaded southbound.  Running parallel to the train tracks is a State Highway which is fairly busy most of the day.  About a mile or more from the tracks and highway is I-25, a freeway that stays busy almost 24/7.  On the other side ...
November 22, 2012 by Big Fat Daddy on STONEYEND
 

Every time I drive south out of Raton, New Mexico, I have a little bit of that fear thing tingling on my neck.  The emptiness of the rolling prairie is kinda frightful.  Us in-the-know folks refer to it as the I-25 corridor, because that is the route I-25 takes...and it is well known for smuggling dope, people, and who knows what else.  Of course, since NAFTA, I-25 has been rumbling with truck and bus traffic from Mexico...no need to smuggle anymore, just load it on any ...
November 17, 2012 by Big Fat Daddy on STONEYEND
My mom, Betty Lou, and I had an unusually close relationship.  She was married at 16, I came along at 17, and she was divorced by 20.  She used to say that we raised each other.  It wasn't always easy for either of us.  I remember one hot Sunday when we were getting ready for church,  she dressed me up and went to get ready herself.  My shirt was starched and scratchy on my neck and it was hot and I was sweaty.  So I filled the utility sink in the garage fu...
November 11, 2012 by Big Fat Daddy on STONEYEND
Thomas R. Fuge, MC's father, the senior living vet in our family, a man who served in WWII in the China/ Burma/India Theater.  Served his country with honor, returned to start a family and a new career in the fledgling TV industry, became an electronics engineer, finished his career as the manager of quality control at Honeywell's Black Canyon computer manufacturing plant in Phoenix, AZ.  He had a successful insurance business for several years after leaving Honeywell.  Gr...
November 10, 2012 by Big Fat Daddy on STONEYEND
 

An asphalt plant is a fairly complicated arrangement of ducts, drums, silos, conveyor belts, and one BIG burner.  In one drum, the sand, rocks, and molten oil are heated and churned together to make the hot mix that is then held in a silo until it is shipped to the job.  The silos are insulated and will hold the temperature for several hours.  In many of the largest plants, there is a system of hoppers and conveyors that move the sand and rocks to the burner;  in sm...
November 9, 2012 by Big Fat Daddy on STONEYEND
I've been trying to avoid too much post-election palaver about who shoulda and what they coulda.  I am depressed enough already.  After the fact, everyone is an expert on what happened.  One phrase comes to my mind over and over:  Train Wreck.  And while I was having that phrase pop through my vacuous mind, two separate stories about trains piqued my interest:1.  In Gabon, a West African country, the unloading of a new, huge, American-made locomotive didn't ...
November 9, 2012 by charliemama on charliemama
I've been trying to avoid too much post-election palaver about who shoulda and what they coulda.  I am depressed enough already.  After the fact, everyone is an expert on what happened.  One phrase comes to my mind over and over:  Train Wreck.  And while I was having that phrase pop through my vacuous mind, two separate stories about trains piqued my interest:1.  In Gabon, a West African country, the unloading of a new, huge, American-made locomotive didn't ...
October 22, 2012 by Big Fat Daddy on STONEYEND
I had two Uncle Jimmys growing up.  One was my Mom's brother,  I am named after him but never knew him.  Well, that isn't exactly true;  I remember when he died that everyone in the house was so upset.  When they told me my Uncle Jimmy had died I got upset too,  because I  had just seen him drinking coffee in the kitchen.  They convinced me it wasn't my coffee drinking uncle who had died, but the other Uncle Jimmy.

I remembered that I knew w...
October 20, 2012 by Big Fat Daddy on STONEYEND
 

Fletcher Parkway comes out of Fletcher Hills down a grade into the northwest section of El Cajon.  Back in the day, the big rigs used to run with little or no muffling and they would ride their Jake Brakes (a Jacobs Engine Brake that basically turns the fuel off to a diesel engine's cylinders and turns it into an air compressor to aid in slowing the truck ) all the way to the bottom of the grade.  Late in the evening, when the traffic had thinned out, the trucks would rat...
October 16, 2012 by Big Fat Daddy on STONEYEND
I begged and whined and bugged my mom for weeks before she finally relented.   She had me cut off the boxtop;  she filled out the order and I taped a quarter to the cardboard order.  We put it in the envelope, sealed it, stamped it, and sent it on its way.  From that point time seemed to stop.  I was at the mailbox the very next day looking for my treasure.  I was disappointed that it wasn't there.  Every day I waited for the mail;  every day I was nex...
October 15, 2012 by Big Fat Daddy on STONEYEND
 

He started his military career as an aircraft mechanic.  He went to flight school and became a pilot.  He flew P-51s in Europe.  He was shot down over France and spent some time evading the Germans while helping the French Underground.  He was able to get  back to England and convince Eisenhower to let him fly over France again (policy was that escape-and-evaders could not fly over the areas where they had been captured).  He returned to combat over France...
October 10, 2012 by Big Fat Daddy on STONEYEND
 

I remember Alex Karras as a fierce defensive lineman on the Detroit Lions.  But I remember him better as a naturally funny guy who never took himself too seriously.  In an interview on an afternoon talk show in the seventies (probably Mike Douglas but I'm not sure) he talked about needlepointing his friends names on their jockstraps for them and when asked if he missed the NFL he responded by saying that he missed the comraderie and nowdays hung around in the showers at t...