Thursday, March 31, 2016


Before I discovered the pleasure of a beard.

Auditioning for the role of the Sundance Kid in some movie with Paul Newman.

(Just kidding.)

It was a selfie taken in a bathroom mirror in Indianapolis back in the very early 1970's.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016


Turn your sound up.

This is Arizona, folks.

This crap ain't supposed to happen!


I was meandering around on this blog yesterday and checked to see how long I'd been writing it.

I was stunned to see it has been over 8 years!

My first post was on March 2nd, 2008 and it concerned my starting it up again.

This was my third attempt at blogging.

This is the 2,454th post.

That averages out to more than 290 posts every year!

What, one wonders, can one find to say for that much of one's life.

Nothing important, I'd guess.

Nothing earth-shaking.

Nor newsworthy.

Some time in the past I began copping out, sort of, on three days of each week.

Tuesday is devoted to Tuesday Travels.

Thursday is Throwback Thursday.

Friday is the Friday Funnies.

But with persistence, the number of page views has risen.

While, on a good day, I may get around a dozen comments, I know there are many more "lurkers" who check the blog from time to time.

In the 8+ years I've been posting here, I have accumulated more than 280,000 pageviews.

What do they find so interesting, I wonder.

I have contemplated stopping, like so many other once-upon-a-time bloggers.

Like I did twice before.

Still I keep plugging along, looking for something to fill these pages.

Many times, in desperation, I turn to music, and that's what I shall do today by taking the Wayback Machine to 1945 and Spike Jones and the City Slickers.

See you tomorrow.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016


Deep into the Great Sonoran Desert, the adventurous archaeologist discovers a mysterious petroglyph, which he is working night and day to decipher.

Actually it was only a day trip to Painted Rock Dam State Park, about 90 miles from Phoenix and I was only posing with a pictograph.

But Indiana Jones had nothing on me.

He didn't even have one of those snappy Marlboro cigarettes fishing hats!

Monday, March 28, 2016


It's something I had read about awhile back.

I told SWMBO about it.

She turned up her nose.

Basically, it's an egg cooked in oil in a very hot pan until the bottom is brown and crispy, the white is set and the yolk is still liquid.

It's delicious!

You can read about it here in a posting by Deb Perelman on her blog The Smitten Kitchen.

She's a New York lady who cooks in a tiny kitchen in one of those typical apartments in the Big Apple.

But she keeps coming up with amazing recipes.

Be sure you click on the link in her article for the short video showing a New York chef, Frank Prisinzano, doing a crispy egg.

I showered my egg with some coarse Sea Salt and a dash of Mrs. Dash, SWMBO's go-to spice seasoning.

But you can use whatever herbs or spices you prefer and serve the egg over anything from a simple plate to toast to spaghetti.

It's a good 'un.  Try it.

And let me know what you think.

Sunday, March 27, 2016


"What do you suppose got him?"

"I heard it was diabetes."

"Yeah, apparently the sugar just ate away at him."


Saturday, March 26, 2016


Life is change.

It's always changing.

So I've made some changes.

I've removed a couple of blogs from my blogroll.

Their authors haven't posted in a year or so and I think they reached the boredom point.

But I have it on good authority that they both read this blog, at least once in awhile.

So, if y'all decide to come back from the brink, let me know and I'll happily put you back on the list.

Actually y'know, I have no idea how many of my Gentle Readers actually go to any of the blogs I recommend.

I know some of them do because I see their comments.

But just so you don't feel deprived, I have ADDED a couple of blogs to the sidebar.

The first is written by an old buddy who hides under the name Jager.

Actually I think that may be the name of one of his long-lost dogs.

But he's a talented guy in many areas, including radio broadcasting and management, teenage driver instruction, cars, boating, writing and women. (He has a beautiful wife.)

You can find his sometimes profane screeds under the heading of You've Got a Lot to Learn over there on the right side of this page.

The other newcomer is a lovely lady that I've had a crush on for decades.

Problem is she's married to a friend of mine, who blogs from the Central California coast which he might refer to as The Little Mediterranean.

She is an extremely talented artist who had a long career as an arts educator in Hoosierland.

She now paints and blogs (occasionally) under the heading of Lana E Cochrun.

Check her out.

They are a couple of fine folk who join our happy band of warriors and thieves.


Friday, March 25, 2016


Here's hoping you're having a Good Friday, Gentle Readers.

Actually any Friday is a good friday for me because I get to sift through . . . the FRIDAY FUNNIES!

First off this week a lesson in how to be a symphony conductor.

O.K. With that one for the ladies . . . or the liberated men . . . or just the bachelors who don't have a Chinese laundry in the neighborhood, we'll call a halt to this parade of mirth and merriment.

I hope you all have a totally terrific weekend.

Happy Easter to those who celebrate it.

To all of you, keep those cards, letters and cartoons coming and always remember: let a smile be your umbrella.

Here kitty, kitty.

(oops, caught in the act)

Thursday, March 24, 2016


Back in the early 1970's, I was newly married to SWMBO and living in Indianapolis, Indiana.

One Sunday afternoon in March, about this time of month because I remember it was close to Easter, the phone rang.

It was my friend, Tom, calling from the radio station where we both worked.

He said there was a report of a tornado on the east side of Indy where we lived and asked me to look out the window and see if I could see it.

I did and I could.

As Tom put me on the air and I began describing what I was seeing, the twister seemed to be getting larger and darker and, more seriously, closer!

After a few minutes of live broadcasting I told Tom it looked like the tornado was headed in our direction and I was getting out of there.

We piled a few belongings and whatever family was home at the time into the car and drove away.

The tornado tore into a different apartment project about a mile from where we lived before it dissipated.

It didn't come any closer to us but it did a lot of damage where it did come down.

We eventually returned home, glad to be alive and safe.

Tornadoes are scary and while I had seen some small twisters as a kid in North Dakota this was the closest I had been to a big one in Tornado Alley.

Here's a picture of Judy and me outside the apartment house we were living in at the time.

You'll just have to forgive me for my clothing.

It was the Disco Era, you know.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016


Once upon a time, a long time ago, I worked for several years for a radio station in Indianapolis, Indiana.

My friend and colleague, Tom (he of the Light Breezes blog) was a young whippersnapper fresh out of college in those days.

Tom is at the upper left here, I'm at the lower right.

It's a newspaper picture taken when we each won awards for our coverage of schools.

The general manager of the radio station in those days was a fellow named Jim Hilliard.

Snappy dresser, eh?

Anyway there was a mini-reunion of a handful of those guys over at Tom's house in Cambria, California recently.

Jim is in the center of this group with Tom next to him in the dark shirt and glasses.

On the far left is Mike Griffin, who was a disc jockey at the FM station, and Bob Christy, who got into management. 

On the far right is George Johns, who was a sales guy who I never met. 

He came after I had moved on to Arizona.

The years have been better to some of the group than others.

But speaking of that, when I was in Indy, I met a college pal of Tom's with a weird sense of humor.

He was a weatherman at a local t.v. station in those days but he was looking for something different.

He wrote and recorded several pieces of his humor for our radio station.

He later parlayed that comedic talent into a pretty good career.

You probably recognize him as late night talk show host David Letterman.

Well, old Dave retired awhile back but a photographer caught up with him as he was out jogging recently on St. Bart's Island in the Caribbean.

As my wife said "I'd walk right by him on the street and never recognize him."



Hair loss.

Weight gain.

As has often been said "Old age isn't for sissies!"

Tuesday, March 22, 2016


Back in the 1970's when I was a television news reporter in Phoenix most of my travels were related to my job.

In those days the man who became Baseball Steve was my photographer on many of those trips.

Here we are, "hard at work", high atop what I referred to as The Dread Mogollon Rim, known to the average person as just the Mogollon Rim, in Northern Arizona.

As you can see by our attire, it can get chilly even in sun-swathed Arizona.

I am standing very close to the edge of the rim, with a vertical drop of a couple of hundred feet straight down just behind me.

SWMBO says I always had to go right to the edge of places like that in my younger days. 

False courage, I suspect.

Monday, March 21, 2016


SWMBO prepared one of my favorite meals last night.

Chicken Piccata.

The sauce is butter, lemon, capers and white wine.

(We were out of white wine so she used a dash of vodka.)

Our entree is customarily served with Fettucini Alfredo.

My contribution was a couple of baguettes, baked earlier in the day.

It is a meal fit for a king.

I discovered it many years ago in a Georgetown, D.C. restaurant while visiting with an old pal, Frank.

It was actually veal in the restaurant.

But it was that sauce that attracted and eluded me for quite some time until we found a recipe in Bon Appetit magazine and discovered the secret ingredient to kick it up a notch were the capers.


And I'm happy to report there were enough leftovers last night for a repeat performance soon.

I've said it before.

I'm a lucky man.

Sunday, March 20, 2016


When I went out to replenish the bird bath this morning I noticed, just above my head, the first of the Redbud tree's blooms had turned into a green leaf.

On the official first day of spring!

It won't be long before the entire tree will go from the showy purple blooms into a green foliage for the birds to hide in.

Spring is here!

Saturday, March 19, 2016


SWMBO and I have a new great-granddaughter.

Cadence Rose Milburn came into the world just after 8:30 last night in Tennessee.

7 pounds 11 pounds, 21 inches.

The proud parents are Russell and Kayla.

FAME (of a sort)

My old buddy, Baseball Steve, got his wish from this political season the other day.

He got a picture with Bernie Sanders.

Steve (on the right) and an audio guy had just shot an interview with Sanders by Rachel Maddow.

So the old shooter got a selfie out of it.

The two Phoenix guys look happy.

Sanders looks, typically, befuddled and as if the other two are holding him up.

Meantime, I had a little touch with fame myself recently.

The first week in March marked the 50th anniversary of the great blizzard of 1966 which slammed into North Dakota.

I was working as a radio-tv newsman in the state capitol, Bismarck, at the time and, after walking three miles to work through snowdrifts and white-out conditions, spent the next three days at the station, much of it on the air on radio and television.

A relative of mine who still lives in North Dakota saw that my old t.v. station would be doing special coverage of the storm and called to tell me about it.

I then emailed the station weather men and newscasters and asked if I could get a DVD of their coverage.

That resulted in them asking me if I would mind driving down to Phoenix and being interviewed for their coverage.

Since the station in Phoenix is also one I once worked at I was happy to oblige and the interview was done by a friend from my days there who is now their anchorman, Mark Curtis.

I since have received the DVD from Bismarck and after viewing it and seeing how battered my visage appears after all these years, I rather wish I hadn't agreed to the interview.


It's a fleeting thing.

Friday, March 18, 2016


It is Friday, the high temperature here today is predicted to be 73 F., and I'm feeling really chuckle-y.

So let's get on with it.

Okay, this next one is my favorite this week.

When you stop laughing hysterically, please accept my hopes that you'll have a wonderful weekend.


Resume laughter.

Here, kitty-kitty.

Oh, c'mon. I told you it was warming up!

(For those of you too young to know, that's a steam radiator.)

Thursday, March 17, 2016


I tried a new (to me) recipe last night - Gjelina's Roasted Yams.

They were a wonderful accompaniment to a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store.

I used sour cream instead of Greek yogurt. 

And if you're kind of eyeballing your measurements and the sauce is a bit tart, a teaspoon of honey added to it fixes it instantly.

(Thanks, SWMBO!)

Also, though the recipe doesn't say it, don't forget to oil the foil on the roasting pan.

Sorry, I didn't take a photo but there's one in the linked recipe above.

Now for the real business of the day.

Oh, I know.

It's St. Patrick's Day.

But I'll drink to get to that later.

The real business of the day is a picture for Throwback Thursday.

I can't identify all of this Merry Gang of Thieves but the fellow holding the handle of the wagon is the one who provided the photo recently, my lifelong buddy Jim.

He says he thinks the guy standing at the far left is me.

Tommy is behind Jim in the wagon and Jerome (Romey) is just above him, with his chin obscured.

Standing on the far right of the photo are Dorrance and his younger brother Boop (another Bruce).

I know you Gentle Readers don't know these childhood friends of mine but just think: that photo is somewhere around 70 years old!

Have a good St. Patrick's Day and remember, it's a day when everyone is Irish!

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

ON THE ROAD (again)

Okay, so I cheated yesterday.

I used a photo for my Tuesday Travels post that I had used before.

Maybe I was distracted by Super Tuesday 2.

So here's a pic you can file under Tuesday Travels or Wednesday Woes.


It was taken recently at a stop on the road to Jerome and the Verde Valley and Sedona.

Nice road.

Beautiful scenery.

It's about 25 miles from my door.

Lucky me.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016


On this election day in several states, I give you two guys in Washington in 1980, looking glum possibly because neither of them WERE elected.

Monday, March 14, 2016


There was a time in my youth that I liked going fishing.

It occurred mostly at Lake Carlyle, Saskatchewan, Canada, about 100 miles north of where I lived in North Dakota.

I hated trolling from a slow-moving boat because it seemed nothing ever happened.

But I remember once when Dad and I and some others had been out much of a day fishing that way and catching nothing.

When we returned to shore at dusk, my dad went up the hill to the cabin we were staying at to fix us some kind of supper.

I stayed at the dock practicing my casting.

That is to say swinging the fishing rod and throwing the lure as far out into the lake as I could.

And what happened?

I caught a fish!

I hurried up the hill to show Dad and then went back to the dock to try again.

Before long I had caught three nice fish.

They were called Pickerel or Northern Pike but for some reason we usually called them "Jacks", short for Jackfish.

Good eating.

After I brought the third fish up to dad to clean and fry in a pan with some butter for our dinner he said "Stop! We have enough!"

I don't have a photo of that evening but this is one of me and my partner-in-crime, Jim, with a "mess of perch" we had caught, perhaps from that same dock.

Some times you would think you could practically reach down into the water and scoop them up.

Kind of like these . . the wily trout.

They're in a so-called "Show Pond" at the Page Springs Fish Hatchery.

The smaller fish are kept in tanks under canopies.

Ducks can always seem to find water and a few were in evidence at the show pond on the day we visited.

I've never fly-fished but I suspect the trout would be too cautious for my impatient younger self.

Maybe it's just as well that I can find pleasure with simply gazing at them.

The hatchery is ideally located just across the road from a winery and within walking distance of two more!

If you are so inclined, you may read more about the hatchery here.

Sunday, March 13, 2016


One of the nice things about living in Arizona is that you can picnic outside year around.

SWMBO and I did just that last Thursday and it was delightful.

Just in case you're wondering, that's a Guinness in that cup.

And we split a bottle for the trip home without a DUI charge.

Saturday, March 12, 2016


There's a place for peace and it's right here in Arizona.

Here among the red rocks and the green trees in West Sedona is the Amitabha Stupa and Peace Park.

It was created as a vision of Jetsunma Ahkön Lhamo, the spiritual director of Kunzang Palyul Chöling, a Buddhist organization committed to compassionate outreach.

A large Stupa dominates the center of the site.

A sign says the Stupa represents the body of Buddha and requests that people not sit on it nor place objects on it.

Nearby a statue of the Buddha gazes over the quiet landcscape.

Visitors are invited to walk around the Stupa three times and many do.

You can see the size by the next photo with some visitors next to it.

It's a quiet spot where one can meditate while circling the Stupa or sitting under a canopy in a plastic chair.

I had a long conversation with a man from Illinois who knew a lot about Buddhism though he did not profess to be a Buddhist.

He told me of one visit he had made to a retreat for 10 days of silence and sitting.

He described it as "psychic surgery."  I liked that.

In these increasingly tumultous times, I think we could all use a little psychic surgery and a little peace.

This small park may be a good place to find it.