How to Make A Mix-Tape

They say that music soothes the savage beast. I don't think you can call me a savage-- beast maybe, but not a savage... but I agree that music can be soothing. It can also stir a lot of other emotions and feelings but right now I need it to be soothing. I have had a rough morning so I have put in my ear buds, kicked up my iTunes and I am going to hide under my desk, close my eyes and put everything else out of my mind for a few minutes...

There, that's better. It is pretty amazing how that works. Certain recordings can take you to happy places and better times in the same way that a picture can, or a smell or taste. All of our senses have the ability to affect us physically, mentally and emotionally, but music goes a step further by blocking out other distractions.

As a performer, I have had firsthand experience seeing how music can affect, effect and infect people. For some it may be a rock 'n roll song that "pumps them up", almost to a point of an aggressive frenzy. For others it may be a mellow ballad that makes them cry or a peppy pop tune that brings a smile to their face. Christian music and religious hymns can be very powerful, bringing the listener to their feet in a moment of joy and classical music or other genres can be very spiritual, as well, to some. It is very different for every person, but I think everyone has some degree of instinctual, internal rhythm that is keeping time to a song in their head.

Having dealt with many challenges with anxiety, I have a collection of songs categorized by attitude adjustments that they bring on. Music to help make me happy, relaxed, energized, concentrate or reflective is all grouped in different playlists on my computer. My calming tunes have even been burned to a series of CDs so I can listen to them in the car-- to prevent road rage or at the office-- to prevent work wage. I also have other song sets that I listen to if I want to get in the proper mood to do something like workout, mow the lawn or get romantical.

I love the idea of playlists because it reminds me of the mix-tapes that we used to make before the Internet age and the invention of the CD burner. A mix-tape is a group of songs recorded to cassette tape with the intention of reflecting the producer's chosen theme. Anyone could make them with very minimal equipment and with vinyl, 8-tracks, cassettes or even compact discs but a true mix-tape artist would toil hours-upon-hours to get the best possible reproduction of the perfect, 60-minute, combination of tracks.

Mix-tapes have been around since the early 1970s when compact cassettes were made readily available to the public and hit their peak in the 80s and 90s before fading away in this millennium when consumers were able to record music, as well as data and video to compact disc. The amateur recordings were vaulted into mainstream pop-culture with the release of the 2000 film, High Fidelity, starring John Cusack and based on the novel of the same name by Nick Hornby-- a great flick that I would highly recommend, especially if you, like me, are a big fan of Cusack.

Some would argue that the CD Compilation is the mix-tape of today, but the purist knows that the shiny silver discs could never live up to the small, twin wheels of fragile, thin tape embedded in that smokey, plastic shell and that no one could cue a song with a pencil, blindfolded, with one hand tied behind their back, as well as them.

Today, as with many other days, this went a different direction than I intended. Visit How to Make a Mix-Tape if you would like to read more of what I have to say on the subject. Be sure to check back soon when I will post the article that I was planning or writing about how the music of today and the music of the past is impacting each other.

Until then, Read This. Buy T-shirts. Peace.


Monday Morning Quarterback 1.17

Although I spend about three-times as much time on the other articles, these quickie little Monday Morning Quarterback postings are getting all of the attention. The 17 collections of thoughts that I usually throw together during my Monday lunch hour have had more readers than the other 70 stories collectively, that sometimes take me many hours over several days to complete. This doesn't bother me because I enjoy either one as much as I do the other and I have learned, over the years, that a client (or your boss,or the public, or any end-user) doesn't care how much time you put into something. They are only concerned with the end product and if they like it or not. In fact, I will put as much effort into a project as is needed, but I usually start with a "less is more" philosophy because if the end product is the same no matter how much  you put into it you might as well save that extra energy.

Note to all you men out there however: you can throw this whole concept out the window if your wife is the person making the request. Here are my notes from the week:

• Being from St. Louis and a Rams season ticket holder, I have seen a lot of mixed emotions in this town about the Superbowl this year. Most people love Kurt Warner on one hand and, I think, most dislike the Cardinals and their ownership on the other. Either way, it is really a great story and, I hope, it will be a great game.

• A couple of times, while hearing reports on the plane crash landing in the Hudson River last week, I heard correspondents corrected when they said Canadian Geese. Apparently, the proper name of the bird is Canada Geese. I'm not sure if it was the Canadians or the geese, but one of the groups was upset (I guess they didn't want to be blamed for bringing down that plane) and was sure to make a point of it.

• In similar news, in order to be certain to not accuse any other countries of involvement in accidents with non-resident subjects, we will refer to so-called subjects in the non-possessive vernacular. For instance: France Toast, Germany Potato Salad, India Giver, Brazil Wax and Poland Sausage. 

• Just to remind me of how soon our little baby boy will be here, MLW's cousin went into labor two-weeks early on Saturday. Welcome Olivia Joy. On our way to visit baby and Mom, my wife mentioned that M3S and she could marry because they are forth-cousins but I quickly convinced her that these families are already screwed-up enough to start messing with the gene pool any more than we already have.

• Talk around the Sunday Dinner table last night (after we were finished eating) turned to babies and deliveries and C-sections and stuff. The only one at the table that had not been through a birth but was still able to understand what we were discussing was my 22-year-old niece, who commented, "I wish we could just throw them up!" As freaky of an experience natural birth was-- and I wasn't even the one having the baby-- her idea may be even more bizarre.

• My Mom thinks I should write a book called Sunday Dinner. I explained to her that I am basically doing that by writing in this blog. I think she would enjoy reading it but she refuses to own a computer... or fly in a plane.

• Barrack Obama's Inauguration price-tag is somewhere around $150 million for four-days of events with 1.5 to 3 million attendees. This is more than three-times the amount that was spent for the most recent Bush bash and more than five-times the amount for Clinton's first-term inauguration bill. I don't feel like messing with the math but I think that is a more expensive ticket than the Superbowl... and I would think the taxpayer is taking care of the bill. Where are our priorities?

• I understand that they are re-naming Delmar in our fair city-- Barrack Obama Boulevard. This for a man that has not served a day in the presidential office yet. You would think that the St. Louis planning commission would have learned their lesson from when they named a stretch of I-70-- Mark McGwire Highway, only to have the muscle-bound slugger lay an egg in the Congressional hearings on steroid abuse in baseball.

• Do not try this at home... or anywhere else for that matter... and don't read this one if you have a weak stomach. I recently heard of a disgusting (even by my standards) practice young people have been participating in order to get high. They actually poop in a bag, let it ferment for a while and then snort the fumes produced. What is the world coming to? We did some pretty stupid things as kids for some pretty stupid reasons, but none even close to this stupid! I have a real hard time believing this one because if someone asked me to come up with the most gross, disgusting, stupid thing in the world, I would have a hard time thinking this up. Why can't they use this energy and experimentation with methane gases to develop alternative fuel choices-- if your going to play with poop-- it should at least be for a good cause.

• Similarly, I can't believe that their is a certain frequency that only humans under the age of 18 can hear and that they are making ring tones in these frequencies for the kids' cel phones. I believe that this is a giant conspiracy that has gone mainstream with stories on the national network newscasts. Millions and millions of kids across the globe are laughing at all the big dumb adults behind our backs. It is like a giant 21st-Century snipe hunt.

• I was looking at my niece's friend's and my sister's pierced noses yesterday and noticed something peculiar (I mean something besides the fact that my sister is 41-years old and has her nose pierced)-- their piercings were on opposite sides. I thought this might be another one of those things that I didn't know about because I was old but, because my sister too was old, this may be my opportunity to get an honest answer and I asked what was the significance of the locations. She gave me some long drawn out explanation of how a young girl of Indian descent told her that her mother told her about the meanings in ancient India and it turns out that there is no difference in the meanings of piercings on the left or right side of the nose... they both mean that you're a hussy.

Oh well. Read this. Buy T-shirts. Peace.


You Gotta Be Kidding Me 1.02

The mercury was just creeping up over 2-degrees this morning when I rolled into work-- coldest temperature in St. Louis in over 10-years. As I turned the corner past the receptionist and down the main hallway toward my work station, I was unwrapping myself from the several layers of scarves, coats and hoodies, when I stopped, face-to-face, with a young man coming out of the break room with his cup of warm beverage of some kind.

I was certain to pardon myself as I did not want him to spill on himself, the floor or, most importantly me, and quickly went on about my way. As far as I was concerned, a long, drawn-out conversation was not needed because, although this guy had worked in our office of about 100 employees for a little over a year, I knew his name and said, "Hi, how you doin'?" in passing before, we didn't really work together or socialize, we had nothing in common, I was running a little late due to a stalled car on the highway and I am not big on the small talk, anyway.

He just couldn't leave well enough alone, however, and had to come back with the witty, "Cold enough for you?" I stammered for something to say, not expecting to be presented with such a deep question at 8:02 A.M... "No, I was hoping we would get to see negative numbers today"... "It's not the cold, but the humidity, that will get you"... "You know that is 14-degrees in dog-temperature"... didn't come to me until later. All I could think of at the time was, "Yeah, Buddy!" followed by a, "you, tool"... under my breath.

Why can't anyone just go about there business and not say anything when you don't have to? Why is it that, when found in an uncomfortable situation, we often have the need to just blurt out the first thing that comes to mind? Has the phrase Silence is Golden lost it's impact with the falling prices of precious metals?

I had only been working-out at the YMCA for about a week when I realized that there was an unwritten routine and an etiquette that one needs to follow. Among other things, certain people are in certain places and doing certain things at certain times-- like clockwork. It didn't take too many dirty looks before I figured out that, at 6:05, treadmills #4, 5 and 9, and elliptical machines #1 and 6 are available, but by 6:15 all of the ellipticals are being used, however, treadmill #5 is still open and #6 and 7 have opened up, too.

It took a little longer to grasp the pecking order in the locker room. Grown men can be pretty territorial when it comes to changing spaces. It is best to search for a spot without padlocks on, at least, four adjacent lockers, in each direction. In addition, you should try to keep to yourself and never speak unless first spoken to. You may, however, give a head-nod or hand-raise, accompanied by a low-volume and -tone grunt or an inaudible, questioning mumble as a salutation upon coming or going.

After two-and-a-half months of-- over-an-hour-long workouts, five-days-a-week-- not talking to a single soul, I really thought that I had become invisible or something. Perhaps, since it was early, I had morning breath, but I never opened my mouth enough for anyone to get a whiff. Can people really go for months without interacting with anyone? Maybe it just takes a while for individuals to warm-up to each other and feel comfortable sharing conversation? It could just be me, though, because I have actually seen people in the gym talking to each other, and on one occasion I could even hear words coming out of their mouths and smiles on their faces!

In fact, there is one guy that must have been a member for many years as there has been more than one occurrence that I have seen him talking with more than one person. For weeks, I would see him make his rounds and say, "good morning", to other members, but not a word to me... until that faithful day just after Christmas...

With the holiday upon us, the Y was going to take care of some maintenance issues while they were less busy between Christmas and New Years. Among the things on their "to-do" list was replace the shower heads in the men's locker room, so they shut down half of the plumbing at a time to make repairs. Although there were, definitely, less people working out during the holiday, it was still a bit crowded in the very early morning and with some of the facilities unavailable, the guys were cramped in the tight quarters. Instead of leaving one or two stations between bathers, some were forced to do the normally unthinkable, and shower right next to another man.

I wasn't too very freaked out about this as, since I was exposed to a lot of new experiences when I had the stroke, I had become much less inhibited. I couldn't help but feel a little uneasy, though, when the dude that was always friendly to everyone else but me, pulled up to the shower-station next to me and said, "How you doing? I'm John." 

In my shock and embarrassment, I was unsure if he stuck out his hand and I was too afraid to look so I just squeaked out out a quick, "Good. Scott." and went on about my business. Is it considered rude to not shake the hand of a naked man? It has been awkward and we haven't said a word since-- just the occasional head-nod and grunt in passing.

I'm not sure if you understand or not. There are rules! Men do not visit the bathroom in pairs like women. They do not speak to each other or look anywhere but straight ahead when they are using a urinal so I would assume that the same would also apply to public showers. Maybe he was from a different Country or something?

About a year ago, I was still in therapy but progressing very well so they put me in a group psychology session that met every Friday at lunch-time. The group consisted of usually 6-10 other patients that had suffered brain injuries of some kind and were getting ready to get back into their everyday routine in the real world so there was a variety of people attending in the eight-weeks or so that I participated.

On this particular Friday, I was dropped-off by my driver a bit early which was both unusual and advantageous because I really had to use the restroom. I did my best to limp past the meeting room down the hall towards the lavatory as quickly as possible when I approached a guy that I recognized as being part of the group but he had not been there in several weeks. I gave him a head-nod and a "how-ya-doin'" as I hobbled past him and he mumbled something back that I didn't pay attention to as I reached my goal and turned into the bathroom.

I entered the middle of three stalls with a big sigh of relief that I held back as I heard the door squeak open and someone else come in. I sat quietly and, through the space between the door and the frame, saw the gentleman, slowly passed my stall and occupy the one right next to me-- serves me right for picking the middle one. I now tried to delay my business as I didn't want to draw attention to myself with someone sitting right next to me.

And then he said, "Hey, how you doing?"
Stunned I replied, "Pretty good... How are you?" not thinking that the conversation would go any further... but it did... "Alright. So what are you up to?"

OK, so this is really freaking me out and I thinking, "Don't answer. This is nuts. Don't answer."

But I say, "Well, I have a group psych session and had a few minutes to kill so I thought that I would come in here and take care of my busin..."

But he cut me off with, "What time are you going to be there?" and at this point I'm thinking, "Yeah this is crazy that we are having a conversation in the stalls in the men's room, but you started it and now your cutting me off? That is just rude, but again, I answer, "Well, group starts at noon, but they usually run a little late so I've got..." and this time I stop, myself as I hear him say,

"Hey, I'm going to have to let you go because there some moron in the stall next to me that thinks I'm talking to him.

I didn't even finish what I started and left as quick as I could without making another sound. I was glad that none of my group partners were there to see me make a fool of myself. As we were getting ready to start, the guy that I saw in the hallway came in, plopped himself down in the chair next to me and said, in a very familiar voice, "Hey, how you doing?"

We had a good laugh about it after the session and then I never saw (or heard) him again.

I know this story is so good that it sounds like a joke. In fact, someone emailed me a similar story, shortly after the event occurred. The only proof that I have that it really happened is that guy that was there-- maybe he started the email about me.

Sometimes it's just better to say nothing.


Monday Morning Quarterback 1.16

When we weren't busy with other things this weekend we were preparing for the new baby's arrival. The due date is still almost six-weeks out but MLW's cousin, who is also expecting, was sent to the hospital almost three-weeks early. She didn't have the baby, however, she was put on modified bed rest and will probably go this week. 

It's not that we won't be able to get by if our new Son would like to show sometime in the next couple of weeks... I'm not going to be that ready if he shows in July. Mentally, I am about as prepared as I am going to get and I would just like a little more time to get the house ready.

I am almost sure that we now have more baby and toddler clothes than my wife's and my wardrobes combined. As my wife went through and sorted them into piles by size-- 0-3 months, 3 months, 3-6 months, 6 months and so on and so on-- I worked on, finally, converting our home office into M3S's permanent room. We were very lucky that we are having another boy, this time around, as it has made the preparation much easier and much less expensive than if we had to re-decorate, re-organize and re-buy everything for a little girl.

I think my wife and I were pretty satisfied with the progress that we made and that is a rare occasion when we are both happy with such a project. We still need to paint some rooms and build a bed for M3S, but that doesn't need to be done before the stork drops-off our special delivery. I will write in more detail about the anticipation of the new arrival to our family in the coming weeks but, for now, here's the notes from the weekend:

• As my Son and I dug through the tangled mess in his toy-box, we sorted into boxes labeled: GOOD, BABY, DONATE and TRASH. When we were finished we found a place for stuff in the GOOD pile and, neatly, put it away; we sealed up the BABY box and put it in storage until his little brother is old enough to play with it; we gave the DONATE stuff to the "poor kids" and we threw out the TRASH. I was proud of the little guy because he did let me talk him into getting rid of some of his stuff even though I could tell by the look on his face that it was breaking his heart to give most of it up. I had to remember that as we were sorting through my stuff in the office. It made him feel better, though, because my boxes were labeled: GOOD, BUDDY, DONATE, TRASH. It is amazing how some of my old junk can bring joy to a three-year-old's face.

Baby-proofing a house is very similar to how we used to party-proof a house when we used to have a blow-out when a friend's parents were out of town... except it is much harder on the knees.

• There is never a shortage of good things said about a person at his or her funeral but I have never, in my life, heard so many good things about a man than at the funeral we attended Saturday. For the sake of privacy, I won't mention any names but I would like to say I hope that when I go, I will have half as many people say half as many nice things about me.

• The National Safety Council is trying to get a nation-wide cel-phone ban for automobile drivers because of the evidence that mobile phone use increases the chance of being in an accident four-times. Okay-- you have finally convinced me... Seriously... I agree... Ban them. Okay, now can you do something to ban idiots, morons and asses from driving?

• I have an idea-- onion-free onion-rings-- onion-frings! and I think I have developed a way to make them. This could be my million-dollar idea.

• Three of four of the visiting-dogs won their NFL Playoff games this week-- that's parity for you. The National Football League is the most well-run organization in professional sports, even with the problems that they are having with the officials blowing calls.

• I will be the first to admit that I was a Kurt Warner basher. When he came back to the Rams after his broken finger, I thought he was done and, although he had a few incredible years, I thought he would just fade away after holding the clipboard for some young stud QB, never to be mentioned on SportsCenter again. Not only did I write him off but, I would be willing to bet, a good majority of football fans were with me. How wrong were we? Next Sunday, a bunch of those fans will be sitting in front of TV rooting on Warner as he will try to take the Arizona Cardinals to their first (his third) Superbowl. His is just an amazing story of perseverance that you almost have to root for him! When he came on to the scene, Sports Illustrated, did a cover story on him titled, "Who IS This Guy?" There is going to be a lot of similar questions if he leads his team in a home win against the Eagles next week. I don't usually do this but I am jumping on Warner's bandwagon because I now admire his work... and the Rams suck, Green Bay isn't much better, Favre is done for the season (or for good... or for the season... or for good...) and there is no other team left that I really care for at all.

• After Let's Roll 1.10, I put together a new Squidoo page: How to Tight Roll Your Pants-- check it out! You can create your own Squidoo page on anything you want! It's fun, free and easy!

• I got new shoes of the weekend. I've got two-words for you VEL CRO... Sure I look like I'm 73 instead of 43, (MLW even noticed that in the advertisement for the shoes the guy in the picture isn't even wearing them!) but they are super-comfortable (I wear out before my feet do), convenient (both-- on and off in 7.2 seconds... I timed it) and, most importantly, in these tough economic times, cheap ($11-- no holler)! I'm out.


Let's Roll! 1.10

I wanted to take this opportunity to tease a special story that I will post sometime next week. It is a special follow-up report on my driving series that was published last year. As I was driving home from work on I-70 at 22 miles per hour, I did some quick calculations in my head and was astounded at the amount of time that I spend in my car! I am taking some time to do a little more research and put together a another piece commenting on our commuting habits.

I came down with some kind of stomach bug that has put me out of commission for some time this week, but I still hope to get this post out before Saturday. Because I'm doing a Let's Roll, MLW will not read it anyway but, while doing my research, I have stumbled across several Websites that I wanted to feature today. They include a tool to improve your Squidoo experience and a couple of tributes to the best decade in the history of the world. Let's Roll:

Squidoo supplies users with an abundance of tools for use with the application but SquidUtils takes it a few steps further with an extensive list of utilities and very simple explanations of how to use them to work for you. An Advanced Dashboard, as well as tools for lens building and maintenance will allow you to determine the needs of your individual lenses and a directory to make your lenses available to other users with similar interests. There is also a chat room, other plug-in extensions and an interesting little forum where you can buy and sell lenses in an auction-type setting. If you have created lenses on Squidoo, you should have this Site bookmarked.

I have to mention my disclaimer again-- I don't like to list other people's blogs because you have no idea what type of person the writer really is. I have read through a good number of entries on this site, however, and not only does it seem fairly family friendly, it is also very entertaining for a child of the 80s, such as myself and the online editor who was kind enough to feature my Shermer High School Bulldogs T-shirt in October. Along with his commentary on all things eighties, there are links to the official Websites of the decades bands and personalities... Totally Rad!

The epitome of a rock 'n' roll front man, Diamond Dave filled the airwaves and concert halls with an loud, arrogant, flambouyant personality. His sound bites were a hard to avoid plastered between music videos at the peak of MTV popularity. (Yes... they used to play videos on MTV.) I can't, possibly, believe that this is really digital sampling of DLR's distinctive vocal stylings, but if it's not, it is certainly a good impression. I like to pull this up when I'm at work and try to use one of the 37 Davisms as a response to all of the stupid questions I am asked during the day.

I here it is coming back into style and if you have not been properly trained in the technique, you should not try this with you fine denim-wear. 

Short but sweet this week because my Wife doesn't like these. Read this. Buy T-shirts. Peace.


Best of 2008

I started writing this blog on July 17 and have since published 90 articles, to date. I wrote a few more that the general public did not see for one reason or another, and have several more in the hopper, for a rainy day, in various stages of completion. For all intent and purposes then, I have written over 100 stories, or about a post in 2 out of every 3 days, for the last six-months.

That's a lot but, when I began, I thought I would write something every day. Less than two-weeks in however, I realized I wasn't going to be able to keep that pace. After all, I do have a life with a day job, a Son and pregnant wife, a bowling league, two gaming systems and a couple of friends that I like to keep up with from time to time. Besides, to try to write more often I would really have to stretch the limits of the topics I am truly interested in and that would quickly get boring for me and the few regular readers that I do have.

No... I am pretty happy with the volume of articles that I have been posting; I am very happy that I am having fun doing this; but what is most surprising to me, is that I'm not too, terribly bad at it either. This is only my humble opinion and, in the past, I would never consider myself a writer but you'll have to admit there is a lot worse stuff out there on the Internet and a lot worse ways for you or me to spend the amount of time it takes to read or write it.

As I was looking back on the year and the postings in this blog, I wanted to do something to review the Best of 2008. I couldn't do a straight Top Ten or something because there are so many different types of entries that I would have a hard time choosing, so I just went through and picked the ones that I thought had some kind of merit and started to list them for what they were worth. 

I don't expect anyone to sit and read through them all but, if you are visiting for the first time, this will give you a good idea of how we roll. If you have been here before, it may highlight something that you missed or something that you like but forgot about. This is what I came up with:

Best Way to Make a Big Announcement... The Big Question
I would have picked How to Announce Your Expecting (A Baby) but absolutely no one was reading my blog at the time except MLW and she already knew she was pregnant so there wasn't much of an impact.

Best Post for a Good Cause... Beat It, Beat It, Beat It
Here again, I could have gone with I Survived A Major Brain Injury... but it was an earlier article that no one read. I think it was a few weeks later that I really hit a good stride and built some rhythm into my stories. A lot of it had to do with opening up and having the courage to write what I really felt instead of just trying to sell a T-shirt. The story about Tocco helped me do that.

Best Idea That Just Didn't Catch On... Jonah's Brothers Tour T-Shirts
I thought this was so clever. Obviously, the world didn't agree with me. An honorable mention goes to All You Need Is Love. It wasn't as good of an idea but just as many people "got it"-- none.

Best Surprise That It Did Catch On... A Trip to the Land of the Lost
I had no idea that anyone ever watched this show and really didn't expect much interest at all but have gotten a ton of visits from the posting. If I didn't have the sleestack design, I could say the same thing about What Did the Headless Horseman Say to Frankenstein, but I do so I can't.

Best Self Help Article... How to Quit Smoking Overnight
I wouldn't recommend it for everyone but if you are really desperate...

Best Instructional Post... I'm an Excellent Driver
Ohh... please don't get me started!

Best Political Comment... What Is A Bellwether State?
Thank God we don't have to deal with that again for another four or eight years.

Best Spiritual Story... From the Bottom of My Heart
I planned on reading this during the Thanksgiving Sharing Service at church but was almost sure I would chicken out at the last minute. Somehow I worked up the courage to do it in front of the whole congregation. It went over pretty well and I felt great afterward-- Who would've thought? 

I'm starting to like this list format. This was the first one I did and I like it but wish I would've included links to each one as I did in America's Top 40: Christmas.

Best Use of Sarcasm... When I Was Your Age...
There is not enough sarcasm in the world today.

Best Post That Required A Lot of Research... What's In Your Name?
Took me a few days to put this one together-- last time I'll do that.

Best "Let's Roll"... 1.07
MLW hates these but, even she will admit, the Halloween Edition was a real Thriller!

Best "You Gotta Be Kidding Me"... 1.01
This one still freaks me out every time I hear it and they are still claiming it's true!

MLW liked this article so much that she forwarded it to everyone in her address book. I think we, directly or indirectly, heard comments from every one of those kind folks. Thanks.

Best Issue That I Would Most Like to See Go Viral... It Only Seems Fair
You can help! Read this and forward to anyone you know that visits a chiropractor, anyone who knows someone in chiropractic treatment or anyone else who may be interested in joining the cause.

It's just my opinion but, then again, the whole thing is my opinion so if I say it is the best... it's the best.

That's the best I can narrow it down. I can't imagine how tough it will be to do this next year when there is a whole year's posts to consider. I think the articles are getting better as I go so as long as I can keep coming up with decent subject matter, 2009 should be looking good.

Hope you enjoy it. Thanks for reading. Buy T-Shirts. Peace.


Monday Morning Quarterback 1.15

Happy New Year! What is today-- the 5th already? It is real easy to lose track of time on these four-day-weekends. I never feel that I get enough done or have enough fun during that time, either. We were awfully busy, though, so here are the notes from the week:

• Working in a city like St. Louis, with a large percentage of African-Americans, Catholics and Americans, you would think that we would be off for Dr. Martin Luther King Day, Good Friday or President's Day but we don't have another holiday until Memorial Day. 

• I would be interested to know if the rate of heart attack is higher in the first week of the New Year because out-of-shape individuals try to fulfill their year-long resolutions to get fit in four-days. There must have been three times the regular number of people at the gym this morning and, from the looks of things, a few of them were not going to make it through to Wednesday. I didn't have to perform mouth-to-mouth on anyone but it may have been a different story if one guy didn't pull a hammy or that lady didn't blow out her knee.

• You can partially blame seasonal depression on lack of sunlight but, I believe, more of it has to do with transitioning from the joyous, active, event-filled, holiday season to January and February, when the best thing you have to hope for is... March.

• We have not had that bad of a Winter, yet, here in the Mid-West. If you are looking for snow you will have to wait until four-six-hours before MLW goes into labor for the really deep stuff-- with a 46-mile trip to the hospital... you can count on it.

• The one good thing about this time of year is that it is Trivia Night Season. If you are as excited as I am visit How to Win a Trivia Night and give add your input.

Wii is just what it Nintendo markets it as-- a really good way for families to play games together... even for the kids and Mom. The motion sensing remotes are pretty cool, but for serious gamers I still recommend Xbox360.

• The cymbals for the RockBand drum kit are pretty much just for show as they just replace the corresponding drum pad, but they are fun to crash. What I really want to try is the mufflers that reduce the amount of sound produced when you hit the pads with the stick. If they work, why don't they just modify the drum set that comes with the game to include them as standard? It would inexpensively improve the quality of the game greatly.

• The over/under of when I will last write 2008 when I mean to write 2009 is May 11.

• The first time that I will have to choose between MLW and M3S is coming up this Summer. My Son asked, yesterday, if he could have his next Birthday Party at the place that his cousin had his and my Wife has his and his unborn brother's parties planned until they are 14. There is nothing in those plans about going to the "jumpy place".

• I have been trying to prepare M3S's room for when the new baby will take over the nursery and had the bright idea on Saturday to build him a new bed. It told me right on the Website that I could do it, and I believed it. My Dad built my brother and I a circus cage bunk bed when we were little with bars and everything so I have asked for his help. I will give updates on how the project is going and post pictures when/if it is complete.

• I have realized that I miss a whole lot more than just the company gossip by not smoking anymore. This time of year you come in before dawn and leave after dusk. In a building with no windows, if you don't leave for lunch, it can be days before you see the sun.

• A nice December shopping season has definitely made SkeetzTeez a success! Now that the holidays are over, however, sales have been less than impressive. Except for the occasional interest in my adult designs, almost all of my sales have been the Big Brother or Big Sister shirts. Because, it seems, that there are so many pregnant women that like my designs, I am working on an expanded maternity section with the intent on opening a shop for new baby families only!

• I have gotten a lot of great comments on my blog in recent weeks that I would like to thank my readers for the kind words. I have gone back and re-read some of my older entries and will publish The Best of 2008 later in the week with my favorites. I hope you will enjoy them!

• I love to hear your feed back! (Even if it isn't always, totally, positive.) Please respond to the articles and tell me what you think!