Monthly Archives: April 2015

Shotgun Dreams

Oh, the days of watching a movie almost every night.


Fri 20

Letter #2 a week later [sent with the previous letter]


Hi. Thanks for the letter, Mom.  I have a hard time getting to the post office so all this stuff–escept this letter–is a week old.  I’ll send another letter and check next week–hopefully.

The mountain we climbed was Carr–maybe Car–but I think Carr.

Work is pretty good. So far we haven’t been real busy though.  But I’m looking forward to afew 12-16 hour days in the weeks to come.  There is a six-plex that will be ready then, a new church, a job at the fort that will take a weekend and which D has to pay us $28 an hour four, an inside bank job that will take a weekend, and a couple new houses, oh and some apartments.  When it rains it pours–although it hardly ever rains in Arizona.  –Just a little dry humor.

Tell Sadie [the dog] to be careful.  I had a dream where a mean hound dog was trying to get into the back yard and so I shot at him with a shot gun, but the shot would vanish just before it hit him. I guess it can’t come true til August.

About those tapes: If you could would you send me the In 3-D one. Be sure to put “DO NOT X-RAY” or they might and that would ruin the tape.  [I don’t know if this is actually true or not.] The other one–Kieth Green–belongs to Spencer Nelson (my pledge dad). It’s been paid for and is his.  He lives in McPherson.  I don’t know his address or how you could get it to him.  If you can, please do.  I don’t think he will be in Manhattan next fall.

Mike, if you find time could you make that Cosby tape.  I saw the movie “Bill Cosby Himself” that your one record comes from.  It was pretty much what the record is except it’s about 2 hrs. long.

N has been working at Shilo’s Vacation Bible School all week.  Tonight is a big covered dish supper for all those and their families of which I am part, who helped with VBS. N says there will be some good Mexican food there. A lot of mixed–black, white, brown, green, marriages down here and no one cares–neat.  [Ah, the ’80s]

Movie ratings. Diner (R) [drawing of a thumb pointing up] (Thumbs up) Bill Cosby Himself (PG) [up thumb] if you havent’ got the record memorized. Remo Williams (PG) OK–too close to call. To Live and Die in LA (R) [up thumb]–not bad sort of Miami Vice.  Faces of Death II (R) [down thumb] not very good.  Best bet–Diner–very good.

I better get ready for the supper.  Write again. I will next week.  I love you.



P.S. Natty Gamm (PG) [up thumb] very good.


Run DMC part 2


My love of Run DMC started with Rapper’s Delight. I think it was high school friend Marshall that introduced the awesome foursome (me and my three friends, not J.J. Evans and his) to rap via the Sugerhill Gang via the classic 20 minute song. We soon had it memorized, and it wasn’t uncommon to find us at some kind of school or church event standing in a circle rapping away. As far as the ladies were concerned, we could have been discussing slide rules and magnets, but we were having a blast. “Clearly these four white rappers had an influence on the likes of Vanilla Ice, The Beastie Boys, and Eminem that cannot be undervalued.” — Rapper’s Digest

Check it out, I’m the C-A-S-A, the N-O-V-A,
And the rest is F-L-Y,
You see I go by the code of the doctor of the mix,
And these reasons I’ll tell you why.
You see, I’m six foot one, and I’m tons of fun
When I dress to a T,
You see, I got more clothes than Muhammad Ali
and I dress so viciously.
I got bodyguards, I got two big cars
That definitely ain’t the wack,
I got a Lincoln Continental and a sunfoofed Cadillac.

from Book of Common Prayer

Sometimes, for whatever reason, I don’t want to write anything. When that happens I usually pull from the Episcopal Book of Common Prayer.  I like the familiarity; it gives me comfort.  And sometimes I have us all say the Lord’s Prayer together.


Holy and gracious Father: In your infinite love you made us
for yourself, and, when we had fallen into sin and become
subject to evil and death, you, in your mercy, sent Jesus
Christ, your only and eternal Son, to share our human
nature, to live and die as one of us, to reconcile us to you, the
God and Father of all.

He stretched out his arms upon the cross, and offered himself,
in obedience to your will, a perfect sacrifice for the whole

On the night he was handed over to suffering and death, our
Lord Jesus Christ took bread; and when he had given thanks
to you, he broke it, and gave it to his disciples, and said, “Take,
eat: This is my Body, which is given for you. Do this for the
remembrance of me.”

After supper he took the cup of wine; and when he had given
thanks, he gave it to them, and said, “Drink this, all of you:
This is my Blood of the new Covenant, which is shed for you
and for many for the forgiveness of sins. Whenever you drink
it, do this for the remembrance of me.”

Therefore we proclaim the mystery of faith:

Christ has died.
Christ is risen.
Christ will come again.

We celebrate the memorial of our redemption, O Father, in
this sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving. Recalling his death,
resurrection, and ascension, we offer you these gifts.

Sanctify them by your Holy Spirit to be for your people the
Body and Blood of your Son, the holy food and drink of new
and unending life in him. Sanctify us also that we may faithfully
receive this holy Sacrament, and serve you in unity, constancy,
and peace; and at the last day bring us with all your saints
into the joy of your eternal kingdom.

All this we ask through your Son Jesus Christ: By him, and
with him, and in him, in the unity of the Holy Spirit all honor
and glory is yours, Almighty Father, now and for ever. AMEN.

And now, as our Savior
Christ has taught us,
we are bold to say,

Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy Name,
thy kingdom come,
thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those
who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
and the power, and the glory,
for ever and ever. Amen.

Anya’s Ghost


Picked this book up in the school library today because Neil Gaiman said on the cover he liked it.  A nice story about a teen-age girl feeling like an outsider and struggling with the tension of wanting to fit but not wanting to change who she is.  Plus she has a friend who is a ghost. It made me laugh out loud a few times, at least once from the creepiness.

Plainview #19

In episode #19 we respond to listener mail.  We remember when we used to get our movies at the grocery store.  We talk about a couple movies, American Splendor and Superman.  Mare predicts that her first group of 6th graders will be one of her best. (They have since graduated from high school, and her prediction holds true.) We wonder about the pledge.  And the boy impresses us with his hapkido yells.

Bachman Turner Overdrive – Not Fragile

Bachman-Turner Overdrive / Not Fragile LP 1

I like to think that I was a rock guy back in high school, but I listened to a lot of pop. And it was the 80s, so the new wave was happening. And some funk. And we listened to a lot of Lionel Richie when our high-school-boy hearts were broken. Also, I wasn’t much of an album guy as a kid. I had a few. But, with a couple of exceptions, the albums I had didn’t exactly rock. And BTO was just a bit before my time.

Given all that, I tried for a couple weeks to get into this album which I picked up at a garage sale a while back. I couldn’t seem to do it. Then I discovered the problem.  You’re going to think I’m making this up or quoting a 1970s t-shirt or paraphrasing Dr. Johnny Fever, but it’s true. It wasn’t loud enough. When I put this album on and cranked it, it was a beautiful thing. The first cut comes on like Spinal Tap. It’s that earnest driving unrepentant rock that Spinal Tap parodied so well. Not only is nearly every track on this album is a great rock song (there are a couple that are just ok), but each one is unique and rocks in its own way. “Rock is My Life” is a talky messagey ballad about living the rock and roll life.  “Roll on Down the Highway” is a rambling moving-on-down-the-road song with a hook that sounds like it was borrowed from the Archies. “Freewheelin'” is a bluesy freestyle rock jam. “Giving it All Away” is fun.  And even the hit “Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet” is not the best song on the record, but is still good.

The reason I pulled BTO out to listen to and write about is that I needed a break from the jazz and blues. The Bachman brothers and their friend Turner and Thornton certainly provide that. Here’s a couple for you to sample. And don’t forget–turn it up!

Swimming in Seaweed

Another missive from my summer in Arizona.  As I type these, I am correcting spelling to make them easier to read (I’m a terrible speller).  I am not editing out things I say that make be sound like a 19-year-old from the 80’s–things like jokes about smacking babies or random comments about someone’s race.  If someone wants to go back in time 30 years and shake your finger at my young self, feel free.  Just be sure to look yourself up as well. Oh, and I don’t remember what I sent to mom.  I bet she doesn’t either.


June 16


Not much to tell.  Mostly just sending my check home, along with some other stuff.  The other stuff is basically for Mom.  It’s about 6:30.  Rough day today. About 10:30 this morning D had to go to Tuscon to get some wallpaper and some money.  While we (I went with him) were there we hit a show–Raw Deal with Arnold (pinhead) Schwarzenegger. It wasn’t bad.  M got his shots today–some baby shots, I don’t know–so he’s pretty fussy.  I gave him a rap in the mouth to shut him up.  It didn’t work and I got blood all over my hands.  –Of course I’m just kidding.  He didn’t bleed.  Thanks for the letter.  I’m think I’m going to write some this evening.  Last night (Sunday), we all went to a lake with some people from the church.  Did some swimming in some seaweed–not much though, that wears you out quick.  Went to church Sunday too.  We were about 5 min. late so we came in when the singing was going on.  (They just sing for about 30-45 min before the rest of the service–ie. offertory, announcements, sermon, etc.)  It reminded me of the Blues Brothers church. The minister is a black guy. Neat what-you-would-expect-black-baptist-type preaching.

Irrelevant point of interest==> Mom, I read where your Phil Collins record is a platinum 4-million seller, and your Whitney Houston record is a platinum 5-million seller.  You joiner!

Mike, see if you can get to work so that you can fly out here at the end of the summer.  Ma, you aught to come too.  Pa’s already been here, but he could come if he wanted.  Please forward any mail that comes to the house to me.  Tell Sadie [the dog] hi and get well soon. Tell everybody else that cares hi too.  Write when you want.  I love you all.



P.S. Be sure and put some of this money in my checking account.  I mailed all this in a big envelope so I wouldn’t have to fold Mom’s thing into little squares.