Saturday, May 31, 2014

Indy 500, 2014-- Part 4: Eatin' Cue and Drinkin' Beer on Main Street

May 23, 2014.  Dawson's was crowded, both inside and outside and we got a table by the window and perused their special: bucket of five aluminum pints for $15.  Sue made sure everyone got an equal portion of the last of those five cans.  I mean, down to the drop equal.  Was it good to the last drop?

While at that table, we got to talking about our favorite team, those hockey players from Chicago, and John and Paul said they remember the Black Hawk fans cheering and yelling during the National Anthem happening as far back as '72.  They like the old guy who sings it better than the new one.  I don't know, but the new one is hard to beat.

Sue, Paul and John went back to the RV.  I decided to stay and went back to Barbecue and Bourbon and watched the band for awhile more (hey...ID!!).  I also tried their two wings for $3 and $2 corn on the cob.  Now, usually, I would consider two wings for $3 a bit expensive, but these were referred to as Giant Wings and they sure were, with both parts.  And, then, too, there were sauces (hot and sweet) to douse them with.  I also used both sauces on that ear of corn.  That was mighty fine and filling eating.

Good Times on That Main Street.  --RoadDog

Friday, May 30, 2014

Indy 500 2014-- Part 3: Party on Main Street

We walked several blocks over to Main Street in Speedway.  There is a town of Speedway right by the race track.  When I was there to meet friends and tour the Indy 500 museum and take a ride around the track several years back, Speedway's downtown section was more than a little down at the tooth, but I had heard that major renovation was planned.  It is definitely in the process right now.

There is a lot of redevelopment and new businesses opening.  We decided to go to a new one called Barbecue and Bourbon, where they were setting up to have an outside party, complete with food, beer and a group  called Abbey Something Band.  Nothing much finer than a band and drinks outside on a beautiful day, especially with all the Indy 500 stuff going on in the area.

I went into the roped off area (and had to show my ID at one day shy of age 63!).  For some reason, Sue and Paul did not have their IDs (they are around 58), but were told they could go into the bar even without IDs.  It made us wonder if that was a rule for outside parties in Speedway.

Sue and Paul were not happy, so after a couple songs by the band, we left and walked over to Dawson's, about a block away.

Has the Party Started Yet?  --RoadDog

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Indy 500: 2014 Trip-- Part 2: Setting Up

Once on I-65 in Indiana, I saw a sign reading "Hell Is Real."

On arriving at the American Legion Speedway Post 500, we were shown to our spot, which was about three rows in from the street that runs by the track.  The famous Pagoda top could be seen close by.  It would be hard to get a better parking spot than this.

As we were setting up, we heard the song "I Can't Drive 55" from the track PA system.  A very fitting song what with us being where we were.  Of course, they like to say that at the Speedway, the speed limit is "241."

We immediately cracked open some celebratory drinks as we had arrived for yet another Indy 500.  For me, it was my third.  Sue and Paul have been coming since 1999 (and used to stay at hotels before they got their RV).

--  RoadDog

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Indy 500: 2014 Trip-- Part 1: A Ride On Fairfield Road

May 23, 2014

Drove to Sue and Paul's in Long Lake, Illinois, and boarded their RV and headed out for Indianapolis. Immediately encountered a really bad back up on Fairfield Road in Round Lake at Il-134.  Sue said this happens every day Monday to Friday.  Glad I don't have to face it as this is an intersection I went through for 31 years.  It wasn't that bad back then.

Fairfield Road was a route I took a lot back when Liz's parents were living in Palatine and then, after her father died, her mom moved to Arlington Heights.  It was always Fairfield, to Old McHenry Road to Quentin to US-12.

This is the way we went.  Even with all the increase in population and subdivisions, Fairfield Road is still one great ride.  Lots of hills, fields and just pretty scenery.

They pointed out where a buffalo ranch was, but none were out and about.

There is a big dog park by the intersection of Il-176, east of Wauconda, near the forest preserve and Lake County Historical Museum, home of that huge Kurt Teich postcard collection.


Monday, May 26, 2014

Indy Returned

We just got back in today from out trip to the Indianapolis 500.  Another great time which i will be writing about i  the next several weeks.

Arrived back in Round Lake at a little after noon, unloaded the RV and drove over to Terri's place to give her some Indy stuff.  I have made up my mine to enjoy the event, but not accumulate, which was a good thing as there was plenty to get.

She is a complete Indy 500 nut and has been there the last 15-18 years.  I mean, she goes to everything and stands in every line to get stuff.  Sadly, this year, she was unable to go because of a severe injury.

It just came to me that she was our Union leader on the two-month-long strike by the Round lake Education Association's two month strike back in 1994.

Hey, we have the twenty year anniversary of that horrible event coming up in October!!


Thursday, May 22, 2014

Indy Bound

This will be the last post for several days as I am heading to Indianapolis for that little ol' race on Sunday.

Vrroooommmmm, VVVrroooommm.

Always a good party and I'm even getting to learn the names of some of the drivers.

Let You Know Later.  --RoadDog

A Cold Trip to NC-- Part 11: What's So Cannonball?

Still stuck in Yorkville, Illinois.  In the last post I mentioned Cannonball Road being north of Yorkville off Il-47.  It is actually Cannonball Trail. I did some research and found that there is also a subdivision in Yorkville called Cannonball Estates.

Evidently it was just the name a builder came up with as I can find no mention of a cannonball factory in Yorkville.

There is, however, a park named Cannonball Ridge Park at 2087 Northland Lane.  The Yorkville Parks site says, "To keep up the theme of Cannonball Estates subdivision, the park has a Civil War theme with a Civil War-style fence, stone walls and prairie grass."


Wednesday, May 21, 2014

A Cold Trip to NC: Part 10 (March 23, 2014): Yorkville, Illinois

I always have to wonder about Cannonball Road north of Yorkville, Illinois.  Did they make cannonballs at some place on it?

In Yorkville now, and I no longer stop at the McDonald's on US-34 where I have stopped many times in the past to use facilities and get a bite to eat or drink.  I don't anymore as you take your life in your hands trying to turn across 34 to get back to 47.

Il-47 through downtown Yorkville looks like a war zone. It is all torn up and the small row of businesses look like they're all closed.    They have cleared the hillside on the bluff (the Fox River flows just north of the downtown) and you can now really see that impressive courthouse or church sitting on top of it.  Looks like they are going to turn the hillside into a park.

Continuing south on Il-47, I see that interesting brick and stone building which houses Berengy Auto Sales which may have been an old gas station.

A Ride Through Yorkville, Illinois.  --RoadDog

A Cold Trip to NC-- Part 9: Ten at Ten and Snow

March 23, 2014:

Along with the great tunes, Bob Stroud always gives you interesting information on his Ten at Ten shows.  For example, in 1973 the very first cell phone call was made in New York City.  Of course, back then, it wasn't hard to get those cell phones out of your pocket or find it as they were the size of a large brick.

It was a bit strange listening to the weekend Ten at Ten, however, because there are commercials.  Mondays to Fridays, they play straight through with no commercial interruptions.

Right now, he is playing another of my favorites, "Brandy" by Looking Glass.  I don't know why, but I can always picture what is going on in this story song.  And, try to listen to it and not sing along.  It just doesn't happen with me.  Gotta sing.

Most snow is gone here south of Spring Grove in Illinois, except I still see piles of it on the sides of Il-47.  That horrible white stuff which we saw way too much of these past four months is no longer on the fields (though we still have it around home).


A Cold Trip to NC-- Part 8: Gas Prices

All prices rounded up.  $3.65.9 shown as $3.66.

3-23:  Crawfordsville, Ind. $3.66
3-23: Englewood, Ohio--  $3.40
3-24:  Rockbridge, Ohio--  $3.50
3-24  Wytheville, Va.--  $3.10  (always cheapest on trip)
3-31:  Goldsboro, NC--  $3.34
4-2:  Wytheville, Va.--  $3.22
4-3:  Englewood, Ohio--  $3.70 (Same station as going down.  I didn't buy here this time.)
4-3  Ten miles west of Englewood--  $3.60
4-3: Crawfordsville, Ind.--  $3.60 (Same Station)
4-3: Mahomet, Ill.--  $3.59

Prices mostly went up between going down and coming back.

I bought 61.642 gallons of gas and spent $213,53.


Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Road Music: NC Spring 2014 Trip-- Part 3

On the road, you'll find me switching back and forth between local radio stations and CDs (or even cassettes if I'm in the '03 Malibu which has a cassette.Cd player with the radio).

The last two CDs I listened to going and returning:

REDNECK CRAZY--  TYLER FARR--  Honk and Blues Country music.  As rowdy as they wanna be.  Lots of drinkin' songs like "Makes You Wanna Drink" with its call and response.  Other drinking songs "Whiskey in My Water," "Ain't Even Drinkin'," "Chicks, Trucks, and Beer" with the cheer reprise.  As a boat owner, however, I'm not sure he knew what he was talking about in "Wish I Had a Boat," but it would be a great song for out on the local Chain of Lakes.

The title song, "Redneck Crazy," is about payback.  Break his heart and that ol' redneck boy gonna get ya back.  "Throw empty beer cans at your bedroom window," is just one bit of payback.  But I say throwing full ones would be more effective at getting her attention. But guess that would be too much a waste of good beer after a bad woman.

FROM HERE TO NOW TO YOU--  JACK JOHNSON--  Actually, I was intending to buy a Jack White CD when I bought this one.  Got my Jacks mixed up.  Good for me.  If there was ever a better laid-back, chilling out album, I'd like to know.

It is a group of guys sitting around and having fun playing , picking and singing.  There is even a picture of them doing exactly that.

I especially liked "Shot Reverse Shot," "Tape Deck" and "Radiate."

Sometimes, Those Mistakes Turn Out Real Good.  --RoadDog

Monday, May 19, 2014

Road Music: NC Spring Trip-- Part 2

DRINKS AFTER WORK--  TOBY KEITH:  Definitely one of my favorite country performers as I have most, if not all of his CDs.  I especially like the title track.  Other good ones are "Last Living Cowboy," "Shut Up and Hold On" and "Hard Way to Make An Easy Living.."

As usual, Toby wrote all the songs but one.  The guy's got talent.

SUNSHINE & WHISKEY--  FRANKIE BALLARD:  Young, really rowdy country music.  Lots of drinking songs like the title track, "Drinky Drink," "Sober Me Up" and "Don't Tell Mama I Was Drinking."  This last song was quite the sad one.

Cruisin' and Listenin'.  --RoadDog

Road Music: NC Trip Spring 2014-- Part 1

SPEED OF DARKNESS--  FLOGGING MOLLY:  Great Irish rock  The songs "Revolution" and "The Power's Out" make being a CEO akin to a bad word.  They are fully on the side of the downtrodden working middle class while the rich get richer.

"From the town of Detroit where my job is secure, yeah, secure in the fact that it's gone for sure, yeah!  So I'll scrimp and I'll scrape at this pension I've made, so it should be gone by the end of the day."

MAGPIE AND THE DANDELION--  AVETT BROTHERS:  One of those albums you like a few songs, the real kickers,  the first time through, but the more you listen, the more you like.  They just grow on you.

"Open Ended Life" starts off slow, but really kicks into gear.  Their big hit from the album is "Another Is Waiting."

The group hails from North Carolina and is not your typical gock group using old-timey instruments.


Saturday, May 17, 2014

Cold Trip to NC: Listening to CDs

When I travel, I always take several CDs along with me that I haven't listened to yet.  I alternate them with local radio stations along the way.

This past trip to North Carolina at the end of March, I had   CDs with me:

SPEED OF DARKNESS-- Flogging Molly

SUNSHINE & WHISKEY--  Frankie Ballard


I'll be talking about these CDs in my next several posts.

Cruising With Music.  Gotta Be.  --RoadDog

Friday, May 16, 2014

Survived NIU Shooting, Now Campus Cop-- Part 4: Maria Christiansen

Maria Christiansen was hospitalized for about two weeks.  Once she was out, she wanted to be back at Northern Illinois and wanted campus to be like it was before the murders.

Within two months of the shooting, she was back on campus and headed to Cole Hall where the attack took place.  She returned to classes, although her new voice was a bit squeaky at first, like a 12-year-old girl's.  She had to go through voice therapy, and on the weekends attended police academy at Princeton, Illinois.

She interned with the NIU police in the fall of 2008 and received her badge March 2009, even before she received her degree  She went from part-time to full-time in May 2010 when she got her sociology degree with an emphasis on criminology.

Maria met her husband, DeKalb County Sheriff's Deputy Dave Christiansen, in the fall of 2010.

By all accounts, she is an excellent police officer.  A video accompanies the article and she still bears the scars of that day on her face.

A Real Hero Who Didn't Let Events Control Her Life.  --RoadDog

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Survived NIU Shootings, Now Campus Cop-- Part 3: Blood Pooling

As Maria Christiansen lay on  Cole hall's floor with her blood pooling around her head, Chief Donald Grady found her and dragged her to the end of the lecture hall aisle and elevated her feet to slow her blood loss.  Grady asked her questions to keep her alert and distract her from her injuries.  He remembers seeing shotgun pellet wounds along her throat and from her nose to upper chest.

As she lay there, Christiansen said she was interested in law enforcement.  he stayed with her until the paramedics arrived.  A helicopter would later take her to Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital in Downers Grove.  There, she and her family learned that the shotgun pellets had destroyed her trachea, esophagus and vocal chords.

She underwent five hours of surgery that night, with doctors giving her only a 50 percent chance of surviving the neck reconstruction.  They told her family to say their goodbyes before they began.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Survived the NIU Shootings, Now a Campus Cop-- Part 2

Maria Christiansen, now 26, is an NIU police officer and patrols the campus where she was wounded.  She initially served under NIU police chief Donald Grady, who besides having nothing but positive things to say about her duty, but also had a big part in her survival that tragic day.

This past Sunday, Maria celebrated her first Mother's Day as a mom to her 10-month-old Alexis.

More than six years ago, Christiansen didn't know much about weapons and didn't even recognize the killer's weapon as being a sawed-off shotgun.  "To me, it looked like a bazooka kind of thing.  All of a sudden, I just felt pressure on my left shoulder, and after that, I went down to the floor.  I remember hearing some screaming and noise in the background and heard the shots--'bang, bang, bang-- and after that there was just silence."

She was severely wounded, but five other students died that day and many others were wounded.

More to Come.

Survived the NIU Valentine Day's Shootings, Now a Campus Cop-- Part 1

From the May 13, 2014, Northwest (Il) Herald "Protect and remember: NIU police officer survived campus shooting as a student" by Danielle Guerra and Andrea Azzo.

There is also an interesting video.  NIU is in DeKalb, Illinois and located on Illinois-38, the old Lincoln Highway.

Maria Christiansen is "A victim-turned first-responder, she's made it her mission to make sure what happened to her on Feb. 14, 2008 will never happen to another student at her alma mater.

"Christiansen, then known as Maria Ruiz-Santana, was a 20-year-old Northern Illinois University junior... when it happened.  With ten minutes left in her oceanography class, a shooter wielding three guns barged onto the stage of the lecture hall and opened fire.  Christiansen was severely wounded by a shotgun blast."

She barely survived and still bears scars from that day on her face and in her mind.

Quite a Hero In her Own Way.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

A Cold Trip to NC-- Part 7: Testing My Stoplight Theory

I had been planning on leaving for the NC trip on Thursday and here it was Sunday as I was feeling kind of sick.  And, one big problem was the need to constantly spit.  And, right before entering Huntley, i had a big ol' gob.

Alright, here I was about to attempt the myriad of red lights that is Huntley today along Il-47.  I sure needed to spit as well, but perhaps that might be in my favor as you can never get a red light when you really want one.

Of the 10-12 stoplights in Huntley, I made it through EVERY SINGLE ONE with only two slow-downs!!  Amazing!!    I even got through that pesky light at Main Street.  And, south of I-90, I made it through the new one at Big Timber Road that seems to be in competition with the one at Main Street to make me wait most often.!!!

I did finally have to stop at the US-20/Il-72 intersection by Stark's Corner, but just for 15 seconds.

Just Something To Think About.  --RoadDog

Monday, May 12, 2014

A Cold Trip to NC-- Part 6: How to Avoid Pesky Stoplights (In Huntley)

As I mentioned in my last post, the remnants of the cold had me needing to spit a lot.  And, I am not really good at spitting out the window,  I just can't get the trajectory of distance and it often ends up on the side of the car.  YUCK!!  It is even worse when I'm moving fast.  Plus, I don't like to spit out the window at stop lights or signs if somebody is behind me (and they usually are).

However, as I was approaching Huntley, Illinois, on Il-47, I got to thinking.  "Maybe I can use this need to spit to my advantage."  You know how if you need to look at something on a piece of paper you can NEVER catch a stoplight red to give you the opportunity.  Might that not hold true with needing to spit?

And, I had the perfect opportunity to test the theory right in front of me.  Huntley used to be a small town isolated from Chicago by distance, but not anymore.  It is a real boom town, growing faster in population than they can keep up with it, especially in the road department area.  (There is a huge Del Webb Sun City complex and it is right by the I-90 Tollway)  Huntley's roads (mostly Il-47) are almost always torn up.  And, with all the businesses flocking to town, they have been in overdrive as far as putting up stoplights.

There used to be just two lights at Algonquin Road and Main Street.  That Main Street stoplight was one of those that just quietly waits for my arrival to turn red.  I have spent many a minute waiting at that light, which seems to take forever.

Did the Spitting Theory Prove True?  More to Come.  --RoadDog

A Cold Trip to NC-- Part 5: Stark's Corner, Illinois

MARCH 23RD:  A short distance south of Huntley is Stark's Corner. It is not a town, essentially, for many, many years, it has just been a gas station and(at one time) a  little diner.  It is at the intersection of US-20 and Illinois-72.  This is a place I have been passing by for many years, starting back when I was a freshman at Northern Illinois in DeKalb, back in 1969-71, when I would drive from Palatine.

Sadly, the old station and diner were torn down and replaced by one of your standard mega-stations you see so often these days.  Anyway, Stark's Corner has the reputation of nearly always having the most expensive gas along the expensive gas Illinois-47.  Today, gas was $3.86.  As usual, the highest (well, tied for highest).

I also used to pass it a lot 1972-1973 and several times each year after that when going to homecoming and driving from Round Lake Beach.  I really passed it a lot from 1978 to 19891 while I was getting my master's degree in history from NIU.

This is handy place to stop for a  bathroom break, and, it is the only place I know of where I can get some of those great Frito-Lays Sabritones puffed wheat snack with chile and lime flavoring..  Now, those are some good driving and snacking things to eat.

I also bought a cup of pop.  I wasn't thirsty, but I still had a bit of a cold (why I didn't leave on the trip several days earlier), but needed a spit cup after I finished the drink.


Saturday, May 10, 2014

A Cold Trip to NC- Part 4: The Ramblin' Wreck

Just a note to all you kids who these days think it is your birthright to receive a really nice car from your parents when you turn 16.  That Ramblin' Wreck of mine was a 1963 Rambler which my parents  paid $300 for and gave me my junior year in college.

But, back in 1972, it got me from Athens, Georgia, to DeKalb, Illinois, a couple times, even burning through a quart of oil every 75-100 miles.

Like I said, I couldn't sneak up on anyone in it as the burning oil smell would give me away quickly.

It Was a Ramblin' Wreck, But From UGA, Not Ga. Tech.  --RoadDog

Friday, May 9, 2014

Whoopie! Pies

From Wikipedia.

At least I've heard of this and I think I even had one once.

Whoopie Pies are also called black moon, GOB (a term used in the Pittsburgh area) or BFO for Big Fat Oreo.   It can be classified as either a cookie (a real big one), pie or cake.

They are made of two round mound-shaped pieces of chocolate cake (and sometimes pumpkin or gingerbread cake) with a sweet creamy filling or frosting sandwiched in between.  (Might they also be classified.

It is considered either a New England or Pennsylvania Amish tradition, but increasingly it is sold throughout the United States.

The name supposedly comes from when farmers would find one of these packed in their lunchbox, they's holler "Whoopie!!"  There is some controversy as to its origin.

It is the Official State Treat of Maine.

I'd Show You a Picture of One, But You'd get Too Hungry.  --RoadDog

A Cold Trip to NC-- Part 3: Watch That Microcassette Recorder!!

My spring trip to North Carolina and was it ever c-o-l-d!!!!  You sure wouldn't expect March to be so cold, especially in the sunny South where I even was snowed on iat Mt. Airy.

Driving through Elburn, Illinois, and got past that pesky railroad crossing where I have spent much time.  Wait a minute, hurry up and put the microcassette recorder down as there is a cop over by the side of the road watching speeders!!  He didn't see me, I guess.

But in Illinois it is now illegal as of Jan. 1st, to use a cell phone while driving and from what I hear, lots of folk are getting tickets for using them.  I might have had a hard time explaining it and maybe they consider that distracted driving.

I am not sure that talking on a cell phone is all that bad other than dialing numbers.  I rarely get a call on my cell phone, maybe once or twice a month, but I do use it a lot during trips to touch base with Mom and Liz.  Other than that, I don't make many calls.

You can use hands-free cell phones or those really stupid looking Bluetooth things.  As it turns out, I used the OnStar hands-free a lot as my 360 minutes expired on the 29th of March, and here it was the 23rd of March and I hadn't used it even once in the past year.

I wouldn't wear one of those Bluetooth things as I think they look rather silly.  Hey guy, you got something either growing out of trying to get into your ear!!  Those Bluetooths look about as  smart as those flat-brim baseball caps.

No Bluetooth Fer Me.  --RoadDog

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Natchitoches Meat Pie

From the site and Wikipedia.

This is Louisiana's Official State Meat Pie.  It is a beef and  pork pie with a moderately spicy seasoning or you can get it more spicy with additional cayenne pepper "for that extra kick."  They come baked inside of folded pie crust.

They even have a meat pie festival every year in Natchitoches, Louisiana, in September.

Wikipedia has it as a regional dish from northern Louisiana with ground beef and pork, onions, peppers, garlic and oil as ingredienats all baked in a pie shell.

Now You Know.  Now I Know.  --RoadDog

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

I Noticed Some State Foods That I Didn't Know

Of course, that means a little more digging.

The ones on the last several posts that I didn't know much about:  Natchitoches meat pie, Whoopie pie,  (heard of them, but don't know much about 'em), South Island cake, Bizcochito, Buckeye candy, coffee milk, kuchen and sopaipilla,

Come Learn With Me.  --RoadDog

Some More State Foods-- Part 4

UTAH--  State Snack Food--  Jell-o  (Not exactly sure why this is.)

VERMONT--  State Pie: Apple pie

VIRGINIA--  State Muffin:  blueberry,  State Dessert:  Ice cream

WISCONSIN--  State Beverage:  milk  (Really?), State Muffin:  cranberry muffin, State Pastry:  Well, you know.

Kringles, Of Course!!  --RoadDog

Some More State Foods-- Part 3

OKLAHOMA--  State Meal: BBQ pork, State Meat: chicken-fried steak, State Treat:  cornbread,  State Dessert: Pecan pie.

PENNSYLVANIA--  State Cookie:  Chocolate chip cookie,  State Candy:  Chocolate  (Not surprised here at all.)

RHODE ISLAND--  State Drink: Coffee milk.

SOUTH CAROLINA--  State Snack Food:  Boiled peanuts  (Double Yuck!!!)

SOUTH DAKOTA--  State Dessert:  Kuchen

TEXAS--  State Dish:  Chili con carne,  State Pastries:  sopaipilla and Strudel,  State Snack: Chips and salsa.

Actually, Every State Should Have State Foods to Emphasize a Food Noted for Their State.  --RoadDog

I Noticed That Illinois Didn't Have Any State Foods

Surely, we must have some state foods here in Illinois.

Perhaps one might be Governor's  Prison Food, or Dishonest Pork Sandwiches?  How about Pension Cheese?  Or Madigan Meat?state

Actually, I do have a few nominations which I will write about later.


Some More State Foods-- Part 2

MASSACHUSETTS--  State Muffin:  corn muffin; State Dessert: Boston cream pie,  State Cookie: Chocolate Chip cookie,  State Doughnut:  Boston cream doughnut.(What would Homer say?)

MINNESOTA--  State Muffin:  Blueberry muffin

MISSOURI--  State Dessert:  ice cream (Could it be Ted Drewe's?)

NEW MEXICO--  Cookie:  Bizcochito

NEW YORK--  State Muffin:  Apple muffin

OHIO--  State Candy:  Buckeye  (How about State Chili: Cincinnati Chili?)

Good Ol' State Food.  --RoadDog

A Cold Trip to NC-- Part 2: Music

March 23, 2014:  No cruise for me is a cruise unless I'm listening to music--no talk.  This being a Sunday, I had listened to my usual two Sunday morning shows, but they end at 10 AM.

I was happy to find that WDRV had a Ten at Ten Weekend going on, where they played nothing but Bob Stroud's Ten at Ten shows and I was fortunate enough to get a mighty fine year, 1972, to listen to.  The first song he played was my all-time favorite Jim Croce song, "Operator."  That had me singing right along.

Later, it was another favorite and one that really brought back some memories, Elton John's "Rocket Man."  This one always reminds me of another road trip, my drive from the University of Georgia in Athens to Northern Illinois University in DeKalb back in 1972 to see Liz and go to the Elton John concert.    This song was really playing a lot on the radio the whole way, and, of course, he did it in concert and we were just a few rows off the stage in the old Chick Evans Field House.

I drove the "Ramblin' Wreck" as I referred to it, the '63 puke green Rambler station wagon which burned a quart of oil every 75-100 miles.  You could always tell when I was coming.  And, always prone to breaking down in those scary days before credit cards (and on my extremely limited college budget).  Took a chance, but the old car made it.

Road Music Makes It Even Better.  --RoadDog

Monday, May 5, 2014

While On the Subject of State Eating, Here Are Some State Foods

From Wikipedia.

There were many state fruits and nuts, but I was mostly just looking for things that had to be made.

FLORIDA--  State Food: Grits

IDAHO--  State Food: potato

LOUISIANA--  State Meat Pie: Natchitoches Meat Pie

MAINE-- State Dessert: Blueberry pie made with wild Maine blueberries,  State Soft Drink:  Moxie,  State Treat: Whoopie Pie.

MARYLAND--  State Food:  Blue Crabs (well, you have to cook 'em before you eat 'em),  State Dessert:  South Island Cake.

More to Come.  For Some Reason I'm In the Mood for Some Mexican Food Today.  --RoadDog

Saturday, May 3, 2014

2013 Wisconsin Act 20: Making Racine's Kringle the State's Official Pastry

This act designated the kringle as the state pastry.  The kringles a flaky dough pastry that can be filled with fruit, nuts or other fillings and baked with icing.

The proposal was supported by the City of Racine (Big Surprise there) as they are a mass producer of the pastry.

This is one thing both Republicans and democrats can agree on.  But, back in 2012, a movement to make the Cream Puff the official state pastry died in General Assembly.

It was made official Sunday, July 1, 2013, when Governor Scott Walker signed the state budget.

Personally, I'd Make Both the Kringle and Cream Puff As Co-State Pastries.  --RoadDog

Kansas City's World War I Museum

From the April 6, 2014, Chicago Tribune" "Museum puts WWI into focus" by Jay Jones.

And a person has to wonder how they knew to call it World War I back then?

About 9 million soldiers died from 1914-1918 on both sides, including Americans, although U.S. entry wasn't until 1917.  In Kansas City there is the National World War I Museum sitting at the foot of the 217-foot Liberty Memorial, quite an impressive sight.

In ten short days after the war ended, the people of Kansas City raised $2.5 million to build the tower, which opened on November 11, 1926.  It is considered America's official World War I monument, even though there is a movement, supported by Frank Buckles, our last veteran of the war who died a few years ago, to build another memorial on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. (something that I fully support).

I will write more about  this museum in my Cooter's History Thing blog (perhaps today).

The National World War I Museum is at 100 W. 26th Street, Kansas City, Mo.  Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday until Memorial Day when the museum also opens on Mondays.  Admission is  $14 for adults, $12 for ages 65 and older and students 18 or older, $8 for ages 6-17.  Military gets a 50% discount.

Something to Visit With the Centennial of the War Beginning This Summer.  --RoadDog

Friday, May 2, 2014

Wisconsin State Fair Cream Puffs

From the Wisconsin State Fair site.

89 Days to Go before It Opens, In Case You're Wondering.

They are referred to as Original Cream Puffs and have been sold since 1924 and IS the MOST popular food item.  (I don't even think kringles are sold at the fair.)

On average, 350,000 are sold each fair run.  In 2013, more than 387,000 were sold.

You can buy the delicious cream filled bits of heaven individually, in 3-packs or even 6-packs. Best description of an original Cream Puff: ""A mountain of sweet cream sandwiched between  scrumptious puff shells."

The Wisconsin Bakers Association operates the Cream Puff Bakery in the Original Cream Puff Pavilion which is the main site, but there are two other small sites around the grounds for convenience.  Also, there is a drive-thru at Gate 6.

Cream Puff, Anybody?  --RoadDog

Thursday, May 1, 2014

What About Those Wisconsin State Fair Cream Puffs?

Actually, I was very surprised to see Racine Kringles listed as Wisconsin's Official State Pastry.  The reason being those ever-popular Wisconsin State Fair Cream Puffs.  They have a whole section of a building where they serve nothing but these heavily caloried, not-good-for-you, but Oh-Sp-Good treats.

There are some folks I know who would not consider themselves as having been to the fair without having one, or two or three.

However, Liz and I finally figured how how to eat them.  We buy one and split it.  That way, we get the taste and smile, but still have room left over for other good things to eat, and there are plenty, especially if you get to the Wisconsin Products building.

To Kringle Or to Puff, That Is the Question.  --RoadDog

The Drive's Album Sides Thursday

Chicago's WDRV, 97.1 FM, the Drive, has been playing nothing but album sides all morning and will continue into tonight.  And, they're playing vinyl on turntables, the way I used to play the music.  Listen to a side and then turn it over.  Hear all the music, not just cherry-picked downloaded stuff here.

They are playing GHOSTS IN THE MACHINE  by Police right now.

Album sides they've played since I started listening at 6:50: (side) year:

LONESOME JUBILEE--  John Mellancamp (1), 1987
RUMOURS--  Fleetwood Mac  (2), 1977
IT'S ONLY ROCK AND ROLL--  Rolling Stones (1), 1974
HI-INFIDELITY--  REO Speedwagon (1), 1980
CHICAGO II--(2), 1970

STRAIGHT SHOOTER--  Bad Company (1), 1975
52ND STREET--  Billy Joel (1), 1979
CHRONICLES--  CCR (4), 1976.
GHOST IN THE MACHINE--  Police (1), 1981
WISH YOU WERE HERE-- Pink Floyd (2), 1975

TOYS IN THE ATTIC--  Aerosmith (1), 1975

It's streaming at

I Know What I'm Listening to Today.  --RoadDog