31 August 2005


No power at the house in Clinton. No trees fell down on the house either-- just twigs, branches, and leaves on the yard. I do have dialup and run the computer on batteries. Currently charging up at McAlister's in Clinton. Heard from one of the docs my mom & uncle stayed with for the storm. They're fine and back at their house. Of course, there's no power there. If I have enough gas for a round trip, it looks like a journey to Hattiesburg will soon be on the horizon.

28 August 2005

Gotta be at work Monday...

No classes at the college, but administrative offices will be open. Since I'm a 52-week administrative employee, I work when the college is open for business. I have to be there at 8 Monday morning.

My mother & uncle's riding the storm out with friends in Canebrake.

26 August 2005

In Football Veritas

I'm drinking coffee at Cups in Fondren. It's a Friday night. There is Truth in Football. And they played at Smith-Wills tonight. The first football game ever at Smith-Wills.

Smith-Wills' football setup is like so. Visualize the baseball field. The first base baseline is the "home" sideline. The third base baseline is the 5-yard line. There are goalposts in right field in front of the fence-- a good kick can clear the fences-- and in front of the the third-base bleachers.

Nearly everyone attending the game watched the game from the first-base bleachers. Some watched from the grandstand.

I was at the Sylva-Bay Academy - Veritas game. I like to see schools from my home area play when they're in the Jackson area when possible. This week, it was an MPSA Academy A game. Next week, it'll likely be Wayne County at Madison Central.

I've helped my friends out for years by writing some season previews for them. I did the season previews for all the Academy schools this year. I also do the game previews for them. I made it to the game shortly before kickoff.

I know one of the assistant coaches for Sylva-Bay. He played high school ball at Bay Springs and later at Ole Miss-- a real good athlete. I know his younger brothers a little bit better, but we know each other. We chatted for a while at halftime. He seems to be doing well, which is good.

The Saints (that's Sylva-Bay) scored often in this game. They scored a couple TDs in the first quarter-- one running and one on a long pass play-- and another rushing TD in the second. It's 20-0 at halftime & it's 8:45... A long, long game it looks to be...

I go to the concession stand. I order a cheeseburger and a Pepsi. I'm tempted to order a coke to see if the volunteer says "No Coke. Pepsi." A youngish African-American guy asks me if I work at my college. And I say that I do. I don't recognize him. I've seen many students during my relatively short tenure at the college. I introduce myself and ask his name. We chat. He seems to be doing well, which is good. It's always good to see students who seem to be doing well for themselves. And I hope he does.

The third quarter. The Saints score twice more on running plays. The Lions (that's as you might expect, Veritas) score on a long pass play. It's 32-6.

The fourth quarter. It's 9:40. The Saints score twice more-- again on running plays. All pretty similar plays. It's obvious that Sylva-Bay doesn't want to show too much.

Their next two games are their two most important games against Wayne Academy and Heidelberg Academy-- both teams have traditionally dominated the district. Two teams advance to the playoffs. And in the Clarion-Ledger coaches poll, Wayne was picked first, the Saints, second, and Heidelberg, third. If the Saints win both games, they will likely win their district. If they lose both, they will likely not make the playoffs.

Final score. 9:55 pm. Sylva-Bay 44, Veritas 6.

Walking across the diamond to the first base dugout, I turn to say goodbye to Sylva-Bay's assistant coach & I see he's talking to Chip Pickering. When she was growing up, my mother lived near Judge Pickering in Jones County. And when I worked at the public library in Laurel, one of Chip's sisters frequently used the library.

Chip remembers me. One of his sons plays for Veritas-- a freshman lineman. We chat briefly. He asks what I'm up to. I tell him about my library and writing work. I'll call my mother tomorrow morning and mention that I ran into Chip at the game.

I'm almost done with my coffee. I'm heading to Don's.

25 August 2005


This week, a colleague & I have been going over one of the documents that our committee wrote for the college's SACS reaffirmation of accreditation. We've had to make sure that we've followed the procedures that were set forth regarding such things as citations and hypertext linking. We've also had to make sure that our supporting documentation was in .pdf format.

This afternoon, we finished editing one of the documents in the college's preferred style. We have the supporting documentation in .pdf format as well. Tomorrow, the full committee will go over what we've done. There shouldn't be any trouble. Any decision my colleague and I made was made pretty quickly. We both agreed on the way to approach the citations. Considering that examples were given, we examined the examples and edited our citations accordingly.

This fall is pretty much going to be SACS-oriented. There will be more SACS stuff in future blog entries. Tomorrow after work, I will be going to another football game. So at least the next blog entry shouldn't mention reaffirmation.

24 August 2005

Neil Gaiman

I'm a big fan of his work. He's got a new book coming out soon called Anansi Boys, He's the subject of a really long interview here.

Bookslut also has a good feature on Gaiman, and in a most apropos format, I might add.

23 August 2005


I got back to work yesterday afternoon.

It's been hectic.

I'm glad I was able to take a little time off last week. The past couple days have been busy what with all the preparations surrounding the college's SACS reaffirmation. I'm on a committee writing part of the documentation. For those of you not familiar with academe, reaffirmation/reaccrediation is something needed of all colleges and universities in the US.

I know it's going to continue to be hectic. I'm tired. No pub quiz for me this evening. I might visit Don's though, but can't stay too long though.

20 August 2005

Shuffle Meme

Following the Rev's directive, here are the first 20 songs that come up when I re-press shuffle mode via iTunes.

1. Feed Kill Chain - Jay Farrar
2. The Future - Leonard Cohen
3. Psychedelic Sex Machine - North Misssissippi Allstars
4. One By One - Enya
5. Mario Takes A Walk - Jesse Cook
6. Sweet Home Chicago - Robert Johnson
7. Judy Is A Punk- The Ramones
8. Going Down Slow - Muddy Waters
9. Something In The Air - Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers
10. Santa Cruz - Dirty Dozen Brass Band
11. A Mess Of Blues - Elvis Presley
12. Mellon Collie And The Infinite Sadness - Smashing Pumpkins
13. Linus And Lucy - Vince Guaraldi
14. Make It Alright - Jay Farrar
15. One [S&M album] - Metallica
16. It's Now Or Never - Elvis Presley
17. One Red Rose - John Prine
18. The Possibilities Of Right Now - Questions In Dialect
19. Hard Times [24 nights album] - Eric Clapton
20. Your Hand In Mine (Goodbye) - Explosions In The Sky

Of course, it doesn't have to be iTunes, it can be any mp3 player.

Football Season

In addition to my regular gig, I help out some friends in Laurel who own & operate a high school sports newspaper-- covering mostly football.

This afternoon, I left my mother's house & went to my friends' house in Laurel. K's suv was blocked in by another guest & I had plenty of gas in the Accord, so I said I'd drive.

And so we headed off to Waynesboro for the Presbyterian Christian - Wayne Academy game. We arrived a little before 7:30. The game had actually started at 7. We weren't doing any game stories-- so no big deal. We identify ourselves & walk in to the game.

We get to the home sidelines & the first quarter is nearly over. The Jaguars (that's Wayne) were leading 6-0. It was pretty humid, but no big deal. K takes photos. I serve as her caddy-- carrying her camera case & notebook.

In many ways, it was a typical season-opening game. It was pretty apparent that even though Wayne was leading that PCS's Bobcats wouldn't allow much to happen. It was a defensive-oriented game. Mistakes. Turnovers. I saw & briefly spoke to some people I knew-- Wayne's team doctor is a friend. Our parents knew each other for many years. Also one of Wayne's former football players-- a cousin's stepson's cousin.

Presbyterian scores before halftime, but misses the extra point. The game is tied.

Halftime. K & I go to the other side of the field. She likes to do a cheerleader feature. As it turns out, one of the cheerleaders is the daughter of a professional colleague. I make small talk with my colleague. I also talk to one of the Presbyterian statisticians. I'd attended a couple of their games last season-- a loss at Jackson Prep & a loss to Copiah at M.M. Roberts.

Second half. Back on the Wayne sidelines. PCS intercepts a Wayne pass & later scores. The two-point conversion is successful.

Defense is still paramount. The Jaguars put together a nice little drive, but are stopped. PCS has the ball late in the game and drive the ball. K's mission successful-- photos taken, etc., we leave with less than two minutes to go in the game.

I drive to Laurel. After stopping off at McAlister's and picking up a couple sandwiches and a cup of their famous sweet tea, we arrive at my friends' house. We eat, chat, & visit for about an hour. The local TV station gives the score of the game-- Presbyterian Christian 14, Wayne 6. Then I leave for Canebrake.

18 August 2005

On sale: October 4, 2005

The Complete Calvin & Hobbes.

17 August 2005

Socializing in Jackson

Bucky & T.D. posted in the past three weeks their thoughts and memories regarding some of the bars here in Jackson. I meant to add a comment, but never got a chance, but since I have a few days off, I'll post some few belated things.

Unlike Bucky & T.D., I didn't grow up in Jackson. My grandmother, uncle & aunt, and first cousins lived here. I came over to visit every so often. My first experience with bars in Jackson was Hal & Mal's. I was doing research for my MA history thesis. I went over to Hal & Mal's for lunch.

My second experience was shortly after I had gotten my MLS degree. I had a temp job working at a local law firm in their library. I often ate lunch at George Street Grocery. I usually ate at the bar. Serving at the bar was a guy named Puddin. Nice guy. A few months after the temp job ended, he was killed. That really saddened me.

Five years ago, I'm offered a position where I currently work and so I move here to the area. By then, my grandmother had died. There was just my uncle & aunt and first cousins-- and I hardly ever see my cousins. So it's like what is there for a single guy from smalltown Mississippi to do?

Being the sort who likes coffee shops, bookstores, and bars, I go to some and try to socialize. What with many of my colleagues either being a lot older than I am or married, there weren't many opportunities to go out with people I knew-- so I had to explore. Which is fine with me. I like exploring-- the problem is that the intelligence about the local scene wasn't there.

I went to Hal & Mal's a few times (pre-Pub Quiz) and was unimpressed. I went to the Forum & was unimpressed with it. Yeah, it was big, but there was no atmosphere to speak of. I went to Musiquarium pretty frequently. Its problem was different-- it was too small. I like smaller places, but I also like to be able to move around. It got to be so bad for me that I stopped going to Musiquarium. A few months afterwards, Musiquarium closed.

Bookstores are cool. My oldest friend here in Jackson that I made was at Barnes & Noble is Jen. I don't know if she knows it, but she's helped me a lot. She is a true friend & whenever I see her, I have to smile. Thanks to Jen, I met T.D & later became aware of Martin's, which is where I've met a lot of my friends & acquaintances here in Jackson.

At about that same time (May 2003), my father had died. It was right at the end of the spring semester. I wanted to do something different. I was a little disenchanted with the coffee houses as far as a place to socialize. And even though I like my Shiner Bock & Hoegaarden, I am loath to get drunk. When you grow up in a small town & know people who were alcoholics and died because of alcoholism, it can make an impression.

So anyway, I went to Pub Quiz. Normally I wouldn't have been able to go because I normally worked Tuesday nights, but with school not being in session, I could go, so I did. The first time I went, I was my own team & did pretty well-- didn't finish in the money, but did much better than would be expected for a solo player. The second time I went I saw Jen & T.D. and asked I could team up with them.

And through PQ, I've become acquainted with a lot of people (you can see many of their photos at T.D.'s site), made a bunch of friends-- some of whom I later find out are people I am somewhat distantly related to (if you're keeping score-- second cousins once removed, I think)-- but not of the guy wearing the cap in the second photo.

The last time I had something to drink in Martin's was the first weekend in April. That was a pretty strange weekend for me. My father would have turned 80 that weekend if he were still living. I was not in the best of moods & had way too much to drink that Friday night. I spent the night at T.D.'s house.

The next week all heck breaks loose with the bar scene in Jackson. Now I'll confess. Even though I've made criticisms of the Forum & Musiquarium, it's not the places that ultimately matter to me. It's the people. Many people-- many of them friends and acquaintances-- were upset. And because they were upset, I was sad.

I went to George Street pretty often, but as Bucky said-- the Putsch was unsuccessful. I go to PQ at Hal & Mal's somewhat often-- not as often as I once did-- because it's a slightly different atmosphere. A lot of the people are still there, which is good, but I go about once a month now-- I've not been since the third birthday PQ though. I teamed up with the Episcopalian minister from Justice League whose name escapes me at the moment, a couple of college students, and a high school student. We finished in second.

There's a part of me that wishes things were the same, but I know change happens. Sometimes change is cool. Sometimes change sucks. There's always the people though. Thank goodness for the people.

16 August 2005

The Apropos of Nothing Dead White Male of the Month

Norton I, Emperor of the United States of America and Protector of Mexico

Somewhere Douglas Adams is smiling...

The Bar at the Center of the Galaxy?

Taking a Break at Canebrake...

It doesn't have the je ne suis quoi of "Living Right in Ridgeland," but I'm at my mother's house for a few days.

15 August 2005

One-Day Work Week

I'm at the college. It's the first day of classes & I'm working the late shift.

I'll be taking Tuesday through Friday off. I need the break. It's been a busy work summer for me. I took only two days off-- one was when I went up to Memphis last month to take & pass the Jeopardy Contestant Test. The second one was last week to attend a funeral.

I'll be back at work next Monday afternoon.

14 August 2005

Luciano Pavarotti Loves Elephants

If you're at work, turn down the volume.

I'm surprised this hasn't become a Pub Quiz round yet...

Or has it?

Arsenal 2, Newcastle United 0

The 2005-06 Premiership season starts.

One of the links you'll see to the right of this blog is a link to Arsenal FC. I first saw the Gunners play some friendlys (that's British for exhibition games) when I was over in London in the Summer of 1994 while enrolled in the University of Southern Mississippi's British Studies Program. One of the Profs-- Frank Glamser-- organized a trip to Highbury to see Arsenal, Chelsea, Atletico Madrid, and Napoli play.

Ever since, I've kept up with Arsenal via the Internet and TV whenever they've been on here. I've not been back to London since '94, but want to go back.

13 August 2005

Blues Bash

Yesterday after work, I headed off for Laurel for Blues Bash.

It began raining in Magee and rained hard between Magee and Mize and pretty much rained the whole time on the way to Laurel until I made it to my friends' house over there. They're husband & wife-- I've known them pretty much ever since I was a librarian at the public library over there. He's a recently elected Republican city councilman for Laurel. His wife is in communications (marketing, publicity, etc.) Cool people. They also are the publishers of a high school sports newspaper-- covering schools in the Hattiesburg-Laurel area. I help them out by writing for them-- features, season previews, and even game previews.

Anyway, I made it over there & met up with people who were over there. Most I knew. One I didn't (the husband of someone I'd just met the previous weekend). We visited for a bit and then went by the Museum, where the Bash wasn't because of the aforementioned rain, which had by then died down. We went to the in-case-of-rain site of the Bash-- the Courtyard (or Courtyards?), which used to be, and what I still refer to as Central Avenue Cafe.

I saw people I'd not seen in quite a while-- probably not since the last Blues Bash. I saw a former co-worker who I'm ashamed to say I didn't recognize-- new hairstyle, new haircolor, and she'd lost several pounds... I saw people from my old hometown, Heidelberg. I thought I'd recognized someone who was a few years ahead of me at the Academy, but wasn't sure.

Chatted with some of the Museum folks as well. All in all, good times. Also met up with a friend of friends. Said f.o.f. had gotten remarried. She said I missed my chance to ask her out. Mind you, this f.o.f. is someone I'd only seen at parties about eight times over a four-year period and all but two times (the first time and another time she had to leave early because of an emergency), she had a date. It's good to think that I made a good impression on her, but looking at it from my perspective, she's someone I hardly knew since I'd seen her so rarely, and in fact, had a time remembering her name last night (I am terrible with names after all), but finally remembered it on my own.

I think a couple friends were trying to set me up with someone-- a someone I actually had a couple dates with many years ago... but she reminds me a lot of me-- in the wrong ways. From when we went out and having talked on the phone previously, she'd given me the impression of being a bit too emotionally cold for me-- nothing wrong with being cold in that manner, I consider myself the same way. However, I do like women to be a bit more passionate-- not necessarily fiery, but certainly more extroverted than I am. They knew we had dated. I think they wanted to see if something would rekindle, but as I told one of the friends and another f.o.f. last night-- there ain't nothing there.

11 August 2005

CBGB's gets a legal victory

10 August 2005

Cliffs Notes on...

R. Kelly?

Classic. Found via Jessa's blog.

Mississippi Chinese & Grocery Stores

I was sitting at a local watering hole with T.D. and Laura last night and somehow the subject of China & Chinatowns came up. I remember reading Lotus Among the Magnolias, a book about the Mississippi Chinese several years ago. This Mississippi History web site has some good info about Chinese life in the Delta in the last century.

Thumbing through Magnolia Report, I noticed this Greenwood Commonwealth article about the decreasing number of Chinese groceries in the Mississippi Delta. Unfortunately, that's not unusual. It seems to me that the number of family-owned groceries here in Mississippi has decreased. My family owned a grocery store for some fifteen years. Fortunately, we sold out before the local Wal-Marts started selling groceries.

08 August 2005

A Thomas Wolfe Day

This morning, I went home again.

No, not Hattiesburg where my mother lives. Heidelberg, where I grew up.

I attended a funeral of the widow of one of my father's first cousins. I'd known her for it seems like all my life-- and you know, it has been. Until now.

The funeral was a graveside service at the family cemetery. I saw people I'd not seen in years. I saw cousins I'd not seen in years. Some of their names I remembered. Some of the names, I didn't remember. Nothing impersonal. I'm just absolutely terrible with names. I'm such a stranger now.

I visited with them for awhile. I met one cousin's (if you're keeping score at home: my second cousin once removed) husband for the first time. Nearly everyone told me that I'm looking more and more like my father, which is kind of bittersweet. He died a little over two years ago. But I do have his eyebrows, that's for sure.

I also reacquainted myself with a cousin's pet Boxer-- that playful puppy is now nine years old and has grey hair.

I went by the old homeplace before I went to the funeral. Looks different. It just doesn't have that same feeling though.

I dropped by my old school on the way back. I met up with a teacher I knew & a couple of students from when I was there who are now teachers there. I visited with them for a little while & got the football coach's cellphone number as well as a football schedule. I've written some for a high school sports magazine in the Hattiesburg area. I've known the owners for years. I'll write some more for them.

I'm now at my mother's house at Hattiesburg, I'll rest a bit & then head on up to Jackson this evening. I've got to be at work tomorrow morning.

07 August 2005

I am Hermione Granger...

Courtesy of PoliBlog by way of Harry:

Pirate Monkey's Harry Potter Personality Quiz
Harry Potter Personality Quiz
by Pirate Monkeys Inc.

No big surprise. I've consistently been an ISTJ ever since I first found out I was one some twenty years old.

05 August 2005

Bringing in the Sheaves: A Blog Novel

My pla The Rev has started a blog novel entitled Bringing in the Sheaves. He's a creative mastermind. I read & like his work a lot. I recommend you check out his sites.

04 August 2005

Apropos of Nothing: Doing More to Welcome Potential Deriders

Harry said I needed more potential deriders. He suggested I remove the Blogger membership restriction for those who wish to post comments. So I did.

03 August 2005

Pimp My Library?

Librarian.net brought a smile to me this evening with this little post. I wonder if Xzibit would host...

Cups needs a new window...

I'm sitting here at Cups in Fondren. A truck backs up... and Cups now needs a new window. The glass didn't get to me. The woman who was sitting at the table there had just gotten up a few moments previously... so no injuries thank goodness.

02 August 2005

Rappers & college football teams...

Sexy Results has a fantastic blog entry comparing college football teams to rappers. Freakin' hilarious.

Lost Delta Found

This book looks interesting. And there's a book signing at Lemuria in a couple weeks... Hmmm...

01 August 2005

C'est la vie.

A little over a month and a half ago, I noticed an advertisement in The Chronicle for a part-time position in my field-- working nights & weekends-- at a major Fondren university. So I applied... I figured what the heck, you know.

I received a letter & it turns out the times to work majorly conflict with the hours of my present job. So I withdrew my name from consideration. Too bad, I like the place a lot. My sister has a degree from there. That's life.

Giving in to Peer Pressure aka Humorous Headline o' the Day...

I read this story yesterday on espn.com.

I hope The Diplomat & Laura are satisfied now.