Friday, February 13, 2009

The Smoking Lamp Is Now Lit

The sounds of the engines began to sound like conversation, muffled, yet meaningful. The distance from home hit him. The distance so large it could be easy to get lost in, even for the Navy's latest fighter aircraft. He felt acutely that he was, worlds away from his beginning.

The forced draft blowers whined in unison, just below him, as the flight operations began. He could feel their vibration on the cold bulkhead his sleeping rack was bolted to. All that iron, on the water, being furiously pushed away from all that he loved and was familiar with. He felt it in the pit of his stomach.

There would not be a real morning. A recording of reveille would sound as the lighting snapped on, with that odd squeaking sound of bare feet on immaculate linoleum installed on a steel deck. Conversation wouldn't start right away. The sailor's etiquette of unloading men stacked in shelves three high would work itself out first. But the quiet wouldn't last for long.

This day there would be quarters on the hanger deck for four main machinery room. Usually the "black gang" (engine room personnel) headed down the steep stairs called a ladder that ended up in the unbelievably hot engine room that held two boilers and the number four main engine.

The boiler tenders and machinist's mates weren't much for tradition and not used to forming up for inspection. Ray Searles held a greasy concoction of bacon and bread he swiped from the mess decks as he was on his way to the hanger bay. As he took formation it was behind his back and he was on the next to the last line of men. As the inspection team headed away from him he would eat the sandwich, as it came closer sweeping across the formation toward him, he would stow it again behind his back, assuming the group's "parade rest" instructions.

Behind him a small spot of grease formed. He timed his consumption of the greasy mess perfectly. Finishing it just before the officer stood before him and then moved on to the next man. The sailor behind him watched closely, admiring Searles' rhythm as he syncopated with what would have otherwise been a dull exercise.

The observer was focused, wondering what would happen to the daring sailor and the sandwich that was beginning to smell so good. And all he could think of, thousands of miles from home and next to battle ready fighter aircraft was, why didn't I get a sandwich?

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Beautiful Musical Evenings

A good cigar and a cup of strong black coffee. With some winsome jazz piano tinkling softly in the not so far away background. It is evening and dark on the back porch. And the moon is just beginning to shine through the tops of the tall pine trees. Bright enough to begin making shadows through the tree limbs.

The musical background is supplied graciously by a radio station that has been around since 1964. Jones College radio, like many college radio stations, is non-profit and almost free of any musical interruption. The station calls its music beautiful and is agreeably so. By its own description: "Instrumentals and standards of yesterday and today." The call letters are WKTZ. The dial position is 90.9 and its town is Jacksonville. But it can be heard to Daytona Beach, Florida, and North into Georgia. The station reports regularly of being heard in exotic ports of call, by way of the internet. and a short search will reward you with Jones College music via your computer.

Perhaps you have to be at least fifty years old to really appreciate this radio station. The order of play is ingeniously crafted with selections that can stay in the background of your day yet tenderly tug at your memories. Using that unique facet of music that corresponds with specific times, places, and most magnificently; with people of your heart. Jones College Radio is a wonderful companion. Pouring out a stream of pleasant memories without saying a word. Eddies of places, faces, and special friendships. Flowing by to ease your day and soften your evenings. You will soon find this public servant to be an essential one.

It is an aural history and landscape. And the transitions from one play to the next one sometimes promote a change from one emotion to another. In the familiar way you would consider one time frame in your life and the friends within that frame and then move to another time and other friends. This music source does it carefully and with style, as if being mindful of your precious memories.

I have finished my cigar and the coffee is gone. The evening is beginning to chill just a little bit. Bringing in the aroma of the woods and pine trees. This is turning into a beautiful evening with beautiful music. "Green Sleeves" is playing, a soft accompaniment with which I bid you, good night.

Monday, February 9, 2009

My Hot Date With Simpleology Cooled Quickly

WOW. It looked so promising last night. And I just might be suffering a simple case of cold feet this morning. But the simple in simpleology turned out to be anything but that.

The simple became complex. And the complex came in a pop-up format with various offers and counter-offers. Some were one time offers that will never, ever, be seen again. Written on pages that self-destruct like the mission impossible devices. You must act now! or then, the offers are lost to all of mankind--or maybe just me.

I was supplied with a free forty-five page syllabus in PDF form and offered a wonderful book for free as well. When I went for the book I found it was at the end of the yellow brick road. I declined the journey. Then, a flurry of pop-ups, like the flying monkeys in The "Wizard Of Oz" came at me with more offers than Billy Mays. I ducked them all and logged back into the simple site to check out my new, "free," simple "cockpit" that came with my free offer. Sadly, I found that all my controls were marked "locked." Probably because I wouldn't "put out." I departed the new plane that promised trips to exotic locales and I am patiently waiting for a bus.

Originally, and without any fanfare, I discovered MintArticles. Or,
I can submit articles through them, directly accessed by AdSense; supplying my own website. It is very easy to use and is just starting up. On that site I found good information on how to operate a blog. My interest is in bloggers that don't take advantage of the ad revenue possibilities of their social network, AdSense certainly wants in on it. You must have a publishing I.D. from AdSense, but you can get that for the asking. MintArticles has made the publishing process so much easier with large icons and simple instructions, it is very much point and shoot. My apologies to anyone I caused any difficulty, I certainly did not mean to.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Help from Simple-ology

Here it is friends, a shot at simplifying the blog so we can all have a shot at it.  Don't let your talent go to waste.  I am doing this off of the top of my head.  This group just broke a champagne bottle over their bow and slid into the water.  I have no special interests here just rights of discovery.  You can see my struggles in this blog, I am hoping for a little blog difficulty antidote.

I'm evaluating a multi-media course on blogging from the folks at Simpleology.  For a while, they're letting you snag it for free if you post about it on your blog.

It covers:

  • The best blogging techniques.
  • How to get traffic to your blog.
  • How to turn your blog into money.

I'll let you know what I think once I've had a chance to check it out. Meanwhile, go grab yours while it's still free.

I have struggled and made some headway. There is clarity in a recent discovery of mine,
This site seems to publish more straightforward than any I have seen and it still goes to AdSense. Good explanations of how things work too. Knock around in there and tell me what you think. It is as brand new as a shiny penny.