Life Is A Comedy For Those Who Think...

Thursday, July 28, 2005 at 9:31 PM

Drive Satan, DRIVE...

Jed here, once more filling some lines to cover for Mt. Girl. She has been doing English Comp. II in summer semester and her hands are pulling out her hair when they are not holding that folder her Professor gave her.

She asked me to give it a read, and I think I hurt her feelings when I said it seemed long. Now what the heck would I know about technical writing? I am used to reading the news, or an occasional short novel. When it comes to reading thesis papers "The Comma Splice Kid" (a.k.a. Jed) just goes cross-eyed with fear. Fear that comes from my college daze. I worked on Comp I, with all my might only to get a "C". I suspect that my teacher had mercy on me because I did not miss a class. Needless to say after working near four years on a two year degree Je
d just faded away from the College...not dropped out, just faded away.

I have been delivery driving the past week for a company for 20 cents per is going to take many miles to pay the mortgage. At day four I have covered 3000 miles, and I am tired. I remembered a verse from Job the other day as I drove...

And the Lord said to Satan, "Where have you come from?" Satan answered the Lord, "From roaming through the earth and going back and forth in it."
Job 2:2 (NIV)

I wonder if I would sound like Satan if God asked me the same question today?

Saturday, July 23, 2005 at 9:20 AM

A Sinegal Of Hope...

Tennessee Jed, here filling in for Mountian Girl as she has been busy in her pursuit of sheepskin.

I have been feeling the pinch the past five years of extreme economic struggle. Understanding the big picture normally eases my grief and helps me see past the trees to the forest. Sometimes it causes more grief. Either way I will wiggle until I become comfortable or dead.

One factor I have been observing is greed from the highest levels of leadership. I would like to point out I don't enjoy placing blame on others (so I won't directly). I feel that I am well equipped as a human to be responsible for my own decisions and actions. To study this issue from a layman's point of view, I started comparing my working life to my father's working life. Major factors in cost verses income compared over his life and mine were the focus. Then I saw this blog article "Maximum Wage" by my on-line mentor. My eyes started to open to the fact that opression is growing (as it does every few years when unmonitored and fed). If I carry on with this line of thought I am under the flag of Socialism, which I prefer not to represent. I want to creatively whine by sighting a positive example.

I saw an article by way of Angry Wolf Dog in the New York Times on Costco's CEO Mr. Sinegal who appears to have the right idea. I hope his example can be viewed as a starting point for public and priviate leadership reform in this great country.

Despite Costco's impressive record, Mr. Sinegal's salary is just $350,000, although he also received a $200,000 bonus last year. That puts him at less than 10 percent of many other chief executives, though Costco ranks 29th in revenue among all American companies.

"I've been very well rewarded," said Mr. Sinegal, who is worth more than $150 million thanks to his Costco stock holdings. "I just think that if you're going to try to run an organization that's very cost-conscious, then you can't have those disparities. Having an individual who is making 100 or 200 or 300 times more than the average person working on the floor is wrong."

His business ideas could thrive in the public and priviate sector of high management. If I knew where this man lived I would go there and wash his feet today.

This web log entry has worked my mind to remain on the positive side and not site the many problems we face. I would rather point to a simple example of a man willing to act on his best intentions and value humans. Humans, after all, are the reason he has anything to work with.

My thirteen year old daughter sent me this link on demotivation (sample below) to help me laugh at the world a little bit. I am suprised she has the wisdom to understand the satire in it. Oh God, forgive me as I have passed my darkness down into the next generation.

"It is easy enough to tell what is wrong, but that's not what I want to hear all night long." - Lou Reed -

Wednesday, July 20, 2005 at 10:29 AM

So Long And Thanks For The Big F*** You...

SKB posted this message today beneath the big GAME OVER sign:

So long, and thanks for all the fish!
For those of you who are wondering, yes, this
blog and this website are no more.

It was fun,but lately it has become too much
like work and not so much fun. Contrary to wild
speculation around the internets, that's pretty
much all there is to it. It's a personal decision,
and that's all.

Thanks to everyone for reading and for your
participation over the years. With that, I bid
you adieu.

I have been asked via e-mail and on my comments, what is going to happen to The Rocky Top Brigade? My answer: I'm not sure. It would have been nice to have a little heads up.What do we now all do with our links? How will this affect the traffic to our blogs? If we had warning, we could have planned for the change-over and started a new home. I don't mean to sound ungrateful. Bubba did a wonderful job for the grassroots movement and he provided a "home" to us Rocky Toppers. I do, however, think it was quite rude to throw us away without a word of warning. We have supported SKB in situations where his credibility was attacked. We have promoted him on our blogs and in the community. I realize it is his to do with what he chooses. I enjoy the same freedom. I know that I would not so abruptly quit without warning and leave a flippant message such as "So long and thanks for all the fish". Thanks for the years of service skb. You are appreciated, admired, and respected, but don't let the door hit you in the ass on your way out. How's that for closure.

Okay, then.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005 at 2:37 PM

Game Over????

What the hell happened to South Knox Bubba?

Update: This was added to the SKB site today.
So long, and thanks for all the fish!
For those of you who are wondering, yes, this
blog and this website are no more.

It was fun,but lately it has become too much
like work and not so much fun. Contrary to wild
speculation around the internets, that's pretty
much all there is to it. It's a personal decision,
and that's all.

Thanks to everyone for reading and for your
participation over the years. With that, I bid
you adieu.

Update: Email from Bubba to David A. Garrett Jr.

I’m quitting. Getting to be too much like work and I’m
just tired of all the hassles. Thanks for reading and
thanks for your support.


Saturday, July 16, 2005 at 1:13 PM

This Aint Your Daddy's Cockfight...

Another cockfighting ring has been uncovered. (Inspired by SKB's Cockfighting news)

Here is my interpretation of how it went down.

Gambler 1: Look at the size of that COCK!
Gambler 2: That cock is huge!
Gambler 1: (points to a cock)Why is it the black cocks are always so much bigger?
Gambler 2: I don't know, but that little red cock looks like it could give a good pounding.
Gambler 1: I wonder if they ever put more than two cocks in a ring at a time?

Gambler 2: Shh. Shh. They're about to start. (background crowd voices fall to a hush a cacophony of sound erupts)

Gambler 1: Wooo-Hoooo! My cock's really going at it!
Gambler 2: Uh-Oh. My cock's already bleeding.
(background fighting stops and crowd goes quiet again)(screams at cock) Get UP! Get UP! Well, that sucked! My cock got licked!

(There is a commotion and two plain clothes cops run in with weapons drawn)


(gratuitous big cock)

Wednesday, July 13, 2005 at 11:14 AM


I would like to clarify my opinion (for the sake of individuals with hardened hearts and closed minds) on the letter I posted yesterday.

Practical Penumbra has taken a stab at my logic by insinuating I support troops who commit torture and murder .

"Mountain Girl does not dispute any of these allegations that US and British troops in Iraq are behaving surprisingly like Saddam Hussein's forces."

She does this by merely quoting this response to a reader:

I too support our troops. It is not a question of loyalty to the troops. The troops are pawns in this game. They must do what they are told or face life-long consequences. I hope that we can break this cycle of attack and be attacked. We are perpetuating terrorism, in my opinion, by occupying Iraq."

She goes on to say, "Any American military personnel who gouge out prisoners' eyes or pull off their limbs should be summarily court marshaled, not "supported" by Mountain Girl and her ilk. I do not and never will support those kinds of troops."

Never did I say our troops are "behaving suprisingly like Saddam Hussein's forces". I merely posted a letter I found disturbing. I don't believe our troops are killing innocent bystanders for shits and giggles. When a war is raging, innocent civilians are killed. My president lied to me, made me feel justified for this war, and the terror has not abated. If anything this letter makes me feel as if civilian Iraqi's who were not part of any terror group are now seeing terrorist tactics as their only way of survival against the Forces invading their country. When civilians feel this way we must be doing something wrong.

Buddy Don has an interesting post today that helps validate this point. Robert Pape has written a book following a study of suicide bombers from 1994-2005. The book is titled Dying to Win: The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism.

Here are some of the studies conclusions:

* The data show that there is far less of a connection between suicide terrorism and religious fundamentalism than most people think
* What nearly all suicide terrorist attacks actually have in common is a specific secular and strategic goal: to compel modern democracies to withdraw military forces from territory that the terrorists consider to be their homeland
* Three general patterns in the data support these conclusions
1. First, nearly all suicide terrorist attacks - 301 of the 315 in the period I studied - took place as part of organized political or military campaigns
2. Second, democracies are uniquely vulnerable to suicide terrorists; America, France, India, Israel, Russia, Sri Lanka and Turkey have been the targets of almost every suicide attack of the past two decades
3. Third, suicide terrorist campaigns are directed toward a strategic objective: from Lebanon to Israel to Sri Lanka to Kashmir to Chechnya, the sponsors of every campaign - 18 organizations in all - are seeking to establish or maintain political self-determination
* Before Israel's invasion of Lebanon in 1982, there was no Hezbollah suicide terrorist campaign against Israel; indeed, Hezbollah came into existence only after this event.
* Before the Sri Lankan military began moving into the Tamil homelands of the island in 1987, the Tamil Tigers did not use suicide attacks
* Before the huge increase in Jewish settlers on the West Bank in the 1980's, Palestinian groups did not use suicide terrorism
* There had never been a documented suicide attack in Iraq until after the American invasion in 2003.

If these points are in fact a true reflection of why suicide terrorists do what they do then our administration's logic is flawed. The war is simply feeding the fire and perpetuating terrorism.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005 at 11:18 AM

Don't Blame Me I'm Fighting For MY Country....

Sgt. Zachary Scott-Singley is a soldier in Iraq. I read his blog daily to get a perspective on the war through the eyes of our armed forces. He is on leave right now but I still check in to see if he has returned. Someone posted this letter on his blog yesterday:

A Letter to the British People.

From Iman as-Saadun.

I’m sending this letter to the British people and in particular to the residents of London. For a period of hours, you have lived through moments of desperate anxiety and horror. In those hours you lost a member of your family or a friend, and we wish to tell you in total honesty that we too grieve when human lives pass away. I cannot tell you how much we hurt when we see desperation and pain on the face of another person. For we have lived through this situation – and continue to live through it every day – since your country and the United States formed an alliance and laid plans to attack Iraq.

The Prime Minister of your country, Tony Blair, said that those who carried out the explosions did so in the name of Islam. The Secretary of State of the United States, Condaleezza Rice, described the bombings as an act of barbarism. The United Nations Security Council met and unanimously condemned the event.

I would like to ask you, the free British people, to allow me to inquire: in whose name was our country blockaded for 12 years? In whose name were our cities bombed using internationally prohibited weapons? In whose name did the British army kill Iraqis and torture them? Was that in your name? Or in the name of religion? Or humanity? Or freedom? Or democracy?

What do you call the killing of more than two million children? What do you call the pollution of the soil and the water with depleted uranium and other lethal substances?

What do you call what happened in the prisons in Iraq – in Abu Ghraib, Camp Bucca and the many other prison camps? What do you call the torture of men, women, and children? What do you call tying bombs to the bodies of prisoners and blowing them apart? What do you call the refinement of methods of torture for use on Iraqi prisoners – such as pulling off limbs, gouging out eyes, putting out cigarettes on their skin, and using cigarette lighters to set fire to the hair on their heads? Does the word “barbaric” adequately describe the behavior of your troops in Iraq?

May we ask why the Security Council did not condemn the massacre in al-Amiriyah and what happened in al-Fallujah, Tal‘afar, Sadr City, and an-Najaf? Why does the world watch as our people are killed and tortured and not condemn the crimes being committed against us? Are you human beings and we something less? Do you think that only you can feel pain and we can’t? In fact it is we who are most aware of how intense is the pain of the mother who has lost her child, or the father who has lost his family. We know very well how painful it is to lose those you love.

You don’t know our martyrs, but we know them. You don’t remember them, but we remember them. You don’t cry over them, but we cry over them.

Have you heard the name of the little girl Hannan Salih Matrud? Or of the boy Ahmad Jabir Karim? Or Sa‘id Shabram?

Yes, our dead have names too. They have faces and stories and memories. There was a time when they were among us, laughing and playing. They had dreams, just as you have. They had a tomorrow awaiting them. But today they sleep among us with no tomorrow on which to wake.

We don’t hate the British people or the peoples of the world. This war was imposed upon us, but we are now fighting it in defense of our selves. Because we want to live in our homeland – the free land of Iraq – and to live as we want to live, not as your government or the American government wish.

Let the families of those killed know that responsibility for the Thursday morning London bombings lies with Tony Blair and his policies.

Stop your war against our people! Stop the daily killing that your troops commit! End your occupation of our homeland!

July 11, 2005 11:50 PM

Scary? I wonder if this person speaks for a majority of Iraqi's.

Monday, July 11, 2005 at 11:26 AM

Friendship At It's Finest....

Last week I was able to bring the breaking news of two Knoxville girls injured in the London blasts thanks to a cousin of mine who has been Emily's best friend since they were small children. She found out within a couple hours of the blasts and shared the information with my family. She was distraught and needed consoling. Not only was her best friend in surgery but her soon-to-be father-in-law had not been heard from either. He had arrived in London the previous night. (He has still not been contacted) The day following the blast my cousin was inundated with calls from Entertainment Tonight, CNN, MSNBC, Fox, and of course the local news outlets. They wanted pictures of the girls, an interview with my cousin about the girls, and anything else she could give them. My cousin refused. She told them, "If you want pictures ask their father. If you want information ask them. I am not going to give you anything they have not given me permission to give." One man was particularly nasty with her, but she held her ground. I am quite proud of her for being so aware at such a young age and in the face of grief. I am proud of her for being an exemplary friend. I am proud of her for not trying to capitalize on someone elses tragedy. How wonderful it would be if more people had these same virtues. It takes some of us our entire lives to learn the traits this girl possesses at the age of 20.

Friday, July 08, 2005 at 10:55 AM

Friday Tire Swing Blogging...

With all that is going on in the world just enjoy the simple pleasures of life and think of things you can do to entertain the kids.

Tennessee Jed here, standing in for Mtn. Girl as she seeks paperwork in another city to brighten her future.

A couple-three years ago I drew up a plan to use a 36 inch tractor tire that was discarded on my (and mostly the banks) property. I did not want to haul it off and then have to pay ten dollars to have someone dispose of it in a proper manner. I kept looking at it for the useful object it was, a nice round shape, very solid and very heavy. I drew this image with a no.2 pencil and went to work.

I remember a quote that went something like: All people want is love, if they can't get love, they want hope, if hope is slght, then give them something to work on.

This project worried me some for the safety of
the children since the tire itself was over a hundred pounds and in full swing I guessed it would triple that without any humans on it. I studied the project for flaws and failure possibilities. The first thing to go was the yoke idea, if that fell on the skulls of my little GOD!
I used 4 lengths of #12 1/2"tripple braided nylon rope each having a working load of 525 lbs. and a 5760 pound breaking point. I attached it to a very alive 120 ft. sugar maple tree about 40 feet high to a 18" branch at a fork about 12 feet away from the trunk with a nylon sleeve used for wire.

The kids love it! The only real danger now is for the person pushing it. When it has four kids on it in full swing and it hits you closer than expected, it is similar to stopping a car with your hands...ouch.

Some days it is nice to to look at it empty and still while pondering peace.

Thursday, July 07, 2005 at 11:54 AM

Knoxville Girls Injured In London Blasts...

Two Knoxville girls were aboard a subway in London when it was bombed early this morning. Katie and Emily Benton were aboard a London Subway. One girl is presently in surgery the other girl's condition is not known. Knoxville Fellowship Church is asking for prayers for these two young victims and all involved. This comes after it was reported no Americans were injured.

This just came in via agee at SKB:
"Emily's feet were both badly injured and she is currently in surgery. Her sister, Katie, who was with her on the train, is presently unaccounted for. They volunteer in London for the Middle School Ministry through Fellowship Church."

Second Update:
A friend of the girls reports Katie is accounted for but her hands are badly burned. She also has shrapnel in her side.

Third Update: A Knoxville man is presently unaccounted for. I cannot reveal his name as of yet at the request of the family.

Fourth Update: Emily is now out of surgery. She suffered injuries to her feet and to her one of her arms. She did suffer some broken bones and will need to have more surgery in the future.
Katie is in the same hospital as Emily and suffered shrapnel wounds to her back, neck, and one of her legs. Doctors in London expect a full recovery for Katie.

At least 37 people were killed and 700 injured today when 4 bombs exploded on London's transit systems.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005 at 12:48 PM

Damn, I'm In Charge...

Tennessee Jed told me he saw a photo of The Queen Mary II over at Buddy Don's Wandering Hillbilly. It prompted him to write this enlightening story about a dream he had a few years ago.

Here is his reponse to bd's post:

Hey Now, what a ship! I understand having a boatload on your mind my friend. I have a most vivid dream story I would like to tell you about. I hope this doesn’t bore you too much or is too long to be a comment, but I wanted to share it, if I may. In the winter of 1999 I was facing the worst conditions of my life and was sleeping shallow and short when this vision of my life appeared in my media drenched, overburdened and semi-conscious mind.

I was walking along a wide boardwalk with consistent lampposts against a starry sky that did not seem familiar. While I was on this walk, there were strangely uniformed people snapping off salutes to me, as if I were the most important person in the world. The salutes were not military salutes. They were more just a smile, a nod and a foot movement that caused a pause in their step. It was the uniformity of the movements and dress that had me in the mind of some form of discipline. These people were familiar faces. They were not close friends just people of vague acquaintance whom I had never had a chance to get to know, but were always around, like a local store you see all the same folks shopping when you live in community. While acclimating to all this human attention, I started to notice the surrounding machines, hoists and railings on what was a huge deck speckled with lighted areas and people doing chores around these machines.

I only realized it was a deck at this time because beyond a certain defined and distant point there was no light except for the star patterns I did not recognize. The constellations were as if they were something my mind would guess the southern hemisphere’s sky to be with an “X” shape being a main feature and no big or little dipper. On my walk, I approached a raised tower that seemed to be my goal. It was the only thing that really broke the horizon of the deck. The tower was not at all a ships control tower, but more an open top scaffold made of uniform machined cross bars with a few evenly spaced marker lights. I wanted to be on that lookout more than anything, and the folks moving past me seemed to open the way with kind and respectful gestures that eventually led me to the stairs of this modest structure.

As I moved up the stairs I became aware of the size of this ship. It was intimidating me if I were in command like the people on deck had alluded. The outline rail lights of this place were a dashed white in a pitch black field. It was as dark as a Halloween cut out on black paper and would have been at least as wide as a football field is long, and five times that from front to back. I realized at that point I could not determine my direction of travel nor could I discern the rear from the front of this vessel.

At the top there was a man more familiar to me. He was not a close acquaintance just a man I could place at work. I had known his first name at one time, but it was lost. I felt better seeing him there, as he looked in charge with some markings on his chest that was different from the other uniforms. His face was the kind of face I had noticed because I saw him working and he held his brow in such a way that seemed wise and confident, even though he was obviously younger than me. His gaze and features were strong and more certain than I ever felt. He was a studious sort of fellow. He always kept large bound books on his rolling tool cabinet that were not machine manuals, like my cohorts and I. He adorned glasses that seemed a part of his face since childhood and dark facial features not definable to a certain race. He was working a sextant type device. Beside him was a huge book of numbers in rows and columns on a very technical looking table. The table held an adjustable lamp. The lamp was the kind used to aid in the navigation of stars but not interfere with the viewing of them. It was dim but sufficient. I had never visited his workstation properly, to find out what these books were because meeting people at this huge machine shop was risky business as the management kept a constant threat on us to mind our own duties and not visit neighboring processes unless you saw someone in peril.

When he heard me arrive, he took his eye from the eyepiece and gave me a similar, but more relaxed salute than the others. I awkwardly returned the favor and spoke, “Where are we?” not wanting to follow it up with an unsure name, I was thinking it was Doug, but did not want to risk it. He replied, “Well Captain, I am not sure”. My heart jumped, “damn I am in charge”. My mind whirled because my question should have been, “where am I”. “Well what do you know so far?” I asked. His reply sent chills up my forearms, which I noticed at that point had bright metallic stripes on the cuff unlike any uniform onboard and worried me further. “Well” he said, “It seems as if the charts are out of season with the stars like some shift of season, and the known coordinates and dates are messed up. The stars are not where they are expected to be, from where I last charted”. I though it would be best if we called someone to help us chart our course, but something told me that was not an option. I asked “Can we just proceed back along our path, to where we last charted correctly and go from there?” “You mean dead recon back?” he asked. “That’s risky since things have changed so much”. “Well then just proceed along out current course and perhaps things will look different tomorrow night” I told him, and woke in a clammy but familiar skin.

I looked for the familiar face at work. I spoke to people in the shop asking where he was. No one seemed to know of whom I spoke. Since this dream I have wondered if I steered those folks from their lost course or if we all are still adrift without knowing where we are. -Tennessee Jed

I think this story is relevant to all our lives. Even when things seem out of our control it truly is us who are in charge of our own helm.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005 at 1:40 PM

Let The Bot Do It.....

Cruise Control for all of those "I'm too busy today, bloggers."

And in the news...
Image hosted by Photobucket.comThree-term U.S. Sen. Gaylord Nelson, D-Wis., the founder of Earth Day, died at his Maryland home Sunday of cardiovascular disease. He was 89.

Nelson was a co-sponsor of the 1964 Wilderness Act and laws that banned the pesticide DDT, Agent Orange and phosphorus detergents.

Nelson came up with the idea for Earth Day in 1969, after visiting an oil spill off Santa Barbara, Calif., The Washington Post said. He was reportedly astounded by the first turnout when 20 million Americans joined the April 22, 1970, event -- cleaning up creeks, recycling cans and learning about ecology.
Full article here.

Monday, July 04, 2005 at 12:13 AM

God Bless America....

Updated July 5, 2005.

Bring Them Home

Saturday, July 02, 2005 at 4:21 PM

We Are Starting A Religion.....

"Writing for a penny a word is ridiculous. If a man really wants to make a million dollars, the best way would be to start his own religion" -L.Ron Hubbard Reader's Digest, May 1980

And he did.

We are building a religion
We are building it bigger
We are widening the corridors
And adding more lanes

We are building a religion
A limited edition
We are now accepting callers
For the pendant key chains

To resist it is useless
It is useless to resist it
His cigarette is burning
But he never seems to ash

He is grooming his poodle
He is living comfort eagle
You can meet at his location
But you better come with cash

Now his hat is on backwards

He can show you his tatoos
He is in the music business
He is calling you dude!

Watch Tom Cruise kill Oprah....HILARIOUS!