Saturday, April 30, 2011

The Naked Lunch....

There are NO birthday candles. A nude cake.

Yep. 72 would really be a LOT of candles.

And look pretty silly.

Not to mention The Liberty Tap & Grill in Mt. Pleasant would be quite a bit warmer.

My brother and his wife suggested we meet there for a birthday lunch and I readily agreed.

(Please ignore the small bite that I took before I remembered to put down my fork and reach for my camera.)

I have eaten at The Liberty before and ordered the Salmon BLT.

As usual, it was excellent.

They were "new" there and liked my suggestions of the Grouper sandwich and the Wasabi Seared Tuna.

I try to stay away from hot or spicy but they both tasted - and praised - the bright green sauce.

April is over and the offers of birthday meals from restaurants have come to an end.

My brother was telling me about the exercises he does and the weight he has lost.

I didn't have a lot to add to that conversation.

Well, not yet.

(Click twice on the photos for food details. I'll be moving clothes soon that are hanging on my treadmill and see if it'll start. Really.) Thanks for stopping by.

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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Birthday Presents...

So my 72nd birthday tomorrow means free food.

Denny's wants me to come by for breakfast.

Might stop along the way for a free birthday drink of my choice at Starbucks.

Social Media Marketing means companies keep track of such things as your birthday and then they let you know that they know. Cool.

This evening, it's a night-before-birthday treat at Ruby Tuesday.

They want me to enjoy one of their special burgers AND unlimited French fries. (Or are they still being called Freedom Fries?)

The Crab Shack is a fine seafood restaurant I enjoy all year long.

This week they want me to come by for a free birthday feast.

Looks like I could be out to The Edge Of America to participate in the the Shack's noted Crabby Hour.

Or I might go to their West Ashley location.

Either place, I probably will have some of their peel-and-eat shrimp.

Nom. Nom.

The really good news is places offer you a week or so to come in and celebrate.

Could have been a long, long night!

(Click on pictures to read the signs.) Thanks for stopping by to wish me a Happy Birthday.

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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Just Rolling Along....

My first ever Roller Derby game, er, I mean, Bout.

I was surprised to see it's on a flat surface and that short oval must seem much longer when you're actually skating on it.

For all the first-timers, they do a Slo-Mo run through that explains who the players are and what they're trying to do to score points.

And I thought it was just a fist fight on wheels!

Actually, it's pointed out, you're not allowed to use your elbows, your hands or do any head butting.

Hmmm. What's left?

Many referees are skating around the track calling fouls and sending people to the penalty box.

Another ref points out the "Jammer" (star on her helmet) and that's the one trying to go through the defensive pack.

One point for each person she passes after the first go around.
It's definitely a contact sport and it was exciting to watch.

These ladies are in good shape and very dedicated to the sport.

The theme was "Malice In Wonderland" so the mayhem matched the madness.

Many costumes - Mad Hatter, Queen of Hearts, and Malice, I mean, Alice, of course.

I had not been to the Field house at the Citadel before and my camera is good - but not the best for fast action sports.

However, I found there was ample beer on hand.

(Click - twice - on the photos for more detail.)

A large SLR with zoom lenses would be much better but at least I came away with some memories.

I saw the visiting team colors were black and blue. How appropriate for this sport!

Stop by again and go watch a bout. Sip a PBR.

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Friday, April 22, 2011

"You Had Me At KWAK..."

So the last time I had seen a Kwak served in the distinctive glass in it's miniature wooden holder was in Belgium.

It's a requirement when serving it properly.

By Belgian law.

Or tradition.

With 700 different beers - and particular glasses for each one - it can get confusing.

But Oak Barrel Tavern in West Ashley does it right.

If you're heading to Gene's Haufbrau or crossing the street to Triangle Char or Mellow Mushroom, you might miss the small store front.

Seek it out.

You'll be glad you did for a change of pace. And taste.

And, speaking of Easter, it's time for me to dust off my two favorite "seasonal" shots.

The bunnies of course came from the internet.

I buy a chocolate bunny each year but keep forgetting to take pictures as I bite off the ears.

The other shot of a cancellation sign was taken on James Island about 12 years ago.

A church's annual Easter tradition ran into problems and could not be presented.

I love tradition.

Chocolate bunnies or reliving a beer drinking experience in Bruges, Belgium.

(Clicking on the pictures usually produces more detail. A shot taken from the internet does not always enlarge. My small collection of beer glasses includes a tall yard of ale glass, a half-yard, a foot and a tiny toe. Collect glasses responsibly.)

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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

WHAT? I Can't Hear You....

Here's something most people don't do often.

Well, probably police officers. And members of the military.

I remember qualifying as a Marine with a .45 at Parris Island many, many years ago.

The discount coupon Living Social offered a special shooting package at the ATP Gun Shop & Range in Summerville.

Normally I select B.O.G.O. (Buy One Get One free)deals for restaurants, bars, movies and the like but I DID have a .38 special revolver and it had been years since I had fired it.

The offer included range time, targets, a box of 50 bullets, safety glasses and hearing protectors.

My previous weapon had been a 9 mm semi-automatic that had one small problem. It would occasionally jam.

I bought a less complicated revolver.

With a 5-shot pistol you spend a lot of time reloading.

It had been about 6 years since I had been shooting and I couldn't find my gun cleaning kit when I got home. Hmmm. Not good.

Checking around, I found that K-Mart had dropped all guns and supplies but Wal-Mart still carried what I needed.

It's not over until you police up the brass and clean your weapon.

(Click on the photo for more detail. If you didn't have a gun, they would loan you a S&W or a Glock. These have 10-15 round magazines. Yikes.) Thanks for stopping by.No concealed weapons allowed.

*Note: you unload a gun to clean it. I re-loaded the rounds AFTER the weapon was clean and oiled.

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Saturday, April 16, 2011

Photography is light .....

Taking pictures at a music concert is a challenge.

First, there might be a sign saying "No Flash Photos."

Well, I try to shoot natural light so that's not the main problem.

The Pour House has GREAT sound. But, sometimes I am "fighting" the light man.

Changing the lights suddenly is not good. Or flashing them in your eyes. Dimming the lights - ouch! Hard to calculate exposure.

The Music Farm has great lighting.

There's a balcony level on each side too. Gives different views.

Still, the BEST concert experience is down on the floor.

Being jostled by dancers. Drinks spilled on you. Arms pumping the air excitedly blocking your shots.

Usually, the brighter the stage, the more detail of faces in the crowd.

Shows at major venues are often so well lighted, you can have your camera set same as a regular sunny day.

Then you can freeze action at 1/200 sec.

THAT'S a "light day" at work for me.

(Click on photos for more detail. Taj Mahal at the Pour House was SRO so more of a challenge shooting from back of the room. Acoustic Syndicate set up additional flashing lights. April Mary was an opening act at Music Farm.) Thanks for stopping in.

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Monday, April 11, 2011

Blues By The Sea - 2011

Listening to the Blues is good.

Hearing a talented legend is even better.

Did I mention this was a FREE concert?

James Cotton is a master of the Harp. The man has played with the best and learned from them all.

Gary Erwin a.k.a. Shrimp City Slim, is quite a Blues keys player himself and he puts together great shows.

Gary's 17-day February Blues Bash has an enormous following as he brings in talent from EVERYWHERE.

Sharing the bill Sunday at Freshfield Village - Kiawah - was Marcelo Ponce Y Viviana Dallas from Buenos Aires, Argentina.

This couple plays terrific Blues and Gospel and run an Escuela de Musicos in B.A.

They are on their first trip ever to North America. They were surrounded by blooming azaleas and Spanish moss-laded oaks as they sang our Songs of the South.

Imagine going to a foreign country and singing their national folk music. Yikes.

Ike & Val Woods, dynamic husband and wife team, are based in Miami.

They brought a joyous sound of Blues, R&B, vintage soul and some Florida Funk.

Yes. There was plenty of dancing.

How could you sit still?

(My shady spot was easy to get because I showed up early. Being across the street from a Newton Farms store meant food and beverage was right at hand. Chef from Cajun Country Kitchen in Hanahan was there with his colorful tasty Louisiana creations too.) Thanks for stopping by.

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Saturday, April 09, 2011

Hey, good buddy, what's your 20?

Do you remember CB radios?

Truck drivers. And then private cars. Citizen Band radios.

"I got your back door" meant the police wouldn't come up from behind and catch you speeding.

Being able to talk between vehicles. Wow.

That got REALLY big in the 70s.... and then, CBs just disappeared.

Now people text or just call each other on cell phones.

I found a set of walkie-talkies I bought years ago.

But, you need two people to make these devices work.

Or, maybe, just you and your cat.

It helps if she's a young kitten and still takes things at face value.

A clicking noise or a familiar voice needs to be examined.

Batter it around and make it be quiet.

My 7-year old cat would first have checked to see if it was food.

He would have ignored this thing and gone back to sleep.

That's a big 10-4. Catch you on the flip flop.

(Click on the photos to see the confused kitty better. I see it as a learning experience for her.)I'm glad you stopped by. Now you know my 10-20.

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Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Where In The World.........?

Yikes. This blog is five years old.

I've done 404 postings.

There have been about 47,000 "hits" from all over the world.

(A "hit" is someone who has opened my blog and looked around.)

So far, visitors have come from all 50 states, two U.S. territories (Guam & Puerto Rico) and 132 other countries.

Being a typical American, I have to click on Google to locate most of the new countries. It has been quite a satisfying geography lesson.

Back in the 1970s, while subscribed to National Geographic magazine, I received a leather bound divided binder with some interesting maps tucked inside.

Many countries have come and gone since then.

But Google keeps me up to date when I see hits scattered around China, Brazil, Korea, Malaysia, The Russian Federation, India, Bangkok, Kuwait or the Congo.

Sofia, Bulgaria; Minsk, Belarus; Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam; Tiszakanyar, Hungary and Dopohol, Romania all have looked me over.

It really gets strange when I see my blog in a foreign language. Now, THAT warrants another "Yikes."

(Click on the globes for more details.) I took Latin for 4 years at BEHS but don't really speak other languages. Thanks for dropping in to visit. Danke or gracias.

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Monday, April 04, 2011

A Slice Of Life.......

So the pizza place is called "Your Pie."

You go down the line and select the toppings, the crust and all the other details.

Hmm. don't we do that at EVERY pizza place?

Anyway, the ad said "next to the Coburg Cow" in West Ashley.

I liked that they had Italian birra on tap and ordered a Moretti.

Then I placed my glass so the Coburg sign outside looked like an orange slice you see served on a Blue Moon beer.

Yes, I play with my food and my drinks.

The pizza was just the start of the evening.

Next was the Pour House on Maybank Highway.

The Acoustic Syndicate was in town and I remembered they bring their own light show.

Quite a dazzling effect.

That means standing back to enjoy the lights before you join the crowd down in front of the stage.

As is often the case, I was probably the oldest guy there.

Also likely the only one wearing professional ear plugs.

I've been to a LOT of loud shows in my time.

The night before I was at Home Team BBQ in Sullivan's Island for a sneak preview of Zydeco band J.J. Callier from Louisiana.

He was in town for Sunday's Cajun Country Festival and his 10-year old son was playing spoons & washboard.

I was pleased to catch a moment when he and his dad had the same set mouth look.


(Click on the photo for more details. The earplugs got a nice workout and no, I did not do the Bridge Run.) Thanks for stopping by the blog.

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