Monday, June 17, 2013

Well, I have had enough of Face Book and am going to try my blog again. I will invite many of my FB friends here and hope many will follow and join. Time will tell. So first, this is just a test to see if I still know how to do this. Not much will change because Molly set this up for me and I don't know how to change anything ;-) I hope to write about most anything that comes to mind - again, we'll see how it works out.. So this is #1 as a test.... Molly is no longer with me. My best friend died jan 2012. But the references to her quilting sites are still good so check her blog out too. they are located in the right column of my blog.. well that's about all for now... thanks for reading this ...

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Hi all.... Thought I would try making a small post just to find out if I still have anyone still on here. I do almost everything on Facebook now but I post on it like I do a Blog. Most everyone shares the same stuff over and over so thought I would try this. And believe me, it took a while to refigure again of how to use this Blog... Much has changed!! I do miss writing on here and hope I get some responses but I do understand most of you were Molly's friends and prefer talking sewing, quilting and the like - Still I had to try,, Thank all of you for being Molly's friends ... I wish I knew how to send this to all the friends she had made over the years. If I read things right, she is missed!!! I know I miss her too... Thanks again and hope to hear from y'all A picture of me and my Molly (hope this works ;-)

Friday, May 25, 2012

It's National `What' week???

Well, it's me again after a long absence. I have not been able to get on here again and now think I might have gotten this figured out. I have been doing most of my writing on Facebook which I still don't understand but continue to try. As another experiment, I am going to post this little tad-bit of information: While I was observing Memorial Week and doing some research, I discovered that it is also National EMT week. Now that struck me funny. Why would they share the same week? A little more looking and I discovered this is only a tiny bit of sharing of commemorative days/weeks. There are so many that it shocked me. There are weeks set aside for just about EVERYTHING..... Don't believe me??? Check this site out for a listing.. ..... Might have to cut and paste - Remember, this is an experiment

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

A New try at my blog

I might have found the problem with why Molly and I couldn't use our blogs. I think I fixed it. Anyway, this is a test..

Hope it works `cause I like writing in my blogs.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Problems posting on my blog

Hi all,

Boy I have been having lots of problems getting on my blogs. I can write them BUT can't post them. Molly's blog works ON THE SAME COMPUTER...

I have GOOGLED my problem and found lots of answers of what is causing this. I have tried everyone but nothing seems to work.

BUT I stumbled into a backdoor to get on my blog. It is to complicated to explain and I am not even sure if I can explain it in words. Basicly I have to write the blog and hit publish.... all it does is save it as a draft.... I then go to my editing area where all my posts are listed. I check the draft and hit publish at the bottom of the page. Now it is published but I can edit it where it will change anything in the post.. That sounds like fun. It works every second or third time.. Now I am going to try to publish this one.. Wish me luck!!

Be sure to check my other blog too. I am going to try to put some stuff on there too...

Bye for now

Saturday, August 6, 2011

A cop was killed in our town

A Cop on the Beat (poem) - a cop killed (true)
Hi all,

This post is a sad one. We had a policeman killed in Rapid City recently. Two other officers were wounded. The cop-killer who was stopped in a routine traffic stop was shot and later died at the hospital. He was a known offender and handled by the police many times.

If you would like to see the news article to get a better idea, click below:
and lots of pictures:

The officer is Officer J. Ryan McCandless

From the write-up and pictures, you can see this officer was a very special man - a good man - a good cop!!

Being an old cop myself, this hit me a little harder than most (other than close friends and family). As many of you know, I deal with things by writing about them. I wrote the following poem in memory of the brave officer who guarded our town.

God Bless him and the people who hurts due to his death....


A Cop on the Beat
By jay Wilson ©2011

A cop on the beat, patrolling the street
Made that stop that policemen all fear
Some fool with gun, with scruples none
Killed the young officer without a tear

This officer was good, did what he could
To make this city safe for you and for me
He put his life on the line, ended up dying
Now he is gone from friends and family

The news hit hard and I turned to the Lord
To seek for the answer I needed
I read the good book, I took a long look
I was assured the officer would be greeted

The Bible did say, a passage for this day
`bout a person laying down his life for a friend
To heaven he soared, to the arms of the Lord
But sadly will be missed by us and his kin

I will pray for his soul, but the truth be told
The officer already stands by the golden gate
I’m sure he is on guard, working for the Lord
And as always, the officer’s duty’s first-rate

The day may come when you are the one
who will ask St Peter if you can go in.
It would be great, if that cop by the Gate
smiles and says, “Welcome, my friend.”

Thursday, August 4, 2011

If ya don't like the weather - wait a minute ;-)

A NOTE- I have been trying to post this since last June 25.... Something prevented me from being able to post.... I am going to try now for the 8th time and see what happens. Yes it will be an old Blog BUT I am determined to get this thing working. So, if it works, here it is... If it doesn't - dang it - I will keep trying ;-)

PS - I am writing about Hail and today it is close to a hundred .. Now that is late!!!!


If ya don't like the weather in Texas - you just wait a minute ... or that's how the old Texas saying goes... Well I have news for you - It's the same in South Dakota.

This last Friday (June 24) started off kinda normal with the weather but steadily got hot as the day wore on. Some friends of ours (along in years) was having a garage sale just down the road from our apartment building. I checked on them about 11am. They were already too hot to be out there even with their ice tea and shade. I told them I would come back about 4pm and help them put their stuff up. Well, the heat got to them AND ME so they packed it in about 3pm. This turned out to be a very good decision.

I told them I would help them in the morning get setup again for Saturday's sale.

Now here's where it gets interesting. Menacing clouds started rolling in ... and rolling in ... and getting DARKER. I had checked on a neighbor in the apartment building next to ours. I decided I had best head for home `cause the sky was about to do some bad things... and it did.

First there was a small shower and then the hail came. It caught me within 30 feet of the door to my apartment. The pieces of ice were huge; some the size of golf balls. I had my hand over my head when one hit me on my middle knuckle of my right hand. Hurt like HAIL.......

A second `boulder' of ice struck me on the right shoulder near my neck... Also hurt!!!!!!! There was a constant pelleting of marble size hail. I had never seen hail falling like this stuff was doing. I think the one that struck me on the neck was the size of a grey-hound bus.... well, it felt like it to me..

I got inside and it took only minutes to completely cover the ground with the falling ice pellets.

Here is a picture of a car being pelted but the picture doesn't do the hail justice. The balls of ice started melting as fast as it hit the ground. By the time I thought of a camera... most was already melted. At one point, you could not see the ground, roadway, or sidewalks.

We had lots of windshields broken and dimples on the hoods and tops of our neighbor's cars but ours escaped damage. The only damage Molly and I had was mostly to my little garden. Tomatoes, pepper plants and cabbages will have to be replanted.... The planted area closer to the building was okay.

All this happened in a matter of minutes while we were sun-burning just hours before.

Like I said, the pictures do not do justice as to what happened... There were thousands of 1 1/2" hail but I also saw dozens that were as big a golf balls. But all in all we did better than those five miles away from us. They reported hail three inches across. Ours was tiny besides theirs.

Then we get the National Weather Service warning - the weather channel had put us under another alert for a second wave of the same about 45 minutes. They advised for folks to take shelter in the middle of your home or building.... Dumb us! We went outside and set in our lawn chairs to watch it come in and then we were going to run for cover. We enjoyed a nice afternoon; sipping tea. NOTHING HAPPENED... Yep, the weather changed it's mind.

Our little experience was like that old saying down in Texas where I came from ... but South Dakota got a good dose of what that old saying says.. If ya don't like the weather - just wait a minute.... It worked for us ;-)

But ya know, I would rather have this hail storm than the heat and fires my Texas friends write to me about.

Got to run for now ... I have some garden plants to replace.

My best as always

PS and yes my swollen finger still hurts but not as much as my neck and shoulder (but then, I have always been a crybaby).

PSS Just imagine how I would complain if we were getting the tornadoes or the fires or the `lack of rain' as many of the states around the U.S.A. are dealing with. Those are the folks who have it bad... Think of them in your prayers.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Getting to first-base at the fast-foot place

Yep, it's true. I got mad at a couple of kids(16 yrs old) that makes a spectacle of making out and they didn't care who saw. Now first understand, I am no prude even if I am in my 60s. But I did have the decency to do it in a private place (well semi-private if we count drive-ins). These kids seem to take great pride in hugging kissing AND groping. They stand out in public and do more tonguing than a heifer cleaning her new born calf. Both of their hands were busier than a clock on steroids. And the funny part is they seem to intentionally get where we can see them. They just don't care. I will tell you, if that was my daughter .... well enough on that!!!!!

Anyway, after sitting out in front of our apartment with Molly and two other ladies we kinda voted that someone should throw water on the kids before they burned `something'.

We had our laugh and decided to call it a day of our tea drinking group. I asked Molly if she would like to run into town and get a burger. NOTE- she beat me to the car and she was on a walker. :-0 she does like hamburgers.... so off we went.

We arrived at the fast-food place and ordered a couple burgers, fries, drink, and an apple pie to finish off the meal. When I take my wife out for a meal, I spare no expense he he he...

Now you might wonder why these two subjects are thrown together. And where this is leading. I'm glad you asked (I assume you asked because you are still reading). I'll explain!

I finished my excellent meal and picked up the box containing my little apple pie. I took a bite while reading the box. Suddenly it hit me. Where do kids get these ideas to `smacky-mouth' in such a public place like in front of 4 old folks; 50 feet from where we were sitting. And the answer was right there in front of me on the little apple box.

I'll add a scan of the box below and you see if you can see a subliminal message printed for all to see. Be sure to read all the words AND put them with the picture. If your eyes are like mine, you might want to click on the picture to make it bigger (QQ). Hummmm Now all I can hope for is Molly gets the subliminal message. AND if she does, it'll be indoors behind closed doors in private. Dang, where is a drive-in when you need one?

By the way, you'll notice I did not name the fast food place.... But don't look too hard on the box unless you want to figure it out.

Monday, February 28, 2011

A hero died today - Frank Buckles - WW-1

A hero died today

Age 16 years
Above is the Face of a Hero -- Why? - Read on please

Hi all,

I have kept up with a special man over the last number of years. I read about him in an article. And yes he is special ... even today. He WAS the last WW-1 American Vet living. He was 110 years old. He has now passed. I wrote the following poem in Honor of him:
The Face of a Hero

We hear of many who answered the call
Each man volunteered, a hero one and all
There was to be a war and these men came
By train, auto, and by the goodness of their name

This first World War to end oppression world wide
Who could have guessed so many would have died
But still the young men came to join into the fight
They would stand with America for what is right

One such patriot wanted to help freedom ring
He lied about his age – he was just sixteen
With the heart of a warrior, he joined and fought
Then as a POW he learned the hard lessens taught

Frank W Buckles made it home at the end of the war
He was proud of his service and adventures afar
He thought his part was finished, forgotten and done
But we remember him as the last U.S. Vet of WW one

I just got word today that Frank W Buckles has died
This is the brave boy who, to fight for his country, lied
He is gone now to join all the warriors gone before
I know he will be welcomed by friends from the Great War

Although he will missed by we, grateful Americans all
We celebrate his life and passing to answer God’s call
He will take his rightful place with all the soldiers in heaven
Remember Frank W Buckles; died Feb 27, 2011


If you would like more information on him - see:

His story in news:

His story in Wikipedia

Age 106 years old

Rest well ol' Warrior, You did your job!!!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

A Man called Thunder Mountain

Hi all,

I have mentioned a fella called `Thunder Mountain' several times in the past on this blog or my story Blog. I thought I might explain a little about him today. I have a lot of funny little stories to share about `Mountain'. We have been good friends for many, many years and we regard each other as Brothers. I think enough of him that I wrote a Novel with him being the main `star' -- but set in 1840-1850 Montana. These stories take place in Texas.

Mountain, this buds for you ;-)

Thunder Mountain – His Story Thru My Eyes Yep, I remember the first time I met this fella we fondly all `Thunder Mountain’ .. well he wasn’t called that yet.. that’s a story in itself and a little farther along in this letter. We were at a `Mountain Man Camp out’ called a Rendezvous. The area where we were going to have our 3 day camp was near Columbus Texas. These outings were all done in pre-1840 fashion. That is guns, clothes and attitudes to be like the mountain men of the early Rocky Mountains. . Molly and I had gotten to the camp site early. We were setup in our lean-to well before this `skinny’ fella showed up. There was something about that guy that I just liked. Where we were backed-up into the edge of the tree line (Cedars), this guy was out in the middle of the cleared field. I watched as he put up his TiPi. Those things always fascinated me as well as seeing my first one put up by this fella. He work steadily, pole by pole and then up went the canvas skin. He wore a buckskin pants and no shirt. He had no beard and short hair. I found out later that he was in the Air Force in San Antonio. Yep, and he was skinny. But then, anyone who knows me can understand how I can call anyone skinny.

Anyway, He worked and I watched. I got curious and walked over closer to where he was but didn’t talk to him. This was my second `doing’ and I didn’t know many people there. I remember remarking to my wife Molly; I will meet this guy before the weekend was done. Boy was I right. My son, David was going through a test of manhood. That is, in our group back home, everyone was tested as to your ability in woodland skills. You were required to learn the old skills and become proficient in them. When you were ready, you were tested. If you passed, you earned a feather to go on your personal shield. My son was trying for his `fire feather’. For a nine year old, this was a pretty good test of skill. He had to start a fire with a `flint and steel’ and light a candle within 30 seconds… and he did it in 25 seconds.. A good job and another feather for his shield.. I was proud of him and decided to take him out into the woods for a `mans hunt’ as a reward. All we carried were hawks (tomahawks). We scared up an armadillo, killed it and cooked it. Word got around camp that me and my son had caught and killed this critter and everyone wanted to see us catch another; but alive. We went out and brought another one back in. Well we didn’t need two armadillos to eat so Molly came up with an idea. We tied a ribbon to the live animal (the dead one couldn’t run) and called for all the kids to come to the center clearing. About 30 kids showed up and I explained they would get on line .. I would get out front of them and turn it loose .. and who ever brought me the ribbon – received a prize. So there I am and back behind me is that skinny fella’s TiPi. I turned the frightened animal loose and it ran straight for the woods BUT then took a sharp left turn and headed for the ….. THE TiPi.

That crazy thing ran right into the side of that TiPi and bounced off. I just knew I was affixing to have to buy that Indian dwelling or get a butt kicking from that skinny fella.. Well, that critter hit the side another 2 or 3 times before the kids jumped him (the armadillo.. not the skinny guy). I went over later to apologize to the guy. He didn’t even know it had happened. He was inside and was wondering why all the kids were running around his TiPi. He introduced himself and his family. Mark Lockwood and I became friends from that day on.

I remember about a year later, I was putting on a doing for the `Texas Association of Buckskinners’. I had promised an outing for the club that would be remembered for a long time. Molly and I had more kinds of activities than they had ever seen. One of the contests was a Mountain Man Run where each person had to move along a path while achieving different goals before he could pass. For example, at one of the stops, the person had to trade for a trap (spring type), and set it before moving to the next event. From that point they had to, start fires, shoot muzzleloaders, throw hawks, and so forth. It was a real test of ones skills and a hell of a lot of fun. I was hanging around one of the stages where each person has to stop and receive instructions from an Indian Woman before they could pass to the finish line. Remember this is a timed event so they are moving through as fast as they could. When Mark ran up to the lady, he was already winded. She told him he could not pass until he satisfied her. Of course that led to a bunch of hoots and howls from the onlookers. She explained, grinning that Mark had to sing her an Indian Love song before he could leave. Many had just hoop and hollered; some just screamed at the sky. Mark took a deep breath, looked at the sky with his arms held out each side; palms up, he sang, “Thunder on the Mountain, Thunder in the grass.. Snuck up on Custer and shot him in the ….Hi ya hi ya hi .. hi ya hi.. hi ya hi hi hi ya hi.. He was allowed to pass with EVERYONE laughing and applauding.

That night at the council fire, I named him `Thunder Mountain’. I almost named him `Thunder on the Mountain’ but felt that would not be as I saw him. To the Indian `Thunder’ is a noise. To the Indian `Mountain’ is strength and endurance. I put the emphasis on the word MOUNTAIN and thus the name. And he has been a credit to that name ever since as well as my dearest friend.. From this point it gets kinds hazy. You see in our younger days we `partied hardy’ at night time while at these doings. I always called it `letting some steam off’ from the real world. These nights were ours and we enjoyed them. I remember a few nights … that I don’t remember very well ;-) Thank God and time that we grew-up a little since those days and nights... In those days Mountain and me were always together and that cause us to get into a lot of things.. some good, some not so good .. but never bad! I always seemed to pick on Mountain but always with the love of a friend. I remember one time going over to Mountains camp since he had some coffee hot and I was needing some. I took one drink and dumped it out on the ground and told him I would wait for some of Capt’n Jim's coffee to be ready. Grinning I walked away. It was 6 or 7 years (I said YEARS) later that Mountain told me that he thought I was serious and didn’t like his coffee. I always wondered why I hadn’t been invited back to his camp for coffee.. Now I know.

Picture of Mountain fleshing a hide to tan it.

We were camping up near Lampasas one year in a really neat place. The only thing we had to be careful of was a HUGE ditch eroded out in the flat ground behind the camp. The edges were sheer and about 15-20 feet deep. Now picture us playing poker and drinking beer. No, picture us playing poker and drinking lots of beer. The reason I mention the amount of beer is because you can only hold so much in. Well, nature called, Mountain to visit the cliff. He walked out in the darkness with no light and couldn’t see very well. He could see a tree and he was making his way to it. The only problem was the sheer drop-off cut in between where he was and the tree. We are sitting there playing when we heard a faint cry from the darkness; “Bites … Bites” . Yep Mountain had fallen off the cliff and was sprawled out at the bottom of the drop. I sent a crew way around to get down and get him back out of there. His ankle was hurt but it could have been much worst. He was lucky to have fallen where the ground, down there was wet and soft.. and it hadn’t rained. The rest of that weekend everyone would shout when Mountain walked by, “Look Out, Mountain”…. We renamed that buff `Lookout Mountain'!!

Mountain is a good man. I have never heard one person speak badly of him. Me, on the other hand was always in some conflict or another. I knew this guy that seemed to always pick on and bully Mountain. Mountain took it in stride as just fun… I didn’t like it one bit. I finally had enough and told that fella to back off my friend or he and I were going to have a real serious talk. Not only did that harassment stop but me and that other fella drifted apart. We are no longer friends and don’t even speak now. And the trade for Mountain was well worth it. I used to bring a jug of homemade wine to the doings… so did many others. We would sit around the fire and the jugs would make their way around with everyone taking a pull before it was passed on. Well it was getting late and we had been at it for quite a while. Everyone was feeling the `pulls’ on the jugs. Mountain was sitting across the fire from me on one of my boxes. I looked over at him and then put a jug to my lips. I took a long pull and brought it down. I looked back over toward Mountain. He was gone. I looked around the fire. He was not among the 10-12 people sitting there. I asked Molly where he was. She pointed toward the box. There were two legs with moccasins sticking straight up in the air from behind the box. Mountain had leaned back to have a drink a little too far. He said it was kinda comfortable laying there and he decided to just stay there a while and rest.

That skinny fella had a great since of humor. I was curator at a pioneer village at Gonzales Texas. It was a `historical’ town open to the public. After hours, the jugs came out. All the guys (and gals) were pleased that the village had recently had a nice restroom facility put in. Before, we had to use a Port-a-John. I had designed a nice urinal in the men’s side, made out of stainless steel about 4 feet long and closer to the floor than normal (we had lots of small boys from the schools going in there). I kept deodorizer cubes in the urinal. Well, we were all down in the village and Mountain went up the hill to visit the `facility’. He was gone a long time. I was getting worried that maybe an alligator or something got him. I was affixing to go look for him when .. here he came. He strolled up to me and without a grin said, “I’d been back sooner but I got stuck in your stainless bath tub”. He looked down and added, “Those bars of soap don’t lather very much either”. Everyone fell over laughing.

One year he made me a beaded bag with a rattle snake in the pattern. The crow beads had been stitched right onto the brain-tanned leather bag. It was one of the most beautiful things I had ever seen. It must have taken him a long time to make it. Yet for years he complained that he had put one wrong color bead on it. I still haven’t found that bead. He also gave me a small metal emblem of 3 snakes intertwined that is worn on my `medicine bag’. . These are two of my most treasured possessions.

Mountain is one of these guys that has to wear glasses.. and he can be sensitive about it. Five of us were sitting around the fire one night doing what we do around the fire when there was a free jug close. I was feeling mine pretty good and when I looked toward Mountain, he looked a little blurry (surely it wasn’t the jug). I smile and said, “Hey you have four eyes…”. Mountain reached down and picked up a stick and threw it at me. It hit me in the chest. I looked down and then back at him. He stated loudly, “I don’t like being called Four-Eyes”. We let it pass because of the drinking. What I was saying was he looked like he had four eyes, two noses, and two mouths. I was talking about my physical state – not his. We have laughed over that one for years. .. but I will never call him `four-eyes’ and neither will anyone else in my presence.

Mountain and me like our old guns. We like the smell of black powder and the recoil of muzzleloaders and buffalo guns. We really like our Buffalo Guns. He had invited me over to San Antonio to go out to one of the gun ranges. We had all our `old’ guns with us. We were shooting about a hundred yards and everyone was interested in what we were shooting. The only thing wrong with this range was the way the targets kept moving.. Surely, it wasn’t our shooting. All of a sudden we heard, what seemed like a machine gun firing. Well, we knew that wasn’t right so we went to check. There were a couple of guys from `Soldier of Fortune’ Magazine there shooting `legal’ full auto rifles and handguns. They were in SA covering a news story. One was the editor and the other a writer. But the funny part was they were set back by OUR guns.. go figure.

Mountain will tell you that he’s not a hunter. Well, that’s simply not true. I have seen him hunt and kill a pig. We were camping at a State Historical site (mission) near Goliad Texas. The curator came and told me that had a wild pig got loose out of a pen and that could pose a problem with the tourists. He asked me if I would shoot it if I got the chance. WELL SURE, says I. The first day the pig came up and Capt’n Jim took a shot, hitting it in the jaw. BUT it got away in the under brush. Okay, I told Mountain he was up for the next shot if the pig came back. The next morning, there he was. Mountain with muzzleloader in hand, followed me straight up toward the pig. I had Jim circle so if Mountain missed Jim would have time for a backup shot. Mountain made a running shot at about 35 yards. As the pig ran out, Mountain told me he missed. But I saw the shot. It was perfect, right behind the shoulder. The pig ran out toward the brush line but collapsed after about 40 yards. Mountain made his kill. The shot from the previous day had broken the pigs jaw. By now it was running fever and the meat couldn’t be eaten. I did cut the tail off for Mountain though. Maybe you might think this would be an easy shot. But put yourself with the opportunity to make a `one time shot’ on the biggest animal you have ever had in your sights, with a muzzleloader and an entire encampment of hunters watching from behind you. He got a lot of pats on the back that day.

I guess I play too many tricks on my friends. It has caused `almost’ disasters for me. Sometimes my friends don’t know if what they are looking at is real or something I have set up as a joke. Mountain falls into that category. He had come to my house for the weekend. Of course we had the Buffalo guns and were out shooting them. I had placed a target on the back of an old wreaked pickup and we were shooting at it. Me and Mountain was walking up to the target when he spied something underneath. First I need to set this story up before going any farther. I collect Copperhead snakes. I catch them; kill and embalm them to where they dry up. Although dehydrated, they look pretty real. I sometimes place them around just to keep people on their toes. Well, Mountain saw what he thought was one of my jokes. Under the bumper of the old truck was a board about 2 inches wide and 8 inches long. Coiled on it was a sickly looking snake. As I walked up behind Mountain, he reached down and picked the board up. As I looked around him, he was bringing it up to his face for a closer look. I saw it was a live rattlesnake. I hit Mountain on the shoulder, knocking him back and away from the dropped snake. He didn’t believe it was real until I flipped it out into a clearing where he really came alive. It was only 13 or 14 inches long but still plenty big enough to get ya; especially in the face. When he saw the snake coiled on the board, Mountain thought it was one of my jokes… I have not done another snake and will not ever again.

This next story is one of friendship and trust. An event took place that I don’t think many of you will understand. Look deep and learn what trust and friendship is all about. I have to back up to the previous night. We were all sitting around the fire and talking. The subject came up about shooting a weapon in defense or in saving another’s life. Mountain had made a remark about no one had ever depend on him for that `life saving shot’. He wasn’t good enough. He had a strange look on his face like one of self-disappointment. I jotted that down to memory for future use. The next day we were having matches while shooting with our muzzleloaders. His statement kept bothering me. I felt he really did not believe he could make a shot under that kind of pressure. I stopped the line from reloading for another match. I walked out in front of the line about 20 yards and picked up a stick. I held it out from my body. The stick was about ¾” by 10”. Holding it I yelled to Mountain to shoot it. Everyone paused and started looking at each other. I yelled again for Mountain to shoot it. His face turned an ash color as he started loading his rifle. He looked down at the ground and just stood there. I stated again for him to shoot it. When we made eye contact, the ash color was gone and was replaced with an expression of resolve. Slowly he lifted his rifle and took aim. One of the men walked off the line muttering something about crazy. The others stood tight and quiet. Mountain took aim and fired blowing the 2 inches off the end. He just smiled. He knew he could take that shot if it came down to it. He gained confidence and I changed my pants.

It took me years .. many years before I could talk about what I did in the Marines. In one weekend, Mountain got me talking about things that I thought I had put so far in the back of my mind. It didn’t matter. Well it did matter. I guess we all lost people somewhere that gave us bad dreams. Mine though was getting worst. My memories were affecting my life. Mountain helped me with that. I’m not going to discuss any of what we talked about because that’s not what this is all about. This little part is so people will know there is a whole lot more to this man than meets the eye. For years he has told me that he can’t understand why I liked him…. Hell, I can’t understand why he has put up with me. But then, I guess that’s true friendship.

I guess that’s enough stories for one letter so I am going to stop for now. This will continue in another letter later. Maybe many letters.

The picture is of Mountain as a Pirate.. Below is a video of him shooting at a `Cowboy Compatition. Yep, he's a man of many hats.

This is a video of Mountain shooting compatition as a cowboy

Saturday, January 1, 2011

A Little Magic

Hi all, I am just trying an experiment. I am trying to learn how to post movies. videos, and clips. I don't know what I am doing so go easy on me. The only videos I can find right now is some FUN magic tricks I made for my grandkids. Anyway, here goes

This is a trick using a dollar bill

A Dancing Feather

Tied Straws

Like I said, these are simple tricks for my grandkids.... Hey, I'm having fun :-)

I have a second reason for learning how to do this. My wife Molly needs me to video some tutorials for her Blogs. Her Blogs on the right side of my Blog just click and go.

I will get better at both (magic and posting)..

My best as always jay

Friday, December 31, 2010

Blizzards, New Year's Party, and Little Naked People

Yep winter has fell upon us here in Rapid City, SD.
Our local paper said so:

It's Officially a blizzard

The combination of high winds and snow makes today's weather an official blizzard, National Weather Service meteorologist Scott Rudge said.

Blizzard conditions are being reported from Rapid City, Faith and Pine Ridge east to the Mitchell area as fresh snowfall combines with wind to make travel treacherous.

As much as 6 inches of new snowfall was expected in the Rapid City area today, with 3 of that already on the ground by noon.

With the wind, "It'll be a lot of bare patches and drifts," Rudge said.


And the story continued but that little part pretty well sums it up. And the local authorities have `advised' folks to stay off the roadways. It's bad out there now but will worsen as this day (New Years Eve) moves along.

Now this news has caused us some problems. For one thing, we were going to a New Year's Eve Party. No, I won't get my Molly out in this kind of weather. We'll just stay home and have our own. And that's okay with us.

Over the period of 37 years of marriage, we have lots of the staying up to wish the new year in. Though I do have to admit the last 10 or so years we usually celebrate earlier and am in bed by midnight. Guess we are getting old ;-)

I remember our first year of marriage and our first New Year Party. It was without doubt one of the MOST memorable ones.

We had been invited by some friends to go to another couples (we didn't know them) house for this special party. Molly and I drove up to the house described (no address). We were looking for the yellow house on the southside of Sage Street - a new addition. We found the yellow house and parked. We didn't see our friend's car but we figured we were early. We knocked on the door and a man opened the door. I smiled and said, "We are here for the party". After introductions and handshakes, he welcomed us in and I turned over our `bag of goodies & drinks' to the man. We went in and met several other couples. Molly and I didn't know anyone there but joined into the conversation. But something didn't seem right. Hmmm Seemed a little strange, NO - VERY STRANGE.

Well, if you haven't figured it out yet, we were at the wrong party.. We were 4 blocks from the OTHER yellow house we were supposed to be at. We all had a good laugh over this mistake. We said our niceties, gathered our goodies, and headed for the door. Hated to leave because we were having a good time. In fact the man told us to come back if we didn't find our party down the street.

We did find our party and our friends. But the uniqueness of the night did not end with our earlier adventure. Molly and me went to the bathroom. Molly wanted to show me something in there. WOW, this was going to be a great new year..... Don't let your imagination get ahead of my story ;-)

Molly told me to look at the wall paper in the bathroom. It was a white background with ink blotches on it. I didn't see anything. She said look closer. Oh My!!! It was nude couples in various states of - how do I say this? - ENCOUNTERS of a personal nature. Shocked? Oh yes...

And the funny part is the couples whose house we were at were not the type to have this on their wall. They had recently bought the house. Molly and I wondered if they had even discovered the designs by that night. Who knows, it might still be there. We never went back again.

Yep, that was a night to remember but that wasn't all. I guess I could continue about the men at the party running outside to capture a couple of people stealing the gas out of our cars. But then, I might save that one for next year....

All of you have a Happy New Year. If you would like to call us and wish us the same - DON'T CALL AFTER 10PM.... we'll be in bed asleep

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Yep, Christmas time is a busy time...

Hi all,

Today was a busy day for this old Santa helper. I had sites set up for today so I knew Molly and I was going to be out all day spreading Christmas cheer. We started out going to the Food Bank and the Food Pantry. These two places help to feed those who need a little help in Rapid City. I even worked there as a volunteer but my knees gave out too soon.. When we went in to the stores, everyone started to smile. The manager shouted out to the `guests' that Santa was here.... All heads turn and I start handing out candy canes to everyone. I also have a huge sack of `Ty Babies' that goes out to all the young `uns. I aquired dozens and dozens of them through donations...

From there we hit a dentist office at an elementary school (only one child there but lots of adults).

Off we rode again. This time I went by Wal-Mart. We handed out candy canes and more `Ty Babies'. Even ran into several friends and their kids. Wal-Mart is a in & out place. That is I walk in and give everyone something and then leave. I can't hardy finance the whole store. I have been the store Santa back home in Texas. I had to sit in a chair and kids came up to me. I prefer the in and out method...

And the last place today was at (of all places) IHOP. I really didn't have them on my request form. We stopped to get something to eat. Of course my bags of goodies went along with me inside. I went around to all the tables with kids and handed out about 20 `Tys' and lots of canes. The manager came by our table and thanked us. He is interested in setting up a regular visit for the IHOP - I'm to talk with him tomorrow about times and days (best hurry - Christmas is upon us).. When we got up to leave we were informed that our chicken-fried steaks were paid for by one of the tables I visited... Wow - we got a present....

One more stop at our local Community Health Center. Several sick little ones was happy to see a Santa with canes and `Ty Babies'. We felt good about this stop. It brought a little cheer into some kids lives when all they expected this day was the Doctor and maybe an injection... Ouch!!!!

We had a good day. We have been doing this for a lot of years. But it had been a long day and it was time to get home. As we drove up at our door we noticed something strange. On our door was a sack full of goodies and surprises. It was from a neighbor who I wasn't even sure she knew our names... We had helped her with a problem (nuff said) and I guess this was her way of saying thank you. That was nice. And that was the end for this day (lots of smiles by Molly and myself).

Now we go back tomorrow and hit several more stores as well as the Golden Corral and another dentist office. And then we have the places like the food banks we go to everytime we are in town. This will continue until Christmas is over... Then it's time to start planning for next year.

In Case I don't get back - Y'all have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year... Y'all hear?

With sincerest Cheers from Santa's Helper and Mrs Helper

Thursday, December 16, 2010

A cut above the rest

Hi All…

I have a question for you. Have you ever noticed a child who, for whatever reason, didn’t have any hair? I’m not talking about a baby or just having really short hair or a style or even shaved, I’m talking about a little boy or girl who due to burns, cancer or other disease has lost their hair as in bald? Did you stare? Did you just take a peek and think to yourself, “Oh my” Did you think to yourself about how you felt sorry for them and their family?

I know I would be self-conscious as a 6 yr old. Or even as a 10, 15 or 20 yr old if I was bald. You know some other children make fun of them and, sadly some adults.
Well, I know I have stared and didn’t mean to. I think that WAS human nature until I start re-evaluating what I was seeing. I didn’t want to feel sorry for that child … I wanted to help!!!

I found a place on the internet called `Locks of Love’. They take long hair and makes wigs (hair prosthetics) for these special children in need. The wigs are made for kids who suffer from hair loss. And how was I able to help? I contacted LOCKS of LOVE and they explained how folks (like you and me) can send long locks of hair and that is how they get to make the wigs for the children. Most women are used to at one time or another having long hair that could be cut and used as a gift. Men are a different situation. Few men have that long a hair… unless you grow it special for the LOL. So I did….

And when it was long enough, I cut and mailed it to LOL. In return, they sent me a nice thank you card. But the best part of this whole deal is how it made me feel to help. It was hard for me (as a man) to grow that stuff. Each time it got hung in a branch or got caught under me when sleeping or when the wind used it like a whip on my face/eyes, I hated it more. Was it worth it? Oh yes. Each inconvenience made me remember why I was growing it and that made it worth while.

My hair was being used to make life easier for some child who faces the world without hair. Think about that for a minute. How would you feel as a child? Most of those kids I have met are braver than I ever was. And they deserve our help…
Did you catch I said `OUR’ in the last sentence? You see you can jump on this wagon too and help. It just takes growing a little extra hair or cutting that long hair you have now. Many Beauty Shops and Barber Shops cut hair for free if it is going to Locks of Love.

Some might feel that the hair is vain but it is much more than that. It is a tool to allow a young boy or girl to walk down the street with their heads held high. It is a tool to re-building self- esteem.

I would ask you to consider this very special gift. I did it and I’m proud I did (3 times now). The following pics are from the first time I cut my hair for LOL. The first two is before and of course the last two is me without my long hair. I missed it for a while but started regrowing it THE NEXT DAY. By the way, Molly cuts the locks off for me. And I would cut hers too ... but not so close.


The following is taken from Locks of Love web site

WHAT IS LOCKS OF LOVE?HATLocks of Love is a public non-profit organization that provides hairpieces to financially disadvantaged children in the United States and Canada under age 21 suffering from long-term medical hair loss from any diagnosis. We meet a unique need for children by using donated hair to create the highest quality hair prosthetics. Most of the children helped by Locks of Love have lost their hair due to a medical condition called alopecia areata, which has no known cause or cure. The prostheses we provide help to restore their self-esteem and their confidence, enabling them to face the world and their peers.

Mission StatementOur mission is to return a sense of self, confidence and normalcy to children suffering from hair loss by utilizing donated ponytails to provide the highest quality hair prosthetics to financially disadvantaged children. The children receive hair prostheses free of charge or on a sliding scale, based on financial need.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

A little visit to the VA to visit Vets

Hi all,

Well it has been a while since I scratched anything on my blog. Guess it is time to quit putting it off. I thought I might share a little story about a PGR (Patriot Guard Riders) and HOTH (Helping On The Homefront) mission to carry a little Christmas up to the Vets who stay at the VA hospital in Sturgis SD.

We made little gifts. The gifts was a rolled up pair of white socks stuffed with other little goodies. If ya ever spent any time in a nursing home or VA, you'ld know their #1 complaint is having cold feet. So with the gifts in a little wagon, we headed out.

We walked the halls and handed out a lot of gifts. Counting what we left at the nurses station, it totaled 70 pairs of socks with the goodies stuck inside. From the psycho ward to the lunch room to the two wards including the Hospice area, PGR members made their way along spreading joy among the patients and nurses alike.

One neat thing that happened was Ride Captain Curt had a quilt (made by his wife) to give to one of the residents... And he found a man who never got any visitors. The quilt was appreciated.

All and all, it was a great mission - one I look forward to doing each year and hope to do again. This was my third year to be involved with this project. We have developed a good relationship with the VA. I would like to extend a special thanks to Mike Ellis who lead us around. His help and courtesy was very much appreciated.

There is such a reward in seeing the looks on these people's face as gifts were handed out. But sadly, there were some faces missing from last year. We must all remember to appreciate these older (some my age) warriors at the hospital. We are losing so many of the guys .. and gals (no disrespect intended).

Remember that it does not have to be a group (like PGR) to go up to a VA hospital and visit these people. Just go by the Volunteer area and talk to them. Soon you'll be doing something special. And you know what else? There are plenty of nursing homes around too. They like having visitors... What's that old saying? -- Try it, you'll like it.

Go out and visit some folks who can't be home and I promise you'll love it.... and they will too.

If ya find an old warrior (Vet) don't forget to thank him for what he did for all of us and his country... You'll be glad you did. Molly even got into the act....

My best to all until next time...

Until later.... jay

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Veteran's Day Parade - Molly and Me

Well another Veteran's Day has come and gone. But Molly and I made some neat memories.

I told Molly that I needed to go down to the Vet's Parade to take pictures. The Patriot Guard (we are both members) was going to ride in the parade and I was to document this with pictures taken from the side lines... It didn't go that way. We were in the parade.

I ride with the PGR but ride in a `cage' (car). Many injuries over the years dictates that I don't ride motorcycles anymore. So I bring up the rear as guard and support. I always fly two flags off the rear of my Van on special holders. One is ALWAYS the American Flag. The other flag depends on the event...

Well being the day after the birthday of my Corps (USMC), I decided to fly my USMC flag. And we brought up the rear of the many PGR motorcycles. It was great. With every person wearing a `military hat (WW2, Retired USMC, etc) went a salute from me. And they saluted back. Many, many flags being waved by young and old made a wonderful day for all there. I had NEVER heard so much cheering for the Vets. It was great. Some folks yelled, some waved, and a few cried. Each had their own reason to express themselves as they saw fit.

Molly waved back at all the children. She had a great time. Although later she called me, "a bad boy" for tricking her into being in the parade. She has been in dozens and dozens of parades over the years but now felt she needed to be on the sidelines. Well, she is out of retirement!! ;-)

I hope all of you remembered to `thank a vet' yesterday for what they have done and do for all of us. But remember also, you can thank them any time; today, tomorrow, next week...... anytime... they would appreciated it.. I promise!!!

Here are some pictures of a few of our close Vets we wanted to remember. There are too many to list any more.... The post pics are our relatives who served in WW2
Molly's Uncle - USAF - Pilot

My Father - US Army - Combat Medic

My uncle - USMC - Military Police

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Marine Birthday and Me


Happy 234th Birthday

Dedicated to my uncle who encouraged my joining the Marine Corps. I wore his WW2 Marine EGA pins on my 1960s uniform. I was asked by many (officers included) where I got the pins. When I explained, ALL thought it was neat and a great way to show my respect for my uncle.

Me, as a young Marine

And this is my DESKTOP on my laptop (and yes those are my pictures on it..

As an added note - I wrote a patriotic blog (last one) and it really messed up. I thank everyone who tried to help me solve the problem. It might have been a lost blog cut short ... but my friends came out in droves.. I thank each of you again and from my heart ---- J

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Remember the `8th of November'

Song by `Big and Rich'

The 8th of November

Said goodbye to his mamma
As he left South Dakota
To fight for the Red, White, and Blue.
He was nineteen and green with a new M-16
Just doing what he had to do.

He was dropped in the jungle
Where the choppers would rumble
With the smell of napalm in the air.
And the sergeant said, "Look up ahead"

Like a dark, evil cloud
1,200 came down
on him and 29 more.
They fought for their lives
But most of them died
In the 173rd Airborne.

On the 8th of November,
The angels were crying
As they carried his brothers away.
With the fire raining down
And the Hell all around
There were few men left standing that day.
Saw the eagle fly,
Through a clear, blue sky
1965, the 8th of November.

Now he's fifty-eight
And his ponytail's grey
But the battle still plays in his head.
He limps when he walks,
But he's strong when he talks
About the shrapnel they left in his leg.

He puts on a grey suit
Over his Airborne tattoo
And He ties it on one time a year
And remembers the fallen,
As he orders a tall one
And swallows it down with his tears.

On the 8th of November,
The angels were crying
As they carried his brothers away.
With the fire raining down
And the Hell all around
There were few men left standing that day.
Saw the eagle fly,
Through a clear, blue sky
1965, the 8th of November.

Saw the eagle fly,
Through a clear, blue sky

On the 8th of November,
The angels were crying
As they carried his brothers away.
With the fire raining down
And the Hell all around
There were few men left standing that day.

On the 8th of November,
The angels were crying
As they carried his brothers away.
With the fire raining down
And the Hell all around,
There were few men left standing that day.
Saw the eagle fly,
Through a clear, blue sky
1965, the 8th of November.

The 8th of November
The 8th of November

He said goodbye to his mamma
As he left South Dakota
To fight for the Red, White, and Blue.
He was nineteen and green with a new M-16
Just doing what he had to do.


Note - I had a post already written here for the `8th of November' song. I tried to add a video and it completely messed up my post. I guess I need more lessons ;-)

Anyway, the memories are too painful for me to rewrite the original post so I will simply have the words to the song... If interested you might want to google the story and the video. It makes a hell of a story...

Jay - former Marine

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Another Halloween done come and gone

BUT what memories we made......

Molly and I started off with a Pre-Halloween event on Oct30. This was an idea I came up with for our kids in Box Elder to have an extra night of trick or treating... You see ALL the kids in our little town go to Rapid City to a city wide event at the Civic Center for Halloween. It is a great thing for Halloween but we kinda get left out seeing the children. I met with the same committee that just put on the Box Elder Bash and layed out plans for another Halloween the night before the actual night of `spooks and goblins'. They thought it was a cool idea and we did it with only six weeks of planning... A special Halloween would be sponsored by local businesses in an empty building. The committee did a great job. Molly and I were the only `plain couple' to set up to give candy. All other tables were operated by the businesses around Box Elder... And then the kids came .... and came .... and came.

It was so cool. I was dressed like a pirate and gave a gold (plastic) coin with each handful of candy. I had my candy in a treasure chest. Molly gave candy with a spider ring. Molly really got into the spirit (no pun intended) of things... She was the Great Pumpkin.

Then Halloween night we had kids beating down our door; all dressed up. Some were cute .. some were scary .. and some - well I am still trying to figure out what they were..... BUT they were all great.

Now we are planning next year's Halloween to make both nights even more fun and games ... and we are adding a Haunted House. Guess who plans to run that he he he...

Sunday, October 25, 2009

The Buffalo at Bear Butte

Just east of Sturgis SD is a very special mound of earth reaching up into the sky. Well, the mound is a lot more than that. It is a beautiful mountain that holds a very special meaning to the local Lakota Natives. It is a religious and holy place for them. It would behoove you to look up this place called Bear Butte. I am not going to go into that.. I just want to share with you the mountain and the buffalo.

Molly and I have been there many times as tourist although I do recognize the spiritual significance which it holds. Being there is an adventure in itself. I have always wanted to walk up the path to the top but my knees have pretty well ordered me to forget that idea. Still we drive through the small park on the road that leads to the parking lot. There is a museum at this location and an area to leave your vehicle to make the trek up the mountain.

We especially love it in the winter when the snow is on the ground. I am a fool-hearty, picture taking fool. I love my digital camera and believe in using it every chance I can. I have taken so many pictures of EVERYTHING up here in South Dakota. But the most peaceful place for photos is in the Black Hills and at Bear Butte.

Last winter on our trip up to Bear Butte, we caught the Buffalo out near the road. I saw this as a great photo opportunity and I took advantage of it. I stole a few shots of these grand animals ... thought I might share a few pictures with you.

Although I have been a photographer for 3 newspapers (small), I do not think of myself as a professional by any means. My photos serve as proof of that ;-)....

Anyway, I hope you like some of these...

My best to you as always......