Tuesday, December 31, 2013

JOIN THE RESOLUTION!!

Okay ... it's a few days before the big ball drops (somehow, that reminds me that I've gotta get my Persian cat Gunnar neutered on Monday), but, in case you're busy on that day, let me wish a HAPPY 2014 TO EVERYONE!

Actually, I think we're all happy "2013" is finally making an exit. But the best part is that we've got a brand-new, unused model (so far, it's still got the sticker on it) coming up that we can make into anything we want.

Most folks have already made resolutions ... and, in about a week, some of them may begin to wonder why they haven't worked out. They think resolutions, like the money that bill collectors hound us for, must be due immediately, and transacted in full!

But it doesn't work that way. Y'see, it's a two-sided word: On the one hand, the noun "resolution" comes from the word, "resolve", which means "determination"; on the other hand,  the computer version of it means "clarification".
So if we can clarify our desire, and work at it with determination, we're there!  But, remember: it doesn't happen overnight ... ya gotta keep workin' at it until that desire becomes a reality!


Sometimes, they're not fulfilled because we tailor our resolutions to fit the little "comfort zones" we live in - the repetitive thoughts or actions we're used to. Remember the old saying, though (it's on pg. 238 of the Old Sayings hymnbook):

"If you always think like you always thought, you'll always get what you always got!" 

I think it means "always".

So, this year, I'm calling for a Resolutionary War! Gettin' out from under the blanket of that comfort zone, taking a few calculated risks, and, even if we're feeling a bit like a fish outta water for a moment or two, going for it if it's honorable!

But we've still gotta be patient while these resolutions take hold. That's the hardest part.

But if you really, really want those rezzies to work, then throw back the covers of your comfort zone, get outta that bed of familiarity and rattle them pots and pans of positive movement!

And you can shake-rattle-&-roll yourself through a dynamic 2014!

With that in mind, I wish for all of you the best for the New Year (and the 364 that follow it). Now ...

C'mon, 2014 - show us what you've got!  We're ready for ya!!



That being said for this special-edition of TMC, I'll see ya on day 1 of the New Year.  So ... stay tuned ...

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

MERRY CHRISTMAS, MOUSERS (2013) !!


Sunday, December 22, 2013

Readin', Writin', Rockin' and Rollin'


I couldn't have said it better myself ...
actually, a few years ago, whilst I was publicizing a band called The Fore and my amazing mates, Ron Ryan and Mike Lane, it had become more of a "business" than pleasure - until Uncle Lloyd and I had a heart-to-heart about the business.
It was at that time that the old "spunk" returned (but, within minutes, I was able to get rid of that census-taker and return to the business at hand ...).  Today, it's just like the pic up there says (PS it's also my Facebook cover, so you'll know where to avoid ... er, find ... me!)

Actually, I've been away for a while, compiling a new book as well as a script, sorting through songs for a new internet radio broadcast - all the while keeping the Mouse House clean and spiffy, doing some FB/Twitter updates and a bit of Christmas shopping for the zoo crew here. 

Anyway, 'nuff said about that!  Let's get on with a little R&R news, okay?

Hey ... did you see where the inductees for the  Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame (class of 2014) have been posted?  They were announced this past Tuesday - with Linda Ronstadt, Cat Stevens, Kiss, Hall & Oates, Peter Gabriel and Nirvana all getting the nod
(we've gotta get Wenner to stay awake a little longer!  Poor guy ... between this, Rolling Stone mag and the HoF itself, he must be losing sleep at night ...)
They'll be inducted on April 10th of next year. At the same time, Beatles' manager Brian Epstein and Rolling Stones manager Andrew Loog Oldham will receive non-performing awards,  and Bruce Sringsteen's E-Street Band will go in as sidemen.
It's good to see Linda go in; though her career has ended due to Parkinson's Disease, she has touched millions of lives and just about every genre of music through her amazing talent!  Hall and Oates are perennial favorite - and it's no surprise that, whether together or solo, John and Darryl are still knocking 'em dead in venues around the country.

KISS??  Wh ... who are they??  Well, I guess even those small, local bands are good, too.

Actually, we all know who they are .. and congratulate them for a job well done!!

Oh ... and congrats to Marie Osmond, who takes on a new role: that as first-time grandma!  Her son, Stephen, became a proud papa this past Thursday (now do ya feel old??).
At the same time, it's sad to hear that L.A. DJ Rick Dees came home from an out-of-town gig to find his home broken into - and over 100 Grand in jewelry was taken!  Los Angeles police are investigating the break-in (geez ... I hope they didn't take his Disco Duck!  That little rascal was priceless!!).  In all seriousness, Rick: we hope they catch the low-life who did that and get every one of your baubles, bangles and beads back to you soon ...

Now, since I've gotten just about every "t" dotted and "i" crossed, I should be back with more in about 24.  Until then, if you wanna catch me on Facebook, just click this little link and join in the fun there!  Therefore and thuswith ...

Stay tuned ...


Sunday, December 1, 2013

NOTES from the CHIEF (requested rewind)

NOTE:  Since we have quite a few new mousers who wanna come over and see how we clique, I'd like to introduce them to our (sadly) late founder - the Master of Madcap and Munchkin of Music, LLOYD THAXTON.  He was Pied Piper Man to millions of devoted and rockin' fans who tuned in every weekday afternoon to dig the music and laugh at his crazy antics.
Now, some of you might not know that Uncle Lloyd was also an avid blogger.  In fact, you can still read his popular blog, which the love of his life (his lovely wife, Barbara) has allowed to remain online so we can re-visit and remember his wonderful posts..
So why did he blog?  Let me share that with you - in words he wrote me in 2005 - as we  repeat one of our most popular posts.


 Y'know, when my own readers heard me talkin' about my friend, Lloyd Thaxton, their first response (after the obligatory "Soooo WHAT?"  They weren't brushing me off ... they just remembered his famous teaser) was "He's still ALIVE?!?" (and, brother, he'll always be alive in our hearts. Can I get an AMEN?!?)
But, then, I told 'em about Uncle LL's blog, and told 'em that, for the mere price of an imaginary car, they could come on over and join in the fun and memories.

And many of 'em did! And, thus, they did enjoy the verbiosity that emanated from the inner being of one Lloyd E. Thaxton, Esq.

But, how did the original Mr. T. actually start blogging?
Here ... let 'im tell ya in his own words:

"I’m constantly asked why I spend time writing a blog. Who’s going to read it? By last count, there are over 23 million blogs on the web. 23 MILLION! Insurmountable odds? I’m optimistic. I Look at it this way: There are about 300 million people in the United States alone. Do the math. Divided equally, that computes to over 10 million readers for each blog. And, I’m just out to get my share.
Actually, I think my chances are pretty darn good. According to LA Times writer Patrick Goldstein, we are now a nation of niches. “Today’s action is with the country watching cable shows … that play to a specific audience.”
Specific audience? That’s my fans. The Lloyd Thaxton Show was always kind of a “niche.” It certainly played to a specific audience. And that makes me a real “son of a niche.”

It is said that the reason “American Idol” is such a big hit is because there is a huge niche out there that wants to be a member of a group, encouraged by their peers. What the “Idol” audiences love to see are others like them up there competing for fame and fortune. They see how they dance, sing, how they dress, and how they are treated with great respect. They even accept the occasional put-down from judge Simon Cowell as meaningful. “That could be me” is most likely the “Idol” fan’s mantra.

That, if you think about it, is what The Lloyd Thaxton Show was all about. We had our lip-sync contests, dance contests and each show was a showcase for the latest dances and “what-to-wear” on a date. Young people watched because they saw themselves up there joining in the fun. And, everyone was treated with great respect.

Still doing the math, I’ve figured that in the years the show was on the air, we had over 45 thousand dancing and performing teens on the show. And that was just the ones who were actually there, in person, live. Add to that the millions who were watching each show and we had a pretty substantial niche going for us.

According to Princeton University’s WordNet, niche is “a position particularly well suited to the person who occupies it.” In other words, a “clique.”
There is no doubt that the 60s represented a very unique period in history. Think about it. Civil Rights demonstrations and legislation, the Vietnam War, the draft, Woman’s Lib, the assassinations of John F. Kennedy, Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King, Flower Children, Students for a Democratic Society, and Sex Drugs and Rock & Roll. The country has never been the same since.


Throughout this tumultuous time, The Lloyd Thaxton Show was there pumping out The Twist, The Beatles, James Brown, Surf music, Motown music, Top Forty and Rock and roll. And millions of kids were dancing to the music. It was the oasis in the midst of chaos; The calm during the storm. And according to the many letters I’ve received from the show’s fans, it gave a lot of people the confidence that everything would turn out OK. I, myself, am completely awed and humbled by it all.
So, back to the original question: why am I writing a blog? The answer is quite simple. I have a niche I just have to scratch. And so far I feel I have only scratched the surface. Judging by the hundreds of emails I have received, there is a substantial niche out there that wants to hash over a lot of cool memories."

So there you have it, Mouskiteers ... and it couldn't've been said any better than that ...

Hey, listen ... if you have any vids, .mp3s or memories you'd like to share about the boss? Just send 'em in to therockrelic@yahoo.com and we'll get 'em on here! Heck ... we'll even pay the postage for ya ...

As the Head Cheese of our Mouse Clique used to say: Stay tuned ...

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving, Mousers!!

I'll be back in the Mouse House in a couple of days, with a couple of special replays of your fave posts about Uncle Lloyd.  Until then ...

 
... and for all of you who thinks all the hoo-hah about Christmas was just a bit too early this year:

'nuff said?  Good ... then have a great Thanksgiving!  

Stay tuned ...
 

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

THE GIFT OF (FILL IN TODAY'S DATE)

Whilst I normally cart a load of funny stuff and dump it here in this blog, this time I thought I'd share something a little different.
You see, I met a friend of mine at the supermarket and, quite frankly, he looked a bit seriously depressed. He said there wasn't anything to look forward to in his life anymore; he was behind in his bills, lost his job and his wife, and was ... well, he was down on everything.

Maaaan, who are you kidding?? Yeah, I feel for the guy, but ... well, "nothing to look forward to"??

Look ... let's take this in order, shall we??

(1) You woke up this morning. Consider the alternative. You could've died in your sleep last night -- but you didn't! Sooooo, you're
(a) seeing the dawn,
(b) hearing birds outside your window,
(c) maybe catching the aroma of fresh, morning coffee as it's brewing ...

(2) You're free to go outside to get your paper, turn on morning music, check the Today show on television, and move around the house/yard/street/stores, etc. There are thousands who are in jails and can't do that -- or hospital rooms, confined to beds right this very minute!

(3) You have hundreds of minutes ahead of you -- and
all of them unused and just waiting for you to fill them up with something good. You've got the power to do that, y'know!!
Look at your arms for a second:
Is anyone "twisting" them to do otherwise?

(4) Now, I know you've got things that are hurtin' you, but let me ask this: Do you remember anything bad that happened to you right this very hour and on this day back in, let's say, 1979? Okay, how's that affecting you now? Does it still make you wanna cry, or tear someone's lungs out? Or have you gotten over it?
Well, I GUARANTEE that you'll survive these heartaches, too!

And the way to do it?

Remember those "unused minutes" I talked about? Fill them with productive action that will provide positive results! And why let something -- someone's actions -- control you? Remember:
YOU'VE GOT THE POWER OVER YOURSELF! 
It's YOUR plane ... YOU fly it to the heights you want ...
because you've got
YOUR hand on the controls!!

And don't forget this little wonder we call the internet! Use it to regain a step or two ... to search for a new job, make new friends, etc. You can even Google® whatever's bugging you and find loads of ways to help you win over the situation(s)!
So, man, don't ever overlook the awesome gift of today that we've been given! This can be the day that the pendulum finally starts swinging in your direction again ...

Okay ... 'nuff said.
Share this with someone if ya think it'll help, okay?

And ... stay tuned ...

Sunday, November 17, 2013

A Bit About Blogging ...

Ahhh, the thrills and chills of having your own "blog" ...

Actually, I've been called on the carpet (that's where my phone ends up half the time; my dogs have learned to rifle through my pockets at night)  for not keeping this one as current as it should be.  But, as John Lennon once said, "Life happens when you're busy making other plans."  Since I'm too young to retire and not smart enough to beat the system, I've still gotta work for a living ...
and that's what's been cutting me back on my blogitizing a bit ..
But, starting today, we're at least gonna congregate here once a week - so you'll get a brand, spankin' new post every Monday morning for now. 

I remember how this "blogging" thing started for me:

Many moons ago - not long after the last dinosaur vanished (but I do wish my ex a good life these days) - my publisher thought it would be a good idea to get a newfangled contraption called a "computer".  He said I could get my work submitted faster, and also meet new people if I stayed on it long enough.

So I waited.  And waited.  Not one soul came by to have coffee or visit ...

"No," he laughed, "you've got to get on the internet."  And then he hooked me up with something called an "ISP" and showed me how to work it (the blasted thing only worked when it wanted to.  It was an old "UASUKKA" model ...).
So there I was, staring at my blank word processor and wondering if I should draw funny faces on it to get people's attention when my cat jumped on the desk and started heaving a furball:

"H-UHHHH ... H-UUUUUAARRRHHHH!!" and finally ...

"BBBLLLLAAAGGGGHHH!!!"

My face brightened with an epiphany: "A ...BLOG?? Of course! Why didn't I think of that before??"

So it began (er, after cleaning up the keys, natch ...).

It was during those first few ishs that I met and became friends with Lloyd Thaxton (in fact, he sent me the clipping at the bottom of this post). To say that he became an inspiration is like saying the Beatles sang songs ... everyone who knew him can vouch for his positive, encouraging attitude.
In time, we decided to run with an idea that he was tossing around in his mind: A group of misfit mousers (computer-type) coming together in a little kaffeklatsche we ended up calling The Mouse Clique. Many mousers come ... cats stay away ... we make exception if they have guitar ...
Anyway, since I had already published a sorta-popular hard-copy writeup called The Window, we started talkin' plans to build a (in his words) "hand-held new Spaper". We kidded each other about how that little phrase of his had such sellability ... it was bound to be a success!

Of course, both of us had our hands in other things -- he with making a DVD of his show as well as following the sales of his book, Stuff Happens, whilst bein' husband to beautiful Aunt Barbara; me with publishing articles and feeding the cats ... as well as working appearances at pro wrestling shows (as announcer. You don't wanna see me in tights, trust me ...).

Then came that sad day in October, when Uncle Lloyd left us to entertain the angels. Needless to say, the new Spaper never materialized; somehow, working on it just wasn't the same.

But the show had to go on:

In honor of the Chief -- and after conferring with Cuzzin' Gary Belich (our esteemed secretary in the Mouse Clique) and beautiful Aunt Barbara -- I continued the group here, at this blog.

There's one thing that set LL off from the rest of the celebrities - and we, his loyal fans and friends, are all thankful for it - and it's that he took time to be with us!  All too often, you'll find these so-called "stars" too "busy" or just wanting to hang with their "own" or whatever.  But Lloyd Eugene Thaxton had a sincere appreciation and love for each and every one of his fans!  He told me once that he was just a person like everybody else - nothing special; just a man with a God-given talent to make others smile.  In short, he was "one of us" - and wouldn't've had it any other way.  He loved to hear from his fans - and responded to as many as he could, either by comments on his own blog or by personal email.

So, as we open up the Mouse House (and subsequent membership into the Clique, pursuant to the Rules of the Cheese) to the masses (and the misters, if they behave ...), I've closed all my other blogs and continuing this one in the style and memory of one of America's most-beloved elves - the legend whom I'm proud to have called "friend" and "mentor":  LLOYD THAXTON ...
Stay tuned ...


Thursday, November 7, 2013

THE DAWK DYNASTY

For you who've just tuned in, this show could've easily been called the Dawk Dynasty, since one of Uncle Lloyd's trademarks was the legendary little hippie dude, the Dawk! Since we started this shortly after LL left us, quite a few fans have dusted off their old signs, gotten out (and, in some cases, let out) their old hippy-dippy clothes, gotten the groovy sunspecs outta storage and joined us.

Now it's your turn ...

But it's more than just about the "dawks" now!  This site was set up to honor the amazing "Pied Piper" of Sixties teendom, Lloyd Thaxton.  Many of you probably grooved to the music and dug the zany antics that his weekday show (The Lloyd Thaxton Show, natch!) provided us.
He also was the producer of the popular (and often parodied) show, Fight Back! (with David Horowitz) and also quite a few memorable segments on The Today Show.  Along with author John Alston, Lloyd also wrote the highly-effective bestseller Stuff Happens! (and then you fix it).

Here's more on this exciting, eclectic, electric elf.
Will the Real Lloyd Thaxton Please Sit Down? Part I
WTRLTPSD? (ie, Part II)


The odd thing about this cartoon composite that Uncle LL sent me is that I actually was living on a street by that cartoon's name when I got his email!

When Uncle LL and I talked about forming The Mouse Clique, everybody was to meet at his blog (yes, LT fans - his lovely wife, Barbara, graciously left it online for all of us to enjoy.  So thumb through his posts and you'll soon know why everybody who knew him loved Lloyd! Thank you so much, Barbara!).  Now - with him entertaining the angels - I want you all to join The Mouse Clique here - where we're gonna continue the merry madness, mirth, music and more, every week (at least!).  
I'll give you folks on Facebook and Twitter the "high-sign" as to when a new post is percolating.  Then, just come on in and pour yourself a big cuppa smiles, memories and music...
after all, you're all Mousers now!!

We're doing it in tribute, honor and memory of Lloyd Eugene Thaxton - the man, the legend, the motivationalist, the clown .. our Chief Mouser and everybody's friend.

So stay tuned ...





Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Here's YOUR Invitation, Mousers-to-Be ...


Okay ... you've been officially invited now!  You're all now part of the Mouse Clique and have all rights and privileges as the cheesy cadre that runs it (bring your own cheese, though ... y'see, our goat's broken ...).

We're heading for the "grand re-opening" of this blog; I've been away on assignment and have also penned three e-books, so I haven't had a lot of time to keep it updated.  But the shelves have been restocked, the floors swept and mopped, and we're gonna be running on all cylinders in just a couple of days.
We'll be running a lot of new material as well as some "golden oldies" from our archives - and even throw in some vids along the way!  But I'll tell ya what: rather than do a lot of jaw-jacking about what we'll be doing, camembert to set your feta on the Mouse Path this Thursday and see how it's all put together, okay?  C'mon ... it'll be a bries!!

Soooooooo ...
Stay tuned ...

Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Return of Rock

Apparently, there's something old, something new, something borrowed but certainly not blue in the air these days ...
no, I'm not getting married (gotta have somebody to do that, and, that, I ain't got dammit!)

What I'm talking about is the awesome return of "old-time rock-and-roll" - only now it's got a bit of a "newer" sound to it - (due, in part, to the new, high-tech stuff we have to produce and mix the music). Of course, it helps to have some great managerial support.

To prove what I'm talking about, let me introduce you to the Fab Foursome (gotta put that last part in there to separate them from another beat group from years ago ...) from England called The Lightwings!  When you hear these lads (and watch their vids on YouTube), you'll see why they're becoming one of the most popular and in-demand bands in England (and, soon, in the USA)! 

So, ladies and gentlemen, without further ado or adon't, may I introduce you to ... THE LIGHTWINGS:

 

More coming up in 24 hours, so stay tuned ...

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Talkin' Possum

Getting a lot of good feedback on the new e-book, Grinnin' Like A Possum (if you don't have your copy yet, just click the link you just passed; you're not only in for a solid read, but you'll also like the price - and the fact you can actually download two versions of the book for that one price!

... Possum is my brand spanking new e-book that, I hope, will give you the chance to laugh out loud, Southern-style!

Here's what the promo says (and thanks to WPM for submitting this):

"Now, chances are, if you were raised in the South, you already appreciate the aesthetic ballet of NASCAR races, understand the historical significance of 'The Andy Griffith Show', savored culinary delights such as grits with red-eye gravy, and have studied great philosophers such as Jeff Foxworthy, Bill Engvall and Larry the Cable Guy. But – well, your Rebel experience won't really complete unless you get to know Charlie Hick..."

Set in 2005, it follows the antics of two long-lost Southern boys, reunited after 16 years. While the story has an offbeat Marx-Brothers-meet-The Monkees ring to it, it does have a good basic plot: Charlie Hicks knows that his compadre, Tony Samples, is having marital trouble, so he devises a plan to send them on a second honeymoon. Before and after their trip, he and Charlie get into all kinds of madcap mischief - something that Southern boys are known to do. And, believe me, Charlie still has his hands full in the meantime (he's married with two small kids, a monster-cat and the world's funniest Shih-Tzu)!

 (Shhhhh! That's all the publisher will allow me to tell. The rest will have to be a pleasant mystery until ya buy the book [for only ninety-nine cents! Shoot ... even McDonalds® coffees cost more than that!]).

So you've got (1) a book designed to bring a lot of laughter into your day, (2) at a very affordable price, and (3) you can get two formats of the book (one for your e-reader and one you can print out or read on your desktop) for that one price!  You can't get any better than that!

Now ... get ready to put some South in your mouth and a whole lot of grits-and-gravy grins along with it.  Just click the link up there at the top of this post and, soon, you'll be Grinnin' Like A Possum!


Saturday, August 17, 2013

The LLessons of LLoyd LLive On


With year 63 now firmly in place here at Mouse Central and all the cheese crumbs and mouse droppings disposed of (yup ... I clean that teeny little litter pan at least twice a month!), we're ready to re-open the doors (wait a minute until that Lysol kicks in, though).

Actually, I've been gone awhile, working on other projects and setting the course for straight sailing on this 63rd voyage through the Sea of Time (ahh, poetic ... but I have enough back-issues of that blasted magazine that it seems like a sea)!  But, as Lloyd would say, "You don't have to spend a lot of time trying to sail through life if you've got a motorboat!
You've just gotta be that motorboat!"  
   

Now, we've seen a lot of tragedies on our television sets lately (I mean, beyond that "Housewives of Whereinthe Hills" or "Honey BooBoo".  I mean on the news ... although "honey booboo" sounds like what Yogi Bear says when he offers a favourite food to his partner ...), and these can set us into an emotional tailspin.  Or, as one writer-colleague put it, "It can take the wind out of your sails!"

UNH-unh!!  Remember:  you're a 'motorboat', not an old, creaky sailing ship.  Rev up your motors, get your rudder set, and move through the day with the determination that it's gonna be a good one, no matter what the newspapers, boob tubes or Congressmen say!  Hey ... it's your boat, not theirs, so why should they try to steer it for you?

That pic up there kinda reminds me of the hills around this part of ol' Kain-tuck-ee:  From a distance, they look huuuuge.  When I saw the first one on the way into town, I really wondered whether my Malibubu could actually make it up to the top without either losing my transmission, a tailpipe, or my nerves.  But, the closer I got to them, I found they weren't that big at all!  So, hitching up my belt as well as my nerves, I brought an old saying of my daddy's back to life ("Do it to it and through it!"), took a deep breath ...
then put my hands back on the steering wheel, got back in the incoming lane ... and made it to the top in less than three minutes!

Basically, what I did is follow what Uncle LL taught us, not just in his illllustrious lllife, but in his book, Stuff Happens!  When you face what you fear, head-on and with fullll-speed determination to win, chances are it'llll back down, turn tailll and run for its lllife!  (He alllways wanted us to remember: his name is spelllled with two "LLs", so I've incllluded a few extra here in remembrance ...)

So, as you start the next hour, be sure to grab a big handfulll of belllief, confidence and drive (they set the "rudders" right), then ... start your engines!  You'll find your excursion through the next 60 minutes a lot easier than you thought!  Then try it on the next 60 -- then the next -- until you reach your goal!

I'm talking about your mindset and willpower!  Besides, motorboats don't go uphill too well on dry land here in Kentucky ....
yes, it's been tried ...

Stay tuned ...

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Lloyd's Best Message

This is a rewind that I'm honoured to publish.

For years, we of the Clique-and-beyond looked forward to getting home from work so we could get the latest thoughts from Uncle Lloyd and his blog. Whether we agreed 100% with him on everything or not (and disagreements were rarer than Vitalis™ in a headbanger's dressing room!), we loved every minute we "visited" with him.

Then, of course, we had the Good Book (I mean, Stuff Happens, of course). Between him and John Alston, we felt as though he really was our favorite uncle, showing us better ways to deal with life's challenges.

Yes, there were those of us who remember his segments on both The Today Show and Fight Back! In the latter, he gave us a lotta boss info on all kinds of goodies to make our Wal-Mart® shopping easier (if we'd had the store back then. As far as shopping there -- and with apologies to Clark Howard -- I still have to ask myself "Why??").

It goes without saying that his most memorable achievement to many boomers was The Lloyd Thaxton Show (now, why'd I say that?? Didn't I say it "goes without saying"?? Oh, NOW I remember ... we do have post-boomer mousers on board here). He brought the message of good times and rock-and-roll to our homes every weekday at 5 PM.

But the greatest message that Uncle Lloyd conveyed wasn't in his show, or in his book, or in his other shows.

It was found in the soul and heart that he shared with each and every one of us. When he had something bearing on his mind, or when he really felt great about something, when he was reminiscing -- or even when he was "up against the wall" with cancer -- he was still the epitome of hope, smiles, and an attitude that just grinned a big "Everything's gonna be all right. C'mon ... let's have some fun while we're here ..."

A cautious optimism? Confidence? A habit of being upbeat?? Let's face it: Uncle Lloyd just had a tremendous love of life and all that was in it! And, in his too-short time with us, he tried showing us, through his words and actions, that "Hey ... it isn't gonna BITE ya! ENJOY life!! It really ROCKS!!"

Chief, we're still learning ... but, then again, we had a great teacher ...

stay tuned ...

Sunday, July 14, 2013

The Box With The Prize Inside!

Okay, who amongst us doesn't remember this little delectable snack?

Why, for just a single quarter (well, when I was a little, snotty-nosed kid, anyway. The price might've been more or less when you were 25 ...), you could get the most scrumptious caramel popcorn with a few peanuts mixed in. But the real thrill was when, about halfway down in the box, we'd see a little wrapped toy of some kind!
(By the way, I understand the lady who bought this particular box had tried them before and only got a small, wooden whistle! So, this time, she got lucky. At first, she wooden whistle - but now, she tin whistle!)

Oh, those little wonderful toys would give us minutes of fun (until they broke and required the purchase of another box. Great marketing idea, guys ...). But there was something far greater than a toy that the Hinson boys got from those boxes:

Picture it: Pineville, 1965 (okay, so I liked mama Sophia in The Golden Girls.) As many of you already know, my daddy, Eola Hinson, was a wise man and could draw useful parables out of anything (read this article, which I wrote seven years ago in his memory). Well, this time was no different.

My brothers and I were sitting in the living room, watching Uncle LL's zany antics on The Lloyd Thaxton Show (his 'finger people' were doing a Four Tops song, as I recall) and chowing down on our individual boxes of Crackerjacks.  Every few minutes, we'd poke around in the boxes, hoping to feel the little wrapped toy hidden inside.
A commercial came on, and that was daddy's cue (unbeknownst to us, he'd been watching us from the kitchen.  The rascal ...).  He came into the room (1.5 minutes of commercial time left!) and said "Boys, you're rootin' in those boxes like hungry pigs!  If you're that hungry, I'll get Mama to ..."  I looked at the TV set (c'mon, dad ... just a minute left!) and said, "We're lookin' for the prize!"  He laughed and said, "Boys, if you look for somethin' that hard when you grow up, you're sure as shootin' gonna find it!"  As the show came back on, he walked back into the kitchen, but kept talking! ("DAAad, we wanna hear Lloyd THAXTON, not YOU! So HUSH!!!") "Yeah, you're gonna have to go through a lot of stuff just like you do them Crackerjacks - but, if you want somethin' bad enough, don't let it stop you from gettin' it!  Right, Irene?"
Mama just smiled and peeked around the doorsill, watchin' Steve, Dick and Chucky with his guitar in his lap, grinnin' and gobblin' as we watched the best teen show anywhere ...

And we owed it all to the Crackerjacks (waitaminnit! Not ... those ... Crackerjacks; that's Arthur Smith's old group, who played on Carolina Calling every morning on channel 3 for years! Who didn't remember "Guitar Boogie" Smith, Tommy Faile, "Skeeter" Haas, Uncle Ralph and Cuzzin Fudd [the 'Counselors of the Airways'] and Wayne's comic rendition of "Surfin' Bird"? But all that's another story ...)

Speakin' of stories, though ... remember what Daddy said, okay? We've been through a lot over the past few months here in the good old USofA alone. But, from Boston to Cleveland, Oklahoma to Arizona, we've learned that if we just hold on, dig a little deeper, and expect something good to come of it all and, like we did in front of that old Zenith, work as a team, we'll find something good coming out of this life!

Our hands may get a bit sticky, and there may be crumbs on the floor now and then, but the good will always outweigh the bad, right??

Stay tuned ...





Friday, July 12, 2013

Lloyd Thaxton Never Mythed A Thing!

NOTE: Over the past few months, the Relic - head cheese taster of the infamous Mouse Clique - had been so swamped with other work that I let the TMC blog slide ... and slide ... and slide, until this little hole-in-the-wall started lookin' a little (dare I say it??) ratty (I did)!
So, yesterday I grabbed a broom, a solid bucket of non-Bieberized mop water (see my rock blog for that story), and started cleanin' and renovating. Then, because this blog was created to honour the little dude who made the Mouse House possible to begin with (no, not Topo-Gigio, though he's an honorary member of TMC), I'm relaunching it to reflect the style, wit and thoughts of our Fearless Leader, the Pied Piper of Rock and Roll, Aunt Barbara's forever-valentine and Mrs. Thaxton's little boy, LLYOD.
So come on in ... the door's open again: 

Yes, he was the original Pied Piper of Rock -- the dude who brought Ben E., Brummels and Byrds to our afternoon TV time. He made Sonny Cher, showed us his Knickerbockers and got Eddie to Flo with the Turtles. The week-daily teen show that took his name was a standard fix for every young person in the mid-Sixties.

He was Lloyd Thaxton ... a man whom we were honored to call "friend", "Uncle", or collect if necessary, until his passing in 2008. Though he was a DJ, emcee, producer, writer and five-time Emmy winner, he always had time for his fans.

In fact, he started this little "clique" so all he could mix with 'em all. And The Mouse Clique was his baby; the offspring of his blog.
Now, in his absence, the little guy has been adopted by The Rock Relic and the world-renowned Sir Gerald of Belichdom (known amongst modern scribes as Gary "NEXT!" Belich), who promised their Aunt Barbara they'd raise it right.

Now, what we're lookin' for is any-and-everybody who has memories of Uncle Lloyd and/or his show to give us a shout-out. Heck ... I'll even sweeten the pot a little: If you'd like to write a guest post dealing with him or the show, just let me or Cousin Gary know and we'll turn the reins over to you for a mile or so! Fair enough?? Then 'nuff said!!

FINGER PEOPLE AND ... DAWKS??

Back in March of the 07, I had the opportunity to interview LL -- about his background, his start in showbiz and more nosiness -- and you'll find it right here . Believe me, it's well worth the read ...

Uncle Lloyd was also the man who popularized not just one finger (which many of us are apt to show sometimes) but all five digits as his "finger people". He'd dress 'em up, have them move as he directed and say what he told 'em to say (sorta like marriage, isn't it?).
One of his most popular routines was when he used them as part of his lip-syncing to Linda Laurie's Jose, He Say.

And then there was ... The DAWK!!

The package says "It Stands for Silent Protest" ... and that's really about as openly political as Lloyd was. But the dude really become popular amongst the viewers ...

By the way, it came in dawk ... er, dark hair as well as lovely, lush blonde (see the pic to your left? Uh-huh ...). We'll have more on this character as this revitaminized blog progresses..

Now, since this is the Big Return, we've got this baby all dressed up, shoes shined, hair combed and ready to go (well, mostly. We still need to work on the blogroll ...)! So here comes the fun part: Getting all the meeces and mouses to come over and visit the blog (cheese optional, though we do get a mite hungry!). Leave yer name and message (and camembert cheese; now, if you cant membert, just substitute a gouda cheddar. Thanx ...) in our comments section, okay??

Now, we can't leave without giving LL's signature sign-off (or something).  But, before we do, remember that you can catch either me or Cousin/brother/co-mouser/king-in-his-own-mind Gary on Facebook ... so go thou there now and friend us up, okay??
That being said ...

Stay tuned ...

Monday, July 1, 2013

What Are They Up To NOW??

I know ... you could be asking the same thing of me, since I've been gone since spring of 1975 (well, it seems that long ... but I'll tell ya more 'bout it in a few posts or the next one (whichever comes first). 'Til then, here's a post redux you might enjoy ...

Look ... let's face it: some entertainers make it, some don't ...

and, while Uncle Lloyd gave plenty of exposure to some of the day's top bands, it was no guarantee they'd make as big a splash as The Beatles, beards and boppers of that "British Invasion," Mrs. Miller, et al (dunno. who "Al" is, but those last four words sound like a grotesque headline!). In fact (and although they never made it to the guestlist of Thaxton's show), there's only one member of that band up there (known as Chameleon Church) who actually broke through the ranks and hit the proverbial jackpot! And it wasn't as a musician ...

It was the drummer -- a chap named Chevy Chase.

The point is (as the point was, as the point will be. Wait -- what was the point again?? Oh ... I remember now ...) that our generation influenced everything from great comedy (Chase) to great politics (okay, it's a stretch, but let's go with it for now ...) like former Reps. John Hall [guitarist, Orleans . Remember [You're] Still the One?) and the late Sonny Bono, to movie dudes like Billy Bob Thornton and Tommy Chong (of Cheech and ...). They all cut their public teeth on the music!! Remember when I mentioned how baby-boomers seem to be "snubbed" these days (readallabouddit here)?
Well, courtesy our gee-tar slingin', longhair generation, seems we're still making a noticeable impact on society! Whether it's in the music or in the Capitol rotunda, you just can't get away from us!
And you never will ... (maniacal laughter follows while, in background of our dark cave-of-a-laboratory, volatile chemicals bubble and steam in vials ... who knows what we have planned next??)

Here are some shots of bands that didn't quite make the national cut back in the day ... but ... there's ... someone ... we ... know ... in these groups. Can you figure it out??
First, there's Tico and The Triumphs. Together, these kids had a great act -- but Tico, himself, had a very unique, almost quiet style about him (he's the dude at the top).

Why, you could almost call it ... the sounds of silence! (awww, do I haveta spell out his real name for ya??)

The country-rock of a little band called CARP admittedly didn't thrill a lot of fans.
But their drummer (left rear in pic.[It means he's the one on the far left in the back. Actually, when he left the photo shoot, his rear left with him ....]) did okay for himself. Though a little(?) gonzo now, he would've gotten Buddy Holly's respect a few years ago (c'mon ... guess the acto ... er, guy ...)

Now, Mouskiteers, if ya don't get this one right, ya get the required 40 with a wet noodle!
Though both Bobby Taylor and his Vancouvers enjoyed limited success, can you imagine what coulda happened to the band if they'd gotten a gig on Uncle Lloyd's show?
Especially that ... that guitarist on the left (in the pic). I ... I can't ... quite make out the features, man! It's like my vision's kinda covered with a purple haze or something ...

Was that too subtle??

Stay tuned ....

Friday, June 14, 2013

THE COURAGE OF A COUNTRY STAR

That's right: Mike Lane, England's top male country artist, is back ... and, as the old song goes, "Feelin' Stronger Every Day"!

If you remember, Mike had suffered a near-fatal aneurysm whilst onstage performing and - well, let's have him tell the story (I'll jump in every once-in-awhile to add to it):

"As I went down ... Ron (Ryan) caught me as i was going to fall into the pit, and laid me down on the stage<" He was transported to a hospital only about a mile away. According to Mike, he "went bang on stage. Lucky they bothered with me as you are effectively dead - maybe 2 out of 10 live." Meanwhile, Ron - a world-renown performer and songwriter - finished the show on behalf of his mate.
From there, he was transferred to a hospital that had a top-flight Aneurysm Unit, some 200 miles away "Having just opened 10 days (before), it was full of world-wide surgeons specialising in that operation" - one that he needed, and quickly!

His lovely wife Helen and family was as devoted and loving as any family could be during that time.  In fact, Mike says "my family traveled 2 hrs there and 2 hrs back every day for a month to visit me in hospital," and provided the up-close-and-personal support and encouragement he needed.

And what an outpouring of support from his fans!  "I received many get well cards from around the world. Many friends and fans world wide and I mean many  seem to be interested in me. So BLESS THEM for that."  Then he asked me to do something for him, "But if you could thank every one for me world wide that would be just great. Also A BIG THANK you to Ron (Ryan) for what he did for me on stage."

Now, for those few of you who don't know much about Mike yet, here's an article from a British country music magazine (just click for a larger, readable size).:

And here he is, singing his hit, Believe:

CHECK OUT MIKE'S WEBSITE ATMIKE LANE COUNTRY ... and, Mike,
WELCOME BACK, MY FRIEND!!
See ya on the flip side ...

Friday, May 31, 2013

Here's Why I Was Gone ...

Just in case you were wondering  ...

Over the past few weeks, I've been neck-deep in research and study to produce my new e-book, Leave Me Alone!  Now, whilst these blogs of mine usually emit some strrrraaannnnge sounds  (er, I mean, humour and music), this particular one is set up to introduce you to the book itself.
So bear with me for a couple of minutes, okay?

You see, a couple of weeks ago, I was in the midst of an early draft of this book when word came from NY that a youngster had hanged herself due to the effects of cyber-bullying.  Of course, something like that could tear anybody up - but it made me realise that I had to pour a little more horsepower into this script and get it done.  I mean, before any other youngster were hurt that deeply ...

So everything was on hold whilst I burnt the midnight oil (and myself twice by coffee that was accidentally knocked into my lap. I think my cat did that deliberately just so he could hear my 'dude-who-swallowed-helium' impression!) to get the book finished.
Today, it's available online and ... well, here are the details:


In the ebook, Leave Me Alone! How To Stop Being Bullied At Either School or Work, readers will find ways to either stop the bullying or minimize its impact on themselves or other victims.  In it, you'll find sections devoted to both school and workplace bullying (including a vital worksheet for students!), information for parents, proposals for schools and much more!
Most sections have segments called So What Can You Do? that outline specific plans to help the victims, whether in school or in the workplace, to overcome the bullying.

The book also has a full bibliography, encouragement for school-aged victims - even  proposed "game plans" for schools that, up to now, don't have anti-bullying measures implemented.  You'll also find facts and figures about the extent of bullying that might surprise you.

It's available in .epub (Kindle® ), .prc  (e-book formatted .PDF) and standard .PDF.  Click here or on the pic at the start of this post and, when purchased, you'll be transferred to the site where you can choose and download the one you want. In fact, you can download all three formats for the one single price of just $2.99!

A great buy ... for a great reason ...
Now, that being said, we'll continue with our regular madness in our next ish ... so
stay tuned!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Two LL's for Uncle Lloyd ...

When I started promoting the return of TMC (not the TV channel), a question that kept popping up was "Why did he (Lloyd) spell his name with two 'LL's?" In fact, though this is a re-post from 1938, I was asked that question again last night at our neighbourhood Wally World (it was preceded by that famous conversation-starter, "Will you please get your @!*& buggy off my foot?").

Well, Llord onlly knows why follks name their llads with doublle LLlls! Llike my llongtime friend Ron Ryan tolld me, though, it's Wellsh in origin. (In case yer wondering and according to my llocall grocer, my own name [Chuck] is apparently cow in origin.)

Now, that photo up there reminds me of one of Uncle Lloyd's famous llip synchs. As you know, the man was an expert at miming the greats (be careful with that word, Chucky; remember: an "ex" is a has-been, and a "spurt" is a drip under pressure. The Chief was neither of those ...).
He'd gone to stage right, and, guitar in hand while sitting on a simple stool, soulfully waded into Bob Dylan's super-long Desolation Row (from his Highway 61 Revisited album. It was about 11 minutes, as I recall ...).
He was a few minutes into "Row" when there was the scheduled two-minute commercial break. Cutting back into the show, and there was Uncle LL ...
still playing the song (now, remember: this was all live-time, so he'd kept going while the camera was off)!
By now, the lights had been cut, old newspaper blew past him (they had a wind machine doing the honors off-camera) ... all set to make it look like everybody'd closed up and gone home!
Not only was the bit hilarious, but it showed that Lloyd knew how to milk the song's length to make it even funnier!

Now, remember to invite all the mousies you know to join us every day at the Mouse House ... in honor of Lloyd, good times and great music ... and ...

Stay tuned ...

Monday, May 6, 2013

The Volks Are In (The Beat Goes On)

That magazine cover on your left introduced millions of teens to the wonderful world of rock and roll (well, it was a little bigger than that picture. Otherwise, the print would've been too tiny to read!).

But see that innocent-looking dude in the upper left corner?  (Y'know, come to think about it, I never asked him why he was in the middle of a bull's eye in that pic!)
That was the guy who made rockin' fun - the Pied Piper Man himself (and the Clique's beloved Commander-In-Cheese), Lloyd Thaxton!

And when you saw his name on the original, wholesome, fab, accept-no-substitutes Tiger Beat!® teen 'zine, you knew you were in for the best of everything rock.  Uncle Lloyd would add just enough zaniness to have you drooling over every article (the paper coulda been just a tad bit thicker so the slobber wouldn't penetrate) - and those "ripping" sounds you'd hear across America were kids ever-so-carefully tearing out pics of their faves so mom and dad wouldn't get on them for messing up the magazine.


But I said all that to tell you this:

Lloyd often promoted the legendary  Paul Revere and the Raiders in his action-packed issues.  The band mixed the absolute best of rock with the funniest on-(and often off-)stage antics to make the perfect act!  Mix in super-good looks (Mark Lindsay. Swoon. Need I say more?), and ... well, it's no wonder they had more airtime than any other performer on television other than Lawrence Welk!

But the one who brought an instant, "feel-good" smile to teen's faces (and made millions of girls' hearts skip a beat or two) was their lively bassist/vocalist Phil "Fang" Volk.  His enthusiasm was contagious, his sense of humor refreshing - but don't kid yourself: this guy could out-play and out-sing any other rocker (some said he'd even give that McCartney guy a run for his money)!

Fast-forward to 2013.  Drake (guitarist) and Smitty (drummer) have left this world to serenade the angels.  Mark is working shows on occasion.  Paul fronts a "new" group of Raiders who, whilst good, will (in my opinion) never match up to the "originals".
And "Fang"???
The man's busier than ever - and has a phenomenememenal fan base that spans from coast-to-coast, including a number of them on Facebook®!  He's been playing shows with his beautiful wife Tina Mason (whom he met when the band were headlining Dick Clark's Where The Action Is!) and their lovely and talented daughters.  He's also recorded a heart-stopping, turbo-charged version of Dylan's classic, The Times They Are A-Changin', and is quite busy with many other endeavours. 
But he's still as lively and witty as ever, with a positive attitude that matches Uncle Lloyd's, and looks fantastic!

Of course, his fans (especially the new ones!) are "Hungry" for whatever pics and info they can find on Phil.  The first place they all want to go is to Fang's website, or they'll check his name through search engines.

But many of them are remembering Uncle Lloyd's Tiger Beat® magazine and those who still have copies are even putting a few of Phil's pics online (I took the one on the left from a copy that Lloyd sent me a few years ago)!
And that also creates new interest in the man who made the magazine famous.  Lloyd Thaxton and The Raiders (naaah ... it doesn't have the same ring; but I was talkin' about them separately) were so much alike in that, despite having different careers in entertainment, truly knew the meaning of the word - and lived it with everything they had!

Now, if you get a chance, check out "Fang's" site up there, and by all means, take in his show when they come to your area!  Doesn't matter if you take a bus, cab, ride with a friend or take a boat (unless you're in Arizona, in which case you're up the creek!), but you're (wait ... they do have creeks there, don't they?? Scratch earlier remark, then ...).  I promise you'll leave feeling happier and brighter than you did before you walked in!
Phil has that wonderful effect on people ....




Stay tuned ...

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Bein' Sutthun Bred ...

As most of you know, I was brought up in a little town called Pineville, N.C. but, as I write this, I'm makin' my stead in the Appalachian foothills of Ashland, KY.

Now, both of these places have one thing in common: We've both been called unintellogical hillbillies by folks who are too ritzy to have a Wal-Mart® in their made-to-order cities.  And what's wrong with that? I mean, the hills are necessary to everyday life.  Without them, you'd just have straight miles of boring roads without the excitement of hairpin curves, listening to your transmission rattle as you're tryin' to get your car up a 45-degree slope, or praying for guard rails.

Besides, our hills are popular! Even the Bible says we're where ya need to go: "I'll lift mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help" (Psalm 121:1).

So ya see?  We're good to go!  And, though we're really just on the edge of the hills - in a place called the Piedmont - down in Pineville and pretty darn close to the Smokies on this side of the range in Ashland, we're proud to be considered billies of the hills.
(incidentally, mentioning "this side of the range" reminds me: I've gotta put the dishes away this morning.  They're sittin' between the range and the sink ...)

SOUTHERN BORN 

But we were talking about the South (gotta tie this in with the post title somehow) so it gives me a chance to do what I promised two posts ago, to make some sense, ummm, introduce myself:

Historical rewind: once, I was a child -- a member of an elite Pinevillean force known as Hinsons. Feared by no one, we trampled the grounds of Morrow Avenue and played amongst the wild creatures that roamed the wilderness ...

I was of the feeding group known as "kids". The scrawniest and biggest-snouted of them, I was often corralled for feeding, teaching and disciplining. Very embarrassing when you're 16, but I dealt with it.

Yes, we were raised on cornbread, turnip greens, fatback and pinto beans.  Our favorite drink was either Pepsi or RC Cola (right ... often with Moon Pies!  What of it??).  We didn't have a lot of money, but our folks could take a single dollar bill and squeeze every drop of savings out of it! And we didn't have these fancy (gag!) "Wally Worlds", so most of our shopping was done at K-Mart®'s (no, you always added that "s" to it!).

Here in Ashland, it's the same, except they drink Coke (pray for them, okay??).  It's like the Pineville of old, except with a little more concrete ... and a WalMart® ... and somethin' called "dip" (strange word meaning: "DONT DRINK OUTTA PAW'S BOTTLE!! IT AIN'T PEPSI ... I mean, COKE!!")

And ya gotta love the people in this little town!  Where else can you have (and I swear this is true!) a little old lady, no bigger than a minute but with years of 'em under her belt, stop by a local convenience store and, upon seeing a big rottweiler, tell the clerk she wants to call the police but needs to know the number for 911?
Or the man who was just leaving church but couldn't get his wife to come with him?  He looked around and found her talking to someone.  "Just a sec," she told him.  Apparently, he'd heard that many times before, because he bellowed, "You're always tellin' me that!  Honestly, I'm sick and tired of your 'secs'!"
Then he looked around and noticed that everybody in the vestibule had gone silent ... and looking at him.  So he tried to save face by looking at her and adding, "But whaddya say we give it another try tonight, just to be sure?"

Right now, as you know, there's a lot of hot air coming from Washington ... and they're too busy playing the "cootie" game with each other (remember the old days?  "You don't wanna play with Johnny!  Ewwwww ... he's got cooties!!"  And, no, I don't know what "cooties" are ... don't want to know...) to get anything done.

But I submit to you that if we just get rid of all those loudmouth city slickers and put in a number of women who've slaved over hot stoves, moppin' floors, washing clothes and cookin' supper whilst hickory-switchin' one young'un, band-aidin' another and listening to another read for school as she's tryin' to get the baby to burp, we'd have our country's problems fixed in no time!

'Course, they were better, stronger and more effective than all the Congresspeople in Washington; they were our mamas!!  

Now ... with all that bein' said ..

stay tuned ...

DOG-GONE TIRED??

I've gotta admit: being a southpaw on this keyboard, sometimes when I type the word "dog" it instinctively comes out "god".

Not that they mind, of course.  I mean, in their doggy minds, they probably wonder why you're not on your knees, giving them a love offering and praising them and ...

Wait!  That ... that's what we do, isn't it??  Oh, well ...

I remember the first puppy I brought home for my sons back in 1988.  A cute little dude, Bingo was a black lab with a BFH disorder (bladder from hell).  To help him learn where to ... er, "go", I put old sections of the Charlotte Observer down near the back door.  Whenever he'd take a leak (and, by the way, why do they say "take a leak"?  They're leavin' it, for cryin' out loud!), I'd pick him up, take him to the paper and tell him "NONONO!! Go HERE!"  

Then he'd go back, sniff where he was ... and do it again!  For awhile, I was convinced his little "thing" was like a witch-hazel stick that could point to any moisture in the air, absorb it and expel it.

Sooo, I'd pick him up again, take him to the paper, tell him to "go" there ...
and he'd immediately run off (after absorbing whatever water was used in the creation of the original paper stock) and do it again!

Ahhhh, but after a lot of patience with him, he finally got the message I was giving him:

He'd still pee on the carpet, but then run over to the paper, read it, and run off to empty his bladder again ..

A year later - he was four years old by that time - one day I came in from work before the kids got out of school. Now, they had a neat Sega® game system that played some kind of game with a hedgehog (I mean, it was the game.  They actually played against each other ...) - it was their favorite.  But, when I came in the
front door, there was Bingo - with the cord to one of the controls chewed up and dangling from his mouth!

I'll never forget that innocent "awww-sh-t-now-I'm-gonna-die" look on his face as he spit it out and took off for higher ground (the claw-foot tub in the bathroom.  Not a good choice with his bladder ...).

So I took a look at the controller and figured "Hey ... THIS isn't complicated!  I can fix it with a little splicing and duct-tape.  It'll be good as new!!"  A half-hour later, I was finished!  So I plugged the controller back into the console, loaded the game and turned it and the TV on (back then, kiddies, no computer - you watched it on your television screen).

But, instead of the cute, happy music that introduced the game, the TV emitted a sound reminiscent of Jimi Hendrix, a trash truck unloading a dumpster and cats with their tails caught in a fan!  And that hedgehog looked like he'd gotten some bad LSD or something - and ran accordingly!

Thank God we had a Toys-R-Us®  just a mile down the road from us!   








Saturday, April 27, 2013

Gotta Hand It To The Cats ..

God bless Kabuki. If the rest of my cats were the Real McCoys, he was "Grandpappy Amos". Sadly, he's no longer with me ... but that Fateful Day could've been a lot earlier in his illustrious life

Y'see, a few years ago, I had a panful of boiling grease -- the result of frying up a package of bacon . As I was transferring the grease to a trap at the side of the sink, he ran in front of me. Now, the handle of the pan was kinda loose, and was just about to come off -- and I knew the entire, scalding-hot mess would douse K-Cat!

So, instead of seeing him fatally burned, I pushed the handle down in a snap, and took the entire load of it on my left hand!

Now, I'm not gonna say it hurt, but it was at that very moment that I found I could dance a very mean Watusi.
I ran to the fridge, jerked open the freezer door with my good hand and stuck the parboiled one in a big bag of ice. Then I took the bag out, poured it into a pot I had on the stove and carried it to the coffee-table in the living room (yes, I had to take my already-swollen paw outta the ice to do it. My reaction to the immense pain nearly resulted in five new curse words added to the Merriam-Webster® dictionary ...).I laid down on the sofa and stuck my hand in the pot. The relief was overwhelming -- and I shortly fell asleep.
But ...
two hours later, I awoke (hand still in the ice) to find my cats had gathered around on the sofa and table -- staring at my crotch (I could swear that the smallest were giggling. K-Cat and the others just shook their heads in disbelief ...).
So it's not just warm water that loosens the ol' bladder, eh?? Gotta make a note ...

Two Tylenol®, a bottle of peroxide (poured, not drank) and an ace-bandage later, the pain was still so bad that I went to the local ER to be checked out. Two hours passed -- I was down to the last two buttons of my shirt. I'd already chewed the rest of them off -- and the doctor came to look at it.
"You need to have somebody take a look at it," he said. He meant someone called a reconstructive surgeon. I was just hoping he'd have come back with a hatchet and cut the darn thing off.

Instead, I drove to the pharmacy (he did prescribe medication to ease the pain. What, exactly, is "arsenic", anyway? ...), and they gave me a jar of some kind of cream to put on it as well. Of course, I was to keep it bandaged afterward ...

The next few days were ... well, eventful. Now, I also had two dogs -- one male, one female -- who were very well-trained. All I had to do is give a simple command like sit, stay, flush and they'd do it.

But, once, I walked into the computer room to try my hand (literally!) on the Compaq®, when I accidentally hit my bandaged-but-still-throbbing hand against the doorsill.
Now, I'm not gonna repeat what I said, nor how often I said it -- but, when I turned around, the hall was filled with little brown poops!

NOTE: Whilst the second-and-third degree burns apparently had done enough damage to warrant reconstruction, I chose against it. It healed perfectly, and today I have total use of the hand. Miracle?? Therapy?? Listen ... the most miraculous therapy I received was some loving cats gently rubbing against the bandaged hand, purring ... and tender doggy-licks as deep brown eyes gazed up at me as if to say, Daddy, you're gonna be alright ...
and, by the way: thanks for smearing the back of your bandage with peanut-butter!

Monday, April 22, 2013

A Little Travelin' Music (Maestro, If You Please ...)

Welll, it's not exactly like that, really. My cat's grayish-looking ...

but this is the new addition to the Mouse House (besides, I couldn't get the new hutch in here; our starsky was blocking it).  This continues the fun that Uncle LL was so famous for.  Sadly, he's left us for a larger stage ... and no one could ever duplicate our Mighty Mouse, Lloyd Thaxton (LL stands for "Lloyd", or "Leaping Leprechaun".  Either way, the name's the same...)..  But it's also sort of an extension of what I started over there on Facebook®, but without all the 'pokes'' 'likes', 'shares' and - and ...

oh - did I tell you I'm on Facebook®? Look me up ...

Anyway, because I need to concentrate on our little hole-in-the-wall here - I'm incorporating some of the scripts from my other blog Out Of My Mind and closing her up.  And we're gonna mix it with some great stuff from the Head Cheeser himself - our fab and still-seriously-missed Uncle Lloyd Thaxton.  After all, Aunt Barbara asked us to carry on our Mousey business in his memory, and that's just what we gonna do (after all, THIS IS THE HOUSE THAT UNCLE LLOYD BUILT ... right?  

Speaking of FB: Have ya noticed that we haven't heard one word there from those nice Nigerian people who email us, offering tons of wealth if we just send our personal info and first-born child to them? They're not on the social stagecoach yet ...

HEY!  I've got an idea that'll get rid of those emails and the hackers we haveta deal with on the 'book:

Let's get allll those Nigerian money people to sign up for Facebook®.  Then, the next time we're faced with those hackers (they call them "phishers", but I'd rather not.  The Fishers were friends of mine back home in Pineville and wouldn't do that stuff ...), we can refer them to our Nigerian 'friends'.  In turn, the hackers will be hit up, send their money, go broke, won't be able to afford computers, and we'll not see them anymore!

The Nigerian brotherhood-of-the-buck will be hacked into, their money and personal info taken -- all of which will be found to be fraudulent -- and the hackers and the law will be after them.  So they'll all go into hiding, which means they can't plug in their computers without being busted by one or both of them - so our emails will be free of them!!

Tell me what ya think ... is it workable?  Well, don't you wish it was??

In other news ...

A little earlier today, I ran across a friend (don't worry, he'll be fine.  Just my back wheels got him ...) who told me about a trip to his psychiatrist last week.  Said he'd just finished a quick jog around the park, so he went as he was: shorts, tee shirt, etc.

Oh, he had a good visit ... until he saw the shrink's coffee cup (you know, the ones with the little funny sayings and stuff??).  Said he instinctively crossed his legs tightly and sorta slumped over a little when he saw it.

A big, cream-colored cup with burgundy words that read:

"I can see you're nuts."

 Okay ... that's it for the first edition here ... and more is coming up in about 24 hours (depending on where you live ...)  Sooo, Mousers ....

stay tuned ...

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Identity Identified




It all ties in ...

Awhile back, whilst trying to use my little, nearly-dog-eared Visa®, I found out that it was nearly maxxed out -- and not by yours truly!! Not entirely pleased with the matter, I went down, tore off the entered the doors of the bank with my little, nearly-Visa-eared dog® and found that somebody apparently used my identity to buy half of Podunk (of course, Podunk doesn't cost very much ...).

After crunching the figures about as much as my nerves were at the time, the banking father gave me the facts, figures -- and I believe, as irate as I was, even the bird -- and I proceeded to sign the zillion papers necessary to get investigations going and maybe a little remuneration.
At least I think I signed my name; remember, someone had stolen my identity, so I'm not really sure ...

Now, though it happened a few months ago, that incident did cause me to think for once:

These snakes who slither between the cracks in our web security and steal our names and numbers are called "identity thieves".  They lift our bank account numbers to drain us (heck ... what do they want with my 45 cents anyway??), or our credit-card info (I guess to raid one of those shopping networks?) or whatever.

But what they don't do is actually steal our identities!!  Those things are locked inside our brains (again, what do they want with my 45 cents' worth of intelligence, anyway??) and personalities. It's in how we handle our jobs, our families and ourselves when we're out-and-about.  It's in the way we worship.  It's in the way we react to movies, television or books we read.  Bottom line? It's in the way we present ourselves to others ... and ourselves!

And that, my friend, is sealed tighter than the answers hermetically sealed in an airtight jar on Funk & Wagnall's porch ...

You see, we can open new accounts, get new credit-cards or whatever.  But our identities -- our own, individual personalities -- are one-of-a-kind, permanently ingrained in us.
And nobody can take those away!
 
Stay tuned ...