Saturday, December 19, 2009

Saturday Evening Musings and Wally Cleaver

Tammy's comment from ten minutes ago, "If that dog lives another year I'll be surprised". We just got back from the mall to find the remains of Rachel's Hershey's Kisses candy-cane on the couch in the basement. A quick check with Rachel told us that she hadn't had any of it yet and had left it on the couch after watching TV where we're assuming Charlie got into it. I can't figure out how he was able to separate the foil from the chocolate but he did...well, most of it anyway; I'm sure he ingested some of that as well.  There's nothing left but the plastic tube the chocolate came in.  Tammy looked online and found that a dog his size would have to ingest twice the amount he did before it would be hazardous to him.  The fun that little guy has while we're away!  I'm half tempted to set up a couple webcams around the house just to check in on his antics from time to time.

We gave up on trying to teach him to leave the ornaments on our Christmas tree alone. The temptation is too great for him. Tammy moved all the ornaments from the bottom half of the tree to the top half. It may look odd but it works. He's making his first Christmas with us a memorable one.

Tammy and I spent a few hours this afternoon at the Dakota County government building watching Rachel's Mock Trial team take on a team from Eagan High School. The competition played out over two days with Rachel's team taking 2nd place overall behind Lakeville South. Rachel plays the part of an expert witness. It's a bit of speech, drama, civics, and law all rolled into one.

The case is a fictional story about a high school athlete who dies suddenly from anabolic steroid abuse. The widowed father of the dead student is in court to hold the school accountable for his child's death asserting that the stresses placed on his child by the track coach to succeed led her to improve her performance illegally.  Attorneys for the school dismiss the blame and accuse the father of being negligent in his role as a parent. There's a script that's followed but different outcomes can be arrived at depending upon where the emphasis is placed by each side. The teams have to learn both the defense and plaintiff sides of the case as they will argue each throughout competitions over the next couple months.

As I was sitting back watching I couldn't help but be impressed with a few of the kids in particular. I'm a bit biased but I'd include Rachel in that bunch. She came away with an award for best witness out of six so my impressions couldn't have been too far off.

My Wizard of Oz meets Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon video series on YouTube is no more. Warner Brothers put the kibosh on my uploads due to copyright infringements. I'm surprised they lasted as long as they did, actually. The 1st video out of the 6 had just gone beyond the 125,000 hit mark and was showing no signs of slowing down. It wasn't like I was somehow benefiting monetarily from the videos but it was a clear violation on my part so who am I to challenge the decision to yank them?

I am left with one troubling last impression of the movie. Do you see anything wrong with this image?

There's a guy I work with who was in a band years ago. He was their lead guitarist and they traveled the Midwest under than name Wally Cleaver. They once opened for Huey Lewis and the News before 40,000 people. They had a pretty good run from around 1981 to 1987 before their lead singer decided to head out on his own leaving the others to pretty much go their separate ways.

I remember asking Grant years ago if he still played his guitar and he said he didn't. That surprised me because I'd love to be able to play but I'm completely tone-deaf and the only thing I can play besides the radio is a CD player. If I had that talent I know I'd use it.

Grant isn't on Facebook (yet) but he told me last week that one of his former band-mates started a fan page on Facebook where he uploaded a few dozen photos and some video of the band from back in the day. I had to check it out. Sure enough, there they were and there he was—a lean, fresh-faced Grant with a guitar slung around his neck. I've uploaded a few of them here, mostly for the guys from work who will get a kick out of them: Grant, in what looks like a make-shift sound room; some motel/hotel room someplace; the band with '80s hair, and a more recent photo of them all from last summer.

Is there a reunion of Wally Cleaver in the works?

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