Monthly Archives: September 2013

If Interviewed By Barbara Walters

My family portrait, one of them could be  me - funky, groovy, and happenin'.

My family portrait, one of them could be me – funky, groovy, and happenin’.

Daily Prompt: On the Road

If you could pause real life and spend some time living with a family anywhere in the world, where would you go?

Sometimes the Daily Prompt has a Barbara Walters’ interview feel to them; questions designed to know the inner being. Get lost Barbara; ask me the tree in forest question.

Rather than pick a family, let’s start by eliminating them; the Kardashian’s or any reality show family, including the Dugger’s. A kid could rush in with an arm missing and they’d say, “Well, you still have a good one. Come on, Honey, let‘s have another kid. Maybe it will be born with three arms, everything evens-out.”

I never wanted hang with the Manson family. Squeaky was freaky (Squeaky Fromme, Manson family member who tried to assassinate President Gerald Ford).

Sly and the Family Stone was too funky. No way I would dress like them.

No musical families like the Osmond’s or Jackson’s. Although, I would have fun singing off key, off beat, and dancing stupid.

I don’t philander so I could never be a part of a Kennedy reunion.

Likely once I passed gas the Windsor family would be showing me the back door at Buckingham Place.

I’m afraid if I was either a member of the Hatfield’s or McCoy’s they would unite against me.

If a member of a crime family I’d roll-over in a New York minute. Our family photo would have to be shot at Riker’s.

In all seriousness, for one day I’d like to sit in the living room of and old farm-house in north/west Ohio thirty-five years ago and just hold my family. That’s the only family I want.

Now are you happy Barbara?


Filed under Daily Prompt, Essays

Boise State: Great Win, Great Effort, Now What?

Our d-line should rush like it's Black Thursday at Best Buy.

Our d-line should rush like it’s Black Thursday at Best Buy.

There were a lot of impressive performance by Boise State in their 60-7 win over Southern Miss.

Joe Southwick tuned in another great passing performance, 19 for 23 and 268 yards. He has come a long way, in skills, leadership, and understanding of the game. He is incredible at reading defenses and changing plays at the line of scrimmage.

Grant Hedrick is looking really good. It looks as if he has more confidence in his ability to tuck and run rather than wait for a receiver to open up. He was 3 for 3 and 45 yards. He had 5 carries for 29 yards.

Jay Ajayi had a great night; sort of a redemptive performance. On Boise’s first possession he missed a block that resulted in Southwick being sacked. He came out. Later he was back in and running over people and ripping away from tackles. The best of all things; he didn’t fumble. He gained 83 yards in 14 carries.

We didn’t see as much from Aaron Baltazar as many expected. Although he had 4 carries for 36 yards.

Finally, Shane Williams-Rhodes got to show some of his downfield receiving skills rather than those side line passes. Williams-Rhodes’ hidden skill and value is downfield where no one is able to cover him. He had 9 catches for 59 yards. I know, they give him those easy money passes and let him do the work to get yardage after the catch, but the touchdown catch where he took the ball off the carpet was as good as it gets.

Miller turned in another steady game. He doesn’t have off nights. He had 5 catches for 107 yards.

Geraldo Boldewijn has turned into a beast. He snatches candy from the mouths of babies. He had only three catches but for 104 yards. If the referee would have been looking out of his other eye he would have given him a touchdown catch in the second half from Southwick. I don’t think the replay booth could have overturned the call.

Jack Fields was able to break a sweat and we were able to see what he is capable of doing; 12 carries for 46 yards.

Charles Bertoli plays like a man possessed. He plays like a man whose heart is too big for his chest. He will soon be ready for quality time. He had 4 runs for 24 yards. They came when everybody was expecting nothing but run. His touchdown was epic; he sat a tackler on his keister to get the end zone.

Demarcus Lawrence showed up. He did it all, but what was impressive was the two blocked field goals. That’s a season for most defensive linemen. Yet he is the only one who is having a positive effect when it comes to the pass rush.

The Southern Miss. quarterback was given too much time to find receivers. The Broncos young secondary can’t hold them off forever. The secondary is doing a great job. They need help from the d-line and blitzes. Darian Thompson and Bryan Douglas had two great picks.

The kicking wicked witch returned to Boise State. Dan Goodale, who had been good all year long, missed two extra points. In a close game or a loss that may have ended his playing time. He was able to connect on a 33 yard field goal.

The o-line is simply not giving Southwick the protection he deserves. They’re missing assignments and getting over-ran.

The first touchdown against Southern Miss. was a message to the Mountain West that the so called ‘trick-plays’ are still part of the play book. Although I would rather see that one with thirty seconds left down by 3 in the conference play-off game.

A week off will be good for the Broncos. The d-line and o-line can work on the mental lapses and mistakes. If there is not improvement we can conclude they just don’t have it, at least for this season. It is either the players or what they’re being fed from the sidelines. If it’s the latter than the coaches are the ones who have to bone-up.

For the d-line I suggest showing video of Best-Buy when the doors opened last year Black Friday; that’s what we want. For the o-line a nature video of a she-bear protecting her cub.

Utah, Boise’s next opponent averaged 5.1 yards per carry in their last outing. Boise averaged 4.4 in a blow-out. You would expect it to be around six. Boise ranks somewhere near the middle in yards per carry in the MWC. If they are to win the MWC, they should control the line of scrimmage and that is evident by having a hefty yards per carry average.

Just like losses, put wins behind you, and move on.

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Filed under Boise, Sports

How To Get Rid Of Junk

Going to a garage sale is like snooping into the private lives of other. What people put in a garage sale is like a window to their soul.

Going to a garage sale is like snooping into the private lives of others. What people put in a garage sale is like a window to their soul.

Daily Prompt: Clean House

Is there “junk” in your life? What kind? How do you get rid of it?

A garage sale is the way you get rid of junk.

This is how it works; other people pay you money to haul your junk away, that’s what a garage sale is.

Take a piece of junk; remember that food processor you bought for $7 at a garage sale three years ago? It was one of those $99 ones in a catalogue. You already had two you never used, but it was such a good price that you couldn’t imagine it being possessed by someone who would not get some good use out of it. We’ll put a tag on it and get rid of it along with the set of $12 golf clubs and $10 push mower.

I know what you’re going through; someday all that junk will be worth money. Here’s some advice and a word of truth; American Pickers and Antique Road Show is entertainment. It’s not the real world. You will not live long enough for your junk to be worth more than what you paid for it.

Here’s a test; the price you put on something in a garage sale is in direct correlation to your desire and willingness to part with it. – A pair of roller skates for $50, you’re too attached you can‘t part with it, you‘ve formed and emotional bond. A drill with a cord for $1, you are living in reality. Likely, you’ve been shocked by the drill.

I had this old bicycle pump. It was in several garage sales. The last price on it was 25 cents. Nobody took it. I stacked it with other items on the curb with a sign that read “free.”

I went inside to pour a coffee and looked out the window and saw some guy loading everything into the trunk of his car.

Six months later I see a garage sale. It’s at the house of the guy who took my pile of junk including that pump.

I thought I’d have some fun.

“What ya askin’ for that old bicycle pump?” I said.

“$3.00,” he said firmly. “Got at have at least three.”

“I’ll give ya fifty cents for it,” I said.

“Sold,” he said.


Filed under Daily Prompt, Essays

2016 – The Way We Is

september-2016-calendar-4[1]Daily Prompt: Ebb and Flow

Our blogs morph over time, as interests shift and life happens. Write a post for your blog — but three years in the future.

Well, here we are in 2016:

Al Gore is predicting a global winter for the next thousand years.

The NRA is issuing a fully automatic assault weapon to every newborn.

The U. S. has ask the U. N. for sanctions against the city of Chicago; rival gangs are using poisonous gas instead of bullets.

The population of Detroit is 14, whoops 13; that was a bag of cloths.

Presidential candidates are offering forty acres and a mule for a vote.

Soccer still sucks no matter how hard ESPN and the news media try to shove it down our throats.

Female sports casters still stink no matter how hard ESPN and the news media try to shove it down our throats.

Bernie Madoff receives a Presidential Pardon.

I become more cynical.

Jimmy Hoffa’s DNA shows up in McDonalds’ Big Mac.

The Jittery Goat has 1,000,000 follows and 23 views a day.

I’m blogging once a week now, because I have a life.


Filed under Daily Prompt, Essays

Shea McClellin, The Kid From Chicken Dinner Road – A Boise State Legend & Bears’ Star In The Making.

images[2]Shea McClellin was raised just down the road from Boise in Marsing, Idaho, a farm boy. It’s an environment where you don’t call in sick, because you don’t feel like working today. If you don’t work nothing gets done because there is no one else to do it.

Farming is a tough racket. You plant, hope, pray, and wait for rain. In Idaho you plant and go get the rain; nothing comes to you. I imagine Shea spent some time moving irrigation pipe. He bucked hay and straw. There was probably a time or two a ornery calf had to be man-handled. That kind of work builds muscle and character.

They say muscle is muscle, but what you get from hard work is reflected in what you accomplished as a person and not standing in front of a mirror doing reps.

McClellin was a gifted athlete at Marsing High School. He excelled at football, basketball, and baseball, but it was football that got him to Boise State.

Boise State was the only college to recruit him although Idaho and Idaho State showed interest. I suppose when that happens it’s a real motivator – if you’re a person that can be motivated. Like I said before, being from a farm, motivation is a word for corporate types. They have a couple of motivational speakers a year to keep the corporation in the black. No, out on the farm motivation is you don’t eat and the farm goes back to the bank. After awhile everything becomes  routine, a way of life.

After watching him at Boise State for four years it is clear he doesn’t know the word ‘quit.’ He wore opposing lineman down. They were huffing and puffing while he was smiling.

He is likely as good of a success story as Kellen Moore, perhaps even more so. That story’s for another day, but here’s the boiled down version; Dad splits, Mom gives Shea to Grandma and Grandpa to raise, they raise a good kid, plays high school sports, goes to Boise, Bears draft him first round.

Chicago is a good fan city, especially for defensive players. They seem to appreciate the hard work and dedication it takes. Flash only last for a moment. They like the long haul. They like you, they keep you for life. His work ethic and personality will endear Bears’ fans to him. The Bears and McClellin are a good fit.

He’s not only blue-collar, but he’s blue turf. Boise is endeared to him also. I got the feeling that back in Marsing they’re all proud of him, but he’s just the kid that lives outside town down on Chicken Dinner Road (Yep, that’s the name of the road).

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Filed under Boise, Sports

Does Pie And Milk Speed-Up Time? How I Got To Harvard In A Flash (short fiction)

images[11]Daily Prompt: A Bend in Time

When you’re giddy with excitement, does time speed up? Slow down? Tell us about the experience of anticipation.

Goose Michaels is my best friend; known him all my life. Don’t ask how he got the name Goose, but it’s not as obvious as it sounds and I don’t have the time to elaborate. Let’s just call him Goose.

He was raised on the farm behind ours. We worked fields together, skinny-dipped together, and shared everything. He wasn’t the sharpest knife in the drawer, but he wasn’t rusty either.

If not for him I wouldn’t have gone to Harvard. Yeah, you heard me right.

I did pretty good in school; top of my class and won a lot of scholastic awards. Learning came easy for me, things seemed to stick in my head that others forgot. Goose said he liked hanging around me cause it averaged out our IQs; see what I mean only Goose could have come up with that.

I’d been waiting for acceptance letters all spring. There was nothing from Harvard. I began to think I wasn’t as smart as thought.

Well as it turned out I got an acceptance letter from Rice, that was my Uncle Cal’s alma mater. Everybody said I got my brains from him, Daddy didn‘t like hearing that one. He was the only other one in the family to go to college, not counting cousin Wade who went to auto mechanic’s school and cousin Lucy who went to cosmetology school, but dropped out, said her brain locked up when they put curlers in her hair.

Goose drove me to the station the catch the southbound bus for Rice. We got there early.

We sat in his car a couple of spots from the bus depot.

“Why so early?” Goose said.

“Just in case we got stopped by a train or had a flat,” I said.

“Train comes three times a day,” Goose said. “You can set your watch to them. We wasn’t gonna get caught by no train. The tires are bald, but sill got some good rubber. You’re just nervous and anxious.”

“I’m being cautious,” I said.

“Why you lookin’ at yer watch all the time than?” Goose said.

“I like my watch,” I said. “It’s a graduation gift.”

“You can look at it all you want when yer on the bus,” Goose said. “Just admit it yer nervous.”

“I’m not nervous,” I insisted.

“Ya know they say if ya put yer mind on something else time goes faster,” Goose said. “That’s a fact.”

“Time is constant,” I said.

“I was in the barn last winter waiting for Bessie, our heifer, to birth. I waited all night long. It was the longest wait of my life. Finally I couldn’t take it any more. I stepped outside and took a leak. When I came in there was Bessie with her heifer. Sometime it’s good to have some sort of distraction. Makes time go faster.”

“So are you saying we should play cards or something?” I said.

“No,” Goose said, “But the way yer movin’ your legs back and forth yer either nervous or got to take a leak.”

“I just don’t want to miss the bus,” I said.

“So yer just being vigilant, right?” Goose said.

“That’s right.” I said.

“We can be just as vigilant from the diner across the street from the bus station,” Goose said. “I’ll buy ya a pie and glass of milk. That will calm yer nerves.”

“If I accept your offer do I have to accept your theory that I’m nervous?” I said.

“It’s yer show, ya call it yer way,” Goose said.

So we went to the diner and had the pie and milk. We sat in the booth next to the window. My eyes were glued to the bus station and all the while Goose was insisting I was nervous.

We walked back towards the car and I checked my watch. “The bus should have been here ten minutes ago. Let’s walk over to the station and see what’s up.”

We walked to the counter and said to the old man behind it, “When do you expect the bus going south?”

“It left five minutes ago,” he said.

“What!” I said.

“Yep,” he said. “Stopped, took a look, nobody got on, and took off, just like he always does.”

“When’s the next bus south?” I said.

“Tomorrow same time,” he said. “Try to be her on time.”

“What did it tell you,” Goose said. “You was distracted and time sped up so fast it done passed us by without a notice from us.”

“No,” I said. “A semi pulled in front of the diner and blocked our view. That’s when the bus came.”

The phone rang and the man behind the desk picked it up. “I think he’s right here in front of me ma’am. He missed the bus. Sure, I’ll put him on.”

The man handed the phone to me.

“I missed the bus, Mom,” I said.

“And it’s a good thing,” she said. “You got your letter from Harvard today. There was a terrible mix-up. Since you missed the bus to Rice I guess you’ll have to catch the next bus east.”

I said good-bye to Mom and asked the man,” When is the next bus east?”

“Thirty minutes,” he said.

Goose smiled and said, “A hamburger and coke can make it seem like fifteen.”


Filed under Daily Prompt, Short Stories

The Jittery Goat Travel Log – Places I’ve Been; Zone, Ohio

imagesCA3HOI5BI’ve never been to a lot of places, but here’s a place you haven’t been that I have.

I’ve been to Zone, Ohio. I bet you haven’t and if you say you have you’re probably laying. You’ve probably never heard of it.

Zone is so remote and unheard of you can’t if find it on a Google Map, but it’s there. You just have to know what you’re looking for.

Go to your Google Map and type in Fayette, Ohio. Follow Route 66 about three miles south of Fayette. Zone is where Route 66 crosses Road L. They have a sign planted firmly in the ground that proudly reads, “Zone.”

There’s nothing there. I don’t mean nothing nothing, of course there’s something there.

A home sits on the north/west corner of the intersection of Route 66 and Road L. It looks as if it may have been a country market at one time.

Just south of the center of Zone is what appears to be a school or what might have been a school at one time. Can you imagine the confusion; a sign saying, “School Zone” and another saying, “Zone School.”

Don’t you wonder if anything ever happens in Zone. Of course something happens, but you know a Presidential visit, a terrorist’s threat, a flat tire.

I’ve been through Zone a hundred times. It got to be so regular that the people of Zone lined the streets and said, “There he goes again.”

The place is so bland it doesn’t even have a demographic.

Hopefully now if somebody Googles Zone, Ohio it will now have it’s place in cyber-world.

So I’m going to undertake writing the complete history of Zone.

The origins of Zone, Ohio are currently unknown. The people are friendly and trustworthy (I think), little else is known about them. The name Zone comes from the word “Zone.”

If you are ever in Zone; knock on a door and say, “Kenton Lewis wrote about this place. Can I have a hand-out.” The will say, “Who is Kenton Lewis?” Reply, “The guy that drove through here a bunch of times.” They will than say, “Oh, that Kenton Lewis.”

Keep in mind Zone is not for everybody. That’s why everybody is someplace else.


Filed under Places & Travel