Day after day our weather folk tracked the incoming winter storm; mile by mile they punched out their notices of forthcoming cataclysmic devastation.

Now, Saturday morning, things are quiet, calm, and bright; and my mug of Rogue American coffee tastes better than ever. The storm is over and we’re looking at a landscape covered by an inch and a half of pure white snow. It’s lovely.

” People don’t notice whether it’s winter or summer when they’re happy.” ~ Anton Chekhov

Coffee explanation – I should point out what it is with today’s Rogue American coffee rather than our go-to standard; White Castle. We were out of our go-to stuff hence the changeover. Rogue American Apparel is a company started up by friends of Vince and Kirstin in Austin. He was a Navy Seal, a Body Guard for some personage, and then the American dream hit and out of that was born a great idea – start a company. Now, it’s apparel, specialty items, a beer, and several coffees. Kirstin doesn’t drink coffee so I took some with me. I’ve discovered that two mugs of White Castle equal one of the ‘Rogue’. Pulchritudinous stuff. (thought I’d throw that one at you)

”Adults who use big words in order to seem intelligent are annoying, especially those who are not intelligent.” ~ Mokokoma Mokhonoana


Musicology – Marcia beat me out of bed this morning, so by the time I got up the coffee was on as was the radio. Normally I’ll listen a bit to a local bartender, Jerry Jeff Walker, who does an amazing Saturday morning talk show on WLW-700 (the Big One). He garners an array of great call in personalities; where else can you listen to Big Dick from Dayton or Dave the Bus Driver who climbs into the studio every so often?

This morning Jerry Jeff, away on vacation, had a substitute. His guest was one Jim LaBarbara – “the Music Professor. What a blast-from-the-past.

Jim became a music fixture in town beginning in the 1960s. From ‘A’ to ‘Z’ (Herb Alpert – Zombies) he’s interviewed, traveled with, and ‘hung’ with possibly everyone on the emerging Rock and Roll scene.

He has a degree in musicology and is an adjunct music professor at The University of Cincinnati. He’s named as one of the “Top 40 Radio Personalities of All Time”, listed in the Rock Jock Hall of Fame, and was inducted into the Radio/Television/Broadcasters Hall of Fame. What a joy to find him on the airwaves again.

Now you understand why this morning’s Post is a little late? It’s just not right to walk away from a friend. Even though we’ve never met in person, hearing Jim’s voice was like hearing from an old friend. Tales from those storied early times of popular radio are so wonderful, especially on a cold winter’s morning.

Finis – The week was quickly eaten up shortly after we received our Property Tax bill – it had TRIPPLED!

By the time the next bus pulled up to the bus-stop next to our place I presented the driver my ‘Geezer’ bus card and was off to the city and the County Auditor’s office.

First it was lunch with Jason who works in the same building, and then I was ‘spoon-fed’ to an array of helpful clerks. The next day it was the gathering of some pertinent ‘comparables’ and those plus an array of forms were then hauled to the Post office and mailed to something called the; “Board of Review”. The wait has begun!

As an aside, our County Auditor, Dusty Rhodes, was also a local DJ during the Jim LaBarbara on-air period. Think I could use this factoid during my hearing?

Jim LaBarbara

We just made reservations for our neighborhood Progressive Dinner coming up in a couple of weeks; something that has both Marcia and I excited. It’s such a perfect winter stopover to catch up with friends and neighbors, enjoy some great food, and possibly even imbibe a bit of Snaps.

Monday is Martin Luther King. Jr. Day so what does Dirk do? At 7:45 am I will have my eyes tested from side to side, from top to bottom. Adrianne, who works at our local Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired tells me that I; “done good” with the surgeon I am seeing. I trust her and I’ll see if I trust him.

Make it a great week.



PS. A friend who lives further into the neighborhood (and who owns property in Traverse City but only goes there in summer) just called to see how our street was and could she make it out. Remember people, we’re talking an inch-and-a-half of snow here. This is SERIOUS stuff!

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