Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Thunder Beach Motorcycle Rally report: Part 2

I headed down hwy 42 until I reached the small town of Richton where I got on hwy 15 that turned onto hwy 98 heading to Mobile Alabama, a co-worker and I had talked about it the day before and said knowing my luck I would reach downtown mobile around lunch time (lots of traffic for many miles). Yep you guessed it, I looked at my watch as soon as I entered town….12:03pm, I have to admit the traffic turn out not to be that bad, I made it through town in just a few minutes. I turned on to hwy i-65 and headed to I-10 once I turned onto I-10 I took exit 44 to Gulf Shores Alabama, the ride down the road to gulf shores is a nice little ride on a bike, the police were out in full force so I pretty much kept to the speed limit. I pulled into the state park to get a camp site for the night. As I got near the guard shack I noticed what looked to be hundreds of Fema trailers stacked side by side, I stopped and talked to the park ranger and he said they had a few camp sites but none with trees on it (all trees killed by the last big storm),

this is not a good thing, I brought my hammock tent that hangs in the trees so I decided to move on. So I drove on to Pensacola Florida and found another state park called the Big Lagoon it looked to be a nice gated park, I talked to the park ranger there and told him what kind of site I was looking for, so he told me to go take a look around and pick a few sites that would work then come back and tell him the one I wanted. I road around for about thirty minutes until I found three sites that had trees in the right arrangement for my hammock then I drove back to the ranger station, by this time there was a line for sites, as I was standing in line I noticed in the pamphlet I had picked up the rules. RULE 6: Do not hang ropes, clotheslines, lanterns in or on trees. Use poles provided. Yep you guessed it the ranger said no hammock in the trees. WOW!!!! Another hour wasted L well it looked like a hotel was in my near future, so I headed to Navarre Beach to get a room, just one problem with this plan, there are no hotels on hwy 98 in Navarre beach, I had almost given up hope when I saw the Best Western hotel.

So I pulled in and went inside to check in: this proved to be my biggest adventure of the day. Let me set the stage for you, I walk in, in full biker gear, boots, jeans, jacket, helmet and goggles in hand, sunburn face (now remember it around 90 degrees out side) when I walk up to the desk there is a young guy checking in wearing shorts and a tank top, the girl behind the desk HOT CHICK!!!! Wearing shorts, low cut belly shirt, you know the type weights in around 100 lb with about forty pounds in boobs….all I can say it’s a very good thing she is good looking, not much going on upstairs…if anything. Ok here is what happen…I check in and she gives me the key cards room 223 second floor (oh yea first I had to sign a release saying I had no pets with me, I could not resist, I told her I had my pet in my saddle bag on my bike…Here’s Your Sign) So I decided to go check out my room before I unloaded my bike (thank god) well the first problem was the stairs was on the side of the building, when I get to the stairs there were two cute well dressed Mexican women walking down the stairs, so I wait for the to get down the stairs before I go up (remember I in full biker gear) I get to my room and try the key, no luck, the door will not unlock so I try both keys about a million times no luck, so back down the stairs I go, this time coming up the stairs are the same to ladies I had seen before , this time we spoke as we passed. So I went back to the desk and the HOT CHICK said oh let me scan the key again (no I’m sorry are anything) so back up the stairs I go, and guess who is coming down the stairs again, yep the two ladies. Well I get to my door again, the key does not work again, so back down the stairs I go again, and I know this is hard to believe, but the ladies are coming back up again. So I tell the HOT CHICK it did not work again, she stands there for a minute and says oh I forgot to punch the code in, she was to busy, so she does and off to the room I go again. Yep you guessed it the two ladies are coming down the stairs again (now I starting to think their stalking me) so I get back to my room………and the F@#ning key does not work again. Check out my best of YouTube clips of all times on the left side of my site “planes trains and automobiles: f@#k” if you want to see how I was feeling….ha-ha. So back down the stairs I go, and who is coming up the stairs the two ladies and the HOT CHICK, so I tell her in passing that the key still does not work, and what response do I get “neither does these ladies just go wait in the lobby and I be right with you” well a few minutes later HOT CHICK shows back up, this time she goes back up the stairs with me to prove that I have no idea how to work the key, and to her amazement the key still does not work. So back down the stairs we go, and then she asked me if I would like another room. It took everything I had in me not to say….NO I’ll just sleep outside the door… “Here’s your sign”. So back up the stairs I go again (with the new room key 224 in hand), I think a tear came to my eye when I felt the door open, by now it around 7:00 pm, so I unpacked my bike, took a shower after running across the street to get something to eat. Then jumped into bed picked up the TV remote, ready to watch a little TV before time for bed. THEN IT HAPPENS!!!!!!!!! The remote does not work!!!!!!!!!!!! NO!!!!!!!!!!!! NO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! NOOOOO!!!

What a night….time for bed….in the morning… Panama City Beach!!!!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Thunder Beach Motorcycle Rally report: PART 1

Thunder Beach Motorcycle Rally report: PART 1
As I mention before, I took off Friday to head to Panama Beach Florida, I got up early, got the wife and kids of to work and school (the way it should be, while I stayed home) then I started to pack…yea I know I should have packed the night before but I did not, I did wash my bike the day before. I was packed and ready to go sometime around 9:00am but the day before while washing the bike I noticed the bikes windshield could be raised a couple more inches by just removing 4 bolts (sounds easy…right) well to my surprise the bolts came right out and I moved the windshield right up, I put two bolts back in to hold it into place (this took about 5 minutes) then came the last two bolts!!!!!! You guessed it they were not going back in……time to call out the big guns…..DAD!!!!!!!!! Sometime it pays to have your parents living in your back yard…Ha-ha. Well pop came out and we pushed and pulled on the windshield until we managed to get the bolts back in to place….it only took one HOUR!!!!
It was an hour well spent, no more love bugs crashing into my forehead at 70 mph, so I pulled out of the drive way at 10:06am. I little about what I packed, one saddle bag carried my rain suit and rain gear with room to tuck my canon digital camera in between, the other saddle bag carried my every day stuff…baseball cap, a gallon zip lock bag full of chargers, iPod, maps, and my diabetic kit with room to spare in case I bought something I needed to bring home. I put my pants and shirts in a Adidas gym bag and decided not to carry my regular tent (this proved to be a big mistake) and carry my hammock tent instead, I also brought my 20 degree sleeping bag, I hear it was getting into the mid fifties at night. I used two motorcycle hold down straps to strap it to the passenger back rest, this worked great the bags ended up making a very nice back rest for me while on the road.

Just a photo of my sleeping bag, hammock tent
and my zip lock bag full of stuff before I loaded
it onto my bike

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Thunder on the Beach in Panama City

Thursday September 25, 2008
I’m getting ready for another motorcycle rally “Thunder on the Beach in Panama City Beach Florida” My plans as of today are to get packed up early in the morning (I took the day off) and head off into the sunset, first stop; Gulf Shores Alabama and spend the night at the state park (tent camping) then head into Panama early Saturday morning, first I need to find a place to stay, I’m sure I’ll find something, if not I have a standing offer to share a condo with a co worker Bonnie and her husband Jerre (also down for the rally). Thanks guys but I really want to try out my camping gear. After the free concerts and all the stuff Panama has to offer, I will try to meet up with my co worker and her biker group for the ride home Sunday morning. I’ll be posting photos, and stories about the trip Monday, be sure to check it out.

Monday, September 22, 2008


> >
> >
> > By: Paul Marx
> >
> > Owner of "Louisiana Proud" KBON 101.1FM
> >
> > NOTE: Just so this is not interpreted to be a "racist" observation, let me
> > make it clear that this writing refers to ALL races!!
> >
> > What is going on? Why do some people feel that everyone else, including
> > the government, owes them?? It seems that there are some people who think
> > that is cases of emergencies they automatically become everyone else's
> > responsibility and have none of their own? That needs to change!!
> >
> > For Hurricane Gustave, I saw the vast majority of the people who were
> > getting on evacuation buses, knowing there was a few hours of bus ride
> > ahead of them, do so EMPTY HANDED! Not even a bottle of water for
> > themselves or even their little children! They've had days to prepare, but
> > they prepared nothing! How about a couple of sandwiches for the trip? No.
> >
> > I watched the news and saw people complain about the place they had been
> > evacuated to being "filthy" with trash! Many of those complainers are
> > sitting or lying on cots furnished to them. Well, I'm sure it's not the
> > volunteer workers who dirtied the place. My advice is get off your asses
> > and clean up!!
> >
> > For one of the past hurricanes, I received a phone call at KBON 101.1FM
> > radio from an evacuation center. Keep in mind, this center had several
> > hundred evacuees housed there for their safety. Well, the caller explained
> > to me that there was an 18 wheeler that arrived with water, meals and
> > other supplies, and asked if I would announce that they needed volunteers
> > to help unload the truck. I have to tell you, I lost it. "You mean to tell
> > me that you have hundreds of evacuees in that building and you want me to
> > ask someone to leave their house and their family to come and unload THEIR
> > truck?", I asked. Before the person could answer I recommended "I'll tell
> > you what to do. Go inside and tell them the truck is there and needs to be
> > unloaded and that you need volunteers. If no one offers to help, you
> > simply lock up the back of the 18 wheeler and tell it to go somewhere else
> > where it will be more appreciated"
> >
> > In another situation, I received a call and was asked to announce that
> > they needed volunteers to help serve meals to their two hundred or so
> > evacuees. My advice again to that caller was to get some volunteers among
> > the evacuees and if they refused, then simply don't serve food.
> >
> > I am concerned that the day will come when we will have a lot of trouble
> > finding anyone willing to open it's doors to the people who need to
> > evacuate, and I cannot blame them if they choose to not make evacuees
> > welcome. After all, they have nothing to gain by doing so. People come
> > into centers, halls, etc. and practically trash the place. They complain
> > to the press about not being comfortable, the place being dirty, not
> > liking the food, not getting water often enough, and more. Then they leave
> > the place in filth!!
> >
> > I am concerned that the day will come when people will not volunteer to
> > leave their home and families to go and "wait on" people who have
> > absolutely no appreciation of them and what they are doing to help.
> > Imagine volunteering to help someone out of the goodness of your heart and
> > not only, not being appreciated, but being criticized for your service.
> > Personally, I'd rather stay home with my family then give my time to such
> > ungrateful people and would not blame anyone for feeling the same way.
> >
> > I saw on the news recently where the Red Cross was having problems getting
> > donations to help the people hurricane Gustave victims in our area. Could
> > it be that people around the country are seeing the "whiners" and the
> > "unappreciative" and just don't feel like giving to such people, knowing
> > it will not be appreciated?
> >
> > It's my belief that the American people are great, kindhearted and
> > generous people, and are very willing to help people who are trying to
> > help themselves but I think more & more of us Americans are feeling less &
> > less generous to people who just don't appreciate it. It's important to
> > know that no one owes you anything. It's important to know that people
> > will help you a lot faster when they see you trying to help yourself.
> >
> > I am concerned, and you should be too.
> >
> > God bless America, God bless Louisiana and God bless you!
> >
> > Paul Marx
> >
> > KBON 101.1FM
> >
> > www.kbon.com
> >

I have seen for myself two and heard about one story that makes me think of the letter above…and I have to admit I get angrier every time I think about them.

Story one:
A few years ago I was asked to place telephone (remember I’m an engineer for AT&T) cable down a road where Habitat for Humanity was building about fifteen new homes for people that had lost theirs during the storm. When a contractor and I pulled up I could not believe my eyes, there were 40 to 50 young collage kids working their asses off building houses. The first two houses on the road were complete and about six more were under construction. I talked to one of the collage kids and found out that they had taken the summer off to work FOR FREE all summer long. Let’s hear it for the kids, I was so amazed, it was such a great thing they were doing. Wow!!! Ok this is where the story turns ugly, very ugly; my blood boils just thinking about it. As I was walking down the road I noticed a huge Bar-B-Q going on between the two newly constructed homes with people running around everywhere having a good time, so I made a joke to the collage student and said “at least they feed you good around here” and to my shock the students reply “we moved those folks in about three weeks ago, and they have cookouts almost daily and have not offered the students anything not even a drink of water….nothing!!!!!!” these are the same students that built the two homes for them just weeks before……..there is something wrong here. How do those people live with their selves? I guess I will never understand.

Story two:

A while back my family and I owned a fitness center here in Petal, Ms. In our club we had a hot tub and steam room as well as lifting equmement, the steam room was kept hot by a steam generator located in another small room, from this room we (the owners) could adjust the temperature of the steam room, well as you could imagine the metal pipes that run away from the generator would get very hot (full of hot steam) so we placed a big sign on the door “danger keep out, owners only” yep you guessed it, one day one of our gym members (keep in mind this guy was in his forties and should know better) came into the gym holding his leg and whining about burning his leg on the hot pipe. So I asked him where he burned it and he said in the steam generator room, so I asked him if he saw the keep out sign, he said yea but he wanted to see if he could turn the steam room up hotter. I think we ended up giving him a free t-shirt to shut him up after he threatens to sue. Here is the sad part, in today’s world he would have most likely won.

Story three

The last story is something a co-worker told me about, I remember the day she walked in the office, with fire in her eyes. Another co-worker made the mistake and asked what was wrong and boy did he get an ear full while I just sat back and enjoyed the story. Ha-ha. Well the story went something like this…my buddy was at the grocery store picking out some food for the week ahead, as she was trying to find the best price on some steaks, a few people walked by her pushing a buggy full of the top cuts of meat. Then went to the sea food counter and started buying crab meat and lobster tails, after a few more chance meeting in the store, my buddy asked what they were doing with all that food, the people replayed the were having a party. So my buddy though that was great and went on with her shopping kind of wondering to herself what the people did for a living to be able to afford such high priced food in such large amounts. Once finished she went to the check out counter to check out, and guess who was checking out in front of her. Yep you guessed it... the people with the buggies full of meat. I bet you have figured out where I going with this story by now, haven’t you. I don’t remember the total but it was HUGE. YOU GUESSED IT…out came food stamps to pay for it all……there is just something wrong when a person works hard all their life and has a very well paying job, but still has to pick through meats, to find a deal, then you have people not working that can have the top choice meats and general foods and have the government pick up the tab. Wake up people this has got to end.

Ok… as my buddy Chad would say, I’ll get down off of my soap box now.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Words from Afghanistan


Words from Afghanistan

Hey everyone I just received an email and three photos from my little buddy Jimmy Touchstone, right now he is working in Afghanistan 5 miles from the Pakistan border. Just to keep everyone up to date (blog followers who don’t know him): Jimmy is a member of the Army National Guard, and use to work for AT&T as an engineer in our office. After 911 he was sent overseas to look for the bad guys for a year, once he returned home and back to work he got and offer he could not refuse, it seems there is a shortage of helicopter repair men in Afghanistan (were is that Maytag man when you need him) so the next thing we know, Jimmy quit his job bought some tools and was on his way back to Afghanistan, this time as a civilian making the big bucks. I had sent him an email a few days ago and received one back today so I posted the entire email below. I just wanted everyone not to forget it is still a scary place over there, even in a secure American base. Good luck little Jim I’ll see you in October.

“A l,

I hope that this finds you well and happy. Man I am proud to hear that you are doing well and that you are beating the diabetes thing. That is good to hear. I know that with the weight loss and all that you have to feel better. Just stay on top of it and don't let it get a hold of you again.
Things here are pretty much the same as always. Just a lot of work. I like it that way though as it makes the days go by faster. When work gets slow the days get slow. I am coming up on 7 months that I have been here so it is clicking by pretty good.
I am coming home at the end of Oct. I should be back on US soil by Oct 22nd. I can't wait. Just to have a little break from here will be good. I will only have 2 weeks but that will give me enough time to get re-booted and atleast breathe so that I can come back and finish this thing up. I am not sure right now how long I will stay past my 1 year mark, so I am just playing that by ear. I don't think that I will stay for two but maybe an extra 6 months or so, anyway.
Just to answer your question on where I am at. I am on the eastern side of Afghanistan 5 miles from the Pakistan border. I am in the Hindu Kush Mountains where the media likes to call the lawless border region. That is why we get hit more than most places over here. They come over the mountains and shoot at us then go back across into Pakistan. Our Apaches stay busy so that is what keeps us so busy too. Don't know if Eric told ya'll but we got hit hard a couple of weeks ago. We took 2car bombs then 7 suicide bombers wearing vests tried to storm our perimeter it was a 24 hour non stop battle that was fought right here at the airfield where I am at. That was pretty cool as we were sitting on top of a connex watching it, then would jump down and help them reload the aircraft and send them back across the wire, so that was nice, anyway
Maybe you guys can plan your next hiking trip over here as the mountains are pretty rugged and will offer some good hiking. Just let me know and I will set that up for you. lol! We might can even get you a Special Forces guide to show you the way.
Well I suppose that I need to get busy again so I will let you go. Tell everyone that I said hello. Take care and write when you can.

Take care

P.S. here are a couple of pics the one with no aircraft is standing at my work and across that last set of mountains is Pakistan”

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Weekend Bike Ride Canceled

Weekend Bike Ride Canceled

Well in case you have not figured out the cartoon I made yet (another attempt at humor) looks like the bike ride is off this weekend. The boss made us an offer we could not refuses, we were offered overtime this weekend and our greed overtook us….money…money…money. It’s just hard to turn down time and a half pay and trust me it’s not very often that we do. Ha-ha.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Cyclist curing cancer century ride 2008

Cyclist curing cancer century ride 2008

The event:

You’ve always ridden because it’s healthy for you. Now ride
because it’s healthy for someone else. Ride with us at
7:30 a.m. on Saturday, September 20, for Cyclists Curing
Cancer Century Ride. The journey begins at the Baptist
Healthplex in Clinton, Mississippi, and stretches all along the
beautiful and historic Natchez Trace. Whether you choose
to ride 25, 50, 62 or 100 miles, you will be benefiting Baptist
Cancer Services’ Serenity Garden for cancer patients and
their families.
All participants will receive a Century Ride t-shirt and will
enjoy a pasta lunch after the event. Rest stops along the
route will be well stocked with water, sports drinks, snacks
and fruit.
Please note: All riders remaining on the course after 3:30 p.m.
will be picked up.
Early registration

Yep you guessed it Matt (the Hammer) Roland will be participating in the ride, and I have agreed to ride along beside him (on my motorcycle) to be water carrier, pit cure, and photographer and of course give a full coverage of the race on the blog. The “Hammer” plans on ridding the entire 100 miles…that should come to no surprise to his many fans all over the world.

I plan on being packed and ready to go after work Friday and ride my motorcycle to Simpson Lake in Magee Ms, where I plan to camp. Then getting up early Saturday morning and drive on in to Jackson in time for the race….unless it rain…then I’m a no go.

Bonus day: 10 fitness quotes

Bonus day: 10 fitness quotes

(1) Fitness - if it came in a bottle, everybody would have a great body. ~Cher

(2) A man's health can be judged by which he takes two at a time - pills or stairs. ~Joan Welsh

(3) The word aerobics came about when the gym instructors got together and said, "If we're going to charge $10 an hour, we can't call it jumping up and down." ~Rita Rudner

(4) If it weren't for the fact that the TV set and the refrigerator are so far apart, some of us wouldn't get any exercise at all. ~Joey Adams

(5) If your dog is fat, you're not getting enough exercise. ~Author Unknown

(6) The bicycle is a curious vehicle. Its passenger is its engine. ~John Howard

(7) Aerobics: a series of strenuous exercises which help convert fats, sugars, and starches into aches, pains, and cramps. ~Author Unknown

(8) The only exercise some people get is jumping to conclusions, running down their friends, side-stepping responsibility, and pushing their luck! ~Author Unknown

(9) When man invented the bicycle he reached the peak of his attainments. Here was a machine of precision and balance for the convenience of man. And (unlike subsequent inventions for man's convenience) the more he used it, the fitter his body became. Here, for once, was a product of man's brain that was entirely beneficial to those who used it, and of no harm or irritation to others. Progress should have stopped when man invented the bicycle. ~Elizabeth West, Hovel in the Hills

(10) Everywhere is walking distance if you have the time. ~Steven Wright

Monday, September 15, 2008


THE NEW GUEST BOOK IS HERE! THE NEW GUEST BOOK IS HERE!! THE NEW GUEST BOOK IS HERE!!! I’m somebody now!!! (All I can say if you have not seen the movie “The Jerk” staring Steve Martin, I’m sure my attempt at humor above went right over your head.) I’ll try to post a link to the “the new phone book is here” clip tonight to my BEST OF YOUTUBE CLIPS, I added this morning (look on the left hand side of the blog) I’ve already posted two are three clips..With many more to come.

Now back to the GUEST BOOK, SIGN IT!!!! Let me know what you want to see and I’ll try to add it to my blog. One of you lucky people out there will be the first to sign, as of now, no one has signed..sniff….sniff. Come on, it only take a second to sign…well unless you type like be, then a few words could take hours…ha-ha. I only laugh because it’s true.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Motorcycle ride to Red Bluffs, Columbia Ms

September 13, 2008
Motorcycle ride to Red Bluffs, Columbia Ms
I almost got rained out today; I woke up around 6:40 am. and got up around 7:30 am. only to see the sky full of rain clouds and hard blowing wind. At first, it kind of dashed my hopes of the Red Bluffs Motorcycle ride, so I decided to check with the wife and see if she was up to going to a new coffee shop “Café Boheme” Matt and I had helped move the phone lines from the side of their building while it was under construction, we met the owners that day and I have want to go there ever since, to my surprise the wife agreed to go and we were off in the Navigator not the bike.
What can I say the place was awesome; it’s just an old house that the owner has converted in to coffee and pastry shop. As soon as you walk in you are greeted by the staff and you feel right at home, even the customers came up to us and traded web sites and just general conversation, it’s a very homey place. They even made me a sugar free Carmel coffee (got to keep the diabetes under control) oh yea get this, the owner asked us to come back around 6 tonight because it was jazz night, all jazz music to be played on vinyl (old records) my wife and I laughed about it on the way home, thinking our son Myles age 11, I bet has never even seen a record much less have heard one, Wow!!! we are getting old. Ha-ha.
After the coffee shop, we stopped by SACK’S ARMY STORE, in downtown Hattiesburg and bought me a pair of boots for work and for the motorbike, and then we came on home.
I sat around until 11:30am, looking at the sky and then I decided it now are never, so I packed up my camera and my Frogg Togs (rain suit) and I was off, straight up twelve o clock I stopped at a local gas station fill up the bike and the adventure was on, sky still dark very dark but so for no rain. Before I left I checked the weather channel and it said scattered thunder storms, and wind gust from 10 to 20 miles and hour, what a great day for a ride…ha-ha.
I headed west on interstate 59 then headed north on hwy 49 then turned west on hwy 42 until I got to downtown Sumrall (home town of Matt “the hammer” Roland) I took a side track through downtown and snapped a few photos,
then I was off again until I reached hwy 44 south

(very nice hwy for a ride, plenty of curves and very little traffic) I hit a few light sprinkles along this hwy not enough to put on the rain suit, it only lasted for a few seconds several times along the hwy. Now once I reached Columbia it was a different story, the sky turned black and I knew the big rain was coming any second. My first thought was to turn around and make a run for it, then the scary side of my brain said “go for it!!!” and I did, so I stopped at a strip mall
and put on my rain suit just in the nick of time, it started to pour just as I turned onto hwy 587 the last hwy of my journey, to my surprise it was only 9 miles from hwy 98 to red bluffs, even in the pouring rain it was nice hwy to ride too. You can’t miss the sign, the bluffs are on a closed road but you can drive right up to them, the road ends right at the bluffs with plenty of room to park.
I parked my bike next to three trucks that were already there, the rain stopped almost as soon as I stepped off the bike, I must be living right are something…god loves me. Ha-ha. There were two guys standing at the edge of the bluffs we had a brief conversation and then I started taking photos. I did not have time to hike the canyon so you will have to settle for the photos from the rim.

Once I was done shooting photos I headed back to the bike and to my horror I had misplaced the keys to the bike, what had happen was I was still wearing my rain suit and had put the keys in my hip pocket, here is the funny part (not funny at the time) the rain suit only has slits were the pockets should be so you can reach your hand through the rain suit to your blue jean pocket, so after a frantic search every where I had walked it dawned on me that the suit fits tight around the bottom of the legs to keep the rain out, so after I stripped down (the rain suit only girls…don’t get yourself all worked up into a frenzy) and found the key in the suit. As I was pulling away i saw another sign

on the hwy and drove around to the other side of the bluff, took some more photos and headed back home. The original plan was to head back towards Lumberton but the sky was just to black that way, so I decided to ride through downtown Columbia and snap a few photos.
Main Street turned into hwy 13 so I decided to take it to the small town of Prentiss and there to get on hwy 84, some where I made a wrong turn and ended up on hwy 42 the hwy that would take me back to Sumrall, only one problem I was running out of gas, luckily I found a gas station in Bassfield

and stopped filled up the bike and me, I realized I had not eating anything since the coffee shop this morning it was now around 3:30pm. I had a bag of peanuts and a diet coke, not much but better than nothing. Oh yea while I was filling up the bike a lady pulled up beside me waiting on the pump, (are maybe she had heard about my strip tease at the bluffs and was waiting on a repeat performance) I guess I should mention this is one of those old gas station (no debit cards taken) so you have to pay cash before you pump, so I gave the attendant a 5 dollar bill (more than enough gas to get home) once I finished my 5 dollar fill up, the lady looked at me in amazement and asked “is that all it cost to fill that bike up” my replay “yes it is!!!!!) Got to love the motorbikes.
Well the rest of the trip home went pretty much uneventful, until I reached hwy 49 only 20 miles from home, the sky started to blacken again. I passed a fellow biker pulled over on the side of the road; you guessed it putting on his rain suit. I decided to ride on, and was punished for it, god’s little joke, to my surprise I upped the speed to around 70 mph and the windshield kept me dry all except the lower part of my blue jeans. The rain only lasted for a few minutes, so no harm done. Just a couple of more turns and I was safe and sound at the house, somewhere around 4:30pm.
What did I learn: well first of all I had a little fear about riding a bike in the rain; I have to admit it was kind of nice, as long as you have proper rain gear, I have decided to now invest in some proper rain gear, the Frogg Togs worked great but I think a more form fitting rain suit would have less flapping in the wind.

Friday, September 12, 2008


Lake Clark National Park, Alaska

"There is an intense but simple thrill in setting off in the morning on a mountain trail, knowing that everything you need is on your back. It is a confidence in having left the inessentials behind and of entering a world of natural beauty that has not been violated, where money has no value and possessions are a dead weight. The person with the fewest possessions is the freest."
-Paul Theroux

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Up and coming events!!!

Up and coming events!!!

Saturday September 13, 2008 at 8:00am: Solo motorcycle ride to Red Bluffs in Columbia Mississippi. The plan get up Saturday morning, and head to the Bluffs taking the long way around passing through Sumrall, staying on the back roads taking photos (I’LL POST THEM) along the way stopping at small towns and just enjoying the view, that’s what is great about a motorcycles. Unless you get into a bunch of love bugs…yuck!!!!! Clean up, Al’s face.

Date unknown: it’s getting time for the Sipsey backpacking, hiking trip. This time with a twist, we are bringing the wives, and kids. The plan is to leave on a Friday around 5:30am drive to the Sipsey and be in the woods by 11:00 am, spend Friday and Saturday night in the woods and hike out Sunday and be home around 6:00pm Sunday night. This trip is open to anyone who wants to go, just send me an email and I’ll put your name on the list. We will pick a date in the next few weeks, once we see how the weather is going to treat us, we’re trying to wait till the first cold snap to kill of all the bugs and shed some leave off of the trees (better viewing of the cliffs) I’ll post as soon as the date is set. Check out my hiking links to the left, many of them are about the Sipsey.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

News Flash!!!

News flash!!!

Lance Armstrong will compete again in Tour de France

Lance Armstrong is getting back on his bike, determined to win an eighth Tour de France.
Armstrong's return from cancer to win the Tour a record seven consecutive times made him a hero to cancer patients worldwide and elevated cycling to an unprecedented level in America.
Armstrong, 36, told Vanity Fair in an exclusive interview posted on its Web site Tuesday that he was inspired to return after finishing second last month in the Leadville 100, a lung-searing 100-mile mountain-bike race through the Rocky Mountains.

Breaking new!!!

Lance inspires local rider to come out of retirement…THAT’S IT YOU HEARD IT HERE FIRST!!!! Matt (the hammer) Roland announced this morning at a local press conference (downtown Hattiesburg AT&T office) that he was coming out of retirement and planed to race in the Tour de France 2009. Reporters from Vanity Fair wanted to know WHY, WHY NOW!! Wait now that I thinking about it, Vanity Fair could not make it, so we had to stick to questions from the local news paper Hattiesburg American….auuu?? What the heck…..i forgot they could not come either… hmmmm, come to think of it, it was just a co-worker Eric and myself that heard the breaking news. Oh well, I guess it was us that asked the questions that everyone was wanted to know; exactly what races had you won in the past, that you were coming out of retirement from. The Hammer’s answer and I quote “I won the……you know the bike race, oh yea I entered the….. Hmmm and then there was the one I went down a really big hill, very, very fast. I had a tricycle once and could beat every kid on the block; my title was stripped after the judges found out I was 22 years old at the time (just a young pup), I was in my prime, I’m tell you, it was rigged no where in the rule book did it say you have to be 6 years old, so I know in my heart I’m still a champion, my mom tells me so every night before she tucks me into bed, that makes my wife sooooo jealous.”

Strong words from the Hammer, Eric and I wish him well in 2009, and hope to get his autograph soon, before his sure victory at the Tour.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

DIABETES AND ME...July 17, 2008…time to make a big change!!!

July 17, 2008…time to make a big change!!!

Well I guess you can tell by the title I have diabetes, lucky it turned out to be type 2, and not type 1, no insulin for me, as you can see from the cartoon above I HATE needles!!! I have to admit I was kind of relieved once I found out what was wrong with me, at least now I know what to do to fight this disease, and so for I have to say I’m doing very well.

I started feeling sick almost a year ago, but had no idea what it was, I just though I was out of shape and lack of exercise. It all started on a hiking trip in Arkansas and became very ill and had to abandon the hike, truth is I though I had a small stroke. But I made it out alive thanks to my buddy Matt Roland (if you want to read more about what happen on the hike here is a link http://www.trailjournals.com/GYMONR5/ ) below is a paragraph I copied from the conclusion of the hike, it tell how I found out what I had.

Here’s how I found out what was really wrong. About two months ago I got fed up with being out of shape, my body weight was up to 310 lb and I was feeling like dog po-po. So I decided to start lifting weights again, so I went out and bought a LOT of supplements (supplements I had used before back when I was in shape) and started taking them (around 40 pills a day split up six times a day) and started hitting the gym every morning. A couple of days went by then I just started to run out of energy, five minutes into my workout my body would just seem to shut down, kind of like the hiking trip but not as bad. A few more days went by and I started to have to pee about six are seven times a night, then I would wake up and my mouth would be so dry that it hurt. TIME TO SEE THE DOCTOR!!!!! Well you may have guessed it I was told I had class two diabetes, and had had it for a long time. Come to find out it had been going on so long that I had caused slight damage to a lot of my organs. So come to find out that the supplements I was taking almost killed me, but on the other hand they had saved my life…it just depends on how you look at it. What had happen my blood sugar had been off the chart for years (I had no idea) so when I started taking the supplement six times a day, it was like throwing gas on a fire (come to find out the supplement I was taking had a lot of sugar in them) so every time I took them I was adding sugar to a already bad diet, then my blood sugar skyrocketed to the moon, doctor told me I was about a week from going into a coma.

Since the doctor visit above, I have improved my diet about a 100 percent, no more fried foods, all baked are grilled, and I mainly live on vegetables, chicken, fish, and nuts NO SUGAR. It took awhile but now I’m starting to feel great again. I went to the doctor 7/17/2008 and weighed in at 310 lbs its now 9/09/2008 and I weighed this morning at 270 lbs, that’s right, its 40 lbs gone. My plan is to drop all the way down to 225 lbs that will be very, very light for me. The doctor started me off on three pills a day the first two were for my diabetes and one was for my triglycerides (also off the charts high) after two weeks went by (second check-up) he took me off one of the diabetes pills, one down two to go. I go back for more blood work in mid October, and I hope to soon be off all of the pills, as for now I have it under control my blood work never goes over 120 (I test myself three fingers pricking times a day…ouch!!!)And averages around 90 (just as a note 70-120 is normal) I’ll update this after the doctors appointment in October.

I’m just trying to get the word out to friends and family that may not have heard yet, but anyone feel free to email me, if you have any questions, I no expert (for from it) but I’d be happy to tell you what meds I’m taking and about my diet.

Monday, September 8, 2008


Long hours, just a update on what’s been going on, we were informed Friday that starting Saturday September 6, 2008 AT&T (Hattiesburg district) would start working 12 hours days 7 days a week. Hurricane Gustav may have missed Hattiesburg and petal Mississippi where I live, but we had slight wind and water damage in our sister cities Mccomb and Natchez, so it’s all hands on deck until the cable and pole damage is repaired. So what does this mean to me…long hours sitting in front of a computer drafting all the field notes coming in from our field engineers. Good new…..overtime!!!
Time and a half pay. Ha-ha
Still waiting to see what hurricane Ike is going to do, looks like Cuba is getting the most of it right now, we’ll see, it may be more overtime. I’ll keep you up to date, lunch hour is almost over time to go for now.

Sunday, September 7, 2008


Small town motorcycle ride
Saturday, August 30, 2008

Ok here is a little background about the ride, my original plans were to take the long Labor Day weekend and ride my bike from Hattiesburg up the Florida coast line and camp along the way. Well……thanks to hurricane Gustav my plans had to change. Dam you Gustav!!! You see, I only have had my new bike a little over a month now and I have not had a chance to put any long miles on it, don’t get me wrong I ride it most every day its just 20 are 30 miles at a time. I just had its 600 mile checkup done last week so the break end period is over…time for the open road.

I guess I should give you a little information about the bike; it’s a 2008 Yamaha v-star 1100 Silverado…why a Yamaha you ask. Truth is I just walked into the local motorcycle dealership and asked a salesman what kind of bike I could get for under 10 grand and over a 1000 cc’s the salesman pointed to my bike and it was love at first site. I have not owned a bike in the last 20 something years, and was not sure if I would like riding again, but I do. I may move up to a bigger bike in a few years but for now my Yamaha does everything I need it to do.

Ok back to the story, I was determine to go for a ride but only had a half of day to do it, so I decided to pick a few local small towns and make me a loop staying off the major highways due to Gustav. So Saturday august 30, right after lunch I headed out. Once I drove through my subdivision I rode down Monroe rd crossed interstate 59 (that was already getting busy, due to the storm) then it was on to Eatonville rd that turns into old hwy 49 (Eatonville rd is a great place to ride a motorcycle are a bicycle for that matter a buddy of mine Matt Roland rides this road often on his bicycle, the road is mostly farm land, littered with old barns and friendly folks waving as you drove by(now that I think of it they may have been shooting at me I’m not sure.ha-ha). About 20 are 30 mile later I came to hwy 590 that takes you into downtown seminary (seminary is on of those towns if you blink…well you missed it) hwy 590 runs into hwy 49 so I headed north to Collins http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Collins,_Mississippi , Collins is a metropolis compared to seminary but still a very small town. I made a quick sidetrack to downtown to see if any of my AT&T buddy’s were working the weekend….they were not!! The central office was empty. So I got on hwy 84 and headed west passing through Lone Star until I got to the intersection of 84 and hwy 13 in Prentiss (just as a side note Prentiss is where the longleaf rails to trails bicycle trail ends, I posted a link to it on my site, great place to ride bicycle http://www.mylongleaftrace.com/ no motor vehicles allowed) so south I went down hwy 13, not many cars lots of stuff to look at… if you like old barns and trees…I do. About this time my butt was tell me it was time to take a break so I pulled into a gas station once I reached downtown Columbia at the intersection of hwy 98e. I bought a diet Dr Pepper and a small bag of peanuts then I decided I needed to find a place to sit and relax while I enjoyed my meal. I remembered a friend of mine Jimmy Touchstone use to fish at a place call Lake Columbia, so by new mission was to find it, sure enough there was a sign on hwy 98 and I drove right to it, to my surprise I was the only one there, so I picked a covered table and enjoyed my meal, while snapping a few photos with my new iphone g3 (the greatest cell phone ever!!! More on that later) after about 45 minutes I got on my bike and headed E on hwy 98, so for the traffic was not to bad (hwy 98 is a pretty major road that runs from Columbia to Hattiesburg, malls, stores, you name it, its on 98) traffic was good until I passed Brett Favre house http://www.officialbrettfavre.com/ yea he lives in Hattiesburg right on hwy 98, trust me you can’t miss his house, It’s unbelievable, I was thinking of getting one just like it, until I remembered I did not have an extra 20 million laying around.ha-ha. I’ll spare you the details of how I had to sit in bumper to bumper traffic for about an hour to finish last 20 miles of my trip, oh yea once I made it out of traffic and was on one of the back roads home…..what do I see more traffic….what can I say I forgot Southern Miss was having a football game, and I came right in the middle of everyone setting up tailgating parties, I have to admit the view became a lot better… guys you know what I’m talking about.ha-ha.

Well I made it home safe and sound, my first what I calling long bike trip (got to start somewhere), it was right around 200 miles, the bike ran like a champ…I can’t wait for my next one, I promise I will make the next story more enjoyable I’ll be taking a lot more photos, and get into more detail about the places I go. Until next time RIDE ON!!

States I’ve traveled to over the years

big als music