Red Knit Cap Girl To The Rescue

9 Dec

Red Knit Cap Girl to the Rescue is a children’s book that is written by Naoko Stoop. This is a road trip book for children. A little girl playing in the woods finds a polar bear cub, and along with her friend the rabbit they assist him in returning to his home in the Arctic. This is a simple story with a big message. The message is that no matter how big or small we are one person can help solve a problem.

red knit cap girl to the rescue
Red Knit Cap Girl to the Rescue
The illustrations in the book were created by Stoop, and she uses mixed media from found items. It’s a great effect, and further reinforces her message about changing the world. The book also encourages readers to respect everyone in the world they live in.

So if you are looking for a book that will teach children of all ages respect you should really check out this book.

Old Crow Medicine Show

8 Dec

When I think of the Grand Ole Opry, I think of Minnie Pearl and Johnny Cash. I usually don’t imagine a bunch of young guys playing on that stage. And I admit it’s not really something I pay much attention to. But when I found out the Old Crow Medicine Show was a part of the Grand Ole Opry, I thought maybe it’s time to pay more attention to what goes on in Nashville.

old crow medicine show

Carry Me Back
Old Crow Medicine Show is a group of seven guys, who worked their way through the music industry the hard way. They started playing their blue grass old timey music on street corners. And they were on the right street corner one day because they caught eye of an icon in the folk scene, and after a few years they now have a platinum selling single. So all of you buskers reading this don’t give up, the dream really does come true sometimes.

These guys don’t play the southern rock you hear on most country stations, they play country music the way it was played in the early days of radio. And that is a lot of the reason I think they are great. These are guys that haven’t traded the sound they love for a formula that would bring them fast money. They have stuck with a string band sound, and it’s brought them success.

So listen to that platinum selling sing Wagon Wheel, and see for yourself why these guys deserve all the praise they are receiving.

Bad Religion Christmas Album

5 Dec

Bad Religion has been around the music scene for pretty much as long as I can remember. And a smile crossed my face when I saw they released a Christmas Album this year. Part of the reason for that is that a band that has been the center of so much controversy in the past and present has decided to put their own twist on Christmas this year.
I wasn’t sure what to expect when I listened to the songs. Would they turn Christmas songs that I really love into some creation I didn’t like? I’m pleased to say they didn’t. In fact I love the album.

My absolute favorite song on the album is their version of White Christmas. I love the Bing Crosby version, it was written at a time when life was a little different than it is now. Bad Religion has of course picked up the tempo in a punk style. It reminded me that life has a little faster pace than it did when the song was first written.
And their version of Hark the Herald Angels, is a perfect blend of Christmas tradition and punk. The song starts out acapella, and then kicks into a punk pace. It’s kind of like Christmas caroling with an attitude.
So if you’re looking something a little different this Christmas season, this may be the cd for you to add to the Christmas collection.

bad religion
Christmas Songs

A Very Klingon Khristmas

4 Dec

One of the things I really enjoy about Christmas is seeing all the unique items that come out specifically for the holiday. It never ceases to amaze me just how creative individuals can get with things they are passionate about in order for them to fit into the Christmas season.  I recently read the book A Very Kling Khristmas, and it is definitely one of those creative works by an avid Star Trek fan named Paul Ruditis that manages to combine his love for Star Trek to the Christmas season.

A Very Klingon Khristmas (Star Trek)


The book is kind of a Klingon version of Twas the Night Before Christmas. Now I’m sure there are people who are saying geeky! There are others saying Klingons don’t celebrate Christmas. And there are a few whose eyes lit up when they read Klingon Khristmas. Yes, this review is for you!

First of all I like Star Trek. It’s a fun world, but the Klingons really aren’t my favorite part of that universe. But this book has broaden my horizons on Klingons just a little bit. Like I said earlier, the book is written in the manner of Twas the Night Before Christmas. The book is also the size of a children’s book so it’s easy to read through, and it has great illustrations by Patrick Faricy.

It explains why Klingons celebrate the birth of Kahless, and how they believe that Khristmas was stolen by humans. And then it tells how the Klingons celebrate this season.   If you are not into the geek world do not get this book to read, you won’t like it. And if you’re kind of on the fringe of the trekkie world you will find it entertaining. And if you’re a trekkie boldly go where no man has gone at Khristmas.

Mikhael Paskalev

3 Dec

Remember the movie Risky Business with Tom Cruise dancing around in his underwear?  That’s what watching Mikhael Paskalev’s video for the song I Spy reminded me of. That’s mainly because Paskalev is dancing around in his underwear during the video.

The song has a fun fast pace, the tune is catchy, and it’s easy to sing along with. And when it ends I found myself saying hey why’d you stop? I was having fun. So I played it again, and I wasn’t disappointed the second time I listened to the song either. And this time I really noticed the guitar in last half of the song. There is just something about the way it was being played that I really enjoyed. I can’t put my finger on it exactly, but I know that I liked it.


Jive Babe EP
While the melody is real upbeat, the lyrics are a little thoughtful. The chorus’ lyrics contain the line, “I Spy with my little that to fall is connected to trying.” That line can be either encouraging or discouraging depending on your point of view in life. Personally, I found it to be encouraging. It reminded me that even if things I try don’t work out the way I planned, at least I did try to do it.

The song has been a big hit in Paskalev’s homeland of Norway, and hopefully he will gain some exposure in the States since his music is so much fun to listen to.

The Last Runaway

2 Dec

Tracy Chevalier has a new book called The Last Runaway. This book is about a Quaker woman named Honor Bright, who makes the journey from her home in England to Ohio during the pre-civil war era. Honor is faced with a world that is much different than the one she was to in England. People speak differently, and they act differently. Honor soon finds herself marrying a man in the Quaker community. But in order to get along with her new family Honor is faced with the choice of betraying her personal beliefs, or abiding by the laws of her new homeland.

In this book Chevalier paints a picture of what it was like to live in Ohio during the pre-civil war timeframe. Especially, what is was like to be a woman living during that time. It shows how difficult it can be for individuals who have strong beliefs to actually walk their talk. And it also shows that there may be a price to pay if you do act according to your conscience.Image

Chevalier has developed characters in The Last Runaway that are easy to understand, and they feel as if they are people you might know in real life.  You can relate to their problems even if they were in a time that you do not live in. And you see that there were many things that were different during that time, but there were also many things that are just the same as the time we live in now.

This book probably isn’t for everyone; I don’t think that a lot of men would enjoy it. It’s too focused on women and their interactions. But I think many women who enjoy history, and quilting would enjoy this book. 

The Puppini Sisters

1 Dec

The Puppini Sisters are a female trio that always seems to put together perfect harmonies. Their music is most closely related to The Andrews Sisters. While some of the songs the ladies sing are their recreations of those standard swing hits like It Don’t Mean a Thing, If It Ain’t Got No Swing, the ladies have decided to recreate newer songs with a swing twist. The best example of this is Walk Like An Egyptian. Some of you might remember the song from the 80’s by The Bangles.

And then there is their unique version of that disco classic by Gloria Gaynor I Will Survivor. You will recognize the song, but it’s not like the original version at all.

The ladies have released six albums, and they were working on another as of last spring. I really can’t wait to see what they come up with this time.

Dear Mr. Glidden

26 Nov

I was wondering if you give me some advice on how to receive a patent.  I know that you successfully patented barbed wire over a hundred years ago. So I’m pretty sure that you have an idea of how to patent an item. My first question is how did you decide that your product was an original? And was it difficult to put together that application?

Now I read that you had someone dispute your claim that you were the actual inventor of barbed wire. How exactly did you deal with this? I’m assuming you were able to prove that you invented barbed wire since you are still credited with the invention, and the huge amount of wealth you acquired due to the patent. How did you handle the frustrations that went along with those legal battles? And is there any way that if I decide to file for a patent that I could avoid these legal battles?

Did you have any idea how your invention would change the landscape of the country? I mean the country went from having wide open areas of prairies that buffalo and humans could navigate, but after barbed wire was introduced to the area. People and animals could no longer navigate freely through the area.

I know that you were not a selfish man due to the fact that you donated your homestead to what is now Northern Illinois University.

Is there anything that you would do differently if you had it to do over again Mr. Glidden? Would you still file that patent, or would you just let things go?

I’m looking forward to the valuable advice you can provide me about obtaining a patent.




Zombie Ghost Train

25 Nov

I started watching the Walking Dead series on Netflix. I haven’t gotten through the entire series yet, but I decided that I should share a little Zombie music with everyone. And Zombie Ghost Train is the band I’ve chosen.

Dealing the Death Card

While the band is no longer together, it made an impact on the psychobilly world. The bands are reported to have been great fun. And if you can’t tell from the band’s name, the music deals with zombies and such. It’s fast music like most rockabilly music, but psychobilly is a sub group of the rockabilly world. And it has attracted fans from the goth world too. So you can just imagine that the shows were pretty rowdy.

But their music is so much fun, and that is why they are still a group I enjoy listening to. The song Graveyard Queen is actually a love song. Where the singer is singing about his love who has died and she is now the Graveyard Queen.  The tempo of the song is fast, so it makes it a fun song.

I’ve heard reports that the lead singer of this band has formed a new spaghetti western band, and I hope that is true because if the new band has the entertainment value that Zombie Ghost Train has it will certainly be something I want to listen to.

First Squad Moment of Truth

24 Nov

For those of you who are fans of anime style films, you might find this movie interesting. Instead of being based in Japan, the movie is set in 1942 Russia. So it’s a war movie. The German Army has managed to raise an army of long dead warriors, who have an old score to settle with the Russians. But the Russians have a secret weapon the First Squad.

first squad
First Squad

The First Squad is a group of youth with psychic abilities. The problem is that all but one of the members of the squad are killed. The only living member must travel to the world of dead warriors to ask the other members for assistance.

The movie is based on a comic book series from the Soviet era. So it definitely has a propaganda feel to it, but the story is interesting. It’s kind of captures what people might have been hoping for during that war. I’m sure that there were individuals who were hoping that some miracle would happen so that the war would be shortened.

The animation is also great! The scenes on the battlefield are almost lifelike in a cartoon way. They are bloody. So this isn’t for children. But if you are looking for an interesting story that has a much different look than traditional Hollywood films, you might enjoy this movie.