Posted in A to Z Blogging, Baseball, Capitals, HOF, Homeschooling, Sherman Brothers, Writers Write, Readers Read, Rollers Roll

A to Z Challenge Reflections 2020

I hadn’t originally planned on participating in the A to Z challenge this year. I hadn’t really been blogging at all since midsummer and when the school years started I was working 60 to 70 hours a week at a movie theater and as a substitute teacher. And even though I had a week off school for Spring break our family had a number of activities planned for that week. Planning 26 entries for mu blog was probably the furthest thing from my mind.

Then in quick succession my spring break was lengthened to two weeks, the movie theater temporarily closed , and all the spring break activities we had planned were postponed or cancelled all due to pandemic concerns. Sometimes during those 2 weeks came a stay at home order and all of a sudden I had time on my hands.

During those weeks I did a lot of relaxing and even amid all the anxiety really enjoyed my family and my new found free time. I rediscovered reading blogs for pleasure and while I pondered whether I might be able to find work to replace my “nonessential” jobs, I decided not to look until March 30th, which would have been the Monday I was supposed to come back from Spring Break. It was at that point I decided to sign up for the A to Z challenge.

My theme for last years challenge was the movie music of the Sherman Brothers. It was a bit of a complex process as I would have a video of the song, the lyrics from the song and my reflections or remembrance from the movie. It was complex but each post had a very predictable pattern. I also had prepared many of the submissions in advance of April 1st. By choice or necessity that was all different this year.

I chose a topic Capitals and put my own Random twist on it. I chose New York’s capital Albany as my A entry and wrote about a visit to Baseball’s Hall of fame a few years back. The Hall of Fame is in Cooperstown, not Albany. While my son and I did stay in Albany for a few days on the trip the articles main focus was not Albany.

Most every entry was like that. Quito is the capital of Ecuador. The missionaries Jim and Elisabeth Elliot were married in Quito, I’ll write about them. It was much less about capitals and more about free association derived from Capitals. I tried as much as I could to tell about myself and so you might not know anymore about Pierre, South Dakota than you did before, but hopefully you know a little more about me.

Going back to my sudden inclusion into the ranks of the unemployed for a moment, I actually viewed it as a bit of a sabbatical. I had set a date of March 30th to start looking for work, I expected that this could take quite a bit of time. The truth now was that on the 30th, I heard about a job, applied for that job, was interviewed and hired for that job in about a 6 hour period.

I thought the job would be restocking a grocery store on the over night shift 2 or 3 times a week. Which would give me plenty of time for my family, volunteer activities and the challenge. It turned out the job was 5 to 6 times a week giving me less time than I thought I would have had. Also changing my sleep patterns really did a bit of a number on my whole creative process and also got in the way of deadlines. On three different times I had to catch up on my posts after missing the natural deadline of the calendar.

Generally one of my favorite parts of the a to z challenge is how it involves me in the blog-o-sphere. I love reading and interacting with other peoples blogs. This year I did far less of that than I hoped to. Now that I am no longer obligated to post every day, I hope to catch up on some of that reading and commenting.

I will start by spending some time to look at some reflection posts. If you are interested in checking these out, click here. I am already looking forward to next years challenge. I have an idea that will be very time intensive and will take months of preparation. I thought of it last year, but by December , I knew there would be no way to implement it this year. This is what is known in the entermation (a synonym I just created for infotainment) field as a tease.

I’ll end this piece with a bit of an announcement. 11 years ago I began my blogging journey with a blog called Home School Dad. I did over 700 posts there from 2009 to 2012 another 100 from 2013 to 2016 and its essentially laid dormant for the last 3+ years. I recently decided to bring this blog out of mothballs. I will still be posting here as well, but I imagine that HSD will again become my flagship. I spent a few hours this evening adjusting the format. If you check it out by clicking here, you will always see a link to my most recent Random Acts of Roller entry, which of course will be this entry. Thanks for everyone stopping by from the challenge. I hope achieving a new normal after the challenge and in this crazy covid situation is fun and fulfilling.

Posted in A to Z Blogging, Capitals, Pictures, Random Acts of Roller, Sherman Brothers

A Return To Blogging

This is my return to blogging. It has been since July 2019 since I have posted anything. In the past 2 weeks I have gone from too busy to even think about blogging to plenty of time on my hands due to losing both my jobs (at least temporarily) to the corona virus. I had considered coming back for the A to Z Challenge and these recent events have allowed it.

My Theme will be Capitals. Due to the random nature of my blog, and specifically my mind, each entry may only be somewhat related to the Capital mentioned. For example, it is entirely possible that Friday April third’s entry will feature the Krispy Kreme themed love song I wrote in 1995 because I wrote it while living in Columbia, South Carolina where I first encountered Krispy Kreme.

Last year I participated in the A to Z challenge and my theme was the music of the Sherman Brothers. At the end of my entries this year, I will include a link to last year’s entry as a bonus. As a sign of a good faith, click here to see last year’s reflection post. I’ll be back on Wednesday to start off this years extravaganza.

The Sherman Brothers after receiving National Medal of Arts Nov,17 2008

Posted in 10 Things, A to Z Blogging, OPB, OPV, Sherman Brothers

A to Z 2019. A Reflection on 10 things about my Sherman Shuffle.

I’ve just recently come back from a blogging hiatus. After more than 26 posts in April, I decided I needed a bit of a break. Click here to see an index of my A to Z posts from 2019. The index didn’t write itself, So I was doing a little blog related work in my hiatus,

Thing 1: The A to Z challenge helped me remember things I love about blogging. My first foray into blogging was reading a blog called Outwalking by Steve West. When I first read it , I didn’t know what a blog was and it wasn’t until later when I started blogging in 2009 that I realized Out Walking was a blog. What I like most about blogging is discovery. The first post I remember reading on Steve’s blog was a review of the movie Once. That post helped me discover a movie , musicians, later a musical and even an island. (The Island existed, I just didn’t know about it until I went to see the musical).

Participating in the A to Z challenge this year did help me discover many new people, places and things. This was a little nostalgic for me, as one of my themes in a previous a to z challenge had been nouns. I think this year I really did enjoy reading other peoples blogs as much as if not more than I did preparing my own. And I loved preparing my own.

Thing 2: Posting about the Sherman Brothers non stop in the month of April helped me remember things I loved about growing up. To say that life is much different now than it was in the 1970’s goes without saying. It’s a good thing I’m typing it. Many of the Sherman compositions were songs I discovered and or adored growing up. Winnie The Pooh, Charlie Brown, Charlottes Web, these were common place for me. Remembering listening to theses songs on 8 track long before I knew who the Sherman Brothers were brought piles of memories back into the forefront of my mind. I’m not sure If I didn’t stumble upon Snoopy Come Home on Hulu in March, If I ever would have remembered singing The Best of Buddies as a bath time ritual and I certainly would have not known it’s actual title or the authors/composers of the piece.

Thing 3: Posting about The Sherman Brothers made me astoundingly aware of this legendary songwriting team.

I knew of the Sherman’s work prior to this year. I knew of their work on Mary Poppins and Winnie The Pooh. I had no idea of really how prolific they were. As previously mentioned, I didn’t know about their non Diseny work on Charlotte’s Web or Snoopy Come Home. There is so much of their work I was unfamiliar with.

I am interrupting this paragraph to say that in the last 15 minutes I have discovered that the Sherman Brother’s wrote You’re 16 (You’re beautiful and your mine) in 1960. When I googled the Sherman Brothers and hit what songs did the Sherman Brothers write sure enough they were credited with writing the song that would eventually become a number one hit for Ringo Starr in 1973. That means that the duo wrote music performed not only by the Beach Boys (The Monkey’s Uncle) but also by the Drummer of the Beatles. Pretty Amazing! There are propably still songs that I know of out there that I didn’t know the Sherman Brother’s association with.

Thing 4: I showed remarkable restraint on a common mistake.

All A to Z challenge announcements this year centered on this being the 10th anniversary of the Challenge. IT WAS NOT!

Consider this excerpt from teh A to Z website:

 It all began with my post from Saturday March 27, 2010 when I set forth a challenge to all bloggers for the month of April.   Can you post every day except Sundays during this month?  And to up the bar, can you blog thematically from A to Z?

http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/p/what-is-blogging-from-to-z.html

 If the first A to Z challene began in 2010 this was it’s 9th anniversary. What it accuaratley was was the 10th annual a to z challenge, March 27 2020 will mark the 10th anniversary of the challenge and April ist will commence the 11th annual challenge.

For 26 entries I held my tongue, as I did not think that was the time to point it out. That being said, If the 11th anniversary is announced a year early next year I probably will mention it sooner than I did this year.

Thing 5: Less is always not easier.

My A yo Z challenge entries stuck pretty much to a basic format, which I tweaked a little from week to week. My posts would always include the name of the song, the movie or television program the song appeared in, the year it was made, a video of the song and the ltrics from the song. There was not a lot more content than that.

This did not necessarily mean it was less time consuming than writing a regular blog post that contained more copy. Linking videos and other materials to my posts is not my strong suit and actually more time consuming than just producing words. I thoroughly enjoyed it and it was worth the extra work but doing this times 26 in a monthly period could be fatiguing sometimes.

This leads to Thing 6: Did I cheat?

I had a conversation with a school principal on a substitute teaching assignment today and she commented that I am a very proactive person. I had just said goodbye to her for the Summer even though I’m scheduled to be back at her school later this week. I told her I was saying goodbye just in case we missed each other that day. Thus, the comment on proactivity.

I tended to be very proactive with the A to Z challenge and wrote many of my posts a week in advance and then scheduled them to post at about 5:30 am the day they were due. This is where I began to wonder if I was cheating. If the purpose of the A to Z challenge is to actually write a blog post every day (except most Sundays) than I didn’t really do that. I produced a post for each letter of the alphabet, to be sure. However, writing 3 to 4 posts at a time when I had time was really the secret to my success.

Thing 7: Best comments came from a non A to Z Post

10 years ago on April 7, 2019. My youngest brother Keoth passed away. This was on a Sunday, so no A to Z post was needed. I wrote a brief post commemorating his passing, 2 participants from the A to Z challenge John Holton and J-Dubs both wrote encouraging comments that I really appreciated.”

Thing 8: A theme park within a theme. Park I

I did quite a bit of research on the Sherman Brothers for last month’s spectacular. Much of what I found blew me away. The Sherman’s wrote many songs for attractions at Disney World and Disney Land. They also wrote a song for the New York Worlds Fair in 1964 that has since become the most performed song in the world. It’s a small world, but that still is quite a distinction.

Thing 9: A Theme Park within a theme. Park II

One place I never expected to see the Sherman Brothers was in the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Univierse). Yet Robert Sherman did write a song that to date has appeared 2 MCU films (Iron Man2 andCaptain America: First Avenger). The song is called Make Way for Tomorrow Today and sounds like it could also have been in the 1964 World’s Fair. I think this is on purpose as the Howard Stark character is in many ways like Walt Disney himself. The Shermans also wrote a similar tune for the World’s fair called There’s a Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow.

Thing 10

Sherman on my mind.

Most every morning during the A to Z fun fest, I woke up singing a Sherman song. Not always the song I was posting that day. Just a random Sherman, some of them ones I hadn’t even been posting about. I guess this was one of the many wasy that April A to Z permeated through by being during the merry month of April.

Posted in A to Z Blogging, OPV, Sherman Brothers, Word of the Day

Sherman Brothers A to Z: Zis for Zuckerman’s Favorite Pig (Q is for Quintessential) *M*is*for*mono*person*multi*track*

The Word for today is quinteseential. I know that I have already used Q for Quintessential earlier in the A to Z Challenge when referring to Jolly Holiday. While Jolly Holiday is a perfect example of a Sherman Brother’s tune. Zuckerman’s famous pig is an ideal example of a barber shop quartet song. I’m not sure why, but I’m a big fan of one person multi-tracks so here is one for ZFP.

earlier in the A to Z Challenge when referring to Jolly Holiday. While Jolly Holiday is a perfect example of a Sherman Brother’s tune. Zuckerman’s famous pig is an ideal example of a barber shop quartet song. I’m not sure why, but I’m a big fan of one person multi-tracks so here is one for ZFP.

He’s…some pig…some pig

Some terrific, radiant, humble pig

He is some pig

Oh wow look at him now Zuckerman’s famous pig

Sooey, what do you see

The greatest hog in history

Fine swine wish he was mine

What if he’s not so big

He’s some terrific, radiant, humble

Thingamajig of a fine phenomenon

My land isn’t it grand

Zuckerman’s famous pig

Golly, you got to agree

He’s a real celebrity

Fine swine, wish he was mine

What if he’s not so big?

He’s some terrific radiant, humble

Thingamajig pig

The terrific….radiant…

(Humble x2)

Zuckerman’s x5

Zuckerman’s famous pig


https://the-sherman-brothers.fandom.com/wiki/Zuckerman%27s_Famous_Pig

It has been a real pleasure to crank out a month’s worth of Sherman songs. I’ll be back soon with a Sherman sign-off. for more A to z blogs just click

.

Posted in A to Z Blogging, OPV, Sherman Brothers, Word of the Day

Sherman Brothers A to Z: Y is for You Two (P is for Penultimate) *C*is*for*Chitty*Chitty*Bang*Bang*

I have decided to use one of my favorite words in each and every post I do this week. The word for today’s post is penultimate. which means 2nd to last. Y is the penultimate letter in the English alphabet. Making this the penultimate post in the A to Z Challenge. We are featuring the song You Two from the 1968 film: Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.

Caractacus: To me, the answer’s clear; it’s having someone near; someone dear.

Someone to care for; to be there for. I have You Two!

Someone to do for; muddle through for. I have You Two!


Someone to share joy or despair with; whichever betides you.


Life becomes a chore, unless you’re living for.

someone to tend to be a friend to. I have You Two!


Someone to strive for, do or die for, I have You Two!


Could be, we three get along so famously,

’cause you two have me, and I have You Two too.

(Breakfast is behind made, then Caractacus sneezes)

Kids:  Someone to care for; to be there for.

Caractacus:  I have You Two!

Kids:  Someone to do for; muddle through for.

Caractacus:  I have You Two!


Someone to smile once in awhile with; whenever you’re lonesome.

I’ve a happy lot, considering what I’ve got.


But, I couldn’t do more, Than you do for your poor Father.

(Kids: Daddy!)

Things go asunder and I wonder why you bother.

All: Could be, we three get along so famously ’cause…

Kids:  we two have you, 

Caractacus:  and I have You Two…

All:  too.


https://the-sherman-brothers.fandom.com/wiki/You_Two

For More A to Z challenge blogs click here.