As a teenager, I first noticed Paul Newman in the 1969 classic, George Roy Hill's Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. (Ain't no rules in a knife fight.) In 2003, the movie was selected for preservation in the U.S. National Film Registry by the Library of Congress, as being "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant." For all his onscreen accomplishments, I'm most amazed by Paul Newman's creativity in establishing the Newman's Own food brand for the benefit of terminally ill children and other progressive causes. Pure genius, at that time, to put his powerful name and image behind a brand that would end up being his legacy well past his time on this earth. There are a number of good actors out there, but few take the time or trouble to think outside the box in using their power for the good of humanity. Indeed, Paul Newman was one of a kind.
Emily and the Right Reverend Rich found a few quiet moments in the grand ballroom to contemplate the ceremony.
We've been waiting for this day for something like a year and now it's over in a flash. Emily and Tommy had a perfect afternoon for their outdoor wedding. The evening prior, at the rehearsal, the sun started to set and a big, brilliantly colored rainbow appeared. A good omen!
Time for Jeff to hand over the bride and take his seat next to Julie.
Jessica and her escort, Carlos.
People are getting ready to par-tay. Oh boy, did we see some funny sights later in the evening. Video will be added to this blog as evidence as soon as possible. (Editing takes time, you know.)
Here is the cake, chocolate and vanilla by the way, with the Lenox bride and groom topper.
How's this for excitement? The neighborhood is buzzing about the plane that landed on Weber Rd. today. Although it careened through the intersection turning cartwheels, no one was seriously hurt according to local news reports. That's a miracle. Weber is a well-traveled road with nearly bumper-to-bumper traffic all day long.
How would it feel to see a plane swooping in right in front of your car, head-on? Read all about it.
We like sitting in the hot tub on days when the airport is busy. There's a red and black 2-seater ultra-light that sounds like a lawn mower and some kind of Cessna that appears to involve lessons since the same plane takes off and lands over and over. Small military planes stop here for refueling. And helicopters ... news choppers and one huge and incredibly loud, orange-colored beast, blast off on a regular basis. Glad today's episode ended up OK for all the people involved.
Photo by Bill Ackerman, published in the Argus Press Spectator.
Here in our Chicago suburb, we have been getting soaked since Friday. The sump pumps are purring and bumping day and night, working their little motors as best they can to keep the deluge out of the basement. A few streets away, the local ballfield is quickly becoming a pond for a family of ducks.
There won't be any picnics here for a while.
A few minutes down Weber Rd., the DuPage River is spilling its banks. People are driving up to the barricades to take their kids for a look, just like Jay, Rory and I did years ago at Kellogg and Sutton Rds. when the Ohio River overtook Coney Island.
A good day to stay inside. Let's all stay alert for ways to help people in Texas, Louisiana, Chicago and elsewhere who aren't on high ground right now.
Due to eyewitness video that ran rampant all over the web, including Tranquility Pike, charges were dropped today against Christopher Long. As you may recall, he's the cyclist who was slammed to the ground by a NY cop during a ride in Times Square. Long was then charged with assault. Go figure. Of course, why should I be surprised? I unfortunately live in Drew Peterson's community where that particular ex-cop's wives keep meeting unfortunate fates.
But this is a case where justice may be served after all. The police officer, Patrick Pogan, said that Long deliberately hit him with his bike. However, the video showed compelling evidence to the contrary. Officer Pogan is now on desk duty while an investigation into his actions continues. What more is there to investigate? The video speaks for itself. Makes you wonder about all the people in all the communities where there wasn't someone nearby with a video camera to record the truth.
Jay has heard me complaining that I'm not getting my Ocracoke fix this year and he knows I'm missing it for sure. For three years during college, Jay's summer job was on the Outer Banks, where he worked with his great friend Steve, below at right, delivering summer supplies such as grills and bikes to the big beach house rentals. For those years, my summer itinerary always included a flight to Norfolk, where Jay picked me up for the jaunt to Kitty Hawk, Kill Devil Hills and beyond.
Twice we drove to Cape Hatteras and took the ferry to Ocracoke Island, supposedly a favorite hideout for the pirate Blackbeard and his crew. Ocracoke's inlet, Silver Lake Harbor, is said to be the spot where Blackbeard lost his head. According to local lore, after his head was chopped off, his body swam around his ship several times before sinking. We've enjoyed staying at the Harborside Motel on Silver Lake and also at a really cool, quaint and comfortable inland hotel called Blackbeard's Lodge.
Why, here is Jay with Blackbeard, himself, over in the lounge at Blackbeard's Lodge. (Pay no attention to that hook in place of Blackbeard's right hand.)
Now that Hurricane Hanna's nearby tonight, the people of Ocracoke are closing up and hunkering down to ride out the storm, something they've done countless times. I'm thinking about strolling beneath the leafy canopy of tree-lined Howard's Street, sipping my morning coffee; spending pleasant evenings at Howard's Pub with shrimp, beer and live music; and enjoying leisurely breakfasts at the Flying Melon Cafe. And I can't forget the Island Ragpicker, overflowing with wind chimes, glass, books, pottery, music and just about everything else imaginable ... our favorite island shop.
I'm a regular reader of Ocracoke Island Journal and Ocracoke Blog, which are both reporting on the situation. Tonight I'm thinking of Ocracoke and its people and cats. May you all stay safe, warm and dry this evening.
Last weekend, the Mudhippies descended on a Logansport, IN farm for their annual Night of the Living Mud. Highlights were music, food, zombie mud facepaint, and of course, a caving trek. Rory joined his friends for part of the festivities and we'll soon be posting a loud and lively video. Like I've said before, gotta love those mudhippies!