Musings on music, sports, life in general from Quincy, Illinois.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Beat Daddies

Went to The Club last night at 1oth and Chestnut to hear The Beat Daddies from Evansville, Ind.

Wow ....

Great band, great songs (originals and covers), great company, fun night! Click here for more band info, hopefully they'll be back this summer for our Bluesfest.

Off to Peoria today to see the 6-1 senior play in the All State Honors band concert, first chair oboe!

Friday, January 30, 2009

Another thaw

The Grawe boys came over to The Pond this week for a huge inter-school pond hockey battle with Team Stegeman.

Team Stegeman let Old Guy play with them. Old Guy is very impressed with the number of good skaters and it was an awesome time. Both sides had 12 players so we did line shifts every few minutes.

I believe Team Stegeman won. I believe they let Team Grawe score a few goals here and there just to make them feel better. 

The ice was chippy yesterday. This weekend's thaw might actually help get the crud off the ice and flatten out the surface. Cold again early next week, might get in a game or two.

Then the thaw really hits toward the end of the week, and that will likely be the end of pond hockey this season.

Found out Boyers sharpens skates and they do a really good job.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Buh Bye Gov ....

Buh Bye, Rod.

I am ashamed to share the same name.

I am ashamed to live in the same state. I'm ashamed you were voted into office twice.

I am relieved you are gone.

I am sad the snake oil you've been trying to sell us can't be returned.

Buh Bye, Rod.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Two Places

We were fortunate in Quincy to dodge a pretty nasty storm yesterday. It careened just south of us and left a trail of ice, slush and debris.

My sister and dad live in Louisville, which got smacked hard by the storm. Judging from the photos, they'll be cleaning up for a while down there.

My brother, on the other hand, lives in Phoenix and is still pinching himself about the Cardinals. 

Dealing with 70 degree weather must be tough, too ....

Monday, January 26, 2009

Get On Your Boots

The first single from U2's "No Line On The Horizon" is out.

Give "Get On Your Boots" a listen here.

You can never tell what you will get with U2, though the last two CDs were more of the powerhouse U2 older fans remember. 

This song is basically "Vertigo" on steroids, strange but captivating the more you listen to it.

More info on the CD here.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Not So Trivial

Much fun at St. Peter's trivia night. Our team, led by Theresa Oakley, finished with a respectable top 20 showing. Missing Marianne Barnard hurt, as did missing the kids (illness). More fun afterwards with 1/3 of the Funions hooting and hollering ....

The ice has been magnificent at The Family Farm Pond and we had a great game today. 

Yes, they are twice as young, yes, I'm having trouble walking up the steps, yes, I wish it was 1983 again. Not really.

Looks like the cold weather will stick around so we'll have ice for a while. 

And ... the snow this morning sure beat the heck out of rain.

And .... to the little girl who blew threw the 10th and Adams intersection this morning, nearly careening into a parked car while skidding on the snow — TAKE YOU STUPID CELL PHONE OUT OF YOUR EAR before it gets stuck up in there and pay attention. It might save your life.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Wire ... Less (update)

A very gracious soul set me up with wireless Internet a while back and it's awesome. I can sit anywhere in the place unhooked and hooked up, a beautiful thing.

The other day something called "Angelove" popped up on my wireless network, booted me off and screwed everything up. Now I can't reconnect, despite expert efforts.

If you are Angelove and living in Calftown, thanks for nothing, and thanks for using a non-secure wireless network and wrecking my little parade.

UPDATE: We called Comcast, which said the router was fine. They switched us to Belkin, the router maker.

"Oh," said the Belkin tech person. "If you have an iBook, you have to type in a $ sign before your password when you log back in."

Geesh. Glad we called, our we'd be using the router for a hockey puck right now ....

Ready tonight for the Trivia Contest at St. Peter. Since half our team are Funions, expect a big after-party jam session somewhere ....

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Warm Air = No Ice

So what if mid-50s makes everybody feel better .... all I know is that's the end of our Farm Pond Arena ice.

I think.

Back into the teens tomorrow, maybe it will still be around this weekend ....

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Flu and missing history

So Monday I spent a miserable day dealing with the flu. Blechh, double blechh.

Got up this morning and felt like I'd been hit by a truck, but at least the thought of eating something didn't repulse me. Got to the office and by about 11 I was dragging, so I went home.

I turned on the presidential inauguration, hoping to catch history. President George H. Bush looked really old. Jimmy Carter looked great. All the other politicians looked like ... politicians.

Obama came out and there was a huge roar and it was quite a grand scene.

Then I fell asleep.

Then I woke up to hear Aretha Franklin absolutely warbling and screaming, and I turned the TV off.

Rats. Flu has a way of interfering with history, I guess.

Well, I assume Obama had lots of good lines and everybody was impressed. Now they are talking about a luncheon and china used by Lincoln and HOLY CRAP is Ted Kennedy still alive?

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Hey Rocky .... MAROON!

Rocky .... The problem with reading Tookie's blog is that some people actually think his nonsensical dribble means something and is accurate.

Don't be one of the three.

These aren't sweats, they are maroon snow pants. MAROON. As in, the color of America's university, Central Michigan. As in, the former Montreal Maroons hockey team.

Might be wearing them shortly just down the street from your abode ....

Sunday Morning Quiet

Sometimes it's nice just to wake up, get some coffee, sift through the paper (or, like more and more people these days, browse online) and just take it easy.

More fun at The Farm yesterday. My mid-40s muscles are barking this morning. Hurts so good!

Watched "The Bucket List" last night. Morgan Freeman is amazing. I kept thinking about how autobiographical much of the material might have been from Jack Nicholson. 

So, you have a sleeping 17-year-old on a Sunday morning. What do you do?
1. Wake her up and make pancakes.
2. Threaten to ground her if she doesn't wake up, then realize all she'd do is sleep if she was grounded.
3. Try the old Calvinistic guilt trip thing about missing church.
4. Let her sleep.

Correct Answer: C'mon, too easy ....

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Hectic Friday

It started with a noon skate at The Farm. Kevin Murphy of The Whig copy desk was introduced to pond hockey Quincy style and it was SO much fun zipping around the ice with Corey and crew.

Then it was back to work where Judge Mark Drummond didn't mince words when telling a Chicago drug dealer what he thought, click here.

Then it was off to The Elks for a Funions show. I thought we played pretty well, just something off with the energy, might have been the cold January night. The people that did stick around had a great time and I'm always grateful people will come out to hear us.

When we were done all I wanted to do was go home and crash, but Rock A Bye, Pat, Steph and Shey Fey were insistent we go to Port's Place to see Kevin Allen. Port's Place? Are you kidding?

There weren't. And it was a blast. And now I'm embarrassed to pick up a guitar after watching Kevin jam with his buddies. HOLY CRAP. 

Back on the ice today with any luck, gotta do it now because it's warming up!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Ice Again!

Went down to South Park's Curtis Creek today and the ice was perfect.

It was all good except for Lucy getting too close to the dam and falling in, but she couldn't have cared less chasing me around the ice. Mom finally took her home when the icicles started forming on her chest ....

Tomorrow I introduce Kevin Murphy to real pond hockey in Quincy!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009


Buh buh buh bundle up, baby ....

The weather is a big topic right now. What do you do to keep warm? 

In the immortal word of a cook I used to work with many years ago who gave me a tip about making nachos - "Layers, dude. Layers." You don't need a big heavy coat, just a few shirts, jackets and sweatshirts.

And if you don't have to go outside, DON'T. Pretty simple, Hoser.

Went to St. Charles this morning for work and drove into the sunrise. Even on a bleak January morning it was pretty cool. 

QHS girls gave it a good go last night in Keokuk. In a month the season and No. 44's career will be over, and it's just hard to believe.

Two more nights and it's Elks rock and roll time, we can't wait!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Well Deserved

A really good story about a really good guy, click here.

A local blogger who is different and interesting at times ....

Ice by Friday? It's possible!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Dreary January Mondays ....

.... Make me long for scenes like this.

We'll try to warm things up Friday night at the Elks, 7:30 p.m., members and guests. FOF (friends of Funions) welcome as well.

Also getting ready for the annual Music Trivia night coming up, Rock A. Bye has recruited quite the Funion-influenced team. My goal is to beat teams with Alan Lawless and Sam Middendorf.

Going to give guitar lessons in a few minutes .... nothing restores faith and sanity like music and young people!

Friday, January 09, 2009



He is accused of allowing a Funion to jam with his band, Fielder, thus making the Funion a Fieldion.

Both are greasy, from what I've heard.

Let's quote the greatest philosopher of all time by saying HOLY CRAP and congratulating the QHS girls on a huge win in Galesburg last night. Some nice pics of No. 44, too!

The Funions practiced last night and learned a boatload of songs. Ain't No Sunshine in Q-town in January.

We also discussed summer World Parking Lot Tour plans, south and north sides of Mendon, how much gear we've had lost/stolen/misplaced/borrowed and never returned, watched Florida win the national championship and lined up the soldiers when we were done.

Looking forward to hanging out at the Aces tournament tomorrow and watching more NFL playoff games ....

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Beach On The Brain

This post is dedicated to Mike Provine and beaches. He is right. This time of year really makes you think of warm sand.

The only way you survive the January bleakness is by pretending you are sitting on a beach with nothing but a beverage and the sun in your face.

Well ... you'd also have to deal with the waves crashing into the sound, stars so close they seem to be dropping on top of your head, no cell phone reception ..... glorious.

The good news? Six more months 'till vacation. The bad news? Six more months 'till vacation.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Gas Prices

We all knew this $1.60 a gallon gas was waaaayyyyy too good to be true.

I just went to West Quincy and paid $1.58. At the local gas station in Q-town gas is $1.85. The difference, of course, is competition and state taxes.

Many times I go to West Quincy just to spite Illinois and its higher gas taxes. Sometimes I give in and buy gas here. But when it's 27 cents a gallon cheaper .... c'mon. You are dumb not to do it if you aren't that far from the bridges.

Now lawmakers say they may need to jack the federal tax on gas because Americans are driving fewer miles.

Let me get this straight — we, John Q. Public, are using less gas and being more responsible in tight economic times, presumably with less wear and tear on our roads, and the answer is to SMACK US IN THE FACE WITH MORE FREAKING TAXES?

Let's trade Washington D.C. to another country and just call it even.

Monday, January 05, 2009

Stuffed Animal Abuse

In some states, ripping the head off a stuffed animal is a Class 3 felony.

In Calftown, it's par for the course ....

Sunday, January 04, 2009


The world's loudest band ever for the Sandwich Maker of Doom's Birthday Bash ....

So we figured out the more people drink, the better we sound.

And ...

- I hate "Sweet Home Alabama." But it works. We did draw the line with "Gimme Three Steps."
- Drums fall apart. Thankfully drummers still work.
- We'll work out a few kinks for the Jan. 16 show at The Elks.
- Gotta play a few more originals.
- These people know how to have fun!

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Birthday Party

Looking forward to playing tonight at the Sandwich Maker of Doom's birthday party — the house is sure to be a rockin' ....

How about those QHS girls ...!

Watching Nick Saban run off the field last night looking like he swallowed sour milk was worth the price of admission. Take that, BCS. Take that, you arrogant Bama fans who dismissed Utah.

Plus it got me huge points in the Hart Family Bowl Challenge. I'm currently in first, with my brother's dog, Ella, in second. Ella made her picks by barking or growling when the team name was mentioned. She might be the dumbest dog in the world, but she knows her bowl games.

Back tomorrow with a report from the birthday bash ...

Also, Funions dates confirmed for Friday, Jan. 16 at the Elks (members and guests) and Saturday, March 7 for the Children's Action Network party at the old Holiday Inn, now called the Clarion.

Thursday, January 01, 2009

New Year's Day

Lots of fun at the Elks Lodge last night. The Classics are awesome, a band that understands it's not about being loud, it's all about being heard.

New Year's Day has been quiet, lots of football and hanging out in the newly-dubbed "Mark's Sports Bar" in the Ridge. 

The hockey game today at Wrigley Field was the best. Whoever came up with this idea needs to be knighted .... you'll see it every year now.

Hope 2009 is good to you!