Epically Awesome Award of Epic Awesomeness Times Three


My mother always told me I was special (she still does actually) and even though I knew that she thought so, I knew it was because all mothers think their children are.

But today, I’ve had no less than three different bloggers nominate me for the Epically Awesome Award of Epic Awesomeness!

First, Kim over at Tranquil Dreams, then Natasha over at Films and Things and finally Meera over at Meera Darji have all hit me with the same nomination. I can feel my ego expanding to huge dimensions as I re-read this and I may have to order a larger sized hat in future!

Now before my ego gets so big I need to move into a bigger house, I need to thank Kim, Natasha and Meera for nominating me and just have to say, if you haven’t checked their blogs out, do so now. These are three interesting, entertaining, and erudite people who write interesting, entertaining and erudite blogs!

Check em out!

Right, as with all these awards in the blogging verse there are rules. I know, I know, but it’s like the big guy said, “There’s no gain without pain.” (Or something very similar to that.) Now before I go into these rules, I’ll just point out that these “awards” are all good fun and are not some subversive type of punishment or torture. It is a way to build our little (Did I say little??) community into one that is not just about the blogs, but more about the folks behind the blogs.

Caring and sharing. You know?

So, let’s get those pesky rules out-of-the-way, shall we?

After all my waffling on about rules in the above paragraph, there are only two!

1. Tell 10 epic and/or awesome facts about yourself.

2. Pass it on to 10 bloggers you think are awesome and/or epic – or both.

I’ve done so many of these that I’ve pretty much run out of things that are epic and/or awesome about me to reveal! I’ve been doing pictures but I’ve gotten at least one request to, “Knock it off with the pictures already?”

But this is my award, dammit and I’m going to do a mixture…Okay?

1) I became a member of this “exclusive” society in 1975.

Scan 35







2)I won the best supporting actor award in 1976 after a year of playing six different roles in one semester at Fayetteville High School.

3) My first ever radio spot for a play I did (called The Curious Savage) was done on the first take.

4) I went to school with ex-President Bill Clinton’s cousin.

5) Our “study hall” teacher was the guy who wrote the Disney film The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes starring Kurt Russell.

6) For a very short time, I joined a group of volunteers and read a news magazine for the blind.

7) Before being ill-health retired from my job as a prison officer I had been assaulted six times, the most memorable were getting kicked and punched in the face.

8) In 1996, I had a car accident that should have killed me. I walked away from the totalled car with just a few scratches. The policeman who responded to the call, looked at me and then the remains of my car and asked me to, “Please sit down.”

9) My cousin and I found a fossil that was unlike any we’d seen before, my uncle took one look and threw it away saying it was a fake, years later I found out that it was worth a small fortune!

10) I met ex-Vice President Dick Cheney when I was stationed in Holland. Two words? Not impressed. We were “volunteered” to meet him.

And now for my ten Epic and Awesome nominees!

1) Marilyn over at Serendipity she has one of the most diverse blogs on the net!

2)Tyson Carter over at Head in a Vice he does reviews, interviews, contests, promotions…He does a lot!

3)Austin over at The Bishop Review he is entertaining and always doing new “themes” and promotions!

4)Brian over at Hard Ticket to Home Video his blog is full of great reviews (among other things) and lots of humour!

5)Sandra over at quirkybooks writer, author, great fun and great reviews!

6)Donna over at a little bird tweets another writer, author and excellent blogger!

7)Daniel over at Daniel’s Film Reviews aspiring film critic who does great reviews!

8)Ionia over at readful things blog writer passionate reader and lover of new literature!

9)Nostra over at My Filmviews  he does movie reviews, blogging tips and lots more!

10)Tim over at timneath artist, sculptor, reviewer check him out!


And that is that. Except to say there were so many to choose from and there were three, no four! That I really wanted to include but I would be accused of playing favourites. Just know, that I think you are all epic and awesome and I’d nominate you all if I could!

So go check these bloggers out and they folks who nominated me as well, they’re all EPIC AND AWESOME!

Photo on 27-03-2013 at 09.03


Show and Tell

We moved to Fayetteville when I was fifteen. I started that fall at Fayetteville High School. I desperately wanted to take Drama, but there were no spaces left. The closest the school advisor could get was Public Speaking. It would have to do. On the first day of class I became devoted to the teacher.

He was a mountain of a man. He must have been at least six and a half feet tall. He had a barrel chest and wonderfully rich voice. He had been a bit of everything in his life before he, “Came back to the school that showed me the door and suggested I never come back.” One of the many things he had done  was work as a prison officer.
About halfway through the school year, the teacher wanted us to do a “show and tell” speech. He handed us our subjects. Mine was on how to make a Martini. I held my hand up and asked if I could do the speech on a subject I chose. He answered in the affirmative. Luckily he did not ask me what I was going to do.
When I was a lot younger I used to read a book series called The Brains Benton Mysteries.  Brains, as was suggested by his nickname, was a genius. He was like a young Sherlock Holmes. I adored the books and it was through one of them that I found the recipe for making gun powder. It was not exact, that would have been irresponsible.But it did list the main ingredients.
Charcoal, saltpetre, and sulfer. Saltpetre and sulfer I could get at the local drug store. In those days you could get your hands on loads of “cool” things. I remember getting Hydrochloric Acid and Formaldehyde over the counter. That did change very shortly when a new chemist started working there. Of course I had the other ingredient at home in the guise of charcoal briquettes.
After a lot of experimenting I made a small pile of gunpowder that could more accurately be called flash powder. I did tightly pack a bit and it did make a satisfactory bang when lit. I was inordinately pleased that I had cracked the formula. I wrote the measurement down in a notebook and never had the opportunity to make the stuff again. Well, until my Public Speech class came along.
I went home on Friday and spent the next two days making gunpowder. I managed to fill an entire coffee can with the stuff. I then wrote my speech outline and made a few index cards with the formula on them. Speech class was my first class of the morning, so on Monday I entered the room with my coffee can, index cards and my outline. The outline I gave to the teacher and I sat down with my coffee can and index cards on the desk in front of me.
When the teacher read my outline he raised his eyebrows and looked at me questioningly. I just grinned and nodded. This seemed to satisfy him and he then did a roll check and said that I would give the first speech of the morning.
I got up to the podium and using the chalk board I wrote down my recipe for making gun powder. I then explained where you could get the ingredients from. Then with a flourish I opened the coffee can asked everyone to pass it around and have a look. When the can came back to me, I opened the floor for questions.
Immediately from the back of room came the question I was hoping someone would ask. “How do we know it works, man” This was from the “druggies” in the corner. “Ah,” I said, “Now comes the demonstration part of my speech.” I took a box of matches out of my trouser pocket, opened the box and pulled a match out and lit it. With what I thought was a theatrical gesture worthy of P.T. Barnum himself, I tossed the match into the coffee can.
FOOM! In a split second a flame roughly about five feet tall shot out of the top of the can. This was followed by a huge black cloud of smoke. The teacher shouted at the class to open the windows. This action did not immediately help to disseminate the smoke which appeared to get worse. The general atmosphere in the room was one of great hilarity. There was a lot of laughter and shouting and coughing. The teacher then evacuated the class room and we all went outside to wait for the smoke to clear. Luckily no one hit the fire alarm. Although this was mainly because the smoke was confined to the speech room.
Once the smoke had cleared and we were herded back to our seats, the teacher asked me if I knew that was going to happen. I had to honestly say no. I explained that I had never made that much before and had no idea that it was going to be so spectacular. He believed me and did not send me to the Principle’s office for being a disruptive influence on the class.
He instead gave me an A+ for my ingenuity and flair. Looking back on my time spent in High School, I think it was the highest grade I ever got for anything.
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