Archive for August, 2013

31
Aug
13

perseverance

perseverance trophyIt has been nearly ten months since my stroke, and I think I have passed the milestone analogous to February 12 when even the insensitive eye can perceive the return of light to the year. My friends with whom I have maintained telephone communications have told me my voice is getting noticeably stronger and more like my pre-stroke self. Last week I noticed that my stamina is returning to the “old me.” But there is still a long way to go. My capacities are still much-diminished and improving very slowly.

I am fortunate.

This past year has been quite a lesson in patience for me. I have been affirmed in my conviction that the best “medicine” for me is to remain on the land, whatever it takes. I still sleep about half the day and it takes me weeks or months to accomplish even the simplest of tasks around the house, but I am still here. I have returned to a state of being productive for juvenile parricides, and I am thankful for this. Second to only remaining on the land, productivity has been my salvation. My traveling days are over, though, I fear for the rest of my life. But I am not complaining. I am content with what I am able to  do with my life.

I have learned a lot from the examples of people around me, most notably my son Henry, who lost his job this spring. He had been working for a terrible company which squandered his potential, and he stuck it out for five years despite my urgings for the last couple years for him to find a position with a firm that valued him and would provide him with the support to realize his immense gifts. He did not waste a lot of time nursing his wounds and feeling sorry for himself, but instead submitted over 260 on-line applications in three months and attended countless interviews where he endured numerous rejections. But we knew all would turn out well because he was offered a quality job within two weeks of being available… too early, as it turned out. Now he has learned much about the job market, about himself, and has found a manager who cares about his welfare and an organization that appears willing to invest in his career advancement. So my son is no longer among the ranks of the unemployed, and he has done it all by himself and by being disciplined.

Bad things happen to good people all the time. The world and fate are not fair. The important things are to be thankful for what you still have and to not spend excessive time mourning what is lost. To remain a positive thinker despite whatever stupidity and disappointment you encounter. To be patient and never lose faith. To persevere.

perseverance quote

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Groove of the Day

Listen to Gloria Gaynor performing “I Will Survive”

30
Aug
13

freight train blues

Steam Freight Train

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Groove of the Day

Listen to Boxcar Willie performing “Freight Train Blues”

29
Aug
13

dates at last

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The waiver hearing for Paul Henry Gingerich has been scheduled for three days starting November 19. A little later than expected, but firm dates.

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Groove of the Day

Listen to Power of Three performing “Better Late Than Never”

28
Aug
13

carlos

gag 1

Talk about dumb (but it is further evidence that Colt Lundy never had a chance growing up). I am reportedly being sued for a million dollars by Colt’s biological father for “defamation of character.”

I haven’t been properly served yet, but I’ve been warned it’s coming. Notice of the summons popped up on the Kosciusko County website Monday.

Apparently Carlos was denied a gun permit by the state of Indiana, and he has concluded this is because I brought to public attention that Carlos A. Lundy (54) currently of North Webster IN, and formerly of Lompoc CA; Saint Helens OR; Fort Walton Beach FL; Brewton AL; Syracuse IN; Indianapolis IN; Leesburg IN; married to Robin S. Lundy, has a felony criminal record.

This is the first I’ve heard that referring to someone’s public record that he is a felon can be construed as “defamation.” Maybe the record shows that Carlos has kept his nose clean in Indiana, but we are responsible for our actions wherever and whenever they occurred. This is definately not someone who should be allowed to carry a gun, and the felony record probably showed up through the normal course of Indiana doing its job.

I am frankly mystified by Carlos’ intentions in filing a lawsuit at this time. It is the worst possible way for someone to keep his conviction record a secret. But with Paul Henry’s new waiver hearing coming up, it may be a spoiler’s way of shifting the blame onto anyone but one’s self and one’s family. It may be an attempt to recast one’s self as a victim, rather than the perpetrator of past criminal activity. Carlos seems to be saying, “These meanies won’t leave me alone.”

I also think the lawsuit may be a  form of intimidation. Carlos may want me to back off on my support of Paul Henry Gingerich, a boy who at the age of 12 became ensnared in the Lundy family’s dirty business. Remember, this is the same Carlos Lundy who on 7 February 2011 reportedly left an obscene and threatening voicemail on my then-associate’s phone, demanding that we stop digging into the facts of the murder of Philip Danner and cease trying to maintain contact with Colt Lundy. It’s not going to work. I’m like a pair of Chinese handcuffs. The more you struggle, the tighter my grip.

I may be forced to make Carlos one of my projects. I was scared off by his initial threats, but now I’m getting curious about him. He was once a side show, but a lawsuit brings him to center stage.

This is what the free public record shows. I didn’t invent this. It is out there on the Internet for anyone to see… even the state of Indiana.

CARLOS A LUNDY  53  01/03/1958    MISC  MARIJUANA/POSSESSION
IDENTIFICATION
CARLOS LUNDY
RACE:
SEX:
DOB: 01/03/1958
AGE: 53
PROFILE INFO
WEIGHT:
HEIGHT:
EYE COLOR:
HAIR COLOR:
SKIN TONE:

OFFENSE DETAILS
CASE NUMBER: 
COURT NAME:
ARREST AGENCY:
ARREST DATE: CASE STATE: CA
CASE CATEGORY CODE: DISPOSITION DATE:
COUNTS: DISPOSITION:
ORIGINAL PLEA: STATE CODE: CA
CHARGES FILED ON: 05/28/2003 OFFENSE DATE:
OFFENSE CODE: OFFENSE CLASS:
OFFENSE TYPE: OFFENSE: MARIJUANA/POSSESSION
CONVICTION DATE: CONVICTION DATE:
SENTENCE DATE: PROBATION DATE:
SOURCE NAME: CA FINES:  100/50
 CARLOS A LUNDY  53  01/03/1958    MISC  POSS OF COCAINE
IDENTIFICATION
CARLOS A LUNDY
RACE: White
SEX: Male
DOB: 01/03/1958
AGE: 53
PROFILE INFO
WEIGHT:
HEIGHT:
EYE COLOR:
HAIR COLOR:
SKIN TONE:

OFFENSE DETAILS
CASE NUMBER: 
COURT NAME:
CA ARREST AGENCY:
ARREST DATE: CASE STATE: CA
CASE CATEGORY CODE: DISPOSITION DATE:
COUNTS: DISPOSITION:
ORIGINAL PLEA: STATE CODE: CA
CHARGES FILED ON: OFFENSE DATE:
OFFENSE CODE: OFFENSE CLASS:
OFFENSE TYPE: OFFENSE: POSS OF COCAINE
CONVICTION DATE: 2003 CONVICTION DATE:
SENTENCE DATE: PROBATION DATE:
SOURCE NAME: CA Dept of Corrections FINES:  500/275
 CARLOS A LUNDY  53  01/03/1958    MISC  TERRORISTIC THREATS
IDENTIFICATION
CARLOS LUNDY
RACE: White
SEX: M
DOB: 01/03/1958
AGE: 53
PROFILE INFO
WEIGHT:
HEIGHT:
EYE COLOR:
HAIR COLOR:
SKIN TONE:

OFFENSE DETAILS
CASE NUMBER: 
COURT NAME:
CA ARREST AGENCY:
ARREST DATE: CASE STATE: CA
CASE CATEGORY CODE: DISPOSITION DATE: 07/02/1988
COUNTS: 04 DISPOSITION: CONVICTED
ORIGINAL PLEA: STATE CODE: CA
CHARGES FILED ON: OFFENSE DATE:
OFFENSE CODE: OFFENSE CLASS:
OFFENSE TYPE: OFFENSE:  
CONVICTION DATE: CONVICTION DATE:
SENTENCE DATE: PROBATION DATE:
SOURCE NAME: CA FINES: 5000/500

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Groove of the Day

Listen to George Harrison performing “Sue Me, Sue You Blues”

27
Aug
13

vide cor meum

heart 1

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Groove of the Day

Listen to Katherine Jenkins performing “Vide Cor Meum” (Find My Heart)

26
Aug
13

little pink stars

little pink stars 1

Radish was a self-proclaimed “Sugar Metal” band from Greenville TX, formed in 1993 and in existence until 1999. It consisted of Ben Kweller (vocals, guitar), John David Kent (drums, vocals), and Bryan Blur (bass). This song is from their only major-label album, Restraining Bolt, and a top-40 hit in the UK in 1997.

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Groove of the Day

Listen to Radish performing “Little Pink Stars”

25
Aug
13

obstinate

Jordan Brown 2011Like an investor who has made a bad bet but blames everyone else for his mistake, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is refusing to admit its error in prosecuting Jordan Brown for the 2009 murder of Kenzie Houk and her unborn child.

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has been asked to review a lower court’s ruling which rightfully overturned the conviction of Jordan Brown. Defense attorneys do not believe the case will be heard.

From the beginning, this case has presented one outrage and injustice upon another, and this may not be the end. Disgraced former Lawrence County prosecutor John Bongivengo and the state police, in rushing to judgement and failing to conduct a competent investigation, started a chain-reaction train crash that since then has been perpetuated by every state official connected to the case.

On April 13, 2012, Lawrence County Juvenile Court Judge John W. Hodge ruled that Jordan was responsible for the deaths of his father’s pregnant fiancée, Kenzie Marie Houk and her unborn child. But this was only the culmination of a long process that has consistently misinterpreted or ignored key evidence and denied justice to an 11-year-old who should have been protected, not persecuted, by the state.

Following his conviction, defense attorneys appealed to the Pennsylvania Superior Court. In May, the Superior Court overturned the conviction and sent the case back to county juvenile court.

In his filing to the Supreme Court, chief deputy attorney general James P. Barker challenged the Superior Court’s opinion that the weight of evidence did not support Hodge’s ruling and that evidence on record does not support critical factual findings.

Barker argued evidence presented at the juvenile court hearing did support Hodge’s ruling and that any other ruling “would offend one’s sense of justice.”

Barker has got it all bass-ackwards. In refusing to accept the Superior Court’s ruling and the injustice of all that had gone before in the crime investigation and the state’s shameful and politically-motivated prosecution of this case, Pennsylvania officials are guaranteeing that such injustices will continue in the future.

The appeal by the office of the attorney general is the latest and final step, according to defense attorney Dennis Elisco. Thursday was the deadline for the Commonwealth to appeal to the Superior Court’s order that sent the case back to the county, he said. “They have asked the Supreme Court to review the overturning of the guilty verdict. We don’t expect the Supreme Court will hear the appeal,” said Elisco. He said the defense has 14 days to answer the appeal, and that the defense would definately file an answer.

Not admitting to mistakes is dangerous because if the Commonwealth fails to acknowledge their mistakes, it will be likely to keep repeating them. It is only by admitting to mistakes that people can learn from them. Trying to ignore mistakes is a type of denial, in this case an attempt to forestall being sued for gross dereliction of duties. As this whole affair is proving, it takes more work to hide from mistakes than to learn from them.

Jordan is all the while being held in a juvenile facility where, as long as Pennsylvania drags out this miscarriage of justice, he could remain until his 21st birthday.

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Groove of the Day

Listen to Trisha Yearwood performing “You Done Me Wrong (And That Ain’t Right)”

24
Aug
13

on this day

Pierre Jacques Volaire - View of the Eruption of Mount Vesuvius

On this day in history, August 24, 79 AD, Mount Vesuvius erupted and buried the Roman cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum, as well as other nearby Roman communities.

Pompeii was one of a number of towns located near the base of the volcano, Mount Vesuvius. The area had a substantial population of about 20,000 which grew prosperous from the region’s agricultural fertility. The eruption occurred just one day after Vulcanalia, the festival of the Roman god of fire, including that from volcanoes.

That eruption ejected a cloud of stones, ash and fumes to a height of 20½ miles, spewing molten rock and pulverized pumice at the rate of 1½ million tons per second, ultimately releasing a hundred thousand times the thermal energy released by the Hiroshima bomb. An estimated 16,000 people died due to hydrothermal pyroclastic flows.  Heat was the main cause of death of people, previously believed to have died by ash suffocation. The results of a study, published in 2010, show that exposure to at least 250° C hot surges at a distance of 10 kilometers from the vent was sufficient to cause instant death, even if people were sheltered within buildings. The only surviving eyewitness account of the event consists of two letters by Pliny the Younger to the historian Tacitus.

frescoIronically, this destructive event preserved (better than any other place on earth) a snapshot of what daily life was like in ancient Rome. The cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum were sealed under 13 to 20 feet of ash and pumice, and the marvelous buildings and frescoes were preserved for thousands of years because of the lack of air and moisture. Herculaneum was rediscovered in 1738 by workmen digging for the foundations of a summer palace for the King of Naples. Pompeii was rediscovered as the result of intentional excavations in 1748 by a Spanish military engineer.

These towns have since been excavated to reveal many intact buildings and wall paintings. Excavations were delayed, however, and the sites were purposely kept covered because the sexual images on many of the frescoes were considered lewd when the cities were first discovered.

vesuvius 4Interesting, many human bodies (or hollows where the bodies decomposed) were discovered where they fell. As voids were discovered, these were injected with plaster to recreate the forms of Vesuvius’s victims. This technique is still in use today, however with a resin instead of plaster because it is more durable and allows further analysis of the bones.

Vesuvius has erupted many times since and is the only volcano on the European mainland to have erupted within the last hundred years. Today, it is regarded as one of the most dangerous volcanoes in the world because of the population of 3,000,000 people living nearby and its tendency towards explosive eruptions.

Pompeii has been a tourist destination for over 250 years. Today it has UNESCO World Heritage Site status and is one of the most popular tourist attractions of Italy, with approximately 2½ million visitors every year.

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Groove of the Day

Listen to Fall Out Boy performing “Young Volcanoes”

23
Aug
13

child soldiers

child soldier 5

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guns & schools

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DJ Boy in Helmet cropped

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1Children of War adj

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20 Children of War

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child soldier 1 b+w

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on tank

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child-soldier-sierra-leone b+w

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17 Children of War

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execution toy photo  b+w

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Groove of the Day

Listen to an unknown DJ Unit performing “Die Jugend Marschiert”

22
Aug
13

fly with the angels

angel 1

by Frank Manning

My daughter Jill gave birth to her second son, Joshua, on July 17. We were delighted, of course. The next morning her husband Paul left an ominous message on my voicemail: “Frank, Call me when you get this.” I immediately called back. There were complications: an intestinal blockage and a heart defect. Surgery would be necessary. The hospital was moving Joshua from their town in Middle Georgia to the finest children’s hospital in Atlanta.

Because Paul is an officer in the United States Air Force, Joshua got the very best treatment our medical system has to offer. (Thanks, taxpayers!) The pediatric surgeons fixed the bowel problem handily, and Joshua was given several days to recuperate. Then they performed the open heart surgery and repaired the defects there. To help him recuperate from this far more traumatic surgery, they put him on an ECMO machine, also known as a heart-lung machine. It oxygenates and circulates the blood, allowing the heart and lungs to rest and heal.

All this time my daughter and son-in-law were able to stay in Atlanta, at a nearby hotel, and be with Joshua every day. Paul’s commanding officer told him not to worry about anything else. The NICU nurses and doctors were fabulous. Even Joshua’s older brother Zackie, 2½, got to visit with him. But there were problems. After almost two weeks on the ECMO, Joshua began experiencing bad side effects from the anticoagulant drug that was needed in this treatment. So over the weekend they tried weaning him off the machine. He did not respond well. On Tuesday they told Jill and Paul that they would have to take Joshua off the ECMO Wednesday morning. They did so at 9 am. Joshua died about an hour and a half later. He was 35 days old.

When I broke the news to my daughter’s mother in New York, she shrieked: “WHY? She did everything right! Some mothers throw their baby in the garbage can. She did everything right, why HER?!”  I don’t ask why. There is no god, no destiny, no fate, no whatever. Shit happens. Bad things happen to good people. There is no why. It’s just the way of the Cosmos. My wife has a different opinion. She believes it’s all part of God’s plan, that there is some good to be found in this outcome. Different strokes for different folks, I guess.

I’m heartbroken. I hurt because my daughter is hurting in a way I cannot even imagine. My heart breaks for her and her unique grief. She is a strong woman, and her husband is one of the finest men I have ever met. They will come through this all right.

Earlier today I posted a message to my precious little grandson Joshua Michael: “Grandpa never met you or got to hold you. But you will always occupy a special place in Grandpa’s heart.”

Fly with the angels, my little one!

gorgeous-childrens-graves-art-catalogue-m78

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Note: I am deeply honored that of all places Frank could turn for support, he should turn to this community. Thank you, Frank, and my sincerest condolences to you and your family for your loss.

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Groove of the Day

Listen to Purcell’s “March Music for the Funeral of Queen Mary”