Warm Southern Breeze

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Posts Tagged ‘United States Navy’

A Father’s Day Essay

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, June 15, 2014

This year, 2014, my Pop will begin his 82d year of life in good health.

I am blessed, fortunate, happy and to be envied to have him with me now. Some of my peers’ fathers have been long departed.

A friend once said to me that “we never truly become men until our father dies.” In that sense, I suppose I’m still a youth… even though my teen years have been long departed.

My Daddy - v42

My Dad – When he looked at this photo, he said with a smile, “Who’s that? I’m going to have to get a new mirror!” I love my Pop. He’s a swell fellow – a real gentleman – with quite a life’s story! Raised in poverty in rural West Alabama, he knows how to pick cotton by hand, remembers when electricity came to his family’s house, the electrician’s name who wired their house, and so many other hard-scrabble stories of a life unknown to many of us in this day & age.

My dad is a Southern man. Having grown up in abject poverty in rural West Alabama, he was not merely acquainted with “everything but the squeal,” but was intimately familiar with a very real daily struggle for existence, where food was precious, and life even more so.

On occasion, I still hear him recall with utter amazement how much food he saw wasted – literally thrown into the garbage at San Diego Naval Station – where he attended Basic Training before shipping off to serve in the Korean War aboard the U.S.S. Juneau – CLAA-119, also known as “The Galloping Ghost of the Korean coast.” To his then-18-year-old eyes it was a culture shock which he remembers to this day. In his first day there, he saw more food thrown away than he had ever seen in his still-tender life. The adage “waste not, want not” is practically embedded into his DNA.

For those unfamiliar with the term “everything but the squeal,” it refers to the use of every part of the hog for food, and material. Nothing would be wasted. The fat would be rendered into lard, some of the meat would be preserved by smoking, while some parts were made into sausage. It was also time in which neighbors would help one another in the preparation of the animal. (If you’re interested in seeing & reading about some of the various aspects of hog butchering, see here.) It was only many years later that electricity came to my dad’s house – and he remembers the electrician’s name, and date the house was wired.

I recall tales he shared with me of his youth of “hog killing time,” which refers to the first enduring snap of cold weather, which was the proper time to slaughter a hog because the preservation of it’s parts would be more readily facilitated. That is, spoilage would be significantly reduced, because it could be stored in cooler conditions. Their “refrigerator” was an ice box – literally. ‘What’s an ice box?,’ you may ask. An ice box is literally a box into which a 100 pound block of ice was placed to cool food items. Not many items, mind you, because the creek was still a location where food items which readily spoiled were placed. Milk, dairy, meat and select other foods were regularly stored in a special box made to keep critters out, and keep food cool by the running water.

Naturally, not having electricity also meant that the meals were prepared in a “wood cook stove,” literally an implement which had to be tended night and day by his mother to prepare the family meals. Temperature regulation was achieved by moderating the amount of wood, the type of wood (seasoned dry or unseasoned green), and the variety of wood (species, such as oak, hickory, pecan, birch, pine, etc.).

Suffice it to say, his was a hard scrabble life. And it’s certainly neither joke nor exaggeration to say that they were so poor, someone had to come from Washington to tell them there was a Great Depression going on!

Dad honored his father and mother. He was Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in - Faith, Religion, Goodness - What is the Soul of a man?, - My Hometown is the sweetest place I know | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts Blasts Congressional Budget Impasse: Condemns “Fiscal Cliff”

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, December 31, 2012

This is the complete text of the Supreme Court’s Year-End Report on the Federal Judiciary.

The document itself is available as a PDF document via: http://www.supremecourt.gov/publicinfo/year-end/2012year-endreport.pdf

Page breaks and page numbers are annotated at the bottom of the page enumerated beginning with page 2.

Note: The links provided in this version are NOT part of the original version.

EMBARGOED until 6 p.m. E.S.T. December 31, 2012 (No wires, no broadcasts, no Internet until 6 p.m. E.S.T.)

For further information, contact the Public Information Office 202-479-3211

2012 Year-End Report on the Federal Judiciary

Imagine a young seaman, two hundred years ago, standing night watch at the rail of an American frigate. Just one generation removed from the war for independence, he finds his Nation once again squaring off in battle with Great Britain, the world’s preeminent sea power. The sailor has ample reason to be anxious. Britain’s Royal Navy includes 115 ships of the line and 126 frigates, while the United States Navy consists of only 17 vessels. Perhaps the seaman musters confidence from the name of his ship: USS Constitution.

Named by President Washington himself, the Constitution was one of six frigates Congress authorized in 1794 to bolster the fledging United States Navy. The name was apt. The ship’s designer, Joshua Humphreys, drew on venerable Old World principles and New World ingenuity to engineer a nautical vessel uniquely suited to the country’s needs. Like the Framers, Humphreys produced an American original. He fashioned a ship long on keel but tight of beam. Constructed from frontier timber and copper bolts

forged by Paul Revere, the Constitution was durable but economical, nimble yet powerful. Christened with a bottle of madeira—the favorite beverage of future Chief Justice John Marshall— she launched on October 21, 1797.

During her early years, the Constitution patrolled the eastern seaboard and saw action in the Caribbean and along the Barbary Coast. But she became the stuff of legends two hundred years ago, at the outbreak of the War of 1812. Called into battle off the coast of Nova Scotia on August 19, the Constitution engaged and decisively defeated the British warship HMS Guerriere. The American ship’s sturdy oak hull repelled the Guerriere’s 18-pound cannon balls, earning her the nickname “Old Ironsides.” Four months later, the Constitution repeated the feat off the coast of Brazil. On December 29, she traded broadsides with HMS Java and reduced the British ship to an unsalvageable wreck.

The War of 1812 was fought over a wide field of battle. Measured against the whole war effort, the Constitution’s unexpected victories did not play a decisive role in the outcome of the conflict. But facing long odds, she did her part and did it well. The triumphs of Old Ironsides boosted America’s sagging morale during the early days of the war. Her exploits were celebrated in the paintings of Thomas Birch, the poetry of Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr., and the prose of James Fenimore Cooper. Through Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in - Did they REALLY say that?, - Politics... that "dirty" little "game" that first begins in the home., - Read 'em and weep: The Daily News | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

 
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