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A Conversation With Generation Text

"You know," I said, "in the 1950s and early 60s this thing called rock-n-roll was invented. Christian fundamentalists called it the Devil’s music."
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"You don’t understand. My generation is fucked up, and not just a little bit!”

"The same has been said about every generation," I replied, smiling. “Quit cursing.”

“Really, so in your generation were fourteen year old girls stealing their mother’s cars and driving around like idiots? Were fifteen year olds dropping acid or getting high in the back of the classroom? Were twelve year olds having sex and getting STDs?” she asked, indignant, with a frown on her face. She was looking around the food court at the local mall, shaking her head at the horrors she saw, there and in her memories. ... more »

The Resurrection Of Wheat Field Jesus

Freedom, with all of its warts and foul odors and uncomfortable postures, can only be measured by the ability of the least amongst us to be heard
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Wheat Field Jesus was crouched down along the side of Main Street, also known as interstate 70. It was, in fact, western Kansas – near the edge of Russell County. Wheat Field Jesus was peering over the tops of wheat stalks and wearily watching over Kansans in their pick–up trucks and Chevy Malibus. ... more »

Steve Jobs

We all loved Steve Jobs for the incredible products Apple has given us over the years. He built the first computer that was actually fun. He made a machine our friend instead of something we had to use.
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We all loved Steve Jobs for the incredible products Apple has given us over the years. He built the first computer that was actually fun. He made a machine our friend instead of something we had to use. For those of us in the creative arts he re-defined our professions and allowed us to go in directions that none of us could have ever believed possible just 25 years ago.

My daughter is fourteen years old and she has never known a world without an iPod or the iTunes store. Music dominates her life – is her life – and yet neither of those products existed before she was born. Garage Band, an Apple application for editing audio and music, is an essential tool in her world and it is barely out of infancy. ... more »

The Haunting of 26th

Numbers haunt me. They always have. They take up real estate in my head and they burn synaptic pathways that never falter or weaken with age.
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26thNumbers haunt me. They always have. They take up real estate in my head and they burn synaptic pathways that never falter or weaken with age.

I can tell you that in 1976 I hit .427 for Norwood Sorrentos Baseball Club and that I didn’t commit a single error that season in center field. That same season Bob Crable, the former Notre Dame All-America and New York Jet stand out, embedded the number 500 in my head. At the time, Crable was playing for the Midland Cardinals baseball team in Cincinnati. He hit a ball so hard that by the time I chased it down and picked it up he was crossing home plate. The field we were playing on didn’t have a home-run fence. Crable didn’t need one. That ball traveled at least 500 feet before hitting a tree and coming to rest. It was too far to throw it back to the infield so I threw it to the kid in left field. As a number, I have nothing against 500. As a memory, 500 tastes like bile. ... more »

Okay, Old Man

Yes, Eddie Van Halen was cool, emphasis on was. High school was not the pinnacle of my time on planet earth. If it was yours, well, sorry. Really, move on
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I’m not the sort to be overly sentimental. And, truth be told, I tend to count amongst the living-dead those not yet retired who frequently reminisce about days gone by, especially high school days. Relishing past glories too often is to give up on present aspirations and celebrations. It’s kind of like listening to classic rock from back in the day and nothing else. Look, Dude, try some Jimmy Eat World or Linkin Park. Yes, Eddie Van Halen was cool, emphasis on was. High school was not the pinnacle of my time on planet earth. If it was yours, well, sorry. Really, move on.

Thomas Wolfe exposed the reality that most of us face at some point in our lives, that you can’t go home again. Change, the animating factor in life, turns the most rose-coloured glasses another color, or dark, depending upon your experience when returning to the home of your youth. ... more »

Stop That Train! The Little Bear

It’s an eerie but incredible feeling when your fourteen year old daughter takes the stage at one of the legendary bars in the west, the Little Bear in Evergreen, Colorado
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The truth is the Little Bear is still at the forefront of live music because it is a living history. Every week each act adds to its lore and contributes to its spirit. Some acts are better than others. Some go on to bigger things while others fade away. But taking the stage under the light of so much history forces the best out of them. In this way, the Little Bear feeds on itself, on its own energy and history, and on the expectations of those in attendance ... more »

I Am The Sushi King

I am the sushi king. This is commonly known amongst my friends. Mind you, this is less for my depth of knowledge regarding raw fish and rice than it is for my friends lack of it.
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I am the sushi king. This is commonly known amongst my friends. Mind you, this is less for my depth of knowledge regarding raw fish and rice than it is for my friends lack of it. And this isn't something I'm about to discourage. There is no way I'm going to let a group of mouth breathers who order their steaks well done have a say in my raw fish. No way. ... more »

Every Dog Has His Day

My daughter, smart though she may be, is like all teenagers: omniscient of all things life and indignant towards her elders (that would be me). She is not singular in this affliction, of course.
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opposable thumbsMy daughter, smart though she may be, is like all teenagers: omniscient of all things life and indignant towards her elders (that would be me). She is not singular in this affliction, of course. All teenagers since the opposable thumb evolved have been know-it-alls, myself excepted — I swear!

Lately she has taken to posting on Facebook bits of parenting knowledge she wishes those of us with inferior DNA would acquire. And today I logged into the site to find this ... more »

The End of the World As I Know It

It wasn’t always like this — slivers of silence amongst the warbling and cacophony. But invasions are like that, aren’t they. Sometimes they are blindingly sudden, so brusque and immediate. So devastating.
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TeenagersIt wasn’t always like this — slivers of silence amongst the warbling and cacophony. But invasions are like that, aren’t they. Sometimes they are blindingly sudden, so brusque and immediate. So devastating. And other times, like now, they come so slowly, so deliberately, they feel seamless, integrated, unthreatening. No matter how foreign, how alien, they blend into the fabric of days like natural occurrences, their disruptions a matter of fact instead of an overwhelming force, an occasional calm before ... what? ... more »

We Are The Crowd

Cultural change can be an incredible thing to witness and examine. This is especially so when the change is something you've been involved in, up close, and felt personally.
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U.S. soccer fan at the World CupCultural change can be an incredible thing to witness and examine. This is especially so when the change is something you've been involved in, up close, and felt personally.

In 1974 as a young teenager living in Cincinnati I watched the World Cup at the Cincinnati Gardens. The games were shown on a movie screen on the basketball court with curtains draped all around. My mother managed to win a set of tickets from a local radio station and I got the thrill of my young lifetime. ... more »

Twitter Bitches

The Twitter bitches, as I came to think of them, were chirping about drunken encounters and nearly forgotten evenings (of which this was destined to become another in that long list) and feverishly typing on their cell phones.
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Twitter BitchesThe Twitter bitches, as I came to think of them, were chirping about drunken encounters and nearly forgotten evenings (of which this was destined to become another in that long list) and feverishly typing on their cell phones. I don't mean to call them bitches, exactly. They were nice enough. But the conversation was a parallel to their texting and tweeting — anything over 140 characters was too burdensome and to be avoided. Seriously, when the conversation is so shallow that you can't retain it in your short-term memory you might as well concede that you are spamming your way through life. ... more »

Mr Fix It

Occasionally I become a fitx-it guy. You know, the guy who sees something wrong, old, worn or broken, who has to grab a tool and tinker. This isn't to say that I'm mechanically inclined. I'm not un-inclined.
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Occasionally I become a fitx-it guy. You know, the guy who sees something wrong, old, worn or broken, who has to grab a tool and tinker. This isn't to say that I'm mechanically inclined. I'm not un-inclined. It's just that most days I'm completely uninterested. Besides, I have to fix things like bad code in a web site design all day long so who wants to mess with the knob on a door at the end of the day. ... more »

Chaos Theory and the Tea Party

They are staunch conservatives. They abhor socialism, government intervention, and taxation of any sort. They insist that this country, the United States of America, needs to return to its Founders' original vision and values, as they interpret them.
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Tea Party ChaosThe Tea Party movement - essentially a creation of Fox News that now is receiving corporate news coverage - is filled with individuals screaming for government to get out of their lives. They are staunch conservatives. They abhor socialism, government intervention, and taxation of any sort. They insist that this country, the United States of America, needs to return to its Founders' original vision and values, as they interpret them.

The Tea Partiers will scream at gatherings in every corner of america for lower taxes and less government control. They don't seem to understand that their current President — yes, the black man who really isn't an american — gave more than ninety-five percent of the populace (and almost all Tea Partiers) a significant tax break last year, thank you very much. Not one of the mainstream media outlets has run an article pointing out this very simple fact. The president has already cut taxes (to the poor and middle class). ... more »

Vancouver Olympics

The Winter Olympics are taking place in Vancouver, Canada. I find myself following events I wouldn't normally watch.
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Shaun WhiteThe Winter Olympics are taking place in Vancouver, Canada. I find myself following events I wouldn't normally watch. Don't get me wrong, I would probably pay a bit of attention in the intervening years between Olympics, but television pays them no mind. For once, I'm happy to not be dating anyone at the moment. There is nothing worse than watching guys in sequins acting feminine. I'm not watching figure skating. I'm not watching hockey, either. There aren't any stories in hockey. Just a bunch of pros we already know. I like my Winter Olympics with a little unknown, with a little home-town humility and obscurity. ... more »

Colonel Mustard With A Candle Stick

DaVinci was more than an artist. Quite probably he was one of the greatest inventors and scientists that has ever lived
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William Feathers once said: “Beware of the person who can't be bothered by details.”

Leonardo DaVinciDig deeply into any work of art, any novel of note, and amongst its mountain of details you will find its excellence. Broad ideas, bold strokes, and colorful images are the signal posts of our world and how we navigate it, but it is only in the details that we can truly see its beauty.

Design is no different than any other endeavor. No matter the apparent simplicity of the work, there are always an array of complicit details that make it shine. A professional designer is aware of this and strives with every project to focus on the little things that separate the ordinary from the extraordinary, the competent from the effective. ... more »

Copyright © Jack McDaniel