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Posts Tagged ‘Ray Charles’

DSCN7096 - Version 2What’s a gal to do when she’s just finished a book, for the second time, whose ending she knows and whose author will be visiting the Cutoff when the very next day dawns?

Well. she sheds a puddle of tears for, though she knows how the story ends, it is the journey that is the protagonist in an adventure that is both funny and sad, painful and celebratory. It is the story that is both physical and personal for the author, and it reminds the reader, perhaps, of one’s own long travelled road; of memories made, bridges crossed, battles fought (some won and some lost), of lessons learned and of those lessons she keeps learning. It brings to home and to heart the value of family and friends, and of those who have cheered us on and had our back along the way.

 “Not Without My Father: One Woman’s 444-Mile Walk of the Natchez Trace”, is the book and the author is none other than the remarkable and gifted Andra Watkins.

Andra’s name often appears in the comment section here on the Cutoff, for which I am grateful. Her name also sometimes appears in the body of a post, especially when one of her books is published, such as last year’s “To Live Forever: An Afterlife Journey of Meriwether Lewis”, which I wrote about here.

I was delighted when I won an advanced reading copy of Andra’s second book, “Not Without My Father: One Woman’s 444-Mile Walk of the Natchez Trace”.  “Not Without My Father . . . ” is Andra’s memoir of her trek along the Natchez Trace, promoting her first book. It entails how she drafts her father to be her “wingman” on her journey – the angst and pain, frustration and hilarity that occurs along the way. Roy Lee Watkins is bigger than life, a natural storyteller, and a bit of a character, to say the least. The book is the story of her journey along the Trace, as well as their personal journey as father and daughter.

In the book, we also meet her mother, Linda, her friend, Alice, and others; from the innkeepers that provide a nest’s rest, to the National Park workers she meets along the Trace, as Roy sells her book from the trunk of his car and weaves his own tales.

It was in my second reading of Andra’s book, once it was published, that I realized I was mentioned in the acknowledgments, along with a host of other readers, for song suggestions, which are used as chapter heading in the book. What fun it was to discover.

So, in honor of Andra, who will be wending her way to the Cutoff as part of the Chicago leg of her book tour, here’s a little Ray Charles and a lot of hope that she does come back some more, some more, some more, some more . . .

 

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Busted!

I could not believe what I was hearing this morning. Matt Lauer used the word busted on the Today Show. I was making the bed, listening to the morning news at the top of the hour, most of the early features about BP and the oil spill in the Gulf and the word gushed out of his mouth.

Busted!

We have been hearing the word used more and more on local news. Our favorite news stations, both radio and television. I say  “we” because Tom and I have commented on it, rather frequently, in fact. I am sure it has been slowly seeping into everyday language  and we hadn’t noticed it until now. You know, you hear something, are a little taken aback, go on, and it slowly becomes a word or a phrase that was once considered crude or slang or profane and suddenly, there it is, in your face, or even on your own lips, everywhere.

Down I came, muttering to myself, to Tom, to Maya  “I don’t believe it. Matt Lauer said ‘busted’!”. “Really? When?” “Just now.”  The day, just heating up.

I looked up the word busted. First the internet, then I pulled out the several dictionaries I have and still use. I love dictionaries, especially old ones where you can find words like dither, but, that discussion is for another day. I looked up busted. Besides all the definitions referring to the bust, busted is listed as slang, a verb and oh, my, the many uses of it, some causing me to blush.

Growing up, it was considered slang and inappropriate to use the word, the term, the verb – busted. Busted meant you are goin’ to the slammer and you ain’t gettin’ out no time soon. I was not appropriate to use the word busted.

I was shocked. Really, I was. Matt Lauer, you are so busted!

Is there a word or phrase now commonly used that sets your teeth to grinding?

While you’re thinking about it, here’s a song we all know.

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