Thursday, September 30, 2010

Bill Maher quote

We have been the cowards lobbing cruise missiles from 2,000 miles away. That's cowardly. Staying in the airplane when it hits the building, say what you want about it, it's not cowardly.

Tchula, MS

This photo was taken in June 1953. This shows me at age 5. With me is my father. We are at an old plantation in the Mississippi delta where my Aunt Reno lived with her husband, Brown Russell. This is just one of several places where Reno and Brown lived.
The house in this picture dates from before the Civil War. In the back of the house was a bell about 12 inches in diameter, which was rung to call to slaves in for feeding. There was also a large pot in the back yard in which food was boiled for the slaves.
The house was two, maybe three, stories tall. It was constructed in the shotgun style, meaning you could fire a shotgun through the front door and the shot would most likly pass through the house and out the back door without interference.
Up from the stairs in this picture, you enter the central hallway. All the rooms of this house would be on either side of the hallway. The central hallway was as tall as the house. This area might have served as a dance floor.
Only certain rooms of this house were heated in winter. I can remember spending some cold nights in this house. The kitchen was always warm. We only went there to visit, though.
The grounds were large and were next to a large field with pecan trees. I can remember picking up pecans there as a child.
I believe I heard some time ago that the house had been torn down. I wonder if the pecan trees still stand?

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

A visit with the doctor

I had an appointment with Dr. R. this morning at 10:30. I told him that I was finding it difficult to be in a standing position without pain. My recent trip to Oklahoma City would have been more enjoyable had I been free of pain.

I realize now that in my description of our trip to OKC that I stopped abruptly with my description of the last day. After our visit to Thomas, we went to the zoo. As we went inside the zoo, we rented a wheelchair. J pushed me around in the wheelchair for most of our visit there. Luke and Ayla thought is was neat riding in a wheelchair; so, they got their turn in it, too.

We have scheduled surgery within the next few weeks.

I have added more pictures from my family's past below.

In uniform

Here is my dad in uniform in Germany.

My dad, his brother George, and Aunt Ida

Here is an early photo of my dad, his brother George, and Aunt Ida. I am unfamiliar with Aunt Ida. Whatever happened to her?

Off duty

This is my dad relaxing. I think this photo was taken in Germany following the war.

From the 1940s

This is my dad in the 1940s.

School photo

Here is my father in a school photo dating around the late 1930s.

School picture

Here is my father when he was 18 or 19.

Passport photo

Here is a passport photo of my father from the early 1970s.

Family photo

This is a poor quality picture of my grandfather (in the middle) and my father, Paul Nerren, on the left and my uncle, George Nerren, Jr., on the right.

Monday, September 27, 2010

View from our window

Here is the view from our window at the Hampton Inn where we stayed during a recent trip to OKC.
Gail came over today and we played piano duets for about two hours. After lunch I took a long nap; then I got up and watched TV for a while.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Short Vacation to Oklahoma City

We made a short trip to Oklahoma City, leaving Saturday and returning Sunday. The travelers were Nick, Jen, Ayla, Luke, J., and myself. The six of us departed Sand Springs around 9 am Saturday morning. Nick, who has a minivan, drove all the way.

While Nick drove, I worked on a puzzle on my Kindle. The name of the puzzle is Every Word. The object is to take a certain number of letters given to you by the Kindle and rearrange them to make as many words out of them as you can. Every Word literally challenges you to form every word possible from the target word. Blanks at the bottom of the screen are filled in as you come up with the words possible (about 25 words). Once you find the longest word possible, you can move on to the next word. There are ten words possible in each set.

We arrived at the Hampston Inn & Suites Saturday morning. We had two rooms on the eighth floor. Ayla stayed with J and me. Luke stayed with Nick and Jen. You could look out the window and see the ball park below. We had a good view of the field, but there were no games going on at that time.

For lunch, we went across the street to Crabtown. Nick and I both ordered a salmon dish, Luke and Ayla had a corn dog. I don't remember what Jen and J had. In the afternoon, Nick and I went geocaching. The first two caches we looked for we could not find. However, we did find the third.

In the evening we drove up to Arcadia to see a Route 66 attraction: Pops. Thousands of pop bottles line the windows. The place was packed. I've been by Pops several times, but never at night. Sometime I will go by there to see how it looks at night.

We found a nearby cache, a micro, and then we headed back to the City. We ate at Chileno's Mexican Restaurant on the canal. I had the shrimp cocktail. It consisted of about ten shrimp, tobasco sauce, tomato juice, plus a few other spicy ingredients. Jennifer could not eat all of her order, so I had a tostado or something like that. J also shared her order with me, so I had half of whatever it was she ordered. It all caught up with me around 1 am when the reflux hit me. It was a rude awakening. I got up and rinced out my mouth and went back to bed.

The next morning was the event we went to OKC for: Thomas the Tank Engine. Ayla and Luke both enjoy watching Thomas and His Friends. J had ordered ticket about a week before the event. We saw a model train at one venue. Moving to another venue, we watched a performer, a ventriloquist, who was very good. At another venue there was a gift shop. Food venders were present, too. The ride on the train was not much to brag about. One mile down the track and back. But the kids enjoyed it. It's not everyday you get to ride on a train.

A Joke

It seems to be the season for jokes, so here is one I encountered recently:

In a crowded city at a busy bus stop, a beautiful young woman wearing a tight mini skirt was waiting for a bus. As the bus stopped and it was her turn to get on, she became aware that her skirt was too tight to allow her leg to come up to the height of the first step of the bus.

Slightly embarrassed and with a quick smile to the bus driver, she reached behind her to unzip her skirt a little, thinking that this would give her enough slack to raise her leg. She tried to take the step, only to discover that she couldn't.

So, a little more embarrassed, she once again reached behind her to unzip her skirt a little more, and for the second time attempted the step.

Once again, much to her chagrin, she could not raise her leg. With a little smile to the driver, she again reached behind to unzip a little more and again was unable to take the step.

About this time, a large Texan who was standing behind her picked her up easily by the waist and placed her firmly on the step of the bus. She went ballistic and turned to the would-be Samaritan and yelled, "How dare you touch me! I don't even know who you are!"

The Texan smiled and drawled, "Well, ma'am, normally I would agree with you, but after you unzipped my fly three times, I kinda figured we was friends."

Friday, September 24, 2010

On a horse

The adult in this picture is my great grandfather on my grandmother's side, James Abraham Maize. Next to him are my father, and my Uncle George. this picture was taken c. 1925 in Dora, AL.

As a newborn

Here I am being held up by my father. I do not recognize where this picture was taken.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Back from Springfield

We got back in from Springfield today. We left Wednesday and returned today. I am too tired to write anything much tonight. I drove all the way to Springfield and back. I will get a fresh start tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Red Hot Days Coming to an End

I think the hot weather has passed for this summer. Fall is just around the corner.

This morning I took the revised copies of the walk instructions to the copy shop near here and ran off 50 copies of both the 5K and 10K walks. Then we went out to Keystone where I replaced the old copies with the new copies. The new copies included information about the suitability of the walks for those with disabilities. There was no money to pick up since I had just recently been there to pick up the money. On the way out of town, we stopped at the Pratt Library where I picked up a DVD: Iron Jawed Angels. On the way home, we stopped in at Braum's and got a half gallon of milk.

Tonight we ate out at Subway. We got a five-dollar footlong with the usual "fixins." After we ate, we tried walking around a little bit, but I could not go very far. The medicine Dr. Morgan prescribed for me has not helped the least bit. I take three capsules a day now. With this kind of medicine you cannot stop taking it suddenly. You start off with a small dosage and build up to where I am now. I will try it a few more days, but if I am not doing better by next week, I will call Dr. Rapacki's office and see about having surgery scheduled.

R. V. and Kathryn Hallford

Kathryn is my dad's only sister. She was the firstborn of the Nerren children. Her mother died in the late teens of the twentieth century. G. L. Nerren married again and had three boys: George, Jr., Paul, and Floyd. Due to some lighting aberration, Kathryn appears to have a halo. The man in this picture, who was always called by his last name -- Hallford, was a "take-no-prisoners" fundamentalist, Southern Baptist preacher. Hallford is now dead. Kathryn, now in her nineties, is still living as of this date.


This is my grandfather holding up the fish he has caught.

Uncle Benny and more

The man in the suit is my Uncle Benny (Henry Andrews). The kid in the striped shirt is me. The baby girl is my sister Paula. The man on the right is my father, Paul Nerren.

Footbridge across creek

I found this picture among those I borrowed from my sister. It shows a young girl standing in the middle of a rickety footbridge over a creek. In the distant background is a train being pulled by a steam engine. The train is heading toward the right in the picture. Does anyone know anything more about this picture?

Uncle Floyd

This is my Uncle Floyd Nerren high atop a mountain in Germany.

Ted Maize at 57

Ted Maize was the brother of my grandmother, Cecil Maize Nerren.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Paul Nerren

This picture was taken of my father in Germany in 1946.

My grandfather

This is my grandfather, George Luther Nerren, Sr.

In Carbon Hill

Here I am with my sister, Paula, in Carbon Hill. This photo was taken in March 1952.

Paula, my sister

This picture was taken in March 1952 in Carbon Hill, AL..

Two women near bridge

This picture was among those I borrowed from my sister. The two women may have been my aunts. Or perhaps they were just friends. Just how did these ladies get into position for this photo? Did they scale the support? Or did they walk down the tracks and shimmy down to the top of the pillar?


This picture was taken in March 1952 when my sister, Paula, was nine months old. The kid in the background in the stiped shirt is me.

Dad on bicycle

This is my dad on a bicycle. The little girl with him is Linda Borders.

Cecil Nerren

This is my grandmother, Cecil Nerren, on the right. I do not know who the woman on the left is.

Cary Brown

This is my dad's Aunt Cary. Written on the back is: New Falls, N.Y. / June -- 1944 / Cary Griffin Brown / 38 Fulton St. / To Paul / This was made in the back yard. I have on a two-tone blue smock and blue wool slacks.

Monday's events

The day began with Gail coming over to play piano duets with me. We played through several of our duets. Our next performance piece most likely will be "Oakton Toccato."

Next we had lunch. After lunch, I went to my computer to read the blogs that I follow. When I got sleepy, I laid down for a nap.

J woke me up saying someone from Channel 6 wanted to speak to me on the phone. It was Chris Wright, and he wanted an interview. All this concerns a sign erected by FFRF Tulsa. I agreed to meet him at the sign at 4 pm. Before I left I called Bill Dusenberry and asked him to come also. I called Randy, but I only got his answering machine.

I pulled in to the Reasor's parking lot (from where the sign is visible) at 5 till 4pm. I spotted Bill's car. He was sitting in it with his air conditioner running. I got a call from Chris saying he would be there in ten minutes. I told him our location.

When he arrived we decided to relocate to a position more favorable for the camera angle to include the sign while we were being interviewed. I went first and answered whatever questions the reporter asked. Then Bill spoke. Bill went into depth with the questions, making his interview much longer than mine.

I just now got a call from Chris Wright of Channel 6 saying that due to some breaking news we were being bumped to a later time. They were planning to run the story tonight at 10 pm.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

This Sunday

I just posted a few pictures. I will be taking the pictures with me when we go to Springfield next time to give them back to my sister, and I need to get several of them put on my blog before we go.

Today as I was getting ready to go to church, Joy Avery called and said that she would not be going to church this morning because of a reaction she was having to a flu shot. She had earlier told Barbara Frey that she would give her a ride to church. Joy asked me if I could provide Barbara with a ride. I said yes, I would. Before I could call Barbara, she called me to say that due to her Saturday activities (the Greek Festival and the symphony), she had decided to stay in.

Vanessa was in charge of the Sunday program. She had come over to the house Saturday afternoon to discuss the program for Sunday. I read a passage from the 41st chapter of Genesis about Joseph and Asenath. I used my Queen Jane's Version of the Bible. We began by watching a few minutes of a program which had been shown on the History channel: Banned From the Bible. Then I read the passage from the 41st chapter of Genesis. Next Vanessa took the pulpit and spoke extemporaneously for 15 minutes. She is an excellent speaker.

After the service was over, I came home. I was feeling pretty sleepy for I had taken a Tramadol table before I left for church. I decided to lie down for a while before going to drumming. I left the house shortly after 3 pm and went to the Prices for drumming.

I returned home after drumming and did the usual Sunday chore of taking the trash cart out to the curb for trash pick up tomorrow.

Aunt Carrie

Written on the back: "This was made last Sunday. ______ cold, snowing ______ ______miles from Memphis. ______ had been out in the country. the back of the car was just filled with holly leaves and sassafras root.
Adams a_____ [Blanks represent missing parts of the inscription.]
The last sentence begins with a lowercase "t."
There is a rubber stamp inpression also on the back of the photo. There are two concentric circles with the word "The Avery Co. Memphis Tenn." written between the circles. Inside the circles there is something like a German cross with the word "AVERY" written both horizontally and vertically. One "E" serves for both the horizontal and vertical spellings.

Close up of Carey

This is a close up of the photo below.

Caroline "Aunt Carey" Brown

Aunt Carey was my dad's aunt, but we always called her Aunt Carey. From the stack of wood slats, I would guess this picture was taken near Winona, MO. The National Forests in this area was the source of many wood products. It is not unusual to see stacks of wood while driving through the Mark Twain National Forest. The only thing on the back of this photo is the number "55." Perhaps that means the photo was taken in 1955?

Willie Andrews

This is my grandmother on my mother's side of the family.

Winona, MO home of "Mother" Walker

This is the home of "Mother" Walker in Winona, MO. "Mother" Walker was my dad's great grandmother.

Birthplace of Paul Nerren

My father, Paul James Nerren, was born in this house on September 9, 1922. The location is Dora, Alabama.

Uncle Jack?

Written on the back: "Sure looks like Uncle Jack. Who are the girls?" Is that a lunch box, or a tool box?

Aunt Billye

I can't be sure due to the poor quality of this picture, but I think this may be my Aunt Billye.

Billye Andrews

This is one of several aunts one my mother's side of the family.


This is my grandmother on my mother's side.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Family photo

Standing (L to R): Miss Annie, Kathryn (later Hallford), Papa Maize, George, Jr., George, Sr., Cecil. Seated: Paul Nerren on left, Floyd Nerren on right. This picture was taken c. 1932-33.

Ted Maize

This is my Dad's Uncle Ted -- my grandmother's brother.

Dad as a young child

I am guessing this photo was taken in Dora, AL.

Dad at 11

This is my dad at age 11. This picture was taken in Carbon Hill, AL.

Close up of Erasmus

This picture is taken from the one below.

E. L. Nerren

This is a photo of my great grandfather. The photo is undated. I would estimate it was taken around 1910. Erasmus was born on November 28, 1875. His friends called him "Ras." He died just a couple years after I was born.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

The day in review

It was time once again for an "Autobutler" treatment for our 2008 Aura. This time we drove to the place where we bought the car. It is now a Honda dealership. I took my Kindle; J read the newspaper. About an hour later an employee came and said our car was ready. We came over on the turnpike, but drove back using the city streets.

As we approached Saied's Music, I just had to go in and look over the music. I looked first at the solo selections, of which there is much. I saw a collection of music from the movie "Mamma Mia" by Abba. I was tempted to buy it ($17), but I moved along to the duet music. I went through the duet music and saw many selections I already have. I narrowed my choices down the three. The one I settled on was a collection selected by Weekley and Arganbright. The title is simply "Duet Repertoire." With tax, it came to around seven and a half dollars. The collection contains ten pieces from Mendelssohn to Satie. Satie is one of my favorite composers.

After we left Saied's, we drove to the Greek Orthodox Church at 12th and Guthrie for the annual Greek Holiday festival. The festival happens in a huge tent just outside the church building. Today was the first day of the three-day festival. It was slow during the time we were there, but we were three for three hours. We saw several people we knew while we were three.

First was George. I knew George from my railroad days. George was a switchman. He retired shortly after I did. His family is originally from Greece. You can find him each year at the Greek Festival. He said he used Google Earth to locate the village his grandmother was from in Greece. Google Earth is a good tool to use to see various parts of the earth. He also showed us pictures on his iPhone or some similar device. They were of a vacation his family took to Egypt and the pyramids. Due to a fear of flying, George stayed behind and took care of the family pets.

Second was Linda W. from the Methodist Chruch. Linda is also in the Tulsa Walking Club, as am I. Her husband, Randy, was with her. We run into the Woodards often.

Next we saw a couple from my church, Josie G. and her husband Earl. Josie was in charge of the Religious Education department, back when the congregation had children. The congregation no longer has children and Josie no longer has a job at the church. We spoke a little about the billboard currently visible from the Broken Arrow Expressway which says, "Atheism is OK in Oklahoma." It mentions that Oklahoma's first senator was an atheist: Thomas Gore.

Greek food was served at the festival. We had lamb and rice. Later we went to another building and bought some Greek pastries. We looked briefly an the items for sale on the tables there. Finally, we went through the sanctuary. We viewed the icons, I saw a large chart showing the various schisms which have taken place over time. The Orthodox Church dates back to the time of Jesus and its liturgy has changed very little. Other sects may come and go, but the Orthodox Church has changed little. They are not without their faults, though. Their treatment of women leaves much to be desired.

We had our lawn mowed this evening. I am still not able to get out and do yard work. I never cared a lot about doing yard work, but I would mow the yard. Today for the first time, I am taking three Gabapentin pills per day, as was instructed by Dr. Morgan. I can't tell they are doing me much good. I see Dr. Morgan again late in October. I will probably ask for surgery.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

ALGAE luncheon

Today was the third Wednesday in the month, meaning it was time for the ALGAE luncheon. We had suspended the luncheon since attendance had tanked back in the spring. Well, today was no better than last spring. J and I went and the only other person attending was Gail. The three of us sat at a table and enjoyed our lunch and chatted.

Later that afternoon, I took J to see a doctor in a building near St. John Med. Ctr. It was a quick visit. All is well. While I was waiting in the waiting room, a worker came around and asked it I would like something to read. I said, "I'm reading my Kindle," and held it up for her to see. She replied, "Oh, that's great," or something to that effect.

Tomorrow, we plan to take the new Saturn to a dealership near where we bought the car for an AutoButler treatment. Following that we might go by the Greek Festival.

Wedding day

Here are my grandparents, Walter Lee Andrews and Willie Clinton Underwood Andrews, on my mother's side of the family on their wedding day. This picture was taken c. 1904.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Uncle Benny

The man above is my Uncle Benny standing in Mt. Pisgah Cemetery. He is near the grave of Ruby's baby. Ruby was a sister of my mother's. I never met Ruby since Ruby died young. She is also buried here.

Cecil Nerren

This is my grandmother.

Graduation day

This photo was taken on June 5, 1971 when I graduated from Southwest Missouri State University in Springfield, Missouri. This picture was taken in my front yard. My mother is next to me.

Monday, September 13, 2010

A mess of fish

Here is my grandfather (on the right) with W. K. James. Fishing was one of my grandfather's favorite pasttimes.


This is my grandfather relaxing somewhere.

George Luther Nerren, Sr.

This is my grandfather. This photo was probably taken around 1950.