This is impressive commentary, by Fareed Zakaria, on what should be obvious to Americans by now. I would even go a step further, and call out the NRA as probably a criminal organization at this point, not unlike the Mob, of the early twentieth century, when they relied on racketeering, bribing politicians, illegal gambling, extortion, etc., to manage and sustain their corporate infrastructure. For some reason, the FBI still follows 88-year-old paroled gangsters who just want to have an espresso on the hill and make it to a friend’s wake, before they die, rather than follow the trail of bullet casings, dollars, and Republican votes to maybe stop the next Norman Rockwell American Massacre.
This started out here, but since you wound up on MY page, you’re getting the director’s cut version, so buckle up for a bumpy ride!
Which simply means that you are now in the presence of shear, unedited brilliance. Within these magical, mystical scrolling points, you will be privy to the sometimes, coy copy, maybe shady, doctored images that certain local, Pamphlet of the Isle editors censured, due to my questionable investigative techniques, and/or subversive nature of the content contained herein, using unnamed sources (usually because I forgot to write down their names before they hung up on me), that will take you on a point-by-plot, connect-the-dot investigation of international intrigue starting from all the way down into Hilton Head Blog Angel’s gut instincts, and leading up into the dark, grey, nether regions of her brain-pan (or, as Johnny D refers to, her effing, ‘nut-case’).
See? This is good stuff my friends, and only the very discerning of you will appreciate how hard I worked keeping it together for your reading pleasure, not unlike British agent, Christopher Steele, with his, y’know, ‘alleged,’ dossier, that Buzzfeed published online a while back. Do you all understand how hard we independent movers and shakers work to remain both marginalized, AND disenfranchised at the same time? It is not easy going rogue; just ask Sarah Pahlin, who had to learn that you can’t just blather the word, ‘rogue’ interchangeably with, ‘maverick,’ over, and over just because you learned what they both meant a week before press time. Hunh. Now, look where she is.
Just kidding (not really. I’ll leave that one up to reader’s discretion).
And, speaking of readers and their discretionary habits, according to my ex-editor at the local daily newspaper, there weren’t enough of them – them, being readers who liked my articles that is, I’m speaking now to, you guys – clicking around my fledgling column, Only on Hilton Head, to make it worthwhile for The Island Packet to include my uniquely islander’s insights, on the weekends any longer, and sadly for me, I won’t get to continue interrupting your Sunday mornings with embarrassing, ‘remember back-in-the-day moments’.
Apparently, my, “numbers weren’t adding up,” according to the Bionic Man, before he fired me. Darn it. Now, which of you, Hilton Headers, forgot to turn in your Hilton-Head-Blog-Angel-end-of-term quiz? Hmm? See, this is why, forgotten Sea Pines Academy alumni scribes like me, get whisked into dustbins; because islanders forget to click the blue Likey button, or comment, SHARE, or for God’s sake YOU’RE NOT STILL READING THE PRINTED NEWSPAPER DELIVERED TO YOUR DOOR, ARE YOU?
Don’t you understand? They can’t count your smiles, and chuckles, when rationalizing firing a feel-good, columnist, whose fluff-piece gets cornered into the back pages next to ‘Pets of the Week’ (seriously, that’s where I was Sunday morning, July 9, in the Lowcountry Life section of The Island Packet, 6C, right next to a labrador named River, at Rogue Rescue & Sanctuary,) if you’re just reading a printed paper you bought at the 7/11..’sniff‘…I’m fine, thanks for asking,… just need a moment…
Anyhooo, and be. That. As. It. May. My hope is to resume blogging again more regularly, in case you’re wondering, or maybe you don’t care… whatever. I’m in a snit. (sigh)
Transitioning to BlogAngel ArtWorks
You may enjoy the following photos I took during last week’s stellar fireworks display at the 18th fairway in HarbourTown – none of which made it to the newspaper’s online website because, apparently, I suck. But, the lovely Berrigan family was nice enough to invite me to join them, so a good evening was had by all. And if you stick around, you’ll see some more of my fun artwork from that night…
All I know is that, having made no plans last week for the 4th of July, 2017, I mosied down the 17th fairway from Bob and Susan’s house (that’s on the 11th tee, for those of you new to this blog), and it was another banner evening of Americana red, white, and blue, like the big Boeing fly-by on Easter Sunday a couple months ago, during the RBC Heritage Golf Classic presented by Boeing.
And again I infuriate myself; by showing up with bells and whistles I don’t know how to use properly. Like, I used to always show up places with a tri-pod that didn’t want to attach itself to the exceptionally priced – yet, aptly named – Rebel T3i EOS, but instead, would lollygag its neck around, and around, while I attempted to click the camera securely into place on the neck of said, Mr. Tripod, who’s neck would tip-tap about, like a fancy little two-stepper, as I kept trying to click the… REBEL..T3i.into.place while the fashion show would be moving ahead without my stylistic videography no matter what…! Noooo….
So now, Sir Lollygagalot, does not accompany me so often, rather he remains in time-out in the Carolina room, thinking about how he has frustrated his kind, and patient, scrivener maiden.
And no, I do not mind standing still when I need to shoot video, and my upper arm starts to burn holy Moses, because that’s why we do fifteen-twenty minute planks nowadays, right? And isn’t that what the corner of a bar is for anyway? A place for Captain Can’t-do Canon to rest and record activity without moving, while Princess Blog Angel sips a Perrier with lime? (Just nod and keep your eyes moving along.) Any device that argues with my ego for more than sixteen hours, receives an appropriate insulting name, and is relegated to the corner of my Carolina room, until… whenever my mood changes. Just ask the two Colonels Big & Little Red, and Zeus Buddha, the non-zense stone waterfall that corroded my double AA batteries.
So, yes, I have gotten used to those looks from IT professionals and other such trained engineers who groan when people like me walk into their shops with a couple of new words in their vocabulary, but that’s about it.
I am also someone who – when mistakenly taking pictures in the night light setting, with the shutter stop at the wrong speed, jamming up, and the focus going in and out, and finally the darn thing pops a flash, with the resulting photo containing comet-like zig-zags – will allow people to think that I did it ON PURPOSE, as an effort of artistic expression, because I am known to appreciate, and dabble in, the creative arts, myself.
So, I leave you all with one more bit of art work, which happened to be the first inspiration, when Tom Berrigan & Co. caught me staring up at the night sky last week, through Captain Canon Rebel T3i, just before the crowd went wild on the 18th fairway watching a Russian spyship shoot off some fireworks in honor of our 4th of July in HarbourTown.
I call this one, Moon over America the Free! And no, this was not photo-shopped in any way. It was a gimme, my retirement present on America’s birthday.
And as always, thank you for reading all the way down to this point.
|A strand of Spanish Moss|
Excellent question. Tillandsia usneoides, or Spanish Moss as is commonly known, is the gauzy-looking veil that drapes from the branches of southern Live Oaks, Cypress, and even some pines. Often, at The Vacation Company, we are asked about several wildlife curiousities, the first being “do alligators really roam the golf courses free?” And the second one being, “so just what is Spanish Moss, anyway?” The following is my attempt to address this odd, yet nostalgic plant ubiquitous to this region.
The only references to it being ‘Spanish’ were in the form of legends. I found three different tales on the Internet alone. Two had to do with a Spaniard who dies in a Live Oak tree because of his undying forbidden love of a young Native American woman. For some reason or other, his beard continues growing until it spreads and populates the other trees, showing that his love truly lived on even after he was gone. The third tale was about Cherokees who attacked a Spanish couple planning to develop a plantation in Charleston in the 1700’s. As a warning to any other Europeans to not continue invading their land, the Cherokees cut off the long hair of the wife and threw it into the trees, where it shriveled into gray strands and spread as a way of warning other settlers.
|Spanish Moss on Live Oaks at Honey Horn Plantation
on Hilton Head Island, SC
Through the years, this plant has supplied both function and art to civilization. It has been used for pillow stuffing, upholstery filling, and more recently in arts and crafts (Note: it does provide a home for critters like snakes and beetles, so it would be wise to select carefully). Aesthetically, the romantic and haunting characteristics of Spanish Moss dripping over a swamp, or hanging cobweb-like in a humid forest have also come to represent the genre southern gothic, in novels and movies.
Personally, I can’t imagine looking across a Hilton Head Island marsh sunset, or bike riding through the Forest Preserve without seeing it waving slowly in the breeze. It has come to signify home for me, lace curtains decorating the scenery as I drive towards the island from any point north.
This ends this week’s science topic. There will be a pop-quiz on Facebook.
|Scenic Hilton Head bike trails.|
Not that I need reminding of how fabulous Hilton Head Island truly is, whenever I leave town, some cityscapes really make me homesick for the trees, beaches, marshes, and sand dunes.
Like what, you may ask? How about a maximum security prison on the side of the road? That’ll make you grateful for our strict building codes, “crowded” bike trails, and free-roaming gators. Take it from me, I used to live in the quiet neighborhood that’s right next door to this granite gem.
|Scenic Max. Security-Cranston, RI|