Saturday, February 14, 2009

. . . . . . And Thanks For All The Fish . . . . . . . . .

Thanks Guys, for sharing the last couple of years of my life. It's time for me to move on. I'll still visit you, you'll probably see me around here and there, but Sir Robin is indeed riding away.

It's time.

Never let anyone tell you that online friends are somehow lesser friends than those in the meat world.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Happy Birthday Bob!

Bob Marley would have been 64 today. It's hard for me to believe that he was only 36 when he died. He was a true poet, in his mind and in his heart.

He left us way too soon.

Everyday at work, as I sit at my desk, I can look over my monitors and see Bob hanging on my wall. Many years ago, I purchased a charcoal drawing of him at an art show. I paid about a hundred dollars or so for it. At the time, that was a pretty large sum for me. I've never regretted the purchase. During those years, (my low to late 20's), I moved several times. Bob was always the last thing off the wall in the old place and the first thing on the wall in the new place.

When I got divorced, I brought Bob to my office. No one in my office even knows who he is. I tell them he's my grandfather. The most common response is: "Are you Indian"?


I love to watch him sing, he has such passion. I get the feeling he'd be just as happy singing on a street corner as he would be in a concert hall. It was about the music, not the money.

Anyway, I love Bob. I wish he were still around.

Redemption Song

Old pirates, yes, they rob I;
Sold I to the merchant ships,
Minutes after they took I
From the bottomless pit.
But my hand was made strong
By the 'and of the Almighty.
We forward in this generation
Won't you help to sing
These songs of freedom? -
'Cause all I ever have:
Redemption songs;
Redemption songs.

Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery;
None but ourselves can free our minds.
Have no fear for atomic energy,
'Cause none of them can stop the time.
How long shall they kill our prophets,
While we stand aside and look? Ooh!
Some say it's just a part of it:
We've got to fulfil de book.

Won't you help to sing
These songs of freedom? -
'Cause all I ever have:
Redemption songs;
Redemption songs;
Redemption songs.
Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery;
None but ourselves can free our mind.
Wo! Have no fear for atomic energy,
'Cause none of them-a can-a stop-a the time.
How long shall they kill our prophets,
While we stand aside and look?
Yes, some say it's just a part of it:
We've got to fulfil de book.
Won't you help to sing
Dese songs of freedom? -
'Cause all I ever had:
Redemption songs -
All I ever had:
Redemption songs:
These songs of freedom,
Songs of freedom.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Oh Dear

I am at a loss for words.

That doesn't often happen, but there are just so many ways to approach this.

I suppose one can applaud her for the sentiment of the passage. As bible verses go, it is an agreeable one. The circumstance in which one might find themselves in a position to read it, however, might negate a bit of it's effect.

Speaking of negating . . . . just a thought . . . . . if one were to be in a position to read the words, mightn't they, (the words), oh . . . . I don't know . . . . lessen the . . . . well . . . . um . . . need to be in such a position? I mean, in times that one might find oneself in that position, might bible verses not be on one's mind?

I'm just sayin' . . . . . . .

Are you sure you want to see this?

OK. but you've been warned . . . . . .

Last chance to not look . . . . . . .


Makes me very happy.

I own and enjoyed this, but I am very excited about the new project.

Discuss - please. . . . . . .

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

I Got a Big New Love . . . . . .

I have a question for you.

When you find that you really like something that you assumed you wouldn't, does it annoy you, or delight you?

I must admit, it rather annoys me. Let me explain -

I don't watch a lot of regular TV. I simply don't have time to get involved in a series. Yes, I have a DVR, (what a wonderful invention!), and it helps, but I still rarely find the time to actually sit and watch something. Because of that, I just don't even start to watch a weekly TV series, even one I'm sure I would love, because I don't want to spend the time trying to keep up with each episode.

When I see advertisements for a new show, I tune them out just for that reason. So, when Big Love started a couple of years ago, I didn't pay a lot of attention. The premise alone was enough to turn me off of it. Let's face it; I have some very prejudicial, preconceived notions about far right Mormon pluralist, and the entire idea of multiple wives creeps me out to no end. Easy to avoid that show, right?

Well, it was.

The new season started three weeks ago, and I caught a few minutes here and there of the show. Then, I watched the entire third episode.

Damn you HBO for making such intriguing and interesting characters!!!!

I'm hooked. I've already set the DVR to record all the episodes, and this Friday is a back to back to back catch up for all of this season.


It is a good show. Even if I feel like I need a shower after I watch it.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Better Late Than Never?

I somehow missed Blogger Poetry Reading Day yesterday.

What do you know about Ted Hughes? I didn't know much. To me, he was always the guy who killed Sylvia Plath. Of course, that's not true, things are rarely that simple.

This year, I was gifted by a dear friend with two volumes of his poetry.

This one is from Birthday Letters. It is addressed to Sylvia, as are all but two in the collection. They are deeply personal, intimate, and occasionally disturbing. Reading some of them almost makes me feel like a voyeur, peering into the raw emotion of an intense but flawed relationship.

If you can't guess what this one says to me, you haven't been paying attention.

The Shot

Your worship needed a god.
Where it lacked one, it found one.
Ordinary jocks became gods-
Defiled by your infatuation
That seemed to have been designed at birth for a god.
It was a god-seeker. A god finder.
Your Daddy had been aiming you at god.
When his death touched the trigger.
In that flash
You saw your whole life. You ricocheted
The length of your Alpha career
With the fury
Of a high-velocity bullet
That cannot shed one foot-pound
Of kinetic energy. The elect
More or less died on impact-
They were too mortal to take it. They were mind-stuff.
Provisional, speculative, mere auras.
Sound-barrier events along your flightpath.
But inside your sob-sodden kleenex
And your Saturday night panics,
Under your hair done this way and that way,
Behind what looked like rebounds
And the cascade of cries diminuendo,
You were undeflected.
You were gold-jacketed, solid silver,
Nickel-tipped. Trajectory perfect
as through ether. Even the cheek-scar,
Where you seemed to have side-swiped concrete,
served as a rifling groove
To keep you true.
Till your real target
Hid behind me. Your Daddy,
God with the smoking gun. For a long time
Vague as mist, I did not even know
I'd been hit,
Or that you had gone clean through me-
To bury yourself at last in the heart of the god.

In my position, the right witchdoctor
Might have caught you in flight with his bare hands,
Tossed you, cooling, one hand to the other,
Godless, happy, quieted.
I managed
A wisp of your hair, your ring, your watch, your nightgown.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Can Brave Sir Robin Come Out And Play?

I've been tagged!!!!

Audrey, the lovely proprietress of Multitude has tagged me with the "4th" meme.

Here are the rules:

Got to the file that holds your pictures, go to the fourth folder and pick the fourth picture and display and write about it.

My home computer crashed last week, and I haven't received a call from the repair shop as to it's health. The photo folders on my work computer are not nearly as extensive as on my home computer, but I do have some.

Here goes:

This is a picture of the USS Constitution. It was taken in the Spring of 2000. I was still married at the time and I took my wife to Boston for the weekend to celebrate her birthday.

The story of how it came to be on my work computer is far more exciting than the picture itself.

I have been and out of my attic several times over the last few weeks, as I have been working on a bit of remodeling/redecorating at the castle. My attic is a pain to get in and out of, so I don't usually go there. While up there looking at wiring options for a light fixture, I found a box of old photos that I didn't know was up there. They included many picture of the children growing up. These are a particular treasure to me because I lost most of my photos in the divorce.

This photo was on a CD that was in the box. I was on my lunch break when I found it, so I brought it to work to see what was on it. Photos from our weekend in Boston, Spring of 2000.

As always, consider yourself tagged!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

A New Feature!

I'd like to introduce a new feature here at Tales of Brave Sir Robin. I call it:

Songs I like that you've probably never heard of.

Of course, the problem with that premise will be that the more obscure the song, the more difficult it will be to find a video of it. The quality of today's video will attest to that fact. It is a live version and not nearly as haunting and poignant as the studio cut.

So, now that my intro is crudely out of the way . . . .

Songs I like that you've probably never heard of.
(Vol. 1)


Artist - Sixpence none The Richer Album - Divine Discontent

Americans like distractions.

We must, because we are so easily distracted. Why do you think bad news always comes out late on a Friday afternoon? Although you'd barely know it from the (American) media, there has been a great deal of brutal carnage going on in Gaza for the last month. To be fair, there has been a lot to distract us from the rest of the world lately; the holiday season, the banking crisis, the economy, the new administration nominating cabinet officials, and of course, the inauguration.

It seems the human race just can't keep from killing and maiming one another. I challenge you to find a 5 year period in modern history without a war of some type. Hell, I haven't done the math, but I'll bet a 2 year period doesn't exist. Perhaps that's why we hardly treat it as news anymore. What is your reaction when you watch an account of a village being bombed? Do you ignore it? Are you anesthetized to it? Or do you grieve?

This song was written 10 years ago, but it will sadly remain topical for as long as human nature remains as it is. It is also an appropriate response to violence.

Again, seek out the studio cut, it's so much better.

(Matt Slocum)

I look out to the fields
Where blood is shed upon the ground
I breathe in, breathe out
Change the channel, mute the sound
I take a match, a cigarette, and a walk to clear my head
Stomach's reeling at the thought of all those (human beings dead)

I breathe in, breathe out
I'm going to an interview
About a song, three minutes long
I just need something to do
Especially when my dearest friend
Was sent to cover Kosovo
His last assignment brought a bullet
And now he's gone, he's gone

Feels like I'm fiddling while Rome is burning down
Should I lay my fiddle down, take a rifle from the ground
I need the Ghost to breathe a Northern Gale tonight*
'cause I'm paralyzed, I'm paralyzed

I packed his books up, left the office*
Went to tell the wife the news
She fell in shock, the baby kicked,
And shed a tear inside the womb
I breathed in, I breathed out,
Soaked the ground up with my eyes
It's hard to say a healing word
When your tongue is paralyzed

Feels like I'm fiddling while Rome is burning down
Should I put my fiddle down, take a rifle from the ground
God give me strength to pray that You will set things right
'cause I'm paralyzed, I'm paralyzed

*Yes - some of these lyrics don't quite match the live version. This band was originally signed to a Christian label, and was still representing this label in 1999 when this performance was recorded. The song wasn't actually released until 2002 on a secular label. I am supposing that is the difference. These lyrics match the studio version.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

It's Almost Over

Our long National nightmare is about to come to an end.

It's yet to be seen if the Republic will survive the devastation of the Bush years, but millions of Americans and millions more worldwide are hopeful.

That hope is personified in one man.

Thank you Mr. Obama, for accepting this burden.

Monday, January 12, 2009

While You're Waiting . . .

Sorry guys, I've been very busy for a few days. I'll have updates and details soon.

Meanwhile, Fred took this video of Zoe Christmas night, and it was too cute not to share.

(The laugh track you hear in the background was the boys watching TV - it sounds coordinated with Zoe, but that was just happy coincidence.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Oh, Sorry, Is It 2009?

Brave Sir Robin has been remiss during the Holidays. I have neglected all of you shamelessly. What with fabulous Holiday parties to attend, a gorgeous new girlfriend to keep me occupied, and jet setting away to a sunny locale I just haven't had time.

Oh, what's that? None of that happened to me? That was all other bloggers?

Well, then I guess I was just lazy.

Or busy.

Or a combination of both.

So, what has happened in the past few days?

Brave Sir Robin rested.

A lot.

This was my year to have the kids for Christmas, so I took the last two weeks of the year off. 17 days in a row without going to work.

A guy could get used to this I tell you.

Alas, it ends tomorrow, back to the routine I'm afraid. Luckily, I have had the chance to ease into it. Clinton had a basketball game Friday the 2nd, so school has intruded into our lazy time a bit before work will.

I spent a lot of time in the car, traveling back and forth to Houston, but I don't usually mind the drive. We visited Scottie quite a few times, including yesterday. I'm elated to report that his is progressing. His progress tends to go in spurts. He will make several advances in a short time, then plateau for a week or two, but his overall progress is readily apparent. He is feeding himself now, and can dial a telephone. His speech is getting better, but it is still far from good. His therapy at his current facility is primarily focusing on getting his left arm and leg fully mobile. His leg is showing progress. He isn't walking yet, but I feel certain he will in the next few weeks. His left arm isn't showing nearly so much cooperation I 'm afraid. He still has pretty much no mobility at all in that arm. His spirits, however, were very good throughout the holidays.

Did I mention I rested?

The photo detectives among you may have noticed a pattern in the pics I posted the day after Christmas. Yes, everyone is wearing pajamas. Bee lamented that she didn't spend a couple of days in pajamas watching movies. Rest assured dear friend, Brave Sir Robin's clan more than made up for your lack of sloth, with our excess of same. I let the family open one present a couple of days early so it could be enjoyed all week. Enjoy we did.

Christmas Eve, we awoke early and went to Houston. We visited Scottie, and brought him an order of enchiladas, rice and beans. We then went shopping for Christmas Dinner at the newly opened Wholefoods right across the street from my children's absolute favorite restaurant, (no - not McDonald's) - P.F. Chang's. After stowing away our Wholefoods booty in the ice-chest, we went and feasted across the street. That's about all we did in Houston that day, we drove home and while I prepared Christmas Eve dinner - Tamales, rice, beans, assorted cheese, crackers and finger foods, the kids immediately got back into PJ mode. The entire family remained in PJ mode until Saturday when I had to take them all to their Mother's. I prepared Christmas Dinner in my Pajamas, and it was consumed by all in the same manner. The day after Christmas I watched about 10 hours of TV straight through. All told, while all four kids were here, I watched about 5 movies, 4 seasons of That 70's Show, and as much football as possible.

The Saturday after Christmas, I loaded up the kids and took them to their Mom for her half of the Holiday. I was prepared to stay in Houston for several days and do New Year's Eve out on the town with friends.

Didn't happen.

For some reason, she wanted me to pick them up New Year's Eve morning, so I did. Clinton used the opportunity to attend a party at the home of a young lady he is fond of. Unfortunately for Dad, said young lady lives almost 25 minutes away. There is no way, no how I was going to be on the road after midnight with even a drop of alcohol in my system, so I spent a sober night at home, alone, watching football.

I spent the rest of the week either driving to Houston or working on my redecorating project, which - btw - is coming along nicely.

Yes, I did spend more than a few moments this weekend thinking about She Who Must Not Be Named, but it was more bittersweet than raw and painful.

That, dear friends, is the kind of progress that makes me hopeful for 2009.