Tuesday, June 26, 2007


This Saturday is the annual 4th of July pool party at my sister-in-law’s house. I started bringing barbecue ribs four or five years ago and now people request them every year.

I peel the membrane off the back of the ribs with a paper towel and trim off the skirt and meat flap. Then I rub the ribs with a mixture of Dion’s Rib Rub Seasoning from Urban Herbs and half as much brown sugar mixed together.

I let the ribs rest while I place an oblong cake pan in the bottom of the oven and fill it with water and preheat it to 275’. I line some baking sheets with foil and place the ribs on the sheets. Once the oven comes to temp I place the ribs in the oven for approximately six (6) hours.

When they are tender to the bone I remove them, cut them in two bone segments and let them cool. When it’s time to grill I warm each segment up and then sauce it a bit – being careful not to let the sauce burn too much.

I use the cheapest sauce I can find and a few specialty sauces that catch my eye. My favorite inexpensive sauce is called Chicken N' Ribs. Our local grocery carries it but you can also order it online.

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Sunday, June 24, 2007

I have been away...

It's been a week or so since I've written. I was in Florida most of last week working. West Palm Beach is a beautiful area but Florida in June is one hot place. I actually got to drive up a good portion of the east coast of Florida and see some great scenery including some wild boar feeding near the highway.

What it confirmed for me though was that I am a person who prefers the cooler climes. The heat and humidity were just way too much.

I enjoyed the trip because I got to talk about things like the importance of clear communication, trust, accountability, respect and friendliness. These are all values that I appreciate and are very much a part of the culture of the company I work for. I feel very fortunate that I work for NCC and that I can spend my working days talking about values.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Amy Winehouse...Back to Black

This woman can write and sing.

I think she is a soulful cross between Sheryl Crow and Macy Gray. Amy is a great songwriter who gets the everyman/every woman kind of thing that Sheryl has going on. Amy also has a smooth bluesy voice like Macy's that can "git rough" if it needs to.

Her songs are about unrequited love and cheatin', and the pain of heartbreak. The title tune "Back to Black" is a testimony to lost love. "Tears Dry on Their Own" is an anthem to starting over.

She is one of the best singer/songwriters I have heard in a long while.

By following the link above you can listen to some of her album and get the flavor of it.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

What am I listening to these days…

This morning at the top of the I-Pod is Patty Griffin’s “Impossible Dream” Album. This album is 3 years old but I just saw her on an Austin City Limits show from 2004. Wonderful Album. I will catch up to her latest one of these days.

The Derailers out of Austin are great. If you like Honky-Tonk music this stuff is “Genuine.” It’s great driving music.

Emmy Lou’s angelic melodies are a part of nearly every playlist I create.

And take a listen to Wilco… on "Sky Blue Sky" you’ll find some thoughtful music and lyrics.

I just ordered Amy Winehouse’s new CD (I still buy cd’s) "Back to Black" and I am looking forward to hearing her soulful voice – the reviews out on this album compare her to Etta James and Billie Holiday.

I will let you know when I hear it…

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

A Myriad of Choices

As a young man I was determined to set my own course and make my own choices.

Even in that regard, growing up in an alcoholic family had more of an impact on my life than I would understand until much later. But at some point I began to experience a slow realization that I was allowing myself to be controlled by inherited behaviors that were just below the surface - behaviors that were common to children of alcoholics.

Those behaviors can derail your best intentions and your choices if you don’t recognize them for what they are and what they are doing. Now, I know we live in a day and age when people want to blame everything on their up bringing. I am not doing that.

I am just saying that we need to recognize that we don't fall off a pumpkin wagon into this world as adults without any learned behaviors, history or internal influences. Our parents and families affect us more than we are willing to recognize or even want to admit.

But thanks be to God we all still have a choice. We make that choice each day. And those collective choices that we make this week, one at a time, can either lead us to peace and contentment or they lead us to sadness and resentment.

But we make them one... choice... at a... time.