Time--2017 A to Z Theme

My theme for the 2017 Blogging from A to Z April Challenge was "Time". The posts are of a more philosophical, contemplative, and even autobiographical bent. No time management tips in this theme, but stuff intended to make you think.

Always a work in progress--welcome to my blog...

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Monday, January 9, 2017

Plowing Into Another Year (#BOTB results)

      We have nothing to fear but beer itself.   Of course when it's freezing outside I'd rather have brandy anyway.


Train in the Snow
Train in the Snow (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

       As we plow into the first month of 2017 I guess it's appropriate that snowplows have been clearing roads back east.  What I now think of as being cold--uh, fifties and sixties here in Los Angeles--is nothing compared to what most of the country has been dealing with.  Global warming I guess.  Or actually I guess that's now climate change although it seems like the climate has gone through cycles of change throughout my lifetime.

       No doubt this previous statement rankles more than a few readers--if any of those readers are still reading.  I assure you that I'm in no way a climate change denier as I've seen evidence of climate change ever since I was a wee lad sixty years or so ago.

       I don't like to talk about that many years where my life is concerned, but as we know, we can't hold back time.  The years pass in an ever accelerating manner the older we get and that's that.  I guess my years are just going to go faster and faster like a big old snowball rolling down a steep hill.

Battle of the Bands Results


      As we all have seen in our own Battle of the Bands matches as well as those of the other participants, surprises are often in store.  My first Battle of 2017 was an overwhelming landslide victory for the version of "Holding Back the Years" that I chose as my favorite--the original recording as performed by Frantic Elevators.  

       I greatly enjoyed the laid back jazzy version by Gretchen Parlato, but it seemed a bit artificial to me.  It's canned music that one might hear played as background music in a restaurant--good, but manufactured.  On the other hand, not only did the version by Frantic Elevators have the great vocals of Simply Red vocalist Mick Hucknall, it also had a ragged garage band sound that added greater authenticity in my opinion.

       Actually there are several much better versions of "Holding Back the Years" to be found on YouTube, but I think they would have completely blown away either version that I used for this Battle and possibly even the hit version by Simply Red.  However, I really wanted to use the Frantic Elevator version so I tried to find a version that might be somewhat an equal.  I thought Parlato's version would be competitive--guess I was wrong.


Final Vote Tally

Frantic Elevators              25 votes

Gretchen Parlato                 3 votes

Next Battle on Sunday January 15th

        My next Battle upcoming this Sunday is beginning to stir me with excitement as I have already been playing my song versions repeatedly.  No eighties music this time, but an avowed classic with versions recorded over fifty years apart (I love those kinds of match-ups).  This Battle will be my tribute of sorts to the Presidential Inauguration on January 20th--can you believe it's already almost here!

         You Trump deniers don't have to fear as the song has nothing really to do with him, but I think it will be a fun association.  Hope you'll get on board with the fun on Sunday.   And even though the song is somewhat on track with Trump, I think this is a song that a good many of you will like no matter what.

         And regarding Trump, my President Trump Acclimation Series will continue starting on Wednesday and will continue through Friday.   That is if I stay motivated.  If I continue as planned, my upcoming posts are guaranteed to disturb some while garnering cheers of encouragement from others.  After all, I know I'm not the only one who believes the way I do.

         Do those who disagree with climate change as proposed by some scientists terrify you?  Are you more afraid of me or ISIS?   Care to hazard a guess what my next Battle song will be based on clues I provided above (yes, I did provide clues in this post)?  



42 comments:

  1. We on the South Coast UK have not had any snow .....Yet. But to all those experiencing bad weather I hope it hurries up and subsides.

    I picked the winner in the BOTB, I really prefer Simply Red as I well remember when it was released. Great song.

    Yvonne.

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    1. Yvonne, this early morning I've woken to a pouring rain--much needed in our parts. I'd rather still be sleeping in, but morning calls and it's not even light yet. My wife's vacation schedule has been toying with my own.

      Lee

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  2. wow, Lee - I read previous post and some comments - you're a brave soul and I really appreciate your candor. I hope everyone can get past the past because we need a strong leader to get us out of the targeted hole we are in! Praying for positive!

    And wanted to thank you for stopping by my cradle rock release tour at Ken's place!

    stay warm! and happy 2017!

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    1. Tara, is what I've been doing brave or stupid? I'm getting conflicting reactions. That's okay as I've always liked stirring the pot. I won't say anything about smoking it since it's going to be legal here in California soon.

      We should all be praying for all of our leaders. Thanks for stopping in and leaving your comment.

      Lee

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  3. Sorry I missed the battle but I was still offline at the time.
    Agree that we should be praying for all of our leaders.

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    1. Alex, I need to get offline sometimes I suppose. Sometimes I am offline when I'm online while sometimes I'm online when I'm offline. Sometimes I'm enigmatic and make no sense whatsoever. Or maybe a semblance of sense.

      Lee

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  4. Trump is going to be president no matter what people think. Long has he doesn't do anything illegal or outrageous enough to get impeached, he'll have his four years just like Obama got in his presidential years. Wow that vote was definitely a decided one for BOTB. I loved Frantic Elevators way more but I thought Gretchen would have gotten a couple more votes than 3. Times moves along without a care in the world. Have a great day Arlee. No idea on the next BOTB song selection. Stone Cold by Demi Lovato? Kidding!

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    1. Sheena-kay, so far I'm liking the signals we're getting from those collaborating on the new administration. It all sounds more favorable to the United States in general and a stronger United States is good for the world.

      "Stone Cold" would fit into certain parameters of this post, but my clues aren't for that song.

      Lee

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  5. All I care about is that the band I picked won! :)

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    1. H.R., apparently the winner was a clear choice that I didn't think would be so clear.

      Lee

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  6. Blaming everything on climate change is dumb, but to those sticking their head in the sand and pretending it isn't there, rather dumb too. Blow out this time.

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    1. Pat Hatt, we and science should leave all possibilities on the table until absolute proof is determined. So far there are still some questions that lead to some arguments of doubt.

      Lee

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  7. I don't understand the histrionics regarding climate change. The climate has always changed. Ice Age, Great Floods, Volcanic activity, unexplained mass extinctions, droughts are just a few odd things that come to mind.
    Yay for Frantic Elevators! But I did think Gretchen deserved a few more votes than she got.
    Hmm, if you asked a lady I spoke to at a Farmer's Market recently, she'd probably guess you'll be playing something like 'Bad Moon Rising' ;-)

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    1. Diedre, not too many years ago I remember a greater concern about another Ice Age eminent. We could be seeing a pre-Ice Age era coming again like that which existed when dinosaurs ruled. I think the Earth is amazingly resilient and adapts to change whatever it may be. It seems rather pompous to believe that we humans can totally destroy the Earth by changing climate. Maybe with nuclear destruction, but carbon emissions? A major volcanic/thermal event could do far more damage more quickly than what we could do.

      I'm going to be optimistic with my next Battle so it won't be "Bad Moon Rising".

      Lee

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  8. Climate change is normal. Saying it's all global warming is bunk.

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    1. L. Diane, of late I've been wishing for some global warming. I'm glad right now that I'm not living in areas of the country where it's really cold compared to where I am.

      Lee

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  9. I, as an environmentalist, believe the scientists, there is indeed global warming. The melting icecaps and rising sea levels confirm it. Yes there are cycles of climate change, but on the whole it has been confirmed that temps have been rising and that comes about partly from lack of pollution control in many countries. Denial doesn't make it so. As for Trump, you do your thing, Lee, but don't expect to convert those who are not fans of the prez-elect. I missed all the last BOTBs, but will try to make the next one.

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    1. PS - I was drawn to your post by the image you attached to this post. I recognized it as Monet. And I really like his work, that one included.

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    2. D.G., I too consider myself to be an environmentalist and have been so before a great many of my readers were born or ever thought of climate change. I also like the idea of technological and industrial progress. Better to look for solutions to problems if they exist than to stifle progress and industrialization. From what I've heard our environment is in a better state than even a hundred years or more ago. I think we've done pretty well, but it's also good to maintain an awareness and continue to work toward betterment of the environment. Preservation of resources is essential.

      As I've indicated in the posts of my Trump series, I'm not so much interested in converting anyone as I am in correcting the lies and misconceptions that have arisen throughout the Trump campaign. There is a lot of foolish prattle coming from a lot of people who are obstructionists by nature.

      The Monet piece is very nice. I like it as well. I've long been an admirer of impressionism.

      Lee

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  10. I never figure out your clues. Any of kind of science denier bothers me. It's not just those who don't believe in climate change.

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    1. Susan GK, the very nature of science relies on questioning what is observable and coming to conclusions based on experimentation and measurement. Even in the scientific community there is denial of that which some think might be questionable. I trust much science, but certain things such as the nature of the universe and how the Earth came into being I would deny based on my own faith. Some scientists decry the concept of Creationism or Intelligent Design while others are able to fit it within their own framework of scientific outlook. Science deniers are often the truest advocates of the nature of what science is.

      Lee

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  11. Wow, Gretchen got pounded! Is that the result of being a woman on a Trump supporter's blog? (Note tongue firmly in cheek)

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    1. CW, no, her loss is probably because her version didn't sound as good as the Frantic guys. Then again, the name Parlato sounds foreign. Maybe she's an illegal.

      Lee

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  12. We got nailed over the weekend with a blizzard. Two feet of snow. Yuck.

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    1. JoJo, yes, I was seeing that on the news and feeling absolutely no envy. Though I guess if you didn't have to go out into that weather and could just look at it from a toasty warm living room then that might be kind of nice.

      Lee

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  13. I only wish the cold weather in my neck of the woods were like yours! It was about 19 degrees on Saturday morning, and later warmed up to 23 degrees. That was the same day I had to take care of a dead car battery, something I only did on the Sabbath since it was a legitimate emergency that couldn't wait. My parents are now in Upstate South Carolina, and had their first snowstorm last weekend. They got a few inches, and reported people were frantically buying water, bread, and other supplies at the grocery store. Being from the North, they're used to snow, and don't think a few inches of snow are a crisis.

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    1. Carrie-Anne, looking at the nationwide weather map over the weekend it all seemed so nuts. Cold and crazy! Having lived in the South I know how panicky things can be with even a threat of snow. I'd hate to see a big snow in L.A. It would be totally wack.

      Lee

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  14. I won't be too concerned about the weather unless it starts snowing in my little neck of the woods, although it did do that about 55 years ago. Maybe we are having global warming :). I am still not a fan of the new guy but I do enjoy reading your explanatory posts. As there is nothing I can really do about either situation, I'll just keep plugging along. Kinda more afraid of ISIS than you though.

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    1. Janet, I do hope no one fears me more than ISIS, but I was kind of amused when one blogger said that I made her afraid. Go figure.

      Lee

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  15. Yay! for Frantic Elevators.
    Crazy weather in Europe, it's on the BBC a lot, Minus 32 degrees centigrade in some places. It even snowed in the Greek islands, wow.
    Here in Johannesburg it has been raining almost every day for weeks now.
    As far as your DT posts are concerned, I like them and thoroughly enjoy reading the comments you get. Amazing to see how the film industry and mainstream media are still at it, making fools of themselves.
    Just in case any of your commentators haven't quite worked it out yet, movies are fiction. Movie stars, no matter how much one may enjoy their performances, are still only "Bull........"
    Go well my friend and I hope things warm up for all of you, Geoff.

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    1. Geoff, I believe your assessment of the entertainment industry is spot on. I don't know why some people look up to these mostly liberal advocates of absurd thinking, but fortunately I don't think the majority of people do. I wish they'd all just shut up and sing or whatever it is that they do. Their blathering tends to turn me off toward them and want to avoid what they do.

      Lee

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  16. I have seen the weather vary in interesting cycles over the last (muffled sound) years, so I don't doubt for one minute climate change is real. How much is human-caused, however, should be open for discussion, and overpopulation should be high on the agenda.

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    1. Patricia, climate change is undoubtedly real as documented by a historical perspective and certainly the actions of humans continue to play a part in the change, but I do question the precise nature of the effect and consequences in the future. God gave us a big world and a great amount of ingenuity for dealing with this world. We must be good stewards of what God gave us, but I think we give ourselves way too much credit to believe we are anywhere near destroying this world. We should never stop the discussion and research though.

      Lee

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  17. I'm glad Frantic Elevators won. They deserved it and with Hucknall's vocals, it's no surprise. I am curious that you found other versions that you think would surpass that of Simply Red's? That's hard for me to wrap my head around as I just love Simply Red's version and can't imagine someone doing it better. Care to share??

    Michele at Angels Bark

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    1. Michele, the other versions are easy to find on YouTube and in my opinion some of them are pretty darn great. I will likely use this song again in the future, but you can find the others easily and even use some in your own Battles.

      Lee

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  18. LEE ~
    Hokey-Smoke! I was one of only three who voted for Gretchen? I'm very used to holding the minority opinion about things, but THAT was a HUGE MINORITY!

    Seems like blowouts have been the norm overall for BOTB lately.

    Sadly, it looks like the song I wanted to use for my Jan. 15th Battle is not going to work. I have one version picked out for sure, but ALL of the other three covers that I feel can give it at least some kind of resistance in the voting will NOT play in Canada.

    What a drag. Guess I'm gonna have to go to Plan B. ...Which means I guess I'm gonna have to THINK up a Plan B. I'm really disappointed because I had my heart set on using this particular song for THAT particular BOTB installment. (Like you, I had my reasons.)

    >>... Do those who disagree with climate change as proposed by some scientists terrify you?

    No, I don't terrify myself.

    >>... Are you more afraid of me or ISIS?

    Well, I dunno. You ARE a pretty scary character. (Don't think I've forgotten "The Justin Bieber Attack".)

    >>... Care to hazard a guess what my next Battle song will be based on clues I provided above (yes, I did provide clues in this post)?

    Uh... 'On The Atchison, Topeka & The Santa Fe'? (Whatever it is, I know it's train-related. Can't be 'Crazy Train' -- has to be an old song.)

    ~ D-FensDogG
    Check out my new blog @
    (Link:] Stephen T. McCarthy Reviews...

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    1. STMcC, too bad about the versions of the song that you were going to use not working in Canada. Maybe you can still find others that will? Doggone, now I'm curious.

      Maybe Justin Bieber could defeat ISIS if he's all that scary.

      Excellent guess on the song--you are definitely on the right track, but it's the wrong songs.

      Lee

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    2. LEE ~
      I don't know if Bieber could permanently defeat ISIS, but he could definitely make 'em run!

      I'll give another listen to a few of the songs, but I've already heard all of the real serious contenders and none of them will play in Canada. To use any other version against the one I've already selected is inviting a shutout. (And the real shame is that I'd contacted the artist about 2 months ago and told him his recording would be featured in my Jan. 15th BOTB.)

      Ten minutes after I posted my comment above last night, I crawled into bed, and as soon as I did, it hit me. 2nd and last guess: 'Chattanooga Choo-Choo'.

      ~ D-FensDogG
      Check out my new blog @
      (Link:] Stephen T. McCarthy Reviews...

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    3. STMcC, another good guess, but not that song either. Some many great songs in the genre that you have a lot to choose from.

      Lee

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  19. Neat battle. As an environmentally minded person Trump makes me nervous. HRC didn't give me warm fuzzys on the environment either. That being said I think this a time for states and local government to do more.

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    1. Mike, I'm environmentally minded as well, but I'm not overly concerned that Trump is going to come anywhere near close to destroying the world. I think we do a far better job in the U.S. of caring for our world than much of the rest of the world. That's probably what we need to worry about more.

      States and local government should always have more control and it seems to me that this was part of Trump's message all along.

      Lee

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  20. I'm not surprised Frantic Elevators ran away with this one! ☺ As for climate change, there are extreme views on both sides. What's needed here is a rational middle ground.

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Go ahead and say something. Don't be afraid to speak your mind.
I normally try to respond to all comments in the comment section so please remember to check the "Email follow-up comments" box if you want to participate in the comment conversation.

For Battle of the Bands voting the "Anonymous" commenting option has been made available though this version is the least preferred. If voting using "anonymous" please include in your comment your name (first only is okay) and city you are voting from and the reason you chose the artist you did.

If you know me and want to comment but don't want to do it here, then you can send me an email @ jacksonlee51 at aol dot com.

Lee