A Late Tribute

My good friend and bike riding buddy from Georgia sent me this video, and I am very happy he did. It is a great story told by Tony Orlando a pretty good story-teller. It is also a tribute to all veterans everyday of the year. By the way, I have to let you know how I feel about the nut job who stated that we should stop thanking veterans so much. Here is what I think; pull your head out of your ass you have nothing to say about how many times I’ll say thanks to a Vet

A Salute To Veterans Of America

World War II Memorial Fountains and Arch

World War II Memorial Fountains and Arch (Photo credit: IslesPunkFan)

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Viet Nam War Memorial Washington, D.C.

Vietnam Memorial Statue, Washington D.C.

Viet Nam War Memorial Washington, D.C.

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War Dog Memorial Washington, D.C.

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World War I Memorial Washington, D.C.

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Korean War Memorial, Washington, D.C.

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Women in War Nurses Memorial, Washington, D.C.

A  National memorial commemorating the Kuwait, Iraq, and Afghanistan wars has not yet been established, let us honor these brave military people for their service as well, and all lessor war skirmishes that our country fought in.

This video says what is in my heart. I salute every veteran who has protected me and my family since World War II. I owe you all a debt of gratitude.

Make Him Stand in the Corner

I salute you, the Veterans of the US armed services. Regardless of your age, branch of service or duty, I thank you for keeping us protected and for marching into duty at the command of our country.

A dear friend of mine sent  these posters and I want to share them with you. They bring back many memories of my boyhood, when the United States was considered a great country, and our president did not fly around the world apologizing for our actions. Quite the opposite, it was the rest of the world that was thanking us and our service people for their sacrifice.

When ever we see Obama bowing and apologizing, we the people should make him stand in the corner and read the history of the American Revolution, Spanish-American war, WW I, WWII, the Korean police action, the Viet Nam war, the war to liberate Kuwait, the war to find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, and the war in Afghanistan to put down the Taliban. When he is done with the history lesson, I would make him watch videos of the Muslim hijacked airplanes crashing into the World Trade Center, and the Pentagon.

He needs to understand that the millions of US soldiers that died were not dying for gain in those countries, but rather for the liberation of Peoples from tyranny.  He needs to understand that the U.S.A. dropped the bomb on Japan, not to be mean, but to end a war that would have gone on for several more years at the expense of millions of more lives.

What Obama needs to apologize for, is duping the citizenry of this great country into believing his hope and change was something other than socialism.

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Branson Hiatus

Every once in  a while we need to get away. Peggy and I celebrated our fourth wedding anniversary by taking a trip to Branson, Missouri. I fully expected to add posts and cartoons to grumpajoesplace, but learned very early in the trip that my computer was trashed. It needs a reload of the operating system. I now have it at the fixer to try and save my files before it is re-loaded to factory status. In the meantime, I work on my seven-year old lap top; sloooow, verrry slooow.

Branson is pure fun. It has to be the entertainment capital of the world. A person can see three shows a day for a week and not see all of them. Each one is better than the last. Even the second tier entertainers are great. We saw a young man, Keith Allyn,  who put on a Neil Diamond tribute. He looked like Neil, and sounded like Neil too. We learned of him one morning at breakfast. He came into our hotel to hand out business cards and to talk up his show. Had he not done this, we would never seen his act.

Who else did we see? I’ll list them all and review them for you.

1.”SIX *****” This act partners six brothers who use their voices as instruments. They do not have a single musician on stage, yet they sounded like a full orchestra at times.

2. “Butterfly Palace. **”  More of a tourist trap than entertainment. It was interesting to walk through a jungle like atrium with white butterflies flitting all about. There were hundreds of them. The image being conveyed was that of snow falling. That is why they used white butterflies. All of them are purchased from Costa Rica in cocoon form. They are hatched in the Palace, and live for two weeks. I learned that a butterfly will not reproduce unless it has its host plant to do it on. Since Palace does not have any of the  host plants, they do not reproduce in Branson.

3. “Neil Diamond Tribute ***” very entertaining and well done one man show.

4.” Tony Orlando  ****and the Lennon Sisters ****”  The trio of Lennon Sisters sang beautifully. They combined favorite songs from the Lawrence Welk show with more contemporary tunes. Since Branson features Christmas shows from November through early December, many of the songs are Christmas Carols. Stage sets are typically loaded with Christmas trees. Tony Orlando combined his hour of both contemporary songs “Tie A Yellow Ribbon,” with a Christmas skit starring Santa Claus and the Nativity. Although in his mid-sixties, his voice was pure and powerful.

5. “The Oak Ridge Boys, *****” The boys are back. All of them are original, and now in their sixties, but one would never know by their sound. It was obvious that this group had done a lot of tour performances. The level of professionalism was astounding, the sound was great, the lighting, and the accompanying band solid. Lead singer Joe Bonsall sang a song in tribute to his parents and for veterans. It was a knock out. Joe sang it with such emotion, that the audience had tears in their eyes. The song is “G.I Joe and Lillie.” Veterans day falls into the Christmas season at Branson and each show pays tribute to veterans. The Boys are on their annual Christmas tour and come back to Branson mid-week to perform in their theater.

6. “Andy Williams, *****” this guy is amazing. He invented the Christmas season in Branson. His Christmas show is without rival. At eighty-two, the Andy performed for an hour and forty-five minutes and sounded great. I thought for sure he was lip synching.  We had front row center seats, and I can tell you he does not lip synch. His voice is as powerful as it always was.  His show emulates his old TV show. He has a few acts coming out to keep things lively and to give him a break. As long as he lives, he will do this show, and I will go to see him.

7. “Shoji Tabuchi, ****” An immigrant from Japan, this man became a first class country western fiddle player. although he can play classic violin, he came to America to be a CW star. He migrated to Branson nineteen years ago and built a theater for his performances.  The theater is a show case venue. He made the restrooms a feature that people talk about as much as they do  his performances. I can only speak for the men’s room which contains a billiard parlor with two rows of perimeter seating to watch  matches. The interior of the elimination room is absolutely stunning.  His show is also stunning. He combines his play with many well choreographed dances, flying angels, and songs by his daughter.

8. “Yakov, ****” Russian born and an immigrant to the US, Yakov is a very funny man. He has a unique way of looking at our culture from his perspective, and to point out the humor.  Like Shoji and Andy Williams, he has been in Branson for nineteen years. He built his own theater and plays to capacity crowds regularly. He boasted of how hard it was to earn “a lousy $100,000.00 a week.”  I left his show laughing for hours afterward. His jokes lingered and the humor kept me in high spirits. In one of his skits he showed the value of humor in longevity. He taped a couple who were married for seventy-five years. He asked what their secret was for staying married so long. The wife answered this way, “never go to sleep angry, stay up and fight.”

9. “Dalena Ditto,”  **** Another second tier performer who puts on a great show. This time she used me as a celebrity walk on. As part of her show, she picks an old fat guy from the audience to fool around with on stage. I was the second guy she picked. She had me sit on a chair facing the audience. She wore long red gloves and a stunning red gown. During her song I felt and saw red gloves against my face and through my hair. The audience was screaming with delight. I helped out by nuzzling the hand against my face. At the end of the song, I learned that the red gloves were on the hands of the male guitar player. Lots of fun. Dalena sings great and is a good looker too. She comes from family of performers. She spoke of her father playing in the Country Western scene.

Joey Riley, ****” Joey has been playing straight man for Mickey Gilley for seventeen years. The two of them are hilarious together. This year, Mickey cancelled his season because of an accident. Joey Riley filled in for him with his own show. He is a talented musician, playing the fiddle, guitar, and the steel guitar. His wit is spontaneous and quick.  He featured his lovely wife in several dance routines. We  spent another two hours of side-splitting laughter.

The worst part of going to Branson is the nine-hour drive home.

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