The Mother Road – Decertified

June 27, 1985 – US Route 66 was officially “decertified” on this date by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, and all signs denoting the route ordered to be taken down.

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Historic US 66 sign south of Springfield, IL

US Route 66 was originally designated in 1926, and eventually stretched 2200 miles from Chicago, Illinois to Santa Monica, California. The meandering route through the western American wilderness was first laid out in 1857 by U.S. Navy Lieutenant Edward Beale at the head of a caravan of camels. It took until the early 20th century for road building technology to advance to the level whereby a paved surface of 4″ of Portland Cement could be poured consistently, economically, and continuously. The State Of Illinois passed a resolution to begin paving the Illinois route from Chicago, through Springfield, to St. Louis, Missouri in March of 1921. Specifications for the quality and thickness of the Portland Cement surface placed on top of the previous mud/dirt and or gravel road were based on research conducted in the vicinity of Bates, Illinois (a few miles west of the State Capital, Springfield). The resulting specifications became the standard for road paving nationwide in the early 1920s. The engineers and scientists responsible for the Bates Highway tests were housed in the Bates Motel when they were on-site. (No reports of mummified mommies were ever made… think Alfred Hitchcock)

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Current Site of Bates Motel, on Old Rte. 54, Bates, IL.

The reliance of the growing private motoring public and the commercial truck-transport industry on the US Route system significantly interconnected the entirety of the continental United States on a grand scale. By the 1950s, further transportation research and development lead to the birth of the US Interstate infrastructure. This saw the construction of new, high-speed, 4-lane, controlled access highways that diverted around, over, or through cities and towns without the need for traffic to slow down or stop.

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Rte 66 dead-ended south of Springfield, IL

Although Route 66 was decertified, it is estimated by the National Historic Route 66 Federation, drivers can still use 85 percent of old Route 66. Springfield, Illinois still promotes its connection to Route 66 in a big way…

 

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Historic US 66 sign in Chicago, IL

Thursday Doors – Alabama

This week I am featuring the Oceanside face of a “beach house” in Orange Beach, Alabama. The Mrs &I saw this house on a morning run while vacationing, and I pointed it out to her, saying I was going to return with my iPad to photograph it. I would have used my digital camera, but it was safely back in Illinois where it would not get too hot!

Thursday Doors is a weekly feature allowing door lovers to come together to admire and share their favorite door photos from around the world. Visit Norm 2.0 (   https://miscellaneousmusingsofamiddleagedmind.wordpress.com/2017/03/09/thursday-doors-march-9-2017/)for more doors and details. When you get to Norm’s site, look for The Blue Frog.

 

 

Hope’s Happy Birthday

I have been silent for over a week now, both on my blog and in my “real life”… I have been laid low with what I thought at first was just a cold, but it quickly transmogrified  into the flu. Blahhhhh… I did get my flu shot, so I am certain that is why I got the flu, right?  😉

That said, just a couple days ago, The Mrs posted Her Movie on YouTube! It is a real live indie feature length movie that she wrote, directed, starred in, edited, copyrighted, and released. It is titled,

HOPE’S HAPPY BIRTHDAY

You can also read more about the film at the IMDb (Internet Movie Database) HERE

The movie was filmed in Illinois (Springfield area) and Texas (Austin area).

I was going to do a summary , etc, but am still not feeling well, and just want to nap… maybe when i feel better…

Thursday Door – Day Late, 1 Door

I was just too busy yesterday to post my Thursday Doors offering. Doing…. ummmmm… nothing???!  Ah well, so for my door this week, I have a door from a small little lane on the lake south of our lane. I drove down this lane last week while I was driving around in our area looking for a lost dog. Didn’t find the dog, but did see this neat door. I really like the echoing of the arches in the windows, doors, and roof lines…

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Thursday Doors is a weekly feature allowing door lovers to come together to admire and share their favorite door photos from around the world. Visit Norm 2.0 for more doors and details. When you get to Norm’s site, look for and click on….

The Blue Frog, and only the Blue Frog….

 

The Stars and Me

I love this poem! It is cheerful, optimistic, and just darned fun!!!

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Victoria has us repeating ourselves over at d’Verse Poets Pub
I’ll Say It Again (and Again and Again)


The Stars and Me

I thought I saw the stars wink at me
As if they knew my secret
I thought I heard the stars whisper
As if they might be gossiping
I thought I felt the stars hopping
As if they could share my joy
I thought I whiffed the scent of stardust
As if the stars were blooming
And so I turned my face up
To the sky and blew the stars
A kiss

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Eagle Ice & Fish Heads

I just asked The Mrs if she was familiar with the song, “Fish Heads”, by Barnes and Barnes. She immediately started singing it, which truly surprised me because she is not normally so well versed with 70’s & 80’s music, especially the quirky stuff like, well, Fish Heads! This is the link to the original short movie from 1978

If you have noticed my banner photo for the past week or so, you may have noticed that it is two Bald Eagles sitting on the ice just east of our dock here on Lake Springfield. I took that picture on December 28th. A couple days later, the temperature outside got warm enough for the ice to melt. This past week, the temps dropped again close to 0 degrees F, and the lake froze again. Two days ago, the young eagle was back again, this time flying over a flock of geese , looking for injured or sick ones. All the geese were healthy, so the young predator flew off, headed back (I assume) to what is affectionately called Bird Island. The eagles have a huge nest on the small island. It is illegal for humans to go onto the island in order to protect the variety of birds that nest there.

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So…after the ice melted the first time around a couple weeks ago, I was down by the shoreline taking Lester (the cat) for a walk, and we both were surprised to see a catfish carcass lying in the rip-rap, mostly eaten.  Of course, I stumbled down to the water’s edge, grabbed the fish (head), and carried it up to the back deck and positioned it so it faced in towards the living room window in order to impress The Mrs…

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I put the soda can next to the F-H for perspective, not cuz dead catfish are particularly fond of diet root beer…

The next morning, the fish head was lying on the deck under the table, totally devoid of skin or meat of any sort. Raccoons… And the following morning, the F-H skull was gone, never more to been seen. The Mrs, I’m certain, was very disappointed!!!

 

 

and per se AND…

I have loved reading & writing since, well, since I was learning to read via “Dick & Jane“. Not only did I love learning the words that were made by the infinite combinations of letters, but it was, hmmmmm, tactile! I loved feeling the words forming on my tongue & in my throat, & later feeling the creativity of my hand forming words on paper.

I attended a Catholic School (St. Mary’s) for grades 1 – 6, & we had a very strong readin’ writin’ & ‘rithmatic background. I transferred to the public junior high for 7th & 8th grades, & my language arts teachers for both grades gave me accelerated work to do cuz I already knew the stuff they were teaching the other kids. I was introduced to the poetry of ee cummings. WOW!

In high school, I was bored in my english class most of the time, & in my junior year I was failing at midterm. I had the worst “teacher” I had ever experienced… She was tenured, old, worn out, & would stand in the front of the classroom everyday blabbing on about stuff we had learned or read in grade school. My Mom made a deal with me… Bring up my grades in the class (“You could be teaching this class, so just PASS the damn tests!”) & she would let me take night english classes at the junior college nearby! I agreed, passed junior english with a C, and started taking college classes. I always got A’s in my college english classes, btw. (yay for me!)

I initially planned to study journalism in college (I worked at a radio station for 2 years in the news department during my junior college years). But when I transferred to Northern Illinois University, the journalism we were “learning” about was a bit different than what I had done in the field, so I changed my major to psychology because I found the field interesting & it came easily for me… Except I had to take Statistics. I tried 3 semesters, & dropped it 3 times. Then changed my major to History, with a strong minor in Psych. Well, the more history classes I took, the more papers I got to write! I was thrilled! Only thing I struggled with was the fact that most of my profs got their PhD’s from the Columbia school of historical interpretation via Marx. Except my Russian/Soviet history prof… He escaped his home nation of Georgia during the Stalin purges, and was not very impressed with communism/socialism.

I worked in the university library for a year & a half after getting my BA before I started a career in law enforcement, & it was fantastic! I was surrounded by books, I got to read on my breaks, & had started working on a master’s in library science. Once I became a cop, my focus changed, although during my career, I did spend a total of 6 years assigned to the state police academy. I taught, tested, supervised, & tutored cadets/recruits. I supervised Academic Development, Instructor Development, Curriculum Development, Legal Training, Testing… & a bunch more stuff. I oversaw the revision of all the academic/legal training curricula into a standard measurable Goals & Objectives format. & I taught Report Writing. & Remedial English. I taught these college graduates how to write a sentence. I taught cadets how to write a police report in first person, making sure they knew how to use correct punctuation. & I was working on finishing my Master’s in history through the University of Illinois at night. & I discovered three of my all-time favorite books during this time: The Transitive Vampire – A Handbook of Grammar for the Innocent, the Eager, and the Doomed (Karen Elizabeth Gordon); The Well-Tempered Sentence – A Punctuation Handbook for the Innocent, the Eager, and the Doomed (Karen Elizabeth Gordon); & Writing Down the Bones – Freeing the Writer Within (Natalie Goldberg).

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Which brings me to…. and per se and. TRIVIA ALERT!!!!! This was the 27th letter of the english alphabet into the mid/late 1800’s. It supposedly originated with Roman scribes in the 1st century AD who, when they wrote the Roman word “et” (and) in cursive, they would use “&”.

According to Dictionary.com: “The word ‘ampersand’ came … when ‘&’ was actually part of the English alphabet. In the early 1800s, school children reciting their ABCs concluded the alphabet with the &. It would have been confusing to say ‘X, Y, Z, and.’ Rather, the students said, ‘and per se and.’ ‘Per se’ means ‘by itself,’ so the students were essentially saying, ‘X, Y, Z, and by itself and.’ Over time, ‘and per se and’ was slurred together into the word we use today: ampersand. “

MORE TRIVIA!!!! The “&” is, therefore, a MONDEGREEN!!!!  A mondegreen is a word or phrase resulting from a misinterpretation of another word or phrase that we hear… You know, “There’s a Bathroom on the Right”… by Three Dog Night…

Final thought…. I love books & reading. This past year I downloaded the Kindle application to my computer & started reading on my laptop. For Christmas, The Mrs, her Mom, Sis, & Bro-in-Law chipped in to buy me an iPad so I could read on that. So now THIS >>>> 068

is gonna replace this>>>>>>

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