Welcome to Sunday Social

Let’s all meet up over at Rachel’s for a little meet and greet and some virtual drinks. 😉

Rachel McKee~Illuminated Literation

Sunday Social is a place to mingle, collaborate, and share our blogs. Sunday Social is one more place where you can share a post that maybe didn’t get as much feedback as you were hoping for. Sunday Social is a place to meet new bloggers.

This weekly post is a “wild card” of sorts. There aren’t many rules but I do ask that you follow a few guidelines.

  • Give honest, constructive feedback, but always be courteous.
  • If someone takes the time to comment on your post, please return the favor and check out their endeavors too.

How do you participate?

It’s very easy.

  • Copy and paste the link to your blog or a specific blog post in the comment section below.
  • Give us a little blurb about your blog, the feedback you are looking for, or if you are just hoping to meet some new blogger buddies.

Voila! That’s it.

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Song Lyric Sunday 4/22/18 – Sister Christian

Our challenge for Song Lyric Sunday this week was brother/sister or siblings. A tough topic for sure and I tried like hell to find something other than the first song that popped into my head but try as I might, brain dead me was unable to come up with anything so my default pick it is I suppose.

According to lead singer and bassist Jack Blades, the background of this song is, “Kelly’s [Keagy] sister’s name is Christy and so he was writing a song about his little sister growing up in a small town in Oregon and cruising up and down the street on a Friday, Saturday night, you know, motoring, everything like that, but it was ‘Sister Christy.’ He’s singing ‘sister Christy oh the,’ and we all thought it was Christian.” Alas, the band decided that “Christian” sounded better than “Christy” so the name stuck. (Source: http://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/2015/08/24/real-story-behind-night-ranger-sister-christian.html).

So here then is “Sister Christian” – a power ballad by the band Night Ranger (written by Kelly Keagy):

Sister Christian
Oh, the time has come
And you know that you’re the only one
To say, okay
Where you going
What you looking for
You know those boys
Don’t want to play no more with you
It’s true

You’re motoring
What’s your price for flight
In finding mister right
You’ll be alright tonight

Babe, you know
You’re growing up so fast
And mama’s worrying
That you won’t last
To say, let’s play
Sister Christian
There’s so much in life
Don’t you give it up
Before your time is due
It’s true
It’s true, yeah

Motoring
What’s your price for flight
You’ve got him in your sight
And driving through the night
Motoring
What’s your price for flight
In finding mister right
You’ll be alright tonight

Motoring
What’s your price for flight
In finding mister right
You’ll be alright tonight
Motoring
What’s your price for flight
In finding mister right
You’ll be alright tonight

Sister Christian
Oh, the time has come
And you know that you’re the only one
To say, okay
But you’re motoring
Yeah, motoring
Source: https://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/nightranger/sisterchristian.html

I know, totally lame pick this week but oh well. Been a long day.

Meeting A Fellow Blogger

kittens

For the first time in almost two years of my blog, I got to meet a fellow blogger! “Laina” over at The Silent Wave and Who Loves Kitty, being true to the name of her personal blog, made the 4.5 hour drive out to Abilene to collect two adorable kittens and take them to their forever home.

About the time her beloved Murphy passed away my sister’s cat gave birth to three kittens, two of which made it. As our rule here is only two cats in the house, we had to re-home the offspring and, as the timing worked out, the stars lined up so that she and her husband were able to give them the home they so deserve.

Laina and her husband arrived at home headquarters around 11:15 AM to come have a “meet and greet” with my family and their two new fur kids. Much as I expected, it was love at first sight (not that I had any doubts whatsoever – I’d been sending Laina weekly updates and of course she just gushed over all of them). After hanging out at HQ for awhile, I led them to the Taylor County Taphouse here in Abilene for lunch and drinks where we shared lively conversation, lunch (with excellent gluten-free options for them) and drinks. It was truly a special time to share.

After a quick pit-stop to top off fuel and get refreshments for the road, they arrived back at home HQ to collect the prize. We said our final goodbyes to the little bundles of fluff, Laina and I pressed up against one another in a hug that seemed to go on forever (not that I mind – I love hugs – and she said I give the best hugs!) and they got back on the road to return to San Antonio and I retired back to the house to cue up NASCAR. Timing worked out perfect.

It couldn’t have been a better day for it either – warm enough to sport my shorty shorts and show off my multiple pieces of body art (so she got the full experience of who I am!) but not too blistering hot as to make her car drive miserable.

A little sad to see the cute little kittens go, but they couldn’t have gone to a better home. They will be well-cared for, happy and healthy. I have no questions about that.

Thanks for the company today, Laina. I truly enjoyed it. Hopefully we’ll cross paths again sometime soon. I know you’ll be great furparents to the two kittens. Just be sure to inundate us with pictures as they grow up. It’ll be much appreciated.

An Ode to Friends (A Facebook Rant)

I posted a rant on Facebook last night that I’m reposting here as an ode to my friends. I’m very misunderstood, misperceived and misjudged by most. As such, I kind of teed off last night. I’m reposting the rant here because I feel it is worthy.


I just need to go on a bit of rant here. Forgive me. Please disregard if you wish, but I have to get this out of my system.

Yes, random stranger, to you I’m sure I seem like just some bitter, angry, cynical shell of a human, and that would be true. I am all those things. I’m jaded as fuck, cloaked in existential nihilism and philosophical pessimism. You would be correct in making those accusations.

Alas, aren’t we all at the end of the day? One has to turn a bit of a blind eye to the world to not be. This world is a scary place.

Alas, you see what you choose to see. Instead of hurling insults, etc. at me – talk to me. I’m shy but at the same time an open book. I’m quiet and reserved but I’ll still talk your ear off. I’ll tell you anything you want to know. I’ll shoot straight with you and I sure won’t sugarcoat, but talk to me. If you would stop trying to pick a fight with me for a minute and endure my short-lived sour shell, you’re sure to get to my sweet center.

To the few of you who have befriended me and stuck by me, thank you. I appreciate it wholeheartedly. I don’t have many friends in this life. It takes a special person to be able to power through my sour outer shell. I’m like a warheads candy I guess; most people can’t endure the first seconds of intense sourness. You all did.

And it is much appreciated.


So yes, this is to you, my friends. Thank you for sticking with me. Cheers!

Wine/Cigar Reviews – Stave & Steel Bourbon Barrel Cab and H&S Veiled Prophet

So today in my reviews we’re doing something a bit different – I’m reviewing a wine and a cigar. I absolutely love wine but I don’t review many wines here because I don’t feel as I have developed a super sophisticated palate for it yet but I’m learning (I’ve been drinking more and more wine lately – I find it goes very well with a cigar). Well this one is a special wine, and I’m reviewing it along with a special cigar review as well.

We’ll start with tonight’s wine.

Stave & Steel Bourbon Barrel Aged Cabernet Sauvignon 2015

Bourbon barrel aged everything seems to be a fad lately so why the wine scene has not gotten into it yet I don’t know. Whatever the case, here we go. This offering from Stave & Steel retails around $15-20/bottle depending on geographic location.

Pours the deep reddish-purple color a good cab should. The nose is immediately greeted with a big whiff of smoky bourbon supported by floral notes and cherries. On the palate the bourbon is up front but not overbearing or dominating. The supporting flavors include dark chocolate, ripe cherries, mixed berries and features a smoky oak and tobacco finish with a touch of a warm vanilla aftertaste. Rich and substantial in the mouth and easy drinking.

If you like whiskey and you like wine, do yourself a favor and check this one out. It brings the two together beautifully. Pair with a hearty steak dinner or with a Habano or Maduro wrapped cigar for best results. Rating: 4.75/5.

And now for a truly special cigar pick:

Hiram and Solomon Veiled Prophet

The cream-of-the-crop stick in the Hiram and Solomon line by Blanco Cigars, this stick comes in one size (a whopping 7″ x 60RG “Grand Monarch” vitola) and features a Brazilian Arapiraca wrapper and an undisclosed binder and long fillers.

First light revealed a perfect draw producing plumes of thick, chewy medium-full bodied smoke containing notes of a sweet creamy leather, nuts and a peppery but not overbearing retrohale.

Getting into the first third the pepper dials back a bit allowing a bright, aromatic cedar to join the retrohale and bringing in a rich, sweet caramel onto the draw. The flavors remained largely consistent into the 2nd third but with an added level of complexity as a bright, light roast coffee joins the mix. A very long 2 hour and 15 minute smoke surprisingly only a mild/medium nicotine strength by the end of it (ending with around 2″ to go; if you like the hot nub you can easily get almost 3 hours out of it).

Construction was what I will call excellent. It did have some of the characteristic burn issues found in 60 ring gauge cigars and required occasional touch-ups. It did also prefer to be double-puffed for the first third or so as more airflow was needed to generate smoke than I had in my mouth, but these were small things and definitely worth the flavor package.

This would make a lovely after dinner or special occasion smoke. Would pair well with almost any drink you throw at it, but just make sure you have ample time to sit down and enjoy it. Rating: 4.75/5.

That’s a wrap for today. Hope you enjoyed this special edition of my reviews. Let me know what you thought!

Beer/Cigar Reviews – Salvator and La Hacienda

Welcome to another edition of my beer and cigar reviews where we take a look at some notable (and some not-so-notable!) beers and cigars. Let’s just jump right into this week’s reviews, starting with tonight’s beer selection:

Salvator

This offering from Paulaner Brauerei in Munich, Germany is a Doppelbock style lager. It weighs in at 7.9% ABV and an unspecified IBU and gravity rating.

Pour is a hazy red-orange color with a frothy white head that recedes fairly quickly leaving just a thin ring behind. Aromas of yeasty bread, toffee and a slight roasted character tickle the nose. Sweet, malty flavors consisting of a variety of malts from caramel to roasted over a bready core. A slight hint of coffee toward the back of the palate and finishing off with a faint hint of pineapple. Medium in body and low in carbonation, this beer drinks super smooth.

A solid doppelbock for sure, easy to please yet not too alcoholic so you can have a few. Rating: 4/5.

And now for today’s cigar review:

La Hacienda

This offering from Warped cigars is a Nicarguan puro. The vitola reviewed is the 5.5″ x 52RG Gran Robusto.

The first light revealed a fairly firm draw but producing a decent amount of medium-bodied smoke. A slightly sweet leather presented on the draw and a slight pepper on the retrohale.

Getting into the first third the pepper drops off while a bright floral note takes its place. The draw also sees the addition of dried pineapples. The 2nd third sees a slight transition with the leather shifts into notes of almonds. I ended the cigar with a third to go as burn issues made it a pain to smoke.

Construction was average at best and featured quite a wavy burn from the get-go. I touched it up about halfway and after that it was very difficult to keep lit. It went out at the 2/3s mark – beyond the point of no return and not worth re-lighting at that point.

Maybe I just got a bad example but while the flavors were okay the construction just did not work for me between the draw and burn issues. It just missed the mark for me I’m afraid. Rating: 2.5/5.

That’s it for today’s reviews. Have you had either of today’s offerings? Let me know what you thought!

Song Lyric Sunday 4/15/18 – Stay

I know it’s still Saturday in my neck of the woods (as this post goes live on 4/14 at 6:30 PM CDT), but I just couldn’t wait to post this. I have to get it out of my system now. This Song Lyric Sunday is dedicated to the memory of my very dear friend Shawn Bolvi-Singleton who passed away this past Monday. I’ll forever love you and miss you.

Alas, it’s time once again for our weekly dive into the world of music. This week’s theme is “stay” – a theme that hits home for me this week with the loss of my beloved friend. Please stay with us all in spirit. I wish you all could have known her – she was one of the kindest, most gentle and beautiful people I’ve ever met.

Anyway, the very second I saw the theme I knew which song to feature, because a brand new song has that one-word title – “Stay.” This song was released in November 2017 as a sister song to “I Love You But I’m Lost” to be featured on the compilation album Rule The World. The name of the album should give a vital hint as to who did this song.

So here’s the song (written by Curt Smith):

Speak, don’t speak
Go, don’t go
Damned if I do
Damned if I know
Wait, don’t linger
Wait damned slow
Stay for the open hand
Or let it all go

Young enough
To play the game
Old enough to know
It’s all or nothing

Stay, don’t stay
Go, don’t go
Stay, don’t stay
Go, don’t go

Dust to dust
We all fall down
One for the hills
Until we’re safe and sound of the

Young enough
To play the game
Old enough to know
It’s all or nothing

Stay, don’t stay
Go, don’t go
Stay, don’t stay
Go, don’t go

It’s all or nothing
Stay, don’t stay
Go, don’t go
Stay, don’t stay
Go, don’t go
Source: https://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/tearsforfears/stay.html

Well, that’s this week. Sorry for the slightly somber tone, but it just kind of fit with the events of this past week. Thank you to all my friends who showed me an outpouring of support; it means a lot to me.