30 November 2006

As we grow up, we learn that even the one person that wasn't supposed to ever let you down probably will. You will have your heart broken probably more than once and it's harder every time. You'll break hearts too, so remember how it felt when yours was broken. You'll fight with your best friend. You'll blame a new love for things an old one did. You'll cry because time is passing too fast, and you'll eventually lose someone you love. So take too many pictures, laugh too much, and love like you've never been hurt because every sixty seconds you spend upset is a minute of happiness you'll never get back.

Sometimes we get magic. Like hearing a song out of the blue that reminds you of a friend you've been missing. Or seeing a rainbow and wishing it to a sick friend and then suddenly seeing a double rainbow.

St. Andrew's Day

In honour of my Scottish heritage (by right of marriage) I am observing St. Andrew's Day today.

Saint Andrew is the Patron Saint of Scotland, and St. Andrew's Day is celebrated by Scots around the world on the 30th November. The flag of Scotland is the Cross of St. Andrew, and this is widely displayed as a symbol of national identity.

The "Order of Saint Andrew" or the "Most Ancient Order of the Thistle" is an order of Knighthood which is restricted to the King or Queen and sixteen others. It was established by James VII of Scotland in 1687.

Very little is really known about St. Andrew himself. He was thought to have been a fisherman in Galilee (now part of Israel), along with his elder brother Simon Peter (Saint Peter). Both became followers (apostles) of Jesus Christ, founder of the Christian religion. St. Andrew is said to have been responsible for spreading the tenets of the Christian religion though Asia Minor and Greece. Tradition suggests that St. Andrew was put to death by the Romans in Patras, Southern Greece by being pinned to a cross (crucified). The diagonal shape of this cross is said to be the basis for the Cross of St. Andrew which appears on the Scottish Flag. St. Andrews bones were entombed, and around 300 years later were moved by Emperor Constantine (the Great) to his new capital Constantinople (now Istambul in Turkey). Legend suggests that a Greek Monk (although others describe him as an Irish assistant of St. Columba) called St. Rule (or St. Regulus) was warned in a dream that St. Andrews remains were to be moved and was directed by an angel to take those of the remains which he could to the "ends of the earth" for safe-keeping. St. Rule dutifully followed these directions, removing a tooth, an arm bone, a kneecap and some fingers from St. Andrew's tomb and transporting these as far away as he could. Scotland was close to the extremities of the known world at that time and it was here that St. Rule was shipwrecked with his precious cargo.

St. Rule is said to have come ashore at a Pictish settlement on the East Coast of Scotland and this later became St. Andrews. Thus the association of St. Andrew with Scotland was said to have begun.

Perhaps more likely than the tale of St. Rule's journey is that Acca, the Bishop of Hexham, who was a renown collector of relics, brought the relics of St. Andrew to St. Andrews in 733. There certainly seems to have been a religious centre at St. Andrews at that time, either founded by St. Rule in the 6th century or by a Pictish King, Ungus, who reigned from 731 - 761.

Whichever tale is true, the relics were placed in a specially constructed chapel. This chapel was replaced by the Cathedral of St. Andrews in 1160, and St. Andrews became the religious capital of Scotland and a great centre for Medieval pilgrims who came to view the relics.

There are other legends of how St. Andrew and his remains became associated with Scotland, but there is little evidence for any of these, including the legend of St. Rule. The names still exist in Scotland today, including St. Rules Tower, which remains today amongst the ruins of St. Andrews Cathedral.

It is not known what happened to the relics of St. Andrew which were stored in St. Andrews Cathedral, although it is most likely that these were destroyed during the Scottish Reformation. The Protestant cause, propounded by Knox, Wishart and others, won out over Roman Catholism during the Reformation and the "idolatry of catholism", that is the Saints, relics, decoration of churches, were expunged during the process of converting the Roman Catholic churches of Scotland to the harsh simplicity of Knox's brand of Calvanism. The place where these relics were kept within the Cathedral at St. Andrews is now marked by a plaque, amongst the ruins, for visitors to see. The larger part of St. Andrew's remains were stolen from Constantinople in 1210 and are now to be found in Amalfi in Southern Italy. In 1879 the Archbishop of Amalfi sent a small piece of the Saint's shoulder blade to the re-established Roman Catholic community in Scotland.

In 1969, Gordon Gray, leader of the Roman Catholic Church in Scotland was in Rome to be appointed the first Scottish Cardinal since the Reformation. Pope Paul VI gave him further relics of St. Andrew with the words "Saint Peter gives you his brother". These are now displayed in a reliquary in St. Mary's Roman Catholic Cathedral in Edinburgh.

St. Andrew

29 November 2006


My sweet George was a kind and gentle spiritual being in life and in bodily
death. George was the essence of love and that love was ever present in his
music, his heartfelt words, his family, his voice, his gardens, and in his smile.

George, with great love and affection, you will always be in my heart.

Remembering George Harrison

Wednesday, November 29, 2006
The Rock Radio online

Hard to believe, but it was five years ago today (November 29th, 2001) that George Harrison lost his long battle with cancer and died at the age of 58. His legacy was secured as soon as the Beatles started making records in the early 1960s, but Harrison wasn't content to just be a sideman to John Lennon and Paul McCartney.

His contributions to the Beatles included the songs "Taxman," "Something," and "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" and his solo career kicked off with the Number One hit "My Sweet Lord" and Number One album All Things Must Pass. He was also responsible for The Concert For Bangla Desh, which was the first major rock and roll fundraiser paving the way for countless other music-supported benefits over the years. He later went on to become a member of the Traveling Wilburys with Bob Dylan, Roy Orbison, Tom Petty, and Jeff Lynne, finally securing himself legendary status. He is sorely missed -- today, and every day.

Maybe the best way to judge Harrison's importance is for his fellow artists
to talk about him:

When Harrison was inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame as a solo artist in March 2004, Tom Petty said: "George really was a man who lived every single minute of his life. He was a very upbeat person, had a very keen sense of humor, very keen sense of spirit, he led by example. Years before Live Aid, George invented the idea of rock and roll giving back to the people."

Badfinger guitarist Joey Molland worked with Harrison on All Things Must Pass, and Harrison helped the group make their Straight Up album in 1971. Molland told us what it was like taking direction from Harrison: "It was easy, very easy. You know, George was just such a nice guy, like...a regular kind of person, really. He doesn't come off, like, 'I'm a Beatle,' you know?"

Life-long friend Eric Clapton said that it might have taken Harrison's death to show people just how great he really was: "The best thing that came out of his passing was that we all got to remember exactly what he'd contributed, you know, as much as any of the other guys -- and maybe more so, because it was an individual achievement. You know, Lennon & McCartney's one thing, and Paul is one thing, and John's one, but I think George -- in my opinion, I found him, his work the most accessible, and the strongest, for me to tune in to."

Kiss singer-guitarist Paul Stanley told us that Harrison's legacy can't be underestimated: "Everybody knows that George Harrison is part of the fabric of rock 'n' roll and he's been an influence on everybody no matter what kind of music they play. Probably more so than they even know. He's been an influence on every kind of music that exists at this point because the Beatles are woven into everything that rock 'n' roll is about."


28 November 2006

Merry Christmas Charlie Brown

For those of you who keep up with this blog (ok, I'm admitting to two of you now, thank you very much) I will just say that I am recovering from my recent health problems. I thank everyone for your concern and good wishes.

Tonight we watched the Charlie Brown Christmas Special. Nothing gets me in the Christmas spirit as much as Snoopy and Linus. Now I'm ready to finish my Christmas shopping, mail the cards and bake the cookies.

Charles Schulz, aka Sparky, takes his eternal rest just around the corner from where we live, and I feel his spirit very near at this time.

15 November 2006

Time of the month

Tomorrow I go in for a second surgery in the past six months in an attempt to relieve symptoms of heavy and continuous bleeding. My so-called time of the month has been lasting for months at a time. It’s been draining (all puns intended) to say the least. I have not had my usual enthusiasm for living; I’m tired all the time, due to anemia. Everything I try to do seem to have some other undesirable side effect. I have had days where I’ve taken up to three birth control pills (by doctor’s orders). I’ve been an emotional wreck. I’ve been bitchy (ok I’ve been more than usually bitchy).

This procedure tomorrow will essentially end my fertility. I will not be able to carry out a pregnancy, BUT I can get pregnant so I must continue using birth control.

I asked my doctor if I am going through "the change" but he assured me that as long as I am bleeding I could not be menopausal. I feel like I am in some nether world of post-fertility and pre-menopause. No longer a maiden and not yet a crone.

09 November 2006

Fuzz Huzzi Rocks!

Best wishes to my nephew and his band Fuzz Huzzi and congratulations for being nominated for the Los Angeles Music Awards as Independant Rock Artist of the Year.

Allen has worked hard for many years in a tough business and he's finally getting some noteworthy recognition. I remember his first gig at Chula Vista High School... a long time ago.

Tonight Hollywood will rock to Fuzz Huzzi!

02 November 2006

Best Hug Video Ever - Grandpa Caleb does Halloween