Aug 30, 2011

Frog Follies 2011...

If you've ever read through my Great Race Web site, you might have seen the following entry from June 20,  2001 (the year we went from Atlanta to Pasadena): "In Evansville, we had a greeting party!  It seems that Analda Anglin’s parents live not far from Evansville, and they had been waiting patiently for our arrival.  They even had cold drinks and snacks!  The four of us ate together and had a nice chat, after which we had to leave for our next timed segment.  Our thanks for the great Evansville fan club!"

That day, Analda's mother mentioned to me that I might enjoy coming back to Evansville in August for something called the Frog Follies.  She said it was a car show that had been hosted by a local hot rod club for a number of years.  I recall thinking that the last thing I was going to want to do when I got home was to drive a couple of hundred miles to attend a local car show!!

Fast forward a few years.  I got involved in the design and building of a hot rod.  I became a frequent visitor to several hot rod related Web sites.  I began to read reviews of the Frog Follies by many attendees from several states.  They all raved about the hospitality, the setting, organization, size, variety and quality of the cars.  It turns out that this is a car show of importance, especially to folks with pre-1949 vehicles.  So this year, after careful consideration, I and Monty Love (faithful sidekick) decided to attend.  We didn't decide to go until early August, but we were fortunate to find a few rooms still available.

It is a terrific event.  We will undoubtedly try to attend again in the future.  I wish I had listened to Analda's mother back in 2001...

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Aug 4, 2011

A Real American Hero...

Chip Ramsey, a few days ago, in Afghanistan (photo courtesy L. Dowling)
For several years, I worked with Chip Ramsey.  He was a hard working, competent fellow and a helluva nice guy.  He was also a member of the Army National Guard and a card-carrying patriot.  Some of you may remember that when Mary Ann and I participated in the 2006 Great Race, we carried an American Flag.  At every stop, we asked people to write notes of thanks to our service men and women on the fabric and to sign them.  We got hundreds of notes and signatures.  The flag was sent to a unit in Iraq where it was proudly flown in the war zone.  That was Chip Ramsey's idea and he made sure the flag made it to Iraq.  He was that kind of American.  He left last November for his second tour in Afghanistan, after having previously served in Iraq.

I heard today that on August 4th a sniper's bullet ended his too-brief life.  He was 41.  He leaves a widow, Mary, and two small children behind.  And our nation is much poorer for his passing.  Good bye, Chip.  We will miss you.  There are no words to express our gratitude for your sacrifice.  Rest in Peace, my friend.