An American Chimera

Latest

Veterans Day

 

US Flag - U.S.S. LCI 541

To all of our Vets – I am grateful. You make me proud of this country. This flag was flown on D-Day, June 6th, 1944 during the Invasion of Omaha Beach, Normandy, France. My wife and I took this photo at the Commemorative Air Force Museum in Midland Texas.

Hello world!

Welcome to WordPress.com. This is your first post. Edit or delete it and start blogging!

Ray Wylie Hubbard – Texas Troubadour

Ray Wylie Hubbard

My wife and I had the pleasure of seeing Ray Wylie Hubbard perform at the Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts in Arlington Texas. It was an amazingly intimate show. Ray joked around a bit with the  audience as he spoke about his life. For those that don’t know about the Great Ray Wylie Hubbard. I have to say that as a Texas Songwriter he is among the company of our greatest troubadours, Willie Nelson, Townes Van Zandt, and Waylon Jennings. He may be a little more on the blues and rock side of the spectrum but the twang and chime of his country and folk influences shine brightly. He is the kind of songwriter that mentions William Blake, Howling Wolf, and St John the Revelator all in one set. He finds the sacred in the least of us and the abyss in the those of us that are held in the highest esteem. All while pelting stones at his own human existence. Thanks to you Ray Wylie Hubbard for all the great songs and one hell of a show.

COWTOWN to JET-TOWN

Most people know of Fort Worth as Cowtown. This is the city that touts the slogan “Where The West Begins!” While it is true that the cattle drives of yesterday helped put Fort Worth on the map. The airplane took Fort Worth higher, further, and faster. The city built the B-24 Bomber that helped win WWII. The F-16 Fighter is also built here, and has become one of the greatest combat aircraft ever built. Besides manufacturing there has always been a large military aviation presence. Many aircraft and airman from the area have been deployed across the globe. While Fort Worth is a world leader in aviation the entire North Texas region has also contributed. The Fort Worth Memorial Air Park showcases this regional effort with Aircraft displays and Aviation Artifacts. The Air Park is actually a cooperative effort between the Forward Air Controller’s Museum, B-36 Peacemaker Museum and the Fort Worth Air & Space Museum Foundation. I met with a Museum Guide named Buster that had been a C-5 Galaxy Pilot and also worked at the Lockheed Factory. He was passionate and knowledgable about every aircraft on display. It was contagious as I would catch myself gazing at the angled lines of tapered wings and streamlined fuselages of Cold War Aircraft. All of these planes served us well and continue to do so as they inspire future generations of Airman and Aviation Enthusiasts. Please visit http://facmuseum.org/

A-4 Sky Hawk

O-2 Sky Master Rockets

F-5 Aggresor

F-4 Phantom

A-7 Corsair

OV-10 Bronco

F-4 Phantom

Ted The Gnome

Ted The Gnome

The Garden Gnome has been around for a long time. They have visited more destinations throughout the globe than I will ever have the privilege of doing. This has been proven and is extensivley documented. That’s ok I don’t mind so much, we have Ted. He is now a part of our family. I named him as my wife and I browsed the shelves at our local Target. He was conceived in Germany, made in China and purchased in the Great State of Texas. So I guess he has already existed in one form or another on three continents. I have a feeling that Gnomes are loosing their appeal. They have peaked in popularity. That’s ok though I may be a late adopter but I was brought up to “dance the with the one that brought you.” So Ted has a home in front of our large oak tree. The only competition that Ted may have one day is the Pink Flamingo. I doubt that a saintly St. Francis or a serene Buddha would pose any threat to our chubby friend. So Ted, with all that you have been through. I have to say, Welcome To The Family.

July 4th

This is so beautiful….

American Muscle – Mustang Mach 1 – The End Of An Era

1973 Mustang Mach 1 - The End Of An Era

Ford 351 Cleveland

Simulated Wood Grain and Vinyl Interior

Mach 1 Badge

Pony Gas Cap

Rear Spoiler

I came across this magnificent machine at the car show that I wrote about in my previous blog entry. What makes this vehicle so significant to me is that it marks the end of an era. The Ford Mustang Mach 1 as shown was manufactured from 1970 -1973. This is when the muscle car era started to come to an end. The War in Vietnam was coming to a close, the economy was not so great, and the price of gas was rising. One side effect of the changing world was the idea of planned obsolescence. Granted nothing lasts forever but this car and those before it were made to last. I am inclined to believe that as this era ended designers and bookkeepers realized there was more profit to be made in cars that would need to be replaced rather than repaired. If I were to guess the early 1970’s was the time that the WWII generation began to retire. Twenty-five years or so earlier the Auto factories in Michigan had manufactured the jeeps, aircraft, and tanks that won the campaigns in Europe and the Pacific. These machines were rugged and were easily maintained. They were not only pretty to look at but also utilitarian in nature. These ideals carried over into the Great American Cars of the 1950’s, 1960’s, and early 70’s. After the mid 1970’s everything changed, as that was the time that disposable culture came into total fruition. In short the era of “Built to Last” had ended.