Little Drummer Boy

I heard DRUMMER BOY on the radio and it was almost exactly the arrangement we have for The Caroling Company. It was a version by the Harry Simeone Chorale, so I looked it up on the internet, and found this story:

allmusic > Harry Simeone > Biography: “In 1958 Simeone contracted with the 20th Century Fox label to record a Christmas LP. In the midst of assembling the 25-member Harry Simeone Chorale, he also began seeking material to record, discovering ‘The Little Drummer Boy’ via friend Henry Onorati. The song, of unknown origin but presumably based on melodies of both Czech and Spanish descent, was given English-language lyrics by Katherine Davis in 1941 but not recorded until 1957, when it appeared on the Jack Halloran Singers’ Onorati-arranged Christmas Is A-Comin’.

Simeone loved the song, and made it the first single from his 1958 LP, Sing We Now of Christmas. ‘The Little Drummer Boy’ was immediately hailed as a modern classic, generating some 150 cover versions and global sales topping 25 million. In 1960 Simeone returned to the charts with ‘Onward Christian Soldiers,’ and in 1962 returned to Bethlehem with a second enduring seasonal favorite, ‘Do You Hear What I Hear?’ He died in New York City on February 22, 2005.”

Evangelical Scientists Refute Gravity With New ‘Intelligent Falling’ Theory

“According to the ECFR paper published simultaneously this week in the International Journal Of Science and the adolescent magazine God’s Word For Teens!, there are many phenomena that cannot be explained by secular gravity alone, including such mysteries as how angels fly, how Jesus ascended into Heaven, and how Satan fell when cast out of Paradise.”

Read More from the Onion

Did It

There must’ve been 1,000 runners. Marathoner Seth accompanied and encouraged me, although I could see it was a little difficult for him to throttle back to my pace. Nonetheless, I knocked about 2 minutes off my neighborhood 3 mile time. Its not about racing; we’re all winners.

computer rebuild

I got the download.trojan virus on my new Dell PC. So I wiped the harddrive and upgraded with an XP Pro install. What a pain; I have spent hours and hours struggling with this. I just managed to finish up my approx. 4 min movie edit of our Blue Springs camping trip. Its the last thing I did prior to giving up on trying to remove the virus. I completed it on the struggling, sick PC yesterday. The video is in raw AVI, so as soon as I get things restored, I’ll convert it and share it. Stay tuned. Now I’ve got to finish restoring all my software….priorities completed so far:

OS Updates
Norton AV
Groupwise (for work email)
Firefox browser
Printer installation and sharing.


Last November I decided to start some regular exercise (it was one of my post-graduate school objectives). I thought early morning running would be convenient and cheap. My last encounter with running/jogging was in my late 20’s before I moved to Florida. What I remembered well was the total tedium encountered in a 30 minute run — I targeted a running time, not a distance.

Well, I headed out in November 2004 and to my complete surprise, I couldn’t make it to the end of the block without getting winded and my legs cramping up. What happened to my modest (if boring) running endurance of 20 years earlier? So I set a goal: I would be able to run 30 minutes, or 3 miles, by my 51st birthday (Dec 2005).

At Linda’s urging we got a treadmill for christmas and I traded the pavement for running/walking in front of the TV, and started a regimen of at least a 30 minute workout 3 times a week. With the treadmill, it was really easy to control a gradual increase in my distance and speed. And with the TIVO I could catch up on my TV viewing at the same time.

I had two setbacks from injuries; First I got “catcher’s knee*” from extended kneeling scenes I had in the spring opera Aida, then this fall, I got “swimmer’s knee” in the other leg from an aggresive body surfing session at Cocoa Beach. Both of these ailments are forms of bursitis, and in each case I seriously aggravated it by running to injury on the treadmill, and each time it took about 4 weeks to fully recover and get me back on track. After the second recovery, I quickly accelerated my treadmill distance to a 3 mile non-stop run on a regular basis, and a few weeks ago, I registered for a bona fide outdoor 5K (3.1 miles) race to be held on thanksgiving morning.

I figured I better get some practice outside on the pavement before I tried the 5K in public, so I tried a 2 mile run one morning. It was hard; much more difficult than 3 miles on the treadmill, and my knee swelled up a little bit and gave me some warning pains when climbing stairs. I took care of my knee, and the next time out I paced myself more carefully, and tried to adopt my marathoning friend’s advice to work on my gait and run “over” the ground, not “on” the ground. (Linda said this sounds zen-like).

This morning, I completed a 3 mile outdoor circuit, running non-stop, in 36 min 41 sec. I’ve met my goal, and I can do the 5k next week!

*better known as “housemaid’s knee“, but I strongly prefer the association with an athletic injury! The orthopedic doctor (who’s practice is mostly athletic) snickered and called it an ‘opera injury’.

Singing News

I made my debut with the Caroling Company today at the Festival of the Trees. Its a freebie gig for me to be checked out and see if I’m ready for paying jobs. I think I passed. My carol-mates were all seasoned and experienced.

Also this weekend I heard from the Orlando Opera, and I’ll be cast in the spring production of Tosca. Rehearsals start in March, performances in late April.

Large Redfish

I had the day off of work, so I went out early this morning. I would estimate this redfish at 30+ lbs, I landed him with a 6″ plastic jerk bait on 8lb test line. It was a long fight getting him to the boat (I hooked up while under the bridge in the background), then trying to set up this picture took a little bit of time. I flushed water back and forth through his gills by holding him along side of the boat, and he revived and swam off.