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Archive for the ‘Black Mountain’ Category

I have become a big fan of the show Ghost Hunters on the Sci-Fi Network. These two plumbers-by-day-ghost-hunters-by-night and their team are intriguing to me. I’m hooked on the possibility of maybe there being some footage of a glimpse of an apparition on video. I don’t know what it is about it but I’m addicted. My favorite episode is the St. Augustine Lighthouse. They all had some questionable personal experiences but seeing the footage and hearing the recordings has me a little convinced about otherworldly goings on.

Now they have a Ghost Hunters International show that airs on Wednesday nights. I thought it had some great potential especially with Europe’s history going a little farther back than ours. But I’ve been let down.  The two downers for me are Brian Harnois, whose most memorable quote is, “Did you see that?” and Barry Fitzgerald the drama queen of the show. And, yet, I still watch.  Now, I’m not saying I’d be spooked and see stuff or not want to continue a hunt but I wouldn’t do it in front of a camera to be shown on TV.

Lately, I’ve been checking out Paranormal State on A&E. I was slightly interested in the differences of their pseudo-scientific techniques between TAPS and PRS.  Other than being a little more dramatic it’s not too bad. But the Elder Extroverted Holy One and I were watching Paranormal State last night and they visited a woman and her husband who were experiencing hauntings in their condo that was once a schoolhouse. As Ryan was interviewing the woman I saw that she looked very familiar. All of a sudden it hit me! She’s on the GHI crew! What the heck?!? I’m not sure how one becomes a haunted victim to a haunted hunter but she’s done it. With tacky outfits to boot (ya gotta watch the show).

Other than having some spooky vibes at one point or another I’ve never really had a personal experience. That is until the EEHO and I were at our dear friend’s parents’ house in Black Mountain, NC. Their family is probably one of the oldest in the town. Sitting around their great room one night I smelled pipe smoke and then so did the EEHO and we both commented on it. My friend had said that they had a relative (I can’t remember which one) had long since passed but used to smoke a pipe. That was kind of neat . . . as long as it’s not in my house! I have enough problems dealing with the brown recluses!

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As we pulled off of I-40 to get on Highway 9 into Black Mountain on Thursday we did our traditional/ceremonial rolling down of the windows to take in that Blue Ridge Mountain air.

Us:  “Do you smell that Young Extroverted One?”

YEO:  “Yeah, it smells like dog.”

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I was hoping for more varied responses to the previous post.  I think the winner is my dad’s comment with the Floridian’s response to certain traffic signals.  Beautiful.

Now to the lovely story.  I was driving down Church Street (just writing Church St. has me longing for the Black Mountain Bakery and their Mountain Mystique coffee brew on a lovely cool morning . . . sigh . . .) on my way to work and came upon the blinking yellow light as Church goes over 65.  I should have proceeded with caution considering I just saw two cars fly through the blinking red-light of which they are supposed to stop, look for any on-coming traffic and then proceed through the intersection.  But, no.  It’s early, it’s Saturday and there aren’t many cars out.  All of a sudden a small white car comes barrelling down on me.  Feet on brake.  A little fishtailing.  Speedy heart rate.  But no awful sound of front of white car smashing into side of my car.  No deployment of airbags.  Whew.  After laying down some lovely words directed toward the errant driver I proceed on.  As I look back in my rear view mirror at the next red light I watch another car just fly through the intersection.

I’ve always been a firm believer that drivers in Nashville were bad.  This just adds more proof.  Ugh.  I find myself driving more offensively than defensively.  I’m sure there are bad drivers everywhere but give me a break.

Well, Men’s Health has a list of cities that has the worst and best drivers.  I think I’ll look over the top ten cities with the best drivers and move there.

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I just heard about 30 minutes ago that the wonderful Ruth Graham just passed away.  I don’t have any words to describe what an absolute beautiful person she was.  I didn’t even know her personally.  But . . . wow.  So, I’ll let Reverend Graham do it:

“Ruth was my life partner, and we were called by God as a team,” Billy Graham said in a statement. “No one else could have borne the load that she carried. She was a vital and integral part of our ministry, and my work through the years would have been impossible without her encouragement and support.

“I am so grateful to the Lord that He gave me Ruth, and especially for these last few years we’ve had in the mountains together. We’ve rekindled the romance of our youth, and my love for her continued to grow deeper every day. I will miss her terribly, and look forward even more to the day I can join her in Heaven.”

Oof.

 

I only have a couple of ties to her and her wonderful family: I saw the Grahams at Tong Sing once. Tong Sing isn’t a classy Chinese food joint but the best one we have in Black Mountain. At the time I just happened to look up and see the Reverend Billy Graham return to his seat from the restroom. Of course, he was carried by four angels.  Once he got back to his seat I saw the rest of the Grahams sitting there eating Chinese food.  Or, rather being fed Chinese food. God has them hooked up! =)

 

Also, as a wilderness ranger for the Montreat Conference Center I had the pleasure of spending time with Franklin Graham’s mother-in-law.  She has volunteered down at the Nature Center (ranger hut) for countless years.  Through her I met her grandchildren, Franklin’s children.  They were very fun to be around, especially, when I was doing environmental education for the conference center’s Club’s program.

Um . . . wow . . . all I can say is the world lost a special person today.  God be with the family (as if I needed to say that) and especially Reverend Graham.

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Okay, it seems that every blogger in Nashville is talking about this potential purchase of the Nashville Predators by a Canadien (gasp) businessman. As a hockey fan I might as well jump on this bandwagon and say my piece (or is it peace? MTA a little help?) about the impending transaction.

To start off this post I must share an anecdote. The day I drove the Uhaul filled with our possessions I tuned in to one of the sports radio networks (I can’t remember which one) when they announced that Paul Kariya had just signed on to be a Predator. Hearing that announcement made the move from my beloved Black Mountain, North Carolina to Nashville worth it. The Elder Extroverted Holy One’s acceptance into Vanderbilt Divinity School aside I was all about living in a town with a NHL team again.

Okay, back to the topic at hand.

First of all the deal is not done.

The sale must be closed by June 30. Approval before that date from the NHL’s board of governors would be required.

Balsillie, the co-CEO of BlackBerry-maker Research in Motion Ltd., who saw his recent bid to buy the Pittsburgh Penguins fall apart, said he is respectful of all the “due diligence” required before the Predators deal can close.

“This is still Craig Leipold’s franchise until the deal is completed, so for me to comment at this time on any number of topics relative to the franchise would not be appropriate,” Balsillie said in a statement.

Hoops need to be jumped through and so forth and so on. However, I am as pessimistic about the outcome as most others are.

I must say that the current predicament the Preds are in I’m going to have to blame the corporate entities here in Nashville. As the Wall Street Journal says, “In a league where teams shoot for a 65-35 split between corporate and consumer ticketholders, the Predators’ fan base is about 30% corporate and 70% consumer.”

One can’t expect the fan base in this southern town to carry the whole burden of supporting the team. It has to be the whole community, which includes the local businesses. It seems that we, as fans, have done quite a lot to support our team. Heck, the Young Extroverted One loved our experience so much that she cried when I took someone else to a game! If I could afford it I would definitely get a couple of season tickets so I can take her to every game and to support our team.

When I worked for the Carolina Hurricanes it was extremely tough to make fans out of NASCAR and ACC basketball fans. It basically took a Stanley Cup win to build a following but there was definitely a core fan base that stuck it through the whole time. Plus, it took the local Raleigh businesses to get behind them. That’s what we need here.

But I must also keep in mind that this is all about business. If the deal goes through and the lease agreements aren’t made then Balsillie can do whatever he chooses with the team. If he decides to move it to a more hockey friendly community, like anywhere in Canada, then that’s his prerogative. I love hockey, I love the Predators but this relationship can’t work if the entire community doesn’t jump in to support them as well.

If any out-of-towners would like to support the Introvert/Extrovert family’s wishes to help support the Nashville Predators with season tickets then leave a comment below with your pledges. A hockey fan representative will contact you shortly.

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I’m sitting here in the fine home of our dear friends, currently stealing someone’s wi-fi (thanks whoever you are!) and enjoying the scenery here in Black Mountain, NC. I have certainly missed this quaint town on the verge of being surrounded by gated communities spoiling the ridge tops of these Blue Ridge Mountains. I’m not really sure if it’s B.M. or just the area because we really enjoy Asheville too. Whenever the Elder Extroverted Holy One graduates I’d really like to be back here.

It’s not that we don’t like Nashville. We really do enjoy being there. I think it’s the community feeling that we miss the most.  As we pulled into the Ingles parking lot to pick up some wine* for our host family the EEHO saw and greeted three or four people she knew. I only see one person that I know when I go into the Inglewood Kroger every couple of weeks and that doesn’t guarantee they’ll speak to me (or me to them . . . what can I say? I AM an introvert!).

Just driving from one place to another in this place we have seen people that we know going about their business. It’s comforting to experience that kind of thing. In East Nashville it’s more like, “Hey!  There goes that kid who broke into my car last week!”  Definitely not the warm and fuzzy feeling that one gets from a small, mountain community.

I guess the one thing that’s going for Music City is that we wouldn’t have to pack and move again. Plus, the hockey team. Oh and the museums and concert venues. Add to that the fact that I have a job that is year round. Oh well, maybe we’ll stay. I swear to you out there in the blogospherical universe I will have seasons tickets to Predators hockey if we stay!

*It is SOOOOO nice to be able to buy wine at the grocery store and not some nasty liquor store.

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