Saturday, March 19, 2011

Beat like a rented mule

 Kristyn Harris - A real rising star

So, yes it has been a while since I posted, but as always I have a good excuse. I have been busy.

Last weekend I was tied up with performing at the 15th Annual Cowboy Festival in Kamloops, B.C.  I was performing in what they call the Rising Star showcase. While rising star might adequately describe some of my fellow performers, in my case it should have been called "the not even a hope-in-hell competition."

I jest, of course. I had a great time even though I was competing against some very talented folks. We gave three performances over Friday and Saturday and were judged at each performance and then the top three in both poetry and singing went on to the main stage event on Sunday. Due to a mix up in the adding of scores (I am sure) I ended up on the main stage with 5 very good performers.

The kid, Jayden Stafford, who won the poetry was some precocious 9 year old who was reciting the poetry of Brian Salmond. The combination of the kid's delivery and Brian's poems made him a crowd favourite and I was quite content to use the opportunity to make 300 people I didn't know listen to some of my poems and stories. The fact that our local radio station, Country 103, put up $2,000 in prize money made the experience even more enjoyable and I walked away with some impressive folding money in my pockets for being a runner-up. Country 103 is a real strong supporter of cowboy and country music in our town and my hat is tipped to them.

The singing part of the competition was very close and again, it was youth and talent that took the top spot. Folks would do well to keep an eye out for Kristyn Harris a teen-aged Texan fireball that has an upbeat personality and a great grasp of Texas-swing.

Apart from inflicting my poetry on folks I have been busy with my TESL course and working for a living. Tomorrow with favourable weather I will be out making movies.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Who - who's there?

Just a real quick post today as I am up to the proverbial armpits in alligators. This week will be the "perfect storm" in terms of projects for yours truly.

First I have about 6 zillion assignments due for my TESL classes. Next I have two sets of lesson plans to prepare and deliver for the ESL class I am teaching. Then, I have a huge stack of applications on my desk to process at work. Adding to the stress, the Cowboy festival kicks off on Friday and I am thinking of changing my set which is probably a very bad idea at this pint. Finally, Lisa and Nick will be by for supper tonight and I have to get some ribs in the oven and all of the other fixins that go with a sunday supper. Looks like I won't be getting off to the workshop at TRU that I was hoping to attend.

So why have I had time to hike around Kenna Cartwright Park, and to go out to Tranquille taking video of the waxwings? Why? That's a very good question. Maybe I know that no one has ever died, wishing they had spent more time at work.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Git along doggies

The 15th annual B.C. Cowboy festival is about to descend upon Kamloops and I are in it. I thought it might be a bit of a stretch losing all of that fine grammar I were taught at the university but apparently, at least according to my profs, I was doing a very good job of masking any grammar that I had picked up.

Fortunately, aficionados of cowboy doggerel are not as discerning. And it is for those that I post the following:

The hundred dollar shirt

I could’a spent the money
on booze or girls that flirt
But there’s nothing like the feeling
Of a hundred dollar shirt

The girls will often leave ya
And the booze just makes you hurt
But you’ll never be mistreated
By a hundred dollar shirt

Oh, I could’ve paid the feed bill,
Or squared up with the vet
But the smell of fresh pressed cotton
Why a fellow can’t forget

With its brocade and its buttons
Why it’s better than dessert
And I’m prouder than a peacock
In my hundred dollar shirt

So when you’re feeling beaten
Whipped by life’s relentless quirt
You’ll find the perfect pick-me-up
Is a hundred dollar shirt

Bright and gaily coloured
Neatly pressed right off the rack
More like a million dollars
You got hanging on your back

And when my race is over
And they lay me in the dirt
You’ll surely see me smiling
In my hundred dollar shirt