From The Ashes

As I was wrapping up the writing on my blog "Heading For The Light" on November 28, news reports were slowly filtering in from the other side of the Smokies: Gatlinburg was literally on fire. The Chimney Tops fire that I mentioned in the previous blog had suddenly, wildly expanded, as promised and much-needed rains were preceded by hurricane force winds, some reaching up to 90 MPH. Those winds picked up burning embers from the Chimney Tops fire and rapidly deposited them at random throughout the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and Sevier County, setting new fires - fourteen separate fires in all - that engulfed areas quickly with no warning. The area that was already choking under a fog

Counting 'em Down

When I was a kid, I had my own little Saturday morning ritual. Starting around 1980, not long after my father passed, I'd make a bee line to the grand room in our house, sit on the couch, and turn the radio to Z-93 in Atlanta to hear Casey Kasem on American Top 40. And for four hours, I'd sit and be mesmerized by the tunes Casey played, some of which weren't even on Z-93's playlist. I'd listen as he counted them down, from 40 to number one. And I did this for years, all the way until Z-93 changed into a Classic Rock format in 1989, and after Casey himself jumped ship and started his own countdown show independent from AT40 in 1988. To this day, if you ask me about a particular song, I could

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