Tennessee Stud

CashThe Tennessee Stud was long and lean
The color of the sun and his eyes were green
He had the nerve and he had the blood
There was never a horse like the Tennessee Stud – Johnny Cash

Been a long strange week and theres no better way to hold the line then with some Johnny Cash.

Some idiots decided to take out their frustrations of not making friends, money, or getting laid in this country by assembling some crude explosive devices and deploying them against innocent people in a popular foot race in Boston. Some people died, some people lost legs, some people lost their faith in the simple notion of public safety.

Then as has been proven time and again in this nations short history, when things are down we pull together and stand as one. Its a shame it takes such extreme devastation to look past religious or political differences to come together as a nation as was evidenced this past week in the subsequent killing and capture of the two suspects.

None the less we live in different times now. Its not up to our government to protect us from every idiot retard kid with a gun or extreme idealogical asshole with a pipe bomb. One needs to be vigilant and aware of their surroundings at the mall, NASCAR races, football games, or the movie theater. If somethings strange or your gut tells you somethings not right, move along or tell someone.

The kid that lost both his legs, who later in the hospital told the FBI/authorities the bomber looked him in the face, placed the backpack/bomb at his feet and then walked away only two and a half minutes later to have the bomb go off may be hailed as a hero. The fact remains, he unknowingly stood next to a goddamn bomb, after watching the bomber place the pack at his feet and did nothing. While hindsight is always 20/20 in this day and age if you’re out in highly congested areas and some jackass sets a rather large backpack on the ground and moves away in a fashion like he/she isn’t coming back you get your ass out of dodge too.

American BulldogIn other news, I adopted another dog from the local animal shelter. In keeping with my tradition of naming all my animals after characters from the movie Cool Hand Luke, say hello to Dragline.

Drag is about a three year old American Bulldog, Pit, Mastiff and anything else. About a year ago the local no kill shelter got him from the Humane Society which was going to Buddieseuthanize him the very next day. Dragline at the time was heartworm positive and not in good shape. We got him cleaned up, healthy again, and now he is thriving and in my home with my Cocker Spaniel, Lucas Jackson War Hero.

Both dogs are getting along without any overt our outward aggression. I keep my eye on them since they’re both males and when any sizing up to see who is the alpha between the two starts to take place, I get in the middle and show them that neither of them are in charge that I am their pack leader. The last few days around here have been lots of exercise, discipline and love. Rinse lather repeat. Its working.

Guns and the second amendment has been a pretty hot topic these last few months. I will admit I felt good about watching a dejected Obama cry on TV about his gun legislation not getting past the senate. As if I needed to state publicly, I am not in favor of ANY additional gun control. Not “assault” weapons bans or magazine capacity limitations. I do not support private sale background checks. If a government agent can come to my door with a thirty round magazine in an assault type weapon, as long as I am not a convicted felon I should be able to meet that force with the exact same level. Period the end. Its not about hunting, its not about need. Its about simple unalienable right!

.45 auto 1911Last week, a friend of mine whom is new to firearms and shooting wanted to go to a gun range and shoot. I offered my services since any opportunity bring someone new into shooting and firearms with some level of safety and respect is a good thing. I have plenty of guns, been shooting all my life so away we went.

We drove to a brand new indoor rage not to far from here. Plenty of staff, new accommodations and equipment. Gun rental, ammunition, eye and ear protection you know the scene.

After a short questionnaire and hold harmless releases, all new members watch a five minute range safety video. No problem I think and we head over to a small tv in the corner of the establishment.

Its a Saturday, business is good and there are plenty of people in the shop both customer and staff. My friend and I are about a minute into the safety video, the front counter is over my right shoulder behind me where business is being conducted. People buying range ammo, renting guns, having personal weapons safety checked for used on range etc.

Then it happens.


In all of about 1/2 second I automatically know what the sound is without even flinching or turning my head. My lady friend who has never really shot or been around guns jumps about three feet straight up. I position myself between her and where the sound came from. I think in my head, “ok we’re at a gun range with clearly armed staff, we’re not being robbed, so the next thing is accidental discharge and I am going to look over there now and see someone bleeding out on the floor if they weren’t already dead.” Remember the elapsed time from gunshot to me making sure my friend was ok, to turning around knowing what I was going to see was all of about 1/2 to 3/4 of a second.

I look over, sure enough accidental discharge. No one is down, no one is bleeding. Good sign. Some young kid staff member had the sense to point the customers weapon into a safe direction while either clearing a jammed weapon or handed a loaded weapon from a customer. I never got the full story, but the rest of the staff didn’t beat the shit out of the customer after the fact so I suspect the staff was trying to clear a jam, which was successful albeit through the wall behind the cash register.

While the entire establishment is deathly silent and in disbelief, I rather loudly proclaim “maybe you guys (staff) need to watch this movie too.”

Everyone is ok, the staff member chokes his balls back out of his throat and excuses himself to go change his pants.

I knew this wasn’t going to be a good start to introducing my friend to the pleasures of shooting and gun ownership. However she was a trooper and continued on. Nervously.

I had my heirloom reworked 1911 .45cal that my grandfather carried in WWII and my father carried in Vietnam. I rented a nice Luger .357 roll gun for my friend as she was interested in revolvers. Now you’re probably thinking “you gave a woman new to shooting, who just stood 10 feet away from an accidental discharge a .357?”

First timersYes I did. I am of the opinion while I have her here go big now and get it over with. You know what? She shot it too and believe it or not with all things considered she did very good with it. It is in fact too much gun for her, but I reassured her this is all part of the process of finding a personal weapon. You shoot a bit of everything, but now she has pretty much as far as kick and power, shot the worst of the worst. Granted there’s the .44 mags and .50 hand cannons but we already know those will never be a part of her arsenal. We put a box through the .357 and .45 and she tries both. She’s never really been around an active busy gun range and shot at the same time, plus with being unnerved with the slight episode in the lobby, she did do well. I was proud of her. We’ll go again to the range and try other guns. She’ll get more accustomed to the sounds and smells, and she’ll one day pick a gun to call her own. All in all a successful fist trip.

Let ‘er rip, tater chips!

Whadda ya want from me?

IMG_0091“One dog goes one way, the other dog goes the other way, and this guy is sayin’, ‘Whadda ya want from me?'”

Hello loyal readers, hello world, hello Monday. Before we get going too far, let me first apologize for the content slow down at the Whats Up Brock empire. Sometimes life, work, or writers block gets the better of any of us and we slow down a bit. I wouldn’t necessarily say I have suffered from writers block or have nothing to say, but from time to time I look back at some of my writing trends and I add up the “Fucks, Politics, Religion or Vagina” posts and think maybe I should take a nap and come back with something fresh. I Don’t want to post just to post just to post. I believe in the have something to say, then say it but don’t bore people and be repetitive. Or something like that. Who needs rules when you’re at the top of the food chain?

Speaking of food chain. This past Friday I was fortunate to meet up with some close friends and start a new annual tradition. Good low country crawfish boil.

I have had crawfish many times in the past via restaurants here and there over the years. To really enjoy crawfish as much as any self respecting Louisiana Cajun you need to cook a metric shit ton of ’em, and sit around eating them outside in the company of friends. We did this and it was excellent. DSC_0378

I had brought this idea up to a good friend of mine this past fall. Crawfish season is in the spring, and that for anyone not living within driving distance to Louisiana can go online and buy and have shipped overnight live fresh crawfish to their door.

I was literally a day away from putting in an online order to Louisiana to have 30lbs of fresh crawfish shipped in. Now you may be thinking 30lbs of crawfish is a lot. How much does that cost and who are you feeding? Believe it or not 30lbs of crawfish shipped to your door isn’t terribly expensive at about $160. Furthermore 30lbs of crawfish isn’t a lot in regards to amount one has to eat. 30lbs is actually the smallest amount you should buy. Specifically 30lbs of crawfish is enough to feed about 10-12 people or 2 Cajuns as my friend Allen and I proved.


We didn’t ship these in overnight. The day before I was going to order them, my friend Allen, knew some folks that were driving up to Louisiana for a vacay and he gave them a cooler and some cash and viola we had 30lbs of live crawfish at our door for less then half the cost of having them flown via FedEx. 30lbs of crawfish $60. Oh and before I forget, live fresh crawfish will live about 4-5 days no problem in a cooler. So if you live within a days drive of Louisiana and you know someone going that way in the spring time, give them a cooler and some cash, you wont regret it.

There are many ways to cook crawfish. Steamed, boiled, you name it. Some add potatoes, corn, onion, garlic, lemon, sausage, spice packs. We elected to do a traditional boil, or a modified traditional boil. Some will add the sausage and vegetables in with the crawfish while they cook but we elected to boil the crawfish first, remove to a cooler then cook the potatoes, corn, sausage alone in the water. The reason is the sausage will render off the fat  and grease while it cooks and this way you don’t get all your crawfish oily and greasy. At least that was our reasoning and it worked out well.

When all is said and done, you get some friends together around a table, lay down some newspaper, then pile up the cooked goodness in the center of the table and go to town. Theres the whole pinch the tail, suck the head thing and I have to tell you its glorious. IMG_0928

Now what you see on the table here was the first pile of about five, ten of us together went through. Well let me rephrase that. This was the first pile that ten of us ate, then there was about four more piles of about this size that Allen and I went through with shit eating grins and pure culinary bliss.

Everyone enjoyed the crawfish some more then others. Its a lot of work for a little succulent tail meat. However its camaraderie around the table with friends that is the main ingredient being shared and enjoyed the most.

We all sat down and enjoyed the first heap of crawfish. Some ate the corn and potatoes and sausage, I think I tried some sausage. After that first heap, Allen and I looked at each other saw that everyone else happily tried some and then we got down to business with a five gallon bucket between us for the shells and we wiped out about about 25 of the 30lbs between us. Really 30lbs of crawfish isn’t a lot. There is only about a bite of tail meat and juice in the body region. The rest gets thrown away. I wasn’t even full. Well actually I was happily full but not “oh god, I pigged out and ate too much full.” Online when ordering crawfish sites will state normal people will eat about 2lbs each but figure about 10lbs for a Cajun. Allen and I proved this is true as we passed the Cajun mark and happily headed into Troy Landry “shoot ’em” territory.

Allen and I pretty much committed this activity to a once a year tradition and depending on who we invite next time, we’ll pretty much ensure the two of us will easily eat 15lbs each and then we’ll add more for any other guests. Its a good time and an easy way to get folks together around a table for good food.

There was cake, pie, brownies / blondies, pulled pork there too, and I tried a bit of each, but I will have to be honest this inaugural event was about the almighty crustaceans.

If you like shrimp, lobster, or other assorted seafood I venture a guess you’ll love crawfish.

Let ‘er rip tater chips.

Renegades of Funk

sunIts been a long strange week. Strange in that I cant quite figure out what is in that air but there is some Tomfoolery about. I think. Maybe. Sort of.

Its the feels like it is the Springtime of my lovin’ the second season I am to know oh oh oh…sorry Led Zeppelin moment there. Yes its like this each spring. Most complain that the only thing Florida lacks is clear delineated seasons. Most will claim we have two seasons down here. Hot and hot/wet and for the most part that is accurate, but to me I could always tell when it was spring. Not so much weather-wise but more a state of mind.

In my case springtime is a few short weeks before summer or what we call “the rest of the year.” I always know its spring when I travel up and down the roads in the interior parts of the state. You can smell the orange blossoms from the groves. I cant explain the smell or compare it to anything other then industrial mechanics hand cleaner but in the air all around you.

As it turns out every time I have found myself either in car, truck or Harley roaring down the roads enjoying this smell and experience in the spring, I was either on my way to be with, recalling happy times of it, or imaging in my head what the next experience of “love” may be.

Why these benign thoughts and moods of love happen in spring, with orange blossom smells in the air, and me on the open road in some mechanical fashion happen I cant explain. They’re nice thoughts however and I look forward to them. Its not to say I only feel such emotion a mere three weeks each year, but its a time of year where all the planets and chi and aura and whatever other whacky things enter my house of awesome and I think specifically about love and what may be in the future and don’t particularly get nauseous or pissed about failed love of the past.

The before mentioned Tomfoolery of it all this time is that I think I am changing my thoughts on the subject of love. As we get older and have experiences in life we find out what works and what doesn’t in regards to love. For some time now I thought I knew what true love is, and generally speaking I am sure I have to common bases covered but I am beginning to rethink what it truly means. I used to look for it. I stopped. I rationalized when I looked for it all that I found was something disguised as love but not love I was willing to spend the rest of my life with. I figured the love I wanted will just happen naturally. I still believe in this notion but as I am getting older I am starting to second guess myself. Are my eyes still open? Am I paying attention? Have I drawn such an opinion and picture of love in my head  that everything right in front of me is passing by? Have I priced myself out of the market? All questions and internal dialogue on the subject of love I battle and debate. In the end I wonder if I accept this or relax my opinion on that would love come along any faster, or better?  Eventually the soundtrack of my life gets a little louder, Pearl Jam’s Black gets fast forwarded to some Zeppelin, I smell the orange blossoms in the air, and turn the throttle back on the Harley some more and for a short time again I am at ease and in love. Love with myself and happy with who I am, one day I’ll share it again with a lucky woman who thinks the same of me as I do of her.

Thank God for Orange Blossoms and Spring.

Let ‘er rip, tater chips!