Currently Browsing: Feel Good Stories

Why We Love Sports.

So much news around sports these days has been of the negative type. College basketball is in the midst of a scandal where top colleges and recruits are being accused of paying money – large amounts of money – to recruits to come play at a particular school. The NCAA is being sued for their roll and lack of oversight in the molestation of many gymnasts (make and female) by Dr. Larry Nassar who was convicted and sentenced in July 2017, Nassar to 60 years in federal prison; in January, 2018, sentenced to 40 to 175 years in a Michigan state prison and in February 2018, he was sentenced to an additional 40 to 125 years in prison. As the sentences run consecutively, Nassar is looking at a total of 140 – 360 years in prison. Major League Baseball players are claiming collusion between owners as some big name free agents haven’t been signed by teams. (Apparently the thought that the player with their guaranteed contracts may not be worth the money has not crossed the players’ minds.) The NFL had the debacle of the kneel down protests and a loss of viewership based in part on the league’s lack of response to the protests and the lack of quality play this past year. The Olympics were a disaster in ratings and medal production. It also seems that most sports are suffering from the influx of politics into the sport. Instead of sports being a diversion or a break from the day to day humdrums, sports have become a platform for everything instead of competition and good sportsmanship.

At least our beloved lacrosse continues to grow without scandal and the Maryland Terps are ranked second in the nation with a monster game coming up this weekend against number one ranked Albany. (Fear the Turtle!)

But with all the bad and depressing news about sports in general comes the inspiring story of Shaquem Griffin.

Shaquem Griffin and UCF Coach Scott Frost celebrate win in 2018 Peach Bowl. (Courtesy Getty Images.)

Griffin was a standout linebacker for the University of Central Florida for the past few years. His career ended with an perfect, undefeated season over Auburn in the 2018 Peach Bowl.

By all accounts, Griffin is a leader. He is bright, articulate, funny, and never asks people to do what he will not.

It Was In All The Papers, But Do We Remember Or Appreciate It?

Believe it not, 60 years ago this month in 1958, the United States launched its first satellite, Explorer 1.

The event was huge for the US and for the people of what would become the “Space Coast” of Florida.

There would be more successes and far too many tragedies within the space program, but reaching for the stars carries a risk of falling.

We can think of no greater legacy for Explorer I and the men and women who created and launched it, to commit to a return to the exploration of space.

Happy New Year!

To all our friends and even those with whom we disagree, we hope you, and your family have a wonderful and prosperous 2018.

Irish People Taste Test American Pancakes.


Pancakes are great and all that, but if you really want the good stuff, try hoecakes. (Pun intended.)

“Stop eating it so I can have the rest.”

American pancakes are totally fat/phat in comparison to the thin little Irish ones we eat on this grassy island. We asked our chef make up some fat stacks for the contributors to chow down and they were happier than they’ve ever been in any video so far.

Stool Pigeon Or Parrot?

Bud – the African Grey Parrot. (image courtesy

An African Grey parrot helped convict a Michigan woman of killing her husband.

It almost sounds like “fake news,” or an April Fool’s joke, but it isn’t.

Forty-nine year old Glenna Duram was charged with the shooting death of her forty-six year old husband, Martin Duram.

Glenna Duram was alleged to have shot her husband five times before trying to turn the weapon on herself.

Other than Glenna and Martin Duram, the only witness to the shooting was an African Grey parrot by the name of “Bud.”

Bud is a fast learner and says a lot of things – including what prosecutors say were Martin Duram’s last words:

Mr Duram’s ex-wife Christina Keller, who now looks after Bud, previously said the parrot had been repeating a conversation from the night of the murder – ending with “don’t shoot!”

His mother, Lilian Duram, agreed that the parrot would have been repeating Mr Duram’s last words.

She said: “That bird picks up everything and anything, and it’s got the filthiest mouth around.”

Another news outlet says Bud was even repeating the words “don’t (expletive) shoot” in Martin Duram’s voice.

It took eight hours of deliberation for the jury to convict Glenna Duram of first degree murder. She is scheduled to be sentenced next month.

Happy Mother’s Day!

For all the moms out there, thanks for all you do. Too often under-appreciated and often taken for granted, this is the day we remind you and ourselves what we should act on every day.

You’re awesome.


Rejoice all ye haters!

Okay, that’s a bit harsh, but we are chest deep in a professional project as well as making changes to the official Raised on Hoecakes computer. We are backing up everything and that takes time to not only back the files up, but to verify them when placed into their new home. There are a lot of files and a lot of work spread out amongst a lot of people. Because of that, posting will probably be light this week.

While we do what we have to do, enjoy this incredible piece of art:

This is a chess board that I made with my father. It is made out of Walnut, Soft Maple and Jatoba wood. It took several weeks to create and is 100% playable! Each ‘square’ has a magnet embedded in it, as does each chess piece for easy movement of the pieces.

We have no idea how old the son or the father is, but it warms our heart to see generations spending time together to create, bond, and share. We doubt if while cutting the wood, anyone was looking at a cell phone.

Well done.

The Barkley Marathons.

Via another website comes the trailer for a documentary called “The Barkley Marathons: The Race That Eats Its Young.”

Frankly, they had us at “race that eats their young.”

What the heck is the “Barkley Marathons?” Basically it is an ultra-marathon in the hills of Tennessee. The organizer claims that the race is 100 miles, but contestants say the race is closer to 130 miles – that’s five normal marathons. Throw in elevation changes of 65,000 feet, and you are going up and down Mount Everest. Twice. All of which must be completed within 60 hours.

The race course is not marked. Racers are given time to look at a “master map,” then mark their own maps and using only the maps and a compass, find their way to each waypoint. Each waypoint has a book and to show the runner has been there, the runner removes the page of the book which corresponds to their race number and brings that back with them to the start / finish line. The race is five laps and is so difficult that in the 25 years of it being run, only 17 people have completed the race in the required time.


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