Thursday, July 12, 2007

Elton John - Ticking - Live in Sweden 2003

I can't get the youtube video to load, so here is the link.........

"An extremely quiet child" they called you in your school report

"He's always taken interest in the subjects that he's taught"

So what was it that brought the squad car screaming up your drive

To notify your parents of the manner in which you died

At St. Patricks every Sunday, Father Fletcher heard your sins

"Oh, he's unconcerned with competition he never cares to win"

But blood stained a young hand that never held a gun

And his parents never thought of him as their troubled son

"Now you'll never get to Heaven" Mama said

Remember Mama said

Ticking, ticking

"Grow up straight and true blue

Run along to bed"

Hear it, hear it,

ticking, ticking

They had you holed up in a downtown bar screaming for a priest

Some gook said "His brain's just snapped" then someone called the police

You'd knifed a Negro waiter who had tried to calm you down

Oh you'd pulled a gun and told them all to lay still on the ground

Promising to hurt no one, providing they were still

A young man tried to make a break, with tear-filled eyes you killed

That gun butt felt so smooth and warm cradled in your palm

Oh your childhood cried out in your head "they mean to do you harm"

"Don't ever ride on the devil's knee" Mama said

Remember mama said

Ticking, ticking

"Pay your penance well, my child

Fear where angels tread

"Hear it, hear it,

ticking, ticking

Within an hour the news had reached the media machine

A male caucasian with a gun had gone berserk in Queens

The area had been sealed off, the kids sent home from school

Fourteen people lying dead in a bar they called the Kicking Mule

Oh they pleaded to your sanity for the sake of those inside

"Throw out your gun, walk out slow just keep your hands held high

"But they pumped you full of rifle shells as you stepped out the door

Oh you danced in death like a marionette on the vengeance of the law

"You've slept too long in silence"

Mama said

Remember Mama said

Ticking, ticking

"Crazy boy, you'll only wind up with strange notions in your head

"Hear it, hear it,

ticking, ticking

© 1974 Big Pig Music Limited

Alive and.........

well, well.

I'ts been awhile, but things are basically the same with me. Nothing much changes here.

I spent the latter part of June and the beginning of July in Maryland visiting family. On Saturday we had a reunion of sorts for about 40 people. Sunday was then devoted to a 6th birthday party for my nephew David.

Happy Birthday, buddy!

On Thursday David wanted to take me on a hike. We packed up a few sodas and a Kit Kat or two for him and headed down the old railroad tracks.

Not too far into our journey we came across drainage from an old and abandoned coal mine. Draining at this particular site has been called the worst acid mine drainage in Maryland.

For most of my childhood George's Creek was a questionable mix of raw sewage and mine drainage. I know that this sounds disgusting, but I can remember flushing the toilet and then running down to the "crick" to see what was flushed enter George's Creek. Around 1980 a sanitary sewage treatment plant was built and the good people of Washington, DC were spared from drinking our waste. (George's Creek flows to the Potomac and DC and other places down state pull their drinking water from the Potomac) Most of the mine drainage was also cleaned up and fish and even a few pair of bald eagles returned to the area. All this changed recently when for unknown reasons the McDonald mine began spewing this toxic mix at levels exceeding any in the past.

The state is currently adding limestone to the drainage in an effort to offset the acidity. No one is quite sure what else can be done. Hopes are that the recent surge was caused by the collapse of an old mine shaft and that the flow will eventually slow/stop naturally.

In any case, George's Creek had largely been restored and flowed with clean, clear water until the McDonald mine drainage began flowing in earnest. You can see in the picture below where clean water meets caustic.

For the next four miles, until George's Creek enters the Potomac River, the creek is DEAD. Nothing. No fish, no insects, no larvae under the rocks. Just a sulfer/rust colored path of yuck.

The coal mines in the area have left a toxic legacy.

To David's credit, he told me that he would build a dam just before the acid meets the creek "so the fish could live."


The qualifying period for the River King free roll has ended. 164 players qualified from the Palms. 20-40 players will be coming from other parts of the country. 200 players and a prize pool of $1,020,000.

If I was one of those players I would be angling for a chop.


A friend sent a link to a video of Ticking by Elton John. I've been an EJ fan forever but for some reason this song had remained off of my radar. What a powerful song even if I DO own a handgun and don't believe that banning guns if the answer. Maybe if one of those 14 dead in the Kicking Mule had been packing........?

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