APRR WebLog Archives: January 2004

Thursday, January 8, 2004

Our Skate in the Peach Bowl Parade
On Friday - January 2, 2004
(Part 1 of 2)

Images only for right now.

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Paula BP and Carole R

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Russell B

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Carole R, Cindy S, Chuck O, Stephanie R, Marc Sk8 Pierre,
Paul K, Laurie K, Russell B, Paula BP, Donald S, and Mark D

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University of Tennessee - Knoxville (UTK) marching band

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Some angels

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Russell & wife, Laurie

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The Receiving of Marching Orders

Posted by marcstpierre @ 06:24 AM EDT [Link]

Our New Years Day Skate in Chattanooga, TN
On New Years Day – January 1, 2004

Ken O and I drove up to Chattanooga on New Years Day morning to participate in the "Chattanooga New Years Day Skate," as provided annually by the Chattanooga inline skating club. What we got in return was a warm and embraced welcome, and a most enjoyable day that will be long remembered and cherished. Thanks for your more than down-to-earth hospitality Chattanooga!

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(front) Marc
(middle) Phil P, Cindy H, Judy M, Marty B, Ken O, John M
(back) Mac M.

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Walnut Street Pedestrian Bridge
(Ken, Judy, and Marty)

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Downtown Chattanooga
(Ken, Cindy, Marty, Judy, Phil, Mac, and John)

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Chattanooga has some pretty neat stuff…
a world class aquarium,
a restaurant with train cars,
and upscale bus stop benches.

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Tennessee Aquarium in Chattanooga.

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Part of the New Years Day - Chattanooga Skate Tour
was to observe some Canadian Geese or something,
water skiing in the Tennessee River. But no birds or
loons were there. “They’re so disorganized,” exclaimed
Marty, “they probably all slept in. I can’t understand it.
Last year, it was so much colder and the water wasn’t
nearly as nice, and there were so many of them.”

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The Chattanooga skaters are delighted
that Chattanooga has been designated
as a bicycle friendly community. Not
many U.S. cities have such distinction.
(front) John
(middle) Judy, Phil, Marty, Cindy
(back) Ken and Mac

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One of many skating opportunities located
off Reggie White Boulevard.

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The monstrous, looming goal of our New Year.
Our resolution: To get to the top of the thing!
(John in front, Judy, Mac, and Cindy in back)

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“Where’s Lookout Mountain?,” I jokingly asked Mac.
“It’s right over there,” he replied.
“Where?,” I asked again, as if I couldn’t tell Lookout
Mountain from a hill of beans. (I was trying to buy
time on behalf of my camera and its dying batteries.)
“It’s right there,” he exclaimed, “can’t you see it?”
“Keep pointing at it,” I responded, “I think I see it, but
I’m not yet sure… Oh, okay, good, there it is… the
green camera ready light has finally come on.”
Mac then turned around to look at me, “You just wanted
me to keep pointing so that you could take my picture,
didn’t you? You knew where Lookout Mountain was all
along! You had me-ah-goin’ there for a while.”

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“Lets Roll-um!!!,” barked-out Jane after each stop.
(Judy, John, Ken, Phil, and Mac)
Mac is perhaps the most friendly, lovable, down-to-earth
person I’ve met in a long, long time.

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Group photo at the Lookout Mountain Incline Railway station.
The grade at the upper portion of the track is at an incredible
72.2 percent incline. The layout of the track, itself, has been
coined “America’s Most Amazing Mile.”
(front) Marty, Judy, and Cindy
(back) Phil, John, Mac, and Ken

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John insisted that he take my pic as well.

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The system utilizes two cabled cars. The cars pass each other
at exactly the halfway point between the two stations. And
interestingly, at the podium that you see in this photo, the train
operator in each car leaves the moving car, walks briskly onto
the podium, passes the other operator (who's doing the same
thing), and enters the opposite moving train car. In other words,
the train operator who originated from the station at the top
of the mountain returns to that station, without ever reaching
the other station. Pretty bizarre, I thought.

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If this path were covered in snow…
I’d want to ski down it.
If it were covered in asphalt,
I believe I’d be terrified to skate down it.
That’s for sure!!!

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With my inline skates on my feet and the weblog camera in one
hand, I was using the other hand in prayer, “Dear God, please
don’t let this cable break!”

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The Incline Railway was not overly compatible with inline skates.
(Marty attempts to make her way to the front of the car.)

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A gorgeous view from atop Lookout Mountain.

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John and Mac pointed out all sorts of stuff to Ken and me.
(I thought I could see Atlanta, but learned that I was mistaken.)

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Ken searches for Raccoon Mountain

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One of many pretty houses atop Lookout Mountain.
“It’s all Coca Cola money and lawyer’s money up here,”
noted Judy.

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I can’t remember the name of this house, but it had
a cute “ring” to it.
(front) Marty, Marc, Judy, Cindy
(back) Ken, Mac, John.
(Phil took the photo)

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John was learning all about old, deep, vertical,
wet caves from Ranger Curry. Meanwhile, Cindy
had been learning all about their shotguns.
"He once held my grandmother at gun point,"
she later told us.

(well, she said something along those lines.)

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The well known “Chattanooga Choo Choo” restaurant. Here, the
patrons can eat in diner type train cars. I remember my father
relocating my family to Atlanta from Chicago in 1973. We stopped
at this restaurant to eat, and it was in the middle of winter.
I also remember that my younger sister and I ate spaghetti with
some type of weird meat sauce. My whole family became terribly
ill during the rest of our drive to Atlanta. “The restaurant isn’t
as good as it used to be,” simultaneously noted Judy, Marty
and Mac.

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Some of the pretty architecture and streetscapes
in downtown Chattanooga.

Posted by marcstpierre @ 06:01 AM EDT [Link]

Wednesday, January 7, 2004

Our Skate Into The New Year
On Wednesday Night – December 30, 2003 thru
Thursday Morning – January 1, 2004!

A number of APRR gathered at the Carter Center to bring in a tradition – skate to Underground Atlanta, watch the Peach drop, consume lots of beer, and watch yourself fall. This year, Ken O devised a plan. We were to gather as a usual Wednesday Night Skate, per our usual 8:30 PM time. We’d skate for a while and regroup at 10:30. Head to Underground, watch the Peach drop, and then make our way back to the Carter Center, via whatever bar was to get in our way. What actually transpired this night… no one really knows.

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Uwe is nothing more than a gentle snowman to
all of APRR, but he's most definitely abominable
toward all other, competitive skaters. APRR can
melt in his arms: the other, competitive skaters
melt at his feet.

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Equipment check at Park Street and Monroe.
“Anyone got ahh’ 5mm wrench?,” Tomas P asks.
Tom S merely had curiosity, but lent a helping
hand anyway.

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Midtown Atlanta per view of the Weblog camera.
(We set up for a group photo here, but, well, um…
dead batteries.)

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Official inauguration of the 17th Street Bridge.
Tom S in front
George W , Thomas P, Ken O, Lisa M, Mark D,
Keith, ???, Chuck O, Jim M
Uwe in back

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(photo by Tom S) I can’t quite remember the name
of this bar, off Peachtree Street. I’ll attempt to return
to this line once I determine where it was that we were.
But the bar maid was most kind, and wished all of us a
most wonderful and safe New Year. We made time for
one more drink before heading up Peachtree Street and
toward the dropping Peach.
(George, Keith, Ken, Mark, Chuck, Jim, Marc)

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(photo by Tom S) APRR skating its way
through hoards of people at Underground
Atlanta, just prior to the New Year.
(Tom, Keith, George, Ken)

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(photo by Tom S) More of APRR
(Marc, Jim, Keith, George, Ken to right)

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(photo by Tom S) Final moments of 2003.
We were already drunk.
(Tom, Marc, Jim, and Mark in background)

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(Photo by Tom S) Keith and Tom counting
down to 2004 at Underground.

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(Photo by Tom S) The dropping of the Peach.
And it went FAST !!!

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(photo by Tom S)

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With a bottle of bubbly open,
APRR brought in 2004!

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(photo by Tom S)
Marc and his new friend exchanging
some early 2004 kisses.

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(photo by Tom S)
Although we were already drunk,
it was now time to start drinking.

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(photo by Tom S)
After lots of bubbly,
Chuck understands everything A-O-K.
(Mark D to left)

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(photo by Tom S)
Conserving table space at Hooters
– making room for good things to come.

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(photo by Tom S)
The smile that melted our hearts, filled our eyes,
and baffled our brains.

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(photo by some drunk)
Group Photo!!!

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(photo by Tom S)
It really was a wonderful night!
Chuck (in front), Mark, Anne, Jim

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(photo by Tom S)
… and Lisa came by to rescue us guys from Hooters!…

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(Photo by Tom S)
Mark and a stolen kiss from some guy’s girlfriend.

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(photo by Tom S)
Keith and Marc trying to survive the Urban Jungle.

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(photo by Tom S)
Saved from Grace...
These two angels were like pilots,
and flew us to Heaven.
(Lisa & Elizabeth)

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(photo by Tom S)
The late night flight to Heaven.

Posted by marcstpierre @ 11:57 PM EDT [Link]

Sunday, January 4, 2004

Our Zunday zleeper zkate (Zzz)
On Sunday – December 28, 2003
(Part 2 of 2)

Ahh yes, zkatin’ on Zunday – thuah zway taz goz!
Zleep lotz, zen wakezzz up, and zee zun zhine ztream in.
Zen goz zkatin’ zince itz ahaz zunny Zunday!

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Mims obstructing Peachtree Street traffic.

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Lisa found a treasure of purses in Hardy Ivy Park.
She found one that she liked. Then she found one
that she liked equally well. Then a third.
“For $20, they’re good knock-offs,” she vouched
to me.

I asked her which one she liked best, thinking I’d
come back and offer the guy $5 or $6 for it. (I had
no cash at the time.)

“Oh, I like all three. I’ll just come back and get
them later,” she said to the man and me. “I really
do like them.”

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Mims also saw the purses as a treasure and found
one that he liked too. Jenny made sure to look into
the quality of Mim’s favorite purse. You never know
about those purses made in Taiwan.

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Allison B in Hardy Ivy Park, just off
Peachtree Street.

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The skaters made their way through
Olympic Park and to the CNN Center.
They were then seen skating down
Marietta Street, toward downtown Atl.

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Chuck O and Lisa M on Marietta.

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Lisa discovering a whole new stash of
purses in Woodruff Park. To Lisa, parks
became synonymous with purses.

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Atlanta’s Urban Skate Goddess.
She's like no other!

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The Skate Goddess w/ Bruce B & other Sunday Airport Ride cyclists.

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Bruce B.

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Mims en route to Jake’s Ice Creams
& Sorbets.

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Jim M.

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Marc’s old friend, Tim, at Jake’s.
Tim’s the one who helped to serve
us the much needed ice cream.

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These three were precious.
They loved the fact that we were on roller skates.
The boy went even further and announced that
my cheep sunglasses were “way cool.”
I couldn’t help but to let him wear them for a while.
(If I had them with me, I’d probably have given him
my $250 polarized Oakleys. I sat on them just a few
days after purchasing them. They’re now a mangled
mess. Nah, the only place those sunglasses can go
is in my bad memories file.)

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At Jake’s: Photo #1 in series.

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Photo #2 in series.

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Photos #3 - #5 in series.

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The cute Cocker Spaniel next door.

Posted by marcstpierre @ 12:30 AM EDT [Link]

Saturday, January 3, 2004

Our Special Christmas Lights Skate
On Monday Night – December 22, 2003

For a period of time, there’d been rumbling tremors within APRR about this Christmas Light skate tour. We wished it to be on the Monday or Wednesday prior, but too cold. Our snowmen & women conducted practice tours. Each skate night became an opportunity of reconnaissance. We could equally have been on ice blades with wool scarves strewn around our necks and shoulders. It was generally that cold. But to experience such a display of colored lights and red and green inflated vinyl statues. We risked the discomforts for the spectacular of multiple shapes and sizes of metal Christmas deer, strung with hundreds of strands of brilliant white lights, such as those hanging as icicles from the eaves of each roof. The Christmas and Hanukah spirit was abound in Atlanta’s Midtown area. It was high time to see its display.

We were delighted to have APRR’s Deborah D with us from her new Zepher Inline Skate Tours home in Montana. Isn’t it cold up there too? Her red hair flowed unfrozen alongside her face more beautifully than ever. And we had Ann S’s friend, Mo M, join us for the first time, and had a whole bunch of faces that weren’t with us during the previous frozen week. A holiday homecoming! Ken O and Ann S were the ones at center stage. They had laboriously planned, replanned, refined, and thawed-out the Christmas Lights Skate route. They knew precisely for sure where we were heading, and what it was exactly that we were to see. And knowing what was in store for us, the two guides were overly joyous – like parents knocking on our door in the morning… “It’s time to see what’s been wrapped for you.” But we were already anxiously there. (Thanks Ken & George for carrying the tripod !)

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Touring Virginia Highlands in search of Christmas lights,
eggnog, and stocking stuffers to warm our hearts.

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Amsterdam Ave.
(front to back, left to right)
Marc Sk8 Pierre
Allison B, Stephanie R, Gerry B, Jim M, Donald S, Yong HT, Greg T
???, Lisa M, Chuck O, Mims R, Jenny R, Jethro J, Caroline B, Nancy G, Ann S, Paula BP
George W, Ken O, Sam F, Keith, Deborah D, Carl C, Allen F, Bill B, Mo M

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Mark R and sweet daughter Caroline
(notice the almost exact sameness in eyes, nose,
ears, cheekbones, chin, smile, etc, etc.)

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North Morningside
(lying down) Chuck, Carl, and Marc
(kneeling) Deborah, George, Paula, Nancy, Caroline Rose, Mark, Allison, Jethro, Bill, Mo, and Ken.
(standing) ???, Jim, Greg, Yong, Caroline, ???, Rick, Keith, Lisa, Gerry, Sam, Stephany, Donald, Jenny, Mims,
Jim, and Ann.

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Pelham Road
(lying down) Jethro
(kneeling/sitting) Chuck, Carl, Paula, Keith, Stephanie,
Gerry, Ann, George, Mo, Ken.
(standing) Jim, Bill, Deborah, Jim, Allison, Donald, Rick,
Lisa, Jenny, Mims, ???

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Some most happy caroling skaters.
Deborah, Rick, and Mo
Donald in background.

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Montgomery Ferry Drive.
Mims & Ann knock on an unsuspecting door while Lisa looks on.
Paula and Carl – George and Ken.

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Montgomery Ferry Drive
Singing “…Here Comes Santa Clause, here comes Santa Clause,
right down Santa Clause Lane…”

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Montgomery Ferry Drive
Listening to “… Here Comes Santa Clause, here comes Santa Clause,
right down Santa Clause Lane…”

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Montgomery Ferry Drive
Allison B & “Sgt. Sweetie.”

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Montgomery Ferry Drive
Skating carolers waiting for a door to open.
Though it never opened.

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Montgomery Ferry Drive
Outside the door that never opened.

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Caroline pulling her father up hill,
through the Ansley area.

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Beverly Rd. & Avery Dr.

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Christmas ornamentation off Park Lane
Mims, Paula, Jethro, Keith, and George

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Sam points to a whimsical direction post that houses
multiple arrowed signs. One sign points to the Silver
Comet Trail – 17 miles “that-a-way.”

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They watched in wonder and joy as the skaters passed
them by. And lagging behind, I unexpectedly skated up to
them, grabbed their attention, and snagged our image -
– they were wonderously overjoyed.

It is of course entirely my fault that I had not been able
to post this Christmas Lights Skate entry for well over
a week. Not only is Christmas and Hanukah past, my mind’s
no longer present. For the life of me, I can’t remember the
names of these two young ladies. In all honesty, I’d return
everything, I mean everything that I received for Christmas
if I could only have their first names - - simply to place
within these very words. I’d turn back the hands of time if
I could, just to give them this simple respect.

“Did he just take your picture?,” Sam asked them as I skated
off to join the rest of the group.

“Yessssss…..sssssss…” they simultaneously sang as if melting.

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Chillin’-out on Monroe

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Singing “Jingle Bells” and “Silent Night” to a family.

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Mr. Bill Graceful whimsically points “this-a-way,”
yet keeps his stride exactly – 17 miles “that-a-way.”

Posted by marcstpierre @ 02:07 PM EDT [Link]

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