Saturday, May 29, 2010

Seamus Plays Blackbird


This is posted on a private Ning, but you can watch it here :)


Rich Ferguson steps in mid-song as page turner and my beaming brother makes a cameo appearance at the end.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

10 minutes and 39 seconds on The Empathic Civilisation (sic, those pesky UK spellers)

Thanks to my brother James for this: "Empathy is the opposite of Utopia..."

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

My Gift Vacation, Journal Conclusion

My Gift Vacation, 2

May 24, on the plane ride home:

Wow.

I leave Hollywood not a star, but with memories of events and sights that have renewed my spirit's shining.

First and foremost: Seamus. The boy is a gem. He is holy. He is of course affected by the events of the past year, the appropriation by cancer of the 10th year of his life and likely much of the 11th. The tumor, the surgery, the long pull back from the resultant loss of speech and control of his right arm and leg, the healing, and then the repetitive series of chemotherapy and recuperation--serial attacks and recovery--bombarding his physical being. Jimmy showed me a picture of Seamus before his most recent round of chemo and since due to low blood numbers he had gone four weeks between treatments his hair was coming back in and he looked content and untroubled, and Jimmy said he was getting his voice and his walking gait back and then...the drugs were administered again and the voice returned to its little boyness, the gait again a little uncertain, hesitant, uneven. His first step out of the door on Friday morning, I watched him favor that leg and foot, thinking hard, being careful. That carefulness will serve him well in the months to come. His final chemotherapy takes place in August and then, all things equal, the real recovery can begin. I watch for it filled with the words on the rubber bracelet Jimmy gave me that says "SEAMUS MORRISON 24 LOVE*HOPE*FAITH."

Seamus is at times almost otherworldly, though of his parents deeply. Deep in a way that is sometimes uncanny, and in a way that reflects his father's introspective nature but can actually surpass it. Jimmy's mental muscles are informed by events, beliefs, relationships of his past. Seamus has far less of the world to draw upon but also far less of the world to get in the way. He thinks about and comments upon the essences of things. I am glad he is with us--discovered by the kind of people who make martyrs of golden souls, he might have been taken and capitalized upon. As it is, he is surrounded in his recovery by a rich community of creative, thoughtful, centered, and caring people (the adjectives could go on and go on) who will form the crucial scaffold that will enable his recovery. This awareness of his support system is the most valuable gift I bring home.

Here's a slideshow of the pics I took over the weekend:




This year has taken its toll on my much-loved brother-from-another-mother and his much-loved wife. Only now are they getting back to the amazing vital work of their film, "Showing Up: A Documentary About The Audition." I know "The" shouldn't be capitalized, but for this project I submit it should be. Mark my words: This movie will be an award winner. You can get a taste of the intensity of the work at showingupmovie.com.

I left off the last post with the comment that I would be going to a recording studio on Friday night. Words can't really describe how much fun that experience was. I met Jonathan Baker, the charismatic producer and an artist in his own right, who welcomed us to his home right off Sunset Boulevard, shepherding us to the carriage house out back, where his tidy and fully packed recording studio, replete with grand piano, "just tuned today" sat awaiting the fingertips of Alan Okuye; and where Jimmy's record , as he put it later, was to be raised up to the next level. Jimmy's introspective and spot-on myopic (surprise) examinations of the human condition, originally accompanied only by clean and masterfully performed solo acoustic guitar, had already been stepped up into something else by drums and bass provided by Rich Mangicaro and Larry Taylor, respectively, of Don Henley and Canned Heat experience, respectively, and Jimmy was not sure just what he wanted, only that he wanted Alan. That proved fortuitous.

Suffice it to say that the session lasted from around 6:30 pm to straight up 2 in the morning, and that every minute was time well spent. Alan comes most recently from playing tour dates with former Men at Work front man Colin Hay. He's a quiet, unassuming, self-confident keyboard genius. And Jonathan, oh, Jonathan, is a bundle of creativity in his own right. Headsetted, bouncing barefoot in his office chair, he played ProTools like a virtuoso, asking for retakes, revisions, and re-imaginings that he will remix into magic by the time the project is complete. At some point, it is Jimmy and Jonathan who will decide that: The project is complete. Jimmy's record title may be "Your Name Cannot Be Blank" and it may be something else, but if you are thoughtful and appreciate brilliant musicianship--which is the "next level" Jimmy did not imagine but to which his music has now been taken--you will love it.

I got up Saturday and took a jog, just as I had on Friday morning. Those of you who know me know that I've been step-machining nearly ever day since a physical about two years ago told me I needed intentional cardio, and since that little sucker is heavy, I could not pack it, so I decided to try running whilst in Hollywood. Well, not running. My knees and back are not in favor of running. Jogging. I know I look foolish, bouncing along with tiny stride, Nashville School of the Arts ball cap backwards on my head, headphones in (I listened to Rush the first morning, then to no one the second morning, then to our yoga lesson band--more on that in a bit--Monday morning, took a break on Sunday). After showering, I joined the Morrisons for an omelet and company.

At around 11:30 we packed up a bag of Jimmy's percussion instruments, my mandolin, and we took off for Yogaworks, where I would join Soul Katuu, his regular accompanists, for an hour and a half of the funnest improvisation it's been my pleasure to share in years. Jimmy teaches regular weekly classes there. I got barefoot, made my way through the large studio packed with students (the count was 54 in the class that day) to the far front corner, where Butch, Kalani, Noelle, and Rich were already stationed, drums and instruments sprawled about them. I introduced myself and thanked them for sharing the opportunity with me, then set up my own little station. I set out my old Dell Axim to record. Unfortunately it flaked out and stopped recording after only 36 minutes, but I did manage to pull out three pieces of the maybe 8 or 10 we improvised that morning. I plan to upload them to my scottmerrick.net webspace and share them soon. It's really nice stuff, and I am honored to have been accepted to play, though since as Kalani said, "Oh, you're James's brother," it may not have been possible for them to refuse the Master's request. In order from left to right, nearest to me to farthest away, I'll describe them briefly.

Butch Norton (you MUST see this youtube video) is drummer for one of the sexiest Americana singers on the planet, Lucinda Williams. He's burly and beautiful, cowboy hatted and bearded, and he is a master of beat. My favorite memory of the day is when I picked up a little percussive phrase he was laying down and pre-echoed it, repeatedly, and looked up to see him smiling and nodding. Jimmy recently quoted Neil Young as saying that he most enjoyed playing music with players who didn't care if other people thought they couldn't play, they just played anyway because they love to do it. I guess I'm one of those. Listening back, I realize that I missed the beat at times, and there's one horrible moment (in a piece I didn't render to .mp3) where I'm trying to figure out how a cobalt blue metal tube works. Turns out what I thought was a clapper is really a mallet. Go figure. But the noises I produced were not actually what you might call "musical" as I hung it out and let the mallet handle strike it. I'm a musical buffoon, but I am not afraid.

Kalani was gracious and at one point indicated from across the way that he'd like to see the blue tube, hence removing the offending tool from the hands of the stumbling apprentice. His work on ukelele forms the foundation for the string piece that I will always be proud of, where I played some beneath-the-bridge tinkly mandolin and found some nice little single string phrases that helped the momentum and color. I was playing single string only, and very tentatively, in part because one of my strings was slightly out of tune and so I favored the in tune ones. Kalani's wife Noelle, a beautiful brunette with a MacNally strumstick (I have one at home:), various percussive instruments, and the voice of an angel, sat next to him and they often vocalized enchanting harmonies that imparted a smooth spirtual vibe to the music.

Rich Ferguson sat on a stool farthest away with congas, and he played them sensitively and right out front, obviously comfortable with the little band and perceptive about the needs Master James harbored at various stages in the session. Rich is a Spoken Word artist with a vibrant career and also performs as a 5th grade teacher, known to his students as "Fergie," in the LA public school system.

We drove home, hung out a bit, saw some more of Riad's masterful cuts on Showing Up, then drove up to Sunset Boulevard to Amoeba, a huge record store, the Walmart of used vinyl and disk. We went back again on Sunday for a bit, since I hadn't gotten upstairs. To give some background, I have a modest vinyl record collection, a "complete" Beatles section and a couple hundred or so choice records that have informed the musical soundtrack of my my life. I truly think some of my Twitter followers are there not for my educator's credentials and track record, but in order to see what I'll be listening to next as I move through the unordered vinyl in my workout station day to day. I may listen to Madonna "I Can Dance" on Wednesday and be pumping cardio to Steve Goodman's "Unfinished Business" on Thursday. This collection is rejuvenated when I travel, as I make it a habit to visit used vinyl meccas in my travels. Last year in D.C., for example, I hit upon a rare Beatles vinyl issue of their Hollywood Bowl live performance, pressed in Japan, at Smash Records and added that to my collection. At Amoeba, I struck gold in a French issue of The Beatles, in a clear jacket with "Les Beatles" cover emblazoned on the record itself, and the album track info and credits likewise on the B side. I don't know that I'll even take that one out of its sleeve! The Fab Four on the cover are horseback, in a completely counter-intuitive and oddly unsettling depiction of English riding, something that may have seemed like just the right thing for the French record designers but which just freaks me out. Fun! I picked up an Aztec Two-Step record that I used to have but have lost or misplaced in my moving about and a couple Amoeba tee-shirts, one for Colin and one for me. I also got a fun Jethro Tull I haven't seen elsewhere.

We went out to dinner Saturday night to a local Greek place, le petit Greek, and the food was great, though the company was better. Seamus was charming and hungry, two of our favorite things for him, and his mirthful laughter as I insisted on calling his Orangina "Georgina" left me beaming with the pride of accomplishment.

Frozen yogurt after (laughter about the odd way the dark chocolate mint flavor issued constipatedly out of the self-serve pump), home, then cigars on the back porch. Jimmy and I dug deep, in a conversation that may have left an onlooker either confused or disdainful of our pretensions to understanding the meaning(s) of life. Good thing there were no onlookers. I had intended to get to bed early, but it was around 2 o'clock again when I finally turned off the light in the casita. I slept like a baby, just days before I was scheduled to leave my 50's and enter my 60's. Sheesh, time flies.

On Sunday morning I slept in until 8 or so and decided to give me old bod a break. No jogging today. My legs were sore from the repetition of impact running, even jogging, inflicts upon them. Nothing strained or broken, though, so I consider my jogging a success, as well as proof that I can follow that regime in Denver every morning before taking off on public transit to the ISTE Conference. I moseyed into the house to find Rich Ferguson at table with the biggest muffin I ever saw. He was there to tutor Seamus in academic skills. The boy has missed a bunch of school, and his parents are keenly aware that he needs help and finding the best support they can find to provide it. Seamus played "Blackbird" for us on the piano, and I made myself scarce to let the academic work proceed.

Later, after I had taken a righteous hour alone in their high-infrared sauna, we played Wii Beatles Rock Band. What FUN! I know what's going on my Christmas list. How cool to challenge yourself in fine motor response while immersing yourself in laughter and the Beatles' music. I was the weak link, of course, picking the "Easy" level every time, whether playing guitar or drums (didn't do vocals, because I was enjoying Seamus's renditions too much to even consider asking for a turn). I think our whole family could play that. After all there are 4 Merricks!

We went back up to Amoeba for a bit, then ordered and picked up pizza from Mario Batali's fabulous Mozza2go and brought it back home to eat. Jimmy had a script to begin reading so Seamus and I cuddled up on the oversized chair he bought for that very purpose and watched America's Funniest Home Videos before retiring. Jimmy and I sat on the back porch again, and I passed on another cigar, having had three this visit, a record for me. To bed, to sleep, to wake, to run again, to pack, to fly, to home. Lots of memories. Good ones.

I'm now 40 minutes out of Nashville, so I'll call this writing to an end. This vacation, a gift indeed, is one I'll remember with utmost fondness. Thanks to Lee Ann, and to Lee Ann's step-mom, Annemarie for her contribution/funding.

Among this trip's many rewards lay the fact that I chose not to drink beer or other alcohol since having a beer on the plane to L.A. I could've, but I chose not to. I'm such a creature of habit at home and sometimes I fear that this habit is one that I may be more or less addicted to. After three days I never once found myself on the floor in fetal position screaming for a drink. That feels good. I pronounce myself "less addicted." I enjoyed tea, water, and juice over the weekend, and I feel all the better for it.

Captain says we're 30 minutes out. Thanks for hearing me out, and hold dear to your loved ones. They're what we've got to help us through this, "whatever 'this' is."

4 pm Nashville time, Monday, May 24, 2010, my last day in my 50's.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

My Gift Vacation, Back to Basics


My very first blog post was about my invigorating trip to Japan in 2004. My next few will pick up on that precedent and put down some thoughts during my trip to Hollywood, California to mark the end of my 60th year on this fine globe. I'm sharing it here to reflect upon it while it's happening. Feel free to give these posts a pass if rambling reflection isn't your cup of tea. I'll be back to thinking about education and change soon enough. Right now I'm into the present and the personal, a gift from my extraordinarily loving wife. Thank you, my love.

My Gift Vacation, 1

So at work on Thursday, May 20, I opened my gmail and there was an email from American Airlines with the subject: Your flight is ready for check-in, or some such flag. I really did think to myself, referencing the shared MUVErs LLC email that forwards to my gmail, "Well, I wonder where Cathy's going now?" and so I clicked to see. Imagine my amazement to read that my flight that evening to Los Angeles, California was confirmed and that I could check in. Dutifully, I checked in, only to be told "You are already checked in for this flight."

I knew what this meant, of course. My adored wife Lee Ann had conspired to book me passage to visit my "bfam" (brother from another mother) and my godson and the lovely prime mover of their household, Riad. My godson, Seamus, just turned 11, has also just finished up another in his series of chemotherapies for a brain tumor he contracted last summer. He's doing very well, thank you, and you'll likely hear more about that as we go. My bfam (I really have never seen that before--did I coin it?) Jimmy, known to the world as James Paige Morrison, is a yoga master and actor, having just wrapped the season of "Hawthorn" in which he had a recurring role. Also wrapping this season, "Private Practice" and "24," the latter in which he did not appear this season, but which he co-starred for I think 5 seasons as the unflappable Bill Buchanon, head of the Counter Terrorist Unit Jack Bauer so continuously made interesting. "Interesting" in the context of the Chinese curse, "May you live in interesting times."

Anyway, Lee Ann was outraged that the airlines had given away that secret, held by nearly everyone who knows me since it manifested itself in March. I'm sure someone at American Airlines has a smoking ear from the first call she made. The error had unintended good consequences, though; it let me weep my tears of joy in private rather than surrounded by family and colleagues at the end of the day. I retain my manly pride.

Thursday: Lee Ann and Colin got me to the airport right after school. My bag was packed with clothes and necessities, I had my backpack with laptop and such, and at the airport I picked up a pre-wrapped deli sandwich to keep me fed. A fine long flight, around 4 hours, got me to the City of Angels. I texted Jimmy "landed" and he replied "Parking" to which I replied "isn't that a movie?" Following the lemmings off the plane to the baggage claim area I eased down the final escalator to see him standing at the foot of it, surrounded by a sea of humanity, an island of smile. Long hug (I didn't cry, though it was touch and go for a moment), bag fetch, to the car, and home. The beautiful stucco cottage on June was dark and we sat up jabbering on his back porch, clear skies above past 80 foot palm trees, cigars blazing, minds sparking over topics such as life, its meaning, and something we agreed could be called "dogmatic scepticism." Don't ask. I got to sleep around midnight, retiring relaxed, content, and centered in a way I haven't felt centered in a long long time. I slept, awoke around 6, went back to sleep, then awoke just enough to plug in my iPod and dial up the audiobook "Five Classic Meditations" by Shinzen Young, working my way through the first mantra meditation, laying down in the amazingly comfy fold-out bed in the backyard cabana. Up after, I dressed to run, then proceeded to jog all the way south on June Street and back. Not a run, mind you--my knees don't like that anymore, but a good solid 50 minute jog. Back here, no one's about but the lawn maintenance folks, and I'm now cooled down from the exercise. I'll have wireless later on this XPS and I'll start uploading my little journal. Writing helps me think, like thinking helps me write. I hope to share some of the discussion we had last night. It really was about the meaning of life.

Like that's ever going to happen.

Tonight I get to sit in on a recording session of one of Jimmy's new tracks. He's compiling original songs for release "when they're cooked." Tomorrow I'll help a group of musicians provide accompaniment for his large yoga class, 40 or 50 folks, and I don't know what else. I hope to spend a great deal of time with Seamus and to hear him play Blackbird on the piano. 11 months after surgery which left him without a lot of things, including the use of his right hand and his ability to speak, this alone will be worth the cost of admission. Thanks, honey, and thanks Annemarie, for the flight ticket. It was a little bumpy getting out of Nashville, but smooth sailing after that, and I predict more of the same. Later.

The rest of Friday: Showered and dressed in jeans and tee-shirt I opened the cabana door to signal I was up, then sat to start writing this. When I was finished, I looked up and Seamus was making his way through the house's back door to me. Barefoot, bald, and beautiful, he said "Happy Birthday, Scotty." I held back tears and said in my silly shaky Johnny Cash voice, "Seaaaaaaaaaamus" and hugged him. He presented me with a beautiful handmade birthday card,
It has colored puffballs on it and a single white feather. Inside, handwritted with purple marker on the shiny black paper, it says, "Happy Birthday, I hope your Birthday is the Best Ever." I hugged him for along time, a little awkwardly. I realized then how little I really know this little guy. I resolve to work on that.

Riad cooked us some luscious buckweat pancakes (I need a package of that from Whole Foods for home!) and I topped mine with the sweetened syrupy strawberries she had prepared for that purpose. Seamus sat with us, a bit tired and sad over the fact that his playdate a little later is to be cut short by his friend William's commitment to a ballet class. Riad later explained that much of his emotional turmoil is chemo driven. That and his struggling gait when walking and more can be attributed to the powerful array of drugs he's taken to ensure the cancer has left his little body. Just before this round of chemo, Jimmy told me later, he was becoming more himself, his hair beginning to return, his voice less shaky, and his moods stronger. Then here we went all over again, his body forced to fight against drugs that are geared to kill everything they come in contact with, including cells and muscles and nerves repairing from the trauma of the surgery that removed his brain tumor 11 months ago. Twice more he must undergo that cycle before, the battle called, he can look forward to healing on a trajectory that will bring back himself, the recovered Seamus. If things go on schedule, he'll be done in August, get his clean bill of health, and begin that trajectory. That'll be the day. That'll be the day.

After breakfast, I was treated to 45 minutes or so of the work my favorite married couple is just now picking up after the medical crises of the past year, their film "Showing Up: A Documentary about The Audition." You can get a taste of what this is about at http://showingupmovie.com, where they've parked their work whilst the digital cutting room floor fills up with digital clips and the film takes shape under Riad's talented FinalCut Pro direction. 60 actors told their stories in 10 or 20 separate film clips apiece, filmed professionally face-on in locations from LA to New York to North Carolina. It's absolutely amazing, and to watch portions of it coming together on their huge Mac monitor was a treat. Once finished, it will be a gift to the world, to people who have not ever auditioned, because it offers eloquent insights into the practice; and to people who have, because it will help them know that they are not alone. Its viewing will be required assignment in acting classes and film classes for decades to come. That's my prediction and I'm sticking to it.

They were funny through the morning, excitedly pulling me into the office to see the latest segment that had been pulled together from clips in the 6 or so thematic groups they've identified. "You sure you can stand to watch some more?," they'd ask? I could have watched the segments I'd just watched over and over again: It's that good.

Seamus's friend William came and they played on the Wii, the boys laughing and shouting in the living room as their digital characters careened over the terrain until crashing into digital waters to end a player's turn. Later they would break out more Legos. When Jimmy and I left to work out at Gold's Gym, they were sitting at the coffee table eating mac and cheese, surrounded by Lego constructions.

We worked out, Jimmy on an elliptical and me on a stationery bike, Rush on the iPod, Guitar Magazine on the rack in front of me, for 40 minutes before heading back home, where I checked email and caught up, more or less, with my ISTE work. I'm detached from it here. I like that feeling but I also look so forward to the conference in Denver that I see this break as a godsend respite.

Around six o'clock we headed out to the car and to Jonathan Baker's studio, 10 minutes away in the detached garage of his home off Sunset Boulevard. That's what I'll write about next, after getting to sleep at 3 this morning (Saturday), awakening at 7, uploading pics to the laptop from digicam and FlipVideo, and then taking a jog, which I'm doing just as soon as I dress and stretch. This time I'll take the real camera so I can grab some of those California spring flowers. More later...

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Some Local Recognition!

WOW, a little local press! :) From my school's weekly newsletter, hot off the digital press (my shirt is tropical because the male teachers celebrate "Tropical Thursdays" at my school, when they can remember to do so):

Technology Coordinator Designated NAIS “Teacher of the Future”

USN Lower School Technology Coordinator Scott Merrick, 14 year faculty veteran, has been chosen as NAIS “Teacher of the Future” for 2010-11, along with 19 other innovative educators nationally.

The announcement was made via an email from the National Association of Independent Schools on May 11, 2010 and carries with it new responsibilities for Mr. Merrick, some of which are noted in the announcement. Here is a portion of that email:

“We had more than 200 nominations, and eight judges carefully reviewed them all and selected what we believe is an excellent, creative group. Your accomplishments as a teacher and innovator make you a perfect member of this community. As one of 20 NAIS Teachers of the Future, you are asked to seed and moderate an online discussion forum and post short educational videos in NAIS’s new teachers’ community and at NAIS on iTunes U…”

In addition to his curricular and teaching responsibilities for all students Kindergarten through grade 4 and his support roles for all USN teachers and staff, Mr. Merrick is a Core Volunteer at the 100,000+ member International Society for Technology in Education and chair of one of the 20 Special Interest Groups for that organization.

As he takes up the role of NAIS Teacher of the Future, Merrick will attend an Apple Summer Learning Institute in Boston in late July following his week of workshops and presentations at ISTE 2010 Conference and Exposition in Denver, Colorado. USN is thankful for his pioneering efforts and we look forward to learning from his experiences through his personal/professional blog at http://scottmerrick.net.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

"Teacher of the Future" for NAIS


Hey, all,

Just received word that I've been selected as one of 20 members of the "Teacher of the Future" collaborative at the National Association of Independent Schools. It's a huge honor for me and a huge surprise. I thank the NAIS for its confidence in me and I am flattered to think that the modest innovation I have brought to the field of education deserves this kind of notice.

Thanks to all my Personal Learning Network, at my physical workspace, in my home, on Twitter, Facebook, EduBloggers, Second Life, ReactionGrid, ISTE, and everyotherwhere I hang out, lurking to learn, contributing as I can. Part of the deal is a subsidized trip to an Apple Learning Institute, and I'll likely be in Boston the end of July for a couple of days for that. What a treat that will be!

Stay tuned for more, and you can see the NAIS site for a bit more on the ToF program.

Sunday, May 09, 2010

Information and Address for USN Flood Relief

Dear folks, I posted a google site to give people information to support bake sales, lemonade stands, or personal donations to our community's flood relief efforts, and you can find it at https://sites.google.com/site/usnfloodrelieffundinformation/. We appreciate anything you can do.

There are also links at the site to broader efforts in Nashville, if you'd feel better about helping in that way.

We thank you,

Scott

Friday, May 07, 2010

How You Can Help Us

I've been talking with my PLN about the horrendous tragedies the recent weather has inflected upon our faculty and family community and I want to post this to have as a resource for those discussions. My school's Director, Vince Durnan, is a man I completely respect and admire, and I know that recent events have presented difficult challenges to his administrative expertise. Imagine that you're the head of a community of families of very many configurations supporting 1017 students. Here's what he sent out today:

Friends,

As we find ourselves at the end of a very long week, I want to take a moment to reflect upon and summarize some important information:

1. Our students, faculty and staff continue to work towards helping those most affected in the USN community and beyond. Find out more about their plans. Additional volunteers are always welcome.

2. The USNA continues to sponsor a USN Fund for Flood Relief to offer assistance to those who have lost their homes. Monetary contributions (mailed to 2000 Edgehill Ave., Nashville, TN 37212 with checks payable to the USN Fund for Flood Relief) will be combined to benefit the several families in the USN community (most of whom are faculty) whose houses were in the direct path of the flood. Every dollar will be allocated to meet these families' immediate needs.


Thanks in advance for anything you can do.

Mayday Floods in Nashville, TN Video

Sunday, May 02, 2010

It's a Deluge in Nashville

It's a catastrophe in Nashville, rains coming down so fast and hard that my own neighborhood is transformed into set of raging streams, whitewater in the streets, the landscape eroding before our eyes. I'm watching Newschannel2's coverage and they're showing Farmer's Market, downtown, under 4 feet of water. Mother Nature seems angry.

Everyone in the family is safe. Miranda is down on campus at Belmont University and at last report was walking to Pancake Pantry (which is just up from a flooded intersection and may be closed) and Ann's up at her Wessex Towers home. The only wild card is Gerry, who is apparently driving from a Fall Creek Falls retreat in the east. Ann is ordering him to pull off at the nearest motel and settle in.

Here's a Picasaweb slideshow of my stuff which I'll update as we continue to navigate the deluge:

Rains


From Rains