Author Archives: Mick

Tall Enough to Tell the Tale

You’ve got me there, Bob (see previous post); but as I’ve been saying more and more frequently lately, it seems to be the names that go first. That means I’ve got a lot of nameless faces floating around in my … Continue reading

Posted in albany, Americana, darts | Tagged , , | 9 Comments

leaving a room

room one: It was not that I was a bad child, but it was clear early on that I seemed to have a gift for mischief. Consider, for instance, the quiet summer morning in 1944, a day when my father … Continue reading

Posted in albany, Catholic School, The Air Force | 7 Comments

Swing Low, Sweet Pontiac

In the fall of 1963, I was a young airman stationed at Griffiss Air Force Base in upstate New York. I had recently returned from a tour of duty just outside Istanbul, Turkey and the Rome/Utica area just didn’t have … Continue reading

Posted in Baseball, Bobby Thomson, Brooklyn Dodgers, New York Giants, The 50s | 2 Comments

We Interrupt This Program…

..to bring you an important bulletin. Nearly two years ago, while Bob was visiting from Japan, he and I were sitting out on the back deck of my home in Desert Hot Springs, just shootin’ the breeze, reminiscin’ about our … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Let There Be Soul!

In the beginning the music was formless and void,and a great emptiness went forth across the airwaves.All that could be heard therein was Patti Page,Theresa Brewer and Frankie Laine. Then God said, “Let there be rhythm, let there be blues!”;and … Continue reading

Posted in Americana, Pop Music, Rhythm and Blues, Rock and Roll, Soul, the 40s, The 50s | 9 Comments

Cool On Ice

In the process of writing a piece on skateboarding recently, I found myself at a distinct disadvantage: being much older, I had little or no experience of the world of the skateboarder, a world which may as well have unfolded … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 5 Comments

The Migration of the Anglo-Saxons

To provide a bit more visual context for the previous story, I offer this photo, taken roughly within the same timeframe of those events, with an additional bonus: it includes our trusted steed, the unsinkable ’57 GMC panel truck which … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 4 Comments

Merry Christmas To All, And To All A Goodnight!

‘Twas the Night Before Christmas, by Henry John Yeend King; 1855 – 1924

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Motorcycle Painting

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

The Midnight Ride of Danny McNabb

EVERY NOW AND THEN I get it into my head to make a list of certain things I’ve done in my life. There’s a sense of satisfaction to be gained by stacking up a bunch of items that are normally … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

The Spy Who Came In From the Cold War

AT THE THRESHOLD OF THE SIXTIES – the same year, in fact, that JFK became president – I joined the Air Force. Bob had joined a couple of years earlier, studied Chinese at Yale, and was diligently gathering intelligence in … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 5 Comments

Edifice Rex

LONG AGO AND FAR AWAY (the width of a planet for you, Bob; a mere continent for me), in the heart of the Empire State, there lived a little king. On one particularly warm and sunny spring day, the little … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

The Parcheesi Plot

Ah, the hours whiled away on the Parcheesi board as a youth. I haven’t played the game in years, but I can still remember the sound and feel of the dice rattling in the leather cup, the chok-chok of the … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Football In the Side Pocket

Mr. McGuire: “I just want to say one word to you -just one word.”Ben: “Yes sir.”Mr. McGuire: “Are you listening?”Ben: “Yes I am.”Mr. McGuire: “‘Plastics.’”xxxxxxxxxxxxx– From The Graduate, 1967 The Albany Billiard Ball Company, founded in 1868 by John Wesley, … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Twilight of the Trolley

I remember sitting at our little table on the second story porch overlooking Second Avenue sometime around dusk on a summer evening, having milk and cookies and watching the sparks fly from the overhead cable as the trollies went by. … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

The Lineup

The usual suspects:Bob, Pat Villani, and Mick, probably during one of those real winters of the late 1940s, when the snow could very well be over your head when you rolled out in the morning, wearing so many layers that … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 11 Comments

Half Moon Rising

A little bit of Albany history… By the beginning of the 20th century, Albany had become an important, versatile transportation center connecting major markets throughout the Northeast, just as the railroads were beginning to surpass riverboats as the primary mode … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 4 Comments

School of Hard Rocks, Part II

On the way to my first day at Schuyler I had to walk past McCloskey High, and felt a twinge of shame and sadness as I waved and said hello to a number of good friends and former fellow students. … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 8 Comments

Hot Rod Fever

Blandly mothertakes him strollingby railroad and by river-he’s the son of the abscondedhot rod angel-and he imagines carsand rides them in his dreamsxxx– from Wild Orphan by Allen Ginsberg I was daydreaming about current events while Mrs. Taylor droned on … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

School of Hard Rocks

I must have been staring at that page for a good ten minutes. It remained as blank as my mind, except for the few shards of information I was able to scratch out at the top: name, date, subject, school. … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 6 Comments

Cold Warriors

“…and these atomic bombs which science burst upon the world that night were strange even to the men who used them.” The World Set Free, H.G.Wells, 1914 I can still recall standing on the couch next to Mom, looking out … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 6 Comments

Fin de Cycle, Part Deux

Bob, you and I were coming out of a Saturday matinee at the Delaware Theater back in ’52 (no doubt after seeing a film in which the good guys got the bad guys) when we discovered that my bike was … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Fin de Cycle

It was 1952, the year that Gary Cooper took back Hadleyville and left his badge in the dirt as he left town in High Noon. The theme song, Do Not Forsake Me, Oh My Darlin’, became a top ten hit, … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Here’s To You, Mrs. Robinson

Bob, I have to correct something, just for the record. In an earlier post, The One True Church, I offhandedly remarked that Shirley Connell was my second great love; Dodo Einstein, Albert’s daughter, being the first. Wrong. My real first … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

The One True Church

Fly the ocean in a silver plane,See the jungle when it’s wet with rain,Just remember till you’re home again,You belong to me True enough; you were for one brief, shining moment, a tadpole holier than moi. Even though my heart … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Across the Street from Heaven

Bob, just to add another touch of celestial glory to your story, I present these images of the very sights you and I would have beheld 1) on our way into St. James Church on a Sunday morning, our minds … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Young Rascals

Bob, I felt it was important to include the only photo I could find of the scene of the crime; that is, the Carl’s house in Schodack Landing. Oddly enough, it happens to be a double exposure, which to me … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Railroad Man

Bob, one of the best ways I can think of to honor the man is to post a poem from your book, Further on This Floating Bridge of Dreams, which sure do him proud. Thanks for the green light. Old … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Back to the River of Dreams

Using what little willpower I have left, I am nailing some of those pandora’s lids back on for a moment, so that we can return to the river of dreams (called Muh-he-kun-ne-tuk by the Mahicans, the mighty Hudson by others), … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 4 Comments

Ducklore Galore

Bob, thoroughly enjoyed reliving our last great bridge adventure, and I do believe you can rightly claim to be the only one to have done it wearing baby ducks; or at least the only one who lived to tell the … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 8 Comments

trust your instinct, kid…

“‘Imagine a Bridge in the Distance” was one of the most evocative, scene-setting, best titles ever and went perfectly with that first heart-stopping photo!! Carried you right headlong into the tale!! How come you changed it? How come you took … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Imagine a Bridge in the Distance, Part II

Being light, agile and foolhardy enough to make the aforementioned leaps, we eventually arrived at our destination: the top of the first of a line of massive concrete pylons (see image in Part I) stretching across the Hudson River, holding … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Imagine a Bridge in the Distance

Bob, it’s high time we took a side trip down the Hudson River to Schodack Landing, a place you mentioned in an earlier blog (The Gun That Won the Imagination); a place not far in miles, but an entire universe … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Santa Says Hello

Every year at about this time, we get out the boxes of Christmas decorations, and every year at about this time I receive a gift from the ghost of Christmas past. For some reason I am always surprised, even though … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Life on the Hudson

From 1863 to 1948, the Hudson River Day Line transported passengers along the Hudson River to points between New York City and Albany. Known for the elegance and speed of its steamboats, the Day Line was a popular way to … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

The Firebombing of Mapleridge Avenue

Yes, Bob, your slingshot legacy stands unchallenged, near as I can tell. Had we been born into an Indian village as we so often dreamed, you would have had an honored seat in the sweat lodge, right up there alongside … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Hey, Wild Bob, wait for me!

Posted in Uncategorized | 4 Comments

Crossing Delaware

We were such brave warriors back then, prepared at the first hint of danger to strap on a six-gun, slap on some war paint, dust off the sling shot, and march into battle. We never knew where the next deadly … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Our Own Private Oz

The Yellow Brick Road, the old Delaware Turnpike, runs south from the hamlet of Normansville to Elsmere, and was abandoned in 1863. We took it over in 1951. The two bridges over the Normanskill Creek can be seen below, where … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Graceland

Yeah, I remember Graceland Cemetery. Elvis’ ghost still hovers at the gate, I hear. You may also remember Paul, the caretaker’s son, who one Christmas morning sat and shot out every one of the ornaments on their Christmas tree with … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

The Prince and the Papers

I remember those long, delicious evenings buried in piles of comic books, then loading them into the wagon for the trek home, where the marathon would soon begin. After reading Captain Midnight, Plastic Man and Batman late into the night, … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Captain Marvel Eyebrows

As a kid I would always hear from a certain person, slightly older than me, that I had eyebrows just like Captain Marvel, and though it made me feel a bit self-conscious, I secretly turned it into a link with … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 5 Comments

Iceberg Looming

Funny, I remember the Fellini scene as well, with the ice looming up before me. I may have been on a tricycle but don’t remember. My head had a way of finding hard objects, though, so I may have been … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Improbable Wizards

The Blog Brothers at Pat Villani’s birthday party, 1948.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Bad Luck and a Very Hard Head

I certainly understand your response to that photo of Dad; I had many of the same feelings when I saw it. Though it appears to be a previously unseen picture, however, it is actually a detail from a photo that’s … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

One Morning After the War

I remember the Luger well. Darth Vader himself would later tap into its dark power, which was mesmerizing to us even at that tender age. Brings to mind my memory of meeting dad for the first time when I was … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Night of the Living Dead Boys

Convenient memory lapses aside, I know who tossed the monkey, and I salute you for it, brother. You’re right up there with Jacques Tourneur, the French director who provided me with another favorite mental melodrama (see Post-Cinematic Stress Syndrome). I … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

screaming monkeys

Agreed, those were awfully dark thoughts being foisted upon millions of innocent souls, and sad to say, it goes on to this day. It seems, though, that we were somehow inoculated against those ideas, and were able to take the … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue

Speaking of scaring children, why was that baby’s cradle up in the treetop? Why couldn’t some responsible adult go up and rescue that poor kid before the bough broke, and, most importantly, why the hell have parents been using it … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Post-Cinematic Stress Syndrome

As a boy I was haunted by a dream in which a black panther was on the loose in our apartment over Einstein’s drug store and had killed everyone else in the family, while I remained hidden in a clothes … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

A Tale of Two Beginnings

A couple of stories centered around the beginnings of things. One about me, one about Sue. First, me, of course. From the beginning of me I heard that Dad was trying to find his new baby boy among a crowd … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

First Press Conference

Mother, dear mother, may God give you wings,For your two little boys tend to complicate things.

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Technorati Profile

Technorati Profile

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment