Friday, April 27, 2007


Amy of Badgroove Fame says:

"I was in a major funk last has finally started to are some funk related questions..."

1. You are in a funk. What is something that you do to try to get out of it?

Usually music. I have a whole list of CDs I reach for when in a funk. Carole King's "Tapestry," Sarah McLachlan's "Fumbling Towards Ecstasy," and Counting Crows "August and Everything After." The Decemberists "The Crane Wife" is going to be a new favorite too. All these albums are depressing albums, mind. Sometimes when I'm down, I'd just as soon stay blue. These are the albums I listen too then.

2. Sometimes music helps when I am in a a song that always makes you smile.

Anything that Satchmo sings on. He always makes me smile.

3. How can you tell you are in funk? Can others tell?

How can I tell??? There's no way you can miss it. I don't smile, I don't have fun. I don't want to talk. Everything seems like it's going against me. And yes, others can tell. They can tell immediately, just by how I carry myself. And, as my sister alluded too, it happens rather frequently. I can even remember the song she made up for me when I was a kid. "He's got the negative blues..."

4. I know when I am in a funk I don't feel like doing the stuff I usually like to do. What is something you do when you are in your funk?

Get away from everyone, and listen to music. Maybe read some depressing poetry. Maybe Plath, maybe Sandberg, maybe Lucille Clifton, maybe some Dickinson.

"Because I could not stop for death, he kindly stopped for me."

5. If you are going to crave a it usually salty or sweet? What is your favorite cravebuster for each?
Some of each, I guess. Actually, my categories would be crunchy or chocolate. Sometimes I have a crunchy craving (chips, crackers, whatever), and sometimes chocolate. Just about any chocolate will do.

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Amy's Interview Meme


1. Leave me a comment saying, “Interview me.”
2. I will respond by emailing you five questions. I get to pick the questions.
3. You will update your blog with the answers to the questions.
4. You will include this explanation and an offer to interview someone else in the same post.
5. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them five questions.

I played along with Amy. Here are her questions for me.

1. You have three beautiful did you and your wife decide on names?

Julia's name came a little by accident. It just fell out of my mouth one day. The Julia part comes from John Lennon's song of the same name. Her middle name, Valentine, comes from a special affinity Susan and I have for Valentine's Day, to include the song My Funny Valentine, a song by Shawn Colvin (see the last verse), a painting by Greg Mort called Valentine, and the fact we were engaged on Valentine's Day, 1993. Julia is also mentioned in the Bible, in Romans. We tossed around Elisabeth a little, but after Julia came up, it was the end of discussion. We both loved it.

The boys were a little harder. For one thing, it takes a special name to sound good with Batty, and harder still to find a good one that hadn't already been used. Zachary Pierce got a little airplay, as did William III. Once Susan told me she'd call William III by the nickname of Trey (or Tre, or Tres), I said "Absolutely not!" When we found out we were having twins, it got worse. Now we have to find TWO good names. My father and my uncle were both born on the same day, one year apart. My uncle was a Jr., and of course I'm a Jr. So we thought perhaps we'd name the boys after my father and my uncle, and have a William Rogers III, and a Thornton Eugene III. We even went far enough to ask my uncle if he'd be ok with it, and he was. Susan, though, just couldn't stand the idea of hollering for "Thornton" to come home for supper. And if I couldn't have a Thornton III, I didn't want a William III. So it didn't pan out.

Susan picked the name Nathaniel. Nathaniel is mentioned in John's gospel, though with a slightly different spelling. (I also think his nickname, Nat, sounds like a great musician's name. "Tonight, on stand-up bass, Nat Batty, ladies and gentlemen, Nat Batty!") His middle name, Lewis, is my maternal grandfather's name, and Susan's paternal grandfather's name (though he spelled his name Louis).

I spent much time trying to figure out Matthew's name. It was the original name I came up with, but I looked around for several weeks to see if I could come up with something else. I couldn't. His middle name is Thornton, named after my uncle, and ultimately my paternal grandfather. Now that he's here, I can't think of him being anything but a Matthew.

Someday, when they're in school, perhaps they'll be known as Matt and Nat Batty. We almost always call them by their given names. Oh, and though we didn't know it then, Nathaniel means "Gift of God," and Matthew means "Gift of the LORD." And, some people believe that the Biblical Nathaniel (who is mentioned only in John) is the same as Bartholomew (who's never mentioned by John). If true, both our boys share the name of an Apostle. Not planned that way, but cool nonetheless.

2. What is your favorite way to eat a potato?

I'll be shorter with this answer! Probably hash browned, dark and delicious. Yum.

3. Share a favorite recipe that you enjoy making.

I'm not much by way of recipes. I'm more of a "wing it" kinda guy. I have found the perfect secret to medium rare steaks on the grill though. Get the grill good and hot. Take well seasoned, room temperature steaks, and throw them over medium high flame. Don't be afraid, and don't turn the grill down too low. Two minutes later, turn the steaks 90 degrees for those delicious looking grill marks. Two minutes later, flip. Two minutes later, turn 90 again. Eight minutes total--that's all! And Susan will tell you how yummy they are.

4. You finally own your fire engine....what do you do with it?

I drive it to work. I take the kids to get ice cream in it. I take it to the beach. I take it to gigs with a drum set in the back. In short, I drive it! Wanna go to the Maine Mall with me? Cool! Let's take the fire truck!

5. What makes a good drummer in your opinion?

It's all about a good groove. It's got to have the right feel. Terry Bozio and Chad Wackerman have all the technique in the world. But I'd way rather hear someone laying down a fat, funky groove any day of the week! They gotta play tasty! Chops are great, but after one listen, I'm like "Yup, they can play." But I don't go listen a second time. I could listen to Papa Don't Take No Mess all day long!

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Monday, April 23, 2007

A really late MI-5

1. Name a movie you would like to see soon.
I don't have one, really. Gwenyth Paltrow played Sylvia Plath in a movie. I've been wanting to see it for some time. I have yet to see it. I have yet to look for it in a movie store. My movie watching has gone way down hill. I guess I don't really have the time to devote to it. If I had 2-3 free hours, there are other things I'd rather do.

2. If money were a bit tight where is an area you would cut back?
I'd cancel the DirecTV. Susan and I have done it in the past, and I find I actually rather like it. It allows me time to read, watch movies I already own, and listen to music.

3. What is something that you used to dislike but now like?
Nothing comes to mind that went from one extreme camp to the other. I was never big on mayonnaise on sandwiches, but I could eat one now with mayo on it. Coleslaw. It's not a favorite, but if served, I eat a little. I was never big on that before.

4. Tell us something that people often notice about you right away?
I look like my dad.

5. When you have had a long day and you go home what is your way to unwind?
Music and a little taste of bourbon. Just a little.

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Sunday, April 22, 2007

The WEEK Wrap-Up

I'm gonna give you the Week Wrap Up, not just the weekend, ok? There was a lot going on, and I didn't have much time to blog, so I'll make up for it with a super gigantic post.

Monday. Monday was the day before billing. And of course, it was the hight of the storm. (For those of you in Cali, we had four or so days of really bad weather. I spent most of the day in the office, preparing for billing day. In the evening, I had a rehearsal with the steel drum band. This was also the day a potential new pastor arrived in town for a few days.

Tuesday. Billing day. I was in the office a little before 6am. The actual computer end of billing day was fine--probably my best one yet. No hang-ups at all. Well, Gina reported the mechanical end of things wasn't working too smoothly (the folder/inserter machine is finicky), but that happens just about every month. In the morning, around 10am, I took payroll down to the Newcastle office. In the afternoon, I got ready for the trade show. In the evening, I went to bible study with the pastor candidate, and I brought along pizza for everyone. It seemed a good time, and everyone really seemed to like him.

Wednesday. Wednesday was the Penobscot Region Chamber of Commerce Business Showcase. Every year (save one) since I've been with MIS, we've served coffee in our booth. This year, two other booths also served coffee. And, the traffic pattern was such that most people hit one of the other two booths before they hit mine. Well, you know they say about imitation.

Thursday. Thursday was about my most "regular" day. I was in the office all day (I think). In the evening, I had another band practice, this time with Blind Albert. Also, the kids went to Susan's parent's house for the weekend.

Friday. I was only in the office 1/2 the day. I put in enough extra hours on Tuesday and Wednesday, so I took some time off. Susan had asked a professional cleaning service to come in and work on our kitchen and bathroom. They did a great job. I'll be trading them some web work in exchange for their services. They finished up around 1pm, I think, and then Susan and I went to lunch at Applebees. Dessert was a raspberry chip sundae over at Dormans. I spent the afternoon taking some stuff to the dump, and doing some more general clean up. In the evening, we had supper at Sul Mare. My appetizer was wood roasted sausage with tomatoes, red pepper, and cannellini beans. It rocked! I should've asked the chef to make me a dinner size portion for supper! For an entree, I had venison ragout, and Susan had hanger steak and merlot risotto. Yum. We had enough left over for lunch on Saturday.

Saturday. I made Susan and I a romantic breakfast of waffles with a raspberry sauce and whipped cream. I made another trip to the dump, and then to the in-laws to pick up the boys. (Julia stayed later, as she was going to the circus.) What did I do in the afternoon? I can't recall. I worked on my new snare drum. In the evening, we got pizza at Amatos. I think I went to bed relatively early.

Sunday. Pancakes. Church. Susan wasn't feeling well, so she stayed home. Matthew woke up with some crust in his eye, and it was a little red, so he stayed home with Susan as a precaution. Lunch was leftover pizza from yesterday. I took a little nap, and was up around 3pm. While Susan took her nap, I cleaned the fridge. (She hasn't noticed yet!) I made supper for everyone, and now at about 8:30, I'm finishing this post.

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Monday, April 16, 2007

Weekend Wrap-Up

How's everyone? Good! Glad to hear it! Here's the weekend wrap-up.

Friday night? I don't even remember.

Saturday. In the morning, I got up with the boys. I made some blueberry muffins. I worked on some web sites. I had to go into the office for a little bit too. I don't remember the rest, really.

Sunday, and it was Susan's favorite: bacon and eggs. Too bad she really didn't get to enjoy it. She wasn't feeling well. (She still isn't feeling well.) I took the kids to church, and Susan stayed home to rest. I taught Sunday School, and got through one verse! When we got to Mom's for lunch, I wasn't feeling too well, so I didn't eat any of Lisa's meatloaf. (Actually, I didn't eat anything.) I got a hair cut from Mom, and headed home for a little nap. In the evening, I went back to church. Susan still wasn't feeling well, so we headed right home after church.

And that was it!

The end.

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Gina's MI-5

Gina says: "Today's questions.... an eclectic group. Let's find out about YOU!"

1) If you were responsible for casting a new film about Jesus Christ, which current actor would you give the role to and why?

I'm not really sure. I'm not into Hollywood that much, so I'm not really up on actors and all that. And, I keep going back to those actors who have already played Jesus. I guess they seemed to do the roll well enough that I'd probably just ask them to do it. (On a side note, notice my two picks have sort-of "rugged" faces. I'm not sure why that is.)

2) If you had to recall a time in your life when your self-esteem was at it’s highest, when would you say that was? And why?

I'm not really sure. I think my self esteem has run at about the same level since I can remember.

3) What is the most creative outlet that you have?

Playing drums. The bands I play in all allow me to play what I want, how I want, and without any real limits. I can't be silly about it; I can't play "Mustang Sally" in a bar as a Waltz, but I can play the song with whatever feel, intensity, and groove I want, so long as it works within the song.

4) If you had to name the emotion that you waste the most time on, what would it be. Feel free to elaborate.

Depression. They don't call me bipolar bear for nothing. When I start off having that "bad day," it's frequently hard for me to pull out of it.

5) Complete the phrase “I love my life when…,”

It's a Saturday, I've had a good night's sleep, and I have no real plans for the day. I can do whatever I want!

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Strange Sleep Patterns

I usually have pretty steady sleep habits. My alarm is set for 5:50am. I almost never hear it, as I'm always up before it. Usually, at 5:45, I'm up and out of bed. For the last three mornings, though, I've been up earlier than that. In fact, Monday and Tuesday I woke up at 4:45am. This morning, it was 4:30! So I've just been lying there, maybe sleeping for three or four minutes, waking up, look at the clock, see it's now 4:40, drop off for a few more minutes, repeat. What's the deal?

You probably won't get any more posts from me until Friday. I'm crazy busy for the next week or so. I'm busy at the office, I'm busy in the evenings, I'm just busy. Tonight I'm at a gig, playing Jazz at a business function.

In other music news, I finally won a WWII era snare drum.

Boys already put in time out this morning: Nathaniel
Watching: The morning news

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Friday, April 6, 2007

Susan's Unpredictable MI-5

My beloved wife Susan says: "The weather in Maine is wacky & unpredictable, and so are the questions."

1. How do you react when Plan A becomes Plan B?
OK, I guess. Probably Susan is the better one to answer how I react. As long as there's proper communication about changes in plans, I'm cool. Of course, if someone tells me they'll meet me at 5pm, and then a 6pm they show up and are all "Hey, man, plans changed," well, I'm not to OK with that.

2. What is under your bed?
Ask Susan. I know my stuff that's under there. Some stuff belongs to her, of course. My stuff, is I think all art prints.

3. If you had a million dollars what would you buy first?
A bigger house for us. Then, a trailer by a brook for Mom.

4. If you could have one superpower what would it be?

5. When you were a teenager what did you think your life would be like at the age you are now?
Well, I figured I'd be either a musician or a chef. I got 1/2 right. I thought I'd be married to Susan. I got that right. I didn't factor in three kids, and especially not twins. I figured I'd have kids, but I thought I'd stop at two. The whole public relations/marketing thing wasn't something I thought about until after college. And certainly, even a year ago, managing an Internet company wasn't on my radar.

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Thursday, April 5, 2007

Props to Some Peeps

Shawn, formerly of Asbestos Den, has a new blog: Comics Pundit. I checked it out, and lo and behold, he's made me a new 88 button.

Thanks Shawn!

Also to my Mom. She's gone crazy on me recently. We try to do nice things for each other. She cuts my hair. Her bills to somehow get paid, yet her checks don't get cashed. A CD from my Amazon wish list shows up. The salesperson at the local computer store won't take her payment for a new scanner. I think she may have trumped me, though. This showed up for me yesterday. At first I suspected Susan, who mentioned me and said watch on her blog recently. But she said it wasn't her. So then I suspected my Mom. And sure enough, they left her name on the packing slip. So thanks, Mom, it's really great, and I really love it. I don't think I'll be able to tag you back for this one.

Feeling: Really moody, and ready to bite bullets

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

Sunday, April 1, 2007

The Weekend Wrap Up

Here's my weekend wrap-up.

I'm going to start with Friday. For Christmas, my Susan asked that my Mom buy the boys new wallpaper for their room. So she did. She found some nice wallpaper (tan with blue stars), and Friday was the day to put it up. Me, being somewhat ok at wallpapering, took the day off to help. We started at a little before 9am, and by about 3:30, we were done. Everything seemed to go very well, and only the corner with the roof line and the boys' closet door gave us any real trouble. I was cleaning up after we finished when Jim called from the office. Something had broken, and they needed some extra hands. So I went in and helped out.

Saturday I had the entire day off. No gigs, no office, no nothing. It felt great! I started off with pancakes for everyone. Once that was done, and the kitchen cleaned, I went to the hardware store with the boys. We came home, and did some yard work. Since it was so warm and spring-like, I also thought I should pull out the grill. Since I was in the garage, Julia asked if we could go for a bike ride. So we took a ride up to the high school. Later in the afternoon, I worked on the web site that's been taking quite a bit of my time. For supper, Julia wanted Susan's twice baked potatoes.

This morning, Susan let me sleep in a little. I didn't bother with breakfast. Instead, we grabbed something at Dunkin' Ds. Church went well, as usual. Cousin Jen and her new husband Joe were here for a "meet the newlyweds" pot luck. By the time that was over, and we got home, it was around 3pm. Nathaniel fell asleep in the car, and Matthew was asking to go to bed. So naps all around! We went to church again in the evening, and had a Destination Unknown. That's when, after church, you follow one person to an unknown location for games, food, and fun. Mom was the host, and we played some games and had strawberry shortcake.

Now I'm home, and Susan is watching Amazing Race. Of course, I don't really care about that, so I figured "Hey, why not get my weekend wrap up online on time for once."

According to the prophecy of: Billy Rhythm [Link]

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