Monday, November 13, 2006

HEY, REMEMBER ME?

It is hard to believe that I have taken this long to update this blog. Things here have been super busy and I just have not been doing that much bbq. Sounds strange I know but I think I have a pretty good reason. Let me explain.

I have had a few health concerns since the spring and have spent my share of time in the doctor’s office. I have had three toe surgeries since May and hopefully I will not have to have anymore. It was all minor stuff but it did slow me down a bunch.

Earlier this year I was diagnosed with sleep apnea. After a couple of sleep studies my doctor prescribed a CPAP for me to use at night. One concern was my weight. I had ballooned to almost 260 pounds. I knew I was out of shape but I had no idea of the significance my weight had on my overall health. The doctor gave me a pretty good incentive to loose weight. Basically she said, “Stay the weight you are and sleep with a hose attached to your face for the rest of your life (how ever long that might be). Or, you could loose about 30 pounds and probably be able to do without the CPAP forever.” Now, I am not the sharpest tool in the shed, but it did not take me long to decide which option I liked better. Besides, those hoses are not as romantic as the name implies. Besides, I need to get in shape for next years’ thong season. (pigs being slaughtered, gotta get away!!!)

So I decided I needed to do something. My wife and I chose to begin a “diet and exercise” program. We started on October 16th. We determined that the Fat Smash Diet would be the best for our busy lifestyles and overall physical makeup. You may have heard of FSD. It is the same program used on VH1’s “Celebrity Fit Club”. FAT SMASH is specifically designed to be a 90-day program with four phases that will ultimately re-wire your body and its relationship to food and physical activity for the rest of your life. At the end of the 90 days, you will have made small, but important adjustments not only in your food consumption, but your understanding and attitude towards food and the way you view the importance of physical activity in maintaining a healthy life. Each phase builds upon the previous phase like the levels of a pyramid that support the ones above it. The foundation and its integrity are what allow the peak to stand, so you must be careful in constructing the building blocks so that they might be as strong as possible to allow you to reach the top of your goals.

I have seen some pretty good results so far. At my last weigh-in I was down a total of 12.2 pounds in only 23 days. Since August I have lost an amazing 21 pounds and have been able to keep it off. In the past, I have never been able to do this.

So, for now, I have had to put the bbq on hold. Pork is not allowed until later in the program. Chicken and beef are allowed in smaller quantities than I am used to eating. What I am doing now is formatting recipes that allow me to eat the foods allowed on the FSD program and incorporates bbq.

Thanks for listening and understanding.

Monday, September 11, 2006

911 FROM MY EYES

I was not in New York City, Washington D.C. or Pennsylvania 5 years ago this morning. I was, however, a police officer 5 years ago today and watched in horror as these events played out on my TV. I watched as the planes hit, the smoke rose and the towers fell. I saw many people screaming, most were crying and some were too paralyzed with fear to do anything. I spent my entire 8 hour shift that night guarding an entrance to our local military installation (recently closed by BRAC) waiting for National Guard troops to be mobilized to take over.

I look back on 9-11-01 and cannot help but reflect on how things have changed in our country. I have flown on several commercial flights since that day and, must admit, I look at everyone in a different light. I notice the person or vehicle next to me a little closer now. All of my daily actions and routines have changed. Some folks would say that this is a change for the bad. But some things have changed for the good. I hug my wife a little bit more than I used to. I turn off the TV and play with my two sons when they ask me to play instead of telling them “in a minute”. When I see them, I thank that soldier in uniform for his or her sacrifice and service that allows me to live in a free country. I thank God several times daily that the country that I live in is still free. Have faith in the power of freedom!

People who live in freedom always prevail over people who live in oppression. The people who inflicted this scar on the face of our land have not conquered us but have awakened a spirit of patriotism that had been dormant for much too long.


God bless each one we have lost, here and abroad, and their families. God bless all those defending our freedom and God Bless America.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

BE BACK SOON

In the next few weeks I hope to have this blog up and running again. Until then, please visit my friends and check out their blogs.

Remember, the 18th Annual Jack Daniels Championship is October 20-21, 2006. Should be another good one.

Monday, July 03, 2006

HAPPY 4TH AND AN UPDATE

No, I am not dead , just in case you were wondering. I have not been able to post lately. I did get another computer to replace the dead dinosaur but travel and work have prevented me from posting and cooking as much as I would like. I can no longer access any blog or RSS news service from my work computer. (STUPID FIREWALL!) My part-time music commitments (playing bass and singing in a local group) have had me on the road every weekend for over a month and there will be no break until October. So much for cooking in or visiting an competitions this year. Did I mention it was part-time?

I hope everyone has seen (or will see) the Food Network special on the Mobile contest from March. I wish they would do more of these. Anyway, my partner (Kudzu) and I got a few frames in the show. Most of mine were “B-roll” with me in the background. The was me in the orange tie-dye shirt walking around the EZ-UP as Chris Lilly was getting DQ’d. But the winning shot was of Kudzu turning our chicken in with 3 seconds to spare. It made the show twice. I hear the execs @ Food Network were so impressed with his on camera persona that they offered him a new cooking show. A show name has not been selected yet but it will star Kent “CHICKEN BOOGIE” Lenox. Good bye Hazel Green – Hello Hollywood!

I probably will cook up some wings and a fattie on the WSM tomorrow. Got a lot going on and will not be able to do anything too time consuming. If I get a chance I’ll post some pics in the near future.

I hope everyone has a great 4th. Remember what we are celebrating. It’s not about the cooking, drinking or even having fun. It’s about celebrating our freedom. Love it or not our country is the best thing going. I hope each of you share that feeling. Of course, if you don’t think America is the best, you are free to find a better one.

Happy 4th. Talk to you soon

Ole Smokey

Friday, May 19, 2006

MEET MEALTIME BBQ

I have not been doing a lot of bbq lately. Work and time-consuming projects have kept me from getting the WSM hot. I hope to do a little bit over the Memorial Day holiday (after I get off work that day).

So since I do not have any cooking stories to share, I want to take a moment and introduce you to two friends I have met along the bbq trail. Meet Terry and Cecil from Nashville, TN. Together, they make up the cooking team of Mealtime BBQ. These guys are super folks. If you are ever down this way at a contest look for their cook site. I believe Terry told me they were cooking in about 18 contests (at last count) so you are bound to run into them somewhere.

Mealtime has really put it together this year. With three top ten calls already this year things are looking pretty good for the guys. They got a 4th in Pork @ Winchester, TN in April. Then they started out May with a 1st in Chicken @ Huntsville and a 9th in Chicken in Pulaski, TN. A top ten call in overall points cannot be too far away.

I met Terry and Cecil through a mutual friend, Kent of Kudzu BBQ, at a contest in Decatur, AL last year. Cecil and I attended the same CBJ class in February so not only do we know how to cook, we know what good bbq tastes like (like that one Cecil?). It was a blast hanging out with them in Mobile earlier this year.

Terry and Cecil are a lot like most of the folks in competition bbq these days. Easy to talk to and get to know. I consider them my friends and look forward to getting together with them any time I can.

Take a bow guys, a big one!


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