This is Buzzy's Country Store blog designed to keep you apprised of what's going on at the Store. Buzzy's is a general store located in St. Mary's County, Southern Maryland near Pt. Lookout State Park. Buzzy and Jean Ridgell purchased the Store from Jean's father Harry Raley in 1953. Buzzy operated it until his passing in 2009. His son J. Scott Ridgell is the current owner.

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Two for Tuesday

Couple tunes here for you that played on my radio the other day.  I like it when the DJ's string together a bunch of songs with a theme.  As you will see, this particular one involved a subject we sure seem to hear a lot about nowadays - "Lies." 

Thought I'd pass these along to those of you of who know what the "lie to me" refrain is really all about when you realize that the someone you thought you knew is really full of shit.    Fortunately I only have a couple such folks in my rear view and they are long gone.

Then again, life is really all about living, learning, dealing with adversity and moving on - right?  (Notice I didn't say anything about forgiving.)

Monday, October 22, 2018

Lotto Thoughts

I was behind an elderly black gentleman at a convenience store awhile back and he was buying lottery tickets.  As he paid the clerk and pocketed his tickets he said "I been playing this number for two years now and it ain't hit yet."  With that he left the store.

As I moved up to the counter to pay for my items, the Indian clerk looked out the door as the fella departed and said to me in his accented voice "I think he may be what you call very slow learner."

As a rule I don't play the lottery.  Like most other suckers though, I will wait until it gets over say  $300 million before I waste a couple dollars on it just to have something to talk and dream about for a day or two.     

The latest Mega Million Hurricane has spun up because the lottery folks have made it even harder to win it.  Hence, the jackpots are getting higher.  And the Lottery folks did all this after they raised the ticket cost from $1 to $2.  The following explains it in detail:
Someone simplified the Mega Million approach by noting "Give me a dollar and try to pick out the seven of hearts from this deck of 52 cards.  OK now give me two dollars and try to pick out the seven of hearts from say 62 cards."

A friend of mine who has a "Neighborhood" Store told me that this past Friday he did over $3,000 in Mega Million sales of which he gets back a 5% commission.  Customers coming into his business to buy a lottery ticket also purchased other items.  Bottom line, he said Friday, thanks to the Lottery, was a very good day for him.

The next Mega Million drawing is set for Tuesday night.  I will buy a ticket or two from my friend's business so at least he will get something out of the deal when I don't win.  I usually play some variation of my kids' and grandkid's birthdates.  However, the times that I have played, I think I may have actually had only one of the numbers pulled.  And I have never had the Mega/Power Ball number match any of mine. Maybe I am the slow learner here.   

Bruce has a very optimistic tune here about hope and dreams:

Sunday, October 21, 2018

To See Heaven in a 10 Ounce Beer

Sunday morning so let's talk a little religion.  But just a little religion because I will also be discussing 10 Ounce Buds, so hang with me while I make the connection..

Many moons ago I was talking religion/spirituality with a friend who noted that he felt more at peace and in the presence of the Lord when he was in the woods than he ever did in any church.  When I bounced this idea off my cousin the priest Father John, he explained that there are different forms of spirituality which appeal to different folks.  He noted that my friend obviously was guided by the Franciscan Model of spirituality that is nature based, more free and independent.

(Note - To find your spirituality type (click here.))

I thought of all this recently when I stumbled upon the William Blake poem "To see the world in a grain of sand and heaven in a wild flower, Hold infinity in the palm of your hand and eternity in an hour."  The following explains and sums it up very nicely: 

As I listened to the above NPR report I thought that reporter Robert Siegel sounded familiar.  Turns out that he was one of the NPR reporters who did the now famous 2006 story on 10 Ounce Budweiser including an interview session with folks at Buzzy's Country Store.  When I asked Buzzy why he didn't talk to the NPR folks for the story, Buzzy simply said  "I didn't have anything to say to him so I put the 4 O'clock Boys on him."  Listen at the 4:18 mark to catch the report from Buzzy's.  

Saturday, October 20, 2018

Tennison's Store

The other day someone mentioned to me that when she was a little girl she enjoyed going to Tennison's Store in California with her folks.  She said her dad would have a beer and she had ice cream, candy and a soda pop.  As a result, she loved going to Tennison's.

I found the following info on Tennison's Store which was located at the corner of Rt. 5 and Esperanza School Road where the Chipotle currently sits.  A 1981 Enterprise article (click here) talks to Tennison's getting a facelift shown in some of the photos below. 

Sterling Tennison (Claude's Nephew)

In the Enterprise article Sterling Tennison discussed some of his clientele as follows:
Sterling also discussed his role in fighting against the establishment of a Holiday Inn on the corner opposite his Store.
(As with most controversies, there is a back story to the Holiday Inn venture that I will save for some other time.)

But back to Tennison's in the day.  When it was operational, it was known as a Gro-Bar where customers could buy groceries and have a drink or beer onsite.  At one time the County was full of such places but now it's down to only 7 of us:  Piney Point Market, Dent's in Tall Timbers, Chaptico Village Liquors, Race N In (formerly Stones Store in Budd's Creek,) Quade's Store, Betty Russell's and I'm fairly sure you know the other one (hint hint.)

The irony is, with the exception of Dent's, the rest of us are more Bars than we are Gro's.  But the bottom line is that, we are all still here and hopefully, Chipotle's isn't eyeing any of us for expansion.  

Speaking of "jokative peope" as did Mr. Sterling in describing his customers, Cheech and Chong are having a bit of a comeback with the 40th anniversary of their classic movie Up in Smoke.  Little trivia quiz for you - can you name Cheech and Chong's full names?  Hint - Cheech is a first name and Chong is a last name.  

Friday, October 19, 2018

Times Like This, You Need to Get Out

All sorts of things to do this weekend so get out of the house and go do something fun!
South County's Sunset Cove Restaurant is now open every day for lunch. So check them out some afternoon when you want to chill on the water and have a nice lunch.

The Home Grown Market at Rt. 5 and Hermanville Rd. continues on Saturdays thru December:

Meanwhile at your favorite Country Store, drop in and say goodbye to the old beer cooler that has served you so well all these years.  
The replacement cooler is due in soon and I'm in the process of getting everything ready for its installation.  In a weaker moment I could get nostalgic about seeing the old beer cooler go out of Buzzy's.  However, it has been such a pain maintenance-wise these past couple of years that I won't miss it at all and am actually looking forward to having a new one in its place.  I guess this is another indication that you know you have no life when the prospect of getting a new beer cooler kinda excites you.

For some reason the lyric "I'm a simple man, it's no big mystery" ran thru my mind just now.  So I tracked it down to this Sting song where he sings it at the 1:40 mark.  (Looks a little like Dickie Wood here doesn't he?)

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Jan, Christy, Their Mom and Little Mary

In the days leading up to the Buzzy Car Show I will get quite a few calls from folks asking me what kind of prizes or awards are being given away at the Show, what time does the judging take place etc..  I always tell folks asking these type of questions that the Buzzy Car Show is a very informal and laid back affair with no judging nor prizes.  

Thus, when Jan Kiger called me the Sunday morning of this year's Car Show to ask me what type of show it was, I immediately thought that she was another one of those Car Show folks who bring their rides to the event in order to win a prize or a trophy.  After I gave her my "Buzzy's is a very informal affair" response she said "That's exactly what we're looking for."  Doing my best Bob Barker impersonation, I then told her to "Come on down."  She noted that they had a 59 Ford truck and would bring it down shortly.
Little Mary
When Jan and her husband Jerry rolled into the Buzzy Car Show they were immediately spotted by LP Mercure who helped them get their truck parked and situated in the Buzzy parking lot.  (As we all know, LP is very partial to Ford trucks.)  Pat Birmingham took the above photo along with this one of Jerry and Jan relaxing and talking with Bobby Wright.   
LP's wife Lisa also talked with Jan and later told me how Jan and Jerry had come to own the truck.  Because it was such a great story, after the Car Show I called Jan, whose phone number was still listed on the Buzzy store phone, to see if it was ok that I post that story here on the Buzzyblog.  

Jan not only agreed, she also sent me an email (below) along with some photos.

Here's the story.  Jan's Mom Mary Thompson passed away a year ago after Jan had tended to her for an extended period of time.  Jan's Sister Christy Thompson, who lives in the Philadelphia area, was not able to help Jan out very much with taking care of their Mother who was confined to a wheel chair.  Complicating things, their 100 year old Grandmother began experiencing medical issues and Jan tended to both Mom and Grandmom for several years.

Following the passing of Mom and Grandma, Christy invited Jan and Jerry up for a visit to Philly.  Once there, Christy suggested that they visit Carlisle to check out some classic cars.  When they arrived at Carlisle, Christy told Jan that this day was for her.  Christy explained how much she appreciated all that Jan had done in taking care of their Mom and Grandmother and said that she wanted to show her appreciation by buying Jan any vehicle of her choice there in Carlisle.  That is when Jan became the owner of the 59 Ford truck that she would name Little Mary.  Here's Jan's story to me in her email.

Here are the photos Jan mentioned:
Mary and Jan

Christy and Little Mary
Mom On the Move

 As for why Jan picked a 59 Ford truck she noted that she checked out all of the classic vehicles and for some reason the truck was the one that caught her attention and "sang to her."  
 I got to think that somewhere Mother Mary is smiling.  

Thank you Jan for such a great Buzzy's Car Show story!

And just because I referenced it, here's a nice little tune from you know who:

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Taking a Knee

I was helping Ned install a new electrical outlet  behind the beer cooler when the knee of my old jeans split.  (Quick update on the beer cooler replacement - the new one is due in to the warehouse in Aberdeen next week and to be delivered the week after or so I hope.  Meanwhile, I'm doing the prep work for the replacement.)

Regarding the jeans,  I knew it was getting kind of close because I'd notice how threadbare the knee area had become and made a mental note - don't kneel anymore than you have to.   You know how best laid plans go right? 

There I was kneeling on the floor at Buzzy's Country Store when I felt a little splinter of wood snake its way into my kneecap.  I knew it was over and looking down saw that I was correct.  
The jeans are done.  Call it a "right of tearage."  And while I am not the most sartorially minded person in the world, I do have a standard of not wearing jeans with holes in them.  That seems to be the style now but still, it looks kind of half assed to me.
OK, Maybe the Lower Left Pair of Torn Jeans Don't Look So Bad
Thus, I'm on my way out to purchase a new pair of jeans.  You know you're getting old when the thought runs through your mind - wonder if I will live long enough to wear out a hole in these jeans.  Guess it depends on my genes.  (Sorry, couldn't resist saying that.)

Jackson Browne wrote this song about his wife's pregnancy and her having trouble getting into her jeans.  There is a sad background to the song as the wife later suicided.  However, I still think about this tune and smile a little every time I hear some guy make a remark about having trouble getting into a young lady's jeans. (Click here for video.) 

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Two For Tuesday

Listening to Billy Joel on his Sirius XM Channel, I heard him tell the story of how he came to write Uptown Girl. 

I had always thought that he wrote it to and about Christie Brinkley.  The song's video (below) certainly implied that when it showed Billy as a car mechanic meeting up with Christie in her Rolls Royce and him wanting to … well you know.

However, turns out that Billy initially wrote the song about another supermodel he had been dating at the time - Elle Macpherson (right.)
Billy noted on Sirius that his musical inspiration for Uptown Girl was the song Rag Doll by Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons.  Whereas Frankie and Company sang about a dude falling for a poor girl, Billy flipped it around with the girl being someone who was way out of his league.  Like most guys I know, and definitely speaking for myself,  we all seem to marry way above our station in life don't we? 

I'll leave you with a connection you've never made - David Norris and Billy Joel. Think about it.

Monday, October 15, 2018

Ready for Fall (Weather You Are or Not)

With an exception or two, just about everyone dropping into Buzzy's Country Store these past couple of days has been wearing a jacket, a sweatshirt, or a sweater.  Fall weather, as in cooler weather, has finally arrived.  About time wouldn't you say?  Goodbye to all those muggy days and sweating like a pig.  (Do pigs really sweat?  If not, then why do we say that?  (Click here.))

But enjoy this great weather while you can do so because it won't be too long before we start hearing phrases like "frost warnings" and "freezing temps" thrown around.  Fall is a little like that fun vacation or get away trip that you enjoy briefly but then it ends much too soon.  Old man winter is just around the corner.

But for now let's just enjoy this perfect patch of weather for the next couple of weeks before us.

Here's a little 2 minute video that captures and helps put you in a fall kind of mood.

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Go With Flo

A visitor to Buzzy's Country Store the other day was wearing a Binghamton University shirt.  I asked him if sports reporter Tony Kornheiser was Binghamton's most famous alum.  He laughed and said "Actually, Flo is."  I too laughed and asked "You mean the Progressive Insurance lady?  What's her real name?"  The man replied "I'm not sure but I think it's Stephanie something."

I learned later that Flo is played by actress Stephanie Courtney who graduated from Binghamton in 1992.  She has been doing the Progressive commercials since 2008 and has made a lot of money doing so (click here for more info about her.)   
But our conversation led me to wonder - how do all these insurance companies stay in business?  I Googled Car Insurance Companies and found this listing containing 23 of the larger companies (click here.) 

And speaking of net worth, watch the following at your own risk because it's gonna stay with you the rest of your day:
Wonder if, but seriously doubt, that dude has a future in doing Progressive commercials.

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Beer Buying Eddie "Five Hundred Bucks But Who Cares?!"

Red Sox and Astros square off tonite to see who will represent the American League in the World Series.  If the Astros Front Office folks are on the ball (literally!) they will provide their now famous fan Eddie Flores (shown here toasting his seat mates) with a ticket to the game in Fenway Park.  Read below why I suggest this.
Here is the story of Eddie buying two rounds of beer for folks seated in his section: 
Video follows:

Friday, October 12, 2018

Rock and Coal

Just in case you have been too busy this week what with Nikki leaving the scene and wishing that Kanye would too, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame announced their slate of 2019 nominees as follows:
Fans get to vote for the official nominees and thus far Stevie Nicks and Def Leppard are amassing the most votes.  To vote (click here.)  Here are current standings:

John Prine, who probably won't make the cut, recorded this song on his first album released in 1971.  (Looks like an old country store there at the 0:32 mark.)  At one time Muhlenberg County was the top coal producer in the US.

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Happy Birthday Buzzy!

Celebrating Charlie Simms' 92nd birthday the other day, made me realize that had he lived, Buzzy would have been 94 this year.  I spent some time culling through old photos and found this one which captures one of the last times that Buzzy was behind the counter.  

Mom, Shawn, Lily and Dad
Here is how I like to remember him behind the counter, laughing, joking and enjoying himself.
Buzzy and Steve
Bart, Kenny, JW, Busser, Winkie, Pat John, Buzzy, Rufus, Steve and Bobby D

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Buzzy Car Show Pt. 2

Couple more car show photos for you.

Again my thanks to Pat Birmingham and Bob Mann for taking these photos.
Also, thank you to Brian Barnhill for figuring out how to situate over 100 classic cars, trucks and  bikes into Buzzy's  very small parking lot.
Thanks also to Kim Wiley, Lisa Mercure, Terri Yates, Chris Bender, Doug Byrne and Dylan for all their  help during the event.  Last and certainly not least, my thanks to all of the owners of the vehicles for making the Buzzy Car Show the success that it was.