Eric on The Road

Journeys into the offbeat, off the beaten path, overlooked and forgotten - by Eric Model

Friday, May 29, 2009

A Bike Trail That Traces the Way to Freedom (NY Times)

From The New York Times:

Published: May 29, 2009

The 2,000-mile Underground Railroad Bicycle Route roughly traces the network of paths and hideouts that were used by slaves seeking freedom and the abolitionists who ferried them along.

Monday, May 25, 2009

New Podcast Postings

Journeys into Hidden America: Bob Wills Western Swing, Benny Goodman Centennial and "The Dawn of American Radio"

Journeys into Hockey: The Calder Cup Playoffs over time, and Ron Ellis.


Remember to Remember

The weather is nice, the grill is up, and we'll take a swim today.

We miss the old Memorial Day doubleheaders. But most we miss that Decoration Day used to really matter. It still does to some. Be seemingly, far fewer than before.

Perhaps you can make a difference - whether you're in our Nation's Capital, your hometown or some place "on the road", take the time to remember to remember on this Memorial Day '09.

Remembering Benny Goodman at 100

Benny Goodman, the King of Swing, was born on May 30, 1909.

To mark the occasion, WCKR-FM (89.9 FM in NYC) is in the midst of a multi-day Benny Goodman Festival. They started a week ago and are in the midst of playing his recordings from 1926 until his death in 1986. Today (Memorial Day) they are in 1947 so we still have a chnace to enjoy the music over the next few days.

To hear the likes of Teddy Wilson, Peggy Lee, Tyree Glenn - forget about Goodman himself - is a real pleasure.

Listen in - if you get the chance.

And, thanks to WKCR.

Disney on a dime: Yes, Mouseketeers, you can do it (USA

Via USA Today:

By Nancy Benac, Associated Press Writer

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Disney World has been on our kids' minds this year, but it wasn't in our family budget.

What's a parent to do?

Sunday, May 24, 2009

An Indy 500 Tradition (You Tube)

Via You Tube:

Back Home in Indiana sung by Jim Nabors (since 1972) at the 2009 Indy 500:

Friday, May 22, 2009

A Passage Into the Primeval on a Bayou Lake in East Texas (NY Times)

From The New York Times:


Legend has it that Caddo Lake, shrouded in Spanish moss and guarded by tall cypresses, was once a favored hideout for murderers, thieves and Bigfoot.

With accompanying slide show.

Passing: Clint Smith, Last Living Member of Rangers' 1940 Cup Winnner (NY Times)

From The New York Times:

Published: May 22, 2009

Clint Smith, who was the oldest living member of the Hockey Hall of Fame and the last surviving player from the Rangers’ 1940 Stanley Cup championship team, died o9n May 19, 2009. Smith, who lived in Vancouver, British Columbia, was 95.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Savannah scores title of 'Most Mannerly City' from Charleston (USA

From USA

SAVANNAH, Ga. — They've been rival Southern cities for 276 years, but Savannah and Charleston, S.C., aren't going to risk their courtly reputations by fighting over which one is "America's Most Mannerly City."

After a 12-year reign, Charleston officials have agreed with a survey's organizer that it has held the "Most Mannerly" title long enough, opting to cede it to its Colonial-era sister city on the Georgia coast.

Maybe Bettman has outlived his mandate (CanWest News Service)

From The CanWest News Service via the Montreal Gazette:

Canwest News Service

"...It has been Bettman's mission to make hockey work in Southern U.S. markets...".

Monday, May 18, 2009

S.C. Gullah communities open farmers market (USA

Via USA Today:

The Sea Island Regional Farmers Market, located outside of Charleston, features everything from sweetgrass basket makers and bee keepers to artisans selling their works and farmers selling local seafood, fish, meat and produce.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

The Top 10 Victoria Day events across Canada (

From The Ottawa Citizen via

The top event is the Victoria Day Parade in Victoria, BC

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Replica of Uncle Tom's Cabin to be built in Kentucky (USA Today/Advocate-Messenger)

From The Advocate-Messenger via USA Today:

By Art Jester
The Advocate-Messenger

LANCASTER, Ky. — Two-hundred-year-old logs lie in wait on the ground, a Mount Sterling man is making shingles, and construction of a replica of the fictional Uncle Tom's Cabin is expected to begin in Lancaster in mid-June.

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Pepsi, Mountain Dew Launch Retro Drinks (NPR)

From NPR News:

All Things Considered
May 5, 2009

Pepsi and Mountain Dew have both launched Throwback, two retro variations of the popular drinks that use sugar instead of high fructose corn syrup.

Friday, May 08, 2009

Passing: Dominic DiMaggio

From The Boston Globe:

By Mark Feeney
Boston Globe
May 8, 2009

Dom DiMaggio, who despite having to share an outfield with Ted Williams and a name with his older brother Joe became a diamond standout in his own right, earning All-Star status seven times during 11 seasons with the Red Sox, has died. He was 92.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Passing: Jack Kemp - A "Hometown" Perspective (Buffalo News)

From The Buffalo News:

Friends and colleagues recall Kemp as a tough competitor whose passion, whether it be on the playing field or in politics, distinguished him from others.

Also see:

An appreciation of Jack Kemp

Kemp name forever etched in Bills lore

Kemp was a born leader for Bills

Friday, May 01, 2009

Flu Epidemic Cancelled Stanley Cup in 1919 (


Much of the world is worry (sensationalizing?) this new Swine Flu epidemic. When the World Health Organization issues a pandemic alert it must be serious.

This Swine Flue apparently has potential to be something significant. This flu has something called a H1N1 virus. H1N1 was the key ingredient in the "Spanish Flu" of 1918 and 1919 that is estimated to have killed as many as 100 million people world wide.

There was another casualty of that famous flu - the Stanley Cup. The NHL actually had to end the Stanley Cup finals before a winner could be declared. Prior to the 2004-05 lockout season it was the only time the Stanley Cup was not awarded.

Travel and Twitter from the View of a USA Today Travel Writer

Laura Bly wrote an interesting piece in USA Today about travel and Twitter. The comments were interesting, as well.

She writes:
"Derided as an avalanche of self-absorbed, stream-of-consciousness updates that reads like a foreign language to non-participants, Twitter has nevertheless hitched a ride among cyber-savvy travelers looking for real-time inspiration, information and deals". What do you think ?

Passing: Irving D. Chais, Manhattan Doll Surgeon (NY Times)

From The New York Times:

Published: April 30, 2009

Irving D. Chais, who in his 45 years as the owner and chief surgeon of the New York Doll Hospital in Manhattan reattached thousands of heads, arms and legs; reimplanted fake hair shorn by scissor-wielding toddlers; and soothed the feelings of countless doll lovers, young and old, died on April 24 in Manhattan. He was 83 and lived in Manhattan.