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James R. Stout

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Everything In Its Own Time

            There was once a place in Southwest Houston that was a great place to go for shopping and for going out on a date. It was called Westbury Square. The first time that I went there was with a couple of friends and my girlfriend. It was in October of 1975. We went to a eat at The Village Sq…

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Is That All There Is?

            For my 8th birthday my parents took our family to the circus. We lived in Bryan, Texas at the time and a circus like Ringling Brothers didn’t bother with small towns like ours. But there was plenty of people who otherwise wouldn’t be able to go to a circus that it would be pro…

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It's Going To Be Ok

            All I can say is “wow”. Well, that really isn’t all I can say. But you knew that. I’m half a year away from being 65-years-old. I’ve lived through quite a bit in my life. Some really great times and some really not-so-great times. When I was 18 the Arab oil embargo hit A…

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Evil

            There are times in our lives when things happen that we simply cannot understand. In fact, I don’t believe that certain things can be understood. We expect to experience the ups and downs of life including some devasting lows and incredible highs. But there are things that come along tha…

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The Falcon Soars No More

            In the summer of 1977, I got a 1962 Ford Falcon that had seen its better days, but still ran and would suffice as transportation to and work. At the time, I thought back to when my aunt and uncle bought a new 1962 Falcon. I had clear memories of what one of those cars was like brand new.…

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Green and Purple Pills

            In 1961 a record came out that struck a funny bone with my family. It was called, “Jeremiah Peabody’s Polyunsaturated Quick-Dissolving Fast-Acting Pleasant-Tasting Green and Purple Pills”. It was the first success for singer-songwriter Ray Stevens. The record was all about…

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A Week On The Farm

            When I was young, I would stay with my grandparent’s at their farm for a week here and there. This was before I started 1st grade. All through elementary school I would stay a week at a time during the summer as well. My parents would leave me with my grandparents after spen…

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The Gauntlet of Fire

            From the time I can remember until I was about 13, I went barefoot when outside playing. Of course, this wasn’t true during cold weather, but in Texas it is warm or hot weather from as early as March until as late as October. The feel of the grass on my bare feet was always great. I like…

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My Favorite Five Novels

            It is no secret that I love to read. Although I enjoy greatly non-fiction books about a plethora of subjects, I lean toward fiction novels. I have enjoyed reading novels since I was in elementary school. Of course, I read books that were written for my age at that time (for the most part…

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When Every Day Was Thanksgiving Day

            There are many objects that I associate with my childhood years and spending time at my grandparent’s farm. There was the old crank phone. The earpiece for that phone was very heavy, but my grandmother seemed to not notice when she made calls on the that phone. There was the old wood sto…

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In My Room

            Three weeks before I turned 16 my sister got married. My only part of that wedding was to wear a black tuxedo and perform the job of being an usher. I can’t say that I was sad to see her move out though. Oh, we got along great and I wished her the best. But it was her bedroom that I want…

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The Ballad of Walker Cane

            I believe its natural for us to portray ourselves in the best light as possible. Now, there are certainly some people who seem to love being felt sorry for. Those people will often make sure that everyone sees how bad off they are, physically speaking. Many times, it’s not as bad as they…

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Cool Change

            There are things that happen in life that are just plain weird. There’s absolutely no logical explanation for these things. I know how this is going to sound to some of you, but I promise you that I am telling the truth. This is not fiction. First, let me tell you about some early strang…

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Doors and Windows

            We bought a 1978 Honda Accord in January of 1987 to go along with our old 1975 Toyota Corolla. Yes, it already had 109,000 miles on it, but it appeared to be in good running condition. One weekend in 1988 my wife decided to take the kids up to visit her parents in the country. She would …

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A Thorny Situation

            In September of 1966 there was excitement in the air at our house. I had just turned 11, but the big news was my parents had decided that we would move back to the Houston area from Bryan where we had lived for 3 and a half years. At the time, I was excited because I wanted to be in the …

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Randolph Scott, An Aquarium, and A Red-Hot Spinning Top

            In the spring of 1975, I was 19-years-old. I worked a part-time job at Fox Photo and was also in a trio. We would often times practice until 10 or 11 o’clock in the evening. It was a time of change for me. I was out of high school and trying to decide what I wanted to do with my life. Th…

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You Oughta Be In Pictures

            I had a craving last night. I just had to watch an old movie that I have known about since I can remember. It just so happened to have been a big hit movie the year I was born. The movie is “Blackboard Jungle”. Well, I went into look for it in my extensive DVD/Blu-Ray library and before …

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Why I Write This Blog

            I’ve met a handful of people who have claimed that they have no regrets whatsoever about their life. Well, from my perspective that’s just nuts. Everyone has regrets. That said, you shouldn’t spend your life dwelling on your regrets and wishing that you could change things…

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A Soapbox and Making Memories

            I made the mistake of falling asleep in front of the TV. It was a mistake that I seem to be making often these days. The problem with it is that when I wake up a couple of hours later, I can’t get back to sleep to save my neck. So, I was channel surfing in the early a.m. hours and came u…

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The Lavender Carnation - Happy Valentine's Day!

            When I was growing up Valentine’s Day was celebrated in our schools. All through elementary school we would prepare Valentine’s cards for everybody in our class. Then on the day itself we would tape a brown paper bag to the front of our desk, and everyone would go around and put the card…

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