Monthly Archives: April 2014

Issue 277 – Coquina Beach . . . and More

Issue 277    —    The Paregien Journal    —    April 29, 2014

Coquina Beach . . . and More

by Stan Paregien Sr.

Hello friends and neighbors:

Well, I guess another senior moment reared its head a few days ago. That’s when I intended to post “#13  We Get Visitors” on my “Stan’s Paradise Report.” And I did post it there, but . . . WordPress in its infinite wisdom actually posted here on my “Paregien Journal” blog.

Then just now, I again tried to post (what you see now, below) to that “Stan’s Paradise Report” blog and, . . . Bingo! . . . it, again, posted the info on my “Paregien Journal” file.

Okay. The internet gods are working against me, here. I’m much more frustrated by all this that I want to be. So . . . , I will abandon the “Stan’s Paradise Report” blog and just combine it with “The Paregien Journal.” Now I’m probably telling you more what what you want to know.

So let’s just move ahead.

Meanwhile, here in Paradise . . . 

I want to share with you some photos from last week (Friday, April 25th) when we spend from 5 pm to dark (8 pm) at lovely Coquina Beach some 7 miles or so from our house here in Bradenton. The air temperature was about 83 and the water temperature was 77, a few degrees below “comfortable” for us. But it is getting there. And we did actually get into the water for a while, making it our first swim in the Gulf for 2014.

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Miss Peggy as she was about to rise and shine and go looking for sea shells. Say this six times real fast: “She was searching for sea shells among the sea gulls by the sea side.” Yeah, I couldn’t do it either.

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Guy illegally fishing in the public beach area. He is not a good “poster child” for other fishermen.

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I stepped up close to a tree at the edge of the beach to get a good shot of the beach. And, lo and behold, I was staring right into the beady eyes of this little character up on a limb in that tree. He/she was busy chewing on a peanut and didn’t seem to be bothered by my presence.

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Another beachcomber. Note the sweatshirt. This photo was taken some time after 6 pm. The ocean breeze had picked up and the temperature dropped considerably. By 7 pm I was looking for a pair of long pants but, alas, I was out of luck.

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You remember Bob Wills and his Texas Playboys, don’t ya? Bob and the boys had a big hit with a song called, “Faded Love.” And a part of one lyric says, “As I watched the mating of the dove.” Well, we didn’t see any dove mating on the beach. The this pair of seagulls was getting with the program, as were several other agitated and noisy, dancing birds. Hmmm. 

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Shhhhh. This old guy thought he was the only one on the beach. Hey, wait, that’s me. Sad, but true. I was deep in meditation about the mysteries of life. Well, that’s my story and I’m keeping to it.

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Well, folks, that’s about it for today here in Paradise.

We have two visitors coming down from the North County on Wednesday. They will be staying about a week, so we will no doubt have some more photos to share about life here in Florida.

— Stan

Issue 276 – Photos from 1959, Part 01

Issue 276    —    The Paregien Journal    —    April 27, 2014

Photos from 1959 (Part 1)

by Stan Paregien Sr.

Oh, boy, where did all the years go? In about eight weeks it will have been 55 years since I graduated with the Class of 1959 at Fillmore Union High School in Fillmore, California. So I’m going to take a few blog posts to reflect on that great year of 1959.

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The above photo is of me and my sister, Roberta (Class of 1961). I’m wearing my “Senior Sweater,” but I only got a couple of years of wear out of it because in the fall of 1961 a thief broke into my car and stole it and everything else. The photo was taken at the Samuel Edwards Ranch (now part of the large Limoneria corporation) located 1 mile due west of Piru, California. The orange orchards were snuggled up against the mountain on the north side of the Santa Clara Valley.

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Ah, yes, those “white bucks” made popular by singer/movie star Pat Boone and others.

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This was our dear, sweet momma — Mrs. Harold (Evelyn Cauthen) Paregien. She was a couple of inches taller than my father and an inch or so shorter than I, so she was about 5′ 10″ in her prime. However, in her 70s she began to experience severe curvature of the spine. At her death in 2011 she was probably only about 4′ 7″. Though she was in constant pain, and that bent over position eventually made it hard for her to breath, she seldom complained. She was a strong, loving Christian woman and we all miss her terribly.

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This is a view from up on Goodenough Road, looking west across Sespe Creek to the mountain. Mighty beautiful area.

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A bunch of us in the Class of 1959, plus several other adventurous types, ditched school one day to go to Piru. The occasion was the filming of some scenes for a movie starring Tony Curtis and Sidney Portier. It is a black-and-white film titled, “The Defiant Ones.” Look for it on late, late night TV once in a while. There was no such thing as “security” on that movie set, so we walked right up and visited with Tony Curtis. Sidney Portier was not working that day. One of us asked Mr. Curtis, “Who has the female lead in your movie?” And Tony smiled and said, “Oh, we don’t have a female lead. Tony and I fall in love.” Back then, that was a joke.

Alas, FUHS’s truant officer was alive and well. Though he didn’t actually physically catch us, he knew who we were and the jig was up.

Another time that year, a high-profile murder trial was going on at the Court House in Ventura. It was gory and sensational. The prosecutors claimed an older woman hired someone to kill her daughter-in-law. So, since we were fans of “Perry Mason,” Ferrill Williams, Mike Amey and I went to the “Duncan trial.” I don’t remember if she was convicted and punished or not. But I know we three were discovered, convicted and punished with detention time.

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You see, friends and neighbors, it is not easy being sexy Seniors and on the cutting edge of being “cool.”

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The above photo is of my father’s sister, Mrs. Eupel (Paregien) Higgenbotham and her husband John. He managed an orange and lemon farm on the north side of Highway 126, some 7 miles or so east of Santa Paula. 

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I am so stylishly dressed because this was “Letterman Club” initiation day at dear ol’ Fillmore H.S. The existing members of the Lettermen Club probably would be locked up in jail if that did today what they did to us back then. I get teary-eyed just thinking about it. Well, sorta.

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The above photo is of a wonderful group of thugs . . . , er, I mean . . . upstanding (see, they are, too) young men. The leaders of tomorrow. The cream of the crop. The elite. The . . . , oh heck, you get the idea. There was a lot of talent and brain-power in this group, contrary to the old “jock” stereotype.

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The above photo is of my sister, Roberta, and her date Carroll Beard. He was the older brother of my best friend (and the best man in my wedding), Duane Beard. Duane and Carroll had an awfully good-looking sister named Ruth. Duane died in Oklahoma a few years back.

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Gee, look at that. I could actually grow a few chin whiskers back in 1959. Today, of course, I have a full beard, and one that is far more salt than pepper in color. Times they do change.

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Hey, it looks like Don Ho is back and about to sing “Tiny Bubbles.” Or not. After my weekly Saturday night bath, I was mite near clean. But clean or not I was ready to rock and roll . . . to the music of Hawaii. 

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The photo above was taken at the wedding of Garrold Muth and Janice Ballenger, in Fillmore. The women, left to right, are Barbara Wallace, Linda Yount, Patsy DeJarnette (one of her brothers, Bill — otherwise known as “Rat” — later became the Police Chief in Fillmore), Sue Ballenger and Janice. On the right side are Anthony Rice, Ferrill (“Shorty”) Williams, Stan Paregien and Mike Amey.

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The photo above shows me with the lovely Judy Goodenough, younger sister of my fellow Class of 1959 member Don Goodenough. We dated off and on for a year or more. This photo was taken at my parent’s home on the Edwards Ranch near Piru, Calif.

That’s about it for now, friends and neighbors.

More later.

Issue 275 — We Get Visitors

Issue 275    —    The Paregien Journal    —    April 25, 2014

We Get Visitors

by Stan Paregien Sr.

There’s a joke down here in Paradise to the effect that only after you move here do you suddenly become popular with those relatives who refused to speak to you for years, and with those high school classmates you thought had died years back, and with friends of your friends who stop in to give you your friend’s best wishes.

As I said, it is a joke. But it is only funny because there is an element of truth in it. This is a Big Tourist State with loads of things to see and do, so people do seem to flock here to see the new resident in town. And, hey, that is okay with us. Peggy and I are people persons, so we enjoy seeing our family and friends from far places, even friends of our friends. Those in that last category, however, we limited to a two-night stay. 

Here are some of the folks who have blessed us with a visit since we moved here:

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Glenda & James Cotton with Stan & Peggy Paregien at the Ringling Mansion & Museum

in Sarasota Florida on Oct. 25, 2013

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We tend to go a little crazy when guest come. Glenda Cotton and Peggy

are shown getting a little carried away.

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Woody King (Peggy’s nephew) with his wife Lisa and baby Ella.

The Kings are from the Portland, Oregon metro.

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See, Santa came all the way to Florida to find us. Bet ya didn’t know that when ol’ Santa Claus crosses the border into Florida, he gives up the sleigh and reindeer for a golf cart. In this case, Santa and his helper are former Kentuckians Gary & Holly Woolums

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Phil and Kay Coldiron are from the Oklahoma City metro area.

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The Allen Sisters (Indianapolis, Portland & Bradenton)

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Muriel & Jerry Paregien with Stan & Peggy Paregien at St. Petersburg, Florida on March 2, 2014.

Jerry, Stan’s cousin, has always been more like the brother Stan never had. They live in Tennessee, 

but we are trying to get them to see the error of their ways and to move down here to Paradise.

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Daniel Paregien with his parents, Stan Jr. & Becky Paregien in St. Petersburg, Florida on March 10, 2014

They are from the St. Louis area.

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Here Daniel and I are at the Classic Car Museum in Sarasota, sitting in a “Flintstones” cartoon “car.” When Stan Jr. posted this photo on his Facebook page, Peggy’s outlaw nephew in Indianapolis, Terry Gardner, commented: “It is nice to see Stan Sr. back in the kind of car he used to drive in high school. I’m thinking about suing Terry for elder abuse, except he was about half-right. 

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These were two visitors to the music jam we had at our house when Stan Jr., Becky & Daniel were there. Abe Guillermo is a native of Hawaii and as a 9-year old, stood on his family’s hillside farm and watched the Japanese pilots bomb Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941. He lives near Gainesville, Florida now. He and Jean Pendergrass (at right, from Venice, Florida) attended Florida (Christian) College in Tampa during the 1950s and have been friends ever since.

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Note these honorary old people playing shuffleboard. Back home in Illinois, they sorta poo-pooed this “Sport of the Kings” (very old Kings), until they came down here and actually played it. They liked it and came back for more. This Becky and son Daniel deciding on a strategy . . . or something or ‘nother.

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Daniel Paregien, Stan Jr., Becky, Peggy and Stan Sr. are shown here as they were getting ready to get on a Marina Jack’s ship in Sarasota to take a dinner cruise of Sarasota Bay. The food was great, the company was wonderful and the sunset was spectacular.

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So, boys and girls, this ends our little storytime about life in Paradise. Well, at least it ends this chapter, and with a magnificent sunset to boot. Thanks for dropping by. More later.

Issue 274 — “The Cajun Cowdog” and “Cowboy Earmuffs”

Issue 274    —    The Paregien Journal    —    April 20, 2014

My New eBooks:

“The Cajun Cowdog” and “Cowboy Earmuffs”

by Stan Paregien Sr.

Howdy doo,

I now have two additional new eBooks, my 13th and 14th. These are storytelling books for readers probably at an age level of 13 or older. In other words, these are not bedtime stories for small children. The eBooks are titled, THE CAJUN COWDOG: 15 COWBOY STORIES FOR ADULTS and one called, COWBOY EARMUFFS: 15 COWBOY STORIES FOR ADULTS.

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ISBN:  9781311267405    $2.99 U.S.D.  Published April 16, 2014. Pages: 82. Words: 25,110. Language: English. Categories: Humor, storytelling, Americana, cowboy culture. These 15 stories are just a few of the stories which he has written and performed, starting in 1991. This eBook contains such storytelling jewels as “What Dead Cowboys Do,” “My Most Unforgettable Christmas,” “The Story of Juan Cordova,”  “The Angel & the Bad Man,” “The Urge to Kill,” “Romeo & Juliet: Cowboy Style,” “Cowboys & Parrots Don’t Mix,” “How One Cowboy Got Rich,” and the laugh generating story chosen for the title of this eBook, “The Cajun Cowdog.”

This eBook is dedicated to Peggy and Stan Paregien’s long-time, close friends: Darrell and Martha Russell.

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ISBN:  9781311267405    $2.99 U.S.D.  Published April 16, 2014. Pages: 82. Words: 25,110. Language: English. Categories: Humor, storytelling, Americana, cowboy culture. These 15 stories are just a few of the stories which he has written and performed, starting in 1991. This eBook contains such storytelling jewels as “The Cajun Submarine,” “My Cowdog Named ‘Sex’,” “The Grey Ghost,” “The Christmas Spirit,” “A Patoot Salute,” “A Lot of Bull,” “Reincarnation Blues,” “Cowgirl Smarts,” and Stan’s signature story, “Cowboy Earmuffs.”

This eBook is dedicated to these writers (and more) who had an early influence on my career: Jory Sherman, Thomas (“Tommy”) Thompson, Louis L’Amour, John Erickson, Elmer Kelton, Max Evans, J.T. Edson, Tony Hillerman and Bill Gullick. The “Addendum C” at the end of the eBook contains photos and descriptions of a few of those folks.

Most of Stan’s eBooks are available at: 

 https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/StanParegien

 At that page, just scroll all the way down to the thumbnail photos of each cover. Select the book you want. (You may need to press the “Adult Material” button at the very bottom to the listing for my two Western novels). Then select the exact format you want to download. It is quick, simple and mite near painless.

Here are other ways of keeping up with what is going on around here at the ol’ Circle P Ranch:

Stan Paregien’s Journal  —  http://www.paregien.com

The Paregien Journal  —  http://www.paregien.wordpress.com

 Stan’s Paradise Report  —     http://www.stansparadisereport.wordpress.com

 Depository of Stan Paregien’s Writings  —  http://issuu.com/cowboystan

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See ya next time.

–Stan

Issue 273 — My Two Free eBooks

Issue 273    —    The Paregien Journal    —    April 8, 2014

My Two Free eBooks for You

by Stan Paregien Sr.

For a limited time, you may obtain absolutely FREE copies of each of these two eBooks:

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A Rainy Day Reader: 100 Poems for Your Enjoyment 

By Stan Paregien, Sr. ISBN: 9781310912474  

Price: Free eBook, for a limited time! 125 pages. Words: 23,920. Language: English. Published: April 3, 2014. Category: Poetry, humor.

This eBook, Stan Paregien’s 12th to date, contains 100 of his general poems. The poems range from the serious to the hilariously funny, from those with an academic bent to those with little redeeming social value (except for a smile or two). Great for that rainy day read. Poems include “N. Scott Momaday: A Literary Legend,” “Had Any Lately?,” “My Banker Ain’t No Friend of Mine,” “Ireland Is Your Land,” “The Cure for Erectile Dysfuction,” “Caffeine Blues,” “That Damned St. Francis Dam,” “Things My Dogs Taught Me,” “Cat Heaven,” “Smart Pills,” “They Seemed Like Good Ideas (At the Time),” “English Teachers,” “Romancing in the Rockies,” “The Sounds of Oklahoma,” “Countdown to War,” “The U-Haul Blues,” “Ode to Oreo Cookies,” “The Origin of NASCAR,” and “Garage Sale Blues.”    It is dedicated to the author’s classmates in the Class of 1959 at Fillmore Union High School in Fillmore, CA.

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The Day Jesus Died   

By Stan Paregien, Sr    Price: Free, for a limited time! ISBN: 9781301302468 100 pages. Words: 46,350. Language: English. Published: January 4, 2013. Category: Nonfiction, religion, truth, atheism, hope, gospel.

 This eBook is a revised version of a book of Stan Paregien’s which was originally published in hardback in 1970. It grew out of his research, writing, sermons and life’s experiences during his years as the preaching minister of the University Church of Christ in Las Cruces, NM. It deals with such still-current topics as the importance of truth, atheism, racism and the meaning of the gospel.

Here is how to obtain one or both of these currently FREE eBooks in your favorite format:

1. Insert this address in your browser:

   https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/StanParegien

2. At my “Profile,” scroll down until you see the thumbnails of the covers of my various eBooks. Then click on one of the above and choose the format you want. Then download it to your computer, smart phone, or Kindle Reader. That’s about it. And it is FREE.

While you’re there with the other eBooks in front of you, I hope of course that you might consider purchasing one or more of those other eBooks.

Regardless, I hope you enjoy your free eBooks and will tell your friends about them.

Thanks,

Stan Paregien

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