If you do not know me (I mean, really know me) then there is something you need to understand before you read this blog: I value the truth above everything else... except a good laugh. A good laugh will almost always beat the truth as far as I’m concerned. Everything you read on this blog will be true, somewhat true, or something I made up in an effort to get a laugh. Sometimes I will go on a rant that I don’t really mean (or only kind of mean). Sometimes I will mean what I write only to completely change my mind a year, month, or day later. Such is life. By reading this blog you agree not to get offended by anything I write (or, at the very least, you agree not to tell me or anyone else that you are offended). It is worth noting that my employer does not endorse my blog (or even read it, to tell you the truth). The Wife also does not endorse my blog (though she will read it from time to time). I am not paid to write this... it’s just my way of giving back to the community. I have, and will, touch on a wide range of subjects and will give my opinion on these subjects. Again, most of what I say is for laughs but every now and then I will say what I really think and feel (see my views on Westboro Baptist Cult). How will you know when I’m serious and when I’m trying to get a laugh? You’ll know. And if you don’t know, well... maybe this isn’t the best thing for you to be reading. So, sit back, read and enjoy. Leave comments if you want and don’t be afraid to publicly follow me.

Friday, May 31, 2013

The I'm just sayin… Top 421 Books of All-Time Countdown (The Top 5)

Know Your Medal of Honor Recipients:

Private Joe P. Martinez (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on May 26, 1943, on Attu, Aleutians. His citation reads:

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty in action with the enemy. Over a period of several days, repeated efforts to drive the enemy from a key defensive position high in the snow-covered precipitous mountains between East Arm Holtz Bay and Chichagof Harbor had failed. On 26 May 1943, troop dispositions were readjusted and a trial coordinated attack on this position by a reinforced battalion was launched. Initially successful, the attack hesitated. In the face of severe hostile machinegun, rifle, and mortar fire, Pvt. Martinez, an automatic rifleman, rose to his feet and resumed his advance. Occasionally he stopped to urge his comrades on. His example inspired others to follow. After a most difficult climb, Pvt. Martinez eliminated resistance from part of the enemy position by BAR fire and hand grenades, thus assisting the advance of other attacking elements. This success only partially completed the action. The main Holtz-Chichagof Pass rose about 150 feet higher, flanked by steep rocky ridges and reached by a snow-filled defile. Passage was barred by enemy fire from either flank and from tiers of snow trenches in front. Despite these obstacles, and knowing of their existence, Pvt. Martinez again led the troops on and up, personally silencing several trenches with BAR fire and ultimately reaching the pass itself. Here, just below the knifelike rim of the pass, Pvt. Martinez encountered a final enemy-occupied trench and as he was engaged in firing into it he was mortally wounded. The pass, however, was taken, and its capture was an important preliminary to the end of organized hostile resistance on the island.

Private First Class Gary W. Martini (US Marine Corps) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on April 21, 1967, at Binh Son, Republic of Vietnam. His citation reads:

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. On 21 April 1967, during Operation UNION* elements of Company F, conducting offensive operations at Binh Son, encountered a firmly entrenched enemy force and immediately deployed to engage them. The marines in Pfc. Martini's platoon assaulted across an open rice paddy to within 20 meters of the enemy trench line where they were suddenly struck by hand grenades, intense small arms, automatic weapons, and mortar fire. The enemy onslaught killed 14 and wounded 18 marines, pinning the remainder of the platoon down behind a low paddy dike. In the face of imminent danger, Pfc. Martini immediately crawled over the dike to a forward open area within 15 meters of the enemy position where, continuously exposed to the hostile fire, he hurled hand grenades, killing several of the enemy. Crawling back through the intense fire, he rejoined his platoon which had moved to the relative safety of a trench line. From this position he observed several of his wounded comrades Lying helpless in the fire-swept paddy. Although he knew that 1 man had been killed attempting to assist the wounded, Pfc. Martini raced through the open area and dragged a comrade back to a friendly position. In spite of a serious wound received during this first daring rescue, he again braved the unrelenting fury of the enemy fire to aid another companion Lying wounded only 20 meters in front of the enemy trench line. As he reached the fallen marine, he received a mortal wound, but disregarding his own condition, he began to drag the marine toward his platoon's position. Observing men from his unit attempting to leave the security of their position to aid him, concerned only for their safety, he called to them to remain under cover, and through a final supreme effort, moved his injured comrade to where he could be pulled to safety, before he fell, succumbing to his wounds. Stouthearted and indomitable, Pfc. Martini unhesitatingly yielded his life to save 2 of his comrades and insure the safety of the remainder of his platoon. His outstanding courage, valiant fighting spirit and selfless devotion to duty reflected the highest credit upon himself, the Marine Corps, and the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.

Sergeant Elihu H. Mason (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions during April 1862, in Georgia. His citation reads:

One of the 19 of 22 men (including 2 civilians) who, by direction of Gen. Mitchell (or Buell), penetrated nearly 200 miles south into enemy territory and captured a railroad train at Big Shanty, Ga., in an attempt to destroy the bridges and track between Chattanooga and Atlanta.

Michael’s Top 5 Books

5 - The Two Towers (Lord of the Rings Series) by J. R. R. Tolkien

4 - A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson

3 - A Clash of Kings (Game of Thrones Series) by George R. R. Martin

2 - Stardust by Neil Gaiman

1 - When the Lion Feeds (Courtney Series) by Wilbur Smith

I will be honest and tell you I could feel/hear/see Michael age 20 years when I told him I needed a Top 5 list from him.  Like me, he is a man of the books... so when I asked for a Top 5 he was able to respond pretty quickly.  This was followed up with a number of emails begging for more than just 5 spots because he kept thinking of books he didn't want to leave off.  It reminded me of how some college basketball analysts are after the brackets are set for the NCAA Tournament.  They talk about what teams they would have as the four #1 seeds and by the time they are done they've listed 25 schools.  I know that even as he looks at his list on here he will think of all of the books he wanted to included and then he will curse me for not letting him.  And that's why I like him.  I mean, that's not the only reason I like him... but it is one of the reasons.

Well this is it… The Top 5 books… The best of the best. I’ve had a fun time sharing all of these books with you. I hope that maybe you saw some that interested you. I didn’t do a personal Top 5 for this because who can limit their list to just 5 books? That’s crazy! Haha… just kidding, I didn’t do a personal Top 5 because this whole list was pretty much a personal list. Of course, like many of you this list changes with time and mood. For the most part, #1 on this list is always my #1 and #2 is always in my Top 5. Others come and go. Something tells me there is a good chance Ron’s new book will crack my Top 5 after I read it. Something tells me I already own a bunch of books that will make this list look a lot different once I get a chance to read them. Maybe in a few years I will update this list. That could be fun (for me, at least). Until then, I hope you enjoy looking at what books make the Top 5 of this countdown…

The I'm just sayin… Top 421 Books of All-Time Countdown

5 The Great Gatsby by: F. Scott Fitzgerald *Don't bother watching the movie (any version of it), because nothing can live up to the book. I probably read 75% of this book while in my ear doctor's office back when I was in high school. It's without a doubt an all-time classic.*

4 A Man Called Intrepid by: William Stevenson *This is the first book DG recommended to me. It was August 2001 and classes were just starting for the Fall semester of my last Senior year at Winthrop. This book is great… so great that I couldn't put it down. And by that, I mean I was reading it every single chance I could (even during my classes). This book is the reason why when DG tells me he thinks I'll like a book, I believe him. This is a great look at the "spy game" during WWII. I won't say you HAVE to read this book... but I will say you really SHOULD read this book. And by that, I pretty much mean you HAVE to read this book.*

3 To Kill A Mockingbird by: Harper Lee *I don't know what it is… but I love reading this book. It's a classic for a reason…*

2 Goodnight Moon by: Margaret Wise Brown and Clement Hurd *Without exaggerating, I have read this book well over 1,000 times. I read it to the girls before bed when they were little and would let me read a book to them before bed. Now, I read it to Daniel just about every night before bed. If you have kids, you need this book. If you don't have kids... you still need this book. It's that good.*

1 Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by: Mark Twain *The greatest of all of these great books is an American Classic. I read this in high school and l-o-v-e-d it. English teacher, God bless them, want to analyze books like this and break them down and talk about what each little thing means and that's nice and all and this is a fun book to do that with... but really, this is a GREAT book to just read. I mean, if you want to over think it, it's great for that, too. Just do me a favor and read the real book (I'm not 100% sure if that's the one I linked to or not). If you don't already own it (and I'd question why that is), make sure you flip through the book before buying it. The original has the "n-word" in it... a lot. Later, politically correct versions removed that and probably some other things as well. Here's the thing... I get not liking that word... that's fine. I don't go around using it... but you can't change a classic just because you don't like some parts of it. Either read the book or don't... but don't read some water downed version of it.*

Flashback Friday

With the weather getting warm, I thought I'd post some more snow pictures on here.  One of these pictures is from a different "snow storm" than the others.  See if you can tell which one.

Sonny and me playing football.  Look at how much bigger than me he was.  Oh how the times have changed... I went from being the size of CJ Spiller to being the size of Levon Kirkland (during his NFL days... just a little shorter).  Sonny pretty much looks the same.

Before Hugo, you couldn't see that house from our back porch.  A lot of stuff has now grown up (like a fence) so it doesn't look like this anymore.

Yes, Teresa Lynn DID hit me with the snow right after this picture was taken.  But she says I'm the mean one...

Thursday, May 30, 2013

The I'm just sayin… Top 421 Books of All-Time Countdown (10-6)

Know Your Medal of Honor Recipients:

Boatswain’s Mate William Martin (US Navy) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on December 27, 1862, on board the U.S.S. Benton. His citation reads:

Serving as boatswain's mate on board the U.S.S. Benton during the attack on Haines Bluff, Yazoo River, 27 December 1862. Taking part in the hour_and_a_half engagement with the enemy, who had the dead range of the vessel and was punishing her with heavy fire, Martin served courageously throughout the battle until the Benton was ordered to withdraw.

Seaman William Martin (US Navy) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on April 24, 1862, on board the U.S.S. Varuna. His citation reads:

Captain of a gun on board the U.S.S. Varuna during an attack on Forts Jackson and St. Philip, 24 April 1862. His ship was taken under furious fire by the rebel Morgan and severely damaged by ramming. Steadfast at his station through the thickest of the fight, Martin inflicted damage on the enemy, remaining cool and courageous although the Varuna, so badly damaged that she was forced to beach, was finally sunk.

Corporal Benito Martinez (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on September 6, 1952, near Satae-ri Korea. His citation reads:

Cpl. Martinez, a machine gunner with Company A, distinguished himself by conspicuous gallantry and outstanding courage above and beyond the call of duty in action against the enemy. While manning a listening post forward of the main line of resistance, his position was attacked by a hostile force of reinforced company strength. In the bitter fighting which ensued, the enemy infiltrated the defense perimeter and, realizing that encirclement was imminent, Cpl. Martinez elected to remain at his post in an attempt to stem the onslaught. In a daring defense, he raked the attacking troops with crippling fire, inflicting numerous casualties. Although contacted by sound power phone several times, he insisted that no attempt be made to rescue him because of the danger involved. Soon thereafter, the hostile forces rushed the emplacement, forcing him to make a limited withdrawal with only an automatic rifle and pistol to defend himself. After a courageous 6-hour stand and shortly before dawn, he called in for the last time, stating that the enemy was converging on his position His magnificent stand enabled friendly elements to reorganize, attack, and regain the key terrain. Cpl. Martinez' incredible valor and supreme sacrifice reflect lasting glory upon himself and are in keeping with the honored traditions of the military service.

So, I just saw the movie Knight and Day the other night. I thought it was pretty funny. Well worth watching.

KC’s Top 5 Books

5 - Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain

4 - Othello by William Shakespeare

3 - The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne

2 - 1984 by George Orwell

1 - On The Road by Jack Kerouac

Interesting to see that most of KC’s books were written while he was in school… What?

The I'm just sayin… Top 421 Books of All-Time Countdown

10 The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by: C. S. Lewis *A GREAT book to start a wonderful series!*

9 A Civil War (Army Vs. Navy): A Year Inside College Football's Purest Rivalry by: John Feinstein *This book is one of the reasons I pull for Navy in football.*

8 Breakout: 'The Chosin Reservoir Campaign - Korea 1950 by: Martin Russ *Another must read for high school students. Excuse my language, but these guys went through some bad shit. If you are an Army person, this probably isn't a book you'll want to read. It isn't too kind to the Army (I think it was written by a Marine), but it's still a must read in my mind. It's crazy to think anyone was able to live through this stuff.*

7 We Were Soldiers Once… And Young: Ia Drang- The Battle That Changed The War In Vietnam by: Harold G. Moore and Joseph L. Galloway *The thing I said about the previous book is true for this one, too (except the focus of this one is the Army and it was written by an Army man). I have to give credit to the movie… it's one of the best movies at staying true to the book it was based on. Again, I don't know how anyone lived through this. And some of the helicopter pilots... wow! I mean... WOW!*

6 Twelve Ordinary Men: How the Master Shaped His Disciples for Greatness, and What He Wants To Do with You by: John MacArthur *This is by far the best book I've ever read that talks about the life of the disciples after what we read about them in the Bible.*

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The I'm just sayin… Top 421 Books of All-Time Countdown (20-11)

Know Your Medal of Honor Recipients:

Sergeant James Martin (US Marine Corps) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on August 5, 1864, on board the U.S.S. Richmond. His citation reads:

As captain of a gun on board the U.S.S. Richmond during action against rebel forts and gunboats and with the ram Tennessee in Mobile Bay, 5 August 1864. Despite damage to his ship and the loss of several men on board as enemy fire raked her decks, Sgt. Martin fought his gun with skill and courage throughout the furious 2_hour battle which resulted in the surrender of the rebel ram Tennessee and in the damaging and destruction of batteries at Fort Morgan.

Sergeant Patrick Martin (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions in June and July 1873, at Castle Dome and Santa Maria Mountains, Arizona. His citation reads:

Gallant services in operations of Capt. James Burns, 5th U.S. Cavalry.

Lieutenant Sylvester H. Martin (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on August 19, 1864, at Weldon Railroad, Virginia. His citation reads:

Gallantly made a most dangerous reconnaissance, discovering the position of the enemy and enabling the division to repulse an attack made in strong force.

I’m just sayin…Fan of the Year Ashley’s Top 5 Books

5 - The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown

4 - Born in Fire by Nora Roberts

3 - Fifty Shades of Grey (Book 1) by E. L. James

2 - Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows by J. K. Rowling

1 - Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J. K. Rowling

The I'm just sayin… Top 421 Books of All-Time Countdown

20 A Peculiar Prophet: William H. Willimon and the Art of Preaching by: Michael A. Turner and William F. Malambri *At first glance I thought this would be a great book for preachers to read… but I then realized it's a great book for everyone to read. I'm not just saying that because Will Malambri is married to my Labor Day Cousin Sally... because, as you know, I'm not nice to someone just because they're family (just ask Sonny). I really did love this book. Sonny loved it so much that he started preaching one month a year (plus Easter). It didn't move me THAT much, but I still love it.*

19 The Science of Hitting by: Ted Williams *I read this book the fall of my senior year at James Island. That spring I had my best offensive season of my high school career (I credit just about all of that to this book... and to the advice I got from watching Rocky "Women weaken legs". I wish I'd read the book before then. It is a great book for anyone trying to be a better batter (or for those who just like reading about baseball).*

18 The Shack: Where Tragedy Confronts Eternity by: Wm. Paul Young *I remember there was some controversy when this book came out. I didn't see anything to get upset about… but maybe I'm just slow to upset. Anyway, I read this in a small group and thought it was great. There was one part that gave me nightmares, but overall I thought this was a great book.*

17 The Little Engine That Could by: Watty Piper *This is probably just the greatest book ever for teaching kids to never give up.*

16 The Da Vinci Code by: Dan Brown

15 Alpha Threat: Germany's Most Insidious World War II Plot by: Ron Smoak*I've talked about this book on here before, so I won't say much about it now except to say that I still think it's a great book. If you haven't read it yet, do so now. It's an easy read which makes it perfect for reading on a summer vacation... or anytime, really. Was it written by a cousin of mine? Yes. But as we've already established, being related to me doesn't get you special treatment on here (just ask Teresa Lynn). Anyway, you need to read this one pretty soon because the follow up book (Caribbean Chill) is right around the corner (I'm not sure of the release date, but I think it will be this year or sometime after that). Word on the street is that this next book will have an awesome new character in it...*

14 The Monkey's Raincoat by: Robert Crais *I'm not real sure how I came across this book, but it was one of the best things to happen to me as far as books go. This is the first in the Elvis Cole/Joe Pike series and I love it. It's got action, humor, short chapters… everything a great book needs.*

13 The Godfather by: Mario Puzo *I don't think I need to say anything about this one.*

12 The Guns Of The South by: Harry Turtledove *What's not to love about this book?*

11 In Harm's Way: The Sinking of the USS Indianapolis and the Extraordinary Story of Its Survivors by: Doug Stanton *Wow and WOW! This is another book every high school kid should have to read. It'd be hard to read this and then complain about some stupid thing going on in your life. I'll let the late Quint tell you a little about the subject matter in this book...*

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

The I'm just sayin… Top 421 Books of All-Time Countdown (30-21)

Know Your Medal of Honor Recipients:

Sergeant George Marsh (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on July 2, 1863, at Elk River, Tennessee. His citation reads:

Voluntarily led a small party and, under a heavy fire, captured a stockade and saved the bridge.

Quartermaster Edward S. Martin (US Navy) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on August 5, 1864, on board the U.S.S. Calena. His citation reads:

On board the U.S.S. Calena during the attack on enemy forts at Mobile Bay, 5 August 1864. Securely lashed to the side of the Oneida which had suffered the loss of her steering apparatus and an explosion of her boiler from enemy fire, the Calena aided the stricken vessel past the enemy forts to safety. Despite heavy damage to his ship from raking enemy fire, Martin performed his duties with skill and courage throughout the action.

First Lieutenant Harry Linn Martin (US Marine Corps) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on March 26, 1945, on Iwo Jima, Volcano Islands. His citation reads:

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as platoon leader attached to Company C, 5th Pioneer Battalion, 5th Marine Division, in action against enemy Japanese forces on Iwo Jima, Volcano Islands, 26 March 1945. With his sector of the 5th Pioneer Battalion bivouac area penetrated by a concentrated enemy attack launched a few minutes before dawn, 1st Lt. Martin instantly organized a firing line with the marines nearest his foxhole and succeeded in checking momentarily the headlong rush of the Japanese. Determined to rescue several of his men trapped in positions overrun by the enemy, he defied intense hostile fire to work his way through the Japanese to the surrounded marines. Although sustaining 2 severe wounds, he blasted the Japanese who attempted to intercept him, located his beleaguered men and directed them to their own lines. When 4 of the infiltrating enemy took possession of an abandoned machinegun pit and subjected his sector to a barrage of hand grenades, 1st Lt. Martin, alone and armed only with a pistol, boldly charged the hostile position and killed all of its occupants. Realizing that his few remaining comrades could not repulse another organized attack, he called to his men to follow and then charged into the midst of the strong enemy force, firing his weapon and scattering them until he fell, mortally wounded by a grenade. By his outstanding valor, indomitable fighting spirit and tenacious determination in the face of overwhelming odds, 1st Lt. Martin permanently disrupted a coordinated Japanese attack and prevented a greater loss of life in his own and adjacent platoons. His inspiring leadership and unswerving devotion to duty reflect the highest credit upon himself and the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life in the service of his country.

The I'm just sayin… Top 421 Books of All-Time Countdown

30 Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith by: Patricia C. Wrede

29 Guess How Much I Love You by: Sam McBratney and Anita Jeram

28 The Last Great Game: Duke vs. Kentucky and the 2.1 Seconds That Changed Basketball by: Gene Wojciechowski *A great book about one of the greatest games I've ever seen. I remember watching this with my cousin Louis at my Aunt Yvonne and Uncle George's house. Man that was a fun game to watch (if you were pulling for Duke, that is).*

27 I'm Back For More Cash: Because You Can't Take Two Hundred Newspapers into the Bathroom by: Tony Kornheiser *I love his writing as much as I love his radio show.*

26 Left Behind: A Novel of the Earth's Last Days by: Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins *The best of the series… this is the one that makes you want to read all of the others.*

25 Moby Dick by: Herman Melvile

24 Halsey's Typhoon: The True Story of a Fighting Admiral, an Epic Storm, and an Untold Rescue by: Bob Drury and Tom Clavin *High school kids should have to read books like this one. This is one of those books that I like to read when I think I'm having a bad day… because I don't care how bad a day I'm having, it ain't as bad as what these men went through. I would say this is a must read for everyone.*

23 Is Your Mama a Llama by: Deborah Guarino and Steven Kellogg *I love reading this to the kids… it's not my favorite (we'll get to that later), but I do love it.*

22 The Runner by: Cynthia Voigt *This is another book I read in middle school and loved. Unlike The Crazy Horse Electric Game, I had a little easier time finding this one.*

21 Star Wars: Heir To The Empire by: Timothy Zahn *This is the book that brought Star Wars back.*

Picture Tuesday

Me and Susie before her music program

I think the stress was getting to her... or maybe not

Me and Daniel waiting for Susie's music program to start

I think the stress was getting to him... or maybe not

Susie during her music program

Daniel eating ice cream

Susie eating her ice cream

Monday, May 27, 2013

Happy Memorial Day!!

Know Your Medal of Honor Recipients:

Sergeant Charles Marquett (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on April 2, 1865, at Petersburg, Virginia. His citation reads:

Sergeant Marquette, although wounded, was one of the first to plant colors on the enemy's breastworks.

Sergeant Albert Marsh (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on May 12, 1864, at Spotsylvania, Virginia. His citation reads:

Capture of flag.

Private Charles H. Marsh (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on July 31, 1864, at Back Creek Valley, Virginia. His citation reads:

Capture of flag and its bearer.

We hope you all have a great Memorial Day and take some time to remember what this day is all about.

The I'm just sayin… Top 421 Books of All-Time Countdown

40 The Boys of Summer by: Roger Kahn *It would be hard to read this book and not fall in love with the Brooklyn Dodgers.

39 Sea Island Yankee by: Clyde Bresee *Want to know what James Island was like long ago? This is the book you want to read. I loved it.*

38 The Grapes of Wrath by: John Steinbeck

37 Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln by: Doris Kearns Goodwin *Very interesting book. I learned a lot reading it.

36 War and Peace by: Leo Tolstoy

35 The Magician's Nephew by: C. S. Lewis

34 Where The Red Fern Grows by: Wilson Rawls

33 Transfer of Power by: Vince Flynn

32 The Crazy Horse Electric Game by: Chris Crutcher *I read this book in middle school. I loved it… but over the years I forgot the title. I like it so much that I wanted to own it… but without remembering the title or the author, it wasn't easy finding it. So I spent about 7 years (off and on) googling different parts of the plot that I could remember until I finally found it. I'm glad I did, because I still like the book.*

31 Harry Potter: And The Deathly Hallows by: J. K. Rowling *I'm not sure I've ever looked forward to reading a book as much as I looked forward to reading this one. And I can say it was as great as I thought it would be.*

Sunday, May 26, 2013

The I'm just sayin… Top 66 Books of The Bible (the Top 10)

Know Your Medal of Honor Recipients:

Corporal Sidney E. Manning (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on July 28, 1918, near Breuvannes, France. His citation reads:

When his platoon commander and platoon sergeant had both become casualties soon after the beginning of an assault on strongly fortified heights overlooking the Ourcq River, Cpl. Manning took command of his platoon, which was near the center of the attacking line. Though himself severely wounded he led forward the 35 men remaining in the platoon and finally succeeded in gaining a foothold on the enemy's position, during which time he had received more wounds and all but 7 of his men had fallen. Directing the consolidation of the position, he held off a large body of the enemy only 50 yards away by fire from his automatic rifle. He declined to take cover until his line had been entirely consolidated with the line of the platoon on the front when he dragged himself to shelter, suffering from 9 wounds in all parts of the body.

First Lieutenant William Marland (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on November 3, 1863, at Grand Coteau, Louisiana. His citation reads:

After having been surrounded by the enemy's cavalry, his support having surrendered, he ordered a charge and saved the section of the battery that was under his command.

Second Lieutenant Walter Joseph Marm, Jr. (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on November 14, 1965, in the vicinity of la Drang Valley, Republic of Vietnam. His citation reads:

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of life above and beyond the call of duty. As a platoon leader in the 1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile), 1st Lt. Marm demonstrated indomitable courage during a combat operation. His company was moving through the valley to relieve a friendly unit surrounded by an enemy force of estimated regimental size. 1st Lt. Marm led his platoon through withering fire until they were finally forced to take cover. Realizing that his platoon could not hold very long, and seeing four enemy soldiers moving into his position, he moved quickly under heavy fire and annihilated all 4. Then, seeing that his platoon was receiving intense fire from a concealed machine gun, he deliberately exposed himself to draw its fire. Thus locating its position, he attempted to destroy it with an antitank weapon. Although he inflicted casualties, the weapon did not silence the enemy fire. Quickly, disregarding the intense fire directed on him and his platoon, he charged 30 meters across open ground, and hurled grenades into the enemy position, killing some of the 8 insurgents manning it. Although severely wounded, when his grenades were expended, armed with only a rifle, he continued the momentum of his assault on the position and killed the remainder. His selfless actions reduced the fire on his platoon, broke the enemy assault, and rallied his unit to continue toward the accomplishment of this mission. 1st Lt. Marm's gallantry on the battlefield and his extraordinary intrepidity at the risk of his life are in the highest traditions of the U.S. Army and reflect great credit upon himself and the Armed Forces of his country.

Danny (yes, that Danny)’s Top 5 Books

5 - Just Like Jesus by Max Lucado

4 - The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown

3 - Left Behind by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins

2 - The Monster at the End of this Book by Jon Stone and Michael Smollin

1 - Hatchet by Gary Paulsen

Danny’s list also included this blog (kiss-up… I like it) and the Bible (I was pretty clear I want all books EXCEPT the Bible).

Well here we are! The Top 10 books of the Bible! They said it couldn’t be done… but I said I’d do it. You didn’t think it would, but I did. If you’re only going to read 10 books in the Bible… you’re missing out. You should really read all of them at some point. But these are probably the books I’d read first. There’s stuff here that is useful even today… thousands of years after it was written.

The I'm just sayin… Top 66 Books of The Bible

10 Genesis

9 Psalms

8 Acts

7 Exodus

6 Philippians

5 Proverbs

4 Mark

3 Matthew

2 Luke

1 John

The I’m just sayin… Proverb of the Week
Proverbs 17:20
One whose heart is corrupt does not prosper;
      one whose tongue is perverse falls into trouble.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

The I'm just sayin… Top 421 Books of All-Time Countdown (51-41)

Know Your Medal of Honor Recipients:

Private First Class Joe E. Mann (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on September 18, 1944, at Best, Holland. His citation reads:

He distinguished himself by conspicuous gallantry above and beyond the call of duty. On 18 September 1944, in the vicinity of Best., Holland, his platoon, attempting to seize the bridge across the Wilhelmina Canal, was surrounded and isolated by an enemy force greatly superior in personnel and firepower. Acting as lead scout, Pfc. Mann boldly crept to within rocket-launcher range of an enemy artillery position and, in the face of heavy enemy fire, destroyed an 88mm. gun and an ammunition dump. Completely disregarding the great danger involved, he remained in his exposed position, and, with his M-1 rifle, killed the enemy one by one until he was wounded 4 times. Taken to a covered position, he insisted on returning to a forward position to stand guard during the night. On the following morning the enemy launched a concerted attack and advanced to within a few yards of the position, throwing hand grenades as they approached. One of these landed within a few feet of Pfc. Mann. Unable to raise his arms, which were bandaged to his body, he yelled "grenade" and threw his body over the grenade, and as it exploded, died. His outstanding gallantry above and beyond the call of duty and his magnificent conduct were an everlasting inspiration to his comrades for whom he gave his life.

Quartermaster Henry J. Manning (US Navy) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on January 4, 1882, on board the U.S. Training Ship New Hampshire. His citation reads:

Serving on board the U.S. Training Ship New Hampshire, off Newport, R.I., 4 January 1882. Jumping overboard, Manning endeavored to rescue Jabez Smith, second class musician, from drowning.

Private Joseph S. Manning (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on November 29, 1863, at Fort Sanders, Knoxville, Tennessee. His citation reads:

Capture of flag of 16th Georgia Infantry (C.S.A.).

The I'm just sayin… Top 421 Books of All-Time Countdown

51 Glorious Appearing: The End of Days by: Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins

50 Grace Walk: What You've Always Wanted in the Christian Life by: Steve McVey *Great book… great to read alone or in a small group study type situation.*

49 Tales of the Anna Karrue by: Captain Buddy Ward *I had Captain Ward's now ex-wife (who is one of the reasons I went to Winthrop) as a teacher in high school. She was great and this book is too.*

48 Tuesdays with Morrie by: Mitch Albom

47 Memoirs Of Sherlock Holmes by: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

46 The Art of War by: Sun Tzu *All the great military leaders can't be wrong…*

45 The Five People You Meet In Heaven by: Mitch Albom *Who are the 5 people you'd meet?

44 Uncle Tom's Cabin by: Harriet Beecher Stowe

43 The Fifth Angel by: Tim Green

42 Shoot Low, Boys- They're Ridin' Shetland Ponies by: Lewis Grizzard

41 Elvis Is Dead And I Don't Feel So Good Myself by: Lewis Grizzard *The reason there aren't more Grizzard books on here is I (for some strange reason) haven't read any others. These are laugh out loud funny. These might be the only books that are better if you hear them on tape. If I could write like Lewis Grizzard I'd be rich.*

Friday, May 24, 2013

The I'm just sayin… Top 421 Books of All-Time Countdown (63-52)

Know Your Medal of Honor Recipients:

Captain George H. Mallon (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on September 26, 1918, in the Bois-de-Forges, France. His citation reads:

Becoming separated from the balance of his company because of a fog, Capt. Mallon, with 9 soldiers, pushed forward and attacked 9 active hostile machineguns, capturing all of them without the loss of a man. Continuing on through the woods, he led his men in attacking a battery of four 155-millimeter howitzers, which were in action, rushing the position and capturing the battery and its crew. In this encounter Capt. Mallon personally attacked 1 of the enemy with his fists. Later, when the party came upon 2 more machineguns, this officer sent men to the flanks while he rushed forward directly in the face of the fire and silenced the guns, being the first one of the party to reach the nest. The exceptional gallantry and determination displayed by Capt. Mallon resulted in the capture of 100 prisoners, 11 machineguns, four 155-millimeter howitzers and 1 antiaircraft gun.

First Sergeant Harry J. Mandy (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on August 15, 1864, at Front Royal, Virginia. His citation reads:

Capture of flag of 3d Virginia Infantry (C.S.A.).

Private Richard C. Mangam (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on April 2, 1865, at Hatchers Run, Virginia. His citation reads:

Capture of flag of 8th Mississippi Infantry (C.S.A.).

Sonny’s Top 5 Books

5 - Men at Work by George Will

4 - To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

3 - My Turn at Bat by Ted Williams

2 - The Firm by John Grisham

1 - Angels and Demons by Dan Brown

I would like to make fun of Sonny’s list, but I can’t… he’s got some quality books on here.

The I'm just sayin… Top 421 Books of All-Time Countdown

63 Fair Ball: A Fan's Case For Baseball by: Bob Costas *Jeremy told me about this book.*

62 When the Game Was Ours by: Larry Bird, Magic Johnson and Jackie MacMullan *Great book about a great NBA rivalry.*

61 Death to the BCS: The Definitive Case Against the Bowl Championship Series by: Dan Wetzel *If you hate the BCS (like I do), you'll like this book.*

60 A Time of War by: Michael Peterson *This is another bargin book I got for $1. I read it in middle school… It's a great fiction book about the Vietnam War. You probably shouldn't let your kids read it until their in high school, but then again, you should also be happy if they want to read anything so maybe you should just let them read it whenever. Anyway, something I didn't realize until I just went to get the link... the guy who wrote this is the same Peterson who was convicted of killing his wife a few years ago. Still a good book, though...*

59 Harry Potter: and the Order of the Phoenix by: J. K. Rowling

58 The Cardinal of the Kremlin by: Tom Clancy

57 The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors: The Extraordinary World War II Story of the U.S. Navy's Finest Hour by: James D. Hornfischer

56 Tribulation Force: The Continuing Drama of Those Left Behind by: Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins

55 Gate of Hell: Campaign for Charleston Harbor by: Stephen R. Wise *This is a great book for all of you who like to read about Charleston and the Civil War.*

54 All The King's Men by: Robert Penn Warren

53 James and Related Sea Islands by: James P. Hayes *A great look at where I come from.*

52 Harry Potter: And The Sorcerer's Stone by: J. K. Rowling

Flashback Friday
Here we have a picture of Mom and Dad's yard during the great snow storm of 1989...

A picture of the road...

The road going the other way..

The house...

Sonny and me playing football...

Teresa Lynn and me stacking wood (not really)

Thursday, May 23, 2013

The I'm just sayin… Top 421 Books of All-Time Countdown (75-64)

Know Your Medal of Honor Recipients:

Fireman First Class George Mahoney (US Navy) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on May 28, 1898, on board the U.S.S. Vixen. His citation reads:

On board the U.S.S. Vixen on the night of 28 May 1898. Following the explosion of the lower front manhole gasket of boiler A of that vessel, Mahoney displayed great coolness and self-possession in entering the fireroom.

Private Gregory Mahoney (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on September 26-28, 1874, near Red River, Texas. His citation reads:

Gallantry in attack on a large party of Cheyennes.

Sergeant Jeremiah Mahoney (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on November 29, 1863, at Fort Sanders, Knoxville, Tennessee. His citation reads:

Capture of flag of 17th Mississippi Infantry (C.S.A.).

The I'm just sayin… Top 421 Books of All-Time Countdown

75 Armageddon: The Cosmic Battle of the Ages by: Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins

74 On The Swing Shift: Building Liberty Ships in Savannah by: Tony Cope *This was a pretty cool book about the Savannah shipyard. My guess is things weren't all that different at the Charleston shipyard (where both of my grandfathers worked).*

73 Stranded in the Philippines: Professor Bell's Private War Against the Japanese by: Scott A. Mills *This is a great book that talks about stuff I never heard about in History class…*

72 The Sign of The Four by: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

71 Star Wars: X-Wing Rogue Squadron by: Michael A. Stackpole *This is THE best Star Wars book that doesn't focus on the main characters of the movies.*

70 Psych: A Mind Is A Terrible Thing To Read by: William Rabkin

69 Dave Barry's Money Secrets: Like, Why Is There A Giant Eyeball On The Dollar? by: Dave Barry

68 The President's Assassin by: Brian Haig

67 Harry Potter: And The Prisoner of Azkaban by: J. K. Rowling

66 Second to Home: Ryne Sandberg Opens Up by: Ryne Sandberg *This is a great book by/about my favorite baseball player.*

65 Nicolae: The Rise of Antichrist (Left Behind #3) by: Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins

64 Fatherhood by: Bill Cosby *Unless you're Rebecca, you've got to love Bill Cosby. This book is laugh outloud funny and the best part is it's true (I'm sure all dads will agree).*

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

800th POST! Oh, and Happy Birthday Teresa Lynn…

Know Your Medal of Honor Recipients:

Apprentice First Class George Frederick Mager (US Navy) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on May 11, 1898, on board the U.S.S. Marblehead. His citation reads:

On board the U.S.S. Marblehead during the operation of cutting the cable leading from Cienfuegos, Cuba, 11 May 1898. Facing the heavy fire of the enemy, Mager displayed extraordinary bravery and coolness throughout this action.

Private First Class John D. Magrath (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on April 14, 1945, near Castel d'Aiano, Italy. His citation reads:

He displayed conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty when his company was pinned down by heavy artillery, mortar, and small arms fire, near Castel d'Aiano, Italy. Volunteering to act as a scout, armed with only a rifle, he charged headlong into withering fire, killing 2 Germans and wounding 3 in order to capture a machinegun. Carrying this enemy weapon across an open field through heavy fire, he neutralized 2 more machinegun nests; he then circled behind 4 other Germans, killing them with a burst as they were firing on his company. Spotting another dangerous enemy position to this right, he knelt with the machinegun in his arms and exchanged fire with the Germans until he had killed 2 and wounded 3. The enemy now poured increased mortar and artillery fire on the company's newly won position. Pfc. Magrath fearlessly volunteered again to brave the shelling in order to collect a report of casualties. Heroically carrying out this task, he made the supreme sacrifice--a climax to the valor and courage that are in keeping with highest traditions of the military service.

Private Herbert Mahers (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on August 25, 1869, at Seneca Mountain, Arizona. His citation reads:

Gallantry in action.

HAPPY 800th POST!!!!!! That’s right, we’re just 200 away from 1,000 (that’s for all of you math teachers out there... you know who you are). I’ve had a fun time and I hope you have too. I’m thinking of making some changes to the blog at some point… but knowing me like I do, I’ll probably do a whole lot more thinking before I do anything. The bottom line, though, is that unlike some people (don’t worry Jenn, Ross, KC and Michael… I won’t name any names) I’m going to keep posting on this blog. Anyway, thanks for reading… keep coming back.

Don’t forget, the new Darius Rucker album (True Believers) is on sale now. I’ve bought it and listened to it and think it’s great. I hope he’s around for many many many more years to come to keep making great music.

Before I forget, we’d like to wish Teresa Lynn a very happy 41st birthday! I would make a big deal about this birthday… but at this age, what’s the point? It’s just another log on that high woodpile of life.

I'm going to be honest... I don't think that was their best effort. I don't think Maverick's heart was in it... I think he's getting a little tired of having to carry the group.

Teresa Lynn’s Top 5 Books

5 - How the Mighty Fall by Jim Collins  *No kidding... she has a business book in her top 5 (yes, I double checked with her)

4 - Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers

3 - Ramona Quimby, Age 8 by Beverly Cleary

2 - Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White

1 - Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown and Clement Hurd

The I'm just sayin… Top 421 Books of All-Time Countdown

87 If Looks Could Kill by: Kate White

86 Soul Harvest: The World Takes Sides by: Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins

85 Star Wars: A Clone Wars Novel- Shatterpoint by: Matthew Stover *This book is set between Episode II and Episode III.*

84 The Teammates: A Portrait of a Friendship by: David Halberstam *Great book about the love between teammates… something that I think exists in some ways at all levels of the game.*

83 The Bad Guys Won! …The Rowdiest Team Ever to Put on a New York Uniform - and Maybe the Best by: Jeff Pearlman *This is a great book about a crazy group of guys who won the World Series.*

82 Memories of Summer: When Baseball Was An Art, and Writing about It a Game by: Roger Kahn

81 Harry Potter: and the Half-Blood Prince by: J. K. Rowling

80 Rat Pack Confidential: Frank, Dean, Sammy, Peter, Joey, & The Last Great Showbiz Party by: Shawn Levy *I love (LOVE) reading about the Rat Pack. I would have loved to had a chance to hand out with them when they were at their best…*

79 Patriots: The Vietnam War Remembered From All Sides by: Christian G. Appy *This is a GREAT collection of interviews from all different types of people from the Vietnam Era. I'm pretty sure all sides had a say at some point in this book.*

78 Banks to Sandberg to Grace: Five Decades of Love and Frustration With the Chicago Cubs by: Carrie Muskat

77 Our Oldest Enemy: A History of America's Disastrous Relationship With France by: John J. Miller and Mark Molesky *If you have a dislike of France (and you know I do) you'll like this book.*

76 Bat Boy: My True Life Adventures Coming Of Age with the New York Yankees by: Matthew McGough *Coach Cadden told me about this book. It's a great look at the life of a bat boy for the NY Yankees. Funny story (not about the book)… The Wife and I went into a Barnes and Noble on our way home from MaMa's house back in December of 2002. Who should I see but my old American Legion coach (Coach Cadden). He, of course, calls me by my older (but no longer bigger) brothers name. I call him Mr. Williams (ok, I get that only a few of you will get that, but I'm ok with inside jokes here). Anyway, he starts telling me that he doesn't have any assistant coaches for the upcoming season. I hadn't seen Coach Cadden since the summer of 1998 (when I was one of his assistant coaches... a year after I had played for him). Long story short - I tell him I can help him and so my second stint in the American Legion coaching world got going. And had that not happened, I probably would not have heard about this book (look at that... I was able to make this about the book).*

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

The I'm just sayin… Top 421 Books of All-Time Countdown (99-88)

Know Your Medal of Honor Recipients:

Lieutenant Commander James Jonas Madison (US Navy) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on October 4, 1918, on board the U.S.S. Ticonderoga. His citation reads:

For exceptionally heroic service in a position of great responsibility as commanding officer of the U.S.S. Ticonderoga, when, on 4 October 1918, that vessel was attacked by an enemy submarine and was sunk after a prolonged and gallant resistance. The submarine opened fire at a range of 500 yards, the first shots taking effect on the bridge and forecastle, 1 of the 2 forward guns of the Ticonderoga being disabled by the second shot. The fire was returned and the fight continued for nearly 2 hours. Lt. Comdr. Madison was severely wounded early in the fight, but caused himself to be placed in a chair on the bridge and continued to direct the fire and to maneuver the ship. When the order was finally given to abandon the sinking ship, he became unconscious from loss of blood, but was lowered into a lifeboat and was saved, with 31 others, out of a total number of 236 on board.

Second Class Fireman John W. Magee (US Navy) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on August 21, 1884, on board the U.S.S. Tallapoosa. His citation reads:

Serving on board the U.S.S. Tallapoosa during the sinking of that vessel on the night of 21 August 1884. During this period, Magee remained at his post of duty in the fireroom until the fires were put out by the rising waters.

Drummer William Magee (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on December 5, 1864, at Murfreesboro, Tennessee. His citation reads:

In a charge, was among the first to reach a battery of the enemy and, with one or two others, mounted the artillery horses and took two guns into the Union lines.

Dad’s Top 5 Books

5 - Gods and Generals: A Novel of the Civil War by Jeff Shaara

4 - The Cardinal of the Kremlin by Tom Clancy

3 - The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown

2 - The Shoot Canoes, Don’t They? by Patrick F. McManus

1 - The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett

The I'm just sayin… Top 421 Books of All-Time Countdown

99 Sex, Lies, and Headlocks: The Real Story of Vince McMahon and World Wrestling Entertainment by: Mike Mooneyham and Shaun Assael *I played baseball with Mike's step-son Dusty at JIHS. I also played one summer for Mike after I got cut from the American Legion team. Very good family… and book.*

98 His Last Bow by: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

97 Watergate: A Novel by: Thomas Mallon *A great historical fiction look at the Watergate scandal.*

96 Work Hard, Study… and Keep Out of Politics!: Adventures and Lessons From an Unexpected Public Life by: James A. Baker III *Baker's probably the first non-president or SC politician that I remember.*

95 Apollyon: The Destroyer is Unleashed by: Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins

94 Moneyball by: Michael Lewis *The movie was good but the book was great.*

93 A March To Madness: The View From The Floor In The ACC by: John Feinstein *I remember reading this book during my lunch break when I was working for Santee Cooper

92 The Hound of The Baskervilles by: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

91 An Honorable Defeat: The Last Days of the Confederate Government by: William C. Davis *This is the first book I remember reading that talked about the end of the Civil War. Most books act like once Lee surrendered, the war was over.*

90 The Twelve: The Lives of the Apostles After Calvary by: C. Bernard Ruffin

89 The Voyage of the Dawn Treader by: C. S. Lewis

88 The Return of Sherlock Holmes by: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Picture Tuesday

Came across this fella while I was walking.  I'm usually a live and let live kind of guy, but since there were some kids riding their bikes near this snake I decided to live and let die.  I didn't have my trusty hatchet this time, so I went with the simple heal stomp.  I then tossed him into the woods as a warning to the other snakes. 

On a different walk, I found this little fella (the baby turtle, not my keys)... 

Mary Ruth coming down the slide...

Susie coming down the slide...

Daniel came down the slide a little faster than I thought... and then had a pretty hard landing, but he bounced up like a trooper...
He had fun in the swing...
The girls were spinning around so I took a quick pic before I had to turn away (I was about to get sick)

Monday, May 20, 2013

The I'm just sayin… Top 421 Books of All-Time Countdown (111-100)

Know Your Medal of Honor Recipients:

Coal Heaver William Madden (US Navy) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on August 5, 1864, on board the USS Brooklyn. His citation reads:

On board the U.S.S. Brooklyn during the successful attacks against Fort Morgan, rebel gunboats and the ram Tennessee in Mobile Bay, on 5 August 1864. Stationed in the immediate vicinity of the shell whips, which were twice cleared of men by bursting shells, Madden remained steadfast at his post and performed his duties in the powder division throughout the furious action which resulted in the surrender of the prize rebel ram Tennessee and in the damaging and destruction of batteries at Fort Morgan.

Ordinary Seaman Edward Maddin (US Navy) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on January 9, 1876, on board the USS Franklin. His citation reads:

Serving on board the U.S.S. Franklin at Lisbon, Portugal, 9 January 1876. Displaying gallant conduct, Maddin jumped overboard and rescued one of the crew of that vessel from drowning.

Sergeant James Madison (US Army) received his Medal of Honor for his actions on March 2, 1865, at Waynesboro, Virginia. His citation reads:

Recapture of Gen. Crook's headquarters flag.

I have been asked why we didn’t post a video of Maverick and the Kids singing Happy Birthday to Alan on my blog post yesterday. First, the kids were able to sing to him live on Saturday. Second, Maverick was… how can I say this… a little mad that he wasn’t invited to Alan’s party. I tried to tell him that Alan wasn’t to blame for this (Aunt Yvonne was), but he was too mad to sing. So that’s why we didn’t do it.

The I'm just sayin… Top 421 Books of All-Time Countdown

111 Byrnes Downs, South Carolina: Images of America Series by: Donna F. Jacobs  *A nice look at a subdivision close to where my Dad grew up.*

110 Rawhide Down: The Near Assassination of Ronald Reagan by: Del Quentin Wilber  *A GREAT look at the shooting of President Ronald Reagan.  It talks about how close he really came to death.*

109 The Case Book of Sherlock Holmes by: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle  *I read all of the Sherlock Holmes books during the second semester of the freshman year at Winthrop... it was after my roommate moved out and took his TV with him.*

108 The Machine: A Hot Team, a Legendary Season, and a Heart-stopping World Series: The Story of the 1975 Cincinnati Reds by: Joe Posnanski  *A great book about one of the greatest teams in baseball history.*

107 Dan Rooney: My 75 Years with the Pittsburgh Steelers and The NFL by: Dan Rooney 

106 The Mark: The Beast Rules the World by: Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins

105 Ric Flair: To Be The Man by: Ric Flair 

104 The Big Show: Inside ESPN's SportsCenter by: Keith Olbermann and Dan Patrick   *This is a pretty funny book.  A couple of stories had me laughing so hard I cried.  They were one of the best SportsCenter duos.

103 Harry Potter: And The Chamber of Secrets by: J. K. Rowling *Call me a nerd, but I think the Harry Potter books are great.  Some better than others, of course, but overall the series was great.  The movies were good, but the books were great.*

102 The Fourth Perimeter by: Tim Green 

101 Prince Caspian by: C. S. Lewis

100 The Last Battle by: C. S. Lewis  *Remember what I said about the Harry Potter books... the same can be said for the Narnia books.  Every kid should have the complete set of Narnia books.*