Sunday, January 27, 2013

Vietnam "Peace" Plus Forty Years January 27, 2013

Every year on this date, I reflect on "Peace" in Vietnam, achieved by a document from the Paris Peace Talks after years of negotiations, and years of war.  Actually, I think about the Vietnam "Conflict" somehow almost daily.  My twenty West Point classmates who died as a result of the war weigh heavy on my heart frequently.  As a veteran of the Conflict, I pray that we, as a nation, learned something that makes the losses and expense worthwhile.  I still can't tell if we did.  What do you think?

I've blogged about this before, including:  peace-in-vietnam-39th-anniversary

38th-anniversary cease fire in Vietnam

Memorial Day, Grief and The Wall ,

 Memorial Day: The Vietnam Veterans Memorial

Below are some of the images that remind me of various aspects of my year in Vietnam serving as a helicopter pilot, instructor pilot, maintenance officer and other roles in the Aviation Section of the 45th Engineer Group. I took almost all of these, except those with me in the picture.  Included are Vietnam 45th engineer Group venues in I Corps (we flew for our three battalions and Group HQ), Saigon, The Bob Hope USO Show on Christmas Eve 1970, R&R in Sidney, Australia, Khe Sanh during Lam Sanh 719, and a few faces of Vietnam- my favorite of which are the Montagnards with cross-bows).

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Didgeridoo Hullabaloo- Successful Launch

Nine participants at the BellHOP Cafe droned into the launch of the Didgeridoo Hullabaloo, a five month musical health enhancement program of rhythmic fun and challenge.

You may already know that playing the didgeridoo has been shown to eliminate snoring as an added benefit for folks with that problem.  Daytime wakefulness of both snorers and their bedmates was enhanced after five months of fifteen minutes or so of daily playing the didge (by the snorer).

OK, maybe you wouldn't call it music when beginning to play the didge.  Many of the sounds you will hear if you listen to the Dr Synonymous Show of the session on January 19 (accessible through the link below on Blog Talk Radio) may not sound like music, but that is part of didgeridoo skill development- annoying noise here and there.

Peg, Mary Ann, Maggie, Pat (aka, Dr Synonymous), Bruce, Mark, Kim, and Donna here with didges, some home-made from PVC pipe.  They enthusiastically went through the program noted in my previous post:    Didgeridoo Hullabaloo  This includes a link to the Dr Synonymous Show of this session-much of which is loaded with the sound of didgeridoos and lots of laughter (and a minute of silence for a technical glitch).

Bruce Clough wasn't content to play the didgeridoo only so he added the mandolin, maybe becoming the first didgeridoo mandolin player (at least the first one at the BellHOP Cafe).

Another unique aspect of the day was Mike Sabin of the BellHOP Cafe playing the shophar, accompanied on the didgeridoo by Mark Chancey (a percussionist in another part of his life).  Mike made a couple PVC didges with unique connectors and mouthpieces, too.  He was kind enough to project the Youtube video about snoring and the didgeridoo to launch the session.  Our other video was an aboriginal gentleman with full regalia, painted body and incredible didgeridoo sounds.

Peg Sprauer, Mary Ann Stone, and Maggie Weisman working on their drone.  Mary Ann, a Faith Community Nurse with Bellbrook United Methodist Church, is also the Executive Director of the Community Wellness Coalition which is developing a Free Clinic in Bellbrook for the poor and underserved.  She gave a brief overview of the Free Clinic project during a break in the session.

Mark had the most beautiful didgeridoo at the session- it sounds good, too.

This was lots of fun.  We'll be announcing more sessions over the next five months with details on recording participant contest entries on Youtube.  Wanna be in a contest with your didgeridoo?  Wanna sleep better? Do you want to annoy your dog a bit?  Join the Hullabaloo.

Friday, January 18, 2013

First Didgeridoo Hullabaloo Session Agenda January 19,2013

The Didgeridoo Hullabaloo January- June, 2013
 Special Broadcast of the Dr Synonymous Show from the BellHOP

The Didgeridoo Hullabaloo Kickoff 9AM ET with Dr Synonymous at the BellHOP Café January 19, 2013

Introduction of Participants, The BellHOP, Dr Synonymous, The Hullabaloo

Disclaimer: No medical implications to this event and no guarantees on your snoring status.

Video:  The Didgeridoo and Snoring

How to play the didgeridoo
               The instrument: An adult kazoo.  A frequency enhancer. Not a religious symbol/item here.
               The mouth- breathing, “horse lips”, “horse lips” with a smile: 3 each
               The Drone:  The sweet spot. Play it 5 seconds times 4, 20 seconds times 2
               Overtones: vowels- a-e-i-o-u, Oh-ee-Oh,
               Rhythm: Ha- Ha- Ha, He- Haw, He Ha Ha Haw,
               Tonguing:  Dah- Dah- Dah, Kah- Kah- Kah, Doh- Doh- Doh-Doh, De- Dah- Daw- Oh
               Animal Sounds: kookaburra, dingo  
               Circular Breathing Introduction:  Cheeks, Breathing in/out, Chewing air

Practice, practice, practice and be prepared to duck.  Some folks may not appreciate the sounds initially
Enter the Didgeridoo Hullabaloo Contest via  Send your entry as a comment on this announcement of the DH contest on Dr Synonymous blog ( before February 15th to be eligible for a small prize.  Identify whether you are a neophyte, novice, or expert didgeridoo player.
Follow the Dr Synonymous blog for the next session and location.

Why the didgeridoo and snoring?   Click Here.

How to play the didgeridoo:  How to Play the Didgeridool

What does it sound like?

Friday, January 11, 2013

Didgeridoo Hullabaloo January 19 at The BellHOP Cafe

Neophytes, Novices and Masters of the didgeridoo are all welcome at the kickoff session for the Didgeridoo Hullabaloo.

Why play the didgeridoo?  Fun and/or snoring cessation are two reasons. (A good study showed that 85 % of snoring men who played the didgeridoo for five months stopped snoring)

January 19 at 9 AM all are invited to the BellHOP Cafe in Bellbrook, OH or to the Dr Synonymous Special Show on Blog Talk Radio to learn and/or play the didgeridoo (poorly even).

Dr Synonymous will broadcast from the Hullabaloo on Blog Talk Radio, leading the session and accepting comments and calls from participants on and off site. has a good package for beginners including a didgeridoo with cover, instructional CD  and pamphlet for $25 plus S&H.

Do it yourselfers may make their own didgeridoo with a 4 foot long 1 3/8 inch internal diameter piece of PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride) pipe that one can buy at a home supply store.  Beeswax or a rubber tip can function as a mouthpiece for lip protection.

Interested participants in the Didgeridoo Hullabaloo can post a video of their new or old skills on YouTube for others to enjoy and our judges to judge.  More details later.