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Roy Jerden's Blog

About Roy Jerden
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I starting writing poetry again in 2012 after a 50 year hiatus.

Born and raised in West Texas, I lived all over the area as a child until my mother remarried, as my father was in the oil drilling business, which required constant moving. I grew up in San Angelo, home of Fort Concho and the Buffalo Soldiers, but spent quite a few summers working on my grandpa's farm in the Texas Hill Country.

I met my wife Toni while I was stationed at Aviano AFB, Italy. I learned to speak Italian fluently and we still speak it at home interchangeably with English. My three sons, all born in Italy after I got out of the USAF, also speak Italian.

We moved back to the USA in 1972 and settled in Missouri, where I went back to school.

We moved to Atlanta in 1988, when Toni relocated here with AT&T. I got a job with McKesson (then HBOC) working with medical information systems, which started my career in this field. I had a natural talent for application design and parlayed this talent into a great R&D management position with an internet startup.

We are now retired. We spend time traveling the world and visiting our grandchildren in CA and NC. We also spend some time in Italy almost every year visiting and traveling with friends in Europe as we have a small apartment there in Sacile near Aviano, not far from Venice.

My other passions are mushroom hunting (the edible kind), gourmet cooking and bread baking.


Texas Oil Patch Talk


Blog Posted:5/15/2013 8:49:00 AM
Here's a primer on some Texas oil drilling terminology you might not be familiar with if you have read some of my poetry:

"Keep it turnin' to the right" is a phrase used to mean "be efficient and don't stop the drilling if not necessary". Time is money. Oil rigs drill continuously 24X7 until they either have to add more pipe to the drillstring (the bit and the 30' joints of pipe), change bits, or have a problem. 

"Oilfield Trash" is the term that oilfield workers and their families use for themselves. It is not a perjorative term, although it likely started out as one, but like many such, reversed itself into a proud badge of recognition.

A "tour", pronounced like "tower", is a shift on the oil rig. Back in the old days, there were only two twelve-hour shifts, morning tour and evening tour, seven days a week until the job was done, which was either when you hit oil or the hole was no good, known as a "duster".

"Caliche" is a sedimentary rock, a hardened deposit of calcium carbonate. Caliche is also known as hardpan. It forms a significant portion of the surface in West Texas.

"Forty-two" also known as Texas 42, is a trick-taking game like bridge, but played with a standard set of double six dominoes. 42 is often referred to as the "national game of Texas", and continues to be very popular in much of the state. It was invented to get around the Southern Baptist prohibition of card playing.

A "norther" or "blue norther" refers to a swift-moving cold front marked by a dark, blue-black sky with strong wintery winds from the northwest or north and temperatures that may drop 20°F to 30°F in a few minutes.

"Devil's brew"  is slang for the smelly hot sulphur water sometimes hit when drilling a hole. It also refers to alcohol, at least for Southern Baptists.

If you're not a Southern Baptist, Lone Star beer is the national beer of Texas. Drinking any other beer is treason, although they'll close an eye for Shiner Bock, of course.

Dr. Pepper (AKA Texas holy water) is the Texas national soft drink.

Frito pie is a dish made with chili, cheese, and corn chips. Sometimes it is baked as a casserole, but the classic Texas version is served in the Fritos bag. To make it 100 % authentic, you need Wolf Brand chili (no beans), Austex Ranch Style beans, shredded cheese, and chopped onions. Heat up the chili and beans, open the bag and pour them on top of the chips, add the onions and cheese, mix and eat. I have seen all these ingredients (except the onions) at the Dollar Tree stores at one time or another, which speaks well for their nutritional quality.

Wash it down with a Dr. Pepper (or Lone Star), and wait 30 minutes for the fireworks to start. For a Texas Trifecta Perfecta, have a fried pie (a real one, not Hostess) for dessert. Wait 30 more minutes and call 911.
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  1. Date: 5/15/2013 4:53:00 PM
    Fried Pie - not the same as Frito pie, although it translates the same from Spanish. It's a mostly Southern thing, but West Texas makes the best. You can make them from scratch, but a bought pie crust shaped into a square and then quartered will do. About 2 tbsp of thick fruit preserves (apricot is my favorite) in the middle. Fold over into a triangle and crimp the edges with a fork. Fry until golden in a tasteless oil. Sprinkle lightly with powdered sugar. Enjoy one. Then get someone to handcuff your wrists behind your back.

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  1. Date: 5/15/2013 4:41:00 PM
    Frito pie - There is some controversy about its invention with both Texas (where Fritos were invented) and Santa Fe, NM both having a paternity claim. It goes by the name of a "walking taco" in the Midwest. I think you know where my allegiance lies.

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  1. Date: 5/15/2013 4:31:00 PM
    PS.........tell us more about the fried pie! (we had one of those recipes too!)

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  1. Date: 5/15/2013 4:30:00 PM
    I may not be familiar to all the oil drilling lingo.....but I am definitely familiar with Frito pie !! Somehow I thought maybe my own family invented this gooey, easy, and completely unhealthy but yummy meal. Campers that we were, it was a staple we could throw together after a long day's hike in the mountains...warming those beans up on a camp stove or fire..adding onions/cheese...pouring over corn chips.....my kids loved it! Me too! My mom used to make something similar adding canned tamales.....baked in the oven with corn chips on top. Maybe sounds terrible.......but it was delicious!!! (healthy?? ..........NOT!!!)

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  1. Date: 5/15/2013 2:11:00 PM
    well, I scanned this and decided to read about the frito pie. I think I have heard of it before. sounds like something I would sure like to try!! I think I saw you were big winner of the pub challenge. Congrats!!

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    Hunter Avatar Painted Hunter Date: 5/16/2013 6:08:00 AM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    never had frito pie?...Its good. my wife makes it sometimes.
  1. Date: 5/15/2013 1:49:00 PM
    Ha...enjoyed seeing these oilfield terms...I'm gonna refer to Dr. Pepper as Texas Holy Water until the day I die!

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  1. Date: 5/15/2013 10:47:00 AM
    MY MY! now that's the Texan way. Dr. Pepper LOL the Texas holy water. :-) a big grinner on that. mostly hotter than sauce - when chili time's around the corner. ~SKAT~

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    A  Avatar SKAT A Date: 5/15/2013 10:49:00 AM Block poet from commenting on your poetry

    I'm from Houston Texas. 3 hours away from my sissy pd :-)
  1. Date: 5/15/2013 9:29:00 AM
    You're a riot! Love local stuff!

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My Past Blog Posts

 
Got Writer's Block?
Date Posted: 12/6/2014 8:10:00 AM
Clean and Clever Limerick Contest Update
Date Posted: 11/17/2014 7:51:00 AM
My First Short Story - Accepted for publication
Date Posted: 11/2/2014 6:46:00 PM
Happy Halloween
Date Posted: 10/31/2014 7:18:00 AM
Non-Christian Poetry Contest Update
Date Posted: 10/19/2014 9:05:00 AM
New Contest - Religious Poetry: Non-Christian
Date Posted: 10/5/2014 6:40:00 AM
"AT SEVENTEEN"
Date Posted: 9/30/2014 10:57:00 AM
The Pedicure Virgin
Date Posted: 9/11/2014 8:19:00 PM
How to make an image out of a long poem
Date Posted: 9/3/2014 12:58:00 PM
How to do a scansion of your poem to verify the meter
Date Posted: 8/19/2014 6:03:00 PM
Too Subtle?
Date Posted: 8/15/2014 1:39:00 PM
New Feature -Poet's Notes About the Poem
Date Posted: 8/2/2014 12:31:00 PM
Free Verse: Start here or finish here
Date Posted: 7/21/2014 7:04:00 PM
Bogus Entries in Contests
Date Posted: 7/19/2014 6:46:00 AM
Punctuation and Capitalization in Poetry
Date Posted: 7/18/2014 6:35:00 PM
About Poem/Poem Notes/Inspiration, etc.
Date Posted: 7/18/2014 8:17:00 AM
Bawdy Limericks II Judged
Date Posted: 7/6/2014 2:48:00 PM
To Footnote or Not to Footnote?
Date Posted: 7/3/2014 8:47:00 PM
User trying to set a password
Date Posted: 6/24/2014 10:01:00 PM
Centering, Bolding, and Italicizing in a Poem
Date Posted: 6/9/2014 9:51:00 PM
Bawdy Limerick Contest Complete
Date Posted: 6/7/2014 4:38:00 PM
Limerick Contest Update - Last chance
Date Posted: 5/27/2014 5:31:00 PM
Bonnie Parker's Poetry
Date Posted: 5/24/2014 2:48:00 PM
Limerick Contest Update
Date Posted: 5/22/2014 2:48:00 PM
Kudos on the Miltonic Sonnet Contest
Date Posted: 5/13/2014 4:06:00 PM

My Recent Poems

Date PostedPoemTitleFormCategories
12/4/2014 Saint Nicholas Clerihewchristmas,humor,
11/29/2014 But I Must Stay Villanellesad,
11/29/2014 The Pedicure Virgin Prosehumor,
11/14/2014 One Tolkien Over the Line Rhymetribute,
11/5/2014 Message of the Moth Quatrainangst,longing,
10/30/2014 Just Another Routine Day Monorhymedeath,
10/28/2014 Drool Burger Epulaeryufood,
10/25/2014 Pi Day Rhymehumor,
10/25/2014 Go For It Carpe Dieminspirational,
10/15/2014 Halloween on the Dark Side of Town Rhymeholiday,satire,
9/22/2014 Andrea Dietrich Clerihewtribute,
9/15/2014 The Empty Quarter Alliterationearth,nature,stars,
8/31/2014 Bad Goldilocks Abecedarianhumorous,
8/25/2014 Pussy Riot Chastushkahumor,
8/23/2014 Matryoshkan Multiverse Haibunhumor,
8/18/2014 A Roll of Duct Tape - Footle Footlehumor,
8/10/2014 The New One Blank versedark,
8/5/2014 Little Superheroes Quatrainchild,children,
7/22/2014 A Brush of Wings Versebird,
7/16/2014 Great A'Tuin - the Giant Star Turtle Haibundeath,journey,stars,
7/13/2014 Blood on the Saddle Limerickfunny,vacation,
7/8/2014 Willow: A Fable Rhymechildren,death,dream,fant
6/30/2014 Ragnarok: The Storm Epyllionweather,
6/28/2014 Dante's Path Quatrainspiritual,
6/11/2014 Bill's Drill Limerickhumorous,
5/26/2014 Albert Einstein Clerihewhumorous,science,
5/22/2014 John Cougar Mellencamp Clerihewbio,humorous,
5/19/2014 Same Old Soup Quatrainpoetry,satire,
5/14/2014 Into the Sunlight Haikunature,
5/12/2014 Rainier Haikunature,
5/9/2014 Januaries Haikunature,
5/7/2014 Jonah Falcon He's Not Limerickfunny,
5/6/2014 The Well Traveled Linguist Limerickhumorous,
5/5/2014 Raise the Mast Limerickhumorous,
5/4/2014 Are you glad to see me or is that just a wrinkle Limerickage,funny,
5/2/2014 The Devil Can Cite Scripture For His Purpose Rhymehate,religion,slam,
5/1/2014 On Conspiracy Theories Sonnetphilosophy,
4/28/2014 Gold Mold Limerickfunny,
4/28/2014 Tongue Oil Limerickfunny,
4/28/2014 Red Moon Limerickfunny,
4/28/2014 Fochs Gnus Rhymeslam,
4/24/2014 Concerning Human Understanding Blank versephilosophy,
4/1/2014 The Thunderous Wonderous Electric Toy Train Rhymechristmas,nostalgia,
3/18/2014 Ignominious Exit Rhymehumorous,
3/11/2014 Premature Exoneration Limerickholiday,humor,
2/28/2014 Going Gigging Rhymefishing,
2/10/2014 A Series of Unfortunate Darwin Awards Limerickdeath,humorous,silly,
2/7/2014 What Can I Do Sonnetabsence,death,fear,
1/29/2014 The Earth Abides Quatrainnatural disasters,nature,
1/23/2014 Ancient Dance Sonnetlove,
1/21/2014 Happy Hour Iambic Pentameterdrink,relationship,satire
1/7/2014 San Saba Springtime Sonnetnature,spring,
12/28/2013 The Whittlers Cowboygrowing up,nostalgia,
12/19/2013 Redneck Santa Rhymechristmas,
12/17/2013 The Tale of the China Poblana Epichistory,
6/13/2013 Ode on a Japanese Commode Rhymehumorous,
5/24/2013 The Fruits of their Labors Free versepolitical,
5/23/2013 Damaged Goods Quatrainabuse,
5/21/2013 White Trash Nostalgia Quatraingrowing up,
5/15/2013 The Conceit of Poetry Coupletphilosophy,
4/26/2013 Empyreal Ecstasy Quatrainnature,night,stars,
4/24/2013 Bordeaux Rouge Limerickhumorous,
4/18/2013 head typist Quatrainhumorous,writing,
4/14/2013 The Roughneck Song Rhymeday,drink,red,song,work,
3/23/2013 Tiger's Wood Limericksports,
3/20/2013 A Couple for the Ages Sonnethumorous,
3/17/2013 Bambino, Bambina Limerickbaby,
3/11/2013 The Treachery of Images Ekphrasis (Ecphrasis)art,image,me,
3/8/2013 Pearl of La Paz Sonnetdeath,grief,
2/17/2013 All Hat and No Cattle Cowboycowboy,humorous,old,time,
2/10/2013 Dark Temptress Rhymefood,humorous,passion,
2/10/2013 Three Pills Didacticlife,me,philosophy,truth,
1/30/2013 Icebox Days Rhymechildhood,growing up,humo
1/26/2013 The Angel Inside Rhymeallegory,angel,art,beauti
1/22/2013 Call Me Tex Cowboycowboy-western,humorous,s
1/10/2013 Bobcat Moon Rhymeautumn,friendship,loss,mo
12/9/2012 Six Man Dance Rhymeautumn,football,nostalgia
11/18/2012 La Bejarena Rhymeangel,beauty,death,histor
8/27/2012 Kiss of the Eagle Rhymeadventure,space,travel,
8/23/2012 Delicacy of Leaves Rhymehappiness,nature,time,
8/10/2012 Keep It Turnin' to the Right Rhymeday,earth,funny,life,love
8/10/2012 Cruising the Drag Rhymecar,funny,growing up,high

My Photos


Fav Poems

PoemTitleFormCategories
Amazement Free verseplaces,voice,life,voice,
Pearl Diving Quatrainlove,
Slow Movin Tights Balladme,red,women,
That Night We Kissed Rondeauromanceheart,night,heart,
A Voice In The Wind Rhymeimagination,nature,
Stay Sonnetlife,self,self,
Within a Storm Sonnetinspirational,
Sailing the Seas In A Pecan Tree Rhymeadventure,old,
Soul of the Poet Quatrainfarewell,poems,poetess,
Generations Epicbirth,death,hope,life,
Muse Free versewords,writing,
Falling upward Rhymeanger,angst,bereavement,b
Words Rhymelove,words,song,song,
No Longer Mourn for Me When I Am Dead Lyricdeath,faith,religious,
Ashen Snow Villanellesad,september,

Fav Poets

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