We Can’t All Be Jim Groom – the Fairy Tale

Bernie and I were trying to figure out how to tackle Hans Christian Anderson and writing week. The stories do not remind us at all of Danny Kaye and the slapstick and singing.

As a young girl Bernie would have Rocky and Bullwinkle tuned in on the TV for me to watch – so “Fractured Fairy tales” were always a favorite. It might have been the twist of humor or the current day references in the fairy tale format that grabbed us.

We had thought of trying to tell a Fairy Tale from the point of view of another character much as has been done with The 3 Little Pigs and the Wolf’s story.

Did we mention – writing things like stories that are not based on experience, news releases or documentation, was one of the areas that doesn’t come easy?  – – -So from that memory of fractured fairy tales and taking things we knew about and expanding on them to create a story,  the fairy tale of the DS106 and the Ed Administrator aka- We can’t All be Jim Groom came to be. It may not be along the lines of most of the festival – but for a night on the porch of something a little different – hope you enjoy.

Download the PDF File to read the story.

We also pushed ourselves a little as the PR department has been pretty much visual and print so far, so we did a reading of the story.

We  did work with Flip Builder Pro and created a Flip book that links to the media. Not too many bells and whistles, but a start on learning the features of the tool.  We are going to have to check in with NanaLou’s grand daughter, Rochelle on how to get the flip book shared – we have been running into some technical hiccups.

(more details on how it was developed)

I-AM-NOT-A-ROBOT Reads “Legend of the Wooden Shoe”

Cousin Froid tried visiting Dr M’s Tree house to read a Dutch fairy tale to the kiddies a couple of weeks ago.  For various reasons he failed to get all the way inside so his voice sounded as hollow and disembodied as a robot’s when he told the legend of the first Klompen (or wooden shoes) from outside.  Cousin Ron said it was hard to understand all the words that way.

Dr M invited him back to tell the story again.  This time, on only the third incantation he tried, the tree house materialized and opened its door for Froid.  Once inside he found Dr M, Nana Lou, Cousin Ron, and the children waiting to hear how the first wooden shoes happened to be crafted.  Yes, of course it was fairies who did it, but the story starts long before that.  Here’s Cousin Froid, AKA Jim Stauffer, reading from The World of Tales:


Note: There has been some confusion about Cousin Froid’s name since he introduced himself to the Bergeron family last year. Although the spelling is French, Froid is an immigrant Anglo-Canadian who learned French from bilingual cereal boxes as a teen. While he suspects that all letters after the first consonant may be silent in Québécois French, Cousin Froid and his Anglo family persist in pronouncing his name “Freud” because that’s just how they see it.
Froid is inordinately proud of his distant German ancestry and privately entertains politically incorrect views about other languages (i.e. the French are Germans trying to speak Latin, and the Dutch Language is a corrupted form of die Deutsche Sprache) – hence his inability to form the Dutch words in the story properly.

The Burgeron Bard Arrives

The children at the Bovine County Fairy Tale festival have been wonderfully entertained with Nanalou and other #Burgeron106 community sharing stories over at Dr. M’s treehouse.  For those at the festival looking for more adult fare I’ve been in charge of programming and advertising the talent line-up over at “The Porch”. This week, in support of our Celtic Fairy Tale theme from the summer long Around The World Workshops, the world renowned bard of Celtic literature and history, JJ MacGif is joining us.

“In ancient times the Bards were the keepers of tradition, of the memory of the tribe – they were the custodians of the sacredness of the Word.”  Learn more…

He had plans to visit the family last summer for our family reunion, but was unable to make it due to finishing his intense training as a master storyteller. We especially appreciate him taking time away this year from his newly appointed government position as the Minister for Education & Culture and his post as Poet Laureate.


Want to hear a preview of this great olam’s work? Click on the PR poster above or use your mobile device to scan and read the QR code. (QRCode App available for download at: https://scan.me/download) There you’ll find his rendition of “The Fairy Oak of Corriewater” from the Scottish folktale “Elphin Irving”.

You might find this summary and analysis interesting as background on the poem.

On a dark night the sound of pipes heralds the coming of the faeries, who emerge shining from the green hills. They have come to dance and celebrate beneath a thousand year old oak that the Queen of Faeries had planted. The Queen is also celebrating her capture of a handsome human named Elph Irving, and intends to seal his service for seven years with a kiss. Before the kiss takes place though, the faeries rush to their steeds as a christian soul interupts. The sister of Elph Irving approaches, and takes hold of her brother, calling on God. He is transformed into a variety of beasts, and she continues to hold him. When he is turned into fire, however, she releases him with a scream and faints. The faeries laugh at her failure, and she is consumed in the blaze.


The small bird’s head is under its wing,
The deer sleeps on the grass;
The moon comes out, and the stars shine down,
The dew gleams like the glass:
There is no sound in the world so wide,
Save the sound of the smitten brass,
With the merry cittern and the pipe
Of the fairies as they pass.
But oh! the fire maun burn and burn,
And the hour is gone, and will never return.

The green hill cleaves, and forth, with a bound,
Comes elf and elfin steed;
The moon dives down in a golden cloud,
The stars grow dim with dread;
But a light is running along the earth,
So of heaven’s they have no need:
O’er moor and moss with a shout they pass,
And the word is spur and speed—
But the fire maun burn, and I maun quake,
And the hour is gone that will never come back.

And when they came to Craigyburnwood,
The Queen of the Fairies spoke:
“Come, bind your steeds to the rushes so green,
And dance by the haunted oak:
I found the acorn on Heshbon Hill,
In the nook of a palmer’s poke,
A thousand years since; here it grows!”
And they danced till the greenwood shook:
But oh! the fire, the burning fire,
The longer it burns, it but blazes the higher.

“I have won me a youth,” the Elf Queen said,
“The fairest that earth may see;
This night I have won young Elph Irving
My cupbearer to be.
His service lasts but seven sweet years,
And his wage is a kiss of me.”
And merrily, merrily, laughed the wild elves
Round Corris’s greenwood tree.
But oh! the fire it glows in my brain,
And the hour is gone, and comes not again.

The Queen she has whispered a secret word,
“Come hither my Elphin sweet,
And bring that cup of the charméd wine,
Thy lips and mine to weet.”
But a brown elf shouted a loud, loud shout,
“Come, leap on your coursers fleet,
For here comes the smell of some baptised flesh,
And the sounding of baptised feet.”
But oh! the fire that burns, and maun burn;
For the time that is gone will never return.

On a steed as white as the new-milked milk,
The Elf Queen leaped with a bound,
And young Elphin a steed like December snow
’Neath him at the word he found.
But a maiden came, and her christened arms
She linked her brother around,
And called on God, and the steed with a snort
Sank into the gaping ground.
But the fire maun burn, and I maun quake,
And the time that is gone will no more come back.

And she held her brother, and lo! he grew
A wild bull waked in ire;
And she held her brother, and lo! he changed
To a river roaring higher;
And she held her brother, and he became
A flood of the raging fire;
She shrieked and sank, and the wild elves laughed
Till the mountain rang and mire.
But oh! the fire yet burns in my brain,
And the hour is gone, and comes not again.

“O maiden, why waxed thy faith so faint,
Thy spirit so slack and slaw?
Thy courage kept good till the flame waxed wud,
Then thy might begun to thaw;
Had ye kissed him with thy christened lip,
Ye had wan him frae ’mang us a’.
Now bless the fire, the elfin fire,
That made thee faint and fa’;
Now bless the fire, the elfin fire,
The longer it burns it blazes the higher.”


[NOTE:  I tried to get fancy and use the collapsible “read more” feature to make the post more scanable from here down. To my horror, upon a later preview, all of the supposedly collapsed text had disappeared – leaving only the <!–more–> code. YIKES! Luckily I save often and was able to return to an earlier draft and copy the text I’d lost into the current version. Yet one more reason I want to move our site to a new and fully functional wordpress theme.]

DESIGNING A PR POSTER: DesignAssignments1521 DesignTutorials1521

imageThis week’s trip to the Bank of DS106 Assignments had me researching the design world.  Designing A Promotional Flyer,DesignAssignments1521, caught my attention. I don’t think of myself as a designer, so this was a learning challenge I wanted to take.  The image, fonts, colors, placement of text and other stuff are all important in getting your message across in a clear and inviting way.

Using Photoshop CC 2014 I uploaded my image and began placing the text.I found a couple of celtic related fonts for free and after experimentation decided on UnZialish Regular with the addition of a drop shadow effect. My first attempt at copying and pasting the William Blake quote was awful.  The line spacing was coming over as maybe 4 times more space than I wanted. I tried removing the formatting, but that didn’t help.  Frustrated I went to the web and found out how to fix my line spacing issue. There’s an option called “Leading” that is not readily available in the Options Bar, but hidden in the Character Panel.  Once I found the Character Panel,

which was not easy I can tell you, I was able to play around with both the font size and line spacing until I came up with a look I liked.  I choose the line spacing to be two font sizes larger than font itself.

The placement of the text was simply by feel.  I moved them around until it looked “right” to me.  There were several iterations. Finally, I used the eyedropper tool to pick colors from the poster itself to maintain integrity with the image. Again, I played around, clicking different shades from different locations until I found one that worked.


QRCode_FairyOakSoundCloudThe addition of a QR Code was a flash of brilliance that sort of works by allowing the viewer to use their cell phone camera to access the web for more information. I input the URL that I want the user to follow into the generator.  It generates the QR code image which I then downloaded to my computer. Adding the image to my Photoshop file didn’t work correctly, so I opened it in preview and took a snapshot of the image, which then pasted into a new layer just fine.

This concept works great for a real physical poster that you’d post on a wall- but not so great in the purely digital world unless you are opening the poster on a laptop/desktop computer and have additional access to a mobile device to scan and read the code.  (A work around would be to add a clickable link with the use of an image mapper software like this one from CoffeCup.)


There was one more little glitch. I wasn’t sure on the proper spelling of MacGif. My tweet to @johnjohnston confirmed that I had spelled it incorrectly as “Mac Gif”. It was an easy fix in the Photoshop file. While I was in there I also took the opportunity to adjust the white colored font at the top. The “8pm” text wasn’t as visible as I would like against the white clouds.  I darkened it a bit by using the eyedropper to pick up a hue from his white shirt.

But this tiny change in the original file proved not so easy when I tried to update my announcement of the event/poster in our Google+ community. I thought I’d simply delete the link to the poster image and re-add the new one. Guess what I learned this morning? You can’t do that.


Campfire Goldilocks

As Nana Lou mentioned awhile back, the Burgeron children have been enjoying evening readings of fairy tales, often by the campfire. Most evenings after dinner, when the weather is fine (as it often is here in Bovine County), we all gather ’round a fire, singing songs and telling stories–sometimes even a ghost story or two. The Burgeron children aren’t scared of ghost stories, of course, what with I and Little Boo being the family ghosts and so friendly and all.

Well, this being the Bovine County Fairy Tale Festival and all, the other night Nana Lou decided to tell a fairy tale, the story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. And as often happens when we’re all gathered together, it turned into a collaborative story, with lots of us participating:

You might be wondering how we got those sound effects in there, what with this story being told around the evening campfire. Well, as you may know, we ghosts have a way with being able to make all kinds of strange sounds, and Little Boo was working in the background, adding the sound effects.

You might also be wondering why Mama Boo’s voice is accompanied by those strange “ooooh” sounds. Well, I’m a ghost after all! It comes with the territory.

Here is the story …


Sitting in chair sound, by Richard Frohlich, on freesound.org, licensed CC BY 3.0

Footsteps up stairs sound, by sinatra314, on freesound.org, licensed CC BY 3.0

Birds: singing birds in Bovine TX

Spoon: played by Ron Burgeron

Snoring: snored by Ron Burgeron

All other sounds are licensed CC0, also from freesound.org

Dr M. teleporting tree house

Hello family!

I have arrived to the family home and am comfortably settled in my tree house as usual each summer. As you know my tree house is very special. It is definitely larger on the inside and is often in the news.

Dr M talks about her Tree House

What you may not know is that I had some adaptations made to it specially for this summer.  We know about our time cycle and the adventures we can have there. Well, I wanted something like it for my tree house. I consulted with many excellent engineers and they have added a teleport button to my lovely house for this summer. Just like the other doctor! the technical term is Tree House Materialisation or THM.

If you look closely you can see the teleport button under the house and the sign for the 'other' village too

If you look closely you can see the teleport button and the Prisoner 106 Village sign

If you load this file and this file into JJ MacGif new clever contraption here, you can hear the tree house materialising as an audio gif! He is so clever. I used this other clever gadget to get the right format file from Soundcloud.

I still need to make cosmetic changes as I need to add my badge for the other Village I am visiting this summer to my front door. I also promised to bring a set of Jim Groom’s for the whole family from the there!

I will leave the box of them out in the front porch of the trailer so that NanaLou can distribute to the family during the festival or before.

Our holiday adventure begins. In the ‘other’ village I am working at the hospital so it is not going to be as relaxing as visiting the family here. Although I hear that some family members are struggling with their identity and may need a few sessions on the couch this summer.

I plan to make sure that our screening room in the tree house has many good video fairy tales to inspire our writing this summer. I also think we need to tidy up our media library or we will soon run out of space. Can I ask the members of the family to remove anything they do not need for this year extravaganza and move it to the shared Google Plus folder not the Dropbox as this folder takes up space in the family’s computers.

A busy summer ahead, I shall look forward to writing my epic fairy tale ‘Tango Butterfly’ for the festival this summer too.

It’s a DS106 World

DS106_4LifeNanalou and I had a visit with the Burgeron Memory Mirror this week and what a treat.  @Cogdog and @Cris2B and I had evidentally created a fun parody of Mad World by Gary Jules during our lost week last summer.  With the help of a shared Google Doc Alan (aka @Cogdog) and Cris wrote new lyrics, and I sang the new song while accompanying myself on the 12-string guitar. Without a sound studio we had improvised using GarageBand on the iPad recording separate tracks adding some cool effects: dreamy vocals, large room guitar 1 and small room guitar 2.  The final sound editing and mixing were completed much easier by e-mailing the separate tracks to Nanalou’s computer where she keeps and old copy of GarageBand 6.0.5. The editing capabilities on the iPad version of GarageBand are pretty dismal.

When we checked Soundcloud we discovered two versions of the song:  An earlier draft with only Cris’s lyrics– sung twice for some odd reason.  (That Burgeron Backwoods Brew strikes again?)  Then a final version with both Cris’s and Cogdog’s lyrics. Through a misty fog and a lot of static we think the memory mirror was trying to show us something about a music video that was created to go with the parody, but we couldn’t find it. Maybe another Burgeron family member has seen it?  Well… you can at least listen to the audio version.

UPDATE: June 20, 2015 – In the #DS106 world you never know what will happen with the art you create.  Maybe nobody says anything, or maybe someone will riff on it and create something new. In this case Ron Leunissen was inspired to add keyboard and strings to the audio track.  It is beautiful.  Thank you Ron.


It’s a #DS106 World
by Rochelle Lockridge, @Cris2B, @Cogdog

Making art damn it keeps me sane
clears my mind, revs my brain
to create is better than champagne
makes me happy, makes me happy

There’s a freedom when you open up
Fill your cup, fill your cup
Ride the tension to a new creation
Live your vision, Live your vision

And I find it really funny, I find it really grand
to share my stuff with others makes my world expand
And some call it community, or maybe family
People creating art together, it’s a very very
DS106 World… DS106 World…

In front of me are familiar tweets
Blog updates, down under mates
Bright and early for the Daily Create
Making art, making art

Dancing Jim is filling up their GIFs
No layer masks, no layer masks
Going headless, don’t wanna do my work
Boss is a jerk, boss is a jerk

And I find it kind of funny, I find it kind of mad
The dreams in which I’m clone brushing are the best I’ve ever had
I find it hard to tell you, I find it hard to take
When people share in circles it’s a very, very
DS106 World…  DS106 World…

Bloggers waiting for the moment they get pings
Read your post, loved your remix
And I feel the way when Kernohan sings
Sit and listen, sit and listen

Went to school and I was very nauseous
No one knew my blog, nor my soundcloud
Hello Assignment Bank, where’s my example?
Tagged right to me, tagged right through me

And I find it kind of funny, I find it kind of mad
The dreams in which I’m clone brushing are the best I’ve ever had
I find it hard to tell you, I find it hard to take
When people share in circles it’s a very, very
DS106 World… DS106 World…  DS106 World…  DS106 World…


Inspired Artists at Fairy Tale Festival


The Windmill and the Butterfly – A Dutch Fairytale

Over time many Dutch artists have been inspired by the fairy tale of the windmill and the butterfly. Today artists around the world continue to find inspiration in this ancient story. The Bovine County Fairy Tale Festival being held at the Burgeron place this summer features a few of their favorite artists below: OnePercentYellowRon Leunissen, and @rockylou22 . To learn more and join in on the fun visit the festival’s official promotional website.





Flying wind mills / framed

Old Dutch painting based on the fairy tale of the butterfly and the flying wind mill. Framed in wooden frame.






The windmill and the butterfly

Today’s artists finding inspiration in the Dutch fairy tale, “The Windmill and the Butterfly”.







All styles and genres using many artistic and digital mediums have been inspired by the Dutch fairy tale.

The wind mill and the butterfly




Learn more about events and where you can stay while attending the Bovine County Fairy Tale Festival at our official promotional website:  http://burgeronpr.wix.com/burgeron106fairytalefest


NanaLou Captured On MP3

It was a magical night last night.  Nanalou sitting under Dr. M’s tree house, the little Burgeron children snuggled together with the campfire crackling, the katydids and crickets singing their song, and the sweet music of Cousin Ron practicing piano drifting gently on the breeze.   Professor Ryker T. Stork was quick enough to whip out his iPhone and capture the entire evening’s festivities of Nanalou telling the story of  The Old Windmill & The Butterfly.

Thanks to the following for letting us create more art with your art.

A radio bumper from Mama Boo

LittleBooPiazzaNavona2-July2014Little Boo and I decided to take a little trip before our family reunion in August. We’ve spent the past few days in Rome–our first time here. You can see Little Boo in front of a fountain in the Piazza Navona in the picture here. No one seemed to care too much that there were ghosts in the Piazza; I guess they’re used to seeing all kinds of things from tourists.

During week 2 of our computer classes, one of the things we could do was to create a radio bumper. I decided to make one for my friends Mariana Funes and John Johnston, for their “DS106 Good Spell” radio show. During this show, Mariana and John talk about a list of 106 “bullets” about ds106 that Mariana wrote. You can hear some of the past episodes of that show here.

I made a radio bumper that focuses on one of the bullets in particular:

DS106 is art psychotherapy if you want to use it that way

I have used ds106 that way, many times. And it has saved my mental state. I think because of the wonderful people I have been able to meet and make art with. So this bullet point really resonated with me.

So, I made this. I asked my friend Christina Hendricks to upload it to her Soundcloud account because it’s hard to get an account with these things when one is not a living person.


If you were around in the 1970s in N. America, you may remember the “Calgon Take Me Away” ad campaign, which was the inspiration for this bumper.

I’ve got a lot of catching up to do on what’s been happening with the family since we left, and with week 3 of our computer classes! In the meantime, ciao from Italy.


This bumper is licensed CC-BY-SA.

All sounds are CC0 from freesound.org except my voice and the music at the end. Music at the end is by Jahzzar: “The Flowers are Still Standing,” from the album Tumbling Dishes Like Old-Men’s Wishes. Available on the Free Music Archive with a CC-BY-SA 4.0 license: http://freemusicarchive.org/music/Jahzzar/Tumbling_Dishes_Like_Old-Mans_Wishes/The_Flowers_Are_Still_Standing

Link for the CC-BY-SA 4.0 license for this song: creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/

ABC Duet

2014-07-03 17.36.56

Inspired by recent Burgeron stories Sally Lou makes a photo of an alien.

Met with Little Sally Lou this afternoon for her computer lessons.  This week’s computer classes were all about audio, so we played with audio stuff as well as taking pictures using different effects with the Photobooth app on the iPhone. The alleged alien invasions (Anna Cow’s relatives, The Boos, Don)  being discussed on our site may’ve influenced this one.

I had so much fun with Sally Lou, her dad & mom that I got home too late to make a proper blog post for the family.  How many other Nana’s get to have fun like this with their great-great grandchildren?

The DS106 website has this great thing called the assignment bank where students can find and create their own assignments.  I wanted to do something that we could post to the site. I looked around in the Audio Assignments section and didn’t find much that seemed like a six year old Sally Lou and I could do easily together.  So I created my own.  And I decided to toss my 3 year old great-great grandson DJ into the mix as well.  It’s a mashup duet of the two of them singing the ABC song.  I recorded DJ on Wednesday night, then Sally Lou sang her version this afternoon (Thursday).  With a little help from Nana Lou & GarageBand 6.0.5 they’re now singing a duet.

The Making Of….

It helps all of us learn by sharing with the rest of the family how we created something.  I’ve found I learn by both sharing my process with others and reading how others have completed their projects.  So here’s what I did to create this delightful duet.

I recorded both children using the iTalk App on my iPhone. The original files were in an .aifc format which I could load into GarageBand but not easily onto this site for you to listen to.  I used the iTunes feature of “create mp3 version” to put them into the format that I’ve post here.  And since our free site doesn’t allow us to upload audio media files, I uploaded them to Rochelle Louridge’s Rockylou’s DS106 Blog site and linked to them that way.

Sally Lou sings her ABC’s


DJ sings his ABC’s


I tried a couple of different ways to assemble audio snippets: Having DJ simply repeat after Sally Lou; the two of them singing in unison, then a combination of the earlier two attempts.  With my desire to keep it short and interesting to the listener I felt the final attempt with a mix of DJ “repeating” after Sally Lou and at other times singing in unison was my best effort.  Here’s a screen shot of my GarageBand workspace.


I was very pleasantly surprised when their ending segments were almost in harmony.  How lucky was that?

I have a few more audio tracks from this week that I plan on editing and posting later this weekend.  Stay tuned!