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Sunday, June 28, 2009

The top 11 things I will never eat (or have eaten and will never do it again!) Part 1

The ubiquitous ‘they’ say, that your “body is like a temple” – thus implying that it is best to treat it with a great deal of reverence or else the gods will rebel.

My hope in this series of posts, over the next few days, is not to offend or inflame anyone, but to open a dialogue and garner insight into the nature of human nature, particularly when it comes to partaking in certain foods that for some, might be offensive, either from personal tastes, physical reactions or dietary law.

Not in any particular order, here’s Day 1 of my list with links to the foods in question.

1. Kidneys – No thank you on these, as I have found they have a soapy, rather acrid taste, at least to me. And, I’m not sure I would try them again, even if they were cooked in sherry and looked like this.

2. Brain – makes me want to stop thinking about it all together – this was a favored delicacy, that from time-to time would appear to those fortunate passengers that rode first class on (I will not mention the particular airline) and were offered brains and eggs for breakfast - I never tried them and never will. Anyone for a serving of Bovine spongiform encephalopathy?

3. Sweetbreads – by any other name, they are a gland, and I’m “gland” I never tried them even if they can be cooked up to look like this.

Tomorrow, more menu selections to signal your thumb’s up, or thumb down.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Who says classical music has gone to the dogs?

Once in awhile something unusual happens during a live classical music performance that patrons will talk about for years to come.

It might be an exceptionally fine interpretation of a classical standard, which causes the audience to rise to their feet in astonished devotion.

Then again, it could be something totally different and not ever witnessed before – such is the latter in this case.

On Sunday, June 14, 2009, the Hampshire Choral Society, who’s mission is “to create beautiful music, and to have fun doing it, “certainly made good on their goal!

The society .was giving a lovely performance of Handel’s Messiah, when an unexpected visitor entered stage left, and was deftly dispatched elsewhere by Ms. Anita Anderson Cooper, and with very good humor (IMHO) by conductor Allan Taylor.

You will not believe your eyes! Enjoy – this is a first (in my memory) that will make you smile!


Today we celebrate the men in our lives that we have called “Father;” “Daddy;” “Dad;” “Pa-pa;” “Pop;“ “Godfather;” “Grandfather;” "Grandpa,” and the multitude of other names that are special to each individual – these are the men who have raised us up.

Others have said it much better than I…

“The words that a father speaks to his children in the privacy of home are not heard by the world, but, as in whispering-galleries, they are clearly heard at the end and by posterity.” - Jean Paul Richter

"He didn't tell me how to live; he lived, and let me watch him do it.” - Clarence Budington Kelland

"We never know the love of our parents for us till we have become parents." – Henry Ward Beecher

"Sometimes the poorest man leaves his children the richest inheritance." - Ruth E. Renkel

"It's only when you grow up, and step back from him, or leave him for your own career and your own home—it's only then that you can measure his greatness and fully appreciate it. Pride reinforces love." - Margaret Truman

"A truly rich man is one whose children run into his arms when his hands are empty." -- Unknown

Happy Father’s Day gentlemen – this one’s for you!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Welcome to the “Friendly Skies” Again

For the better part of my working life, I functioned in entrepreneurial mode, holding several jobs at one time. Oftentimes, I was practicing the art of multi-tasking before it was actually given a name and became de rigueur.

In one of my previous incarnations, I maintained my own retail business, worked in broadcasting and held full time in-flight management duties with a major airline.

Spending more than a decade dedicated to the business of flying (with one major and a couple of up-start minors) allowed me to travel, study, and develop my artistic passions for which I will always be grateful.

Finally the time came, when I felt I could clip my wings and venture into full time creative territory and actually have a life. I found that holding only two jobs was really quite liberating!

However, I’ve always maintained an interest in the “friendly” and more recently, not-so-friendly skies. I have watched over the years, how changes in the industry, some enforced by economics and some for safety reasons, led to a depersonalization and lack of joy in the whole experience of in-flight travel.

These days, you can count yourself lucky not to be strip-searched and charged for a bag of peanuts or even the toilet, and one airline even recognizes it.

Yes, Southwest Airlines is one bright spot in the industry - these folks have the right idea about how to get passengers to return.

As a little airline that started back in 1971 and struggled against all odds, it’s in-flight personnel are (IMHO) some of the best in the industry and it is a legacy that was begun with the airlines founder, Herbert D. Kelleher. It was Kelleher and his outgoing personality that created a unique corporate culture that aimed for stress reduction by allowing employees to be themselves and have fun – from their onboard “toilet paper races” to their YouTube sensation, the “Rapping Flight Attendant.

Do any of you have a favorite Southwest Airlines story to share?

Friday, June 5, 2009

Today we celebrate our world…

Earlier today, I published the second, of two articles on my page about an absolutely stunning documentary that is being distributed worldwide in an effort to promote ecological awareness, today, June 5, 2009 - World Environment Day.

Within a matter of hours, the film has been viewed by over 70,000 people, and that is just the version that is in English.

To read more about “Home” click here.

To see the film and add your voice click here.

You owe it to yourself, and to future generations to see this.

With awareness, there will be action.