Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The Mourners

Have you ever been blown away by art? I mean stopped in your tracks, take your breath away, heart poundingly, awed? Have you ever, even once, mourned the death of someone who died almost 600 years ago?

I dragged Mrs. T into the big city yesterday to go the Saint Louis Art Museum's exhibit "The Mourners".

The mourners are a series of 39 alabaster sculptures, each about 15 inches tall, from the tomb of John the Fearless, Duke of Burgundy from 1404 until 1419. Commissioned by the Duke's son, Phillip the Good, the carvings were completed by Jean de la Huerta and Antoine Le Moiturier around 1456.

During the Revolution many of the sculptures were borrowed by anti-royalists, but over time most were recovered and reunited with John's tomb in Dijon.

John's tomb is being restored, which allowed the opportunity for the sculptures to go on tour, (and pay for the restoration?). Once the restoration is complete it is thought they will never leave Dijon again.

Until then, there are 5 more cities to visit, closing in Richmond Va. in January 2012.

If you have the opportunity go, go often. The quality of the work is astounding, the emotion they evoke is visceral. These are masterworks.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The warm fuzzies

I've mentioned in passing my current fling with photography blogs. I'm more visually than print oriented, although I have zero talent for taking snapshots, and am unlikely to improve. One of the blogs I've come across is All things Photography a Russian site, featuring for the most part, Russian and Eastern European photographers, in Russian and Eastern European settings. Make certain to have Google translate for you.

This is not necessarily a plug for the site, as its a time sink. There are about 100 photos posted per day, and 2 or 3 may not be for family consumption.

That said, I know near to nothing about Russia. From viewing the posts I've gathered the people are beautiful, the landscapes stunning and the photographers are very talented.

This photo, while not artistically meaningful, brought me up sharp.

Click on the photo. Look closely at the background.

God knows, the coal and oil industries have bamboozled Americans for generations about the dangers of nuclear energy, and while my power is provided by a nuclear plant, I am uncertain I would want one in my backyard.

After Chernobyl, I bet these folks had some sleepless nights.


Monday, June 28, 2010

Is it just me?

Don't get me wrong, I am well intentioned. I try each and every day to make my part of the world a little bit better place. I care.

But, still I wonder.

Is it just me or has it suddenly become a lot tougher to want to be "green", to reduce your carbon footprint, to care about big picture environmental issues, to recycle & reuse, when each of our lifetimes personal environmental saving effort is devoured in less than a second by BP's oil spills?

Am I the only one who feels like a sap, especially now when its time to redouble our efforts?


Sunday, June 27, 2010


Three photos. Three summer looks. I'm besotted

The first shows Prince Charlie at a Cartier Polo match.

It's rare to see the Prince in public looking so casual. Must be the new wife. Perfectly turned out of course. Usually he looks like he has a stick up his *** . Today he simply looks well dressed.

The next photo from The Sartorialist. Ah, to be so young, or so trim. I love this jacket.

Simultaneously, casual, formal, and elegant. Note the opposite of ADG's conceit with the open ticket pocket. There's something about white linen jackets in the summertime.

Finally, also from The Sartorialist. I think this is perfect, and not just for West Palm or Miami Beach. There is something so right about the color. I've kidded myself into thinking I could pull this off, without looking like the Great Pumpkin.

Having spent the last week searching for orange linen jacket material. This is as close as I've come.

I'm just not sure it's heavy enough.


Saturday, June 26, 2010

Oh Happy Day

Once upon a time a man and woman fell in love, married, and had a child. The child was happy and grew up in a home surrounded by the love of her expansive and extended family. She learned by her parents example how to love and return love unselfishly.

The girl became a woman, underwent the usual ups and downs of life, yet never lost her gift of love. Today, because of her, I now know true love. It's the most magical gift I have ever received. It gives meaning and reason to my existence.

That woman, today's birthday girl, is my bride, Mrs. T.

Mrs. T professes to be shy and feigns annoyance whenever she shows up on these pages, but its all an act. She loves the attention, and especially loves being queen of Mrs. T world. I'm happy just to trail behind.

Adored, Happy Birthday. I can't wait to share the next 50 with you.


Friday, June 25, 2010

garech browne

'It takes the Honourable Garech Browne about 20 minutes to drive to the nearest village, but most of that time is spent exiting his own property. Luggala, Browne's 5,000-acre demesne in southern Ireland, isn't so much an estate as a kingdom, a veritable Middle Earth of heather-covered mountains, silvery waterfalls and lakes, emerald forest and meadows.' (Quoted from article In W Magazine, February 2003,

'The Hon. Garech Domnagh Browne', born 25 June, 1939, is a member of the titled family of Oranmore and Browne in the West of Ireland and is a wealthy patron of Irish arts, notably traditional Irish music. He is often known by the gaelic designation of his name, Garech de BrĂșn, especially in Ireland. He is the eldest of the three sons of Dominick Browne, the 4th Lord Oranmore and Browne and Oonagh Guinness, daughter of Hon. Arthur Ernest Guinness, wealthy heiress to the Guinness fortune and youngest of the three "Golden Guinness Girls". His father had the rare distinction of sitting silently in the House of Lords for 72 years until his death at age 100 in August, 2002, without ever having spoken in debate.

As both his parents were married three times, he has had two step-mothers and two step-fathers and also has a number of elder half siblings. His only full brother, The Hon. Tara Browne was a young London socialite whose untimely death at age 22 in a car crash in London's West End was immortalised in song by John Lennon. (He blew his mind out in a car...)

Garech was educated at Institut Le Rosey, Switzerland and though he is a member of the extended Guinness family, he takes no active part in its brewing business. Since the 1960s, he has been a leading proponent for the revival and preservation of traditional Irish music, through his record label Claddagh Records which he founded.

His former house, Woodtown Manor, near Dublin was for many years a welcoming place for Irish poets, writers and musicians and which was associated with the folk-pop group Clannad, where they made many recordings of their music. When in Ireland, he lives at Luggala set deep in the Wicklow mountains. The house has been variously described as a castle or hunting lodge of large proportions which he inherited from his mother. It has a fairytale setting and is famous for its hospitality and house parties since the time of his mother's residency.

Garech was instrumental in the formation of the world-renowned traditional Irish folk group, The Chieftains. When he asked his friend, the famed uileann piper, Paddy Moloney, in the early sixties to form a group for a one-off album for the Claddagh label, Paddy came up with the first line-up of The Chieftains, the membership of which has hardly changed since its foundation.

He is instantly recognisable by his famous pony-tail, wispy beard, tweed suit and dapper appearance.

He was married in 1981 to the Princess Harshad Purna Devi of Morvi, daughter of His Highness Sri Mahendra Sinhji, Maharaja of Morvi in India where he spends part of each year.

Happy Birthday


On a sadder matter, Paige is finally safe and sound at home. Our home is much quieter. The dogs have spent much of the day looking for her.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Never too Young

Last weekend my daughter Katy and her husband were in town to attend her cousin's wedding. The wedding was Friday, and Katy asked if she could have a swimming party here Saturday afternoon. Party on.

I think they and their friends had a good time. I wasn't certain until yesterday when we received this thank you note from the 2 youngest partiers, 2 1/2 yo Joe and his brother 1 1/2 yo Robby.

The guys may have a hard time, but the moms should get this in a heartbeat.

The first picture, in orange crayon, thank you, shows the 2 little boys swimming in our pool.

The reverse side:

signed Robby and Joe at the top. Bottom says Thank you. But you knew that.

We haven't had a fridge picture in donkeys years. It made our summer.


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Where's my brolly?

Like my namesake, my obsessions come and go. Enthusiasms tend to last a very long time. My latest obsession is photography blogs. They deserve their own post, but later.

I came across this photo, which happens to coincide with another enthusiasm, and a pet peeve.

I'm suggesting nothing untoward, but something is wrong with this photo.

Gentlemen of a certain stripe worship at the altar of James Smith and Sons, purveyors of umbrellas, and walking sticks to the gentry since 1830 in the same London location since forever.
Their shop is a treasure trove of Victorian era elegance. The staff, much of it family, can size a customer up on his way in the door. Old Comrades of all British military units have purchased their obligatory mufti brollies there for generations.

Smith's most iconic brolly is the Whangee handled wooden shaft model. Their web site describes it thus:


Whangee cane handle with a silver lapband. (GFUJS.WHANGEE.LP). All these umbrellas can be adjusted to the correct walking length for each customer. Prices from £275.00

ADG tells the story of finding his silk covered topper left behind in a London cab. For the price of a monthly house payment, plus shipping both ways, Smith would gladly recover it for him.

My two are the nylon topped, more pedestrian model, which have provided excellent service for a number of years.

One of a Londoner's great fears is to leave the brolly in the umbrella stand inside the door of his local, and to forget it or have someone walk off with it by "mistake". Cheap umbrellas do not make the man.
Like all style affections, 99% of the population never notice something as provocative as a expensive umbrella. Those in the know, know, and judge accordingly.

So go back to the first photo. The chap on the right strike you as a Smith's man?


Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Grandpa day

Part of the fun of Grandpa Day is the opportunity to try new things, in the name of being the cool grandpa, while all the while maintaining traditions. One of our traditions is going to the movies, Paige picks, I buy.

We have seen some turkeys over the years. Remember Kung Foo Panda? I was there. The Pokemon movie? Seen it. Paige and I disagree on the worst of our adventures. She says her worst of all was Wallace and Grommet, either because she was too young, or poor home training. I hope for the former. I'm voting for Pokemon.

Today was my initiation to the Toy Story franchise, in 3 D thank you.

Those of you awaiting some snarky, I'd wish I had never been born commentary, are going to be disappointed. I liked it. Seen in a crowded theater with lots of kids and cute moms escaping hellish outside temps, it was a very pleasant way to kill a couple of hours. I even cried at the end. If you have kids that age, you are going anyway, so there is no need for my endorsement, but I give it unconditionally anyway.

What came as the biggest surprise was the 3D angle. Paige tells me there is 3D and Real3D. My inaugural was Real3D, and I'm hooked. I may never willing see another 2 D flick ever ever. If you are drifting into geezerhood, and don't have kids at the ready, take yourself just to be amazed at the viewing experience. The trailers will blow you away.

Back to the pool.

Monday, June 21, 2010

The Goldberg Variations

The household wall of family photos is a phase which comes and goes with some regularity. Much like kid's stories, they're fun when it's your kids, but it doesn't travel well. For my money the Goldberg family photo trumps all comers.

It includes all the necessary elements: it's easy, portable, expandable, shrinkable and most important inexpensive. Truly, a gift that keeps on going, and going, and going .

I have tried 15 ways to Sunday to enlarge the photo to make it visible, but it is beyond my skills. Crass as this may be, I ask you to follow the link. You'll ask yourself, "why didn't I think of that?"

Happy summer/winter to y'all.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

RIP Diaperman

On my honor, when the Mothership came to town, things happened. Father's locked up their daughters, police went on high alert, drug dealers went into overdrive. It was better than any circus, anywhere.

I'm talking of course about, George Clinton's bands, Parliment-Funkadelic and the P-Funk All Stars.

George was a barber in Plainsfield N. J. One of his customers was a youth named Garry Shider, who along with his brothers sang vocals and backed up touring gospel groups that came through town. Garry also joined a group of kids, the the founding members of Funkadelic, who sang doo-whop at Clinton's barbershop. Garry's notable talent and drive, with George's support eventually led Garry to become the musical director of Parliment-Funkadelic and the P-Funk All Stars, and a place in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

They were a group you had to see live to believe, and you still doubted what you saw. Such a show you never ever saw before or since. As a rule, the band would begin playing, with people walking all over the stage. Most had nothing to do with the band, but danced or sang and had a boatload of energy. An hour or so later George would appear and the energy level increased another 10 fold. The band did rock.

Garry, also know as Diaperman, because of the loincloth he wore on stage, died last week from various forms of cancer.

Respect to his family.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

General Order Number 3

On January 1, 1863 US President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, which freed all slaves in states which seceeded from the US, except those in areas under Yankee control. Since the "rebellious states" saw themselves as a separate country, the effect was the same as the President freeing the British from Ireland.

Not until the end of the war was there universal emancipation.

In June 1865 federal troops under the command of Major General Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston, Texas to restore federal control to the formerly rebellious state. General Granger's third General Order issued on this date, enforced the Emancipation proclamation and ordered that all remaining slaves in Texas be immediately freed.

General Granger

On January 1, 1980, Juneteenth became an official Texas state holiday through the efforts of Al Edwards, an African American state legislator. The successful passage of this bill marked Juneteenth as the first emancipation celebration granted official state recognition. Edwards has since actively sought to spread the observance of Juneteenth all across America.


Friday, June 18, 2010

taking Friday off

I am joyously in full grandpa mode for the next several days.

Tomorrow, I promise to return in fine fettle, but today is hot and humid, and I have a house load of friends and family, and the pool beckons.

In preparation for our weekend guests, I spent a bit of time cleaning the pool house. I had finished the right side when I broke for lunch. When I returned 30 minutes later I was greeted with this nest on the window sill. By dinner an egg was on deposit. There's always something.

Enjoy your weekend, but stop in tomorrow.


Thursday, June 17, 2010

The Man in White

Atop my stack of summer reading was Mark Twain, Man in White by Michael Shelden.

Whatever I know of Samuel Clemons biography is deeply skewed by a lifetime of watching portrayals by Hal Holbrook, and living within easy driving distance of his boyhood home in Hannibal. In a word or two I know practically nothing.

My mental image is of a professional lecturer, comic and wordsmith who always wore a white. Didn't happen that way.

The white suit began several years after his beloved wife died, he was 71 years old. Tired of mourning, sick of reminders of the death of his wife and son and daughter, Clemons wished to live the rest of his life to the fullest. His high Victorian daughter Clara was aghast.

He kicked off his white suit in December 1906 at a hearing of Joint Congressional Committee on Patents, where it received extensive news coverage. The hearing involved extending the life of an author;s copyright protection. In his later years he still had to earn a living to support his household as well as 2 daughters,spoiled Clara & Jean who suffered from epilepsy, and the copyrights of his earliest works were nearing expiration.

Much like Tom Wolff Jr's white suits many years later, Twain's was a thumb in the eye to convention.

I loved this book. In 3 years Twain covered a lot of ground, fought a lot of battles, was cheated and fought back. Mostly, “he wanted to go out in the grand fashion of a man who had made a deep impression on the world, and who was convinced that nothing about him – including the manner of his passing – would be forgotten. (NYT, 3/22/2010)

The closing of any life is sad, but Twain fought the good fight and Mr. Shelden tells the story magnificently.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Be mindful of the words you choose

This story was told to me by a woman I adore. As you will see, she shall remain nameless, and blameless. I do not doubt its veracity at all, and neither should you.

This woman is conscientious of her weight, and let slip that she attends her local Weigh Watchers group on a regular basis. Those more familiar than I know the drill, but I suspect it begins with a weekly weigh in.

The story teller began by telling that she went to her regular and was greeted not only by an unaccustomed line, but also by a flustered new girl at the controls. As the narrator tells, she was greeted at her entrance at the same time another regular was leaving. The WW girl congratulated the woman leaving for her successful weeks weigh in.

Soon another woman left. She was sent packing with (note: read this out loud, its the only way it makes sense.) "sorry about your wait."

Every person in line was dumbfounded wondering how much she had packed on.

The room was suddenly silent. WW girl quickly recovered and said, " no I am so sorry I wasn't ready for you when you arrived." The mood quickly improved, and new girls job was once again secure.

It's a mistake she will never make again.


Monday, June 14, 2010

The goats, part deux

As luck would have it, I've lost the goat battle.

I've tried the pastoral, the earth mother (not recommended), the small batch fromage producer approach. In return, all I got was sass.

Fortunately, shortly after I rose the white flag, a suitable mower appeared on Craigslist. So what if it was 50 miles away?

Mrs. T suggested we give it a looksee. "Do you have any idea what we're looking at?", I inquired. That said, a delivery boy turned up on C-list who delivered faster than I could pick it up myself.

Think sheep would have worked better?

I've mentioned before that the best part of spring around The Park, is that sometimes we get to babysit the newborns. Today was one of those days.

Mother and baby are doing well. It is surprising to me that immediately after birth, mother will leave the fawn wherever she dropped it, take care of her needs and return several hours later, expecting all will be well. All this, while Charlie, our Lion Dog, is chewing found bones, of one of its relatives, in the garage.

As much as the deer set me off, I feel very privileged to be entrusted with one of life's little miracles.


Sunday, June 13, 2010

Nupts-a most irregular series

I'm a sucker for a great love story, so in honor of my nephew's nupts next weekend, I have resurrected one of my favorite series.

These are excerpts from the June 13, 2010 NYT.

I haven't paid attention lately, but I am glad to see the Times has reverted to publishing the banns of those at all levels of the meritocracy. What is also obvious, and admittedly the survey sample is skewed, is that hard times continue for ordained ministers. A very large percentage of the listed weddings were officiated by relatives who wrote a check for their ordination papers.

I clearly understand couples not wishing church weddings, but to buy ordination papers is not only disrespectful to members of the cloth, but trivializes religious belief. Why can't all states,allow ANYONE to marry via the Colorado plan.

Nicki and Roni:Love can strike anywhere. For Nicki and Roni it got em at the post office. Nicki had briefly caught Roni's eye on the streets on NY. An hour later they were in line together picking up packages at the local Post Office.

Guys beware of this, in my heart I truly believe women really believe this. Be on your guard. I quote Nicki,"I thought I had missed my opportunity on the street corner, and now I had seen it as a sign that the two of us were supposed to meet that day because we were getting a second chance."

Believe it or not, romance ensued from that chance encounter. In March 2009, Roni walked her back to the same PO, walked to the same pick up window, dropped to one knee and proposed. Nicki accepted.

Amanda and Brad:This is double weird.

Amanda lived in Boston, Brad in NY. Mutual friends introduced them at a Halloween Party in NY in 2006, where they found an immediate connection. In 2008, Amanda moved to NY supposedly for her career, more likely to grease the skids for their future wedding.

The kids parents met in January 2007. Upon their introduction, the brides father asked the grooms mother, "don't I know you from somewhere?" They couldn't find the connection.

During one of those 3 AM Aha ah moments dad realized they dated in college. Wouldn't that give you the heebies? The bride to be saw it as kismet.

Farhanna and Andre: Times are tight, and you need to find work where you can get it to support your family. Take Andre for instance. He is a local city councilman, interim director of student recruitment at Bergen Community College, adjunct history professor at William Patterson University, and an adjunct psychology professor at Passaic CC.

Kahdijah and Kandar: Kahdijar's (Candy jar?) daddy and his brother Kool had a band. Remember them? No, they didn't perform, but dad did walk her down the aisle, and yes they did play Celebration when the couple was announced at the reception.

It's easy to get caught up in the gloom during these troubling times. The optimism of these young people is heart warming. May they always be as happy as Mrs. T and I.


Saturday, June 12, 2010

Can you create the backstory?

I just found this photo on All Things Photography.

Every parent has lived through the trauma of their children learning to play barber. It's funnier when they learn on the neighbor's kid.

Don't you just love that face?


PS 71,000 participants showed up for the St. Louis, Susan G. Koman "Race for the Cure" yesterday.

Maybe-Maybe Not

Tired of waiting for a waitperson? All you want is a simple beer, maybe a pitcher, maybe you just want to get drunk and not be bothered.

For better or worse, its real, 11th and Park, NW, Washington DC. The real deal may be found here.


Friday, June 11, 2010

Hello, mind if we hate you?

I'm still allergic to sports, so don't get any ideas from today's post that I've gone all mushy. It's just the times.

First, I am unlikely to give the World Cup a thought, so if you hoped I'd keep you advised, I'm sorry to disappoint and recommend you look elsewhere. I do have this tidbit however.

The US plays its first game against England. It is the first meeting of these 2 teams in 60 years of World Cup play. The last time they met, the US beat the defending champions. It was so spectacular that 55 years later they made a movie about it. The Game of their Lives. Kind of like Chariots of Fire, only on grass. Trivia fans may note that 5 of the US starting 11 were from St. Louis, 2 of the 5 coached my 1st. grade soccer team.

Second Point: In the US major college sports conferences, in a never ending rush for the almighty dollar are breaking up and reforming with different conferences. The group I have known all my life committed suicide this morning, as one team left and the rest will seek TBBD. How this will play out is anyones guess, the only constant is change.

But for those who provide the fannies in the seats what teams are we supposed to hate? Rivalries are developed over time, not invented.

I'll mix my metaphores for the sake of non US readers for a bit. Suppose you are a NHL hockey fan in love with Toronto. All your life you have despised the hated Montreal team. Suppose you woke up tomorrow to find Toronto would never play Montreal again? Man U would never play Chelsea? Michigan never to visit Ohio. Sports fans have to hate some other team, its required. So who would root against?

Can a team join a new conference, attend the first organizational meeting and say hello, how do you do, we would like to hate your team and state too, OK? Doesn't work.

And finally. Apparently, no one gives a flying fig about basketball. The switcheroos are about making stronger televised football packages, at the cost of destroying some major basketball conferences.

If only NIKE would just take over the whole mess.


Thursday, June 10, 2010

The IHM network

Mrs. T is a devoted fan of the I Hate Men television Network, aka The Lifetime Movie Network.

If you are unfamiliar, their story lines go something like this. Bad John Ritter has been mistreating his lovely wife Meridith Baxter Birney for way too long. Finally, John snaps and M is going to get it good. M fights back, kills John, wins awards and meets John's 3 other families at the funeral.

There are a number of variations to this theme, basically they're not unlike a Nicholas Sparks movie.

Over time, the IHM network takes a toll on one's marriage. I've never threatened to take Mrs. T's broom away, or even her TV remote. Still whenever I walk in the room and John's about to get it, I always ask, "What did I do this time".

It's good to take on the roll of the bad guy. A strategist will preach to the unwary, You must know what the other side knows. It's the only way to stay several steps ahead, and guys don't stand a chance.

I did get my evens yesterday though.

Included in my morning routine is the ritual of dishing out the dogs daily medicine, and ours. Coincidently, we recently changed brands of 2 vitamins and the tabs are a different color than previously. It took several days for my bride to notice the difference, but finally she asked "What's this?"

Cyanide, I told her. She swallowed it.


Wednesday, June 9, 2010


Dear Friends: Until the cable, internet, phone man shows up I'm out of service. I hope to return soon.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

A Superior Plan

My favorite line from The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy Trilogy (Douglas Adams) is " in an infinite universe not only are all thing possible, they're likely." This simple sentence explains so much.

Earlier this spring, I found the Iron Horse had cut its last hill. In mourning, I put off cutting the grass until a suitable time had passed, the continuing rain stopped and I purchased another mower.

I wasn't in a hurry. There is something about propelling myself on a tractor, downhill on wet grass towards a lake which brings me up short. This can wait I told myself.

And wait it did.

Soon enough, the grass grew. Add a bit of warmth, a little sunlight, the grass grew higher. Throw in more rain, more heat, you get even higher grass.

Before long, it was so high I had to raise my sights. Instead of a new mower, I would need a tractor. More Manly.

I'm too cheap for that. I continued to hope something would appear on Craigslist. Until then I needed a plan.

How could I get the grass cut, safely, inexpensively and soon, without risking my life and limbs?


In this most perfect of all universes did you know there are enterprising souls who will deliver a flock of goats, and a goatherd to your house, so that they can enjoy the day eating your weeds?

The interested may learn more here.

Goats are an incredibly difficult sale in our house. One of us feels that one of us should be more diligent in their mower search. So much for green.


Sunday, June 6, 2010

Hints from heloise

We have a pleasant mix of the young and the young at heart cruise through these pages on a daily basis, so rather than gripe about my misfortune at having to attend an adult birthday party at 9AM ( I normally arise at 10 ) this morning I decided to turn today's post over to you.

I've had the pleasure recently of dealing with several kids creating their first home away from mom and dad's. It's scary, lonely at times, and will become hugely rewarding. There is so much they don't know, yet need to know. We know too much, but since our own kids won't listen to us, hopefully we can tell other kids and they may listen.

So what would you want your younger self to know? I'll help save your kid, if you'll save mine.

I'll begin with a couple of popups.

1. Learn to comparison shop and use coupons. Make a game of it. The couple of bucks you save at the grocery store, can help pay for drinks Friday.

2. Don't put it on your credit card, if you can't pay in full when the bill comes. Compound interest payments suck the light out of life.

3. Learn the difference between needing something and wanting. If you're uncertain, wait a day. If still uncertain wait another day.

4. Save a little each paycheck. Something ugly or extremely fortuitous is likely to eventually happen. You'll sleep better knowing you can take care of it.

Now it's your turn. I look forward to your wisdom.


Saturday, June 5, 2010

Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure

The St. Louis chapter, Susan G. Komen "Race for the Cure" takes place next Saturday. Participate if you're nearby, donate generously, if you know someone participating. Breast cancer is not a woman's disease, it effects us all.


Friday, June 4, 2010


Did you have nicknames in school? I came in at the very end of that era. In early grade school we lived in a no man lands between 2 ethnic neighborhoods. The Italian kids had nicknames, and the Polish kids had nicknames, but if you weren't one of the group you used them at your peril. We had a few Whitey's,Red's and Lefty's but not many.

That changed in high school. I went to an all boys school, and the custom was to call each boy by the diminutive of his name. We were Jimmy, and Bobby and Tommy....

For most, they were last called Jimmy, on graduation day. It was a custom instantly shed, once you were out of that hell hole. Never again would you hear yourself being called with that hated suffix.

Mrs. T and I went to a talk at the local library last night. Air Force Lt. General Timothy XYZ (ret) was going to talk about something terribly important to him. Think the movie Patton, when George is running all over the UK giving speeches to old ladies prior to D-Day. I didn't much care, but he was a classmate, so I thought I'd give a listen.

I have no memory of his speech. Once I realized it was canned speech #34 I tuned out. It was clear from the reactions of the 50 or so people in attendance the General had not sold his audience.

Eventually, the speech ended and the moderator opened the floor to questions. Perhaps James can relate, but question 1 had something to do with health care and social security. The General was there, he worked for the Feds, the question was about the Feds. Seemed fair. Next question must have come from talk radio. The general was getting testy, looking at his watch, stalling for time to run out.

I'd had enough, and was attempting to convey leaving time to my bride, when #3 stood up. He looked vaguely familiar, but I couldn't place him.

Timmy, he begins. He had me at Timmy. We sat down.

The moderator was on his feet in a heart beat. Have you a question for General XYZ, sir.

Yes, says #3. Timmy, do you...

Moderator again chimed in.

#3 begins again. For 4 years, I sat next to the General every GD day. He was Timmy then, he's Timmy today.

Once the crowd understood they were dealing with Timmy,not General, all the tension left the room. 5 minutes later Timmy was out the door, and giving whomever on the other end of his cell phone hell.

Score one for the peeps.


Thursday, June 3, 2010

We should have collected tribute

Remember the why of the Maltese Falcon? The jeweled bird was a gift from the Island of Malta to a Spanish King, in gratitude for services rendered. In the old days, folks did that sort of thing. A sort of thanks. A "we remember the good you have done us", sort of prize.

At the risk of being politically incorrect, and offending the wonderful Meg of Pigtown Design I feel that Great Britain should have paid the US tribute for our contribution in ridding them of David Windsor, Hitler's king in exile, HM King Edward VIII.

The US, gave up one vapid woman, in return Britain lost a King who was a Nazi sympathizer, and gained a warrior King, saving themselves from Nazi annihilation, what a trade.

Today is the anniversary of Dave and Wally's 1937 wedding.

Twentieth century historians will argue forever the merits of David's reign. Post war, he was a historian, writing extensively on his family and ironically, military history as well clothing, for which he is best known.

The private world Wallis and David created and filled with hangers on of all stripes, was made to seem fun, glamorous, and terribly important. In fact is was anything but.

It's unfortunate they didn't get the noose.