Friday, October 31, 2014

It's Halloween...

...And the Ghosts and Goblins are out (at least the little ones are).


Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Last Outdoor Swim

Last Outdoor Swim of the Season! Woo-Hoo, it was cold! Walden Pond, 10/29/2014!
It's not that easy to take a Selfie when there's no handy mirror, and you're freezing:

Although, I do like this Mad Scientist look - would go like this for Halloween, but it might be difficult to bring Walden Pond with me....

(From the Book of Faces:)
S. Schultz: Clearly, you're mad if you swim in Walden Pond in November!
Me: That's why I cleverly snuck in that last swim while it was still October! Bwahahahah!
M.J.D. Maichack: You get the chilly swim medal.
S. Schultz I thought maybe you had to wait for the entire beach to be clear of people before you would take your shirt off!
Me: Actually was wearing a 'swim shirt' during the Summer to avoid getting sunburnt. Last time was mid-September, when I swam across Harriman Reservoir in Vermont. Wore it mostly for visibility (sometimes there's a lot of boats pulling water skiers), rather than to block the sun, though.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Now You Can, Christine

A friend who's a Personal Chef has this deeply felt (and, apparently not-so-unusual) Holiday Wish:

 C. H. Robinson"Oh, to be able to slap Bobby Flay across the mug, just once...‪#‎wishlist."

Well, Christine, now you can, thanks to this unique Charity Fundraiser:


Monday, October 20, 2014

A Mini-Tour of Concord

Ken Baker, an old friend from College, came up for a short visit. He'd never been to Walden Pond, so we went there. According to the Park Ranger at the Thoreau House recreation,

when Henry D. lived there, Walden was actually in "the bad part of Town".  It is funny to think of Concord, MA, as having a "Bad Neighborhood".  We had a nice walk around the Pond,

then went to see the 'Old North Bridge', which is actually the fifth span to be put up on that site since the Revolution.
Then we had lunch at the 'New London Style Pizza' shop. I am from New London, and never knew that we had our own style of Pizza.

On the way back to his car, I stopped to show Ken the 'Paul Revere Capture' site on RT 2A.

  Right next to it was an amazing Maple tree in full Foliage:


Tuesday, October 14, 2014

But the Cake Escaped...

Yesterday was my Mom's 85th Birthday, so I went down to Connecticut to see her. Here is the cake I brought (which did not travel well):
My sister Deb with my Mom:

 And lastly, the cake entering Hyperspace before we could eat it:


Thursday, October 2, 2014

Long Black Veil


A musician friend, James Houlahan, posted this song on the Book of Faces:
It immediately reminded me of the late, and in many ways, great Yana Sherman, who passed away so suddenly earlier this year. Yana, a long-time friend of mine from Storytelling, loved to tell "Long Black Veil" as a story. And she told it really well. The thing is, she was a teenager when the song first came out in 1959, and she was absolutely, totally, convinced that it was based on a traditional tale.
So I was amazed when I recently heard an interview on WUMB (91.9 FM) with Danny Dill, one of the song's writers. He described in detail how they came up with it. Apparently, they had three different sources of inspiration: an old Red Foley song, a newspaper account about an unsolved murder, and the mysterious veiled woman who used to visit Valentino's grave. (For more about this, see: .)
Since Popular Culture has been relentlessly strip mining the Traditional Canon, I feel that it is our sworn duty as Storytellers to reclaim as much as we can from Movies, TV, and Pop Music. I do it every chance I can, as did Yana. In this case, ironically, it turns out that the Songwriters were also good Storytellers. Although Yana was wrong about where the song came from, I wish she was still here with us, to tell her version, again and again.