Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Stephen King

It starts with this: put your desk in the corner, and every time you sit down there to write, remind yourself why it isn't in the middle of the room. Life isn't a support system for art. It's the other way around.

― Stephen King, On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Jonathan Safran Foer

Most of our communication technologies began as diminished substitutes for an impossible activity. We couldn’t always see one another face to face, so the telephone made it possible to keep in touch at a distance. One is not always home, so the answering machine made a kind of interaction possible without the person being near his phone. Online communication originated as a substitute for telephonic communication, which was considered, for whatever reasons, too burdensome or inconvenient. And then texting, which facilitated yet faster, and more mobile, messaging. These inventions were not created to be improvements upon face-to-face communication, but a declension of acceptable, if diminished, substitutes for it.

But then a funny thing happened: We began to prefer the diminished substitutes.

- Jonathan Safran Foer


Friday, March 27, 2015

Porch Moment

A man came out on the 4th floor porch across the street. He wore a wool herringbone cabbie cap. He sat and lit a cigarette. A cold rain was falling. He opened a paperback and began to read. I watched while sipping my soup. He coughed and then took out a blue plastic bottle of nose drops and inhaled. He kept reading and I kept watching. Maybe he's reading Dostoevsky, I thought. I hope so.

Anne Lamott

Writing and reading decrease our sense of isolation. They deepen and widen and expand our sense of life: they feed the soul. When writers make us shake our heads with the exactness of their prose and their truths, and even make us laugh about ourselves or life, our buoyancy is restored. We are given a shot at dancing with, or at least clapping along with, the absurdity of life, instead of being squashed by it over and over again. It's like singing on a boat during a terrible storm at sea. You can't stop the raging storm, but singing can change the hearts and spirits of the people who are together on that ship.
― Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life

E.L. Doctorow said once said that 'Writing a novel is like driving a car at night. You can see only as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.' You don't have to see where you're going, you don't have to see your destination or everything you will pass along the way. You just have to see two or three feet ahead of you. This is right up there with the best advice on writing, or life, I have ever heard.
― Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life

Jessica Benko

To anyone familiar with the American correctional system, Halden seems alien. Its modern, cheerful and well-­appointed facilities, the relative freedom of movement it offers, its quiet and peaceful atmosphere — these qualities are so out of sync with the forms of imprisonment found in the United States that you could be forgiven for doubting whether Halden is a prison at all. It is, of course, but it is also something more: the physical expression of an entire national philosophy about the relative merits of punishment and forgiveness.
- Jessica Benko


I went to see Sylvia yesterday. I phoned her to say I was mailing letters at the post office and would love to walk over and say hi. She sounded happy about the idea. I brought a box of orange herb tea and we drank it with a little sugar.
"It's like hot lemonade," I said. The wind was whipping and the rain was coming down hard. I could see bare trees swaying on the horizon.
"It makes us think of spring and summer," she said.
"Did I tell you, I got a 60 dollar ticket for a rolling through the stop sign at Terry's auto. I've always rolled through that stop sign," she said.
"Think of all the times you didn't get caught," I said.
"True! I owe them money," she said.
"One time I was pulling out of the Dunkin' Donuts on Cass Ave, and I cut off a car that had four teenage boys inside. Then they passed me and cut me off. The police saw us and we both got pulled over. While the cop was punching in information I got out of the car and walked over to the car full of boys and said 'watch this. I'm going to get away with it because I'm old.' And sure enough the cop waved me off.
So this is payback big time," she said smiling.

Monday, March 23, 2015


I eliminated one character then another, and another, and another. With each one I felt relief. Soon everyone was gone. None of the characters were precious and that is a good thing. So I let them go. The painting became more interesting erased.

Saturday, March 21, 2015


I dreamed this dialogue:

What color is the dress?
Fire-engine red?
Red like WC Fields' nose.
Those movies were in black and white.
You can tell his nose was red.

I was wearing a yellow gown at a party. A man opened a gallon of dark orange paint. I moved away from him. He chased after me splattering orange paint all over my dress using the wooden stirring stick. I grabbed him by the shoulders and said I want a dissertation and footnotes telling me why you did this. You must like me, I said. I was thinking I hope it comes off in the wash.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Philip Roth

Writing turns you into somebody who's always wrong. The illusion that you may get it right someday is the perversity that draws you on. What else could? As pathological phenomena go, it doesn't completely wreck your life.
― Philip Roth

Literature takes a habit of mind that has disappeared. It requires silence, some form of isolation, and sustained concentration in the presence of an enigmatic thing.
― Philip Roth

Tuesday, March 17, 2015


I dreamed I watched someone roll sausage meat in powdered asthma medicine. I knew the right way was to roll the meat in flour but when I tried it it was a tangled mess. I had forgotten about sausage casings.

I dreamed I was at party in a hallway between two apartments. One apartment was John Lennon's and he was alive and the other one belonged to their neighbor friends. I was sitting on a couch in the hallway crying. I wondered if I should show John Lennon my sketchbook. A black woman with a sweet smile and a gap between her teeth came over to me and said, You're beautiful, and I said you are too. Then there were two other women gathered with us. One woman had me taste whipped cream she was making on a meat slicer. She had stored it in a small freezer in the wall. I reached in and had a taste, it tasted like hummus. I said this tastes like garlic and sesame. Yoko Ono was pinning a big red bow on a porch railing she said "I call this one selflessness and gratitude", referring to the bow. I wondered if it was Christmas. This porch served as John and Yoko's garden because having a garden at this apartment complex costs extra. I thought really? They can't afford a garden.

Monday, March 16, 2015


I dreamed someone painted my dog Lily's fur with brown paint. The paint stayed wet and she was rubbing it off everywhere. I was following her trail trying to clean it off the carpet and walls.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Michelle Huneven

My first clearly articulated thought — it came to me when I was probably 2 and a half or 3, standing in the front yard by the myoporum hedge — had to do with my parents: Who are these people? Why are they acting that way? And how is it that I’ve come to live among them?

Michelle Huneven is the author, most recently, of the novel “Off Course.” This essay is adapted from a forthcoming collection, “Selfish, Shallow, and Self-Absorbed: Sixteen Writers on the Decision Not to Have Kids.”

Friday, March 13, 2015


I dreamed I ordered a pet lynx on-line and then it was suddenly in my house. He wasn't friendly with my other pets and I wondered how I was going to clip his nails.

Receive Mode

The objective is not to cause yourself damage, but to accept the pain and fear that are a natural part of life, and to embrace them as a valuable source of lessons to learn and tests to pass.

Thursday, March 12, 2015


Sometimes we resist the very things that are good for us. I went swimming today and it felt good. After swimming I felt centered in my new head. When my head is noisy the best thing I can do is get moving until I find a moderate mental space.

A Hungarian Village for Rent

MEGYER, Hungary — Kristof Pajer’s plan to transform Hungary’s smallest village into a rural vacation paradise had not been going as well as hoped. Bookings were light. Renovations were slow. Money was scarce.

But then, he hit upon a new scheme: Instead of renting Megyer’s handful of available cottages one by one, why not just offer the entire village?


“It really started as a joke,” said Barbara Balogh, marketing director for Charming Country Hotels of Hungary, a consortium of 10 small family-run hotels (and one village) that pool advertising efforts. “It is amazing how many people are taking an interest in our funny little village.”


Edward Albee

If you’re willing to fail interestingly, you tend to succeed interestingly.
- Edward Albee

Wednesday, March 11, 2015


I had a dream that told me if I paint my demons will put on their feet pajamas and go to bed.


Artists don't get down to work until the pain of working is exceeded by the pain of not working.
- Stephen DeStaebler, quoted by David Bayles and Ted Orlan in Art and Fear

When you Love

When you love you wish to do things for. You wish to sacrifice for. You wish to serve.
― Ernest Hemingway, A Farewell to Arms

Strong at the Broken Places

If people bring so much courage to this world the world has to kill them to break them, so of course it kills them. The world breaks every one and afterward many are strong at the broken places. But those that will not break it kills. It kills the very good and the very gentle and the very brave impartially. If you are none of these you can be sure it will kill you too but there will be no special hurry.
― Ernest Hemingway, A Farewell to Arms

Accelerated Experiential Dynamic Psychotherapy

Accelerated Experiential Dynamic Psychotherapy (AEDP)

There is no better way to capture the ethos of AEDP than to say this: we try to help our patients—and ourselves—become stronger at the broken places. By working with trauma, loss, and the painful consequences of the limitations of human relatedness, we discover places that have always been strong, places that were never broken.

Crisis and suffering provide opportunities to awaken extraordinary capacities that otherwise might lie dormant, unknown and untapped. AEDP is about experientially making the most of these opportunities for both healing and transformation. Key to its therapeutic action is the undoing of aloneness and thus, the establishment of the therapeutic relationship experienced as both safe haven, and secure base.

Developed by Dr. Diana Fosha, the author of the The Transforming Power of Affect and numerous articles (see Publications), AEDP is an ever-emergent model, ever-growing through the ongoing contributions of the AEDP faculty and the members of the AEDP community.

AEDP seeks to clinically make neuroplasticity happen. Championing our innate healing capacities, AEDP has roots in and resonances with many disciplines -- among them interpersonal neurobiology, attachment theory, emotion theory and affective neuroscience, body-focused approaches, and last but not least, transformational studies.

Through undoing of aloneness, and through the in-depth processing of difficult emotional and relational experiences, as well as new transformational experiences, the AEDP clinician fosters the emergence of new and healing experiences for the client, and with them resources, resilience and a renewed zest for life. Read more about how AEDP works.

Hilary Jacobs Hendel: Shame not Depression

For the child, shaming himself is less terrifying than accepting that his caregivers can’t be counted on for comfort or connection.

To understand Brian’s type of shame, it helps to know that there are basically two categories of emotions. There are core emotions, like anger, joy and sadness, which when experienced viscerally lead to a sense of relief and clarity (even if they are initially unpleasant). And there are inhibitory emotions, like shame, guilt and anxiety, which serve to block you from experiencing core emotions.

Not all inhibition is bad, of course. But in the case of chronic shame like Brian’s, the child’s emotional expression becomes impaired. Children with too much shame grow up to be adults who can no longer sense their inner experiences. They learn not to feel, and they lose the ability to use their emotions as a compass for living. Somehow they need to recover themselves.

I specialize in something called accelerated experiential dynamic psychotherapy. After being trained as a psychoanalyst, I switched to this approach because it seemed to heal patients who hadn’t gotten relief after years of traditional talk therapy.

Hilary Jacobs Hendel is a psychotherapist in private practice in New York and a clinical supervisor with the AEDP Institute.


Mark Bittman: Feeding Kids Well

Eating patterns are set when we’re young, and 31 million kids eat federally assisted school lunches. Thus the school lunch program is more than just an opportunity to feed hungry kids. It’s an opportunity to shape how kids — and grown-ups — will eat in the future. Teaching children bad eating habits means creating yet another generation of Americans who will have to break those habits; and, given what we now know about the effect of those habits on our health, that’s nothing short of criminal.
- Mark Bittman

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Black Snow

The mud season is here. Walking around outside reminds me of low tide. Gloves, garbage, and cars, are being unearthed from the three foot high mounds of blackened snow. I was in a low mood and decided to walk downtown to cheer up. It always helps. This afternoon I walked some more and needed even more so I walked to the pond. Lily loves being out and doesn't mind jumping into the empty yellow tub for a rinse-off when we're done. Lately she gets a few belly and leg rinses each day. She just indicated that she's ready for bed and has taken her spot for the night.

Emily Rapp

Stories: the only thing we’ve got, the arbiters of this human process of rocketing between hope and despair, and it’s why every person’s is vitally important. It’s why it doesn’t matter if you’re a mess, or put together, or even a success according to arbitrary standards; what matters is that you are conscious of the world around you, in all of its terrible beauty.


The world can be a horrible place at times, but we don’t have to participate in this, we don’t have to harden our hearts as we’re taught and told to do, in order to survive or be sexy or attractive lovers or perfect parents or interesting people. We do not have to make ourselves into mysterious gifts, waiting to be chosen or read or understood by those who will earn us, unwrap our secrets, and then what? We can be something more authentic, and speak from a different place, a different planet. This is why I like being a writer, because what it demands is both simple and incredibly hard. To be a human being. Does anyone even know what that means anymore? Why don’t we allow for mess? Why are we so afraid of it? What do we expect from the veils we pull down over our eyes, our minds, our hearts? How can we possibly connect if we never let people see what we truly are and what it would take to make us free? Now, when I can’t fake a single emotion I don’t feel (or at least not for long), I wonder how I’ve lived this long being any other way. Maybe it’s that I haven’t really been living, and that now I am like Adam, like Eve, my feet still wet from being newly created, awkwardly learning how to walk on dry land.


What does it mean to be human, at this time, in this country? I believe it means practicing a radical generosity and empathy, especially when it’s a struggle. You must look around in the soft darkness of your waking life, which is the partner of your dream life. You must understand that accompanying you always is your animal, primal, complicated, desire-driven, calm but desperate, brutal and brilliant self, blinking and breathing gently in the dark, waiting for you to let it into the light.


Emily Rapp is the author of "Poster Child: A Memoir," and "The Still Point of the Turning World." She is a professor of creative writing and literature at the Santa Fe University of Art and Design in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

3,000 Skeletons with a Story to Tell

Archaeologists in London have begun digging up some 3,000 skeletons including those of victims of the Great Plague from a burial ground that will become a new train station, the company in charge said.

A team of 60 researchers will work in shifts six days a week over the next month at the Bedlam burial ground to remove the ancient skeletons, which will eventually be re-buried at a cemetery near London.

Crossrail, which is building a new east-west train line in London, said the dig near Liverpool Street station was being carried out on its behalf by the Museum of London's archaeology unit.

The company said in a statement that the bones would be tested to "shed light on migration patterns, diet, lifestyle and demography" of Londoners at the time.

"Archaeologists hope that tests on excavated plague victims will help understand the evolution of the plague bacteria strain," Crossrail said.


Accidental Discovery: Correcting Colorblindness


Descendants Altered Stress Hormones

Descendants of Holocaust Survivors Have Altered Stress Hormones
Parents' traumatic experience may hamper their offspring's ability to bounce back from trauma
Feb 12, 2015 |By Tori Rodriguez
A person's experience as a child or teenager can have a profound impact on their future children's lives, new work is showing. Rachel Yehuda, a researcher in the growing field of epigenetics and the intergenerational effects of trauma, and her colleagues have long studied mass trauma survivors and their offspring. Their latest results reveal that descendants of people who survived the Holocaust have different stress hormone profiles than their peers, perhaps predisposing them to anxiety disorders.Article

MacLean's Model of the Triune Brain

Triune brain
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The triune brain is a model of the evolution of the vertebrate forebrain and behavior, proposed by the American physician and neuroscientist Paul D. MacLean. MacLean originally formulated his model in the 1960s and propounded it at length in his 1990 book The Triune Brain in Evolution. The triune brain consists of the reptilian complex, the paleomammalian complex (limbic system), and the neomammalian complex (neocortex), viewed as structures sequentially added to the forebrain in the course of evolution. However, this hypothesis is no longer espoused by the majority of comparative neuroscientists in the post-2000 era.

The triune brain hypothesis became familiar to a broad popular audience through Carl Sagan's Pulitzer prize winning 1977 book The Dragons of Eden. The theory has been embraced by some psychiatrists and at least one leading affective neuroscience researcher.

Reptilian complex

The reptilian complex, also known as the R-complex or "reptilian brain" was the name MacLean gave to the basal ganglia, structures derived from the floor of the forebrain during development. The term derives from the idea that comparative neuroanatomists once believed that the forebrains of reptiles and birds were dominated by these structures. MacLean proposed that the reptilian complex was responsible for species-typical instinctual behaviors involved in aggression, dominance, territoriality, and ritual displays.
Paleomammalian complex

The paleomammalian brain consists of the septum, amygdalae, hypothalamus, hippocampal complex, and cingulate cortex. MacLean first introduced the term "limbic system" to refer to this set of interconnected brain structures in a paper in 1952. MacLean's recognition of the limbic system as a major functional system in the brain was not widely accepted among neuroscientists, and is generally regarded as his most important contribution to the field. MacLean maintained that the structures of the limbic system arose early in mammalian evolution (hence "paleomammalian") and were responsible for the motivation and emotion involved in feeding, reproductive behavior, and parental behavior.
Neomammalian complex

The neomammalian complex consists of the cerebral neocortex, a structure found uniquely in higher mammals, specifically humans. MacLean regarded its addition as the most recent step in the evolution of the mammalian brain, conferring the ability for language, abstraction, planning, and perception.
Status of the model

MacLean originally formulated the triune brain hypothesis in the 1960s, drawing on comparative neuroanatomical work done by Ludwig Edinger, Elizabeth C. Crosby and C. J. Herrick early in the twentieth century. The 1980s saw a rebirth of interest in comparative neuroanatomy, motivated in part by the availability of a variety of new neuroanatomical techniques for charting the circuitry of animal brains. Subsequent findings have refined the traditional neuroanatomical ideas upon which MacLean based his hypothesis.

Monday, March 09, 2015

Ounce in a Bucket

"People say to me, 'Oh, you're so prolific.' God, it doesn't feel like it — nothing like it. But, you know, you put an ounce in a bucket each day, you get a quart."
- John McPhee

Mickey Spillane: Smoke Coming out of the Chimney

When critics complained that his books were garbage, he said, “I see that — but it’s good garbage,” and he described his own work as “the chewing gum of American literature.”

Spillane wrote more than 30 novels, including The Big Kill (1951), Kiss Me, Deadly (1952), The Deep (1961), The Twisted Thing (1966) and The Killing Man (1989).

He said: “I’m not an author, I’m a writer, that’s all I am. Authors want their names down in history; I want to keep the smoke coming out of the chimney.”

-Writers Almanac

Endorphin Dolphin

Swimming lifts my mood and improves my posture.

Unlike exercising in the often dry air of the gym, or contending with seasonal allergies or frigid winter air, swimming provides the chance to work out in moist air, which can help reduce exercise-induced asthma symptoms.

Not only can pool workouts help you avoid asthma attacks if you're prone to them, some studies have shown that swimming can actually improve the condition overall. According to a study published in the scholarly journal, Respirology, when a group of kids completed a six-week swimming program, they saw improvements in symptom severity, snoring, mouth-breathing, and hospitalizations and emergency room visits [source: Science Daily]. What's more, the health benefits were still apparent a year after the swimming program had ended [source: Physorg].

Even those without asthma could benefit from swimming, say the study's authors, as the exercise can increase lung volume and teach proper breathing techniques.


William Wilson wrote in the 1883 book, "The Swimming Instructor": "The experienced swimmer, when in the water, may be classed among the happiest of mortals in the happiest of moods, and in the most complete enjoyment of the happiest of exercises."

Wilson probably didn't know this in the 19th century, but all that happiness was likely due to the release of feel-good chemicals known as endorphins -- one of swimming's most pleasant side effects. In addition to a natural high, swimming can also evoke the relaxation response the same way yoga works on the body. This is due in large part to the constant stretching and relaxing of your muscles combined with deep rhythmic breathing. Swimming is also a meditative exercise, with the sound of your own breathing and the splash of the water acting as a mantra of sorts that can help you "drown out" all other distractions.

Aside from the metaphysical benefits of swimming, research has shown that it can actually change the brain for the better through a process known as hippocampal neurogenesis, in which the brain replaces cells lost through stress [source: Borchard].


Cirkus Kludsky

By Pavel Vaculík

Cirkus Kludský, the most famous Czech circus and one of Europe’s largest ever, was at its peak a colossal enterprise traveling with an 86 x 54 meters (approximately 280 x 178 feet) three-ring, four-pole big top that could seat 10,000 spectators. Its menagerie included a herd of 25 elephants, 160 horses, 74 wild animals (lions, tigers, leopards, etc.), and a vast assortment of exotic animals, among which three giraffes and a hippopotamus—an ensemble advertised at some 700 heads. Cirkus Kludský boasted two hundred performers from thirty-five nations, including two large bands, and two hundred wagons traveling by train were used to transport the circus equipment and house the personnel.

In 1929, when Cirkus Kludsky was invited to perform in Rome, Italy, for a run of fifty-two days, more than 600,000 spectators attended its performances. This gigantic organization belonged to the Czech Kludský family, and had been created before WWI by Karel Kludský (Carl Kludsky, as he became known in the West-European circus business). From humble beginnings, Karel Kludský had managed to build one of the biggest traveling circuses in Europe, which was subsequently continued and improved by his sons.

The Kludský Dynasty

According to family lore, the founder of the Kludský Dynasty was an adjutant to the Polish King, Jan Sobiesky (1629-1696), who saved Vienna from the Turkish invasion in 1683. (The Czech Kingdom—or Kingdom of Bohemia—was then part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire.) Whether the legend is true or not, the Kludskýs eventually became a family of traveling entertainers.

The Ottoman Empire had remained at odds with the Austro-Hungarian Empire and other Western European countries until its defeat in the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-78, and its ensuing rapid decline. Therefore, traveling entertainers from the Austro-Hungarian Empire (and the Holy Roman Empire in general) were not authorized to perform farther than Constantinople (today’s Istanbul). The first member of the Kludský dynasty who demonstrably obtained this authorization was Josef Kludský, from the village of Strážovice in South Bohemia, in 1789.
Antonin Kludsky
He was followed in 1820 by another Josef Kludský—this one from Mačice, near Bukovník, in the Sušice Region—who ran a mechanical theater and organized firework displays. A third Josef Kludský, from Bavorov, in the Strakonice District, tagged on; since 1846, he had traveled with his ropewalking troupe and a carousel. These three Josef Kludskýs were related, and all lived in the South Bohemian region of the Czech Kingdom. The Kludský family was large and widespread; over the years other members of the family ran traveling menageries, carousels, cinematographs, acrobatic troupes, and various traveling entertainments.

The founder of the circus dynasty itself is considered to be Antonín Václav Kludský (1826-1895) of Bukovník, a traveling puppeteer and, later, the owner of carousels and a menagerie. He and his wife Maria (1832-1909) had twenty children, all boys—several of whom eventually became circus owners. Antonín had been granted a puppeteer license in 1852; he later bought a carousel and, in 1874, he acquired the famous Kreutsberg Menagerie of Leipzig, after the death of its owner, Gottlieb Kreutzberg, who had been killed by his tigers. The so-formed Kludský menagerie became the Czech Kingdom’s largest (as reflected by contemporary posters).

The menagerie was very successful, and in time, Antonín passed its actual management onto his elder son, Antonín Junior (1855?-1891), who became the principal shareholder of a combine whose ownership was divided between the Kludský brothers. Now a thriving entrepreneur, Antonín Senior had sent his other sons to school or encouraged them to find other lines of employment. One of them, Karel, was destined to become a priest and went to study theology in Hradec Králové.

There was much infighting between the brothers over financial matters however, and in 1886, his father withdrew Karel from the seminary to take part in the leadership of the business. Karel was only twenty-two. Sadly in 1891, Antonín Junior was killed on his wedding day by a lion called Menelik. Old Antonín was devastated, and closed his menagerie temporarily. He died four years later, in 1895. (He and his wife, Maria, are buried in Pilsen.) Karel decided to take over the menagerie, and sold the carrousels and other business assets in order to pay off his brothers. He was now sole in charge of the Kludský menagerie.


Web site of my dreams.

Dominque Jando


The larger problem, in my opinion, is that banning interactions between humans and wild animals will lead to these animals being removed from our lives and placed in remote animal ghettos — since humans have encroached on their natural habitats in such a way that it makes it impossible to restore them. (The same goes for native animals such as mountain lions, wolves, bears, buffaloes, etc.). The circus plays an important part in making a connection between humans and the animal world. It shows animals as they are: big, alive, smelly, intimidating, nice, ugly, beautiful, real creatures of flesh and blood that are a rightful and necessary part of our universe. And it shows that human and animals can live together, and interact. If humans and wild animals are condemned to live apart, the latter will see their chances of survival diminish drastically.

-Dominique Jando, the former associate artistic director of the Big Apple Circus, is the editor of Circopedia.org.

Krugman: Don’t Yank away that Punch Bowl

To me, as to a number of economists — perhaps most notably Lawrence Summers, the former Treasury secretary — the answer seems painfully obvious: Don’t yank away that punch bowl, don’t pull that rate-hike trigger, until you see the whites of inflation’s eyes. If it turns out that the Fed has waited a bit too long, inflation might overshoot 2 percent for a while, but that wouldn’t be a great tragedy. But if the Fed moves too soon, we might end up losing millions of jobs we could have had — and in the worst case, we might end up sliding into a Japanese-style deflationary trap, which has already happened in Sweden and possibly in the eurozone.

What’s worrisome is that it’s not clear whether Fed officials see it that way. They need to heed the lessons of history — and the relevant history here is the 1990s, not the 1970s. Let’s party like it’s 1995; let the good, or at least better, times keep rolling, and hold off on those rate hikes.


Kenan Trebincevic

Article by Kenan Trebincevic, a physical therapist in Manhattan. He is the author of the memoir “The Bosnia List,” written with Susan Shapiro.

Sunday, March 08, 2015

Snow is Melting

The snow has melted just enough for us to see the edges of the picnic table. How exciting!

The Feel Good Gene

By RICHARD A. FRIEDMAN A professor of clinical psychiatry at Weill Cornell Medical College.

A Professional Observer

A writer is someone who pays attention to the world — a writer is a professional observer.
- Susan Sontag

Asked what a writer is, Sontag pauses for a second and cautiously responds that “there are all kinds of writers” and that “every definition of a writer is true,” before clearly articulating her own definition: “A writer is someone who pays attention to the world.” “A writer is a professional observer,” she adds. And onwards, like a flash flood, as if to assert her manifesto in a single breath, Sontag speaks of the loneliness that is a prerequisite to writing (“writing does require solitude”); about political activism (how writers “should allow themselves to be drafted”); of how the contemporary writer is “a handworker in the era of mass production”; of how one becomes a writer simply because one “couldn’t help not to be a writer”; of writing as obsession and “auto-slavery”; of both American anti-intellectualism and the trap of elitism, not infrequently a mask for anti-intellectualism. “A writer is someone who creates or tries to create literature,” says Sontag, yet “literature is a tiny percent of what is produced in book form.”


Saturday, March 07, 2015

Martin Luther King Jr.

Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.
― Martin Luther King Jr., A Testament of Hope: The Essential Writings and Speeches

Oscar Wilde

To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.
― Oscar Wilde

Ralph Waldo Emerson

To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Mae West

You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.
― Mae West

Woonsocket Bungee!

Bungee company makes jump to Woonsocket
March 5, 2015
Russ Olivo

WOONSOCKET – Amid the clattering drone of loom-like machines that braid thread into bungee cords, shoe laces and key hoops, the mill floor at 20 Privilege St. is like a time warp from a bygone era of manufacturing.
It may be noisy, but it’s music to the ears of David Angelo, CEO of Ross Matthews Products, which moved here from Fall River a few weeks ago.
But those venerable machines would have fallen dead silent were it not for Mayor Lisa Baldelli-Hunt, Angelo says.
“We’re very grateful to the mayor,” Angelo said. “She saved our business.”

No Heads on the Mannequins

Jo Roberts has two rules when it comes to her husband’s ever-growing collections: no heads on the mannequins and no mannequins in the bedroom.

Low Tide Borscht

I unearthed my favorite Presto pressure cooker and put in the steamer tray with water up to the tray. I chopped up broccoli, cauliflower and beets and poured in a cup of frozen corn. I set it up and pressure cooked the veggies for three minutes. I scooped some into a bowl. Everything was magenta from the sliced beets. I added some Adobo and kosher salt and a pat of Smart margarine. I told my husband "It's low tide borscht!"

I Dreamed

This morning I dreamed we were staying with my husbands grandmother. She was a tiny woman with blonde curly hair worn in a long braid that hung down to her waist. She spoke to us in French.

We had a two inch by six inch miniature tiger. "This is what happens from cross breeding in poor neighborhoods" my husband said. I wondered what it had been bred with. A baby pet store alligator, I thought.

Friday, March 06, 2015

Gilles Vigneault

Mon pays ce n'est pas un pays, c'est l'hiver.
Mon jardin n'est pas un jardin, c'est la plaine.
Mon chemin ce n'est pas un chemin, c'est la neige.
-Gilles Vigneault

My land (country) is not a land, it's winter.
My garden is not a garden, it's a plain.
My road is not a road, it's snow.

Yannick Grimault: Sweet Screamin Jones

I keep catching this great music. . . .
Sweet Screamin' Jones

Sweet Screamin’ Jones is a crooner, a Jazz/Blues musician, an entertainer, that transforms the stage into a cross-cultural place; his selection of popular American songs, from Soul to Blues, Groove, Boogie, ... all shine their true essence at the hands of this charismatic entertainer's saxophone and his gravelly voice.
Hailing from Brittany, France, Sweet Screamin' Jones, whose real name is Yannick Grimault, begins his musical career at the age of 23; he studies musicology at the university of Rennes, Brittany and attends the Conservatoire of Rennes. He then joins the Celtic Music band “Gwenfol”, and the “Trompettes du Mozambique” in 1997; these fruitful collaborations lead him to perform more than 200 concerts, both in France and abroad.
From the year 2000, he becomes a member of two of Rennes music collectives: Ze Big Band and Heat Wave, led respectively by Fred Burgazzi and Philippe Dardelle. From then on, he gets acquainted with the pulses of Jazz and American music, thanks especially to many encounters with musicians of national and international reputation: Ricky Ford, Pierrick Pedron, Philippe Dardelle Fred Burgazzi Barbaro Teuntor Garcia, Roby "Supersax" Edwards, Daniel Jeand'heur...

Sled Dogs

Bring the sled dogs here. We have plenty of snow!

Sane Spot

Every man has a sane spot somewhere.
-Robert Louis Stevenson

Keep your eyes open to your mercies. The man who forgets to be thankful has fallen asleep in life.
-Robert Louis Stevenson

All human beings are commingled out of good and evil.
-Robert Louis Stevenson

Old and young, we are all on our last cruise.
-Robert Louis Stevenson

Life is not a matter of holding good cards, but of playing a poor hand well.
-Robert Louis Stevenson

Quiet minds cannot be perplexed or frightened but go on in fortune or misfortune at their own private pace, like a clock during a thunderstorm.
-Robert Louis Stevenson

Every heart that has beat strongly and cheerfully has left a hopeful impulse behind it in the world, and bettered the tradition of mankind.
-Robert Louis Stevenson

Wine is bottled poetry.
-Robert Louis Stevenson

There is a fellowship more quiet even than solitude, and which, rightly understood, is solitude made perfect.
-Robert Louis Stevenson

Whatever Lola Wants

Whatever Lola wants
Lola gets
And little man, little Lola wants you
Make up your mind to have no regrets
Recline yourself, resign yourself, you're through
I always get what I aim for
And your heart'n soul is what I came for

Whatever Lola wants
Lola gets,
Take off your coat
Don't you know you can't win?
You're no exception to the rule,
I'm irresistible, you fool, give in!...Give in!...Give in!

Hello, Joe
It's me
He hits so far
-hold on-that's you
Poo poo pa doop

I always get what I aim for
And you heart'n soul is what I came for
...Lola wants
...Lola gets
...You'll never win
I'm irresistible, you fool,
Give in...Give in...Give in.

Robert Louis Stevenson

There is no duty we so much
underrate as the duty
of being happy.
- Robert Louis Stevenson

Mahatma Gandhi - Truth never damages a cause that is just.

Confucius - Choose a job you love and you will never work a day in your life.
Abraham Lincoln - It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to open one's mouth and remove all doubt.
John Lennon - Life is what happens to us while we're making other plans.
Mark Twain - Be careful while reading health books, you might die of a misprint.
Ferris Beuller - Life goes by pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around sometime, you might miss it.
Chinese Proverb - He who asks is a fool for five minutes, but he who does not ask remains a fool forever.
Mark Twain - Man is the only animal that blushes -- or needs to.
George Bernard Shaw - If all economists were laid end to end, they would not reach a conclusion.
F. Scott Fitzgerald - The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function.
Mahatma Gandhi - Truth never damages a cause that is just.
Groucho Marx - Please accept my resignation. I don't care to belong to any club that will have me as a member.
George Bernard Shaw - People are always blaming their circumstances for what they are. I don't believe in circumstances. The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and, if they can't find them, make them.
John Ruskin - No human being, however great or powerful, was ever so free as a fish.
Walt Whitman - Give me the silent sun with all his beams full-dazzling.
Pebbles and Bam Bam - Let the sun shine in and chase away your blues. Frowners never win and smilers never lose.
Shakespeare - How far that little candle throws his beams! So shines a good deed in a naughty world.
Ella Wheeler Wilcox - So many gods, so many creeds, so many paths that wind and wind, while just the art of being kind is all the sad world needs.
Maya Angelou - If you don't like something - change it. If you can't change it, change the way you look at it.
Albert Einstein - It is appallingly obvious that our technology exceeds our humanity.
Thomas Alva Edison - Genius is one percent inspiration, and ninety-nine percent perspiration.
Albert Einstein - Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former.
John Wheeler - As the island of our knowledge grows, so does the shore of our ignorance.
T. S. Eliot - We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.
Bertrand Russell - Most people would rather die than think; in fact, they do so.
George Bernard Shaw - The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man.
Albert Einstein - There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.
Niels Bohr - The opposite of a correct statement is a false statement. The opposite of a profound truth may well be another profound truth.
Robert Herrick - You say, to me-wards, your affection's strong; pray love me little, so you love me long.
Grantland Rice - For when that one great scorer comes to mark against your name, he marks not that you won or lost but how you played the game.
Galileo Galilei - I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect has intended us to forgo their use.
Mahatma Gandhi - You must be the change you wish to see in the world.
Alan Kay - The best way to predict the future is to invent it.

Robert Louis Stevenson

How To Be Happy

by Robert Louis Stevenson

Make up your mind to be happy. Learn to find pleasure in simple things.
Make the best of your circumstances. No one has everything, and everyone has something of sorrow intermingled with gladness of life. The trick is to make the laughter outweigh the tears.
Don't take yourself too seriously. Don't think that somehow you should be protected from misfortune that befalls other people.
You can't please everybody. Don't let criticism worry you.
Don't let your neighbor set your standards. Be yourself.
Do the things you enjoy doing but stay out of debt.
Never borrow trouble. Imaginary things are harder to bear than real ones.
Since hate poisons the soul, do not cherish jealousy, enmity, grudges. Avoid people who make you unhappy.
Have many interests. If you can't travel, read about new places.
Don't hold post-mortems. Don't spend your time brooding over sorrows or mistakes. Don't be one who never gets over things.
Do what you can for those less fortunate than yourself.
Keep busy at something. A busy person never has time to be unhappy.

Keep On The Sunny Side of Life

Written by Ada Blenkhorn in 1899.
Music by J. Howard Entwisle.

There's a dark and a troubled side of life
There's a bright and a sunny side, too
Tho' we meet with the darkness and strife
The sunny side we also may view

Keep on the sunny side, always on the sunny side,
Keep on the sunny side of life
It will help us every day, it will brighten all the way
If we'll keep on the sunny side of life

Tho' the storm in its fury broke today,
Crushing hopes that we cherished so dear;
Storm and cloud will in time pass away
The sun again will shine bright and clear.

Let us greet with a song of hope each day
Tho' the moments be cloudy or fair
Let us trust in our Saviour alway
Who keepeth everyone in His care.

Icy Pompeii

Walking around the city covered in ice and snow I feel like we are in the ice version of Pompeii. Instead of molten lava we have ice. The fences and trees are up to their necks in snow piles. We cant access the street or see where we are in the usual ways.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The city of Pompeii was an ancient Roman town-city near modern Naples in the Italian region of Campania, in the territory of the comune of Pompei. Pompeii, along with Herculaneum and many villas in the surrounding area, was mostly destroyed and buried under 4 to 6 m (13 to 20 ft) of ash and pumice in the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD.

Researchers believe that the town was founded in the seventh or sixth century BC by the Osci or Oscans. It came under the domination of Rome in the 4th century BC, and was conquered and became a Roman colony in 80 BC after it joined an unsuccessful rebellion against the Roman Republic. By the time of its destruction, 160 years later, its population was approximately 11,000 people, and the city had a complex water system, an amphitheatre, gymnasium and a port.

The eruption destroyed the city, killing its inhabitants and burying it under tons of ash. Evidence for the destruction originally came from a surviving letter by Pliny the Younger, who saw the eruption from a distance and described the death of his uncle Pliny the Elder, an admiral of the Roman fleet, who tried to rescue citizens. The site was lost for about 1,500 years until its initial rediscovery in 1599 and broader rediscovery almost 150 years later by Spanish engineer Rocque Joaquin de Alcubierre in 1748. The objects that lay beneath the city have been well-preserved for centuries because of the lack of air and moisture. These artifacts provide an extraordinarily detailed insight into the life of a city during the Pax Romana. During the excavation, plaster was used to fill in the voids in the ash layers that once held human bodies. This allowed one to see the exact position the person was in when he or she died.

Pompeii has been a tourist destination for over 250 years. Today it has UNESCO World Heritage Site status and is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Italy, with approximately 2.5 million visitors every year.

Bob Chelmick The Road Home

CKUA Radio Network
The Road Home
"solar powered radio, from a cabin in the woods"

Host: Bob Chelmick
9pm-10pm MT Mondays to Thursdays 5am-6am MT Mondays to Fridays (rebroadcast)

The way I see it, radio offers the best pictures–vivid, colourful, powerful–because the mind and heart of the listener are engaged in the creative process. Images evoked are usually more powerful than images seen.

We talk of CKUA being “hand-made radio.” Never more true than on The Road Home, literally a cottage industry. A poem is storytelling at its most refined and distilled. It belongs on radio. To be able to combine these passions for poetry, storytelling, music and extraordinary radio is a very great joy. To be part of the world’s finest radio service and be blessed with the enthusiasm of fellow travellers near and far is an enormous privilege.

Close your eyes and let’s see where The Road leads.

The Road Home offers a quiet cabin in the woods for listeners to enjoy; a place of refuge and discovery, rife with images that move the mind and the heart through readings, songs and personal ruminations on the country life. Host Bob Chelmick offers poetry, song and reflections on his world of dogs, horses, birds and other subjects for a gentle adventure on the road we all share.

The Road Home is inspired from moment to moment and from season to season by the world outside Bob’s cabin windows. For Bob, perhaps the best thing about living in the quiet woods, and depending on the forest for heat, the sun for power, and the aquifers for water, is the close connectedness with the natural world. Balance is easier to come by in a natural setting, away from the city.

What goes on around Bob, as mundane as it might seem sometimes, provides all sorts of odd, humourous, even provocative points to talk about. Inside the cabin, books of verse are rich sources of inspiration, elevation, and excitation.

Theme Music:
‘The Road Home Theme’ (commissioned) by Solon McDade, performed by The McDades

Bob Chelmick

I got my start at CKUA in 1969 and came back in 2001 after 28 years away from home. My journey has encompassed a lot of storytelling, as host and producer for CBC and CTV, visual artist, filmmaker, speaker and teacher (Transcendental Meditation).

RIP Daniel Von Bargen

Daniel was my favorite Trinity actor and was our neighbor briefly many years ago.
PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- Daniel von Bargen, a longtime Trinity Rep actor who later played George Costanza's boss Mr. Kruger on TV's "Seinfeld," has died at age 64 after a long illness.

Von Bargen shot himself in the head in 2012 as he was about to have toes amputated because of diabetes, the TMZ website reported then. Von Bargen began his career at Trinity in 1972. He attended Purdue University and performed for the American Repertory Theater, the Dallas Theater Center and on Broadway in "Mastergate."

He said in a 2003 interview with The Providence Journal that he left Trinity on good terms and had decided to stay with movies and television.

"I really don't like [the stage] anymore," he said. "The rehearsals and the openings are some of my favorite times as an actor. What I don't like is, after a couple of weeks, going back to the theater to do the same thing over and over eight times a week. That quickly turns sour for me."

Trinity said in a news release Thursday: "Trinity Rep mourns the passing of Daniel von Bargen, a much-loved longtime acting company member, who passed away in February. From Lady Audley’s Secret in 1972 through Golden Boy in 1990, Dan was memorable in more than 50 plays at Trinity Rep, including Eustace Chisholm and the Works, King Lear, Awake and Sing!, Death of a Salesman, Hurlyburly, The Wild Duck and The Lady from Maxim’s. He moved easily from hilarious comedic roles to affecting dramatic parts, and was a talented musician.

“Complex, highly intelligent, enormously funny, Dan was a large part of the artistic fabric that brought international attention to our theater,” said fellow company member Cynthia Strickland, with whom he first came to Providence. “But more than that, he was a dearly loved friend to many.”

Among his movie roles was one as the jury foreman in "Philadelphia," alongside such luminaries as Tom Hanks, Denzel Washington, Mary Steenburgen and Antonio Banderas. He also appeared in "Basic Instinct."

His role as Mr. Kruger on "Seinfeld" carried him across several episodes. He also appeared as a demented military academy commandant on "Malcolm in the Middle." He had a role in a TV movie with Andy Griffith and Blair Brown called "Set for Life."

Von Bargen appeared in guest roles on such TV shows as "Spenser: For Hire," "NYPD Blue" and "New York Undercover."

Giambattista Valli

Q. How does your day begin?

A. I like to have two days in one: one private, one professional. I live on the opposite side of Paris to my office, because I really love to separate my two personal and professional lives. So I live in Canal Saint-Martin. It’s very bohemian; it looks like a village. I have a very long breakfast, that is my silent moment; I’m getting energy and cleaning up my mind to come and start a new day. Normally I have a trainer come into the house. I do meditation, sometimes I do yoga. It’s almost like a treat to go from that side of Paris to this side, the most historical and institutional one. It’s a place very inspiring for the luxury profession. And then I come to the office, and the first thing is I have my tea. I drink tea all day.

Q. What happens in the office? Do you draw?

A. When I sketch a collection, mostly I do it in my house, because it’s the moment you are really naked with a white sheet of paper; it’s the moment that you are the most fragile, with your mind, your soul, your emotions open. So I do it in private.


Fabulous Interview of Loren Graham by Nin Andrews

Fabulous interview here.

LG:I do try to write at least a little every day. Life interferes sometimes, as I’m sure it does for every writer, but I think the discipline of sitting down to work every day, whether I feel like it or not, is terribly important. It keeps the imagination percolating. It generates inspiration. Why do I think of a new poem line in the shower, or driving down the highway, or in a meeting at work? Because I’ve been percolating: my mind has been working on that poem even when I was asleep or was thinking about something else, and now it’s popping out of me. But when you don’t write every day, that process slows down or stops. You get unhappy and your life gets difficult because you no longer think you’re able to do what you believe you are on this planet to do. It’s no good then.

LG:I want my poems to be little machines that will generate content I didn’t plan and say things I didn’t expect them to say.

NA:What do you think are the most challenging and the most rewarding aspects of being a poet?

LG:The most challenging thing is the feeling of isolation that sometimes comes with writing constantly. It’s something one does alone. I’m okay with that—I actually like being alone and in fact have a hard time functioning if I’m not alone for at least a few hours every day. However, when the writing you are trying to do is for one reason or another not really generating something you’re excited about, it is possible to feel isolated and stranded, and that’s never good. I can sometimes work pretty hard for quite a long time without feeling I’m getting anywhere, especially when I’m starting a new book. It sometimes gives me a sensation like I’m swimming in slowly setting concrete.

Fortunately, sooner or later it always turns around. I hit my stride, and then I can’t be alone in my studio enough. And that’s the best part—when poetic ideas and poetic music are coming out of your very pores every time you so much as twitch an eyelid, and you can’t really even stop them. And then the process transforms them into things that are better than you first imagined. It’s wonderful.

Dream Bits

I had a dream your mother's big toe got removed but you had it put back on. Maybe it was diabetes.

I dreamed I looked at my apartment in Providence and the windows were open and the gas stove burners were on for heat. It made no sense to me.

There was another apartment next door but there was no wall separating the two. They could take my things, eat my plums, I thought.

My friend K surprised me by letting a friend of his stay at my apartment.

S+T were offered a job at RISD. They made fun of it. Teach engineering and dance, I said. T's car drove down stone stairs and had a tiny interior parking spot in the school. The car parked tipped vertically on it's nose.

We ate desserts at a dark dessert bar where they gave free samples while you waited for your ice cream.

Thursday, March 05, 2015

Story about Brautigan


Ianthe Brautigan Interview

I was reading books that had writers who were willing to take on way beyond what I had suffered, like Primo Levi, Natalia Ginsburg. And I was going, "OK, so these people are willing to take these heady things on and they survived." Because I think that's the biggest element of memoir writing -- that if you're going to write about something incredibly intense, you better be able to survive it. That's the first thing I tell people -- they'll tell me a really sad story that happened and say, "I want to write a memoir." And the first question I ask is, "Do you think you can? Do you think you have the strength to do it?" Because this is not something you take lightly.

Snowy White Owl Photo

by Mike Reshitnyk. Here

Circus Elephants


The Figherfighter Workout


Teensy Cottage

See it.

Why I Love the City

"Hey, can I give her a french fry, he said holding one out for Lily. I had to get rid of my dogs, I was in prison and they went to a friend who got rid of them."
"I'm glad you're out. I said remembering him and his two pit bulls from the neighborhood. Were you at the ACI? I've been there to give a reading with a few poets," I said.
"Which prison," he asked
"Medium security," I said.
"Yes, that's where I was," he said.
"That was 4 years ago, when we were there," I said knowing he was there recently.
I'm glad you're out.
I get to see my son.
How hold is your son?
"My son is a year and a half," he said.
"Have you heard about the woman in Georgia they are going to put to death by lethal injection?"
"That's wrong," he said.
"I agree."
"Only God can make that decision," he said
I agree."
"And this woman has been rehabilitated, too. She became a spiritual leader."
"That's no way to help society, going around killing people."
"I couldn't agree more."
He got a phone call and pulled his cell phone out of his pocket and I turned to go into the post office.

White water Hawk was calling my name when the traffic was backed up. I looked around. "Over here" he said walking towards me to greet Lily.

The man with the tattooed face said hello.

Sauna and Health

Social Sweating

The idea is not to have the best sauna on the block, but to get the entire block in the sauna.
-Professor Harold Tier
President, Finnish Sauna Society

The medicinal and spiritual values of the sweat bath are furthered by its communal character. The sweat bath is a social event--like the coffee shop, neighborhood bar or picnic--and is probably the healthiest ever offered a group of people.

Early in its history, sweat bath ceremonies and rituals were strong expressions of the community. Elders of' the Cherokee tribe used the sweat bath as a hallowed schoolhouse where teachinings of' their forefathers were passed on to their young. Groups of Finns, dodging elves, would gather inside the sauna to talk, to escape the Nordic cold and to soothe aching muscles. Turkish women would congregate for hours in their hamman, the only place their men allowed them to socialize. The gregarious Romans would throng by the thousands to their lavish thermaes.

The Russians say, "If there are few banias, we live in unity; but if there are too many, we are lonely because one does not visit the other."

I Love the Ladies of the Pool

Yesterday walking Lily I ran into two neighbors who both told me they just got physical therapy in the pool at Fogarty in North Smithfield.
"Water is the healer" I said, smiling.

I love going swimming in the early morning or the late afternoon. Swimming is my 4:00 tea and I am swimming in the cup. Swimming lifts my spirits and calms me. I sleep better and I receive clearer signals through my body antenna.

Yesterday I was an emotionally exhausted wreck and I made myself go "for ten minutes". When arrived I was with three women in the pool. One was having a one-on-one-swim-lesson and then they left. After a very blissful long swim I realized I recognized the woman swimming laps. She was thinking the same thing about me. We used to both swim at the YMCA. We both love the RI Athletic Club a million times better because they are all about community and community outreach and have better hours. They are flexible and super kind and cheerful. The place is spotless with no bad odors. The multiple changing rooms are cozy and varied. There's a dry sauna in the large locker room. The water is as hot as you want it to be! The RI Athletic Club doing what the Y promises but doesn't do. Barbara told me she cured her son of ADHD from a particular salicylates allergy diet when he was a child. I had never heard of it but it made sense to me so I looked it up.


Cat Ate the Radio Antennae

Our cat Sammy loves our skinny plastic wire radio antennae and he finally chewed it to bits. Then we couldn't receive our favorite radio station WICN Worcester. Bill put in a new antenna with a piece of wire and now it's better than ever. No more fuzziness. WICN loud and clear.

Everything is Broken

I just heard Ben Sidran perform this song on WICN radio and it caught my ear. I loved it!!

Everything is Broken by Bob Dylan

Broken lines, broken strings
Broken threads, broken springs
Broken idols, broken heads
People sleeping in broken beds
Ain’t no use jiving
Ain’t no use joking
Everything is broken

Broken bottles, broken plates
Broken switches, broken gates
Broken dishes, broken parts
Streets are filled with broken hearts
Broken words never meant to be spoken
Everything is broken

Seem like every time you stop and turn around
Something else just hit the ground

Broken cutters, broken saws
Broken buckles, broken laws
Broken bodies, broken bones
Broken voices on broken phones
Take a deep breath, feel like you’re chokin'
Everything is broken

Every time you leave and go off someplace
Things fall to pieces in my face

Broken hands on broken ploughs
Broken treaties, broken vows
Broken pipes, broken tools
People bending broken rules
Hound dog howling, bullfrog croaking
Everything is broken

Copyright © 1989 by Special Rider Music

Wednesday, March 04, 2015

Ice Dam Blues

We've got a whole lot of house dripping from ice dams. I decided I was feeling sorry for myself so I stepped out with Lily and came upon a roadblock. Apparently a cruiser with sirens was driving fast through the light and a woman in a white SUV was oblivious as she cruised through her green light at the intersection. Kaboom. People told me both drivers were taken away on stretchers. The whole City came to a halt. I hope they will be okay.
I stopped in at the Post Office and got my mail (being held due to the ice) my registration renewal stickers and certificate had arrived. I ran into Donald the master community gardener who had been swimming and my pal Sylvia who just colored her hair, and told me her terrace was snowed in. Then we bumped into Blain who was in his patrolman's uniform with another officer doing detective work from Slatersville. I introduced everyone to each other.
I felt much better having gotten out. When I got home I washed Lily's muddy paws and had lunch.
We knew the ice dams would happen. What bothers me the most is the smell of wet wallpaper and wet plaster. I'll have to bake the good smells back.

I Waited

When my grade school classmate died of an overdose I waited for an invitation. It did not arrive and I was sad. I didn't know that you don't need an invitation to go to a funeral. How did I not know these this? I had no knowledge of community the kind people get from church or school or just plain common sense. There was no sense and not much common in my life.


We live in a world where people have forgotten how to listen.

Art Lien Courtroom Sketch Artist

A Courtroom Artist Attempts to ‘Capture’ Dzhokhar Tsarnaev

By Hilary Sargent
Boston.com Staff

If you’ve seen a courtroom sketch of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev in the past month, there’s a pretty good chance it was drawn by Art Lien.

Last month, Lien was in attendance at the final pre-trial status hearing in U.S. vs. Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. It was the first courtroom appearance by the alleged Boston Marathon bomber since his July 2013 arraignment.

Lien’s sketch from that day was striking, and a far cry from the images of Tsarnaev that had flooded newspapers and websites since his arrest.

“People said I made him look too old. He is young, but he has a very strange look, his eyes. Almost seems like he just woke up, or he’s high,” Lien told Boston.com.

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev has his handcuffs removed after entering courtroom.Dzhokhar Tsarnaev in his first court appearance since being arraigned.
Courtesy of Art Lien

It was in stark contrast to the criticism hurled at Rolling Stone over what some called a “dreamy” depiction of Tsarnaev on the cover of their August 2013 issue.

But Lien isn’t fazed by the fact that his depiction of Tsarnaev wasn’t to everyone’s liking.

Grace and Hope Mission on Gay St. Grace and Hope Mission on Gay St.

“I struggle to do the best I can to just capture what I’m seeing,” he said. “I like the idea of documenting things through sketches.”

Lien usually spends his days as a courtroom sketch artist at the United States Supreme Court, where he documents the goings-on of the nation’s highest court for NBC News.

In addition to his work at the U.S. Supreme Court, Lien sketches a range of other high-profile courtroom dramas. He has sketched Roger Clemens facing perjury charges, jury selection in the trial of Jerry Sandusky, Jack Abramoff being sentenced for corruption, and Whitey Bulger facing the families of his victims.

For the next several months, Lien will be spending his days in Courtroom 9 at Boston’s Moakley Courthouse, providing the public with some of its only glimpses of Tsarnaev as he stands trial on more than 30 charges related to the bombings at the finish line of the Boston Marathon in April 2013.

Roger Clemens on trial for perjury.
Courtesy of Art Lien

While there is no indication that cameras are coming to federal courtrooms anytime soon, Lien said the number of courtroom sketch artists has dwindled during his 38 year long career.

Reporting for jury duty, U.S. v. Dzhokhar TsarnaevJurors report for duty on Monday, January 5, 2014
Courtesy of Art Lien

“There used to be many more of us. It used to be that every network had their own artist. Local stations often had their own, too. And then papers often had their own,” Lien said. “At a trial like this you would have had four to eight artists. So far for Tsarnaev there are just two of us.”

Lien at work on a courtroom sketch
Courtesy of Art Lien

Lien doesn’t show up to sketch unprepared.

“I try to find out as much as I possibly can. I read the filings. I read the media reports. I even look at Twitter. I look for all the information I can get,” he said.

When he’s not sketching in a courtroom, he can often be found sketching urban scenes in and around Baltimore.

Or building bicycles. That is, if he isn’t tied up practicing mandolin for an upcoming performance of his mandolin orchestra.

Email me at sargent@boston.com. Follow me (but not home) @lilsarg.

Courtroom Sketch Artist

What is Courtroom Sketch Art?

Courtroom sketch art is an artistic representation of courtroom environments and trial proceedings.

Centuries ago, when cameras weren’t invented – or at least as common as they are now – courtroom sketches were the only way that many people could get a glimpse of what happened during a court trial. These types of sketches were used during the infamous Salem Witch Trials of the 17th century, for instance.

After cameras became more commonplace, sketches were still used to depict the goings-on of most courtroom trials. This is mostly due to the fact that early cameras were ultimately ineffective at capturing movement. They were also large obtrusive contraptions that many key courtroom players – such as jury members and witnesses – found very distracting.

It wasn’t until the late 20th century that many jurisdictions began allowing photographers into their courtrooms. By this time, cameras were much smaller and less distracting than previous models. Even with the advancements of modern photography, there is still a need for courtroom sketch artists.

Some jurisdictions, for example, still do not allow cameras of any kind in their courtrooms. In many jurisdictions, judges may decide to put a ban on cameras in the courtroom for nearly any reason. Cameras are sometimes banned from court trials of a particular nature, for instance, such as high profile cases or cases involving minors.
What Does a Courtroom Sketch Artist Do?

Simply put, a courtroom sketch artist draws courtrooms scenes during trials. In some cases, depending on the rules and regulations of a courtroom or jurisdiction, a courtroom sketch artist may need to get prior permission to do this type of work.

A courtroom sketch artist will usually arrive several minutes before the start of a trial. Thinking ahead like this can allow the artist to get the best seat possible, with a clear view of all the action. In fact, some courtrooms even have designated seats for courtroom sketch artists.

Some trials may last a few days or less, while others may last as long as several months. In general, most courtroom artists should be prepared to attend every part of the trial in order to record as much of it as possible.

Some jurisdictions allow courtroom sketch artists to sketch while the trial is taking place. These artists must be able to draw very quickly and be able to decide which scenes are worth sketching and which scenes aren’t. For instance, a courtroom artist won’t usually sketch a moment when there is a lull in courtroom activity. Instead, he will usually sketch more memorable scenes, such as particularly emotional witnesses or the jury foreman reading the verdict.

In some jurisdictions, such as the UK, a courtroom artist is not allowed to sketch during the trial itself. Instead, he must wait until court is recessed or adjourned and create his sketches from memory. Obviously, a courtroom sketch artist in this situation must have an excellent memory as well as speed.

The tools that a sketch artist uses are generally quite simply; usually, all that is necessary is a sketch pad and drawing implements of some kind. Depending on an artist’s preference, these can include graphite pencils, colored pencils, pastels, and chalk.
What Are the Necessary Skills for a Courtroom Sketch Art Career?

In addition to excellent drawing skills, a courtroom sketch artist should possess a number of other skills and personality traits. A courtroom sketch art career is not for everyone, and it’s certainly not for the faint of heart.

First of all, a courtroom sketch art career requires artists to quick thinking and equally quick with their hands. The majority of courtroom sketches are created within minutes. Artists who are unable to or uncomfortable with creating sketches in such a small time frame may want to consider another type of drawing career, such as portrait drawing.

Also, during criminal court trials, every grizzly detail of a crime is often displayed and discussed several times. A courtroom sketch artist should be prepared to hear disturbing and shocking details of extremely heinous crimes, including abuse, rape, and murder. Sketch artists who are easily disturbed or riled may not want to pursue a courtroom sketch art career.
Where is Courtroom Sketch Art Used?

The majority of courtroom sketches are typically printed in periodicals featuring coverage of the trials. Websites, and online magazines and news venues, might also feature courtroom sketch art. In the case of high profile cases, courtroom sketches might also be used as illustrations in books about the crimes or trials.

In a few cases, a courtroom sketch artist might also be able to sell their sketches to private buyers as well. Key players in the trial – including lawyers, judges, and jury members – may wish to purchase a piece of original art as a memento of a particularly memorable trial. Selling courtroom sketches of high profile trials can also be quite lucrative as well.
What Are the Necessary Education Requirements for a Courtroom Sketch Art Career?

A formal education is not always necessary for a successful courtroom sketch art career, but it can be very helpful. Most individuals pursuing a courtroom sketch art career will often find that a degree from an accredited art school can help them hone their skills and gain experience.

When pursuing an education for a courtroom sketch art career, students should earn drawing degrees. Some courses that may come in useful for this type of career may include portrait drawing, caricature drawing, and life drawing. All of these types of drawing help artists capture the human form.

What is the Average Salary of a Courtroom Sketch Artist?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, courtroom sketch artists fall under the category of fine artists. These art professionals made an average annual salary of $53,080 in 2010.

Predicting the salary of a courtroom sketch artist, however, can be somewhat difficult. In general, though, these types of artists are usually paid per piece of art they create. Obviously, faster and more talented artists will be able to command a higher wage in this industry. Also, artists that list in larger jurisdictions that frequently do not allow cameras in their courtrooms will also be able to make more money as well.

Anti-Stress Law

German Government May Say 'Nein' To After Work Emails
by Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson

Morning Edition

German Chancellor Angela Merkel uses a mobile phone during a meeting of the German federal parliament in Berlin, on Nov. 28, 2013. The country's labor minister supports a call that would prohibit employers from sending emails to employees after normal business hours.

All of us are familiar with the sound a smartphone makes when an email or text has arrived. Our somewhat Pavlovian response is to pick up the device, see who the message is from and read it.

In Germany, a growing number of these emails come from the boss contacting employees after work. That's not healthy, say experts on work-related stress, including psychologist Gerdamarie Schmitz in Berlin, who is feeling the technological encroachment herself.

"This horrible phone I have with me, and so I get emails," she says. "I check them because I can check them, and I get that What's App message from my clients. So of course there's also, after hours, a constant stress that has not been there before, absolutely."

And it also crosses a sacrosanct line in Germany between work and leisure, says Hanns Pauli, who is the health and safety expert for the Federation of German Trade Unions.

By law, every worker in Germany gets at least four weeks of vacation and works — on average — 35 hours a week, which proponents say actually improves productivity. But advances in technology and growing economic pressure are leading many German employers to ignore the cultural mandate for work-life balance.

"You sit there at the table with your computer all day long, you have very tight deadlines, you should contribute to the profit, and every day, every year, it's getting worse," he says.

Pauli says the resulting burnout — which leads to health problems and decreased productivity at work — has increased sharply in Germany over the past decade.

Psychological problems and pain linked to such stress were also cited by more than half of the German workers who applied for early retirement last year.

The worrying statistics have prompted German Labor Minister Andrea Nahles to call for an "anti-stress regulation" compelling companies to reduce stress in the workplace. It would also ban employers from contacting employees after hours, just as it's already forbidden to contact employees on vacation under German law.

Some companies, like Volkswagen and BMW, already do just that.

But Nahles' boss — Chancellor Angela Merkel — has put the brakes on any quick enactment of a new law forcing other German companies to follow suit.

In a September podcast, she criticized the proposed anti-stress law.

Merkel says the government's focus instead should be on investment, balancing budgets and decreasing bureaucracy to ensure Germany's economic future.

In an email — sent during business hours — Labor Ministry spokesman Christian Westhoff said that from the ministry's viewpoint, "the current state of knowledge is not enough to come up with requirements for employers. On this important issue, thoroughness takes precedence over speed."

Karl Largerfield: I Have a Famous Cat


“I have a famous cat,” said Mr. Lagerfeld, glancing over the cat-printed notepads offered to him and Choupette. (She has more than 46,000 fans on the Twitter account invented in her honor, turns up frequently in the pages of fashion magazines and has inspired a line of makeup by Shu Uemura.) Mr. Lagerfeld said he hoped the cat would become more famous than him. “Then I can disappear behind Choupette,” he said.

There’s no history. I don’t even have archives, myself. I keep nothing. What I like is to do — not the fact that I did. It doesn’t excite me at all. When people start to think that what they did in the past is perhaps even better than what they do now, they should stop. Lots of my colleagues, they have archives, they look at their dresses like they were Rembrandts! Please, forget about it.

Do you worry about not having enough ideas? I wouldn’t expect so.

No, no, no. I don’t believe in waiting for inspiration. The French say, l’appétit vient en mangeant, the ideas come when you work. I work a lot for the garbage can. I have huge bins next [to me], for whatever I do, 95 percent goes to the bin.

It’s like Einstein apparently said: 99 percent perspiration, 1 percent inspiration.
Continue reading the main story

He was very funny and very clever, even if my brain is not exactly his. He was pretty right. You know, Einstein had a huge sense of humor.

Do you have a good sense of humor?

I hope so.

Is there a place for humor in fashion?

I don’t think that most of the designers have a very quick sense of humor. They take themselves very seriously because they want to be taken as artists. I think we are artisans. It’s an applied art. There’s nothing bad about that. If you want to do art, then show it in a gallery. Photo

So you don’t consider yourself an artist?

No, no, no, no. I’m a designer, I do photos, I do books, I’m a publisher, but I don’t have the self-proclaimed label “artist.” I hate that. Very pretentious. If other people say it, it’s very flattering, but if you start to say it yourself, you better forget about it.

Speaking of photography: You shoot the Fendi campaigns, the Chanel campaigns, even some Dior Homme campaigns, and for magazines. Why? Is it a pleasure, or just a different type of work?

If it was not a pleasure, I wouldn’t do it. Second, it’s quite important. If you do only collections, you end up in an ivory tower. You finish the collection and you are isolated until the time to get to the next one. That would be very boring. It’s very bad and unhealthy to get isolated. Already I don’t walk in the street, so I have to do something, somewhere.

You don’t walk in the street because you’re too famous now? People stop you?

Exactly, all over the world. We live in the world of selfies.

Do you like selfies?

I don’t do selfies. But other people do, and they all want to do selfies with me. No, no, no. Thank God, Sébastien, my assistant, he’s mean to the people in the street, mean and rude. I’m a nice person.

Do you keep an eye on the work of other designers, your competitors?

Yes, I look at many things. I don’t see it like competition. I like when there are many people who do good things, because you work better if there is competition than if there are only third-rate people. Paris cannot be Paris only with one. But from me to you, there are very few who have, in terms of craftsmanship, the craftsmanship of high-quality couture. For me, the best — I won’t talk about Chanel, because they have the biggest operation, with 250 workers for the whole couture — is Dior and Givenchy. The others, I prefer not to comment. I am not a fashion journalist.

Have you begun to work on the haute fourrure?

It’s working in my mind, but now I have to get rid of the season of the ready-to-wear, so I have to do Fendi, then Chanel, then we have to do the cruise, then we have to do this. ...

Is it difficult to design for so many labels?

When I’m at Fendi, I don’t even remember what I am doing somewhere else, and if I am somewhere else, I forgot what I did here. What I do for Chanel never looks like Fendi. I have no personality. Perhaps I have three.

Do you foresee a time when you might stop?

No. I would die on the spot. Chanel died in the middle of a collection when she was in her nearly 90s. I have time! In fashion, you think about six months, six months, six months. Now it’s even three months, three months, three months. The world is different. There’s no faraway future, it’s no futuristic thing. Fashion is something people are supposed to consume immediately, not in 10 years.

Next Door Network

A virtual village green.

Ice Dams

My house is weeping.

A Cloudy Appearance or Divine Intervention


Colson Whitehead on The 'Loser Edit'

Do you think it’s working? Did you get away with it today?

We give ourselves loser edits and winner edits all the time, to clasp meaning onto experience. Sometimes you render both kinds of edits in the same day, maybe even the same afternoon, deleting certain scenes from your memory, fooling with the contrast, as reality presses on you and directs your perceptions. Pull it off, and maybe you’ll make it to bedtime. Why do you think they call it “Survivor”?

Splice and snip. The contradictory evidence falls to the cutting-room floor, and we assert order, shape a narrative, any narrative, out of the chaos. Whether you tend to give yourself a loser edit to feed that goblin part of your psyche or you fancy the winner’s edit for the camouflage and safety it provides, it’s better than having no arc at all. If we’re going down, let us at least be a protagonist, have a story line, not be just one of those miserable players in the background. A cameo’s stand-in. The loser edit, with all its savage cuts, is confirmation that you exist. The winner edit, even in its artifice, is a gesture toward optimism, the expectation of rewards waiting for that better self. Whenever he or she shows up.

Take the footage you need. Burn the rest.

Tuesday, March 03, 2015

Louise Rafkin

Confessions of a Pebble Thief
By Louise Rafkin

During my first year of therapy with Dr. Conger, I began what started as a random gesture and soon became a ritual. After each session, on the short, pebbly path from his home office to the street, I’d secretly pick up a small rock and pocket it.

The shape of the rock — big, small, oval, round — reflected something about what I felt about the session. The lexicon of meaning was based on intuition: I’d let my eyes scan and hit upon the “right” rock. If we’d talked about something unfinished I’d take an asymmetrical rock. If I’d had a breakthrough I’d pick a big rock. If it had been a quiet session I’d select a small, ordinary rock. A red rock denoted anger and a black rock despair.

Wind Farm

Deepwater Wind completes financing for Block Island wind farm

PROVIDENCE, R.I. — Deepwater Wind has tied up financing for what could be the first offshore wind farm in the United States.

The Providence-based developer announced on Monday that it has closed on more than $290 million in financing for its five-turbine demonstration wind farm planned in waters off Block Island. The money is coming from Societe Generale of Paris, France and KeyBank National Association, of Cleveland, Ohio.

The finance agreements come after Deepwater has secured all permits for the 30-megawatt project, clearing the way for construction to begin in Rhode Island in the coming weeks. Although manufacturers in France and Louisiana have started building the turbines and the steel jackets they will stand upon, work has yet to start at Deepwater's staging site in the Quonset Business Park.

The announcement is also notable because it follows news in January that the 130-turbine Cape Wind project in Massachusetts, which had been on track to be first in the water, had failed to meet a deadline to secure financing and had lost crucial power-purchase agreements with utilities National Grid and NStar. That project suffered another blow on Monday when its lease on port facilities in New Bedford fell through.

In contrast, financing has gone smoothly for the test project that Deepwater is set to build off Block Island. With only five turbines, it's much smaller than Cape Wind and, Deepwater CEO Jeffrey Grybowski said, that was key.

"As a company, we thought it was always important to start the industry in the U.S. with a small project," he said. "Everything is easier, especially the financing."

Grybowski said that the project is also a good financial bet because it will be located in waters set aside for offshore energy by the state and because Deepwater was selected in 2008 as Rhode Island's "preferred developer" of offshore wind. Those factors make it less risky as an investment, he said. The company is planning a 1,000-megawatt project in Rhode Island Sound after the Block Island Wind Farm is completed.

Deepwater is being backed by D.E. Shaw, an international investment firm with $36 billion in international investment as of March 1, and renewable energy company SunEdison. They are putting up more than $70 million in equity investment in the Block Island project, with more than 90 percent coming from D.E. Shaw, according to Grybowski. The financing from Societe Generale and KeyBank comes in addition to that money.

Societe Generale has invested in a number of offshore wind projects in the United Kingdom and Germany. "We at Societe Generale are proud to be a partner of Deepwater Wind, the U.S. leader in offshore wind power," Alexander Krolick, director of energy-project finance in the Americas at Societe Generale, said in a statement.

This is KeyBank's first investment in offshore wind. Andrew Redinger, of KeyBank, said, "We are pleased to provide financing for the first offshore wind project to be fully financed in the U.S."

Blaming the Victim

Blaming the victim must be a built in human thing to do but it is still outrageous.

Diana Krall Comes to Town


Diana Krall, at PPAC Wednesday, switches from jazz to pop
Jazz performer changes gears in new 'Wallflower' tour, with interpretations of ballads of '60s and '70s.

NEW YORK — Singer-pianist Diana Krall wants to make one thing clear about “Wallflower,” her new CD: It’s a pop album, not a jazz album.

The repertoire mostly includes pop ballads from the '60s and '70s, including The Mamas and the Papas’ “California Dreamin'"; The Eagles’ “Desperado” and Elton John’s “Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word.”

The title track is an obscure Bob Dylan song that Krall discovered on one of his “Bootleg Series” records. The newest song is a previously unreleased ballad by Paul McCartney, “If I Take You Home Tonight.”

Krall kicked off a 27-city U.S. tour last week in Boston. She'll perform tomorrow night at the Providence Performing Arts Center.

A conversation with Diana Krall:

Q. Why did you want to do a pop album?

A. I had a chance to work with David Foster, whom I’ve known for a long time. I felt that this was the right time and the right person to do this kind of record with. David has a jazz background, but he’s also a great pop producer and incredible accompanist, which I discovered more and more as I was working with him. … I really made it clear that I didn’t want to do a jazz record. … I wanted to do a pop record and keep the integrity of the original melody and chord changes.

Q. Do you feel a personal connection with these songs from the '60s and '70s?

A. I don’t think I could do things that I don’t find some connection to. It’s not like I’m pulling songs from another era that mean nothing to me. I sang pop music most of my life. I was a somewhat normal young person listening to pop music — Crowded House, Linda Ronstadt, Bryan Adams — and playing it. Elton John was always a hero of mine.

Q. What was it like working with Paul McCartney on his standards album, “Kisses on the Bottom”?

A. That whole time working with Paul was probably one of the greatest experiences in my life. He’s just an amazing, good person. … I was the band leader, piano player and accompanist, and I loved being in that role. Every day it was a joy to come into the studio and see Paul and [producer] Tommy LiPuma work together.

Paul had written some romantic ballads of his own to include on the record, but fortunately for me one song, ‘If I Take You Home Tonight,” did not make it on the record. I asked, “Paul, do you think it would be OK if I did the song on my record?” and he said sure. How exciting is it to do a new Paul McCartney song? It’s one of my favorite tracks.

Abraham Megerdichian Metal Miniatures

Come discover Metal Miniatures!, a charming collection of intricate miniatures located in the atrium walkway window boxes and handcrafted by talented metal artist Abraham Megerdichian (1923-1983).

From an elegant violin to an impressive set of trains, the delightful creations fashioned from solid blocks of metal are a testament to their maker's skill and humor.

The Megerdichian family is proud to share Abraham’s wonderful miniatures in museums around New England and loaned the collection for this display. “The miniatures made by my father are a tribute to the skill of a trained machinist combined with an artist’s eye and a generous man’s heart,” said his son, Robert Megerdichian.

Born in Franklin, MA to Armenian immigrants, Abraham lived and worked as a machinist for most of his life in Cambridge, MA. He often used his 20-minute lunch breaks to craft precious keepsakes as gifts for family and friends, including replicas of things that were special to kids – like his son Robert’s wagon. As his skills flourished, his creations became more complex, imaginative and humorous. Each of Abraham’s pieces is a unique and inspiring example of creativity and inventiveness.

Metal Miniatures! will be on display through April 27, so check them out on your next visit PROVIDENCE CHILDREN'S MUSEUM!

view here

Cirque Alfonse

Cirque Alfonse, a troupe of acrobats and musicians from Quebec, is performing Wednesday night at 7:30 at Roberts Hall Auditorium on the Providence campus. The troupe's acrobatic feats in "Timber!" are directly inspired by the natural raw materials of the forest and the equipment used on the farm as well as the exploits of the first North American lumberjacks, loggers and farmers. Tickets are $35, seniors $30, students/children $15. For more information on both events call (401) 456-8144 or online at ric.edu/pfa.

Elderly Anorexia


Another article

Eating habits and appetite control in the elderly: the anorexia of aging.
Donini LM1, Savina C, Cannella C.


Although a high prevalence of overweight is present in elderly people, the main concern in the elderly is the reported decline in food intake and the loss of the motivation to eat. This suggests the presence of problems associated with the regulation of energy balance and the control of food intake. A reduced energy intake causing body weight loss may be caused by social or physiological factors, or a combination of both. Poverty, loneliness, and social isolation are the predominant social factors that contribute to decreased food intake in the elderly. Depression, often associated with loss or deterioration of social networks, is a common psychological problem in the elderly and a significant cause of loss of appetite. The reduction in food intake may be due to the reduced drive to eat (hunger) resulting from a lower need state, or it arises because of more rapidly acting or more potent inhibitory (satiety) signals. The early satiation appears to be predominantly due to a decrease in adaptive relaxation of the stomach fundus resulting in early antral filling, while increased levels and effectiveness of cholecystokinin play a role in the anorexia of aging. The central feeding drive (both the opioid and the neuropeptide Y effects) appears to decline with age. Physical factors such as poor dentition and ill-fitting dentures or age-associated changes in taste and smell may influence food choice and limit the type and quantity of food eaten in older people. Common medical conditions in the elderly such as gastrointestinal disease, malabsorption syndromes, acute and chronic infections, and hypermetabolism often cause anorexia, micronutrient deficiencies, and increased energy and protein requirements. Furthermore, the elderly are major users of prescription medications, a number of which can cause malabsorption of nutrients, gastrointestinal symptoms, and loss of appetite. There is now good evidence that, although age-related reduction in energy intake is largely a physiologic effect of healthy aging, it may predispose to the harmful anorectic effects of psychological, social, and physical problems that become increasingly frequent with aging. Poor nutritional status has been implicated in the development and progression of chronic diseases commonly affecting the elderly. Protein-energy malnutrition is associated with impaired muscle function, decreased bone mass, immune dysfunction, anemia, reduced cognitive function, poor wound healing, delayed recovery from surgery, and ultimately increased morbidity and mortality. An increasing understanding of the factors that contribute to poor nutrition in the elderly should enable the development of appropriate preventive and treatment strategies and improve the health of older people.