VSO Season opener, September 12, 2009

  Virginia Symphony Orchestra season opening night at Chrysler Hall, Norfolk, Virginia. 

 Joanne Falletta, Conductor.

The Orchestra was wonderful, as always.  {I am a fan, not a critic}  Ms. Falletta and the Orchestra start out the season by playing the “Star Spangled Banner”.  She conducts the audience in a sing along.  That has been the routine I have observed for the last 12 years.

VSO Opening Night, September 12, 2009

VSO Opening Night, September 12, 2009

  The Virginia Symphony Orchestra is a  lynch-pin to the Arts in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia.
   As a result of the economic issues at this time, the Orchestra’s “Classics at Chrysler” series is limited to 8 performances instead of the normal 10 performances. 

 The program:
          STRAVINSKY – Feu d’artifice (Fireworks), op.4     Short piece.  Complex and lots of percussion.  *This piece was a prelude to Stravinsky’s famous ballets: Firebird, Petrouchka, and The Rite of Spring.*
          BEETHOVEN – “Emperpor”  Concerto No. 5 inE-flat major for Piano and Orchestra, op. 73  Benedetto Lupo, pianist   *Beethoven’s last concerto.  The middle movement is just beautiful.*
          SHOSTAKOVICH – Symphony No. 5 in D minor, Op. 47    Intense.  *Controversy surrounds Shostakovich and his body of work, regarding his relationship to Stalin and Stalin’s domination of the Arts (and country) during Stalin’s EMPERORSHIP of the Soviet Union.*

Pianist, Benedetto Lupo

Pianist, Benedetto Lupo

Benedetto Lupo, the soloist for the evening.  Can’t say it better than the program notes:  “The critics description: “exceptionally fine pianist… who has a remarkably fine touch and beautiful
tone control” (Oregonian).  ….”meticulous technique with romantic sensitivity” (Birminghom News).”               Sensitive touch and really fast fingers.

Happy to have the music season resume!






My Newest Project

I have finished, for the most part, my first website.  A one page website.  For the non-webmaster, this is an accomplishment.  I am learning which webhosts I DO NOT want to use again.  This is important.  I have uploaded and posted to youtube.  I have my own channel (nothing on it, or in it).  I have modified the website builder template (boy was that a steep learning curve- still with minimum skills).  I have ‘chatted’ with the webhost provider’s tech support in India about 5 times today.

Street Musician, Montreal, Canada 2008

Street Musician, Montreal, Canada 2008








  Here is my video I uploaded…  A street musician, cellist, that I filmed in Vienna, Austria – in July 2008.  Fantastic accoustics where he chose to play.  Vaulted ceilings, like a cathedral.  I have had the pleasure of listening to a couple of performances in cathedrals.  The vaulted ceilings add an amazing depth to the sound.

Street Musician, Vienna, Austria, July 2008

Street Musician, Vienna, Austria, July 2008




Vaulted ceiling

Vaulted ceiling









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I do not know if the above will turn out to be an embedded video or you have to click thru on the blue.  Part of the text, that is.

Also, my newest website:  http://thisisagoodidea.info

Gotta go… it’s 3:50 am

Bob Dylan vs New Jersey cops

I am running this post as a companion to my post on the Boston incident regarding Dr. Henry Gates and the Boston police.
    I still think that it is REALLY important how you talk to the police.  It can be the difference between a warning and a ticket; OR, worse, an arrest with a trip to the police station.

The incident:

Scruffy looking white guy wandering around a minority neighborhood…     …THAT comes under profiling…  which helps police make decisions. 

Suspect has one of the most recognizable names and face on the planet; admittedly, the face IS getting older…     

Still, the officers did not know him from John Brown.  The difference here, is, Dylan was cool about it.  No name calling, no confrontation, no “DON’T you know who I AM”?!?!? 

Attitude makes the difference.  

  I go back to the Southfield, Michigan Police Chief’s comments, from my previous blog post:  “keep your focus on the incident.  What happened?  How was it handled?  What are the lessons learned?  Will there be a need for further training?”

NPR\’s take on the Bob Dylan incident

……And, Don’t you know, …..there will be a song out of this from Mr. Dylan.

Training ~to avoid problems

Guest on PBS's Newshour program

Guest on PBS's Newshour program


Communication problems continue in America.

They escalate into other problems.  The arrest of the Harvard professor is one of those problems.  Is it all about Race?   About ‘who’s in charge here?’  About ‘ruffled feelings?’  About ‘who is supposed to be the ‘Adult’ in the situation?  Misunderstandings gone bad?  If it was between two White people, two Af-Am’s, two Asians or two matched anyones, would the controversy go this far? 

The Chief focuses on the issue at hand, not ‘society’s’ issues.  It is always about how the situation is handled.  Which path gets taken depends on training.   Flaring emotions are a powerful force.  The focus needs to stay on  solving the situation at hand to avoid escalation.  However, it does get down to who is the ‘professional’ in the situation. 

Ray Suarez, of PBS, interviews Joseph Thomas, Jr., Chief, Southfield Police Department, Southfield, Michigan, July 23, 2009 on PBS’s Newshour.

The Chief says “you can talk yourself into a ticket or, worse, getting arrested with a trip to jail.” 

I say:  “You have to watch how you talk to an officer of the law.” (no matter what color YOU are or THEY are – even if your colors match)   In addition, how do you talk to an officer on YOUR property????   Still, Probably, very carefully.

The Chief says: “Training is the key.”   For everyone.  Continuing Education.  Things change.  Society changes.  Everyone needs to update their training.   Continuously.

Read the transcript at NPR:  http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/social_issues/july-dec09/gates_07-23.html

The Chief is a really smart guy.

Puppet Contest


Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson                           CBS television

The puppet popularity contest continues.    Dateline: July 23, 2009

Puppet Popularity Contest as of July 23, 2009

Puppet Popularity Contest as of July 23, 2009Close up - what the hell is that puppet 3rd from right????

Craig talking about puppet contest

Craig talking about puppet contest

Putting hat on Clam puppet

Putting hat on Clam puppet

Clam puppet with hat

Clam puppet with hat

Clam puppet added to contest
Puppet Contest:
15136     Pig puppet
  7236     Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
   2250     Penguin
      986      ??????
       989     Shark  -beating out whatever the hell is in 4th slot
          20     Alligator
     Off the chart  Clam puppet  (happy as???????  /bad joke)                
Craig scintillates as Puppet Master……

What is YOUR geek quotient ???

MINE is ‘up there’.  However, The Geek Squad has nothing to worry about.

Returned from a trip to Florida Tuesday night, 11:30 pm, Computer DOES NOT turn on…      Nancy to Nancy:  it’s late – try it in the morning….   AM – still does not turn on – it trys to – – – –

Calls for help…  Thanks to Rich Benet, IT guy @ VPAR (my Realtor association), I am able to hone in on the problems…….         Replaced power source, installed new 512 RAM card {512 is ONLY option for OLD computer} (put older 512 card in 2nd slot – if it is not DEAD, will add to short term memory [need some of that myself]).  Also, replaced the power cord (guy @ Best Buy suggestion – said ‘sounds dumb, but they go bad as well’).

!!!!!! IT WORKS !!!!!!   I am totally proud of myself.  >>>>Yeah, well, I did ‘piss away’ (??? did I say that ????) the whole day solving that problem.<<<<  One trip to VPAR, two trips to Best Buy -One more trip to BB to return the ‘Battery Backup Power Strip’ the salesman talked me into purchasing-   Multiple opening and closing of the tower case – disassembling the wires – repluging in, in another location to test if the electrical outlet & power cord @ my desk was the culprit –  Replacing the power source was scary /as it did not look ‘just like’ the old one/ all those wires (and they are a different color w/different looking sockets – but the business end is the same)       ??? will I get all of the things ??? (cd/dvd drives, motherboard, memory device sockets, & one or two other things..) plugged in correctly {if not, have to go back in to recheck – OR ‘throw in the towel’ & take an additional trip to see Rich}    

HOWEVER——-  YEP,   MY ‘GEEK QUOTIENT’ is pretty ‘up there’.  My desktop computer is WORKING !!! again  >>>>>>>>>No having to resort to the laptop… have yet to install the printer software and have not figured out/taken the time/ how to set up the wireless access to the printer to same laptop…..<<<<<<<<<

I am able to make this post, yea !!!!

Inside of computer before repair

Inside of computer before repair


In garage, cleaning out the dust bunnies

In garage, cleaning out the dust bunnies

Pix to map how wires are supposed to be hooked up               


Cord tangle

Cord tangle

The Computer & Me - in that space    (to install component wires)

The Computer & Me - in that space (to install component wires)

Dynex - new power source, looks like a medusa; two RAM cards now; adaptor for motherboard cord to power source

Dynex - new power source, looks like a medusa; two RAM cards now; adaptor for motherboard cord to power source


TIME CONSUMING  — that’s why repair people get paid

And, taking things apart satisfies curosity in people like me.

Craig Ferguson is the funniest guy on late TV

If you’re up in the late hours, or can think to turn on the recorder, gotta watch Craig Ferguson !!!!!

Invisible friend… Puppets… Facial expressions …. Characters ….                                            The Accent …..

Tonight (July 7, 2009) Craig gave a moving tribute to Michael Jackson… must see when it comes on Youtube …   >you might find it on the CBS website<

Usually has two guests…. Most are pretty good…. Larry David was on recently -promoting his movie ‘Whatever Works’ – I thought Larry David bombed


Where have you been Nancy???? Well, I DON’T know )))) Ferguson has been on LLS since 2005… i thought he got there SIX months ago++++ Funniest guy on television – making me lose sleep.


Doesn’t get any respect from CBS – a quick perusal of their website – – – NO Craig on the front page _ have to go to a ‘drop down menu’ to find info                                                          (- impressive  ~ uh, the accomplishments, not the way you have to look all over the place to find CF )


Good Day in America

Great Day in America