The interior decor of Dirty Frank's is bright, hip and fun,
At the front of the dining room is a karaoke stage, which suited our purpose perfectly,
...as did the super-friendly and helpful staff and the delicious food, which I'll get to down the line.
The event was organized by Miguel Lopez, the YourBookMyBook Media Production Coordinator,
(Here's the URL for my interview in case anybody missed it but has a hankering to see it:)
Miguel then invited me to - well, I actually sort of asked him if I could - be the MC for the Authors and Winners event.
As the event was scheduled to begin at 11:00 am I arrived at Dirty Frank's at 10:30 with part of my help-and-support crew,
...as, along with speaking, the authors were also there to sign and sell copies of their books.
...attempting between authors to entertain the audience with a little comedy - my first attempt at stand-up in many decades - on the trials and tribulations of the writing life,
...and, with Miguel, keeping things moving along.
Each author had a fifteen-minute slot in which to speak and answer questions.
I was amazed at what captivating speakers these authors were, each one with with a compelling story,
After the last author spoke there was socializing and discussion,
It was an experience of great food for the body and the soul.
As a prologue to this post I would like to mention that my husband is a retired Army Lieutenant Colonel,
...and I served as a Department of the Army Civilian in Aschaffenburg, Germany, where I worked with the troops at Graves Kaserne in a morale support job that could be filled by either a soldier or a DAC, as we were called.
I bring all that up only in case anyone should question my patriotic pedigree, try to tell me the meaning of the word "patriotism," or suggest that I might not be someone who loves my country and has great respect - as well as affection - on a personal level for those who've served in the military or national service.
Those who oppose the athletes' gesture claim that kneeling during the National Anthem is unpatriotic and disrespectful to our flag and to those who've served in the military, though as for the anti-military accusation I personally don't get the connection, since the players have made it very clear that the point of taking a knee is to call attention to the problem of racism and have never indicated in any way that this was meant to disparage our troops.
Nor, for that matter, do I see why singing our National Anthem on one knee - or at half one's standing height - should be considered unpatriotic. After all, it is considered patriotic to fly our flag at half mast during periods of national mourning.
Nor is it unpatriotic to fly the U.S. flag upside down, as flying the flag upside down is a signal of dire distress.
We should all be singing the national anthem standing on our heads.
Helloooo...Donald Trump? Anybody home?
Three million Americans are stranded in Puerto Rico, existing in devastation, with no electricity, no running water, no power grid at all, no structures, no shelter, no transportation, no hospitals, running out of food and water, hungry, injured, desperate, helpless...people are dying, children, old people... and all you can do is pat yourself on the back and waste your time sending out stupid tweets about the NFL? And stupid dangerous tweets to Kim Jon Un that could get us all killed? And, worst of all in this case, stupid, cruel heartless, insulting tweets to the suffering Puerto Ricans?
Or do you just revel in behaving in ways that are beneath contempt?
But you're the President, for crying out loud, you're supposed to be doing something about the crisis in Puerto Rico. But the fact is, you don't have a clue about what to do, which is why all you can do is run your tweetin' mouth!
Okay, you've made it clear that you don't know or don't care how to take command in the face of the humanitarian crisis that is happening on your watch in Puerto Rico. I do. Listen:
1. Listen to Hillary Clinton.
Who isn't our President, but who if she was, wouldn't have us on the brink of nuclear war with North Korea, wouldn't be frittering her time away complaining about football players - well, there wouldn't even be the NFL situation if Hillary were President - and who knows what needs to be done right now for Puerto Rico:
Get it, Donald? Send the Navy! Now!
2. Along with sending the Navy, follow the example of the American medical aid group Heart To Heart International,
Heart To Heart has rounded up cruise ships and helicopters to transport medical staff and supplies to Puerto Rico, as posted on the Heart To Heart home page:
"A large helicopter has been arranged to fly our team and all our emergency gear to San Juan, Puerto Rico on Sunday morning (that was last Sunday morning). The cruise line, Royal Caribbean, has graciously offered to transport another medical team along with a large amount of emergency medical supplies to Puerto Rico. “The Adventure of the Seas” will depart Fort Lauderdale on Monday (yesterday), delivering our team to San Juan on Wednesday. Thanks to Linda Allen, our cruise consultant, for opening the door to this wonderful gift of transportation."
Donald Trump, you could do that, too! I mean, you are President of the United States! You could put out a call - immediately! right now! To every cruise ship in the Caribbean! Create a "Caribbean Navy" to deliver volunteers, food, and aid to Puerto Rico. And while you're at it you could send your own yachts, too.
As for the rest of us Americans, we haven't the power to send the Navy, appropriate cruise ships, or go there ourselves to help. But what we can do is make a donation to Heart To Heart International, http://www.hearttoheart.org/
At least we can do something.
Over the course of the 20 years I've been teaching piano my student recitals have been rather
For my first recital in 1998,
I prevailed upon the good nature a fellow piano teacher to allow us to crash his students' recital
at Grave Recital Hall (see post from 2/23/2017) and perform with them,
After that first recital we proceeded to move over the years from venue to venue, performing at
my home or my students' homes,
...with me beefing up the program by having my own children perform,
..along with my piano students,
As my studio grew our recitals moved from homes to a school auditorium,
...which will be our final, permanent new recital home,
But besides having a wonderful performance venue, Graves is also home to a vast piano and
organ dealership, and is, in truth, the place to go in Central Ohio to buy a quality piano or organ.
Which also makes Graves the place to go to look at pianos and organs of all kinds, which is part of the fun of having a recital there:
There are rooms and rooms full of beautiful pianos and organs of all kinds for sale or show,
...interesting, unusual pianos of every style and color,
...and behind the showrooms, a whole back warehouse full of more pianos.
One can't help leaving the place pondering the instrument as an art form,
This past Thursday, September 21, my piano students performed their Fall Recital,
...and oh, how sweet the post-recital relief that follows, the upbeat feeling that we pulled it off - which indeed, we did, Gott sei Dank,
...to the advanced,
...to the most advanced, who whipped through their ragtime pieces,
...to those of us most advanced in piano years and experience,
And so beautifully performed pieces at whatever our skill level is what we aim for,
...up until that last rehearsal-room practice,
Then, when it's all over,
This last-ditch effort to wipe out the Affordable Care Act no matter the cost in lives and money has been such an under-cover operation, such a hand-is-quicker-than-the-eye move conceived in haste and led by the two senators who get to have their name on the bill,
...that no one had even heard about the Graham-Cassidy health care bill until a few days ago.
This is doubtless not what Graham and Cassidy would have wished. They doubtless would have wished, rather, that no one at all had heard about their bill,
Quickly because, for some reason that I don't claim to understand, if the bill is voted on by September 30 it will need only fifty Senate votes to pass, but after that date it will need sixty votes.
And sixty votes for this ugly thing ain't gonna happen nohow.
But fifty votes might well happen, even though:
- The Congressional Budget Office hasn't had enough time to give the bill a score.
- The bill has received no Senate hearings.
- The cutback in Medicare expansion, federal subsidies and other cutbacks and the switch to state-by-state block grants will cause 15 million or more people will lose their heath care.
- AARP, The American Medical Association, The American Hospital Association, The American Pediatric Association, The American Cancer Society, and every other medical association in this country have come out against Graham-Cassidy.
- a dozen governors, six of them Republicans, have come out against Graham-Cassidy,
And just as a nasty little touch, under Graham-Cassidy, the states that have successfully expanded insurance coverage the Affordable Care Act will be punished by having healthcare funds cut while the states that refused Obamacare Medicaid expansion will be rewarded with and increase in funding.
Under Graham-Cassidy 34 states will their insurance funding cut by billions, including the eight Red states that implemented the Obamacare Medicaid expansion.
The attitude towards Graham-Cassidy among Senate Republicans appears to be, "Uh, well, uh, yeah, we don't really understand it, it doesn't look great, or anything, but, meh, we'll vote for it anyway because, like, you know, we promised our base we'd do something to get Obama's name off healthcare."
Even if it means thousands among their base would die under Graham-Cassidy from an inability to afford necessary healthcare.
...the Graham-Cassidy Apocalypse will do the job.
FEED YOUR BODY AND MIND!
I will be MC-ing the Your Book My Book Authors & Wiɇnṋers Open Mic/Book Signing at Dirty Frank's, 2836 W. Broad St, Columbus, OH, on September 24, 2017 from 11am - 1pm.
Come meet the local authors and have some great food!
The Columbus Landmarks Foundation, an organization of historians and local residents that promotes the preservation of historic Columbus neighborhoods and structures, is sponsoring a series of free walking tours called Culture Walks through old historic city neighborhoods for the purpose of encouraging the re-discovery and revitalization of these once-vibrant areas which have undergone the changes and sometimes ravages of time.
This past Saturday Tom and I did the first of these walks, the King-Lincoln Culture Walk.
King-Lincoln, also known as (though I didn't know this before the walk) Bronzeville, is a historically African-American neighborhood just east of downtown that was once the heart of black culture and community in Columbus.
The walk began on Long Street at the Lincoln Theater, once the only theater in Columbus that allowed blacks entrance,
Before the walk began we were given lectures on the area's history by several local historic preservationists,
After their lectures the preservationists led us on the Culture Walk,
...along which we passed some beautiful old restored homes,
...to our first stop, the Shiloh Baptist Church at the corner of Hamilton and Mt Vernon Avenue,
...dating back to its ancestor congregations before the Civil War, among which there was a split when it was decided that this church would be a slave-free church, meaning that as a condition for joining the church, any black former slave-owners who moved up to Columbus from the South would be required to buy back the slaves they'd sold and give them their freedom.
This building, we learned, started out as a hospital, then became the Hotel St. Clair, which in the days of segregation was the premier Columbus hotel for people of color and housed celebrities, entertainers, and musicians, as well as people who wanted to spend an evening in a fine hotel. An elderly woman in the group told us that she spent her honeymoon in the Hotel St. Clair. The price was $5 a night.
This landmark building was purchased last year by a local entrepreneur who has renovated it into apartments.
We then walked back to Mt. Vernon Avenue and continued our walk,
Mt. Vernon Avenue.
Along the way we passed The soon-to-open Container Project, which is to be an outdoor theater and concessions stand made of shipping containers.
Our next stop was the A Cut Above The Rest barbershop,
...who talked to us about his work and the history of the beautiful murals that adorn the walls of his shop.
We continued up Mt. Vernon Avenue past 22nd Street and Ohio Avenue then made a right onto Champion Avenue and walked to our next stop, Poindexter Village.
Built in 1940, Poindexter Village was the nation's first public housing complex and was for decades a thriving African-American community nicknamed "The Blackberry Patch."
From Champion Avenue we turned the corner that brought us back to Long Street,
...which brought us to our last stop,
...a recently renovated and still thriving commercial building built in the 1920's by two black entrepreneurs.
Our tour was then over so we continued down Long Street until we arrived at the Lincoln Theater,
Come feed your body and mind!
It's true that these are times of great trial, that every day in our country seems like just another daily episode of "The Donald Trump Theater of the Absurd, Dangerous, and Cruel,"
But if there's one bright side amidst the gloom, it's that from these inauspicious times has arisen in our country a veritable Golden Age of Political Satire, nor should this be surprising; for when in this country,
...have comedians been gifted with such a mother lode of material?
And, in truth, our comedians help us through times such as these.
I've more recently discovered the cheering effects of another gem of a musical political satirist who's come into his own with the rise of Trump:
Randy Rainbow - that's his real name (his father was a musician named Gerry Rainbow) - is a YouTube comedian, actor, singer and writer who makes the most hilarious videos, usually with himself starring as a newscaster with a gay persona who breaks into song - in the clearest, smoothest, most golden-voiced tenor - while covering the Trump White House.
In fact, why Randy Rainbow is singing on Youtube instead of Broadway is a mystery; but it's our gain, because his parodies of Broadway and pop tunes are not only hilarious, but smart, sharp and hit their target dead-center.
There are dozens of Randy Rainbow videos, but here are the links to a few of them:
So if you need a good laugh to get you through these times, go ahead and check out Randy Rainbow with the warning that after one video you may become immediately hooked. Still, if you do that's okay - there are plenty more of his terrifically funny videos to be seen on Youtube.
...gathered to together to help him move from his old space in Gahanna,
But that move was actually a good year and a half ago, on March 12, 2016, and this past Saturday there was a re-convening of some of the old members of the old Awesome-Friend Moving Crew with one new member:
...to once again help Tommy leave the old place,
Moving day started early, around 8 am, when Tommy arrived in our driveway with a good-sized U-Haul to pick up some things that Tom and I, in proper parental mode, had been storing.
Several hours later when the truck was all packed up,
...the guys headed over to the new apartment to unload while I stayed behind at the old apartment,
Then it was time for a lunch break.
For lunch those of the crew who didn't have to leave after the first shift headed over to an up-and-coming downtown Columbus neighborhood called Olde Towne East,
...where there are gardens planted along the sidewalk,
...where the decor was awesome,
...the food was very good,
...but the service was the pits. Even though the restaurant was practically empty we waited well over an hour and a half for our pizza to arrive. Which was probably why the restaurant was empty on a Saturday afternoon.
By the time we finished lunch - which we hadn't planned on taking so long - it was late afternoon, but we still had the the second half of the job to tackle, that is, now moving Emily's possessions (Emily, by the dictates of Providence, had to work this Saturday),
...to the new apartment.
Tommy and Emily's new apartment is in a Brewery District complex called Brewer's Yard,
...had arrived to join the moving crew,
By 7 pm the most of the crew had gone home and by 7:30 Tom and I were likewise ready to call it a day. So we did.
We arrived home dog-tired, finally understanding what was meant by a hard day's night.
I will be hosting the Your Book My Book Authors & Wiɇnṋers Open Mic/Book Signing at Dirty Frank's, 2836 W. Broad St, Columbus, OH, on September 24, 2017 from 11am - 1pm
Early this morning after waking up, turning on my mind and scrolling down my mental calendar to find nothing of particular note, only the routine agenda of Monday stuff - yoga class, housework, writing,
...teaching, eating breakfast, lunch and dinner - I then turned on my computer and began scrolling down my Facebook page until I came across a post from my niece-in-law, Suzie.
Suzie had posted this striking photograph above the caption "The Falling Man":
As is my habit (and I suspect not mine alone) I headed straight for the picture without reading the script that went with the picture. I was captivated by the image.
A whimsical bit of trompe l'oeil art photography, I thought, and I positioned the pointer-arrow over the "Like" icon below the post.
Then I glanced at the quote below the photograph:
Do you remember this photograph? In the United States, people have taken pains to banish it from the record of September 11, 2001. The story behind it, though, and the search for the man pictured in it, are our most intimate connection to the horror of that day.
I was immediately hit with what day this is and with the sickly realization of what it was that this photograph - no flight of an artist's fancy - had captured. I had a vague memory of having seen this picture when it was published a few days after September 11 sixteen years ago.
I opened the link accompanying the picture and was brought to an article published in Esquire called "The Falling Man." The article chronicled the capturing of this photograph, the shock it generated world-wide, its immediate disappearance and the efforts to learn the identity of the man falling through the air from the top of the burning North Tower, a horrifically beautiful backdrop for a man fast descending to his death.
The article covers an aspect of the death and destruction of that day that was not greatly chronicled because it was too terrible for people to absorb: that among the almost 3,000 souls who died that day, it's likely that one in six jumped to their death from one of the burning Twin Towers.
Later this morning I watched on television the memorial ceremony at the Pentagon honoring the 9/11 first-responders and mourning the lives lost in the terrorist attacks on that day. I recalled what I was doing when I head the heart-stopping news that planes had crashed into the first Tower then the second: I was finishing up my packing for a plane trip later in the day to visit my sister in San Francisco.
It's true that the years go by and the space of time threatens - for those of us who weren't there or who didn't lose one close to their heart - to dull our memory of Septemeber 11, 2001. But I believe, as I've always believed, that September 11 should be for all Americans a day, not of patriotic rally or celebration of our undeniable strength, power and military superiority on this planet, but rather a day of somber national reflection, remembrance, and of pondering of the conflict and bloodshed that followed from that day of terror and grief and continues to this day with no end in sight.
Here's the link to "The Falling Man":
Take 15 minutes to read it. And in contemplating the images, the sorrow and the never-ending questions this piece raises of a day 16 years ago that started out so normally for the world and has changed it so immeasurably since, you will have paid, as well as you can, this day and all those who lost their lives to it their due.
by Patti Liszkay
Buy it on Amazon:
by Patti Liszkay
Buy it on Amazon:
"Equal And Opposite Reactions"
by Patti Liszkay
Buy it on Amazon:
The Book Loft
of German Village,
Or check it out at the Columbus Metropolitan Library
I am a traveler just visiting this planet and reporting various and sundry observations,
hopefully of interest to my fellow travelers.