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Showing posts from September, 2009

Life's Essentials

"You're just heading into your real busy time period in the next week or two, aren't you?" my mom asked me on the phone last night.

"Yes, everything really kicks in now," I replied.

"Doesn't leave you much time for yourself, does it?" she said.

I didn't need to think before saying, "No, but it's all stuff I like to do."

I may gnash my teeth and cry "Hack! I'm just a hack!" in those frustrated moments with my violin, but I keep practicing and going to rehearsals for multiple ensembles because the music wouldn't stop in my head anyway.

I may find myself exhausted and collapsing face down on my bed around 9:30pm at night, just wishing I could go to sleep right then, but I'll get up and wait patiently for my news scripts so I can go down to WRFA to record the morning news. There is a time slot that requires content and I must fill it with something.

On days where my mind is blank and the creative streak that occa…

Sunday Dinner - City Chicken

City chicken for Sunday dinner! My dad said that just about every wedding he went to growing up had this dish. This was back when veal was cheaper than chicken. City chicken is veal and pork that is breaded and cooked on a skewer/stick. We also had homegrown tomatoes with basil on top, potatoes, broccoli, and coleslaw with apples and cran-raisins.

Sacked Out

Matt chills out on the floor with our dogs.

A Wedding We Weren't Invited To

We didn't have to go to this couple's wedding but I felt compelled to take their picture because her dress is so pretty.

Wager Winery - September '09

The view from Wagner Winery. I think I take a picture from here every year when we come down for my mom's birthday. Seneca Lake is probably my favorite Finger Lake.

Shelling and Eating Peanuts to Cleanse the Palate

Tasting wine at Leidenfrost. We love their red wines. Plus the owner and his daughter have good taste in music. Something ska-ish playing right now.

Partial 90s Night Playlist

I had an initial play list for my first 90s night at Forte and then went off the cuff for the rest of the evening. I decided to take requests since the bar wasn't too full and I figured I may as well play stuff people wanted to hear. My original plan was to stick to the early 1990s, specifically 1993, just for difficulty sake. As I shared with Bartender/Reporter/Blogger/Fellow Lady GaGa Fan Nick Dean

Here's the play list:

My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult - Final Blindness
The Julia Hatfield Three - My Sister
Cranes - Jewel
Kate Bush - Eat The Music
Pet Shop Boys - Different Point of View
Suede - Animal Nitrate
Mighty Mighty Bosstones - Someday I Suppose
Cracker - Low
Catherine Wheel - Crank
Morphine - Buena
Ash - Uncle Pat
XTC - The Ballad of Peter Pumpkinhead
World Party - Way Down Now
The Sundays - Here's Where The Story Ends
Sugar - Believe What You're Saying

Len Barry jumped in at this point and played "Soda Jerk" by Buffalo Tom and I think a song by Pavement and The …

Everything Pumpkin Flavored

Last year, friends and friends of friends started a Facebook page dedicated to "Everything Pumpkin Flavored."

I didn't realize how crazy I was about pumpkin stuff until I joined that group.

Pumpkins rock!

I don't know if it's the spice used in most recipes, the texture, or the taste of pumpkins but I have this thing for pumpkin flavored stuff. Well, unless it's the pumpkin flavoring at Tim Horton's. That's the epitome of all things nasty when it comes to pumpkins.

Pumpkin Spice Lattes became a reason why I found myself stepping into Four-.. I mean StarBucks. Pumpkin Spice Lattes made with real pumpkin were the happy reason I rushed to Labyrinth Press Company last year. Pumpkin milkshakes at McDonald's had whole groups of people I knew frantically dashing off messages to each other of where these milkshakes could be found and if they were sold out. I even called a friend who worked in the McDonald's office to query WHAT HAD HAPPENED TO THE PUM…

The End

Mist clung to me on the first day of Autumn. The moist air still slightly smelled of the sea. I looked down and saw the stones that covered a make-shift parking lot near my office become the rocky beach near Lake Ontario at a Girl Scout Camp I went to as a kid. A calm, gray swath of water and sky spread out before me as I took careful aim before letting a smooth stone skip over the surface.

A gaggle of Canadian Geese heading south for the winter flew overhead, honking louder and louder. The honking seems to reach a feverish pitch until the birds begin to squeal and I'm suddenly lying flat on my back. Something has hit me with great force. I realize for a moment before slipping away that my daydream has caused me to walk into traffic, where a DPW truck has brought me to my end.

Author's Note: 2nd paragraph is fiction. Duh.

April & Simon's Wedding

April and Simon make their vows.

Wedding #6

Here we are all dressed up for wedding number six.

5 Years Later

Looking at the altar from the pew for this wedding. Five years ago, Matt and I stood up there and were married. Today is April and Simon's day!

Getting The Best of Myself

I have a habit of letting myself get easily frustrated. Everything could be absolutely fine, but I'll let one little thing work me into a complete tizzy until I'm a sulking mess. Most of my personal drama comes from this.

Tonight, the frustration started as I tried tidying up the house. I kept seeing a million things that probably could be taken care of but I couldn't tend to right at that moment because I had other stuff on my to-do list to accomplish. And when I came across something that had to be done that wasn't on that to-do list (putting dog's bed in washing machine because he had an accident), I let that get to me too.

Naturally, going into practicing violin with this attitude was grounds for FAIL. I dutifully popped the Broadway soundtrack of "The Producers" into the CD player, opened my book to the first in a list of songs I wanted to practice and hit play. My determination turned to confusion as I tried to figure out why my notes didn't…

Hats For Houses

Everywhere I look around I see houses being re-roofed. Old shingles are slid into yawning dumpsters below. Bright, new plywood sheeting stands stark next to older, more resilient sheeting from the last tear-off. Scaffolding is staggered around walls of houses and on the valleys of the roofs. Smart rows of new shingles shine in the early Autumn sun. The volume of work in the neighborhood whispers of "Hurry, hurry!" against wind, rain, and snow.

Career in Politics

I would guess that most people who read the title to this post aren't immediately filled with warm fuzzy feelings.

Politics, as a career, tends to get as much sympathy if not less than the field of law. People, perhaps innately, don't trust politicians and so by association tend to not trust the people who work for them.

A co-worker this morning made the observation that two people who are running for local office in our county have, for the most part, only had jobs "that involved a vote." He didn't say more than that, but his tone of voice implied that he didn't think much of this. I didn't say anything at the time because I could see that it wouldn't make me a lot of friends at work and, by nature, I'm very non-confrontational.

Still, it grated me that a person could be denigrated because they chose to follow a career they loved which just happened to be in politics. I have worked in that field. It can be unforgiving and very rewarding.

I wo…

Thee Audience at Mojo's

Well look at that. We made it to Mojos to hear a little bit of Thee Audience. Last band officially on the schedule for us for Local Music Showcase. I lasted for about 3-4 songs before heading back to Forte. It was totally packed at Mojo's and I kept getting smooshed into the wall by guys walking by.

John Merino at Forte

John Merino at Forte. Of course we came back here. Maybe a little acoustic action to end the evening?

This Band Is Tight!

Hot Stenographer at the Reg Studio Theatre. We may make it to one other show after this but auditory overload is imminent. But it's so much fun!

Settling In At Forte For Some Music

Katie Elfman at Forte. They have Southern Tier Harvest on tap! First beer of the evening. We are here to hear Cale Hawkins and Tiny B. After that we head to the Reg Studio Theatre for Hot Stenographer.

Feeling Old at Eustice

Eustice at the Ice Arena patio. A little harder sounding band than we usually listen to but our friend's son is in the band. Yeah, we are double the age of most of the kids in the audience for this one.

Disco Labrador - LMS '09

Disco Labradors at Suburban Blend doing a song based off of something by Django Reinhardt. It's the Local Music Showcase in downtown Jamestown! This is the second time I had seen this band. The first was a year ago in the same location for LMS '08.

Date Night Moves to Olean

Moo. I like my meat rare. Date night in Olean. We went to the Beef & Barrel for dinner since it had been a few years since we'd last been there. It was a nice night out, because as much as I love all our friends, it was relaxing to just eat dinner and not see anyone we knew. Sometimes you have to get away, even if just for a few hours.

10 Things About Autumn

Similar to her 10 Things to Do this Summer post, Mary Kunz Goldman has offered up 11 things she's looking forward to this Fall. I naturally have to share my own list of things I'm looking forward to and hope to do over the next few months:

1. Enjoying pumpkin everything. Last year, a friend of a friend started an "Everything Pumpkin Flavored" group on Facebook. There was much hair pulling and gnashing of teeth over where to get pumpkin milkshakes at that time. This year, we were all quite relieved to know that September 1st seemed to be the magical day that pumpkin milkshakes were available at McDonald's and pumpkin spice lattes were available at Starbucks.

2. Fall music. I like to dust off and search out certain artists during the Fall like The Replacements, Sugar, Cranes, Tom Petty, Morrissey, Gin Blossoms, and other assorted artists that I discovered during the Fall months of my junior and senior years of high school.

3. Lynn & Tiny B's Wedding. This wil…

Local Music Showcase 2009

The 6th Annual Chautauqua Region Word Local Music Showcase is this Saturday, September 12th.

The evening will feature 40 local music acts performing at eleven different venues around downtown Jamestown between 6pm and 2am.

For information about some of the bands playing, check out the latest issue of the Word.

For a quick list of tomorrow night's schedule, simply visit

Wrist bands are $10 and can be purchased at each venue. They give you admission to all the venues all evening.

Most importantly, proceeds benefit the Infinity Performing Arts Program.

WRFA Celebrates 5 Years

WRFA-LP is celebrating its 5th year of being on the air in Jamestown today. Station Manager Dennis Drew is celebrating by being live on the air under the Reg Lenna Studio marquee on East Third Street in downtown Jamestown. He's pictured here with Mayor Teresi, who presented a proclamation declaring it "WRFA Day" in the city.

I love that I've been a part of this station from just about the very beginning. In April 2004, when I saw an article about the Arts Council wanting to start a community radio station, I went in and asked how I could help. At those beginning meetings, we talked about content, looked over sources of free radio content, talked about fundraising, and laughed. One of my favorite moments is when Steve Shulman and Dennis Drew started joking about having a morning show like feature called "Snooze Button" where we could jolt listeners awake every nine minutes with some loud music before going back to something more soothing. It's one i…

Reaction to Catcher - The Others

I guess part of what makes Catcher In The Rye a novel that has stuck with people over the years is its ability to get people to talk.

I've come across people over the past few days that have very strong feelings about the book, or its characters. Last night, a fellow I know but who is usually reserved caught me on my way to record the news and said, "So you didn't like Catcher In The Rye?"

I paused, "Well, it's more I didn't care for the main character."

"I love that book. I first read it my sophomore year and have read it every year since. There's something different I get each time for it. My opinions toward Holden have changed over the years too. When I first read the book, he was older than me. And as I got to that age, it made sense. Now, when I read it I have pity for him. I can see if people were just reading it now, as adults, how he might be unlikeable."

He snubbed out the end of his cigarette as I turned the key in the doo…


I started and finished Catcher In The Rye this past Monday. Somehow, I had made it through my years of schooling without ever having to read that book. A friend who is an English teacher was aghast when she learned I had successfully avoided the novel this long.

Did I like the novel? It wasn't terrible. I can't say I related to Holden Caulfield, but he did remind me of people I know. Despite time, the book somewhat holds up. Had I read this in high school, I probably would have tossed into the same pile as A Separate Peace. I get it, but I found it tedious. I didn't find the characters "likeable." It's hard to not want to smack them upside the head and tell them to sort it out. Of course, not playing by the game is part of the problem for Holden.

Outside the pages, I have friends like this. Everyone does. They were like that in high school, and many haven't changed. It can be frustrating to sit by and not know what to say, or if you should say…