Who would’ve thought of me as some type of music expert? Definitely not anybody who knows me! I’ve been planning this blog for a little while and the lyrics immediately came to my mind as the headline. (Of course, I’ve never heard of Five Man Electrical Band. They sang Signs in 1971.)
It’s actually pretty funny, considering the last post’s headline was a takeoff of Simon & Garfunkel’s Mrs. Robinson. The lyric goes “Where have you gone, Joe DiMaggio?” but I used somebody else’s name.
So signs. A fun post before vacation.
Philadelphia is the birthplace of our country. Where free speech was instituted. Maybe that’s why it’s known for some unusual ones.
I live in a high-rise so I found no need to put any up but by far, the most popular type is the one that tells delivery drivers to take their packages somewhere else.
I don’t know why people would order something and not be home to receive it. That means the driver has to stop, fill out a card, and delay everyone else’s packages. Why not just ask that it be delivered somewhere else?
While some signs are simple, I can’t figure what all these are about.
I’m not exactly sure about this one either, but I do know it’s not meant for me.
The people living here are apparently very generous — with choices — but only for drivers who press hard enough to ring the bell and knock loudly on the door, and then find out nobody is home. If that’s the case, the driver gets to toss the package over their back gate! Like tossing packages never happens.
The people who live below also offer choices. They start out nicely by writing “please” and then letting the driver choose which of two addresses they’d prefer to make their delivery! But by looking at the sign, I’d guess they didn’t even plan to be home. At least that information would save the driver from pressing hard enough to ring the bell and knocking loudly on the door! Of course, they probably expect somebody to be home at the address the driver chooses. Otherwise, it may mean a third stop. If that’s the case, I’d hope the driver gets to return the package to the warehouse and make the person pick it up. That’s too many delivery attempts in too few minutes!
This sign also gives the driver a choice between two addresses, but at least both are businesses and open during the day when packages are delivered.
This next one is for drivers who may not be too bright. I also put smiley faces on my 1st graders’ good homework…
When I was working at CBS in Miami, I had a new computer delivered there. It was great! First, the boss was able to check it out and make sure all settings were correct. Then, he installed the programs I’d need in order to work at home. That was my idea.
And it came in handy when he was out and I left a little early, feeling sick. That night — July 27, 2005 — former Miami-Dade County Commissioner Art Teele shot himself in his head, committing suicide in the Miami Herald lobby! He’d been convicted of corruption and removed from office. I got home, turned on the TV and was the only person from the station able to put up a story.
Another time, I was about to head to the Keys on a Saturday morning when a small plane crashed into a lake in Aventura. The weekend morning news had a picture, and I listened and wrote a story. Then, I was on my way.
I never minded working from home, especially when it saved me from a rushed trip to the office for a single story.
Parking spaces are prized in Philadelphia. Garages are even more so, if you can get in and out. I found somebody decided to use chalk to make sure nobody blocked them…
Speaking of cars and parking, maybe someone above can teach the Philadelphia Parking Authority how arrows work. Here we are, on Aspen, approaching the corner of 24th Street. You can see the corner is a bus stop. You can take the 48 from Center City and get dropped off right in back of my building.
But take a closer look at the signs for drivers who want to park. The middle sign shows it’s not allowed past the sign because of buses. But the bottom sign says it’s allowed on both sides of the sign.
They say “The PPA don’t play” but it should at least make up its mind.
That reminded me of a sign on Front Street, south of South. You see how people with residential parking stickers can park their cars in their zone without having to obey days and time limits. I’m in zone 6. This is what I found last year, and shared with a reporter co-worker.
It may not be right but it’s easier to understand than this group of signs at a busy intersection in Bristol, VA. Remember, you only have until the red light turns green, if you’re lost and lucky enough to hit a red light!
Some signs would save money if they weren’t changed.
It’s kind of hard to see, but this is the second of two doors, also with Larry Krasner’s name.
And as we get closer to the bottom…
And I can’t leave out this classic from downstairs in my own building.
Anyway, I’m off for a week. Thanks for reading. You can check out some relatively old web stuff from when I was Digital Media Manager at WCYB in the Tri-Cities of TB/VA, 2015-2016. The format changed twice since then, and everything looks a bit different than it did, but I was able to capture some still shots here. The writing was more formal than this, but not completely A.P. style. That would come later.
And please, don’t miss out. If you like what you read here, subscribe to CohenConnect.comwith either your email address or WordPress account, and get a notice whenever I publish.I’m also available for writing/web contract work.
P.S. This is a bonus I found the next day in the 2000 block of Spring Garden. The sign was up the stairs and not easy to shoot when I zoomed in, but I felt worth a look. Should the “USPS/UPS Guy” have to be subjected to this? Should passers-by like me?
“Leonard is getting emotional helping his buddy get ready. Leonard is happy for Sheldon and that he will be officially and legally Amy’s problem. Ahh. Sheldon adds that he will always be Leonard’s problem.”
Then, Mary Cooper comes in and asks for a moment with her son, Sheldon.
After that, Sheldon describes to Amy,
“how her comments about imperfection in his bow tie makes him want to add the imperfections of the real world into his string theory calculations. Amy then calls his work super asymmetry and he likes that.”
Obviously, the importance of perfection depends what you’re doing.
None of us will be perfect in life, or in any particular part of it. That’s what makes us human. We can and should strive to improve in areas we particularly need it.
Which is why regular readers know I get angry when I see fellow journalists messing up or unwilling to fix their mistakes — especially former colleagues who know better.
That said, look at the Publix bakery. Publix is a big Florida supermarket and expanded into other southeastern states, where fed-up Floridians went when they became former Floridians.
Come to think of it, The Herald reports that was the problem!
Mom had gone out of her way when ordering the cake to make sure everything would go right and Publix would accomplish just a tiny fraction of what her son did – reading, baking and spelling.
“A computerized Publix algorithm that trolls cake inscription requests for naughty words didn’t like the Latin word ‘cum’ — pronounced coom — which means ‘with.’
“The centuries-old phrase translates to ‘with the highest distinction’ or ‘praise.’ So the cake maker followed the computer’s instruction — despite (proud Mom’s) explanation of the Latin phrase in the ‘special instructions’ column of the order form — and instead decorated the cake with ‘Congrats Jacob! Summa — Laude class of 2018.’
“The Latin preposition for ‘with’ was replaced by dashes.”
Instead, she “went on Facebook to tell everyone how embarrassing it was to have to explain to her son and 70-year-old mom the other meaning of that preposition when used as English slang.”
Brilliant Jacob may not be as brilliant as credited, or it may say a lot about his graduating class, if he looked at the actual word by itself and had no idea it may have an alternative meaning.
Last night, Stephen Colbert went off on Publix on “The Late Show” and was able to present “another graduation treat made for Jacob — cupcakes with the offending (to Publix) word as decorative frosting,” as The Herald put it.
Blame CBS, not me, if you see a commercial.
I’ll bet he didn’t have to travel to Times Square — a few blocks south of the Ed Sullivan Theater — to have them made, either.
According to The Post, Mom called Publix and the assistant manager offered to remake the cake.
“No,” the paper reported she said. “You only graduate once.”
But she may have ended up smiling financially.
Publix refunded $70 for the cake and gave her a store gift card.
Just don’t try it with Publix, yourself.
The Post wrote it “replicated her experience and got the same result.”
So the tie Sheldon wore at his wedding in The Big Bang Theory may not have been tied perfectly. That’s not a big deal in the scheme of things. Besides, by the time anyone important (besides Mark Hamill) would see him close-up, there would’ve been plenty of time and movement for the perfect tie to become imperfect. So he gets away with it while dressed better than most of the guys on the show, most of the time, anyway. (And it would probably have been corrected for pictures.)
But as Jacob’s mom said, “You only graduate once,” and she said she explained the situation to the Publix assistant manager because she didn’t want this to happen to anyone else in the future.
“as The Washington Post test revealed, that particular ‘c’ word remains profane by Publix standards.”
So nothing was learned. Try putting it on your next license plate instead.
P.S. I have another reward for reading all the way!
In an exclusive, unaired clip from The Big Bang Theory Season 11 finale, the happy couple gets one last wedding present from the late theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking.
Hawking died in March. I posted a Facebook article with thoughts then.
Also, I’ll give you these two articles on how the scientist was so misguided on that topic.
The BBC reports Saturday, “the Syrian-American Medical Society said more than 500 people were brought to medical centers in Douma (Duma),”
“near the capital Damascus, with symptoms ‘indicative of exposure to a chemical agent.’
“It said this included breathing difficulties, bluish skin, mouth foaming, corneal burns and ‘the emission of chlorine-like odor.’
“Neither the death toll nor what exactly occurred can be verified as the area is blocked off with access denied. (Note from Lenny: Absolutely the OPPOSITE of what’s happening around Israel, not because Gaza – led by the terror group Hamas – is a free, open society, but because Israel is, with freedom of the press.)
“The estimates of how many people died in the suspected chemical attack range from 42 to more than 60 people, but medical groups say numbers could rise as rescue workers gain access to basements where hundreds of families had sought refuge from bombing.”
Now, the US and Russia have traded barbs at a UN Security Council meeting. The Russian representative said the incident was staged and US military action in response could have “grave repercussions.”
US ambassador Nikki Haley said Russia – being a Syrian military backer – had the “blood of Syrian children” on its hands. She said if the UN Security Council acts or not, “either way, the United States will respond.”
Later Monday, President Trump pledged the incident would “be met forcefully,” adding the US had a lot of military options and a decision would be taken “tonight” or “shortly.”
UN Watch reports Syria is due to “chair the United Nations disarmament forum that produced the treaty banning chemical weapons” from late May into late June. The US and others are expected “to strongly protest, and for their ambassadors to walk out of the conference during the four weeks of the Syrian presidency.”
To the situation in Gaza and reaction: Starting with the basics, Mahmoud Abbas was elected president of the Palestinian National Authority after Yasser Arafat died. Then, the PLO Central Council voted him into office indefinitely. So there’s no democracy in Judea and Samaria, which is referred to as the West Bank of the Jordan River.
In 2005, the Israeli army withdrew from Gaza and dismantled all settlements in the Gaza Strip. Then, the terror group Hamas was elected as the Palestinian government. Abbas, who succeeded Arafat in Judea and Samaria, lost.
According to Wikipedia, “There have been conflicts between Hamas and similar factions operating in Gaza, and with Israel” and “The radicalization of the Gaza Strip brought internal conflicts between various groups” like deadly Hamas crackdowns. Plus, of course, nobody can ignore all the rocket fire from Gaza into Israel from schools and hospitals – any way to use civilians as human shields.
So there has not been a Palestinian group to negotiate with Israel.
Tonight, a friend I respect in certain areas but on the far left fringe posted this on Facebook.
So Israelis should just sit back and let everyone nearby do what they want to do?
This was somebody else’s response, and then mine to my friend.
It compared what’s happening to the US-Mexico border
“being attacked by 40,000 rioters whose goal is to overthrow the United States and reclaim Texas, Arizona, New Mexico and California. What if they were hurling Molotov cocktails, rolling burning tires and trying to cut holes in the border fence? How would our country respond?”
Some people say Israel overreacted. Tell that to the folks who live in the area, like southern Texas, Arizona, New Mexico and California!
Facts and Logic guessed,
“We’d probably respond with leaflets and loudspeakers warning the militants to stay away from the border. If they didn’t stop rushing the border, we’d use tear gas, then rubber bullets. If they persisted and tried to tear down the border fence, we’d respond with live ammunition, and some would die. Which is exactly what happened when the terrorists attacked Israel last week.
“The Israel Defense Forces have identified 10 of the 17 people killed as members of Hamas or other Palestinian terror groups. This was no family picnic or peaceful demonstration.”
Even worse, “Hamas leaders told the protesters, the so-called March of Return marked a “new phase in the Palestinians’ national struggle on the road to liberating all of Palestine, from the river to the sea.”
In other words, don’t shed any tears. That’s conquering all of Israel.
You can’t say they’re attacking Israel to end the boycott of Gaza. Facts and Logic says they’d be attacking Egypt since “Egypt controls the Rafah crossing to Gaza, which was open for less than 30 days in 2017, compared with some 280 days for the Erez crossing from Israel.”
We know the phrase “war is hell.”
I ask you, who started it and who is experiencing (and arguably deserving of) hell?
There have been numerous offers of land for a Palestinian state. The Arabs rejected the 1947 UN Armistice Plan and Israel won its War of Independence. Then, 19 years later after a war of defense that took only six days, Israel
“drove Jordan from eastern Jerusalem and the Jewish homelands of Judea and Samaria (later known as the West Bank) and repulsed Egypt from Gaza. Shortly thereafter, the Arab League issued its famous Khartoum Resolution: ‘No peace with Israel, no recognition of Israel and no negotiations with it.’ (Any questions? -Lenny) Since then, despite numerous Israeli offers of land for a Palestinian state, the Arabs continue to reject peace.”
Luckily, the Gulf states may be coming to their senses with Iran being a bigger, closer enemy. In fact, India’s airline can actually fly over Saudi Arabia to and from Tel Aviv, saving gasoline and hours! (Israel’s El Al can’t do so at this time.) The way it’s looking, the Palestinians will be the LAST Arabs to make peace with Israel.
“Following World War II, the Germans and Japanese surrendered and were forced to give up lands they had earlier occupied. In return they were granted peace and sovereignty. The Arabs, on the other hand, have never surrendered, despite losing numerous wars with Israel, and they have never accepted peace. Sadly, until the Palestinians are willing to give up their quest to conquer Israel, they are doomed to unending struggle and statelessness.”
“A Brooklyn legislator was accused Wednesday of delivering a bizarre tirade against Jews, while ripping Mayor Bill de Blasio as a sellout, during a local community board meeting this week. Assemblywoman Diane Richardson’s 50-minute rant during the Board 17 meeting Monday night faulted Jews for gentrifying in her district. … During a rezoning talk, a board member complained that people constantly ring her doorbell to ask if she’s interested in selling her home. ‘It must be Jewish people,’ Richardson responded, according to Lew Fidler, a former City Council member who is Jewish and attended the meeting as a representative of Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams.”
Want to stereotype? We’re not the ones who ring doorbells or even knock on doors!
But The Post reports, “Before faulting Jewish interlopers, Richardson snidely referred to Brooklyn state Sen. Simcha Felder as ‘the Jewish senator from southern Brooklyn.’”
(He should be taken to task for “new rules for what yeshivas must teach … the result of state Sen. Simcha Felder’s push to lower standards for yeshivas. Lawmakers mercifully nixed that outrageous demand but did agree to new language, seemingly written just for yeshivas, that spell out new curriculum requirements.”)
Would that work with any other group of people?
The article also said Assemblywoman
“Richardson apparently knew her remarks were controversial because she had board officials shut off the board’s tape recorder before her comments. Richardson also invoked race when discussing what she called the city’s uneven placement of homeless shelters.”
This is how the discussion played out.
So a few giggles about the absurdity of the whole thing.
I don’t know why Richardson felt the need to invoke race or religion.
I would think people like her have suffered enough. Didn’t last night’s 60 Minutes teach anyone anything? And now, she’s a New York State assemblywoman who made herself look like only the first three letters of her title.
I wonder if she even realizes her district contains Kingsbrook Jewish Medical Center, plus Crown Heights and Eastern Parkway. There’s also the Brooklyn Children’s Museum, but I think she should stay as far away from there as possible, and not be any influence.
Apparently this was the second time in as many weeks Richardson had a breakdown.
“also went ballistic … at a Democratic caucus in Albany, sources said. Assembly Democrats who witnessed Richardson’s outburst at Speaker Carl Heastie over funding one of her pet projects said they were stunned and outraged, calling it the most abusive and rude behavior they ever encountered at a caucus meeting.
“She had a meltdown. She was really out of control,” said one Assembly veteran.
“Everyone in the room was appalled at her behavior. She basically accused the speaker and his staff of lying to her. It was a personal attack. I’ve never seen anything like that in conference.”
Another Assembly Democratic insider who witnessed Richardson’s rant called it “the most abusive behavior in memory.”
Looking for some sort of apology, Richardson has had no press releases posted in almost a year, since May 3, 2017.
Last night, I did something I rarely do: open a Facebook post to the public, rather than just friends.
Today, I’m blogging about the online battle that followed, something I hadn’t planned to do.
The story was about one of the hosts of a show on the DIY Network — part of Scripps Networks Interactive and sister to HGTV, the Food Network, Travel Channel, Cooking Channel, Great American Country, TVN, Fine Living and the Asian Food Channel.
You’re certainly familiar with some of them unless you’ve been living under a rock.
Unfortunately, it has since been reinforced to me that too many Americans have been living under figurative rocks.
Texas Flip N Move host Toni Snow — who along with her sister Donna — are “real estate entrepreneurs” who “compete head-to-head in a fast-paced and thrilling real estate flipping competition,” according to the show’s website.
It goes on, if you understand flipping, “Our flippers are under the gun to buy low, work fast and sell high.”
And in a recent episode that was shot, produced and edited, Toni Snow asked a participant who was willing to pay full asking price for a refurbished school bus, “You’re not even gonna bicker a little bit, Jew us down?” according to CNN and People magazine.
I’m not a regular watcher of that channel nor show, although I think I once saw part of an episode that was shown on HGTV.
I could say things about people from Texas but I won’t.
The network told CNN in an apology, “An inappropriate comment unfortunately made it past our team” and that they “immediately pulled the episode to edit it for future broadcast.”
My original point was that Toni Snow needed to be edited out. In other words, she should be fired and the episode should never be shown again.
This is an embed of the Facebook post. Be warned, not all is polite.
I have to note how hateful some Toni Schroeder Schwind comes across like those quotes politicians used above, just clinging to the past. I don’t know her but her profile pictures indicate she’s not Jewish, yet she insisted more than once,
“This comment has been around for ages and I think somewhat over reaction was an over reaction. Get over it.”
(Yes, her words.)
I’d say to ask a black person about the N-word, or another minority about slurs about them. Who is she to judge what’s offensive to most Jewish people?
And I wrote “most Jewish people” because some of my friends say it’s no big deal, or it’s the intent that matters.
I also originally angrily posted, “Only #Jews! What other group would tolerate that?”
Seems liberalism has replaced religion for many non-Orthodox Jews and that bothers me. Their thoughts and practices are certainly up to them, but it leaves me with a bad taste. I wonder what will be in the generations to come.
Others would say I should be doing more. Again, that’s their opinion. Most of us know stereotypes like “two Jews, three opinions” carry a bit of truth.
As for the speaker’s intent, who knows? I’m not a mind-reader. I did write in a private message off Facebook,
“I find people who say things like that about Jews and prices to have bad intent. The reason is simply, one side wants the price higher and the other wants it lower. It’s adversarial by nature.”
One friend wrote there are worse words and phrases.
I responded late last night,
“Look at the reaction from the post at this hour, and also all the news articles. It’s not exactly like the president using SHole because he’s the president. Besides, if people hear it on TV, they think it’s acceptable. Don’t give the public too much credit.”
“Are slurs against any minority group tolerable in 2018? After I left the Tri-Cities, a member of the local synagogue – the only one between Knoxville and Charlottesville – contacted me after the station I worked for did a story about a guy holding an auction and using the same phrase, just like his father taught him! It aired at 5:30. At 11, there was an apology. But he was just white trash and not on the payroll. What gets me is that it’s missed in the editing process. Of course, so do curse words on signs at anti-Trump rallies.”
Yes, I used a phrase where the stereotype fit (and not about somebody from Texas, as I promised earlier). I’m certainly not perfect. I tend to be middle of the road politically, but absolutely not politically correct. Society needs civilized discussion.
I’m guessing a photographer who grew up locally shot the interview, wrote the script and edited it. That’s what happens in small non-union markets.
I have files of both the original piece and the apology but won’t show them publicly because the anchorwoman on air had nothing to do with putting together the story. She just read it, along with having to read the apology hours later with her face on air. Her co-worker who should’ve known better caused her to suffer enough embarrassment, and she was simply subbing on someone else’s newscast while that person was on vacation!
I had this last thought while trying to fall asleep last night:
“This conversation reminds me of an episode of All in the Family. It definitely was not my favorite because there was more drama than comedy. Archie and Meathead were locked in the basement and opening up to each other while drinking. Mike tried to convince Archie their fathers were very similar, but wrong as it turned out. Mike had changed completely, becoming a leftist. Archie, his older father-in-law, was more defensive and blindly insisted his father could do no wrong. Most of us have (had) relatives like that, even those who came to this country as immigrants. They lived among each other (in shtetels?) and had no way of understanding anybody else’s feelings or experiences until getting out in the real world. That’s the way things were then. Today, whether traveling a few blocks or watching TV, most people become exposed to others and realize it’s wrong to use and perpetuate stereotypes.”
Even at Fox 29, the morning news anchors would talk ON THE AIR about the troubles they’ve had with the PPA. These were good, honest, educated hard-working people trying to do the right thing at an ungodly hour. Apparently, they felt so angry, they were forced to offer their opinions which is hardly ever done during a newscast (except “Go Eagles!”).
The most common complaint was about so many people from the station having gotten tickets across the street for parallel parking in a space on Market Street. It has a low meter for handicapped people and is in the middle of the block — unlike any other, which are on corners, they say — and the meter is hard to see in snow. Well done, PPA! Those handicapped violations are supposed to be extra expensive.
The competition reported drivers were urged to look at the color of the sign, along with the days, hours and arrows on it. They even quoted a PPA employee who told them, “We had professional driving instructors on hand and people were taken out to cars and taught to parallel park.” Isn’t that task for the folks at driving school?
The conversation with Hank actually started with us discussing residential parking permits. As you’ll read, I lived in zone 4 with I first arrived, but later moved to zone 6.
Then, across town, I came upon this sign and took a picture. Read what it says carefully. You’ll often find residential zone number exceptions on top or below a parking sign. You’ll even find two different zone numbers if a street is on or near the border between them. But what about the dash between the 5 and the 7?
Google calls the dash “a horizontal stroke in writing or printing to mark a pause or break in sense, or to represent omitted letters or words.” In other words, the 6 that falls between the 5 and the 7!
I followed up with the PPA since their sign clearly allows someone with a 6 sticker like me to park at that location, even though it’s across town.
They tweeted back no, with no explanation — not that certain parking signs are the only bad ones in the city.
One final update before the original blog post, for those of you still with me, is the fact people in South Philadelphia can park wherever the heck they want, with no ramifications. Notice I write they do, because they get away with it. The city chooses not to enforce the law in that part of town which is unfair to everyone else and potentially unsafe.
That last part was used in a lawsuit that was decided less than a month ago. According to Philly.com, the judge ruled police and the PPA can’t stop people from parking their cars or whatevers in the middle of S. Broad Street (nor apparently any other street) because apparently authorities have more important things to do.
We left off May 16, 2016 with a blog post called Not exactly a warm welcome. It was mostly about the awful move, two weeks after I started work here, which was less than a week after I left my job in Virginia. (I’ve moved to a much better place since then.)
The pictures show you’ll enjoy it more than I did!
The move was awful but at least everything is in either the apartment or the storage unit (that’s nearly impossible to get inside). I’m still trying to figure out which.
Now, my biggest problem is the car. I didn’t want a new car but that’s a long story and somebody else will have to answer that.
I don’t have a residential sticker to park on the street in the neighborhood. First, I have to get a driver’s license. Then, use the license to get a license plate. And then, go for the sticker.
So for now, I have a Virginia license plate and have had to park where it’s allowed, a few blocks away, south of South Street.
Unfortunately the good folks at the Philadelphia Parking Authority try to uphold the laws of every state, even though they’re not familiar with the law. In my case, they think all Virginia cars need to have inspection stickers on the front middle of the windshield.
Virginia lets new cars go without inspection stickers for the first year. But I got two tickets (so far) and the fine is up from about $15 when I left town 12 years ago, to $41 now. Hopefully this note with information will keep me from getting a third. (So far, so good. I’ll know for sure when I see the car again.)
So I need to get a Pennsylvania license, to switch from Virginia license plates to Pennsylvania, to get a sticker for parking.
Easier said than done. I mentioned the move was horrible and I don’t know where things are.
To get the driver’s license, I need my passport and other proof of residency. The passport was in the file cabinet, and the file cabinet was deep inside that storage unit. I’ll say something for those packers: They know how to get stuff in!
Saturday was a waste. I was hoping to get the passport, but that didn’t happen. And losing the keys to the storage lock is not something I want to remember or write about.
Sunday, Tony and I took out a mattress, box spring and top of a heavy dining room table. We maneuvered half the large couch out and got access to the file cabinet. Of course, the two drawers I needed were in the middle.
I got what I needed in about 15 minutes and am hoping the driver’s license, license plate and parking sticker will be easier to get.
UPDATE: I got the driver’s license. Waited a little while and had more documentation than necessary.
So I walked a block to the traffic school that would take care of the license plate and found out I’d need the car’s title. I had that for my old car but as I’ve said repeatedly, “I didn’t want a new car but that’s a long story and somebody else will have to answer that.” So I’m in a holding pattern.
It all worked out.
Now, back to 2017, and another big challenge and fight. I hope I’ll be able to fill you in next week.
I haven’t posted anything in about 3 weeks. (I also haven’t heard from you asking for a post. Unbelievable! What’s up with that?) I haven’t been relaxing at the beach. Been doing plenty of writing. Just very busy at work and home.
My parents’ visit has come and gone. Went very well. Wasn’t sure for a while. Garry cleaned and made sure things were pretty good around the apartment. The only shortcomings were the bedroom carpet, kitchen, and the stickers still on items from the move. (I brought up that one.) My mother didn’t mention my hair. Mom and Dad both LOVED spending time with the kids. (Click any pictures to make them larger.)
Cousins Barry and Ellen stopped by on their annual drive from Florida to Massachusetts, and brought presents for the kids.
Around the same time, Garry installed a portable screen to keep bugs out when the door is open and also a fence to keep Yeti in the patio area (but he hasn’t tried that yet).
Now, I’m left with a ton of travel brochures and I’m learning a lot more about Bristol and the rest of the area. Should help at work.
Speaking of work: several accomplishments since I last wrote here.
Red Nose Day to support the poor is Thursday and NBC will air a three-hour special. I was able to take a button, place it on the homepage, and link it to a page I wrote. Also, we have a daily Facebook contest going with viewers submitting pictures of themselves with red noses. (Check out the app. You can have red noses implanted on your photos!)
I was also able to get Web links onto email signatures at work. The digital manager should have Web links, right?
We had big coverage of a Miami-style murder trial. It’s known as the Facebook murders. In short, Dad killed a young couple because the woman unfriended his adult daughter on Facebook. Dad was already convicted. This trial was for adult daughter and also Mom. (Daughter’s ex-boyfriend was also going on trial, but turned state’s evidence just before.) Oh, and the female victim was murdered with her infant son in her arms. Anyway, our reporter at court tweeted out everything, and I wrote the stories and created a section with photo galleries, videos, and old stories. (By the way, both were guilty. Life in prison.)
I was able to put the new app button from the regular desktop Web site onto the mobile Web site as well. Analytics are looking good.
A big spring story here has been a good number of bear sightings. I started a picture gallery and think it was my first to make the “Most Popular” area.
There was some sad (arguably more shocking) news and that’s Kelley Mitchell died. Those of you who visited me at WSVN in the 90’s met her. She was great on TV. We had our ups and downs from the beginning to the end, but she seems to have gotten raw deals on jobs and proved her dedication by taking her dog to chemotherapy regularly for months. RIP, Kelley.
There’s good and bad news on the Miami condo rental front. I got tenants! There were finally approved and they moved in. Of course, they’re complaining about things I never complained about. Things will get done (at least some) but luckily, I have a manager so I don’t have to hear whining. Worth the price. Still thinking I should’ve sold.
Another interesting week ahead. Tuesday is Election Day in three Sullivan County municipalities. I wrote up a voter guide and plan to stay late, to put results on our Web site.
Definitely more important (except if you’re a candidate) is Casey’s 7th birthday on Friday! I still don’t know the exact details on the celebration, other than singing. Yeti will be there. She has occasionally been picking me up from work.
Anyway, off to get a haircut so I look good in Casey’s birthday pics!
It’s April and there’s a lot of spring cleaning going on in the Tri-Cities and other places. Garry and I really aren’t doing any of it because we’ve only been here for a month and are still putting stuff I paid to move away. (Or trying to find space for it all!) But I digress. We Jews did our cleaning more than a week ago, before Passover, and that’s what a lot of this week’s edition will be about. Food.
Passover could’ve been a whole lot worse. It’s never really a pleasure with the special brands of everything and out-of-control prices. I really like matzah and can eat more than most, even (especially) plain. And living where I am, I thought I’d have to. There’s not much of a selection in these here parts. (Plain matzah was my breakfast for a week.)
I haven’t been one of those people who takes pictures of their food and posts it on Facebook right away. I leave that to others. Yes, there was this one on my first Passover day at work (matzah with jelly).
Luckily, Garry has really become a yiddishe mama, a ballabusta. (Note to Garry: Look them up.) He quenched my hunger with matzah ball soup, apple and raisin kugel that was so sweet he thought it was a dessert (delicious!), so many fruits and potatoes, not to mention matzah! He didn’t think we needed the five pound set of boxes and we fought over it, but I was right.
I mean, three variations of matzah brei, until he found what I like. (Not too hard, and definitely not too soft.)
A lot of thanks goes to the computer and, of course, Garry’s good sense to use it. There are multiple recipes for everything, which really shouldn’t be surprising, considering a population that invented agreeing to disagree. He even found kosher delivery services that are less expensive than the kosher Winn-Dixie in Aventura! My mother said she is proud of him.
Some other holiday highlights: Gnocchi and sauce from actual tomatoes, because tomato sauce from a can is not kosher for Passover.
Also, fresh basil chopped up (nothing processed) and kosher salt. Plus, lots of fruits and vegetables. Not to mention more matzah.
In case you were wondering, this is the first time Garry actually asked to be in the blog (the text, not the pics). You’ve seen him at Food City before. Now, he wants a fryer. I think he earned it.
In other news, this week, one of the reporters asked me how I am liking it here. She is relatively new also. Started in September. I told her I like it but I haven’t seen so much. Usually, I wake up and rush to work. When I get home, I’m exhausted, eat what Garry prepared, and go to sleep. I told her I needed to get out and see the other two of the Tri-Cities!
Last night, Garry and I discovered Johnson City and ate our first non-Passover meal there. We’d actually driven through J.C. (as they call it, not Jesus Christ or Julius Caesar) on the highway with ice and sleet on the way up. It’s nice to see places I’ve written about (the woman from Piney Flats arrested, etc.). We even got to see the airport in Blountville along the way (okay, drive through it, my fault). It was tiny and looked closed! Anyway, that makes 2 of the 3 Tri-Cities. Kingsport, you’re next!
Luckily, I like most of the work and all of the people, even if I don’t know all their names.
Some accomplishments this week: getting into a routine with breaking news (Emory & Henry’s NCAA probation) and reframing images that don’t fit every type of box (the Amber Alert girl, who was found safe after two hours, by the way). I learned to take national IBLakana stories and localize them, so I can manipulate sections, and also change the Job Opportunities page which is harder than it looks.
Let’s not forget the “Watch News 5 Live” button. It’s a big deal. People couldn’t find the live stream under News on the navigation bar, so thesales and promotions departments wanted it. Anything that helps!
One other event from this week to note: There hadn’t been any decent offers to rent the Miami condo, so I’m now considering selling it. We’ll see which happens first. (Did I mention the pool? Or that pets are allowed?)
Time to wrap (takes hours to make this perfect) and eat lunch (pasta and beans, which I couldn’t have for a week), then get rid of a few more boxes. Less than a month until Mom and Dad come to visit. Don’t worry, you’ll be safe!
Spring is often thought of as a time of renewal, the first season. I’ve had some firsts over the past week or so.
Starting at home for a change, I can walk to back of the den without having to step over a box, for the first time. It’s a major accomplishment and I’m very proud. I make my way from the door (bottom left), past the computer (you see the chair), to the file cabinet. And there are actually things in the file cabinet now, which helps with boxes in other places. Just 35 days until my parents show up for their visit!
The station even showed our live stream coverage from the Web on their “proof of performance” promotions. (It was the first time I saw that.) The live stream page was even the #1 most popular page on the Web site for a while because of the announcement. (Another first, at least for my eyes.)
For the first time, I put 4 pictures together to make one graphic. Been practicing that sort of stuff lately. These are the folks who will be running the new, merged Wellmont Health System-Mountain States Health Alliance company if/when it happens. Looks good here.
Didn’t look good as the top story in a box that’s shaped this way. Gotta work that out. Sizing is tough when you’re dealing with different shapes.
April 1st was the first time I was able to give the sales team analytics on the station’s Web site. I did it for the month and the quarter. Also, finalized the look and content of our new mobile news app because our current one will be going away at the end of the month.
Friday was the first time I left work early and the first time I went to a synagogue here. (Hat tip to everyone there who’s reading this: Rhona, Marisol, Marilyn, and apparently plenty of others!) It was for a Passoverseder with Garry. Was very nice. Wish there were two. Garry took video, then had to spend way too much time chopping it again and again (I guess like charoset) to email to the station to air at 10 and 11. The file size was way too big. Only 8 seconds could get emailed at once. Unusable for air, even if labeled “amateur video” (except if it was the only video of a huge news event). Maybe recording on the station’s iPhone rather than my own would’ve helped. We ended up with everyone singing Dayenu rather than a few singing the Kiddish and that was a better, livelier choice. It didn’t make TV but it did make the Web site, somehow. Click it to enjoy. (By the way, Garry is now available for bar mitzvahs.)
Saturday marked 21 years since I first started my television news career at WSVN. Thanks again, Callie!
I got my first offer on renting the Miami condo, but they’re going to have to do better. We did lower the price a little. Hopefully that’ll be a last!
Have a good week and keep enjoying that matzah! It’s hard enough to find regular kosher stuff here. Passover is impossible. (By the way, the synagogue people drove down to Atlanta for the food.)