"I don't want to sell anything, buy anything, or process anything as a career. I don't want to sell anything bought or processed, or buy anything sold or processed, or process anything sold, bought, or processed, or repair anything sold, bought, or processed. You know, as a career, I don't want to do that."
Monday, December 27, 2021
Saturday, December 25, 2021
Christmas Time - a time for a little truce and ponder the true meaning of Christmas.
On December 7, 1914, Pope Benedict XV suggested a temporary hiatus of the war for the celebration of Christmas. The warring countries refused to create any official cease-fire, but on Christmas the soldiers in the trenches declared their own unofficial truce.
At the first light of dawn on Christmas Day, some German soldiers emerged from their trenches and approached the Allied lines across no-man’s-land, calling out “Merry Christmas” in their enemies’ native tongues. At first, the Allied soldiers feared it was a trick, but seeing the Germans unarmed they climbed out of their trenches and shook hands with the enemy soldiers. The men exchanged presents of cigarettes and plum puddings and sang carols and songs. There was even a documented case of soldiers from opposing sides playing a good-natured game of soccer.
Some soldiers used this short-lived ceasefire for a more somber task: the retrieval of the bodies of fellow combatants who had fallen within the no-man’s land between the lines.
The so-called Christmas Truce of 1914 came only five months after the outbreak of war in Europe and was one of the last examples of the outdated notion of chivalry between enemies in warfare. It was never repeated—future attempts at holiday ceasefires were quashed by officers’ threats of disciplinary action—but it served as heartening proof, however brief, that beneath the brutal clash of weapons, the soldiers’ essential humanity endured.Info above taken verbatim from History.Com
|Photo: “1914 Christmas Truce Monument, Messine.”|
Friday, December 24, 2021
Where is Santa now? NORAD tracks Santa - 2021 - this is for the young & young at heart - links to tracker and the story as to how it all began.
NORAD Tracks Santa. A recommended site.
Click on this link to Welcome to NORAD Tracks Santa to view where Santa is at the time.
Or follow Santa on Google's Santa Tracker by CLICKING HERE
Eugene Flinn and family
How it started: One of my favorite Christmas stories: A great read - NPR (originally published December 19, 2014)
Smile, you're being photographed (53 years ago). Two of my strongest non-family related Christmas time memories:Apollo 8, we all monitored that mission (all space missions at that time) - we later saw the Earthrise photo taken 53 years ago this date, 12/24/1968. This photo provides perspective; that we live on a small self-contained outpost.
The other, and certainly less important memory was back in 1971, when the Miami Dolphins were relevant, and played in the Christmas Day playoff game against the Kansas City Chiefs. The double-overtime game remains the longest game ever played in NFL history.
The Dolphins were led by coach Don Shula, and six players – Nick Buoniconti, Larry Csonka, Bob Griese, Jim Langer, Larry Little, and Paul Warfield.
I prefer the space memories, looking up as if I could actually see something with my own eyes, if I could only focus on the exact spot near the moon.
One of the many gifts that space exploration/NASA has provided to us.
Read the article (it remains available online), Miami Herald: The stunning photo on Christmas Eve that changed how we see our planet, by Christian Davenport The Washington Post
Thursday, December 23, 2021
I enjoy road cycling. I can roll out of my driveway and have reached as far as Hollywood Beach, Florida. No need to drive to a starting point. It is easy to cycle when we live in one of the best places to cycle year around. The pandemic dramatically increased the popularity of cycling. This year saw yet another increase in the activity as it can be done socially distanced as well as outside.
But for me, there were no big trips this year - no cycling in central Florida or upstate NY,
|The 2021 B-day mileage ride|
Remember Rule #1 listed in the movie Zombieland: Cardio. I am fortunate to maintain my health - and I credit long term gym and spin class for my health, though since the pandemic, my activities are nearly exclusively outdoor cycling. Published studies have shown that cycling at a moderate pace for an hour allows overweight people with diabetes to halve their blood sugar levels in the next 24 hours. Even cycling faster for only half an hour can reduce levels for an entire day, but only by 19%.
Other health benefits include strengthening your heart muscles, lowering one's resting pulse and reducing blood fat levels. Research also shows that people who cycle to work have two to three times less exposure to pollution than commuting via car; improving lung function.But let's be clear - bicycling alone is not magic, like any exercise, a certain level of exertion is required for maximum health benefits.
And let's not leave out the social aspects - not the mad pelotons, but friends who ride together - fun times.
One such ride was the 12-22-21 "Holiday Lights, City Ride" where the group explored the local holiday light displays:
So on to the photos for 2021:
Above left - Coral Gables branch library. Above right - The Sahara, Collins Ave, Sunny Isles Beach, FL
Above left - Hollywood Beach. Above right - Rickenbacker bridge
Above left - Virginia Key. Above right - Black Point Marina.
Wednesday, December 22, 2021
I am kicking off the year in review with some photos of the 2021 gravel biking adventures - a great socially distanced activity (no drafting). The pictures tell the story. No cycling travels this year, it was all local - south of Black Point, east Everglades, parts in and near Everglades National Park, in and around Shark Valley and the Tamiami canal / Levee areas.
Monday, December 20, 2021
Tuesday, December 14, 2021
It was a beautiful day to ride. You can tell I am not much of a climber ( at 4:36 ) as you can watch some experienced climbers blow by me. It is all about practice. It had been a while since my last ride over the bridge: January 17, 2021.
And then - back to the mainland:
Wednesday, December 8, 2021
Christmas rankings for movie versions of Dicken's "A Christmas Carol". Here is a suggested guide to binge watching. Ranking my personal favorites.
We are in prime binge watching season for the Christmas specials. We still are not fully out of the woods on COVID, so I offer up an activity you can share within your family bubble as well as participate with others remotely. Here is a guide for your Pandemic Christmas Ideas –
'A Christmas Carol' Adaptations Ranked from "Bah Humbug!" to "God Bless Us Everyone!" by Dave Trumbore, COLLIDER Movie News, Dec 21, 2019 His lead in:
Besides the Christmas stories that are Biblical in origin, Charles Dickens' 1843 classic telling of A Christmas Carol remains one of the longest-running, most-adapted, and most-relevant holiday tales to date. More than 170 years after the infamous miser-turned-do-gooder Ebenezer Scrooge entered our culture for the first time, there are still quite a few folks out there who could do with taking this timeless lesson to heart. I'd suggest they take the time to do what I did and watch 20 or so adaptations of A Christmas Carol until the moral sinks in, but the good-willed among you who don't need a lesson from the spirits can check out our ranked list to see which version is most worthy of your time.
A story for that stands the test of time. A Christmas Carol. In Prose. Being a Ghost Story of Christmas, commonly known as A Christmas Carol, is a novella by Charles Dickens, first published in London by Chapman & Hall December 19,1843 - Wikipedia
Here are some of my favorite film versions and how they were ranked by Dave Trumbore:
9. A Christmas Carol (1999) what I call "the Patrick Stewart version". (My #4)
6. A Christmas Carol (1984) George C Scott (my #5)
My favorite - 5. Scrooged - Bill Murray - For all the reasons in the description:
Easily the best non-traditional adaptation of A Christmas Carol, Richard Donner's 1988 comedy Scrooged is a testament to just how timeless Dickens' tale is. Set in the hyper-violent and profit-obsessed entertainment world of the 1980s, Bill Murray plays Frank Cross, a TV network executive who's under the gun to bring in huge numbers for the channel's upcoming Christmas special. What follows is an exploration that goes behind the scenes of a "traditional" TV adaptation of the story, and more importantly, a character examination of Cross as a modern-day Scrooge.
Scooged (rated #5, but it is my #1) does compete with the top two as determined by Dave Trumbore. I, however, have them ranked in reverse order and both after Scrooged in my personal list:
1. A Christmas Carol (1951) Alastair Sim (my # 3)
2. A Christmas Carol (1938) (my # 2) An earie classic - wonderful to watch even 82 years later - 82 years old and still holding its own!
In conclusion: Much like college football, pre-BCS championship sellout, the fun is in the argument as to #1, so watch and opine away.
It’s just not Christmas until two things happen on my TV:
I watch my #1 Scrooged (note: checked off the day after Thanksgiving here in 2021) and …
“It's not Christmas until Hans Gruber falls from Nakatomi plaza” (Die Hard is a Christmas movie – change my mind).
Sunday, December 5, 2021
Thursday, December 2, 2021
Construction of the 87th Avenue Bridge - coming to Palmetto Bay in Fall, 2022, at least per this County Fact Sheet
The information provided in this fact sheet do not appear to be consistent with the actions planned by the current members of the Palmetto Bay council. This project is moving forward, at least according to this update:Fall 2022 - we are in the last month of 2021.
How to register and participate: Virtual Public Meeting Regarding the SW 87th Avenue Bridge Project, Wed., 12-15-2021, 6:30 to 8:00 PM
Updated information / link to register for the meeting.
|Note - photo above is not the actual rendering for the bridge currently in design.|
Wednesday, December 1, 2021
Miami-Dade County DTPW sets a critical Virtual Public Meeting regarding the 87th Avenue bridge - set for December 15, 2021, from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Miami-Dade County has scheduled the meeting Palmetto Bay officials have declined to have –a detailed public meeting on the 87 Avenue bridge. The advertisement is posted below. Miami Herald subscribers can view this Miami-Dade County advertisement on Page 12A, Miami Herald, Wednesday, December 1, 2021.
This meeting didn’t just pop up overnight. I am not sure why it was not discussed by the current mayor and council members at the Palmetto Bay Special Council meetings held Monday, November 29. Perhaps they were caught by surprise at the public notice in the Wednesday paper (although advertisement deadlines required that this advertisement be submitted days prior to the Monday meetings). Unfortunately, the current Palmetto Bay administration appears to prefer to restrict information rather than promote robust public discussions.
Regardless – who should attend? (I bet you, the reader, meets at list one of those listed below):
Those concerned (for and/or against) the bridge.
· Cyclists who want input as to the planned dedicated bike lanes (including, not just for the bridge, but for all of 87 avenue).
· Those interested in connectivity for golf carts.
· Pedestrians (who plan on walking this section – to see what protective walking areas the County has planned as they are not included in ‘dedicated’ bike lanes).
· Those interested in ensuring that drought resistant native plants will be used for landscaping.
· Those interested in this project adding value to the area (more than ‘just a bridge’ – the additional amenities).
Note the project will include lighting, fencing and landscaping - all of which will impact the immediate area.
Also note: This is a Miami-Dade County planned project, so we want to watch this project to ensure that it does not become another 136th Street MEGA sidewalk fiasco as planned by Palmetto Bay officials.
Also note - the planned amenities are those planned by Miami-Dade County and were never mentioned or sought by Palmetto Bay Officials during the many months of negotiations were held on the proposed Interlocal A
More information (for those who truly want to be ‘in the loop’ on this matter: email: DTPWOutreach@miamidade.gov
Friday, November 26, 2021
Kicking off the 2021 Christmas Season music - A Charlie Brown Christmas - Christmas Time is Here Song
Thursday, November 25, 2021
The holiday season is officially upon us! Have a happy and safe Thanksgiving.There is much to be grateful for this Thanksgiving. Alexandra, Katherine, Meredith and I wish you and your family the happiest of holidays.
Like millions of others across this great country, we will celebrate Thanksgiving, honoring a tradition older than the nation itself. The Continental Congress proclaimed that the "inhabitants of these states" observe a day of Thanksgiving back in 1782. Ever since then we set this day aside to give thanks for all our blessings, and this year we have many things for which to be thankful.
Please also take the time to remember and help the less fortunate. Many families and children are doing with less, Take the time to become involved in a local charity, with time, if not a donation. There are many ongoing charities that are looking for donations and volunteers.
Thanksgiving is the busiest traveling season of the year. Please be aware and be safe.
One of my personal favorite quotes about a holiday:
On Thanksgiving Day all over America, families sit down to dinner at the same moment - halftime.- (author unknown)
Very truly yours,
Monday, November 22, 2021
Preparing for this holiday week: Who remembers WKRP "As God as my witness, I thought turkeys could fly" Happy Thanksgiving
Thursday, November 18, 2021
Nov 18, 2021 Update to POD of 9/20/2021. Non-native grass planted, appears to be no requirement to replace the lost canopy. More trees lost to the ax.
The tree loss extends beyond the SW 136th Street MEGA sidewalk project. 82nd avenue is joining the streets undergoing tree diets. It now appears as if no trees ever stood on the Northeast corner of SW 152 Street and 82nd Avenue. But there were - the Oaks were at least 50 years old. They survive many storms, including Hurricane Andrew in 1992, but they could not survive the chain saw.
Where is the tree maintenance / replanting program that Palmetto Bay once took pride in?
Answer? There are new policies at play that reflect the current priorities (or lack of) for this current mayor and council.
For background, see prior related post of Monday, September 20, 2021, POD. Monday, 9/20/2021. Time to grind some stumps and sweep more issues under the rug.
Photos from the prior post documenting what once stood there:
Saturday, November 13, 2021
The ay was flat smooth. Shore birds doing their thing, staying just out of reach. The water was clear, so you could see some fish close to shore doing their thing.