The Look of Local Fashion Show – 9/27/16 – 6pm – The Garment District

This is going to be so much fun.  This year I get to participate as a vendor in The Look of Local Fashion Show, an event put on by Cambridge Local First in conjunction with The Garment District and Boston Costume and a bunch of the most happening local businesses around.  It is going to be fantastic.

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#Riverfest2016 at Assembly Row Tomorrow 12-8pm

My first Fall show is upon us!  That’s right, it’s Riverfest 2016!  Everything is happening tomorrow from 12-8pm and when I say everything I mean absolutely everything.

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Check out this lineup:

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Moving- the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

The extended radio silence around here has been due to several factors.  The major factor has been because Geoff and I spent the better part of this summer looking for and then buying a house.  (YAY HOUSE!!!!!)  Then we had to move.

We had to move ALL the stuff and things.  And ALL the books.  OMG.

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Martha’s Vineyard: a much needed vacation (Part One)

It has been a busy and often stressful last few weeks, but Kelly and I had the chance to get away for a few days with the dogs.  We boarded Scratch, and hopefully he will get all sorts of attention from the vet techs while we are gone.

They worried while we were packing.

They worried while we were packing.

Much like the first family, who is also on the island this week, Kelly and I have spent the last few days on Martha’s Vineyard.  It is the first time I have been on the island in over 30 years.   Continue reading

The 2016 election takes a turn for the surreal

This would be a noteworthy and historic election in any circumstances because of the selection of Hillary Rodham Clinton as the first woman to be nominated for President of the United States by a major political party.  And as much as I have problems with many of Clinton’s policy choices over the years, generally speaking I would consider her to be a highly experienced politician and quite well qualified.

Then there’s the other party and their nominee.  If someone had written this story ten years ago as fiction, people would have thought it was totally over-the top.  An egomaniacal reality TV star has gained the party’s nomination for President, and in the meantime, has also pretty much wrenched control of the party away from the establishment.  And to top it all off, there are now questions as to the exact nature of the relationship between Trump and Russia, for God’s sake.

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“Do you miss the South now?”

That’s a question I am often asked in winter here in Boston by people who know me, especially on particularly cold days.  My answer is always no, no matter how snowy and miserable and cold it is.  And the reason for that is because while I don’t mind cold winters, I really, really don’t like hot summers.  Plenty of people don’t feel the same way, which is probably why so many people from the Northeast retire to Florida.  But I would always rather put up with nasty Boston winters than brutal Alabama summers.  And it’s why on days like today (when it’s supposed to get over 90 degrees) I long for winter to return.

Being the weather geek I am, let me break it down for you with some data.

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Time for some GoT escapism…

because the real world has been just awful lately.  Terrible.  Horrible.  I just can’t bring myself to talk more about it because it’s just too depressing.  Things just get worse and worse rather than better.

So yeah, let’s talk about Westeros – the North in particular, although I am sure I will wander around to other places at some point.

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Sometimes, there’s just too much going on to write

In the time since our last posts, so much has happened in our lives, and in the greater world, and in the world of GoT, that it feels truly overwhelming.  I can’t keep up with it all.  If I was to try to describe everything in great detail, it would take multiple posts of extraordinary length.  And right now I don’t have the time or the energy.

I am just going to try to summarize everything with just one one post.  At least for now.

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An appeal for a special U.S. Park Service Ranger #bettyreidsoskin

Before I start talking about this particular Park Service ranger, I wanted to put it in context of my own relationship with the Park Service.  I have been a fan of the Park Service for a very, very long time, at least since I was a boy.  And for about a decade in my twenties and early thirties I was a volunteer for them at Stones River National Battlefield (in fact, you can occasionally still see a photo of me in my Union Army Civil War uniform in old park literature) in Murfreesboro, Tennessee.  Occasionally I also did programs at other Civil War battlefields and sites.  I miss it, frankly.  Perhaps one day I will be in a position to do that sort of volunteer work again.

Anyway, I still read a lot about things going on with the Park Service and I generally try to keep up with things going on with NPS.  Like any organization, NPS has its celebrities.  I had the privilege of meeting one of them, Civil War historian Ed Bearss, now retired, on several occasions.  Ed is a warm, funny, extremely intelligent and knowledgeable guy with an incredible work ethic.  And in that regard I am reminded of him by Betty Reid Soskin, another NPS celebrity.  Betty is an extraordinary woman who also happens to be the oldest serving U.S. Park Service Ranger.  She currently works at the Rosie the Riveter/World War II Home Front National Park in Richmond, California.  In fact, Betty was absolutely instrumental in the creation of that historic park.  And since she herself lived through the events preserved at the site, she has her own unique and fascinating stories to tell about that time in our history, including what it was like to be a woman of color in that segregated era.

US Park Service Ranger Betty Reid Soskin

US Park Service Ranger Betty Reid Soskin (photo by Justin Sullivan via NPR)

Last year she lit the National Christmas Tree and got to meet President Barack Obama, who gave her a special commemorative coin as a souvenir and gift.  At the ceremony, she carried a photograph of her great-grandmother, who was born a slave in 1846 and died in 1948 at the age of 102.  She carried the same photograph in her pocket in 2009, when she witnessed President Obama’s inauguration.

AND… she’s an avid blogger.  She’s that awesome.

Well, something terrible happened to her this past Monday.  She was beaten and robbed in her own home there in Richmond.  And one of the things the a**hole thief took from her was the coin the President gave her.

What kind of person does that?  Who attacks a 94-year-old woman? How utterly depraved and/or desperate do you have to be to do that?  God, I hope the police catch whoever did this to her.  And the President has already said that he will replace the coin.

Luckily, she seems to be recovering.  But if you want to help her, the Rosie the Riveter Trust has organized a fund to help Betty out with her expenses while she recovers.  And being the awesome person she is, Betty has already said that any excess funds will be used for a special documentary film history project about her life.

Glad you are still with us, Betty, and from the East Coast, we all wish you the very best and hope you get well soon.  We love you.

-Geoff

 

Brexit gets uglier and uglier

Well, now that the consequences of the UK voting to leave the EU have had some time to sink in, it is both fascinating and disturbing to see just what a lot of people thought they were voting for.  Much has been made of the reports that a lot of people in the UK were googling terms like “what is the EU?” the day after the vote.  I am not sure whether or not that data is accurate, and apparently there are other people who feel the same way.  Still, it does seem that a significant number of people in the UK are acting as if the “stay” or “leave” question was not based on the UK leaving the EU, but on whether or not non-white and/or non-British people should “stay” in the UK or “leave”.  And in the minds of many of these people, that answer is pretty clear.

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