Don't believe what your eyes are telling you. All they show is limitation. Look with your understanding, find out what you already know, and you'll see the way to fly.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

365 - Three Sixty Five

365 days ago, I realized I did not like the number 46, so to try to offset that negativity, my year long project was to blog something positive about each day.  For the most part, I believe I was successful.  I tried hard not to write blithe statements, to find something that really was positive about the day.  Did it help my outlook?  Yes, at times.  When the day was going in the wrong direction, I would start thinking, "What am I going to write???" 

But more than that, did it have an impact on 46 changing to 47 tomorrow?  Actually, I think it did.  Don't get me wrong, I don't like this number any better but it's not deniable.  Will I continue blogging?  Probably.  It does help me keep focus.  I will be changing away from the 46-365 blog as that was just for this past year.  New blog site, that isn't named/confined to just a year, is .

So to the year ahead - I hope you're a good one!

Friday, July 30, 2010

364 - Teen Troupe

Tonight, the inaugural ABET Teen Troupe performed "A Mad Breakfast" to a full house of family and friends.  The teens did a very nice job with the one-Act play.  My videography, for not having seen the show, wasn't bad. Evidently, the kids are thrilled to be getting a DVD of their show, and I'm glad to provide it.

Theatre ... it brings life to life!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

363 - Back to the Parade

The final weekend of Parade begins.  Tonight, Joe told me to take the center seat in the back row for videoing.  It was a nice, stable place.  Cast was ON.  My videoing was almost "on".  The audience ... they seemed to be watching a different show.  Strange laughter, and over done applause.  I'm sure it threw the cast, but that certainly didn't show.

It has been incredible being an adopted member of the cast/crew of this show.  All I can hope is that the DVD finished product lives up to my expectations and is a fitting tribute to this show.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

362 - Side Effects

In the pic above, Oliver is not thrilled to be heading back to the vet, but I had to.  He hasn't had a bowel movement, is "leaking" badly, and vomiting.  The good news - he's not blocked again.  The bad news - this is side effects from the Baytril (antibiotic).  So, we're switching to Amoxicillin and I'm going to back off his Laxtulose.  I hate seeing him uncomfortable and not being able to do anything.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

361 - A Little Time Out

This evening was dedicated to Nome, Alaska ...  Not many movies scare me, but this one did.  It was very well done.  Scenes made to look like actual interviews with the psychologist that treated the folks who were abducted (and returned) by the aliens were incredibly real.  So real that I had to do some internet research to see if the abductions in Nome were true.  (They weren't.)

This movie was worth the couple hours out of my evening.

Monday, July 26, 2010

360 - Happy Birthday To My Mother!

Mother and Dad on our cruise, Feb 2009

Mother's birthday is today. What better positive could there be (especially on a Monday)? I tell everyone how incredible she is .... at her young age, after wrist surgery in March and breaking her ankle in late May, she still rode her motorcycle from East Tennessee to Cody Wyoming. She and Dad are hosting a motorcycling weekend with probably a hundred or more friends over Labor Day. She's the consummate hostess and kind to everyone. I'm a very lucky daughter.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

359 - Unexpected Rest

I was supposed to video record a show up at Stage Aurora on the Northside of Jax. A delay in finding out if I could record, combined with getting a little lost then not being able to find the correct back door led to me not even getting into the theatre until after the show had already started. So, I went home. I felt really badly about how it worked out because I wanted to do this for Anthony, but I did get to crash on the couch for the afternoon. Then early to bed and a long night's sleep (much needed)!


Saturday, July 24, 2010

358 - Bowling, Sort Of

Our heart-shaped Theatre Bowlers (minus a couple of peeps)

After the show, about 30 of us went to Cosmic Bowling (almost directly across from the theatre). It was, without a doubt, the craziest "bowling" I've been a part of. There was more dancing, talking, singing and eating than bowling going on. And if someone was out having a smoke, we just bowled their turn for them. The lanes closed at 2am, and they pretty much had to get the group to leave. What an awesomely fun evening!!!!

Doing the Cupid Shuffle in Bowling Shoes

Friday, July 23, 2010

357 - TGIF & A Packed Evening

Tonight, I met Teri at Buddha's Belly for dinner prior to going to Players for Parade. It was wonderful to be able to sit and catch up. At Players, I have her a tour of the theatre and introduced her to a lot of peeps. A good number said they saw the article announcing her new position as Riverside Arts Market Director. The show was good, and Teri enjoyed it. Bill asked me if I was sick of them and the show yet. Nope. It's much more fun to be at the theatre with all that energy than to be sitting at home watching re-runs. After the show, about 20 of us crashed Taco Lau's. It was too loud to have any in-depth conversation, but I did get to catch up with Stacy.

You know you're with theatre peeps when some of them sing ALL of Rent's "La Vie Boheme". It was cute!


Thursday, July 22, 2010

356 - Roto-Rooted

My poor boy. He blocked up again, so Dr. Goricki had to "roto-rooter" him again. He's dropped more than a pound since the last time he was in, which isn't good. Doing blood tests to check his calcium levels.

Phase 2 on his treatment is here. I knew the day would come, just never knew when. 2x a week now, I'll be giving Oliver subcutaneous fluids. He is NOT going to happy to see an I.V. hanging in the house again.

The positive - we haven't run out of treatment options, and he came through today's procedure.


Wednesday, July 21, 2010

355 - Hide and Seek

It's been too damned hot to have Happy Hour in the back yard with the 'kids', so tonight, Diva and I played hide and seek. I have Diva sit and stay by the sliding doors, then 'hide' one of her toys in another room. When I tell her to "Find" she goes looking for it, and when she brings it back, we do it all over again. At first, I hide it in plain sight, but each hiding gets a little more difficult. Never really hard, but not laying in the middle of the floor. She has the hardest time if the ball/toy is up on a chair, but after a couple of those, she knows to look up too. Good way to engage the hunter side of her breeding.


Tuesday, July 20, 2010

354 - Video Montage

I spent some time, on and off, for the past couple of days putting together a video montage of Parade at Players By The Sea.  My first draft was 17 minutes long.  Even I knew that was too long!  So, I got it trimmed down to 10 minutes.  Zeina's response was that she needed it about 90 seconds long.  OY!  How to cut all this beautiful music down to 90 seconds.  The detail person in me said, "Ok.  I can have 9 10-second clips."  That made it much easier to trim.  The final product, I have to admit, I'm very proud of.  While not all of the soloists are featured, I think it captures a good glimpse of the show.

To say I'm enjoying being behind the tripod again is an understatement. It's loads of fun, and the editing process taps into parts of my creativity that haven't been used in a while.

Here's the link to the video:



Monday, July 19, 2010

353 - Madam Director!

From ....

Riverside Arts Market has New Director
She’ll head the popular Riverside shopping site starting Aug. 16.
By Charlie Patton

Since she was a child, Teri Coutu has had a recurring dream. She starts to fly but then she begins to question herself. And she falls back to Earth.

She even wrote a book, “Don’t Think So Hard and You Can Fly.”

So when Coutu heard there was an opening for a new director for the Riverside Arts Market, she reread her own book. It helped inspire her to go for it.

Market officials have announced that Coutu, who spent the last two decades working in health administration, got the job.

She’ll start Aug. 16, replacing interim director Wayne Wood. Wood, who is on the market’s steering committee, took over after Tony Allegretti, who had run the market since it launched in the spring of 2009, stepped down at the end of May.

Wood called Coutu the perfect person to lead the Riverside Arts Market. “She’s wonderfully articulate and knowledgeable,” he said.

Coutu, 43, who grew up in Michigan, moved to Jacksonville in the early 1990s to complete her bachelor’s degree in community health at the University of North Florida.

She earned a master’s in health administration from the University of Florida. Most recently, she has been working as associate director of the Area Health Education Center, a nonprofit.

Coutu, a singer, guitarist and songwriter, said that while she’s enjoyed working in the health field, her first love has always been music.

She said when the Riverside Arts Market job became open, it seemed like an opportunity to take her administrative and organizational skills and “funnel them into something that’s my passion — music and the arts.”

Until this weekend, her involvement with the arts market was as a performer. She played there twice last year, once as the headliner, and her band is scheduled to play again Nov. 6. By then Coutu, who plans to spend Saturday volunteering at the market until she becomes director, hopes she has the market running well enough to spend a couple of hours on stage.

The Riverside Arts Market, which is scheduled to be open each Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. through December underneath the Fuller Warren Bridge, is operated under the auspices of Riverside Avondale Preservation.
We had a celebratory dinner tonight with about a dozen or so in attendance.  It was good to see some folks I haven't seen in a while.  Then after leaving 5 Points and heading towards I-95, I see 3 friends that I hadn't seen since April.  More catching up was done.
This is most definately a positive!

352 - That Scary Thing

The auditions for Sugar Bean Sisters were this afternoon at ABET.  I've said it before and I'll say it again - auditions are much more nerve wracking than performances. 

Monday update:  There had to be close to 30 people auditioning; competition was tough. No dice, this time.  Maybe next.  It's ok, though, as my self esteem doesn't live or die by being cast in shows.  Still very involved in theatre projects.


Saturday, July 17, 2010

351 - Sleeping In

After 4 nights in a row of getting to sleep after midnight, this morning was a morning for sleeping in.  After getting up, feeding the kids and having breakfast, we all crashed again.  Fortunately, there was nothing that couldn't be put off in order to catch up on some z's!


Friday, July 16, 2010

350 - Opening Night - Pride and Shame

This is a picture of a postcard currently for sale online, $385.  It's a photo of the crowd gathered around the dead, hanging body of Leo Frank in 1915.

Tonight, I shut off the videographer in my mind and once again became a theatre patron.  After a wonderful dinner with Holly and Redgie, it was off to opening night of Parade.  After being at the theatre for the past 3 nights, I was now really familiar with the show.  For me, the more familiar I am, the more the emotions ring.  I don't have to think and understand, I can just be.  Sitting in the front row with a wall of sound just a few feet away from me, I could "just be" and many of the storie's layers hit home.

For the purpose of expediency, here's a brief introduction/history of what happened in 1913.  "Leo Max Frank (April 17, 1884 – August 17, 1915) was an American man, the superintendent of a pencil factory in Atlanta, Georgia. Frank was convicted of the murder of one of his factory workers, 13-year-old Mary Phagan. The case is widely regarded as having been a miscarriage of justice.

It was the focus of many conflicting cultural pressures, and the jury's conclusion represented, in part, class and regional resentment of educated Northern industrialists who were perceived to be wielding too much power in the South, threatening Southern culture and morality. The trial was sensationalized by the media. The publisher and former U.S. Representative Thomas E. Watson used the case to build personal political power and support for a revival of the Ku Klux Klan.

Shortly after Frank's conviction, new evidence emerged that cast doubt on his guilt. After the governor commuted his death sentence to life imprisonment, Frank was kidnapped from prison and lynched by a group of citizens who called themselves the Knights of Mary Phagan. The ringleaders included a former governor, a senator's son, a Methodist minister, a state legislator, and a former state Superior Court judge.

In 1913, in response to Frank's conviction, the B'nai B'rith founded the Anti-Defamation League. Ultimately, in 1986, "[w]ithout attempting to address the question of guilt or innocence," Georgia granted Frank a pardon."  [ ]

Jason Robert Brown's musical stayed very, very close to the actual reports of the case and trial.  The music is powerful and emotional, and the story very poignant.  The Players By The Sea production sports a cast of 30, an orchestra of 8, and most of our best theatre people in Jacksonville.  When I saw the tech rehearsal on Tuesday, I was stunned; when I saw it tonight, I was left emotionally exhausted.

I cannot find a weak link in the cast ... at all!  With a cast this big, that's unusual, but there is none.  The leads are beyond phenomenal.  Their character work to completely encompass these actual people in our history is stellar.  Josh and Staci especially - the emotional journey their character's take must be extremely difficult and their portrayal is not only believable but where even if you know them, you forget who they are in real life.  They are Leo and Lucille Frank.  After I got home tonight, I sent out a couple of emails encouraging some friends to make reservations to see this show.  My comment - I haven't been this moved, this "WOW'd" by a production since I saw Light in the Piazza in New York.  I can't give much higher praise than that.

The production/cast/orchestra/crew is the "pride" part of this blog.  The "shame" part comes from that ugly part of the southern heritage.  Back on March 5th, I wrote the following concerning the song "Strange Fruit" from Lady Day at Emerson's Bar and Grill: "I felt ashamed at how some in the generations prior to us treated black people. Bigotry is something I cannot wrap my mind around, that someone could treat another human being in that manner no matter what their reason. As much as it horrifies me, I'm glad that I cannot fathom it."  This show, Parade, brought out the same shame.

Talking with Michael during intermission tonight, I told him how I'm very proud to be a Southerner but there are parts of that heritage that I am ashamed of.  I know, I know - it was another time completely, something that many have finally evolved past.  That still doesn't mean it isn't ugly.  The lynching of Leo Frank brought the KKK back into existence; the politics behind them breaking him OUT of jail to hang him got the next governor elected.  People danced around his body; they sold pieces of the hanging rope as souvenirs.  There were post cards made of the lynching.  Hell, they even wanted to lynch Slaton, the governor who commuted Frank's sentence from death to life in prison.  That is reprehensible.  What scares me is that there are people out there, in 2010, who still believe this same way.

But, back to the production at Players - there are not enough superlatives to give credence to this show.  Hat's off and deep bows to everyone involved.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

349 - Oath of Citizenship

Today, one of our developers at work was downtown to take her citizenship oath.  She's from India, has been her for about 7 years, and today became a US Citizen.  I think this is very, very cool.  Tomorrow when she's back in the office, we'll have a congratulatory cake for her!

It was Family and Friends night at PBTS; the last performance of Parade before opening night.  It was like 'old home week'.  People I hadn't seen in a few months or a few years were there, and I was able to give them a big hug and do a quick catch up!


Wednesday, July 14, 2010

348 - Tech

Last night, tonight and tomorrow night, I'm doing my base recording for Parade at Players By The Sea.  Because I know I'll be writing about it after opening night on Friday, I won't say much now except that the show is INCREDIBLE!  My plan is to video from 3 angles, and pray I can splice a musical together.


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

347 - BB2

Today, I had the privilege of being at the 3D ultrasound for "BB2" (Baby Bucci 2).  He wasn't very cooperative, kept hiding his face.  So the tech had Linda walk around and drink some fruit juice, hoping to liven him up.  He didn't liven up much, but he did finally show us his face.  He looks a lot like T-ster did at this point.

It's absolutely amazing that they can get these photos.

Monday, July 12, 2010

346 - More Vacation?

When I first scheduled my vacation, I planned on taking Friday, July 2nd off.  Then I realized it was end of month, so I changed my vacation to starting on July 3rd.  What I forgot, however, was that Outlook keeps the number of days or hours the same if you update a current calendar item. 

I got to work, and Steve looked at me saying, "What are you doing here?"  He told me I was still on vacation.  Later in the morning, Joe (boss) said the same thing, so I checked Outlook.  Sure enough, when I changed the start date of my vacation from July 2nd to July 3rd, Outlook changed the end date from July 11th to July 12th.  By lunch, I'd caught up all the stuff that didn't get done while I was gone, and took the rest of the day off.  After all, they weren't expecting me to be there.


Sunday, July 11, 2010

345 - A Day of Rest

After vacation where I was going to sleep on Wyoming time, but waking up on Floria Time, and then being out late with the nutty crowd, today is a total vegetable day.  I didn't even get to laundry .... and that is good.


Saturday, July 10, 2010

344 - Home and Friends

This morning at 4:30am, I woke up in Denver, dropped off the rental car and caught the shuttle bus to the airport.  The pic above is sunrise in Denver.  It was so good to see my 'kids' again when I got home, but I wasn't home long.  Dinner and a show with friends.

I met up with Evan, Judy, Ilana, Zeina and Lee at Buddha's Belly for an incredible dinner.  The food was so good that I overate, something I rarely do. The conversation was so much fun.  Then it was off to ABET to see Almost, Maine, featuring Jaclyn, our lead in the first show I was in.  Fortunately, the show was funny - I might have fallen asleep in a drama!  Zeina didn't come to the show, but Gary did, so we were still a group of 6. We were laughing so hard, before, during and after the show.  It was good to be home!


Friday, July 9, 2010

343 - Until We Meet Again

Today, the saddest day of vacation; the day I head home.  I'm not ready.  I feel there's more I need to do here in Wyoming, but I've run out of time.  There's a seat on a plane waiting for me tomorrow morning, and lots to do once I get back to Jacksonville.

Fortunately, I was able to get away from Cody without seeing anyone (besides Suzann) that I needed to say goodbye to.  All the goodbye's, be safe, see you next year's were said the night before.  It literally took over an hour to get out of the banquet room with everyone I wanted to see or who wanted to see me.  This morning, I was on the road by 7am.

When I got to Wind River Canyon (2 pics above), I got the video camera out, and videoed most of the run through the canyon.  Don't know yet how it turned out.

Further south in Wyoming, I saw the sign "Hell's Half Acre," and this time was able to quickly stop.  (I saw the sign last Sunday but couldn't get stopped in time to turn in.)  I was the only one there, and it was a very interesting experience. 

"Hell's Half Acre - a geological masterpiece. ... To those who have not experienced Hell's Half Acre, the name would suggest a small parcel of land, when in fact, the half acre encompasses more than 300 acres in the middle of the Wyoming prairie, flanked by mountains and valleys. Over fifty million years ago, the Earth was shifting and wreaking havoc. Left behind the restless movements of aging Earth were depressions and breaks in the land. ... There are many stories haunting the hills and lurking in the shadows. The ghost of a beautiful young Indian woman moves freely through the canyons, protecting the area and warding off evil. The spirits of tens of thousands of buffalo who perished by plummeting off cliffs now roam the deserted range. It is rumored that a mysterious, dark, unsocial figure lurks inside one of the many dark and labyrinth-type caves. This eerie shadow has been seen by many a weary traveler along Wyoming Highway 20/26, leaving them with the impression that 'something' is there."

As I said, I was by myself, and spent over 30 minutes there, looking at the rock formations, imagining herds of buffalo plunging to their deaths as Indians chased them over the cliffs, and just listening.  There is most definately something mystical there.  I walked as close to the edge of some of the cliffs as I dared; I did not want my bones scattered amongst those of the buffalo.  Will post pics when I can get them out of my camera.

On the way to Denver, I was able to have a quick dinner with Samantha.  She's such a lovely young woman to sit and talk with.  It's sad, to me, that we'll be 2000 miles apart again.  I hate when young friendships have to survive the test of space so soon.  As I was getting ready to leave Cheyenne, the skies opened up with quarter-sized hail and heavy rain.  Sam said it was Cheyenne telling me I wasn't to leave.  I think it might have also been my spirit saying it wasn't time to leave.  I'll be back ... I know it.

Until then,

Thursday, July 8, 2010

342 - Deja Vu

This morning, it was back to Bear's Tooth Pass.  Dad and the rest of the gang hadn't ridden it yet.  We let them go on, and Suzann, Keith and I stopped often for photos.  Here's some of my favs:

Yes, there was snow on both sides of the road near the top.  (This pic was taken while riding.)

Dad at the top.

Mother's bike; my helmet.

Keith and Suzann before heading down the mountain to Montana.

We also had our banquet to close out convention.  It was a record setting convention - 270 members in attendence; the most ever!  It was wonderful, as always, to see my friends that I only see once a year.  I'll miss them until I see them again.

Happy Trails.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

341 - Bear Tooth Pass

A long, but great day!  Started the day by riding Bear Tooth Pass with Suzann and Pat.  Talk about the majesty of our earth!  WOW.  Absolutely stunning views.  At the top, we were above the snow line, it had to have been in the 30's at 10, 900 feet.  Brrr.  (And yes, some of these photos were taken while riding Mother's bike.)

Motor Maids' parade this afternoon.  I videoed and put the still camera on burst.  Will have a lot to compile when I get home, but that's always the way.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

340 - Buffalo Bill Cody

We had planned to ride today, but temps in the 40's with on and off rain led to a change of plans. So, a little shopping in the morning, then a tour of the Buffalo Bill Historic Center.  What a well done museum.  Multiple sections, each on something different - Buffalo Bill (of course), guns, Plains Indians, wildlife, etc.  It would take a couple of days to go through it if you read everything; definately a full day if you just skimmed.  We spent a 1/2 day and didn't go in some of the areas.

Some of my fav pics.

Dad and I before dinner.

Keith and I

Finally got my steak, and it was melt in your mouth good!