January 5th, 2023

“ Dobroho ranku”, or “Good Morning!” in Ukrainian, an Eastern Slavic language spoken mainly in Ukraine.  I have decided that the UJT will remain focused on Ukraine until we can all rejoice in the end of hostilities.  It has been 306 days since Russia attacked Ukraine.

This week I learned some stuff:
• I hope you had a wonderful New Years celebration!  My favorite New Year’s was the turn of the Millennium. My wife, Jack and I wandered around the streets of Geneva. Switzerland looking for the city’s party and ended up feeling like the very disappointed Running Buffalo Chief  character in McClintock. “Great party but where’s the whiskey!??” . Not finding it we just went home and woke up in a new century.
• The Prostate Adventure continues. I got some good news. My son, Sean is coming out to be with us when my radiation treatments begin. I guess, I have been kind of nonplussed by all this stuff but I was  moved by his decision to visit.
• Have you seen the movie “Hook”? It’s a well written impeccably acted version of Peter Pan. It is also a huge bucket of feelings for me, I am ashamed of the fact that I was a father very much like Robin Williams’ Peter. I was always working & preoccupied with my work even when I was with my kids. I guess in addition to truly loving my jobs, I was driven by fear of failing them followed by sadness later because they grew up and I had missed so much.
• January 5th is the 5th day of 2023! Just 362 days till Christmas! Today in 1781, Richmond, Virginia, is burned by British naval forces led by Benedict Arnold; Kappa Alpha Psi, the world’s third oldest and largest black fraternity, is founded at Indiana University today in 1911; On this day in 1914, the Ford Motor Company announces an eight-hour workday and minimum daily wage of $5 in salary plus bonuses; Also today in 1925, Nellie Tayloe Ross of Wyoming becomes the first female governor in the United States; Construction of the Golden Gate Bridge begins in San Francisco Bay today in 1933; US President Richard Nixon announces the Space Shuttle program today in 1972; Zebulon Pike, American general and explorer  was born today in 1779; Joseph Erlanger, American physiologist and academic, Nobel Prize laureate was born today in 1874; Jeane Dixon, American astrologer and psychic  was born today in 1904; Also born today but in 1914, George Reeves, (AKA Superman) American actor and director; Jane Wyman, American actress was born today in 1917: Robert Duvall, American actor and directo born today in 1931; Today in 1946, Diane Keaton, American actress, director, and businesswomanwas born;  Bradley Cooper, American actor and produce was born today in 1975: Died today in 1933, Calvin Coolidge, American lawyer and politician, 30th President of the United States; George Washington Carver, American botanist, educator, and inventor passed away today in 1943; Charles Mingus, American bassist, composer, bandleader died today in 1979; Today Tip O’Neill, American lawyer and politician, 55th Speaker of the United States House of Representatives passed away in 1994 ;Sonny Bono, American singer-songwriter, producer, actor, and politician died today 1998; Thomas Bopp, American astronomer best known as the co-discoverer of comet Hale–Bopp passed away today in 2013.

Website Update:
This week:
• Week 2 for Vocabulary Quiz
• Last week for our Musical Trivia Quiz
• This week I published the Spicy and Sweet Fish Kabobs recipe, a new Mac & Cheese Quiche recipe and lastly, we tried a tasty derivative of a British celebration of leftovers called, “Bubble and Squeak”. Check them out, everyone here enjoyed them.
• The Home Page quote this week is from Panama Red, “Little girls love to listen to him sing & tell sweet lies. But when things get confusin’ honey, you’re better off in bed. Cause I’ll be searchin’ all the joints in town for Panama Red”.

Writing, Ceramics, Bonsai Trees, Stained Glass and Painting Update:
•  Ever so slowly .. step..by step.. I got a little more work done on the stained glass project but no painting got done this week.
• I am continuing my streak of slacking off on the paper edits of Grandpa Stories. I just haven’t carved out any time for more chapters.


2023 will be my 3rd year of keeping a Gratitude Journal. You can google it and find different templates but most consist of a statement of what you are grateful for on this day. From that point, the contents can vary widely. My gratitude journal is where I manage my weekly menu and my todo list. Each journal entry is adjusted daily as I make or change the menu or capture a new task or accomplish my todo items. I find it enjoyable to start my day by appreciating what I have and enjoy what is coming.  Maybe its the hormone treatment or maybe I am just getting a bit mushy in my twilight years, but over the past week, I have had numerous occasions where I was just overwhelmed by my good fortune. If you haven’t taken stock of your life recently, I encourage you to give it a whirl. I think you will find a lot of reasons to be grateful. I have a family that has kept me going in mostly the right direction over the years. I am still learning from my kids and grandkids. I have been able to do almost everything I ever wanted to do (and probably a whole bunch I wasn’t so excited about). I have traveled the world. I have enjoyed doing and learning something new almost every day of this long strange trip. You folks have helped me enjoy my time and I am grateful.  Thank you.

Music Update:
This week I am  celebrating my good fortune with some remarkable music that I hope you will enjoy.

This week’s UJT Radio Program:
•   •   Stephen Stills  — So Begins the Task —  This one of my favorite songs from one of my favorite artists.  This version is from “Just Roll Tape” – a demo cut from April 1968, released in 1988. It was first released on his album, “Manassas” in 1972.
• NRPS — Panama Red — This is a blast from my checkered past that never fails to make me smile when it comes up on the rotation. NRPS, New Riders of the Purple Sage rose up out of the Grateful Dead’s traveling menagerie and magic show. At least 2 of the members started out as roadies for the Dead and would do sound check jams that Jerry Garcia would sit in on. Jerry also played guitar and slide guitar on their first album and produced for them too. Panama Red was released in 1973
•   Little Feat – Spanish Moon — This is a great cut off their album, “Feats Don’t Fail Me Now” released in 1974. We lost Freddy White, drummer for the Feat on this tune and with his brothers in the multiple grammy winning band, Earth, Wind and Fire. Freddy was 67. RIP Freddy.
• Genesis — Just a Job to Do — This is just so tight!! Phil Collins’ vocals have impressed us for years but this is a great demonstration of his great skill as a drummer too. This one is from their self titled album released in 1983.
• U2 — Who’s Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses  — It is really hard to pick a favorite U2 song but this is one of mine. This one comes from their “Achtung Baby” released in 1991.
• Jackson Browne  – The Road — This is a deep cut from Jackson’s 1978 release, “Running on Empty”. I fell in love with his music when I was living in Norfolk, VA. By the time this album came out, I was a new father making yet another tactical retreat back to Miami. I guess I hadn’t finished growing up. Anyway, this is a great song about being a touring musician.  

That’s it… Do the best you can; Laugh every chance you get; Always remember… The best is yet to come! As always, thank you for being my friend!