September 19th, 2019
“(Gutn morgn) גוטן מאָרגן” or “Good Morning!!!” in Yiddish, a Jewish language that developed from Medieval German with influences from Hebrew, Aramaic, and various Slavic languages.
Last Thursday eighteen years ago, the day after the attacks on 9/11, I saw and felt something beautiful in the horror. As a nation we cried, got angry and reached out to one another with support and tolerance for the first time in a very long time. It was a great day to be a proud American of any shape, gender, color, religion or sexual orientation. The true tragedy in all this is that it took a horrible act of aggression and murder to bring us together. I imagine it was much the same on December 8th, 1941 after Pearl Harbor was attacked. We flocked to the recruiting centers wanting to “do our part”. I wonder what would happen if we recruited people to help address the conditions leading to such terrible acts of desperation. I wonder what we could do if we didn’t need national pain and horror to unite as a people. On September 12, 2001, we set aside our petty differences and our self-interest. We cried for strangers very different than ourselves, seeing only the things that made us alike. We set a national grim determination to help the first responders and in any way we could. What can we do to act and feel like that on September 19th and every day afterwards. What good would we do for each other and the world? 
In my tottering old age, I have become very found of several of the British shows on PBS. Most recently, I have been binging on Midsummer Murders. Apparently, the locations for the filming are spread across Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire areas. Given the frequency and number of murders per episode, it must be a deadly place. But I digress. The reason I mention this show is that when DCI Tom Barnaby retired (after 13 seasons), he was replaced by his cousin, DCI John Barnaby, the new Barnaby came with this really delightful dog, Sykes. From my perspective, to see Sykes is to love Sykes. He is so expressive and plays his role so well, I can only assume he writes his parts in the script. Nothing would surprise me. Check it out, I watch on Roku but they also show on Netflix.

Here is Sykes

! Oh Man!! The very next episode we find out that Sykes passed away. In real life, Sykes died in June of this year. He was a 7month old stray when his trainer found him in 2004 and in addition to 4 seasons of Midsummer Murders, Sykes also was a significant star in movies and commercials. Films that Sykes appeared in include Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, The Other Boleyn Girl, Young Victoria, The Dutchess, Alexander, Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, The Wolfman and Clash of Titans.[2].

Here is the link to Syke’s Memorial on Facebook

. It got over 14,000 likes and hearts, 2500 comments and was shared almost 4,000 times. RIP Sykes old chum! Thanks for all the smiles!

This week I learned some stuff:
•I saw something that seemed to make a lot of sense to me on Facebook about Heart Attacks and Drinking water. The article was pretty comprehensive and the logic of the embedded anatomy lesson seemed reasonable. It included a pretty good description of the symptoms, some discussion about how aspirin may help and an admonition to seek help immediately and inform the responders that you did take two aspirin. I saw no downside to sharing the article so I did. But maybe there is a downside that my uneducated dumbass, couldn’t detect and intending well, passed on information that might actually hurt some one. I really don’t think that is the case here but what if ? Is there enough risk to stop information transfer like this? 
•September 19th the 262th day of the year (only 97 days till Christmas!) and has been a busy day in history. In 1778, The Continental Congress passed the first United States Federal Budget, the United States began to pay its Revolutionary War debt and regulate federal finances; President James Garfield was assassinated. Chester A. Arther became president; Charlie Chaplin was barred from returning to the US after a trip to London; Plumbbob Rainier becomes the first nuclear device detonated entirely underground producing no nuclear fallout in 1957; St Kitts and Nevis gain independence from Britain; in 2010, the Deep Water Horizon oil well has stopped leaking and is sealed; Leon Jaworski was born on this day in 1905; Adam West, aka Batman, was born in 1928; Bill Medley, 1/2 of the Rightous Brothers was born in 1940; Gram Parsons of the Byrds and Flying Burrito Bothers passed away on this date in 1973; And September 19th is also Armed Forces Day in Chile.
Website Update:
•Week two for our  “New” Vocabulary Quiz!
•Last week for the Music Trivia Quiz (again!).
  • This week I didn’t add any new recipes. 
Writing, Ceramics and Painting Update:
•It is good getting back to school. I worked on my big bowl and restarted my House sing in my ceramics class.  In water colors I continue to try to do justice to Chris Spain’s photos. I painted a still life with pairI also started a couple of new paintings of some Spanish Tapas and a very cool old door.
•Grandpa Stories is still not re-published. 
•I have always been a student of history and believe the old adage about, “Those who do not learn history are doomed repeat it. put forth by philosopher, George Santayana. So I have been learning about history my entire life. One of my all time favorite books published in 1974 is “The Glory and the Dream by William Manchester.  This two volume set covering the United States from 1932 to 1972 was set up much like a series of newspaper articles describing the events of the day socially and politically in plain language that was educational and helped understand historic moments by day, at least to me. It helped me trace and understand the root causes to some of the events of the day, like that pesky Viet Nam thing and those grumpy Cubans. It was a best seller in 1975. Manchester authored 18 books (novels, biographies and histories) before he passed away in 2004.  I found him to be a no-nonsense but compassionate author who was able to capture the humanity in the subjects and times that he wrote about.
Music Update:
Once again this week, I have created a very nice collection of song samples that I think celebrate life in a grand way!
•Gordon Lightfood — Carefree Highway — This wonderful Canadian songwriter put this out on his 1975 release, “Sundown” as I was heading back into the Navy because my wife got her self pregnant.  Sundown won all kinds of commercial success for my Canadian friend but I always loved this song the most. 
•Harry Chapin — Taxi —  One of he truly great musical story telling songwriter. Harry gave us such moving music and from all accounts died in a car wreck at 39 years of age. Harry was generous man deep into his campaign to address world hunger, a dedicated husband and father of five kids. 
•The Cars — You Might Think — This band blew up MTV in the early days and captured a huge audience with their unique style. We lost Ric Ocasek the 5th of September of this year. He was 75 years old. This one was released in 1984 on their “Heartbeat City” album.
•Roger Miller — Dang Me — Roger wrote a lot of C&W hits for a lot of C&W players before he started recording his own music and then just having fun making up funny songs. This one comes from his 1964 album, “Roger and Out.” He had is own prime time tv show for awhile and he was really funny. He liked to make all these rather strange sounds with his voice and weave them into his songs. Made me smile.
•Billy Joel – Only the Good Die Young — One of my favorites from BJ!! Reminds me of the girls I knew from St. Theresa when I was wearing mohair sweaters. “I would rather laugh with the sinners than cry with the saints!” Ain’t life grand! This comes from his 1977 release, “The Stranger.” 
•Mike and The Mechanics — Get Up — This one should be on everyone’s cardio play list. From their “Word of Mouth” album released in 1991. I love the piano and guitar work on this one a lot! Now just do it you all, just Get Up! 
•John Hall and Darryl Oates  — I Can’t Go for That (No Can Do) — These boys just hit the scene and took over the radio for awhile. I always thought their music was nice and tight. Charles DeChant plays the sax on this one. Released in 1981 on their 10th studio album, “Private Eyes”.  Darryl Hall said the lyrics are about the music biz and not some manipulative fem fatale as many have assumed.
That’s it… Do the best you can;  Laugh every chance you get;  And always remember …  The best is yet to come!  As always, thank you for being my friend!