Wednesday, April 1, 2015

And the winner is.... Moonlight Phone - The Napkin Thief Published - Poem: My New Carpet


When I was on FB, I was shocked to find Mom's vase being advertised on there. It was sold for $350.

BTW, Blogpost in its stupendous wisdom will not allow me to enlarge the photo of the vase, as something else appears and blocks it.

Vintage Fenice Art Pottery Vase Beige Brown w/ Grape Design Made in Italy As Is. It sold for $350. I believe the vase was her mom's, Gramma Lily's.

I'm enjoying my Acrylics Art Class, taught by Jane Behrends, at Abington Adult Evening School.

Last night was Open House. All classes met in one of the cafeterias and displayed their wares on tables.

One class was teaching Ukukele. What a delightful sound they made as a group.

The Watercolor Class featured very professional paintings.

And the Woodcarvers were wonderful. The teacher had never heard of Ralph Nelms, who, in his retirement years, I believe, drove a school bus, and was also a wood carver. His wood carvings were on display at the old Upper Moreland Library. Got in touch with him and wrote a story about him for the Philadelphia Inquirer.

He lived nearby on Division Avenue.

He drove over and gave me this sculpture after he was diagnosed with ALS. His daughter wrote me a note after he had passed.

Many prizes were given away in our Acrylics Class. I was happy that my friend Bill Babb won First Prize for his many-colored Bison.

It was raining when I drove over to the high school, so I wrapped my two paintings in my red sweater and found my way to the brightly-lit noisy cafeteria.

There they were! My class. Really talented people.

I quickly named my two paintings. The winner I titled "Moonlight Phone" and the artist, I wrote, was Ruth Picasso. 

This morning I learned that my story "The Napkin Thief" was published by the publication "Manifest Station."

Dunno the meaning of 'manifest station' - looked it up but couldn't figger it out. I thought maybe it's a phrase used by Tolstoy. That idea just popped into my head.

The Napkin Thief has been rejected numerous times, so I was happy it finally found a home.

Read it here.

Story mentions that when I worked at Maryknoll Missioners in Ossining, NY, I pilfered a beautiful wooden file box from the office and replaced it with a plastic one.

Here they are.

Safe and sound in their new home.

The endless painting of my bedroom and hall continues. I allus like to show before and after photos, so here goes.

 Above is the photo on Facebook of mom's vase.
 I'm the second owner of my house. The first owners, Dave and Arlene Travis, put on three layers of wallpaper in the upstairs hall.
When my sister Donna came over, I said, "What does this remind you of?"

Of course she remembered. When we lived on Glenmore Road in Shaker Heights, my parents had an artist come out and paint a mural on the dining room wall.

The five of us kids had never seen anything like it!!! Nor had Aunt Ethel and Uncle Dave. Or the next-door neighbor, The Turnocks.

I sent David Kime a thank-you note for a donation he made for the Compass. I wanted to write a new poem to include in the envelope.

I sat upstairs in my upstairs office and typed the words


but couldn't think of a darn thing to day.

I stood, walked around, and began.

Before posting it - it's 9:25 am - I asked Dan's permish.

BTW, was gonna do some grocery shopping early this morning and then pick up Scott from the train, but my car was FILLED with frost and I could NOT get it off the windows, so I went back inside.


Let’s go for an archeological dig
in my upstairs office
knowing that after I’m
gone someone else
will tear down the walls
and begin again. Remember
when this was Dan’s room?
That weed-smoking, hip-
hop singing, comic-book
reading son of mine blew
my mind with his devil
may care ways, a mind that
unbeknownst to his mom
created a torn-paper collage
of desires, this same boy
who called his nursery school
teacher Miss Bev, “the one with
the big pink lips.”

The new carpet covers all this
buries it, a glimmer of
memory swishing like
mouthwash throughout
the vast room that once
housed the Travis Boys

I sit now, a small sparrow,
inhaling the new carpet smell
eighty-eight percent
Olefin, twelve percent Nylon
it could be grass tickling
my bare feet
or sand from when my
Jewish ancestors lived in
tents with fragrant date
palms flopping in the
hot desert breeze

My rolling desk chair
slides across the nubby
white carpet sprinkled
with flowering pinks and blues
a Matisse of a carpet
with nary a crumb
nor an eyelash nor
a fingernail to mar it
but shall in time
bear the melodies
of Leonard Cohen
Johannes Brahms
and my own queries
of who I am.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

New exhibit at Glencairn with my new friend Terry

Say hello to Teresita Pointer - Terry! - my new friend from the acrylics painting class. She drove over from her Glenside home and, since my car knows the way, I drove us to Glencairn.

It's the former home of Raymond and Mildred Pitcairn and their nine children. It was built during the Great Depression from 1928 to 1939.
Image result for glencairn museum

Wiki - It houses a collection of about 8,000 mostly religious artwork from many cultures as diverse as ancient Egyptian, ancient Greek and Roman, medieval Christian, Islamic, Asian, and Native American.

The castle-like building was the former house of billionaire businessman Raymond Pitcairn (1885–1966) and his wife, Mildred Glenn (died 1979). It consists of more than 90 rooms on 10 floors, adjacent to Ralph Adams Cram's Gothic Revival Bryn Athyn Cathedral (1913–19) and his father's home Cairnwood.

The Pitcairn fortune derived from control of Pittsburgh Plate Glass Company, of which his father John Pitcairn, Jr. (1841-1916), was director, 1896-1906. The name of the museum is a combined form of Raymond's last name and Mildred's maiden name.

 Terry was astonished by the beauty of the building, deep in the heart of a Philadelphia suburb.
 I once spoke to the man who fashioned many of the doors from Monel.
Where does one start taking pictures?

I suppose I visit Glencairn once every six months.

 Terry took a 'hip shot' of Chris Alp and me. Chris attends Bryn Athyn College and is a senior majoring in history. There's a job opening at Glencairn he hopes to get after graduating. Teaching kids right here at the Castle.
From Eden to Eternity, from the website.

This exhibition features textiles hand-stitched by the Cuna Indians along the Caribbean coast of Panama, esp the San Blas Islands.

Molas are reverse appliqué panels made for the front and back of blouses worn by Cuna women. Each mola in this exhibition illustrates a story from the Bible—from the Garden of Eden to the Ascension of Jesus Christ into heaven. Molas probably originated with the custom of body painting, traditionally done by Cuna women as early as the 17th century. By the 19th century this painting was replaced by textiles, perhaps because Christian missionaries insisted that the Cuna wear clothing.

Molas are made by women and female children, using only a needle, scissors and thimble. The Cuna have selectively adopted certain aspects of Western civilization, but continue to maintain their indigenous lifestyle and traditions. Many belong to thriving Christian congregations, and biblical themes are often depicted in their textiles.

The molas in this exhibition are on loan from the collection of Sandra and Bob Bowden. And what a collection it is!  

Shoot it Ruthie.... straight from the hip....

 The above embroidery is about Moses shooing away serpents. Did you ever hear of this? It's from Numbers in the Bible.
I was so excited to see nuns dressed in real habits. I MUST find out where they hail from. Dyou think Little Tongue-Tied Ruthie will have the nerve?

Ukraine. Sister Elisabeth and Sister Couldn't Catch her Name. They've been here two years and now are at a Russian Orthodox Catholic Church downtown.

The handsome gentleman who accompanied them did not wanna be photographed.

Glencairn has such loving people working there that the atmosphere was ripe to talk to perfect strangers.

 Veronica at the front desk was very helpful and put us on the Mailing List. Their next show, also from the Bowden collection, is by Marc Chagall.

I saw his work at the Maltz Museum in Cleveland. Read my fascinating blog.

 I loved the idea that Phoenix was the doorman. He was wearing a swell pair of sneaks.

Terry and I bought some nice gifts in the shoppe. Hmmm, wonder who will get postcards from me?
Terry is a nature-lover and gardens at her home in Glenside, where she lives with hubby Mohammed ("Mo") who is also an RN - he's at Jeane's Hospital, she's at Temple U - and their 10-yo son Nicholas. Nick sings in the choir at his North Penn school.

 I'd never noticed this courtyard until Terry pointed it out. This is the advantage of having two heads instead of one. As we bounded down a hill - why take the stairs when a hill awaits, Jack - Terry asked about my diabetes numbers.

Oh, I'm fine, I said. We were headed toward a new restaurant, two doors down from the excellent Allways Cafe.
 In the mail I got a coupon for a new Asian rest. which opened two months ago in Bethayres.
 Here's Yang, the Chinese owner, of Panda. 
The tea was delicious as was the Buddhist delight seafood platter. Enough for three servings. I injected 8, which was the perfect amount. I'm really good at estimating.

Just injected another 8 for our Saturday night pizza.

 We sat for a while at Panda and Terry worked w me on using my iPhone.

You simply TAP TAP TAP, she said.

I did!

Instead of going directly home, I asked Terry if she wanted a lil tour of the wonderful sights around Bryn Athyn.

Talk about entering Medieval Europe, which is the style of Cairnwood and the Bryn Athyn Cathedral, which we drove through. Here's another denomination of The Lord's New Church.

Drive through the cobblestone road and you'll get to a food commune. There also used to be NA meetings here.
Off on the road of life.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Dave himself came out to fix the fridge - Ed Quinn came out for paint selection - While I watched n slept thru a movie rental dans le living

I asked one of the Albanians - Zack - to take my photo. I always find new clothes when I look thru my closet. Bought this years ago at The Sweater Mill in Hatboro.

Here's Dave Foster, owner of Dave's Appliances in Horsham, PA, 19044. My credit union is there and I got a donation for the Compass - thank you MARCY!!! - so I addressed an envelope and chased after Mailman Ken.

Did you ever get the feeling, I asked him, that you were being stalked?

He smiled. I make him happy. I'm probably the only nut on his route.

Am drinking strong delicious coffee out of my new Starbux mug from my sister Donna. She advised me to come over tonite bc she's moving in THREE WEEKS.

She urged me to take whatever I wanted from 1 Drummers Way, Hatboro PA 19040.

We ate popcorn in her bedroom and I drank delicious strong coffee she made me in a chipped cup. The youngsters she lives with break everything.

That's why I use Corelle.

  Dave and "Blake" another Albanian were here a few hours. They fixed the fridge and also the icemaker.

Dave wants me to call him tomro for a report. At age 50, he's got a lucrative biz and was named Best Appliance Repair by Philadelphia Magazine. 

At age 14, he went to the Vo-tek School around the corner on Terwood Road and studied appliance repair.
Image result for eastern school for arts and technology

New name is Eastern Center for the Arts and Technology.

He began getting clients while he was still in school. He has five children and lots of grandchildren. A granddaughter, Layla, was just born last nite at AMH. He was there and didn't get much sleep. He lives in Horsham.

Great Performances on PBS. Just finished. Marvelously exciting.

From the Times:  Since its premiere in 1988, Mark Morris’s full-length dance staging of Handel’s oratorio “L’Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderato” has provoked two widespread reactions. One: How blessed we are to live in an age in which such miraculous beauty is made! Two: When will this be filmed and made available to a wider public?

That question now finds its answer in a new television film directed by Vincent Bataillon. Recorded last year at Madrid’s Teatro Real, it will be broadcast on Friday on PBS as part of “Great Performances,” with an introduction by Mikhail Baryshnikov and interviews with Mr. Morris, some members of the Mark Morris Dance Group and his music director, Colin Fowler.

Ed Quinn and his friend John were here for several hours taking stock of what they'll need to do to paint my BR and the hall, where the wallpaper is peeling off. 

 This is a funny little closet high off the bedroom floor. Nothing important is in there but it's packed. Give a person space, and they will fill it, right Cindy?
 This painting hides big gouges in the wall. Can't remember how they occurred.

John and Ed.

John retired as a fire fighter 8 yrs ago. At "the Department," as they called it, everyone did every job there was.


Driver of the Ladder Truck

Scott Pack Man - goes into the burning building, suited up

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Oxygen lasted for half an hour. Today it's 45 minutes. Get out fast. The roof could fall on you. Yes, you're scared but you're running on adreniline. You can't see. You feel your way inside. John has seen some sad sights in burning buildings. He also arrived just in time when occupants were standing on the roof of a burning bldg and his team was able to lower them down before they jumped!

Look at what happened to my former home at Village Green Apartments in Hatboro. 

Image result for village green apartments hatboro

 John also rode the Tillerman truck. It's pronounced TILLerman
Image result for tillerman truck

Ed, who studied interior design at Temple, brought his color cards with him. For my BR, to go with my lavender rug, I chose....

Charcoal gray .... as soon as I saw it.... I went wild!!!
For my hallway, the above dramatic Burgundy. I am psyched!!! But it won't happen for another month.

Donna encouraged me to take whatever I wanted. Here's a darling cup she made with three coffee spoons in it. She's a gifted potter.

Had she had the motivation - and she's really talented - she could've been another Bill Daley, who I interviewed for Art Matters.

Image result for bill daley pottery

 Steady your eyes, Dear Reader, and I'll tell you what this is. In the freezer of my dead refrigerator is this fish that Bernie Samuels gave me - bronzini or European Sea Bass - and told me how to make.

The head is on the Right.

It was filled with bones. At one point a bone got caught in my throat but I kucked it up. You'll have to figger out what that means.

Here's the mostly filleted fish.

Incredibly delicious! I picked on it throughout the day.

Then I put it in the compost heap for the feral cats.

Image result for conspiracy film  This is a difficult film to watch. Am halfway through. Award-winning by HBO. Made in 2001, it has an international cast including a very young-looking Stanley Tucci playing Colonel Eichmann.