Ithaca Blog

Sunday, October 31, 2010

James Carville at IC, Monday 1 Nov.

On the night before Election Day, Ithaca College presents James Carville, ex-political operative and current commentator.

We want to go, to see if Carville retains walloping significance, which we doubt, and to see if he is turning into a caricature of the caricature of him presented regularly on Saturday Night Live (last night, in fact).

The event is free.

It takes place at 7:30 in the Emerson Suites, address unknown at Ithaca College, the School Without Streets.

Steve Burke
for Ithaca NY Blog

Music on Halloween

Dead people can't enjoy music, or at least not live music, so on Halloween, we recommend you do, before it's too late. Eventually it will be.

How is that for Irish fatalism, in the spirit of the thing?

The Grady Girls will do a lively set at Felicia's, at 7 p.m.

The big show in town is at the State Theater: Sim Redmond Band, Donna the Buffalo, and Railroad Earth. Doors open at 6:30, says the publicity; music starts at 7:30, and goes all night.

Steve Burke
for Ithaca NY Blog

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Lexicon And On

We watched David Letterman tonight, as we do sometimes because we work late, and dopey stuff helps us relax.

(You will see that we keep late hours sometimes if you notice the time of this posting.)

Anyhow, Mr. Letterman was interviewing a snow-boarding dude. (We assume most guys such as this, who have long hair and snow-board for a living, are dudes.)

In the course of the conversation, Letterman alluded to their differing life experiences, as reflected in their language.

"You know, I feel like I'm missing something," Letterman said about his life: "I'm 62 years old, and I've never been 'stoked'."

Neither have we. We don't even think we were even ever "psyched," although we remember when this was common.

A similar phenomenon, which we have noted here before, is that we have never found much to be "awesome," at least that we would talk about, rather than ponder; but people today do, pretty frequently.

Of course, it is all a matter of lexicon, which delights us, personally. We wonder, as "psyched" has turned to "stoked," what's next in line. "Awesome" has, in our memory, lasted a real long time, and we wonder if it will go on. It seems to have legs. And when did that expression start? And, stop?

We bid you goodnight now, as we hit the hay; crash; and, our personal lexicon favorite, geeze.

Steve Burke
for Ithaca NY Blog

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Stressed? Zag With Your Friends

Our friend Catherine Saar, who runs an enterprise called Saar Coaching (Google it, or find it on Facebook), posted a reprint today of a piece on how to be happier at work.

The strategy that most impressed us was called "Invest in your social network."

The basic idea is that, when or over-worked or -whelmed, often our impulse is to retreat, to close ourselves off, and to approach work (and life) with a bunker mentality; and that this is the exact wrong approach.

Focus on the work, sure. But also make sure you spend time - keep time; make time - to enjoy friends. This helps keep things in perspective. It helps us enjoy life, which should be part of one's everyday routine. All this is likely to help you achieve your work.

We generally like zagging when common wisdom says zig. Thank you to Ms. Saar for the good advice.

Steve Burke
for Ithaca NY Blog

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Stephanie Miller Event: Sold Out

Well, our instincts in the previous post were sort of correct about the possible popularity of the Stephanie Miller/Bill Press appearance at the Hangar Theater this Saturday.

We contacted the Hangar and found it is sold out.

Try Craigslist for tickets?

Steve Burke
for Ithaca NY Blog

Stephanie Miller and Bill Press at the Hangar Theater, Sat. 23 Oct.

Two stars of lefty talk show radio, Stephanie Miller and Bill Press, appear at the Hangar Theater this Saturday night for an evening of commentary and, we imagine, comedy, of the political sort.

This kind of fare is generally irresistible to the typical Ithacan. The ticket price, a mere $10, is likewise nicely likeable in a town where people are used to cheap entertainment all the time.

We're a little surprised the event is not in a bigger venue for more money. We recommend getting tickets asap.

Steve Burke
for Ithaca NY Blog

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Cayuga Beans in NY Times Magazine

The Sunday New York Times magazine today features a piece on Cayuga Pure Organics, our local growers of beans and grains whose products are the rage of restaurants and farmers markets in the big city.

We've written about CPO before here. Their products are amazingly good, and available in Ithaca at GreenStar Co-op.

The co-op gets a generic mention in the Times piece, as does a particular local tacqueria that orders 500 pounds plus of CPO's beans per week.

Congratulations to Dan, Adrian, Anne, Eric and Tycho, and thanks for the great work.

Steve Burke
for Ithaca NY Blog

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Wednesday Morning: Fire on the Commons

There was a fire this morning on the Commons, in the Petrune building on the north side of the middle of the mall.

We are directly across from the building. Reports are there are no injuries. Exterior damage is minimal. Interior is probably moderate, mostly smoke damage.

At the moment, the middle of the Commons is closed, but fire crews are packing up and preparing to leave, so re-opening is probably imminent.

Steve Burke
for Ithaca NY Blog

Saturday, October 09, 2010

Happy Birthday

As you might have noticed, Google noticed, and much of the world remembers, it seems, that today is John Lennon's birthday. He would have been 70.

Of course, he is noted for his music, his peace activism, and his energy and humor, all great. For us, though, one of the most important things about him was his writing.

Lennon wrote two books in the mid-1960s: "In His Own Write" and "A Spaniard in the Works." They were books of short comic vignettes, absurd and playful, with drawings. They showed influences of Lewis Carroll, James Thurber, and even James Joyce.

They were the first books I ever owned. I got them when I was 10 or so. I had to send away for them. Maybe there were bookstores in Manhattan that sold them, but there weren't in East Flatbush, Brooklyn.

I treasured them, I guess. I enjoyed them and learned from them.

Lennon was a big inspiration to me. I started a newspaper at school in 6th grade because I knew he had.

I imagine his was better. I remember reading a weather forecast he wrote for it. "Today will be Muggy," he wrote. "Followed by Tuggy, Wuggy, Thuggy, and Fuggy."

Stephen Burke
for Ithaca NY Blog

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Fighting Cancer Locally, at the Cancer Resource Center's Walkathon/Race

Most of us, probably, have had our lives touched by cancer.

In Ithaca, we are blessed to have the Cancer Resource Center of the Finger Lakes, a not-for-profit group offering services to people with cancer.

One of the best ways to help the Cancer Resource Center is to support their annual Walkathon/5K Race. The 17th annual event happens this year on Saturday 23 October, in Cass Park.

Pre-registration is available on-line at CRC's web site, Registration the day of the race, at 10 a.m., is at 9 a.m. The event happens rain or shine.

If you are not a runner, or even that much of a walker, there will be music and other activities at the site. You can sponsor runners. You can buy a t-shirt. Or you can simply make a donation.

Please contact the Center for more information on how to help.

Steve Burke
for Ithaca NY Blog