About Me

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Split personality. Liking the arts, especially opera, and hockey and Los Toros. I know, I know THAT one is non pc currently. But I can't help it saw some in Spain and got hooked, but good. But on the other hand right now opera and hockey are in the forefront!


Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Lappers, Flappers and Joggers

Since the indoor pool where I normally exercise is closed for 'rejuvenation' the outdoor one has to suffice!

That is to say I haven't quite found THE perfect time yet for my water exercises!
Either too hot, too crowded, too sunny, too early, too late.. whatever.
But going I am, daily!

Now the outdoor adult exercisers/swimmers can be, I found,
categoricarized into three:  Lappers, Flappers and Joggers

There are those sleek, toned-to-the-hild, bronzed ,minimalistically clad swimmers of either gender, that knife through water without so much as a splash :-), lap after lap - our  LAPPERS. They wear close fitted swim caps and dark googles, swim with fins - sometimes, and waterweb mittens, too..to increase their speed - all seemingly training for the next Olympics :-) -  totally engrossed to the exclusion of anything but sleeking through the blue - back and forth!

Then, we have the 'head-up-don't-get-my-hairdo-wet' ladies, and a few gents, slowly paddling lap after lap - our FLAPPERS. They wear an assortment of  baseball caps, sometimes fins, 
sarongy suits and long legged trunks,
over much rounder bodies.  Keeping steady time - maybe breaking once or twice for a brief chat with fellow lane Flappers - to catch their breaths!

And then there are the JOGGERS:
Mostly women, more mature and rounder :-), often skirted, maybe sarong suited, behatted with really WIDE brims,
aquabeltedWater Aerobics Fitness Equipment AquaJogger Junior Water Aerobic ... (to keep upright) and swinging aquebellsSwim Aids Water Fitness - Adjustable Belt Float for emphasis. Majestically 'jogging',"cycling', 'rowing' (well that one has to be done without a hat) through water (now I said through not on-that would be a miracle) while exercising minds, ahem mouths, as we are oh, so social! Gotta keep up with comings and goings of our fellow joggers from the day before or maybe two days ago! Right!
Anyway, it is relaxing and refreshing - just being in the water (still relatively cool in the AM)
and flexing stiffening older joints!
It really works - the flexing I mean.
One feels like a teenagers again, erm, superannuated teenager for sure!
But what do I care. I do feel better!
Every Day.
For 45 minutes, at least!
Come swim with me!!!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Bin so angfressen..hab' scho gnua!!

wie man im Wiener Dialekt sich so bildreich ausdruecken kann ;-)!
Als Beispiel gebe ich meinen verehrten Net-Weaner Lesern den folgenden Ausschnitt - und hoffe sie werden es ertuefteln koennen ;-)!
"med ana schwoazzn dintn is a Gedichtband  des H. C. Artmann.  
Es haundlt si dabei um a experimentölles, expressionistisches Weak.
Es gähd oiso ned um a Hamatdichtung, sundan um surrealistische, schwoazze Inhoide mid makaban, groteskn und bäsoatign Motivn.
Des Buach is da erste große Erfoig vom Artmann gwesn. In de 70er Joa san dazua aa de easchtn Tonaufnauhman gmocht woan."

Angfressen bin jetzt sogar schon ich mit der Hitze,

Unsere zukuenftige Welt?
und angfressen mit dem Wassermangel.
Und jetzt noch dazu die drohende Gefahr von angedrohten Stromausfaellen waehrend der aergsten Verbrauchszeit zwischen 3-7 nachmittags.
Und im Osten der USA ist alles unter Wasser dank Irenes,
die sich im voraus mit Erdbeben ebenda anmeldete :-)!
Im Westen noch immer Waldbraende.
Warten nun ergebends (was kann man machen -
Natur spielt was und wie sie will mit uns)
auf den naechsten Sturm im Golf und Texas?
In der Zwischenzeit - mehr Regentaenze?? 

Man lacht beim Weinen.
Oder Realitaet?

Monday, August 29, 2011


Well, let's face it some stuff is just that -
GOSSIP gleaned from various sources:
1. Italian Tenor Salvatore Licitra (below as Cavaradossi in Tosca)
was seriously injured in a road accident in Italy. he was riding his Vespa without a helmet and is in hospital with serious Head and chest injuries. His female Chinese companion was not injured much-she was wearing a helmet. Licitra was to be awarded the Premio Ragusani nel Mondo on September 3, 2011.
2. Blind Tenor Andrea Bocelli and his current partner Veronica Berti await the birth of the Tenor's third child. Bocelli, born 22 September 1958 in Pisa, met his future wife Enrica, with whom he had two children, while singing at piano bars early in his career. They were married on 27 June 1992. Their first child, Amos, was born in February 1995. Their second son, Matteo was born in October 1997. The couple divorced in 2002. Below Bocelli and Berti recorded together.

3. If you really believe that classical Music is just boring, just listen it's different, clever and can be  fun, too.

1. Mike Modano to retire?
Starting new career in broadcasting with the Dallas Stars?
Modano, 41, born in Livonia, Michigan, spent last season with the Detroit Red Wings after playing his entire career with the Minnesota North Stars/Dallas Stars franchise.
He plans to decide by mid - September.
After spending all his life in hockey since just a kid it will be hard to let go, but Modano feels he could be instrumental in getting the Stars fan base back up and excited again"

2. Players say: guys like John Scott are really appreciated by players more so than by fans. Scott and, for instance Carcillo, Clutterbuck, or at the AHL level Kassian,

  Morency (to name a few Aeros/Wild) keep other teams' nonsense (runs at your star players) to a minimum.

Popular Music
Remember this ?
And so what does Lady Gaga do this year at the Vmas?
Despite her HUGE success  she is not immune to be parodied.
Enjoy the clip below - get this week started with a small or big )!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

While Irene visits East Coast

Aeros fans among my chers readers might be interested in a better yet link.
You'll recognize many!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Dreams, Reality, which?

Why is that, when I dream in glorious prose and stunning colors,
with oh so delectable but wild details of all sorts...;-), I always wake up just before A big moment.

And why can I not write those dreams into edge-on-seat, nail biting, mesmerizing stories?
I am not asking for THE novel of a life time.
Just the power to write as fancifully as the dreams. Write to spell bind.
To grab readers, let them travel with me into wondrous worlds.
Worlds, where love is writ large, and not only platonic :-)!
Where revenge IS sweet!
But  forgiving comes easy!
Where history mingles with science and the result's 'out of this world' (LoL)
Where phantasy and reality come together, 'sending'  the readers into orbits of delight.
Alas, that kind of realization must be.. a figment of MY dreams.
Into which others are unable to enter but which I enjoy immensly while dreaming.
Of which - big sigh - little remains with me, after waking!

Siegmund Freud might have been starved for material for his interpretation of dreams had  I been a patient.
Or perhaps not, he did say:
"What a distressing contrast there is between the radiant intelligence of the child and the feeble mentality of the average adult".
But he also said:
"Dreams are often most profound when they seem the most crazy"

AMEN to that

Thursday, August 25, 2011

News from the Aeros front - New Coaches, New Jerseys

Meeting up with the NEW coaches and leaders of the Aeros was short but enlightening!
First Impressions:
Head coach at left 'The Torch' John Torchetti: will surely light some fires. And talked at length to media.
But he was somewhat reticent talking to fans.

At middle Mike VanRyn: he will be in the van in game strategies. He seems quite happy to be in Houston, as is his wife Amber (closer to her home -Miami) so that their two (new baby boy and a 2 yr lively girl) children's grand and great grandmas are only a short flight away.

At right Sebastien LaPlante: will have much to say in planting forwards and really appreciating the work goalies (he knows form personal experience) do, plus he seems to enjoy the internationality of the Houston area already...so many different languages, mais oui - French as well -  for a Quebecois, that's lovely!  Wife and 3 kids (girl, boy, girl) were not present. But school has started for some -so... Maman has to stay put.

All three coaches seemed eager to get going. Both assistant coaches have known Torchetti at one time or another and are happy with his approach, or so it seemed to me. All are newly arrived and not much strategy was talked about...nor did they know when per-season camp, and open practise will start...aeros.com may have that information.

And David Burke, coming 'home to the Houston area'. His wife (present)  is from New Orleans, so humidity and heat is not such a shock for them. Burke knows the drill and will motivate more fans, plus groups of them, to come to games. Sure it will be lots easier to fill the TC on weekends, but fill it he wants - all the time!
Robert Clarke Trophy in back of David Burke
(no, he's not related to of the Burke of Burke and Hare  of Edinburgh).
He most definitely wants it known that to please STH is foremost on his mind.
And he is versed in overcoming media and public's less than enthusiastic responses, as he was working for the Phoenix Coyotes previously. 

It really was a pleasant surprise to find them all so accessible to the fans who lined up to chat, to question and in general welcomed the new coaching staff. Fans happily thronged the Maple Leaf pub and munched on the Cheesecake Factory's generous fare.

THANKS to Pub for hosting the event. And the Factory for supplying the viands.
Van Ryn, LaPlante and Joe attentive to Torchetti's remarks.
Joe O'Donnell was a suave cheery voiced MC. But then he always is!
Three new jerseys were unveiled as well. The new rather attractive road jersey is green with gray sleeve stripe and red triangle at neck; the home jersey a simple white with green lettering, but the third seems the same as last years in white, green with red stripe down the side
-left, middle is the NEW road jersey.
photos artandhockey

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

With thanks to Bobby R...Disney On Ice

who did the research for the funny video of this day! And does not mind, I hope, that I adopted it for artandhockey's Midweek post... just cannot think of a better way to get the laughs started.

this will surely keep you laughing till opening game day.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

2 down, 19 to go..

of the 21 books recently purchased.

One, by Paul Manning discussed here in some detail by a reviewer, sorta fits into my field of historic interest.
I did question some of his reasoning in coming to certain conclusions following DNA and other scientific advances.  But the international ramifications of business propounded on by Manning  weren't exactly boring as they seem to be echoed in a book about IBM! IBM and the Holocaust (cover).jpg
I did expect a more biographical treatment, not so much about economics of big business' covert wheelings and dealings.
Perhaps rather fitting in these times of  "too big to fail"  - just kidding! 
Enough said.
Go read both  and make up your own mind.

The other by an 'olden days' Author, Aphra Behn (1640–1689), published in 1688 !!!,
concerns the love of its hero, an enslaved African in Suriname in the 1660s
Historical Depiction of Suriname
and the author's own experiences in this new South American colony.
Her life reads like a suspense novel itself.  
She became a spy for Charles II during one of the Dutch Wars.
For which she was NOT paid properly and ended up in debtor's prison after returning to England.
She began to write to make ends meet (ha - Rowlands of Harry Potter fame seems a fitting heir to Aphra, eh?).
She truly had quite a success with publishing poetry, and many plays with large numbers of performances,  which already made her famous in her own lifetime.
Later on she wrote prose pieces of which "Oroonoko" is one of the earliest English novels and was published a year or so before her death. 
Interest in this woman author began to blossom in the 1970's who
is often said to be the forebear of British women writers,
with "Oroonoko" representing a - if not THE - crucial text in the history of the English novel!  Interesting for sure!
Go for it.
This was the annotated version to help with the background and antiquated,
albeit here a bit streamlined, style of writing.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Good Old Days?

Talking about  good old days:

Did you know
- that men and women took baths only twice a year (May and October)? When they changed from winter to summer clothing and vice versa, perhaps?
Warhol inspired Wig ?-artandhockey
-  that women kept their hair covered,  while men shaved their heads (because of lice and bugs-hmmm did bugs prefer males ;-) ?) and wore wigs.

- that the wealthy men could afford good wigs made from wool. These wigs could not be washed, of course  so to clean them they would carve out a loaf of bread, put the wig into it, and bake it for 30  minutes. 
The heat would make the wig big and fluffy/ Which is were we get the term 'big wig'!
Now, we often use the term 'here comes the Big Wig' because someone is powerfully wealthy.
Or seems to be  ;-)!
'Big Wig by Flowers :-)' - artandhockey
Good ? Old Days of Hockey

    And so there is this paean to hair by Big Wigged Lady Gaga.....

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Have you hugged your Book today?

Having spent a couple hours going through 'gently used' books for sale at the JCC this morning,
and walking away with 21 books, I simple must ask that question of you, chers readers.

So, have you hugged, AND READ, your book today?

I was truly amazed by number of people already eagerly in line at doors' opening.
Armed with rolling suitcases and huge shopping bags.
Even  :-) (actually rather well behaved - to the most part) kids in tow.
And books seem to take flight.

After my chosen ones were safely stowed, I went for my customary 'aquarobics'.
Finishing just in time.
On the stroke of 12 the pool opened to members' doggies
out for a Sunday swim.  After that the pool will be drained!

To be re-surfaced!

Then I remembered seeing an art book or two earlier, and went back for them.
Alas, those books, eyed earlier, were gone. 
One on 'El Greco in Toledo' (normally at 35.00) was still there in solitary splendor FOR JUST $ 1.oo.
It had a soft cover!

And I have already thumbed through it.

Admired the photos of all those saints El Greco painted so elongatedly!
Such as this  of 'Saint Sebastian'.
Or this of 'The Martyrdom of Saint Maurice and the Theban legion'!
Most seem to have been painted drawing the viewers' eyes upwards from far below  -
thus 'elongated' 
But in case of Saints it may be fitting!
Lift my Saints to Heaven   ......  :-) !

I also managed to fish up from one of the lowest shelves a soft bound tome on classical music!
Shelved - astoundingly under humor! WHY?
I guess I will have to read it to find out if the author wanted to write a parody on classical music, LOL!
Anyway, with 21 books for $21 I do have reading material for weeks to come.
IF my eyes can stand the strain!

And since there is neither hockey nor opera yet to divert me...let's go at them!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Aeros Game Schedule

Schedule for Aeros games 201112 is out and here it is
Looks like  a few weekends.. and ONLY one morning at home! The other one is in Abbotsford !!!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Man sollte mal...AHL news, too

wieder einen deutschen Posten hinschreiben, oder? 
Was eignet sich denn besser dazu als der Alptraum der letzten Nacht!
Waehrend dieser ruecksichtslosen Hitze hier,
scheint mein Hirn schon fast gebraten....
und produziert nur noch dumme Gedanken.

Wasser... Wasser!
Lechze nach Wasser..
 fast leere Regenwasser Zisterne auf Acoma, New Mexico-artandhockey
Viele und aeussert intensive Regentaenze!  
Sogar als Pauseneinlage beim Eishockey! :-)!

                                                                      AHL news .

Wie sollte ich eigentlich den Alptraum der letzten Nacht einstufen?

Ich traeumte von NUR MEHR zwei Jahreszeiten!
Einem fast ewigen Sommer - wie ein heisser Ofen
(kann mich kaum erinneren wieviele Wochen wir OHNE guten Regen und MIT 100 plus Graden Fahrenheit hinter uns haben,  und auch noch weiter haben sollen)
Einem Winter ohne Grenzen, nur Schnee, Blizzards, White Outs, Polartemperaturen, Lawinen,
ohne Sonne, ewige Nacht, und mehr Schnee und Eis.
Wo sich nur die Eisbaeren beim 'Gute Nacht Sagen '  freuen koennen !
Herbst und Fruehling gibt es keine mehr!
Eventuell  je 5 Tage davon - mit Glueck.
Nach dem, im Traum, Riesenankauf dickster Daunendecken, schwerer Polar Parkas,
pelzgefuetterter Stiefel, langer Pelzmaentel mit Hauben...
wachte ich schweisstriefend auf!
Oh Greuel! Oh Horror!

Da bin ich wieder froh - mehr oder weniger - es ist NUR heiss? :-)
Bin halt keine Winterliebhaberin!

Und das Wasser wird knapp und knapper.
darf nur noch 2x die Woche den Rasen giessen.
MAN soll keine Autos waschen,  
Und nur spaetabends Waesche oder Kochgeschirr waschen.
MAN soll keine Schwimmbecken nachfuellen. Usw.

Frage: Sollten wir denn nicht den Regengoettern opfern?

artandhockey: Allan Hauser sculpture, New Mexico
Vielleicht NUR MEHR Katzenwaesche vornehmen ;-)? 
Sollen Troepferlbaeder wieder eingefuehrt?
Oder viel schweres Parfum spritzen, wie dazumal in Versailles ;-)?
Bei der Hitze!
Solche Gedanken erlauben weitere Alptraeume - nicht wahr?

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

NO news would be so much better

than these sad news coming from the hockey community.
Rick Rypien, who in the past gave the WILD

a Wild fan some big trouble,
was found dead last night.
Another enforces dies at a very young age (27)
More here.
Very sad...
more details expected soon.

Monday, August 15, 2011

NO News is NO news!

No  news Aeros scheduleYET!
On the other hand  I am alive and kicking.. albeit just barely.
Too ennervated - at last even I - by this relentless heat!
Just a bit of hockey fun to liven up these days:
Mikael Granlund-Wild Prospect  goal vs Russia last spring.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

The first signs

that summer is nearing its end....
Opera in The Heights Guild Board meeting, OH Artists arriving for rehearsals,
HGOStudio members, as well, Houston Grand Opera's Open House...
all to happen within the next few weeks.
And rumours that Aeros schedule will be out soon, to pick one's playdates...;-)!

And that is good. A ray or two of excitement NOT caused by rioting or other horrors..
And that brings me to the onslaught of riots in the UK...
disenfranchised hooligans...with no barriers, no sense of honor... just greed for violence.
And that's all I am going to say. Not wasting one more minute on that.
Asa mumble aged person MY time is far too precious.
I want (yes I - me - want) to enjoy as much beauty as I can till... well, you get my drift.

all photos by artandhockey

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Muscle Flexing by AGMA? AGAIN!

Just stumbled across this article by Andrew Patner quoted below in its entirety.

And it came as rather a shock. 
Following the debacle at New York City Opera.
After the news of drastic cutting of artsfunding at state and federal levels.
AGMA flexes its muscles!
Because it can!
Because it wants to force issues, which may or may not really be urgent at this time.
Will Anthony Freud be successful in negotiating after his official start at Lyric opera Chicago?
I simply am baffled. 
 Just let them sing!

When everyone (including government) tries cutting back drastically on spending.
When people tighten their purse strings just to survive!
It does seem to me any one still being employed should be content, when so many are facing lay offs, have been down sized, outpaced their unemployment payments.
Another sign of these times. Another "big brother" action "Its all for your own good'!

Singers' Union alleges lockout threat by Lyric.
Says it could picket Grant Park free concert next month
Contract negotiations between Lyric Opera of Chicago and its three major unions normally take place in relative quiet until a season curtain is about to go up.
But with more than seven weeks until Offenbach’s The Tales of Hoffmann is set to launch Lyric’s annual gala evening Octoer 1, the executive director of the national union that represents the company’s principal singers, chorus members, dancers, non-singing actors, and production staff claims Lyric has threatened its members with a lockout later this month.
The Thursday statement from Alan Gordon of the New York-based American Guild of Musical Artists, an AFL-CIO affiliate, also said “the fall season [is] in peril” and that “members should be prepared to picket” the free September 10 “Stars of Lyric Opera in Grant Park” concert.
AGMA’s last four-year concert expired April 30. Union members had authorized a strike in 2007 but a contract was signed shortly before opening night.
Lyric representatives had not previously seen the statement until informed of it by the Sun-Times. The company’s chief spokeswoman responded: “Lyric Opera is in contract talks with AGMA right now. It has always been the company’s policy not to negotiate in the press and so we have no further comment to make at this time.”
Gordon, a controversial figure currently locked in a bitter dispute with the increasingly shrinking New York City Opera, states that his union and the company differ on the number of work weeks, wage cuts, benefits, and health and safety provisions.
The union is also proposing a one-year status quo contract so that a longer agreement could be negotiated with incoming general director-designate Anthony Freud, who takes up his job on opening night, rather than retiring longtime chief William Mason, Gordon wrote.
He says Lyric has threatened an August 22 lockout if a contract is not signed, a claim that Lyric would not confirm.
“We would not be making these public statements if our members’ livelihood was not being threatened with a lockout,” Gordon said.
AGMA’s national president, James Odom, a tenor in the Lyric Chorus, said, “I’ve never seen this type of intransigence. We, too, prefer to keep negotiations at the table, but when faced with an overt threat of a lockout -- particularly just having gone through an actual lockout of our union with [the] Joffrey [Ballet] here -- we can’t just do nothing.”
Gordon also sent a letter to principal artists engaged for the upcoming season -- naming Renée Fleming (now also a member of Lyric’s management and a vice president of its board), Matthew Polenzani, Catherine Malfitano, and David Cangelosi -- saying, “If Lyric locks out AGMA members, you MAY NOT work for Lyric, you may not cross an AGMA picket line and you may not perform on opening night or thereafter until there is a negotiated collective- bargaining agreement in effect.”
Similar hardball tactics have enmeshed Gordon in a series of Federal labor complaints and counter-complaints with City Opera in New York, whose perilous financial and presenting situation is a far cry from Lyric’s strong fiscal health, ticket sales, and ownership of its own theatre.
The Lyric Opera Orchestra and its union, the Chicago Federation of Musicians, have a separate contract with the company that runs through the 2011-12 season. Civic Opera House stagehands are members of IATSE, the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, and are also not involved in the current negotiations"

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Where do old faves go?

I am, of course talking about books!
Not hockey players, as much as I, and many, would like! Maybe another post?

Went over my book case to dust.
Yes, I do that sometimes, if needed or not.
But stopped soon when  old faves beckoned.
So I ended up re-re-re-reading some last night till the wee hours!
One, "Drei Kameraden" by Erich Maria Remarque
has been read so often the pages are loose and only kept together with a rubber band.
Or else, the book binding was so shoddy it fell apart over the 'mumble' decades in my bookcases.
Whatever, it was so sad to see that.
But I had to dig into it nevertheless.
Carefully turning page after page, keeping them in order!

Now what?
How do I give an old worn out - physically only - otherwise it still fascinates this reader -
book an honorable burial?
There are cemeteries for pets!
So why aren't there cemeteries for beloved books?

I can no longer in all honesty pass it on - too tattered, plus it is in German.
I just can't bring myself to simply toss it in the trash bin!
It's not just a book. It is a beloved one, for heavens sake.
One, that I have read so many times over the years.
One, that I have enjoyed so much.
One, that has caused me to think, to cry, to laugh, to sigh!
One, whose author uses language so cleverly, so deeply felt yet sparingly,
that I feel all the emotion, within expressed, in my body, mind and soul!

And I can not, most definitely not, burn it. Not only because there's a burn ban on.
Nor do I have a pit in a back yard to do it in.
But the idea of book burning causes just too many horrid thoughts .
Going back to the middle ages, books have been burned because some ignoramus felt offended or threatened by the ideas of writers.

I guess  - I'll just put new fresh rubber band around the floppy, discolored pages.
And keep it still, a while longer. Until the bitter end when pages crumble into paper dust!
Maybe tie pretty purple bows
In half mourning as it were, for a - dearly beloved almost departed  - book!