full tilt crazy

 

You see that lovely young woman?  Her name was Alison Parker and this morning she and her cameraman Adam Ward were shot and killed near Roanoke, Virginia in a place called Moneta. She was 24 and was a graduate of James Madison University and he was 27 and a graduate of Virginia Tech. They were with Virgina CBS affiliate WDBJ7. They were killed in the middle of a live shot interview it looks like.

This story is so horrific and I like many others didn’t know either Ms. Parker or Mr. Ward. For me personally it hits home because I have friends who are reporters and cameramen as well as newspaper reporters and newspaper photographers . I thought of them all immediately as this news broke. You think of them covering the news, not becoming the news and victims of violence.

And even more horrible? It has been disclosed that the shooter was a former reporter, one of their own,  who for a while put what he did on video on Twitter! They are reporting he is being chased through Virginia and other media reports say he may have committed suicide.

Two WDBJ7 employees killed in attack at Bridgewater Plaza. Reporter Alison Parker and photographer Adam Ward were attacked during a live broadcast

Web Staff, WDBJ7, news@wdbj7.com
POSTED: 07:27 AM EDT Aug 26, 2015 UPDATED: 10:56 AM EDT Aug 26, 2015 
Virginia TV reporter, photographer killed in shooting during live interview

By Eliott C. McLaughlin, CNN

Updated 11:05 AM ET, Wed August 26, 2015
Sources: WDBJ shooting suspect is former reporter Bryce Williams

  Posted: Aug 26, 2015 8:20 AM EDT

Updated: Aug 26, 2015 11:34 AM EDT

By NBC12 NewsroomCONNECT

This county is on full tilt crazy again. You can click on the links above to read about this horrific event. But before everyone goes into another endless gun control debate, remember what just happened here yesterday at the Chester County Courthouse, which made national news.

Yesterday a guy named Curtis Smith of Coatesville went crazy with a knife inside our county courthouse, hurting people. He was shot and killed by Sheriff’s department personnel. As e dust began to settle we learned this guy had been arrested in Washington DC for scaling a wall of the White House.

Washington Post National Official: Deputy’s attacker arrested at White House in March

  
A Chester County sheriff’s deputy with a hand injury is taken from the lobby of the Chester County Courthouse following a shooting Tuesday, Aug. 25, 2015, in West Chester, Pa. The Daily Local News of West Chester reports that the shooting involved a member of the Chester County sheriff’s office and a man who apparently tried to enter the courthouse. (Pete Bannan/Daily Local News via AP) (Associated Press)

By Associated Press August 25 at 5:58 PM

Daily Local News Chester County Justice Center suspect dead

By Michael P. Rellahan, mrellahan@21st-centurymedia.com,, @ChescoCourtNews on Twitter

POSTED: 08/25/15, 12:31 PM EDT | UPDATED: 2 HRS AGO

Questions linger in courthouse shooting

Justine McDaniel and Michaelle Bond, Inquirer Staff Writers

Last updated: Wednesday, August 26, 2015, 1:06 AM

But seriously, this country is such a country of unpleasant extremes these days. When did we become a nation of violence?

Sad day again for this country. We need to dial back the violence.

what bishop tube looks like (and more legal stuff filed)

DSC_8760I went to Malin Road and stood outside the fences of Bishop Tube today.  Totally creepy and deserted.  I was glad to see an unmarked police car do a drive by a couple minutes after I got there, the place gave me the willies.

DSC_0009

I took photos from outside the fencing on the road. What a weird feeling to be out on such a gloriously beautiful day, yet there was the overwhelming creepiness of the Bishop Tube Site, all abandoned and the only way to describe it was the place seems to radiate negative energy.  Don’t see how that feeling will be eradicated by plastic townhouses marching row after row.  The site doesn’t appear to be particularly secure and given what appears to be vandalism, nor does itappear as if it has been for years has it?

DSC_0013

Staring at the site, I couldn’t help but wonder where the PA DEP was on this? I can find on the Internet where they were in the past, but not in the present. Or the EPA, which is so screwed up just read THIS and THIS and THIS.  Here let me share this:

The EPA Should Resign in Shame over Orange River

Let States Step Up to the Plate on the Environment

The cause? None other than a mistake by the US Environmental Protection Agency. The Wall Street Journal reported details on the incident Sunday, noting that the spill was initially downplayed by the EPA, and that it was much larger than first reported. Most importantly, as of Sunday, the mine is still releasing wastewater at a rate of about 500 gallons per minute. The pollution incident is ongoing.

This latest toxic release is yet another example of the EPA spectacularly failing at its primary mission. As I’ve expressed in this space before, the government is not particularly competent at environmental remediation and management.

When you read things written by critics of the PA DEP, it is often not much better. Look these government agencies have good intentions but they all seem to get in their own way and in the end are the accomplishing their goals of protecting all of us?

Just check out this article from 2014 about fracking contaminating drinking water :

The Pennsylvania DEP has been criticized for its poor record of providing information on fracking-related contamination to state residents. In April, a Pennsylvania Superior Court case claimed that due to the way DEP operates and its lack of public record, it’s impossible for citizens to know about cases where private wells, groundwater and springs are contaminated by drilling and fracking.

“The DEP must provide citizens with information about the potential harm coming their way,” John Smith, one of the attorneys representing municipalities in the lawsuit, told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “If it doesn’t record and make available the violations records then it is denying the public accurate information, which is unconscionable.”

When is the last time the PA DEP or EPA took a good look at sites like Bishop Tube in Pennsylvania?  These aren’t new sexy disasters, they are plodding along existing trouble spots so now that there don’t appear to be lots of  government money floating around for clean up ( a la “Growing Greener“) who cares about these toxic sites like Bishop Tube?

Now the PA DEP mentions Bishop Tube in it’s 2014 report, yes but it isn’t in so much detail is it? I found the annual reports on the DEP website which crashes a lot. So where are State Representative Duane Milne and State Senator Andy Dinniman on Bishop Tube?  Aren’t they supposed to be looking after Chester County residents on this topic as well?

I happened to check the court dockets on the Bishop Tube litigation mention in prior posts when I came home and there are a few more filings on the case of ordinary hard-working people vs, everyone involved around Bishop Tube.  Here are the two most interesting:

Plaintiff Memorandum Response Bishop Tube 2015

Amended Complaint With Jury Demand Bishop Tube 2015 Aug 12

Apparently although The Daily Local did that curtain raiser of an article a couple of weeks ago, no other media seems interested in a toxic superfund site in bucolic Chester County? Or are there media inquiries and other inquiries starting to foment and ferment behind the scenes?

DSC_8764

Here are a couple of gems from all this legal stuff:

From the plaintiffs’ memorandum (2:15-cv-01919 (GJP) filed 8/10/15):

Table of Auth

Page 4: “The Plaintiffs have alleged that, during the Defendants’ respective ownership and operation thereof, they discharged hazardous substances into the environmental which have migrated onto and into the Plaintiffs’ property including the Plaintiffs’ drinking water. It is further alleged that the Defendants have failed to remediate the contamination, the regulatory authorities have failed to require the Defendants to remediate the contamination and additional response work will be necessary.”

Page 6 “It is alleged in the Complaint that, during their respective periods of ownership and operation of the Bishop Tube site, the Defendants used or permitted the use of hazardous substances, including trichloroethylene (“TCE”), during the manufacturing processes for their seamless stainless steel and other products and that, as a result of the Defendants’ ownership and operations at the Bishop Tube site, hazardous substances, including TCE, were disposed into the environment, including the Bishop Tube site’s soils and groundwater. See Complaint,¶¶34-35. It is further alleged that subsurface migration of contaminated groundwater from the Bishop Tube site has and continues to contaminate the aquifer beneath the Bishop Tube site and beneath off-site premises including the Plaintiffs’ home. See Complaint, ¶36.”

Page 7 “Accordingly, in or about 1999, the PADEP took over response actions at the Bishop Tube site, which included periodic sampling of soil, surface water, groundwater, vapor intrusion pathway analysis and maintenance of monitoring wells in the contaminated aquifer as well as the installation of a soil vapor extraction and air sparging system designed to capture and remove contamination from subsurface soils at the Bishop Tube site. See Complaint, ¶¶42-43.

However, none of the Defendants have taken any steps to actively remediate the contamination that originated on the Bishop Tube site, which has and continues to migrate onto the Warren property and neither the EPA nor the PADEP have taken any steps to compel such remedial activity. See Complaint, ¶44. Further response action is necessary to abate the release of the hazardous substances at the Bishop Tube site which have and continue to migrate onto the Warren property. See Complaint, ¶45.”

A Notice of Intent to Sue was served on all Defendants as well as the EPA and PADEPon December 8, 2014, to which no one responded”

Page 11: “III. Plaintiffs’ RCRA Claim Must Not Be Dismissed

Johnson Matthey next argues that the Plaintiffs’ RCRA claim must be dismissed because it does not adequately allege an “imminent and substantial endangerment to health or the environment” and because the State is diligently addressing the contamination.

However, as described in detail above, the Complaint alleges that TCE contamination from the Bishop Tube site has migrated into the Plaintiffs’ well water. TCE is a volatile organic compound “used mainly as a solvent to remove grease from metal parts, but it is also an ingredient in adhesives, paint removers, typewriter correction fluids, and spot removers.

Trichloroethylene is not thought to occur naturally in the environment. However, it has been found in underground water sources and many surface waters as a result of the manufacture,use, and disposal of the chemical.” There is evidence that TCE affects the developmental and nervous systems in humans and is also carcinogenic. Specifically, there is evidence that TCE can cause kidney cancer and limited evidence for non-Hodgkin lymphoma and liver cancer as well as various tumors in animals. See United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, Toxic Substances Portal for TCE, http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/substances/toxsubstance.asp?toxid=30 (last visited August 7,2015).

Accordingly, it is respectfully submitted that it is disingenuous for Johnson Matthey to claim that Plaintiffs have not adequately alleged sufficient imminent and substantial endangerment to health or the environment to sustain a RCRA claim.”

Page 13: “Conclusion

Simply stated, in support of their federal CERCLA and RCRA claims, the Plaintiffs have alleged that: (1) the Defendants, including Johnson Matthey, discharged hazardous substances, including TCE, into the environment at the Bishop Tube site which have migrated onto the Plaintiffs’ property and, specifically, into their drinking water; (2) that the Defendants have failed to remediate the contamination; (3) that the regulatory authorities have failed to require the Case 2:15-cv-01919-GJP Document 6 Filed 08/10/15 Page 12 of 13 10 Defendants to remediate the contamination; and (4) that additional response work will be necessary. Indeed, TCE is a carcinogenic. Based on the foregoing, it is respectfully submitted that the Plaintiffs have alleged sufficient facts, which must be presumed true for purposes of this Motion, to withstand a Motion to Dismiss pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6) of the FRCP”

From First Amended Complaint With Jury Demand:

Page 5: 37: “During their respective periods of ownership and operation of the Bishop Tubesite, the Defendants used or permitted the use of hazardous substances, including trichloroethylene (”TCE”), during the manufacturing processes for their seamless stainless steel and other products.”

 TCE

const dr ptnerbish tuNegligence Bishop Tube80 81Ok above are just snippets of the legal documents, quotes, excerpts. You can read for yourself the entire thing as they are uploaded in this post:

Amended Complaint With Jury Demand Bishop Tube 2015 Aug 12

Plaintiff Memorandum Response Bishop Tube 2015

I did not create any of this it is all on the court record.

I am a cancer survivor. I would not wish that on anyone. I have also known people who have seen their children through cancer and trust me, it is too gut wrenching for words. In my opinion based on the research available to publicly peruse, this is site is toxic is it not? And then there is General Warren Village.  Those residents deserve peace of mind don’t they?  They have always been directly affected by Bishop Tube haven’t they?

I am a realist. This might be a creepy site but it is this chunk of land that developers are salivating over (don’t know if they are glowing in the dark from walking around it, however.) This site will be made into something although really it should be cleaned up and left alone since it is also my opinion that this site will take years to properly remediate, and can’t you agree that is reasonable?

But the thing is this: a plan like that not only affects people who want their piece of the American Dream and want to live in gorgeous Chester County who might purchase these cram plan slab on grade no basement wonders if they are built, but potentially every east Whiteland resident in the future, correct?

How can East Whiteland say for certain they would not ever become a party over litigation surrounding this site?  They can’t, can they?  And they have an obligation to current and future residents to see beyond the shiny promises of developers oh so familiar to them, see beyond and some new ratables  down the road, and must put their heads down and see that this site is properly remediated and even get alternate land uses investigated, right? The bottom line is the owner of the land knows how to remediate this properly, they have the experience, correct?

Approving a development plan here while this litigation is ongoing and remediation isn’t complete can be considered a case of putting the cart before the horse, yes? And why is it all we hear is about the developer planning on “capping vapors” with the concrete slabs for the townhouses, yet the current litigation mentions aquifer again and again which is ground water, drinking water, and so on, right? A little different from vapors, right?

East Whiteland has a lot of development balls in the air and should we worry about how the land planning with all the developer driven zoning overlays are getting done?

East Whiteland, you have to do this right. Lives depend upon it. Please.

DSC_0015

human shaming in phoenixville

  
This is August. So cars heat up fast, don’t they? Especially in parking lots open to the sun, right?  And as you see that is a dog in a hot SUV earlier today. It was taken by a friend at the Redner’s parking lot in Phoenixville.  These people who own this Ford SUV should be ashamed of themselves!!!

 I wish the people who sent me the photos had taken photos with the license plate showing! This photo and the one below came with the following message:

We went shopping at Phoenixville Redner’s today. I waited in the car while the wife got a few things.

Some jerk left a poodle in a parked car. Driver window was open a couple inches, but the dog was frantic at first, then just laying on the seat panting like hell. 

A local cop came through, and I got his attention. He looked, and said “the window is open a little, and it’s a white car, it won’t get hot, besides this is private property, I have no jurisdiction”. The windows were heavily tinted, and too hot to put your hand on. 

I was about to break the glass when a young couple (about 6 people gathered by now) said they would go inside and have the manager put the vehicle, license plate, and business name on the P.A. system that their window was about to be broken. A volunteer firefighter had a rescue tool, and said he would give them 5 minutes. A girl with a water bottle squirted water through the cracked window on the dog, and it got up, and got a little. 

 Don’t know the final outcome. Even through the heavily tinted glass you can see the dog with it’s mouth wide open. 

So Redner’s in Phoenixville is in which township?  I would like to commend their officer who stopped for showing such caring and concern, wouldn’t you? Do you sense my sarcasm ? If  the officer was loath to break a window why couldn’t said officer have gone into the store to check for the irresponsible owner? Wow.

Kudos goes to the volunteer firefighter and others who sprang into action to try to help the dog.

Dogs give us unconditional love and devotion so it is really upsetting when you see stupid human tricks in action. 

There is a law being proposed in PA regarding keeping pets out of hot cars. Contact your legislators in PA ASAP about getting it passed!

New bill focused on keeping pets out of hot cars

Carolyn Blackburne 08/05/2015 06:54 PM08/05/2015 07:29 PM

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. — A new bill proposed in the Pennsylvania legislature is focused on keeping animals out of hot cars. 


Farm manager at Greener Pasture’s Animal Shelter, Ryan Jacobs, said leaving a pet inside a car on a hot day can be a matter of life and death. Cats and dogs that are left in cars can die within five to ten minutes on days above 110 degrees.

“We already have laws like this for children, so I think it is important you take your dog out of the car when you go somewhere,” Jacobs said.


If an animal is left unattended in a car for more than five minutes, it can go into heat stroke.

  

UPDATE: the power of the Internet. Another person sent me a partial plate (missing one letter or digit) and told me that this shopping center is on the edge of Phoenixville Borough and apparently it was an unmarked police car and three police departments can be found on patrol around here (Phoenixville Borough, East Pikeland, and Schulkill Twp). And the static decal in the window is for a company called Unlimited Restoration which has an office in Pottstown.

  

is having an opinion social crucifixion?

 

“Be wary because they also say what goes around comes around.”

That is but one of the public comments my blog received yesterday. Other comments included non publicly created gems like “eventually, we’ll get you.”

Remarkably, these were comments from women. Ladies, if you will.

Why?

For having an opinion that differed from the pack and for asking questions.

Sometimes as a blogger, I feel it’s just me that this is happening to me alone and then I hear it from other people.  Just yesterday as a matter fact someone I know was a guest on a nationwide talk show  where one of the hosts remarked  to my friend off stage as they were getting ready something along the lines of some days they didn’t know what they were going to talk about because no matter what they spoke about people were always unhappy, telling them they can’t have an opinion, saying they were horrible, and even issuing threats.

As a blogger and writer, I am not particularly controversial.  As a person I am not particularly controversial or extreme. But I do have opinions that will occasionally differ from the pack and I will ask questions about things that I find curious or which concern me.

And if someone takes issue with an opinion and if I comment back often I get this : “Oh, only you’re allowed to have an opinion?”. No, that is not what I said. It is as if I am supposed to take the keyboard lashings without further comment. Well truthfully sometimes I do, because it’s not worth arguing with someone who only cares about expressing their opinion, not in discussing something where opinions are opposing.

But yesterday I actually took the time to explain my position to a  keyboard critic.  I shouldn’t have bothered. She really wasn’t interested in a reasonable conversation, she was merely a self-appointed judge, jury, and executioner. Ok fine, she expressed her opinion. I have no problem with that. But I did have a problem with her dismissiveness of my taking the time to explain something to her which seemed important to her, followed by a thinly veiled social threat. 

… I am simply stating my OPINION which apparently is reserved only for you and not others!  I absolutely don’t have time to go back and forth with this nonsense!  It seems that your OPINION is the only OPINION that counts and I most definitely don’t have the desire to go around and around with you about this any longer… it’s like they say the definition of insanity is to do the same thing over and over again, expecting different results!  That My Dear is not in my wheelhouse so I’m out!  Good luck and be well, but be wary because they also say what goes around, comes around!

Ok eyes rolling? Really? This is what makes them a good person and me bad? 

Take away lesson here is supposed to be I am OK if I am a subservient bobblehead , not if I am expressing an opinion they don’t agree with? And they can talk at me, but we can’t have a conversation about it? And I’m not supposed to respond?

Sad.

I love living in Chester County, but what I’m discovering is there are people of similar vein everywhere: urban, suburban, and country. They  also come from all socioeconomic levels across the board. These are the people that are only comfortable when the opinions are uniform and almost of a single mind as if we are a bunch of Stepford wives. 

I don’t live like that. I have a brain and was raised to use it not hide it.  This nonsense is often all too reminiscent of the middle school and high school lunchroom and the antics we all remember and not always all too fondly.

A few years ago I read this great piece about blogging and having opinions:

Don’t Be Afraid To Have Opinions Or Take Sides

By Adam Singer Future Buzz

What makes blogs special to you?  To me, it is the unique viewpoints of individuals who express their thoughts uninterrupted by editors or restrictions other than the self-imposed variety.

I frequently inject opinion here and take sides.  That’s not really a secret and should be pretty clear if you’ve been reading for awhile.  I would like to think you’re here not necessarily because your agree or disagree with what I write, but that you think it is worth hearing and want to learn, interact and debate with me.

If you agree with everything all bloggers you read are saying, you’re not reading enough blogs.  I don’t think there is any blogger I read who I agree with all their thoughts.  Perhaps most interesting of all are posts I disagree with, as those are the kind that I’ll think deeper about, add my opinion on and back up why I disagree.

If you’re a blogger, don’t ever be afraid to have opinions or take sides, you’ll only succeed in getting in the way of what could potentially be great content.  Don’t second guess yourself….If we want bland content lacking heart, we’re not looking to blogs – it’s that simple.  We want to read sites that touch our emotions.  An easy way to do this is to write something you have a strong opinion on, one way or the other.  Don’t shy away from these types of posts, say what you feel and your audience will be moved.  There are too many people who wring the emotion out of their work, don’t let this happen to you. 

Many bloggers, especially those in business in technology write as if they are afraid to be wrong, and seem to think if they have one misstep they’ll be ruined.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  You might as well not even keep a blog if you’re worried about being wrong on something – we’re only human and part of that is making mistakes and being wrong.  Certainly there is no better way to learn than making mistakes, and in fact if you aren’t making any in your blogging, you haven’t been doing it long enough.  No one is gets it right all the time. 

Bloggers like traditional writers have different styles. Do I agree with every blogger I come across? No. Do some of them make me uncomfortable? At times, yes. But they are entitled to their opinions.
Sometimes I find myself  writing about gardening, other times sharing a recipe, or showing you my latest photography or vintage find, or telling you about a restaurant or a shop I stumbled across that I thought was pretty cool.

But sometimes I’m going to have purely opinion driven piece of how I feel about something or something I don’t care for or something I am  questioning. 

Sometimes I even write about politics, religion, social politics, or even parenting topics. However, the  unfortunate thing is in today’s land of political correctness, these non-Suzy homemaker and gardener posts often amount to social crucifixion. 

Sometimes I wonder if sociologically, we are regressing? Are we bringing back the Scarlet letter?  Dunking people to see if they  sink or float, thereby determining if they are a witch or not?

A lot of this phenomenon is determined by keyboard courage. A lot of people feel very free  to express themselves in certain ways that they would never do in person in. Hence the advent in our society of cyber bullying. Some just perform a “bless your heart” on you and think you don’t realize it and keep on moving.

I have friends who have online presences to compliment  their various aspects of business and even they experience these online kerfuffles. One recently described it and pretty simplistic terms. They said you can say the sky is blue, and you will get 50 comments telling you that you’re wrong that is cerulean or aqua. And they will fight you to the death online to make sure their opinion is the only one left standing. And why?  Because you said something wrong or you said something they didn’t want to hear?

George Orwell once wrote “The enemy is the gramophone mind, whether or not one agrees with the record that is being played at the moment.”  

He also said when he was releasing Animal Farm (quite controversial in it’s day)  “The chief danger to freedom of thought and speech at this moment is not the direct interference of  any official body. If publishers and editors exert themselves to keep certain topics out of print, it is not because they are frightened of prosecution but because they are frightened of public opinion…..intellectual cowardice is the worst enemy a writer or journalist has to face.”

I’m not comparing myself to George Orwell, let me be clear, I just found his comments timely in a weird way. Another great writer, E.B. White also touched many times on this topic of censorship. As did Galileo when it came to the Catholic Church centuries earlier.

And again, I am not comparing myself to E.B. White or Galileo. I am doing is pointing out that for a country based on certain freedoms, we certainly can be as backwards as our ancestors some days.

Having an independent thought or an opinion shouldn’t  amount to social crucifixion, but it does. Does that make me a martyr? Certainly not. It’s just another interesting thing to observe sociologically. 

And it all amounts to the more things change, the more things stay the same. Just like it is always easier to tell someone they are crazy, or infer they are a bad person, or berate or threaten them rather than have a conversation or discussion and discover opposing points of view that differ from your own. 

People react differently to things that put them out of their comfort level. Sometimes that is a positive and sometimes not. A lot of people like to live in a predictable little box where they control the universe. And that’s also OK, their universe doesn’t have to be my universe and vice versa.

I am sure this post will spark a conversation and even chiding  directed at yours truly. That’s OK. Thank you to my critics giving me more food for thought.

Thanks for stopping by on a stormy day!

adult summer reading

Yes, gardening magazines are always part of my summer reading and fall reading and my winter reading and my spring reading. But I’m not writing a post to tell you that you should be reading Fine Gardening Magazine, even if I do think it is the best gardening magazine out there today.

I am talking about a novel I just finished called Luckiest Girl Alive by Jessica Knoll.

I had heard buzz about it, and a lot of people have been reading it that I know from Shipley because it was written by a Shipley graduate and basically the school at the center of the book is a fictional private school very much like Shipley.  Reese Witherspoon has also optioned the movie rights. (She had Main Line experience when she came to Philadelphia to film a movie a few years ago and if I recall correctly she rented a house somewhere around Gladwyne and Haverford during filming, but I digress.)

If you grew up on the Main Line and/or went to one of the private schools you should really read this book. It’s fascinating, darkly accurate and darn fun to read.

It’s crime fiction but it’s not just that. It also is utterly spot on as to what life in a Main Line private school could be and was like— complete with the different tiers of kids and school social status.

Truthfully, for a debut novel it’s pretty powerful and yes can be quite dark. The depiction of the lunch room is also spot on.

The funny thing is that although I’ve heard a lot of Shipley graduates talking about this book I don’t remember seeing anything that the school put out. Maybe I missed it.

Main Line Today wrote about the book and I read the article after I finished the book. I always felt that the inspiration for the other fictional school in the novel was actually Villa Maria and I think I was right. Of course this makes me wonder that one of the many brief descriptions of teachers at the school is actually a teacher I remember and not particularly fondly. 

The descriptions of the area, down to pizza places are spot on. But I would expect no less of someone who grew up in the area. But what is most fascinating to me is how accurate and unabashed the author is about writing about growing up and going to school on the Main Line. And the types of parents she writes about, we all lived through.  

One of the sub- topics in her book, the reaction to new non-WASP kids at a school, resonated with me because I have a vowel on the end of my name. I also came to Shipley in the Upper School and wasn’t a lifer. Yes, I had some friends there going into the school as a new student,  but I still remember the new girl feeling and the pit in the bottom of my stomach which accompanied it.

The author also depicts the whole working in your twenties and the hoopla around weddings and the crossroads some found themselves in.

The book is a work of fiction but it is one of those books that will resonate with a lot of different people.

I will admit I have a thing about books and movies set in this area. That is what drew me to the book initially. What kept me is the main character. Sort of an anti-heroine but oddly real for a fictional character. I liked her and I loved the novel. Check the book out!

Thanks for stopping by.

in the pocket visits east whiteland

post cover

You have to give East Whiteland Township and Friends of Summer Stage credit. They do summer concerts  right!  Last evening’s concert  courtesy of them, Point Entertainment, and WXPN, was  David Uosikkinen’s In The Pocket.

post 1Davis Uosikkinen is with the Hooters. This is his own individual project and he calls it “Essential Songs of Philadelphia”. And it so is. His band is a revolving and evolving cast of the men and woman who give Philadelphia it’s unique musical perspective and sound, and in many cases have for years and years.  The line up depends on the availability of the artist.post 2

Last evening the concert was moved from Valley Creek Park into the conference center at  Penn State Great Valley. The line-up was amazing –

David Uosikkinen – The Hooters, Kenny Aaronson – Bob Dylan / John Eddie,Richard Bush – The A’s,Steve Butler – Smash Palace,Tommy Conwell – The Young Rumblers, Jay Davidson – Steve Winwood / The Funk Brothers,Greg Davis – Beru Revue,Jeffrey Gaines,Jerry Getz – Beru Revue,Cliff Hillis ,Kenn Kweder,Charlie & Richie Ingui – Soul Survivors,Zou Zou Mansour,Wally Smith – Smash Palace / Crosstown Traffic.

I will also note that David’s son Samuel Uosikkinen played with In The Pocket as well last evening. He is a very talented musician in his own right!

post 5

I loved every song. I will admit a Richard Bush /Kinks cover and Punkrock Girl were among my favorites but Zou Zou Mansour killed it with Be My Baby, and Ken Kweeder’s Me and Mrs. Jones was also terrific!

 

The set list was:

Change Reaction – Steve Butler / Cliff Hillis
I’m Not Like Everybody Else – ZouZou Mansour
Be My Baby – ZouZou Mansour
Open My Eyes – Jeffrey Gaines
I Saw The Light – Cliff Hillis
Turn On A Dime – Cliff Hillis
Good To Be The King – Greg Davis
Moon River – Greg Davis
Me and Mrs. Jones – Kenn Kweder
Like A Rolling Stone – Kenn Kweder
Count The Days – Steve Butler
Turn On Your Love Light – Charlie & Richie Ingu (Soul Survivors)
Back Stabbers – Charlie & Richie Ingu (Soul Survivors)
You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’ – Charlie & Richie Ingu (Soul Survivors)
Expressway To Your Heart heart emoticon – Charlie & Richie Ingu (Soul Survivors)
Punk Rock Girl – Richard Bush
You Really Got Me – Richard Bush
Sunny Afternoon – Richard Bush
Woman’s Got The Power – Richard Bush
Can’t Sit Down – Tommy Conwell
Everything They Say Is True – Tommy Conwell
If We Never Meet Again – Tommy Conwell
Workout – Tommy Conwell
I’m Not You’re Man – Tommy Conwell
Beat Up Guitar – Richard Bush w/ In The Pocket band (Everybody else)

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If I really want to date myself I can admit I have been listening to Eric Bazilian and the Hooters since they would perform at places like Harriton High School back in the day.  Music is definitely a thread of continuity in our lives and this concert reminded me of so many points in time. Like in the way back time machine to when summer housemates were Avalon Cabaret girls, so you never knew which members of the bands you would find at our place, often hiding our from the groupies that would hang outside the steps of the band quarters at the Avalon Cabaret.

 

post 7In recent years, I have gotten to know other sounds like Jim Boggia (who wasn’t playing with In the Pocket last evening, but does) and Jeffrey Gaines, who used to be the neighbor of myself and friends of mine. Now Jeffrey is also a very compassionate musician and in 2007 when friends of mine and I planned a fundraiser for a woman named Moira who had been struck with viral encephalitis and needed a lot of medical care, he was among the many talented musicians who donated their time completely to a fundraiser and concert.post 4

All of the musicians who played last night were amazing! I had not seen Tommy Conwell perform in so many years, and  he has not lost a note, step, or guitar lick.

It was a truly magical musical event and if you have the chance to go see David Uosikkinen’s In The Pocket perform – run. It is an amazing experience and just an evening of awesome sounds!

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