Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Here's looking at you!

Next Monday I will be starting a fast that will last 24 hours. I am having a colonostopy ( lovely ) at the Queen of the Valley Hospital. I have to drink about two quarts of Ginger Ale and take this stuff that is going to clean me out thoroughly. The only reason I am mentioning this is because I am now 56 and I need to have all my working parts checked, to prepare for my twilight years twenty years from now. Hey, you should always be prepared ! Today I am going on my scooter to the Coffee Roastery to have my cup of joe and to read the paper. Hopefully, I will meet up with a kindred soul who's ear I can bend for awhile. I may even bring my sketchbook to do a few drawings.

Friday, January 19, 2007


The first day back at work is always a little intimidating. All at once you feel like the new guy again... but that's good. Having what the Zen Buddhists call a "beginner's mind" is helpfull in overcoming any negative patterns you have established that block personal growth. It's like having an open mind with the added benefit of discernment. All in all, it was a pretty good day. The Healthy World's of Flavor Conference started today. It is by no means, anywhere near what the Grand event of the year is like in November but it could be in the future. The "World's of Flavor" takes the cake as the showcase event of the year.On another note, I am doing a lot of research on a history project I have taken on... Basically, I've come up with a lot of factual data about the Greystone campus. Brother Timothy's oral account of what took place on the property from an interview taken in 1975 reveals how the Christian Brothers succeeded as one of the top wineries in the Napa Valley during that era.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Reflective Thursday

Today I got up and went to work. I forgot that I had arranged to take the day off to go to a memorial service for Sister Clare Wagstaffe. She was the aunt of my co-worker, Eileen Wagstaffe, and if she was anything like Eileen, she was a beautiful soul.Once I got to work I realized where I should be and clocked out. From there I went to St. Mary's College in Moraga for the memorial mass.Sr. Clare was made an affiliated member of the Christian Brother's Teaching Order and will be buried at Mt. La Salle. Once I left the chapel after mass I met up with Eileen and walked with her for awhile, just to reflect on the beauty and strength this person had contributed to Eileen's life.I didn't want to go to the reception not for any other reason than I didn't think I wanted to chat with Brother Mel or some of the other brothers. I don't really no why... so I took off for Napa. On the way back,I listened to The Dr. Dean Edell show on KGO and he was talking about Prostate Cancer in men. I realized that I was now 56 and had never had an exam.This is something that concerns me because cancer has occurred more than twice in my family.So, I immediately made a left turn and drove to my physician's office to be checked out. Luckily, I was taken in a given a referral for an appointment on Monday.I will keep you posted.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

My date with Kitty

Today is Tuesday, January 14th, and we are still in the middle of a cold snap.Yesterday, I had a nice run with Don,who suprised me with a silver bracelet that he made by hand. It is very cool looking and the agreed price of $70.00 was immediately paid.Money is tight, but I should be able to afford it after a I am paid this Friday.Then at 1:30pm I drove my car to the Century Theater in San Raphael to see the movie. "The Children of men" with Kitty. She and I were both limping as we greeted each other. She, because she needs to get a hip replacement, and me because I think that I have torn the miniscus in my other knee.Yipes. Anyway, the movie was pretty good.It was set in the future under the premise that the last child had already been born some years before and that no one was able to reproduce for whatever reason.There was much fighting, guns and violence in the movie, but it still had a pretty good story line which was like a modern day story of the Nativity of Christ.After the film we decided on having pizza across the street at this little pizzeria which had a delicious Pesto Pizza. During dinner, Kitty presented me with a cell phone that she was giving me as a gift because she needed a new (and better) one for her job. I was happy to recieve it, but will probably only use it for emergency calls.All in all, it was a very nice date.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

It could happen to you !

Watch the video

It has been so cold here I couldn't find my johnson to take a leak! ...and now I've got a man-vagina!... (well, you get my drift).This isn't like me.I was so inspired yesterday that I tried updating my blog here at the local Coffee shop.I went to hook up my camera, but only drew uncomfortable attention to myself.Now I question my own motives for having this video blog.If everyone had new IPhones we would all be taking a shitload more pictures and posting them wherever we wanted... just because we have the technology to now flaunt it ! I mean privacy concerns, copyrights and increased legislation are not making anyone's space anymore safe (either for the recorder or the one being recorded ).Yesterday at MacWorld, people were snapping pictures with thier fancy digital cameras everywhere I turned.If I was part of the witness protection program, I could have been tracked by the mob so easily by now.Think about it...only fifteen years ago Faith Popcorn (a marketing futurist ) predicted that we would all be "cocooning" ourselves with this false sense of security and all the products and services that go along with it. We have gated communities, alarm-devices, minature survellience cameras, tear-gas pens and stun guns .This is so lame.Does anyone feel any less terrorized or intruded upon? Does anyone really feel more safe ? People now have a hard time distinquishing between private and public space.Most will saunter around with their new kewl cell-phone and a snotty feeling of entitlement when they are nammering away to their friends who are two aisles down in the supermarket. Or better yet, at the checkout stand feeling totally "put-off" when the clerk interrupts your oh-so important call by asking you if you wanted paper or plastic! Privacy control and security are all part of this illusion. We might as well assume that we are all on the lamb, and this is just another symptom of our sick society.Perhaps one suggestion would be to walk around like the Blues Brothers with Fedoras and Ray-Bans on. An old hippie once told me..."Just because you are paranoid, does not mean they aren't out to get you!" No truer words were spoken. Now as new-media celebrity, and police victim Rodney King has implored us to do over a decade ago..."Can we all just get along?"

Monday, January 08, 2007

James Brown Popcorn

This was the hardest working man in show buisness.
Without his moves and grooves, Michael Jackson or Prince wouldn't have a leg to stand on... This was one of his better performances.James Brown VIDEOS and MUSIC at : http://www.getpedia.com/1/jamesbrown.htm

Chris Rock - How NOT to Get Your Butt Kicked.

Very funny clip of Chris Rock. www.upyourvideo.net

Thursday, January 04, 2007

The Winds of Change

The new year continues to unfold around here at the C.I.A. Meetings are going on which tell me that something BIG is brewing. I shouldn't let the resturant closure or the Campus Store Inventory deter my natural momentum for keeping the ball rolling around here. The weather today was a cross between sun, rain and wind. Whenever it gets windy, I suspect that changes abound.My employer wants me to compile a history of Greystone that can be viewd on a flat panel monitor for the Atrium (which will undergo a huge change).I have been the one who has cataloged a whole variety of pictures and documents relating to this place.I feel confident that I can produce a multimedia production which will really showcase the best of what we have here.I plan to begin this project with the legacy of William Borne and Everitt Wise.Then I will talk a little about winemaking before Prohibition and after the Phyloxera epidemic.Then I will speak briefly about the Bisceglia Brothers and finally mention how the Christian Brothers came to the Napa Valley.I am looking forward to this project.It will be especially gratifying to talk about the marriage of wine,food and art after the Paris tasting and before the C.I.A. opened it's doors here.

Monday, January 01, 2007

Happy 2007 !

Just like an old fuddy duddy, I went to bed early and woke up around midnight to the sound of my Mexican neighbors honking their car horns, blowing off fire-crackers and pumping up the mariachi music full blast. Needless to say, I got up and put on my earphones and sat at the computer. I figured out that i could call my sister in Australia and that it would only be around 8pm where she was. We eventually got hooked up on "Skype" and did our best to work out the audio/video bugs so that we could chat anytime we felt like it. I don't make any new year's resolutions because my will power has always translated into won't power, and that is too much of a perfectionist set up for me. The good news is that I haven't found it necessary to take any drink or mind altering substance for almost 30 years. Actually, my sobriety date is March 13th, 1977 so that is the date that I will thank my fellowship and higher power.This year should be a good one, God willing.