Read the whole story > here < and join in the conversation with your comment at the site, or leave a comment here for your colleagues.

online_mom-300x199I wonder how many people reading this of any age have a Facebook page that they use for professional networking (including job hunting.)  I have an account, but I have not completed any of the information yet.

man_mobile_phoneI plan on doing it soon, and to get the most out of it, I need to tie it in to the other accounts I have, i.e., Twitter, LinkedIn, and these two blogs. So far the blogs, Twitter, and LinkedIn keep me pretty busy.

Share your questions, sucessful practices, comments, etc., here!

Images from via the Web


emptypockets_getty_400Not that this information puts me back to work full time at full salary, but St. Louis is in pretty good shape on the Economic Stress Index measures compared to many, many other places in the USA.

> AP Economic Stress Index, Interactive Map < lets you see county by county measures from March, 2009, for unemployment + foreclosures + bankruptcies = economic stress index.

Check out the link, and if you’re thinking about moving because it’s “bad” where you are, you might think again after you see this. “Bad” is a relative term.

Image of empty pocket from Getty Images via the Web

I subscribe and receive daily updates from NPR ‘s feature, “The Writer’s Almanac with Garrison Keillor.” Here is a selection from Sunday, May 17, 2009,

Satie, Self Portrait

Satie, Self Portrait

It’s the birthday of composer > Erik Satie <, born in a seaport town in northern France (1866). He’s known for his eccentric piano pieces, with French titles that roughly translate into Flabby Preludes (for a Dog) (1912) and Three Pieces in the Shape of a Pear (1903). His scores also contain instructions to the performers like “Light as an egg,” “With astonishment,” or “Work it out yourself.”

> Sample Satie’s Premiere Gymnopedie < here, from Musopen!

Click the link, then click the Download button to play the piece.

Robin Cembalest

Robin Cembalest

I found Robin’s series of > art related videos < on a Web site called

She’s talking in some substantial dollar amounts. Some of her numbers only connect with me when I’m buying something like a car or a house (I live “low on the hog,” if you understand my meaning.)

You can substitute any dollar amount, or any type of artistic expression, however, and I think the videos generalize well and are very well done.



From “The Writer’s Almanac with Garrison Keillor,”

It’s the anniversary of the printing of the first known book. In the year 868, Wang Chieh printed the Diamond Sutra, a Buddhist scripture, on a 16-foot scroll using wood blocks. It was discovered in 1907 in Turkestan, among 40,000 books and manuscripts walled up in one of the Caves of the Thousand Buddhas.

Diamond Sutra_Jingangjing

And, from Wikipedia, the image, above, and this information,

A page from the Diamond Sutra, printed in the 9th year of Xiantong Era of the Tang Dynasty, i.e. 868 CE. Currently located in the British Library, London.


Composers Datebook

John Zech

John Zech

The link, above, for Composers Datebook is to a podcast from American Public Media to a daily music program about composers of the past and present, hosted by John Zech.*

I subscribe to Composers Datebook by e-mail, and I receive both a recorded and a written version of it each day. It only takes at most a few minutes to enjoy the content of each one.

It occurred to me that especially for readers in China and other countries where English is a second language that this could be of interest beyond the musical pleasure; that is, having a both a written and spoken version is a help in adding to English vocabulary and cultural knowledge of western musical traditions.

So, the spoken version is linked for you, above, and here is a copy and paste of the written version. If you enjoy this post and would like to have more Composers Datebook posts here from time to time, please leave a comment for me to let me know. Also, if you have any questions about the names and other references in this Composers Datebook, below, I’d be delighted to answer them!

Leopold Stokowski

Leopold Stokowski

Of Mice and Maestros: Leopold Stokowski

On today’s date in 1882, a child was born in London to a Polish father and Irish mother—a baby christened Leopold Boleslawowicz Stanislaw Antoni Stokowski.

In 1882, Brahms completed his Second Piano Concerto and Wagner introduced his last opera, “Parsifal”; Gustav Mahler was a promising opera conductor aged 22; Richard Strauss was a young man of 18; Arnold Schoenberg a lad of seven; and Igor Stravinsky still a few months away from being born!

Leopold Stokowski would grow up to become a famous conductor of all those composers’ works. For 25 years, Stokowski led the Philadelphia Orchestra in an astonishing variety of music, ranging from his own dramatic symphonic arrangements of works by J.S. Bach to cutting-edge, avant-garde works of Edgard Varese and dozens of other contemporary composers.

Stokowski cut a glamorous figure on stage and off, hung out with movie stars, and played himself in a 1937 movie, “100 Men and a Girl.” He shook hands with Mickey Mouse in Disney ‘s animated classic Fantasia,” and Bugs Bunny did a devastating Stokowski imitation in a famous Warner Brothers cartoon.

For some, his flamboyance was hard to take, but the list of old and new music Stokowski performed before his death in 1977, at the age of 95, remains as impressive as his recorded legacy, which continues to live on via compact disc reissues.

# # #

*John Zech | Host, Classical Music/Composers Datebook

Minnesota Public Radio

John Zech got started in broadcasting as a news anchor at his high school’s closed-circuit television station (KRUD). At St. Olaf College, his love of classical music earned him his first “real” radio experience at WCAL-FM. After a dozen years doing virtually everything there was to do at a small public radio station, John crossed over into the private sector, doing audio production and narration for a major educational publishing company, managing translation projects for an international communications company, and generally learning what it’s like to work for a living. Having seen the light, John returned to radio in 1992. After deciding his Zen garden was too much of a headache, John looks for enlightenment on the tennis court and the billiard table instead.

© 2009 American Public Media

480 Cedar Street, Saint Paul, MN USA 55101

Image of Leopold Stokowski from LIFE Magazine archives via the Web (Leopold Stokowski conducting the New York Philharmonic Orchestra in rehearsal at Carnegie Hall, New York, NY, USA. Taken in 1947. Photographer: Gijon Mili.)

Robin Red-Breast

Robin Red-Breast


As each day passes, it becomes less likely that St. Louis will have snow again this season. Snow is not an impossibility, but at this point, it would melt quickly, as the ground is warming. This makes me happy: I’m not a fan of snow, or cold weather, for that matter.

My favorite temperature range is between 50-75 degrees Fahrenheit. Not a wide range, but to me the range that is most comfortably “perfect,” and that is whether it’s sunny or cloudy. We’ve had several days in that range in the last few weeks. I think it is the perfect temperature for the birds in our backyard, too. They are busy, busy, busy these days. I’ve been watching the robins and grackles taking turns splashing in our birdbath. It’s “dating season,” and they are all sprucing up, it seems.

Red-bud in my backyard

Red-bud in my backyard

I took a few pictures yesterday of nature coming alive again now that “spring has sprung,” as we say. One of the photos is of a red-bud tree in our backyard. The other deciduous trees are also slowly coming alive, buds opening into leaves, and it’s such a relief to know that the easier days of warm weather and backyard barbeques are almost here!

The other photo is of our sweet cat Eliza watching the world go by safety from the window in our living room. This time last year she was a homeless stray living outdoors and struggling to find her food and shelter each day.

Eliza in the window

Eliza in the window

Eliza is part of our family now, and she enjoys her easier, peaceful life. Every evening she comes and curls up on my lap for a nap.

We’ve had a lot of rain and a few freeze warnings in the last few weeks, but I can stand on the front porch in my bare feet without my toes going numb from the cold. The day is coming soon when we will be able to put away our coats and hats and gloves in the closet for six months or so and roll out the Weber kettle grill for the season. That’s my favorite day of the year!weber_compact_grill_47cm_charcoal_bbq_l