Sunday, December 28

A Feminine Problem

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And the moral is....

Sunday, December 21

Why Not Australia & New Zealand?

I have decided not to go on the trade mission I discussed two posts ago. Thanks for your posted and emailed counsel.

The thing is that I see hotel and meeting rooms all of the time. To know that just beyond their walls lies all of Australia and New Zealand would be too torturous. Given the economic storm which has struck, it is clear that the April editions of my business magazines will be focused upon the impact of of the conflagration upon first quarter financial statements. And since the trip is in March, I may not be able to find any substantial room for it in the April edition.

Perhaps I can ask for a raincheck until a time when the interest of my readers will be different and I can arrange more time to extend the trip to experience the places fully. But that time will not be in March... Plus there appears to be some pressing managerial opportunities with which I must be involved over the first quarter of next year which may also peak in early March. So, the stars are not in an alignment for this trip... and tomorrow I shall turn down the flattering offer to join the trade mission. Sigh.... Needless to say, there will always be a regret for the road not taken. Eh?

Merry Everyone

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Wishing you a warm and balmy Christmas... Blessed, of course with all of the joy that we imagine can happen and dream about over these days. Christmas is a feeling to believe in. Hope you do... tenaciously.

Thursday, December 18

Advise Anyone?

<- Click here A month ago the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania invited me to accept a spot on a March 2009 trade mission to Australia and New Zealand.

Never been there... sounded like a trip of a lifetime. But... but.. but...

While they will pay half of the cost (on everything but dinners/drinks) the mission lasts eight days... in three cities (Melbourne, Sidney and not sure of the New Zealand city yet). It will involve four days in the air going to and from, and however long the trip will take from Australia to New Zealand.

Each day will be filled with meetings (three to five meetings daily). So... eight days of meetings, four days of travel... best part of two weeks away from my work (I am a partner and managing editor of business magazines). Most of my work would involve writing a major piece on the fit between the Pennsylvania business culture and those of the countries I'd visit.

But... but... It will still cost me a lot, and I will lose about two weeks from my management responsibilities and simultaneously have to do a lot of my editing by internet on top of the many hours of work during the days of the trip.

Sigh... In some ways it is a trip of a lifetime (and of course my wife wants to go... hmmm... but for pesky some reason that expenditure is mine, go figure...). I have until Monday December 22 to notify the folks at the commerce dept. re. my decision. And frankly, this is a lot of work and a lot of money for... for... well, I'm kind of wondering what's in it for me. Can't really afford to add more days to the trip away from the job. And while it could be cool to see those cities after work, well, there are a lot of cities I still haven't seen that won't take four days of travel.

Anybody got any advice? Most photo opportunities will be at night when I probably will also have to do my editing chores. Sounds like a whirlwind... and I'm not sure the benefits outweigh the costs. Hulp!

Maybe there will be a spot on a later mission, but there's sure no guarantee. Sigh....

Email always accepted at the email address there on the right... K?

Thanks... Reeeeely appreciate advise especially from folks who live or visit Down Under.


Sunday, December 14


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Saturday, December 13

Three Squared

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People bring cities current. Hmmm... let me try that differently. Each new generation adds some permanent mark to a city in its architecture which grows like the rings of tree. But it's the people lurking about the streets which swirls the present moment's culture all over that longer term background. Our ancestors create the setting for the present instant's drama.

Right now is always inextricably mixed with ... back then.

Sunday, December 7

Wasn't Going To Post This

Entry Into A RedBubble Challenge

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I suppose many of you know of the Red Bubble forum? I'm fascinated by the talent of many of its participants, I'm finding them both instructive and VERY challenging. They accept all sorts of art including short stories, poems, and other fiction. One of the groups, WMG - The Writer's Market Group is bringing out an annual "Best Of" E-Book and this year they will apparently combine submissions from 2008 which shared "Epic" as a theme.

To that end, they challenged group members to submit entries into a contest to design a cover. Now since it is an eBook I decided to break with the convention of a horizontal book format (so far I'm alone in entries which have done that). Of course all of the text on the cover can/will be eventually tailored to the forum's specific needs. However it seems to me that a graphic which screams EPIC needs to have some pretty common elements, right?

(1) VAST... It's gotta be BIG... HUMONGUS... SWEEPING! Hence the panorama format.
(2) Sexy... Gotta imply all sorts of moist liaisons which of course demands a blonde... Obvious, hun?
(3) Weird, scary, sinister villains.
(4) A mysterious object.
(5) A palette that oozes something spooky either reds or yellow-greens, or cold-cold blues.
(6) Suggestions of edgy texture? Gritty.
(7) Action.

Now I probably should have had armies massed in the background along with booming cannons, lots of smoke, and squirming bodies. But, lacking any squirming bodies ... well y'gives it what y'gots. Right?

Wuddaya think.... does it screech "EPIC!!!!"

Hope so, if you're Red Bubble members... please vote for the sucker. K?


Okay.... I should read the rules. Seems that the dimensions had to be A4 size.... Sigh.... I still think that the pano screeeeechs out EPIC!!! But if it has to be book cover size... well, hey.... I can do dat.... Which do you prefer? Choices?

Thursday, December 4


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