In Memory of Grandpa

Grandpa Sal as a Young Man in ROTC

Grandpa Sal as a Young Man in ROTC

On the morning of Friday, December 1st, I had dropped my parents off at the airport. They were heading to Atlanta for a conference. Later in the day, I drove over to work to get my schedule for the coming week. While I was heading there, Dad had rented yellow Mustang convertible for their week, and had texted me a picture of it. So I got to work, got my schedule, and hung out for a bit.

Then I got a phone call from my mom, who was crying. At first, she could barely talk, and two horrible thoughts went through my head. First, I thought she and Dad had gotten into a bad accident. Then I thought my brother, and best friend, Aaron, had gotten into an accident.

What she finally told me did not make me feel better.

At all.

Her dad, my grandpa, in Connecticut, had had a heart attack. He was in the hospital on life support.

Not long after, Dad called me. Grandma was taking him off life support, so he wouldn’t suffer.

I picked up my parents and my brother at the airport the next morning, and we went straight to Connecticut.

That side of my family is Catholic. The wake was Wednesday. The funeral was Thursday. And we came back home on Thursday night.

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Cassini’s Grand Finale (Why I Missed Wednesday’s APotW)

Hello! You’ll noticed that I skipped Astronomy Pictures of the Week on Wednesday. That… was on purpose.

Today was Cassini’s last day alive. This morning, Cassini plunged into Saturn, sending back some amazing data, but, in the process, ending its life.

Cassini was launched on October 15th, 1997. For two decades, Cassini revealed the wonders of the greatest planet and planetary system in our solar system to us. We learned so much.

But, now, it’s over…

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Great Guitar Solos – Jimmy Page Plays White Summer/Black Mountain Side Live on the Julie Felix Show (April 26, 1970)

Late! I’m so sorry…

Jimmy Page is here on the Julie Felix show, playing White Summer/Black Mountain Side on acoustic guitar. It’s probably my favorite version of the instrumental.

Sadly, the video quality is… poor… but then this is recovered raw footage. It aired on April 26, 1970.

If you listen closely, from 2:57 to 3:21, it sounds like he’s riffing on “Friends” just a tiny bit (different key and arrangement, obviously, but still).

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Quick Life Update

I apologize for the massively decreased posting here. I’m not leaving. A lot of things are in the way right now. So there’s a few reasons for my seeming silence here…

The first is the fact that the publicize feature is broken. In the past, when I published a post, it automatically got sent out to Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Google+, and even LinkedIn. Now I have to do all that manually. I don’t have a problem with this for APotW and GGS, but for more in-depth posts I want people to dig into, the extra step of manually putting these out on my social networks is kinda annoying.

The second is that things in my life have taken an… interesting… turn. I work at Teavana, and Starbucks has announced that it will be closing all Teavana’s by Spring 2018. Unless I’m working at Starbucks by that time (they will have to hire me as whatever their equivalent of a team lead is, or as an assistant manager, and at a higher hourly wage than what I’m making now, which is $10), I’ll post my thoughts on all of this, on Teavana, and stuff like that. I’d call it a “tell all”, but it’s just going to be my opinion, others will disagree, and, well…

Teavana is, perhaps, not the most popular place in the tea community, and there are good reasons for that. But there’s a lot of good at Teavana, as well, not the least of which is that it has actually served as a reliable stepping stone for people interested in giving up soda and coffee and the like and want to move beyond the bagged stuff… so it won’t all be bad.

As for the third thing…

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I’m Heading Back to New York

My flight back to New York is scheduled  for 3:30pm. Assuming it isn’t delayed, I’m probably boarding now. And that’s it…

The end of my awesome vacation with my brother in Georgia.

Back to…

New York, Teavana, parents… life…

I think maybe I should move back to Georgia…

Sorry… Forgot Posts Today…

Sorry I forgot the Self Care post today. My brother got into town last night, so I stayed up getting kinda drunk on really expensive scotch with him and Dad, and then I woke up at 12pm today and had work at 3pm. So… apologies.

As for news about the Circus Peanut administration… it’s been kinda light in terms of stuff worth highlighting, to be honest… although that’s partly because I decided, what with Passover coming up and my vacation the week after, to take a break… my anxiety’s been spiking horribly again, to the point where 10mg of Lexapro a night is doing fuck all for me. Although I’m sure that’s been obvious considering how my posts have been pretty much since Agent Orange was elected (nothing but anger, cynicism, and hatred).

I need some laughter and happiness.

But anyways… that ableism post has been coming along, and in fact I’m going to focus on it for a bit, so I can put that and my commenting policy up before I start my vacation in Georgia next week.

I’ll see y’all with Great Guitar Solos on Monday at 12pm.

A Note About the “Self Care” Series…

This really should be obvious at this point, but the series has basically become anything that’s positive or good news and not related to the administration (the only time it will be related is if I have good news to report about the 2018 midterm elections, although my hope for that is non-existent).

You may also start seeing it more than once a day sometimes.

There’s so much terrible shit coming from the government that I need to subset that with happy, feel-good, unrelated stuff as often as possible, so…

There will still be a continued Self Care post around noon; but you’ll probably see it more often on some days.

Astronomy Picture of the Week: Hercules–Corona Borealis Great Wall (And an Update)

Late yet again… sorry…

This one is really cool. It’s currently the most massive known structure in our observable universe, measuring 10 billion lightyears in diameter. Sorry I can’t get y’all a better link than Wikipedia. I can’t find anything at Nasa.gov or Hubblesite.org, which is annoying but… what’re ya’ gonna do?

Hubble image of MACS J0717 with mass overlay

Hubble image of MACS J0717 with mass overlay (Hercules–Corona Borealis Great Wall)

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Quick Update and a Couple Links

As of right now, I have a few days off now (assuming I don’t get called in), so I’ll be working on a couple posts: one with lots and lots of links talking mostly about the police (in the context of the report that came out about just how bigoted and violent the Baltimore PD really is, and why it’s true of way more PDs than just Baltimore), and another light-hearted one about tea.

To get you started on the police thing, though, here’s a couple links to posts written by Caine I really need you to read:

1. Lethal Incompetence
2. Cop Who Killed 73 year old: record of excessive force

Also, tomorrow (Monday, August 15th), at noon, another Great Guitar Solos post featuring Kaki King will go up.

So that’s three posts you have to look forward to over the next couple days. One to really piss you off, and two to make you happy… if guitar and tea are things that make you happy, anyways…