Signs of the Times

I was in CVS Pharmacy picking up my meds and saw these two signs. I couldn't shake them from my memory and had to go back another day to snap pictures. The way the exit sign is labelled makes me wonder, is it an exit, or not an exit?

What interested me most, though, was whether I could really get my money back if I buy a beauty product and it doesn't actually make me beautiful.

Dead bodies attacking the living

Authorities are investigating an apparent hacking of the Emergency Broadcast System. Those watching Public TV 13 Monday afternoon or the Bachelor on ABC Monday night may have seen a message come across the screen saying "Local authorities in your area have reported the bodies of the dead are rising from their graves and attacking the living," the message warned. "Do not attempt to approach or apprehend these bodies as they are considered extremely dangerous."

Candy Recycling Service

Talking about my neighbor's decorations reminded me about something that happened the Halloween before last, that took place on a Friday. My kids had a sleepover, and the next day 5 kids were sitting around the breakfast table and I came up with the idea of going around the neighborhood acting like the Candy Recycling Service, and predicted about a 20% success rate. This was received skeptically but ended up being about right after they got dressed and took a trip around the block knocking on neighbors' doors--most either had passed out all their candy the night before, or wanted to hold in to what was left, and a few were openly suspicious as to whether the kids actually were with a bona fide Candy Recycling Service. But as predicted, there were a number of households that jumped at the opportunity to dispose of the temptation, one lady cried out "oh yes I do!" when asked if she had any candy she'd like to get rid of. They came back with a whole pillow case full, more than they'd gotten the night before in costume. As there had been a number of kids exposed to the idea, I predicted that it would quickly go viral as it spread around their school, and then jumped the fence to others, and soon sweep the nation. As far as I can tell this doesn't seem to have happened yet, I presume since this year Halloween was on a week night, and you can't really go after work the next day to same effect. I still think this could be a good opportunity to get in on the ground floor of a new micro-business, selling cards for people to out in their windows with the words "No Candy Recycling" so they won't be bothered by surley teenagers the next day. I thnk it is only a matter of time before this takes off, so I want to register he idea to help future historians figure out where it began n

Neighbor Violates Christmas Decoration Ordinance

This has been a hard year for my neighbor. First he got a ticket from a city inspector for watering on the wrong day of the week. Next he had his industrial strength 4th of July fireworks show shut down by the police. Afterwards he said he was fed up, and was thinking of moving out if town. Every year since they moved in he has started early getting ready for Halloween. This year he has amped up his Christmas presentation, doubling the number lights in his yard after his dad unloaded a bunch of stuff on him.

I got a lovely idea for a performance art piece: hiring a guy to dress up like a city worker to deliver a citation for being in violation of the city's excessive Christmas decoration ordinance, having exceeded by 30% or more 50% of the average amount of decorations per residence of his street. It's a funny idea to me, but I don't think he would agree, and it could prove to be dangerous for the imposter. My neighbor may be ready to snap, and he has guns. Christmas decorations

Young at Heart

A lovely documentary about a choir of senior citizens who delight and warm the hearts of their audiences with covers of tasty pop songs. I get teary at 10% of the movies I see, but Forever Young even got to some of the inmates they entertained at a prison. I normally don't like to post spoilers, but you're gonna love the opening—one of the ladies scream to kick off the punk classic Should I Stay Or Should I Go. "What ultimately emerges is a funny and unexpectedly moving testament to friendship, creative inspiration and reaching beyond expectations." Rotten Tomatoes

Conlon Nancarrow, player piano composer

Conlon NancarrowEvery time Conlon punched a hole, the world got more interesting. If you like something different, and I mean really different, check out Conlon Nancarrow's player piano music. He spent his lifetime composing radical player piano music in Mexico City. I'm organizing a Symposium for September, 2012, in time to enrich concerts expected to take place the following month in honor of the centennial of his birth (October 27, 2012). The website is under construction, but you can find links to interviews and videos.