(2) Chuck H. in NC: In addition to your list of favorite films, how ’bout going to one if a good one comes to town. The last good one I saw was The Artist. It was hugely recommended by my brother who is not a great movie goer, so I thought I better check it out, which I did at Blockbuster. I too thought it was great, as did Linda. Maybe we could even take the wives to dinner and a movie or movie and a dinner.
Are there any Charlie Chaplin films on your list of favorites? “City Lights” was probably my favorite, but I really liked “Limelight” too. Unlike the artist, Charlie adapted nicely to talkies and even wrote the musical backgrounds for his films. Laura’s Theme from Limelight became very popular in the fifties. Can you remember back to the fifties? Great to hear from you. Hope we can get together soon.
Note: Chuck is referring to my list of favorite films. If you’d like to see it, send an email to: email@example.com and put FAVORITE FILMS in the subject line. Also, my pick for best film now in the theatres: THE INTOUCHABLES.
(3) Michelle B. in NC: Loved the Erma Bombeck quote.
(3) Michelle B. in NC: Loved the Erma Bombeck quote. Along the lines of what I have told my son also.
(5) Gene S. in NC: So funny and true [7A clip]! Thanks, Blaine! It’s similar to what I used to tell my niece and nephew when they were little. There’s only one rule: “Don’t be stupid.” Maybe it’s time to get some stickers and fridge magnets printed up?
(6) Paul S. in PA: Like your new web-look…cheers.
(7) Maya V. in PA: Chance to enter DRN’s Inaugural Virtual Canoe Race
(8) Nick M. in VT: When I came upon the group Active Heroes I was impressed with what they were doing to help the members of our military and their families. I thought it would be a great idea to get involved in their cause. Take a look at their website activeheroes.org and if you agree with me please contribute at my website fundraise.activeheroes.org/fundraise?fcid=209867. Thanks.
(9) Cathy in PA (with a part-time job for somebody living near Bensalem, PA: My Bensalem office is looking to hire someone to answer telephones part time. It would be day hours only, no evening. If you know of anyone, please e-mail me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
(10) At Cat Video Film Festival, Stars Purr for Close-Ups
(11) Gary J. in NC: What Successful People Do With The First Hour Of Their Work Day
Improv therapy blog entry
by Jeff Thompson*
A couple of friends and I treated ourselves recently to lunch at a nice restaurant. We were seated next to a table of three well-dressed elderly women. The three of them talked very little, breathed very little, and spent most of their meal time gazing around the restaurant, expressionless, seemingly either looking at other people or looking to see if other people were looking at them. What these three ladies had in common that drew them together for a meal, I do not know, but what was obvious to me as an observer was this: they all had very tight skin strapped to their faces and they had tiny, strangely shaped noses.
The skin, dyed orangish brown, looked as though it had been stretched back and stapled behind their hairlines, behind their ears, under their chins. It clearly wanted to snap back but was prevented from doing so by some trickery of modern medicine. The snubs that strived to pass as turned up noses, like some inebriated sculptor’s attempt at Hershey’s kisses, sat slightly but eerily asymmetrical in the midst of facial expressions frozen in flat, wide-eyed stares.
I assume that all three of these ladies had spent untold amounts of money on plastic surgery and Botox, and I felt sad for them that apparently no one had ever let them know about Wabi Sabi. At the very least, knowing about Wabi Sabi could have saved them a lot of money. Even better, it could have helped them feel a lot better about themselves. Perhaps best of all, it could have left them with the physical capacity to smile. I can only assume that would be nice for them.
What is Wabi Sabi, you ask? A new skin cream? Mud mask? Dietary supplement? Nope. Wabi Sabi is an aesthetic tradition in Japanese culture. The concept has evolved over the centuries, but historically the term referred to the appeal inherent in impermanence.
In contrast to the Greek ideals of beauty and perfection, Wabi Sabi calls on us to acknowledge what Buddhists call the 3 marks of existence: nothing lasts (anicca), nothing is finished (anatta), and nothing is perfect (dukkha). Furthermore, Wabi Sabi asks us to seek the elegance and comfort intrinsic within the experience of this decay.
I was lucky. As a child, I was privileged to have a mother who knew about this philosophy. She would regularly read to me, at bedtime, a remarkable parable about Wabi Sabi. There is one passage in the tale that sums up my understanding of the idea with remarkable poignancy: “You become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.”
You guessed it. That’s from “The Velveteen Rabbit.” We really don’t have to look much further than that to find the wisdom needed to live gracefully in this world. One of these days, I’m going to make a video about the Velveteen Rabbit and Barbie duking it out for control of the hearts and minds of America. You can guess who would win in my tale.
But I digress. Wabi Sabi, right? As we take this idea to heart, even a little bit, our ability to improvise, both in art and in life, improves dramatically. Gone is the pressure to be clever, or attractive, or funny. Gone is the presumption that an effort need be judged a failure if it is imperfect. In essence, gone are all of the reasons we’re afraid to live, to take action, to try something, to jump into the fray.
I don’t know your life, but I would wager that when you come to the end of it and find yourself reviewing the footage, the moments you’ll linger on will not be the ones that you meticulously planned and outlined. They will be the gorgeous, divine, entirely unintended mistakes. The friend you met unexpectedly on the playground when you were feeling sad and lonely, the frightened box turtle you almost tripped over while trail running, the sound and smell of the rain on the roof top, the first time you noticed that your lover was getting crows’ feet. Wabi Sabi.
* Reprinted from 7.9.12 with the gracious permission of Jeff Thompson, a friend and body-centered psychotherapist who practices in the Asheville area. For more information, please call him at 828.545.8813 or click: https://www.facebook.com/jeffhthompson
Section 12A (1 seminar I’m presenting & 1 I’m moderating)
(1) Survival Marketing–offered by Asheville SCORE
Sponsored by Ruth C. Smith
Saturday, October 13, 2012 – 9:00 AM-Noon
Registration starts at 8:30 AM
Save $5 by pre-registering by clicking:
To market and grow your business, you need to understand the concept of positioning; i.e., what is it that you do that makes yourself meaningfully different from the competition. Come to this informative and engaging seminar to learn how it’s done.
(2) The one I’m moderating–offered by the SBA to celebrate National Encore Entrepreneur Mentor Day
Panel geared toward people interested in starting a small business, post-retirement.
Section 12B (NC)
(1) Majo M. in NC: Building Bridges [in Asheville] provides an exceptional opportunity to learn more about black-white relationships and to actually develop rich connections with black and white participants who care and are willing to share about these issues. It’s also fun. I have participated several times and highly recommend it. Starts a week from today.
For more information, please click:
(2) Mary Rita S. in NC: If you haven’t already been to Flatrock to catch NOISES OFF it’s soooo good! My good friend Scott [Treadway] is his usual funny
self & another dear friend Ralph Redpath is in the show also. (Only personally know 2 actors) The comedy is an outstanding high energy farce!! I loved it.
Note: It runs through September 9. For tickets:
Tuesday, September 18, 8:00 PM, FREE
About the Original Music Series: Asheville’s own Mike Holstein and Justin Watt bring Original Music on the scene in Asheville. This is a Musician’s Heaven. The Altamont Theatre is proud to support the craft of music composition. This series is a place where composers can share new material and musicians can hone their reading skills by seeing the latest in modern repertoire. the first set will feature a special guest composer, and the 2nd set will be open for other professional musicians to join in.
(1) ACTORS’ NET LAUNCHES 17th SEASON
WITH GORE VIDAL’S THE BEST MAN
EVENT: THE BEST MAN: Just days after the play’s successful revival closes on Broadway, The Actors’ NET of Bucks County presents Gore Vidal’s The Best Man. NET Co-Founder Joe Doyle directs Vidal’s brilliant drama about intrigue and blackmail behind the scenes of a fictitious 1960 Presidential Convention in Philadelphia. DeLarme Landes, Michael Wurzel, and John Shanken-Kaye co-star, along with Cathy Liebars, Margaret DeAngelis, and Virginia Barrie. Featuring James Cordingley, Michael E. Russo, Robert D. Rodriguez, and Tim Kline. With Bill Brenner, Katarina Giselle, Kelly Riley and Maryalice Rubins-Topoleski. Stage managed by Maryalice Rubins-Topoleski. Set design and construction by James Cordingley. Lighting design by Andrena Wishnie. Costume coordination by Gail Russo and Cheryl Doyle. Produced by special arrangement with Dramatists Play Service.
DATES: Sept. 14 – Oct. 7, 2012. (Twelve performances only, over four weekends)
TIMES: Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m., Sundays at 2 p.m.
PLACE: The Heritage Center, 635 North Delmorr Avenue (Route 32), Morrisville, PA – near the Calhoun Street Bridge.
ADMISSION: $20 for adults, $17 for seniors 52 and up, and $10 for children age 12 and under. Season tickets now available, $140 for adults and $119 for seniors.
ON THE INTERNET: The company’s website is www.actorsnetbucks.org. Social networking includes Facebook page — “ActorsNET, AKA Actors’ NET of Bucks County” — and Twitter name @actorsnet.
(2) Rita Olinnsky in NJ: Are you always asking yourself “how do I fit fitness into my already frazzled day? ” Jump start your fall fitness program with an hour of motivation. (Not a physical session) Wednesday evening Sept 12th, 6 – 7 PM. Healthy Lifestyle Center, Morristown. Registration required: 973.971.6301.
(3) On Thursday, September 27, 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. you’re invited to
Please RSVP by September 21 to 215-968-8224 or e-mail us at email@example.com
(4) Join Gabrielle Strich at Greenbriar at Whittingham, 100 Whittingham Drive, Monroe Twp., NJ for an informative seminar about the differences between Medicare and Medicaid. Learn the basic rules for Medicaid for long-term care, including income and asset rules and care level requirements as well as what Medicare does and does not cover. Don’t miss this educational event!
Wednesday, September 12, 7:30 pm
For reservations and information, please call or e-mail Jerry Cohen at 609-655-4934 or firstname.lastname@example.org or call Sandy at 609-619-3229.