Monday, June 30, 2008


“WALL-E” Pops
Karen Dahlstrom, Big Picture Big Sound

Out of this World
Ty Burr, Boston Globe
Daring ‘WALL-E’ is a family film with a cautionary message that even parents can love

[Duchess Note: Saw this movie yesterday with a friend and I loved it. It is such a terrific film and Pixar has done it again. Wasn’t really a fan of ET or Short Circuit, but I adore WALL-E. Plus the film conveys messages about mankind, consumerism, technology, etc. Don’t just go for the cute, lonely robot who’ll steal your heart. Go and absorb the subtle messages. We need to save our planet; whether it’s the environment, mankind or animals. Push greed aside and be peace.]

Sunday, June 22, 2008

The 4th Reich under Cheney
The Storm Clouds Closing In On Cheney's 4th Reich]

Tuesday, June 3rd, I attended the monthly Knit & Crochet meeting at IBM Atrium. I arrived around 7:15pm and walked around the atrium abit. Encountered Arlene and Lauren, then we got a table to hangout for about 45 minutes or so. Very nice ladies and they were knitting items, plus showed me how to do a “pearl” stitch. As to this latter bit, I had some difficulty comprehending it and really need to practice more.

On Thursday evening, June 5th, after work I headed over to Dress Barn to check out the 50% off suit sale. I tried on several fully lined fall / winter suits before getting a nice grey pinstripe for $59. Nice deal! From there I jumped on the F train and headed to Park Slope in Brooklyn for the weekly Knitters meetup. Since the weather was nice and comfortable, we were all sitting in the café’s garden dining area. I noshed on some delicious Chocolate Molten cake while I socialized with the other knitters, admire some lovely projects / yarns, plus learn and practice an easier version of the pearl stitch. Thank you Barbara! It was an enjoyable evening and we literally closed the café at 10pm.

Friday evening, June 6th, I volunteered with the City Harvest gang down at Union Square farmers market.

On Saturday morning, June 7th, I hopped onto a bus at Port Authority to visit my friend Sheila in New Jersey. From the bus stop we drove back to Sheila’s apartment for a tasty bagel brunch in her cool apartment. She’s done more decorating with her place since I was there in August 2007 and it’s quite charming, plus has a terrace. I would love an apartment with a terrace or patio. Great place to spend leisurely time or entertaining friends. [Weather report for the day was hot, humid and sunny.] Before driving over to Princeton, we stopped at a yard sale and I made several purchases. I got some great deals. We arrived into Princeton just before noon and found parking on Nassau Street near Thomas Sweets Café. Strolled onto the university grounds and headed for the art museum. Very nice museum with a little bit of everything on display and there is no admission fee, plus it was air conditioned. Before entering the museum we took some time to admire and photograph the large sculpture outside. The sculpture is by Magdalena Abakanowicz called “Big Figures”. Afterwards we strolled around the University grounds for abit before heading over to Thomas Sweets for some delicious ice cream. This place is delightful, I highly recommend it, plus the way they blend the yummy ice cream with toppings is terrific. Heavenly! Drove around Princeton to locate some shops we were interested in checking out and accidentally headed down the wrong way of a one-way street in trying to find parking. Cars and trucks coming from the other direction were not pleased with us. I made some purchases in “A Place to Bead” and Sheila did likewise in “Pins & Needles”. At this point we were both warm from the weather and tired feet from walking, so we drove back to the apartment to relax. Before heading back to NYC, we went out for a leisurely Chinese dinner at a local place. Overall it was an enjoyable, nice outing and I so like the town of Princeton. [Photos coming soon………….]

Monday evening, June 9th, I participated in City Harvest “volunteer leader” orientation at Union Square’s farmers market. It was so warm and muggy outside that day. Humidity can be fierce in NYC, especially on the subway platforms.

Tuesday evening, June 10th, I joined other members of the PDA CD14 meeting at Alice’s place on upper eastside of Manhattan. Even though I’m not part of CD14, I am very much interested in the work of this PDA group, plus I know many of the members from past Democrat campaigns. Majority of the meeting, apart from Adam Sullivan’s [Democrat candidate for CD8] visit, was on many topics [ie: town hall mtg, impeachment, DU, outreach, media, e-newsletter, local issues, listserve, and expenses]. Meeting broke up shortly after 9pm and let me tell you, mon dieu, the walk back to the subway on Lexington Avenue from York Avenue was intense. I headed to the subway with Scott along 86th Street and the weather whipped up like a friggin hurricane. Wind was fiercely blowing dirt, debris and people all over the place. I had to put on my sunglasses to protect my eyes from the dirt, as well as to see where I was going. We could see lightening to the west and feel droplets of rain. By the time I arrived home 40 minutes later the storm had passed and it was cooler outside.

On Wednesday, June 11th, I received a call from City Councilman White’s legislative aid regarding a fax sent on June 3rd about DoP Resolution 627. [How will this resolution benefit the NYC area?] They want to meet with NYDoP CCR Committee and asked if we’d give a presentation on Dept of Peace. Absolutely! Hell yeah! This was exciting news and after the call I promptly got on the phone with the other members of CCR Committee. WooHoo!

On Thursday evening, June 12th, I joined the other two members [ie: Kevin & Joe] of NYDoP CCR Committee for a conference call. The three of us gave our updated reports since last call end of May, plus we discussed at length what planning we need to accomplish for this upcoming 30-minute meeting/presentation. Stay tuned for more updates as they develop. The next day I did a follow up voicemail with White’s legislative aid.

Saturday, June 14th, I joined other members of the local Harry Potter meetup group at Riverside Park field for a rousing game of Quidditch. Yep, that’s right folks, Quidditch! This was my first match as spectator and was curious as to how the wizarding game of Quidditch could be pulled off without flying broomsticks. Both teams [ie: Central Park Centaurs & Manhattan Marauders] still had a keeper, three chasers, two beaters and one seeker. The quaffle was a soccer ball and the bludgers were two brown rubber balls about the size of a bowling ball. As an added bonus, the meetup group also had two energetic teens as golden snitches. The Quidditch pitch is set up somewhat similar to that in the books; but is played like soccer, basketball and rugby all wrapped into one. Let the games begin! Due to the weather being humid and warm the match had several “rest periods” for players to refresh themselves with water. Overall it was a fun game to watch and I believe the Marauders won when their seeker caught the golden snitch. [A group photo coming soon.] Afterwards our group of 15+ traipsed off to a café called “Toast” on Broadway for a tasty brunch and fun, interesting conversations. From there I headed home and enjoyed a viewing marathon of season one of LOST on DVD, even while it stormed outside through the night. Next weekend I’ll jump into season two of LOST.

On Thursday evening, June 19th, I headed down to Park Slope for the knitters meetup at Sweet Melissa café. This was my third meetup with the group and like before I had an enjoyable time, plus always learning some new tidbit about knitting. It was great chatting with several of the group members, as well as admiring different projects. I was advised that the Quiche du Jour is quite good, as well as affordable, so I ordered it for dinner. They were right, it was delicious. One of the ladies I was speaking with said she’d help me learn to crochet granny squares. I want to make an afghan throw for my living room and hopefully have it done by the winter. It’s good to have goals.

Friday evening, June 20th, I volunteered with the City Harvest gang down at Union Square farmers market.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008


No Discourse for Americans
Timothy V. Gatto,

Obama Says One Thing But Then Does Another
Douglas Turner, The Buffalo News Opinion

Kucinich Makes Waves With Articles
Diana Bailey, Rutland Herald

Hardball w/Chris Matthews & Green Party Women
Third Party Watch

[Duchess Note: Many thanks to Linda in Texas for sharing these terrific, informative and thought provoking articles.]

Monday, June 16, 2008


The LP Questionnaire - Jeff Ament of Pearl Jam

Last Band Standing
Patrick Wall, FreeTimes

[Duchess Note: Pearl Jam will be rocking what's left of the free world at MSG on June 24th and June 25th. Many thanks to Sarah and Andrea in sharing the above articles. Strength through peace and music.]

Isle of Wight County Press
THE Police gave everyone a Sunday night to remember at the Isle of Wight Festival with a simply stunning set featuring all their biggest hits and some outstanding guitar solos from Andy Summers.

City Harvest Volunteers in May 2008
[Duchess is a volunteer with City Harvest and helps out at farmer markets in Manhattan. Can't miss me, the redhead standing next to the truck (3rd from left) wearing a black/blue hoodie.]

Thursday, June 12, 2008


Dennis Kucinich Makes History Again – Impeach Bush!
Joseph A. Palermo, Huffington Post

Video of Kucinich Presents 35 Articles of Impeachment against Bush

C-SPAN Transcript -

Kucinich Shows How to Block War on Iran
David Swanson,

Clear Pelosi From Impeachment’s Path
Donald Rankin, OpEdNews

The Urgency of Impeachment
Braden Thacker, OpEdNews

Woolsey Supports Effort to Impeach President Bush
Common Dreams Commentary

House Votes to send Impeachment Resolution to Judiciary Committee
Nick Juliano, The Raw Story

Impeachment NEEDS YOU
Chris Rice, OpEdNews

McCain & Obama Are No Different On Iraq
Patrick Krey, the John Birch Society

Behind the Rise of Obama
Malik Miah, GreenLeft Online

Greens Ask: Is Obama Ready to Support an Attack on Iran?
Third Party Watch

[Duchess Note: Many thanks to Linda, Alice and Chris in sharing this wealth of info/articles on latest news. Take a moment and contact your Congressional Representative, ask them to co-sponsor the resolution brought forth on June 9th by Kucinich. We need to hold the Bush Regime accountable for the numerous crimes they’ve committed since 2001. Its time to remove Pelosi as Speaker of the House, as she has been a huge hindrance to impeachment and other issues. It’s never too late to impeach … call today.]

Tuesday, June 10, 2008


Congressman Dennis Kucinich Introduced 35 Articles of Impeachment Against President Bush on Monday Night
After Downing Street

First 5 Minutes of Kucinich Presenting Articles of Impeachment Against Bush

Kucinich Presents Bush Impeachment Articles
D.Edwards & M.Sheehan, The Raw Story

Music to My Ears
Cindy Sheehan, Fog City

[Duchess Note - Bravo Dennis!! One of the only true progressives in Congress today. I've been a supporter of Kucinich and the issues he champions since 2003.]

Friday, June 06, 2008

What Would the World be like if We Left it to Itself?

Freedom regained …
Abandon Prison
... The overgrown ruins of a solitary confinement block in St Joseph Island, off the French Guiana. Photograph: Andres Leighton/PA

Perhaps what the environmentalist movement needs is a little less finger-wagging, and a few more appeals to the imagination. This occurred to me watching Alan Weisman mesmerize a few hundred Hay-goers by talking about his book, The World Without Us, a thought-experiment in which all humans vanish. And nature takes over. It wouldn't take her long to start some foreclosures, too. New York City's streets would collapse into the subways below after just twenty years, once the 850 pumps which keep the East and Hudson Rivers from rushing into Gotham's underground stop working.

Houses would be eaten by termites. Trees would start growing on our bridges, pushing the steel girders apart with their roots. A forest would reclaim Manhattan. Weisman is unequivocal about this. It's not a question of if, but when. There are a few things that'll take a while to digest, however. Plastic, which has drifted out to the ocean and been bashed to tiny bits by waves, is now being ingested by plankton. Scientists have no idea what this will mean.

And nuclear plants, once abandoned, would eventually go into meltdown. It's not clear how long it would take for nature to recover from the resulting simultaneous worldwide nuclear holocaust. By now, we've all seen the graphs, the predictions, paid the risingpetrol prices. Yet maybe what we need is a big reminder of the fact that our time here is not infinite. "Every organism which has overtaxed its resources has suffered a population crash," Weisman warned. "And it's not pretty."

It's an eerie exercise, this book - because it forces you to realize that nature has been tolerating us for quite some time, as we've used up more and more of the earth and its organisms. And one day it's going to bite back. In this sense, The World Without Us hasthe lurking menace of the opening moments of Twenty-Eight Days Later - it's a horror film waiting to happen.

And I couldn't help thinking, up there, on the stage with his professorial voice and bushy eyebrows, there's the guy calling to us from the audience - don't go into the next room, its dangerous!

[Duchess Note - Many thanks to Josee in sharing the above article.]

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

The American Electoral Charade
Glen Ford, Black Agenda Report
Two candidates with almost identical positions on virtually every issue fight to exhaustion over non-substantial concerns for months, and will doubtless soon celebrate having achieved "unity." Tweedle-dum Hillary Clinton and Tweedle-dee Barack Obama may or may not emerge from the primary battles as friends - but what does that matter? "Their policies are interchangeable, as are their advisors.... All serve the same masters: the financial corporations." The general election campaign, already begun, will see Obama and McCain draw politically closer each day, until at the end "the voters' choice will be just a matter of personality and individual taste" - and race.

[Duchess Note - Amen to Glen Ford in speaking the truth and seeing it all for what it really is. How is it possible that many Americans are being tricked by the propaganda generated by the Obama and Clinton campaigns. (They both don't even come close to being true progressives. Not even by a long shot.) Both are heavily backed by corporations, big pharma, hedge funds and insurance companies who have an interest in keeping things “status quo” in our country, which many of you know they predominately control. Teddy Roosevelt must be spinning in his grave over this travesty. Also, many thanks to Linda in Texas in sharing this article.]

Actor Celebrates Derry City Link
BBC News

Fans Catch a Glimpse of Sean Bean on His Travels
Nick Ward, The Star [Yorkshire]

Minor Party Candidates Tap Discontent
W. James Antle III, Politico

Reps Danny Davis, Kucinich Defend NASA Workforce
Press Release,

[Duchess Note: Many thanks to Linda in Texas for the two political articles.]

Tuesday, June 03, 2008


[Duchess Note – Another edition of personal news and events in a condensed version. Enjoy!]

Tuesday evening, May 13th, I attended my second Brooklyn Community Board #1 meeting. This one wasn’t as heavily attended as the one back in April, but it was still interesting. I also did some networking with some individuals for NYDoP CCR project.

Wednesday evening, May 14th, I participated in a conference call hosted by Gili called “Field Talk”. I know Gili through the weekly “Brooklyn Peace Circle” I used to attend before it was discontinued.

Friday evening after work, May 16th, I headed down to Union Square to purchase new bird feeders at Petco. Afterwards I strolled through the farmers market to see how the City Harvest volunteers were doing and ran into Joe. Told him I had terrific news regarding a 45-minute phone call that afternoon with Congresswoman Velazquez’s legislation director [Layth]. [Topics of discussion during the call were on Iraq war funding bill, Brooklyn housing, DoP legislation and the upcoming election.] Joe and I strolled over to a diner in Gramercy Park and were joined shortly afterwards by his wife Marie. I arrived home in time to see the season finale of “Moonlight” on the telly.

Saturday evening, May 17th, found me back at Union Square farmers market doing volunteer work for City Harvest.

On Sunday afternoon, May 18th, I joined my friend Jackie in going to see the new Narnia film called “Prince Caspian”. We’ve both read the Narnia series of books [7 total] and enjoyed the film with its terrific visuals. Afterwards we walked across the street from the cinema to a Cosi for dinner and catch up on news/gossip.

Monday evening, May 19th, I attended the PDA CD14 NYC Town Hall meeting at SEIU on West 43rd Street. The featured guest speakers were; NY Congresswoman Maloney, Michael Schwartz [writer], Daniel Black [retired soldier], and Dahlia Wasfi [writer]. Main topics of discussion were Iraq war and occupation, counter-recruitment, energy crisis, US foreign policies, global warming, impeachment and a need to change strategy in the anti-war movement. Suggested website to check out is

Tuesday, May 20th, after my foot doctor appointment, I headed up to Columbus Circle to attend the 7th Annual Adult Student Recital at Frederick Rose Hall at Lincoln Center. One of NYDoPs board members, Karen M, was performing at this recital along with six other pianists. Each performer played one or two pieces by the following composers … Beethoven, Stravinsky, Pozzuoli, Schumann, Bach, Schubert, Chopin and Moszkowski. Afterwards the student pianists were given awards and a prize. After some socializing, Karen’s group went down to the next level of the Time Warner Center to party at the Stone Rose Lounge.

Thursday evening, May 22nd, I participated in a conference call with fellow NYDoP CCR committee member Kevin regarding DoP resolution 627. Discussion mostly centered on structure and composition of faxes we’ll send to some of the City Council Cultural Affairs committee members. I also told Kevin about the 45-minute conference call I had on May 16th with Layth at Congresswoman Velazquez office. Whether anything develops from that May 16th call remains to be seen.

May 24th through 27th I visited my family in upstate NY for the Memorial Day holiday weekend. Weather was nice and sunny most of the time. Main highlights of the weekend was riding my new bicycle, building a fire pit, attending the Memorial Day parade, several yard sales, dining out and relaxing.

Evening of May 27th I attended the monthly NYDoP board and core team meeting at our new location near Madison Square Park in Manhattan. The two hour meeting was good and very productive. We are working towards re-launching the new and improved NYDoP website, plus the upcoming Inwood Retreat.

On Thursday, May 29th, after work I joined Cielito in attending an Isagenix meeting on 7th Avenue. These monthly meetings remind me of pep talks and also a way to introduce new people to the company/ product. I’ve been utilizing Ionix Supreme and Want More Energy since mid-April, plus I’ve been a member of Isagenix since end of March. Both are great products! With Ionix Supreme I feel more energized, sleep better at night, and more focused or alert during the day. To learn more, go to the website link in the left hand column of this blog. Three quarters of the way through meeting I had to leave and head home to watch the 2-hour season finale of LOST. What an amazing and thrilling two-hour season finale.

Friday, May 30th, I did volunteer work with City Harvest at Union Squares farmers market.

On Saturday afternoon, May 31st, I went out to lunch [Jackson Diner] with Anni and her hubby David, plus their daughter Rachel in Jackson Heights, Queens. Enjoyed some good Indian food and a drink made with mango, which I might add was so tasty. [The #7 subway makes a stop at this predominately Indian neighborhood.] Afterwards we went shopping in the many clothing stores for India style tops known as kurti or kurta. I purchased a soft white embroidered cotton kurti, plus small meditation chimes. For dessert we stopped at a street vendor for a mango flavored ice cream called kulfi, which was delicious. Overall I had an enjoyable time and caught up on news/gossip with Anni.