Saturday, July 5, 2014
I did say finally because for over 50 years there has been a useless embargo on Cuba with the United States. There was a time where politicians believed that to defeat Castro you needed to isolate him and his island of Cuba from the free world, especially since they turned to the Soviet Union for support and guidance during the Cold War. Who else were they going to turn to that was big enough that wasn't influenced by the United States? Prior to Castro, General Batista ran a very corrupt government in Cuba that was pretty much funded by organized crime here in the United States with Meyer Lansky at the helm. Times changed and then the boat lift from Cuba with people trying to get away from Castro's communist Cuba mixed with released prisoners from Cuban jails fled in whatever would float to get to Florida. Needless to say it went poorly and it furthered the cause to maintain the embargo against Cuba. Times changed and Fidel is not an active ruler anymore, relinquishing his power to his brother to oversee the island as Fidel's age goes up and his health goes down. With the largest population of Cubans being in Florida, reducing or even removing the embargo would allow relatives to go back and forth easily between the mainland and the island as well as allow families to send more money to family in Cuba that may need help. Another thing that's sprouting wings is the desire to invest in Cuba by businessmen who see the island as a new territory that can grow quickly with labor and a desire for people to make a decent wage for a change. Christ, once a Republican Governor in Florida, had in the past gone along with the general thinking on Cuba but admits times have changed and the anger is no longer there, sans a few that still don't want the old openness of Cuba back again in the Cuban community. The overwhelming push is to remove the barriers between the two nations and go a step further and re-evaluate how we've been dealing with other countries south of our borders and finally start top ramp up this country's standing in the world once again. Once the politicians with old rocks in their heads start to look at things 'politically' that is. Charlie seems to have the stones to bring it up and push forward on it during a tough run for the Governors mansion in the upcoming elections!
Wednesday, April 9, 2014
My late father was in a marching band in high school back in the days before WW2, he played the cornet. The difference between a cornet and a trumpet eluded me but there had to be some important difference to give them their own names. Makes sense to I guess. All I know is that I'd like to see if I can at least try to make this instrument create some music from my lips and lungs. I took a look on fl studio 10 to see what the differences were and I felt kind of foolish thinking the trumpet was similar to the cornet based on the tube work. The cornet seemed a bit more complicated the way the tubing wrapped like a snake around itself as opposed to the trumpets clean, sleek styling. I think, perhaps, the first thing I'm going to do is do a search for cornet videos to actually see the playing of this instrument and maybe find some instructional video as well. I'm sure it won't be that difficult to find in this day and age, unlike yesteryear.
I, we, have had various pets throughout the years and we don't regret any of the time we've had with them, except when they pass away of course. They are so full of love and loyalty, even the cats even though they will never let you know they are. They show it in ways that are far different from dogs, for the most part. The only possible downside to having pets is that sometimes, like people, have off days when they get to feeling 'off'! One of the projects we have coming up is replacing our linoleum kitchen floor with tile and pulling up all our carpeting and replacing it all with hardwood flooring. Why? We have pets and when they get sick they leave some nasty stains in the carpeting that the leading steaming company you see on TV can't even get out anymore. It would be great if we had these house cleaning services at our disposal all the time and they could jump right on a stain before it even gets a chance to dry into the fibers of the carpets. Our last cat, "Patches", passed away in a most unpleasant manor with mouth cancer, rest her soul. She was unable to hold down her food much and when she actually did it would stain the carpet in a different way, that I won't mention here and now. I bought a floor steam machine and it was the wrong kind. I found that out well after the return period. If you have pets and need a machine to clean when no one is available to do it for you then make sure you get a steamer that has moving bristles that will work the fiber and not just spray and suck, what a waste of cash!
Tuesday, January 28, 2014
This is all well and good except I don't take music classes. Rather, my wife teaches them and I get to run around either store to store locally or on the Internet, to get her needed supplies and equipment. She's going through a stint as a woodwind instrument instructor(she gets antsy when I say teacher) at the local public school. She's not a regular at the school but rather a "temp as needed" instructor, primarily for the band when events will be soon upon them. I just got her some clarinet supplies online for her 2 budding Benny Goodman's(many more years for that level) and some sheet music from another place. I'm sure this weekend the class won't be the only ones with a homework assignment to do.
Friday, November 29, 2013
I've been toying with the idea of taking up a wind instrument again. I played a good deal when I was younger on my fathers cornet but I never learned to play it with proficiency. I came across a tenor sax and my friends place that he never followed through on while in band. He said it felt more like work than fun because of the strict band mentality, something he was happy to shake off when he graduated. I came across it looking through various boxes in his attic and it started me thinking of that coronet again. Not for learning the cornet but learning to play the sax because the sax can talk to you if you know how to listen to it.It speaks through emotions created with sound. It reminded me of when I used to listen to Tom Scott with my friends that were into Jazz when I was younger. One way to get into learning to play is to find some cheap saxophones. With a cheap one I can mess around with it while learning and work up to a really good model when my skills reach the point of making a serious investment into a quality instrument! Kenny G would probably have an easy time with an inexpensive horn but the Tenor sax isn't what I'm leaning towards. I want to learn to play the Alto sax, not the straight tenor like Kenny G(sound is too high for me) and not a Baritone sax(sound is too heavy for me), like many of the best Jazz musicians and many of the recent and not so recent pop players like Timmy Cappello, who played for Tina Turner, as well.
I went to work the other day and found that I no longer knew how to get out of the building. Due to the fact that we do employ a number of 'other language' people we needed to sign the building for them to know how and where to go to leave the building. What? They have had no problem finding the doors before this and nobody ever complained about it because they knew enter signs and exit signs looked like and they understood the wording but someone got a hold of a little used county ordinance that required us to put up new signing. I have no problem with bilingual signs anywhere. If it gets everybody to observe the same rules I'm all for it. Really! My issue is why they took down the required English signs to do it. Over 95% of the people who tour our facility are English speaking and would need to know where to go if suddenly there was smoke or fire present. Right? Of course I'm right. I'm thinking that these English speaking administrators should maybe become English reading administrators. The ordinance that they posted said they were required to post 'bi-lingual' emergency signing in the building. When I get my paycheck this week I think I better cash it right away! lol