Monday, December 29, 2014

2014: The Year That Was

2014: A Summary
Enemies No More: Maybe the biggest shock wave in our political circus that masquerades as our Government was the move to normalize relations with Cuba. What can one say, except, “hmmm . . . what took us so long?”
Die-Ins and Protests of Police Abuses: The killings of unarmed black people by the people who are paid to protect us . . . and them . . . is a shocking tale of unaccountability. When followed by the execution of two innocent officers who were sitting in their patrol car, it raises all kinds of questions about the state of morality in this country. We have not heard the last of this sad story, mainly because we have chosen to take up sides –us against them—choose your side—rather than engage in civil discourse about the issue.
Bombing Syria and Iraq: ISIS: The Middle East continues its path to  . . . to what exactly? The so-called “Arab Spring” has led to organized murder by religious fascists, who have nothing to do with any actual religions.  ISIS represents the worst we could devise in murderous thugs who masquerade as religious power brokers. The Middle East seems to be moving very fast in the direction of the 12th century.
The Senate Goes Republican: What can one say, except . . . how very sad for this nation. The Koch’s have officially bought our government.
Putin Invades Ukraine: And speaking of out of control, Russia and Czar Vlad are running hard, also backwards. They seem to have reached maybe the 18th century and are moving fast in the direction of 17th. Russians must be so proud.
An Epidemic Out of Control: Ebola . . . whatever are we to do?  We apparently have lost control of this pandemic and will be very lucky if it can be contained within Africa. But how many thousands of Africans must die before we declare that “too many Africans have died?”
Executive Action on Immigration: Well, our Republican joke-folks refused to act, so he had to.
The Details of Torture Revealed: Ahhh, the Shrub and his Cheney-master live on in this sordid tale of right wing fascism run amok. No morality here folks. Move on.
More States Legalize Pot: Well Dude, it’s about time . . . sort of like Cuba, but way more fun.
A Minimum Wage Workers Can Live On: Good.

And now, for a real look back at 2014, let’s take a look at some of the finest artistic endeavors of the year. That’s right—Richard’s Art Walk pictures . . . well a small sampling of his best from the year of Art Walks. So, let’s get to it. This is the real stuff that happened during 2014. 
Here's some from February--it was still winter remember:

And then came Spring and the April Art Walk:

And then came June . . . ahh summer has arrived:

September . . . always a nice month for an Art Walk:

Finally, we close pout the year with the November Art Walk. Christmas is coming folks . . .

 Ta ta folks. See you in 2015 . . . if you're good . . .

Monday, December 22, 2014

Happy Birthday Love

And following hard on the heels of my 41st 39th birthday last week, comes my dearest wife's birthday--her 39th of course. And I attempt below to provide a bit of context for a life filled with love and much excitement . . . so far. With much more love and excitement to come. Here below, a few snippets from her glorious life . . . all prior to her current 39th birthday of course. We begin with her earliest with her mom and then with her granddad. We then trace a few episodes from her happy times on this planet . . .

Sunday, December 21, 2014


Sadness Amidst the Celebrations
It really seems to be the case that this country has handed out way too many guns to way too many folks, including, obviously some seriously deranged people. The shooting In New York City of two policemen who were sitting in their patrol car is simply the act of a madman.  And, because of an armed madman, two guys are dead and two families are burdened with unbelievable sadness.  Whatever this guy’s reasons (he shot his girlfriend first) we should acknowledge that the shooting has nothing to do with the recent spate of police-civilian shootings.
We really all need to be clear about this. There are bad guys out there in our Land. We need the police to protect us and to guard against those bad guys. Sometimes, bad things happen when armed police confront people they think are doing bad things. And yes, when such things happen, we need to bring people to account. The police are not immune to being held to account. But that is a job for our legal system, not crazy people armed with guns.
We all mourn the loss of innocent lives, and that is what we have here. Two innocent policemen gunned down for no understandable reason.  So, mourn we will and should.
And on another front, our President once again demonstrated his capacity for rational acts, by moving to rationalize our relationship with the Cuban regime.  It is 50 years overdue. The fact that Republicans are now confused and some part of the right-wing Cuban community in Florida is yelling Foul should not deter us from doing the right thing. It is time, way past time actually, to re-establish relationships with that tight little island.  Someday, Cuba may become a normal, civilized place, full of democracy. But until that time, let us at least try to help that process along. If we can have normal relations with China, surely we can do the same with Cuba.
Who knows, perhaps we could even entertain my favorite idea for resolving the whole Middle East problem by giving Florida to the Israeli’s, and letting the Middle East fester in its own sour juices.  It might be a win-win for all sides. But whatever would all those Middle Eastern pseudo-nations do without Israel to hate??

In the meantime, perhaps we can all relax a bit, quit shooting one another and at least make believe we are all brethren under one nation. So, smile folks. It’s Christmas . . . and Hanukah . . . and Winter . . . and whatever else we can dream up to celebrate. Smile, have a nice glass of your favorite beverage and just relax.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

On Becoming Old

I'm beginning the final week before the 41st anniversary of my 39th birthday . . . It's been a longish haul since my early days in Brooklyn and Manhattan.  I thought for my many thousands of readers (see, I still have a sense of humor) I would provide some context.
So I thought, instead of my usual cranky old man stuff that I write for the cognoscenti, I would publish a little walk down my photographic memory lane. Below are some views of me at varying stages of my exciting life . . . I hope you enjoy.