Year Anniversary of Ted Williams Final At Bat - A Home Run
September 28, 2010
Teddy Ballgame - better known as Ted Williams - was perhaps the
greatest hitter in major league baseball history. Since I am a lifelong
Boston Red Sox fan I always tell people he was! Let's face it, he had a pretty
good portfolio. Lifetime .344 batting average. 521 career home runs.
Hall of famer. Last man to bat over .400 (.406 in 1941). His final at
bat on September 28, 1960 was a home run, a feat most players dream of
accomplishing, and hardly any do. Ted was 42 and hit .316 with 29 home
runs that year which would be pretty good for any player in their prime.
The announced attendance at Boston's Fenway Park for the game was only
10,454. Remarkable considering nowadays you can hardly ever get a
ticket and every home game is a sellout. Williams also did not tip his
hat after that final at bat homer. In fact, he never tipped his hat. It
just wasn't part of his personality. But a great competitor and hitter?
Absolutely. And a storybook finish to an amazing career fifty (50)
years ago today (ESPN article here).
if the President of the United States Came to Your House?
September 27, 2010
President Barack Obama has been traveling the country and making a few
special visits to everyday Americans. Maybe it's just public relations,
but hopefully the President really cares to hear from citizens. One of
them, Andrew Cavalier, is a Viet Nam veteran who resides in the South
Valley of Albuquerque, New Mexico. This is an area of Albuquerque rich
in tradition and primarily Hispanic history. It's not an affluent area
by any stretch, but there is a wealth of local pride. Our whole city is
buzzing about this unusual visit.
Regardless of your politics or opinions about the President, think
about what an amazing personal history moment this will be for Cavalier
and his family. I hope he's planning on preserving his memories in some
way for this is truly a once in a lifetime opportunity.
- And Tell A Story
September 23, 2010
When you are writing about your life it is easy to get anxious and
intimidated. You are revealing intimate thoughts or embarrassing
moments, and maybe even bragging a bit. How to do that in an
entertaining way while getting readers to see what your life was about
is no easy thing.
But writing can be tremendously rewarding. It is hard work. Your
autobiography or memoir will
take time. However, I want to encourage you to do it. Susan Meddaugh,
author of "Martha Speaks", a book about a talking dog, has some advice
for kids about writing and she always emphasizes relaxing. "Tell a
story from your own life, or just make up something that's crazy and
ridiculous," she says. The Washington
Post has a quick little article about her
advice for children.
Is Harry Nilsson (And Why Is Everybody Talkin' About Him)?
September 21, 2010
There are certain songs that stick in your head. Some have great
melodies. Others are quirky. And some have the incredible pathos that
gets you considering the ups and downs of life and relationships.
All of the above qualify as descriptions of songs written and/or sung
by the late and great songwriter Harry Nilsson. "Without You", "Me and
My Arrow", "One" (a huge hit for Three Dog Night), "Put the Lime in th
Coconut" and "Everybody's Talkin' 'Bout Me" (a Fred Neil song Harry
sang from the soundtrack to "Midnight Cowboy").
Nilsson was a close friend of the Beatles and many other musicians and
industry insiders. Yet, people either know who he is...or have no idea.
A new documentary opening in Los Angeles, Who Is Harry
Nilsson (And Why Is Everybody Talkin' About Him)?
chronicles his life, including his amazing talent and his sad and
tragic with booze and drugs that eventually did him in (see Pop & Hiss - LA Times
blog article). See the trailer and more about this documentary here.
Kids, School and Personal History
September 17, 2010
Since the new school year is underway it is a good time to think about
how you can record and preserve some of your children's work throughout
the year, as well as get them involved in family history. Memories are
being made as they are learning new things in whatever grade
they've entered. They will certainly be creating work in their
various classes or subjects and most schools are now encouraging
students to keep a portfolio. Why not help them with this concept by
creating a personal
portfolio that incorporates some of their school
work along with other items throughout the school year that are
important to them and the family? This could be pictures, letters,
cards, arts & crafts, notes from you, other family members
(grandparents, aunts, uncles), coaches, friends and so on. This isn't
meant to replace the portfolio they might be building at school; rather
it is an additional one for your child that teaches them the importance
of preserving life information. Think about how much they will
appreciate this when they look back at it years from now.
You can work on this as a family project, but allow your child to take
some ownership in the design and collection and ongoing maintenance.
Review this portfolio throughout the year, maybe even setting aside a
special time each week to review/add to/discuss.
have a riveting life story to share with others you may think
you've got a potential best seller. And maybe you have. But the odds of
achieving that are very high. Nevertheless, it is not my duty to be a
"dream killer". But I do think people should be pragmatic.
Who might know a thing or two about writing a best selling
Cathy Glass, for one. She's written a couple of memoirs with
sales over 7 million books, including Damaged and I Miss
Mummy. You can read about her tips (which include having a
creating scenes, not monologues, making your story episodic, having a
good presentation and also reading widely so you can learn what works
and doesn't). This article on Authonomy is pretty good. | more here |
First Grandparents Day
September 12, 2010
My wife and I are enjoying our first Grandparents Day
September 12). Our first grandchild, Jacob Ray, was born in February
and is in the incredibly/unbelievably cutest stage possible. At least
until the next cute stage (which is what - every couple of months?).
Being a grandparent is an amazing experience so far. We get to parent
our children and
our grandchildren (at least to some extent). We get to pass along our
wisdom and wit, our observations and lessons. And we get to see the
world again through the wonder of a child - a very blessed thing indeed!
Richard J. Anthony, Sr. is Executive Vice President of GRAND
Magazine.com, wrote a stirring "All Hail to
Grandparents" essay (read it here).
Among the statistics he shared are that over one-third of the US's
population are grandparents, more than 75% of Americans over 50 are
grandparents, we spend a hefty $35 billion each year on our grandkids,
and most of us believe that leaving a legacy is much more than
financial. We want to pass on our values, faith, ethics and
Mr. Anthony is the cofounder of igrandparents.com,
resource site for grandparents. Check that out as well as the current
issue of GRAND
Magazine. And happy Grandparents
Day to all you Grands!
Lessons From Tragedy
September 11, 2010
I awoke this morning to an absolutely gorgeous, sunsplashed September
Saturday in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The weather mirrored that of
September 11, 2001 and I, like so many others, found myself
flashing back to that fateful day. On the other side of the country the
World Trade Centers were in flames and soon to collapse. The Pentagon
was hit by another airliner-turned-weapon-of-mass-destruction. And the
drama was unfolding on yet another plane, Flight 93 over Pennsylvania,
as passengers realized what was happening and fought terrorists on
board until the plane crashed in a field.
Shock. Anger. Outrage. Sadness. Disbelief. So many emotions that day.
And yet, in our rush to patriotism and the villainizing of the "other"
we might forget about the diversity of people affected. People of
different races, cultures and religions make up our country and our
world. Many of them worked in New York City in the World Trade Centers.
Yes, even Muslims.
In light of the controversy over the proposed building of a Muslim
community center two blocks from ground zero, it
might be well to consider what truly honoring our lost loved ones mean.
I don't dispute ground
zero being hallowed ground. But to me the best way to
overcome the misguided zeal of terrorists, religious or otherwise, is
to see the dignity in all people and work to build community. Any place
where people are encouraged to gather in prayer and peaceful concern
for each other is a positive thing.
The NY Times
ran an article about Muslims who worked in the Trade
Centers, how they needed and created places of daily prayer, and how
they were impacted on 9-11-01. Read
it and think about how we might
change our lives for the better as a result of the tragic events that
September day nine years ago.
Enduring Love Story
September 8, 2010
The enduring and poignant love story of Danny and Annie, a couple that
married late in life and enjoyed twenty-seven years of wedded bliss,
adds more credence to my belief that everyone has a story to tell. They
were not a famous or glamorous couple. They lived in Brooklyn, New
York. He was a horse betting clerk, she a nurse. But they loved deeply,
with humor and charm, and the interviews they did with Story Corps are
accompanied by some wonderful animation.
Tseperis - A Golden Voice
September 7, 2010
Nicos Tseperis was born September 7, 1923 in Athens, Greece. His
father, a self-employed rags-to-riches story, surely inspired him. He
seemingly knew early on that he was destined for a life as an
entertainer. “I realized that I had a natural talent for
singing and playing guitar ever since I was eleven years
old", he reflected. “I had a flair for entertaining
and it was reinforced by my singing teacher.” As a young boy
Nicos sang in the streets of Athens, playing guitar and accepting
coins. It was an early indication of his charm.
I've had the privilege of learning about this Greek entertainer and
writing a bio for his Facebook page. The project came to
me via one of his daughters. We'd previously worked together when her
mother Nike (and wife of over fifty years to Nicos) passed away. I did
some writing about her and now just a few years later the daughter
asked me to help preserve some of her father's life story. This is how
some projects develop. And I welcome it as it shows that clients find
the services I provide to be worthwhile.
Nicos Tseperis is now 87 and in the twilight of his life, one that has
been filled with many wonderful moments in the entertainment industry.
He's been considered a favorite Greek entertainer of celebrities,
royalty and the everyday man and woman. He has a gift for establishing
quick rapport with an audience and his charisma and wit have served him
well, along with his golden tenor voice. I encourage you to find out
more about him by reading his bio on his Facebook page (here). And consider how your own
story, or that of family members, also has value worth preserving.
Tribute to a Father
Jim Walsh, someone who is very interested in preserving family
histories, has done a very nice tribute to his father and posted it to
You Tube. What I most like about his honest and heartfelt recollection
is that he admits how when he was a kid he didn't really appreciate
what his dad did for a living or how hard he worked to provide for his
family. But he sure does now. See it below and enjoy.