Sep 25, 2009

Thank God It’s Frigg’s Day!

Odin and his wife Frigg – It’s her day after all!

Friday was names for the Norse goddess Frigg, the wife of Odin, the God of war and death (and surprisingly the God of poetry and wisdom – because there’s nothing as inspiring for writing good poetry than war and death!). 

Odin (also known as Woden) has Wednesday named after him.  Frigg, on the other hand, one of the more prominent Goddesses represents marriage and motherhood and she is the goddess of love and fertility.  Frigg is the daughter of Fjorgyn, the Goddess of the Earth.

Frigg’s day in old German was frigedag which ultimately became Friday.


Another work week has come and is about to end and thankfully so because of late the work week has been tryingly long.

Perhaps it is because I am getting older but I seem to achieve less in an average day than I did as a younger man – or is it that I am working at a higher quality level and so have less time to cram stuff in?

Each night I make a TO DO list, generally about twenty items long, some minor things that just serve to remind while others require action. Each day I use the list as a guide – it is too easy to forget what to do otherwise – and so I get a sense of what gets done.

dummies-book-cover With a glass of wine in hand I look down the list to cross of those things completed and find that if I am lucky I have removed one or two items, only to replace them with two or three items – the list keeps growing.

Okay, some of the items do not need to be on the list…


Write best selling novel…”

Buy winning lottery ticket…”

Find lost $100 bills in pants pockets…”

Others must be on the list…

Finish the story list for the nest issue of The Concordian…”

Get photograph of (fill in name here) for article…”

Yep, it is Frigg’s Day and I, for one, am glad.


Sep 21, 2009

“I GOT FLU, BABE!” CDC stats show we’re all still alive

flu2 Here is a FLU update straight from the CDC website HERE.

“Visits to doctors for influenza-like illness (ILI) are increasing nationally. Visits to doctors for influenza-like illness are higher than what is expected during this time of year and have increased for five consecutive weeks now. This is very unusual for this time of year.

The proportion of deaths attributed to pneumonia and influenza (P&I) was low and within the bounds of what is expected at this time of year.

Almost all of the influenza viruses identified so far are 2009 H1N1 influenza A viruses.”

flu3 Did we get lucky? Certainly – so far.

If you are a parent or around children you know how fast flu travels. With all the mutations of the flu, some will be more virulent than others. And despite our anti-bacterial frenzy, we should allow more germs into our lives; our immune systems will thank us later.


More later…


Sep 14, 2009

A nice memory about Patrick Swayze who just died

Patrick Patrick Swayze has died after a long fight with pancreatic cancer.

Normally I do not indulge in celebrity death notes but in this case, I met him and have a nice Patrick Swayze story to tell.

Back in late 1983 I worked as an extra on a film called Red Dawn (1984) that was being filmed in New Mexico in a town called Las Vegas where I had run away to from California. The film was a blessing because as beautiful as New Mexico was, finding work was next to impossible.

Fresh out of college with a Bachelor’s degree in basket weaving (Communications), I wound up getting an extra part  ($50 a day and prime rib until the film went over budget) and had the pleasure of standing at the bar of the hotel after filming with the cast each evening, most of whom I have nothing nice to say about except for Patrick. 

Patrick was not well known at that time and frankly the movie was…okay (they are making a remake as we speak), 

Each evening Patrick would stand at the bar and have a drink, chat with anyone who was being decent. And so I found myself on several evenings having a very nice conversation with him for about an hour at a time. He was a nice guy. Unassuming. Not at all pretentious.  And it was clear that the values he held were very strong even at that point in his career.

What struck me the most, however, was after our chat he looked at me, shook my hand and excused himself saying: “I have to go and phone my wife. I call her every night at this time.” It was said in a way that was so not Hollywood, and left me quietly impressed.  And that was what he did, validated by the cast who stressed that his wife was the center of his world and he reveled in their time together.

reddawnAG If you doubt my story, I include a photo montage of me (on the left) on the set above, back when I had hair and weighed less than I do now.  The guy on the far right is the same guy who shoots the teacher  in the opening five minutes of the movie – a great claim to fame.

Patrick was married to Lisa Niemi whom he met when he was 19 years old. They married in 1975. And everyone knows the films that resonated from his career, from Ghost with Demi Moore, Dirty Dancing (with fellow Red Dawn actree Jennifer Grey)  to To Wong Foo which he performed in drag.

He was a rarity for Hollywood – a decent man and for that I note his passing with regret. You can read the write up of his death HERE