NUMBER ONE!

For those of you who are anxiously following my Voice Over career here is a LINK to my web-site totally dedicated to all things Voice Over. There you will find existing and new demo tracks as they are recorded, and a dedicated email address for audition requests.

Feeling Pastel

Feeling Pastel

NUMBER TWO!

My lovely partner and wife has just released her new single ‘If I Had Loved You More’ on CDBaby at this LINK

This blog site will remain as my writing voice, so don’t go away; if you are reading.

Some time ago, it was actually Sept 14th 1996, I was in a writers workshop with word rain given as the free write topic. I dashed this piece of almost without thinking. 


Rain

One thing I can tell you about rain is that it falls indiscriminately on all. Or should I prefer perhaps confine myself to telling you something that could be more significant about it? For instance; since the human body is mostly water we have a physical connection with any large amount, body, collection, accretion of water. Again, but speaking purely physically, perhaps you may know the laws of gravity? Two bodies attract each other in proportion to their mass and their distance apart.
cloud
Consider this; a human, an average human contains, shall we be generous, one hundred pounds of water. Any cloud we may see out of the window contains many thousands of tons of water floating at some distance. If the laws are true is it any wonder we are looking skyward to our aerial brothers and sisters? (Clouds with genders?) And if they are our physical doppelgängers in an airborne medium small wonder we are always prating on about the weather. Who has not felt a tingling sensation when one of those big blue black bullies of cumulonimbus lurches over the horizon and creeps with aqueous menace toward you?

It’s the gravity of our common medium. Our very substances are the same. The core of our permanence on earth is shared with clouds.

Next week; why I can’t swim and other watery mysteries.


And perhaps next week I will actually write about swimming and mysteries.

Voice Over, My Demo

August 6, 2015

It has taken me a while but finally I have recorded a professional VO Demo. Coached by Lesley Bailey and recorded and edited by Marc Rose at FuseAudio. I love it. Listen at this LINK Let me know your impression and then book me for your next promotion, documentary, e-learning project, etc.

Shuttling in my car between the two small vegetable gardens I tend and weep over I caught the middle of a radio show (This American Life, or Radio Lab) on Oregon Public Radio. It was an African American woman telling the story of a school in Missouri that lost its accreditation and its largely black students could choose to stay or be bussed to another district thirty miles away. Part of the broadcast was a recording of a public meeting held by the parents of the receiving school (largely white). The rhetoric was thick, objections were unanimous; and when one parent rose to say that their vociferous objection to the program “was not about race” you suddenly knew it was. I remarked to myself that the recording quality was pretty good for the sixties when the woman talking gave the date of the meeting as some time in 2013. It just brought home how little progress we have made since ERA.

nikki

Nikki Giovanni

Last week I was also listening to OPB where someone was interviewing Nikki Giovanni, a writer and poet of whom I had never heard. I was so intrigued by her style and manner I went, of course, to Powell’s Books and sought her out. For $3 I bought a used copy of The Prosaic Soul of Nikki Giovanni. It is a collection of her prose work, including ‘Racism 101’. Yes despite her Mediterranean sounding name Nikki is African American, and her writing jolts me into a world of Black writers and activists barely known to me.

I have confessed to and written of my learned racism before, and my desire to be rid of it. Listening and reading I am left with the residual frustration that I don’t know what to do, and I really believe I am not alone.

We Are All Racist

July 3, 2015

President Barack Obama gave a highly charged eulogy for Clementa Pinckney, who was one of nine people shot by a white supremacist in Charleston. He called out our racism directly.

But there is only so much even a President can do. Ultimately it is up to each and every one of us to admit that we are racist and set out to change. Most white Americans are racist by indifference. Indifference that is fed by media. We live in our white bubble which is strongly maintained. It is up to us individually to make those incremental steps in our own behavior which will add up to genuine progress. Add some local leadership for leverage and change could be faster. There are other causes that did this. Who would of thought gay marriage would be a right as recently as fifteen years ago? I hope I am not underestimating the scope of the change that is needed but we do have to start somewhere.

So I will start by confessing as I have already done before elsewhere that I am racist and I will continue to be racist for some time. It is my learned response. I was taught it at an early age, and constant reminders from radio, TV and movies reinforced it over time. It is very hard to deprogram; but not impossible. I am your average white male racist. I don’t wave a confederate flag, I don’t attend KKK meetings, I am not a member of any racist organization, I don’t read white supremacy news sheets, I don’t do any number of direct racist actions. But my indifference is high, and it feeds the total corrosive indifference of the country. My indifference together with that of millions of others forms the atmosphere where other more virulent and repulsive actors operate.  So I am a racist. Not perhaps by intention, but by default, by habit. I am determined to change.

Removing the confederate flag from a state building however laudable is not the massive (and I really mean massive) enema needed in the American psyche to bring everyone to the same place. A place known as true equality. Don’t expect the republican party to take this on (that’s laughable) and the democratic party will only sort of sidle up to a mild laxative. Nope, it takes the people to decide that racism is always evil, always.

And yes I confess, I have been racist, and will probably continue to be racist, but I acknowledge it as a learned behavioral defect that I am trying to correct. I believe it can be done. We can all help each other to our own personal cleansing enema. And if humor can help..let the jokes begin…

…and listen to The Terry & Sterry Show on XRayFM this Thursday at Noon for more commentary. Streaming at www.xray.fm and broadcast at 107.1 and 91.1 FM.  Terry D. Kester and I use humor to deal with the serious subjects and vice versa.

Love image

My lovely lady, Anne-Louise, has recorded a demo  of her new song, If I Had Loved You More. You can see and listen to it here at this  LINK . If it does not make you cry or come close, let me know. 

A few weeks, maybe a month, I wrote a short poem that sprang from a phrase that came into my head from out of nowhere. “Park Me Down By The Ocean”. As I wrote it the vision of a disabled veteran in wheelchair formed in my mind. Someone struggling to find peace. A singer songwriter friend, Suzan Lundy, asked if she could write music for it. A while later at regular artists gathering to which I belong she sang the poem, with a few changes, to her music. You can hear it at this LINK

And here is the very simple original poem…

Park Me Down By The Ocean

Park me down by the ocean
Sit me down by the sea
Salt air on my face
It’s where I have to be

Raise me up on the mountain
Lift me up in the sky
Cold winds on my face
Make my spirit fly

Leave me out in an open field
Set me on the grass
The humming of the bees
May bring me peace at last

Take me away from things I fear
From dark and heedless noise
From all the crazy foolishness
That destroys the hope of joy

Park me down by the ocean
Sit me down by the sea
Salt air on my face
It’s where I have to be.

Ricotta Cheesecake Flan

April 14, 2015

I recently posted a picture of such a flan on my Face Book page and of course now have to publish the recipe. IMG_1424

Ricotta Cheesecake Flan

Make pastry of your choice and roll out to fit your preferred flan dish. I butter my dish lavishly to avoid sticking. I am sure there are nonstick flan cases out there. Carefully line your flan dish with the pastry and trim excess. If you can, make the edge of the pastry stand a little proud of the flan dish edge. Make a few holes in the bottom of the pastry. Line with foil and weight the foil down with baking beans or similar heavy inert item. I use a smaller flan dish weighted down with a thick ceramic pot. Bake at 375 Deg. for 15 minutes. Maybe a little less time if you have a good convection oven.

While your flan case is baking mix vigorously the following in a bowl. These amounts will fill a nine inch flan case.

2 Cups Ricotta

½ Cup Heavy Cream

2 Eggs

1 Egg Yolk

1/3 Cup Confectionary Sugar

Finely grated rind of one Orange

Finely grated rind of one Lemon

I add 1 or 2 Teaspoons of Vanilla Essence (Or Anise flavor, even Pernod!) but others do not. Other variations are to add candied peel, chocolate chips. There are hundreds of other ways to flavor and garnish the filling.

After the fifteen minute pre-bake remove the flan dish from the oven and allow to cool before pouring in the mixture.

If you are inclined use the excess pastry to make lattice strips. Finicky work to get the lattice straight but very cool looking.

Bake the filled case at 375 Deg. for 30-35 minutes or until the mix is set in the center. Cool on a rack. Decorate with thin strips of lemon and orange rind. I leave it in my garage fridge to get it nice and firm before attempting to remove the flan from the case. I have seen flan cases with removable bottoms. I think that’s cheating!

Relative Sadness

March 30, 2015

It is sad to announce that a show cannot go on. Even sadder to announce that it was because of a fire at the hosts residence. The show ‘At The Vineyard’ with partner Anne-Louise was set for March 21st. We had even rehearsed, and were getting close to what we thought would be a great show. We were very disappointed.

But our disappointment cannot compare to the sadness our hosts, Chris and Susi Carlberg must feel at having lost the home in which they had lived for forty years. Even though the frame of their house remains intact, the interior is destroyed and must be rebuilt.

Our show can be rescheduled and go on without so much trouble. I cannot imagine what the Carlbergs have to face every day.

And so I am rescheduling the show to take place at the Tom Cummins Hall at Saint Francis of Assisi Episcopal Church in Wilsonville. Most likely date will be May 23rd. And the show will feature the wines Chris makes at Christopher Bridge Winery.

Life goes on and we can all help each other to get past such events.

More details of the show will appear here soon!

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