Sunday, July 31, 2011

Think on it.... The Paraprosdokian

unknown photographer

My friend Roger sent these teasers.  See the bottom note about his research.  

  •     Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit; Wisdom is not putting  it in a fruit salad.

  •    I asked God for a bike, but I know God doesn't work that way. So I stole a bike and asked for forgiveness.
  •     I want to die peacefully in my sleep, like my grandfather. Not  screaming and yelling like the passengers in his car.
  •     Going to church doesn't make you a Christian any more than standing in a garage makes you a car.
  •     The last thing I want to do is hurt you. But it's still on the  list.
  •     Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear  bright until you hear them speak.
  •     If I agreed with you we'd both be wrong.
  •     War does not determine who is right - only who is left.
  •     The early bird might get the worm, but the second mouse gets the  cheese.
  •     Evening news is where they begin with 'Good evening', and then  proceed to tell you why it isn't.
  •     To steal ideas from one person is plagiarism. To steal from many  is research.
  •     A bus station is where a bus stops. A train station is where a  train stops. On my desk, I have a work station.
  •     How is it one careless match can start a forest fire, but it  takes a whole box to start a campfire?
  •     Some people are like Slinkies ... not really good for anything,  but you can't help smiling when you see one tumble down the stairs.
  •     Dolphins are so smart that within a few weeks of captivity, they  can train people to stand on the very edge of the pool and throw them  fish.
  •    I  thought I wanted a career, turns out I just wanted pay checks.
  •     A bank is a place that will lend you money, if you can prove that  you don't need it.
  •     Whenever I fill out an application, in the part that says "If an  emergency, notify:" I put "DOCTOR".
  •     I didn't say it was your fault, I said I was blaming you.

Paraprosdokian is a figure of speech in which the latter part of a sentence or phrase is surprising or unexpected in a way
that causes the reader or listener to reframe or reinterpret the first part. It is frequently used for humorous or dramatic effect, sometimes producing an anticlimax.  

Enjoy your Sunday...

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

News Flash: LG Electronics Responsible Recycling

My little brother, Jim Puckett, who started Basel Action Network,  has just sent me this press release of a great step forward for recycling electronic waste responsibly.  Most of you know about his story on "60 minutes" and other global network... of following so called  "recycled" products to hell- hole waste dumps in China and Africa. 

 He has been working steadily on environmental problems for over 30 years!

Well it looks like BAN now has another big international company who will pay to recycle at home responsibly, where the product is made:     LG Electronics.   We salute you .

  How many of us have a few "back-up" cell phones mouldering in the drawer?   In my case there are three that well meaning friends have given me because I refused to update, but can't hear my old model when it rings .

  Unfortunately, as you may have found, there is no percentage in a phone company helping you to transfer your sim card and so you get discouraged ( at least in France) about the whole recycling idea and there the old model sits in your home or garage.  

There are now responsible recyclers in the USA, Mexico, the UK and Canada. How about France?    What can we do to pave the way for FRance and the rest of Europe? 

 If you have any ideas for Jim send them along.  He runs BAN with a small dedicated team but he will respond (or he will hear from yours truly).

And Bravo to Ban, Jim and his team.

Share This: 
LG Electronics Commits to Using the
Most Responsible e-Waste Solution Worldwide
Global Electronics Giant Becomes First Global e-Stewards® Enterprise
SEATTLE, July 27, 2011.   The non-profit Basel Action Network (BAN) and LG Electronics today announced that LG Electronics Inc. is the first “Global e-Stewards Enterprise,” a company committed to responsible recycling of its electronic waste and choosing to use e-Stewards® Certified electronics recyclers worldwide.
“This is historic,” said BAN Executive Director Jim Puckett. “To have a company like LG, with more than 90,000 employees working in 120 operations on five continents, embrace the e-Stewards program around the world will not only significantly protect human health and the environment from toxic pollution but will raise the profile of the e-Stewards internationally.   It speaks volumes about LG’s commitment to environmental leadership.”

The company has been leading the way in responsible electronics recycling in the United States. The LG Electronics Recycling Program provides consumers with a convenient and responsible way to dispose of used, unwanted, obsolete or damaged consumer electronics products. In 2010, LG recycled more than 8 million pounds of home electronic products in the United States, free of charge to consumers.
“LG has always been committed to providing consumers the highest quality products available while reducing the environmental impacts of the manufacturing and use of those products,” said Dr. Skott Ahn, president and chief technology officer, LG Electronics, Inc.  “Our partnership with BAN and e-Stewards demonstrates LG’s equal commitment to reducing the impacts of products at the end of their life.” 
By becoming an e-Stewards Enterprise, LG will give preference to electronics recyclers that meet and are certified to the “e-Stewards Standard for Responsible Recycling and Reuse of Electronic Equipment.”
The international standard, developed by BAN, with the advice of industry leaders and health and environmental specialists, is the world’s most rigorous certification program for electronics recyclers.  It prevents the export and dumping of toxic electronic waste in developing countries. The standard also calls for strict protection of private data and occupational health safeguards to ensure workers in recycling plants are not exposed to toxic dusts.
Currently, there are e-Stewards Recyclers in the United States, Mexico and the UK with several in progress in Canada.
As the primary sponsor of the Champions of the Earth award, the United Nations flagship environmental award, LG contributes more than $600,000 annually to raise awareness of environmental issues at the regional and global levels and to help develop practical solutions.
“Sustainability is a core value at LG,” said Wayne Park, president and CEO of LG Electronics USA. “From our ambitious carbon reduction commitments, to our industry-leading efforts to bring high efficiency ENERGY STAR® qualified products to market, to our support for environmental efforts around the world, reducing environmental impact,  while enhancing consumers’ lives through innovation. Life’s good when you live green.”
# # #
Jim Puckett, Executive Director BAN, Tel: 206-652-5555. E-Mail:jpuckett@ban.orgMike Enberg, e-Stewards Enterprise Manager, Tel: 206-652-5555.
John Taylor, Vice President, LG Electronics USA, Tel: 847-941-8181, 
About LG Electronics, Inc.
LG Electronics, Inc. (KSE: 066570.KS) is a global leader and technology innovator in consumer electronics, mobile communications and home appliances, employing more than 93,000 people working in over 120 operations around the world. With 2010 global sales of $48.2 billion, LG comprises four business units – Home Entertainment, Mobile Communications, Home Appliance, and Air Conditioning & Energy Solutions. LG is one of the world’s leading producers of flat panel TVs, mobile devices, air conditioners, washing machines and refrigerators. For more information, please visit
About LG Electronics USALG Electronics USA, Inc., based in Englewood Cliffs, N.J., is the North American subsidiary of LG Electronics, Inc., a global force and technology leader in consumer electronics, home appliances and mobile communications. In the United States, LG Electronics sells a range of stylish and innovative home entertainment products, mobile phones, home appliances, commercial displays, air conditioning systems and solar energy solutions, all under LG’s “Life’s Good” marketing theme. For more information, please visit 
About the Basel Action Network
Founded in 1997. the Basel Action Network is a 501(c)3 charitable organization of the United States, based in Seattle, Wash. BAN is the world's only organization focused on confronting the global environmental injustice and economic inefficiency of toxic trade (toxic wastes, products and technologies) and its devastating impacts. Working at the nexus of human rights and environment, we confront the issues of environmental justice at a macro level, preventing disproportionate and unsustainable dumping of the world's toxic waste and pollution on our global village's poorest residents. At the same time BAN actively promotes the sustainable and just solutions to the consumption and waste crises -- banning waste trade, while promoting green, toxic free and democratic design of consumer products. For more information,
About the e-Stewards® Certification
The Basel Action Network’s e-Stewards® Certification has become an essential tool in helping individuals and organizations identify electronics recyclers that ensure that their best intentions to responsibly recycle obsolete electronics are honored.  Generators of electronic waste (e-waste) have become increasingly aware of the impacts that improper disposal can have on the environment here in the U.S. and in developing countries that have become dumping grounds for hazardous e-waste shipped from the U.S.  Certified e-Stewards Recyclers, have been extensively audited by accredited third-party Certification Bodies to ensure that all requirements of the Standard have been met.  For more information about the e-Stewards Initiative: 
206 1st Ave South Suite 410 | Seattle, WA 98104 US
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Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Jardins du Monastere: Cimiez

   After going on Sunday to hear the concert, I couldn't resist giving you a glimpse one of the most ancient gardens in Nice, that of the Monastery of Cimiez.

It has even kept its "checkerboard" design since 1546!

Acquired by Nice it opened its paths to visits in June of 1927 after renovation by the garden designer, Auguste Louis Guiglaris (1882-1963) who also did the Villa Massena public garden and Parc Chambrun.

       The parc here is 9950 sq. meters and looks out over the sea, the observatory and the east of Nice.

 The flower beds are portioned out in rectangles on a lawn punctuated by orange, mandarin, lemon, olives, cypresses and some very old pomegranate trees.

 Like many plantings in the city of Nice, blossoms are used along side of vegetables and plants chosen for their color and architecture but free of flowers.  It makes an inspired collage.

An old well has been covered with hanging flowers, a pergola drips with roses.  One wall is reserved for majestic species of Iris and here we see the brilliant green of Hostas paired with a stunning blossom.  Does anyone out there know it's name?

I see an artichoke here among the other neutrals.

A grandaddy pomegranate or "Grenade".

I have found out since yesterday that the olive grove of the Arenes most likely belonged in the 17th century to Jean-Baptiste de Gubernatis, the first consul of Nice and was part of his agricultural domain.

And one last footnote about the alley of trees up the steps at the end of this garden... beyond the terrace and fountain.  Among the oaks and cypresses there is found the "Oppidum ligure" which as far as I can make out is a pile of stones which is part of the ruins of the Roman city of Cemenelum.

 Something comforting about flowers, ancient gardens and cities gone by...  why is that?   Maybe it's a form of denial or could that be acceptance .

Summer Concerts at the Cloisters in Cimiez

I have always wanted to go to a summer concert at the Monastare de Cimiez in Nice but surprisingly I have saved it for now!

This week I had the opportunity to go to a cloisters concert with friends and hear one of the foremost French pianists perform with Philippe Bender, conductor, and the Regional orchestra of Cannes.

Cimiez is to me, the most beautiful neighborhood in Nice.  (French pronunciation: [simje] ) The area shelters the Musée Matisse and the ruins of Cemenelum, capital of the ancient Roman province Alpes Maritimae on the Ligurian coast.
 This ancient town was an important rival of Nice, continuing to exist as a separate city till the time of the  Lombard invasions. The ruins include an arena, amphitheatre, thermal baths, and paleochristian basilica.

 You can see these ruins through the fence of the olive garden (if you don't want to pay to enter the museum).  The  large olive grove at Cimiez is a favorite for picnickers and until this year, was the venue for the Nice Jazz Festival.

                                         Olive grove near the monastery and museums

                                                                Matisse Museum

And here near the olive grove can be found the Cimiez Monastery, its gardens and cemetery that have been used by the Franciscan monks since the 16th century.

 Buried in the cemetery are the painters Henri Matisse and Raoul Dufy.  (Matisse lived in nearby in the splendid Hotel Regina where Queen Victoria used to stay)

The summer concerts at the cloisters are a treat for those of us always searching for beauty and refinement. The gardens are breathtaking to start with and the small church against the summer sky is a stunning visual.

 It also helped to see only champagne for sipping at this music celebration.  No jeans, no tank tops.... just ladies and gents seemed to be in attendance. ...the picture of graciousness, sitting in twos or threes in the garden waiting for the seating to start.

 To the beckoning gardens, add a mottled, dark blue sky,  apricot colored lights thrown onto ancient walls where silhouettes of orchestra lamps make intricate patterns and haloes on the white sail cloth covering the players.

  Seated in the cloisters during the concert, I really had to close my eyes for long stretches to take in the pastoral visual and auditory senses were competing too much for me to take in all of it together.

The piano soloist last night was Brigitte Engerer.  I found this about her on Mrs Sarkosy's blog:

Brigitte Engerer will be playing again on this summer's program( her favorite Liszt) on Monday August 1st.  And the festival doesn't end until August 14.

 Tickets can be purchased online at or at the usual ticket booths.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Ice lollies, Sounds good to me!

Wow, these look good.  Ton Ton Rog sent me this article , thanks Uncle Rog. At this moment I am drinking a glass of bubbly. ( I deserve it.  I worked eight hours today..but we don't really need an excuse do we ?)
Wouldn't a champagne pop be good?  I intend to try some of these ideas.   I want to go down to Picard and get some frozen raspberries or one of their great coulis and put some vodka in the blend. And I may try a goat's milk one with chocolate and vanilla beans.   Where to find the sticks though in France? I may have to use chopsticks or ugly plastic forks with paper cups as molds.  Got any ideas? This could be really interesting.

New York Times

Fruity, Savory, Creamy, Boozy

Yunhee Kim for The New York Times. Food stylist: Maggie Ruggiero. Prop stylist: Deborah Williams.
What could be better than a fresh, homemade ice pop? How about a mojito-on-a-stick?
The summertime appeal of ice pops (as they’re properly called — “Popsicle” is a trademarked word that’s become a default name) is easy to understand. They’re sweet, colorful, lickable and a manageably small snack in an age of gargantuan portions. They recall a simpler time, before the era of artisanal-gelato shops.

Mark Bittman

Mark Bittman is the Times Magazine’s food columnist and an Opinion columnist. Visit Mark Bittman’s blog »

Readers’ Comments

Share your thoughts.
And they’re cold.
Not surprisingly, though, the Popsicles you buy at the local corner store tend to be sickeningly sweet and neon bright, thanks to an abundance of high-fructose corn syrup and artificial colors. Thankfully, this is something you can easily remedy, since it’s child’s play to make ice pops at home, as long as you have a blender or a food processor (and for some recipes, not even that); some ice-pop molds, either purchased or jury-rigged; and a freezer.
You might be surprised at what you can freeze, and what tastes good frozen. The suggestions here represent just a few possibilities and, I think, interesting ones.
Some, like Creamsicle (another trademark) and cherry-vanilla, are re-creations of childhood treats, though without the unpronounceable ingredients. Others, like the entire savory quadrant, were inspired by flavor profiles I’ve come to appreciate as an adult.
The boozy ones, similarly, are intended for a grown-up palate and have enough alcohol in them to serve as an aperitif (try the mojito) or afternoon attitude adjuster.
If you don’t have, and don’t want to buy, plastic molds, just pour the mix into four to six paper cups and stick them in the freezer. After an hour or so, insert a wooden stick into each cup — the mixture will have solidified enough that the stick should stay upright — and continue to freeze until totally solid. To remove the pops from their molds, run them under cool running water for a few seconds to loosen them. Then unmold and lick to your heart’s content.
Purée 2 cups hulled and quartered strawberries, 3 tablespoons sugar, 2 teaspoons lemon juice, 2 tablespoons basil leaves and water as needed to get the machine going.
Purée 2 cups pitted cherries, 3 tablespoons sugar, 2 teaspoons lemon juice, 2 teaspoons vanilla and water as needed.
Purée 2 cups chopped fresh peaches (peeled or not), 3 tablespoons sugar, 2 teaspoons lemon juice, 1⁄2 pinch fresh ginger and water as needed.

Purée 2 ripe avocados, 1⁄4 cup lime juice, 1⁄2 cup cilantro leaves, 1 1⁄2 cups water and salt and pepper.
Purée 1 pound tomatoes, 1⁄2 small seeded cucumber, 2 tablespoons olive oil, 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar, 1 garlic clove, 1⁄2 cup water and plenty of salt and pepper.
Coconut Curry
Purée 2 cups coconut milk, 1 inch fresh ginger, 1 tablespoon curry powder, 1 small hot fresh chili, 2 tablespoons lime juice and salt and pepper.

Orange Cream
Whisk together 2⁄3 cup whole milk, 1 1⁄3 cups orange juice, 3 tablespoons sugar and 1⁄2 teaspoon vanilla until the sugar dissolves.
Cook 2 cups milk, 6 ounces chopped bittersweet chocolate, 3 tablespoons sugar, 1 tablespoon cocoa powder and 1/4 teaspoon chili powder over medium-low heat, stirring, until smooth. Stir in 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. Cool slightly before freezing.
Purée 2 medium bananas, 1 cup milk, 1⁄4 cup sugar, 1⁄4 cup peanut butter and 1⁄2 teaspoon vanilla. Sprinkle 1 teaspoon chopped roasted peanuts into each ice-pop mold before adding banana mixture.

Make simple syrup: cook 1⁄4 cup sugar and 1⁄4 cup water over medium-low heat until the sugar dissolves. Combine with 1 1⁄2 cups grapefruit juice and 1⁄2 cup Campari.
Make simple syrup as described. Purée with 2 cups roughly chopped fennel and 1⁄2 cup Pernod or other anise liqueur.
Make simple syrup as described. Purée with 1⁄3 cup rum, 1⁄2 cup mint leaves, 1⁄3 cup lime juice and 1 cup water.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Bastille Night, 2011

Crazy high jinx at the Bastille Day Prom Party during which the Promenade des Anglais was closed to all but pedestrians and cyclists and 6 moving stages.

First while we were having dinner at Sarao, came some fish and why not? 

Then came the fireworks....
 expensive twenty minute display set to (this time) appropriate music.    Nice must be the richest town in the south!  As Jeanne pointed out , they have to get the rights to the music too to put on this kind of show!

    There was an impressive array of "feu d'artifice" but these seemed to come through best as photos.

     Then the walk home along the Prom with 100,000 other folk, or so it seemed.  Everybody was out except my favorite curmudgeons!

 And six of these moving stages, spaced appropriately, so as not to bleed the music, were offering good stuff ... jazz and cuban included.    These prom parties will go on once a week, all summer, an idea for the second year for the important commercial months in Nice.   This from my friend's blog:  Best of Nice

Nice’s fireworks are accompanied by the first of a series innovative summer Prom’ Parties: a massive street party where the music comes to you on 6 giant rolling stages that rotate every 30 minutes.  Tonight it’s jazz, Italian, tsigane, cuban, musette and biguine (whatever that is!)

The best part of the evening, aside from the company of cronies, was not the Negresco, gaudily clad like a mardi gras girl, non!

  It was the full moon over the sea, a quiet, calm sight so well highlighting the contrasts that we want and accept.  And like many special sightings, it wouldn't be captured on film!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Agapanthus Magnificentia

Agapanthus is commonly known as "Lily of the Nile", but it is not a lily and all of the species are native to South Africa from the cape to the Limpopo River.

  It is a plant that requires little attention here in the south.  The rhizomes only have to be divided from time to time.  There is a fungus that can attack the leaves at the center of the plant, if they are left too damp.  This results in curly, mis-shapen leaves which can easily be cut out and discarded to prevent the spreading of the fungus.  Otherwise, these are dream plants to cultivate.

Even though there is a big emphasis on the AZUR of the blue coast,  I think that the most significant blue in the south of France is this tantalizing hue that is so difficult to capture on film.

We find this deep blue in the sky at certain times of the year and just now I am surrounded by the king of the Limpopo River,  the jaunty, generous, blossoms of the Agapanthus. 

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Haven't gone fishing

  Sciatica:  sciatic neuritis) is a set of symptoms including pain that may be caused by general compression and/or irritation of one of five spinal nerve roots that give rise to each sciatic nerve, or by compression or irritation of the left or right or both sciatic nerves.

                                                                               via sciencephoto

The pain is felt in the lower back, buttock, and/or various parts of the leg and foot. In addition to pain, which is sometimes severe, there may be numbness, muscular weakness, pins and needles or tingling and difficulty in moving or controlling the leg. Typically, the symptoms are only felt on one side of the body.

Via Sayer

Although sciatica is a relatively common form of low back pain and leg pain, the true meaning of the term is often misunderstood. Sciatica is a set of symptoms rather than a diagnosis for what is irritating the root of the nerve, causing the pain. This point is important, because treatment for sciatica or sciatic symptoms will often be different, depending upon the underlying cause of the symptoms. (wikipedia)

What I did:
 1.   Cried and gnashed my teeth a lot.
 2.   Took Drugs that I had around the house. 
 3.   Visited the Chiropractor when the long weekend was over.
 4.   Used Heating pad night and day
 5.   Lay down but walked around some even though I couldn't sit down.
 6.   Astounded myself with what a wuss I was.  Pain can reduce you to a whimpering jelly!

What worked:
 1.  Crying and laughing (when the chiro told jokes) ( thanks Nicola)
 2.  Took Aspirin etc, Codeine saved me on the weekend the chiro was closed.  
 3.  Drinking some lactulose and tons of water after the codeine.   I found this out the "hard"way but better late than ....( thanks Jeanne)
 3. Chiropractor visits.  It was the pelvis completely out of alignment causing the problem.
 4. Microwave heating pad  ( thanks for your home made herb filled one, Andrea S.)
 5. Knowing friends were standing by with offers of TLC ( thanks G and F, M et al)
 6. Husband  who was willing to tolerate an invalid and pitch in around the house and do my work too.
 8. Reading the 2 volume Rumor Godden autobiography:  A time to Dance ,No time to Weep  and
A House with Four Rooms  (Inspiring , astounding woman).

What not to do again:

Saw down a tree near the wall with my pelvis twisted at a funny angle.   

"Ah ha" moments:

There are millions of people who have to live with this kind of pain every day!

Message to self: Be careful with your body, it's the only one you get and it is ultimately fragile!

Life goes on even if you don't answer your phone or emails!