Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Feliz 2009

It is 11:30pm, and I am watching Anderson Cooper and Kathy Griffin on CNN to ring in the new year in Provincetown, MA. The weather has been horrible - it took us more than 7 hours to drive from Boston to Provincetown today. Because it took us so long, no sooner did we arrive at our condo then we had to dash off to Ciro and Sals to make our reservation for our last dinner of the year.

Now that we have settled back into our temporary home, I feel much better and relaxed. The weather outside is incredible. The wind is howling and the snow limits visibility but we have an amazing view of the Provincetown monument which is beautifully lit in Christmas lights. I am sure that tomorrow when we wake outside will look like a winter wonderland. For tonight it is quite romantic.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

My 2008 Retrospective

One of the reasons I started my blog was to record my thoughts and so as 2008 draws to a close, I wanted to revisit some of the high and low points from the year.
Although there were no visits to Broadway shows in NYC this year, I was able to get out and see the following shows: Spamalot, Avenue Q, Whizzin, The Light in the Piazza, Varla Jean Loves a Foreign Tongue, and All About Eve. Additionally, I went to see both Margaret Cho and Kathy Griffin when they visited Boston. I also had excellent seats to see George Michael who put on a fantastic show.

As with most Americans the majority of my travel this year was close to home, but I was able to get away a few times. I started 2008 in sunny, warm Fort Lauderdale. In the spring, I spent a cozy weekend with my entire family on the coast of Maine and later in the summer I spent long weekends in both Newport, RI and Provincetown, MA. I also made a mad dash to NYC to see the US Open in August with my former co-worker and friend Stephanie. This past November / December I visited Brasil and spent time in Belo Horizonte, Buzios, and Sao Paolo. Lastly, I will be leaving tomorrow to say good bye to 2008 from chilly Provincetown. All, told I visited 8 cities / towns and packed my bags for vacation a total of 7 times - not shabby.

In February, I accepted a job to work for a well respected professional services firm and left my job at The Bostonian Group after nearly 4 years of service to the firm. The chance to join the Healthcare practice at this firm was a no brainer and something I have no regrets about but it was difficult leaving an organization where I had made so many wonderful friends.

The most upsetting change in 2008 happened on May 21st when my grandmother "Nana" passed away. Her passing was a forgone conclusion and had been expected for several months but it was still very upsetting and she is dearly missed. I can see how much she is missed in the eyes of her children who have spent the past 6 months learning to cope without their mother.

In June candidate Obama clinched the Democratic nomination making him the first man of color from either party to accomplish such a feat. Five months later he would go on to be the first African American elected to be President of the United States. Finally, after eight years, I felt like reason and intelligence won the day over fear and a desire to elect a President you would want to share a beer with - jeesh!

Other Great Moments in 2008
- Gov. Deval Patrick is one of the first (if not the first) sitting governor to walk in a Pride Parade. He does it to show his love and support for his daughter as well as to show his support for GLBT equality.

- The Red Sox and Patriots season may not have ended in victory but the Celtics accomplish an amazing turn around thanks to the addition of Kevin Garnett and others. Helping the Green Machine crush the LA Lakers (how sweet) and win their league leading 17th NBA Championship title.

- I attended my very first Tennis major by going to the US Open in NYC and was able to see first week matches played by Rafael Nadal and Serena Williams. Sweet!

- The Beijing Olympics and Michael Phelps combined for a one-two knock out punch that made the 2008 Summer Olympics probably the most amazing I will ever see in my lifetime.

Thank you for the memories 2008... I look forward to 2009.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Medical Research Project

The morning of Christmas Eve, I had my third of four visits to Mass General Hospital for the medical research project I am participating. My final visit will occur in mid-January and at that point I can find out which group I had been placed for the study. I've found the entire process very interesting despite some of the side affects. I would hate to think that the side affects I just alluded to have all been psychologically induced, but it is not beyond the realm of possibility that I was receiving the placebo. I will have to wait another 3 weeks to find out for certain. has an interesting pictoral history of Mass General Hospital which initially opened its doors in 1821. The photograph I've included is the first image in a series that is shared on the site. There are some great black and white photos of patients and nurses as well as some interesting facts about the hospital. For example, MGH held the very first demonstration of the use of anesthesia back in 1846. You can check out the photographs and read more about the storied history of Mass General Hospital by linking here.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Happy Birthday Dad

Today is my father's birthday. In addition to being one of the best father's any kid could ever hope to be blessed to have, he is a wonderful person and loving grandfather. The older I become, the more I use my father as a measure of the man I want to become.

Happy birthday Dad - I love you more than I can adequately express in words.

Boxing Day

Yesterday, December 26th was Boxing Day, and a close friend originally from Manchester, U.K. who now calls Boston her home, hosted an intimate dinner party in honor of the holiday. Boxing Day is a 'bank holiday' in the U.K. and is widely celebrated in many Commonwealth Nations (e.g. Canada, Australia, etc...)
I'm not sure when Boxing Day became an official banking holiday but my friend told me that it was traditionally observed by the wealthy in England to provide gifts to the less fortunate.

However, now most people celebrate with friends or shop for post-holiday sales. My friend used the occassion this year to host a fun dinner party complete with a competitive game of Twister. The fact that our bellies were full and more empty bottles of wine than I'm willing to admit were strewn through out her apartment meant the game only lasted two or three spins before someone would fall and knock everyone over. I vaguely remember falling but have a very sore spot on my knee to remind me should I forget that part of the evening. I'm hoping that this dinner party becomes a holiday tradition my friend wants to repeat. It was a wonderful introduction to the holiday and a great way to celebrate Boxing Day.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas

Wishing all a happy and peaceful Christmas holiday filled with pleasant surprises and laughs to share with someone special.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

I love the holidays

The Christmas holiday is fast approaching and today is really the last day of work I have until the new year. I am so excited that I will have the next 12 days off it makes me forget how freezing cold it is here in Boston right now and want to dance.

However, since it is well documented that I have no rhythym, I'll let the guys from Brasil in this video do all the dancing for me. We both seem to share a sense of excitement and contentment at the moment - they are just more expressive and better at showing this through dance.

You can see scores of Brasilians doing this and variations of this dance on YouTube if you type in the search feature, "Cueca Funk". This particular video which was posted on YouTube more than a year ago has had more than 800,000 hits. I can see why... eat your heart out Dancing with the Stars.

This video was also recently posted on a blog I enjoy reading, Wicked Gay Blog, entitled "Parar relembrar porque amamos o Brasil" which translates to "to remember why we love Brasil"... enough said.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Best Editorial Cartoons of 2008

The Boston Globe has posted Dan Wasserman's best OpEd cartoons from 2008. Many of these are quite funny. I've included one of my favorites. If you would like to link to to see all of Dan's cartoons link here.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Some of my favorite destinations

I recently returned from a two week visit to Brazil and had a great time so I added my comments about the place we stayed (Casas Brancas) to Trip Advisor. I use the website to help me plan my travels by reading recent comments left by travellers and to validate information I read on the web.

After I left my comments Trip Advisor asked me to rank some of my favorite places. I don't know that I would really rank any of the destinations below as better than another. Each destination has a special place in my heart and provide me with some wonderful memories. Actually, the list is too short to really encompass all the places I've been which I would happily return to, but I thought I'd include it here on my blog since Trip Advisor makes it so easy to share. Perhaps in the future I'll look back and feel compelled to add new destinations I've yet to visit.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Winter Wonderland

Boston remains relatively quiet and very pretty this afternoon. Temporarily, everything is still pristine - transforming the city into a winter wonderland.

Unfortunately for the retailers, the snowfall seems to have deterred many people from outside the city from coming into Boston today. Fortunately, this made it fairly easy to get around by car so we drove to Jamaica Plain for some hot chocolate at J.P. Lick's.

Getting out and spending the afternoon has helped to avoid any feeling of cabin fever. On the drive home, I snapped the following pictures of Fenway Park and the Cask n Flagon. Check out how long the icicles are which hang from Fenway's Game On.

A Wicked Blizzard

Boston's first snowfall started at 2:00pm on the Friday before Christmas and while I'm unsure of the exact total of the fluffy white stuff there is plenty to guarantee a white Christmas. Most businesses sent employees home early and the effects of that were obvious in the South End where I live. Retailers, banks and even restaurants closed early either out of safety concerns for their employees or because the powerful storm would not make it worthwhile to remain open.

Earlier this evening I walked down Washington Street which was absolutely beautiful in its near deserted state. If it had not been for all the snow blowing around making it difficult to walk, I probably would have stayed out longer. For the most part only dinner-delivery drivers, plow trucks and Silver Line buses were on the road. Restaurants were mostly quiet (Union was actually closed) belying the fact that it was a Friday during the holiday season.

I (accompanied with my friends) stomped into Pho Republique for a dinner. To provide an idea of both how much snow was billowing down Washington Street and show how quiet the restaurants were earlier this evening I've included a picture of the restaurant looking out on to Washington Street.

I generally don't care for snow, but I have to admit it is fun when Boston has this deserted feeling and only those who live in the neighborhood are out and about. It is also nice to have this kind of storm where the snow is fluffy and white - not mixed with ice or freezing rain. On our walk home, my partner channeled his inner child and made a snow angel. I even showed my partner and our friend (both originally from Brazil) how to make a snow ball.

Other people in the neighborhood were obviously channeling similar energies. The picture below shows a handful of guys out in front of my apartment in the BSC parking lot in a large snowball fight that seemed more filled with shouts and laughs than actual snowballs.

The forecast through the rest of the weekend is for more snow and cold temperatures. I am curious to find out how much snow actually does end up falling in Boston. I would guess that we have 6" - 7" total right now, but it could be more. There are better pictures on The Boston Globe's website, which can be viewed by linking here. Interestingly, also has a delicious guide to some of the city's best places to get hot chocolate. If this weather persists, I might just be compelled to try a few of these places. If you too like hot chocolate you can see the Globe's picks here.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Jon Stewart and Mike Huckabee

As shared in this week's Bay Windows.

"I think you are looking at sexuality and not attributes, and it’s odd because the conservative mantra is a "meritocracy", and I think what you are suggesting is the fact that being gay parents makes you not as good as others and I would suggest that a gay, loving family with a financially stable background beats the hell out of Britney Spears and Kevin Federline any day of the week." - Jon Stewart, discussing same-sex marriage and parenting with Baptist minister and former presidential candidate Mike Huckabee, The Daily Show, Dec. 9.

My Hope for Expanding Healthcare Coverage

I am very passionate about expanding access to healthcare and finding ways to make the US health system both more affordable and easier to navigate. I don't have any illusions about how monumental such an undertaking will be but I also don't believe that this is a challenge too great for the United States - even in light of the current economic malaise. As a matter of fact, I believe that the downturn in the economy which is certain to increase the numbers of uninsured and further strain the employer-based health system could be the impetus needed to start reforms.

I am heartened by the fact that Massachusetts' universal healthcare system (while not without faults and problems) is considered a success by virtually everyone and is now being used as a model for several health reform plans in Washington, D.C. Today, The Boston Globe published an interesting story entitled "Mass Health Plan Has National Appeal" that explains how our state has taken a leadership role in addressing expanding coverage. At work, I recently was part of a national conversation that addressed the current ills associated with the U.S. Health system and the need for reform.
Changes will come slowly in the form of an expansion of SCHIP (State Children's Health Insurance Plan) which is all but certain to be signed into law this spring. This is an important first step in expanding coverage and placing emphasis on prevention and wellness, but so much more needs to happen and I am excited by what the incoming administration might do. I think most people would agree that the current administration's decision to do nothing for the past eight years has not resulted in any market self-corrections. More people have lost their health coverage (uninsured numbers are now estimated to be an astonishing 47 million people); for those lucky enough to have coverage they are finding themselves paying more out-of-pocket each year; and businesses are straining to keep up with increases to their health plans which have typically been 3-4 times greater than inflation for more than a decade.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

9th Annual Santa Speedo Run a Success

I have been reading several local blogs to find pictures from this year's Santa Speedo Run in Boston. As usual posted a bunch of pictures which you can view here, but the Loaded Gun has included pictures from two friends. I know it is bad form to pilfer without properly crediting your source so I've lifted the appropriate text from the Loaded Gun blog and hope that they don't mind.

As written on Loaded Gun, "Click here for Marciela's revealing Flickr photostream and here for Derek Lumpkin's pics from the event. Also, click here for a video giving the, um, naked truth exposing all of those "Philly Boys" who make the trek to Boston for charity."

I had intended to go down to Boylston Street to see the runners but I was not able to get there in time for the race and will have to wait until next year.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Santa Speedo Run 2008 - December 13th

This Saturday, December 13th the 9th annual Santa Speedo Run will take place to benefit Cradles to Crayons, a local charity that provides basic necessities to children. Each year this 1+ mile race raises money for a worthwhile charity as well as a few eyebrows as several hundred men and women run in little more than their speedos down the frigid streets of Boston. This year the forecast indicates the weather will be sunny but with temperatures expected in the 20s it will definitely be a tough run for many people.

This run has taken off quite literally and is now done in several other cities. Check to see if your city hosts their own Santa Speedo Run and slip on your suit.

I've included a video from YouTube of last year's Santa Speedo Run in Boston.

*Thanks to Made in Brasil for the picture...

All About Christmas Eve

Last month I mentioned that the Gold Dust Orphans would be performing "All About Christmas Eve" in December.

The show opened last weekend while I was still in Brasil, and the reviews have been great. Louise Kennedy of The Boston Globe loved the play - you can read her review here.

I am going to see the show tomorrow (Friday) with several friends and would encourage anyone in the Boston area to check it out. Tickets are affordable and remain available.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Brasil 2008

The following are more photographs taken from my recent visit to Brasil. I had a wonderful two weeks. The trip was good for the soul if not my waist. This was the first prolonged vacation I had taken in nearly a year and now that I'm back home I am already looking forward to my trip to Puerto Rico in late January / early February.


Earlier this week I returned from my annual trip to Brasil and I am sorry to be talking about the vacation in the past tense. Following my week stay in Belo Horizonte, I went to the beachside town of Buzios for five nights. Here I spent most of my time relaxing and enjoying the beautiful surroundings. I stayed at Casas Brancas and would definitely recommend it to others considering a trip to Buzios. It is quite close to the Rua das Pedras and is very comfortable.

The following are a couple of photos of where I stayed, Casas Brancas, which was excellently situated near the Bridgette Bardot statue and steps from Rua das Pedras.

Buzios is a quaint but wealthy town filled with many small independently owned resorts that support the many shops, restaurants and galleries. As a result this is a place many well-to-do Brasilians, North Americans and Europeans find appealing to visit. I have added a few more photographs from my trip.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Hello Buzios

Tomorrow (Sunday) I pack my bags and head for the beach - the beaches of Buzios and Cabo Frio to be exact. It has been about 5 years since my last stay, and I am curious to see what changes have happened.

Buzios is town of approximately 25,000 residents that stretches out along the tip of a hilly peninsula. The beautiful town is approximately 2.5 hours drive from Rio de Janeiro and a popular destination for many Brasilians during their summer. I´ll be staying at the Casas Brancas - hopefully I´ll concur with the many strong endorsements found on TripAdvisor.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Ann Coulter meets karma

The NY Post is reporting that Ann Coulter´s mouth has been wired shut. I find that ironic to the point of hilarity. Ms Coulter has finally done to herself what nobody in the media has ever been able to do - shut her up. I would love someone to walk up to Hannibal lector (my temporary pet name for Ann Coulter) and ask her if she believes in karma.

Greetings from Belo Horizonte

It is approximately 10am, the sun is shining bright and the temperature is already 27C (or 80F if you prefer). The weather has been fairly steady with the days warm and sunny and the nights cooler making it more comfortable to sleep.

We have spent the time relaxing with family and visiting friends. We have also had several delicious dinners culminating in the best meal last night at Splendido. The reckless abandon I have shown since arriving in Brasil with regards to the amount of food I have eaten has already resulted in some of my shorts feeling tighter around my waist than when I first tried them on, while packing for this trip. I hope when I return home I will be able to show more discipline with going to the gym. I would hate to prematurely become a fat old man, although there can be no doubt that this will eventually happen, when I consider how much I enjoy dining.

In addition to eating virtually everything placed in front of me, I also met a young designer from Belo Horizonte who has started a company called Amazonia, but is spelled AM420NIA. I have included the company´s logo above and will share additional photos from the time spent here in Belo Horizonte, Buzios, and Sao Paolo once I return home and can download them to my PC to share.

Yesterday, Thanksgiving day, I visited the tiny town of Brumadinho to see the beautiful gardens of Inhotim and the quirky modern art exhibits housed there. This year we brought my partner´s parents. The grounds were every bit as beautiful this year and like us, his parents loved spending time there. By far, my favorite art installation remains the exhibit from the Canadian artist Janet Cardiff, 40 Part Motet. The installation is set in a sterile white room with chairs in the center. Surrounding the chairs are 40 speakers aligned in a large circle clustered in 8 separate groupings of 5 speakers set side-by-side. Each speaker represents a single voice in a church choir.

I leave Belo in two days on Sunday. The next stop on the holiday is to Buzios, a beautiful beachside town that is a two hour drive east of Rio de Janeiro. Time there will be spent visiting friends in the neighboring town of Cabo Frio where my other half once had a massive beach house and enjoying all that Buzios has to offer. The last part of this two-week tour will take place in Sao Paolo where we spend a quick two days. We will visit family that live an hour outside of downtown S.P. and spend time with our good friend Onelio "Junior" who lives in town. The days are passing quickly and before I realize it, I will be speaking of this trip in the past tense.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Boston Online

How cool... my blog is now listed on Boston Online or to be more specific the blog section of the website or to be really, really specfic in the directory of South End Blogs.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

At last!

After a very long but uneventful trip I have arrived at my first destination, my partner´s family home in Belo Horizonte. Belo or B.H. as it is often referred is a very modern city of nearly 5 million inhabitants. I tend to think of it as the `Chicago´of Brasil. Last year when we visited B.H. I shared a bit of interesting history and my thoughts in my entry Beautiful in Belo.

As with my trip last year, my access to the internet will be intermittent at best but I wanted to start the trip with an acknowledgement that I have arrived. At last!

Oh yeah, and the weather is beautiful - a steady 22C at 8pm.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Major work event

For the past few months I have been working diligently on a project that addresses healthcare reform. I most recently wrote about it on my blog in mid-October, "I really like what I do" and before that in September, "Work, work, work". My latest project occurred today and was broadcast today from Washington, D.C. to 12 other cities and thousands of people via webcast. The event was divided into two segments - a national broadcast and a local panel discussion.

The 45-minute national broadcast was fed via satellite and webcast to several thousand people worldwide to listen to policy experts address the impact and implications of president-elect Obama's healthcare reform plans. Following the national broadcast, each host hospital held a 1 hour "town hall" forum with a panel of local experts to address the challenges their communities face and the work that needs to happen to provide greater access, affordability and quality.

Boston's event was held at Children's Hospital Boston and despite some lingering frustrations with technical glitches in some cities, I'm both pleased with the event and relieved to talk about it in the past tense. This was the first real project I worked on from cradle-to-grave and it was far more work than anyone on my team (including myself) expected. The reward was seeing the program in action and hopefully dividends will be paid in the form of fostering new and stronger relationships with businesses, clients, and communities where this program was held. As I've mentioned in my log about my Medical Research Project, I am passionate about healthcare and believe that providing affordable quality care to everyone is a fundamental human right that is both worthwhile and attainable.

As was mentioned at today's program and has been well documented previously, the U.S. now spends more than $1 Trillion annually in healthcare so the problem is not funding a mandate that seeks to provide universal or near universal care. The challenge is identifying how to redistribute the money already in the system to be more effective and curtail future spending increases to make the system sustainable. The program today was only a first step in a journey that will require a million more no doubt but fostering serious dialog and engaging stake-holders is a good start, and I was proud to be a part of the program.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

All About Christmas Eve - New Ryan Landry Play

The Gold Dust Orphans announced that the holiday show this year will be "All About Christmas Eve". Spoofing one of the best Bette Davis movies of all times.

The e-mail announcing the new show describes the program as set in Boston at Christmas time in 1950. The story starts by introducing the audience to an aging actress named Margo Channing... Well you get the story. It will be hard to out-do his summer hit Whizzin' which played both here in Boston and in Provincetown, but there is plenty of material based on the movie "All about Eve" and I have high hopes. I'll definitely be at the front of the line when the show hits "The Ramrod Performing Arts Center" at Machine at 154 Boylston Street in the Fenway.

Show Dates: December 5th - January 3rd with performances on Friday and Saturday nights only.

Tickets: $30 for general seating, cash at the door. Or $28 if purchased online at: Dial 1-866-811-4111 for more on Theatermania.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Pictures from the n'hood

What seemed like a temperate fall with comfortable temperatures is all in the past. Walking around the South End this weekend it was blustery and markedly cooler than even just a few days earlier.

I purchased a new camera and wanted to test out the new toy so I spent part of my day on Sunday snapping pictures of places in the n'hood. I'll revisit by adding more photos from the neighborhood in future postings, but for now I've included a few of my favorite places: Brix, Oronoco, Union, Buttery, and two buildings that I really like - Wilkes Passage and the Ethan Allen front entrance.

Medical Research Project

Today I had another appointment at Mass General Hospital (MGH) for the medical research project I'm participating. These appoinments are now routine. Going there today, I felt like an upperclassman on a college campus. I was fully aware of where I needed to go and what was expected of me. Upon each visit I provide urine and blood samples, fill out a fairly extensive survey (about depression, my sex-drive, and physical changes to my body), and a small pellet is injected into my abdomen to prevent my body from making testosterone. This last part is always the most uncomfortable but it is hardly painful and is over in a matter of minutes.

During today's visit I also met with the nutritionist. Since the study is evaluating the degenerative affects of bone density in men with low levels of testosterone (typically a problem for the elderly who are more frail) they want to be certain that I'm getting plenty of calcium in my diet. So we spent a few minutes reviewing what I've eaten over the past month. Apparently, I'm still not getting enough calcium in my diet but in lieu of taking a supplement, I told her I'll eat more ice cream and will snack on some of my favorite cheeses. She was fine with my suggestion so I intend to keep up my part of the deal.

Despite my hectic work schedule which has resulted in a more seditary life than even I'm use to I have not really gained any weight. I still stand at 6'1" and only weigh about 3 or 4 more pounds than when I started the program back in early September (now I'm a solid 186lbs - or my winter weight as I like to refer to it despite the fact that winter is just starting).

Hopefully, my forthcoming trip to Brazil will help motivate me to be more active and when I go back to get weighed and measured at the next meeting I'll not only see a slight weight loss, but I'll finally be able to say 'yes' to a few more of the activities the nutritionist rattles off to try and determine how often I'm raising my heart rate and working out.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

One more Bush rant...

If I'm to believe most polls, a significant majority of the US is pleased that in January there will be a new President sworn into office. However, that knowledge is bittersweet considering how late people were to realize the complete incompetence of the current administration. (Perhaps I should not have read my recent 401k statement before creating this entry!) Reading about the severity of our economic problems in the paper and listening to the bleak news that President-elect Obama will face in 2009 really ticks me off.

Earlier this past summer President Bush was quoted when he thought he was off camera attributing the economic 'slow-down' as a "Wall Street Hangover". The press made much ado about it for about 2-minutes but when the bottom dropped out from the economy about 10-weeks later and the full impact of the "hangover" were being felt nobody bothered to go back and really question why his administration was content to do nothing. All the reporting seems to be about how the sky is falling and every crazy idea needs to be approved by Congress ASAP.

I can not seem to temper my frustration with either the Bush administration or the American public which validated his Presidency by re-electing him 2004; frankly I'm seething. Bush's cabinet of quacks (I include VP Cheney among them ), his inane economic policies which revolved around irresponsible spending and cutting any kind of government regulation (poisoned pet food, tainted children's toys from China to name a few examples - I won't even bother to address the banking deregulation which seems too obvious a target) and nepotism at the highest levels of the administration (which at its worst gave us incompetent men like Alberto Gonzalez) have all contributed to our current financial mess and it sets my blood boiling.

Recording my frustrations in this blog will not change our current situation, will not lessen the hurt this downturn in the economy will have on millions of Americans but it is cathartic so thank you for humoring me.

Silverman signs book deal

The New York Times is reporting that Sarah Silverman has closed on a book deal with HarperCollins. A release date has not been revealed but suffice it to say with everything that has happened in 2008 - the on and off nature of her relationship with Jimmy Kimmel, the love affair with Matt Damon and all the schlepping she did to Florida for Obama - she will certainly have plenty of material.

SpeakEasy Stage presents "The Seafarer"

This weekend "The Seafarer" opens in the Roberts Studio Theatre at the Calderwood Pavilion. The 2008 Tony nominated play is the latest show from the SpeakEasy Stage Company and will run from November 14th - December 13th.

I hope to get a chance to see the show, but the calendar may not work in my favor. With travel plans later this week that will keep me out of Boston until the show's run is nearly complete, it seems like I might miss the play so if anyone reading this attends, please send an e-mail or leave a comment and share your thoughts.

If you would like to learn more about the SpeakEasy Stage Company or would like to purchase tickets to see The Seafarer, link to the theater company's website here.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Boston ranked #1

I read on Boston Real Estate Broker's blog that Travel and Leisure's annual ranking of favorite cities named Boston America's Farvorite Destination. According to the website there was a "mighty surge of ballots" that pushed Boston over the edge. Regardless - I think it is pretty cool and it once again illustrates how Boston is closer to the top of these kind of surveys than the bottom; validating my high opinion of Boston as a great place to live.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


This past March I changed jobs and although I knew work would be more challenging I did not expect it to become consuming. However, a project I've been working on which I've referenced in the past most recently in, work, work, work, has really consumed almost every waking moment for the past two months. I'm really proud of the job I've done, but I'm also very much looking forward to putting this project behind me and taking a well deserved vacation.

One week from this Saturday, I will leave on my annual trip to Brasil, and I can hardly wait. The distance and travel will help me relax and forget about work. I have always been someone who takes pride in my job and in my new role working in the healthcare sector that has never been more true. However, my greatest passions include spending time with friends and family, travelling and meeting new people, and spending time around a table enjoying food and conversation. You could say this is my holy trinity of happiness.

So with one week to go before November 20th when my firm hosts our nation-wide 12-city broadcast from Washington, D.C. and 9 days before I leave for my annual trip to Brazil I wanted to take a moment to write my thoughts, share them with the tens of readers who visit this blog :-) and count my blessings that I'm lucky enough to have a great job and the means to get away from it to relax and really enjoy what life is all about.

I can see Brazil is fast approaching and I'm excited by what I see.

9 days and counting...

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Asphalt as art

One of the things that I really like about my neighborhood is that there is always something just a little bit curious happening. When I woke this morning I was surprised to see a dozen or so people across the street from my home huddled around several tables snapping pictures and engaging in some sort of silk screening process.

After watching pedestrians walk-up and talk to the industrious crew, I decided to walk over to see first hand what was happening. As it turns out this is a group of urban artists who are creating limited edition prints steamrolled onto tar paper to commemorate a forthcoming publication that "promotes the urgency for greater creativity in the design of asphalt spaces."

At first blush this might sound a bit crazy, but as Paula Meijerink - Asst. Professor of Landscape Architecture at Harvard University (the woman in the lower right corner of the photos below) explained, this is an affordable, 100% recyclable material that is cheap and readily available. The publication these prints are being developed for is intended to "inspire change by exploring the properties of asphalt and asphalt spaces" and to spur new and creative uses for this material.

Kudos to Paula Meijerink, Boston-based illustrator and designer James Kraus of Art Guy Studios, and the small team of helpers who dedicated their Saturday to this project. If you would like to learn more check out their cool website at

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Seth Meyers: Short and Curly

To lighten the mood on election day,I thought I would share this video which I initially saw on OMG! It is an SNL video that made me laugh and I hope will for you too. Way to go Seth Meyers.

See more funny videos at Funny or Die

Friday, October 31, 2008

An open letter to red states

Here is a humorous open letter to red states that is circulating the internet...

Dear Red States:

If you manage to steal this election too we've decided we're leaving. We intend to form our own country, and we're taking the other Blue States with us. In case you aren't aware, that includes CA, HA, OR, WA, MN, WI, MI, IL and all the Northeast. We believe this split will be beneficial to the nation, and especially to the people of the new country of New California.

To sum up briefly:

You get TX , OK and all the slave states. We get stem cell research and the best beaches.

We get the Statue of Liberty. You get Dollywood.

We get Intel and Microsoft. You get WorldCom.

We get Harvard. You get Ole' Miss.

We get 85% of America 's venture capital and entrepreneurs. You get AL.

We get two-thirds of the tax revenue. You get to make the red states pay their fair share (finally).

Since our aggregate divorce rate is 22% lower than the Christian Coalition's, we get a bunch of happy families and you get a bunch of single moms.

Please be aware that Nuevo California will be pro-choice and anti-war, and we're going to want all our citizens back from Iraq at once. If you need people to fight, ask your evangelicals. They have kids they're apparently willing to send to their deaths for no purpose, and they don't care if you don't show pictures of their children's caskets coming home. We do wish you success in Iraq,but we're not willing to spend our resources in Bush's Quagmire.

With the Blue States, we will have firm control of 80% of the country's fresh water, more than 90% of the pineapple and lettuce, 92% of the nation's fresh fruit, 95% of America's quality wines, 90% of all cheese, 90% of the high tech industry, most of the U.S. low-sulfur coal, all living redwoods, sequoias and condors, all the Ivy and Seven Sister schools plus Stanford, Cal Tech and MIT.

With the Red States, you will have to cope with 88% of all obese Americans (and their projected health care costs), 92% of all U.S. mosquitoes, nearly 100% of the tornadoes, 90% of the hurricanes, 99% of all Southern Baptists, virtually 100% of all televangelists, Rush Limbaugh, Bob Jones University, Clemson and UGA.

Additionally, 44% of those in the Red states believe that evolution is only a theory, 53% believe that Saddam was involved in 9/11 and 61% of you crazy bastards believe you are people with higher morals then we lefties.

Peace out,
Blue States

Happy Halloween

Here are a few photos from halloween past in Boston. The last few years have been quite mild, and I'm hoping the same will be true tonight for all the kids in the neighborhood looking to show off their costumes. However, this morning had a chilly start so maybe costumes with lots of padding and layers will be popular this year.