Let’s RUSH

I’ve had a forty-year love affair with the Canadian progressive (?) rock band, RUSH.  They were one of the first bands I sort of “discovered” on my own through the radio.  RUSH was also the first band for which I looked “back” to earlier albums, when I had caught up on what they had released in real time.  I listened to whole albums over and over and over again, like so many teenagers did at the time.  Like they still do maybe, even in this era of digital music and single song access.

It was a love affair with Rush.  It still is.

I’ve seen the band maybe ten times in my life; nothing like true “fanatics”, I suppose, but I still consider myself a RushHead (a play on the famous musical fan term, “DeadHead,” for fans of the Grateful Dead).   I once traveled to their hometown of Toronto to see them play live, at the Molson Amphitheatre.  It was EPIC.

So after 45 years of music, the trio — Bass/Vocals Geddy Lee, Guitar Alex Lifeson, and Drummer/Lyricist Neil Peart — have pretty well hung it up.  That was actually announced last year.  So make that 44 years together.  And make that 19 studio albums.  And make that 11 live albums.

As summarized so succinctly in Wikipedia, “The band released its eponymous debut album in March 1974. Since then, they have achieved 24 gold records and 14 platinum (3 multi-platinum) records. According to the RIAA, Rush’s sales statistics also place them third behind The Beatles and The Rolling Stones for the most consecutive gold or platinum albums by a rock band.”

The love affair will continue, even if they have ceased playing live.  In fact, I’ll be seeing the latest iteration of the band’s music and performance history in a “one-night only” movie viewing tonight (Wednesday, 21 August), when I go with a couple buddies and my brother to see “Cinema Strangiato”.

Will have a follow up post to share the experience and further celebrate maybe the longest continuous musical relationship I’ve had.  THANK GOD.

Indulging is GOOD, when you’re into the right stuff.

 

 

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Tostilocos, Doritolocos, Goodness

Tostilocos, Doritolocos, ahhhhhhh, what? Culinary Goodness from the ground level, from the street, from the everyday.

Found this basic content via NPR and a series they produced a few years back:  Borderland.   It’s still available in their archives, and narrates various aspects of the busy southern border between Mexico and the United States.

As part of that feature series, one of the highlights (for me anyway) was this very Mexican and American street snack.  The article called them Tostilocos (because the recipe called for using Tostitos brand tortilla chips).   Whether you use Tostitos or Doritos or any other similar bag of flavored tortilla chips, it’s gonna be a legit snack blending north and south, and down-home authentic for sure. The introduction from the piece spells it out:

Tostilocos. Tosti, as in Tostitos. Locos, as in crazy.
Origin stories vary, but the snack has proliferated in Tijuana — and has crossed the border into Southern California, too.
Vendors like Fidencio Rodriguez set up outside schools, at the beach and next to long lines of people crossing the border.
9 ingredients. About $3 on the street.
Here’s how you make it:
SALSA VERDE TOSTITOS (snack bag size), (CUT LENGTHWISE);
PEPINOS (CUCUMBER) AND JICAMA; CUERITOS (PICKLED PORK RINDS),
CACAHUATES (FRIED PEANUTS),
CHACA-CHACA (TAMARIND CANDY),
CHILE SAUCE
CHAMOY (PICKLED FRUIT) SAUCE,
SQUEEZE O’ LIME
fr: TIJUANA, MEXICO.  Sold on both sides of the border.

In this era of vocalized attitudes of nativism and anti-immigration in these United States, it seems appropriate to give similar voice to the counter opinion. Diversity and being inclusive and celebrating all flavors and colors and peoples, that is in fact a core strength of America, THAT should be respected and honored and protected.

Try the Tostilocos.  It might just take you over the top if you weren’t already so inclined, to celebrate and seek to protect our very precious way of life, blended uniquely here in America. A mixed bag of goodness.

[photo credit:  NPR]
[for the whole Borderland series, go to this URL: https://apps.npr.org/borderland/%5D

Guest Post: “Be the Light” — YES!

I met Camille and her husband too last year when one of their son’s played on the soccer team my wife was coaching (and two of our kids played on, too).

Since then we’ve stayed in touch via social media, and we cross paths around town from time to time too.

With that as backdrop, I saw this post from her the other day and immediately thought, “Half Full!” — so I asked her if I could share this little reflection on my blog, and she generously agreed.

ENJOY!, and BE THE LIGHT.

Be a light in someone’s life. The world kind of sucks ☹️ right now. Someone told me the other day that they had to Google how to talk to your kids about mass shootings! 😮 This is sadly our reality.

This is also my motivation for SPREADING POSITIVITY in my  world and coaching a group of people who want change, whether it’s change in their mindset, change in their lifestyle, change in their habits, change in their body or change in their relationships with themselves and others.

I coach not because I have extra time in my life. As a working Mama of 3 👦🏻👦🏻👧🏻, I don’t have a lot of time so I make time. I wake up early, maybe skip some tv shows and find those pockets of time. I coach because I, too, need the positivity generated from others.

Life is hard. ☹️ But what choice do we have?🤷🏻‍♀️ Do we just be negative all the time and spend our days wallowing in what we don’t have and what we want different? Results come from action!

Positivity attracts positivity. 😊+☺️ I’ve had a rough week and I relied on my group to get me through it and I relied on myself to focus on my blessings, my children, my marriage, and my health.

Be a light in someone’s life.

“If you want to give light to others YOU have to glow yourself!”

#strongasamother #strongertogether #momoftwoboysandagirl#workingmomsrock #workingmomslife #struggleisreal #morningmeltdown100#transformation #mindsetchange #positivevibesonly #thankful #gratitude#youarestrong #youareabadass #personaldevelopmentquotes #shinebright#sparkle #coachinglife #lovelife #embraceliving #smilemore #runningmom#fivesecondrule #leadbyexample #changeforchange #yougotafriendinme #accountabilitycoach #smilemore

Find more of this goodstuff Camille puts out in the world — her Instagram handle is:   @coachcamillepa

camillecf_coach_halffuller_2019

 

 

 

I Didn’t Know This About Sushi

[NOTE:  This excerpt taken from the always AWESOME Seth Godin blog.   Full credit to his experience, insight, and great writing.  I read his piece, got the underlying message, but also learned something about Narita airport, sushi, and where to get the good stuff.]

“One of the best airport restaurants I’ve ever encountered breaks my first rule of airport eating. The sushi bar at gate 30 of Narita airport is a special place (though I wish they didn’t serve tuna).

The rice is extraordinary.

The nori is crisp.

The service is efficient but friendly.

They have wonderful vegan rolls, flavorful shiso, and yes, it’s hard to believe but true: real wasabi, grated to order.

My guess is that the very best sushi restaurant in your town doesn’t serve real wasabi. But I digress.

When I was there a few months ago, I apologized to the entire staff.

I apologized to them on behalf of every traveler (many, if not most, from my country) that was dredging this extraordinary product in soy sauce, bathing it from top to bottom in the style created to mask the flavor of generations-worth of mediocre, lazily-created sushi.

The Japanese equivalent of putting ketchup on your food in a fine restaurant.”

Lesson:  I’ll never saturate another piece of sushi with soy sauce.  I promise.

 

 

 

My Stove

The stove, metaphor for my life.

Four burners equals four priorities:

Children, wife, work. Wait, that’s only three? The fourth burner is for everything else: my elderly parents, the Lions club I serve community thru, my extended family, my friends.

Sometimes one of the first three get moved off, but I try not to let that happen. When I die I don’t want to regret short-changing those I’m most responsible to.

God and faith are the fuel for that stove, the natural gas that keeps me going.

Take care of your stove.

Chill

This was the view I had recently. It was a 30-Hour Retreat. We got up early, almost like a work day to get there.

It's good to do for mind, body, and soul. Regularly. For your own well-being, and for others.

When you allow yourself to chill, it means taking pause, a bit of emotional and spiritual detente, giving your engine time to spool down from breakneck speed.

Chill. Out. GOOD.

Ingredients

I’m known for putting together rather eclectic meal combinations from time to time.

Might be my dad’s influence — peanut butter, bananas, some mayo, maybe with a pickle, was one of his favorite “dishes “(so to speak).

One of my lunches this week provides a good example: I found in various places in the fridge…Brussels sprouts, gnocchi, and ground beef from left-over hamburger.  Tossed in in a Tupperware, threw it in my work bag, and away I went.  At lunch time, I heated for two minutes thirty seconds in the microwave at work, voila!  Chow Time.

Crazy?  Well maybe, but it was delicious, and it used left overs in the fridge I felt compelled to gobble up.   This situation also provides some insight on a life approach that goes beyond the kitchen and meal prep.

Access your ingredients, consider your combinations, be creative, “re-purpose” as needed (“hamburger” becomes “ground beef”) make the most of what you have.

I feel like I’m in the Iron Chef competition every time I open the fridge to figure out what to take to work for lunch the next day.

The core skill-set is the same:  base knowledge, open mind, and creativity.

And then?

Well it’s pretty simple. Get some good. Make it tasty.  And what else?  Well of course, teach your kids.

What exactly?

It’s all in how you use the ingredients before you to make a dish, or the best of any situation, and put a little smile on your face.