Category Archives: Restaurants

Down at Georgetown having lunch before tests…

Georgetown Hospital

If you ever have to do something at Georgetown University Hospital, let me recommend a wonderful on-campus restaurant, Empire and Company, a great classic buffet with a side pizza parlor.

We arrived an hour and a half early leaving time for my wife, daughter and me to have lunch and discuss this afternoon’s tests and what we are required to bring with us. I’ll do a blood test just before we go over and see if I need any insulin before the tests.

I’d like to thank all of you e-mailers and commentators and friends for contacting me and wishing me well and praying for me (can you believe it, an old, publicly avowed atheist like me?). I probably won’t be back to this until much later tonite or tomorrow morning, my last day at home this week. I’ll be back with a report on what’s going on.

Meanwhile, General Petraeus may be off the news and we can get back on to the economy.

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Lunch with the family…

Oy! Three flights of stairs!

My sister took Elly and me, my mother, my son and his wife, my two daughters and three of my grandsons to lunch at Lightfoot’s, a former bank turned into a restaurant in Leesburg, VA. Supposedly, this restaurant is at a halfway point between my mother in Manassas and Elly and me in Harpers Ferry (and my daughter Penny and her kids in Williamsport, MD.)

This was put together so everyone could give me their best wishes before I go into the hospital next week and for all of them to wish me their best.

Buddy and Rachel

We were up three flights of stairs in a private room in this old bank building, where we (or at least me with my current balance and dizziness) slowly walked up and then spent two hours in one place.

It’s full of old French theatre posters, which was sort of neat for my 12-year-old grandson John who is learning French in school this year…”Mais oui!”

My Mother

My son Bud and his wife Rachel are in from Wisconsin.. they’ll be flying back early tomorrow. Penny and the boys, of course, only live a little bit away from us and will be involved in watching me when I recuperate so Elly can go into Hagerstown Community College and work.

Me, of course

My daughter Cassandra who will be here for another week is coordinating all the hospital and doctor stuff with Elly. She is a very organized and impressive woman and has everything going on schedule… more tests next week before surgery, hospital be rental for after (not sure why I need this, but I’m told not to argue.)

Anyway, I can’t get over thinking that this is everyone’s chance to say goodbye to me in case anything goes wrong in surgery (I think there’s a 7% chance or something.)

No radio shows this coming weekend… perhaps the week after. Let’s hope.

Today is our 34th Anniversary…

Elly dances with Buddy at his wedding reception.

Hard to believe it, but Elly and I have been married for 34 years as of today. It’s almost unbelievable that this wonderful woman has out up with me so long. I’m not the best husband in the world and have been obsessed with my various projects, often ignoring hers and making her life less than happy. Now, with my seizures and health care problems, she is making my actual living circumstances both possible and relatively enjoyable.

But we did have highlights in our combined lives. The major thing, of course, was the creation of our fantastic son Buddy (who now calls himself Will, but we will never think of him without the name “Buddy”) who got married a few weeks ago in Milwaukee. I hope he and Rachel get at least the 34 years we have had.

Together we have now raised four different dogs – it’s amazing how much we care about our pet relationships; Now, with Nestlé and Byron sleeping on our couches, our living room is warm and wonderful.

I guess we will go eat somewhere nice today to mark the occasion.

Back from Milwaukee and once again trying to get over my broken bones…

 

It was a wonderful wedding, watching my son and his bride having the time of their lives, but a painful one for me. I spent most of my time looking for places to sit and keep my left side from interacting with the world… and I almost got away with it.

There was one accident, however: after taking wedding pictures of family and bridal party on the Oriental Theater’s stage, I missed a step coming back into the audience area and fell hard, re-injuring my cracked collar bone and shoulder blade. Several nice wedding party members helped me get back on my feet, but I returned to West Virginia more in pain than when I left. Believe me, the 18 hour train rides (switch in Chicago… if it weren’t for the redcap service I never would have been able to change trains… were incredibly unpleasant and I got no sleep on the overnight run.

Bob and the Fat Man

One great thing about the wedding was I got to see my cousin, Bob Barsale, who, since he lives in Chicago, I have not seen much of in the past 25 years. Growing up, Bob was the closest thing I had to a brother and he (and his wife Suzie and daughter SueSue) mean a great deal to me. Since he occasionally reads me on Facebook, I send my best wishes out to him.

OK… now I have to get back onto my life, my string of Doctor’s appointments and more. I hope you all have a nice day. I home Buddy and Rachel are enjoying their mini-Honeymoon at Lake Geneva. I hope all the family and friends I saw got home OK.

 

My son is now a married man and I am a tired old fat guy…

 

Morning after… I’m sitting in the lounge at the Milwaukee Hilton catching up on e-mail and my blog while my wife and my daughters go over to Buddy’s house (or should I say Will’s? No, I can’t get used to that… he’s been Buddy to me since the day he was born) for a brunch (I can’t deal with the stairs up to Bud’s house after my bone-breaking accident… and I had an extra fall yesterday walking down some narrow stairs at the Oriental Theater during wedding pictures time… so I’m staying here until they get back.)

This afternoon at 3:00 we catch the first of two trains… this one to Chicago and the next to Martinsburg, WV. We’ll be traveling for next 20 or so hours. What fun.

During Buddy and Rachel’s wedding reception last evening we had a brief rainfall… and, in a sign that I see as good luck for the married couple… it was followed by a Rainbow. What are the odds of that happening? This was magic!

Elly and I had breakfast this morning with my cousin Bob, his wife Suzie and his daughter SueSue and her boyfriend. They’re driving back to Chicago later. It was nice seeing them
The lovely young woman who works this waiting lounge just brought me some ice water… they are so pleasant here…and I think I’ll take a little nap if i can get away with it. Once we head out for the train I’ll have no Wi-Fi again until we get home tomorrow, so I can’t do much more on the blog.

Be good to each other.

 

Wedding Day… so much to do!

 

Ford Theater of the Performing Arts Oriental T...

 

After having the wedding rehearsal yesterday at the Earl Pabst Music Pavilion ( the Oriental Theater, which is the actual site, was not available ) and a grat rehearsal dinner last night, we are getting ready this morning for the event.

 

Outdoor Rehearsal

 

I haven’t worn a suit in at least 20 years, so this is a complex experience.

 

At 11:30 we take a bus to the Theater and everything starts:

 

• the ceremony

• the Toast bin a restaurant across the street

 

• the Reception in another Restaurant across town

 

I guess we”ll see a lo0t more of Milwaukee, which, so far, seems to be a city where the most imp0rtant activityu is drinking beer. Not something a teetotaller like me can participate in. Oh well.

 

I’ll get back to you all later.

 

 

Freedom’s just another word for nothin’ left to lose…

 

WATERFORD, Conn. —Say you are a 17 pound lobster named Larry living in a tank in a Connecticut restaurant, just waiting to be bought, boiled, buttered and eaten. Not a pleasant thought, is it.

A lobster that big could be anywhere between 70 to 100 years old… he’s lived through the great social and political events of the last couple of generations. Should he be in this situation?

Carrying Larry out to sea…

Fortunately for Larry, a Connecticut man, Don MacKenzie, purchased him at the restaurant, then released him back into Long Island Sound. MacKenzie says the local kids were calling the huge crustacean “Lucky Larry”.

“It takes seven years for him to even become a lobster big enough to keep,” saidMacKenzie. “For a lobster to live this long and avoid lobster traps, nets, lobster pots … he doesn’t deserve a bib and butter.”

MacKenzie won’t say how much he paid The Dock restaurant to take Larry off the menu Tuesday.

“Let’s just say that it’s the most expensive lobster I never ate.”

Turning Larry Loose…

Here at Under The LobsterScope we have great admiration for McKenzie who saw a creature in a deadly situation and saved his life. Larry thanks him and we do, too. It makes me feel proud to come from Connecticut.

 

80% 0f Antibiotics are Fed to Farm Animals – and it’s killing us!

Here’s something we should all be aware of (especially when we go food shopping):

I hope you signed the petition… and look for the label in the meat department that tells you your steak is from a cow raised without antibiotics.

Will Monsanto be allowed to poison us?

Just when we thought there might be some federal control over the spread of genetically modified vegetables and grains, a so-called “Monsanto rider” has been quietly slipped into the multi-billion dollar FY 2013 Agricultural Appropriations bill. This  would require – not just allow, but require – the Secretary of Agriculture to grant a temporary permit for the planting or cultivation of a genetically engineered crop, even if a federal court has ordered the planting be halted until an Environmental Impact Statement is completed.

All the farmer or the biotech producer has to do is ask, and the questionable crops could be released into the environment where they could potentially contaminate organic crops and lay waste to a healthy food supply.

Centre for Food SafetyUnless the Senate or a citizen’s army of farmers and consumers can stop them, the Republican (read “industry”) dominated House of Representatives is likely to make this dangerous rider the law very soon.

Here is what the Center For Food Safety officially had to say about the biotech industry’s latest attempt to circumvent legal and regulatory safeguards:

Ceding broad and unprecedented powers to industry, the rider poses a direct threat to the authority of U.S. courts, jettisons the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) established oversight powers on key agriculture issues and puts the nation’s farmers and food supply at risk.

In other words, if this single line in the 90-page Agricultural Appropriations bill slips through, it’s Independence Day for the biotech industry, and Monsanto comes out on top.

This is the time to contact your Representative and complain… by telephone and in writing… to keep the “Monsanto Rider” out of the law.

Over at Mellow Moods having coffee after the show…

Not a bad show on WSHC this morning… a lot of song request challenges (and I found all of them) from my regulars and nothing went wrong with the equipment (Ta Dah!).

The weekend looks lovely. After coffee, I’m on my way over to our now up-for-sale town house to get some hardware off the garden fence. Then back home to make up the sleep that I DIDN”T get last night.

Hope you all have a great weekend.

We must out-fund Monsanto’s Lobbyists (or die eating our unlabeled veggies!)

Volunteers across California are making history. On May 2nd, the California Right to Know campaign turned in nearly 1 million signatures to place a ballot initiative to label GMOs on the November 2012 ballot.

But this is only the beginning. We know that Monsanto and their minions will do everything in their power to spread lies and confuse voters. They have proven this time and again and most recently in Vermont and Connecticut where citizens in those states overwhelmingly supported bills to require labeling of genetically engineered foods.

Only a few days after voters in California qualified the historic initiative to label GMOs, Monsanto and biotech lobbyists were working behind closed doors in Connecticut to kill the bill that would have made it possible for the residents in that state to know what’s in their food.1 In the final hours of the 2012 legislative session, the biotech industry succeeded in getting Connecticut’s governor and House leaders to strip the bill of its labeling requirement as it was on the verge of passing with bipartisan support. Now, this year alone, governors in Vermont and Connecticut have both caved under the biotech industry’s threats to sue them if they pass a bill to label GMOs. This is an outrage!

While these backroom shenanigans can’t happen in California, since the ballot initiative will be put to a vote of the people, we know that Monsanto’s minions will be up to their usual dirty tricks. Already, a powerful biotech front group is starting to spread misleading stories in the media and distorting the real facts about the California Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act of 2012.

This has been called “the Food Fight of Our Life” and we need your help in making sure that we succeed in November.

Will you chip in to make GMO labeling a reality? Only with your help can we win in November!

We can win in California, but we need your help today! Here’s how. Between May 1 and May 26, a broad coalition of food, farm, health, public interest, and environmental groups all over the country, joined by leading organic food companies, will attempt to raise one million dollars to support the California Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act, a citizens’ ballot initiative, and other state GMO-labeling campaigns.

In an extraordinary gesture of support and solidarity in the fight for GMO labeling in California, Mercola.com, the largest alternative health website in the world, along with a group of leading organic companies including Nature’s Path, Lundberg Family Farms, and Eden Foods, and other nonprofit organizations, have pledged another one million dollars to the “Drop the Money Bomb on Monsanto” campaign – but only if we reach our goal of $1 million by May 26.

Please help us raise $1 million by May 26 for the California Right to Know GMO Labeling Campaign so we don’t miss out on this $1 million matching gift!

http://fdn.actionkit.com/go/591?akid=549.271844.mqPu-i&t=10

Thank you for contributing what you can today – Together we can win!

Now’s the time. Let’s drop the money bomb on Monsanto and take back our food supply!

Thanks for participating in food democracy,

David Murphy

President, Food Democracy Action!

P.S. All money raised for this campaign will go through Food Democracy Action!, a 501(c)4 allied organization of Food Democracy Now!, focused on grassroots lobbying and legislative action. Donations are not tax-deductible. Thank you for your support!

Source:

1. “GMO ‘Right to Know’ campaign in CT fails — Lawsuit threatened”, Digital Journal, May 5, 2012

http://action.fooddemocracynow.org/go/590?akid=549.271844.mqPu-i&t=12

It’s Mothers Day… and I wish a happy one to all you Mothers out there…

Mother's Day card

Elly (who is waiting to see if our son calls her from Milwaukee with a Happy Mothers Day) and I are riding down to Manassas  to take my mom to lunch in celebration.

Although I think this was a holiday created by the greeting card companies in association with florists everywhere, it’s good to remember how much our mothers mean to us. Our personalities were formed under her auspices as we grew up. She was our first supporter and encouraged us as we headed into the future. She was the true person we could turn to if we were in trouble. Is there anyone more important than a mother.

So here’s a bit on the history of Mothers Day:

Have a nice one.

Genetically Modified foods should be labeled…

…we have a right to know what we are eating, and the right to refuse to eat GMO foods.

Just Label It! We have the right to know.

Cartoon(s) of the Week – Without immigration, where will we get more poor laborers?

Bruce Beattie, in the Daytona Beach News-Journal:

… see, if we just take over our own problems, immigration is unnecessary…

– and –

Jeff Danziger of the L.A.Times:

… now Arizona has the right (and I mean RIGHT) idea…

– and –

Clay Bennett in the Chattanooga Times Free Press:

… of course a stand on the immigration issue could equal lots of Hispanic votes…

– and –

Steve Breen in the San Diego Union-Tribune:

… so who are the real problem creators here?

 

Do Monsanto Employees eat GM foods?

If you worked for Monsanto and knew their pharmaceutical evils, would you eat Genetically Modified food?

There is a notice in the cafeteria of the Monsanto pharmaceutical factory is High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, advising customers

as far as practicable, GM soya and maize (has been removed) from all food products served in our restaurant. We have taken the steps to ensure that you, the customer, can feel confident in the food we serve.”

The notice was posted by the Sutcliffe Catering Group.

Adrian Bebb with Friends of the Earth says the notice in the Buckinghamshire plant is hard to misinterpret:

“The public has made its concerns about GM ingredients very clear – now it appears that even Monsanto’s own catering firm has no confidence in this new technology.”

Monsanto company spokesman Tony Coombes says the only reason for the GM-free foods is because the company “believes in choice.” Yeah… that’s a good one.

Unfortunately, we won’t see such announcements in the United States which won’t even require LABELING to show genetic modification. The reason? If LABELING was permitted people wouldn’t buy it. It also doesn’t hurt Monsanto that FDA head Michael Taylor, a Monsanto executive, was appointed by Obama… and America’s Chief Agriculture Negotiator, former Monsanto lobbyist Islam Siddiqui, was also an Obama appointment.

We are, as they say, screwed… unless everyone realizes the problem and takes action, whether writing Congressman or shopping for organic foods or campaigning against the patented seed stores of Monsanto.

 

 

 

 

The Monsanto Story – a personal documentary

I’ve talked many times about Monsanto and Genetically Modified seeds and the dangers they are bringing upon farming since they have been allowed to patent seeds. Perhaps you don’t know Monsanto’s history. This short piece by Andy Radford will give you an education:

New GMOs Poised to Destroy Farmer’s Market Favorites

This article is from Rodale. The first couple of lines are below… then connect to the full story:

New GMOs threaten tomatoes and other garden staples.

By Leah Zerbe

Your tomatoes are under attack.

If approved, two new types of genetically engineered corn and soy crops will threaten some of America‘s favorite farm foods, including tomatoes, peas, cucumbers, squash, melons, pumpkins, green beans, grapes, and other farmer’s market and garden staples.

—> Read the rest HERE.

An evening revelation…

It’s been so long that I’ve seen a rainbow… but, as Elly and I pulled into the parking lot of the Mountain View Diner in Charles Town, there it was… fuzzy in the clouds as the sun behind me was beginning to set.

I took a quick photo with my iPhone:

A little out of focus, but that’s what the air felt like.

The Restaurants folks eat in as an economic indicator…

The New York Times has pointed out that…

…when Americans feel better about their finances, they are more likely to eat at restaurants with full service, including bringing the food to the table, rather than at restaurants with limited service. At the moment, both the restaurant sales and the falling unemployment rate indicate the economy is doing better than the Gross Domestic Product figures would seem to show.

Here are the stats:

So where have you been eating lately? I’ve been going over our cc receipts for the last month or so and discovered that my wife and I fit right in with this recovery crowd… we don’t eat at fast food joints at all and our sit-down restaurant visits have been predominant.

Where have you been eating?