Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Musical Paradise

Hey Paradisiacs!

I'm back after a hiatus. This Friday I'll be joining a few friends to enjoy a really neat band, Garaj Mahal, at Skipper's Smokehouse.

I encourage all Paradisiacs to come out to Skipper's for a fun show. Hope to see you there!

Monday, December 31, 2007

The Lotus Pond

Hi Paradisiacs!

I've been taking yoga classes at The Lotus Room located on Kennedy Boulevard in Tampa. Recently the owner, Val Spies, has purchased a property in Citrus Park - a 4+ acre lot with a large log-cabin building which looks like a ski lodge. The space will be called The Lotus Pond.

The Lotus Pond will offer daily yoga classes, healing arts, workshops, and retreats. There will be walking meditation trails and quiet places to find an escape from the busy world.

I'm really excited to have an opportunity to be a part of this new adventure. Tomorrow I'll be attending a special New Year's event - Blossoming Into The New Year!

Join Val Spies and Roger McKeever for a heart opening New Year’s Day yoga practice celebrating all the delights of yoga including introspection, freedom-in-movement, and connecting to your inner joy. Move into the new year with clarity and inspiration, and let the power of this practice be an affirmation of your deeper intentions on and off the mat.

A very Happy New Year indeed!

Monday, November 05, 2007

The Laughing Lizard

Image size: 3" X 5 1/2"

Hey Paradisiacs! I just stayed the weekend at The Laughing Lizard bed-and-breakfast on Indian Rocks Beach.

"It's more than just great sunsets
and waves lapping at the shore.
It's wonderful restaurants,
museums, galleries, shops
and so much fun —
even the lizards are laughing."

What a neat place! From their website:

The Laughing Lizard Bed & Breakfast is a tin-roofed, three-story, Key Westy island home built in 2005. Located in the quaint island community of Indian Rocks Beach just south of Clearwater Beach in the Tampa Bay area, this casual B & B is a contemporary throwback to the cottage-style architecture that speaks to Indian Rocks Beach's roots.

Forty-two windows offer an eyewitness view of beachlife as it happens on Gulf Boulevard, the main thoroughfare in a barrier island beach community termed by a USA Today article as "the best beach town of all." Creatively colorful and eclectic guestrooms - all with private baths - make beachlife as exciting indoors as it is outdoors.

In the morning, enjoy a full, southern-style, tropical breakfast in Lizard Hall. Coffee in hand, stroll across Gulf Boulevard to the beach for a morning walk. Ride the local beach trolley to the nature park, historical museum, many wonderful restaurants and other beach destinations. Then sip a taste of afternoon wine and experience the sunset.

Jan & Bill Ockunzzi are the owners and they do a beautiful job.

The only other guest was Brenda, a local writer and editor who is working on a novel. She and a partner arrange writer's conferences and seminars via their organization free eXpressions. They are planning a seminar here in Tampa, so stay tuned.

I had a wonderful, relaxing time and will plan to go again. The rooms are beautiful, quaint and comfortable and the breakfasts are excellent. Highly recommended!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Illuminacion Paradisio

Wow!!! Hey Paradisiacs! Gala Corina is happening in South Tampa this year!

Gala Corina 2007: “iluminación” opens Friday, November 2

Friday evening, November 2, GALA CORINA, Tampa’s annual arts extravaganza, presents “iluminación,” an eclectic array of contemporary works by local artists in the fields of visual arts, fashion and performing arts. This year’s show opens at 7:00 pm, Friday, November 2 and runs through November 9. The exhibit is located in South Tampa at 3965 W. Henderson Boulevard, near the intersection of Neptune and Grady Avenues (on Henderson next to Lauro’s and across from Wendy’s). The venue has been generously sponsored by Zerep Enterprises, Inc., which also operates the International Eye Center and Body Science Center.
If recent history proves true, opening night will again be a lively pARTy. Last year more than 4000 art lovers showed up to check out the work of new and emerging artists as well as established favorites. This year’s show, “iluminación” includes 155 artists—from tots to seniors—displaying a wide range of work: paintings, sculptures, photography and installations. Music and a non-traditional fashion show will add to the festivities.

Also visit our website for additional information about Gala Corina!

My artist friend Rich Frederick will be there with his latest works.

"Coral Reef Geo Thermal Observation"
Acrylic & Mixed Media on Canvas - 2007

Gala Corina is always a good time for Paradisiacs to enjoy!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Microscopic Paradise

Michael W. Davidson

Florida State University
Department of Chemistry and Institute of Molecular Biophysics
Tallahassee, Florida, USA

Multiple exposure of concentrated DNA solution of nucleosome corelength DNA molecules in ammonium acetate buffer (25x)

Hey Paradisiacs!
via our local Trib I found this beautiful website" Nikon Small World

The Nikon International Small World Competition first began in 1974 as a means to recognize and applaud the efforts of those involved with photography through the light microscope. Since then, Small World has become a leading showcase for photomicrographers from the widest array of scientific disciplines.

A photomicrograph is a technical document that can be of great significance to science or industry. But a good photomicrograph is also an image whose structure, color, composition, and content is an object of beauty, open to several levels of comprehension and appreciation.

Here's another beautiful image:

Many more beautiful images at the links. Enjoy!

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Nothing So Secret

Jackson Pollock

Guardians of the Secret, 1943
oil on canvas

Administration Leaks Confirm AT&T and Verizon's Role in Warrantless Wiretapping

...the Administration went to work on gathering political support for its proposal to grant retroactive immunity to the telecommunications giants. Over a dozen government officials spoke to the Associated Press "on condition they not be identified because sensitive negotiations with Congress are ongoing." Despite the oft-repeated litigation position that naming particular telecommunications companies was too sensitive:

One of the officials said the defendants in suits brought by the American Civil Liberties Union — Verizon and AT&T — would be the key beneficiaries of the proposed legislation.

The ACLU and EFF are co-lead coordinating counsel in the consolidated NSA surveillance cases against Verizon and AT&T, so its not hard to figure out what the Administration official is talking about. In order to support their arguments for immunity, the Administration felt it necessary to name the particular companies that would benefit, and thereby confirm what it contends elsewhere is a secret.

So how do we explain this apparent discrepancy?

The information is only "secret" when its discussion would be helpful to the courts in reviewing the legality of the surveillance and thereby it is kept "secret" to prevent the millions of ordinary Americans who have been illegally surveilled from establishing what has been going on and stopping it.

On the other hand, when the Adminstration believes that the information helps its efforts to strong-arm Congress into more concessions and a retroactive 'get-out-of-jail-free' card for the telecommunications carriers, they freely discuss it with the press, albeit "anonymously."

Something is very wrong here. The government's state secret argument rests on its solemn assertion that there will be "grave danger to national security" if this information is revealed, even in secret to a federal judge. Now it looks as if the government doesn't really believe this, and instead is turning the state secret privilege into just another political tool to shield judicial review of its actions.

What a bunch of weasels. It's the Rule of Lawlessness.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

New Movie coming to Paradise

SiCKO is coming!

Michael Moore's new film opens generally on June 29th but sneak previews are scheduled for this Saturday. Nearest one is in Sarasota for any who can't wait. Might be worth rounding up a posse next week for the opening. Until then here's a review:

Anger is contageous in Moore's new 'Sicko'

By Gene Seymour / Newsday

What's most striking about "Sicko" is how composed, even serene it is compared with Michael Moore's previous acts of cinematic insurgency. The puckish ferocity and combative mischief that marked such previous Moore polemics from 1989's "Roger and Me" to 2004's "Fahrenheit 9/11" is on relatively low boil in this one -- at least until the climax where he takes a bunch of chronically ill Americans on a boat to Cuba for some accessible pharmaceuticals and treatment.

You may have already heard that he's probably in a little hot water for that.

But overall, the net effect of "Sicko's" penetrating and devastating inquiry into the way America takes care of its ill and dying is to transfer the anger to the audience rather than have Moore's own outrage spread all over his film. Which makes this movie, by a considerable distance, the writer-director's most effective provocation yet.

Those who already have their backs up whenever they hear Moore's voice won't want to see or hear what he has to say about insurance companies that deny benefits and even life-saving surgical procedures to their clients. But he pretty much lets those clients and even some former employees of those companies speak for themselves.

And by the time you've heard a doctor working for one of those companies speak with remorse about such denials to seemingly incredulous congressional investigators, you wonder if you'll ever feel secure about the prospect of getting sick in the United States.

Or, as some of Moore's interview subjects attest, you may consider somehow finagling your way to other western countries where universal health care exists, whether in Canada or France -- or Cuba.

Diagnosis: time for a change.