Month: October 2016

Featured Post

Veterans Day and D.C.’s Memorials

By Bob Tagert   Veterans Day and D.C.’s Memorials   This month we decided it would be a great opportunity to revisit the war memorials and military memorials in our Nations Capital area. The crisp fall is perfect for a brisk walk around D.C. and most of the tourists are gone or certainly in smaller numbers. Also, with the election happening and the conflicts in which we are engaged, I thought it a good time to reconnect with the past.   We will begin our journey on the National Mall adjacent to Constitution Gardens. The Vietnam Veterans Memorial is a 2-acre national memorial that pays tribute to the brave members of the United States Armed Forces who fought in the Vietnam War and were killed or missing in action (MIA). The Memorial consists of three separate parts: The Three Soldiers statue, the Vietnam Women’s Memorial and the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall…or simply, the “Wall”, which is the most popular feature. The memorial is free and open to the public 24 hours a day, with rangers on duty to answer questions from 9:30 am to 10 pm daily. Perhaps the Memorial Wall’s most defining characteristic is a visitor’s ability to see his or her reflection at the same time as the engraved names, connecting the past and the present like few other monuments can. Of all my years in this area the only other places that demand this level of respect is Arlington Cemetery and the Lincoln Memorial. Just south of the wall is the Vietnam Women’s Memorial, which serves to commemorate the 265,000 women that served in the Vietnam War, many of whom worked as nurses. The 2,000 pound bronze structure stands 15 feet tall and depicts three women attending to a wounded soldier, reflecting the unity required during the…

Continue Reading

Featured Post, On the Road, Pets, Places, & Things

On the Road

Old Town Crier loyal reader and friend, Charlie Lanham, visited Eyre Square in Ireland where JFK made his famous speech in June of 1963 just 5 months before his assassination. The flags in the background represent the original 14 tribes of Galway which were merchant families that dominated trade with Europe in the 1600’s. After checking out some history he had to make a trek to Garavans’ Irish Pub and participate in an Irish whiskey tasting.

Master's of Cuisine, Wining & Dining

Chef Edward Lee

By Chester Simpson Chef Edward Lee Succotash Restaurant 186 Waterfront St. National Harbor (301) 567-8900 Chef Edward Lee is a Brooklyn-born chef and restaurateur currently based in Louisville, Kentucky. He has been a multiple finalist for the James Beard Foundation Best Chef Southeast. He has made numerous television appearances on shows including season 3 of The Mind of a Chef on PBS, a contestant on the ninth season of Top Chef and is a guest judge on MasterChef. He has written a cookbook, Smoke & Pickles, that celebrates his cooking honoring Southern cuisine with Asian flavors. When did you first become interested in cooking and what made you choose a culinary career? I don’t think I chose a culinary career…I think a culinary career chose me. I’ve been interested in cooking since I was a young boy. I don’t know why or how or when but I remember telling my parents at 8 or 9 that I was going to be a “Chef”. I really didn’t know what it meant and they didn’t either and they thought I’d outgrow it like everything else. I never out grew it. The older I got, the more interested I got and the more research the more I found. I started working and here I am. I just knew I wanted to do this. Who or what has been your biggest inspiration during your career? There’s not a single person or event. I’m influenced by the people I meet along the way. Every chef I meet has an influence on me and every book that I read and every article that I read. To me, it’s not one single influence it’s a million little ones and I think those are actually more important than the “one”. Which of your “Southern Fare with Asian…

Continue Reading

Beauty & Health, Fitness

Fall and Fitness

Fall and Fitness By Nicole Flanagan With fall comes brisk mornings, followed by cooler days, and not to mention the beautiful foliage and delicious fall foods. Now is the time to get that workout into your schedule so that it becomes part of your routine before things get hectic for the holidays. Here are just a few reasons why you should use this fall to make fitness part of your life.            Enjoy the year’s most beautiful season. Its time for the weather to cool off and for the leaves to change into their fall colors Get outside and enjoy the season by bicycling, walking, hiking, jogging, and playing golf and tennis. Explore parks in your area; find a new bike path through the woods, take a walk around a lake. The time spent out in nature will do as much good for your mind as for your body. Get back to the club. As I have said before, it takes 30 days to make a habit, and supplementing your outdoor activities with a regular gym workout will help keep you on track. While cardio exercise is good for your heart, it is important to add some resistance training to your program as well. If you are looking for something new, sign up with a personal trainer for a few sessions and have them come up with a new program for you. This is especially a good idea if you are looking for a program specifically suited to help you improve your running or hiking. Take advantage of what fall has to offer. Fall makes me think of apple picking. Turns out that this awesome fruit has incredible health benefits. Apples contain pectin, which has been shown to reduce bad cholesterol and can help with managing diabetes. The antioxidants found…

Continue Reading

Beauty & Health, Featured Post, From the Trainer

Fit Ball Leg Curl

By Ryan Unverzagt This month’s exercise is the FitBall Leg Curl. This exercise focuses on the hamstrings, but also involves the glutes, low-back, and spinal extensor muscles. Begin by lying flat on your back with your legs straight. Position the center of the FitBall underneath your heels. Lift the hips up by contracting your glutes and low-back. You should form a straight line from your shoulders to the feet. Arms can be parallel at your sides or out perpendicular (like a “T”) for better balance. This is the start and finish position.   Slowly roll the FitBall toward yourself using your hamstrings while maintaining the bridge position. Do not let your hips drop during the exercise. Keep the movement controlled as you roll the ball back to the start position. The slower you go, the more difficult the exercise.   An advanced move is to perform this exercise with a single leg. From the bridge position, lift one foot off the FitBall a few inches while the other leg does all the work! This simple maneuver takes much more effort and focus. You will appreciate how much balance is required even though you are lying down!   I hope you are keeping up with your exercise routine going into the holiday season, will make it a lot easier to justify eating your way through Thanksgiving! Have a good one.

Arts & Entertainment, Featured Post

“The Last Waltz”

By Chester Simpson “The Last Waltz” “We wanted it to be more than a final concert. We wanted it to be a celebration.” -Robbie Robertson Thanksgiving Day – November 25th – will mark the 40th Anniversary of “The Last Waltz” concert that happened in 1976 at Winterland Ballroom in San Francisco. The Last Waltz was billed as The Band’s “farewell concert appearance.” The Band decided to disband as a group and have a farewell concert in San Francisco. Band members Rick Danko, Levon Helm, Garth Hudson, Richard Manuel, and Robbie Robertson performed along with Bob Dylan and guests. It became one of the most momentous events in music history. As a young photography student at the San Francisco Art Institute in 1976, I knew I had to photograph this historic musical event. All photographers had to arrive at 5:00 p.m. and hold their position 50 feet from the stage while director Martin Scorsese filmed the concert. By 7:30 p.m. all of us photographers where thirsty and tired of standing on our feet, so one photographer offered to get everyone drinks if we held his position. He returned and handed out everyone’s drinks. I drank half of my Dr. Pepper and placed it between my feet for later. Fifteen minutes before the concert started, I realized, like all the other photographers that I had been dosed with LSD, so no more soda for me. This was history and I wanted to capture everything in focus. The Band started the concert at around 9:00 p.m., opening with “Up on Cripple Creek” followed by “The Shape I’m In,” “This Wheel’s on Fire” and “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down.” Joining The Band onstage during the course of the evening were more than a dozen special guests, including Bob Dylan, Paul Butterfield, Neil…

Continue Reading

Urban Garden

Growing Citrus Indoors

Growing Citrus Indoors It seems every year we get the shipment of limes and Meyers lemons into the garden center and folks go into a buying frenzy. And you know what? They have every right to do so. There is nothing like a fresh picked lime or lemon to use in food preparation or making your favorite beverage. The taste and amount of juice you get from your homegrown citrus trumps store bought ten-fold. Tip: Limes are not ripe until they are pale yellow. What you’re buying in the grocery store are “unripened” limes. So….you bought that lime or lemon back in the spring and it’s time to figure out what to do with it while Ol’ Man Winter gets ready to make an appearance. Bring it inside of course. Growing citrus indoors is possible and easy as long as the key elements are adhered to.   First of you should inspect your plant from top to bottom. Top and underside of leaves, branches, main stems and the trunk. Look for those unwanted pests that are not invited to share the warmth of your home. Scale, mealybugs, aphids, spider mites. Spray the plant with insecticidal soap or horticultural oil. I would do it at least twice at 4-5 day intervals and if you do bring the plant in before doing this, keep it in quarantine until you’re sure it’s pest free. I would also get a product called Azamax – which is organic – and do a soil drench on the same schedule to kill off any unwanted pests that may be living in your soil. You can make your own soap mixture if you wish. Get some Murphy’s oil soap and use 2 tbsp. per gallon of water and you are good to go. Do NOT use Dawn or…

Continue Reading

Beauty & Health, Spiritual Renaissance

2016: A Year for Making Room

By Peggie Arvidson 2016 : A year for Making Room 2016 is finally winding down and what a year it’s been! I like November for the opportunity to look back at what’s happened so I can start to plan my new year with new wishes, dreams and goals. I say thanks for what’s come along in the year to teach me to be a more loving person. I say good riddance to some learning opportunities that I’m glad are over (can you say Presidential Election Politics?) This year has taught me that I’m stronger than I thought. Some of you may know that my husband, two dogs and I moved across the country to sunny Tucson at the end of the summer. (I highly recommend Tucson but not necessarily during monsoon season!) That process taught me so much about trust. At least once a week leading up to the move I panicked – afraid of making a huge mistake by leaving everything I’ve known for the past 50 years to start over again in a foreign territory. Hindsight being what it is – I couldn’t be happier with the move and even with the hiccups along the way, I’m still certain that following my inner knowing and not my ego’s fears pointed me in the right direction. Personally, it’s easy to see that 2016 was a year of letting go, breaking down and starting over, but you’ve probably had a share of that too. 2016 was a universal 9 year in numerology. That means everyone in the entire world has dealt with some level of loss, breaking down and big change. Depending on what your personal year was it may have been more or less profound. No doubt you mourned along with the world at the loss of some major…

Continue Reading

Social Media Message

East Coast Internet Outage…Yikes!

By Ashley Schultz Were you not able to access some popular sites on October 21st? Many sites were unavailable for usage due to a cyber attack. These sites included Amazon, Spotify, Twitter, Netflix, and PayPal. This attack is known as an DDos attack. What is DDos? Distributed Denial of Service, it is an attack when a web service is intentionally overwhelmed by traffic from many sources. It is a common method for digital assaults. This assault was on DYN an Internet Traffic Company. According to CNBC, the attacks were “well planned and executed, coming from tens of millions of IP addresses at the same time.” The attack was waged from devices infected with a malware code that was released on the web in the past month, this includes DVR’s . The attack was curbed within two hours, yet, how many devices do we have that can be used for such an attack? Is this attack due to the current election? Take time to make sure that your webcam and DVR’s have the latest firmware and software updates strictly from the manufacturer, to help prevent this in the future.

Featured Post, Points on Pets

Dealing with end of life decisions

By Sarah Liu & Cindy McGovern Dealing with end of life decisions If a basic principle of medicine is “First, do no harm,” then a basic principle of pet ownership may be, “First, don’t let them suffer.” Knowing if and when to consider euthanasia for an ill or elderly pet is one of the most difficult decisions you will make as a pet owner. However, your pet is depending on you to make that decision for them because they can’t. No animal should suffer unnecessarily and responsible pet owners know that better than anyone. Just like humans, all animals react differently to pain, old age and illness. Senior cats can develop arthritis and hyperthyroidism, which causes weight loss and increased appetite. They are notoriously good at hiding pain until an injury or illness is so advanced it’s too late to do anything. Dogs can be equally stoic and hide their pain and suffering because it is a life-preserving instinct. With dogs, know your breed, as some are prone to have specific health problems. Golden Retrievers and large breeds, for example, often develop arthritis in their back and hips as they age. Even a pet that enjoys overall good health will eventually show signs of aging. The following are some signs to look for that indicate age or illness is catching up to your pet: Is your pet irritable, restless or confused? Do they drink water excessively? Have they lost their appetite? Do they avoid favorite activities? Is your pet picked on by other animals in the home? This can happen when a sick or elderly dog becomes the weakest member of the “pack.” Do they seek out unusual places to sleep or hide? Do they want to be alone? Do they turn their back on you? Most importantly, are they…

Continue Reading

View More