Friday, July 13, 2007

I Have Triskaidekaphobia!

I don't really have a fear of Friday the 13th or the number 13 - but I probably should. The first time I ever had to have surgery, it was on a Friday the 13th and my divorce became final on February 13th. I was originally scheduled to go to court on February 14, but called my lawyer to reschedule because it just seemed wicked to drag my husband to court for a divorce on Valentine's Day! As it turns out, he was a no-show anyway - but don't get me started.

What is our fascination with the number 13 and other superstitions? I grew up in a very superstitious home. It didn't seem particularly abnormal at the time, but I do find myself practicing the same little rituals my mother did. I always throw salt over my left shoulder when I knock over the salt shaker. I cringe when black cats cross my path. I'll cross a street to avoid walking under a ladder and I'm always looking for wood to knock when I don't want to jinx myself by saying something out loud. I'm sure there are many more, but they're so ingrained I'm hardly aware.

I just did a little googling to get a better grip on this whole "number 13" thing and my superstitions flared. I recently talked about having dinner at Willie Dunn's with 13 friends. After reading's Urban Legends and Folklore, I feel like I may have dodged a bullet.

"It is said: If 13 people sit down to dinner together, all will die within the year. The Turks so disliked the number 13 that it was practically expunged from their vocabulary (Brewer, 1894). Many cities do not have a 13th Street or a 13th Avenue. Many buildings don't have a 13th floor. If you have 13 letters in your name, you will have the devil's luck (Jack the Ripper, Charles Manson, Jeffrey Dahmer, Theodore Bundy and Albert De Salvo all have 13 letters in their names). There are 13 witches in a coven."

My advice, as a superstitious person (there, I admitted it), is to forget about the possibility of bad luck and head to Jackson Gore this evening for a relaxing start to the weekend with the Jackson Gore Outdoor Music Series concert and a free performance by Jeff Tuohy. The grounds open at 5:30 p.m. Hope to see you there. Cheers!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Vermont Hits a Homer!

It's official - Springfield, Vermont, has been designated as the official home of Homer Simpson's family. Fourteen towns named Springfield responded to a call from 20th Century Fox studio asking them to prove their town should be chosen as the "real" Springfield. Each submitted a video that was posted on USA TODAY's website, where readers voted for their favorite. At 2 p.m. on Tuesday, July 10, Vermont was named the winner. As a result, the town of 9,300 will host the official The Simpsons Movie premiere at its own Springfield Movie Theatre, July 21, with the movie's filmmakers on hand to walk the yellow carpet.

With Springfield located just 15 miles from Okemo Mountain Resort, it's only natural that skateboarding (and probably snowboarding) Bart Simpson and the rest of Homer's clan would consider Okemo their home mountain. In celebration of the naming of Springfield, Vermont, as the Simpson's "real" town, Okemo is extending lifetime season passes to Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa and Maggie.

When asked by a member of the media, how Okemo would "establish the real Simpsons," Okemo's public relations director responded, "DOH! Despite the fact that the real Simpsons are two-dimensional cartoon characters (a sure giveaway), we will require valid identification from Homer and his family when they show up to claim their Okemo lifetime season passes."

My favorite quote through all of this Simpsons-mania was that of Vermont Governor Jim Douglas; " to all other Springfields, I say don't have a cow man." Cheers.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Woke Last Night to the Sound of Thunder ...

How far off, I sat and wondered. Bob Seger's "Night Moves" must have been inspired by a night like last night. Actually I didn't wonder how far off the thunder was at all - the lightning was clearly bouncing off the ground all around me, cracking and electrifying the air. It was a classic summer storm and the lightning show was something straight out of a horror movie. The flashes of light diffused by the cloud cover lit up the entire night sky and my little log cabin. My poor dog couldn't decide whether or not to be frightened, but he did jump on the bed a couple of times when the thunder claps got close.

It's shaping up to be a scorcher here in Ludlow today - with more thunderstorms possible for this afternoon. The garden is loving this humidity and the cukes are almost ready for the dinner table ... maybe a little cucumber salad in my picnic basket for this Friday's Jackson Gore Outdoor Music Series Concert. Barring broken mirrors, black cats and misplaced ladders, The Music Series will overcome all superstitions Friday, July 13, with the contemporary and classic rock energies of singer/songwriter Jeff Tuohy

Defined by fans as "theater stage meets stadium rock," Jeff Tuohy’s music has the timeless appeal of artists like Sting, U2, Jeff Buckley and Tom Petty, taking the listener on a journey into his life's experience. Amplifier Magazine called Tuohy a handsome, singer-songwriter-guitarist who wears his heart all over his sleeve and then some, yet puts forth a high level of musicianship and pop songwriting expertise that makes this listen most pleasurable to a wide audience (i.e. teens, Gen X-ers and their moms). Melding classic rock, adult contemporary, and folk, Tuohy emerges as man of all seasons. To learn more about Jeff Tuohy, or to hear samples of his music, visit

The concert is free and it's a great way to kick off a summer weekend. Cheers!

Monday, July 9, 2007

I've heard alot about blogging, but never took the plunge. After going through all the "set up", I'm now in.............The first one, I am going to keep short. I used the title of Summer 07, to complain about the weather, there is no summer heat............. and to mention some of what is going on at Okemo for the summer. Many people ask, what do you do all summer? (Even my daughter)! Okemo has many Full-time year round employees and they are all hard at work. Some are preparing for the next ski season, but there are a considerable number who work in departments which are open for the summer, mainly, the Jackson Gore Inn, The Lodging department, Okemo Valley Golf, Tater Hill Golf, Coleman Brook Tavern and others. Okemo is not just for skiing anymore..... You should check out the landscaping that has been done at the Jackson Gore Inn complex. Did you know that every lift tower is inspected by our Lift Maintenance staff and all the Sheaves (wheels the cable runs over) are inspected. That is done on 15 lifts...... Snowmaking also gets a complete overhaul so when the temp drops, things are ready to go.Congrats to the entire Okemo staff for making the Vermont Symphony Orchestra's Debut at Okemo such a success. Every department contributed to the success.......... I was so impressed with how the grounds looked and how everything just felt right..........Hey even the weather cooperated.....

phew.....only one left!

One down and one to go.....only one major holiday before ski season....Labor Day! That's the last paid holiday I get before the ski season begins. Despite what some of you might think Halloween is NOT a holiday.

I think I'm one of the few people who did not attend the VSO event at Jackson Gore last Friday. I heard it was a smashing success. I, however, was sitting on the porch at my friend's summer cottage (built around 1890 - very rustic) enjoying cocktails and watching the water float by. It's on a small lake in NH so we got to see Loons and Cranes and listen to lots and lots and lots of bull frogs. (I'll bring ear plugs for sleeping next year)

Despite what you might think, I did go for a run every morning.....remember, winter's right around the corner.....and went swimming and then kayaking around the lake. Finally, returning to my mountain retreat on Sunday afternoon to a very shaggy yard, hot an sticky air, and many outdoor chores still left to be done.

So, what would anyone in their right mind do after being away for five days....late on a Sunday afternoon......have a BBQ! As it turned out, the weather went south fast on Sunday evening....with lots of rain and dark clouds. So we hung out on the porch, ate burgers and potato salad and enjoyed beverages brewed right over in Winsdor, VT.

As for the 4th of July.......I went to see my family and spent the day doing chores at their house. Note to self - next summer, stay home on the 4th and do my own chores. So much for a national holiday and being lazy.

anyways.....gotta run.....time to mow the yard. (and do my lunges)


PS. A list of summer things to do?......Silver Linings is much tooooo organized.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

VSO a hit!

First and foremost - Marc Miller, the manager of Coleman Brook Tavern, is no longer the producer of the Jackson Gore Music Series. He has relinquished his title and is now the 'founder'. However, I'd like to give props to Marc for putting together the VSO. He had a dream - all be it a weird one - and followed it. Friday night over 800 people came to Jackson Gore to listen to the Vermont Symphony Orchestra. The rain stayed away, though the skies were threatening. As Belmont saw heavy downpours we closely watched the cloud work its way onto Jackson Gore peak and then miraculously succeed back to Mount Holly, allowing all those present at the VSO to enjoy the concert rain-coat free.

It was truly a sight to see - and if you missed it this year, be sure to come back next year for a memorable evening.

Thanks to all who enjoyed the concert! I hope you had a great time!