Tuesday, May 7, 2024

Nu, May is Jewish American Heritage Month. Who Knew?


I certainly was not aware that May is Jewish American Heritage Month.   I knew that February was Black History month, and that March is Women's History Month, and that Pride Month is in June.  I didn't realize that Jewish American Heritage  was this month.  (By the way, Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander Heritage Month is also in May.  Which makes sense, because if you count from 2000 years ago, Israel (Judea) is officially Asia. 

May is also Older Americans Month.  This is the time that Israel, Florida, and the Jews all align as one.  Did I mention Chinese food on Christmas Eve?  I was about to.  It is all coming together!

Some of the many prominent Jewish Americans.  I am not prominent enough to be on this list

But despite the obviousness of all these co-occurences, plus the fact that I am a Jewish American, I somehow missed the memo.

JAHM began as an effort by the Jewish Museum of Florida and South Florida Jewish community leaders. Through the bi-partisan efforts of Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz (FL-23) and the late Senator Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, JAHM was established in 2006 by President George W. Bush to honor the contributions and achievements of Jewish Americans and to educate all Americans.

 It’s been continued every year since then by Presidential Proclamation. 

Other notable milestones include the formation of a national advisory committee in 2007 to drive the effort forward; NASA Astronaut Garrett Reisman, a New Jersey native and University of Pennsylvania graduate, carrying the original JAHM proclamation into space in 2010, and President and First Lady Barack and Michelle Obama hosting the first-ever White House reception in honor of JAHM that same year. 

In 2018, The Weitzman  National Museum of American Jewish History. (Hereafter known as The Weitzman) became the home of JAHM and now leads the nationwide effort. Located in Philadelphia, the Weitzman does a great job of cataloging and promoting American Jewish culture.  Especially in light of the recent rise of anti-semitism in the US, and the unrest that is on college campuses, 

If you are looking for additional Jewish American Heritage Month events around the country, here's a list maintained by The Weitzman. 


There are many more events happening around the country, and the list above has a pretty comprehensive list of them.  

Last year, an amazing concert by Frank London and the Klezmer Brass All-Stars (in association with Joshua Nelson and the Kosher Gospel Singers) was held to celebrate.  When Klezmer meets Gospel, the results are electric!

Here it is for your listening and viewing entertainment.
(If you can't see the video below, log in here to view it)

Friday, February 17, 2023

RIP Dave Hollis

Dave Hollis and his daughter Noah.

 I was punched in the gut recently when I heard the news that Dave Hollis had recently and suddenly passed away.  He was an influencer and writer and father (4 kids)  whose work I have admired for the past 4 years.   I never met him personally, but I consumed enough of his content (book, podcast, social media) that I felt like I knew him. 

Dave had apparently entered the hospital for heart related concerns, and despite his exercise and fitness regimen (he was a regular runner, and had recently competed in his first physique contest), something was apparently wrong and had gone undetected.  He died suddenly.

Read Dave's Obituary Here.

It’s a funny thing about Social Media— esp. when done well— you start to have a stake in the success and failure of people you don’t know.  They are talking in your ear, they seem personal to you, you feel like they are talking directly to you, and yeah, you get invested in them. And I certainly did with Dave.

Read my review of Dave's first book back in 2020, where I list the reasons why I like him so much.

I first encountered Dave when he was a guest on someone else’s podcast- Brad Wilson’s now defunct The Process.  In this podcast, Dave talked about personal growth, and how he decided to leave his job at Disney as the president of movie distribution- something he apparently excelled in, in order to become the CEO of his wife’s company, The Hollis Company.  

Dave had recently done a lot of physical work to compete in a physique contest. 
Could this have contributed to his heart problems that led to his demise?
(Photo from his facebook page)

I had never heard of his wife (now ex-wife) Rachel, but I was so impressed with him (and so much of the conversation I resonated with- esp. his discussion about why he left his cushy job at Disney to try something hard (his son asked him what he was afraid of, and he said “not fulfilling his potential”. BULLSEYE.)

  And his story about being a parent and a foster parent was also inspiring and amazing.  (And making your kids become self-reliant and take responsible risks)  I loved this guy from the get go, and wanted to seek out the rest of his stuff.   Which I did. 

I ended up reading his books (see bottom of this post for a list)  and subscribing to his instagram and listening to his and his wife's podcasts: 

START TODAY MORNING SHOW (which is, as the jingle said, "The Morning Show That No One Is Talking About."  This podcast was a lovely little nothing of a time with Dave and Rachel when they were together, and is still available online.  They stopped producing it a little before they announced their divorce.

(which was a couples podcast, with Dave and Rachel, about how to have an exceptional relationship and live your best life.  After the divorce, Dave took it over and turned it into an interview show to try and understand other people's perspectives and walk in their shoes a little while)

Dave Hollis celebrating Christmas 2022 with his family (from his facebook page)

I also watched his YouTube series with his daughter Noah, called TeaTime with Noah, in which he tries to instill values in his 3 year old daughter while they are playing at tea.  Great fun, and a great example of parenting from the get go.  These are going to take on specific significance to Noah and the rest of their family in light of his unexpected death.  And it makes me think of the videos that I have with my kid and my family.

A sample episode of Teatime with Noah.  I recommend watching them.  They are great!  He also started writing a series of children's books based on his Teatime with Noah series. The first one had been released, and I don't know if any more are in the pipeline.

After his breakup with Rachel, Dave soon found new love with trainer/IG personality Heidi Powell.  Here’s a video done last year about their relationship which has also been tragically cut short. (And he talks a little bit about grieving his previous relationship, and talking about divorce and death .  Oddly prescient.)

I’ve gone back and listened to that initial podcast,  where I first encountered him, and it’s great, and sad to hear it again talking about their ultimately doomed marriage and Dave’s untimely death.  (At one point he talks about what will happen when he’s 80, and I am now remembering that was a favorite thing for him to say, and I’m really sad he’ll never get there.)

Dave had a surprisingly profound effect on my life-  his struggles with being a practical person versus having a “growth mindset” really resonated with me.  I remember a conversation he had with Rachel where he talked about being a naysayer to his wife about starting some new project (that ultimately went out to be very successful)  He was trying to be realistic, and practical, and in the process he ended up discouraging her instead of being her cheerleader.  That is a  struggle I know well.  (Only too well, as it turns out)

Dave also introduced me to the quote:  Ships are safe in harbor, but that’s not where they were built to be. (Which he later had tattooed on his body).   Like many other people before me, that quote speaks to me.  Risk is of course part of life, and it’s what we are built for.  But at the same time, I’m not the kind of guy that likes to run the sails higher than prudent, and lately I think I am even more conservative about things as I've gotten older.  And that runs contrary to the idea of enjoying life sensibly.

Dave’s death reminds me of how short and precious life is, and we don’t know what’s in store for us.  And I guess I need to get out of the harbor more often!

Rest In Peace, Dave.  

I’m thinking good thoughts for your family, and for your legacy, and acknowledge the effect you’ve had on my life.

Books by Dave Hollis

Built Through Courage BUY

Buy Dave's First Book


This was clearly meant to be a series of books.

Tuesday, July 19, 2022

Angus Nelson's Mid Year Gut Check: Don't Try

Angus can be found on the internet at http://www.angusnelson.com

 I have forgotten how inspiring and awesome Angus Nelson can be.

I've seen him talk a few times at Dad 2.0 and some other blogging conferences.  I've had a few one on one conversations with him, and had a great breakfast with him a few years ago when he was passing through Chicago.  He's thoughtful and inspiring and great and smart and (all that jazz)

This past year, he and his family rooted themselves up from Nashville where they were living and moved to Lisbon Portugal.  I don't know the whole story why, other than he wanted a change, he needed a change, and this was a change. I follow him on Instagram and facebook and all the other socials and  he's having the time of his life there.  

Having moved to Barcelona Spain with my family about 6 months before Angus and his family for many of the same reasons, I have been feeling more of a kinship with Angus than ever. 

 Apparently the Instagram algorithm realized this recently, and showed me a video that Angus did about a week ago about using the word try as a way of not really committing or owning your desires and your plans.  

This spoke to me on a number of levels.

 I am guilty as charged. I do this a lot. I do it to hedge my bets, to not disappoint my wife (Hey, I said I'd try to get that thing for you. I did try. I didn't promise. I said I'd try)

My dad was a "We'll see." guy. Dad can we go for ice cream? Dad can we go to Disneyworld? Dad, can I buy a comic book? My dad would say "We'll see" and that often meant no , but it didn't rule out No enough so it wasn't a definite no. It left open a possibility for me, it forestalled a potential disappointment or argument from the kids, it put off a potential conflict until a later date.

 I fear that I operate often with the same parameters-- sometimes a little unwittingly, but more because it makes sense to me-- the world is rife with possibility and who knows what will happen?

 I can see, however, thanks to Angus's no nonsense gut check, that it might be (no it is- let's not mealy mouth) that willingness to be indecisive that is holding me back.  I need to commit to more things.  I need to fail more.  I don't need to try.  I need to do.

Thanks for the reminder Angus!

You should totally follow Angus on instagram, where he's got some more great gut checks for you.  He's also got an inspiring podcast.

 I thought about compiling all of his gut checks here for you, but I decided that you can do that yourself.  I have faith in you.

Tuesday, April 5, 2022

The Greatest Adventure of My Life

14 years ago today, my wife and I said "I do" to each other in a restored dance hall in Yonkers, NY, and I can honestly say it has been the greatest adventure of my life.  

Our wedding invitation.

I say that without hesitation, or perhaps with a tiny bit of hesitation-- I mean I want to be accurate right?  Perhaps there was some other adventure that I embarked on that was bigger?  I've been on a few of them.  Driving down to Venice Florida to start clown college, not knowing a single soul there.  Driving cross country to the Dell'Arte school without having been there before, to figure out how I was going to learn to live in rural Northern California.  Teaching clowning as part of a cultural exchange program in Chile.  Studying clown in Czechoslovakia. Traveling to Copenhagen Denmark on a whim and then lucking into three weeks of following Dario Fo around the area.  (As I like to tell it, I met Dario in 1995, and he won the Nobel Prize a year later.  Now I'm not saying there's a connection... I'm just saying that before he met me, he was not a Nobel Laureate. )

But even looking at all those cool things I did, I can say that getting married (and having a kid) is the greatest adventure I've ever had.

Here's the video the NY  Times took the day after our wedding. 

It's amazing to see us as we were then-- before we were parents, embarking on our great adventure.

This is who we were back then.  Two newlyweds.  (Literally, this video was taken the day after the wedding as we were packing to go on our Honeymoon to Paris) 

We're not that far off from that now, although a little worse for the wear and perhaps a little less starry eyed.  Time (and Madness) takes its toll. (Thank you Rocky Horror!)

We're about to set off on another adventure- a couple of weeks in Thailand!  

Read the full article in the NY Times here.

It Doesn't Always Feel Like An Adventure

It doesn't always feel like an adventure, mind you.  Of course, many times it does.  Sometimes it feels super exciting, and everything is a blur and a whirlwind.  I can't concentrate, I've got a pit in my stomach, my palms are sweaty, my heart is racing, and I am not exactly sure what's going to happen next.

There have been times when this adventure feels downright dangerous to my physical, mental, and emotional health.  My head is reeling, I've got a pit in my stomach, My palms are sweaty, my heart is  racing, and I am not exactly sure what's going to happen next.

Sometimes it feels like a slog, and so rote and predictable and the same old same old- so much that I want to scream. My palms get sweaty, my heart starts to race, and I am pretty sure I know exactly  exactly what's going to happen next.  Until I don't.   And then rinse and repeat.

Hmmmm... these things all feel the same....

Because let's face it, adventure is all of those things at once-- it's just hard to focus on any one of these things at a time.

One of the many clown wedding photos I insisted on taking.  I'm not sorry one bit.

Here are some tips to remind me to focus, when it gets difficult (and even after 14 years, it still gets difficult.)

Henry Ford said "Whether you think you can or you think you can't, you are right."  I have a tendency to focus on the negative, to worry about what could go wrong, and think of solutions to prevent things that have not yet happened and might never happen.  Sometimes that's good, and sometimes that prohibits me from enjoying myself fully.

2) WE, NOT I
The more I can focus on the fact that we are on the adventure together, the better off I am.  I am historically poor at this, and I am trying to get better.  But at the same time, The Greatest Adventure of Our Life would be a terrible name for this post, because I'm trying to explain my point of view, not ours.  And there are often differences. Stark differences.

Enjoying what I have and not being disappointed by not getting what I didn't want.  Words to live by.  

This is a variation on a fortune cookie I once got which said "The Joy of What You Have Is Lost By Wanting More."  That rings so true for me.


Life will gobsmack you when you least expect it.  So stay flexible, and always bring a towel. (Obligatory Hitchhikers Guide reference). 

5) If I had to do it all over again, I would.  

No regrets.  You can't change the past.  And in this case I wouldn't if I could.  I could have made better decisions along the way, there are some situations I didn't deal with very well, or could have handled differently, but let's look at #3- the journey.  I'm very happy to be on this adventure with my wife, with my child, and with all of the other people that are involved in my life.

Looking forward to many more anniversaries!

Saturday, March 19, 2022

El Dia de los Padres

 I've been seeing Father's Day signs in stores and was thinking "Wow that's really early!"  It's not even April yet!

Today, I saw some more, signs and a couple of people were really nice to me at the market. 

When I got home and I took  a look  on the internet and it turns out that Spain celebrates Father's Day today  March 19, coinciding with St. Joseph's Day!

My family is not going to find out about this until it's too late, and truthfully I don't really care.  I don't need acknowledgement from them to appreciate the rewards (and occasional pitfalls) of being a dad.  

They are part of the process!

But I thought it was worth pointing out-- So Happy Early Father's Day, all you Americans!

And for those who live in Spain:

¡Feliz día del padre a todos los papás!

Sunday, November 7, 2021

What It's Like To Be A Teacher in 2021.

Chris Bernholdt, in a still grabbed
from his TikTok account.

 I got this from my friend Chris Bernholdt,  (DadnCharge) who is an art teacher in Pennsylvania and a well known Dad Blogger and influencer.

I love the sentiments, and all of the conflicting information and demands on teachers (and it's absolutely similar for parents as well!  And students-- well fuggetaboudit!)

Chris says on his post that he got it from a friend, so I have no idea who really wrote it, but it's brilliant.

If you know who wrote it, I'd like to give them proper credit. 
Let me know in the comments who is the author, and I will praise them and point to them with awe.

I re-formatted it a little.  

What it is like to be a teacher in 2021

**Shared from a friend**

Me: Ok class, today...

Student: This is stupid. I'd rather be playing video games.

Office: *ring* Send (student) to the office.

Voicemail: My kid told me that YOU...

Email: We need you to sub on your prep.

Teacher coaches: Students are experiencing an all time level of trauma. Form relationships with all students and make connections every day.

SRSS: Make sure to incorporate ELA and math into your lesson plan daily, so we can boost our scores for data.

IEP: Implement these modifications and accommodations for these students every hour. Document it.

504: You are legally bound to adhering to these accommodations for these students. Document it.

Pinterest: Every teacher in the universe has a cooler and craftier idea and classroom than you.

Facebook: Omg. Did you hear about what happened in *insert teacher here* class?! Don't they even watch them? It's their job! How did (s)he miss that?! Yeah, and I heard...

Class roster: 30+ kids every hour, 6 times per day.

Student Services: You have 4 homeless students. You need to provide the following daily.

Student Medical alert: These students will die if you don't monitor these medical issues closely
Professional Development: We're trying something new this year even though we're not ready to roll it out and there's no funding for it. Be sure to document that you are doing it correctly.

Media: Your classroom is going to get shot up any minute.

Surprise observation: Be sure goals are set, reports are finished, lesson plans are perfect, and that you hit the learning target and success criteria multiple times. We need documentation and evidence that you're doing this.

Standardized tests: You suck as a teacher. Also, your rating is based on this, but also, make sure students don't feel defined by their performance on these.

PBIS: Teach students the expectations in the hallway, cafeteria, classroom, and outside. Take students in the bathroom and reteach how to wipe, flush, and wash hands. Be sure to only reward positive behavior. Check in and check out with these specific students daily.

MTSS: We have 3 tiers of support. What about your gifted students, pull out students, intervention students? Why aren't you providing enough differentiation? You need to provide documentation.

Door: Keep me locked, so that students are safe. Yes you will be interrupted to open me 10x per hour.

Papers/Grading: Say good bye to your evenings and weekends.

Lesson plans: Are they aligned with school, state, U.S., and world wide standards? Be sure to document that.

The Powers That Be: What can we do to help?

Teachers: Please take something off our plate before adding something new.

The Powers that Be: Sorry, no can do. Btw, you also need to...

Tech Dept: We are working on correcting today's issue as quickly as we can.

English Language Learner: *crying, speaking a foreign language, feeling alone and scared*

The Powers that Be: Sorry, there's just not enough funding for those students.

Department Heads: I've been told we need to align all of our curriculum, assessments, and daily lesson plans. Be sure to document that.

Staff Memo: Be sure to attend the following meetings this week: staff, grade level, core subject, tech, school climate, school improvement.

Counselors: We saw 500 of the 900 students on our caseload, this month.

Social Worker: Yes, I filed that CPS report and the other one. Now we wait on the state to act.

Student: My step dad got arrested last night for beating up my mom.

Tornado Drill: Surprise! Make sure all students are safe. Now go back to teaching.

Fire Drill: Surprise! Make sure all students are safe. Now go back to teaching.

Internal Threat Drill: Surprise! Barricade your door and make sure all students are silent for 45 minutes. Go back to teaching.

External Threat drill: Surprise! Make sure student are silent and out of the funnel of potential bullet spray. Now go back to teaching.

Tutoring: Provided before school, after school, and during lunch.

Technology: Must be implemented into all lessons but also make sure to monitor all 30+ students at all times and make sure they're not doing anything inappropriate.

Data: You suck as a teacher.

Administrators: *literally being pulled in 20 directions at once, everyday, while fielding discipline, making multiple teacher observations, fielding staff, breaking up fights, keeping us safe, performing investigations, cooperating with police, meeting with students and parents, and attending all after school and extracurricular activities*

Employability grade: Be sure to document when students are tardy, not following directions, unprepared, and not collaborating well. Document this for all 175 students.

Academic Grade: Document all accommodations, modifications, retakes, and rationale for grades for each of your 175 students. No we will not provide district time for you to enter these into your grade book.

Special Ed State Dept: You must mainstream all students regardless of behavior, cognitive function, and/or potential violent episodes. Sorry, there's just not enough funding for
additonal support in your classroom.

State: Make sure you are highly qualified, but you must pay for all of your professional development, student loans, grad classess, conferences, hotel stay, food, travel, and substitute teachers out of pocket. And you need to update your certification. You'll need to pay for that too.

Bladder: You haven't peed in 7 hours, you're going to get another infection.

Heart: *racing*

Stomach: *in knots and anxiety coursing*

Brain: You're not enough. You'll never be enough.

Chest/Lungs: I can't breathe.

Eyes: *leaking tears*

Me: *smiles* (Tells self) Stop. Just suck it up. You're fine. You have 30+ students eyes on you right now. Do NOT let them down.

Society: F*ck respect for authority, including your teachers. Must be nice to get your summers off.

Parent of a student: You make a difference.

Student: I know I'm special and have value, because of you.

My own kids: Dad, why are you crying?

Me: *sets alarm for tomorrow to do it all over again*

Wednesday, April 21, 2021

International Dad Jokes.

One of my brothers sent this meme/questionaire to me recently, and I have to say, I guess I'm pretty dad.

I guess I'm pretty darned dad.


Many of these "witticisms" are things I say on the regular   (Hmmmm, on the regular is not on this list.)

I looked this over with my 12 year old son, and we counted 8 on the list that he recognizes as mine, and those I  mostly learned from my dad.  I thought of them as loving nods to the way I was raised, but perhaps they are just incessant ear worms (memes for you younger folk) 

"Looks Like We'll have to amputate"

Actually, I just used a variation of this joke at the doctor in Spain.  My son had a slight fever (we think Strep, although the test came back negative.  It was not Covid.)  We visited the doctor twice. On the return trip, in my very bad Spanish, I asked as seriously as possible "Es necessito amputado?"  The doctor smiled, recognizing this apparently international dad joke.  

"Let's rock and roll"

I actually usually say "Let's rock and/or roll"  which is a reference to a Simpson's episode that I've long since forgotten.  I am also known to say "Let's G"  "Let's make like a tree and leave."  "Let's make like a bakery truck and haul buns."  and "Let's make like a hockey player and get the puck out of here."

"What's the damage"

When I do this, it's usually accompanied by a clown double-take when looking at the bill, or a Fred Sanford "It's the Big One Elizabeth" stagger while clutching my heart.  One day I might have an actual heart attack while looking at the bill, and then the joke will be on me.

"No, your other right."

I don't associate this with something I use as a dad.  This is a joke I almost exclusively use when teaching clowning and physical comedy to people.  It turns out, a lot of people (especially kids) don't know the difference between left and right, and just follow the cues of what the teacher is doing.  And since they are facing me, they actually do need to use the other right.  (Although sometimes I do demonstrate backwards, just to confuse them!)

"Just resting my eyes"

My dad used to say this all the time while laying on the couch watching a baseball game... and snoring.  I am not that far behind him really.  Well, I don't really watch baseball.  More likely to be watching Netflix or "Critical Role."

"That's how they get you."
This might be one of my most used expressions.  I don't just use it about warranties, I use it about nearly everything. Yes, I've turned into that jokey conspiracy theory dad. Of course they are going to get you.

I inherited a few other sayings from my dad that didn't make the list.

"Hands down by your sides-- like a soldier." 
If he was inspecting you to make sure you were properly dressed, or if you were trying to hide something, he'd say that.

"Pay attention- there will be a quiz later."
If you aren't looking or paying attention

"I gave him the one-five, the one-five, (he gave me the 2,3,4 back.)"

This was kind of a joke, because my dad had a very brief stint as a boxer. (at least that's what I've been told)  He was a tall thin guy at the time with extra long arms, and I guess that was attractive at the time.  He didn't like being hit, or hurt, so he quickly gave it up.  

So what did your dad say to you?  And what are you saying to your kids?  Let me know in the comments.

Saturday, March 6, 2021

The Race -Virtual Theatre- Extended March 13-28!

 I previously wrote about my friend Mark Binder's play, that had its World premiere via Zoom at the Wilbury Theatre Group in January. 

Read that article here.

It closed on January 31, but due to popular demand, it's being brought back from March 13-March 28.

Here's a video trailer for the play.

The Race - live theater that disrupts the zoomscape from Mark Binder on Vimeo.

In the play, two candidates (Mr. White and Mr. Black) are vying for a position.  One is white, and one is not (and during the course of the production, the actors change roles, so their name is NOT an indicator) As they are interviewed by an unseen third party (who may be a person, or an algorithm, or some strange amalgamation of the two) politics, race, bias, competition, complicity and computer mediation are all explored.  The questions are off-putting and relevant (and audience members can participate in the live chat and vote on some of the questions using Zoom's Poll feature)  And at the end of the show, the audience is invited for a talkback.

Don't miss the chance to see it!

Tickets are available at https://thewilburygroup.org/the-race.html

The Race by Mark Binder features Rodney Eric Lopez (left), Jim O'Brien (right) and Jennifer Mischley (unpictured)  The actors change roles nightly, which adds to the interest of this production.

Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Virtual Theatre: The Race by Mark Binder: Wilbury Theatre Group Ends January 31

Yes, the pandemic has shut off traditional methods of producing theatre.  But there is always a way.  And sometimes that way actually expands the possibilities of your work.

My longtime friend (and accomplished storyteller and novelist) Mark Binder has a new play being produced by the Wilbury Theatre Group in Providence, RI.  The play is called The Race, and it uses the zoom platform effectively to simultaneously isolate and engage the audience.   

It's his first produced play in 20 years, It ends this weekend, it's gotten great reviews, and I urge you to see it. 

The Race by Mark Binder features Rodney Eric Lopez (left), Jim O'Brien (right) and Jennifer Mischley (unpictured)  The actors change roles nightly, which adds to the interest of this production.

In the play, two candidates (Mr. White and Mr. Black) are vying for a position.  One is white, and one is not (and during the course of the production, the actors change roles, so their name is NOT an indicator) As they are interviewed by an unseen third party (who may be a person, or an algorithm, or some strange amalgamation of the two) politics, race, bias, competition, complicity and computer mediation are all explored.  The questions are off-putting and relevant (and audience members can participate in the live chat and vote on some of the questions using Zoom's Poll feature)  And at the end of the show, the audience is invited for a talkback.

A behind the scenes look at The Race.  I recognize this desk as Mark's!  (photo by Mark Binder)

Because it's on Zoom, anyone in the world with $20 and a computer can see the show. (which expands the audience base.) And because it's DESIGNED to be consumed in the Video/streaming format, it suffers none of the typical issues that a play suffers when translated into video (poor lighting for video, bad camera angles, muffled sound, and a feeling of not being present in the room.)  

This is an interesting new way to look at theatre, and a well designed and enigmatic evening. The actors are great, the writing and directing are on point, and like all good theatre it raises as many questions as it answers.  Definitely see it if you can!

The Race by Mark Binder, directed by Brien Lang with original music by Nikita Zabinski, and features actors: Rodney Eric López, Jennifer Mischley and Jim O'Brien.

Three more shows available:   (click links to purchase tickets)

Friday, January 29, 2021  7:00 PM
Saturday, January 30, 2021 7:00 PM
Sunday, January 31, 2021  2:00 PM

To find out more about the show: visit https://www.thewilburygroup.org/the-race.html

Read some reviews of the show:





Tuesday, January 5, 2021

Relief for Out of Work Chicago Restaurant Workers!

Struggling Cook County restaurant, bar and coffee shop employees can apply to a relief fund that has more than $3 million to give to workers. The Southern Smoke Foundation, a Texas-based nonprofit, established the Chicago Restaurant Worker Relief Fund in August to help people who have been laid off or lost work as coronavirus restrictions limit restaurant service, but it has received limited applications and has more money to give out. The average grant is $2,500-$3,000.

Southern Smoke established the Chicago Restaurant Worker Relief Fund in August to help people who have been laid off or lost work as coronavirus restrictions limit restaurant service, but it has received limited applications and has more money to give out.
The average grant is $2,500-$3,000. To be considered for assistance for the Chicago fund, applicants must have worked in the food and beverage industry for a minimum of six months and an average of 30 hours per week. Applicants must be able to show proof of employment.
The foundation is vetting applications and prioritizing based on urgency.  Apparently, their grant team meets daily to approve and give away grants.
There is also the possibility of more funding: The private donor who started the fund is also matching up to $1 million in donations. If that goal is met, there’d be a total of $6 million in relief funds. 
If you like, you can donate to the fund here.
Since March, Southern Smoke has given close to $4,000,000 to over
2000 restaurant workers affected by COVID closures.

Southern Smoke was launched in 2015 to raise money for multiple sclerosis research and advocacy. The group shifted gears in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey in 2017, providing financial assistance to workers in the food and beverage industry affected by the disaster. 
Apply for a grant https://southernsmoke.org/chicago-relief-fund/