Posts filed under ‘personal opinion’

No Exit -“A touch of class” Lorain

imagesWW4JSHIF

On the mirrors ( at least the last time I looked) in the outer lobby of the Palace Theatre Lorain is a list of donors. Among those that donated significantly is the mention of Palace Players

The Palace Players, an intrepid band of actors and actresses from the local community. At the core were Jean Schaeffer, Dave Cotton, Casey Wolnowski, Karen Kelley and yours truly. The “company” got together to specifically raise funds for the Palace.

The kick off , as described in the history of the Palace on their website mentions what happened, in 1974 and my introduction to Lorain and a great bunch of people. Yes! I served the lunches along with Barb MacGregor, Ruth Calta, Mary Lou Connone
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2009/07/21/ladies-of-lorain/
This immigrant to Lorain- made the soups and generally helped those great bunch of people – thanks to my introduction to Lorain via Jean Schaeffer and was involved in the “speakeasy” segment of the gala night.

The Palace was and is still a major “player” in determining Lorain’s downtown -http://lorainpalace.com

In 1974, “Civic Center Madness”, a major fund raising project, took place in the urban renewal area of north Broadway. Forty civic groups participated in this week long street fair, Stores soon to be torn down were converted as if by magic into an old fashioned ice cream parlor, a “Second-Hand Rose” shop, a casino, a book and plant store, an open air barbecue, international shops, etc. The Saturday night “Great Gatsby Party” at the Palace climaxed the week’s activities.

Theatre was all important to the culture of the area. Most of us didn’t have a lot of money , those band of thespians, but what they did have was a love of theatre and the Palace – so the Palace Players formed.

One production – loosely based on a Dinner with Henry the VIII– took place on the Palace stage

Cover Arcade  MJ

Cover Arcade MJ


We had to be creative , in order to raise money for the building, we couldn’t interfere with the daily running of the Palace. Creative , especially as to performance space we were given. One criteria was that no “set” set – everything had to be put up an hour before the show ( each performance night) and the set had to be struck each night.
ipalace seats

Educating Rita– we did that in a mini proscenium set up in the area behind the seats, using one of the archways with the drinking fountain as the dressing rooms and off stage. I was Rita and it was an education !

palce bar

Two shows were performed in the inner lobby in front of the bar – The Fantasticks -http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Fantasticks A young Mike Skimmin, Melissa Driscoll and Billy the Clown were part of that “company”. Imagine a musical in the lobby- however did we manage the music????- but we did.

The other show No Exit– a depiction of the afterlife in which three deceased characters are punished by being locked into a room together for eternity ( done as theatre in the round). Memorable to me about those performances was we had to share the theatre for a few performances with an action movie playing on the” big screen” – the louder sounds such as crashes, screams and gunfire bled through into our performance area . Our audience was told to ignore as that was just another room in hell.

Hell is other people”,a reference to Sartre’s ideas about the look and the perpetual ontological struggle of being caused to see oneself as an object in the world of another consciousness.”

We were involved , that group participated and performed with such productions as the Follies and – Lorain Community Music Theatre
http://www.loraincommunitymusictheater.org/
when it was “truly Lorain” and performed their musicals every year on the Palace stage. Organizations benefitted greatly from the talent. Just a few come to mind-

Oliver 1978,
JeanSch
Mame -1979 ( Jean playing the lead), and in Camelot 1986 where Jean was MERLIN

South Pacific 1985 ( Dave directing)

Casey and I directing and producing King and I -1991 and Brigadoon 1990 – we sold out the Palace with those performances.

laclogo

Yes! and the same people gave of their time and talent freely to put together an extravaganza to promote the newly formed Lorain Arts Council under the auspices of MainstreetLorain throughout the whole Palace venue even utilizing the “boxes”. The audience was lined up to come and view the talent who call Lorain County home.

We would call on our fellow thespians for help and they always showed up and came through, whether to stage manage, produce , perform, organize, publicize , play an instrument – whatever was needed if they were available they were there. Those were good days.

No Exit – and the statement “hell is other people” – well I have had my share of living that particular line in the “play that is Lorain”.

I am saddened by what has transpired in recent years the demise of Broadway to the extent it has . We need more of those ladies who lunched- they brought a “touch of class” – in my opinion decidedly lacking of late- but that era has too passed us by –
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2014/06/04/the-old-lady-and-the-not-so-rockin-chair-rover-lorain-e/
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2015/01/10/city-officials-caught-between-a-ritchey-and-a-dye-place/
– I have become old , jaded and cynical- Lorain and life has done that and I know I am not alone in wondering what was the point in all those efforts and hard work but then there is the Palace

and am thankful to say still is the house of “light on Broadway” .

Please visit the Palace website for all the latest information
http://lorainpalace.com/

January 15, 2015 at 2:09 pm 7 comments

City Officials -Caught Between a Ritchey and a Dye Place

freedom of speech by  Chris Ritchey

freedom of speech by Chris Ritchey

https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/06/21/is-this-a-bad-area-mum-the-44052/
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/06/25/on-broadway-downtown-the-44052/
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/07/01/chairman-of-the-design-review-board-responds/
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/07/11/the-design-review-board-the-process-and/
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/06/28/fabricating-broadway-the-dye-is-set-418/
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/06/30/on-broadway-dye-downtown-the-44052/

Last Thursday I wrote a post on the continuing saga of 418 Broadway, Lorain Ohio https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2015/01/08/the-dye-is-set-a-sign-of-trouble-lorain/ as the Morning Journal had run an article as to the building conditions and the “behavior” of the owner
lcaud
In 2013 this blog brought to the attention of the readers issues happening in our deteriorating “downtown”. Although many people have been trying for years to change the blighted direction of what is known as the Broadway Corridor and more recently “the Waterfront District” the rot, literally, of the buildings has continued. My question in my last post as to the further deterioration of 418 was to the “powers that be”

WHY, if complaints had been made over the many months and years as to the issues with this poster child of a building, did it take so long for the process to start?

It is no secret there were issues with that building and they could be “seen ” from even a cursory sidewalk inspection.

sc-2nd-floor-middle-ceiling
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/06/25/on-broadway-downtown-the-44052/
Why didn’t our inspectors, Building Dept. act? Why didn’t the acting head of Community Development ( Rey Carrion – no longer with the city) at the time follow through as to the “signage” situation of that building?

Yesterday, I received a copy of an email sent to “Leon Mason, Director
Department of Building, Housing and Planning- City Of Lorain”.
I was sent a copy of the email because, as you will read, I am pretty much the focus of the ire.

The email in question was sent by Kathy Dye, mother of the owner of the 418 Broadway. Ms. Dye is a long-time member of the Design Review Board in Lorain http://www.cityoflorain.org/economic_community_development/agendas
and herself a business owner on Broadway- Dyes Appliances- 960 Broadway
960 Broadway Schnitzler Block Dyes Appliance

Kathy Dye is no stranger to this blog and in 2013 had her say as to my thoughts etc. which I duly posted and answered to her “all caps rant” and innuendo , name calling and her promise “WHILE YOU TAKE THIS RUN DOWN BROADWAY I’M GOING TO ALL OF YOUR HOMES.
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/06/30/on-broadway-dye-downtown-the-44052/

The situation with 418 Broadway and the owners ‘trouble” has once again surfaced this week
http://www.morningjournal.com/general-news/20150107/lorain-building-owner-accused-of-illegal-gas-tap
and I duly wrote about it. The effect of the recent news had another email from Kathy Dye- I have highlighted the words I find troubling from Ms Dye

imagesCA96YLSK

From: Java******** [mailto:Javalady*******]
Sent: Friday, January 09, 2015 11:56 AM
To: Mason, Leon
Subject: Design review board
Getting pretty sick and tired of Loraine Ritchie running this city with her complaints.

#1 if you and the mayor are going to harrass people you should look at everybody, not just a few chosen people. I can be a bigger bitch than Loraine Ritchie. I know of several things if I spill the beans will cause a huge uproar in this city as well as a large number of law suits. I was previously asked to keep my mouth shut about all of it but my patience is running thin. Just to also let you know the information I know has nothing to do with any previous city employees.

#2, Loraine Ritchie has a lot of “ordinance issues” on the outside of her property, what about the inside?

#3 Loraine Ritchie keeps saying that my son did not get approval for his Kharisma sign. Well when he came before the board, before you came aboard, We gave him a conditional approval if the sign fit the sign board. Well it fit and we sent pictures to Dave Gulden as we were told. Then the uproar came and community development was dissolved and Dave damaged his files, not our fault. So I sent pictures again to Rey Carrion. Whatever happened to them I do not know. So here we still are seeing Loraine running her flapping mouth that the sign was hung illegally and that he was told to remove it. Well that is not the case and I want a letter sent for the approval now. The Building Department was notified months ago that we were still waiting for it.

#4 I understand the mayor is planning to run again. Well after I start sending out my series of letters to all the tv stations, radio stations and newspapers I don’t think it will help his campaign. The ball is now in your hands. If things don’t straighten up immediately with my son and his building the letters will begin next week.

#5 Also I have a question, why did the ex-mayor and your father back in their day refuse to take the mast from Admiral King’s boat that sank and make a memorial here in Lorain?

Remember this is a sitting member of Lorain’s Design Review Board- one has to ask WHY? is she- who wishes to hold hostage a process for which she supposedly “sits” for deny due diligence of that process a member of such a board? There is something wrong with that scenario

I want to address Kathy Dyes comments :
I will skip for the moment to No. 2.

11274
“Loraine Ritchie has a lot of “ordinance issues” on the outside of her property, what about the inside?”

I am unaware of any ordinance issues on the outside of my property and when the homes etc. on 4th street were inspected last year we were not cited for any issues. As for the inside of my home – well I can guarantee not one alligator or unusual pets just Shadow
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Kathy is more than welcome along with any one else to come on in- just call first so I am not in my pajamas. In fact, they have done so twice when this house was on tour for two different homes tours for fundraising.
A childish “tit for tat” methinks!

Style Center Kharisma

Let us address No 3 the dreaded signage . Kathy needs to read the post from the PRESIDENT of the Design Review Board and the explanation – it has been stated clearly enough on this blog – twice-
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/07/01/chairman-of-the-design-review-board-responds/
CITYWIDE DESIGN REVIEW GUIDELINES

The board has NOT approved the signage for 418 Broadway as we were not presented with the required submission documentation.

The signage was reviewed and there were conditions that had to be met by Mr. Dye to receive approval. The board has not received the information required for conditional approval. The signage was installed illegally


Now down to the rather strange question to Leon Mason with regard to his father , who at one time was Community Development Director for a few months. No 5
800px-P-Signal_Mast_of_the_USS_Arizona_1
” #5 Also I have a question, why did the ex-mayor and your father back in their day refuse to take the mast from Admiral King’s boat that sank and make a memorial here in Lorain?”

I am not sure what this has to do with anything except her possible use of an innuendo – the lack of thinking and knowledge” leads me to wonder as to “lack of reason”. But that being said let me “educate Ms. Dye on the “history” –


refuse to take the mast from Admiral Kings boat that sunk…

Sorry Ms Dye, you have the wrong end of the mast….. Admiral King’s boat didn’t sink, it was the bombing by the Japanese at Pearl Harbor which caused the sinking of the USS Arizona.

” The battleship USS Arizona (BB 39) was sunk at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. The superstructure above the waterline was removed soon after the attack. Admiral Earnest H. King, Chief of Naval operations, sent the signal mast to his hometown of Lorain, Ohio. Commander Edwin C. Keyes, a close friend of Adm. King commanded that naval armory in Lorain. https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2012/12/10/and-lorain-said-no-admiral-king-lorain-ohio/

AND Ms Dye there were three mayors involved over a decade when the signal mast was an issue. If you are going to cast veiled aspersions I would suggest you get your facts straight first.!!!!


As petty , erroneous and spiteful the above are, it is in my opinion nothing to what Ms. Dye threatens ( and to me there is no other word for it for me) and tries intimidation of one government official and also the duly elected Mayor of the City of Lorain –

IF the Director of Department of Building, Housing and Planning for the City of Lorain does NOT “straighten up” immediately with my son and his building” letters will be sent to the media which will apparently according to her that will cause adverse publicity to the Mayor’s campaign ( Mr. Mason’s boss”)

What those letters contain can only be guessed at with her initial statement “I can be a bigger bitch than Loraine Ritchie. I know of several things if I spill the beans will cause a huge uproar in this city as well as a large number of law suits. I was previously asked to keep my mouth shut about all of it but my patience is running thin.

I understand the mayor is planning to run again. Well after I start sending out my series of letters to all the tv stations, radio stations and newspapers I don’t think it will help his campaign. The ball is now in your hands. If things don’t straighten up immediately with my son and his building the letters will begin next week.

I find Ms. Dye’s behavior insulting , provocative in the extreme and from board member of the “supposed” unbiased Design Review Board most worrying.

HER son is charged with according to the Morning Journal reporting


“unsafe connections to gas supply lines and rubber hoses being used for natural gas” in the building, according to the police report.
The building’s last natural gas connection ended July 7, 2008, according to the Columbia Gas report. One gas meter in the building showed the building had gas usage totaling $14,469 from August 2010, when Dye took possession of the building, to November last year, according to the report.

It is my interpretation – MS DYE, is stating unless the City of Lorain Director of Building and Planning doesn’t intercede and give “sonny” the all clear then she will send out letters containing “what” ??????knowledge of wrongful doings with the City of Lorain enough to cause lawsuits??? -( What a responsible citizen ( that is sarcasm for those in doubt) ! Hopefully, who ever receives these Diatribes of Dye will fact check because her “record” of getting the facts straight even in this last email is nought for 5!
chec
However, I think I have the answer to my question as to why it takes so long for things to happen in this city, with people like Ms Dye “on board” the City of Lorain had better cross all its T’s and dot its i’s otherwise who knows what vicious, vindictive behaviors will come about.

And to those who wonder why I have retired from “downtown” see above….. However, I have not retired from the truth …… Shhhh listen carefully is that sound you hear the falling of another building on Broadway, the “termagant” of Broadway( aka Ms Dye) or perhaps the power of politics in its death throes ????????

January 10, 2015 at 5:57 pm 18 comments

January 3rd- Goals – Chris Ritchey

chrismeresglow1
January 3rd- All over this planet people are starting this year of 2015 with goals- losing weight , spending more time with family, giving up smoking etc. My goal, is to be able to sit in the chair in the den long enough to write my 3rd of the month post for you my son. Not to do so would be , for me , breaking faith with not letting the world forget as so many in your life have already done, that you existed were loved and made a difference.

chirsfacebook

Without going into too much detail, I have had chronic pain for a few months. First the drugs were tried and they took care of it so it was manageable for a few weeks at a time but then more and stronger were needed. I have learned through your months of “hospitals and doctors ” more negatives than I ever wished to know about the health care system and some “professionals and hospitals”. Because of my life for those many months watching and seeing the outcomes I now trust only my instincts , my intelligence and my own research.
white-coat-dr
Yes that is right Chris, the one thing I learned is that I should have taken more charge of what was happening to you- I didn’t. Would the outcome have been the same? In all probability YES but the pain of our journey would have been lessened and hope would not have been sold “wholesale” for as long as the insurance paid and you would not have been Cleveland Clinic “lab rat”.
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2012/09/03/september-3rd-drs-love-labor-lost-cleveland-clinic-chris-ritchey/
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2012/06/03/concrete-in-the-lungs-june-3rd-chris-ritchey/

As I researched and interviewed Drs. I refused to be sent to anyone having anything to do with my dreaded Cleveland Clinic or doctors that took their residency under a certain Program Director at South Pointe Hospital –
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2010/04/20/i-didnt-know-my-son-chris-ritchey/
I knew too much about that aspect of Dr. training from personal experience.

You would be amazed at the faces of potential health care professionals when I interviewed them. I am sure a couple were getting out the “white coat” for me. But remember this is my body , my choice, they are not gods, just people earning a living in the health care industry and not all doctors are of the same level. Putting a MD or DO to their name doesn’t make then all-knowing or of more than a “passable” expertise ! You and your insurance are paying for their expertise and yet so often we turn ourselves over to people we don’t know or know very little about or who know about you and say “save me”. You trust in their ability or the ability to refer but to whom?? You have rights as a patient and I now choose to exercise those rights.

http://www.healthsourceglobal.com/docs/patient%20bill%20of%20rights_merged.pdf

However, I have managed even with my “outrageous to some” criteria to find a few wonderful doctors, and two very special hospitals, small enough to know my name and to whom , I and my family are people and not just an insurance number or the next condo in the islands payment .

One, St. John West Shore http://www.sjws.net/
has literally saved my husband’s life twice in the past 18 months and have treated my strange proclivity’s with patience, caring and understanding.

pain

The pain worsened , I managed with drugs and hot water bottles and a lot of understanding from family and friends for the two weeks it took for the “insurance” to tell my doctor it was Ok for the next step.

Every time I filled the red hot water bottle , too hot for my bare skin, I thought of you the hundreds of times the five hot water bottles we filled in Texas as you went through the “trial” with no one but you and I. The number of scalding hot baths you took every night to ease the pain in your body. You never complained to me I know you didn’t want to scare me , you were “eating pain pills like candy” I knew you were just trying “to be”. I watched the pain envelope you but the phone would ring and you would answer in a voice so strong so as to hide the agony you were going through.

chrisart collage
I am not afraid of dying, you have left me that gift as you have given me so many others. but I don’t handle pain well , it stops my ability to think. clearly, to tolerate and makes me so impatient.

December 17th found me having the first procedure which went well, in fact better than expected and for 10 wonderful days I had only very slight discomfort- the pain forgotten as I got through Christmas. I was waiting for the procedure in the operating room and the anesthesiologist as he stated ” you will feel a little burn then nothing”- I remember thinking

I wish you could make me feel nothing! I wish you and your anesthesia had something to erase this horrible debilitating grief( that you are unaware of as I lay here)

But just like the tsunami of grief that is held at bay whilst life continues, so the pain laid low for a bit roared back into being . It came back after departing for a just a brief while,- contained – only to break through the medical barrier stronger for the respite as my body probably was doing more than it should without the warning of pain.

New Years Eve, found me once again laying on the table waiting to have my misery relieved. I have in the past months learned to live outwardly not showing for the most part the grieving mess I really am- the powder and paint of normalcy painted on like a mask every morning.
maskmist
This time although I felt nothing due to the anesthesia and how that works is a mystery to me and also to others
http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-does-anesthesia-work/

” Despite their necessity in modern medicine, scientists aren’t sure exactly how anesthetics work. The best theory suggests that they dissolve some of the fat present in brain cells, changing the cells’ activity. But, the precise mechanisms remain unknown. ”

Well the fat cells in my brain may have been dissolved but apparently “according to the nurse” my fat body ( she didn’t say that though) was not co-operating and was moving around in pain on the table for a bit even after my brain was anesthetized .

Not such a good thing for the doctor, I would assume, poised to do a delicate procedure. I, of course was unaware this happened although in my mind’s eye this great lump of a body laden with grief flopping around on the table half-naked probably wasn’t a great sight for him that New Years Eve. He earned his money that day.

So here it is January 2nd , my pain has lessened although I am not fully functional but I am endeavouring to sit in a chair for as long as it takes to finish this post for you. – a lap top may be in my future-
post

But somehow I will get this post written and posted even if I have to take jpgs of these scribbles and post them.
Another year without you in our lives will not be happy but hopefully it will at least be free from physical pain…. and I think of you every waking minute of every pain filled moment… I love you Chris
white-lab-coat
Disclaimer : The views and opinions in this post as to various doctors and hospitals are entirely my own based upon my varied experiences with such entities through out the illness of my family members and myself. I have no medical expertise but the life experience of having been there immersed in the world of medicine !

January 2, 2015 at 10:46 pm 1 comment

Samhain – All Hallows Eve – a reprise

Celebrate Samhain :) thanks to CelestialElff

Sue Lombardi witch

Last week found me pondering the narcissism of one’s beliefs being the paramount “belief” to be foisted upon others. Quite frankly I try to be very respectful of another person’s belief especially if they aren’t mirroring my own. I know what it is like to have one’s beliefs trampled upon , I have been devastated by the control of one group in negating my beliefs when it concerned the death of my son. ( Might does not make Right!) . I would not knowingly inflict that pain on anyone .
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2010/06/25/ignore-stance-and-the-roman-catholic-church-part-three/

It is a long story( as to the email received) and the person who had the idea the majority in the community would certainly agree because hey! aren’t we all Christian and Roman Catholic in Lorain They meant well and they have a good good heart. But once again there is a narcissistic naivety in assuming ALL in this community have the same beliefs just because you are a part of the “majority!. I am sure my email to them stating I had to disagree and that I don’t believe as they do and would have to come out against their proposal came as a bit of a shock.

Photo Lisa Miller Lorain 365 Blog

Photo Lisa Miller Lorain 365 Blog

As I watched Zombies walk in Lorain

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.531496826936192.1073741848.476252369127305&type=3 “bloody and yukky” and the enjoyment of the undead as they danced along celebrating “death” gearing up for Hallowe’en and the retail pushing of ghosts , goblins and witches. As I was taking that on board and Christianity and the “holi DAYS” and their meanings I decided to go on a journey of my own. There is a sanctimonious piety that happens here as to ones beliefs being the “ONLY” true belief. Let us go back in time to other rituals of other beliefs …….

Everything has a beginning somewhere even religious beliefs and some are a great deal older than the “recognized religions” in this part of the world!.
world-religion-symbols-thumb8129331-300x300

300th to 51st millennium BCE
223,000 – 100,000 BCE
The earliest evidence of Hominids, such as Neanderthals[2][3] and even Homo heidelbergensis,[3][4] deliberately disposing of deceased individuals usually in funerary caches. The graves, located throughout Eurasia (e.g. the Pontnewydd Cave, Atapuerca Mountains, Qafzeh, Es Skhul, Krapina),[3] are believed to represent the beginnings of ceremonial rites, although there is some debate about this.[5] Neanderthals placed their deceased in simple graves with little or no concern for grave goods or markers; however, their graves occasionally appeared with limestone blocks in or on them, possibly an archaic form of grave marking.[3] These practices were possibly the result of empathetic feelings towards fellow tribespeople, for example: an infant buried in the Dederiyeh Cave after its joints had disarticulated was placed with concern for the correct anatomical arrangement of its body parts.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_religion

We have to fast forward through thousands and thousands of years and about 87 thousand years later than that first evidence and over three thousand years before Christianity there were a groups of people – pagans – some call them :)but only since the 14th century wonder what they were called before that?

Green Man earth element

Green Man earth element

Pagans
Middle English, from Late Latin paganus, from Latin, civilian, country dweller, from pagus country district; akin to Latin pangere to fix — more at pact
First Known Use: 14th century heathen 1; especially : a follower of a polytheistic religion (as in ancient Rome) one who has little or no religion and who delights in sensual pleasures and material goods : an irreligious or hedonistic person

Druids – who celebrated October 31st as summers end.


http://www.albany.edu/~dp1252/isp523/halloween.html

Samhain (pronounced sah-win or sow-in) means “summer’s end” by the Celts. In old Germanic and Celtic societies, what we call equinoxes and solstices marked the middles of the season, not the beginnings.” Therefore if there exist an autumnal equinox, winter solstice, spring equinox and a summer solstice, there are also the beginning of autumn, winter, spring and summer. All of these eight dates were important. Summer’s end which meant the beginning of winter was an important time for people who survived on plants grown in the field and animals that were kept in pastures. “This day marked the end of summer and the harvest and the beginning of the dark, cold winter, a time of year that was often associated with human death” It is most likely this reason that the Druids (Celtic pagans) believed that the spirits of those who died the preceding year roamed the earth the night of Samhain

am_Druid cutting the Mistletoe mid C19th engvg

The Druids celebrated this holiday “with a great fire festival to encourage the dimming Sun not to vanish” and people “danced round bonfires to keep evil spirits away, but left their doors open in hopes that the kind spirits of loved ones might join them around their hearths”.
On this night, “divination was thought to be more effective than any other time, so methods were derived to ascertain who might marry, what great person might be born, who might rise to prominence, or who might die”.

Also during the celebration, the Celts “wore costumes, typically consisting of animal heads and skins, and attempted to tell each other’s fortunes”. Crops were burned and animals were sacrificed The spirits were believed to be either “entertained by the living”, or to “find a body to possess for the incoming year”. This all gives reasons as to why “dressing up like witches, ghosts and goblins, villagers could avoid being possessed.” (Navarro )
Roman Influence
By 43 AD, “Romans had conquered the majority of Celtic territory.” For the 400 years they occupied Celtic lands, two Roman festivals: Feralia (the commemoration of the passing of the dead) and a day to honor Pomona (the Roman goddess of fruits and trees). The apple served as a symbol for Pomona and which might have been incorporated into Samhain by the practice of “bobbing for apples”

Christian Influence
When “local people converted to Christianity during the early Middle Ages, the Roman Catholic Church often incorporated modified versions of older religious traditions in order to win converts.
Pope_Gregory_IV

” Pope Gregory IV wanted to substitute Samhain with All Saints’ Day in 835, but All Souls’ Day (Nov. 2nd) which is closer in resemblance to Samhain and Halloween today, was “first instituted at a French monastery in 998 and quickly spread throughout Europe” (MSN Learning & Research- Halloween).

In the 16th century, “Christian village children celebrated the vigil of All Saints’ by doing the Danse Macabre. The Seven Brethren whose grizzly death is described in the seventh chapter of the deuterocanonical book of Second Macabees” is also said to have resulted in children dressing up in grizzly costumes to signify these deaths.

So “which came first the “witch” or the priest, the goblins or gods, and what pagan holiday are you celebrating- the trick or the treat………….

October 30, 2014 at 12:59 pm 1 comment

Morning Journal- Lorain- Going going oops!

Out of time and no  light at the end of the "tower" Photo Lorain 365

Out of time and no light at the end of the “tower”
Photo Lorain 365

It is true! I have had an on again, off again, on again and now luke warm relationship with what used to be the “local newspaper” for Lorain – The Morning Journal . In fact, thanks to the now deceased editor, John Cole

http://web.archive.org/web/20070813211452/http://thewomblog.com/?p=881
I had a one woman boycott and before him under the publisher Kevin Haezebroeck of

” the “never argue with someone who buys his ink by the barrel full threat”

fame, I wrote the column:

Who is Watching the Watcher found here
Who is Watching the Watcher

……Who? I ask, stands up to the publications and say “NO! We will not be bullied”. Members of John Q. Public who quiver with fear at the thought of their company, political ambitions or organization being on the receiving end of a “nasty editorial”. Yes, it seems our local media has us by the throat, they will be fair and balanced when it suits them, they will as a recent quote in an editorial stated, “we will be watching”. The question begs to be asked, “Who then watches the watchers?” …..

Years came and went, another publisher (Jeff Sudbrook) and another editor ( Tom Skoch) took the helm – fences mended between them and I. BUT the bricks and mortar of this publication at 1657 Broadway also changed- slowly the creeping disease of “web publications” and lack of print sales , bankruptcies, reorganizations took its toll,
http://www.niemanlab.org/2011/07/alden-global-capital-drops-a-shoe-is-the-journal-register-acquisition-prelude-to-more-consolidation/

The acquisition may foreshadow additional moves by Alden, which is interested in two strategies to add value to its investments: (a) it wants its newspaper holdings to aggressively develop digital capabilities and revenues, and (b) it wants to see consolidation (mergers) among newspaper groups”

as well as downsizing, hiring of interns to “report” ( who had no clue as to this city and her “history – let alone the who is who ) did their time before moving on, moving the printing presses moved out of the building, leaving behind but an echo of the newspaper that was Lorain .

The building and the offices have become quiet and as sad as the aging newspapers stacked up along the walls in the last editor’s office. The smell of slow rot permeates the air. The parking lot now, with just a scattering of vehicles, gives one pause as to who will be the last to “turn off the lights” as far as Lorain is concerned.
mjwebsiteres

The Morning Journal has revamped its website to fulfill the directive “to aggressively develop digital capabilities and revenues“- it is in my humble opinion ( remembering I am a potential customer) atrocious, hard to navigate, and definitely not user-friendly and has very little Lorain news- probably because the demographics in this city do not lend themselves to people’s “purchasing power” therefore the covering of more affluent communities.

Oh yes! I know about websites and “hits and page views” and I know that clicking here and there and everywhere when trying to find the “news” sends electronic calculations as to page views / hits and visitors and the numbers game to tell advertisers of your successful website. ” no matter the continent or country.

the more images used in a page, the higher the hit count – so while hits may be a good indication of poor page design, they won’t tell you much about traffic. Hits are often knowingly quoted by website owners in order to impress potential customers, most of whom are likely to think hits equals visitors – wrong!An example: If we have a site averaging 500 ‘unique visits’ a day and each visitor views four pages which each consists of seven images and one HTML file (representing eight hits) you will have a site ‘claiming’ 112,000 Hits a week!

500 visitors x 4 page views x 8 files (hits) x 7 days = 112000 HITS

Armed with these facts you will, we hope, be able to make a more informed judgement about the services on offer and the claims made by potential suppliers

A page view is where the page itself is viewed by a visitor – this is the most important statistic to take note of when managing a website.

A hit refers to a ‘document hit’ – you get a ‘hit’ whenever a document in your website is loaded. This includes pages, but also any images and external files within those pages.

If a page on your site has two images on it, you’ll get 1 page view but 3 hits.

So unlike page views, hits are really meaningless and should be ignored for most purposes.

https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/1257084?hl=en

It is a numbers game and the “punter” ( we the people) are the numbers in the game. Newspapers/ media are dependent upon advertising for their bread and butter. It costs money to report the news and people will pay one way or another to access the media.

The MJ’s competition Chronicle Telegram requires click on answers to questions by Google to read on their website. of course we may not be “truthful” when answering those questions ;) You don’t get the editorials or the letters to the editor on the Chronicle website but you can access the main news with an answer to some “marketing questions”.

csc
However, I have to say the Chronicle Telegram , has stepped up to the plate with their reporting and have in my opinion overtaken the Morning Journal in their “local news coverage”. Just as well as the Morning Journal Newspaper ( print edition) has become as thin as a street walkers foot wear .

I don’t have to buy it , I don’t even go to their frustrating website that often. So I was taken aback the other day when I was clicking around trying to find a specific article ( which I never did find) when this pops up.
MJ 5 articles
I immediately left the page with a “you got to be kidding”giggle at the screen.

shooting+yourself+in+the+foot

Then came the phone call Friday evening. A pleasant young man introduced himself as being with the Morning Journal. Since the turnover of “reporters”for the Morning Journal is quite frequent lately and I have been known to “give background information” etc. on certain articles they are trying to write, I waited to see what the chap wanted.

What he wanted was

” The publisher of the Morning Journal has invited you to read the Morning Journal- since we have expanded into Cuyahoga , Youngstown and Toledo we..

I stopped him right there- you see I started to laugh realizing it was not a personal invitation from the “publisher” – Oh! he said –

did I lose my voice or are you just having a good day.

I said

No! the print edition is not even thick enough for me to buy it to light my wood burning fire , most of the news is a day late and behind the Chronicle Telegram’s- more or less regurgitated after the fact- and sorry but your website sucks and if I wanted news from Toledo I would go the Toledo Blade website .

http://www.toledoblade.com/
The poor chap, he was at a loss for words- then recovering slightly informed me “

Yes! we are working on the website and going to the Toldeo Blade site won’t give you the whole of the news-

I started to feel sorry for him , obviously he was not a reporter but a telemarketer trying to get me to subscribe. So needing a bit of fun- after all HE CALLED ME AND INTRUDED ON ‘MY’ FRIDAY EVENING- I said:

Who is the publisher for the Morning Journal that wants to invite me ?

Telly the Telemarketer said:

Tom Skoch

Tom Skoch

The publisher is Jeff Sudbrook and the editor is Tom Skoch and they do a wonderful job

– Once again I set the poor chaps ears ringing with a loud guffaw –

I am sorry Tom Skoch has not been the editor for the past 6 months or so-

Tom Skoch retiring as editor of The Morning Journal on June 21
http://www.morningjournal.com/general-news/20130609/tom-skoch-retiring-as-editor-of-the-morning-journal-on-june-21

Well I am not sure that is true- I will have to check with my supervisor

– said a shocked Telly the Telemarketer

Oh it is true

says I –

maybe you should check with the Chronicle

– he didn’t find that as amusing as I did -so I said

call Rick Payerchin at the Morning journal Lorain beat – tell him you spoke with Loraine Ritchey – and told her the news that Tom Skoch is the editor and what a wonderful job he is doing

with that he said

” Thank you for supporting the Morning Journal”

Oh dear if I wasn’t laughing so hard I would have cried. How the 4th estate in Lorain has fallen………..

What a way to run a newspaper…………..

4th Estate:
“In current use the term is applied to the press, with the earliest use in this sense described by Thomas Carlyle in his book On Heroes and Hero Worship: “Burke said there were Three Estates in Parliament; but, in the Reporters’ Gallery yonder, there sat a Fourth Estate more important far than they

NOW???? NOT SO MUCH IN LORAIN

January 19, 2014 at 1:44 pm 14 comments

The Memorial Project-Results- Chris Ritchey Pt 5

chrisart collage

Part One https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/12/03/december-3rd-memorial-chris-ritchey/

Part Two https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/12/09/the-memorial-project-why-chris-ritchey-pt-2/

Part Three https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/12/13/the-memorial-project-the-interview-chris-ritchey-pt-3/

Part Four https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/12/17/the-memorial-project-interview-cont-chris-ritchey-pt-4/

December 19th- As I type this morning, once again watching the sunrise over the twinkling lights of the neighbors Christmas decorations lighting the now bare branches of the cherry tree, I am reminded of another December 19th. The day the Lombardis , your bride Angela http://my.clevelandclinic.org/staff_directory/staff_display.aspx?DoctorID=16147 , the Vykas , Gonzales, Zaworskis and Gotts and Father Divas took you my son, to their “family plot” without your kith or kin .

https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2009/12/14/something-wicked-our-way-came/

https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2009/12/28/because-i-was-gutless/

It was an act ( in my view) of pure selfishness,vindictiveness and without pity.
Your name was RITCHEY , NOT – Lombardi , Vyka , Gonzales, Gott or Zaworski . You were taken to their faith and their closure, denying your family even the “time of your interment in their selfishness.”

As someone said


“it is like Chris’ family didn’t exist”

https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2012/06/07/a-memory-of-vipers-chris-ritchey/

That day, just a week before the celebration of Christmas, a day of celebration, where they dress in their finest, attend a church and profess to their God they are worthy of taking Him and His Son into their hearts. They celebrate the “Mother of their Church

http://www.morningjournal.com/general-news/20091221/mary-mother-of-god-begins-anew but have taken– seemingly without a thought to the consequences of such an act, of inflicting further pain to another mother.

The poster accompanying the project

The poster accompanying the project

The Memorialization by Bereaved Parents Project– gave me a chance not only to share my son, his story and to realize I was not alone – there were others who walked the path who needed……….

Memorialization by Bereaved Parents
Kara Thieleman
The death of a child is a devastating loss that has a profound impact on parents and a families . Prior research has found that maintaining /continuing bonds with deceased children is common and can be very beneficial.

This project sought to understand how bereaved parents maintain such bonds through memorializing their children as well as the meaning they find in doing so. Participants were asked to provide photographs that depict how they memorialize and remember their children thus allowing participants to provide the visual images of their choosing that capture unique aspects of their experience……….

Their children died from a variety of causes , including illness, accident , murder and unknown causes. All of the participants are female and are diverse in terms of age ethnicity, religious/spiritual beliefs and sexual orientation.

These mothers , including myself , all have the need to remember “out loud” in their own way; whether it is leaving tokens of love at the last tangible place on this earth that holds their child, a special place to go and reflect or call out to the silence “WHY” ?

The need to have their son or daughter remembered for a life that was lived, no matter how brief . The need to have a repository , if you will, of the love that was for that son or daughter that was theirs alone. A love that still flows from a mothers heart , seeking the child for which it was meant.

When the Lombardis, your bride and the “creatures of control” took you away into that place of deceit and cowardice – for not one had the strength to speak of “pity” for your family. The death of human kindness on that day led to the birth of my own memorial. A place where I revisit your life, your story and I can cry my tears and shout WHY? to the morning sunrise. I can remember you and let your art speak ….

I have only words to describe , it is a terrible thing to live out your life without the laughter of your son , incommunicable to those who have not felt this grief’s slashing ferocity. Words are inadequate………

Dr. Joanne Cacciatore http://www.drjoanne.blogspot.com/ and of the MISS Foundation
http://www.missfoundation.org/

spoke recently of a woman Käthe Kollwitz (July 8, 1867 – April 22, 1945)

“I will never forget the first moment I saw her work. I felt something inside me stir. It was a connection to the abyss, to the darkness of grief- I knew Kollwitz had seen something that I had also seen. I felt she, too, was a keeper of the dark secrets.

Kollwitz birthed art of the soul, from the depths of traumatic grief so frightening that few dare allow themselves to really see it. During WWII, her art (perceived accurately as anti-war) was banned by Hitler. She witnessed, first hand, the horrors of war and lost far too much because of it: Her grandson, named Peter after her dead son, lost his life in war too.

Look at her work. I mean, really look at it. ”

Woman with  dead child  1903 Kathe Kollwitz

Woman with dead child 1903 Kathe Kollwitz


ED NOTE: Kollwitz’s work can be raw and full of truths it can scream the most primordial scream and does

She wrote of her son:

darkness of grief  Kathe Kollwitz

darkness of grief Kathe Kollwitz

[I] made a drawing: the mother letting her dead son
slide into her arms.

I might make a hundred such drawings
and yet I do not get any closer to him.

I am seeking him.
As if I had to find him in my work.

And yet everything I do is so childishly foolish and inadequate…

I am shattered, weakened, drained by tears…
Yet new flowers have grown up which would not have grown
without the tears shed this year.

The Parents ( memorial) Kathe Kollwitz 1932

The Parents ( memorial) Kathe Kollwitz 1932

Men do not know the souls of one another.
Only the galley slaves know one another,
who side by side are chained, and gasp for breath
.

December 19, 2013 at 4:31 pm Leave a comment

The Memorial Project – Why ? Chris Ritchey Pt 2

nochriph6

A few days ago, on December 3rd, I published another “remembering” of my son Chris.
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/12/03/december-3rd-memorial-chris-ritchey/
I have, as long- time readers know, used the 3rd of every month to write about Chris, his life, the story of our journey, our pain and yes, anger .

I mentioned in the December 3rd post how I had been contacted to be part of a project on how grieving parent memorialize their children. I am now, since the project has been presented, going to share some of the interview questions put to me and the answers as to ‘WHY “THIS WAY” TO MEMORIALIZE’?

The project asked for a photo of how we, as parents “memorialized ” our son or daughter. I submitted a collage I put together of Chris and some of his work that has special meaning to me.
chrisart collage
Question :

Please describe the photograph and any special meaning the objects in it may have (such as a headstone inscription, meaning of items placed in a space dedicated to a child, or anything else you feel is important).

The photograph is of my son and some of his art work. I have made a collage of a few that have meanings for him and me.

For example, the baseball hat with the flag and the word freedom was the slide that appeared behind him as he crossed the stage at his graduation from Cleveland Institute of Art. Each graduate was required to put together a slide which told who they were- this was who Chris decided he was.

The “Hands” artwork in the background was homework, sketches of different hands – my son was throwing it out after his first year and I loved it so much I wanted to frame it – it didn’t fit in the frame so he folded the one edge. After he died I had it professionally framed they informed me they could take out the crease but, he had put in the fold and I wanted it left. It was significant to leave it for me.

photo Angela  by  Chris Ritchey

photo Angela by Chris Ritchey

The reason for the collage of his artwork[ as our memorial] is due to the fact his bride[ Angela (Lombardi) Ritchey]
http://my.clevelandclinic.org/staff_directory/staff_display.aspx?DoctorID=16147 took from us his cremains and buried them without our knowledge or input.
Therefore we haven’t a place or memorial in the traditional sense.

https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2010/10/14/an-open-letter-mama-sue-lombardi/

I have had a blog for many years which covers many, many subjects. After Chris’s death and the terrible cruelty that followed including the statement[ a letter sent 4 months after Chris death by Angela Ritchey DO ] “I didn’t know my son”
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2010/04/20/i-didnt-know-my-son-chris-ritchey/

I then started writing about what we were going through and going on a journey “In search of my son”
Part 19 of the series and links to the other posts are part of our journey.

https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2013/08/21/birthday-chris-ritchey-august-21st-2013/

using his work to illustrate my thoughts.
I, then wrote to “him”[Chris} my thoughts on the 3rd of every month for a year, and have continued to do so for the past 3 years and 10 months [the time when I was contacted for the project] although my blog covers other subjects, I continue to use his art work to illustrate my thoughts and reporting on various subjects

a self-portrait Chris Ritchey

a self-portrait Chris Ritchey

Question

When did you first begin memorializing/remembering your child in this way?

The day I read his obituary in the local paper written by his “in-laws” – my son was so much more than the paltry self-serving piece written in the paper.
I could not let those words be the last words written about my son.
So I used my blog (which is well read) not only for him but it has become cathartic for me.
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2009/12/07/my-only-son-chris-ritchey/

It doesn’t matter if thousands read about his life or just one – his story is there and in some sense his art still speaks for him.

to be continued……………

NOTE: all my posts, the reactions to what happened to this family is backed up with written documentation by the parties involved as well as witnesses to the events of what I consider to be despicable, cruel and selfish behaviours by ” those that controlled” – they are in fact the “enablers’ of this memorial for without the decisions made by The Lombardis, Vykas , Gotts, Zaworski and Gonzales https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2012/06/07/a-memory-of-vipers-chris-ritchey/

If things had been handled by them -with humanity, kindness, respect and thought for Chris’s family at the lowest point in any parents life instead of putting us in a realm where we “didn’t exist” – this aspect of my blog would not exist.……..

They have themselves to thank their behaviours are here!

December 9, 2013 at 3:44 pm 2 comments

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