2. 2011: In the Democratic Republic of the Congo, according to a report prepared by the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, 48 women are raped every hour.
TODAY’S NEWS FROM (THAILAND) AMERICA:
How much American’s really value those who took down Osama bin Laden:
Maybe we should draft fortune 500 CEO’s, put them in uniforms and drop them on some Al Qaeda stronghold. It may not frighten the terrorists, but I bet is helps out our economy.
POOKIE’S ADVENTURES IN (THAILAND) SAN FRANCISCO:
Recently, on a pleasant warm sunny day while strolling down Mission Street as it plunges through San Francisco’s Mission District, I thought about some of the changes that have occurred in the area since I first arrived there in 1970.
For those of you who may be reading this and have never visited the City or are unfamiliar with it, the Mission district, is now the barrio of San Francisco. Originally a working class district, peopled mostly by Irish laborers and later a few of the italian immigrants that did not settle in and around North Beach, in the late sixties began its conversion into the barrio as the previous residents moved into the suburbs.
Mission Street, the districts “main street,” I have watched evolve from the low-priced furniture store district and shops servicing the white working class accompanied by a collection of seedy bars and local restaurants, to conversion into markets for the residents of the emerging barrio. Then as now, because of the relatively low rents, the area attracted few upscale restaurants. In the 70’s my favorite was La Traviata an Italian restaurant, During the early 90’s Delfinia’s opened on 18th street. It became Julia Child’s favorite restaurant in the City. It remains one of the City’s best if not the best restaurant. At the same time, Valencia, a street running parallel to Mission exploded into a gormet ghetto producing some of the City’s finest restaurants. During the late 90’s, some nightclubs and associated establishments began populating Mission Street itself.
From the early 1970’s until now , the Mission was renowned for its latin dance clubs. I sometimes used to go to Caesar’s Latin Palace owned by a man who was a perennial candidate for mayor, running essentially to eliminate the regulations that inhibited his plans for his establishment, like remaining open all night and things like that.
Once a famous bongo player from Cuba performed at the club and Francis Ford Coppola decided to make a documentary about the musician. The night they were filming the documentary, I went to the club with my daughter Jessica who was about 7 years old at the time and her mother. Jessica had been dressed, at her request,t in an appropriate costume, including a turban on her head. While I danced with her mother, Jessica decided to put on her own performance on the dance floor. He dancing became so torrid that the film crew and the band invited her on to the stage and her impromptu dance was recorded as a significant portion of the documentary.
As I continued my walk, I noticed that Caesar’s Palace had been replaced by a differently named dance hall and I wondered what had happened to Caesar. I was sure he’d had stopped running for mayor by now having never garnered more that a few hundred votes in any election. Almost as soon as that thought passed into my mind, pasted on the wall was a sign urging the citizens of the mission group to vote for him for mayor. Good luck, Caesar.
JOEY’S MYSTERY NOVEL:
Delayed for several reasons including concerns about Vince. What’s up with him? By now most main protagonists in the usual mystery novel or thriller would have either been shot at, beaten up or at least have recognized the basic elements of the plot. Not our Vinnie. He blithely continues on, not recognizing or it seems imagining himself in danger. Hamlet like, he steadfastly ignores the evidence laying all over the plot and continues to look to others to do his work for him.
Fat Al, Ike and even Ray seem more interesting and competent. (I am thinking that if I ever try to write another novel, the rotund and donnish Ike could become a Nero Wolf type character, with Ray as his Archie.)
Perhaps Vince should be murdered or something in the next few chapters. No, better he is shot and lies in a coma in the hospital so if needed he court be resuscitated as a character in a later novel. All the action can take place around his hospital room, sort of like that scene in the Godfather where Michael saves his wounded father. Now Michael, there was a suitable main protagonist for a thriller.
And what about that Isabella, there is only so much mysterious “femme fatale,” one can take. At some point she either has to either stupidly put herself in danger so that the male hero can save her or in more modern guise the male gets in trouble and she rescues him by being more of a man than he is. I guess a little of that may be apparent in the scuffle in the street after they leave the restaurant. Also, I am not particularly enamored with her once she is out of character. What it with the grunge or whatever it is look. Maybe she has to go too.
a. Trenz Pruca’s Aphorisms, Apothegms, Epigrams and Maxims ( http:/trenzpruca.wordpress.com/):
“Most wealthy individuals are scoundrels, only very few admit it and they usually are already in jail.”
b. Today’s chart:
“With $55 oil we don’t need incentives to the oil and gas companies to explore. There are plenty of incentives.”
President George W. Bush in 2005.
If it was good enough for George why isn’t it good enough for the Republican members of Congress?