And now you're with someone else and I must go home, alone, to think about how long it takes to heal an alien heart.

Csquat Show and Party Halloween Madness!

Wow! What a fun night at Csquat yesterday..Bands played, everyone wore party til after 4am..I somehow ended up dressed as Death from the Sandman Comics..But there were a lot of creative get ups there I was glad to see..Nary a Ricky's lame-o costume in sight! Here are a messload of pics from the party..FUN TIMES! My old pals Stacy and Toby were in town so it was extra special..

Open Mic madness! Three videos for your enjoyment.

Well, been busy lately and perhaps been having a little too much fun... but have hit some open mics..Here are three videos from three different performers..Especially MANGINA! We have Patrick "Mangina" with his awesome stump at Bowery..The talented Peter De Giglio doing "The Skinny" at Penny's Open Mic..and a funny and so wonderfully politically incorrect lesbian comic at penny's..Enjoy pals and gals..! I will have some good blogs coming up this week...My pal Sophie Crumb has an awesome new book out."The Evolution of a Crazy Artist." She'll be in NYC with her pops this coming week promoting it..Plus, I have a super big show ay Jalopy Theater coming up...lotsa pics and videos to follow of it all soon!

If you want to book Peter De Giglio contact him at

Some exciting things in the works lately...I've been celebrating life with a lot of wine lately..Well, it's better than crack!

All Hallows Tour

We had a brisk, colorful ride in Belgrade last week. Stayed dry, but cloudy and cold. We had some fine cycling weather this week, nonetheless. Perhaps it will carry into the weekend. We will meet in Wayne on Sunday for a special Halloween ride to some notable cemeteries, including the round Wing cemetery in Wayne. Costumes optional - anything from Elmira Gulch to Pee Wee Herman - with proper helmets, though. Don't let anything scare you away!

Sunday, October 31st - WAYNE
"All Hallows Tour" - a Halloween ride featuring some historic cemeteries.
START: 10:00 AM at the Wayne Elementary School, 48 Pond Road, Wayne.
DISTANCE: 15-20 miles.
TERRAIN: moderate, creepy in spots.
HIGHLIGHTS: the Wing family cemetery, the Kents Hill orchard, perhaps a notorious historic crime scene, and other local haunts.
LEADER: Jim Merrick.

Highland Fall Fling

We had a fine ride on Columbus Day weekend along the Sheepscot River, although it started out a bit blustery, overcast, and cold. Things actually warmed up nicely later in the day, so a later ride start may have been in order. The weather this Sunday looks favorable, and the fall colors are holding strong, so lets try for a ride in Belgrade Lakes - starting a bit later, at 10:00 am, to let things warm up a bit at the start. We may have a post-ride gathering at either the cafe or the grill in town. This may be one of the last chances to get a group ride in, and to enjoy the fall colors. Hope to see you there!

October 24th, Sunday: BELGRADE LAKES
"Highland Fling" - a tour around the Kennebec Highlands through Belgrade and Rome.
START: 10:00 A.M., at the Belgrade Community Center on Rt. 27, a half mile south of the Village of Belgrade Lakes, on the right (northbound) just past the Great Pond Marina. Park in the community center parking lot nearest the street (just as you turn in).
DISTANCE: about 20 miles.
TERRAIN: rolling to "moderately" hilly (translation: there are hills on this ride).
HIGHLIGHTS: fall foliage, views of the Belgrade Lakes, some roller coaster hills, Castle Island, and Blueberry Hill.
LEADER: Jim Merrick.

Quote of the Day

The most significant gifts are the ones most easily overlooked. Small, everyday blessings: woods, health, music, laughter, memories, books, family, friends, second chances, warm fireplaces, and all the footprints scattered throughout our days.

High-Altitude Allies: Plants that help prevent and treat high-altitude sickness

"Climb the mountains and get their good tidings." ~John Muir

When I was doing undergrad. research in medical anthropology, my travels took me to far (and high up) places. I spent time not only in the Himalayas, but in the Andes mountains as well. I loved my time in the east, but always felt at home in the Andes. To me, there is nothing else like them. I still long for them, and contemplate often my next journey back to them.

Several of the researchers, from not only the FDA, but also doctoral students from the University of Pennsylvania, crossed our path in Puno, Peru, which is 3,860 m (12,421 ft.) above see level. As we conversed with some of these researchers at a local cafe, it became apparent to me that they had not traveled up to this elevation before. This had me concerned, as some of them were describing onset symptoms of altitude sickness that were beginning to set in amongst the group members. As I inquired more about their research, and where they were headed, it was becoming apparent to me that they were heading up to the altiplano behind us. Our destination research site was at 16,330 ft. I was beginning to feel concerned for their well being.

2 days later, 2 of the FDA researchers had to be life-flighted down to Cuzco. Both of them had severe altitude sickness. Their colleagues had to postpone their time-sensitive research, and fly back to the states.

I wondered, in the back of my mind, since we were studying cultural ethno-botany in Peru, if there was anything that couldv'e assisted or prevented the altitude sickness. Felicia, one of the Uros native yerbarinas (herbalists) said to me that there was. She asked if I would like to go high into the mountains with her the next day to harvest roots that were specific for prevention and treatment of altitude sickness. She also kindly offered to share with me how to prepare them.

Yerbarina, altiplano, 16,330 ft., Peru

2 months later, after having collected all the plant samples and data that we needed to for our anthropology dept., we came back to the U.S. I missed the Andes, the culture, the people, the food, the air. I missed those mountains. I knew I would not only be called back there again (only to return a year later), but also to other high places of the world. From rock faces to mountain passes, my life has been about seeking the high places of the world, where the birds are free, and the quiet is the only "noise" you hear.

The information that I learned, not only in the Himalayas, but in the Andes as well, as to what plants can be used to assist with altitude training and sickness, I now pass on to you.

Quechua native boy, holding a newly harvested Maca root (a botanical "cousin" of the radish), altiplano, 16,330 ft., Peru

The following plants you want to have in your "arsenal" of training supplements/altitude sickness kit*:

-Maca Root
-Yerba Mate
-Suma root
-Ling Zhi mushroom
-Rhodiola root
-Astragalus root
-Adrenal Glandular (org.)
-Kidney Glandular (org.)

Some of the above herbs/roots are considered "adaptogens," or "adrenal tonics." Interestingly enough (and this is a completely separate blog, in and of itself), caffeine, and caffeinated beverages are very helpful in altitude adjustment. Hence the yerba mate included above. Coca leaf is also used in Peru, which is a caffeinated tea leaf. In fact, the coca leaf is what the maker of "Coca-Cola" derived his original recipe from, because it was so highly effective in helping him adjust to altitude during his travels throughout the Andes. I'm not suggesting you use "Coca-Cola." The sugar and carbonation are not a good combo. to assist with the nausea that comes along with altitude sickness. In fact, they will prolong the symptoms.

What I do in the clinic is custom-make "high altitude training formulas" for my traveler patients, and athletes-in-training. They are highly effective, and my patients report wonderful results using them. My suggestion is to seek an acupuncturist to assist you in your area, at least several weeks in advance to your trip, or onset of your training regime, so that you may begin the formula 2-3 weeks before increasing altitude. You'll also need to take the formula consistently while you're there, and for several days after, as you come down in altitude to allow the body to adjust.

I would not suggest going to a health food store and purchasing the above herbs on your own, and beginning to take them without supervision. There are drug-supplement-herb interactions that may occur, if you're already on medication. You will need assistance with dosage per sex, body weight, how many days your there, how hard you're training, etc. This is something that a clinician should assist you with.

When people take either herbs or supplements because they "read about it" somewhere, they usually are not taking a proper dosage and/or they are taking the wrong herbs. Then people say, "Well, they really don't work." They work. They've been tested throughout the centuries to work. They need to be worked with, however, a skilled practitioner and his/her experience.

Tibetan refugee camp, Himalayan foothills, India

In addition, the clinician will recommend a list, based on your particular constitution, of foods that will help to strengthen your immunity, and keep you healthy during your travels and/or training. In eastern medicine, there is no "one size fits all." There is no BMI index or magic "bullet" list of foods for you to eat. Whether you're a female vs. male athlete, where you're at in your life cycle, how much you exercise, and even what time (& season) you're training/traveling, is all taken into account. This is why this list is customized to you and your goals.

Please call your local acupuncturist or Naturopathic physician for further information on high-altitude training formulas. A clinician whose practice is focused in sports medicine, and working with athletes, is your best bet.

*Of course, you'll want to consult your doctor before taking any of the above supplements, in conjunction with exercise or training. For the glandulars, you should get them from a grass-fed, reputable, organic source. Quality counts.

John Murdoch-Balloon Man's Show at Marfa

Here are some ballon pics from John Murdoch's balloon show at Marfa..He has been blowing up penis balloons and other stuff at Lucky Cheng's for years..and is quite good at it..Here are some pics from a show he had last week..Included are a duct taped balloon, 9/11 penis balloons, Dick Cheney's REAL Facebook Page! And Cheney shooting friends by accident and on purpose(R rated!), an octopus balloon and an Obama Tea Party themed one..It was a fun show with bands playing all night..I got there a bit late and meant to take video too..
Ah well..Been fairly busy lately with a big show coming up next week..Also Sophie Crumb will be having a gallery opening first week of November which I will write about shortly..

Flashback---London Photo Scavenger Hunt

on our first full Monday in London we set off on an adventure of "Olympic" proportions---in honor of London's hosting the 2012 summer Olympics we were divided into four teams:


Each team was given 10 clues and sent off into the city...

the competition was fierce....

the tubes were a bit confusing...

some of the pictures taken were fuzzy...

but by the end there could be only one victor!...

Team Spain at Piccadilly Circus

Team France at La Duree Patisserie in Harrods Department store

Team Italy at the Houses of Parliament with Big Ben

Team Spain (Lyndsey Ammons) at Green Park near Buckingham Palace

Team France (Brad Middleton and Mary Lira) at Harry Potter's platform 9 and 3/4 at Charring Cross Station

Team Spain at the Queen's home--Buckingham Palace

Team Spain (Courtney Stone) at the famous half-price ticket, TKTS booth, in Leister Square

Team France at the new Apple computer store in Covent Gardens

Team Italy at the London Zoo...

with their Gold Medal "suckers" from Harrods

It was a good, long, tiring fight but Italy prevailed!

Dover & Canterbury Tales... The Movie

Yesterday we went to 
Dover & Canterbury.

Did we have fun?

It's even more obvious when you see this movie!


I hope you all won't hate me for haven't been updating this site for... Gosh, I've lost track. I feel like I'm losing a little bit of my sanity everyday as I'm getting more and more attached to work.

My friend keeps telling me. "Work is not who you are. It's what you are paid for. Don't get too emotionally attached, and don't ever bring it home."

But what can I say when being emotional is part of my nature? How can I distinguish work and personal life so easily when most of the time I spend is at work?

And I let people get to me easily. I take the people I meet, the people I interact with, too seriously. I take their opinions to heart. I beam over their satisfaction, and gloom over their complains.

What is the secret of being professional? How can you separate and compartmentalize parts of your life as you wish? How can you not let things get to you?

"You learn as you go along," I was told. I guess. It's true for everything. I wish I can learn faster because I'm being way too emotional for my own good.

Sorry. To be fair, things have been pretty okay for me. I haven't entirely been miserable during my absence, okay. I'll blog more happy things next time, I promise!

Craig Judelman, Blind Boy Paxton AND Peter De Giglio!

Here are two videos..comedy and music..One is really dark footage at Banjo Jim's and my camera is all shaky cause there were like 150 people a tiny space..but you can hear Craig Judelman, Blind Boy Paxton doing the end of Honeysuckle Rose, I Ain't Got Nobody, and then Feral Foster joining in with great vocals on After You've Gone..They sounded awesome..I guess because they ARE awesome!

Then we have Peter De Giglio at Penny's Open Mic doing bringing you the Skinny which covers topical subjects and is hilarious..and a tiny part of his funny Facebook Round-Up which updates what people at Penny's write on their pages..Unfortunately, he ran out of time..He's there every tuesday though! So come out! Theater Under St. Marks..

Jane Austen Inaugural High Tea

We did something new this week.

 HUE ground was broken
by hosting a
high tea
discussing the works of
Jane Austen.

Who knew literature could be so....