2013 Liberty States Fiction Writer's Conference
I attended my first #LSFWConference this year. That's the Liberty States Fiction Writers Conference, held in the spring in Islen, NJ. (Yes I know I'm opening with a hash-tag (#) but it is the official hash-tag. This is the blogosphere, and Twitter is not to be trifled with.) Let me throw their web site out here for good measure: http://www.libertystatesfictionwriters.com/ .
The Race of the Saints 2013:Shuta Multimedia Vlog Episode 97
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This Episode shows highlights from the 2013 St Ubaldo Day, AKA the Race of the Saints or La Festa dei Ceri, in Jessup, PA.
Every year, on memorial day weekend, La Festa Dei Ceri is celebrated in Jessup, PA. This festival celebrates the actions of Bishop Ubaldo Baldassini, who was canonized as St. Ubaldo. St Ubaldo rescued the town of Gubbio, Italy by talking Barbarossa out of sacking the town. Before he could return with the news, the town was overcome with fear and panic. Lacking CNN or any social networking sites, and with his health failing, Ubaldo needed a way to tell the town he was fine--in a hurry. So he had himself carried on a platform carried by young men from the town. They ran through the city, calming the population. In Gubbio, this event was reenacted by carrying a statue of St. Ubaldo along the same route. Later Statues of St. George and St. Anthony were added. When immigrants from Gubbio settled in Jessup, PA, they brought this tradition with them. Thus, in Jessup, PA, the Saturday of the Memorial Day weekend is St. Ubaldo Day, and it culminates in the Race of the Saints.
Previous St. Ubaldo Day Vlogs
A Good Day in the Mid-Valley: Shuta Multimedia Vlog Episode 96
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In this episode we cover three events, all from May 18th, 2013, and all happening in the Mid Valley--Olyphant and Throop, PA to be exact. It's a hometown extravaganza for yours truly.
The first event was put on by Tom DeBlasio and June Fedorchack-Deblasio, a husband and wife team that are both fighting cancer. They organized a bed race with the help of local councilman and mechanical wizard Jerry Tully, and the Olyphant Borough. Proceeded benefited the American Cancer Society. Participants included local businesses such as the 411 Studio, and students from Mid Valley High School. The MV High School Cheerleaders raced and cheered everyone on! June and Tom also wanted to use the event to promote the larger Relay For Life Event happening at the Mid Valley High School on June 8th, 2013.
The second event was a car was put on by the Youth Group of the Parishes of Holy Cross and Blessed Sacrament, at Custom Auto and Cycle--owned and operated by local councilman and mechanical wizard Jerry Tully. The benefits went to help Kelly Brown, who lost her family in a horrific fire in Pottsvile, PA on Mother's Day 2013. The kids raised $300 to show her she is not alone, and that she has the love, prayers and support of the church community.
Finally, I attended an art show at Mid Valley High School, featuring the art of students present and past. Organized by Art Teacher Rebecca Rabel, it showcased the immense creativity of the high school kids, which gives me great hope for our future.
Tebow Logic Fail
I'm confused again.
Tony Romo has one playoff win to his credit, and just got signed for six years and over one hundred million dollars, roughly half of which is guaranteed.
Peyton Manning came to Denver, lost in the first round of the playoffs (as he had seven times before, twice as much as any other player) and is considered one of the best quarterbacks of all time, if not the best.
Tim Tebow took that same team—minus players brought in just for Manning—to the playoffs and beat the Pittsburgh Steelers, and he can't even play the game.
Are we going to assume that Quarterback isn't that important a position? Was Dever so good they were able to beat the Steelers even though they were saddled with Tebow?
And yet with Peyton Manning, they couldn't beat the Ravens? Nothing against the Ravens since they did win the Superbowl last year. But if Dever was so awesome they could carry Tebow then my goodness, they should have been undefeated last year.
The fact of the matter is Tebow can win games. He does it with an undisciplined, sand-lot, heart attack inducing style, but he wins games. It was a mistake for the Jets not to play him last year, especially once they had nothing to lose. I'm convinced they didn't because then they would have heard, "Why didn't you play him sooner?" If all the quarterbacks were terrible, then obviously the coaches weren't to blame.
Would I want Tebow to show up in a Steelers uniform? Certainly. I know if he went in for Big Ben, he could find a way to win, and I’m sure the Steelers could find ways to work him into the normal gameplan. This is especailly true with Heath Miller injured.
For the record, I’m not taking down any of the Steeler backups here. I’m not saying we need him, I’m just saying I would in no way be upset if we took him.
Actually, the Steelers would probably be the best place for him. Can you imagine the Steelers getting derailed by media drama? Historically they’ve been great at handling issues that come from somewhere other than the field. The Jets? Not so much. The Jets seem to enjoy it too much.
So I’m still confused. Why is there so much Tebow hate? Everyone around him says he’s genuinely a good guy. I don’t hang out with the dude so I can’t testify, but that’s a point no one seems to contest. Even if he’s the worst player in the NFL, why the rancor?
I can tell you this: it will only make him more popular. People identify with Tebow. Trying your best, producing, and still being torn down is not an uncommon event. There’s a sense that his treatment has been unjust, and that will grow his fanbase.
Some percentage of people will look at it as an assault on his Christianity. I’ve seen commentators say the only reason we care about Tebow is his faith, so that’s not a stretch. As a Roman Catholic, I know I feel hostility from the media. (And as I rejoice. Matthew 5:11.) It would be a bit much to call him a martyr just yet, but people are going to rally around him for what they perceve as persecution.
And that popularity will infurate his detractors, and the lovers and the haters will gather together and wait with baited breath for his next move. The cycle will continue.
Oscar Wilde said the only thing worse than being talked about is not being talked about. The jury is still out on that, but by Oscar’s estimation, Tebow is doing just fine.
Steelers Had Mediocre Talent Last Year According to GM
It's been a while since I've opined on the subject of Football, but today I got inspired. As today is the start of the draft, I surfed over to Steelers.com to see what my favorite team is doing. While there, I read this article:
In it, General Manager Kevin Colbert made the following statement:
"As we’ve stated before, we finished 8-8,” said Colbert. “We weren’t good enough. Quite honestly the talent that we had assembled was an 8-8 team. Any other explanation than that I think is incorrect. Obviously the plan is to be able to upgrade the team that we are going to put on the field in 2013."
Let me get this straight: in the 2012/2013 season, the Steelers had the overall #1 defense in the league.
They had Big Ben Roethlisberger and an array of fast receivers.
They had three competent running backs.
They had Heath "First Down" Miller.
And the most logical explanation for an 8-8 season is mediocre talent?
Let me venture that any other explanation would make more sense. I'm not saying it was aliens, but I'm not ruling it out either.
The Steelers refuse to blame injuries, so I'll stick to the company line on that one. As Tomlin says, the standard is the standard.
Before last season, they got rid of a lot of key players, and brought in a new offensive coordinator. They decided to go to a short-pass, dink-and dunk-offense that was designed to keep Big Ben healthy. (Big Ben got hurt anyway.) The play calling seemed geared to making Mike Wallace look bad, so that no one would offer him big money this year. (Good luck to Mike with the Dolphins. Enjoy that $60 million over 5 years.)
Meanwhile the GM blames the talent pool? Really?
This year should be great then. We've lost Harrison, Wallace and Mendenhall, and Miller is hurt. Unless several people blossom into superstars, or they find some draft day miracles, we're looking at a net loss of talent.
Oh and Colbert just told the current players he doesn't think they were good enough. That's a great motivator. Look for him to start a motivational speaking tour soon.
So by this logic, what are we looking at this year? 6-10? 4-12?
I know we all have moments when we just say stuff that sounds good in our heads but looks bad on paper. I'm guilty of that. But for the sake of this season, Mr. Colbert please say something to the effect that last year's players were only good enough for 8 and 8. There were other factors at play and you know it. Fix those problems and fire the team up.
Or blame the aliens.