The Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree is Now Lighted!

December 1, 2016

christmas-tree

The annual celebration surrounding the lighting of the Christmas Tree in Rockefeller Center did indeed happen last night.  A little about the tree first: it’s a 95-year old, 94-foot high, 14 ton Norway spruce that had been growing in Oneonta, New York and is the second tallest tree to ever stand in Rockefeller Center.  It’s been decorated with more than five miles of lights (50,000 bulbs) which with the star on top are the only decorations.  After the holidays, the tree is recycled and provided to Habitat for Humanity to build homes for the needy.

The ceremony, broadcast on NBC and attended by an estimated  500,000 people, was hosted by Matt Lauer, Savannah Guthrie, and Al Roker of NBC, and included performances by Tony Bennett, Neil Diamond, Josh Groban, Tori Kelly, Dolly Parton, and of course the Radio City Rockettes.  But in my opinion, many of the performances were marginal at best.

Whether or not you watched the ceremony, the tree merits a personal visit…

Feel free to leave a comment, and please come back – I write and post often!  And if you like what I have to say and how I say it, you’ll probably enjoy my novels as well.  They’re listed below, and you can read more about them on my improved website, designed and built by my son Don, http://www.randolphmase.com.  On my site, you’ll also find excerpts of my books that you can read – please check it out!

Randolph Mase, Fiction Writer

http://www.randolphmase.com

http://www.facebook.com/randolphmase

http://www.facebook.com/MatthewHoganMysteries

http://twitter.com/randolphmase

My Novels:

Death on Broadway

Death Beneath the Streets

Death in Central Park

Death at The Cloisters

Death Inside Diamond Head (under construction)

Nathan Hale

It’s Black Friday Again

November 25, 2016

Black Friday

We’re in Virginia again for this holiday, and Black Friday brings back a memory from several years ago when I got up before 4 am (you read it right, and normally that’s something I’ll do only to play golf or go on vacation) to scoop up some buys at a local store.  Although I got what I wanted, I left with the conviction that I’d never do that again.

And I’m sticking with that.  I think I’ll head to Starbucks, catch a local parade, and maybe head to Total Wine to get some good wine at great prices.  Then I think I’ll just enjoy some of that wine and work on my novels…

Feel free to leave a comment, and please come back – I write and post often! And if you like what I have to say and how I say it, you’ll probably enjoy my novels as well. They’re listed below, and you can read more about them on my improved website, designed and built by my son Don, http://www.randolphmase.com. On my site, you’ll also find excerpts of my books that you can read – please check it out!

Randolph Mase, Fiction Writer

http://www.randolphmase.com

http://www.facebook.com/randolphmase

http://www.facebook.com/MatthewHoganMysteries

http://twitter.com/randolphmase

My Novels:

Death on Broadway

Death Beneath the Streets

Death in Central Park

Death at the Cloisters (just published!)

Death Inside Diamond Head (under construction)

Nathan Hale

Happy Thanksgiving!

November 24, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving

The history of this holiday in the United States is uncertain at best.  Some claim it started with Spanish settlers in St. Augustine, Florida an 1565; others look to the English in Virginia in 1619; still others claim it originated in 1621 with the settlers of Plymouth, Massachusetts.

Whatever the actual origin, Thanksgiving became a legal holiday here in the United States when President Franklin Delano Roosevelt signed the bill making it such in December of 1941.

Today, of course, it goes beyond giving thanks for the harvest and all that we have; it’s a time for families, travel, shopping, and parades.  And New York City is one of the leaders there, with its annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.  The parade, which began at 9 this morning, follows a new route because of the closing of Broadway for the new pedestrian mall.  It will still begin at 77th Street and travel south on Central Park West (Eighth Avenue) to 59th Street.  Then it will turn onto Seventh Avenue and continue to Macy’s at Herald Square (Sixth Avenue and 34th Street).  Although the 3-mile route is different, the floats and balloons and bands and performers are just as good as they always are, so enjoy the holiday!

Feel free to leave a comment, and please come back – I write and post often! And if you like what I have to say and how I say it, you’ll probably enjoy my novels as well. They’re listed below, and you can read more about them on my improved website, designed and built by my son Don, http://www.randolphmase.com. On my site, you’ll also find excerpts of my books that you can read – please check it out!

Randolph Mase, Fiction Writer

http://www.randolphmase.com

http://www.facebook.com/randolphmase

http://www.facebook.com/MatthewHoganMysteries

http://twitter.com/randolphmase

My Novels:

Death on Broadway

Death Beneath the Streets

Death in Central Park

Death at the Cloisters

Death Inside Diamond Head (under construction)

Nathan Hale

Questions to How Well Do You Know Broadway?

November 18, 2016

Broadway

Here are the questions to the Jeopardy! answers in the category “Obvious Broadway” I posted last month:

  1. This show’s “Six Merry Murderesses” do the “Cell Block Tango” in Chicago’s Cook County Jail. – What is “Chicago?”
  2. “My Boyfriend’s Back is one of the songs in this show that begins in New Jersey in 1962. – What is “Jersey Boys?”
  3. Sara Bareilles wrote the music for this 2016 show seen here; note the women’s uniforms. – What is “Waitress?”
  4. It’s the plural title of the 2016 revival that combines “The March of the Falsettos” and “Falsettoland.” – What is “Falsettos?”
  5. This 2015 Tony winner is set in a funeral home, given a slightly shorter nickname by the family’s children. .– What is “Fun Home?”

I got only three correct this time.  How did you do?

Feel free to leave a comment, and please come back – I write and post often! And if you like what I have to say and how I say it, you’ll probably enjoy my novels as well. They’re listed below, and you can read more about them on my improved website, designed and built by my son Don, http://www.randolphmase.com. On my site, you’ll also find excerpts of my books that you can read – please check it out!

Randolph Mase, Fiction Writer

http://www.randolphmase.com

http://www.facebook.com/randolphmase

http://www.facebook.com/MatthewHoganMysteries

http://twitter.com/randolphmase

My Novels:

Death on Broadway

Death Beneath the Streets

Death in Central Park

Death at the Cloisters

Death Inside Diamond Head (under construction)

Nathan Hale

Celebrate Veterans Day!

November 11, 2016

Veterans Cemetery

Most of us know that today is Veterans Day.  And some of us (but not me) have a valued day off from work.  But how many of us have ever given thought to the history of this day or, more importantly, what it means?

The history goes back to World War I, which officially ended when the Treaty of Versailles was signed on June 28, 1919.  However, fighting had actually ceased seven months earlier when the Allies and Germany agreed to a temporary cessation of hostilities, at the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month; in other words, 11:00 am on November 11.  One year later, President Wilson declared the first Armistice Day.  It became a legal holiday in 1938, honoring those who had fought in World War I.  In 1954, after many Americans had lost their lives in World War II and the Korean War, the holiday was renamed Veterans Day, honoring all American veterans.  There’s a very good video explanation and tribute at http://www.va.gov/opa/vetsday/.

The Veterans Day National Ceremony was held today at 11:00 am, with a color guard honoring American veterans at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery.  Let us all remember them, including those who are currently in hostile action.  I’ll quote the dedication of my book Nathan Hale:  “To all those who have risked their lives to protect the freedom of our great nation.”      

Feel free to leave a comment, and please come back – I write and post often! And if you like what I have to say and how I say it, you’ll probably enjoy my novels as well. They’re listed below, and you can read more about them on my improved website, designed and built by my son Don, http://www.randolphmase.com. On my site, you’ll also find excerpts of my books that you can read – please check it out!

Randolph Mase, Fiction Writer

http://www.randolphmase.com

http://www.facebook.com/randolphmase

http://www.facebook.com/MatthewHoganMysteries

http://twitter.com/randolphmase

My Novels:

Death on Broadway

Death Beneath the Streets

Death in Central Park

Death at the Cloisters

Death Inside Diamond Head (under construction)

Nathan Hale

The Day of the Dead

November 1, 2016

Tomorrow is yet another holiday…in Mexico this time.

In the past few years, I’ve learned a lot about Halloween.  I also learned a lot about November 2, known in some cultures as All Souls Day.  In Mexico, it’s a holiday called The Day of the Dead.  According to a friend of mine in Mexico City, the day celebrates our relatives that have passed away, so that we do remember them.  In fact, it’s part of the Mexican culture to laugh in front of Death today, and the photo above is one of an office decoration that my friend sent to me.  He said the most famous celebration in Mexico today is in Michoacán State, at Janitzio and nearby Patzcuaro Lake, with many people attending the ceremony at night.  You can read more about it, and see more photos, at http://www.mexicoinsmallbytes.com/november.html.

However you do it, it’s very worthwhile to remember and celebrate our ancestors…

Feel free to leave a comment, and please come back often – I write and post every day!  And if you like what I have to say and how I say it, you’ll probably enjoy my novels as well.  They’re listed below, and you can read more about them on my improved website, designed and built by my son Don, http://www.randolphmase.com.  On my site, you’ll also find excerpts of my books that you can read – please check it out!

Randolph Mase, Fiction Writer

http://www.randolphmase.com

http://www.facebook.com/randolphmase

http://www.facebook.com/MatthewHoganMysteries

http://twitter.com/randolphmase

My Novels:

Death on Broadway

Death Beneath the Streets

Death in Central Park

Death at The Cloisters

Death Inside Diamond Head (under construction)

Nathan Hale

 

Happy Halloween!

October 31, 2016

Halloween 2015

At this time every year, many of us have acquired our stash of candy and anxiously await the arrival of all those children seeking treats, including my grandsons Evan and Noah (in this family photo from last year – can you guess the movie?).  I don’t know about you, but I never gave much more thought to Halloween, until I watched a program on The History Channel about the history of this day.  And that prompted me to do some research about Halloween and its traditions.  For example, in the 8th Century, Pope Gregory III declared November 1 as All Hallows (Saints) Day, and the evening before became known as All Hallows Evening, later shortened to Halloween (actually Hallowe’en).  And I also learned the history of some of the other traditions associated with the holiday.

Trick or Treating.  The Celts left food and sweets around for the evil spirits to take and leave.  Years later, in medieval times, poor people would go from door to door, begging for food in return for offering prayers for the dead on All Souls Day, November 2.

The Jack-o’-Lantern.  Years ago, many Irish and Scottish people would carve a face into a turnip and place a lighted candle inside to honor the dead on All Souls Day.  There is also the legend of Irishman Stingy Jack who tricked the devil into climbing a tree.  To avenge this, the devil placed a curse on Jack – he was forced to wander the earth with the only light he had: a candle inside of a hollowed turnip.  Thus the name.

The Wearing of Costumes.  The Celts also believed that at summer’s end (the same time as Halloween), spirits passed by.  Of course, the spirits of ancestors were invited into the home, while evil spirits needed to be warded off.  To do this, the Celts wore costumes and masks to disguise themselves as evil spirits, thus escaping harm.  And of course, today, we see the full range, from the simple to the elaborate and bizarre.

So enjoy the day, but remember the traditions…

Feel free to leave a comment, and please come back – I write and post often! And if you like what I have to say and how I say it, you’ll probably enjoy my novels as well. They’re listed below, and you can read more about them on my improved website, designed and built by my son Don, http://www.randolphmase.com. On my site, you’ll also find excerpts of my books that you can read – please check it out!

Randolph Mase, Fiction Writer

http://www.randolphmase.com

http://www.facebook.com/randolphmase

http://www.facebook.com/MatthewHoganMysteries

http://twitter.com/randolphmase

My Novels:

Death on Broadway

Death Beneath the Streets

Death in Central Park

Death at the Cloisters

Death Inside Diamond Head (under construction)

Nathan Hale

How Well Do You Know Broadway?

October 20, 2016

Broadway

One of the categories on a recent Jeopardy! episode was “Obvious Broadway.”  Here are the answers; just come up with the correct question for each.  I’ll give those questions in a future post:

  1. This show’s “Six Merry Murderesses” do the “Cell Block Tango” in Chicago’s Cook County Jail.
  2. “My Boyfriend’s Back is one of the songs in this show that begins in New Jersey in 1962.
  3. Sara Bareilles wrote the music for this 2016 show seen here; note the women’s uniforms.
  4. It’s the plural title of the 2016 revival that combines “The March of the Falsettos” and “Falsettoland.”
  5. This 2015 Tony winner is set in a funeral home, given a slightly shorter nickname by the family’s children.

Feel free to leave a comment, and please come back – I write and post often! And if you like what I have to say and how I say it, you’ll probably enjoy my novels as well. They’re listed below, and you can read more about them on my improved website, designed and built by my son Don, http://www.randolphmase.com. On my site, you’ll also find excerpts of my books that you can read – please check it out!

Randolph Mase, Fiction Writer

http://www.randolphmase.com

http://www.facebook.com/randolphmase

http://www.facebook.com/MatthewHoganMysteries

http://twitter.com/randolphmase

My Novels:

Death on Broadway

Death Beneath the Streets

Death in Central Park

Death at the Cloisters

Death Inside Diamond Head (under construction)

Nathan Hale

It’s Columbus Day

October 10, 2016

Christopher Columbus

It’s interesting that when I was going to school or working, I viewed holidays simply as another day off.  Now that I’m doing neither, I find myself trying to learn more about each holiday.  Take today – Columbus Day – as an example.  Before it was moved to the second Monday in October, Columbus Day was always celebrated on October 12 (which it happens to be this year).  I always assumed that it marked the birth of Christopher Columbus, but it actually marks the date when he arrived in the Americas.  It’s not only a US holiday, but is celebrated throughout Latin America and even in some European nations.

On this day and other holidays, take the time to discover more about the meaning of the day.  It’s interesting stuff!

Feel free to leave a comment, and please come back – I write and post often! And if you like what I have to say and how I say it, you’ll probably enjoy my novels as well. They’re listed below, and you can read more about them on my improved website, designed and built by my son Don, http://www.randolphmase.com. On my site, you’ll also find excerpts of my books that you can read – please check it out!

Randolph Mase, Fiction Writer

http://www.randolphmase.com

http://www.facebook.com/randolphmase

http://www.facebook.com/MatthewHoganMysteries

http://twitter.com/randolphmase

My Novels:

Death on Broadway

Death Beneath the Streets

Death in Central Park

Death at the Cloisters

Death Inside Diamond Head (under construction)

Nathan Hale

It’s Time for the Grub Street Food Festival

September 30, 2016

grub-street

For the seventh year, tomorrow from 11 am to 5 pm the Hester Street Fair will feature the Grub Street Food Festival.  Admission is free, and you’ll find a beer garden, live music, and food by more than 50 vendors from A Cake Baked in Brooklyn to Yumpling.  You can find more details at http://www.grubstreet.com/2016/09/the-2016-grub-street-food-festival-will-return-october-1.html.  Enjoy!

Feel free to leave a comment, and please come back – I write and post often! And if you like what I have to say and how I say it, you’ll probably enjoy my novels as well. They’re listed below, and you can read more about them on my improved website, designed and built by my son Don, http://www.randolphmase.com. On my site, you’ll also find excerpts of my books that you can read – please check it out!

Randolph Mase, Fiction Writer

http://www.randolphmase.com

http://www.facebook.com/randolphmase

http://www.facebook.com/MatthewHoganMysteries

http://twitter.com/randolphmase

My Novels:

Death on Broadway

Death Beneath the Streets

Death in Central Park

Death at the Cloisters (just published!)

Death Inside Diamond Head (under construction)

Nathan Hale


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