The word "bling" hadn't been invented in 1987 when Liberace died of AIDS; but his lifestyle was the very essence of bling; the rhinestone covered piano, the mirrored Rolls Royce and his costumes, on and off stage! He shimmered and glittered and sparkled when he moved. His shiny effects are on display in a museum in Las Vegas where he epitomized the over the top bling of the place. But the light is going out; the museum will be closed. From an attendance of 450,000 a year it's now down to 50,000 a year. His fans are dying off and lately it seems even the idea of bling is getting tarnished. Ho-hum.
Freak wind storms occasionally attack certain areas of New York City. This week hundreds of trees, from young saplings to grand old historic trees in Queens and Brooklyn were uprooted. One woman was killed when a big one feel on her car but otherwise people were all right only the trees were lost. Two years ago an equally freaky wind uprooted about 500 trees in Central Park but most of the rest of the city was okay; a couple of years before I moved from there, a wind storm attacked the trees of Riverside Park -- not a very big park but vulnerable to wind off the Hudson -- felling a couple of hundred trees. In a different environment homes would be ruined, but the solid bulk of the buildings in New York protects the people [their purpose of course] It's sad to see trees disappear in an urban environment where they are such a necessary visual softener in the landscape.
Austria, which is a landlocked country about the size of Maine, is 2/3rd Alpine. The Austrians love their mountains and welcome tourists to share their outdoors. They have approximately 680 high peaks, 13,660 miles of downhill ski trails, over 10,000 miles of cross country ski trails and over 500 high mountain huts. I have been there and can attest that the there are also mountain restaurants one chances upon where a hearty bowl of soup and a cool beer is a great treat for a hiker or skier.
Wikipedia, as we know, can be added to and amended by anyone with information. Recently pranksters amended the biography of one Judge Roger Vinson by including the "fact" that he is great outdoorsman who has shot three grizzly bears and had their stuff ed heads hung in his courtroom to show offenders what a tough guy he is. In fact,he has never hunted,let along killed a bear. Judge Vinson isn't happy with his bio.
Also not happy with Wikipedia are the heirs of Agatha Christy. In the 50+ years The Mousetrap ran in the West End of London, the actor who played the character who "done it" would always step out at curtain call time and ask the audience not to ruin the show for others by revealing the end. For the most part London critics and audience honored this injunction all those years so approximately 10 million people had the thrill of being surprised at the end. But on Wikipedia the plot is summarize and the ending reveled for anyone to read. Boo-hisss!
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