Tomorrow is the anniversary of the Galveston Hurricane in 1900 where more than 6,000 people perished. Winds of 120 miles an hour hit with the hurricane, followed by a huge tidal wave. 2,500 buildings were destroyed. It is also the anniversary of Richard M Nixon’s pardon (1974), it is Patsy Cline’s birthday (1932), Peter Seller’s birthday (1925), Cid Caesar’s birthday (1922) and Pink’s birthday (1079). And it’s a big day for TV premiers, like Tarzan , That Girl and Star Trek (all in 1966).
As I’m writing this, I have PBS on and they are talking about the two new buildings going up on Ground Zero and the new park with the waterfalls being built. Pretty amazing engineering feats. The visual of these three spaces are stunning, but the engineering behind them is just incredible. I’m having a hard time focusing on this blog. So excuse me if some of this is disjointed. I did re-read it and I think it’s OK.
The Pittsburgh Zoo and Aquarium as around 4,000 residents. I never thought about it, can you imagine feeding all those hungry guys? The animals consume 800 tons of food a year! And it’s not bags of dog food, either. They all have their special diets, some are carnivores, some are herbivores and some are omnivores. Even in each category, they have their unique tastes and preferences (like us). And they can’t let them get fat, so it’s quite the responsibility of the zoo keepers to keep everything balanced. They make 225 individual diets for the animals, including 135# of food for each of their seven gorillas for example. Pretty impressive.
The former editor of The Carnegie Magazine (three decades) and former CMU English professor has published a book Andrew Carnegie’s Museums and Libraries in Pittsburgh that explores the local and international influence Carnegie had in creating our libraries, museums and performing arts venues. He has two lectures scheduled, one at the Oakland museum on October 18 from 3 until 5 p.m. and the other at the Ligonier Public Library on November 9 from 7 until 9 p.m. and again at the Oakland branch January 14 from 2 until 4 p.m. It should be a pretty informative FREE presentation.
Opening at the Warhol on October 29 (I think it’s going to be a fairly long running exhibit, but don’t have the closing date) is a show case of Charles “Teenie” Harris. A long time photographer for the Pittsburgh Courier, the prestigious black newspaper that chronicled the black urban experience after Jim Crow and the civil rights movement. His works have been donated to the Warhol include around 80,000 images (obviously they all won’t be shown at this exhibit). Once it closes here, an abbreviated version will travel to the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute and then to Atlanta University Center Robert W Woodruff Library.
Another show opening at the Warhol is an exhibit of some of Alex Ross’s work. Mr Ross is one of the premier comic book artists and you might say he was obsessed with super heroes (I say this kindly). One thing in particular I find compelling is three images he created of Captain Marvel when he was 4, the next when he was 15 and the third when he was 31. Quite the progression. It’s worth you moms and dads to go and see the child’s drawing and how he progressed. Maybe you have a child prodigy on your hands. (A lot of smilies today, I must be in a good mood) Another I find interesting is the image of the Joker based on J.C. Leyendecker’s famous Dancing Couple. If any of you are interested in Lyendecker, Kerry at KS Kennedy Floral, right down the street from me is a big fan and has a number of Leyendecker’s images in his shop and a wealth of info on him. Ross is famous for his images of The Human Torch, Superman, Green Lantern and most all of the super heroes.
PNC Bank is really pushing their virtual wallet these days. Supposedly a big reason is they are entering southern states and don’t have a lot of branches to make banking convenient. Also, they want to be positioned as one of the most tech friendly banks. That leads us to Google’s efforts to start up Google Wallet where you got to businesses that are set up with their software and you will scan the purchase with your smart phone and it pays either through debit or one of the major credit card companies. All of the smart phone companies are working on their versions of this. Anyone that knows me, knows how technologically challenged I am. The reason I am reluctant to do this because I am not comfortable with security on these. My identity was stolen a number of years ago by someone that only had my social security number and name. All of the other application info was not even close to anything accurate. Hackers have broken into Chase, Wells Fargo, Bank America, even the Pentagon! I used to do on line banking, but got scared of having my account information in my computer. I keep reading articles on these new payment systems, which I really would love to participate in, but until they can convince me that it’s safe, I’ll just wait it out.
Ruth Ziolkowski, widow of Korczak Ziolkowski, is still supervising the sculpture of Crazy Horse in South Dakota. They have been at this since 1947, now that’s dedication. This monument is only 20 miles from Mount Rushmore, which was finished decades ago. Sioux elder Chief Henry Standing Bear invited Korczak to start this monument, which will be the tallest sculpture in the world, (when completed, the horse will stand 22 stories tall). Korczak agreed because he felt that native Americans deserved something significant because of the wrongs inflicted on them. Chief Standing Bear chose Crazy Horse because because he was a chief dedicated to his people, elderly and all the people less fortunate in addition to being a great leader and military strategist. He personified all the good traits a hero should possess.
Shadyside’s A Fair, not to be confused with last month’s Shadyside Art Festival. This Fair is being held in Mellon Park from 1 – 7 Friday, 10 – 7 Saturday and 10 – 5 on Sunday. This Fair, in addition to the craft persons, will be featuring live entertainment (for details, please visit their web site). The craft person that grabbed my attention is Donna Penoyer. She works with precious metal clay, clay that is infused with precious metals like silver. She works the metal into the clay, forms the piece and then fires it so they both meld together. She’s going to have finished pieces for viewing and sale as well as pre-fired pieces so you can see what her pieces start from.