Tuesday, November 27, 2007



for beautiful hawley.. your comment somewhere... reminded me of this picture. my son a couple years back, bit by the entrepreneurial bug..

picked a product; picked a price (25 cents per handful) staked out his territory...

and now i have to find the one of my daughter and her friend katie w/their version of a lemonade stand...

three tv trays lined up on the sidewalk.. 200 dixie cups, filled 3/4 with a "secret" lemonade recipe

one car passing by every two hours...

Saturday, November 24, 2007

ANOTHER WORD by (me!) sandra, ttgp

good news! my 90 second "create a blog and be free" commentary was selected for the another word portion of in a word, co-hosted by jim ott and kathy cordova, on our local channel 30. (thank you!). i was invited to the studio tuesday november 13th to tape my commentary for the december show.

tuesday nov 13th, 11:15am: so, just after my car was towed but before my "joy to the world" flute lesson with bernie.

exciting morning to say the least.

anyway, this was my very, very, first time ever experience, reading from a teleprompter.

and i must first say this about that: i now know, on the scale of self-inflicted television camera related emotional torment, reading from a teleprompter (even a somewhat old and rickety one), and being taped; not live, is like at the very bottom of the stress list, which for me looks something like this:

unexpected camera/microphone from local tv news reporter while innocently dining downtown:"so, what are your thoughts on immigration?"

preparing/appearing for taped one-on-one 8-12 minute interview for local television

preparing for/appearing - live- on news segments across u.s. creating arts/crafts projects

preparation/appearance - taped - 4 person conversation regarding favorite memoir

preparation/appearance -taped; reading from teleprompter.

had it been live; different story. tripped over my tongue on the word restick

restick shoo.. restrictions. (freudian for sure). and during the second taping, tongue froze all together. or rather, the opposite might be true. tongue kept moving when it should have stopped, making allmywordstooclosetogethertounderstand.

ah, but by the 3rd and final take... completely comprehensible.

and while i was relaxed because i could read, and was not required to memorize, this was still not quite as easy as one might expect.

the challenge having mostly to do with the nature of this particular teleprompter, which, when it comes to scrolling...

well, is analoguous to lucille ball in that famous episode where she's working at the candy factory, quality inspecting chocolates as they pass by on a conveyor belt: slow at first... but as the speed picks up.. so does the comedy.

words appeared at such a comfortable reading pace at first... but then suddenly entire paragraphs raced across the screen testing the very limits of my eye-tongue coordination. really, i had no idea how fast i can't read until this experience.

and speaking of lucille ball, check this bit of trivia out ( i wink here at my favorite trivia blogger friend, leonardstegmann.blogspot.com. learned this kind of thing from him):

It should also be noted that Jess Oppenheimer, producer of I Love Lucy,
rightfully claims credit for the original concept of the teleprompter
and was awarded the U.S. patent for its creation. Originally used so that Lucille Ball
could read commercials on-camera, it soon became a staple
for television news. As late as 1992, "The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson"
was still using an early mechanical teleprompter.

who knew?

stay tuned, as they say...

in a word airs on channel 30 in the tri-valley area, mon-fri, 6:30a and 9:30p.

In A Word #IAW0712
December Edition:
Gift Books for the Holidays: Interviews with the following authors: Karn Knutson, author of City Girl Philosophy. Simon Read, author of In the Dark: The True Story of the Blackout Ripper, Penny Warner, author of The Official Nancy Drew Handbook
And Another Word—Commentary by Sandra Kay.
Length: 29:30 Produced:11/13/2007

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

THANKS RALEY'S! THANKS SATURN! from (me!) sandra, ttgp

i'll be sharing private thanks for and with my family this thanksgiving, but want to pay public thanks for the outstanding service i've received from two local businesses:

most recently from my favorite grocery store, raley's, where i, in fact, did not deserve the incredible service i received.

it must have been 7:50am when the note i wrote to myself on a small piece of paper suddenly tripled in size, folded itself into an airplane and flew directly at me, poking me in the eye

"oh shit! the cheese and cracker tray! thank you!"

so i threw on clothes from the top of the nearest pile and raced (not really officers, speed limit the whole time) to raley's. i was just certain there would be a pre-made cheese and cracker tray ..somewhere... no luck.

no luck and no time. my one and only responsibility for the classroom party was due at 8:15. looked at my watch and it was like 8:01 and ticking faster every second

with my obviously concerned and under-pressure look, i said to the lady behind the counter at the deli, "um, excuse me.. any chance i could get a cheese and cracker tray?"

then i added on at great risk, "now?"

i fully and completely expected her to put her hands on her hips, tilt her head to the left, look at me like who was i kidding, and sarcastically sneer as she hollered "no!" explaining to me like i was two why party trays are ordered in advance

but think here, complete opposite. she looked at another lady, must of been her manager, and asked very kind and hopeful like, "can we make a cheese tray for this lady..."

and get this, she said, "yes, right away" i couldn't believe my ears! so i said to both ladies,

"i know that saying.. it hangs on my friends wall: how lack of preparedness on my end does not constitute an emergency on yours... but boy am i grateful for your help right now."

and then the lady making the cheese tray gave me the receipt so i could pay in advance and therefore run out the door once it was ready

AND the manager lady gave me a cup of coffee on the house to sip while i waited

can you stand it!?

i didn' t deserve the excellent service i received, which makes it even more excellent.

-want to let you know i made it to the classroom on time thanks to you-


***** ***** *****

and this is quite over-due, but


it has been my experience over the years, with a variety of businesses, that just a little bit more pro-active communication could result in a lot more business and sales.

but time and time again, it's the customer waiting, guessing, wondering and ultimately calling and calling again to find out the status of things when the status of things has obviously changed

none of us can always keep the promises we make, but it is exactly that situation that provides people and businesses the opportunity to sparkle and shine or fade and fall.


my hybrid needed some service and i was told it would be ready around 2pm.

everyone knows worse case scenario: 2 o'clock comes and goes.. cars not ready.. you don't know why... you call and get put on hold indefinitely... or end up in the press 1 for this, press 3 for that loop; they eventually apologize and say the car will be ready by 4pm, but then at 4pm the car is still not ready and phone-tag begins again

but think here, complete opposite: THEY called ME (pro-active communication!) around noon (as they found out!) to explain certain parts would need to be ordered, and to provide a new time my car would be ready

and put me in the nicest rent-a-car for the meantime

plus the coffee, snacks and good reading in the lobby. plus the easy check-in, check-out, very friendly and professional staff at every counter


Friday, November 02, 2007

COMMENTARY FOR IN A WORD by (me!) sandra, ttgp

there was an invitation e-forwarded to local poets/writers sometime ago, looking for people interested in contributing a 90sec commentary piece to our local tv channel 30 show, in a word. it's a new addition to their show and i love it. two months ago, kathy cordova closed the show with a wonderful/insightful piece about how reading -praised and mandatory as it is these days - might not be for everyone; and that's okay. last month, jim ott, closed the show with a inspiring/comforting piece about how while reading ALL the classics might not be realistic; with some quick google research about various authors, you can learn enough to understand the value and contribution of their literature and then -and only then - select the authors/classics that interest you most for actual cover to cover reading.

and floating around in my brain, since i opened that email several weeks ago, is this desire to do a 90sec piece on, of course, what else? - BLOGS! they want the commentaries to speak to writers/readers and, if possible, include a little humor. -so i will procrastinate no more and work on my draft write here:

attention all writers young and old. professional writers. amateur writers. every writer in between. i have so much to say, but am forced to make my point in under 90 seconds

- and that is exactly the first point i want to make

because i know a place where no such restrictions exist! a wonderful place. a magical place. a place where you can write as much, or as little as you want. how you want. when you want.

- and the only restrictions - ...are the ones you should not be placing on yourself

it's called the blogosphere

in my opinion, blogs are to writers as improv is to actors. if you want your game up

-eblogger is your second city. a writers hbo. and while i see that as the most important reason to create your own blog, it's hardly the only

somewhere, a perfectly talented writer is opening a rejection letter -but not an e-blogger.

e-bloggers write, post, click and waa laa! "successfully published" ~every time. says so write on your monitor. ~what a treat for the battered and bruised ego of so many writers, huh

somewhere a writer is being required to pad his story by 50 words, while another is required to chop by 75

...but not us e-bloggers...

when you have your own blog: you are writer, editor and king of all words, come or go. instant permission to write your story with exactly the amount of words it takes to tell it.

blogs offer a place to try new things; to fail, to grow and succeed. ONLY with this freedom can writing evolve; new styles and voices emerge

and if you're looking to read things different, exciting, edgy; delightfully unpredictable: you're not going to find that in newspapers or consumer magazines

in my opinion, blogs are as important to writers and readers as a mother's breast to newborns

every thing else -just formula.

and i'd love to tell you about the interactive feature; this awesome opportunity blogs offer to not only write, not only read, but RESPOND. revolutionary!

ah, but time's up isn't it. restrictions, restrictions.

create a blog and be free.