Up Portland May 2019

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MAY 2019

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Processed Media By Randy Dankievitch — TV Critic / TVOvermind

The Next Generation of Gaming Consoles: An Exciting Proposition Since the launch of the Playstation 4 and Xbox One in 2013, the gaming landscape’s experienced some seismic shifts. On the game side, big-budget, selfcontained single-player titles have become an increasing minority, giving way to “games as a service” products like Fortnite and Destiny 2, multiplayer-focused products regularly updated with new content. The “indie” game movement also came to life this generation, proving that a small team with a great concept and a tight budget could produce some of the most memorable games of our lifetimes. The technology has changed as well; the Playstation 4 Pro and Xbox One X brought 4K gaming to consoles for the first time, mid-generation upgrades that represented a half step between where gaming was, and where gaming is headed in the near future. Home consoles even got into the virtual reality business, with Sony’s surprisingly successful Playstation VR and Nintendo’s impending Labo VR experiment, another.

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This generation also marked the triumphant return of Nintendo, who returned to glory with the Nintendo Switch, an innovative hybrid console blurring the line between home consoles and portable gaming. After the failure of the Nintendo Wii U, both on a hardware and software level, Nintendo stormed back to prominence with its new console, which delivered two of the generation’s greatest titles, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and Super Mario Odyssey, within the first six months of the console’s life. Next year, the book will begin to close on this generation; 2020 will mark the arrival of Sony’s Playstation 5, and Microsoft’s next, yet-to-be-named console (please name it Xbox One 2, Microsoft – we’re begging you), with Nintendo rumoured to be launching an upgraded version of the Nintendo Switch. The Big Three aren’t alone, either: last month’s column was dedicated to Google Stadia, the internet giant’s foray into the home gaming ring – and with Apple launching a dedicated games subscription service later this year, they’re bound to be players in the next generation of gaming, in some form or another. The future is crowded; but as we inch closer and closer to official reveals of these systems later in 2019, we’re starting to see the very different approaches console manufacturers are taking. In a recent Wired interview, the magazine sat down with Mark Cerny, the lead designer of the Playstation 5, and discussed some of the tech that’s planned to go into Sony’s new system. Reading between the lines of the interview, it’s clear Sony’s planning to double down on technology, preparing an 8K-ready system with ray tracing capabilities (ray tracing is a very fancy, advanced way to create lighting and sound) and an ambitious allSSD storage solution in an attempt to offer “loading screen-free gaming.” Nintendo appears to somewhat be following suit, though their approach is slightly closer to Microsoft than Sony. Nintendo isn’t releasing an entirely new system, but offering two new versions of the Switch; an updated and improved version of the stock hardware, and a cheaper, less technologically advanced version, aimed to satisfy smaller budgets. While they may not be taking the leap to 8K (or even 4K), Nintendo’s essentially adopting the mid-generation upgrade approach we just saw from Sony, with a dual-system release like the Xbox One S/X releases in 2018. Where it gets interesting is comparing Nintendo and Sony’s similar visions, with the approach it seems Google and Microsoft are taking. Google is on the complete other end of the spectrum from Sony, focusing on high-quality game streaming, completely eliminating the need to purchase and own an actual console – ostensibly, someone could play a Playstation 5 game in their browser with Google Stadia --- an appealing proposition for casual gamers or families on a strict gaming budget. Microsoft might be the most interesting case of them all, in what appears to be a half step in every direction; most analysts suggest they’ll release something along the lines of the Playstation 5, perhaps with a few tweaks to maintain the “most powerful console” status it has claimed since the release of the Xbox One X. The recent release of the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition (a disc-less Xbox with the unfortunate acronym Xbox SAD), however, portends a future where Microsoft releases a streaming-only console, a half step between the underpowered Xbox One S, and the console-less proposition of Google Stadia. For the first time in ages, the console gaming industry is at a crossroads. The last few generations have seen Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo take the same approach to evolution: linear improvements that generally maintain the status quo (compare a Playstation 2 with a Playstation 4 if you don’t believe me; they basically look and operate the same, save for some quality-of-life UI improvements). This time around, there are major delineations between companies about what the future of home gaming actually is. Not since 3D gaming arrived has there been the potential for so many dynamic shifts in game development, publishing, and most importantly, enjoyment.

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at Eastern Cemetery

Tour season starting soon Private tours available now!


Starting in June - join us for a guided walking tour of historic Eastern Cemetery. We will run scheduled tours at 11 am every Saturday and Sunday in June, weather permitting. But if you just can’t wait, contact us now at tours@spiritsalive.org and we’ll work with you to set up a private tour at a time that is convenient for you. Cost $10; students and seniors (62+) $5; children under 12 free. Spirits Alive - dedicated to the preservation of historic Eastern Cemetery More info and volunteer opportunities at spiritsalive.org

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Beyond The Forecast

By Jack Sillin / Weatherman & Meterology Student Hello everyone!

In my column last month, I described a potential problem with river flooding given the robust mountain snowpack. Unfortunately, we’ve seen those concerns come to fruition over the past month or so across the state. Rivers and lakes have risen out of their banks, pushing water into neighbourhoods at least near Fryeburg, but perhaps in other places too. With more rain coming in the last few days of April and first week or so of May, continue to keep an eye on the rivers and streams in your neck of the woods, and remember to never drive through flood waters. This month, however, I want to focus on a question most people in Maine usually wonder about this time of year: why does it take Spring so long to get here? While locations at our latitude both to our west in the Plains and to our east in Europe are already enjoying green grass, lush leaves, and blooming flowers, we seem to be stuck in our annual “drizzle, mud, and potholes” season.

can help move the trees and plants along. Here on the coast of Maine, a southerly wind is a very cold wind this time of year, which dramatically reduces the amount of time a plant can enjoy warm weather to move forward with its leaf development.

So why does it take so long for spring to come to Maine?

The ocean has another trick up its sleeve to prevent leaf-out. Oftentimes a cold front will drag not just warm air northward, but moisture too.

To emerge from their Winter slumber, plants need two main ingredients: sunlight and warm temperatures. The amount of each will depend on the individual species of plant, but the more you have of both, the more cheerful your garden will be. Unfortunately, we’re uniquely situated to minimize exposure to both of those items here in Maine --- especially during late April and early May.

When that moist airmass hits the Gulf of Maine, it starts to cool. As it cools, the moisture it holds starts to condense into thick clouds, which often end up moving ashore as fog. The fog not only keeps temps cool, but it also prevents much sunlight from getting through to the ground, which in turn slows down the process of leaf-out.

Starting on the larger scale, the first problem we have getting sunshine and warm temperatures is a phenomenon known as “cutoff low pressure systems.” This is a term used to describe low pressure systems (storms) that get cut off from the larger jet stream. The jet stream provides a storm with most, if not all, of its energy. Without the jet, a storm can’t become very strong. So why do we care about these weak systems?

As you can see, we’re in a bit of a unique spot here in Maine with the number of factors working against the conditions we need for plants to develop their leaves and flowers. Thankfully, as the month of May rolls on, cutoff lows become less common and our cold fronts start to have more southwesterly flow ahead of them instead of southerly flow. That means that over the course of the month, you should notice a pronounced greening up of the landscape, which should be complete by the time I write my next column in preparation for June.

The jet stream doesn’t only provide these systems with an energy source, it also provides them “motivation” to keep moving. With the rare exception of a particularly powerful blizzard, all our Winter storms are fairly short in duration, usually lasting around 12 hours before the jet stream whisks them away into the Canadian Maritimes. Cutoff lows on the other hand can last anywhere from several days to an entire week, as they have no way of moving without the jet. While they don’t produce fierce winds, flooding rains, or heavy snow, they do offer up the same menu of clouds, and thus cool temps, for days on end. This is a great way to slow down the leafing of your favourite plants! Additionally, we have the influence of the Gulf of Maine to contend with this time of year. As I write this on April 26th, the water in the Gulf of Maine is a crisp 41 degrees. If we get even a hint of an onshore component to the wind, we’ll be stuck with temps not far above that --- even under full sun. Typically when a cold front approaches, southerly winds bring warm air that

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Jack’s Weather Terms Adiabatic - Refers to a process in the atmosphere during which the temperature of a parcel might change, but no heat is added to that air parcel from an outside source (the sun, a forest fire, etc.). How is this possible? Consider the case of downslope flow. Air crests the ridgeline of the Presidential range, and starts moving townhill towards Pinkham Notch. As it moves down through Tuckerman Ravine, its pressure increases (as it gets closer to sea level). This increase in pressure is associated with a compression of the air parcel (reduction in volume) which can only come as a result of the surrounding air doing work (the physics kind) on that parcel. This work increases the amount of energy in the parcel (and thus its temperature) but via a mechanical process, not a direct heating process. Diabatic - Refers to a process in the atmosphere during which the temperature of a parcel changes due to some outside addition of heat. This is perhaps much easier to imagine than the case of the adiabatic warming described above. Diabatic processes include latent heat release from phase changes (melting/freezing/evaporation/sublimation), as well as your typical daytime heating when heat is added to the atmosphere from the sun (via absorption by the earth).

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Layne’s Wine Time

Layne V. Witherell / Up Portland Wine Critic


The wineries of today live by the motto “start ‘em up, grow the brand, drive your people like hell and sell it all to either a giant multinational beverage corporation, a hedge fund mogul, or a just plain mogul, mogul.” Which brings us to a winery that was sold by Joe Heitz’s family recently: Heitz Cellars in Napa, California. The wines haven’t changed much since their founding in 1961. Joe Heitz was a trailblazer, irascible, terribly opinionated and usually right. The new owner, Gaylon Lawrence, Jr. has three things for a perfect fit to purchase an iconic winery. The family is big in agriculture, owns banks and knows a legacy when they see one. Today we will look at the wines and thoughts of Joe Heitz. The wines are pricey and have always been pricey. I compare wines like these to test driving different cars: think Prius vs. Mercedes, or their Maybach top of the line sedan and you suddenly have the idea. There is a difference! There is a decades long-developed style to Heitz wines, and they can be always

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be recognised in a pack of Napa Valley grown and made examples. They are patiently crafted, with no shortcuts in the vineyard or winery. They are usually aged longer than their neighbours prior to their release, and they are distinct. There is a serious flavour of place at work here. Let’s quote from the master in an interview he gave to Robert Benson in the book Great Winemakers of California: “I basically believe Mother Nature is a mean old lady, and mankind has to help make wine”. In a word, Joe was no fan of natural wine. His grapes were from totally organic vineyards, but he never put “organic” on the label. His daughter commented “We want to be in the ‘fine wine’ section, not the ‘organic wine’ section. On winemaking (and the business) he said, “intense desire by itself, though, can be total frustration. So other things being equal, the small winery may be able to do a better job. But a bunch of amateurs have come into the business lately because it is a romantic, popular thing to do. I don’t want to knock the small wineries down, because I am one, but that’s not the only answer to making great wine.” There you have it. Joe Heitz never changed his philosophy from day one in 1961. Now let’s look at and taste the fruits of his, and his family’s labours. ---Heitz Cellars Chardonnay, Napa Valley, 2015, $26. Usually a vintage or so behind what you are used to drinking from California. This is on purpose. The young wine is aged on the dead yeast cells for eight months. The “official” term is Sur Lie, the stirring imparts a creaminess to the wine, adding complexity. The blending comprises a combination of older oak barrels and newer oak barrels. Add it all together and you end up with a baking spice character and a long, complex taste. You don’t gulp Heitz wines, you savor and think about them. Serve with lobster, sauced fish dishes, game hen or pheasant (yes pheasant!).

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---Heitz Cellars Zinfandel, Ink Grade Vineyard, Napa Valley, 2014, $30. Heitz has owned this vineyard and made this wine for ages, selling it at a time when Americans thought Zinfandel was pink, sweet and cheap --- which most were. This one never has been. Not much Zinfandel in Napa Valley because Cabernet fetches the big bucks. Blame it on the limo people. 100% Napa Valley Zin, two years in oak, one in the bottle before release. The usual tasting term is briary or brambly. Yes, it is that, but also meaty. Grilled rack of lamb, or some great Mexican food will work beautifully here.

ever produced anywhere. If your Tuesday nite $10 Cabernet is a Prius, and your Heitz Cabernet is a Mercedes, then this wine is a Mercedes Maybach --- the top of the line.

---Heitz Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, 2014, $64. This is when the idea of Napa Valley as a series of unique vineyards on the planet as opposed to a limo ride for a bridal shower kicks in. This is “retro cool” in the words of wine writer James Suckling. There were few who viewed this place as he did. The Mondavi family, Louis Martini, Beaulieu, Inglenook, Beringer Brothers... a very few.

I tasted them all at a trade event. Those one point five-ounce pours are a whiff of a great winemaker like Joe Heitz. I then took the plunge and bought a bottle of the cabernet to have with lamb for dinner. It takes two glasses of these iconic wines to do them justice. Just sayin’.

100% Cabernet Sauvignon is picked from August to October and aged in neutral oak barrels for two years then transferred to a combination of new and used French oak and kept in the bottle for 18 months before release. The flavours of black currants, earth and a finish that lasts for minutes. Classic old school cabernet flavours that need a cut of beef or lamb on the plate. ---Heitz Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon, Trailside Vineyard, 2016, $85. This vineyard is what is referred to as “Rutherford Dirt”. You can smell it, taste it and it surrounds you. 100 % Cabernet, 100% Rutherford sub-region of Napa Valley. Two years in French oak, one in the bottle. If you like your wines to cellar, this is your wine. Lay it down to quietly mature and forget about it for a decade. Or, if you want a lesson in tannin in a Napa Cabernet, this is it. ---Heitz Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon, Martha’s Vineyard, 2014, $234. Yes, that is per bottle, not per case. “Heitz Martha’s” is one of the most iconic wines

To paraphrase Matt Kramer, a great wine writer, he summed it up with “great wines offer up both surprise and complexity.” You need both in abundance in the glass to fetch that kind of money. Oh, yeah, don’t forget that eucalyptus character, but everyone has said that.

(EDITORS NOTE: Layne is a professional in the wine business with over 30 years experience. He can be reached at lvwitherell@gmail.com for talks and consulting. His website is http://winemaniacs.wordpress.com Layne is also hosting an event “Layne’s Wine Gig” every second Friday of the month from 4.30 to 5.30 at Port City Blue 650A Congress St. $12 gets you four three-ounce pours and a rollicking schtick of a good time. Be there!).

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Mark: My Words By Mark Gatti / Mark’s Hotdogs Hola! Celebrating 30 years of marriage in style, to Spain did we go. It was my second trip ever to the continent and what an eventful, mostly fun, trip it was. I’m glad I decided to reserve one and a half weeks for this vacation as we lost one and a half days to flight cancellations and delays. We finally arrived in Malaga, where we rented a car and independently forged ahead --- no group package tours for us! First destination was the beautiful mountain town of Frigiliana. Our stay here featured a hike from the coastal town of Nerja over four mountain passes ending at Frigiliana. It was listed as a moderate hike of four hours. We soon found out that trails in Spain are not as clearly marked as in the States, meaning it took one hour just finding the trailhead! Also, what passes as a moderate hike in Spain would be a difficult one back home --- even in Maine. Once on the trail, the scenery was breathtaking, reminding one of our Southwest, only a little bit lusher and greener. However, after three hours we had managed to cross only two of the passes and were struggling to stay on the poorly marked trail. This despite some guidance from a young German hiking couple and hiking guidebook. Arriving at a small stream and crossing it, confusion reigned supreme on the other side. The trail markings were numerous and not decipherable. After a futile searches, taking an hour, we decided to head back to Nerja.

gressiveness. Wife Susan did a great job as navigator and GPS operator. However, the old section of Córdoba is a complex maze of narrow one-way streets filled with pedestrians and all sorts of motorized vehicles: small and large. Only once did I get in the wrong direction on a one-way, somehow managing to extricate quickly without bashing into something. Susan wisely got directions to the hotel parking garage after we were told we were driving in a resident only territory. Once safely there it was time for strong drink at the nearest watering hole. Cordova is a fantastic city with a lot of Moorish architecture. We spent our time in strict pedestrian style, sampling sangria, local mouthwatering foods and taking a lot of stunning photos. Next on the itinerary was Ronda, a small city built on a cliff and renowned as a bull fighting mecca. This is where Hemingway hung out and it’s easy to see why, as the city is so pretty. We had a spry 79-year-old guide take us on a two-hour walking tour. We enjoyed all the spectacular buildings and views, all the while marveling at the fitness of our guide. Spain is the second most mountainous country in Europe so most of the streets we walked had steep inclines. While in Ronda we lodged at a spectacular hacienda on the outskirts of town. Located in the middle of a massive grove of olive trees, it was (years ago) the residence of a wealthy countess. We had the run of the stately mansion to ourselves as there were no other guests present. At $80 a night it may prove to be the best deal of our lives. Due to its lavish surroundings, we didn’t bother going out at night --- it was so nice there. It was a pleasure also seeing an 89-year-old shepherd with his heard of sheep grazing on the hacienda grounds. It was like going back in time. A friendly gentleman, we communicated with hand and arm gestures because of our language barrier. He reminded me of myself as I quite often use facial expressions and arm waving while I desperately try to communicate with tourists at my food stand. Traveling on, we motored over to the tiny village of Bubion, nestled high up in the snowcapped peaks of the Sierra Nevadas. This beautiful town consists of whitewashed homes that all feature chimneys that look like so many lighthouses. Scattered about every few miles are other similar looking towns. What a treat to hike from town to town enjoying shopping, drinking, dining and more great photo taking. Once again, the trails were poorly

Comfortable in our knowledge of the way back, the stress and anxiety was now reduced to, “can I make it?” Due to lots of elevation and not hydrating enough I suddenly became super fatigued. I was only able to walk 15 or so steep steps at a time. My more fit and athletic wife claimed she got a surge of adrenaline as she realised that she needed to keep her haggard husband alive. Force-feeding me a granola bar, I vaguely remember I was so dry that the crumbs collected around my lips, she also had me drink most of the rest of our water. Thankfully, I was revived enough to hike up the last mountain pass and then stumbled downhill the rest of the way. Safely back from Frigiliana, we dined on the most delicious paella and drank luscious local wine at a great restaurant. We giddily giggled through our meal, so happy we were not spending the night in the woods. The rest of our trip featured safer hikes. The gorgeous city of Cordova was our next to visit. Getting to our hotel proved challenging. I did all the driving due to my still decent motoring skills and ag-

marked, but we never felt lost because we could always see a whitewashed town in the super scenic vista. The locals are very friendly, and we had a great time up in those mountains. Nearing the end of our trip, we headed back to the city of Malaga. While travelling on the friendly freeway a speedy car passed me in the passing lane. Thinking we were on a divided highway, Susan voiced her alarm. Me driving and her navigating were good choices. Home now for three weeks I have gained a new perspective. Sixty years old, thoughts of slowing down the work pace and enjoying more of Mother Earth’s beautiful offerings near and far occupies my mind more now than ever before. I have lost too many friends the last few years and with my health still good, thoughts of more adventures are ever more enticing. However, I’m not well-heeled enough to retire just yet and I don’t want to. I still very much enjoy my friends and customers at the stand and love talking and/or hand signing to the many tourists who visit Portland. I must admit, though, to a bit of jealousy after meeting up with tourists from Europe my age already fully retired! Till next time, happy trails! --- Mark G.

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PERFECT LUNCH? Start with FREE parking that is ALWAYS available at DiMillo’s!

If you’re looking to enjoy a delicious lunch with friends or family, DiMillo’s is the perfect place. Fabulous lunch specials every day! Huge selection of beer and wines. Amazing views of the harbor from every table. Family members are aboard every day to greet you. Come aboard and you’ll soon see, and taste, why DiMillo’s has been named Maine’s number one family-owned restaurant!

Portland’s One - Of-A-Kind Restaurant In the Old Port, Portland, ME

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Always free parking while you’re on board.

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Food For Thought... We in Portland have a terrible problem... and that’s that there are so many restaurants here, oftentimes we forget about one we have eaten at for ages... years even. That’s the case with me and Flatbread at 72 Commercial Street. I think I went there about 2016, but then, for whatever reason, it slipped off my radar until some friends invited us to join them there on a recent evening for dinner. Fortunately, we were free, and Flatbread was not yet lined up out the door as is often the case in season. It was a marriage that was meant to be, because we had some great food, good service and the views out over Casco Bay (even from the indoor dining room, as it was a bit chilly for the outside) all came together to make for a fun evening. I will confess that I had some second thoughts about going to Flatbread because I am not a huge fan of woodfired ovens and I don’t much like smoky foods. But, I do like pizzas and salads, and that turned my maybe to a loud yes.

and without aggravation. That, too, is a lesson more than a few of our Portland eateries could learn. But I digress. The food was little short of delicious. The amount of toppings was more than ample, and our staffer did a great job of getting things out promptly, and checking back, but not “hovering” as some staffs love to do. That also got Flatbread an extra star from me. So do I have any complaints? Well, there is that lack of my beloved anchovies, but aside from that in a rare occasion for me, not really. What came out was as requested. Staff did a good --- no a great --- job of serving, The pizzas were hot. They checked back for additional drink orders, and at the end promptly brought the bill. It does need explaining that Flatbread is a chain, but a very unique one. In addition to the one in Portland, there is another Maine location in Rockport, and there are others in Portsmouth, the Boston area and (yes, really) British Columbia, Hawaii and Texas... There are 17 in all by our count.

It was a case of “glad I did” because not only did I enjoy our good friends’ company, but those pizzas were wonderful. The menu at Flatbread is pretty much “just” two things: Pizzas and salads. But before you turn the page and say “not for me” allow me to explain there are myriad choices and everything we had --- from a couple specials to my pretty traditional cheese, pepperoni and sausage was excellent. Probably my only complaint is that there’s nary an anchovy in the house, which when it comes to me and pizzas is like lobster with no melted butter or pancakes without Maine Maple Syrup --- in short, unthinkable. Shoving that disappointment aside, my partner and I split a salad, as did our hosts. There were more than enough greens, trimmings and some great blue cheese to go around. So much so that I did not even notice the kelp and other “healthy stuff” which was lurking under the wonderful house-made dressing. Next (and in short order, too) came the main dish. And the pizzas here not only arrived hot, but with everything as ordered. That included one of the hosts’ requests for a change in what was on the menu...a change which Flatbread accommodated happily

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Pricing (though we were being treated) was more than fair with my all sorts of meat pizza coming in around $20; the salads $7.75 (menu says: Organic mesclun and organic sweet leaf lettuces tossed with organic celery and carrots, toasted sesame seeds, Maine sea kelp and our homemade ginger-tamari vinaigrette.) and the dinner for four came in at about half what similar would have cost down the road at Fore Street or one of the “trendier” spots which crowd the Old Port. The best way to find out more is to visit them down on Commercial Street, or online at www.flatbreadcompany.com/portland/ Or just take my word for it and go eat! Hours for the Portland restaurant are Sundays thru Thursdays from 11 a.m. till 9 p.m., and weekends from 11 a.m. till 10 p.m. Now if we could just do something about the tight parking down in the Old Port...

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Sauntering With Mat

By Mat Robedee / Up Portland Commentator

(EDITOR’S NOTE---Mat is just back from a Far East adventure and will be telling readers of Up Portland all about that next month, once he unpacks, gets his body clock back on Eastern Time and reacclimates to Maine. Meanwhile, as warm weather is finally starting to appear, we are reprinting a column he did about MDI and Acadia National Park a few Springs ago, with a reminder that now’s a great time for we locals to go visit, before it’s a mob scene, as it always is during peak season.) It was the first weekend this year that Summer could be felt in the air, so I decided to celebrate by having a real Maine adventure. Knowing that Mount Desert Island was roughly a three hour drive from Portland, I took a Friday off, threw my bike on the car rack and was on the road. Mount Desert is a true state treasure and home to the gorgeous Acadia National Park. This is a place that not only overflows with magnificent beauty, natural wonders and rich history but a park that in 2016 marked its centennial year. Luckily, I knew the park well and timed my trip perfectly to avoid the masses. To this day, I have yet to meet a person who has ever had a negative thing to say about Acadia; other than its horrible traffic and overly crowded tourist season. Mount Desert Island itself has a long Maine history. It was in 1916 that President Woodrow Wilson established Sieur de Monts National Monument, which later in 1919, was changed to Lafayette National Park. In doing so, the land became the first national park east of the Mississippi. It was not until 1929 that it underwent one last official name change to Acadia National Park. This name selection was likely in honour of the prior French colony of Acadia, which once included Maine. In total, the park contains 47,000 acres and is famous for its 120+ miles of hiking trails, granite peaks and striking landscape - especially that of Cadillac Mountain. Sitting at 1,530 feet, Cadillac Mountain is tallest mountain on the U.S. Atlantic seaboard and I have also heard that the mountain is the first place in the United States that the sun strikes upon rising — something I have personally witnessed several times while basking in the morning glow. All I can

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say is that if you can and are able to; do not miss out on such an experience. If hiking is not an option for you, luckily the view can still be seen by driving up to the summit via its auto road. One of the greatest attractions of Acadia is the breathtaking network of carriage roads, which run extensively throughout the park... miles of carriage roads originally built by John D. Rockefeller Jr., between 1913 and 1940. Rockefeller was an experienced horseman who wanted to enjoy and travel the land without encountering motor vehicles. He financed, designed and directed the construction of the network of carriage trails throughout the park — 57 miles worth, a dozen of which currently are private land. Rockefeller not only had a long and respected history on Mount Desert Island, but he had a massive influence on the park we see today. The carriage roads seem to be something pulled straight out of Narnia or some other fantastical land. Traffic free and shared amongst hikers, bikers, horseback riders and carriages. Upon each twist and turn, or up and down, one can get spectacular views of the ocean, island lakes, mossy pine forests, marshes and mountains. The carriage roads are near perfection because they were built to be so. When being designed, they were specifically constructed to flow with the natural setting, rather than re-shaping the earth in its place. Scattered throughout the network of carriage roads are 17 granite bridges and two gate lodges, which are in themselves worth taking this trip. Due to being built for carriages, the roads are perfect for bikes. Take note that they certainly have their ups and downs but for the most part, the riding is smooth and easy. I packed a lunch and decided to make a day out of it, knowing the slightly overcast day would keep me cool. After 16 miles and over a hundred times going “whoooooa” due to the non-stop vistas and beauty, I called it a day. I would strongly recommend getting a warmup in prior to taking these roads on, because, at least for me, after a Winter of hibernation and then pushing out 16 miles, I could barely walk the next day. Perhaps next time I’ll have to try this on horseback...

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Maine Jewish Museum

Opening Reception: Thursday, May 16, 2019 5pm-7pm Exhibition: May 16, 2019 to July 5, 2019 First Friday Art Walk: June 7 and July 5, 2019 5pm-8pm

Letter to Sun: Edwige Charlot Spiegel Gallery

Ebb & Flow

Innovative Techniques

Third Floor Sanctuary

Fineberg Family Community Room

Linda Hirsch

Photography Curator - Nanci Kahn


Maine Jewish Museum

267 Congress Street, Portland, ME 04101 (207) 773-2339 Monday - Friday 10am-4pm + Sundays 1pm - 5pm or by appointment mainejewishmuseum.org Nancy Davidson, Curator in Residence

In Print * Online * On Social Media

Call Us Today & Find Out How To Promote Your Business 207/536.0922 Page 16

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Around The Peninsula... Some Upcoming Events To Note... MAD HORSE PRESENT TOMB OF KING TOT

We Have Been Lucky in the Midst of Misfortune published last year is Stern’s third collection of poems and one of the poems in the collection, The Interview, was nominated for a 2018 Pushcart Prize. Called “Breathtaking” by poet Brooks Haxton, We Have Been Lucky in the Midst of Misfortune explores what is to be human in a world that is so often fraught with fracture and dissonance. “The title of her collection is taken directly from a letter the author’s grandfather wrote from the front lines as a Jewish soldier fighting for the Germans in World War I. Turning complex feelings into love poems to the reader,” writes fellow poet Marilyn Kallet. Stern is also the author of two previous collections, But Today Is Different and Another Word For Love. A meet & greet reception will follow the service.

The Mad Horse Theatre Company presents The Tomb of King Tot by Olivia Dufault in the historic Hutchins School, 24 Mosher Street, South Portland. The play alternates between reality and imagination, laugh-out-loud humour and tragedy as cartoonist Jane Haley grapples with death, love and responsibility. Directed by company member Reba Askari, The Tomb of King Tot is the story of comic strip creator Jane Haley. She is nominated for the Chuckling Willow award but when tragedy strikes the Haley household Jane copes by working furiously on her strip. Her art suffers as her main character wanders through the Land of the Dead looking for his “mummy”. The play makes the case for whimsy as a filter both for shutting out and eventually coming to terms with an unforgiving world. The play runs 16th May thru 2nd June with curtain times Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings at 7.30 and Sunday afternoons at 2. There will be an opening night public reception immediately following the Friday, 17th May performance with light snacks, and time to mingle with the cast, crew, and fellow theatre lovers. Tickets are $23 for adults and $20 for seniors. All under 25’s pay-what-you-can for all performances. As always, Mad Horse offers pay-what-you-can performances for all ages during the first two Thursday performances and one Sunday matinee. Pay-what-you-can tickets are only available at the door on a first-come, first-served basis. Reserve and purchase tickets online at www.madhorse.com or call 747.4148. HELP CLEAN UP ON INDIA STREET The annual India Street clean up day has been postponed to Sunday, 5th May and all are welcome to join in. Volunteers will meet at Cloudport (63 Federal Street) for coffee, pastries, mimosas and networking at 9 a.m., followed by the clean-up from 9.30 to 11.30. After that, there will be a pizza and beer lunch back at Cloudport. Those planning to take part are asked to please bring work/garden gloves if you have some. Audet Enterprises will be doing the heavy lifting again this year with blowers and street sweepers graciously provided, and the India Street Neighbourhood Association will provide rakes, brooms, trash bags and latex gloves. The association would like to thank their food and beverage sponsors for helping make this all happen: Two Fat Cats Bakery, Portland Food Co-op, Amato’s Sandwich Shop, Shipyard Brewery and Friendly Discount Beverage. AUTHOR & POET SARAH STERN TO SPEAK AT ETZ CHAIM Author and poet Sarah Stern will be the guest speaker at the Friday evening service at 7 p.m. on the 10th of May at Etz Chaim, Congress & India streets.

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The Standard Reviewer By Randy Dankievitch — TV Critic / TVOvermind Don’t Look Now, but NBC’s Comedies Are Good Again Once the quintessential home for comedy (though CBS did give them a run for their money with everything from I Love Lucy to Mary Tyler Moore, M*A*S*H and All in the Family) NBC’s legacy in the post-30 Rock/Community/Parks and Recreation era has been an extremely mixed bag. For every The Good Place, there’s been a half-dozen 1600 Penns or One Big Happys – and when the network has stumbled onto low-key hits like The Carmichael Show or shows like Powerless with tons of potential, they’ve unceremoniously cancelled them (RIP Great News).

Bringing back Will and Grace was less luck, and more shrewd calculation. Its return in 2017 was triggered by the wave of Reboot-itis every network suffered once Netflix started revitalising dead shows. Brooklyn Nine-Nine’s move to NBC, however, was a markedly different decision, a true moment of redemption for the network: after developing the concept six years ago, NBC made the initial decision to pass on Brooklyn’s original pilot, where it was quickly picked up by Fox, a choice NBC’s openly regretted in recent years. Saving Brooklyn was not just a plea to bring comedy fans back into the fold; it was a direct response to its own philosophies of yesteryear, an encouraging sign that NBC’s development executives had learned their lesson from a few years earlier. Network success is fleeting, of course, and five years from now there are bound to be “Is NBC Must-See TV Dead?” articles floating around the internet. Thus is the cyclical nature of modern network broadcasting in the streaming age: a diluted field of content, talent and limited creative freedom. But right now, NBC has quietly built the strongest comedy lineup it has had in 15 years --- a return to glory for the once mighty network.

A tumultuous era to say the least, NBC’s struggled to find its footing in the comedy world this past decade, falling into a distant third in the ratings behind CBS and ABC (Fox is barely in the comedy game at this point), and lacking distinct, quality shows to rebuild its signature brand around. Many point to the high-concept The Good Place as the rebirth of NBC’s brand; which is surprising, considering how it was not the kind of show NBC could theoretically build around: too intricately written and expensive produced to be replicated effectively (Remember all those LOST clones eight years ago? Did you really want another The Event?). Everyone pontificated on where NBC might “go next” - when in reality, the network had already started rebuilding its comedy brand with the previous year’s debut of Superstore. Superstore, now in its fourth season, remains the hidden gem of NBC’s lineup; an ensemble comedy set at a fictional Wal-Mart clone, Superstore unexpectedly filled the void left by the network’s other iconic workplace comedies of the 21st century, and is the true signal of the media giant’s comedic rebirth. With Superstore, NBC had finally found a quality series to build around – which it has continued to do, catalyzed by a number of savvy programming decisions.

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Almost overnight, NBC has developed one of the most entertaining, versatile comedy lineups on network television, despite only having a paltry seven shows to its name. Led by The Good Place and Superstore, NBC’s comedy line up has quietly become one of the best on television (even after its premature cancellation of Great News, the true 30 Rock successor), with the addition of shows like A.P. Bio and its newest addition, the wonderfully laid back Abby’s. It’s done so by taking measured creative chances; while none of its comedic offerings are particularly high concept or feature mega famous, audienceattracting stars, they’ve allowed small shows to build a following --- both commercially and critically --- and let those shows organically build their worlds and narratives (while every show is going to be inundated by network notes and suggestions, the hands off feeling a show like Superstore has is wildly encouraging). There’s a second prong to their comedic resurrection, in the form of bringing back canceled series. The two most watched comedies on the network are the uneven Will & Grace revival and Brooklyn Nine-Nine, network television’s best comedy, which had been canceled by Fox last Spring.

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Hackin’ The Net By Ted Fleischaker / Publisher It never ceases to amaze me that some folks think most or all things are indestructible. This makes me harken back to my days when I rode motorcycles and constantly had my bike in the shop because it had a broken this or that... and I got lectured by staff there about not being quite so rough on the foot pegs, shift lever or kick-starter. Or my dad, who reminded me often “remember, it’s only metal!” when I was obviously overdoing things on the bike, in the house or elsewhere. But what’s this got to do with computers, phones and electronics? Lately, I’d say a lot, because the more I hear from friends in the biz, the more shocked I am about the way folks treat their gear --- and a lot of it is NOT the iron or steel they build motorcycles or many other things of, but thin plastic, special glass and some bits of aluminium thrown in for good measure. In other words, a lot of the folks who gripe about failure on the part of their phones, tablets or laptops are really saying (but not wanting to) that they have abused their device. Like me repeatedly trying to kick-start that old Honda when I knew the spark plug was shot and there was no way it would turn over, my techie friends see a lot of bent phones, broken or cracked screens and other “injuries” which have been inflicted upon them by their owners. I can only guess why, because here was I a few decades back: not a skinny guy, kicking that motorcycle over and over. If you stop and think about how you treat your device before you abuse it, I bet it will be far less likely to end up in the techie ER or in the electronics graveyard after it arrives at the shop DOA. Let’s look at a few things you, as the owner of a modern phone, tablet or computer can do to at least reduce the chances of failure...

For one thing, unlike that old steel and iron Honda, today’s “stuff” is, as I have said, way more fragile. As metals have been replaced by less durable and thinner cases and materials to keep the device’s weight down, let (especially phones) fit in pockets and make the devices we all buy do more for the same basic “footprint” lots has changed. My first-ever phone was what they politely called a “bag phone”. Invented by Motorola in 1988, on good days it would reach a tower and let me make or receive a phone call. Forget surfing the net (as one didn’t really exist yet) or finding my way via GPS (also not in existence). Never mind playing music, taking photos (we still got ‘em developed and printed at one of those one hour places) and do not even consider using it for watching a movie or TV. It was a phone. It was also bulky, heavy (weight from two pounds up) and the battery would let one chat for about 2 1/2 hours if fully charged. Fast forward to today’s phones. The biggest iPhone ever, the XS Max, comes in at under eight ounces. You can talk for hours, surf, watch films, TV, take pics, e-mail mom and do anything you pretty much can with a computer. But all that convenience has a price. I am not talking dollars (though they ain’t cheap) here, but materials. Apple, Samsung and the other makers of portable gear constantly struggle with how to make it weigh less, but the gadget remain durable. Special glass for the screens, metal strips for use on cases, durable finishes, water resistance and more have all come into play since the last bag phone got consigned to history or a museum over a decade ago. But therein lies the crux of this month’s column: all those changes mean that today’s things are more fragile than many users would suspect. Just like dad said “it’s only metal!” today it’s mostly not. It’s glass, easily-bent aluminium and other components one can damage. It’s not iron or steel at all. And yet so many folks run around treating phones, tablets and laptops like they are indestructible. They aren’t. Hands up everyone reading this who has a cracked screen on your phone right now, or has in the past year. Or who has soaked a phone at the beach, lake or, worst yet, in a toilet. What about anybody who wonders why their phone is bent, but runs around with it in the back pocket of jeans so tight they leave nothing to the imagination? Or worse yet, hanging out of said pocket just waiting to drop onto a concrete sidewalk or parking lot or into a toilet. We all seem to love to abuse our gear. And the more we do, the faster firms are working to find ways to thwart us from ruining it, but unless and until things are bullet proof and totally water tight, let this be a reminder that we all need to take bit better care. Here are a few tips from this columnist: ---Remember those phones will bend and that means the worst place to put one is in your back jeans pocket. Try a coat, shirt or jacket pocket, purse or, at the very least, a front pocket where the pressure is not so great. ---Get a case! You do not have to spring for one of those $100+ ones which it’s claimed will take a bullet and save your phone. But get a case to help with basic protection. Same with a screen cover. Those (I recommend glass ones) will be found for under $5 on places like Amazon. Get one and use it! ---Summer is almost here and those thin batteries, display screens and keyboards do not like getting overheated any more than you or I do. Don’t leave your tablet, phone or laptop in a hot car then wonder why it quit. Most devices do have “overheat” indicators and if yours shows one, get it somewhere cooler and give it a few minutes to get rested. Most (not all, but much) of the time, it will resume operating once it’s cooled off. ---Water is almost every bit of electronic equipment’s worst enemy. Probably the only ones to be feared more are sodas and wine. Any of the above (plus others like liquor or fruit juice) will wreck your phone, laptop or tablet. I know you are sitting out there thinking “Yeah, but I can put that wet phone in rice and it will

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be just fine...” That may help dry stuff out, and it might (Might!) even resume working, but your damage is done and the corrosive effects of especially soft drinks and wine will continue well after things get dry again. Best bet: keep the device away from liquids! Even a simple trick will help. If you are going out to eat or party and simply must get a photo of the dinner or your friends, when not using it, put it back in your pocket or sit your phone on the table with the screen side down away from liquids. That case will keep what you might drop or spill from getting in your phone and let you rest a bit easier. Just watch for that well-meaning waiter doing his or her job and topping up your water or tea, just spilling a few drops. You have been warned! ---Remember your warranty. Whether you use AppleCare for one of their products, a service your carrier sells you or something else, read the warranty carefully and know your rights and obligations. In most cases, liquid damage will void your guarantee. So will physical damage. If you drop that open laptop on a tile floor and the display shatters or the device just quits working, so will your warranty in most cases. Recall my dad’s wisdom and don’t abuse your equipment. It not only is no longer metal, but it’s way easier to get serviced when it still has some life left in it than waiting until it dies. ---This is my broken record I know, but always back up. Having a back up will save your data if you do break, flood or even lose your item. Trust me on this one. Whether you back up, as most do, to the cloud, or as I prefer, to my desktop computer (as I am old school) have a back up somewhere and keep it current. Accidents do happen and devices to sometimes just fail. Be prepared! ---Use common sense. I know being “phoneless” for a day or two may seem like a prison sentence, but if you know you will be somewhere where danger for your gadget lurks, consider leaving it home or get extra protection. If you are canoeing in the Katahdin Woods and Waters or paddling Casco Bay, be aware that they do make special waterproof containers (a sample of which is shown above) which start at as little as $10. Getting and using one, while it might make answering a call a bit tricky will beat drowning that phone. Same is true with off-road motorcycling, mountain climbing or hiking, where sudden rainstorms can wreak havoc as badly as dropping that phone in the bay or river. Finally, give a bit of extra attention to what you do and need day-to-day, then buy accordingly. If you do not need a huge phone, then get a smaller one which will fit in those jeans easier. If you do not plan to make a lot of calls on that kayak journey and you are going with three friends, consider just one or two of you taking phones for emergencies while the others stay at home or locked in the car. In short, do what you can to minimise the chances of breaking, losing or drowning your stuff. At the end of the day you might need to spend a bit more thinking time before you start, but you will thank me if you get wet or fall, but your gear survives. Happy Spring and Summer. Get out and enjoy Maine’s lovely spots, just make sure your gear is as ready to go as you are, and while they don’t make sun screen for iPhones, you now know there are plenty of other ways you can protect one!

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Up Portland Is A Proud Member of the

June Edition Deadline

Friday 31st May Papers On Street: Tuesday 4th June

Up Portland is edited in Portland and printed the last week of every month in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. We may be contacted at the e-mail or phone number below. While every effort is made to ensure accuracy and fairness, the publisher assumes no responsibility for errors. Liability is limited to the cost of said ad. Ads not cancelled by published deadlines may be billed at agreed-upon price. Ads may be edited or rejected for content at the discretion of the publisher. All items appearing in Up Portland, as well as the name, logos and design are copyright 2019 by BBS, A division of High Speed Delivery Fork Ltd. & Ted Fleischaker and may not be reproduced in any form without prior written approval.

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It’s Mother’s Day! S U N DAY M AY 1 2

Make mom’s day with special treats from Two Fat Cats Bakery

Portland — 47 India Street 207.347.5144 Tuesday–Saturday 8am-5pm Sunday 8am-4pm

Pies, cakes, brunch pastries, and more are available for order

South Portland — 740 Broadway 207.536.7713 Tuesday–Saturday 8am-5pm

Order early since our bakery often sells out

www.twofatcatsbakery.com Page 24

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