Since 1988 â€˘ Priceless
From the Bay to the Blue Ridge
Setting the Standard In Old Town Since 1979
november’20 A Division of Crier Media Group OTC Media LLC PO Box 320386 Alexandria, VA 22320 571-257-5437 email@example.com oldtowncrier.com Published the first week of every month. Worth waiting for! PUBLISHER Bob Tagert MARKETING & ADVERTISING Lani Gering Bob Tagert Meg Mullery SOCIAL MEDIA & WEBSITE Ashley Schultz DESIGN & PRODUCTION Electronic Ink 9 Royal Street, SE Leesburg, VA 20175 703. 669. 5502 Sarah Becker F. Lennox Campello Steve Chaconas Scott Dicken Doug Fabbioli Matt Fitzsimmons Nicole Flanagan Lani Gering Miriam Kramer Genevieve LeFranc Sarah Liu Cindy McGovern
CONTRIBUTORS Meg Mullery Melinda Myers Ron Powers Kim Putens Julie Reardon Ashley Schultz Jaime Stephens Bob Tagert Carl Trevisan Ryan Unverzagt Lori Welch Brown Molly Winans
A Bit of History................................................................ 9
Personality Profile ........................................................... 6
From the Bay...................................................................26
Pets of the Month.........................................................21
Alexandria Events............................................................ 3
From the Trainer............................................................40
Points on Pets.................................................................20
Arts & Antiques..............................................................15
Publisher’s Notes.............................................................. 2
Business Profile................................................................. 4
Social Media Message................................................... 2
Special Feature: Around Alexandria......................17
Special Feature: Pets....................................................22
Exploring Virginia Wines............................................38
Take Photos, Leave Footprints.................................20
Financial Focus.................................................................. 8
On the Road with OTC................................................... 1
The Last Word.................................................................11
© 2020 Crier Media Group, Inc. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the written consent of the publisher. The Old Town Crier is published monthly and distributed to select Alexandria residents, hotels, restaurants and retail shops. Also distributed in the Annapolis, Fredericksburg, Blue Ridge and Washington, DC areas and St. John, USVI.
about the cover On the road with OTC The bucolic Blue Ridge in the fall. Photo by Mark Deane
Longtime OTC readers, David and Laurie Norcross are faithful about taking the Crier on their adventures both at home and abroad. Both of these photos were taken in Oxford…Laurie’s was in Oxford, England on one of their many excursions across the pond before the pandemic kicked in. She is standing outside The Eagle & Child Pub in Oxford known by its devoted patrons as “the Bird and the Baby”. The pub was the liquid hangout of The Inklings author CS Lewis and Lord the Rings author JRR Tolkien among other literary types. David was spotted on the Oxford-Bellview Ferry located in the lessor known Oxford, Maryland. This ferry, however, is the oldest known privately owned ferry route having been established in 1683.
With the travel restrictions in force due to the pandemic we haven't had many current submissions from our readers with their OTC's in hand while they are "On the Road". Until things get better, we would like you to send a photo of you and yours (including your furry family members) checking out the publication in the comfort of your own home/patio/pool or man cave or doing something fun and submitting it for publication. We can always create some fun captions! If you would like to see your photo in this space, take a high resolution shot and email it with a description for the caption to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Old Town Crier
November 2020 | 1
As I write this I look out the window and realize that I need to get the leaf blower out and clean the sidewalk out front from the leaves that have fallen since I last blew the leaves away two days ago. Change is in the air. Elections are this month and the pandemic rages on. I think that I am actually looking forward to the first snowfall...something that will change the landscape with soft quiet. Speaking of quiet, this month’s Road Trip brought us back to the quiet town of Berryville in the northern Shenandoah Valley. Our Personality Profile is about Jack Sharp and his Country Store. For this month’s Business Profile we visited Jackie Baily Labovitz in Sperryville, Virginia. In Take Photos/Leave Footprints Scott Dicken pairs personalities with travel destinations. Speaking of pairings, Matt Fitzsimmons teaches us about pairing Virginia wines with the correct dishes in Grapvine. With cooler weather approaching here it could be a good time to head to the Caribbean. In Caribbean Connection learn about some of the islands travel restrictions. In From the Bay learn about the role the beavers play in the Chesapeake watershed. If you are worried about putting on the pounds during this holiday season, check out From the Trainer for portion control. I hope that everyone takes the opportunity to vote this year and more importantly, that your vote was counted. I do believe Virginia’s early voting eased the stress factor. By the time many of you may be reading this we will know what direction we are going. Let’s just hope is the right one. We celebrate Veteran’s Day every November 11th. Please take the time to thank those who serve and protect us on a daily basis. I also wish all of you all a very Happy Thanksgiving. Large family gatherings may be few and far between this year but our love for one another is still very important. And remember...wear that mask. They are becoming fashionable.
The Publisher salutes Veteran’s Day with the bronze likeness General Dwight D. Eisenhower located on American Way in National Harbor.
SOCIAL MEDIA MESSAGE
Learn How to Cook, Social Media Style!
n the past, your only teaching tools when it came to cooking were hardcover recipe books, note cards from family members, and anyone you knew who was able to cook really well. While those are all still things you can take advantage of in order to improve your cooking skills, there is a lot more out there. One of the most powerful tools, of course, is social media like Pinterest and Facebook, though there are many other options. So how exactly can social media help improve your cooking skills? How can you use it to become an expert in the kitchen? Below you will find some of the most popular ways social media can work to your advantage when it comes to 2 | November 2020
cooking. With platforms like Pinterest, you have a dramatic increase in exposure to new recipes. Users can post ones they have created or ones passed down in their families. This opens up a range of potential recipes you cannot get through traditional cookbooks. With that said, some authors will publish select recipes from their cookbooks as a way to tease the audience and entice them into buying the full book. As you see more recipes online, you will also find an increasing range in difficulty levels, which means you have more recipes at your skill level. They also tend to be broken down more, in that the transition from beginner to
expert recipes is more gradual than what you might see in a traditional cookbook. There are even channels that have recipes that are easier for children to make, even though I have seen plenty of children on shows like MasterChef and Chopped that could cook me under the table!! Many popular chefs and cookbook authors are available on social media platforms like Facebook, which means you have the ability to ask specific questions about a recipe or cooking technique you are trying, as well as obtain general advice about improving your cooking skills. Since it is social media, rather than writing a letter, you also tend to get faster responses. Popular chefs are not the only ones you can ask
as well. Social media allows you to connect with others on your skill level, as well as food bloggers. The range of potential sources of advice you have access to is astronomical. One of my favorites is through the channel Tasty, that is always posting some sort of “tasty” meal or treat! In addition to the wealth of recipes you now have access to through social media channels, you can also find lots of tricks for cooking. This includes details on cooking times for different varieties of rice, information on ingredients that can act as popular substitutes (great for making gluten-free recipes or managing other dietary restrictions), as well as information on how you can
use different pieces of kitchen equipment and utensils in unconventional ways while you are cooking. These tricks can make complicated recipes much easier for you to handle. The sheer volume of recipes available to you through social media is enough to be a significant help in improving you cooking skills. However, what tips social media over the edge and makes it a powerhouse is the ability it gives you to ask experts for advice and how it shares simple tricks to make your life easier in the kitchen. You might just pick up a few new pointers for your Thanksgiving feast this year. Old Town Crier
Alexandria EVENTS & INFORMATION
With the current situation with the COVID-19 virus all schedules events have been cancelled. We will post as we get information, in the meantime we encourage you to connect with the Alexandria Convention and Visitors Association at:
VisitAlexandriaVA.com Blog.VisitAlexandriaVA.com Facebook.com/VisitAlexandriaVA Twitter.com/AlexandriaVA Instagram.com/VisitAlexVA Hashtags: #visitALX Ramsey House Visitors Center at the corner of King and Fairfax is now open.
NOV. 21 Tree Lighting Ceremony 2020 Market Square Corner of King and Fairfax Streets Old Town Alexandria
On King Street in the heart of Old Town, the City of Alexandria’s 40foot tree rises tall on Market Square in front of City Hall featuring nearly 40,000 twinkling white lights. With the absence of the Scottish Christmas Walk and Boat Parade, this year’s tree lighting takes on a special meaning. It is something familiar to look forward to going into this holiday season.
Small Business Saturday
Torpedo Factory Art Center 105 N Union Street
Support local artists businesses and join us for in-person shopping over all 3 floors of the Art Center. Find additional specials online by browsing artist pages via the Torpedo Factory Art Center web site. Torpedofactory.org
When you shop local to find that one-of-a-kind gift this holiday season, you’ll be supporting Alexandria’s small businesses when they need it most.
At the time of this writing there was no additional information about other activities highlighting Small Business Saturday but please check the Visit Alexandria site at VisitAlexandriaVA.com for updated information.
ABOUT ALEXANDRIA, VA Named the #1 Best Value U.S. Travel Destination 2018 by Money magazine, a Top 3 Best Small City in the U.S. 2019 by the Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards and one of the South’s Prettiest Cities 2018 by Southern Living, Alexandria hums with a cosmopolitan feel and a walkable lifestyle—a welcoming weekend escape next to our nation’s capital. A nationally designated historic district founded in 1749, Old Town Alexandria is home to more than 200 independent restaurants and boutiques alongside intimate historic museums and new happenings at the waterfront. At the heart of it all is bustling King Street, a walkable mile recognized as one of the “Great Streets” of America. New restaurants tucked in to 18th- and 19thcentury architecture still intact from the city’s days as George Washington’s hometown ignite historic and off-the-beaten-path neighborhoods as the waterfront district evolves with new energy. Old Town Crier
Learn more at VisitAlexandriaVA.com/ShopSmall
Alexandria Holiday Shopping Guide Available November 9
November 2020 | 3
COTTAGE CURATOR 12018A LEE HIGHWAY SPERRYVILLE, VA 22740 540-773-2700 COTTAGECURATOR.COM
Cottage Curator Art Gallery The “Sweet Spot” in Sperryville, VA
SWEET SPOT AN OPTIMUM POINT OR COMBINATION OF FACTORS OR QUALITIES.
Jackie Bailey Labovitz photograph 4 | November 2020
he Cottage Curator isn’t your run of the mill art gallery. It is not only a combination of a very eclectic exhibit of art in all mediums, it’s proprietor, Jackie Bailey Labovitz, is an experienced curator who offers her expertise organizing personal collections. Jackie brings her expertise of over 30 years of curating collections for embassies and corporations – as well as public spaces - all over the world to your home or office. Bailey Labovitz is also a very accomplished, award winning photographer whose works have been on exhibit in the Smithsonian and published world-wide. She is probably most well known for her collection of flora and fauna images titled “UNDERstory” and her images of animals, birds and insects featured in her “Simple Gifts” collection. Each one of her photographs is a piece of art. She is a true example of “small town girl makes it in the big city”. Her works currently reside in permanent collections of the National Academy of Sciences, the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley, the Thomas Jefferson Foundation, and Johns Hopkins Medicine, Wilmer Eye Institute. She has a very interesting story of her own that we will reserve for a profile down the road. In addition to Bailey Labowitz’ work, several BUSINESS PROFILE > PAGE 5
Old Town Crier
pieces on exhibit at any given time at Cottage Curator are also museum quality and have spent some time on exhibit in the Smithsonian and other well-known museums. She has a very discerning eye and doesn’t hang or exhibit anything that she doesn’t love herself. Local, regional and nationally recognized artists and artisans are and have been featured in this little gallery. At the time of my interview, I was particularly taken with the works of James Carter that is currently hanging – “Bird Call” and “Bird Watch”. They are very clever. All of the pieces on exhibit in the gallery have a back story that makes them more than just a “piece of art’. I think that is something that sets Cottage Curator apart from most other galleries of its caliber as well. They say that a picture is worth a thousand words so I will leave it up to you. Cottage Curator is located in Rappahannock County (home of the infamous Inn at Little Washington) on what could be considered the
“outskirts” of the little burg of Sperryville, Virginia. It sets back from the intersection of Routes 211 (Lee Highway) and 522 next to the three-hole golf course and Headmasters Pub. As you enter the drive it is on the far left. It is about an hour and a half from Alexandria and definitely worth the drive through the countryside. They are open Friday through Sunday from 11:30 am – 4:30 pm and by appointment. They follow all of the COVID protocols and there are no more than 3 guests allowed in the gallery at a time. They have complimentary hand sanitizer, masks and gloves or you may wear your own. Private viewings are also offered and encouraged. Contact Jackie by phone at 202-345-1733 or email jackie@cottagecurator. com to make arrangements. You can rest assured that you will be greeted with a smile and will learn some things about art and collecting it during your visit. The exhibits change on a regular basis so it is wise to sign the guest register upon your arrival. This will ensure that you will be notified when something new is on display.
BUILT FOR THE ICE DIVER
© 2020 Seiko Watch of America. SPB179
BUSINESS PROFILE| FROM PG 4
FOR MORE INFORMATION VISIT SEIKOLUXE.COM
609 King Street, Old Town Alexandria, VA 22314 | 703-549-0011 KingsJewelry.NET
Shop Early. Ship Early. Clockwise, from left: Bailey Labovitz with her floral collection UNDERstory The Proprietor (left) keeping it Covid appropriate James Carter's Bird Call and Bird Watch
Old Town Pack & Ship Service, Inc. • In-house packing • Wooden crates for delicate items • Small and large items • Shipment anywhere using UPS, FedEx and others • Free pickup service in Old Town Alexandria
102 South Alfred St. Old Town Alexandria 703.549.7167 [fax] 703.549.7168 www.vatopservices.com Old Town Crier
November 2020 | 5
JACK SHARP Right Around the Bend
Jack and Bob 6 | November 2020
have travelled Route 522 between Front Royal and the wineries of Rappahannock and Fauquier Counties from the late 60’s on my motorcycle up until today as I deliver the Old Town Crier to this area each month. In all that time, I have never stopped at the Blue Ridge Grocery & Country Store. I really don’t have a good reason except that it is on a sweeping bend in the road and I was usually going downhill. No time to react. When we were out there in September I passed the store again and Lani said that we should stop...”It looks pretty cool.” Luckily I was going uphill this time and slowing down was easier as I pulled off the road to turn around. This turned out to be one of the better moves in my life. Sitting on the small front porch on a two person bench was the proprietor, Jack Sharp. If Route 522 had been
a country dirt road, I could have been transported back to my youth visiting the small town of Nevils, Georgia, home of my grandparents. This store is certainly a throwback and the man is a perfect match. It was almost like sitting there and reminiscing with my grandfather, but that won’t work this time around...Jack is 75 and I am 73. On the afternoon we went back to write this interview Jack brought out his 1950, Red Chevy pickup truck. He told me had been wanting an older pickup truck. “My wife told me I could get one, but it had to be red”, he tells me. “So I looked on the internet and found this one...showed it to her and she said, ‘What are you waiting for?” A country store was something that Jack had always wanted to own. The original owner of the store used to live in the back and operate the front as a store selling essentials to the locals. Jack bought the store in 1986 and he and his wife Barbara lived in the back as he began to build a permanent home behind the store. As it turns out, Barbara is involved with the store as well. She hand paints signs on the walls, painted the bench out front as well as the mats that adorn the porch – she also takes care of all of the technology related work. “She is very artistic,” he brags. As we retreated to the shade of the front porch I went to my truck to fetch a bottle of Copper Fox Single Malt whiskey that I had purchased earlier that day at the distillery. “I have the real stuff inside”, he tells me, “It was just made the other day!” We passed on the moonshine
and hit the single malt...”Just a little”, he said, “I am a sipper.” Jack Sharp is a man of many talents. Right out of high school he worked at a shipyard for several years. After that he joined the Naval Air Reserve and completed his tour of duty. After that he worked for a contractor that had business with NASA and, as a photo lab technician, he helped develop the film of the Apollo moon pictures in 1967. One of the first persons to witness the earth rising behind the moon. Jack’s next adventure was working for Smith-Corona on photocopy equipment. His first assignment was to go to the White House to work on a photocopy machine. “I was driving around looking for a place to park and couldn’t find a single spot so I thought, the hell with this...I am going in,” he says. “I was driving a VW Beetle and the main gate was a little bit open, so I drove in. A guard flagged me down as my hubcap hit the iron gate as I came to a stop,” he remembers. Turns out, by the time the car stopped the guard had Jack out of the car and up against a wall as other guards scrambled. After about 45 minutes they finally said, “Get out of here.” The photocopier didn’t get fixed, he had to face his boss. “I never got to go to the White House again,” Jack laughs. Jack’s best comment about owning the store is that it is fun. His customers are equally divided between locals and tourists who he can hear turning around down the hill. The store is quite the experience. Anywhere from soft drinks to snacks to Moon PERSONALITY PROFILE > PAGE 7
Old Town Crier
PERSONALITY PROFILE | FROM PAGE 6
Pies, this place has it all. Jack is also an avid wood worker and had built a shop in the basement of his house. He has built birdhouses, used woodworking skills to make wine stoppers, whirligigs and walking sticks. He has just about everything in this store and as Jack says, ‘’If we ain’t got it-you don’t need it!” To capture the real meaning of this place and this man, there is a hand drawn sign out front that says Beware of Dog, with “Dog” crossed out and below it reads “Wife”. When asked what happened Jack responds,” the dog died!” After meeting Barbara, she admitted that changing the sign was her idea! Jack met his wife in 1987 while working for Raytheon which was bought out by Telex. “She was the security officer at the headquarters of Delta in Oklahoma and I was the branch manager in D.C. I needed things done yesterday and Barbara was my contact,” he says. Jack had to make a business trip to the Oklahoma headquarters so he called Barbara and suggested
A sample of Jack’s birdhouses.
Jack’s wine stoppers.
that they get together for lunch. “I remember when she came down the little spiral staircase, and I thought “My Goodness!!!” Thus started a long distance relationship and I bet he racked up few frequent flyer miles. They were married in 1988. When asked, why this place? Jack responded, “I always wanted to buy property outside of D.C., you have got to get out of D.C. For many
years I would drive around on weekends with a friend looking for a place. While looking at some property in Rappahannock we happened into Little Washington and I picked up a brochure that had this place listed,” he says. After he got home Jack began to think about it and thought, I have got to have that! Jack called a realtor but could get no answers so he and his friend drove out the next
weekend. “I drove up, parked right where your truck is and thought, I have to buy this, I need to buy it today.” Jack got into the store and found out it was a total disaster, but discovered that the store had to be operational in six months or they would lose their grandfather clause. The agent asked jack if he wanted to make an offer, which Jack did and had $20 in his pocket for a down payment. SOLD.
About this time Barbara showed up and the party began. If you are coming down the mountain from Chester Gap slow down and look for the Blue Ridge Store on the left...it is definitely worth the stop. It took me 40 years. And you know, Jack is right...I they ain’t got it, you don’t need it! But, I will add... you will want it!
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November 2020 | 7
CARL TREVISAN, CFP© & STEPHEN BEARCE
How the CARES Act Could Yield Tax Benefits for Charitable Giving
any individuals are looking for ways to give back during the coronavirus pandemic. What you may not know is that the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act contains provisions that could make it easier to take tax deductions on charitable donations in 2020. Here are possible charitable giving options that you may want to consider.
generous gifts, you could potentially offset all of your taxable income for 2020. Likewise, cash gifts could potentially be used to offset Roth IRA conversion income or capital gains realized upon the sale of a concentrated position or real estate. The CARES Act waived required minimum
distributions (RMDs) in 2020—but qualified charitable distributions (QCDs) are still allowed for
anyone age 70½ or older from a Traditional and Inherited Traditional IRA.
Determining the best way to give Given the expanded options available, you may want to consider one or more of the following: • QCDs. Distributions are tax-free and not
Charitable contribution changes in the CARES Act For 2020, there’s no income limit on the deduction of cash gifts to eligible charities, excluding donoradvised funds or other supporting organizations. (The deduction for cash gifts to donor-advised funds is still limited to 60% of adjusted gross income.) If you’re in a position to make
included in adjusted gross income. Future RMDs may be smaller since distributions lower the year-end balance, which could result in future tax benefits if tax rates increase in later years. • Cash gifts to eligible charities. These may be deductible up to $300 in addition to the standard deduction. This is a benefit to those who do not itemize deductions. You may offset up to 100% of adjusted gross income if you itemize your deductions, providing a current tax benefit. • Stock gifts. These provide a current tax benefit if you itemize your deductions; they also allow you to avoid taxation on the stock’s appreciation. Deductions for stock gifts are limited to 30% of adjusted gross income when contributing to public charities. Before taking any action, consult with a tax advisor to help determine the best possible outcome.
Wells Fargo Advisors and its affiliates do not provide tax or legal advice. Please consult with your tax and/or legal advisors before taking any action that may have tax and/or legal consequences. This article was written by/for Wells Fargo Advisors and provided courtesy of Carl M. Trevisan, Managing Director-Investments and Stephen M. Bearce, First Vice PresidentInvestments in Alexandria, VA at 800-247-8602. Investments in securities and insurance products are: NOT FDIC-INSURED/NOT BANK-GUARANTEED/MAY LOSE VALUE Wells Fargo Advisors is a trade name used by Wells Fargo Clearing Services, LLC, Member SIPC, a registered broker-dealer and non-bank affiliate of Wells Fargo & Company. © 2019 Wells Fargo Clearing Services, LLC. All rights reserved. 8 | November 2020
Old Town Crier
A BIT OF HISTORY
©2020 SARAH BECKER
Credit: U.S. National Archives
Voting propaganda poster.
The Right to
he question of suffrage is one which is likely to agitate the public so long as a portion of the citizens of the nation are excluded from its privileges,” President and former Union General Ulysses S. Grant [R-IL] said in 1870. Amendment 15, Section 1, as ratified on March 30, 1870 gave black men the right to vote. “Apprehension seems to exist among the people of the Southern States that by the accession of a Republican Administration their property and their peace and personal security are to be endangered,” incoming President Abraham Lincoln [R-IL] said on March 4, 1861. “In legal contemplation the Union is perpetual, confirmed by the history of the Union itself,” Lincoln continued. “[O] ne of the declared objects for ordaining and establishing the Constitution was ‘to form a more perfect Union.’” Seven southern states had seceded as of February 23, 1861: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina and Texas. “Plainly the central idea of secession is the essence of anarchy,” Lincoln concluded. “In your hands, my dissatisfied fellow-countrymen, and not in mine, is the momentous issue of Civil War…[As I have said previously]—I have no purpose, directly or indirectly, to interfere with the institution of slavery in the States where it exists.” On March 21, 1861, Confederate States of America officeholder Alexander H. Stephens [Whig, Democrat and CSA-GA] responded. “Our new government is founded upon…the great truth that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery subordination to the superior race is his natural and normal condition… With us, all of the white race, Old Town Crier
however high or low, rich or poor, are equal in the eye of the law. Not so with the negro.” “We meet this evening, not in sorrow, but in gladness of heart,” President Lincoln said on April 11, 1865 his last public address. “The [Confederate] evacuation of Petersburg and Richmond, and the surrender of the principal insurgent army, give hope of a righteous and speedy peace…By these recent successes the re-inauguration of the national authority— reconstruction—which has had a large share of thought from the first, is pressed more closely upon our attention. It is fraught with great difficulty.” “Unlike the case of a war between independent nationals, there is no authorized organ for us to treat with,” Lincoln continued. “No one man has authority to give up the rebellion for any other man. We simply must begin with, and mould from, disorganized and discordant elements. Nor is it a small additional embarrassment that we, the loyal people, differ among ourselves as to the mode, manner, and means of reconstruction.” “We all agree that the seceded States, so called, are out of their proper relation with the Union,” Lincoln concluded, “and that the sole object of the government, civil and military, in regard to those States is to again get them into that proper practical relation.” He also mentioned “the elective franchise,” his want to confer it “on the colored man.” On March 18, 2016, NAACP President Cornell Brooks sharply criticized voter identification laws, noting “the 2016 election is the first election in 50 years without the full protection of the 1965 Voting Rights Act [VRA].” In 2013, in Shelby County, Alabama, Petitioner v. Eric H. Holder, Jr., Attorney General, et.al., the U.S. Supreme Court ruled portions of the VRA unconstitutional.
The VRA enabled the Federal government to suspend all literacy, knowledge or character tests for voting in areas where less than 50 percent of the voting age population is registered. “The Voting Rights Act of 1965 employed extraordinary measures to address an extraordinary problem,” Chief Justice John Roberts wrote on June 25, 2013. “Section 5 of the Act Credit: U.S. National Archives required States to obtain President Gerald R. Ford Greeting Roy Wilkins, Vernon Jordan, and federal permission before Others Prior to the Signing Ceremony for H.R. 6219, Extending the enacting any law related to Voting Rights Act of 1965. voting—a drastic departure House of Representatives Joint Senator Charles Sumner, an from the basic principle of Committee on Reconstruction 1870 Massachusetts Radical federalism,” Roberts continued. wrote in 1866. “Slavery, by Republican. It provided that “And Section 4 of the Act building up a ruling and all persons, regardless of applied that requirement only dominant class, had produced race, were entitled to “the to some States—an equally a spirit of oligarchy adverse to full and equal employment” dramatic departure from the republican institutions, which of accommodations, public principle that all States enjoy finally inaugurated Civil War. transportation, and places of equal sovereignty. This was The tendency of continuing amusement.” strong medicine, but Congress the domination of such a class, “You say you have determined it was needed by leaving it in the exclusive emancipated us,” Frederick to address entrenched racial possession of political power, Douglass told the 1876 determination in voting, ‘an would be to encourage the same Republican National insidious and pervasive evil spirit, and lead to a similar Convention. “But what is your which had been perpetuated result [Jim Crow and the Lost emancipation? What is your in certain parts of our country Cause]. ” The Committee’s enfranchisement? What does it through unremitting and conclusion: “the right of [male] all amount to, if the black man, ingenious defiance of the suffrage should be granted, after having been made free by Constitution.’” without distinction of color or the letter of your law, is unable In April 1865 the Federal race.” to exercise that freedom, and, government divided the South “Underlying Reconstruction after having been freed from into five occupied military the slaveholder’s lash, he is to districts. Freed black men were lay principles important to modern civilized nations,” be subject to the slaveholder’s often homeless; without money historian Arthur M. shotgun.” and at loose ends in a society Schlesinger, Jr., wrote. “Civil “Ours is the most tainted by the hostilities of rights, racial equality, federal extraordinary case of any war. Their wants: ratification powers.” people ever emancipated on of the 13th, 14th and 15th The Federal Congress passed Amendments; privileges and the globe,” Douglass concluded. its first Civil Rights Bill on immunities, and independence “When you turned us loose… April 6, 1866. It granted full through education. you turned us loose to the sky, citizenship to all persons, Amendment 13 ratified to the storm, to the whirlwind, except for Indians, born on December 6, 1865, abolished and, worst of all, you turned United States soil. Black men, slavery. Virginia’s Black Code, us loose to the wrath of our for the first time, had the right its Vagrant Act became law in infuriated masters.” to enforce contracts; to sue, give January 1866. Six ex-Confederate soldiers evidence, and buy property. “By constitutional formed the Ku Klux Klan A reunited, Reconstruction amendment…[a] large portion in Pulaski, Tennessee, on Congress passed the Civil of the population had become, December 24, 1865—for instead of mere chattels, free Rights Act of 1875. The Act A BIT OF HISTORY > PAGE 10 men and citizens,” the U.S. was first introduced by U.S. November 2020 | 9
A BIT OF HISTORY | FROM PAGE 9
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10 | November 2020
“amusement.” Founding member Frank O. McCord was “elected first Grand Cyclops.” Founding member James E. Crowe was “chosen first Grand Turk.” The Klan’s Invisible Empire of the South was established in 1869. The Ku Klux Klan Act of 1870 permitted Congress to deal forcibly with those whites determined to defy the 15th Amendment. The Virginia KKK, Alexandria’s robed Klavern #47 thrived—until 1930. Voter suppression: the authority of a State to determine the mode and manner by which its citizens may cast their ballots; to discriminate on account of gender, race or color. Women received the right to vote only 100 years ago, on August 26, 1920. “Discouragement is the most powerful voter suppression tool in America today,” Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) said in 2016. “The Shelby County decision was dubious when it first was issued and it looks even worse today,” the Brennan Center for Justice decided. “John Roberts court…invited Congress to fix what the court had said was broken in the law…but they had no way of knowing in June 2013 that Donald Trump would within three years become a Republican nominee for President and that voter suppression and the disenfranchisement of minority voters would become a pillar of his campaign.” “In the Court’s view, the very success of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 demands its dormancy,” former U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg wrote, dissenting. “Congress was of another mind. Recognizing that large progress has been made, Congress determined…that the scourge of discrimination was not yet extirpated.” “The question this case presents is who decides whether, as currently operative, Section 5 remains justifiable… this Court, or a Congress charged [Amendment 15, Section 2] with the obligation to enforce the post-Civil War Amendments ‘by appropriate legislation,’” Ginsberg penned. “Particularly effective is the VRA’s requirement of federal preclearance for all changes to voting laws in the regions of the country with the most aggravated records of rank discrimination against minority voting rights.” In the six years
following the 2013 Shelby ruling, “13 states slashed nearly 1,700 polling places.” Texas limited “its drop off box locations” effective October 2020. As of July 6, 2017 Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia, 20 states in total denied Republican President Donald Trump’s White House Credit: U.S. National Archives Commission on Election Passers by looking at window display at Integrity’s request for the headquarters of National Association state generated voter Opposed to Woman Suffrage. 1919 registration information. In most cases the Privacy Republican legislators struggle. Act of 1974 prohibits the federal On October 18, 2019 a federal government from recording judge ruled “that Florida [a citizens’ party affiliations. 2020 battleground state] cannot Several state laws forbid the deny the right to vote to felons release of partial social security who have served their sentences numbers and birth dates. but are ‘genuinely unable’ to pay November 3 is Election ‘legal financial obligations… Day and for the last several restitutions.’” Florida Attorney months President Trump has General Ashley Moody has now challenged the efficacy, the “called for an investigation into reliability if not the legitimacy Mike Bloomberg’s work to pay of mail-in ballots. A devotee of off [qualified felons] fines and Florida’s mail-in ballot, Trump fees…to [successfully] pay off now claims that mail-in voting [the seeming equivalent of a is “substantially fraudulent.” race-based] ‘poll tax.’” FBI Director Chris Wray told The Constitution, Congress on September 17 that Amendment 24 as ratified “while there is little evidence January 23, 1964, Section 1: The for mail-in voter fraud, there right of citizens of the United is hard evidence that Russia is States to vote in any primary or meddling….” other election for President or The Commonwealth of Vice President, for electors for Virginia’s much anticipated President or Vice President, or anti-gerrymandering for Senator or Representative in Amendment is on this Congress, shall not be denied or month’s ballot. “Should the abridged by the United States or Constitution of Virginia any State by reason of failure to be amended to establish a pay any poll tax or other tax.” redistricting commission, Kindly stated the September consisting of eight members of 29 presidential debate fell short. the General Assembly and eight The President “played down” citizens of the Commonwealth the pandemic then soon after that is responsible for drawing tested positive for COVID-19. the congressional and state In truth neither candidate legislative districts that will be has wholly explained their subsequently voted on….” The economic recovery strategy. Amendment has the support of How you vote is yours former U.S. Attorney General to decide. Vote! Wait for Eric Holder; the electorate’s the results, then enjoy the decision is expected soon. As Thanksgiving holiday. are the 2020 Census results. Candidate Joe Biden’s “greatest concern: this President Sarah Becker started writing for is trying to steal this election.” The Economist while a graduate President Trump advocates student in England. Similar “double voting” absentee and publications followed. She joined in-person. “The election is the Crier in 1996 while serving rigged,” Trump told a Carson on the Alexandria Convention City crowd. “It’s the only way and Visitors Association Board. we are going to lose.” Her interest in antiquities began Washington State federal as a World Bank hire, with Judge Stanley Bastian recently Indonesia’s need to generate hard “halted cost-cutting changes currency. Balinese history, i.e. to the Postal Service.” He tourism provided the means. found “that the state attorneys The New York Times describes general proved ‘that the United Becker’s book, Off Your Duffs & States Postal Service and the Up the Assets, as “a blueprint for Postmaster General violated thousands of nonprofit managers.” A former museum director, and infringed on the States’ SLAM’s saving grace Sarah constitutional authority to received Alexandria’s Salute to regulate elections and the Women Award in 2007. Email: people’s right to vote.” email@example.com Meanwhile Florida’s Old Town Crier
THE LAST WORD
MIRIAM R. KRAMER
Rowling, ranked in the top ten bestselling authors of all time, has moved far away from her Harry Potter days. Her renown from penning her beloved children’s fantasy series of seven books, plus other books related to the series, have made Harry Potter and his world of witches, wizards, and fantastic beasts a global pop culture touchstone. The Casual Vacancy, her first murder mystery, was a stand-alone novel with a nasty tone about nasty people. After this freshman effort, which had a mixed reception, Rowling decided to create the Cormoran Strike series, a succession of blunt, psychological murder mysteries based around two private detectives, Cormoran Strike and Robin Ellacott. Deciding to write under the pen name Robert Galbraith, Rowling wanted the series to sink or swim on its own merits, while signaling that these thrillers were set in a different universe than her blockbuster children’s novels. She was outed as the author, however, and the first novel subsequently shot up the bestseller list after its middling initial sales. The Cuckoo’s Calling, The Silkworm, Career of Evil, Lethal White, and very recently, Troubled Blood, have profiled a provocative, evolving partnership between Cormoran and Robin, along with their private lives and hunts for the criminals who lurk among their diverse victims. Cormoran Strike, a former military policeman who wears a prosthesis after his leg was blown off in Afghanistan, starts a struggling detective agency. A secretarial temp
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assigned randomly to the office, Robin Ellacott, shows up there for a week’s work, only to be confronted with Strike’s exfiancée running out the door and Strike himself, who nearly knocks her down the stairs by accident. A sympathetic, personable, and organized colleague, she complements Strike’s gruff and imposing presence, bringing insights to the table as he calls in favors from London’s Metropolitan Police while interviewing suspects and witnesses that Strike would intimidate. As the novels progress, Rowling develops the P.I.s’ back stories. In the first novel, The Cuckoo’s Calling, Strike has just broken up with his gorgeous, wickedly funny fiancée, with whom he has had a tumultuous relationship for sixteen years. The goal of Charlotte Campbell, mentally unstable and fond of drama, is to escape responsibility. An upper-class woman with a broken home life and network of aristocratic friends, she chose Strike in college to rebel against her upbringing and fell in love with him. After his leg is blown off in Afghanistan, the prickly, fastfood–loving Strike decides to opt out of the military and set up his own shop as a private investigator. Strike, the illegitimate son of supergroupie Leda Strike and rock star Jonny Rokeby, has grown up moving constantly. His pot-smoking mother drifts from ratty flat to ratty flat, and musician boyfriend to
musician boyfriend, with her children, Strike and his conventional half-sister, Lucy. Strike’s only source of stability is his part-time childhood in Cornwall, where he has good memories and old friends, with his Uncle Ted and Aunt Joan. Dropping out of Oxford after his mother died of a heroin overdose, he gravitates towards the military police. As an MP, he learns how to organize his life and develop a methodology as he investigates crimes. When Strike hires Robin permanently as a secretary and then a private investigator, she begins fulfilling a lifetime dream of working in criminal justice. Born in a close-knit middle-class family in Yorkshire, she had started off as a psychology major at university. After suffering trauma, she too drops out. A born investigator, she does
what she can to stay with Strike, despite the low pay and potential danger. Her new fiancé and longtime accountant boyfriend, Matthew Cunliffe, finds her new profession dangerous and wants her to make more money. As they plan their wedding, Robin starts coming into her own, developing her professional relationship with
Strike and making her mark by helping to solve cases and bring in customers. Rowling has written five THE LAST WORD > PAGE 13
November 2020 | 11
hroughout time, great songs have helped us give voice to an endless list of experiences, emotions, and opinions. Whether it be expressing how we feel about a person, what we think about a situation, or finding inspiration, we’re drawn to the songs that help us express and feel what is often impossible to do on our own. We’ve been doing this for as long as music has existed. So it comes as no surprise that, in today’s outrageous political environment, a song like “Soapbox” has emerged. These days many of us are experiencing political overload. The back and forth arguments and demonizing that goes on between the right and left has disheartened and shocked many in America. “Soapbox” addresses and gives voice to this feeling in a lighthearted and easygoing way. It’s an expertly crafted traditional country song that gives playful yet firm expression to the collective exhaustion and frustration so many are feeling about today’s politics. In addition to tapping into a collective sentiment, songwriter Brent Cobb expresses an almost childlike longing for people to simply get along. The song begins with an old school country strumming pattern on an acoustic guitar followed 12 | November 2020
quickly by Cobb’s down-home vocal delivery for the first verse. As the verse ends, fiddle, piano and drums are employed to create a rising transition into the second verse where stand-up bass is also added, and a proper setting is created for the message of the song to be delivered. There isn’t really a clear-cut chorus on “Soapbox”. Instead, Cobb uses a melodic variation of the verse to stand in as a chorus. The lyrics for the “verse/chorus” are repeated in different sections of the song which creates some familiarity while listening. However, “Soapbox” does not rely heavily on hooks and the repetition of a simple phrase to hold the listener’s attention. Although the song is plenty catchy, what draws the listener in most is the honesty and playful point of view communicated through the song’s lyrics, vocal melody and vocal delivery. Listening to this song is like getting away from it all. There’s a soothing simplicity to it that makes you feel like you’re miles away from the hot-headed environment that is so easy to fall into by reading headlines or watching the evening news. Songs like “Soapbox” remind us that rivers are still flowing peacefully, and forests are still standing in quiet blue skies. This
song carries a message that comes from a place beyond all the noise and communicates on a deep level that the commotion is not all that exists. With lyrics like “You might wear out my nerves, but you ain’t changing my mind / By good God, let’s hop off the soap box and get along”, Cobb emphasizes the importance of basic human decency and respect and that it isn’t too much to ask that we be neighborly despite our different views. “Soapbox” is the seventh track off Brent Cobb’s latest album which is titled, Keep ‘Em on They Toes. Although “Soapbox” is my favorite, each song on the album stands on its own and is well worth the time of anyone who enjoys well written country songs. If you’d like to listen, you can find Brent’s music on Spotify, Apple Music, YouTube and most other places music is streamed or sold. If you’d like the latest news and live stream performance updates for Brent Cobb, you can find him on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. Ron Powers is an independent A&R specialist and music industry consultant, and is constantly searching for, discovering and writing about new talent. Old Town Crier
THE LAST WORD | FROM PAGE 11
novels so far and plans to write ten more in the series. Can it last that long or will it peter out? Book by book she develops Robin’s relationship and sexual tension with Strike, as they maintain a professional distance from one another while handling their personal relationships with family, friends, and lovers. How will this attraction resolve itself over that many books? I am already impatient. The Cormoran Strike series is characterized by a deliberately rude, occasionally over-the-top focus on the detectives’ personal lives as they solve complex mysteries. As readers may have noted so far, Rowling is not a restrained author. She will hammer home a description of a person or place multiple times throughout the books, in part for the readers who haven’t read other novels in the series, and in part because that is her style. Emotions run high in the Harry Potter series, which features a developing story about pre-teens growing up to face severe adult problems. A detective series can encompass some similar emotions, and the Cormoran Strike series does. Rowling certainly features more shades of grey than she has in her previous work. After his breakup with Charlotte, Cormoran Strike is focused on his job, not relationships. He maintains a skeptical distance from his lovers and does not always accede to their emotional needs. He is grumpy, sometimes volatile, and
occasionally less complicated than he seems on the surface. He dislikes children. He is real. Robin develops independence over time, facing her post-traumatic fears by hunting criminals with Cormoran. She evolves by shedding her need for others’ approval, maturing in the process. While playing second fiddle to Strike, she is still more likable and skillful when playing parts to find information. If I have a complaint to make, it is that the later novels become too long, and I love long books. Rowling provides plenty of gore and drama. She focuses primarily on the P.I.s’ private lives, along with their intuitive step-bystep sleuthing. That emphasis is engaging, and she also adds in some fun recurring characters. Yet in the process, her description of their small day-to-day life actions grows tiresome. We do not need to hear repeatedly what they have for dinner, and how Strike’s leg hurts, and what Robin is doing to prepare for her wedding. Why have I not even lasered in on the criminals? Perhaps it is because they are not particularly subtle or interesting. They are paradoxically both part of the book and an afterthought. Actively, excessively repellent, they are, quite simply, boring. There are no real anti-heroes, or even heroes, in these novels. Robin and Strike’s travels through the UK, and their interviews with witnesses or sources of information, tend to be much more absorbing than the
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murderers at the heart of their mysteries. Robin and Cormoran display the ambition Rowling had when she was a poor single mother writing Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. They live their dreams, however precarious and dangerous their circumstances. Rowling loves creating complex but obscure riddles. If you are addicted to doing puzzles, know that most of these are a thousand pieces or more. While this series features engaging main characters, I would prefer more subtlety, with tighter plots and more complicated murderers. J.K. Rowling has a wonderful sense of humor, and I want more of it here. That being said, I did read each book for fun, and they are decent suspense novels. I advise you to read them because you want to zoom through escapist thrillers, not because you think that they will become classics. TAGS for Blog: J.K. Rowling, Cormoran Strike, Robin Ellacott, thrillers, murder mysteries, suspense, British, Harry Potter
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November 2020 | 13
GALLERY BEAT F. LENNOX CAMPELLO
here are artists to whom the creation of art is a very personal thing, often decipherable only to the artist. There are also artists who create art to cause a public reaction – this is often where the gimmick masters tend to flourish. There are artists who experiment, try, test and explore and spend decades recreating themselves. There are artists who find a niche and spend their entire careers doing the same thing over and over, unable to break away from an image or idea which has become an unbreakable habit. There are artists who create artwork simply for money. There are artists who do pet portraits, house portraits, baby portraits, portraits of portraits. There are artists who elevate the task of creating comic book art to a level of artistry seldom achieved by the most educated “fine artists” on the planet. There are artists who live under the cloud of being illustrators and yet reach more souls via their artwork than all “fine artists” combined. And there are artists, such as Chawky Frenn, to whom art is a harsh mistress who gives pleasure through both a brutal ability to record the dark footprint of the evil side of mankind, as well as the inherent beauty of the human race. Frenn is part of the excellent fine arts faculty at George Mason University, and by 14 | November 2020
far that University’s bestknown artist. The New York Times once wrote about his work that “Chawky Frenn is a painter who has nailed down the figurative mode, and this accomplishment gives him the license to convey anything he wants, including the grand theme: the elusive meaning of human existence.” Currently, and through January 8, 2021, Frenn has a powerful exhibition of fortyseven mixed media paintings executed on posters of the Constitution at the Delaware Contemporary in Wilmington, Delaware. The show is titled We the People, for Show or for Sure. The news release for the exhibition notes that “these works represent Frenn’s response to the timeless manipulations of power and wealth, and their timely manifestations in Citizens United, the Revolving Door, deliberate injustice, and perpetual wars. The paintings summon the viewer to reflect on two fundamental concerns: the influence of money on politics and policy, and the history of the struggle for human rights. Combinations of image and text provide a visual space for reflection on people, triumphs, challenges, and threats to democracy as expressed in the words of presidents, lawmakers, justices, economists, historians, writers, and civil rights activists.” Frenn is an artist brilliantly
equipped to tackle powerful subjects such as these; his brush is enviably equipped to deliver a visual punch to the solar plexus of the mind, and to shake the imaginary shoulders of the conscience while screaming for attention. We the People, for Show or for Sure, is an exhibition full of visually aggressive art. It is perhaps the art show of the year in the entire nation, as 2020 will remain in our memory as a year full of surprises of all flavors, nuances and colors. In using facsimiles of the United States Constitution as the substrate for the paintings, Frenn immediately delivers a social and political statement even before a drop of paint is applied to the paper. When he paints the three wise monkeys from the famous Japanese pictorial maxim, floating above the Capitol dome in the classic pose of “See no evil, Hear no evil, Say no evil” we begin to explore the monkeys themselves looking for clues beyond the original one. The Statue of Freedom atop the Capitol’s dome is strategically placed on the middle monkey so that it appears as though the monkey is sexually excited. Is that a compositional accident, or is Frenn wickedly referencing the myriad of political sexual peccadillos over the decades, GALLERY BEAT > PAGE 15
We the People #44 “I see in the near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety of my country. . . corporations have been enthroned and an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money power of the country will endeavor to prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until all wealth is aggregated in a few hands and the Republic is destroyed.” President Abraham Lincoln We the People #69 “Over the years, elections have become public relations operations, largely stage-managed. Candidates decide what to say on the basis of tests that determine what the effect will be across the population. Somehow people don’t see how profoundly contemptuous that is of democracy. Suppose I’m running for office, and I don’t tell people what I think or what I’m going to do - I tell them what the pollsters have told me is going to get me elected. That’s expressing utter contempt for the electorate...”. Noam Chomsky, linguist, historian
We the People #31 I worry very much what it does on the floor of the House and the Senate. How many people are going to have the guts to stand up to big money when they know that the airwaves in their states are going to be flooded with negative ads if they vote against Wall Street or vote against coal or oil? So I would say that one of the major issues that we’ve got to deal with is Citizens United. I think we need a constitutional amendment to overturn it. I think it would be a wonderful rallying point for folks all over this country. Senator Bernie Sanders Old Town Crier
GALLERY BEAT | FROM PAGE 14
mostly conveniently swept under the rug? The “Say no Evil” monkey is looking upwards to the words “We the People”, his eyes somewhat full of malice. See how Frenn exquisite manipulation of the painting surface also manipulates what the eye “sees” and more importantly, what the mind wants to see? Every single piece in this powerful show replicates the previous questions – each one is full of clues, statements and references. We see Christopher Columbus, but not the Columbus who always signed his name as Cristóbal Colón, and who was allegedly born as Cristoforo Colombo, but the Columbus who is viewed with the glasses of the 21st century and not in the context of the worldwide savagery of 1492 – the fall of Granada, the Spanish
Pope becomes Pope Alexander VI, the invasion of France by King Henry VII of England, the burning of Jews at the stake in Mecklenburg, Germany, and another 100,000 Jews are expelled from Sicily. Jews were also expelled from Spain, and in doing so, the battle lines for the next few centuries were drawn by the soon to be allpowerful Spanish monarchs. We see a 21st century Columbus, side-by-side with a stylized Native American; the painting surface is split in two, and they both look sad. In several of the works Frenn goes for a primal scream as the terrifying main image, and somehow manages to deliver unique impressions in the several works depicting a scream, most notably a self portrait of Frenn and a brutal scream by a small child. The New York Times also once noted about Frenn’s works that “a viewer senses that his life is inseparable from what We the People #102 “What we revealed is that this spying system is devoted not to terrorists, but is directed to innocent people around the world. None of this has anything to do with terrorism. Is Angela Merkel a terrorist? This is clearly about political power and economic espionage. And the claim that this is all about terrorism is seen around the world as what it is, which is pure deceit.” Glenn Greenwald, journalist We the People #6 “We want a great country. We want a country with heart. But when people come up, they have to know they can’t get in. Otherwise it’s never going to stop. When you prosecute the parents for coming in illegally, which should happen, you have to take the children away. Now, we don’t have to prosecute them, but then we’re not prosecuting them for coming in illegally. That’s not good.” President Donald Trump We the People #58 “Our nation was born in genocide when it embraced the doctrine that the original American, the Indian, was an inferior race. Even before there were large numbers of Negroes on our shore, the scar of racial hatred had already disfigured colonial society... We are perhaps the only nation which tried as a matter of national policy to wipe out its indigenous population... Our children are still taught to respect the violence which reduced a red-skinned people of an earlier culture into a few fragmented groups herded into impoverished reservations.” Martin Luther King, Jr.
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he puts down on canvas.” The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette adds that “nothing in Frenn’s work is absolute or beyond question.” And that sums up with Chawky Frenn does best with his artistic wizardry and his enviable painting talent: he puts his life on canvas or paper, and then lets the viewer interpret it and make his or her own interpretation of the subject. Frenn’s work is both the life giving first breath exhaled after a near drowning, as well as the first breath of free will that Genesis so aptly describes.
Exclusively representing the works of
F. Lennox Campello
Price and additional images upon request.
“ONE OF THE MOST INTERESTING PEOPLE OF WASHINGTON, DC” Syreni Caledonii (Northern Atlantic Mermaid). Watercolor, charcoal and Conte. 2019, 12x36 inches.
– Washington City Paper
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November 2020 | 15
It’s That Time of Year
Select the Right Tool for the Pruning Task
eadheading, trimming, and pruning are part of growing and maintaining a beautiful and productive garden and landscape. Make sure you are outfitted with the right tool for the job. Matching the tool to the pruning task will help ensure a proper cut, reduce hand fatigue, and allow you to work longer. Since most pruning cuts in the garden and landscape are between 1/4” and 3/4”, a bypass hand pruner is a must. These pruners have two sharp blades like scissors, making a clean cut that closes quickly. This helps reduce the risk of insects and disease moving in and harming your plants. Avoid hand-held pruners that are too heavy or open too wide for your hand size. 16 | November 2020
Those with a spring action return help reduce hand fatigue as long as the opening matches the size of your hand. Make sure the pruner does not open wider than your hand can easily grip. Select a tool that fits in your hand, is comfortable, has an ergonomic grip and is easy to control. Matching your pruner to your hand size is as important as matching it to the cutting job. Opting for an oversized pruner to make larger cuts can lead to hand fatigue, frustration, and improper cuts. Measure the width across the palm of your hand at the base of your fingers. Next, measure the height from the middle of the base of your hand to the tip of your middle finger. A pruner rated for ½” cuts is a good match for those with
small hands less than 3 1/2” wide and 6 1/4” high. If your hands measure 3 1/2 to 4” wide and 6 1/2 to 8” high, you may want to purchase a 3/4” pruner. Those with larger hands should do fine with a 1” hand-held pruner. But size is just one factor to consider. Hand strength also influences the diameter of the stems you will be able to cut. Just because a tool is rated for ¾” doesn’t mean everyone will be able to apply the needed pressure to make such a large cut. Invest in tools with compound levers or ratchets when you need a mechanical advantage to make cutting easier. When the job is too big for you or the tool, select one better suited to the task. Employ a bypass lopper like Corona Tool’s Classic Cut SL with soft grips that fits
various size hands and cuts limbs up to 1 3/4” in diameter. Loppers have long handles that give you greater leverage and extend your reach. This extra reach makes it easier to prune all parts of small trees, shrubs, and roses. Invest in a foldable pruning razor tooth saw with a pull stroke cutting action and ergonomic handle. You’ll be able to make cuts fast and easy and minimize hand fatigue. Foldable saws allow you to tuck the blade into the handle for safekeeping and reduce storage space. Saws are useful tools for cutting larger branches on trees and shrubs that you can safely prune. Although I am a certified arborist, I only prune small trees and shrubs. I save big tree work for my colleagues that climb, have the equipment and training to do
the job safely. Using the right size tool for the job is good for the health and beauty of your plants and you. You will enjoy a healthier, more beautiful garden and extend your time in the garden by reducing muscle pain. Melinda Myers has written numerous books, including Small Space Gardening. She hosts The Great Courses “How to Grow Anything” DVD series and the nationallysyndicated Melinda’s Garden Moment TV & radio program. Myers is a columnist and contributing editor for Birds & Blooms magazine and was commissioned by Corona Tools for her expertise to write this article. Myers’ web site is www. MelindaMyers.com. Old Town Crier
y day, the George Washington National Masonic Memorial stands as a stately sentinel, overlooking all of Alexandria. Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night - wait – that’s the Postal Service motto! However, that part applies well to the memorial. And, like the Postal Service delivering late evenings during this pandemic, the folks at the memorial also do something about that “gloom of night” part.” At night things on the outside bring new interest. Often featured on local television news broadcasts in “around the region” shots, the memorial is usually bathed in soft white lighting. But during a year’s course, you will see it lighted in a variety of colors, sometimes singly and sometimes in combination, such as red, white, and blue, and even changing colors throughout the night. Sometimes the memorial seems bathed in an almost ethereal light. What gives? Do gargoyles come to life and change the lighting? No, because the memorial has no gargoyles (that we can see, at least!). The completed exterior of the memorial has stood atop Shuter’s Hill since 1932, the bicentennial of George Washington’s birth and, though there has been white lighting on the outside of some sort since its early days, the colored nocturnal lights are a more recent inspiration, probably starting in the 1980s, with the more widespread use of LED-based illumination. These days, that lighting comes courtesy of the memorial’s electrician to work his magic (and no, he does not work from behind a curtain, as in “The Wizard of Oz,” but at a lighting board. From there, according to Shawn Eyer, Director of Communications and Development at the memorial, the colors and overall lighting can be adjusted at several
SENTINEL OF THE CITY
Photo: Shawn Eyer
GW Memorial levels of the memorial. In addition, as the memorial continues its renovation “landmark century campaign,” there will eventually be lighting at all levels. Some people wonder whether the public can make “special requests” for lighting. Such is NOT the case. The folks at the memorial make those decisions. Sometimes the coloration is holiday related. Sometimes the lighting takes note of special events, such as the red, white, and blue lighting for the TC Williams graduation this past summer. By the way, in my daytime walks past the memorial then, I saw a number of
graduates posing for photos in their caps and gowns at the memorial’s base. Pretty neat. Others might wonder if the lighting can be made way brighter. Maybe so, but remember, this is Alexandria, not Las Vegas! At the memorial’s pinnacle, there is an always red aircraft warning beacon - after all, the memorial stands 333 feet tall on what is already the highest point in Alexandria. That height is reportedly roughly the same as that of the ancient lighthouse of Alexandria, Egypt, after which the GW Masonic
National Memorial is modeled. The ancient lighthouse was one of the “Seven Wonders of the World”. We can’t put our memorial “lighthouse” quite in that league, but it is one impressive building and, I would argue, especially so at night! Note: The memorial has reopened for public tours (9-5), though as of this writing the observation deck remains closed. For more information on that, please visit https://gwmemorial.org/ pages/plan-your-visit.
DO YOUR PART TO PREVENT THE SPREAD OF COVID-19 KEEP YOUR DISTANCE WASH YOUR HANDS THROW PROTECTIVE ITEMS AWAY IN THE TRASH YOURSELF! AND PLEASE... WEAR THAT MASK! Old Town Crier
November 2020 | 17
What Kind of Travel Personality are You and Where Should You Travel Next: Does Pseudoscience Have the Answers?
et me start this month’s column with a disclaimer; I don’t honestly think that if you tell me your inside leg measurement and favourite colour that there’s any form of pseudoscience that can determine where you should go on your next vacation. However, it’s fairly obvious that different people enjoy different types of vacations. It’s also fairly obvious (to anyone that’s ever travelled with a friend for the first time only to want to tear your own eyebrows out a mere 24 hours in to the trip) that traveling with someone who
doesn’t have the same travel style and expectations as you can be frustrating for all concerned. That basic premise got me wondering if there was any way to ‘evaluate’ travel companions and destinations to determine if they’re a good fit. After all, if you have limited work vacation and budget then it’s important to maximise the enjoyment and minimise the frustrations of any vacation you book. And then it hit me. I’ve worked in highly politicised corporate office environments for long enough (lucky me) to have been subjected
to personality testing on a whole host of occasions (just to be clear – it wasn’t because of any personality transgressions on my part!). With my limited knowledge of personality testing it seems possible that knowing both your personality-type and that of those you’re traveling with could help you work out the kinds of vacations that suit you and how you’ll get along when you get there. Of course in no way am I saying you should ostracise any friends that don’t match your personality (as convenient as that sometimes might feel), but it might
help you get a better understanding of your friend’s and family’s travel preferences, and how to manage any conflict before the Disney security team are called to respond to an incident on the ‘It’s a Small World’ ride. Just like people, I like to think that destinations have their own personalities, so once you’ve taken the test (16personalities.com) and psychoanalysed your travel buddies take a look at the destinations I’ve listed below that best fit with the keywords of each personality type.
The Architect (INTJ): Imaginative, Strategic, Planners (Seattle)
Innovative, liberal and highly educated, Seattle seems like an ideal place for an INTJ to visit. There’s plenty to see in town (I highly recommend Pike Place Market, the Experience Music Project and Chihuly Garden) and plenty of quiet outdoors just beyond the city which would appeal to the introverted INTJ personality.
The Logician (INTP): Innovative with a thirst for knowledge (London)
INTP’s thrive in intellectually stimulating environments and, although I may be biased as a native, London seems to ‘hit the nail on the head’. London’s abundance of free museums (Natural History, Science, V&A for example), and artistic offerings (The Tate, Tate Modern, Portrait Gallery to name but a few) should cater perfectly to the INTP. The fact Londoners don’t really engage with tourists might also suit the introverted side of the INTP…..just kidding…..I think.
The Commander (ENTJ): Bold, Imaginative, Strong-willed (Mt Kilimanjaro)
My hometown of London is well suited for the Logician’s amongst you
ENTJ’s (which includes me) love to be set a goal and are strong willed and bold enough to go out and get it. One of the biggest travel goals I’ve ever set myself was to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania so that seems an apt choice for any ENTJ out there! Alternatively, if a few days challenge isn’t enough then you might want to check out what ‘The Adventurists’ (theadventurists.com) have on offer. I’ve personally participated in the Rickshaw Run (based in India) and can definitely attest that it’s a challenge!
The Debater (ENTP): Smart, Curious, Intellectual (Washington DC)
Nowhere on earth seems more fitting for ‘The Debater’ than the centre of the political world that is Washington, DC; and with so many global travel restrictions there’s no time like the present to be a tourist in your own back yard. Perhaps sign up for a free tour of the Capitol Building to get a better understanding of the inner workings of democracy (although at the moment I’m not sure anyone really understands what’s going on). Once you’re done there the curiously intellectual ENTP will be delighted to explore the Smithsonian Museums.
The Logistician (ISTJ): Practical, Fact-Minded, Efficient, Reliable (Seoul)
Logisticians like to find time to themselves when on holiday. They also love efficiency and reliability. The calming nature of Seoul’s grand palaces and the ordered efficiency of its transportation networks are likely to suit them down to the ground. Make sure you visit the tranquil Gyeongbokgung and Changdeokgung Palaces before hitting the shops and restaurants in Myeong-dong. If you’re looking for true seclusion, then head to Bukhansan National Park to convene with nature.
The Defender (ISFJ): Dedicated, Structured, Protector of Peace (Switzerland)
Having secured its neutrality in the Treaty of Paris in 1815 I think it’s fair to say that there aren’t many nations more peaceful than Switzerland. The introverted nature of the ISFJ also lends itself to Switzerland’s outdoor activities and the solitude of hiking in the foothills. Of course, Switzerland isn’t exactly renowned for being for the budget-conscious amongst us; so just make sure you save those pennies well in advance.
The Executive (ESTJ): Dynamic Manager, Efficiency, Order (New York)
Dynamic and business-savvy, ESTJs are likely to feel right at home in New York. The efficiency and order of a grid-based city will probably also appeal to the structured mind of the Executive. Spend time downtown in the Financial District; head out on the Ellis Island Ferry to catch a glimpse of Lady Liberty; catch the views from the Empire State Building; feel the buzz of Times Square…New York should easily have enough to capture the attention of an ESTJ for a long weekend.
The Consul (ESFJ): Caring, Social, Popular (Sweden)
Hostelworld recently commissioned a study that ranked Gothenburg as the most sociable city on earth based on openness, propensity to party and frequency of social events. Those results indicate that ESFJs should feel right at home in Gothenburg. Perhaps my photo (of the Gothenburg Archipelago; easily accessible from the city on a half The buzz of New York is a good fit for ESTJs day trip) doesn’t quite evoke those party feelings; but I’ll guess you’ll have to visit and find out for yourself. 18 | November 2020
Old Town Crier
TAKE PHOTOS, LEAVE FOOTPRINTS
Featured Photos: Scott Dickens Background: Lauren Fleming (Scottish Highlands)
The Virtuoso (ISTP): Bold, Practical, Experimenter (New Zealand) Apparently, even though they’re introverted, ISTPs love to experiment and love a good thrill. Based on that description where sounds more perfect than New Zealand, one of the true thrillseeking capitals of the World? Start with a couple of days exploring Auckland and its surrounding islands before hitting the road; it’s the perfect start to a few weeks exploring everything New Zealand has to offer (including two of the top ten bungee jumps in the World).
The Adventurer (ISFP): Flexible, Charming, Explorer (Cambodia) For the adventurer I had a number of choices but ultimately went for Cambodia. The main reason for this is Angkor Wat; where ISFPs can let loose their inner explorer and pretend to be Indiana Jones. Head away from the crowds of the main Angkor complex (although certainly do go and see it!) and you can still find relatively unexplored temples crumbling and covered in vines. You’ll also get the chance to see some of the best sunrises and sunsets anywhere in the World.
Adventurers will love the ancient city of Angkor Wat
The Entrepreneur (ESTP): Smart, Energetic, Lives on the Edge (Overland Africa) Although I’m not an ESTP, like an ESTP I’m one of those people who can’t sit still for more than 10 minutes. I love being on the go and want to maximize my time (after all, time off from work is limited so why would I want to spend it sat on a sun lounger). Seeing as much as feasibly possible on each and every trip is the primary objective. Group “overlanding” is a great way to achieve this; you only spend a couple of days in each place, the journey itself is a large part of the overall experience, and you get to meet new people (with whom you’ll soon be talking about your personal hygiene at a level of familiarity usually reserved for your doctor).
The Entertainer (ESFP): Spontaneous, Energetic, Enthusiastic (Las Vegas) Where else but Las Vegas could be described as spontaneous, energetic and enthusiastic? The Entertainer should definitely feel at home on the Las Vegas Strip taking in the gambling, live shows, music, and high-octane atmosphere. If you’d like to learn more about some of the destinations featured in this month’s article then make sure to check out takephotosleavefootprints.com for more.
The Advocate (INFJ): Quiet, Mystical, Idealist (India) INFJ’s don’t feel at home in big cities (so you might want to steer clear of Delhi) but the reflective and ‘mystical’ Rajasthan might be the perfect fit. India’s largest state is the home of Jaipur and Jodhpur and one of the primary draws for tourists is the Thar Desert. Alternatively, to the North East of the country lies Darjeeling. In Darjeeling I highly recommend getting up at a truly ungodly hour to watch sunrise over the Himalayas; and what can be more mystical than that (especially, as a Brit, if its twinned with a nice hot cup of Darjeeling tea).
The Mediator (INFP): Poetic, Kind, Altruistic (Amsterdam) The altruistic, all-inclusive nature of INFPs makes liberal Amsterdam a great choice. Sitting on the banks of one of the canals or biking across one of the city’s 1,500 bridges is the kind of poetic vision that seems aligned with the INFP personality. Of course, it’s also the home of legalised cannabis; so the poetry will probably flow a lot easier after a few days here!
The Protagonist (ENFJ): Charismatic, Inspiring, Leader (Italy)
The Italian city of Florence is the perfect destination for ENFJs
ENFJs thrive off of social interaction and where could be more social than Italy! ENFJs will love the café and bar hopping culture of Italy; in fact my wife and I try to keep our itineraries in Italian cities clear of touristy attractions because we’re bound to spend most of our time sitting outside in piazzas watching the world go by, drinking wine (which is certainly the one part of Italian culture I can subscribe to).
The Campaigner (ENFP): Enthusiastic, Creative, Social (New Orleans) For ENFPs life is always a party and nowhere hosts a better party than New Orleans. The French Quarter really is at the center of everything you think of when you imagine New Orleans. Its home to Bourbon Street, restaurants, bars, live music into the small hours and to New Orleans most famous French architecture and landmarks. ENFPs will spend hours just wandering the streets, listening to music and indulging in so many rounds of food and drink that it’ll be difficult to make it back to your accommodation at 5am covered in Mardi Gras beads.
Old Town Crier
November 2020 | 19
POINTS ON PETS
omb sniffing dogs may be the first military animal you think of, but you must broaden your horizons to the sky and the sea to get a fuller picture of the animals who serve in our armed forces or are studied by military researchers to discover better ways to perform valuable tasks, like finding bombs. For example, the United States (U.S.) Army Research Office has looked into how elephants sniff out explosives. The U.S. Navy Marine Mammal Program “… trains bottlenose dolphins and California sea lions to detect, locate, mark and recover objects in harbors, coastal areas, and at depth in the open sea.” The objects they locate even include unauthorized humans near Navy interests. Pack animals, including mules and donkeys, have assisted Special Operations troops in areas where logistical support from traditional units doesn’t exist. The use of pigeons to deliver messages and conduct overhead reconnaissance was a common practice in both World Wars: there is excellent information regarding their use in spy craft at the International Spy Museum. Of course, as the view of animals in our society has evolved, so has our thinking of what is ethical treatment of them. Veterinarians and trained handlers are now involved to ensure that working animals’ needs are met. Groups like the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine work with the military to make combat training more humane. Combat type injuries are inflicted on thousands of goats and pigs each year, but this is now being phased out by hightech simulators modeled on human anatomy and supervised experience dealing with trauma patients. While the heroism of animals has been recognized in the United Kingdom (U.K.) since at least 1943, it’s only recently that a similar effort began here. In 2019, a Belgian Malinois named Bass, who served more than six years in Marine Corps special operations and conducted over 350 explosive detections with his handler, was awarded the Animals in War and Peace Medal of Bravery. The award, issued by Angels Without 20 | November 2020
Animals In and Of
Clockwise, from top : A U.S. Navy Marine Mammal Program dolphin named KDog, wearing a locating pinger, performed mine clearance work in the Persian Gulf during the Iraq War. An NMMP sea lion attaches a recovery line to a piece of test equipment during training. Elephants sifting through debris in WWII. Wings, was the first of its kind in the U.S. and was issued by the nonprofit to formally acknowledge the bravery of Bass and other animals who serve at
home and abroad. Other dogs, two pigeons, and a horse (Staff Sergeant Reckless) also received the honor that day. Robin Hutton, the President of Angels
Without Wings, started this program after learning of the Dickin Medal in the U.K., which was created in 1943 (and has also honored eight American
animals). Through her work on a book about Staff Sergeant Reckless, a U.S. Marine horse who served as an ammunitions carrier during the Korean War, she had become passionately committed to the cause of honoring animals who served. According to Ms. Hutton, people who think animals do what they do simply because they are trained are wrong— they do it for their handlers, their fellow soldiers. Because of that relationship, “through the eyes of animals we learn about the people who served with them.” A second award ceremony was scheduled for September 30, 2020, but was postponed due to Covid-19. According to Ms. Hutton, they’ve reached out to all branches of service for nominees, conferred with those involved with past nominees, and asked for input on social media. Forms are available on their website: animals both living and deceased are eligible. According to Mari Lou Livingood, who serves on their Medals Nominating Board, animals must be retired to receive the awards, because the information that goes into their selection would reveal too much information about their handlers. Through Angels without Wings and associated programs, there are also five monuments to Sergeant Reckless, including ones at the National Museum of the Marine Corps and the National Cowgirl Museum, and more monuments and a Distinguished Service Medal are in the works. They are also exploring the possibility of creating an International War Animals Museum to further honor these animals and educate people about their service. Not only do animals serve with our soldiers on the battlefield, they continue to help soldiers recover from their physical and mental wounds once they’re back home. Dogs are most commonly used, but pigs, cats, monkeys, birds, and horses have assisted individuals with disabilities. According to the Disabled American Veterans, there are three types of assistance animals -service, therapy, and emotional POINTS ON PETS > PAGE 21
Old Town Crier
POINTS ON PETS | FROM PAGE 20
support—they perform different tasks and have different legal protection. Service animals are covered by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), assist a single person, and may fly with their owners and live with them regardless of pet policies. Therapy animals provide emotional support to a number of people in different settings (such as hospitals or nursing homes) and are not covered by the ADA. Emotional support animals provide emotional comfort and may live with their owners despite pet policies and fly with them with certain documentation and notice, but aren’t covered by the ADA. Groups like K9s for Warriors, the nation’s largest provider of service dogs to military
veterans suffering from PTSD, Traumatic Brain Injury and/ or Military Sexual trauma, help veterans get service animals to manage their health concerns. K9s for Warriors provides accredited service dogs at no cost to veterans. About 90% of their dogs come from shelters or are owner-surrendered: they “rescue dogs to rescue veterans.” They accept applications from servicemembers who became disabled while in service on or after September 11, 2001, but the disability does not have to be combat-related. After the application process, the veteran completes a three-week training program with their dog. It may even be possible for veterans to get help with veterinary healthy benefits for mental health mobility service dogs under the
Department of Veterans Affairs Mental Healthy Mobility Service Dog Initiative. Whether working alongside solders to guide them on the battlefield or with veterans to lead them back to health, animals are a valuable component of our nation’s defense and care of its wounded. Happy Veterans Day to them and their fellow human veterans! Angela June Ohm lives in Arlington with her two rescue cats Gillian, a domestic shorthair with precious fangs, and Josephine, a Norwegian Forest Cat.
Sources: angelswithoutwings.org waranimals.com/ www.pcrm.org/ethical-science/ethical-education-andtraining/combat-trauma-training www.dav.org/veterans/resources/service-animals/ www.washingtonpost.com/news/checkpoint/ wp/2015/03/13/elephants-rats-and-dolphins-eightways-the-u-s-military-hasgoogelused-animals/ www.public.navy.mil/navwar/NIWC-Pacific/technology/ Pages/mammals.aspx www.dav.org/veterans/resources/service-animals/ www.va.gov/HEALTHPARTNERSHIPS/docs/ CCIServiceDogFactSheet.pdf www.k9sforwarriors.org/about-k9s-for-warriors
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Love. Brush. Groom. Repeat.
OF THE MONTH
4101 Eisenhower Avenue Alexandria, VA 703-746-4774 alexandriaanimals.org Mon-Fri, 1-8 pm Closed Wed Sat & Sun, 12-5 pm
Adult, Neutered Male, White Short Haired Rabbit
Adult, Spayed Female, Calico Domestic Short Hair
Adult, Spayed Female, Brown and White Labrador Retriever
Pippen is a sweet and social guy, especially when his friends have a treat just for him! He loves climbing into laps, “booping” cameras and exploring every new thing. As curious as he is cute, Pippen is looking for a best friend who will be by his side for every adventure, even if that just involves a hop to the couch. Is he the bunny for you?
Cindy is the sweetest cat in the world. That is not an exaggeration. As soon as you crouch down to meet her, Cindy will be on your lap kneading biscuits and purring to her heart’s content. She loves being close to her friends. When a lap isn’t available, she’ll cuddle on your shoulder. A “purrfect” spot for giving you kitty kisses! Still not convinced that Cindy is the sweetest cat ever?
Buddie is looking for just that... a buddy! Even with her big, beautiful smile, Buddie can be a little shy when she’s first meeting people, so she’s looking for a friend to help her meet new people slowly. She loves everyone once she gets a chance to know them! Buddie loves to show off her smile on long walks, during playtime and even when she’s cuddling with her friends, and she can’t wait to show you.
Cindy’s Photo courtesy of Dirty Paw Photography.
Buddy’s Photo courtesy of AAWL
Pippen’s Photo courtesy of AAWL
Schedule an adoption appointment with these three furry friends at AlexandriaAnimals.org/Adopt-ByAppointment.
Adopt by Appointment at the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria virtually on Zoom or in-person at the Vola Lawson Animal Shelter! The AWLA is upholding ALX Promise standards to welcome visitors back to the shelter safely for adoptions and other community services on an appointment basis. Learn more at AlexandriaAnimals.org/Adopt-By-Appointment.
Old Town Crier
November 2020 | 21
BITING THE HAND THAT FEEDS YOU
Petrainer 998DBB Waterproof Dog Training Collar
ith fanfare from animal rights activists, big box pet supply store Petco announced in early October that it will no longer sell remote-controlled, electronic training collars for dogs. “Electricity may be critical to powering your microwave, but it has no role for the average pet parent training their dog,” Petco CEO Ron Coughlin said in a news release. Electronic training collars, are derisively referred to as shock collars and widely claimed by those who’ve never trained a dog, to be cruel and barbaric. And like any tool, in the wrong hands they can be abusive and/or inappropriate. However, they are much more than simply remote delivery systems for corrections as modern ones contain tracking, 22 | November 2020
paging and attention-getting features. They use the same conditioning principles as bark collars and invisible fence containment collars, which Petco continues to sell. All these and, in fact, any tool that aids a person in the training of a dog have saved many, many more lives than they have harmed - including many dogs that otherwise might have had to be rehomed or put to sleep. Whether or not you like or dislike them, use them or not, there is no denying that training collars, including e-collars, are simply tools. Used properly, they have helped far more dogs than they’ve ever harmed. Used improperly, any tool can cause physical damage or worse, even a flat buckle collar. Even sadder, many dogs have lost their homes and even their lives because well intentioned and good hearted
owners tried to raise and train them like humans, or failed to train and socialize them at all. Some of the most recognized pet activist groups like PETA attempt to dramatize an everyday tool and make it seem like a wicked instrument of torture so that—except the minority of the people who understand their use and application—will be horrified and on board with the ban. Shock collar! How dare you burn up your dog in the name of training? When the truth is: there is not one single recorded instance of a dog dying from an electronic training collar. It’s simply not possible, because they cannot deliver enough electricity to even burn the skin much less electrocute a dog, even a small one. There are, sadly, many instances of dogs that died from lack of
training. They are euthanized daily in shelters. If you are not comfortable with the whole concept of electronic training collars, no one will ever force you to use one. If, however, you have a difficult dog and using a training collar might mean the difference between taking it to a shelter or training/keeping it, then that collar just saved a life. Bark and invisible fence collars work on the same principles and those devices have saved many families from having to surrender a dog that received multiple complaints for nuisance barking or running at large. Many homeowners’ associations in fact, are so restrictive about the kind and type of fencing allowed that an invisible fence is the only option for containment. The first clue of manipulation of the emotions of pet lovers are some of the terms
popularized by animal rights groups like Guardian and Pet Parent, or the reference to companion animals as “fur kids”. Dogs are not humans and do not learn and should not be trained as humans. Dogs do not do what we want because they love us. They learn because we teach them what we want and we repeat and repeat again and we praise when they get it right. Dogs do not learn from time outs. Dogs do not speak our language— nor we theirs. Within the training community, especially advanced training, there is some disagreement on the use of positive vs negative reinforcement as a canine training tool. Some maintain any negative reinforcement (punishment) should never be used to train a dog. And indeed, some dogs can do fine with basic pet obedience taught solely through attrition and positive reinforcement. But many, especially highly driven working and sporting breeds, learn faster and retain the lesson better, with the use of occasional reprimands, whether verbal or a pop on the leash. Timing is everything— to be effective, a correction must occur at the moment of the infraction and the infraction must be deliberate disobedience of a command the dog has been taught. Which brings us to the use of electronic training collars. These sophisticated devices TRAINING > PAGE 23
Old Town Crier
November 2020 | 23 Thanksgiving FACT or FICTION Answers (1) FICTION. In 1863, President Abraham Lincoln designated the last Thursday in November as a national day of thanksgiving. However, in 1939, after a request from the National Retail Dry Goods Association, President Franklin Roosevelt decreed that the holiday should always be celebrated on the fourth Thursday of the month (and never the occasional fifth, as occurred in 1939) in order to extend the holiday shopping season by a week. (2) FACT. In a letter to his daughter sent in 1784, Benjamin Franklin suggested that the wild turkey would be a more appropriate national symbol for the newly independent United States than the bald eagle (which had earlier been chosen by the Continental Congress). He argued that the turkey was “a much more respectable Bird,” “a true original Native of America,” and “though a little vain & silly, a Bird of Courage.”
them is they are very effective training tools when used properly and even if you never have a dog that needs training with one, be grateful for the sake of many of the strong, powerful breeds’ owners that these tools exist as they are certainly a better solution than a needle full of pink juice because of lack of training.
(3) FICTION. The Philadelphia department store Gimbel’s had sponsored a parade in 1920, but the Macy’s parade, launched four years later, soon became a Thanksgiving tradition and the standard kickoff to the holiday shopping season. (4) FICTION (kind of). Domesticated turkeys (the type eaten on Thanksgiving) cannot fly, and their pace is limited to a slow walk. Wild turkeys, on the other hand, are much smaller and more agile. They can reach speeds of up to 20-25 miles per hour on the ground and fly for short distances at speeds approaching 55 miles per hour. They also have better eyesight and hearing than their domestic counterparts. (5) FACT. According to the Cape Cod Cranberry Growers’ Association, one of the country’s oldest farmers’ organizations, Native Americans used cranberries in a variety of foods, including “pemmican” (a nourishing, high-protein combination of crushed berries, dried deer meat and melted fat). They also used it as a medicine to treat arrow punctures and other wounds and as a dye for fabric. The Pilgrims adopted these uses for the fruit and gave it a name—”craneberry”— because its drooping pink blossoms in the spring reminded them of a crane.
the dog killed. Further, there is no physical way a dog can be actually burned or killed by electronic collars. There are no documented instances of death by e-collar. No electronic collar has enough juice to actually burn, much less electrocute, a dog, even a small one. And all have built in shut off and safety mechanisms. The bottom line about
(6) FACT. The turkey trot, modeled on that bird’s characteristic short, jerky steps, was one of a number of popular dance styles that emerged during the late 19th and early 20th century in the United States. The twostep, a simple dance that required little to no instruction, was quickly followed by such dances as the one-step, the turkey trot, the fox trot and the bunny hug, which could all be performed to the ragtime and jazz music popular at the time.
at fire and crime scenes and so much more. All personalities of dogs can be accommodated, from bold and confident to soft and compliant; the many levels of stimulation can ensure a very mild and impersonal correction is available for minor disobedience, while a stronger level might be used for a dog chasing a squirrel onto a busy road where ignoring the recall might get
(7) FACT. On November 20, 2007, President George W. Bush granted a “pardon” to two turkeys, named May and Flower, at the 60th annual National Thanksgiving Turkey presentation, held in the Rose Garden at the White House. The two turkeys were flown to Orlando, Florida, where they served as honorary grand marshals for the Disney World Thanksgiving Parade.
Old Town Crier are ideal for advanced training and situations when timing is of utmost importance, such as remote and off lead work. They make advanced training possible for a wide variety of jobs dogs can be trained to do for law enforcement, such as drug and IED detection, search and rescue, accelerant detection TRAINING | FROM PAGE 22
9. The tradition of playing or watching football on Thanksgiving started with the first National Football League game on the holiday in 1934. 8. Turkey contains an amino acid that makes you sleepy 7. On Thanksgiving Day in 2007, two turkeys earned a trip to Disney World. 6. The movement of the turkey inspired a ballroom dance. 5. Native Americans used cranberries, now a staple of many Thanksgiving dinners, for cooking as well as medicinal purposes. 4. Turkeys are slow-moving birds that lack the ability to fly` 3.Macy’s was the first American department store to sponsor a parade in celebration of Thanksgiving. 2. One of America’s Founding Fathers thought the turkey should be the national bird of the United States. 1. Thanksgiving is held on the final Thursday of November each year.
(8) FACT. Turkey does contain the essential amino acid tryptophan, which is a natural sedative, but so do a lot of other foods, including chicken, beef, pork, beans and cheese. Though many people believe turkey’s tryptophan content is what makes many people feel sleepy after a big Thanksgiving meal, it is more likely the combination of fats and carbohydrates most people eat with the turkey, as well as the large amount of food (not to mention alcohol, in some cases) consumed, that makes most people feel like following their meal up with a nap. (9) FICTION. The American tradition of college football on Thanksgiving is pretty much as old as the sport itself. The newly formed American Intercollegiate Football Association held its first championship game on Thanksgiving Day in 1876. At the time, the sport resembled something between rugby and what we think of as football today. By the 1890s, more than 5,000 club, college and high school football games were taking place on Thanksgiving, and championship matchups between schools like Princeton and Yale could draw up to 40,000 fans. The NFL took up the tradition in 1934, when the Detroit Lions (recently arrived in the city and renamed) played the Chicago Bears at the University of Detroit stadium in front of 26,000 fans. Since then, the Lions game on Thanksgiving has become an annual event, taking place every year except during the World War II years (1939–1944).
How Much Do You Know About Thanksgiving??
CARIBBEAN CONNECTION ALEXANDER BRITELL
How to Travel to
St. Kitts & Nevis
t Kitts and Nevis reopened its borders on Oct. 31st, and the twin-island federation has now revealed its entry protocols for travelers. Crucially, travelers from the US, UK, Canada and Europe, among others, will have to submit a negative PCR test completed within 72 hours of travel. They’ll then have to undergo a temperature check and health questionnaire at the airport upon arrival, and then download a contact tracing app. Travelers will be restricted to their hotel and hotel grounds for the first 1-7 days of their stay. For those travelers staying longer than a week, they will be tested again on day 7; if negative, they can book select excursions and access select destination sites. Travelers staying more than 14 days will take another test on day 14; CARRIBEAN CONNECTION PAGE 25
24 | November 2020
Old Town Crier
MYSTERY READING AT ITS BEST by Virginia author Jeffrey Roswell McCord
CARIBBEAN CONNECTION FROM PAGE 20
if that’s negative, they are free to integrate into St Kitts and Nevis. Officials have approved six hotels and resorts in the country for international travelers: they include the Four Seasons Nevis and Oualie Beach Resort in Nevis. In St. Kitts, approved hotels for international travelers include the Koi Resort, Curio Collection by Hilton; the Royal St. Kitts Hotel; the St. Kitts
Marriott and the Park Hyatt St. Kitts. The CDC recently assessed the country’s COVID risk as “very low.” There have only been 19 cases since the beginning of the pandemic in St. Kitts and Nevis. St. Kitts and Nevis have been training stakeholders in the country’s “Travel Approved” safety program. As for visitors, they will be asked to follow basic health and safety protocols like frequent hand washing and sanitizing, physical distancing and mask wearing. They will be required to wear masks
whenever they are outside of their hotel room. For more on how to safely travel to St. Kitts and Nevis log onto their governments site addressing the virus. Covid19.gov.kn The OTC is happy to partner with Alexander Britell, Founder and Editor-In-Chief of the Miami, Florida based Caribbean journal, and his staff. Check them out online at caribjournal. com for valuable information on all of the fabulous travel options and things of interest in the Caribbean.
CARIBBEAN MYSTERY AND INTRIGUE A dead Marine washed ashore on a Caribbean island leads investigators to otherworldly perpetrators in historic pirate waters and high level abuses in Washington. An intrepid maritime historian working the case for U.S. Naval Intelligence discovers a 60-year record of extraterrestrial activity in the Caribbean basin. History and national security politics meet science fiction in this mystery based on exhaustive factual research and informed conjecture.
CARIBBEAN hISToRY AND ADvENTURE Where did the villain General Santa Anna of Alamo infamy retire? Is time travel possible? What was it like on the ground in the worst hurricane of the 19th century? Can a band of rogue sailors from Coral Bay, St. John, defeat ruthless corporate mercenaries? These questions and more are answered in Jeffrey Roswell McCord’s new fact-based novel “Santa Anna’s Gold in a Pirate Sea.”
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November 2020 | 25
FROM THE BAY
ehold the concrete road culvert: straight and narrow and lifeless, having whisked the previous day’s rains from oceans of hard-baked asphalt with ruthless efficiency, swelling quickly to 6 feet deep with storm water, then receding to less than an inch of water hours later. Now follow Erik Michelsen across the road, which is Maryland Route 2, a busy fourlane traffic artery connecting Annapolis to Baltimore. Duck behind a seniors’ apartment complex and enter lush expanses of ponds, wetlands and forested creek bottoms that sponsor natural diversity, slow storm water runoff so it can soak into underground aquifers, allow natural processes time to cleanse and clarify the discharge, and reduce downstream flooding. One side of the road represents the worst of human engineering, maximizing one thing, water removal, to the ruin of all else. The other maximizes nothing, except life, in all of its buzzy, croaky, splashy, winged wonder — water as resource. The latter represents a most hopeful collaboration between humans and beavers, the animals that once engineered the Chesapeake watershed with a thoroughness unmatched even by today’s 18 million people. Before the mid-1700s, when they were virtually trapped out, millions of beavers and their dams and ponds were key to a Chesapeake that was clean and clear almost beyond imagining. Scientific analyses of deep Bay sediments deposited through the centuries have provided us with insights into that astounding ecosystem. Beavers are coming back, even to the inimical conurbation that is most of northern Anne Arundel County. Michelsen, acting deputy director of the 26 | November 2020
Photo: Dave Harp
Erik Michelsen stands atop a beaver dam in Anne Arundel County, MD. county’s Bureau of Watershed Protection and Restoration, is my guide to what is no less than a demonstration project, with beavers themselves doing much of the construction. For Michelsen, it was good news around 2015 when beavers started showing up on the county restoration project that enhanced the north branch of Cypress Creek here. It drains to the Magothy River and then the Chesapeake Bay. What humans began, the beavers enhanced, impounding the whole stream with a series of dams and ponds. Until recently, the beavers would not have been embraced for their ecosystem contributions. They’d have been removed, meaning trapped and killed. That’s still too common around much of the Bay watershed. Beavers are compelled to chew, to control their marvelous, self-sharpening teeth that never stop growing; compelled also to dam, annoyed by the sound of
flowing water. The beaver dams here were raising water levels, with a potential to flood Ritchie Highway. The county responded by installing a simple, low-tech device called a pond leveler. A sturdy metal cage toward the lower end of the pond protects one end of an 18-inch diameter plastic drainpipe. The other end of the pipe exits downstream of the beavers’ dam, carrying the sound of flowing water far enough away so they are not motivated to plug it. The whole affair is set up to keep the pond deep enough to make the beavers feel at home, but not so deep as to flood the roadway. Michelsen estimates there are hundreds of beavers now in Anne Arundel County. Complaints about beavers typically run about “50/50, flooding and chewing down peoples’ trees,” said Peter Bendel, with the Wildlife and Heritage division of the state Department of Natural
Resources. “So now it’s a matter of education, teaching co-existence, offering solutions, explaining beavers’ benefits,” Michelsen said. We headed north up the highway toward where Cattail Creek meanders down from big shopping malls and passes under the road by Joe’s Seafood and Precision Auto Tune. Clambering down a slope, we picked up an improbable nature trail that skirts several acres of beautiful pond and wetlands. Chisel-like beaver chews are evident on sticks and felled trees as big as 18 inches in diameter. Beavers feed on the bark and use the wood to construct dams and lodges. The beavers have done the “restoration” here by themselves, Michelsen said. At least twice, the county Department of Public Works trapped them out and tore out their dam. The beavers just moved back in. The problem was a fear of flooding that raised manhole covers, allowing access to a major sewer line that runs along the creek floodplain. The solution was as simple as
pouring a bit more concrete to raise the manhole covers a few feet higher, beyond the threat of flooding. It was a lot cheaper than never-ending trapping, too. Later that day, south of Annapolis on Flat Creek, a tributary of the South River, we saw an expanse of beaverwrought wild rice wetlands that looks completely wild, save for twin pond levelers protecting Governor’s Bridge Road from flooding. No single-channel babbling brook here — just a broad and languid flow of water, moving in braids across an expansive floodplain. This was water’s chosen way back when both the watershed and the Bay were healthier. The shift toward an ecological beaver ethic remains slow and uneven across the watershed. Tools like pond levelers, abrasive paint and other techniques to protect trees are available, notably from Mike Callahan’s Beaver Solutions in Massachusetts. Callahan’s companion Beaver Institute provides both handson and do-it-yourself training for organizations or individuals working for a peaceful coexistence with the beavers. We’ve scarcely begun to plumb the potential of beavers to restore water’s rightful way throughout Bay landscapes. But Michelsen has high hopes. “I am convinced that, even in a highly urban watershed, they can do wonders,” he said, “if we just allow them to work.” Tom Horton, a Bay Journal columnist, has written many articles and books about the Chesapeake Bay, including Turning the Tide and Island Out of Time. He currently teaches writing and environmental topics at Salisbury University. This column courtesy of the Bay Journal. For more information and more articles like this check out bayjournal.com Old Town Crier
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November 2020 | 27
Return to Berryville & Beyond A
s the leaves began to turn color this past October we thought we would take a final drive west to the Virginia countryside before the yellow and red leaves turned to brown and started to fall. To be honest, we weren’t impressed with any of the vistas. Maybe we were a little too early. It was worth the drive in any case. In addition to taking a drive through Virginia horse and wine country, we were on a mission to repay a debt. About five years ago we visited the beautiful Waypoint House Bed and Breakfast owned by Rachel and Jonathan Worsley. During our stay the four of us consumed a bottle of their Bones Virgin Island Rum. It was great and we promised to return with a bottle of one of our favorite whiskeys...Copper Fox Original Rye. We accomplished our mission and had a beautiful drive along the way. There are three options to get to Berryville and two involve dealing with road construction. The first is I-66 and the second is Route 7, Leesburg Pike. The third is the Dulles Access road to the Greenway, to Route 7. We opted for I-66 on the way out and Route 7 for the return trip. The construction along I-66 is progressing nicely and except for a couple of early merges, the traffic is not too terribly bad, except during rush hour. After a couple of slowdowns, we picked up Route 50 west and set our sights on the mountains in the distance. Soon three lanes became two and then one lane.
28 | November 2020
After crossing Route 15 we came to the charming town of Aldie. Here you will find the historic Aldie Mill. I remember driving my dad’s 1965 Chevy Impala to Aldie...and the car was new. This classic town hasn’t changed much at all except for the addition of the Little Apple Pastry Shop and the remake of the Aldie General Store & Cafe. Great places to stop for a snack. Continuing on Route 50 we passed farms, fields and new housing projects. We eventually reached the town of Middleburg - horse country - including the Upperville Horse Park, past the towns of Upperville and Paris. All of these places are worth a stop. The Upperville Colt and Horse Show is the oldest and most prestigious horse show in America. Established in 1853, the event is held on the site of Grafton Farm, one of the properties adjacent to Route 50, and known for stately oak trees and good grass footing. As Route 50 becomes a four-lane highway again, at Paris we continue west over the Shenandoah River. Soon after crossing the Shenandoah we made a right turn on Millwood Road to take us to the small town of Millwood. The first thing you will notice on Millwood Road is the stone fence and the Blue Ridge Wildlife Center sign. The Center is a unique and special place. It is the only wildlife teaching hospital in northern Virginia. The staff and volunteers of BRWC work to care for native wildlife ROAD TRIP > PAGE 29
Old Town Crier
Top Photos, clockwise from top left: Hip and Humble in Berryville; Nalls Farm Market; The mill stream; The Burwell-Morgan Mill; The Barnes
ROAD TRIP | FROM PAGE 28
by integrating veterinary medicine, rehabilitation, education and research. For more information, check out their web site. About another mile or so you will come to the very small town of Millwood. Millwood is home to many of Clarke County’s most historic sites including the Burwell-Morgan Mill, Carter Hall, The Greenway Historic District, Long Branch, Old Chapel and the River House. The Burwell-Morgan grist mill was built about 1785 by General Daniel Morgan and Lt. Col. Nathaniel Burwell, who both served in the American Revolution. The Mill is only open to the public on weekends but is worth a visit. We realized that we were hungry so we visited the Locke Store for a sandwich. This store has been here for decades and I even met the grandson of a previous owner in the parking lot. He had to be in his 60’s. Their food is the real deal. Everything is made in house and cut in house. We ordered the chicken club sandwich and adjourned to a picnic table at the Mill. The sandwich was big enough for two and went very well with the Australian Sauvignon Blanc and Route 11 chips. Leaving Millwood we turned Old Town Crier
right on Route 255 to Route 340 and into Berryville. As we enter town Waypoint House is one block over at 211 South Church Street. Although it is a historic house, it offers modern style and convenience coupled with old-fashioned hospitality. Rachael and Jonathon are perfect hosts - that is why we are bringing the bottle of Copper Fox Rye. As Jonathan told us, when the pandemic hit they closed for about three months from not knowing what to expect and the absence of folks traveling. Since they have reopened they have seen a rebound in business. During the down time, they both noticed how most folks were eating at home. The two decided to open up Presto Dinners, a concept for the times. Rachael cooks up dinners made from scratch, freezes them and they are available when you are ready for a no fuss- home cooked meal. Berryville makes for a great base of operation to explore the northern Shenandoah Valley with Winchester, Virginia to the west and Charlestown, West Virginia to the north east. Berryville is a “throwback” town where there are as many homes on Main Street as businesses and all the businesses are home grown except for the ACE Hardware store.
One of the main attractions in Berryville is the Barns of Rose Hill, a performing arts venue and community center located downtown. The venue was formerly two historic dairy barns from the early 20th century that have been restored and renovated in 2011 into one unique building with superb acoustic engineering and modern amenities. My traveling partner’s favorite store – Hip and Humble - is right across from the referenced ACE and is an adventure in itself to check out. Leaving Berryville we took Route 7 back. This route takes you towards the Shenandoah River and Veramar Vineyards, one of Virginia’s best wineries (try their Malbec if they have any). You will also pass Nalls Farm Market...you can’t miss it. The last part of our journey took us toward Leesburg where we stayed on Route 7 and road construction on the other side of Leesburg. My advice would be to get on the Dulles Greenway to get home and avoid the construction. November is a perfect time of the year to take a road trip westward. The leaf peepers are mostly gone and fall is finally in the air.
The Locke Store in Millwood, VA Inset: Locke Store Lunch in the park
November 2020 | 29
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Old Town Crier
THANKSGIVING DINNER TO STAY OR TO GO
his holiday season is going to be one for the books for sure with the pandemic still in what seems to be full force. Who would have thought it would be this serious for this long? A huge part of the holidays is food and gathering with friends at our favorite places to enjoy said food. The “rona” protocols also put a damper on gatherings at home but we will just have to continue to make the best of a bad situation. We continue to patronize our favorite places and encourage you all to do the same. The Old Town Crier has been receiving several inquiries as to what the dining options in Old Town are on Thanksgiving Day so we decided to do our part and update you with what our advertisers have up their sleeves for the big day. In alphabetical order: Bastille Brasserie & Bar will be offering a three course menu Thanksgiving Dinner To-Go or to Dine In. The menu includes a choice of a Caesar salad or pumpkinmaple bisque starter, a choice of turkey, gravy and cranberries or beef rib roast and mushroom jus all accompanied by mashed potatoes and roasted vegetables and your choice of pumpkin pie with crème Chantilly or apple pie with browned butter streusel. Pricing is dependent on quantity orders. Orders may be placed through November 22nd at 3 pm and are available for pick up on the 26th from 12 noon-3 pm. Dine in hours are 12 noon to 6 pm. We suggest you make your reservations Old Town Crier
Sunday, November 22nd and are available for pickup on Wednesday, November 25th between 2 and 8 pm. There is an option for local delivery for an additional $10. Orders may be placed by phone at 703-548-1785 or online at unionstreetpublichouse. com. The Warehouse will be open on Thanksgiving Day and will be serving traditional Thanksgiving fare in addition to all items on their regular menu. All meals will be available for pick up and carryout as well.
early either by calling 703-519-3776 or online at bastillerestaurant.com. Tempo Restaurant will also be serving a three course Thanksgiving Dinner both To-Go and Dine In. They are offering your choice of Starters - Virginia peanut and pumpkin bisque, New England clam chowder, insalata Ambrosia (oranges, bananas, pineapple, grapes, coconut and fresh mint), insalata d’Autumn (mesclun lettuce, apples, pecans, craisens, gorgonzola cheese, French vinaigrette); Main Course options are slow roasted, fresh herbed turkey with homemade cranberry sauce and giblet gravy, prime rib with sauce Albert (classic French sauce of Dijon mustard-horseradish and cream) or salmon “Margaux” (salmon filet, crabmeat, Hass avocado, cherry tomatoes in beurre blanc sauce). Dessert will be your choice from the
daily selection. All entrees are served with stuffing, green beans amandine, glazed carrots with pearl onions and your choice of garlic mashed potatoes or sweet potatoes. Dinner is served from 12 noon to 6 pm and is priced at $37 per adult and $18 per child. Reservations are highly recommended. Call 703-370-7900. Union Street Public House will be closed on Thanksgiving Day but is offering a pre-order Thanksgiving Dinner with the works. The menu includes herb roasted turkey served with butternut squash soup, seasonal salad, traditional green bean casserole, sweet potato casserole, apple sage dressing, mashed potatoes and gravy, cranberry sauce, dinner rolls and a choice of house made apple, pecan or pumpkin pie. Pricing dependent on quantity ordered. Orders must be placed by 5 pm on
Landini Brothers, the Fish Market, Mackie’s Bar and Grill, River Bend Bistro and Village Brauhaus will all be closed to celebrate the day with family and friends. We encourage you to patronize all of these fine establishments all throughout the year and be sure to tell them we sent you. See their ads in this section for details. There are many other fabulous restaurants in the area that will be offering both dine in, carry out and delivery on Thanksgiving Day and there are several sources online and via Facebook that provide extensive listings. We suggest that you check out visitalexandriava.com or join the newest Facebook page out there that caters to curbside, carry out and dine in dining inquiries - Alexandria Curbside Dining. @ alexandriacurbsidedining Whether you are cooking at home, ordering in, picking up or dining out this this year, we wish you all a happy and healthy Thanksgiving! November 2020 | 31
Chocolate The Aztec Elixir
his may be the best, if not the most delicious, medical news since the Aztecs gave the world chocolate in the mid16th century. (Well, actually the Spanish Conquistadors slaughtered the Aztecs and took their chocolate back to Europe.) Several studies have shown that dark chocolate and cocoa has beneficial effects on the human cardiovascular system. The chemical behind this miracle are polyphenols, which are a type of plant-based antioxidants found in a variety of other foods such as blueberries, beans, cherries, red wine and grains. Can it be true that a food so delicious is good for us to boot? One of the more definitive studies was reported in the July, 2007 edition in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) where it was reported that dark chocolate actually reduced blood pressure among participants who suffered from stage 1 hypertension, the least severe level. One group was given polyphenol-rich dark chocolate and the other polyphenol-free white chocolate every day for 18 weeks. The group that ate dark chocolate group showed a significant reduction in blood pressure. Dark chocolate and cocoa are rich in flavanols, plant-based antioxidants that may improve blood flow and keep vessels healthy. The study participants might have derived some of the same health benefits by munching on broccoli or apples, but that wouldn’t have been nearly as much fun. Consuming dark chocolate and cocoa offer other health benefits. Chocolate’s low glycemic index is not the only good news for people who must vigilantly watch their blood sugar. The antioxidants in dark chocolate and cocoa may aid the impaired circulation and unhealthy blood vessels that often precede the development of diabetes while also possibly improving cells’ sensitivity to insulin and glucose. Dark chocolate and cocoa contain essential minerals such as copper, magnesium, potassium and iron while milk chocolate contains small amounts of calcium. Dark chocolate and cocoa make us feel good. While is isn’t completely clear why chocolate is a mood-elevator, it does contain natural compounds that have been categorized as pleasureinducing such as theobromine, a natural stimulant, small amounts of caffeine and phenylethylamine that releases the feel-good chemicals endorphins in your brain. And here’s more good news. In September, 2010 Adora, an American chocolatier, announced that it has formulated a brand of premium chocolate that has been supplemented with calcium, vitamin D3 and magnesium. “With the benefit of added calcium, vitamin D and magnesium, Adora offers delicious one-stop shopping to help fill in the nutrient shortfalls so common in many women’s diets today.” says registered dietitian Carolyn O’Neil, coauthor of The Dish on Eating Healthy and Being Fabulous! The supplements come in milk and dark chocolate versions. So the next time you’re craving that wedge of gooey chocolate cake go for it, indulge yourself. Enjoy the unctuous flavor of chocolate without feeling quite as guilty. Plus, you’ll be able to take comfort in the fact that you’ll be eating a bit of Aztec food history. Publishers Note: This is great information to know going in to the holiday season!! Chocolate is good for you!! 32 | November 2020
But what does chocolate not do? The myths abound surrounding chocolate and its adverse health effects.
Here are the facts. Chocolate does not cause acne The Journal of the American Medical Association, after reviewing extensive research on chocolate and acne, stated: “diet plays no role in acne treatment in most patients... even large amounts of chocolate have not clinically exacerbated acne.”
Chocolate does not cause migraines Numerous studies have failed to make a connection between chocolate and migraines even when migraine sufferers an imagined sensitivity to chocolate.
Chocolate does not create cavities Chocolate leaves your mouth relatively quickly-it’s the bits that get stuck in there that are the problem. Studies suggest that dark chocolate and cocoa may actually be good for dental health because flavanol antioxidants and other compounds in chocolate and cocoa inhibit plaque build-up.
Chocolate does not contain caffeine Milk chocolate contains small amounts of caffeine, about as much in a cup of decaf coffee.
Chocolate does not cause hyperactivity Blame the birthday party not the chocolate cake. Studies have failed to demonstrate any relationship between hyperactive behavior and the consumption of chocolate. The culprit is most likely the party atmosphere.
Chocolate is not a common food allergen Of the 1% to 2% of Americans who suffer from allergies, 90% are allergic to either milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, soy, wheat, fish or shellfish, but not chocolate.
Old Town Crier
Fine Dining, Fine Wines, Casual Styleâ€¦
Lunch, Dinner and Sunday Brunch Indoor, Outdoor or Carry Out CALL FOR RESERVATIONS CLOSED FOR THANKSGIVING COVID HOURS: Sun-Thur: 11:30 - 7pm, Fri & Sat: 11:30 - 9pm 7966 Fort Hunt Road (In the Hollin Hall Shopping Center)
Old Town Crier
November 2020 | 33
DINING GUIDE AMERICAN
AUGIE’S MUSSEL HOUSE 1106 King Street 703.721.3970 BILBO BAGGINS 208 Queen St. 703-683-0300 BLACKWALL HITCH 5 Cameron St. 703-739-6090 CAFE 44 44 Canal Center 571-800-6644 CARLYLE CLUB 411 John Carlyle St. 703-549-8957 CHADWICKS 203 Strand St. 703-836-4442 CHART HOUSE One Cameron St. 703-684-5080 CITY KITCHEN 330 South Pickett St. 703-685-9172 fatcitykitchen.com COLUMBIA FIREHOUSE 109 S. St. Asaph St. 703-683-1776 EVENING STAR CAFÉ 2000 Mt. Vernon Ave. 703-549-5051 EXECUTIVE DINER & CAFE 1400 Duke Street 703-299-0894 FIVE GUYS 725 King St. 703-549-7991 FOSTERS GRILLE 2004 Eisenhower Ave. 703-725-1342 GADSBYS TAVERN 138 N. Royal St. 703-548-1288 GRATEFUL KITCHEN 727 N. Henry Street HARD TIMES CAFE 1404 King St. 703-837-0050 HEN QUARTER 1404 King St. 703-684-6969 HUMMINGBIRD 220 South Union Street 703-566-1355 JACKS PLACE 222 North Lee St. 703-684-0372 JAVA GRILL 611 King Street 571-431-7631 JOE THEISMANNS 1800 Diagonal Rd. 703-739-0777 JUNCTION BAKERY & BISTRO 1508 Mount Vernon Avenue Alexandria 703-436-0025 LAPORTAS 1600 Duke St. 703-683-6313
34 | November 2020
THE LIGHT HORSE 715 King Street 703-549-0533
LIVE OAK 1603 Commonwealth Ave. 571-312-0402 LORI'S TABLE 1028 King Street 703-549-5545 LOST DOG CAFE 808 North Henry St. 571-970-6511 MACKIE’S BAR AND GRILL 907 King St. 703-684-3288 mackiesbarandgrill.com MAGNOLIA’S ON KING 703 King St. 703-838-9090 MAJESTIC CAFÉ 911 King St. 703-837-9117 MASON SOCIAL 728 Henry Street 703-548-8800 mason-social.com MOUNT VERNON INN Mount Vernon, Va 703-780-0011 MURPHYS IRISH PUB 713 King St. 703-548-1717 murphyspub.com NORTHSIDE 1O 10 East Glebe Rd. 703-888-0032 OCONNELLS RESTAURANT & BAR 112 King St. 703-739-1124 PORK BARREL BBQ 2312 Mount Vernon Ave. 703-822-5699 THE PEOPLES DRUG 103 N. Alfred Street 571-257-8851 RAMPARTS 1700 Fern St. 703-998-6616 rampartstavern.com RIVER BEND BISTRO 7966 Fort Hunt Rd. Hollin Hall Shopping Center 703-347-7545 riverbendbistro.com ROCK IT GRILL 1319 King St. 703-739-2274 RT's RESTAURANT 3804 Mt. Vernon Ave. 703-684-6010 rtsrestaurant.com SAMUEL BECKETTS IRISH GASTRO PUB 2800 S. Randolph St. Villages of Shirlington 703-379-0122 SHOOTER MCGEES 5239 Duke St. 703-751-9266 SMOKING KOW BBQ 3250 Duke Sttreet 703-888-2649 SONOMA CELLAR 207 King St. 703-966-3550
Please Contact your favorite restaurants for updates on their "Social Distancing" policies.
SOUTH BLOCK 106 N. Lee Street 703-465-8423 SOUTHSIDE 815 815 S. Washington St. 703-836-6222 SWEETGREEN 823 King St. 571-319-0192 SWEET FIRE DONNA'S BBQ & HOPS 510 John Carlyle Street 571-312-7960 T.J. STONES GRILL HOUSE & TAP ROOM 608 Montgomery St. 703-548-1004 tjstones.com TOASTIQUE GOURMET TOAST & JUICE BAR 1605 King Street 571-312-1909 UNION STREET PUBLIC HOUSE 121 South Union St. 703-548-1785 unionstreetpublichouse.com VERMILLION 1120 King St. 703-684-9669 VIRTUE GRAIN & FEED 106 South Union St. 571-970-3669 VOLA’S DOCKSIDE GRILL & THE HI-TIDE LOUNGE 101 North Union St. 703-935-8890 THE WAREHOUSE BAR & GRILL 214 King St. 703-683-6868 warehouseoldtown.com ASIAN
ASIAN BISTRO 809 King St. 703-836-1515 KINGS RANSOM 728 King Street 571-319-0794 KISSO ASIAN BISTRO 300 King Street 703-888-1513 MALAYA 1019 King St. 703-519-3710 MAI THAI 9 King St. 703-548-0600 NASIME 1209 King St. 703-548-1848 SIGNATURE THAI 722 King Street 707-888-2458 STREETS MARKET AND CAFE 3108 Mt. Vernon Ave. 571-431-6810 THAILAND ROYAL 801 N. Fairfax St. 703 535-6622 TOKYO JAPANESE STEAKHOUSE 66 Canal Center Plaza 703-683-8878 CAPHE BANH MI VIETNAMESE 407 Cameron St. 703-549-0800 KAI ZEN TAVERN 1901 Mt. Vernon Ave. 703-836-1212
THE SUSHI BAR 2312 Mount Vernon Avenue 571-257-3232 CONTINENTAL
BRABO by Robert Weidmaier 1600 King St. 703-894-3440 BRABO TASTING ROOM 1600 King St. 703-894-5252 CEDAR KNOLL GW Parkway at Lucia Ln. 703-780-3665 OLD HOUSE COSMOPOLITAN 1024 Cameron Street 703-717-9361 TEMPO 4231 Duke St. 703-370-7900 temporestaurant.com VILLAGE BRAUHAUS 710 King Street 703-888-1951 villagebrauhaus.com FRENCH
BASTILLE 606 N. Fayette St. 703-519-3776 bastillerestaurant.com BISTRO SANCERRE FRENCH 1755 Duke Street LE REFUGE 127 N. Washington St. 703-548-4661 FONTAINES CAFFE & CREPERIE 119 S. Royal St. 703-535-8151 LA MADELEINE 500 King St. 703-729-2854 TWO NINETEEN RESTAURANT 219 King St. 703-549-1141 ITALIAN
BUGSYS PIZZA RESTAURANT 111 King St. 703-683-0313 FACCIA LUNA 823 S. Washington St. 703-838-5998 HANK & MIMI'S PIZZA AND PASTA 600 Montgomery Ave. 571-312-4117 IL PORTO RESTAURANT 121 King St. 703-836-8833 LANDINI BROTHERS 115 King St. 703-836-8404 landinibrothers.com LENA’S WOOD-FIRED PIZZA & TAP 401 East Braddock Rd. 703-960-1086 MIA'S ITALIAN KITCHEN 100 King Street 703-997-5300 MICHAEL’S LITTLE ITALY 305 S. Washington St. 703-548-9338 RED ROCKS FIREBRICK PIZZA 904 King St. 703-717-9873
TAVERNA CRETEKOU 818 King St. 703-548-8688 tavernacretekou.com PITA HOUSE 719 King St. 703-684-9194 DELIAS MEDITERRANEAN GRILL 209 Swamp Fox Rd. 703-329-0006 VASO'S MEDITERRANEAN BISTRO 1118 King Street 703-566-2720 VASO'S KITCHEN 1225 Powhatan Street 703-548-2747 SEAFOOD
HANKS OYSTER BAR 1026 King St. 703-739-HANK FISH MARKET-OLD TOWN 105 King St. 703-836-5676 fishmarketoldva.com ERNIES ORGINIAL CRABHOUSE 1743 King St. 703-836-0046 THE WHARF 119 King St. 703-836-2834 INDIAN
DISHES OF INDIA 1510A Bellview Blvd. 703-660-6085 DIYA 218 North Lee, 2nd Floor 703-706-5338 NAMASTE 1504 King St. 703-970-0615 MEXICAN LATIN SOUTHWESTERN
CASA TEQUILA (next to Crate & Barrel) 1701 Duke 703-518-5312 CHOP SHOP TACO 1008 Madison Street 571-970-6438 DON TACO TEQUILA BAR 808 King St. 703-988-3144 LOS CUATES RESTAURANT 1116 King Street 703-548-2918 LOS TIOS GRILL 2615 Mt. Vernon Ave. 703-299-9290 LOS TOLTECOS 4111 Duke St. 703-823-1167 TAQUERIA POBLANO 2400-B Mt. Vernon Ave. 703-548-TACO (8226) TEQUILA & TACO 540 John Carlyle Street 703-721-3203 URBANO 116 116 King Street 571-970-5148
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Virginia Food & Wine Pairings You Should Try
ood and wine – two of our favorite subjects. The concept is the two react with one another, so finding the right pairings makes the overall experience more enjoyable. While you can enjoy either on its own, like any great team a good pairing is greater than the sum of its parts. The most important rule of pairing is this; drink the wine you like with the food you like. If you enjoyed the two of them, you did it right. That said, here are some tips for those who want to apply a more nuanced approach to food and wine pairings.
Rules of Wine Pairing There are two approaches to food and wine pairing; congruent and contrasting. Congruent pairings create balance by amplifying shared flavor compounds (often found with red wine). Contrasting pairings create balance by contrasting tastes and flavors (usually white, rosé, or sparkling). Regardless of which approach you take, remember these basic rules: • Acid needs acid. As a general rule acidic wines are food-friendly, as they intensify the meal’s flavor and cause a drying sensation which stimulates your appetite. This is why light seafood dishes go well with delicate white wines, such as Pinot Grigio or cool weather Chardonnay. Likewise, acidrich Italian reds like Sangiovese pair well with acidic tomato dishes. Always
36 | November 2020
ensure the wine is more acidic than the food it’s paired with. • Fat needs tannin (or acid). Fat will soften the tannins in wine for a smoother mouth feel. The fattier the food (like duck or steak) the more tannin you need. Acidic wines also pair well with fatty food; otherwise the wine may seem flabby. Sparkling wine is another great way to cut the fat. Actually, sparkling pairs with everything! • Sweet needs sweeter (not dry): You want the wine to be sweeter than the dessert it’s paired with, else the wine will taste dull by comparison. Another route is to try a contrasting pairing of a sweet wine with a savory dish, such as foie gras or blue cheese. • Pair with dominant flavor (not necessarily the meat): White wine pairs with less intense dishes, like fish or chicken, while red pairs with bold dishes, such as flavored meats. But sometimes it’s not the main ingredient that provides the dominant flavor, as is the case of a spicy curry dish or a
creamy pasta sauce. And remember food has a greater impact on wine than wine has on food, so plan accordingly. • Spicy needs sweet (not alcohol): Your perception of sweetness is altered with the introduction of spicy flavors. A sweeter, lower alcohol wine will balance a spicy dish, while higher alcohol wine intensifies spiciness. Serving a chilled wine is another way to alleviate the heat of highly spiced dish. • Salty needs sweet (or acid). Salty foods are enhanced and balanced by a hint of sweetness. If sweet wines aren’t your thing, then pair a salty dish with a low tannin, higher acid dry wine. It is easier to find these characteristics in white wines, but there are plenty of Virginia wineries that produce fruitforward reds.
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Suggested Virginia Pairings 2013 Vintner’s Reserve from Chateau O’Brien with prime rib. Chateau O’Brien in Delaplane is Virginia’s leader in Tannat wine. Unlike most Virginia wineries, their reds are aged at least 6 years before going on the tasting menu, allowing plenty of time for these high tannin wines to mellow out. I loved how this 50/50 Tannat & Petit Verdot blend cut through the fat, while the food simultaneously softened the wine’s tannins.
Royalty or Rosa Negra port-style wines from Fabbioli Cellars with chocolate. Fabbioli is famous as one of the few Virginia wineries that offer food and wine pairings, which range from pear wine with an apricot marmalade mix served on a cracker, to Tannat with a sopressata salami and spicy plumb chutney, to Chambourcin with prosciutto wrapped in asparagus. While the pairings change monthly, one combo you can always depend upon is a port-style wine with chocolate from the Perfect Truffle. Milk chocolate is often a complementary pairing, while a more bitter dark chocolate provides an intense contrasting flavor.
2017 Bell Mount Reserve Chardonnay from Mount Ida Vineyards with oysters. Chardonnay and oysters is a classic combo, and cool climate style Chardonnays like Mount Ida’s work best. Mount Ida also has its own full service farm-to-table kitchen, making it a great place to sample any number of Virginia food and wine pairings.
2017 Petit Verdot from Rogers Ford Farm Winery with lamb. Rogers Ford is the definition of a ‘hidden gem’ in the Virginia wine scene. Winemaker Johnny Puckett isn’t afraid to experiment, but my go-to wine is his Petit Verdot, which I found exceptionally fruit-forward for such a high-tannin grape. It was a great complimentary tasting to this spicy dish, although it would go equally well with salty Virginia ham.
2019 Vidal Blanc from Rock Roadhouse Winery with brie and blue cheese. Vidal doesn’t get the recognition it deserves, which is a shame since its hardy grape that’s dependable regardless of the growing season. While often found as a semi-sweet wine, dry Vidal pairs well with savory cheese plates. Rock Roadhouse also stands out for its production of ‘natural wines’; made with minimal chemical intervention including little to no sulfites.
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2017 Viognier from Nicewonder Farm with duck pastrami. While congruent food and wine pairings are easier to make, Chef Travis Milton of Nicewonder Farm does an amazing job at creating contrasting flavors. Their Viognier has a hint of minerality which rounds out the fat of his duck pastrami. Not only did this full bodied Viognier tone down the pepper, the dish brought out tropical notes that made the wine lighter on the palate.
2017 Cabernet Sauvignon from Shenandoah Vineyards with a meat lover’s pizza. I love this combo as Cabernet cancels out the fattiness of the meat toppings. Winemaker Michael Shaps is one of the best in the state, and Shenandoah has a great track record for its Cabernet.
2017 Walsh Family Wine Bethany Ridge with sushi. There are lots of great Virginia wine pairings for sushi, but this Sauvignon Blanc might be my favorite because it bright acidity goes well with fish-heavy dishes. If you want a more floral wine, try their 2019 Twin Notch Sauvignon Blanc and pair it with Thanksgiving turkey.
November 2020 | 37
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ometimes winemaking is one giant game of Tetris. There are so many moving parts, and each one is vital to the process, but it can be challenging to get them all happening in the order that’s necessary for a good outcome. Harvest is an exhausting time, without a doubt, but once the grapes are in, it gets really strategic. Fermenting the red wines is always a major part of finishing things up. Each fermenting bin holds up to 1-1/2 tons of grapes which are punched down twice daily to keep the skins wet and the flavors extracting. I’ll add yeast to get the fermentation started, a dose of yeast food a few days later to keep the yeast healthy, and then a malolactic inoculation to get the secondary fermentation started as the first fermentation stage is finishing. The timing is different for each bin depending on how far along the fermentation has progressed, so every one of them must be carefully monitored. Once the sugars have been converted to alcohol, we press the wine to separate the juice from the solids. At that point the big challenge is space: being able to keep each lot of wine separate even though most of the tanks are already filled with white wines. Once they do finally get into their tanks, the reds need to rest there a few days to allow the heavy solids to settle out before the wine is pumped into barrels. This movement from bin to tank to barrel—on repeat—is what gives us the space to press off more reds and keep the process moving. Over in the cold room, once the barrel-fermented Chardonnay and Petit Manseng have finished fermenting they are ready for topping up and the next steps in their process. At this point we will start the stirring routine for “sur lie” with these wines, which means stirring the lees into the wine. The lees are the sediment of grape solids and dormant yeast cells that fall to the bottom of the barrel. Stirring this back into the wine over a period of time helps with clarity and gives the wine a creamy texture. As if all that weren’t enough, a neighboring cidery is having trouble keeping enough product for their customers so I have been supplying them with Ladies Man cider. To keep the cider flowing, I am bringing in apples and raspberries to ferment during this time, on top of all the wines. That adds to the space challenge as well the mental focus challenge. The ability to multitask really comes in handy at times like this! And to top it all off, I am only about six weeks out from my next bottling date. I have already ordered labels and am in the process of ordering the rest of my packaging materials. The trick will be finding space in the cellar to blend, filter, and prepare the wines for bottling even though most of my tanks are still filled with fresh wine from this year’s harvest. So far I have always found my way through these challenges at this time of year, but it’s not very restful. I will admit that I tend to push the envelope in my work space pretty regularly, and other winemakers may not be in the same boat. Between you and me, I think I’m going have to build a new building soon, but please don’t tell my wife! Old Town Crier
WORKING OUT THROUGH THE HOLIDAYS your meals off with a bowl of chicken and vegetable soup instead. Not only is chicken soup good for you, studies have shown that people who ate it as an appetizer consumed less calories throughout the entire meal. • GO NUTS! Instead of pigging out on the baked goods, candy and chips grab a handful of mixed nuts and munch on it slowly. Nuts are loaded with protein and healthy fat which makes you feel more full and therefore less likely to fill up on empty calorie foods.
ith the cold weather rolling in and the days getting shorter it seems like we all have less time on our hands. With an already jam-packed schedule we tend to skip out on workouts (or stop exercising entirely) and by the time we get to the New Year we all feel compelled to get back to that pre-holiday shape. This year let’s try to do things a little different. Instead of slowing down on the exercise routine and abandoning your diet completely, keep up the good work and by the time the New Year gets here you will be starting off on a positive foot. Pay attention to what you eat during the holidays and keep your butt moving through the last leg of the holiday season. Here are just a few tips to keep you looking and feeling your best! • KEEP MOVING: Without realizing it we sometimes
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slow down on our exercise routines. This time make a steadfast commitment to workout. Just like you make your work schedule, take time to pencil in a workout. If you end up missing a workout make it up as soon as possible. Remember it is easier to stick to a fitness program than it is to start one after months of inactivity. • TAKE YOUR WORKOUT OUTDOORS: Most people will bring their workouts inside when the weather starts to get chilly. Instead, take advantage of what the weather has to offer. Bundle up a bit and take a walk, you’ll have to walk a bit faster to keep yourself warm while also burning more calories. • TRAVEL SMART: Don’t abandon your workout because of traveling for work or family holiday visits. If you are on a
business trip try staying at a hotel that has a gym. You don’t need a whole room full of exercise equipment to get a workout done. If gym access is not available get yourself moving with a light jog around the block and some abdominal crunches and push-ups. It is always better to do something than do no exercise at all. • KEEP YOURSELF HYDRATED: You won’t drink as much water because you don’t feel as thirsty. Remember that dry indoor air can be more dehydrating that running outside. Make sure to keep drinking plenty of fluids during the day and especially during and after a workout. • EAT HOT AND HEALTHY: Most people throw out those diet guidelines for the winter and fill up on homemade chili and beef stews. Start
• DRINK BETTER: Eggnog is a diet disaster. Instead of consuming half your day’s calories in one drink go for a glass of red wine or a rich tasting dark beer. Drink a glass of water in between each alcoholic drink. This will keep you hydrated and reduce your calorie intake. • EATING OUT: When eating out try to avoid that “too full” feeling that usually comes at the end of a meal. One pasta plate at a restaurant is enough to easily feed two people. Instead of devouring everything yourself, offer to split a low fat appetizer, a salad and a meal. By doing this you will eat less and also save a couple bucks. • STAY HEALTHY: One of the biggest set backs during the winter months is getting sick. Catching a cold - or possibly COVID - will set you back at least a week or more depending on how sick you get. Work toward improving your immunity by keeping up on your cardio. A recent study at the University of
South Carolina in Columbia found that adults who get regular moderate exercise have significantly fewer colds. If you already have a cold, moderate exercise probably won’t make it worse, but consult your doctor if you have possible flu or COVID symptoms such as fever, muscle aches or heavy coughing. • GO TO SLEEP: Missing out on sleep as stress and time demands grow can result in lower virus fighting “natural killer” cells in our bodies. Sleep gives your body the recovery time it needs to stay healthy and to keep your immune system working at its best. • EAT YOUR VEGETABLES! Eat plenty of carotenoid rich vegetables like winter squash, carrots and pumpkin. According to a U.S. Department of Agriculture report, a diet high in carotenoids can raise your immune-cell count by a third, which will help ward off illness and keep your fitness level intact Trying to stay healthy through the holidays can be tough, especially when everyone brings out their favorite pies and dessert goodies. Remember that the holidays come around once every year so it’s not like you are going to miss out on something if you don’t stuff yourself like a Thanksgiving turkey. Focus on keeping your fitness a priority and you will be able to start the New Year with a lot more pep than everyone else who decided to take the last three months off of exercise. Enjoy the holiday season by staying healthy and fit! November 2020 | 39
FROM THE TRAINER
STAYING ON THE FITNESS TRACK
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ovember can be a difficult month to control our eating habits with Thanksgiving being in the way. We seem to let our eyes and stomach get the best of us and give into temptation. So what advice can I give you to stay on the fitness track this month? Put down the fork and back away from the table! Just kidding, but we could all use a little bit of will-power when it comes to eating food. I think the biggest issue to address first is portion control. Eating the correct amount of food can save you a ton of calories. Sounds easy enough, right? Let’s review how much a serving size actually is: 1 fruit serving = 1 small to medium fresh fruit, ½ cup canned or fresh fruit or fruit juice, ¼ cup dried fruit 1 vegetable serving = ½ cup cooked veggies or vegetable juice, 1 cup raw veggies 1 starch serving (carbohydrate) = ½ cup cereal, grain, pasta, or starchy vegetable such as corn, potatoes, beans; 1 slice bread, ¾ to 1 ounce snack food 1 dairy serving = 1 cup milk, ¾ cup yogurt, 1 ounce cheese (about the size of 4 dice), ½ cup ice cream or pudding, 1 medium egg 1 meat serving = 3 ounces chicken, turkey, shellfish, beef
1 serving pumpkin pie = 1/8 pie and 1 serving fruit pie = 1/6 pie
As you can see, it doesn’t take much to constitute a serving. If you truly took the serving sizes listed above, a normal Thanksgiving Day plate and glass would hardly be full. Therefore, choose to grab a smaller plate and glass to “trick” your mind into thinking you have larger portions. Obvious`ly, smaller plates will limit the amount of food you can fit onto it. This sounds crazy, but it can work. The second thing to remember is to eat and drink S-L-O-W-L-Y! Relax and enjoy your favorite foods. Set down your utensils between each bite. By eating slower, you end up eating less because the feelings of being full arrive sooner. Eating too fast blunts those feelings of being full until it’s too late, when you’ve already overeaten. Try to eat more protein-rich and higher fiber foods like turkey and vegetables. These foods will fill you up faster and keep you full longer than higher carbohydrate foods, especially desserts. You can still have your pie, but keep in mind the serving size. One last thing to mention is EXERCISE! A little bit of activity and portion control will keep you from gaining any unwanted pounds. I recommend walking because it’s the easiest and most convenient way to stay active over the holidays. Happy Thanksgiving to you all.
Unverzagt holds Bachelor of Science degree in Wellness Management from Black Hills State University. He is a certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist through the National Strength & Conditioning Association and a Registered Diagnostic Cardiac Sonographer through the American Registry for Diagnostic Medical Sonography. 40 | November 2020
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Beauty ISn’t Only Skin Deep!
e all know that the saying is actually “Beauty is not only skin deep” and while that may be true in the big picture, one of the biggest dilemmas for women as they age is maintaining their “beautiful” skin. Do you show your age or Haircuts $15 Shampoo, Cut & Blow Dry $18 (extra charge for long hair) Scissors Cut $17+up Color $43+up Permanent $45+up (including haircut & conditioner)
not? Taking care of our skin and how to do that is often a confusing web of vitamins, acids, peels, scrubs, toners, and cleansers and hundreds of products to choose from. Many of us are rightfully confused about how to care for our skin. Let’s start with the basics of good skincare.
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Cleanse, tone, and moisturize. It’s important to select products within this regimen that are appropriate for your skin type. If you have extremely oily skin, it would be completely inappropriate to choose a milky, creamy cleanser. And, vice versa, if you have very dry skin, don’t select a product with too many acids or alcohol that will strip and further dry the skin. The key is balance, and to keep your skin balanced, you need to choose the right products for your skin type. Beyond the basics are a variety of products, targeted ingredients and a myriad of solutions for all skin issues. How does one know what is best for your skin ailment. Let’s break it down to the main ingredients that are necessary to affect change in the skin. Vitamin A – often referred to as Retin A or Retinol – helps to change the way our skin cells work. This is an important ingredient because of its ability to tackle many skin issues. Vitamin A is often prescribed to treat severe acne and is touted as a wonder ingredient for aging skin. Its ability to change how our skin cells work makes it a small miracle. Vitamin C (scientific name - L-ascorbic acid) - known for
its ability to rebuild collagen in the skin. It works from the inside out to bring back the skins natural elasticity. Appropriate for all skin types. Glycolic Acid – naturally derived from sugar or glucose, this ingredient sloughs off dead skin cells to reveal newer and plumber skin cells underneath. While also another small miracle ingredient, those with dry skin need to be careful because it can be drying. It’s also important for blemish prone skin not to overuse glycolic acid. Over drying the skin will cause it to generate more oil and lead to more blemishes. Appropriate for all skin types, but don’t overuse it. Salicylic Acid – this little gem is the only ingredient that dips down into your pores to clean out all the bacteria that leads to blemishes and keeps pores looking large. While technically an acid, this ingredient does not overly dry the skin. It is essential for treating and controlling breakouts. Vitamin E – works to moisturize and heal the skin and improve the skin’s texture. This is often paired with Vitamin C because the combination of the two packs a powerful punch. Most appropriate for dry skin. If you are concerned about the aging of the skin and want to maintain that youthful glow and appearance, here are
a few tips to consider. First, skin care is mostly about prevention – staying out of the sun, using eye cream, washing your face every night, and applying moisturizer (unless you are very oily). Second, as we get older, the basics of good skincare need a little injection. This is the time to add a few key ingredients to your regimen. Using Vitamin C will help prolong sagging of the skin and help with damage caused by the sun. It’s also important to introduce a Vitamin A product to improve the skin’s cellular turnover. Last, eye cream, eye cream, eye cream. If there was ever one product that is most important to maintaining your skin’s appearance, it is eye cream. The eyes are the first area to show signs of aging. Maintaining an unwrinkled appearance around the eye starts with the use of an eye cream. If you start early (in your 20s) a basic eye cream will do. If you start late (in your 40s), look for eye creams with Vitamin C or other collagen boosters. Ladies, remember, there isn’t a fountain of youth in any one product. It’s important to remember that if we neglect our skin for 20 years, a single product cannot reverse the damage or neglect we’ve done to our skin. That’s when it’s time to consider professional help – Botox, face lift, etc. In fact it takes a bevy of products with targeted ingredients to tackle our aging skin. November 2020 | 41
Fish Headed For Cover
or many, 2020 was a tough year. Anglers weren’t exempt. Maryland’s Governor Hogan banned fishing in March, April, and much of May. When local fishermen finally hit the water, the normally prolific Potomac River’s submerged aquatic vegetation was absent. Fish congregate in grasses and spawn, making it easier for anglers to find them. The lack of fish cover made this season very difficult. This has been a trend over the past 12 years, since the simultaneous construction of the new Woodrow Wilson Bridge and National Harbor. These projects kept the upper portion of the river stirred up, preventing essential sunlight from reaching emerging grasses. Without these grasses to filter river water, historic grassbeds heading south to the bay were also affected. This year, grass only grew from Pohick Bay south. Lack of cover spreads fish out and raises questions on spawning success. This year, only Mother Nature and Commercial haul seine operations could be held accountable for the lack of fish cover. Nothing could be done about rain and lack of sun; however, haul seine operations dredge up emerging grasses and likely disrupt the spawn. Nothing could be done. However, MD Department of Natural Resources Black Bass Advisory Committee member Dick Berich has a plan. With most “plans” there is doubt they will ever be completed, especially ones of the magnitude proposed by Berich. But those who have 42 | November 2020
worked with him know there’s no project too big to plan, organize and execute. It was Berich who masterminded the 2016 planting of 100 fish habitat reef balls and other log structures to place in the grass-vacant National Harbor. Berich is a professional engineer with over 40 years experience not only in project design and management but also working with federal, state and local governments. In addition, Berich is immensely qualified with experience in water resources, environmental issues, and transportation projects. Oh, and he’s an avid bass angler. Fast forward 4 years and Berich is back and plans to take advantage of the US 301 bridge renovation. Concrete pilings and road surface are perfect to create a dual purpose reef. First, Berich has precisely identified locations to create current breaks for better grass growth and provide year round cover for largemouth bass. In addition, lower Potomac sites in Wades Bay and Blue Banks will continue to accept demolition material from other sites. Berich chose these bays for several reasons. They’re relatively small, about 1 square mile each, are shallow and have wooded shorelines. Typically grasses were abundant, but not recently. Sandy and gravel bottoms allowed grasses to take root and provide cover and spawning areas for largemouth bass. A few freshwater inflows, relatively low salinity and depths ranging up to 9 feet make this area worth the effort to plant a reef to allow grasses to
reestablish and be protected from waves, encouraging bass to take up residence. While the Chesapeake Bay was the original destination for this concrete refuse, Berich sold the project managers on the proximity to his proposed sites. This means lower cost and less time involved for the construction of the new bridge around 2022. The reef would be constructed from up to 50,000 cubic yards of concrete rubble (about 80,000 tons), placed in 6 to 8 feet of water at low tide for three areas, 3 ft wide and 100 ft long. Warning signs will alert near-shore boaters. Berich has also proposed above water barriers to break storm wave action and barriers covered with riprap with planting
areas for grasses and shrubs for protected bird habitat. In typical Dick Berich fashion, costs of materials and labor are minimized as he finds volunteers and arranges a win-win for providers of materials. Debris reef material is available at no cost, and because Wades and Blue Banks are close to the US 301 project, the bridge rehabilitation contractor will have a very economical disposal location. Even material delivery will be free as the bridge contactor will provide barges and place materials at no cost. Additional funding, for rip-rap and plantings, will be arranged through environmental grants, State reef funding, and private
donations. The BBAC is supporting this plan as is the MD DNR, as they should. This will likely be the biggest project of its kind on the river, surpassing the Spoils Cove above National Harbor, constructed from mid 1980s resurfacing Woodrow Wilson Bridge debris. This could create a bass fishing mecca in the lower portion of the Potomac. If history is a guide, just sit back and support Berich and let him do what he does best. He gets things done. Author Capt. Steve Chaconas is Potomac bass fishing guide. Potomac River reports: nationalbass.com. Book trips/ purchase gift certificates: info@ NationalBass.com.
Potomac River Bassing in November Water is cooling into the 50s. The beginning of the month is suitable for topwater lures, provided the water is calm, clear and with lower light. Buzzbaits are best with 2/0 Mustad Stinger hooks on 40 pound Gamma Torque braided line on Quantum casting reels. Otherwise, try shallow crankbaits on Gamma 10 pound test Edge fluorocarbon line. Find wood cover near creek mouths and along the main river points of creeks. Spinnerbaits also on 10 pound Edge can work when water is a bit stained and with chop on the water. Deeper cranks on hard cover around the Spoils Cove, National Harbor and Belle Haven. Firetiger, shad and red patterns are best. Plastics fishing is also a good shot. Use Texas rigged Mizmo tubes on Mustad 3/0 Mega Bite hooks and a pegged 3/16 ounce weight. Pitch to pad edges and dock pilings. Make a lot of presentations to find moving fish. Use green pumpkin colors. Drop shot makes it easier to find fish on drops as tides fall. Use 20 pound Gamma Torque braid with 10 pound Edge leader. A 3/16 ounce Water Gremlin BullShot weight will secure the rig with a 1/0 Mustad Mega Bite hook. Use 4.5 inch soft plastic worms.
Old Town Crier
LORI WELCH BROWN
Changes in Gratitude & Changes in Attitude… …Nothing remains quite the same.
ratitude has been part of my daily practice for quite some time, but this year required adding a whole new level. My list of things to be grateful for changed from things like family, friends, and wellness to medical professionals, fashionable masks, Grubhub, and Netflix. All the doctors, nurses, and healthcare personnel who went above and beyond this year are true heroes, and I am grateful to those who rose to this unprecedented occasion. The news
has been gut wrenching, and combined with a heated election and the overlay of COVID-19, the weight of the world has never felt heavier on our collective shoulders. At least in my lifetime except for 9/11, and several gruesome mass murderers that I can’t bear to recall. And yet, the human spirit finds ways to shine its light through the rubble. I am always amazed at the brave, courageous people who step forward, roll up their sleeves, and lead us through the darkness. I am humbled by them, and eternally grateful. I’ve seen it in my own family and friends. My niece, a young nurse, volunteered to leave her home base in Florida to assist the COVID efforts in New York for several months. A friend has hosted weekly Old Town Crier
fundraisers for the past few months raising thousands for local charities. I watched several neighbors leave each morning to work in hospitals and ERs during peak outbreaks. Several friends delivered meals to
for others that have yet to show up. I had days where I was most grateful for Schitt’s Creek and an abundance of dark chocolate in my pantry. In all seriousness, if you have
attitude. I know I’ll need both to get through the winter months. Nothing remains quite the same. Ever. Thank God. This year has been about change at every corner,
hospital and we have found new things units which in turn supported to add to our gratitude lists. local restaurants. I’ve adjusted my attitude so At every turn, there have hot water, food in your pantry, much this year, I likely need been reasons to be grateful, but some days have been easier and a roof over your head, it’s a to replace my attitude meter. good start. And, if I don’t make it to than others to find them. A I’m embracing changes in “Margaritaville” any time soon, mindset change was needed “gratitude” and changes in I may go insane. in many cases. Many people, I definitely including myself, need to change have had days As we bear down on the last couple of my attitude and weeks where months of this crazy year, I’m reminded of around food. The we struggled Jimmy Buffet’s song Changes in Latitudes: comfort food and with finding our over-indulging footing and/ These changes in latitudes, changes in attitudes, behaviors or reasons to Nothing remains quite the same. provided be thankful. I watched as one immediate Through all of islands and all of the highlands, of my friends gratification, If we couldn’t laugh, we would all go insane. struggled but are not a We are all reminded of places we’ve been. through some good longItaly, Austin, Greece, New Orleans! of his darkest term strategy. I hours. All I could realized that in Visions of good times that brought us so much pleasure do was what I October when And make us all want to go back again. was doing for I was feeling Anywhere, but my living room! myself, remind especially Good times and riches and son of a b#tch*s, him that there sluggish after We’ve seen more than we can recall. were blessings spending the So many SOBs! Especially in line at Costco. everywhere. We month of just had to look September But, we will be back again soon. harder for them in birthday Especially for TP! and maybe wait celebration
mode. All the cake, carbs, and Chardonnay definitely caught up with me. Time for a recalibration. Feeling well physically and mentally is paramount, and making decisions based on wellness needs to be a priority. Remind me of that today around 5:00 pm, okay? It’s a little scary heading into the holiday season when you’re already feeling a health deficit and waistline increase of about 40 percent. At this rate, I’ll be able to sub for Mrs. Claus if
Christmas isn’t cancelled. 2020, you’ve tested us, but we with our changes in gratitude and attitude, we are gonna be okay. We still have plenty to be grateful for, and although I can’t hug my dad, I remain hopeful that people smarter than me will make it possible one day soon. In the meantime, I remain thankful for all the blessings life has to offer, and hopefully, this election being in our rearview mirrors. Time to move forward and get this year behind us before I run out of attitudes. Happy Thanksgiving from my OTC family to yours. If you would like to read more of Lori’s work, you can follow her on Medium at Lori Welch Brown. November 2020 | 43
Heading Into the Holidays with the Rona
have been trying to pull a silver lining out of the consequences of the pandemic almost every day but I keep coming up with a Newton’s Law scenario - For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. I am pretty sure I am not alone in this. This time of year is usually my favorite. I love fall weather, I love the anticipation of the holidays and maybe some snow in the future and I love getting together with friends. The weather so far has been stellar and I have gotten together with a few friends off and on and I have frequented my favorite watering holes adhering to the “Rona Restrictions” but going into the holidays here in the Harbor this year has me feeling sad. I would normally be hyping up “Christmas on the Potomac” and ICE at the Gaylord and all of the other holiday happenings in the Harbor in this column. We do, however, have a little bit of Harbor Holiday tradition happening with the lighting of the tree at the foot of American Way on the 14th. It is a bit early in my estimation but this year I’m not going to let it bug me. I love this 54’ tree with its trick playing lights accompanied by a holiday sound track. The 44 | November 2020
light show begins at dusk and runs on the half hour until 9:30 every night through January 3rd. There are rumors of free hot chocolate at select retailers and a free gift with purchase offer in the mill but I don’t have any specifics for you as I write this. (It is only October 28th after all.) We will be updating information on our Facebook page throughout the season so feel free to “Like and Follow” the Old Town Crier @oldtowncrier. Our friends at the Capital Wheel have a couple of fun promotions that may get you in the spirit. They are jumping on the Black Friday bandwagon with a 72-hour ONLINE only sale that starts on November 26th and runs through the 29th. You can purchase weekday tickets for a mere $10 that are valid Mon-Thurs through December 31st. www. thecapitalwheel.com The second promo starts on the 15th of this month and runs through January 1st. “Holidate to Remember” includes two tickets to the Wheel; two insulated souvenir cups filled with your choice of hot cocoa, spiked apple cider, beer or wine; custom green screen photo and up to 4 hours
of free parking. All of this for only $45+tax. The parking vouchers will be provided upon check in at attraction (ticket window or greeter). Tickets are on sale online and at the ticket window and must be purchased and honored by January 1st. All of the COVID protocols are in place so be sure that you have your mask with you and keep your distance as required. For those of you who are looking for something to do on Veteran’s Day, taking a stroll around the Harbor might just be what you are looking for. The statuary of our military representatives is very impressive and many of the restaurants are offering discounts to active military personnel. Even though it may be a bit depressing compared to holidays past, I am going to continue to look for the silver linings and try to outsmart Newton and keep more positive actions in place. In the meantime, keep washing those hands and wearing those masks as we celebrate our Veterans on the 11th and Thanksgiving on the 26th! Happy Thanksgiving to you all! Old Town Crier
“Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life.” — Melody Beattie
To me, gratitude comes from a spiritual place. It is the authenticity of acknowledging those who have supported you and your efforts over the years. Here at Copper Fox, we are thankful for our talented staff, we are thankful for our family, but most of all, we are thankful for your continued support.
9 River Lane Sperryville, Virginia 540.987.8554 901 Capitol Landing Road Williamsburg, Virginia 757.903.2076 www.copperfoxdistillery.com
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