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E book 27561_66933794

  1. 1. Weathering through the Storm!
  2. 2. Preface / IntroductionAs each year passes through the sands of our mind, each one of use faces many challenges andissues that force us to make choices. These choices drive many different things in our lives andsometime, our choice cause us to lose those things that are dear to us.Many people around the world experience storms that influence many issues, here are just a fewthat influence us here where we are!Denis Darling FOR YOUR FREE MARKETING CONSULTATION-Value $100 CALL ME24/7/365 SKYPE: denis.darlingYES, YOU CAN MAKE MONEY NOW ONLINE STANDINY BY FOR YOUR CALL..... NOW
  3. 3. Table of Contents1. Of apples, apple cider, cider doughnuts. Edible autumn in New England.2. O Little Town... Christmas comes to Cambridge, Massachusetts, December 25, 2011. 12:54 a.m.20 degrees Fahrenheit. Winds W-NW 8 miles per hour.3. USA sets 6,800 high temperature records in March, 2012 as we consider the future when we havemoney -- and nothing else.4. Not gone. Just gone before. An open letter to a friend and colleague upon the death of his belovedgrandmother. Swing low, sweet chariot.5. Hear how the wind begins to whisper. Soon its gonna rain. I can tell.6. Bulldog, bulldog, bow-wow-wow. One of Americas greatest leaders -- Yales president RichardC. Levin -- retires after 20 years. An appreciation.7. Of plums, their sweetness, politics, and the eternal desire for more.8. At a lunch counter in Harvard Square. A place of friendly people and tasty meals; a dinosaur enroute to extinction. Some thoughts.9. The man who survived. Norodom Sihanouk. Sometime prince of Cambodia, king, prime minister,revolutionary, demigod. Dead at 89, October 15, 2012.
  4. 4. Weathering through the Storm!Of apples, apple cider, cider doughnuts. Edible autumn inNew England.By Dr. Jeffrey LantAuthors program note. The bounty of New Englands small family farms is now available at roadstands throughout the region. The weather, despite the wallop of Hurricane Irene, has beenbeneficial and the crops are ample. There is, therefore, enough for all.I love this time of the year, and my neighbors do, too. We, though we abide in the regions cities,make a point of leaving our urban condominiums and walk-up apartments, glad for the opportunityto taste autumn. This is a yearly ritual which none of us wants to miss, for it calls us, if only for amoment, back to the land which is a part of all of us and which recalls us to a past which is for all ofus at some point agrarian.We are all of the land... and the farms and gardens, so picturesque in October, remind us where wehave been... and of our forefathers... who kept faith with this land... tending it... nurturing it...protecting it... so that the land and their descendants might prosper together. Each rock that theyused to build the fences that make good neighbors reminds us of our own families and the constantwork that the land necessitates. The land demands... and we obey the land... for this is the way of theimmemorial land and richness that comes forth if we but do our part. Apples are part of this land andthis richness... and now is the high season of these apples.Apples must be picked.Each apple that you see has been picked. Its something we urban dwellers never think about andwhich industrious apple growers must never forget... for apples on a tree are useless to all but thebirds which well know how to get their sweet juices.In his poem "After Apple-Picking" (published in 1915) Robert Frost reminds us just how laborious itis to pick the apples. On his tiny New Hampshire farm, Frost tells us that in apple-picking time thefarm and the needs of the crop determine all. Everything else must be put aside for now; this is theway of the insistent land, the demanding land, the land that dictates that which humans who desirethe bounty of this land must do:"And I keep hearing from the cellar bin The rumbling sound Of load on load of apples coming in.For I have had too much Of apple-picking: I am overtired Of the great harvest I myself desired."Apples must be packed and promptly moved.Apples, like every fruit of the farm, must be moved, for we buyers and eaters of apples are slothfuland must be waited on. We will go on a yearly ritual of pilgrimage to the apples... praising farmer,land and crop.. .but we demand on all other occasions that the apples we so desire be brought closeto us.The apples I buy, for instance, come from Kimball Fruit Farm in Pepperell, Massachusetts. It is a fartrek from Cambridge and so Carl and his helpers bring the apples to me in a local farmers market,held each Sunday in Harvard Square until Thanksgiving. There after 10 a.m. (the strict opening time,not a minute earlier permitted)... I can fuss over the multitude of varieties, rejecting most, selectingjust the most attractive, aromatic, and (I trust) delicious.Even after his many other customers purchase (for Carl and Kimball have a following), the piles ofapples are still heaping; each and every one must be re-packed, taken back to Pepperell, to bepacked again tomorrow, moved again, scrutinized again, and so on until at last all the apples arehttp://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 4 of 31
  5. 5. Weathering through the Storm!gone. Carl, like Frost, gets overtired, too.But apples are the pride of Kimball Fruit Farm... and their website boasts of over 40 varieties.... howmany could you name? Baldwin, Blushing Golden, Brock, Burgundy, Cameo, Chesnut, CrabCortland, Elstar... the list goes on an on, each one a pledge by Proprietor Carl that the land will be socherished so that each of these apples will flourish in years to come, including one of the mostbeautiful apples of all: the Spencers which I crave. And so it has been going on for the thousands ofyears apples have been amongst us, starting in Western Asia, where the apples wild ancestor, theAlma, can still be found today.There are more than 7,500 known cultivars, resulting in a wide range of desired characteristics. Sodesirable are these characteristics that 55 million tonnes of apples were grown in 2005, with a valueof about $10 billion. China produced some 35 percent of this total; the United States was secondwith more than 7.5 percent of world production. Iran is third, followed by Turkey, Russia, Italy, andIndia.Many of these apples are eaten raw... but many are also transformed into that silky mixture calledapple cider. I buy mine from Allens Cider Mill in West Brookfield, Mass. The reason I initiallybought from this stand at the farmers market was that the fellow tending it looked so sad. I felt gladto lift his load just a smidgeon, but in truth I liked the product... and got in the habit of buying fromhim, though he is laconic to a degree and has never smiled in my presence or ever said a friendlygreeting. I notice such things. A teen-aged boy of 15 or so helps the man out; its probably his father.They look alike. I notice he never smiles either and that makes me wonder at the ways of geneticsand family farms.The label makes it clear that this cider must be refrigerated at below 40 degrees Farenheit and wantsyou to know, too, that it has been ultra light treated for my safety... no preservatives... no additives...and is made of "washed sound ripe apples." I have never bothered with such cider labels before, butI am grateful for their care and practical concern, though Id still like a friendly greeting, a smile, anda chipper query asking me how I like the cider, since I keep returning for it... and for the ciderdoughnuts, too, which I first sampled at this stand...I was in a relaxed and friendly disposition the day I saw the hand-written sign about cider doughnutsand asked what they were. The answer was worthy of Silent Cal, Vermonts only president. "Madewith cider, instead of water," he said, as if each word was a treasure to be hoarded, not shared evenfor commercial gain. They were 50 cents each; I got one, the minimum risk... The next week I got4... and devoured them at record speed, a new taste of fall... topped off with cinnamon and sugar. Itis a delicacy indeed, and I can bear even the lack of amiability so long as there are cider doughnutsnear at hand... and great, grand Spencer apples, too... and the smoothness of apple cider. For all ofthese together, and each distinct, is truly the apple of my eye... deserving of high praise, no waiting,please, for I have no patience, none at all.But I do have a song to accompany so many delicacies. Its by the Four Lovers, "Youre the apple ofmy eye." (released 1956). Go to any search engine to find it now... and enjoy. For you are "done withapple-picking now" and must take a moment to eat, savor, and thank. For apples and everythingabout them are a great joy and benediction. As you and I have known for a lifetime, havent we?http://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 5 of 31
  6. 6. Weathering through the Storm!O Little Town... Christmas comes to Cambridge,Massachusetts, December 25, 2011. 12:54 a.m. 20 degreesFahrenheit. Winds W-NW 8 miles per hour.by Dr. Jeffrey LantAuthors program note. Before I left on my Christmas walk-about at not quite 1 a.m. Eastern today, Iturned on every light in my brilliantly lit house. On the lights in the hallway thereby exposing inradiance the wistful picture of a young 18th century prince of the House of Brunswick-Luneberg.Dead too soon, not even 20, he craves all the light I can give him, and that is much.On the lights, all the lights in the Red Drawing Room, on the lights, all the lights in the Green Room,on the lights, all the lights in the Blue Room from where I am writing you now, where the chandelierthrows out over 10,000 facets of light. So the seller told me; I have long since given up countingthem... but their colors entrance while its welcome heat warms me...What kind of mania is this that demands every light lit, every treasure burnished, everything bold,audacious, polished, warm and, to my uttermost ability, welcome?Just this: It is Christmas Day, this very day, this day of days, to come but once and go... and I amalive, ready, eager to take myself from here and see how this 2,011th Christmas is evolving frommy vantage point in Cambridge, Massachusetts. I command all this light, first, to celebrate theadvent of this day and its great meaning, that on this very day, over two thousand years ago thePrince of Heaven was born, a boon to mankind, our sustaining hope unto the ages. And I want Himto know that He is welcome here... and always has been, though often I did not know or show it...And, too, there must be light, an explosion of light, to welcome me home, for I mean to go out andsee for myself how this Holy Night is faring and what my neighbors may be doing.Red hat, white fur, my lassez passer.This is my 63rd Christmas; the year when my many friends worldwide, of so many climes andcountries, offer their advice freely before I venture out into the dark and cold. "Bundle up," saysMark Anderson. "Remember to cover your ears," proffers Dale Thomson. "Dont stay out too long,"offers David Mobile. Such words, each one on any other day lese majeste, convey care and love...and make me smile. A man like me knows well the warmth of such words and how to conjure them;they cheer the heart such as no fire can. Age hath its wisdoms and privileges; no one knows thatbetter than I do, and I crave them as surely as air or sun; and get them, too.And so I put on the foolish Santa hat I was given by a young friend who looked raffish when hewore it, whereas I look just silly... but I know that wearing it out this night of all nights, will safelymark me as harmless, eccentric, a man who has imbibed too much of the grape, erroneousconclusions to be sure, but useful when a man leaves his cozy house at midnight, and warm bed, too,to venture out into the piercing cold of a Bay State Christmas in pursuit of... but you must come outof your snug world and along with me to see.Presents for me...In the lobby of my building where I am now, I think, the senior resident or close to it, I see twoboxes for me. These neat parcels, festooned by words like FedEx and UPS and the numericmysteries of their tracking systems, firmly establish me as a card-carrying person of the middleclasses and of means; poor people shop at stores and carry home their packages, often on buses andlate-running subways. Mine ascend by elevators and are given by delivery men, exceptionally politehttp://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 6 of 31
  7. 7. Weathering through the Storm!at this time of year, who say things like "Something else for you, Dr. Lant. Somebody loves you..."But I have no time for such packages now... I have a mission.Cold air, colder Puritan.The cold of midnight is piercing but by no means the worst I have felt; the Internet weather report(the only place I go for weather intelligence anymore) says the wind chill factor is 10 degreesFahrenheit. I feel superior to that, and further plunges, too. I am glad to take it, and to know I canstill take worse; more evidence of my evergreen condition; of increasing importance as I get older...The Cambridge Common, where by ancient law and privilege I could graze my cows (should I getsome), is vacant tonight... but the statue of John Bridge continues its austere duty, scrutinizing thelives of Cantabridgians, ensuring not that we are as worthy as he (for that is impossible) but that wedo not stray too far from his noble example.Bridge was a Puritan, a man of God and Gods affairs and ran these, no doubt to Gods satisfaction,for Bridges all-worthy career prospered in mid-17th century Cambridge. Such men, the very fibre ofmoral rectitude and self-assurance (my ancestors, too, for the nonce) made a point of destroying theolde English Christmas of "God rest ye merry gentlemen." Bridge would no doubt have disapprovedthe frivolity of my chapeau... and so I walked on, glad he was not coming to disdain my liberatedChristmas.The artistry of ice.Burdened by winter as I often am here, captive of the chill Atlantic and its perishing cold, I moreoften avoid the ice than consider it. Tonight I rectified this error and stopped to scrutinize therandom beauty of ice, frigid patterns that turned yesterdays puddles into tonights etched allure. It isbeautiful, the kind of sharp avant garde pattern in black and silver a stylish billionaire might use todazzle every penthouse guest; here this transient beauty goes unremarked by all but me.There is livelier fare across the street, when seven squad cars spurt police, busily at work at the maingate of Harvard College, just opened days ago from the thrall of the hapless revolutionaries whoOccupied Harvard, but not effectively or for very long. The police are out in force, a tow-truck at theready, a fellow human being in their arms, his Christmas and destiny to be paid out in hospital or jailcell.I look instead at the statue of Senator Charles Sumner (1811-1874), a man of such austerity andrespectability that when he escorted Mary Todd Lincoln there was no touch of scandal at all, thoughhe was reckoned the most handsome man at Harvard and in Civil War Washington. I often wonderwhether the burden of such rectitude made him happy. Certainly his statue does not show it. He wascold in life, and perhaps the coldness of this statue is its truest aspect.I prefer to spend my Christmas night with another Harvard man, the Reverend Phillips Brooks(1835-1893). He is memorialized in Harvard Yard, but not in copper and stone. His is a memorial ofpeople, for the people who admired and loved him created in 1904 Phillips Brooks HouseAssociation, a student-run, community-based non-profit public service organization whose missionis the true meaning of this holiday, to give and give until it truly helps and makes a difference.Brooks took the fine tune by organist Lewis Redner and graced it in 1868 with the words we know as"O Little Town of Bethlehem" and whose words are my prayer for us all this day, and every day."O holy Child of Bethlehem Descend to us we pray... O come to us, abide with us Our LordEmmanuel."(Concluded and sent to the world as the authors gift, 5:05 a.m., Christmas Day, 2011).http://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 7 of 31
  8. 8. Weathering through the Storm!http://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 8 of 31
  9. 9. Weathering through the Storm!USA sets 6,800 high temperature records in March, 2012 aswe consider the future when we have money -- and nothingelse.by Dr. Jeffrey LantAuthors program note. Future historians, if any of Clios ranks remain, will scrutinize this period ofour planet as the days when Earth reached its tipping point and began its descent to the unimaginablehorrors of the Apocalypse. At least this is the sobering prediction of the International Panel onClimate Change, founded in 1988 by the United Nations. This article highlights this panel, its work,its dire predictions... and asks you not only to contemplate what is happening to us all... but whatyou can do to save yourself, your family and the pied a terre in the Cosmos for our vulnerablespecies.But first, go to any search engine and smile. For not all weather predictions are cataclysmic. Take theone made in 1982 by The Weather Girls, also known as Two Tons o Fun. Their hit -- their one andonly hit -- was called "Its Raining Men" and featured two plus-size African-American womencavorting with scantily clad boy toys falling from a beneficent heaven. It was cheeky, irreverent...and a superbly good dance song. When this ancient body was much younger and more limber, I cutthe rug with it myself. Listen to it now.... because its the last thing in this article that gives youabsolutely nothing to worry about.About the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.March 28, 2012 this Nobel Prize-winning panel of climate scientists released its latest bomb shell, inthe form of a 594-page report. This report represents an important development in its work. Up untilnow, the panel has focused on the slow, inexorable rise of temperatures and oceans as part of globalwarning. Their work, while important and telling to anyone who could read between the lines, didntattract much notice. Indeed, since it was the work of scientists and climate wonks who never met asomnifacient phrase they didnt like, their important work went largely unread.But this year and this report are very different.This report is the first to examine the less common but far more noticeable extreme weather changes,which in recent years have been causing $80 billion annually in damage. As Stanford Universityclimate scientist Chris Field, one of the reports top editors, says, "We mostly experience weatherand climate change through the extreme. Thats where we have the losses. Thats where we have theinsurance payments. Thats where things have the potential to fall apart.""There is disaster risk almost everywhere."The conclusion of Field and fellow panelists is stark and cannot be misunderstood. Thus, you canalmost hear the instructions given to participants at the start of their important work..."Friends and colleagues. Our many previous endeavors reported facts in a calm, deliberativefashion. We knew what the findings meant... but because we were not explicit in our conclusionsalmost no one else did. Thus we assuaged our consciences by reassuring ourselves that we had doneour work... and it was for others to draw the implications and do the necessary follow-up work tomake sure that the science we knew became the basis for necessary policy changes. But this is nolonger enough. We must not only be accurate fact finders, but absolutely clear on what this meansand what must be done. In other words, we must go beyond the usual role of scientist and behave asa citizen of the world committed to saving our planet by doing what is necessary before it is toolate."http://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 9 of 31
  10. 10. Weathering through the Storm!On this basis, the panel has produced what is to date their most important and influential work.Item: Some places, particularly parts of Mumbai in India could become uninhabitable from floods,storms, and rising seas. In 2005, over 24 hours nearly 3 feet of rain fell on the city, killing more than1000 people at once and causing massive damage. Roughly 2.7 million people live in areas at risk offlooding.Item: Many other cities are also at high risk including Miami, Shanghai, Bangkok, Vietnams Ho ChiMinh City, Myanmars Yangon (formerly Rangoon), and Indias Kolkata (formerly Calcutta).Item: Entire countries like the Maldives are at risk, facing submersion because of rising seas andfierce storms.Said Field, "The decision about whether or not to move is achingly difficult, and I think its one thatthe world community will have to face with increasing frequency in the future."At risk.This report is unique because it emphasizes managing risks and how taking precautions can work. Inother words, it not only highlights risks but is explicit in its recommendations about how to handlethem. In fact, the panel report uses the word "risk" 4,387 times... and gives examples of how variouscities and countries have learned from them, thereby providing solutions and models for otherchallenged entities.Item: Field pointed to storm-and-flood-prone Bangladesh, an impoverished nation that has learnedfrom past disasters. In 1970, a Category 3 tropical cyclone named Bhola killed more than 300,000people. In 2007, a stronger cyclone killed just 4,200 people. Despite the loss of life, the country isreckoned a success story because it was better prepared and invested in warning and disasterprevention.By comparison, a country that was not so prepared, Myanmar, was hit with a similar-size storm in2008, which killed over 138,000 people. This avoidable disaster makes it clear why the work of thispanel is so important. Over 138,000 people might well be alive if the repressive government ofMyanmar focused less time and money crushing its people and more on the early warning and othertools needed to diminish the horrific weather effects that batter them so often and which this reportmakes clear will worsen in the years ahead.The worst is yet to come... unless...The study -- all 594 pages of it -- is a Pandoras box of looming catastrophes. Tropical cyclones --including hurricanes in the United States -- will get stronger because of present-day andworse-to-come climate changes. Heat waves and record hot temperatures worldwide will increasewith increased downpours in Alaska, Canada, northern and central Europe, East Africa, and northAsia.Action now... or worldwide grief later.In the face of so much alarming news, all supported by exact science, it is easy to opt out, confidentthere is nothing the average person can do but wait and hope. Such a conclusion is not only wrongbut calamitous. Heres what you can do:1) Urge school officials to disseminate these findings so that young people, who have so much tolose, can be informed.2) Ask your elected representatives what they are doing to stem the tide and give us meaningfulmeasures, not just partisan rhetoric that is so out-of-place in solving this problem.http://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 10 of 31
  11. 11. Weathering through the Storm!measures, not just partisan rhetoric that is so out-of-place in solving this problem.3) Make every day "Earth Day", a top priority. For there can be no progressive change of any kind ifthe very Earth is threatened, at risk, and increasingly vulnerable.And I tell you this: when all the water is polluted, when all the air is toxic, when every once fertileacre is arid, we shall still have money. For unlike all the other elements, God-made, money is manmade; so lets spend what is necessary to ensure that our one and only home -- Earth -- remains assecure as possible, as verdant and productive... a place not of lamentation and anxieties but where allthe crucial weather information can be sung by Weather Girls who tell you, "According to oursources, the streets the place to go/ Cause tonight for the first time/ Just about half past ten/ For thefirst time in history/ Its gonna start raining men!" And thats a fact.http://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 11 of 31
  12. 12. Weathering through the Storm!Not gone. Just gone before. An open letter to a friend andcolleague upon the death of his beloved grandmother. Swinglow, sweet chariot.by Dr. Jeffrey LantJames, you have done me the honor to interrupt your familys grief to share your thoughts andreflections on a matter of the utmost significance. I want you to know, first of all, how honored I amthat you gave me this time, even more precious than usual at such a moment.You have done me the signal honor to tell me my responses have provided balm during a time ofprofound reflection and sadness.... and I am humbled, grateful to take a friends part and help youbear the unbearable.For what you are doing now is the most difficult thing we humans confront... the death of a dear onewho is now gone, gone forever... and we can not grasp how one so vibrant but short hours ago isnow in a different place, a place beyond our ken, beyond our knowledge and our touch whilst weremain here to carry on as best we can... as best we must, bitterly remembering that in life we are butin the midst of death.And this is bitter indeed for now you know, as all will come to know, just how bitter our portion is...and how we must drink of this dread cup to the very dregs. As you are doing this very moment. Letus then mourn together you and I and find the succor and strength that comes when we share thishigh moment of humanity together... and thus pave the way for the peace of God, the greatest gift ofall.Oneida Thomas, December 17, 1923 -- May 8, 2012, your grandmother.These are the facts about your grandmother Oneida Thomas, and they are but briefly told. How shewas born December 17, 1923 in Grayson, Louisiana to the union of Albert Simmons and ParleeLeggins Simmons. How on December 4, 1944 she married Clinton Thomas. How to this union fivechildren were born: Jeri, Carolin, Clayton, Leonard and Marian. How in 1948 they moved toDenver, Colorado. There they celebrated 55 years of marriage... and there she worked hard,strenuously, long and carefully for the betterment of her much cherished family, her fortunateemployer, her community and her God. This was her abiding credo: "What I do, I do to the best ofmy abilities... or I do not do at all". She meant every one of these words... and as she lived them soshe quietly showed the world what was important to her and that she meant to do her part to makethat world a better place. No excuses given, none tolerated. On these elements she built her life... alife well worth living and working for.Her prodigious labor.Stop for a moment and call to mind any image of your grandmother; chances are youll see her inmovement, at work, doing something beneficial for her work was incessant, unending, tiring,essential, purposeful, done early, done late, done right. And done for you... for, after God, you andall your relations were always her first concern.These were the fortunate people who always benefited... but who sometimes took her titanic strengthand unending application for granted, as we all too often do. But there was nothing for granted aboutwhat she did beyond one hard fact: her work was unending drudgery,demanding, draining.However, she was and remained a woman of energy and determination. Both were needed, and overthe course of a long lifetime she had constant reason to call upon them. Work was necessary... so sheworked, none harder even if this work was unpleasant. It was work to be done; she could do it; sohttp://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 12 of 31
  13. 13. Weathering through the Storm!she did.She started her work as a housekeeper, until she was hired by Swedish Hospital as a surgical setupand equipment preparer. Whilst working as a part-time housekeeper she retired from SwedishHospital in 1988 after 20 years. She continued to work as a part-time housekeeper for 58 years.These are the facts. Now let us review them for meaning.Louisiana, segregation, poverty, fortitude.Your grandmother was born and grew up in an atmosphere seething with troubles, malice, threats,painful realities, gnawing poverty, an environment fraught with menace and disturbance. She knewfrom her earliest memories what it meant to be Southern, female and black... and while she maynever have discussed this acid situation with you, this situation shaped her. She endured this as sheensured so much... with dignity... with everyday courage... with sweet temper... with a kind, lovingand giving disposition. She took each day as it came, however inequitable, inadequate, unforgiving...and kept her dreams alive, in a treasured place, working for them... never dismayed because theycame so slowly. She personified fortitude... and never let the drawbacks obscure and embitter. Thatwas not her way.The world was harsh, her circumstances harsher... but her thoughts were free, uplifting, pure, andalways giving. I know. You see, she has bequeathed this strength, this endurance and her warm,magnetic smile to... you. Thus, the first thing we see in you is the first thing we saw in her. You areher chiefest legacy. Thus she abides in you forever. Hallelujah!Her hands.Close your eyes, dear James, and remember the solace and comfort of her hands. Many times theyhave cherished and soothed you... I want you to feel them now, in your minds eye... for they arethere now to sustain you for life... as they sustained so many before.These were the hands of a woman who gave... and so demonstrated her love. She never had to sayshe loved, although she did so say... you had but to see her at her work... up early before the dawn tobe on her way... returning long hours after sunset... no time squandered.... all put at the service ofothers. She was a woman who found comfort for her soul by comforting others... and she did sogladly, happily... a woman fulfilled, hence able to help fulfill a myriad of others. Where did suchunceasing strength, always at the service of others, come from? She knew... she always knew...Jesus Christ, Lord and Saviour.Your grandmothers great healing gifts, her soothing skills, her hands that comforted, the smile thatwarmed... all these came from a single source of unequalled power and strength, the Saviour towhom she gave herself long years before when the landscape was grim and oppressive. Oncecommitted she never wavered... for wavering was not her way. She had selected wisely and livedhappily through every vicissitude. She knew the strength that comes from serenity... and she knewwhence this strength had come. He freed her from doubt.... she repaid with a heart of joy... and whatHe gave her, she willingly gave to others. For her source of strength was the Lord... and thus shedrew from strength everlasting, inexhaustible, without beginning, without end.Coming Home.Thus, your grandmother fashioned a life worth living and because it was grounded in certainty andanchored in her warm heart she lived it with unceasing joy. And so the years passed in happiness, infulfillment, ... with family and friends who flourished with her love and care ... always cared forherself by the Lord whom she trusted with everything... because He gave everything.http://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 13 of 31
  14. 14. Weathering through the Storm!Then things changed radically, as things can do, overnight , with bewildering speed. After 88 yearsof health and stability a sea-change bringing fear and anxiety. Your grandmothers health, soserviceable for so long, began to fail. Doctors told her she must do this and that... but she tookadvice from the source of all health... and the Lord said, "As you have trusted in Me in good times,so trust in Me in the bad." And she did, graciously thanking the doctors for what they did... buttrusting in her Lord, for in Him she had always trusted.... and hers was no fair-weather devotion butone to abide the numberless ages to come.And so Oneida Thomas died, surrounded by love, secure in the love of the Lord.Now she waits for you.You are grieving now, James, for her loss, but she knew a secret still to be revealed to you. For sheis not gone. Just gone before. Thus this woman who gave so much, gives you one last gift: the giftof eternity... for she has pointed the way for you and yours and resides there now her caressinghands ready to embrace you again. Let her certainty about this meeting cheer you, for it mostassuredly cheered her.Now go to any search engine, there to locate the words and music to "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot"for they are apt and soothing:"Swing low, sweet chariot Coming for to carry me home Swing low, sweet chariot, Coming for tocarry me home."As it has already carried her. World without end! Amen! Amen!Written for James A. Holmes and his grieving family and for a restive world whose need for peaceand serenity has never been greater.http://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 14 of 31
  15. 15. Weathering through the Storm!Hear how the wind begins to whisper. Soon its gonna rain. Ican tell.by Dr. Jeffrey LantAuthors program note. In 1960 one of the loveliest musicals ever written hit the Big Apple andmade history. It was "The Fantasticks" with music by Harvey Schmidt and lyrics by Tom Jones. Ittells an allegorical story, loosely based on the play "The Romancers" by Edmond Rostand,concerning two neighborhood fathers who trick their children into falling in love by pretending tofeud and erecting a wall between their houses.The shows original off-Broadway production ran a total of 42 years and 17,162 performances,easily making it the worlds longest-running musical. One of its gems is a song called "Soon ItsGonna Rain", and I defy you to listen to its lyric beauty unmoved... Go now to any search engine;find the original cast album. Then close your eyes and imagine the gentle rain falling calm andserene, washing away all distress..."Then well let it rain./ Well not feel it. Then well let it rain./ Rain pell-mell."Beautiful isnt it?... And, in this summer of 2012, painful and ironic, for in these dog days of thisscorching year there is no rain, though millions pray daily for relief and wonder why God does notrespond and save His people.The facts.The first and most sobering fact, a fact millions are still not prepared to believe, is that climatechange is no longer a "threat" that will occur sometime in the future. It is present reality as virtuallyevery scientist in the field confirms. This includes three scientists who make their findings clear inthe August 2012 issue of the journal "Nature-Geoscience".The findings by Christopher R. Schwalm, research assistant professor of earth sciences at NorthernArizona University; Christopher A. Williams, assistant professor of geography at Clark University,and Kevin Schaefer research scientist at the National Snow and Ice Data Center, are telling. In anutshell, this is their conclusion: extreme weather and drought are here to stay and will influence ourlives directly or indirectly.Item: This years drought, no end in sight, is already one for the record books in terms of duration,severity and temperature.Item: The 2011 drought in the South Central states was a record at the time, but has easily beenbested by the events of 2012.Item: Widespread annual droughts, once a rare calamity, have become more frequent and are nowready to become the "new normal."Bad news gets worse.Item: A growing frequency of weather and climate extremes like heat waves, droughts, floods, andfires can be expected.Item: Future precipitation trends, based on climate model projections from the coming fifthassessment from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, indicate that droughts of the 2012severity will become commonplace as the century progresses.Item: Assuming "business as usual", each of the next 80 years in the American West is expected tohttp://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 15 of 31
  16. 16. Weathering through the Storm!see less rainfall than the average of the five years of the drought that hit the region from 2002-2004.And still more bad news.Item: Crop yields will continue to fall, with many more local cases of complete crop failure.Item: Agricultural productivity will decline as plants take in only half the carbon dioxide they donormally, thanks to drought-induced drop in photosynthesis.Item: Major river basins, already showing 5 percent to 50 percent reductions in flow will fall further,with lakes and reservoirs unable to return to "normal." Ever.Is there any good news?Frankly, not a great deal. In fact, as I sit here surrounded by learned studies, articles the morealarming because so grounded in indisputable fact, and the jeremiads of scientists worldwide, I wantto bury my head in the sand like most everyone else. But of course that is completely useless andunhelpful, whoever does it.Why our "leaders" do not lead.Why do the words "climate change" and our options so rarely if ever pass the lips of our majorpresidential candidates? They are intelligent men... but they also refuse to rock any boats and afrank, open discussion on the matter certainly does that, roiling the dwindling waters.They know that talking about human-induced carbon emissions would upset the "see no evil" votersof Michigan, for instance, and Ohio, states they must carry. Thus, the conspiracy grows. Voters andcandidates know about the problems of climate-change... but no one wants to bite this bullet whichwill necessitate major changes of every kind. And so, before our eyes, things worsen. It is theAmerican way and it will, in due course, sabotage our culture and lifestyle.To avoid this all-but-certain outcome, these are the questions we must ask and honestly answer:1) Do we have the will, the stomach and the fortitude to see this problem completely and truly?2) Are we willing to examine all data without flinching or prejudice?3) Are we willing immediately to act, to implement our findings without special pleading orexemptions?4) Have we the guts to stay with earth-saving programs for the long durations necessary, for therecan be no rushed or instant conclusions?5) And finally. Will we induce our leaders to lead by demanding constant effort and a frank, opendiscussion of continuing problems, deterioration and, yes, progress. For if we do not hold their feetto the fire, they will not focus on the necessity for curtailing it.Is progress certain?Not as things stand at this moment... but we have not yet begun to fight, and so we cannot say whatwe will do to keep the rain coming and all the benefits which ensue therefrom. "The Fantasticks" willhelp..."Soon its gonna rain/... And well not complain/ -- Happy ending --- / / If it never stops at all."/That would be fantastick indeed!Envoi.http://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 16 of 31
  17. 17. Weathering through the Storm!At about 5:45 a.m., just as I was completing this, the heavy mist of early morning changed intogreater abundance as the lightest of rains... a benevolent beginning, most welcome. May it comesoon to your neighborhood and help cleanse us all.http://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 17 of 31
  18. 18. Weathering through the Storm!Bulldog, bulldog, bow-wow-wow. One of Americas greatestleaders -- Yales president Richard C. Levin -- retires after 20years. An appreciation.by Dr. Jeffrey LantAuthors program note. Harvard University, my alma mater, doesnt inaugurate presidents like other,lesser institutions of exalted learning. By no means. They consecrate and install latter-day deities,mere administrators no longer, but the dynamos that rule from Harvard Yard the Great Republic andevery other nation and significant institution everywhere on Earth. That is why such inaugurals, butinfrequently rendered, are more important than the mere coronations of ancient dynasties. Suchdynasties with the most venerable sovereigns are but temporal. Harvard is eternal and its presidentscelestial.The inauguration of Lawrence Summers, Autumn, 2001.The scene was perfect Harvard... academic gowns from every great university on Earth looking likegiant flowers... no one marched to their appointed places as requested; they ambled arm-in-arminstead; the brilliantly colored foliage from the great trees fell softly down upon us, a greatinstitution participating in this passing of the torch... everything was as it should be... everythingexcept for President Summers eagerly awaited remarks... in the event bombastic, inelegant,impolitic, awkward...Thus as these ultra discerning worthies, masters all of nuance and exegesis, listened as their anointedleader blundered through his remarks, the audience grew restive, abashed, and even chagrined. The27th president made his inaugural address, but it was in truth his inaugural blunder, the first of many.I turned to my colleague and, sotto voce, predicted stormy weather for Mr. Summers. One didntneed a Ph.D. in prognostication to make what became in due course a gross understatement.What should have been a glorious event, historic, High Harvard and grand, made us all not merelydisappointed, but sad, let-down and angry that our Harvard was not so fair that day as she had everyright to anticipate and expect. Its bright promise was overcast and glum.... until Dr. Richard C. Levin, President of Yale since 1993, got up to present fraternal greetings andtimely observations. And not a moment too soon. I am embarrassed to tell you, I knew nothing aboutthis man that day; in my defense I must stress that presidents of Yale are not first priorities toCrimson alumni. Still... it was a lacuna.On this day, economist Levin came to praise, exhort and welcome fellow economist Summers to therank and status of Ivy League president, to all loyal Ivies the very top of the greasy pole. And soLevin, elegantly dressed, looking every inch who he was, custodian of one of the Great Republicsgreatest institutions, a man of distinction and undoubted presence rose... and from the very firstwords he uttered we were all on beloved terra cognita, dismayed no longer.Every word he said was le mot juste, carefully selected, carefully stated. He was at once eloquent,informed, genteel, amusing, insightful, a leader who knew his audience like the back of his hand. Hemade the right allusions, his point of view perfect to the occasion, with just the right amount ofimmemorial raillery, for the rivalries of generations must be honored and sustained.I was not alone in that vast audience in wishing we were inaugurating the gentleman of polishedmanners, eloquent and graceful turns of phrase, and the divinity that doth hedge instead of the oftenclueless, bumptious president so ill-equipped for the role that his tenure when it ended in rancor anddisarray after just 5 years in 2006 was the shortest since the universitys earliest days. Oh, yes, wehttp://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 18 of 31
  19. 19. Weathering through the Storm!coveted Levin for Harvard and to preserve, protect and defend our profound interest in the matter.But Dr. Levin loved Yale, although Yale nearly missed the opportunity to be loved by one whoselove was worth the having.Low-key Dr. Levin? Youre kidding!Yale before Levin was an institution at risk; critics of old Eli, its whys and wherefores, were legion.If Yale were a great galleon, its leaks were prodigious and threatening. Yale needed, Yale had tohave a "known" leader... someone capable of overawing the nay-sayers and getting on with themassive overhaul and reformation required. "Rick" Levin wanted the job... but he was no hero, noglamor boy, no titan of education, no household name.No one felt he was up to the job of working successfully with factious faculty, or liberating NewHaven from ghetto status and urban blight by undertaking a sincere and dedicated policy of workingtogether with skeptical community officials and residents. And what about the worrisome budgetshortfalls, the disheartening staff cuts, falling applications and facilities which badly neededrenovation and repair? It was a mighty job, and Levin didnt look like he had the necessary skills,stomach, and salience.And so Yales presidential search committee repeatedly, embarrassingly postponed the deadline fornaming a new president, hoping McCawber-like, that something would turn-up, thereby showingexactly what they thought of Rick Levin, the man who became one of the greatest of Yalespresidents and a model for beleaguered and challenged college presidents everywhere. Hisaccomplishments are staggering, the more so because the honest and honorable man was notdestroyed by ego and arrogance.He is today what he was at the beginning, a man who loves Yale and is happy to do what is calledfor for her immediate improvement and long-term well-being. Here are just some of his notableachievements:Item: He lead the schools largest building and renovation program since the 1930s, expandingYales financial aid programs and global activities.Item: He measurably improved the universitys historically difficult relationship with its unions andbuilt necessary and long overdue partnerships with the too often unregarded and dismissed city ofNew Haven.Item: Yales endowment went from $3.2 billion in 1993 to $19.4 billion this year.Item: A homebuyers program started in 1994 offered financial incentives to buy homes in the cityand more than 1,000 Yale faculty and staff have participated.Item: About 70 percent of the space on campus has been partially or completely renovated,including all 12 of its residential colleges, with plans to build two more."Rick Levin is simply one of the worlds great leaders," Indra Nooyi, chief executive of PepsiCo.Now Richard C. Levin is stepping down, 65 years old, the longest serving president in the IvyLeague. He says its time to take up the next challenge of his life, writing a book of reflections onhigher education and economic policy. He also wants to travel some, and I trust the Overseers willgrant him a Harvard degree honoris causa so hell have reason to return to Cambridge.When John F. Kennedy got such a degree from Yale, he quipped that he now had the best of bothworlds, a Harvard education and a Yale degree. I trust that Levin will at the next Commencement beso honored, ready to say that now he, too, has the best of both worlds, a Yale education and aHarvard degree. For this I shall make it a particular point to return to the Tercentenary Theater inhttp://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 19 of 31
  20. 20. Weathering through the Storm!Harvard Yard where I first encountered this remarkable man, whose unstinting love affair with Yalehas been so helpful to so many, so enhancing the Great Republic and the world.Musical accompaniment to this article. Here there were choices aplenty ranging from "Boola Boola"(composed in 1900 by Allan M Hirsch Yale 01) to "The Whiffenpoof Song" sung by Rudy Vallee27, Americas first pop star. But in the end I had to go with Cole Porter 13 because, like theColiseum and Cellophane, Rick Levin, "Youre The Top". Go to any search engine and find ColePorter belting it out for you!http://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 20 of 31
  21. 21. Weathering through the Storm!Of plums, their sweetness, politics, and the eternal desire formore.by Dr. Jeffrey LantAuthors program note. I decided to walk to the Farmers Market yesterday; usually I ask MisterJoseph to drive me, the better to bring home the excessive armloads of produce I need to feel I haveenough. But the weather, on the cusp between a summer exiting and a fall arriving, was perfect forsomething ambulatory and good for you.Yes, it was a perfect day to be out and about.... and the way to the market hard by the Charles Hotelwas packed with everyone and his brother, folks who had the same idea as I did: to preparesquirrel-like for the rigorous winter ahead... never mind that every morsel I purchased this daywould be long gone before the first flake of snow hits the pavement. Its the thought that counts, thatthere would be enough, that I would have enough, and that this winter there should be, for me andmine at least, an ample sufficiency.It is most curious to me how this process works. One minute it is a hot, stiffling New Englandsummer day... then, as if by magic, there is a whiff of the New England autumn ahead with itspreview of gusts and dismay about the return of the winter that tests us all so sorely, the more so ifSocial Security is your metier. This touch of autumn is Natures wake-up call... and, unless you areclueless on such matters, you get the point and do the necessary. Thus I was walking to the Marketwith a friend who said, "I knew I should have worn my sweater." He really didnt need it... butNatures clues resonate more with some than others. Moreover since he is not of hardy stock, heneeds a call more clarion than I do. And he got it."Done for the season, sir."Last week there were white peaches, blueberries and a few blackberries, too. I asked how long thefabulous whites, an exquisite liquor in a soft skin, would last. The young woman behind the counter,overly plump and too young to catch her breath as often as she does, was cavalier. "Well have themfor another month at least." But today, just a few days after her confident pronouncement, there wereno whites to be had, no more to come, and so I was disgruntled. The only white peaches now were inmy head with many a long day to pine for them and wish them sooner here....But when God, they say, closes a door, He opens a window. And that was nothing but the truth thisday... for there before me was a deep purpled fruit I had, in my lamentation for the whites, forgotten.But the fruit had not forgotten me. "Try the plums, sir. Theyre oozing and ready to pop in yourmouth. No waiting!" Thus the young woman, who any 18th century English novelist would havecorrectly described as a "saucy wench", thereby in some measure regained the good opinion ofYours Truly... and so, by the merest touch, I confirmed her evaluation... eyes engaged for color...fingers to test for perfect readiness... only mouth yet to call into action... and that, onceaccomplished, lead to a dozen ready to take home and devour without ceremony.And so with the plum I had regained my equanimity and good cheer. I knew exactly how Little JackHorner must have felt when he, plumless one minute and chagrined, had by deft digital movementextracted a beauty from his Christmas pie. Plums have been coming to the rescue just like this forcenturies and so boys like Jack "Sitting in the Chimney-corner" know that a single plum at just theright moment can make a world of difference and that old grannies should be reminded of thiswhenever the world is too much with us, late and soon.Facts about plums.http://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 21 of 31
  22. 22. Weathering through the Storm!A plum or gage is a stone fruit tree in the genus Prunus. It is a diverse group of species includingpeaches, cherries and bird cherries, amongst others. Prunus is distinguished from its relationsbecause its shoots have a terminal bud and solitary side buds (not clustered), with flowers in groupsof one to five together on short stems, and the fruit having a groove running down one side and asmooth stone (or pit.)Mature plum fruit may have a dusty-white coating that gives them a glaucous appearance; this iseasily rubbed off. This is an epicuticular wax coating and is known as "wax bloom". Dried plumfruits are called dried plums or prunes, although prunes are a distinct type of plum and may haveantedated the fruits now commonly known as plums... but universally regarded as the best.Plum: the best part of anything.You have only to eat a plum to understand why they are regarded as "good". But you need to knowsomething of its long history and association with mankind to understand why the very word itselfhas passed into our language meaning "the best part of anything," for to call a thing "plum" is to callit the very best it can be. The question is, how to put this "bestness" to work for our greatestpleasures.Uses for plums.Plum fruit tastes sweet and/or tart. The skin, for instance, may be particularly tart. It is juicy and canbe eaten fresh or used in jam-making. Plum juice can be fermented into plum wine; when distilledthis produces a brandy known in Eastern Europe as Rakia. In the English Midlands, a cider-likealcoholic beverage known as plum jerkum is prized.In considering how plums are used you must remember that refrigeration is a very recentdevelopment in human history. One feature very much in the plums favor is that it dries well andkeeps its flavor. Dried plums (called prunes) are sweet, juicy, and contain several antioxidants.Theyre widely known for their laxative effect, particularly with elderly people suffering fromconstipation. How to handle this aspect of what the prune can do has produced sharp disagreementamong plums, all of whom have an opinion on the matter.On the one hand, plums are glad to be helpful, especially to old folks who have eaten plums andbeen loyal to them for a lifetime. On the other hand, plums wish to develop their reputation for beinga celebrity fruit, edgy, cool, the favorite of trend-setters and calorie conscious fashionistas. Thissplit, so distressing to plum lovers everywhere, after many acrimonious years now seems on the roadto reconciliation thanks to recent developments in a thing which initially wasnt a plum at all... sugarplums."Visions of sugar plums danced in their heads".A sugar plum is a piece of dragee candy that is made of dried fruits and shaped in a small round oroval shape. But "plums" here mean any dried fruit, such as dried figs, dried apricots, dried dates,dried cherries, etc. The dried fruit is chopped fine and combined with chopped almonds, honey andaromatic spices, such as anise seed, fennel seed, cardamom etc.; then rolled into balls, to be coatedin sugar or shredded coconut, thence to go into expectant mouths and such gems of our culture as "Twas the Night Before Christmas" (1822) ; Eugene Fields poem "The Sugar Plum Tree" (from"Poems of Childhood", 1904) and, of course, Tchaikovskys masterpiece "The Nutcracker" (1892)where the Sugar Plum fairies and their brilliant theme still enchant despite being egregiouslyoverplayed every Christmas. (Even some plums concur). As for the plums, every time they hear it,they get angry... for their name and flavorful renown have been usurped to sell... apricots! Andcherries! And that will never do.Check your sugar plums... make sure there are plums there. Accept no substitutions.http://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 22 of 31
  23. 23. Weathering through the Storm!Since launching this campaign, plum sales have soared... and plums, gathering to extol themselvesupon this success, have forwarded any number of additional ideas to keep the ball rolling. The best isto rework Jack Horners presentation. Abercrombie and Fitch has been approached for one of theircomely lads to hold a strategically placed plum... and nothing more. Kinky.The Plum Book.No story on the plums and their great reputation would be complete without a reference to whatautomatically becomes the most popular book in Washington, D.C. the minute the televisionnetworks project the next President. Its actual name is "United States Government Policy andSupporting Positions"; it is, however, universally called "The Plum Book." It contains over 9,000civil service leadership and support positions (filled and vacant) in the Legislative and Executivebranches of the Federal Government that may be subject to noncompetitive appointments, in otherwords political appointments.Are you of an upwardly mobile and competitive disposition? Then imagine this: whilst scanning ThePlum Book for something geared to your genius, you nibble an authentic sugar plum whilst listeningto the great melodies of the sugar plum fairies. If youre a plum lover it gets no better than this... goto any search engine now and, with Tchaikovskys help and an appointment from the president turntoday into Christmas, the plum itself in all its manifestations the best present of all.http://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 23 of 31
  24. 24. Weathering through the Storm!At a lunch counter in Harvard Square. A place of friendlypeople and tasty meals; a dinosaur en route to extinction.Some thoughts.by Dr. Jeffrey LantAuthors program note. Weve been having a lot of rain lately here in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Itsthe kind of rain that all locals greet with amiable forbearance, saying even to total strangers(especially if they are grumbling), "We need the rain." It makes us feel important when we say it; asif we were trained agronomists advising farmers on the matter of rain, when, where, how much. Ofcourse it also needs to be said that when we hear other people say it, we regard them as conversationimpaired, offering up such banality with such seriousness.Ordinarily, weather doesnt interest me very much. Rain or shine inside a penthouse where theshutters in my office are always closed, no exception; looks much the same, as do day and night.Others may not like such a situation, but it suits me and my pursuits perfectly. Its not only where Ido my writing but where my daily webcasts and running commentaries take place. The shutters andtwo fine verde mare marble columns once in a French palace constitute the elegant back drop tosubjects discussed which may be anything but.Yesterday, however, the rain lifted and even I, the ultimate urban dweller clueless on the rhythmsand rhymes of nature, thought descending from my ideally appointed space capsule was in order. Igrabbed the Harvard cap one of my visitors had forgotten and left behind; took an umbrella thatanother of my visitors had forgotten and left behind. I was ready for an excursion, lunch in HarvardSquare was indicated..."The Square", isnt.Irregularly shaped and sprawling Harvard Square is one of the half dozen places on Earth everyperson of consequence, real or imagined, visits at least once in a lifetime. It is a place of humanflotsam and jetsam; of people who come to move up (including future presidents of the GreatRepublic) and those who are down on their luck, street dwellers who solicit those who feel generousfor giving a buck or two, which will probably end up amongst the blood-stained profits of oneMexican drug cartel or another. But Mexico and its hecatombs and legion of hapless victims are toofar away to worry about, especially as so many of its leaders were schooled at Harvard, which is justthe way its supposed to be.Down Massachusetts Avenue, the brick sidewalks muddy and wet, passersby smelling like a dog leftout in the rain.I am walking to lunch on the sidewalk along Massachusetts Avenue; "Mass Ave" to the cognoscentiwho are past masters at making people like you seem unsophisticated, unhallowed, unready for theworld Cambridge folk are imagining and inventing this very minute. These multi-degreed paragonsare the planets movers and shakers. They want to be sure you know this about them instantly, sothat they may then exhibit the modesty for which they will one day be so renowned despite so manymomentous achievements. But this is now... and so they regard modesty solely as a trait for thosewho have much to be modest about -- that would be you.Labor Day Week-end, 1969.I am in my stride now passing one Harvard-owned property after another. Here the lavish donationsof long dead alumni are put to current use, fully rented out generating still more money for TheWorlds Greatest (and already Richest) University. The kinds of shops tell you much about the placehttp://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 24 of 31
  25. 25. Weathering through the Storm!and its inhabitants: bank, ice cream parlor, smoke, ice cream parlor, bank, Harvard insignia, icecream parlor, bank. Get the picture? The Square has more banks and ATMs within a few blocks thanmany cities as well as untold tons of ice cream.Because Harvard students are the most privileged people on Earth, strident calls for worldrevolution and sweeping change rarely have much presence either in the Square, or in Harvard Yard,the heart of the place. People who like the status quo are hardly likely urge its destruction. Yet JohnReed 10 did so urge. "Red" Reed is buried in the Kremlins walls. Even that dubious honor needsmust go to a Harvard man. We wouldnt want it any other way, even though he was Red; at leastthats a shade of crimson.Even the homeless like the situation as it is, idling life away, supported by those who can onlyimagine having so much free time since they do not, and never will. Thus instead of earnest youngpeople, grim faced and determined (at least until winter arrives to chill their resolution), there areboys with pony tails selling designer ice cream to undergraduates who will one day (and not sodistant either) rule the world and reap its benefits. They already regard each day at Harvard as thebest years of their lives; Harvard likes it that way. The more they think like that, the bigger theiralumni contributions over the many years to come... and so memory and remembrance help Harvardwax richer.I arrive. 1246 Mass. Ave.About 10 minutes from the time I entered the elevator, I am at my destination, a place of importancefor two reasons: first, this is my first memory of Harvard; the moment I saw Harvard and the Squarefor the first time; Labor Day Week-end, 1969. And because I remember everything about thatepiphany, I clearly remember Mr. Bartleys. Thats where I shall lunch this day... but not because Iam nostalgic about food, but because the food is good and, for once, I am really hungry.A hole in the wall, a dive, a joint.Bartleys opened its door (it has but one) in 1960, just 9 years before I arrived in Cambridge to startmy graduate work. I cannot tell you how many times Ive gone, but dozens seems conservative.Whats more, more times than not I order what I always order because I like it: large raspberry limerickey (to be refilled); Burger Supreme medium well, onion rings, extra dill pickle. If I ate this samemeal every day, I might be thought to be in a rut, but going just two or three times in a year to orderand devour this specialite of the house makes me a connoisseur; I insist on the description.Uncomfortable, packed like sardines, chairs too low.Let me be plain with you; if you are not willing to overlook its inconvenient aspects, if you insist onevery amenity, then you will never be happy at Bartleys which in an astonishingly small spacepacks in an astonishing number of chairs, booths, human and machine food cookers, waitpersons,the raspberry lime rickeys that I crave and can nowadays get nowhere else -- and the lunch counter.Bit by bit you see just how much is going on in this compact space. The walls are covered withclever sayings, double entendres, pictures of film stars, pictures of politicians, and accolades for itssignature "burguhs". You want to get up to see these better but chances are youd be tripping over afew people to do so; unless you come right at opening there is no chance youll get to do this. Youllhave to return. After over 40 years I still have not seen it all.The first time a waiter screams "Burguh Supreme" at the cook, youll be startled, but pretty soonyoure screaming your comments and conversation at the top of your voice, like youve been comingfor decades, and here the sheer proximity of other hungry humans, from Kansas, Greece, orTimbuktu works its singular magic.http://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 25 of 31
  26. 26. Weathering through the Storm!Forced to be close to them, you make your choice, a choice with universal implications. Either youdecide to ignore your very near neighbor, or you talk to them, like our fathers and grandfathers usedto talk... up close, personal, direct, often humorous, even hilarious ... but talk... to the astonishmentand discontent of the young, who are at first often affronted and monosyllabic when an adult like meoffers a comment, an introduction, an opening to the wonder of people meeting each other andactually conversing, not just texting some inane, impersonal drivel. Bartleys works because the foodis good and, if youre lucky, youve made a new friend...This is the way America used to be and now so little is, for along the way we have lost the ability totalk with our neighbors about everything, about anything, about nothing in particular. Now we wantwhat Greta Garbo wanted, "to be left alone." And then when we are, we text message wildly in avain attempt to conjure the kind of relationship text messaging can never supply.So, now a newly minted old age pensioner of 65, I shall keep going to Bartleys, where I shallinform everyone (especially the staff not one of who was then born) how long Ive been coming, likeold codgers do. I shall ask for help getting into and especially out of the blue plastic chairs whichalways make me feel older than the hills. I shall greet the only senior on the staff and will politelyturn down the offer of a menu. I know what I want. And I shall say something like this to the personsitting across from me, "You look like Ernest Borgnine." "Oh, yeah, didnt he just die?..." I am onmy way to acquaintance with all its myriad of possibilities.And while I wait for the best burguh on Earth, I will wonder how much longer Bartleys will last, itsprice for burguhs being the highest in the Square, each increase a nail in its coffin.However for now I intend in my small way to help keep them alive, a place of good food and thechance to connect with another human or two. And so I have selected as the music for this article,the 1964 tune by the Newbeats "Bread and Butter". Its a peppy little number, completely foolish andinane, about his food and his woman. "She dont cook mashed potatoes/ She dont cook T-bonesteaks". No, she secretly gets them at Bartleys... where she also found her new boyfriend, a manwho really appreciates "her" cooking! Find the story in any search engine... and enjoy.http://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 26 of 31
  27. 27. Weathering through the Storm!The man who survived. Norodom Sihanouk. Sometimeprince of Cambodia, king, prime minister, revolutionary,demigod. Dead at 89, October 15, 2012.by Dr. Jeffrey Lant.Authors program note. When the Abbe Sieyes, one of the first three consuls of the new Frenchgovernment of 1799 was asked what he did during the Terror, he replied "I survived." Everyonewho had done the same would have understood at once just how signal an achievement that was. Itseems a particularly apt comment to apply to King Norodom Sihanouk... who lived to a venerableage which so many times looked unlikely, even impossible. It may well have been his mostsignificant achievement. You may judge for yourself.Geography is destiny.To begin this article, go to any search engine and print out a map of Cambodia and its contiguousneighbors, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam. Then cast your eye North, to China, which monitored andinfluenced his every move his entire life.I suspect His Majesty knew every boundary, highway, minor road, river, city and town. He was noscholar, but on this subject I imagine he excelled. Much of what he could do, much of what hecould not do was played out on the maps of Southeast Asia; his dreams, his fears, his rationales forso many shifts, turns, lies, deceptions, convolutions, "irrational" decisions made, reversed, madeagain, reversed again and again.You will never understand this man and his decisions, which so often infuriated and exasperated somany uncomprehending statesmen and diplomats, without understanding the geography of the place.I am writing this article with such a map at my fingertips. You should do the same. To achieve hisgoals of staying alive, keeping Cambodia independent and autonomous, and its population safe, hehad to master every nuance of these maps and his options... options which changed as the goals ofhis contiguous neighbors (and their near and far-away allies) shifted... and above all whenever theshadow of great China crossed his path... as it seemed constantly to do.Born in the purple October 31, 1922.Cambodia at the time of King Sihanouks birth was part of French Indochina, a protectorate since1863. The royal dynasty reigned; the French ruled everything including the dynasty. To make thiswork as efficient and thorough as possible, they wanted young, naive, powerless princes at the helm.Shy 18-year-old Prince Sihanouk seemed tailor-made and so in 1941 French colonial authoritiesraised him to be king. No one, certainly no Frenchman, took this adolescent monarch seriously; hehad wept after all when elevated. They wanted "a little lamb", Sihanouk said later. They got a tiger.The man had been misjudged and misunderstood from the beginning; that never changed.Everything else did, including the French Protectorate over Indochine.The beginning of the end of the French Colonial Empire.The breathtaking 1940 German invasion of France and the French capitulation (June, 1940) gaveKing Sihanouk the chance he needed to advance Cambodian independence. He worked with the newconquerors, the Japanese, as he had worked with the previous conquerors, the French. On March 9,1945, the Japanese still in charge, King Sihanouk proclaimed an independent Kingdom ofKampuchea. The Japanese soon left; the French were prostrate. The King had had a very good war,despite General Charles de Gaulles insistence that the ancien regime be resurrected. He might sohttp://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 27 of 31
  28. 28. Weathering through the Storm!desire, but he could not dictate; a lesson he found hard to learn, then or ever.In due course, October, 1953, Sihanouk declared independence. The "little lamb" hadoutmaneuvered the Cross of Lorraine himself. The King was now as grand as the kingdomproclaimed itself to be... and the Golden Age of his reign and his nation were at hand, a gracefultime revered by every subject and remembered with joy, gratitude and bittersweet nostalgia. If onlythings had so remained... if only.But now one word hung over Cambodia, its king, its gentle people and their life of beauty, serenity,grace and tranquility. That word was Vietnam and in this single word there was an unimaginablehorror and woes beyond measure. No one knew this better than the liberator King of Cambodia, atthe very center of so much that went so wrong for so many, including himself.Saving his house from the inferno next door.Before continuing you must remember this mans objectives -- to save himself, to preserve hisdynasty, to ensure the nations freedom and self-rule, and to keep his adoring people safe from thecollateral damage inflicted on them by bigger, richer, careless nations. It was not merely a tall order;it was the devils own conundrum. And he could not avoid action or, in the way of so manyacademics, avoid making crucial decisions altogether; no, he had to decide, he had to act, he had torow his tiny boat and its 5 million vulnerable inhabitants through the growing maelstrom thatemanated from and engulfed his proximate neighbor Vietnam.For 17 years, he kept his people out of the ever-growing civil conflict destroying his much largerneighbor. This is the key fact by which he should be judged, not the fact that he employed everysingle stratagem, tactic, ruse, insinuation, prevarication or deception he had to. He was a king,charged by heaven with the care of his people, whom he called and considered his "children". Godwould understand.As a result, Sihanouk became the very personification of the oldest Western stereotype, the WilyOriental Gentleman (WOG). This and other far cruder characterizations and epithets permeated theCIAs "top secret" (1964) report "Prince Sihanouk and the New Order in Southeast Asia" by John W.Taylor, the word "patriot" seems hardly to have occurred to his detractors.And so as the fire consumed Vietnam one killing field at a time, King Sihanouk perfected hismastery of the legerdemain that kept his most vulnerable realm as secure as a world of insecuritywould allow.Item: He became the darling of the worlds left-leaning non-aligned nations while discouraging thegrowth of Cambodias left-wing parties.Item: After the Vietnam war broke out again in 1961, he secretly allied with North Vietnam andbegan allowing Viet Cong troops to use Cambodia as a military base. At the same time he tacitlyapproved limited US bombing runs on Cambodian soil.Item: But you get the picture. His Majesty would do what His Majesty needed to do... and he did ituntil it no longer pleased all the people all the time, which had always been His Majestys special,impossible assignment. In March, 1970 the United States tacitly approved a CIA coup that removedSihanouk, turned the nation over to Lon Nol, a former military adviser who gave the United Stateswhat it wanted: a friendly regime that turned neutralist Cambodia into an American base, corrupt,propped up by lavish US aid. The golden days of Sihanouks Cambodia were done and truly over.War, genocide, an impatient, impotent ex-monarch watches. Now the great Cambodian tragedybegan; Lon Nol tethered to US interests, Pol Pot and his Khmer Rouge Communists infiltrating,destabilizing from the left. Sihanouk, in exile in Beijing, condemned Lon Nol and backed the Khmerhttp://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 28 of 31
  29. 29. Weathering through the Storm!Rouge which in 1975 imprisoned him in his palace thereby effectively silencing the Cambodianpeoples best friend and "father". The genocide of Pol Pots regime, responsible for over 1.7 millionbrutal murders, starvations, and exterminations as it tried to convert the entire nation into an agrariancollective, showed just how good the "good old days" had been.And so he watched from afar as the nation he had built was destroyed; the people he loved werekilled in their tens and hundreds of thousands and the United States condemned him for hisunaccountable advocacy of Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge. A realist to his royal fingertips, theex-monarch knew he must explain himself on this matter, or languish on the sidelines forever,anathema to the Great Republic and its "do as I say, not as I do" approach to international relations."War and Hope," my dinner with King Sihanouk, my ticklish assignment.The result was Sihanouks book "War and Hope: The Case for Cambodia" (Pantheon Books, 1980),a ringing denunciation of the Khmer Rouge and its spectrum of brutalities, a denunciation he took toHarvard and its Center for International Affairs; where in those days I was a marketing, publicrelations and development consultant to Professor Samuel Huntington. As such I was invited to hislavish black-tie dinner in honor of the man called "Former Chief of State" and his Samuel L. andElizabeth Jodidi Lecture. Before that dinner, Professor Huntington handed me the evenings hotpotato: on the pressing need to ensure the Princes traveling concubine did not attend the festivitiesin honor of her aging but agile Lothario."Girls, girls, girls"... but not at Harvard!Sihanouk, like all the kings of Cambodia, was a sybarite, a libertine, a frequent, frequentlyindiscriminate, lover and prodigious producer of princely children (at least 14), a real life characterlike Mrs. Anna Leonowens found in Bangkok in 1862. The CIA made much of his concupiscence;he enjoyed his droit de seigneur. In any event, it helped pass his gilded exile. But whatever wasacceptable elsewhere, such behavior did not suit Fair Harvard, at least the residual Puritans at theCenter for International Affairs (now called the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs). Theywanted no part of his current traveling companion. And because I was a hired consultant I was toldto get the lady gone.I can see her to this day and even smell her intoxicating Rue de la Paix scent. She was lovely in theCambodian manner, young, lavishly dressed, a doll. She disdained me... and no wonder.Had it been me alone, I would have invited her, but I was merely following orders. And so while shefiled her nails and cast her eyes down, I stumbled through the message and her contempt. She knewmy discomfort and dragged it out. I felt like a worm, for all that they paid me well. She was not inattendance that evening.But King Sihanouk was, to deliver his "mea culpa, mea maxima culpa" on the Khmer Rouge, toppledin 1979 but not forgotten or forgiven in Washington, D.C.. When I was presented, I murmured theexpected compliments which he, the consummate man of the world, reciprocated without amoments thought. It was what hed been doing for a lifetime, saying the expected, while doing whatneeded to be done.But what was clear was that he was in Cambridge, at Harvard, because he wanted to return toKampuchea and if exchanging small talk with someone like me, if giving up his play fellow for atime were required, he would do it all, and more. For Cambodia was his real love, his one and onlylove, and he missed her to distraction. And so after Pol Pot fell; after the Vietnamese were expelledhe got his fervent wish, to be reunited with the beloved.Now this man, this king, this tiger once thought to be a little lamb, this lover of women and greatpatriot, this evasive man, ambiguous man, deceptive man for whom mere truth was a luxury hehttp://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 29 of 31
  30. 30. Weathering through the Storm!could hardly ever afford is dead. We shall never see his like again in our time. Go then to any searchengine. Find "Nokor Reach", the national anthem of the Kingdom of Cambodia... "Heaven save theking/ Give him happiness and glory/... rule the Khmer Land and/ make it high and filled with honor",as in his way he did.http://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 30 of 31
  31. 31. Weathering through the Storm!ResourceAbout the Author Harvard-educated Dr. Jeffrey Lant is CEO of Worldprofit, Inc., providing a widerange of online services for small and-home based businesses. Your response to this article isrequested. What do you think? Let us know by posting your comments below.Republished with authors permission by Denis Darling http://MyExtremeResults.com.http://www.MyExtremeResults.com Copyright Denis Darling - 2012 31 of 31