April 7, 2015 |
Philadelphia Artists' Collective has once again unearthed an antique play - this time the obscure Renaissance comedy The Fair Maid of the West by Thomas Heywood - polished it up, and made it shine. Under the brilliant direction of Charlotte Northeast, a rambunctious cast whips us into the rowdy audience the play demands, and we laugh and stamp our feet and clap and roar our approval. The plot is outrageously silly: A chaste barmaid, one Bess Bridges (the superb and saucy Rachel Camp)
February 20, 2015
STUPID HATS, too much booze, "Auld Lang Syne" and overhyped plans that aren't fun - that's basically all we need to celebrate a new year here in the West. But maybe we should take a cue from the many Philadelphians who are currently in full-blast party mode. Though today's not much more than a frigid, nondescript midwinter Thursday by Gregorian standards, it marks the beginning of a vital celebration on a different calendar. It's officially Chinese New Year, though not all of us know what that entails.
November 23, 2014 |
Two childhood memories always stay with me. For several years, my mom asked that we "adopt" families - whom we never met - and supply a full-Monty Christmas, including wrapped gifts, clothes, toys, and a holiday meal. And in the weeks leading up to the holidays, my dad would read Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol to my sister and me. Sometimes, he fell asleep. I remember these as the greatest gifts they ever gave us. With hard-core, ugly-sweater-shopping season approaching in advance of Hanukkah, Christmas, and Kwanzaa, how do we avoid the urge to buy more stuff no one needs?
April 14, 2014 |
LANSDALE On the first beautiful spring weekend of the year, it was hard to tell who was enjoying the day more - all the kids running around from one activity to another, or their parents, just glad to be out of the house. "Being inside all winter was not the best," said Gena Ortega, 34, of North Wales, who came with Lily, 6, and Laila, 22 months, to the Peter Wentz Farmstead's annual Sheep Shearing Day. About 1,000 visitors came to see the farm's five ewes and one ram get their spring haircuts at the public park in Lansdale.
March 2, 2014 |
As the long and busy winter turned into spring, the young executive reveled in the tranquil escape he achieved out on the golf course. But as summer came on, the nagging ache in his right side made him wonder if he was overdoing it on the links. For a few weeks, ibuprofen seemed to make the pain subside, but eventually that didn't relieve it. Then he began having pain when he took a deep breath, which pushed him to get evaluated. He described his symptoms, and the physician examined him, clarifying that the pain was in the right upper quadrant of the patient's abdomen, the region housing the liver and the gallbladder.
November 25, 2013 |
It's time you knew I had fleas. As if I weren't single enough. Apparently, being single is like being broke. You don't think you can get broker than broke, but you can. Just ask the government. Oh. Wait. They're closed. Oh, sorry. They're open again. Phew. Anyway, it's not my fault I have fleas, it's my dogs' fault. As you may know, I have five dogs: Ruby the Crazy Corgi, dysfunctional couple Little Tony and Ms. Peach, and bromantic puppies Boone and Kit. I don't know which dog is to blame for our fleas and have questioned them repeatedly, but none of them is confessing.
October 6, 2013 |
His success in banking had given the 39-year-old some rare opportunities. Of late, he and his family had spent much free time working outside on their exotic sheep farm. During the busy late summer preparing for autumn breeding, he had been working closely with their veterinarian. So that early fall morning when he awoke with a cough - and then started coughing up blood - he didn't think it odd to call the vet first. The vet advised him to see his doctor. A chest X-ray that morning suggested an abnormal circular area on the lung - a "nodule" - that led to a more extensive look with a CAT scan.
September 11, 2013 |
In a case that outraged animal-rights activists and generated national attention, a trial began Monday for a Chester County man charged with killing his neighbor's dogs because he believed they posed a threat to his sheep. Gabriel Pilotti, 73, of Chester Springs, was charged with cruelty to animals for shooting the two Bernese mountain dogs - 2-year-old Angus and 1-year-old Fiona - after they had escaped the fenced yard of their owners, Mary and William Bock. As a result of the attention drawn to the case, Pilotti has been the target of threats.
August 19, 2013 |
Let's talk about rides that aren't what they appear to be at first glance. Let's look at some vehicles that aren't nearly as prosaic as their appearances, purposes, or pasts might suggest. Let's check out some seemingly mild-mannered machines that slipped into a phone booth and emerged with a big S on their grilles. In other words, let's look over the most memorable Wolves in Sheep's Clothing (WISCs) that I test-drove this model year. WISC #1: Toyota Tacoma X-Runner. There have been some hot-rod full-size pickup trucks offered over the years (the Ford F-150 Lightning comes to mind)
April 13, 2013 |
The best part of the Philadelphia Zoo's new KidZooU exhibit, at least in the eyes of my two nieces, was the barnyard. As the two stood in the exhibit, they were surrounded by colorful (goat) kids, all nuzzling them in an attempt to reach the brushes the girls held. A short distance away, they marveled over the sheep wandering in their pen. An extremely loud donkey - which made the girls think of Shrek - let it be known that he needed some attention. Lest this sound like a typical children's petting zoo, realize this: KidZooU is all that you expect - and then a little more.