Red Nose Day is Tomorrow! Better Get Your Nose!

Red Nose Day is Tomorrow! Better Get Your Nose!

It’s just about here. Tomorrow, May 24th is indeed Red Nose Day and remember it’s all to benefit kids.

Many different businesses and people are participating in the very cool fundraising event. Here in Central Florida, folks often associate the well-known pharmacy chain Walgreens with Red Nose Day as they’re doing some great publicity for it and their stores are the easiest way for folks to get their nose.

Some may not be clear on exactly where the funds raised are going. The answer is Save The Children and that’s an org I support without reservation. The specific objective for this promotion is to end child poverty. Yeah, I know; that’s a tall order. All the more reason to support this event.

I first came to support Save the Children from a door to door solicitor. Although I had reservations about whether S.T.C. would raise money that way, they do, and I’m glad I chipped in. (By the way, I don’t know if they still do, but they did in 2014.)

If you’re in Central Florida and you’d like to participate, go to any Walgreens and get your nose on. Literally.

I didn’t realize that they’ve been doing R.N.D. for 25 years now. If  you want to know more about this very worthy event, just follow this link.

I’ll see you tomorrow! And if I do, we both should be looking a bit like my friend Alli from Slow and Low Barbecue in Cocoa Beach!

Slow-n-Low-Ali-w-red-nose-how-do-i-look-1

 

 

“Bulldog Ben” Basile

 

Photo credit Benjamin Lawrence Basile

 

Fave Fotos: Crow with Attitude at The Brevard Zoo

Fave Fotos: Crow with Attitude at The Brevard Zoo

And speaking of the Brevard Zoo! That Fave Foto is a pic I love from my trip to the Brevard Zoo three or four weeks ago that I think is well worth a look. This dude has a ‘tude, wouldn’t you say?

That was a very fun and productive trip; the critters — for the most part — were very cooperative, the weather was perfect and I saw some new things I couldn’t have seen in previous trips. What’s not to like? (Well, the zip line damn near killed me, but it was still fun!)

I hope your hump day is going well. I’ll be posting again before long. I just might have more to say about that totally exhausting but totally fun zip line adventure…

 

“Bulldog Ben” Basile

 

Photo credit Benjamin Lawrence Basile

 

Bulldog Really, Really Loves the Brevard Zoo

Bulldog Really, Really Loves the Brevard Zoo

I really love going to the zoo. I’ve been to four zoological parks in the last couple of years. And even though I can say I liked them all, I must add that the Brevard Zoo in Melboure is definitely my favorite.

One advantage they have over some other parks is that it was well-planned right from the very beginning. Some parks expand gradually and that’s a whole ‘nother thing, as the saying goes. So the B.Z. offers more than many of the others and each area or attraction flows naturally into the next one.

There are two different boat rides where visitors can get a different perspective on each area and the featured critters. Many zoos have one, having two here is very cool. And the train ride is lots of fun. Below is the rider’s view from the front train car. Because this visit was in late October of 2015, close to Halloween, they called it “the boo-choo train!” How cute is that?!

BrevZoo-takin-da-train-6v

A highlight at any zoo is seeing the primates; the monkeys, orang-utans, chimps and so forth; the Brevard Zoo is the only one I’ve visited that features the Siamang. This species looks to this layman something like a scaled down gorilla and I find them terribly interesting. They’re a type of gibbon and are native to Malaysia, Thailand, and Sumatra. They’re deathly afraid of water and can’t swim at all, so in that particular exhibit, zoo-goers are pretty close to the animals as the not-so-large moat is all that separates you from a siamang; there is no high fence.

There is an exhibit that features animals — and even botanical specimens — from the Caribbean and it’s no surprise that the zoo folk who designed this part of the park chose to wrap a pirate theme around it. I can’t remember any of the critters feature there, but here’s a couple of shots of mine that I like especially from the part of the park.

 

If you have small children, there is a splash pad here, right behind the pizza place. All zoos seem to have these, and it’s something parents of small kids like. They have a challenge course with very good and very high zip lines; that’s a fine addition, I must say. It is a separate business with a separate admission charge. You can do the zoo and not the zip lines or vice-versa. It’s a very full day if you or the kids opt for both. I did the zips and lived to tell the tale! They are NOT for the faint of heart! I just had to buy the tee shirt that says I got through the course!

One thing to add: I’m an annual pass holder and think it’s a very good value. If you’ve never gone that route, please know this: if you hold an annual pass to any accredited zoo, you receive half off when you visit any other one! I love that; it’s just one more reason to patronize a zoo in your neck of the woods.

 

Photo credit Benjamin Lawrence Basile

 

Knights Knocked Out of AAC Softball Championship Tourney by Lowly East Carolina

Knights Knocked Out of AAC Softball Championship Tourney by Lowly East Carolina

Last Thursday the softball squad from East Carolina eliminated our UCF Knights on day one of the conference championship tourney. I love and support the Knights but that was a huge disappointment for me. UCF was the no. 3 seed; E.C. was in the AAC cellar before the tournament. Perhaps being the host team helped the Pirates kick it up a notch or two.

The Knights finished with a 29-23 record for the 2017 campaign; it was not a bad season considering how young the squad is and that one has to consider it to have been a rebuilding year.

Yes, die-hard fans like me can look forward to the next few years now that the team has more maturity. There certainly is no lack of talent. And coach Rene Luers-Gillispie and her staff are very good at what they do. But the quick exits from the American Athletic Conference the last two years have dampened this dog’s enthusiasm just a bit.

Damn, what a whiner I am! #ChargeOn, Knights fans!

 

Photo credit Benjamin Lawrence Basile

 

Supreme Court won’t review decision that found N.C. voting law discriminates against African Americans – The Washington Post

<Ben says>

This is a follow up to my posting back on Sept 6th of last year looking into efforts by North Carolina’s Republican legislature to suppress the minority vote. Because the Supreme Court will NOT review the lower court’s decision, this clearly racist and undemocratic act is officially dead. We can breathe a sigh of relief now. But know that even though Rethuglicans have lost the governorship in NC, they still control both houses of the legislature and they are not going to stop trying to keep minorities from showing up at the polls.

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Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. cited the state’s changed political scene in the order and noted the justices’ did not address the merits of the case.

Source: Supreme Court won’t review decision that found N.C. voting law discriminates against African Americans – The Washington Post

Our Florida Mall in Orlando Thrives While Most Are Dying

Our Florida Mall in Orlando Thrives While Most Are Dying

Tonight I did something I haven’t done in quite a while; I cruised one of our local malls. I know that malls are really struggling in most American cities and at least three of them here in the Greater Orlando area have gone belly up or are just barely clinging to life. The Orlando Fashion Square Mall was a fave of mine. Our family watched it go up in the ’60s. So sad that the mall’s owners declared bankruptcy a short while ago…

I did notice a few months ago that The Altamonte Mall is doing pretty well and is very busy on weekends. That was good to see. Altamonte Springs is a cool town about 20 minutes north of Orlando, for those of you who aren’t too familiar with Central Florida.

So tonight I thought I’d check out the Florida Mall as I was in that part of town. And it was absolutely thronged. It just blew UP! Of course, it is a Saturday night.

That was a good thing to see.

Not only was business good, but the mall is undergoing a major renovation. I’ll have to check back in a year or so and see how that went.

In the meantime, it’s good to see that some of our malls here in Central Florida are doing just fine.

A quick attempt to fill in a bit of the history of malls around here: The Florida Mall, like the newer Millenia Mall, is very, very close to the heart of our tourist stuff in O’do. I doubt there’s a better location anywhere in the country. No, that’s not an overstatement.

So I suppose it’s not too smart to draw any conclusions about national trends. I don’t see things improving much for investors who’re heavily into a typical mall, but here we’re not doing too badly.

The photo is of the entrance to the Spencer’s Gifts at our thriving Florida Mall. Glad they’re still around, too. I don’t spend money in places like Spencer’s these days, but it’s good that they haven’t gone away.

 

“Bulldog Ben” Basile in Orlando

 

Photo credit Benjamin Lawrence Basile

 

This Blog Immortalizes Cocoa Beach Surfer Dude

This Blog Immortalizes Cocoa Beach Surfer Dude

Well, okay, that’s a bit of an over-reach. But getting some good pix of this surfer is a very cool thing.

I took more photos on this trip than I usually do, and I usually take a lot. And I rarely have a chance to get more than four or five of any particular subject. So this was cool in several different ways.

Because he was not really very close to me, I didn’t pay a lot of attention to him at first. But knowing that the camera’s eyes are way more capable than the photographer’s, I focused more purposefully and went to work.

What the rest of you never get to see are the thirty plus other photos that will live only on my hard drive. If you take about 50, you might get a dozen or so that you’ll liberate from the hard drive and let cruise at warp speed all around in cyber space.

I’m going to try to put together a substantial post to showcase “the whole story” of the Cocoa Beach Surfer Dude but that will have to wait for another day.

On this dreary Central Florida day, I’m content to remember that when I made it to the beach a few days ago, I saw some fantastic sights, recorded a few of them with a modern tech device called a camera and have a means to share it with people I know. That’s a cool thing; I think I’ll do it some more.

 

 

“Bulldog Ben” Basile

 

Photo credit Benjamin Lawrence Basile