Spam Spam Spam





Long before the dawn of junk emails, “spam” was a Hormel food creation provided to World War II soldiers and purchased by American consumers. In Hawaii, it remains available as a sushi preparation. In locales on the continent, it is still marketed as a breakfast, lunch or dinner possibility. The product line has expanded beyond the original ham-like offering to include turkey and, for the health-conscious, a low-sodium option. Tapping into the growing Hispanic market in the U.S., a chorizo-flavored product is now available.

Beyond supermarket aisles and dining tables, one can never be too sure where spam will surface. In recent years, besides computer messages, spam has been seen on theater stages and, more recently, on a beach.

For those who are still failing to appreciate the qualities of spam, or at least the humor, there is always the Monty Python homage:

Moffitt’s, Speculator, Adirondacks

The Adirondack Mountains in New York, with its cold winters and small population, have long been a challenge for year-round residents and businesses.  Its rural landscape and serenity, however, have always attracted vacationers young and old.  It seems little has changed at Moffitt Beach, where private homes and public campsites mix peacefully, by the village of Speculator (population: 321) located in Hamilton County.  

Heavyweight champion Gene Tunney trained locally nearly a century ago, and budget shortfalls seem to impact current services.  But, it’s hard to imagine much changing during the next century.  That’s a good thing.

Promises Kept

Where do old horses go after they’ve run their last race, galloped a last time for the pleasure of a paying customer, or worked their last shift? One possibility — an alternative to the proverbial “glue factory” — is a retirement home like this one in rural upstate New York.

The future of photojournalism: countdown to an evolution

Jim Cummins was spot-on 40 yrs ago — and he still is today.

Canyons of New York








What would George Washington think if he stepped through a time tunnel after enjoying a chicken pie at Fraunces Tavern and headed north on Pearl Street?  Probably, he would be amazed at the tall buildings that line the narrow streets of New York City’s oldest neighborhood. 

The Financial District has reinvented itself through the ups and downs its tenants have gone through in riding — if not causing — the cycles of American capitalism.  Look carefully, however, and you can still find remnants of the old mixed in with, often in the shadows of, the new.  

The chaotic harmony that has always been lower Manhattan, usually New York City, often the United States for over 200 years, remains. 

New York the Beautiful

Some see purple mountain majesties above the fruited plain and raise their voices in praise of America the beautiful.  Others see alabaster cities gleam undimmed by human tears and marvel at America the beautiful.

From sea to shining sea, or at least from the East River looking west, there is little more beautiful in America than New York City. 

Jersey shore, by diesel train

The New Jersey Transit stretch between Bay Head and Long Branch, where the train switches between diesel and electric power, is among the most scenic on the east coast. Asbury Park, Belmar, Spring Lake and Point Pleasant are among the line’s 10 stops as it passes Takanasee Lake, Deal Lake, Shark River, Wreck Pond, Watson Creek and the Manasquan River, often just blocks west of the Atlantic Ocean.

To many commuters, the North Jersey Coast line is the start and the end of a long day. To others, the view outside the window is the start or the end of a fun time. In all cases, it’s a reminder of the locomotive’s historic role in the popularity of some New Jersey shore communities.

The Frenchman

He won’t be appearing in the World Cup for the first time in 20 years this summer, but Thierry Henry is expected to continue being in top form as the New York Red Bulls attempt to capture their first MLS Cup this season.

After scoring 51 goals in 123 internationals for the French national team, Henry has notched 45 goals in 106 matches for New York, including one in last night’s 4-0 win against Houston.  He remains difficult to mark as he roams around the pitch, and still gets past defenders who challenge him, always to the joy of Red Bull Arena ultras grateful for his skills and leadership.    

Behind Wilson Hall

Many Monmouth County residents and vacationers have seen Wilson Hall as they peek to the south while passing through Monmouth University. Erlanger Gardens, situated just west of Wilson Hall’s back rooms, is another of the university’s architectural gems.  The garden occasionally hosts students and events, but often sits peacefully at sunset.