Wednesday, February 13, 2019

FEBRUARY 14 - THE DAY OF LOVE HAS BEEN AROUND SINCE ANCIENT ROME

It's Valentines Day Week  my fellow vagabonds. And I know that all of the cynics in the world think that Valentines Day is just another marketing ploy to get people, mostly men, to buy stuff for the one they love. Well - Not so fast my friend(s). Valentines Day dates back long before Hallmark and Pro Flowers started making big bucks on this holiday that is celebrated in one of the worst weather months on the calendar. Maybe that's the point. Sharing your love with your soul mate makes you focus on the good and forget about the lousy weather. To keep things simple, here is a quote from Encyclopedia Britannica:


"Valentine’s Day, also called St. Valentine’s Dayholiday (February 14) when lovers express their affection with greetings and gifts. The holiday has origins in the Roman festival of Lupercalia, held in mid-February. The festival, which celebrated the coming of spring, included fertility rites and the pairing off of women with men by lottery. At the end of the 5th century, Pope Gelasius I replaced Lupercalia with St. Valentine’s Day. It came to be celebrated as a day of romance from about the 14th century."


There are many questions that couples have to ask and answer for this blessed day and its importance or lack thereof in our romantic lives.

First and foremost. Are you going to take the one you love and go somewhere? It doesn't need to be far or exotic. Plus, there are many other days in the year that lend themselves to  couples going to the next place on their bucket lists. A recent survey for Travelocity said that 56 percent of respondents currently in a relationship believe that travel for V-Day is a good idea. However, it also stated that only 30 percent of those questioned have ever been on a couples only trip. Doesn't sound like they are taking their own advice does it? We decided against going anywhere for Valentines due to weather and other demands on our time. I know, pretty lame. Sorry, I loathe this time of year here in God's country.

Make sure you at least take your one and only to a great place for dinner and show them how much you love them all day and every day. Or have a serious Valentines Night and prepare a gourmet meal at home with all the candles, music and love that your one and only deserves. . I have written four poems to the most amazing creature in my life. The fourth one will be given to her in the morning. We met and fell in love in 1969. She is way above my station. God looked down and said - OK my son, you are NOT worthy, but, sometimes I help those that can't help themselves. And The Man Upstairs hit a home run for sure. I still have dreams about her and what she has meant in my life. We have two amazing kids who, along with dear old dad,  have absolute proof she hung the sun, moon and stars. 

Living with someone through dozens of Valentines makes you understand what true love really is. I know beyond any shadow of any doubt that I am one blessed man to kiss and say good morning to my one and only Susie.

And, of course, with the technology that is available to us today, you can build some serious romantic music libraries. Following are just some of my recommendations to lower the lights and lighten the mood with that special one that you love with all your heart.

Diana Krall - Amazing chanteuse who brings jazz that will move all lover's hearts.
Michael Buble - Today's current carrier of the torch of the greats from the past.
Frank Sinatra - Speaking of greats. 'Nuff said.
Nat King Cole - Another genius from yesterday.
Steve Tyrell - I just started listening to this cross between Van Morrison & Sinatra. Very cool.

Just pull these artists and others up on SPOTIFY and dance with the one that makes your life complete. Music is the best thing to have as a partner when you're loving the most important person in your life.

And remember. As Charles M. Schultz says:

All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn't hurt.

HAPPY VALENTINES

d.l.stafford



Tuesday, January 29, 2019

BETTER LATE THAN NEVER - HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!! - MAKE A PLAN

Today is January 29, 2019 - National Plan For Vacation Day. I'm running a bit late. But, its never too late to motivate my fellow vagabonds to get off that couch and get going. A brand new year. Bills to pay. Still gotta  return or exchange those Christmas gifts that didn't fit or were the wrong color or that made you wonder "what were they thinking?". It's still really cold in most places. What better time than now to plan your Travel Bucket List?

Because I am obsessed with travel and the discovery of places not yet seen, I spend ridiculous amounts of time researching hotels that are high design and affordable, as well as places I haven't seen or places I long to see again. I have been researching a place I have always wanted to see and experience since the middle of 2018. The ancient land of the Italian Heel, Puglia, goes back seven thousand years. They have hotels in caves. And, for now, it's pretty cheap. My guess is that it will become very expensive in a few years much like Croatia is today. If you are of the Money is No Object Crowd then you will probably leave the planning to an expert, travel agent or someone that knows where people go who have more money than time. However, if you want great places that don't necessarily cost what you might spend on your child's education, then stay tuned to THE NOMAD ARCHITECT for ideas and opinions on travel.

To motivate you to travel and understand better the benefits of travel, I recommend reading the following article from FODOR'S TRAVEL - One American Vacation Behavior That Simply Has To Stop . In a nutshell this read gives some startling statistics and other benefits of travel, as well as the bad things that can happen to you if you don't. So read - then plan - then go. Over the course of this new year, I will be giving you places to go and stay that won't break the bank. And I will throw in the occasional place that will take you to another level.

So, once again - HAPPY NEW YEAR!! May the wind always be at your back, may the places you go change your view of the world and may your credit limit never be reached - LOL!!! And remember - The First Thing True Vagabonds Do Is Plan.

D.L.Stafford


Tuesday, December 25, 2018

SOMEBODY SAY HALLELUJAH!! IT'S CHRISTMAS - NO. 1 ON THE 2018 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN

In my humble opinion, the greatest single piece of music ever written is the Hallelujah Chorus, written by George Frideric Handel as part of the great master work Messiah which was premiered in Dublin, Ireland in 1742. So, please enjoy several versions from ancient to contemporary of this great Christmas Classic. What better way to celebrate the birth of our Lord. 



THE MORMON TABERNACLE CHOIR



THE NEW YOUNG MESSIAH



HANDEL'S MESSIAH: THE SOULFUL CELEBRATION



It is my fervent hope that you, your family and your friends enjoy this blessed day worldwide.. Merry Christmas.

D.L.Stafford
thenomadARCHITECT

Monday, December 24, 2018

TWO TUNES & A CLASSIC POEM FOR THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS - NO. 2 ON THE 2018 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN

IT'S CHRISTMAS EVE!! What better way to capture the essence of this great day and night than a reading of the poem by one of America's most iconic singers, songwriters and story tellers. Bob Dylan does today's Classic Countdown Tune with his aged voice as only Bob Dylan can do it. Legend tells us that this greatest of all Christmas poems was written in 1822 by Clement Clarke Moore for his family on Christmas Eve.




And, for a BONUS TRACK that captures the simple essence of Christmas, a heartfelt song by another Texas Troubadour - GRATEFUL FOR CHRISTMAS BY HAYES CARLL.



And I would be remiss if I didn't include at least one Christmas tune by one of the greatest jazz pianists to sit at a keyboard. The one and only DAVE BRUBECK PERFORMS SANTA CLAUS IS COMING TO TOWN. My bride and I are among a very few people that saw this master pianist at THE ATLANTA INTERNATIONAL POP FESTIVAL in 1969 - we were dating then - and again in in 2007 at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater, Florida at the tender young age of 86. Truly amazing both times.


Gather your people around and enjoy this Christmas.

D.LStafford

Sunday, December 23, 2018

THE LAST SUNDAY BEFORE CHRISTMAS - NO. 3 ON THE 2018 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN - A CLASSIC CAROL BY THOUSANDS

Today's Classic Christmas Countdown tune - The Piano Guys, Peter Hollens, David Archuleta and The Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square bring us "Angels We Have Heard On High", also known as GLORIA. Powerful singing and playing by great talents give fresh life to a classic Christmas Carol, written in 1862 and performed and rearranged by many through the years'




And for a rather unique bonus, I hope you enjoy a song, though not specifically about Christmas, is appropriate on this beautiful Sunday by a talented family of three brothers that can play and sing with power and nuance. Enjoy HEAVEN by Los Lonely Boys.


Merry Christmas on this beautiful Sunday. Only three days left!

D.L.Stafford
thenomadARCHITECT

Saturday, December 22, 2018

TODAY IS DECEMBER 22 - ONLY FOUR DAYS LEFT - LET'S HAVE SOME FUN - CHRISTMAS CARPOOL KARAOKE - NO. 4 ON THE 2018 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN

I love innovation in entertainment. James Corden, host of The Late Late Show With James Corden, came up with a very cool way to entertain people - CARPOOL KARAOKE featuring famous singers and Corden as they ride around having fun in a car singing hits, old and new.

It's the last Saturday before Christmas. The sun is out all day in God's Country. What a great day to have fun with a group of very famous singers, from every musical style imaginable, performing one of the great Christmas classics.




Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy CHRISTMAS today!!!

D.L.Stafford
thenomadARCHITECT

Friday, December 21, 2018

TODAY'S CHRISTMAS TUNE IS THE NO. 2 REQUESTED SONG ON RADIO - NO. 5 ON THE 2018 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN

It's official. We are living in an insane PC culture right now and some people find today's Countdown Tune risque. Baby It's Cold Outside, compared to the current horrible state of pop music, not to mention rap and other explicit genres, is as tender and sweet as Mary Had a Little Lamb. This year, it is the No. 2 requested song on the radio, right after Silent Night. The best quote concerning this inane controversy is by Dean Martin's daughter -  He recorded this great little ditty in 1959.

"I was absolutely flabbergasted: it's just insane. she said of learning about the uproar caused by the song that's been around for more than fifty years. "When I heard it and I said, 'This can't possibly be'... I tweeted. 'I think this is crazy. What do you think?' and then all of a sudden it went viral. - Deana Martin

Thank goodness for some common sense. The song is now played on radio all over. Literally dozens of artists have recorded and performed this great little tune. It was written in 1944 by Frank Loesser as a duet for him to sing with his wife at parties.











It's cold outside somewhere. Merry Christmas!!

D.L.Stafford
thenomadARCHITECT