Friday, January 27, 2012

Year of the Dragon

(Jan. 27, 2012) The Chinese New Year began Monday; 2012 is the Year of the Dragon.

In Chinese astrology the dragon is the only animal of the Chinese zodiac year that is not real and the the dragon is quite special and very much revered. It holds special significance for the Chinese people.

More than 4,000 years ago, there were two large tribes and many smaller tribes in China. The tribes had animals as emblems. The two large tribes unified and chose the dragon as their symbol. In fact, the Han Chinese still call themselves the descendants of the dragon.

In Chinese astrology the dragon was seen as a powerful almighty king because it was made up of different parts of animals such as a tiger, fish, snake and an eagle.

The Chinese dragon was not seen as a threatening evil being as we do in the West - rather a symbol of power, superiority and rule.

Still today, the Dragon is a revered symbol. You can see many sculptures and carvings of the dragon. Modern Chinese associate the dragon with power and wisdom.

In Chinese astrology dragon persons are special. Born in the Chinese Year of the Dragon, they usually stand out as befits a dragon. They are powerful and wise with a certain aura about them. They are not shy – they demand attention and respect. Wow!

There are lots more interesting traditions and facts to read about in Recorder Community Newspapers and their online blogs. Interested individuals and local community organization representatives are invited to join the growing group of Recorder bloggers. Just give me a call at (908) 832-7420 or e-mail and I will explain the free process.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Day of service

(Monday, Jan. 16, 2012) Today is Martin Luther King Jr. Day, a U.S. federal holiday marking the birthday of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., civil rights activist. It is observed on the third Monday of January each year, which is around the time of King's birthday, Jan. 15.

Government offices are closed today as are some schools and financial institutions. The day has evolved into a day of service.

King was the chief spokesman for nonviolent activism in the civil rights movement, which successfully protested racial discrimination in federal and state law. The campaign for a federal holiday in King's honor began soon after his assassination in 1968. President Ronald Reagan signed the holiday into law in 1983, and it was first observed on Jan. 20, 1986. At first, some states resisted observing the holiday as such, giving it alternative names or combining it with other holidays. It was officially observed in all 50 states for the first time in 2000.

The Martin Luther King Jr. National Memorial in Washington, D.C., was dedicated in October and we visited there the week after the ceremony. Covering four acres, the memorial opened to the public on Aug. 22, after more than two decades of planning, fund-raising and construction. A ceremony dedicating the Memorial was scheduled for Aug. 28, the 48th anniversary of the "I Have a Dream" speech that King delivered from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in 1963, but was postponed until Oct. 16 (the 16th anniversary of the 1995 Million Man March on the National Mall) due to Hurricane Irene.

Located on four acres at the northwest corner of the Tidal Basin in the National Mall, it features giant stone statues of King and granite walls engraved with 14 of King's inspiring quotes. Since its opening last summer, more than 2 million visitors from around the globe have been able to witness firsthand the message of hope, justice, democracy and love that resonates from the crescent-shaped walls of the memorial situated adjacent to the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial and in a direct line between the Lincoln and Jefferson Memorials.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Oh, No, It's Snow!

(Jan. 13, 2012) It's Friday, the 13th. I should have known our luck with the weather would be over. As I gaze outside, the snow is flying sideways. We're really in for some stormy time after weeks of unusually mild weather with clear driving opportunities. We even traveled to Ohio for New Year's; both ways on the trip we didn't have a problem.

But now, we're stuck inside. This icy snow is sure to make the roads slippery, not to mention the freezing cold wind. Hopefully no trees will be blown down, causing another power outage.

It's a good time to check out the blogs right here at, the website for Recorder Community Newspapers. Some 60 bloggers share their news and comments among the 15 online newspapers. You could join them.

The process is simple and blogging is free. All you need is a computer and an e-mail. I will help you set up. Just give me a call at (908) 832-7420 or e-mail

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Happy New Year!

The year 2012 began last Sunday. It is a leap year, meaning there are 29 days in February which occurs every four years. Most schools are back in session and hopefully life also is back on the usual track.

It's the time of year folks usually aim to do better and make New Year's resolutions toward that goal. Hopefully one of yours is to keep abreast of the news in your community by logging on to, the website of Recorder Community Newspapers' online editions which also include some 60 blogs.

Anyone interested in joining the growing group of Recorder bloggers is invited to call me at (908) 832-7420 or e-mail to find out about this free 21st century communication tool. All you need is an Internet connection device and e-mail.