Tag Archives: Pittsburgh

If I had a tale that I could tell you, I’d tell a tale sure to make you smile

Last Saturday night, I sang the opening lines of John Denver’s 1974 hit “Sunshine on My Shoulders” to an imaginary patch of petunias. I sang it solo and a capella, in front of a packed audience.

I am not a great singer, but it was a great moment. It was the end of a scene I was improvising with my buddy Chelsea for our Improv Level 1 Class Show. I needed to sing something, and that was the first song that came to mind. I think is was kind of the perfect song for the moment.

If you are sad you missed last Saturday’s show, do not despair. I’ll be performing again this Thursday, along with several of the quick-witted and fun people from my class plus a few more experienced improv-ers. And it’s not just a regular improv performance: It’s a competition, a battle for the hearts and minds (and votes) of the audience. It is THE CAGE MATCH. Continue reading If I had a tale that I could tell you, I’d tell a tale sure to make you smile

Waxing, waning

Partial moon through skylight

The past few mornings, those mornings which haven’t been overcast, I’ve awakened before dawn to see the moon glowing down at me through the skylight.

This must be a seasonal thing, like the one day a year when the setting sun comes into ancient tomb, or The Well of Souls (for Raiders of the Lost Ark fans), or straight down the Infinite Corridor (for MIT grads).

Also the past few weeks, each morning around dawn, flocks of birds seem to gather in a holding pattern over my apartment building, calling to each other and swooping around the Strip. Sometimes they sound like geese, the kind of migrating flocks everyone in this part of the country is used to hearing. Other times they are other kinds of birds, generally largish birds with coarse calls. Max heads to the window and stares up at them, now and then squeaking out his best imitation of their cries as if to tell them to come down and hang out for a while.

Each day, each week brings a new perspective on the new to me place I’m living. The trick seems to be taking the time to stop and look around, and appreciate the slight changes, not to get caught up in the hustle of keeping up with the dailiness of life.

Feathers, friends

Feeding time in the wetlands

I’ve lived in the Pittsburgh area for years and years, and the National Aviary is in Pittsburgh, and I like birds. You’d think I’d be visiting there a few times a year. But no, yesterday I visited for the first time. I seem to go to museums and zoos and other interesting places only when friends are visiting from out of town — in this case, my friends Tim and Sharon and their two daughters. Continue reading Feathers, friends

Oranges and olives

Today I did something I’ve avoided doing for years: I shopped at the Pennsylvania Macaroni Company

Yes, it’s a famous Pittsburgh-area foodie destination; yes, they have all kinds of delicious things like amazing cheese and orgeat syrup and amazing olive oil and real Italian imported everything. It is indeed hard to fathom that one might not want to go there.

Here’s the thing: I really don’t like crowds. And the other thing I know about Penn Mac is that, on a Saturday, the crowd there is fierce. Continue reading Oranges and olives

Lofty ambitions

This is a loft in the Strip District of Pittsburgh:

Window side of loft

I’ve long wanted to live in a place like that. And as of today, I do.

In addition to my lovely house in Butler, I now have a loft apartment dahntahn. It will make it much easier to meet clients in Pittsburgh and south while staying connected with my clients in Butler and north. 

I signed the lease a few weeks ago, but today I got the keys. I’ve been humming the “Mary Tyler Moore Show” theme all day. No word on whether I can turn the world on with my smile, but I do know that love is all around.

Women and Girls Foundation honors “Women in Media” — including me!

(This is cross-posted on the Big Big Design blog.)

Women in Media event invitation graphic

Each year, the Women and Girls Foundation honors a group of women who are “engaged in dynamic work in exciting and challenging career fields in Southwestern Pennsylvania.” This year they are celebrating “Women in Media,” and I’m privileged to have been selected among the honorees.

The award ceremony will be part of the WGF annual gala on November 6 at the August Wilson Center for African-American Culture in Downtown Pittsburgh, from 6 – 10 p.m. It’s going to be a terrific occasion, emceed by Laverne Baker Hotep, Patrice King Brown, Eleanor Schano and Sally Wiggin.

WGF’s “Women in Media” event will feature a keynote address by award winning filmmaker and grandniece of media tycoon Walt Disney, Abigail Disney. Disney’s first film, the feature-length documentary Pray the Devil Back to Hell, which won the Best Documentary Feature award at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2008, tells the inspirational story of the women of Liberia and their successful efforts to bring peace to their broken nation after decades of destructive civil war. Disney will give a keynote address at the awards ceremony on the power of media and women’s voices to bring peace to the world, and her film will be screened after the ceremony.

Trailer for Pray the Devil Back to Hell.

Join us at the event! Get details, buy tickets, or become a sponsor at the WGF Women in Media event page.

I am thrilled to be part of this, and I want to congratulate the other honorees and Ginny Montanez, who has been selected for a Special Award of Distinction. I’m thankful to the event host committee for including me with these amazing women.

Find out more about the good work of the Women and Girls Foundation at their website.

Nerves of Steel: Stories of Moxie and Might — The Moth on tour in Pittsburgh, August 26

The Moth is a live storytelling series. Sometimes the stories are true, and sometimes they are factual. Always they are interesting.

Here’s a sample.

The Moth will be in Pittsburgh in August, and I’m so looking forward to it.

American Shorts @WYEP presents The Moth in Pittsburgh

Nerves of Steel: Stories of Moxie and Might

Hosted by

Jessi Klein

Featuring stories by
George Dawes Green (founder of The Moth)
among others

Stories begin at 7pm
at New Hazlett Theater
Allegheny Square E.
Pittsburgh, PA

Tickets: $20, $25, reserved seating


If you can’t attend the event, they also have a podcast.