Monday, June 27, 2016

Who should be Hillary's VP?

Today, the New York Times came up with an interesting challenge: “Articulate in 150 words or less whom Hillary should choose for VP if you were part of Mrs. Clinton’s inner circle?”

Interesting, right?

So here is a preview of my take on the vice-presidential pick:

“Mrs. Secretary of State, your only solid choice is to pick Bernie Sanders and convince him to become your running mate. He will complement you perfectly and bring the formidable boost of energy that will make your campaign a guaranteed winner and your election a landslide victory.

Picking Mr. Sanders will also greatly influence the make up of both Chambers of Congress and will give you the support you need to lead the country and implement your agenda. Bernie will bring you the youth that you're so sorely lacking and will also guarantee that his supporter won't shift their allegiance for the Vermont Senator to Trump, or simply choose not to vote.

Bernie Sanders' age will also make you look appear much younger and his presence will add to the credibility and trust you are sorely lacking. A joint Hillary-Bernie ticket will simply be irresistible!”

Sunday, June 26, 2016

French bashing?

Last night we watch a good documentary about the love-hate relationship that prevails between the French people and both the Americans and the Brits.

I certainly can relate to that movie since I chose to move to America four decades ago. For one thing, I made sure to make no wave, swallow my pride, subdue my worst French traits and go with the flow.

People I worked and came in contact with generally gave me the benefit of the doubt once I had proven my mettle, but some choose to hate me as I could have expected. I had to come up with a constant barrage of questions regarding my accent, my opinions and my origins.

This said, what I had to do to succeed was work at least twice as much and two times better as my American counterparts. Less would have given me a mediocre place in life if it wouldn't have secure my return trip to France.

On top of that, it wasn't just me, it was also my wife who was French and had to endure the same ordeal. Today, we both will admit that thriving in America was very, very hard work!

Saturday, June 25, 2016

The most populated ski town in the world

To my knowledge, there is no larger ski town in the world, from the standpoint of total year-round residents than Park City, Utah.

Next in line would be Davos Switzerland with 11,500 inhabitants, then Whistler, Canada, at about 10,000 and both Chamonix, France and Kitzb├╝hel, Austria with around 8,500 people each.

Our community of Park City has fuzzy boundaries, though. First, there is the incorporated City of Park City where I live with its 8,500 population that manage to sit in the middle of a developing sprawl, also using a Park City address.

So here you have it: The small, original city of Park City with its 8,500 people and its 84060 zip-code, surrounded by cluster of neighborhoods that are borrowing our Park City name for recognition and for boosting real-estate values, just with a slightly different zip-code, 84098.

Park City is also the name of the school district that serves the entire community. This surrounding area adds more than 17,000 people to our City population and when all is tallied, people who claim to be "Parkites" are about 26,000 strong.

Together, we're all part of Summit County, Utah. Our population represents two-third of the entire County that is around 40,000 year-round residents.

This is relatively underpopulated when I compare the 1,882 square miles of the country with the 1,695 square miles of Haute-Savoie, the French Department I was born in, and its 800,000 population!

Friday, June 24, 2016

Brexit: Surprising, yet logical

I'll start with the riddle: What's the difference between involvement and commitment? It's just like eggs and bacon; the chicken was involved but the pig was committed.

So was the relationship of the UK within the European Community: Some involvement but certainly no commitment. No commitment on the Euro, no commitment either on taking the full burden of membership, the feeling of being so “special” as if the United Kingdom was entitled to special treatment...

This lack of commitment spoke louder than the Brits' paper membership into the EC. It spoke volume to the electorate too, that got the message loud and clear and was tired of this double-talk from their own politicians.

Will Brexit it break the EC's back? Not at all; they were simply an impossible partner to live with; life will go on very well without them. One positive side effect is that it will be a warning for the Brussels's bureaucrats and other EU MPs to get off their asses and start working seriously for the good of their constituents, if they're are to keep their plush jobs.

Will it free the UK from an undue burden? Probably not, it will just make everyone's lives more miserable, especially the British “expats” living the good life in Spain, France and Italy, having their cake and eating it too; the gravy train will be coming to a screeching halt for them!

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Living the Dream

Today as we were bicycling we were passed by a friend of hours and chatted for a while pedaling.

As we were chatting about his fun life and our fun life too, we concluded that we were all “living the dream”.

This expression is much used and often misconstrued or used sarcastically, but to me it means that we were living the life that most people dream of living or that we were living the life we had always dreamed of.

That statement felt one hundred percent genuine and it made my day. Yeah, I sure am living the dream!

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

View of the World from Park City

Around 1986, just after we moved to Park City, Saul Steinberg created a replica of his famous work for the New Yorker magazine (View of the World from 9th Avenue) and applied it to our little town.

Steinberg was born in Romania, studied philosophy for a year at the University of Bucharest before enrolling at the Politecnico di Milano, studying architecture. During his years in Milan he was actively involved in the satirical magazine Bertoldo.

After graduating in 1940, Steinberg left Italy to flee Mussolini's Fascist government and sailed to America. There, he worked mostly with the New Yorker magazine and had a lifelong relationship with the publication.

Steinberg died in 1999 after creating created 87 covers, 33 cartoons for the magazine and leaving 71 portfolios containing 469 drawings and several hundred other works amounting to more than 1,200 drawings, including Park City's own view on the world!

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Brexit and the French Alpine Colonies

This coming Thursday is Brexit day and I'm wondering if the Brits will bail out and revert to being insular, special and very independent.

I doubt they will have the guts to do it but would love them to exit the EU, at the very least to teach them a lesson (just kidding!)

First, these guys want just the advantages and none of the constraints the Union brings forth; they spat on the Euro, invaded the French ski resorts and have priced locals out of owning real estate unless their family still has some left. 
With very exceptions, these guys won't mix, speak French and share their lives of the indigenous population. They also live in perfect self-sufficiency, bring their plumber from London, their ski instructors from Scotland and abuse the French Social benefits.

They are the perfect parasite and manage to survive because some local businesses are still making hay out of them, but this shallow profiteering is counted. Fellows from the U.K. Why don't you make a last bow and exit the French Alps?