Our table wasn’t quite as long but our guests were as estimable.

Our table wasn’t quite as long but our guests were as estimable.

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Tuesday, April 9, 2019
What we had in common was respect for the speaker; for the event.
And an openness to others.

This
Sunday past we gathered to celebrate the first birthday of existentialautotrip.com.
The gathering turned into a celebration of friends, old and new.

A dozen of us representing three groups who hitherto hadn’t met.
Turned out to be the most fun I’ve had at a dinner party for a long time.

Rarely does a group of more than six share a single conversation.
But that’s exactly what happened.

Writers spoke about writing and everyone listened in.
We were regaled with stories from the old North End.
And everyone laughed.
And those friends from our children’s schooling spoke of children and high school development, and everyone was interested.

It was the most fun I’ve ever had at a dinner party I hosted, on this
Sunday past, when we gathered to celebrate the first birthday of existentialautotrip.com.

What we had in common was respect for the speaker; for the event.
And an openness to others.
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Postings Count, Weather Brief, and Dinner

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

My 368th consecutive posting, committed to 5,000.
After 368 posts we’re at the 7.36% mark of my commitment, the commitment a different way of marking the passage of time.

Time is 12.01am.

On Tuesday, Boston’s temperature will reach a high of 45* with a feels-like temperature of 39* with light rain.

Dinner of Leftover Dry-Aged Tomahawk Rib Roast

The week sees half the temperatures above fifty, and half below fifty; half the days with sun; half with clouds or rain.  And this the first day of our spring calendar which we are calling to begin on April 8 and extending to June 15.  Tick Tock. In clock language:   Enjoy today. Enjoy the week.

The week sees half the temperatures above fifty, and half below fifty; half the days with sun; half with clouds or rain.

And this the first day of our spring calendar which we are calling to begin on April 8 and extending to June 15.

Tick Tock.
In clock language:

Enjoy today.
Enjoy the week.

_____________________
Question of the Day:
What is rain?

_________________________
Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Love your notes.
Contact me at domcapossela@hotmail.com

From Cindy O:

Thank you Dom! 

I would have never survived that last day without you.

You really went above and beyond with all those trips back and forth with a hotel luggage rack, piled high with boxes, electronics etc. and then unloading at your home and coming back to reload give or take 7 times.

And now you have the fruits of your labor all over your home to remind you the true meaning of “BFF” 😍

Thank you, thank you, thank you and I apologize for those reminders throughout your home.

💜Cindy

Web Meister Responds: Nothing more than a partial payback for the support you’ve given me in my times of need. Thank you, back.

______________________
Chuckle of the Day
:

A fine is a tax for doing wrong.
A tax is a fine for doing well.

Did you hear about the cannibal Tax Accountant who charges an arm and a leg?

A businessman tells his friend that his company is looking for a new accountant.
"Didn't your company hire a new accountant a few weeks ago?"
The businessman replies, "That's the new accountant we're looking for."
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cafe life a long pour_French_flag.png

Occasional Notes
by Howard Dinin

As honest a cuppa’ joe as you’ll find anywhere. In the glass mug (which is French, by the way; bought by the half-dozen—the French version and brands of tempered glass are particularly reliable), is my coffee this morning.  A blend of El Salvador and Colombia Arabica beans from Concave Small Batch Coffee Roasters, where I live in Philadelphia, that they call “Finish Shape.” I won’t attest to this, as it tastes like coffee to me and I like it, but they claim its “notes” are “sweet, milk chocolate, and almond.” I brew it from beans that are fresh and ground a la minute, and dripped in a Capresso drip coffee maker using a FSC® and compostable certified unbleached totally chlorine-free paper coffee filter and PŪR-filtered tap water. All of which is more than I ever tell anyone about how I brew my morning coffee, because I’m not a barista, and I don’t care to be. But I am honest, and always have striven to be. photo: © Howard Dinin.

As honest a cuppa’ joe as you’ll find anywhere.
In the glass mug (which is French, by the way; bought by the half-dozen—the French version and brands of tempered glass are particularly reliable), is my coffee this morning.
A blend of El Salvador and Colombia Arabica beans from Concave Small Batch Coffee Roasters, where I live in Philadelphia, that they call “Finish Shape.” I won’t attest to this, as it tastes like coffee to me and I like it, but they claim its “notes” are “sweet, milk chocolate, and almond.” I brew it from beans that are fresh and ground a la minute, and dripped in a Capresso drip coffee maker using a FSC® and compostable certified unbleached totally chlorine-free paper coffee filter and PŪR-filtered tap water. All of which is more than I ever tell anyone about how I brew my morning coffee, because I’m not a barista, and I don’t care to be.
But I am honest, and always have striven to be.
photo: © Howard Dinin.

There is nothing more transparent than a black coffee in a glass mug, unless it’s what should be obvious, my unashamed romance with the classic French café. But I don’t live in France; I merely have the privilege of spending a luxurious amount of time there. In the meanwhile, I must satisfy that inner need for a special place to commune, if only with myself. So understand, it’s less the access to coffee—like any patriotic American, I can have coffee virtually any time right at home. It’s more the unique qualities of a sanctuary, as mundane a place as a café may be (or coffee shop or coffee house; call it what you will, I won’t be a stickler), somehow, perhaps inchoately for most of us, it’s sanctuary.

I thought therefore it might be edifying for more persons than myself (after all, I already know vaguely, and if only vaguely, what I am going to say—but sometimes in the mere saying we learn something more; that’s the beauty of language, it carries more sometimes than just information, just like coffee, when it’s really good coffee and it’s made right, is more than just a delivery vehicle for a natural stimulant) if I can come up with an anatomy of what, for me, makes a great coffee house or café. Right here, now, in the US of A.

But I’m going to start a few centuries back, six centuries to be precise, and somewhere east of here (or west if you want to take the really long way ‘round).

Although the “discovery” of coffee is generally accepted for the time being as having occurred either in Yemen or Ethiopia, and sometime, possibly, even during the lifetime of the Prophet, who dates in Western calendars to the seventh century AD, I am talking about the creation of the phenomenon we all know as the café.

This is a rendition from the 19th century by a British artist of what it faintly identifies in pencil in the lower left as “The Coffee Shop,” and the setting is Cairo. I am assured from my reading that the original coffee shop, as in, more or less, the first, looked not very much different, even in Damascus, even four centuries earlier. credit: General Research Division, The New York Public Library. "The coffee shop." New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed April 8, 2019. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e0-0edb-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

This is a rendition from the 19th century by a British artist of what it faintly identifies in pencil in the lower left as “The Coffee Shop,” and the setting is Cairo. I am assured from my reading that the original coffee shop, as in, more or less, the first, looked not very much different, even in Damascus, even four centuries earlier.
credit: General Research Division, The New York Public Library. "The coffee shop." New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed April 8, 2019. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e0-0edb-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

It should surprise no one to discover that given the immediate association between a burgeoning custom of sharing refreshments as part of some larger social impulse, with the status of coffee as a pleasurable, but more importantly a beneficial beverage, the coffee house as a gathering place became a locus for engagement in communities where the cafétiére (the coffee maker; specifically the brewer and dispenser) set down his appaaratus and provided seating for customers. The custom spread, and given the distances from the Middle East to the farther reaches of Europe and the British Isles, it was not too long, before there were coffee houses in England and in France.

By the seventeenth century, in urban centers, the coffee house was a gathering place and a hang out. And at first, though the Arab “coffee shop” as depicted in the engraving of the Cairo venue, is clearly an all-male redoubt, there were no such strictures on the gender of the patrons, and women regularly attended. At least through the start of the 18th century (but therein lies a separate political tale—again, for another time; these ancillary stories are building up, and I will soon relieve the suspense), women gathered with the same fervor for networking while sitting and confabulating over a cup.

A familiar scene, that was soon to change significantly through the course of the period known as “the enlightenment,” in some ways, from our point of view, a misnomer. In this early eighteenth-century book (Les Entretiens des Cafés de Paris, et les diferens qui y surviennent. By Mr. le Chevalier de Mailly) women are still shown as clients of the café, a situation that would change over the next decades. British Library. ca. 1702. credit:  Eating the Enlightenment: Food and Sciences in Paris, 1670-1760, E.C. Spary, p.114

A familiar scene, that was soon to change significantly through the course of the period known as “the enlightenment,” in some ways, from our point of view, a misnomer.
In this early eighteenth-century book (Les Entretiens des Cafés de Paris, et les diferens qui y surviennent. By Mr. le Chevalier de Mailly) women are still shown as clients of the café, a situation that would change over the next decades. British Library. ca. 1702.
credit: Eating the Enlightenment: Food and Sciences in Paris, 1670-1760, E.C. Spary, p.114

In the next installment of this narrative—anatomizing what to me is the attraction of a great coffee house or café (by now the terms are interchangeable—this was not always the case), I’ll show how, on a parallel track, the café deviated in social function, going one way in Europe, and France in particular, and going another in the United States.

As far as who could gather (or would want to) where, and especially in the United States, everything was made right by the 20th century. Here’s a heart-warming scene of another kind, from 2011, which I shot in one of my favorite cafés here in America, Amherst Coffee in the town in western Massachusetts of the same name, a place of great solace for me at a time of some personal upheaval for awhile, and my local haunt (at least mornings when I was in town) during a Visiting Lectureship at the local college. credit: © Howard Dinin

As far as who could gather (or would want to) where, and especially in the United States, everything was made right by the 20th century.
Here’s a heart-warming scene of another kind, from 2011, which I shot in one of my favorite cafés here in America, Amherst Coffee in the town in western Massachusetts of the same name, a place of great solace for me at a time of some personal upheaval for awhile, and my local haunt (at least mornings when I was in town) during a Visiting Lectureship at the local college.
credit: © Howard Dinin

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Answer to the Question of the Day:
Rain is liquid water in the form of droplets that have condensed from atmospheric water vapor and then become heavy enough to fall under gravity.
Rain is a major component of the water cycle and is responsible for depositing most of the fresh water on the Earth.
It provides suitable conditions for many types of ecosystems, as well as water for hydroelectric power plants and crop irrigation.

The major cause of rain production is moisture moving along three-dimensional zones of temperature and moisture contrasts known as weather fronts.
If enough moisture and upward motion is present, precipitation falls from convective clouds (those with strong upward vertical motion) such as cumulonimbus (thunder clouds) which can organize into narrow rain bands.

Air contains water vapor, and the amount of water in a given mass of dry air, known as the mixing ratio, is measured in grams of water per kilogram of dry air.
The amount of moisture in air is also commonly reported as relative humidity; which is the percentage of the total water vapor air can hold at a particular air temperature.
How much water vapor a parcel of air can contain before it becomes saturated (100% relative humidity) and forms into a cloud (a group of visible and tiny water and ice particles suspended above the Earth's surface) depends on its temperature.

Warmer air can contain more water vapor than cooler air before becoming saturated.
Therefore, one way to saturate a parcel of air is to cool it.
The dew point is the temperature to which a parcel must be cooled in order to become saturated.

In mountainous areas, heavy precipitation is possible where upslope flow is maximized within windward sides of the terrain at elevation which forces moist air to condense and fall out as rainfall along the sides of mountains.
On the leeward side of mountains, desert climates can exist due to the dry air caused by downslope flow which causes heating and drying of the air mass.
The movement of the monsoon trough, or intertropical convergence zone, brings rainy seasons to savannah climes.

The urban heat island effect leads to increased rainfall, both in amounts and intensity, downwind of cities.
Global warming is also causing changes in the precipitation pattern globally, including wetter conditions across eastern North America and drier conditions in the tropics.

Antarctica is the driest continent. The globally averaged annual precipitation over land is 715 mm (28.1 in), but over the whole Earth it is much higher at 990 mm (39 in).
Climate classification systems such as the Köppen classification system use average annual rainfall to help differentiate between differing climate regimes.
Rainfall is measured using rain gauges.
Rainfall amounts can be estimated by weather radar.

Rain is also known or suspected on other planets, where it may be composed of methane, neon, sulfuric acid, or even iron rather than water.

At yesterday’s dinner party I made a sketch of the table and wrote down where everyone was seated so I could reference their names. Not good with names.

At yesterday’s dinner party I made a sketch of the table and wrote down where everyone was seated so I could reference their names.
Not good with names.

____________________________________________________
Good Morning on this Tuesday, the Ninth Day of April.

Today we talked about the fun of being open and welcoming.
About the weather, a new spring calendar, and dinner, leftovers from a dry-aged tomahawk steak.
We posted three short jokes, a letter of thanks from a friend who has given much, and another wonderful post from HD’s series “My Café Life.”
Finally, we talked about rain, appropriate for Boston today.
 
And now? Gotta go.

Che vuoi? Le pocketbook?

See you soon.

Your Love

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