Death ye shall always have with ye

Death ye shall always have with ye

"The questions regarding dying before one's time are questions that I constantly ask.
I am re-reading Frankl's book, "Man's Search for Meaning" to possibly find some answers.
My cousin, Wade Byram, died at age 19 from Hodgins Disease back in the 60's.

"He was a twin.
His death left an indelible imprint on my brother and me, and I am sure, his twin, who became an alcoholic and lives somewhere in the west (if he is still alive).
When Wade died, my brother was 20 and a student at Auburn, and I was en route from Germany to the Pacific Northwest.

"Wade wanted to be a history teacher, but never made it to college.
He died on the 4th of July.
Why?

"Recently, Don's partner's daughter, age 45, drowned in her pool as she was swimming laps early one recent Saturday morning.
For the first time in 20 years she seemed happy, in love, ready to marry, travel to India and was trying to get pregnant.
Why?

"Life is very tenuous.
Life is very precious.

"Leigh gave me a plaque when I was working on my doctorate with the statement, 'Life is not a dress rehearsal.'
That statement became my motto for life." 

This thought contributed by Tommie Toner.
A copy of this may also be found on the Web Site under Contributing  Writers,

From the Web-Meister:
Thank you, Tommie.

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Today is Thursday, August 2nd
This is my 114th consecutive daily posting.

Time is 12.07am and the day will be sunny and hot with rain in the afternoon.
Today’s dinner is Roast Chicken. I made a Cacciatore Sauce for it.

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Define: tachycardia:

A heart rate that exceeds the normal resting rate.
In general, a resting heart rate over 100 beats per minute is accepted as tachycardia in adults.

Thank you, Wikipedia

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Today’s Quiz-Question:
Who killed Gianni Versace?

Find the answer just before today’s Post below.
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Reader’s Comment:
A blogger asks, given the growing size and time commitment, if I see myself continuing with the blog.
The answer is resoundingly, “Yes.”

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Thumbnail Biography
Gianni Versace, aka Versace, is an Italian luxury fashion company and trade name founded by Gianni in 1978.
The main collection of the brand is Versace, which produces upmarket Italian-made ready-to-wear and leather accessories, while other diffusion lines are Versace Collection (mainly in the US), Versus Versace and Versace Jeans.
The Versace logo is the head of Medusa, a Greek mythological figure.
The logo came from the floor of ruins in Rome that the Versace siblings played in as children. Gianni Versace chose Medusa as the logo because she made people fall in love with her and they had no way back. He hoped his company would have the same effect on people.
The Versace brand is known for its innovative designs having symbolic flashy prints and bright colors.
The company announced in 2018 that it would stop using fur in its collections.

In 1994, the brand gained widespread international coverage due to the "Black Versace dress of Elizabeth Hurley", referred to at the time as "that dress".

Versace was often described as the "Rock n' Roll designer" because they designed for many famous clients, including Elton John and Michael Jackson.
Versace designed the stage costumes and album cover costumes for Elton John in 1992. Versace has also designed clothing for the Princess of Wales and Princess Caroline of Monaco.

The Versace company is known for using the same models in their ads as they do on the runway.

After the murder of Gianni Versace in 1997, his sister Donatella Versace, formerly vice-president, took over as creative director and his older brother Santo Versace became CEO.

In 2000, the "green Versace dress" worn by Jennifer Lopez at the 42nd Annual Grammy Awards gained a lot of media attention, being voted as the "fifth most iconic dress of all time" in 2008, with Hurley's 1994 dress being voted first in a Daily Telegraph poll.

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Movie Details
“Breakfast at Tiffany's” is a 1961 American romantic comedy film directed by Blake Edwards and written by George Axelrod, loosely based on Truman Capote's 1958 novella of the same name.
Starring Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard, and featuring Patricia Neal, Buddy Ebsen, Martin Balsam, and Mickey Rooney, the film was initially released on October 5, 1961 by Paramount Pictures.

Hepburn's portrayal of Holly Golightly as the naïve, eccentric socialite is generally considered to be the actress's most memorable and identifiable role.
Hepburn regarded it as one of her most challenging roles, since she was an introvert required to play an extrovert.

“Breakfast at Tiffany's” was received positively at the time, and won two Academy Awards: Best Original Score and Best Original Song for "Moon River", which was also selected as the fourth most memorable song in Hollywood history by the American Film Institute in 2004.
The film was also nominated for three other Academy Awards: Best Actress for Hepburn, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Art Direction.

In 2012, the film was deemed "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant" by the United States Library of Congress and selected for preservation in the National Film Registry.
 

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Answer to the Quiz-Question:
Andrew Phillip Cunanan (August 31, 1969 – July 23, 1997) was an American spree killer who murdered at least five people, including fashion designer Gianni Versace and Chicago tycoon Lee Miglin, during a three-month period in mid-1997.
Cunanan's string of murders ended on July 23 with his suicide by firearm.
He was 27 years old.

In his final years, Cunanan had lived without a specific job, befriending wealthy older men and spending their money to impress acquaintances in the local gay community, by boasting about social events at clubs and often paying the check at restaurants.
One millionaire friend had broken up with Cunanan in 1996, the prior year.
Actor Darren Criss portrays Cunanan in Ryan Murphy's 2018 production, “The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story.”

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CHAPTER TWELVE

 6.00pm, Friday, February 3, 2017

While sweeping the sidewalk clear of shards, the last step in the installation of new shatterproof glass intended to restore the boutique’s façade to its former grace while offering a modicum of protection against future vandalism, the glaziers engaged in intermittent conversation with Lt. Sam, among other tidbits, apprising him that just this past week industrious vandals broke a dozen windows up and down Newbury Street and their company’s ‘job-waiting’ list grew from eight hours to eight days, while Lt. Sam waited on the warm side of Armani’s entry, trying to avoid being confused with a bouncer, glazier, greeter, or customer, succeeding splendidly in the latter three.

My, oh! my. The Queen of Fashion

My, oh! my.
The Queen of Fashion

Meanwhile, Sgt. Jesse hovered about the Mirabile family, they met at the store’s entry by a tightly-coiffed, friendly, middle-aged woman, perfectly outfitted in a business suit and low-heels, she introducing herself, “I’m Evelyn Warner, the store’s senior wardrobe or fashion stylist.”

After Lorraine introduced their party, Ms. Warner graciously led the Mirabiles to the elevator, to the second floor, through the showrooms, to a set of unlocked doors marked “Runway. By Appointment Only.” She held the door for the group and stepped in after them. Inside, several empty counters waiting reassignment lined one of the walls, and two dozen black leather theatre seats with food trays and cup holders faced a small runway. They took the front row, Dee sitting between her parents. Sgt. Jesse took an aisle seat in the back row. To an offer of refreshments, Michael, consensus-taking, accepted, “Sparkling water all around.”

An assistant went for the drinks and Ms. Warner established the protocol: “I’ve chosen four dresses. You may like one of these and we can stop after the first flight; or we may use these as starting points to find others. We’ll go through as many as we need to find the one perfect dress.” Everyone nodded; no one spoke. Ms. Warner sat and signaled. In quick succession four models walked past the group flaunting their outfits, posing to dramatize front, back, and side views.

“You’ve really chosen well. Any of them will suit my purpose. We don’t need to see more. Mom, I think the first one, the low back, in chocolate.” Her mother nodded, saying, “Yes. My favorite, too, dear. But this is all about you.”

“If you’re settled on it, and it is lovely, let’s get it sized for you.” Ms. Warner waved over the fifty-year old man who had slipped into the showroom and watched the show standing behind the chairs.

Len Rizzo, the tailor, like Roberto, the hair stylist, a smaller man who, like Roberto, moved with confidence in his kingdom. Unlike Roberto, however, Len, in suit and tie, and unlike Roberto whose eyes never strayed below Dee’s neck, Len’s eyes conspicuously ran over Dee’s body, up and down, front and back, lingering an extra moment on bust and rear. The group exchanged greetings.

Ms. Warner, “Len, this young woman is going to gain thirty pounds in the next few weeks. But meanwhile, we need to tailor her new dress to fit now and later…”

“And later to let the fittings out so the dress still fits her perfectly,” Len finishing the thought.

“Exactly.”

“Ms. Dee, you are normally a size six?”

“That’s right.”

Just then, an assistant arrived with two dresses, identical except for size. Ms. Warner pulled the four, draped it over her arm and invited Dee to follow her, walking to the side of the runway where four dressing rooms waited, doors slightly ajar.

 

Dee stepped out to a chorus of ‘Gorgeous.’ Len invited Dee to step onto a carpeted dais defined on three sides by full-length mirrors, and he got straight to work, tugging, pulling, and pinning. He finished and stood erect. “And when do you need this?”

“Tomorrow. Noon.”

A punch in the stomach would have had the same effect, to which the ensuing silence testified. “This is a most unusual request, Ms. Dee. But we will start work on it immediately, and…” here pausing, taking a gulp of air, “Stay with it for as long as it takes.”

“Thank you very much.”

“But I will take the dress from you as soon as you can change back.”

Ms. Warner stepping over, “Just give us five minutes, Len. Please.” Len nodded and stepped to the perimeter of the gathering, joining an older man as tall as a professional basketball player, with weathered face and a full head of shocking-white hair, the iconic Yankee sailor, who had slipped into the theatre.

Ms. Warner, “Dee, before you take the dress off, please meet John Lewis, from the jewelry store of the same name, just up the street a bit. We don’t have much by way of accessories here so I asked John to show you some pieces that might complement or enhance your outfit. His designs are unique and tasteful.”

Dee turned and shook hands, saying, “I’m very excited. I don’t have a lot of experience with jewelry.”

Lewis, “You just need your God-given good sense, my dear. This is all about what appeals to you, so, in that regard, you have more experience than any of us.” Ms. Warner introduced the others. Lewis exchanged greetings.

“I talked with Evelyn to learn a little bit about you and the event, and I brought a few pieces for you to consider. Perhaps we can step over here,” leading by example, stopping at a counter on which he had placed an antique rosewood jewelry case slung with what resembled a barber’s strop. The case had two handles, several sliding drawers, a hasp, padlock and key, pull knobs and hinges, and balled feet, all the hardware with patinas that bespoke cared-for solid brass. Lights came on illuminating the counter and the area around it, including another full-length mirror behind the counter. Ms. Warner, the last to join the group loosely gathering around Lewis and Dee, squeezed Len’s arm, “Thank you.” He nodded.

One lovelier than the other, John Lewis drew out the pieces one at a time, following an oft-repeated designer-created rite: draping the piece against a white, silk-covered board, holding the board and gem up for the group to view, presenting it to Dee, handing it to her to heft and otherwise scrutinize, and fastening the piece around her neck, and stepping away as Dee returned to the dais to view the piece in place.

No one offered an opinion – Dee not seeking any. While permitting John his entire ritual for every piece, once it hung from her neck her decisions, rejections all, came quickly. The eleventh and the last piece the exception.

“Oh! My goodness!” Dee, as soon as it cleared the case. “This is it,” Dee saying as he draped it against the board. “This is the one,” saying as she examined it in her hand, and “I’ll take it,” when she saw it in the mirror, a studded-with-diamonds platinum choke from which hung a large ruby pendant.

“How did I know?” Lewis, reaching into his back pocket, pulling out the single piece of paper stuffed there, handing it to Dee. She examined the invoice for the sale of a “diamond choke with a large ruby pendant,” Dee reading, continuing to the bottom of the page, reading “One hundred and seven thousand dollars.”

“$107,000.00,” saying aloud, repeating with gusto, “ONE HUNDRED AND SEVEN THOUSAND BUCKS.” Holding the invoice against her right thigh she turned to Lewis, “One hundred and seven thousand dollars?” Lewis laughed.

“And it looks like it’s worth every penny,” Lorraine, walking over to Dee, resting the stone in her palm. Dee, mouth fully-open, wondered at her mother, normally a commonsensical woman, she not blanching at the impending purchase, the most expensive, most frivolous their family had ever made. Indeed, mother reaffirmed her encouragement, speaking conversationally to Dee. “It looks and feels extraordinary. Let’s listen to what Mr. Lewis will tell us about it. Remember, my dear, your circumstances are changed.”

Lewis addressed Mrs. Mirabile. “This is a collector’s item, thanks to the size of the ruby, its perfect cut, and deeply-saturated, highly-prized, blood-red color. Of less importance, but admirable, is the number of small but high-quality diamonds set throughout the platinum choke. “Not to mention my exquisite design and execution. It’s an investment-grade piece that will double in value the moment you walk out of the store and inaugurate its provenance with your pedigree.”

“But one hundred and seven thousand dollars?” Dee.

“A fraction of what you would pay for it at Tiffany’s. At my age, I am more concerned with who’ll be wearing my art than with making more money that I’ll never spend. And you are certainly worthy.”

“John, how did you know she’d choose that one?” Lorraine. “You had the invoice ready.”

“She’d be a fool not to.”

“But how did you know…”

“Because when I got the call from Armani describing the prospective client, I got a chill. I am a spiritual person, Mrs. Mirabile. This choke-pendant is my chef d’oeuvre  and I knew that call was on behalf of its new owner.”

Dee to John, “I love that story and I love the necklace. I’ll take it.”

Lewis nodded his head. “Evelyn will wrap it for you.”

“She will not. I intend to sleep in it.” Everyone laughed.

“Well, okay then. Wear it well,” John pausing. “It really is one of the most beautiful pieces I ever created.” With that, he put his arm through the strap and effortlessly slung the heavy, bulky jewelry box over his shoulder, turned away, lifted the back of his hand in a silent farewell, and walked out without another word.

“Daddy, do you agree with mom?”

“Do you like it, Dee?”

“It’s totally beautiful. It’s perfect for me, and the girls. We’ll be fighting over it.”

Michael, “Sure. You guys fighting. No one has ever heard you ever raise your voices to each other.”

“You know what I mean.”

Michael, “Then buy it. Really, it won’t cost you any money. Your balance sheet will simply make a deduction from ‘cash-on-hand,’ adding that same amount to ‘investment-grade jewelry.’ Bottom line stays the same. And you can’t wear cash.”

“Now, show me your jeans, please.” Dee and entourage followed Ms. Warner and Len to the down elevator and through the ground floor boutique, she still in her originally-tagged dress, one hundred and seven-thousand-dollar necklace, and worn sneakers. In “Jeans,” Dee selected two pairs and a tank top to wear to the police station tomorrow, saying to her mother, “Make sure you tell the girls what I’m wearing.” After choosing a bra, she went into the dressing room, coming out wearing one of the new jeans, carrying the dress in hand, handing the prize to Len, “Thank you so much, Len. You’re an angel.” He bowed, wished everyone a goodnight, and withdrew to start his impossible task.

Dee accomplished the rest of her shopping expeditiously: two more bras, a sweater, a pair of purple D’Orsay dress sneakers, and a charcoal wool overcoat. She refused a hat but did take a silk scarf with a lot of purple, and soft, brown leather gloves. All in fifteen minutes.

 

Thirteen thousand, five hundred and some odd dollars the clothes, alterations free, plus the jewelry. Silence descended on the store as the sixteen-year-old handed the cashier her new credit card, Dee thinking, “Did I just spend one hundred and twenty thousand dollars? Am I hallucinating? Was Isabel right? Enough to buy a car? What about two cars? Testing, one, two…”

She didn’t actually jump, just almost. Loud! The computer shook the printer awake, the clickety-clacking of the veteran machine resonating throughout the near-empty store, printing out receipts, a notice of new arrivals, a detailed proof-of-purchase, and the reminder, Alterations free. And then the smiling clerk handed Dee, “Sign here, please.”

Did Dee detect a sigh, a modicum of relief throughout the boutique? “Or was it my own?” she signing slowly, thinking, “Goodness! What did I just do? Am I doing?” She looked from Michael to Lorraine to Michael for affirmation of sanity, taking relief from their peaceful countenances.

 

Outside, using the bright light from the store’s window, the workers focused on the miniscule bits of glass remaining on the sidewalk. Dee detoured from a direct line to the waiting car, skirted the jerking brooms, and stopped to examine a small group of commercial-sized rubber barrels filled with glass fragments, staring at the three letters in vivid-red lipstick lettering glaring out at her from two large shards – P-O-I.