Category Archives: Social Media

Liberty emerges victorious in first major battle to restore the USA

When Barack Obama won the presidency in November, 2008,  it felt as if a heavy cloud of sorrow, apprehension and anxiety would hang over our once great nation indefinitely. I recall experiencing the same sort of mournful, heavy-heartedness one undergoes upon the death of a loved one — made even more bitter after tireless efforts to get John McCain and Sarah Palin (ok, Palin, who made voting for McCain much more palatable) elected.

Posing with Adam Hasner at a rally in January, 2009.

As previously noted, I was a Tea Partier before it was cool. I was raised a conservative and have remained one my entire adult life. I love the United States of America with all my heart — the adopted homeland of my great-grandparents and grandparents, and the place where my father, son of humble immigrants, achieved his dream of becoming a surgeon. The place where my maternal grandfather graduated from Temple Pharmacy School in 1919 — during a time when such an accomplishment was nearly unheard of for immigrants — and opened up a corner drugstore that was a landmark  in his neighborhood for over 25 years.

Giving it our best shot on Election Day, 2008. Sarah Palin would prove to be the bright light in an otherwise dismal campaign.

That was the America I was raised to treasure, appreciate and defend through grassroots activism. For as long as I can remember, my parents were always  involved in the political process at all levels — local, state and national. I knew what I believed and why. Had I been old enough, my first presidential vote would’ve been for Ronald Reagan, but alas, I missed the opportunity to send him back for a second term in 1984 by several months.

But I remember well his sunny optimism, his love of country and his stalwart, principled leadership. Thanks to his indefatigable efforts, the scourge of communism at last crumbled, freeing Eastern Europe, East Germany and the former Soviet Union.

Yet years later, politicians who abandoned Reagan conservatism set our county on a course of reversal that ultimately led to the ascendancy of the most radical president in the history of the United States of America.

The mournful morning after November 4, 2008, when a crowd paraded in front of the White House brandishing  the unthinkable — the Hammer and Sickle flag — I remember crying uncontrollably on the phone with a dear friend and fellow patriot, wondering what would happen next. What was to become of the land of opportunity that had drawn untold numbers to its shores, including my own amazing family? Was the American Dream really over?

The inaugural Fort Lauderdale Tea Party, which would become the longest running weekly event of its kind in the USA.

My  answer came a few months later, when something amazing happened. Ordinary Americans decided they weren’t going to go gently into socialism and tyranny. So they rose up in remarkable numbers to defend their freedom, even in the bluest of places. From South Florida to Seattle, they protested on street corners and town hall meetings, threw their support behind stalwart conservative candidates, organized on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter, and vowed to do everything within their power to take their country back.

A bright light began to pierce the darkness.

With "Too Tall Dan", a South Florida patriot friend, on the corner of US 1 and Oakland Park Blvd. in Fort Lauderdale.

Tea Party Fort Lauderdale, the longest-running Tea Party in America, formed in February of 2009 — founded by Danita Kilcullen and Jack Gillies — and is still  going strong, week after week. Every Saturday, they gather on the corner of US 1 and Oakland Park Blvd. in Fort Lauderdale — with plans to step it up even more in the wake of last night’s amazing election results. Over the past 20+ months, they’ve grown into a force to be reckoned with, as has Karen Hoffman’s South Florida-based DC Works for US.  A tireless grassroots activist, Hoffman is one of the most dedicated, genuine people I know.

With Fort Lauderdale Tea Party Founder, Danita Kilcullen.

Then there are my dear friends and passionate defenders of freedom, Ellen, Kathy, Jessica, Christina, Victoria — and so many others who’ve kept me strong, determined and resolute throughout the first major battle of a long, protracted war. Getting to know these fine human beings has been an incredible blessing.

And to all of my Facebook and Twitter friends whom I only know through the blessings of modern technology, thank you for being a welcome source of strength and resolve in a very trying period in history. Along with local friends and my family, you’ve managed to keep me sane through the radical madness that defines Obama’s presidency.

Last night was the culmination of a hard-fought, principled fight, and the celebration was sweet. But as Florida’s new  governor-elect likes to say, “It’s time to get to work!”

Sorry the audio has been disabled by You Tube. There were great country songs blaring at the Scott/Carroll rally the other day.

Congratulations to Rick Scott, Jennifer Carroll, Jeff Atwater, Pam Bondi, Adam Putnam, Marco Rubio and Allen West!

For today though, I think I’ll bask in the glory of victory. After hours spent precinct walking, robo-calling, sign-waving, poll watching and otherwise doing everything in my power to help elect good, strong conservative patriots, I don’t think it’s asking  too much.

Besides, I have some awesome videos I need to  post from the Allen West victory part last night at the Boca Marriott! As the Sun-Sentinel said, “in the end, it wasn’t even close”. Florida CD 22 “de-Kleined” in favor of our constitutional conservative war hero. 😉

And here’s the son of an exile, now Florida’s newest US Senator:

We’re taking it back, baby!

More video to come.

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Conservative Activism, Politics, Sarah Palin, Social Media, Tea Party, US Military

Precinct Walking with The Conservative Divas in Atlantis FL

Ellen, Kathy, Aimee and I took our Diva act on the road (and on foot) in Atlantis, Florida yesterday to get out the vote on November 2. Though several on our list were not actually at home when we arrived, we did encounter many residents either doing yard work outside on a gorgeous South Florida day, or answering our knocks on their doors with great enthusiasm, once apprised of the purpose of our visit.

There were a few who’d already voted absentee and some who planned to vote on Election Day or during the early voting period. All were fired up and excited to “support the Republican ticket”, though with the valid caveat that the GOP had better get it right this time. We couldn’t have agreed more as we handed out literature for Rick Scott & Jennifer Carroll (Governor/Lt. Governor); Marco Rubio (Senate); Lt. Col. Allen West (US Congress, CD-22); Pam Bondi (Attorney General); Jeff Atwater (FL CFO); Adam Putnam (Commissioner of Agriculture); and Tami Donnally (FL State House).

Next weekend, we’ll be covering the neighborhoods of  Boca Raton (including my own precinct), where among the state and national offices mentioned above, we’ll also be promoting Ellyn Bogdanoff (FL State Senate), George Moraitis (FL House) and Anne Kanjian (School Board, District 4).

After a few hours spent cruising the beautiful, walled city of Atlantis we took some time out for lunch and to recap the morning’s activities:

And Aimee spent a few minutes answering questions about Amendment 4, and why Florida voters should not just say No, but HELL NO!

Awesome true story: As we sat on the sidewalk in the Lantana Pinewood Shopping Center, we struck up a conversation with a witty, passionate conservative woman named Cathy, who happens to know a thing or two about oppression, having lived in Vietnam for the first eight years of her life. She shared with us her genuine love for America and the freedom our great nation represents, noting that since moving here as a young girl with her parents, she and her entire family (including aunts, uncles and cousins) had gone on to achieve success through hard work and ingenuity.

She expressed her disdain for fellow Americans who constantly malign their own country, noting she’d visited many places in her lifetime — France, Germany and other parts of Europe to name a few — none of which even came close to America’s greatness. The ostensibly little things most of us take for granted, such as rest stops along the interstate,  are non-existent in other parts of the world. And, to use her own words, people there are “lazy”, thanks to the socialist system that offers no reward for hard work, and no incentive for producing quality.

Cathy also had a few choice words for voters who fell for the whole “hopey changey” thing, which includes her fellow realtors, many of whom still haven’t seen the light, notwithstanding the state of our economy and the housing market.

As someone who’s witnessed government seizures of private property in Vietnam and other grave infringements upon individual liberty, she has little regard for Americans who simply will not face reality. After speaking with her, we concluded that too many of us have taken our freedom for granted for a myriad of reasons, one of which being the deplorable state of our educational system that fails to teach proper history. Instead of appreciating and celebrating the miracle that is the United States of America, a disappointing number of her citizens would rather chide her for her faults in their zeal for self-flagellation, guilt and entitlement — never mind that the USA has learned from its mistakes (e.g. slavery) and remains (barely, under this administration) the lone protector and defender of freedom for the entire world.

We tried to get Cathy on video, but being shy about that sort of thing, she declined. However, we did get her business card and plan to stay in touch. Perhaps we’ll successfully convince her to officially become a Conservative Diva; we need voices of experience like Cathy to remind Americans that freedom isn’t free and that communism/socialism is a miserable, failed system we never want to adopt in our homeland.

God bless America, her military warriors, her devoted patriots and her concerned citizens who’ve stepped up to run for office. We The People shall prevail!

 

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Conservative Republican Forum

It’s back to our “Grassroots Candidates Series” tonight on CRF as Steve and I welcome two Republicans running for the US House of Representatives: Charles Lollar in Maryland CD-5 and Dan Sebring in Wisconsin CD-4. Join us at 6 p.m. to learn about these gentlemen and where they stand on the issues. As always, live chat and phone lines will be open!

Conservative Republican Forum and The Liberty Belle Hour are proud members of the Red State Talk Radio Network, founded by our good friend and fellow patriot, Premo Mondone. Check out Premo’s excellent broadcast at 10 p.m. Eastern on BTR, and click on the Red State Talk Radio link to listen to our impressive line-up of conservative internet radio talkers!

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Monday Meditation: A Spirit of Power, of Love and of Self-Discipline

“For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline”. — 2 Timothy 1:7

Words to remember as we begin another week. One of the best things on my agenda is my upcoming interview with singer/songwriter/actress, Ava Aston on The Liberty Belle Hour this Thursday at 6 p.m. on Blog Talk Radio. In addition to being multi-talented and beautiful, Ava is also a passionate patriot whose wonderful song, We The People, is a tribute to the American Spirit, freedom and the United States Military. We’ll chat about Ava’s latest exciting career developments, her thoughts on the latest political happenings and her take on the current news of the day, including the midterm elections.

Be sure to check out her website and read my recent review of her fabulous CD, Gone.

Have a wonderful, productive Monday!

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Filed under Inspirational, Lifestyle, Music Reviews, Politics, Pop Culture, Social Media, Talk Radio

Black Tea Party Patriots Speak Out

I am so proud of these determined patriots for standing tall for freedom, and calling out the real racists in the political and cultural class. Among them is my friend Kevin Jackson, author of The Big Black Lie, founder of The Black Sphere.net and host of the internet radio program, The Black Sphere. Please take a moment to watch this video and share with anyone you know who needs an education as to the motivation and objective of the Tea Party Movement:

And for their courage and conviction, they are ridiculed by members of the lamestream, Obama-lovin’ media:

Thank you to all of these  fine folks for their commitment to freedom; I am so appreciative and thrilled to stand beside them in the fight for our country and the restoration of our republic. God bless them!

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The Revelations of Social Media

Back in April, prompted by some things I’d read on the internet and social media sites, I posted an article entitled Is Professionalism Passe? While it was inspired by many different people (most of whom I don’t know), a few of the twitterers and bloggers are indeed characters from real life — whom I’d immortalized in my book.

I don’t know when it became acceptable to reduce every little family dispute or personal problem into a 140-character status, or deliberately misspell (as opposed to abbreviate) words, but it seems that even the most professional and successful among us lose all sight of propriety when communicating in cyberspace. As I wrote:

…The topic is something that has been bothering me for quite some time, after having viewed some pretty idiotic twitter updates and blog posts from allegedly professional, busy and successful members of the business community. It doesn’t seem to matter how educated, knowledgeable or hard-working some people are; in their minds technology, unlike real life, simply does not demand a certain set of standards.

For example, why is it that we’d never purposely spell a word incorrectly in a business correspondence, personal letter or even an email, yet some of us think it’s cute (or worse, cool, as if middle-aged men should still be concerned with such things) to do so in a 140-word character status? I am not quibbling with the necessary use of abbreviations when limited to such a low word-count — I am talking about deliberately misspelling common words.

I get that for many, typing up a cutesy status update just for fun helps to blow off steam and adds a little levity to life — something we all desperately need in the age of Obama. And as I mentioned in the post, perhaps the English Major in me is being a bit too judgmental of those who are simply using social media as a way to connect with friends and family. Still, reading posts like “Getting ready to strangle mom-in-law” is a little off-putting.

Yes, I understand it probably wasn’t meant literally and that mother-in-law was most likely spared an untimely death; however,  is it really a wise idea to broadcast your in-law issues into cyberspace, a forum where nothing ever really goes away? And if your wife has already demonstrated she has no qualms about logging into your personal account on a social media site and pretending to be you, chances are she’s also checking out your twitter updates. Unless she either shares the same opinion of her mother, and/or has no problem with her husband disrespecting one of her parents, this seems like a great way to initiate an argument.

But we’re also talking about a woman who brushes off the plight of the unemployed in a terrible economy:

And in an especially egregious status update given the state of the economy, a small business owner with pressing deadlines laments about being summoned for jury duty when so many others are unemployed, implying that those “lucky” souls should be the ones inconvenienced by civic responsibility, not important people like her. Pardon me, but if you’re a busy entrepreneur during a difficult recession in which nearly 10% of Americans are out of work, I’d say a little gratitude — not to mention tact — is in order. Yes, jury duty can be a detriment to the bottom line, but creating a status update bemoaning a minor obstacle and simultaneously taking a potshot at others in retaliation is just plain rude and insensitive.

And after what I’d learned from my photographer friend’s friend, I wouldn’t be surprised if the mother-in-law status update was perfectly acceptable to her.

Growing up, my mom (like so many others) often told me to choose my friends wisely because we are judged by the company we keep; moreover, she did her best to carefully steer me away from any kids she thought might be a bad influence, since it’s so easy to succumb to peer pressure when you’re young and impressionable. However, this logic still applies in adulthood.

For example, I finally had to break away from a friend whose constant negativity and habitual doom-and-gloom attitude eventually became too much to bear. I gave it nine very long years until the sheer fatigue and depressing aftereffects of being in her company made it impossible to continue the friendship. I wish her well, yet at the same time, have zero desire to rekindle the relationship.

Is it possible this standard applies to marriages, too? Can one spouse’s personality rub off on the other’s until that person no longer seems recognizable?

Because the guy who wrote about strangling his mother-in-law — among other inane things — is not the one I recall; he’s certainly not the one I modeled a character after. And he’s definitely not the one I shared some honest, emotional phone conversations with just prior to releasing my book. But he’s for sure the “Ken” I choose to remember.

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Filed under Lifestyle, Pop Culture, Professional Experience, Social Media, Social Media, Uncategorized, Water Signs: A Story of Love and Renewal

Six Degrees of Separation: Elyse Meets Erin

My friend “Elyse Lombard” has been living in Boca Raton, along with her entire family, for almost 30 years. For at least the past 10 years, she’s been working in the family moving business as VP of Sales and Marketing, which affords her plenty of opportunities to meet all kinds of people and customers throughout South Florida. She’s also been actively involved in  both the Boca Raton and Delray Beach Chambers of Commerce for as long as I can remember, having met her in early 2001 through a mutual friend.

A mover and shaker, “Elyse” is beautiful, smart, gregarious, charming and hard-working, and her family’s business is well-known and respected in the area. For this reason, it’s often very difficult for her to attend any sort of midday networking events, as she’s typically booked with at least five moving estimates per day. It’s all she can do to keep up with her early-morning leads group meetings at the chambers of commerce — and oftentimes, she exceeds the allowable absences, although she’s never asked to leave because she’s such a great networker.

But one day in January of this year, she was able to attend a luncheon event she’d previously declined when a customer canceled their scheduled appointment. Feeling very strongly that she would bump into “Erin” at this event (a woman she’d never met before), “Elyse” contacted me on the way to the venue to obtain “Erin’s” real name, which I then shared with her.

Did I mention “Elyse” is very intuitive and quite often correct in her hunches?

Later that afternoon, she called to breathlessly inform me that her psychic premonition had been right on target. Even stranger was the way in which it all went down: they didn’t simply “bump” into each other, “Erin” actually strode right up to my friend (who’d been chatting with a few other women) specifically to introduce herself — which is normally the kind of thing good networkers do at such gatherings.

And “Elyse” — in spite of her intuitive awareness — was still quite taken aback when it took place for real. She also thought it rather odd that for someone who’d gone out of her way to initiate an introduction, “Erin” exhibited a strange unfriendliness, a noticeable  aloofness. To the best of my knowledge, she’d had no prior inkling of “Elyse’s” relationship to me, but this description coincided with the one put forth by my photographer friend’s friend — the woman who’d been unhappy with “Erin’s” professional services.

Speaking of which, soon after I hung up the phone with “Elyse”, my photographer friend called me on behalf of her friend — “Erin’s” former, dissatisfied client — to obtain “Elyse’s” phone number. Normally, I’d think nothing of it, but coming on the heels of what had just transpired at the business luncheon, I found it all very curious.

But the story doesn’t end there.

A few weeks later, “Elyse” had the good fortune of being able to attend yet another midday event (again, highly unusual for her), where she just happened to be seated diagonally across from “Erin”. She’d discovered this after greeting another mutual friend (who’d been assigned to the table directly behind her) and exclaiming in her boisterous, effervescent manner “Isn’t it great we’re both gonna be on Daria’s show!”, referring to The Liberty Belle Hour.

When “Elyse” took her seat, “Erin” (whom “Elyse” is fairly certain heard the exchange) kind of gave her a strange look. And apparently, throughout the course of the event, she kept trying to make eye contact with my friend, who kept averting her gaze. If memory serves correctly, I believe they did briefly say hello at some point.

Being the protective “older sister” she is, “Elyse” related her discomfort about the whole interaction and the thought of developing a professional association with “Erin”, but I assured her that business is business; there was no reason to feel awkward about talking to “Erin” at all. I am secure in our enduring friendship and have never been the kind of person who makes unreasonable demands like, “If you’re my friend you won’t talk to so-and-so”, or “If you’re really my friend, you’ll do this or that”. That’s not how I roll. Besides, I’ve done nothing wrong.

If anything, “Erin” should be ashamed of posing as her husband on a social media site and attempting to “trap” an innocent woman whose only “crime” was fictionalizing some real life events into a novel. I might further add that I also put myself through some pretty intense and nearly debilitating heartbreak by pretending to be thrilled when “Ken” asked me point-blank how I felt about his engagement back in 1995 — because I didn’t think it was fair to hurt a woman I didn’t even know.

Would the outcome have been different if I’d been honest with him? Well, as Maddy muses to herself in Chapter 19:

At least the reason for the change in the tone of his calls had been revealed, though Maddy couldn’t quite decipher the timeline of events. Not that it even mattered at this point. She wouldn’t dare hurt a woman she’d never met by coming clean with Ken about her real feelings, about how she still loved him deeply in spite of everything. Even if she did go out on that limb, there was no guarantee he’d return the sentiment, or assuming he did, break off his engagement to Erin to pursue a renewed relationship with her.

One other curious thing that also took place concurrently with the “Erin/Elyse” events I’ve described: another one of my friends happened to come over to my house one night, unexpectedly bearing a particular product that had been on sale at the store, thinking perhaps I could use it. This product just happens to bear the name of the person upon whom “Erin” is loosely based. Very interesting, indeed.

So 2010 certainly started out on an interesting note; funny that this all happened exactly one year after the LinkedIn incident and the Boca Raton Entrepreneur Meetup. In this town, six degrees of separation is simply a way of life.

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Filed under Lifestyle, Pop Culture, Professional Experience, Social Media, Water Signs: A Story of Love and Renewal

LinkedIn, The Star Spangled Banner and the Tea Party Movement

After that little interaction with the nice lady at the networking event, not much else transpired on the “Ken and Erin” front for most of the year.  Armed with new insight into Erin’s integrity, based not only on the LinkedIn email, but also a friend of a friend’s experience with her as a businesswoman, I felt the urgency to steer clear of both of them even more strongly. As I’ve mentioned, I was not out to ruin anyone’s marriage, though the deception displayed by Erin in pretending to be her husband and writing that ridiculous message does make me wonder about the state of their union.

If their marriage was solid and strong, why would a fictionalized novel even have the power to drive her to do something so outrageous in the first place? Did she stop to think about his reaction? Assuming we were having an affair (which I’ve stated is not the case), did she honestly think I’d broadcast it in an email?

Oh yes, Kenny, I want to tell the whole world about your johnson! And while I’m at it, I’ll give them an explicit account of every extramarital tryst we’ve shared, so everyone will know what we’ve been up to!

I mean, it’s simply absurd.

Now one thing I do remember about “Ken” is that like me, he can be overly sensitive; he can also  transform from fun-loving and full-of-life to angry and defensive if he feels hurt or betrayed by someone else’s behavior. I can’t imagine he reacted well upon receiving my forwarded email of the original request, and can only surmise that at the very least, they had one heck of a fight about it. Speaking for myself, if my husband had logged onto a website using my credentials in an effort to “trap” an old boyfriend, that alone would infuriate me.

And if she really thought it possible that he’d been cheating, why not confront him about it directly and calmly? Why add insult to injury by being deceptive?

Looking back, I guess I must’ve salvaged a Christmas Holiday for her, because it took me until the day before New Year’s Eve to even respond, that’s how taken aback I was.

But as 2009 unfolded, I concentrated exclusively on promoting my book, co-hosting internet talk shows, getting involved in the grassroots Tea Party Movement, editing for clients, blogging and otherwise avoiding any potential run-ins with Ken and Erin, either in cyberspace or in real life. Funny, but I’ve lived just two miles away from them all these years and have never once spontaneously bumped into either one, ever.

But in December of 2009, I received an email from “Ken” (who’d also included some pretty big media names in the distribution, like Sean Hannity). This time, it was nothing personal, just a copy of his email response to a stupid liberal sportswriter who thought it was a great idea to eliminate the singing of The Star Spangled Banner at professional sporting events. By this time I’d been contributing regularly to Parcbench, Canada Free Press and my other blog, Palin Drone. I have a pretty good idea that “Ken” had been checking out my posts and hence, thought I could get his editorial letter additional exposure, which I did. I’m sure he also knew it was a hot-button topic for me; one that I would not be able to resist commenting about.

So perhaps knowing I shared his passion for the subject and the USA, he’d sent this to me as a way of re-establishing communication? Who knows. But it did give me a great idea for a story, which in the end was published on the Parcbench site. I am also incorporating it into my sequel, Sea To Shining Sea, as a letter Ken writes to the editor, because it fits in perfectly with the plot and themes unfolding in that story.

“Ken’s” request for distribution led to a series of cordial email communications — none of which so much as mentioned Water Signs — prompting me to use the opportunity to set the record straight about the LinkedIn debacle. In very clear terms, I recounted the entire story of how I’d put all of the pieces together, which ultimately verified my initial gut instincts. He replied that he never uses LinkedIn much at all (we have that in common, too) and confirmed “It sounds like you have figured out that it was not me”.

And I was relieved to finally get it out in the open. For whatever reason, it was bugging me that — as far as he knew — I still believed that tacky, immature email came from him and not his wife. For that matter, I wanted her to be aware that I was on to her little schemes, and in fact, told him forthrightly I “wanted this nonsense to stop”.  And it has.

However, social media would prove to be revealing on other ways as far as these two were concerned. More on that in my next post.

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Music Review: Ava Aston’s “Gone”


Since becoming actively involved in social media sites like Facebook two years ago, I’ve come across a plethora of undiscovered, artistic talent. And in the realm of modern music, songbird and lyricist Ava Aston – with a voice that is simultaneously sweet, powerful and provocative – stands alone.

Her debut CD entitled Gone showcases the impressive range not just of her vocals, but also her musical style and creativity. Sometimes edgy and defiant, as in the electrifying title track and in the high-energy single What Do I Gotta Say; other times tender and poignant as in the heart-tugging ballad, I Carry You With Me — for which she was awarded the Grand Prize in the SAW Mid-Atlantic International Song Contest – Ava’s unforgettable performances speak to the human experience and leave you wanting to hear more.

For those with the heart of a patriot, her most recent effort, We The People, an inspiring anthem to the indomitable American spirit, will reaffirm your faith in the power and determination of everyday Americans to return their country to its constitutional roots.

In a day and age where pop stars are manufactured creations of a pop culture gone crazy, it’s nice to know there are truly talented, wholesome and upstanding artists producing quality work. I have no doubt Ava’s star is on the rise and it’s only a matter of time before she’s signed by a smart record label. Until then, why not support a singer who is not only fabulously gifted, glamorous and beautiful, but also wholesome and patriotic? Both personally and professionally Ava proves it’s possible to sound great, look hot and maintain one’s integrity – in short, she’s a breath of fresh air on the music and entertainment scene.

Purchase her CD Gone today.  If you appreciate powerful vocals and unique, eclectic musical arrangements, you’ll be happy you did. And if you’re on Facebook, join her fan page here.

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Filed under Lifestyle, Music Reviews, Pop Culture, Professional Experience, Social Media, Uncategorized

Six Degrees of Separation

After the LinkedIn incident, I decided to leave well-enough alone. Thanks to another social media site, I’d figured out who’d been responsible, and though I was tempted to follow up my email to “Ken” with a phone call, better judgment prevailed. But a curious thing did take place soon after.

Before I get into that, I want to back up to June of 2008, and an interesting photography session. A good friend of mine — a professional photographer — spent an entire Saturday at my home, creating images that would eventually be employed for book promotion, including the back cover head shot of Water Signs. For the purposes of this story, it’s not necessary or even advisable to reveal her name, but I will mention that she’s one of my oldest and dearest friends in South Florida. In fact, the character of Isabella is partially based on this friend, along with another woman I used to know.

Although I absolutely hate posing for formal pictures, my friend and I had so much fun that day changing venues, outfits and poses. The community in which I live is rife with beautiful, outdoor scenery and locations, so we’d alternate indoor shots in my home with others out in front of the garden, with the palm fronds swaying  behind me.

Since we were together for a while that afternoon, I filled my friend in on the back story behind Water Signs, since — much like my close friend “Elyse” (Theresa), she’d known nothing about “Ken” — notwithstanding our 12-year friendship. As I’ve noted, the mind and will are powerful forces.

Anyway, as I relayed the information, something clicked with her, something pertaining to “Erin”. Seemed she had a friend who’d written a cookbook and sought out “Erin’s” professional services pertaining to web design and marketing. To be sure, she called her friend, who upon hearing the real name, confirmed it to be true.  To say that this woman had not been happy with the customer service she’d received would be an understatement.

My photographer friend had already known of her dissatisfaction, since she’d helped her locate another designer to complete the cookbook website — which happened to revolve around the state of Pennsylvania and its traditions (another ironic twist), including the Amish Country. This woman relayed several fascinating tidbits, such as never being allowed inside “Erin’s” house (site of her office). Whenever she needed to drop something off to the designer, she was immediately greeted just outside the front door or in the driveway; never once was she invited in.

As a customer, this woman found her hired designer to be quite rude, with a “basic” personality, lacking in depth and character. If I recall correctly, the last forms of communication they’d had via email (once the woman had secured a new person to finish the project), had been very terse. According to the friend of my friend, “Erin” was a typical “Philly Girl” — a phenomenon with which she was familiar, having been raised in the area.

So when the LinkedIn thing happened much later that same year, I can’t say I was surprised when I finally unraveled the mystery and discovered the real culprit.

About a week or so later, I attended a Boca Raton Meetup for entrepreneurs presented by  Jay Berkowitz. The information I gathered that evening proved to be invaluable, but the most memorable aspect of the event occurred long before Jay took to the podium. As is the case with most of these gatherings, every person in attendance was given a minute to introduce themselves and explain their business in brief. When it was my turn, I mentioned that I was an author as well as a web content writer, editor and blogger.

After all had introduced themselves, we were allowed some time to simply mingle  before the formal presentation. And that was when a very nice  woman, a financial planner, came right up to me and asked, “Do you know “Erin Lockheart”?

Oh, you mean the woman who while pretending to be her husband, asked me to recommend his “big johnson” via the LinkedIn social media site? That Erin Lockheart? Yes, I’m afraid I do know her.

While I wish I could’ve replied that way, I somehow managed to hide my surprise, stating something to the effect of “Yes, I’ve heard the name”. After which, the woman insisted on taking one of my business cards (which were in my hands, thus eliminating the excuse, “Oh, I am so sorry I must’ve run out of them”)  because she was pretty darned sure that  as a web designer, “Erin” might have a need for good content writers from time to time. Bless her heart, that lady was such a great networker. And I must admit, I got a chuckle out of imagining the whole scenario of this woman presenting Erin with my business card and glowing praise.

Yes, in Boca Raton there are definitely six degrees of separation. And this was only one of many forthcoming incidents to prove it.

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