Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Women And Wilderness Survival: Could You Survive?
Ben Vitale

It appears that society seems to favor the male population when it comes to survival training. Young boys are encouraged to join the Boy Scouts in order to learn skills that society believes all males should learn. One of those skills is survival training.

Recently a friend of mine’s daughter was convinced by her girl friend to go hiking in the mountains. The proposed hike was supposed to be an afternoon hike that only lasted a few hours. The females were planning on being home by three PM. The actual names of the hikers are irrelevant… I am being intentionally ambiguous, to protect the identity of the young ladies.

Many hours passed by and the young ladies were not able to find the trail that would have brought them back home. The sun set and it was getting cold! They did not have extra clothes or survival reflective blankets. They soon learned that it is not easy to start a fire with materials that are available in the woods. They were not able to start a fire.

Their situation soon became critical, and they began to shiver from the cold! Hypothermia was now a real possibility and threat!  Fortunately the young ladies saw a camp fire in the distance and walked up to that location. A family was comping there and was able to help the females with the supplies they needed. The girls spent the night next to the camp fire. The females arrived safely at home the next day.

The girls brought three items with them, a pocket knife, matches and a compass. That was all they had. This article is not intended to be a survival guide… one must consult a survival expert in order to learn that skill. A camper should carry about 30 survival items in order to have a reasonable chance at survival.

I cannot understand why survival skills are taught primarily to males and not to females. I met a woman who is a Girl Scout leader. We started to talk about survival skills in the girl scouts, and I soon was advised that survival skills were not taught to females in the Girl Scouts. I can’t understand the rationale behind this… a female can get lost in the woods just as easily as a male can! The women told me that she wanted to provide survival training to the girl scouts, but was prohibited from doing so. The reason… Insurance! I was very surprised when the Girl Scout leader told me that many girls want to join the Boy Scouts because of the survival training.

I personally believe that all females should be versed at survival skills just as most men are! I see this as a casual shortcoming of our society. Females are often stereotyped as being delicate! Women are not delicate and are absolutely capable of learning these survival skills!  

Please follow the link below, after you finish reading this article. The link presents some of the survival equipment that is usually carried when in the woods. I also carry one additional item… a pocked map GPS with plenty of spare batteries! Do yourself a big favor and talk to a person who is versed in survival skills! Could you survive?

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Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Innocent looking Christmas Tree
Ben Vitale

This Innocent looking Christmas tree is not so innocent! This year our holiday season started out the way it should start, if we were in “Santaland.”  For the first time in over 50 years it was snowing when we bought our Christmas tree! “Oh how Christmassy!” LOL! What could be better than that? Snowing while buying a Christmas tree! Wow! My wife Marie and I were wallowing in the spirit of Christmas, as we were buying our Christmas tree! “It’s snowing!” “It’s snowing!”

When we decided which tree to buy, we called an attendant who would normally wrap the tree and tie it on top of my car! As soon as we told the attendant that we decided to buy one of his lovely 12 foot Christmas trees I suddenly saw an expression that radiated fear, on the attendant face! He said… “Oh … You are going to have to wait until the other men come back from lunch… I can’t deal with that tree by myself! I then told the attendant that I could help him! The attendant dropped the tree to the ground and we had to put the Christmas tree on a rolling cart! To my amazement both of us could not lift the tree onto the rolling cart… we had to slide it onto the cart! Hummm! In all of the years that I have been on this planet, I have never seen or dealt with a Christmas tree that was that heavy!

I asked the attendant why the tree was so heavy, and he told me that the tree was full of ice and snow! I guessed that the tree that we had just purchased weighed about 500 pounds! No wonder we couldn’t lift it! LOL!

After just a few minutes, the Christmas tree swat team came back to work, after their lunch break! The task at hand is to get my Christmas tree that was full of ice and snow, on top of my SUV! Thank God that I have roof racks! LOL!  The Christmas tree swat team rolled the tree over to my car! Three muscle bound young man were needed to get my Christmas tree on top of my SUV! As I watched I could see their arms trembling from the heavy load, but they finally got it on top of my car!

The next task at hand was for two senior citizens to duplicate the power and force of three young men! “Ya Kidding me!” LOL! Marie and I had to use engineering techniques to, lift our Christmas tree! Please look at photo number two and three… What is that strange rope hanging from the back of the tree? To put it into simple terms, we needed the mechanical advantage of a Block and Tackle, to get our Christmas Tree mounted in its stand!

I’m sure that my innocent looking Christmas tree, is laughing at us! LOL! If you look carefully at photo number one, you might be able to see the tree with a big sneaky smile! LOL! After the tree was mounted and decorated Marie and I, the two senior citizens, were also smiling back at our tree! LOL! We beat the show, ice, muscle, and brawn, using science and technology! LOL! Have a very merry Christmas! We will! We are still smiling at our Christmas tree, and our Christmas tree is smiling back bat us!  LOL 

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Wednesday, June 07, 2017

Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts Announces New Executive Leadership 
Ben Vitale (From press release)
Photo credit: Benny Migliorino 

PATCHOGUE, N.Y. (LONG ISLAND) - June 1, 2017 - Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts (PTPA) has named Gary Hygom, producing director, Bay Street Theater of Sag Harbor, as its new executive director and appointed Christopher Capobianco, current PTPA board member, as the new chairperson of the board of directors. Capobianco will replace current Board Chairperson Barbara Kane, who has served more than 10 years on the theater board. Gary Hygom, who will report to the board of directors, will assume his position as executive director on June 5. Capobianco assumes his new role immediately. Together they will work to lead Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts in a new creative direction.

Gary Hygom brings a new vision to Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts, after 20 years of working at the 299-seat Bay Street Theater in Sag Harbor, where he was the producing director. At Bay Street Theater, Hygom was responsible for developing innovative programming, such as a classic American film series featuring special celebrity guests like Julie Andrews, Alec Baldwin, Lauren Bacall and Eli Wallach to name a few, interviewed by renowned film critic Jeffrey Lyons.

Gary Hygom said: "I could not be more excited to take on this wonderful new challenge, creating new programming and working within a diverse and vibrant community." He continued, "I look forward to collaborating with the board of directors, building on their 19 years of success and establishing this beautiful venue as a major performing arts center."

In 2004, Hygom needed to shift creative directions at Bay Street Theater. He took a fading cabaret series on Monday nights and replaced it with a headline comedy series featuring up-and-coming comedians. Some of those comedians, like Zach Galifianakis and Amy Schumer, later went on to become comedy gold and have since appeared in numerous Hollywood blockbusters like "The Hangover" film series and "Trainwreck." Hygom has also been credited with bringing live music back to Bay Street Theater. He has attracted everyone from local musicians to G.E. Smith and Roger Waters.

Newly appointed PTPA Board Chairperson Christopher Capobianco said:

"The board looks forward to working with Gary as he brings tremendous talent and more than 20 years experience working in theater and the arts to our organization." He added, "This is a big moment for Patchogue Theatre as we seek to expand our reach as a regional performing arts center while continuing to nurture and support the thriving local arts scene here in Patchogue."

Board Chairperson Christopher Capobianco has been involved with Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts, since the nonprofit organization's first call for volunteers in 1999. He was asked to join the organization's board of directors in 2005, and soon after that he curated the popular local music series, "Live in the Lobby," which ran for 12 seasons. His passion, and that of his fellow lobby volunteers, made "The Lobby," as it's called, one of the premier intimate venues on Long Island for local original music.

Capobianco also organized the first Patchogue Folk Festival and the first Patchogue Arts Festival. He helped the Patchogue Arts Council (PAC) establish the PAC Lobby Art Gallery and encouraged Worldwide Voices, another nonprofit organization, to bring its local musical theater series "The New Musicals Project" to Patchogue Theatre.

  Photo credit: Benny Migliorino

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Sunday, May 28, 2017

Tommy Sullivan Honors our Veterans 
Ben Vitale

Tommy Sullivan, one of the founding members of that famous group "Johnny Mistro and the Brooklyn Bridge," Pays tribute to our veterans on this Memorial Day weekend, by playing a song called "God bless the USA," made famous by Lee Greenwood. 

(Click the arrow below to start the video.)

On Sunday May 28, Tommy Sullivan entertained a very large crowd at the Pindar Winery in Peconic, NY.  Tommy is a veteran himself and was honored to pay tribute to his comrades! The true meaning of Memorial Day is sometimes forgotten because everyone has Barbecues on this holiday weekend! It is obvious by looking at the video, that the true meaning of Memorial Day was not forgotten at this gala event!

Kudos to Tommy Sullivan for supporting the true meaning of Memorial Day!

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Monday, May 08, 2017

National Police Week 29th Annual Candlelight Vigils

Ben Vitale

National Police Week is a week-long reflection on those police officers who have fallen in the line of duty. It occurs the second week of May each year. Events are being held nationwide and are supported by the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial.

Long Island grassroots organizations are holding local events on Saturday, May 13th at local police stations to pay respect to and to show support of those officers who are working side by side with local residents to improve the quality of life in our neighborhoods.

Judy Pepenella, our neighbor, who is a founding member of the Conservative Society for Action and Grassroots Community Organizer will be presiding over our local National Police Week Vigil.

Date: Saturday, May 13th, 2017

Location: Suffolk County Police Department 5Th Precinct, 125 Waverly Ave, Patchogue, NY 11772

Time: Arrive at 7:45 pm Vigil from 8:00 to 8:30 pm
Please wear blue or bring a blue ribbon, bring a flashlight or an led light.

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Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Entertainers that Force Trump Jokes, on their Customers

Ben Vitale

This week my wife and I attended a show which included four comical performers. The show began with one of the comedians presenting a “Trump joke.” As we know… 50 percent of our population will be offended when a Trump joke is presented, and the other 50 percent will applaud that action.

Before I start I am advising the readers that this article is being written to be intentionally ambiguous! Hummm? Ambiguous! Yes… I am intentionally withholding the names of the performers, and the actual location of that performance. I am trying to focus on an issue and not the performer! It makes no sense to dump the entire blame on a particular entertainer or a particular catering house. The location of eastern Long Island is close enough.

As a result of the two trump jokes, a young lady, who was a complete stranger, came over to me and said… “I am pissed! I spent all this money to get away from all the (b*** s***) of life, and look what this guy does to me… A trump joke! I am pissed!” Actually my wife and I were pissed, as well as the couple that we were at the performance with. So… One joke and five people are angry at the performer!

After the performance was over, the leader of the group was passing his business cards around! Opinion! It appears that the entertainment industry feels like it is OK to Piss-off 50 percent of their audience, and then pass a business card to them! The problem is that an entertainer never knows who is in his audience. In this particular case I have a friend that is in the entertainment industry, and is always looking for entertainment at the right price! I took the entertainers business card and presented it to my friend with a written warning that this group is inclined to present Trump jokes! Is that warning desirable on ones resume? Absolutely not!

I am totally amazed! Entertainers continue to do and say things that their customers do not want to hear! Customers that pay hard earned money, to buy tickets, to attend a performance, expect to be entertained, not upset!

I have seen two mainstream entertainers suddenly disappear from the industry, after engaging in Trump bashing, at their performances! If I owned an entertainment venue I certainly would not hire someone who would disenfranchise 50 percent of the people that paid to see a performance at my establishment.

This article represents my own personal opinion, and perception of this issue ! We really would like to hear what you think about this issue. Is it OK to have entertainers upset their patrons? 

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Saturday, January 07, 2017

Hunger Doesn’t Take a Snow Day 
Ben Vitale

This morning I was looking out of my window at the snow. The snow was coming down and accumulating at a fast rate! It just occurred to me that the Lighthouse Mission is supposed to distribute food for the needy, today in Patchogue. It’s snowing, what are the needy people going to do? Nobody goes out in this bad weather!

I must admit… I was concerned, so I did something that I have never done before… I drove to the Lighthouse Mission food distribution site, on Terry Street, to see what was going on! Upon arriving at the distribution site, I saw the people from the Lighthouse Mission, standing in the snow, giving out food for the needy!

I was amazed… The Lighthouse Mission did not take a snow day… They just set-up their distribution point, in the snow, and continued to give out food in spite of the inclement weather! It’s true… Hunger doesn’t take a snow day, and neither does the Lighthouse Mission! What a blessing!

Please visit the lighthouse Mission web site to learn more about the Mission! In addition to food distribution the Lighthouse Mission also has many youth programs. Young adults and children are taken from dysfunctional neighborhoods and given the opportunity to participate in activities such as Kayaking, bike riding, and sailing. These activities are life changing, and are not possible on the streets!

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Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Merry Christmas

Happy Hanukkah

Happy Quanzaa

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Friday, December 09, 2016

Santa Collides With Jumbo Jet
Ben Vitale

Photo Credit:

You must check-out this wonderful web site who published the above photo!

Last night, Santa got sucked out of his sleigh, while on a pre- Christmas reconnaissance flight! Santa’s flight was intentionally done under the same foggy conditions that he may experience on Christmas eve! His plan was to make sure that his Reindeer and Sleigh were in the best possible condition.

Unfortunately Rudolph’s red nose light was not blinking at the time, and the pilot of the 747 jumbo passenger jet did not see Santa.  The jet flew over Santa and his Reindeer at 360 miles per hour! The resulting up-draft sucked Santa out of his sleigh and onto the nose of the jet!

We all know that Santa has some very special powers! For example… How does he climb down a chimney that only has a 6 inch flue pipe! Hummm! OK! Santa landed on the nose of the jumbo jet, along with a sack of Christmas presents! So what did he do? You guessed it… He walked into the plane and started to give out Christmas presents to the passengers. The passengers were ecstatic! One passenger said “I can’t believe it! I met Santa on a plane flight from Florida to New York! What a wonderful way to start the Christmas season!” LOL!

After giving out 400 Christmas presents to the passengers, Santa shouted “Merry Christmas to all and to all good night and instantaneously disappeared in a giant puff of white smoke! Santa then landed on his sleigh, where he continued his pre-Christmas journey! LOL!

I wish that I was on that plane! Merry Christmas everybody! LOL!

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(Bill Vanwormer… Thanks for showing me this photo!)

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Saturday, November 26, 2016

Why do we Absolutely Need the Electoral College? 
Ben Vitale

Our forefathers were by no means stupid… In fact they showed exactly how intelligent that they were by creating the Electoral College! Sheer genius! They knew that a presidential election built around the popular vote would create a disaster!

States like Wyoming, Alaska, Delaware, Montana, South Dakota, North Dakota, and Vermont would be considered to be a joke!  Yep! They all have less than 1,000,000 residents. Without the Electoral College they wouldn’t even receive the crumbs! Even the birds receive the crumbs! LOL!

If the criteria for winning a presidential election was “the popular vote, all a politician had to do is pander to the residents of NY, Florida, California, and Texas, and he would win the election. There is no reason to give anything to the remaining 44 states… Zero! Nada! They just don’t count under this system! The presidential candidate did not need them in order to get elected!

Hummm… 44 states that were totally pissed off at a president for ignoring them could cause massive damage to the United States! The United States is not really one country, but a union of 48 states that have agreed to create a Federal government for the common protection. As we all have observed, this has gotten out of control!

You might also want to read a wonderful article by Mackenzie Eaglen, which explains the concerns about the common defense of our country!

Guess what! We are not stupid! A casual consideration of a popular vote presidential election does indeed reveal the possibility of massive abuse, and a possible catastrophe for our country! Unfortunately the internet has brainwashed most of us to respond to “one liners,” without even thinking that we were not given enough information to enable an intelligent decision! If a person really expects you to accept the idea of changing our country’s electoral process to a popular vote system, on the basis of a one liner, they are really and intentionally insulting your intelligence!  It is time to revolt against the internet indoctrination and start thinking for ourselves!

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