PipeChat Digest #3251 - Thursday, November 21, 2002
 
Connecticut Concert Announcement
  by <Donovan002@aol.com>
Re: Connecticut Concert Announcement
  by "Malcolm Wechsler" <manderusa@earthlink.net>
Widor and Franck
  by "Steve Chandler" <stevec@open-tech.com>
Re: Murrill Carillon
  by "MusicMan" <musicman@cottagemusic.co.uk>
Quick Technicial Question
  by "Patricia/Thomas Gregory" <tgregory@speeddial.net>
Re: Words
  by "David Carter" <davidorganist2002@yahoo.com>
Re: PipeChat Digest #3250 - 11/21/02
  by "David Baker" <dbaker@lawyers.com>
Re: Words
  by <Gfc234@aol.com>
Re: Widor and Franck
  by <Gfc234@aol.com>
turntable to a sound card
  by "Ray Kimber" <ray@kimber.com>
A panegyric upon the Bronx (long)
  by "Jonathan B. Hall" <jonathan@jonathanbhall.com>
Re: Bronxville
  by "Stan Yoder" <vze2myh5@verizon.net>
Re: record players
  by "Bob Conway" <conwayb@sympatico.ca>
George GUEST
  by "Mark Quarmby" <mark_quarmby@yahoo.com>
Studio B Kimball Pipe Organ WMBI Chicago
  by "danielwh1" <danielwh1@ns.sympatico.ca>
Ken Cowan's New CD Perfects Organ Playing
  by "William T. Van Pelt" <bill@organsociety.org>
RE: George GUEST
  by "Mark L. Hopper" <mlhopper@email.msn.com>
Re: A panegyric upon the Bronx (longer, but worth it)
  by "Alan Freed" <acfreed0904@earthlink.net>
 

(back) Subject: Connecticut Concert Announcement From: <Donovan002@aol.com> Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 09:31:16 -0500   The Music Program at First Congregational Church, Watertown presents an = Organ Concert featuring Scott Lamlein.   Friday, November 22, 7:30 PM   Donations will benefit the Music Program   First Congregational Church 40 DeForest Street Watertown, Connecticut 06795 860-274-6737  
(back) Subject: Re: Connecticut Concert Announcement From: "Malcolm Wechsler" <manderusa@earthlink.net> Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 10:02:06 -0500   Dear Donovan002,   Not to seem picky, but - a little information about the Organ, a bit of a bio for Scott Lamlein, and the program he will play might make this more enticing, even to tired old me!   Please.   Malcolm Wechsler New Fairfield, CT   ----- Original Message ----- From: <Donovan002@aol.com> To: <pipechat@pipechat.org> Sent: Thursday, November 21, 2002 9:31 AM Subject: Connecticut Concert Announcement     > The Music Program at First Congregational Church, Watertown presents an Organ Concert featuring Scott Lamlein. > > Friday, November 22, 7:30 PM > > Donations will benefit the Music Program > > First Congregational Church > 40 DeForest Street > Watertown, Connecticut 06795 > 860-274-6737 > > "Pipe Up and Be Heard!" > PipeChat: A discussion List for pipe/digital organs & related topics > HOMEPAGE : http://www.pipechat.org > List: mailto:pipechat@pipechat.org > Administration: mailto:admin@pipechat.org > Subscribe/Unsubscribe: mailto:requests@pipechat.org > >      
(back) Subject: Widor and Franck From: "Steve Chandler" <stevec@open-tech.com> Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 09:24:48 -0600   > Dennis Steckley wrote: > > Well, whaddya know, I'm not such a cultural Philistine after all! = Every > time someone mentioned the Widor Toccata, which I said I was not fa= miliar > with, I realized I had a thread of music running through my head. = So off to > the internet and a midi file of the piece........hey, I AM familiar= with > that piece (where or how I know not)! And, yes, friends, I DO like= it, even > if it IS Widor! > > Gee, I might even start liking Durufle!!! > (Nah, don't want to go that far!)   Ya know Dennis, you are a bit of a !@#$%. Here you write a very nice = admission that Widor ain't so bad after all (and the Tocatta isn't hi= s greatest work). I'm not surprised you're actually familiar with the= piece, it gets played a lot in mass media (for an organ work).   Then you have to follow it up with a snide comment regarding Durufle.= I can almost guess that Allain would be going too far, but the two m= en were friends. I sometimes like to listen to Allain's Litanies and = follow it up with Durufle's Prelude and Fugue on Allain (an hommage w= ritten in memory of a friend killed in action in WW II). When Durufle quotes Litanies then follows it up with a Fugue Bach would be= proud of, it builds an emotionally powerful work.   > Mike Gettelman wrote: > > I am finally developing a taste > for C=E9sar Franck. I have heard Felix play the Choral > No. 3 in A Minor in Columbus last week, and on this > Sunday he played the Choral No. 2 in B Minor. I get the > sense of such a strong, dark mood from Franck, yet the > chord progressions are so moving and beautiful. >   I agree that Franck's harmonic progressions are both moving and beaut= iful, but I don't agree that Franck is dark. It's just that the two p= ieces you mention happen to be in minor keys. May I suggest the Chora= le No. 1 in E Major or the Grand Piece Symphonique as major key works= of Franck that are not at all dark and happen to be masterpieces. Enjoy the listening.   Back to lurk mode.   Steve Chandler        
(back) Subject: Re: Murrill Carillon From: "MusicMan" <musicman@cottagemusic.co.uk> Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 16:19:35 -0000   I always play it in quite a lively manner - more bell-like than carillon-like - carillons sometimes being played rather too slowly for my liking. Still, 'chacunasongout' (he-he)   Harry (musicman)   -----Original Message----- From: Chapman Gonz=E1lez <chapmanp@comcast.net> To: pipechat@pipechat.org <pipechat@pipechat.org> Date: 19 November 2002 03:44 Subject: Murrill Carillon     Dear List, After the discussions here about the Murrill Carillon, I ordered and = got it very quickly from OHS. Nice piece and very accessible. I do have one question about the opening metronome mark. They indicate <eighth note = =3D eighth note> but no number. I'm assuming that to play the piece you use = the eighth note as the rhythm unit because some measures have different = lengths.   Does anyone have suggestions for the actual tempo? With a big registration, one can go quite slowly for a wonderful effect. But, I'm = not sure this is correct. Any help will be appreciated.   Chapman in Baltimore   chapmanP@comcast.net      
(back) Subject: Quick Technicial Question From: "Patricia/Thomas Gregory" <tgregory@speeddial.net> Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 10:35:52 -0600   Greetings:   I am presently restoring a 1939 Estey Virtuoso reed organ. (This is the model which has the console built to AGO specs.)   I am presently regulating the key drop at 3/8". Is this AGO standard?   Best wishes,   Tom Gregory   -- Thomas Gregory 716 West College Avenue Waukesha WI USA 53186-4569  
(back) Subject: Re: Words From: "David Carter" <davidorganist2002@yahoo.com> Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 09:23:30 -0800 (PST)   I would like to add my thoughts this thread. The LDS congregation that I = play for is quite noisy during the postlude. The acoustics of the room, along with the placement = of the organ console, result in my not being able to hear the organ at all over the talking and = general commotion of people leaving the meeting for the next one (Sunday school). However, if I = am able to touch even one soul with the music I play for postlude (usually just hymns registered = on softer stops), than I have done my job. As I listen to the talks given during Sacrament = Meeting, I pick out one or two hymns that have to do with the subject of the talk, and then I will play = those for postlude. I have had people comment from time to time that they heard what I played, = and appreciated it. As I commented in a recent posting, I have also subbed for a church where = everyone sat after the dismissal, and listened attentively to my postlude, and applauded = afterwards. That too is gratifying.   David Carter Getting ready to sing in two (Handel's) Messiah performances in Sacramento = CA.       __________________________________________________ Do you Yahoo!? Yahoo! Mail Plus =96 Powerful. Affordable. Sign up now. http://mailplus.yahoo.com  
(back) Subject: Re: PipeChat Digest #3250 - 11/21/02 From: "David Baker" <dbaker@lawyers.com> Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 13:58:26 -0500   Robert Owen was the organist/choirmaster at Christ Church, Episcopal, in Bronxville for many, many years. He was an exceptionally fine organist = and church musician and teacher. I knew him and had a few organ lessons with him. The organ at the church is a Skinner (Whiteford, I think) that had some (unfortunate?) attention from Gress-Miles, and has been in the care = of John Randolph for many years. He retired at least ten years ago, and may have died since, I don't know.   David G. Baker    
(back) Subject: Re: Words From: <Gfc234@aol.com> Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 14:11:50 EST     --part1_14e.17a1b97b.2b0e89f6_boundary Content-Type: text/plain; charset=3D"US-ASCII" Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit   Yes, It sure does feel good to get a "thank you for your music" from even one person. You know-all the complaining and moaning I do-I still feel great when I = play a service. I love it. gfc   --part1_14e.17a1b97b.2b0e89f6_boundary Content-Type: text/html; charset=3D"US-ASCII" Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit   <HTML><FONT FACE=3Darial,helvetica><FONT SIZE=3D2>Yes, <BR>It sure does feel good to get a "thank you for your music" from even = one person. <BR>You know-all the complaining and moaning I do-I still feel great when = I play a service. I love it. <BR>gfc</FONT></HTML>   --part1_14e.17a1b97b.2b0e89f6_boundary--  
(back) Subject: Re: Widor and Franck From: <Gfc234@aol.com> Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 14:20:40 EST     --part1_199.10f60d4d.2b0e8c08_boundary Content-Type: text/plain; charset=3D"US-ASCII" Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit   i strongly urge you to listen to recordings of the french repertoire on cavaille coll organs. they add a certain twist and fire to the music--and =   each of the instruments has such a rich history--dedicated by Widor etc........ ben van oosten is wonderful for widor and vierne and i have bram beekman playing franck on the cavaille coll at st. john the baptist in perpignan--what an organ-its spec. is close to the original spec of st. clotilde. gfc   --part1_199.10f60d4d.2b0e8c08_boundary Content-Type: text/html; charset=3D"US-ASCII" Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit   <HTML><FONT FACE=3Darial,helvetica><FONT SIZE=3D2>i strongly urge you to = listen to recordings of the french repertoire on cavaille coll organs. = &nbsp;they add a certain twist and fire to the music--and each of the = instruments has such a rich history--dedicated by Widor etc........ <BR>ben van oosten is wonderful for widor and vierne and i have bram = beekman playing franck on the cavaille coll at st. john the baptist in = perpignan--what an organ-its spec. is close to the original spec of st. = clotilde. <BR>gfc</FONT></HTML>   --part1_199.10f60d4d.2b0e8c08_boundary--  
(back) Subject: turntable to a sound card From: "Ray Kimber" <ray@kimber.com> Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 12:28:11 -0700   (snip)>How do you actually connect the turntable to the computer? Do you hook >the turntable directly to the computer's microphone port or do you = connect >the turntable to the stereo as usual and connect the "out" terminals of >the amp to the computer - as you would to a tape player/recorder. > >Thanks, >Keith > >I've got numerous old LPs of Dan Fogelberg as well as some LPs from >Musical Heritage Society that I would like to record.   I have a Radio Shack Optimus turntable with a built in pre-amp which I connect directly to the line input of my SoundBlaster Live sound card. = The only extra item that I had to buy was a Y connector which takes the RCA plugs in on input side and on the output side is a miniature stereo jack which goes into the Line input of the sound card.   Nothing special or fancy!   Bob Conway (snip)   Most turntables will have a cartridge of the (MM) Moving Magnet type. = There are other types of cartridges, such as ceramic, moving coil and strain gauge, but it would be unusual to have one these and NOT already know the difference.   Anyway, back to hooking up a MM cartridge. Records are recorded with equalization called an RIAA curve, during mastering the treble is boosted and the bass reduced. This helps overcome the natural high frequency = noise associated with records (LPs), and the reduction of bass allows the = grooves to be placed closer together for longer playing time. (Along with other advantages like easier to design needles and less wear due to decreased excursion)   So..., on playback the preamp must not only amplify the signal of the cartridge it must also provide a reverse EQ curve, i.e. boosting the bass and lowering the treble. If you plug a MM turntable into a mic pre-amp = the sound will have hardly any low frequency, but you won't hurt anything. = What is risky is to plug a mike into a TT input, the extra bass has damaged = many a driver.   Make sure the preamp is for phono use and it will work with the line = inputs of sound cards, with the right connector adaptors, if needed. This will also work to use a TT with a modern home amplifier that might not have a phono (TT) input, just use the CD or any aux input.   Ray Kimber        
(back) Subject: A panegyric upon the Bronx (long) From: "Jonathan B. Hall" <jonathan@jonathanbhall.com> Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 12:31:29 -0800 (PST)   Hey, Alan Freed--I had no idea you lived in the Bronx! that's where I've lived for a year and a half now. Your recent post sparked the following...     I think the Bronx is terrific!   The kiddies from hither and yon are all still pouring, lemming-like, into Brooklyn, which is now the most crowded, most oversold, and most dangerous borough in the City! Brooklyn is either so beautiful it breaks your heart, and you can't afford it, not in a million years; OR it's over-hyped, crowded, and/or dangerous and you can *barely* afford it. I love the idea of Brooklyn, but if I can't have a brownstone with gaslights in front of it, fergit it.   (Alan--I must gently disagree with your assessment of Riverdale. Brooklyn Heights is, I think, the most beautiful neighborhood in America, let alone NYC).   So...the smart and less trendy folk are quietly taking up with the Bronx, that much-maligned borough that contains Fordham University, the Bronx Zoo, Pelham Bay Park (2,400 acres, triple the size of Central Park), Yankee Stadium, the Botanical Gardens, and the Arthur Avenue Italian community which blows Manhattan's Little Italy away...and City Island, that amazing little bit of Nantucket in the Bronx...and Orchard Beach...and a terrific subway infrastructure...and huge shopping areas where you can actually park a car...   I can commute into Manhattan on the 6 train effortlessly--about 15 minutes on the express.   And there's a gorgeous Catholic church right near me, Saint Raymond's, with an iffy Delaware in a great acoustic, and a very friendly young music director. And nearby is St. Peter's, Westchester Square, a beautiful Episcopal Church with wonderful musical leadership and three centuries of history.   Our apartment in Parkchester would cost us far into four digits in Manhattan, Bklyn or Qns--it's a good one bedroom, with a kitchen you can actually work in comfortably--the building is immaculate, right down to the brass mailboxes--new plumbing, windows, and electric--and our rent is in three digits. That's right, kids, under a thousand, which in this town is incredible.   And there are TREES outside!     Now, there are a few drawbacks with the 'hood. There are, for example, very few "mom restaurants"--cozy places where I'd take my mother for brunch, unless she developed a taste for Cuchifritos, which are fried entrails...not likely. (But we do have a Starbucks, and a Macy's, and a movie theater...)   Also, there is a small but nagging level of petty crime. Better by far than many areas, but still not a good thing.   There is also the occasional racial tension, but compared to Chicago, which is frankly a boiling cauldron of open race-hate, the Bronx is paradise. Spanish and English are spoken about equally here, blacks form a plurality among the many diverse groups, and for the most part people live and let live.   Add to this mix a fantastic old-time butcher shop and an Italian deli around the corner, laundromats everywhere the eye can see, a good fish market, and of course the nail salons, and you have a surprisingly livable and affordable place. AND don't forget the Bangladeshi dollar store where we bought our spanking white fiber-optic Xmas tree last year! Wa-HOO!   Best,   Jon (10462)  
(back) Subject: Re: Bronxville From: "Stan Yoder" <vze2myh5@verizon.net> Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 15:55:31 -0500   According to Messrs. Kinzey and Lawn, it's A-S 1082 of 1945, being then a = rebuild of a 1926 Hall. Rebuilt again in 1953 as 1082A, after water damage. Rebuilt again again by = G-M in 1962. Now 4-69.   I would doubt that Joe W. had much involvement in either '45 or '53.   Stan Yoder Pittsburgh  
(back) Subject: Re: record players From: "Bob Conway" <conwayb@sympatico.ca> Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 16:08:46 -0500     >Jon wrote about turntables:   i have not bothered myself with fancy Stanton turntables, - for the very real reason that I am not willing to pay the high price that they cost. = We had very fancy turntables at the radio station where I produced my "Voicings" programme, but why, I never could understand, for we had automatic level and frequency limiters built in, so Hi-Fi was never going to be on at CFRC FM!   I have a Radio Shack Optimus Lab 1100 turntable that I bought last year = for around $89.00 Canadian. As I remarked in an earlier post it has a pre-amp =   built in, and the output from the turntable is simply plugged into the = line input of my Soundblaster Live sound card.   It cannot play 78's, - but even if it could, I do not own any 78's, and in =   the same manner it will not play cylinders, which also doesn't bother me overmuch! My view is that old organ LPs are not usually recorded at the state of the art that we have today on present day CDs, so, for me, there =   isn't an overwhelming need for Super Hi-Fi turntables.   The fact that I can make CD copies of some of the old organ discs is good enough for me, - all I need is to be able to remove the worst of the = clicks and scratches - but I hasten to add that for some people that isn't enough, so I wish them every success in getting the most out of their = hardware.   I have a CD "British Organists of the 1920's", published by a highly reputable label, but it is from old 78's recorded with the primitive electric recording of those days, - Hi -Fi it is not! But it does bring back memories of old 78's that were in my Father's collection.   Whatever turns your switch!   Bob Conway      
(back) Subject: George GUEST From: "Mark Quarmby" <mark_quarmby@yahoo.com> Date: Fri, 22 Nov 2002 08:21:39 +1100   A Cathedral organist passed this email onto me this morning suggesting = that I forward it to some of the organ lists:   > It with with great regret that I have to inform you of the sudden death = of Dr > George Guest just two days ago. I understand that he died in his sleep. = He > will be greatly missed throughout the world of church music, not only in > Cambridge and Wales but much further afield.     Cheers,   Mark   St Andrew's Cathedral, Sydney    
(back) Subject: Studio B Kimball Pipe Organ WMBI Chicago From: "danielwh1" <danielwh1@ns.sympatico.ca> Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 17:30:46 -0400   here are the specs of the WMBI Studio B pipe organ   Pedal: Bourdon 16; Lieblich Gedeckt 16; Flute 8; Cello 8; Still Gedeckt 8; Contra Faggotto 16; Trumpet 8; Chimes 8; Great Unison 8; Swell Unison 8; Swell Super 4       Swell: Lieblich Gedeckt 16; Open Diapason 8; Rohr Flute 8; Viola 8; Viola Celeste 8; Vox Angelica II 8; Flute D'Amour 4; Celestina II 4; Nazard 2 = 2/3; Piccolo 2; Contra Faggotto 16; Trumpet 8; Oboe 8; Vox Humana 8; Clarion 4; Chimes 8; Swell Sub 16; Swell Super 4       Great: Open Diapason 8; Clara-Bella 8; Rohr Flute 8; Vox Angelica II 8; Octave 4; Flute D'Amour 4; Celestina II 4; Piccolo 2; Mixture III; Trumpet 8; Chimes 8; Great Sub 16; Great Super 4; Swell Sub 16; Swell Unison 8; Swell Super 4         --- Outgoing mail is certified Virus Free. Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com). Version: 6.0.422 / Virus Database: 237 - Release Date: 20/11/2002    
(back) Subject: Ken Cowan's New CD Perfects Organ Playing From: "William T. Van Pelt" <bill@organsociety.org> Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 17:20:17 -0500   Ken Cowan's new CD recorded in the acoustical splendor of Holy Rosary Cathedral, Toledo, on the restored and fabulous 1930 E. M. Skinner is a magnificent treat, and maybe Ken's best, so far. He gives us mature and wonderfully musical readings of the Franck Chorale in E (No. 1) and Mendelssohn Sonata in f minor (No. 1), Fleury's splendid Variations on a noel Bourguignon, and other real organ music by Gigout and Bossi, then the transcriptions Prelude to "Hansel & Gretel" by Humperdinck and Overture to "Oberon" by Weber (either, alone, worth the price of admission) and = Dvorak's Humoresk. He plays America the Beautiful as well. Opening page http://www.ohscatalog.org   Now that Ken has perfected organ playing, generally (maybe a few others = have perfected specific areas, such as early organ music); that E. M. Skinner = had perfected the orchestral organ 70-80 years ago; that the Hook brothers had perfected the eclectic organ 130-140 years ago, that Seitze DeVries (Ken's near contemporary in age and resident of The Netherlands) has perfected organ improvisation, and that Munetaka Yokata has perfected reproduction = of the "historical" organ (in G=F6teborg) as recently as Ken has perfected playing, where do we go from here?   Bill    
(back) Subject: RE: George GUEST From: "Mark L. Hopper" <mlhopper@email.msn.com> Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 17:49:33 -0500   I attended Dr. Guest's workshop at St. Thomas/5th Avenue in 1999. We sat among the choristers in the choir stalls and watched him rehearse the boys in preparing an Evensong from start to finish. He was absolutely amazing. What impressed me most was Gerre Hancock's obvious respect for him...that spoke volumes.   FWIW, Mark   Mark L. Hopper Organist/Music Associate The First Baptist Church Henderson, NC markhopper@ncol.net    
(back) Subject: Re: A panegyric upon the Bronx (longer, but worth it) From: "Alan Freed" <acfreed0904@earthlink.net> Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 18:25:23 -0500   On 11/21/02 3:31 PM, "Jonathan B. Hall" <jonathan@jonathanbhall.com> wrote:   > Hey, Alan Freed--I had no idea you lived in the Bronx!   Where else?? You see? You just don't LISTEN! But SHshshshshsh! I'm much too ashamed to have anyone know that. I've lived in THE Bronx since August 1964, with an hiatus from January 1967 to January 1978, when I was (a) in a parish Baltimore (1967-74), and (b) in Brooklyn Heights. (I'm thoughly p*ssed at the Hebrew Home for the Aged, near me, which says they are "close to Westchester and Manhattan, but never MENTIONS that they are in The Bronx= .. Calvary Hospital FINALLY--after years of saying the same--has finally admitted where they are.)   > that's where I've lived for a year and a half now. Your recent post spark= ed > the following... >=20 > I think the Bronx is terrific!   I could not agree more. But I don't want it known until I am ready to sell my real estate here (or have my estate do so); then, we'll call upon you. The Bronx is OUR SECRET. My house has a separate two-bedroom apartment. I= f the secret of The Bronx got out, I'd have to charge $2200+ a month for that space instead of $1300. Not worth the effort. >=20 > The kiddies from hither and yon are all still pouring, lemming-like, > into Brooklyn, which is now the most crowded, most oversold, and most > dangerous borough in the City! Brooklyn is either so beautiful it > breaks your heart, and you can't afford it, not in a million years; OR > it's over-hyped, crowded, and/or dangerous and you can *barely* afford > it. I love the idea of Brooklyn, but if I can't have a brownstone with > gaslights in front of it, fergit it. >=20 > (Alan--I must gently disagree with your assessment of Riverdale. > Brooklyn Heights is, I think, the most beautiful neighborhood in > America, let alone NYC).   "Beauty" comes in many forms. And I love Brooklyn Heights. Lived there fo= r 3.5 years. Lovely in every way: esp. shopping, transportation, architecture, etc. The priests at St. Ann's and the Holy Trinity were VERY DEAR friends; I was member of the Board of the Long Island Historical Society there. So, without putting down Brooklyn Heights one BIT, Riverdal= e has non-urban bucolic over it. Just a different KIND of beauty. Capiche? >=20 > So...the smart and less trendy folk are quietly taking up with the > Bronx, that much-maligned borough that contains Fordham University, the > Bronx Zoo, Pelham Bay Park (2,400 acres, triple the size of Central > Park), Yankee Stadium, the Botanical Gardens, and the Arthur Avenue > Italian community which blows Manhattan's Little Italy away...and City > Island, that amazing little bit of Nantucket in the Bronx...and Orchard > Beach...and a terrific subway infrastructure...and huge shopping areas > where you can actually park a car...   Totally agreed. INVEST in The Bronx! The only borough named for a Luthera= n (Jonas Bronck)! The transport is the best part. Wanna go into the City? We have, within a few blocks, two subway lines and three or four express bu= s lines, ready to go, east or west side or down the middle. Wanna go upstate= , or to New England, or to Jersey and southward? Nothing TO it! Ten minutes= , and you're OUT of the City! (The Heights? Add 40+ minutes!) >=20 > I can commute into Manhattan on the 6 train effortlessly--about 15 > minutes on the express. >=20 > And there's a gorgeous Catholic church right near me, Saint Raymond's, > with an iffy Delaware in a great acoustic, and a very friendly young > music director. And nearby is St. Peter's, Westchester Square, a > beautiful Episcopal Church with wonderful musical leadership and three > centuries of history.   I was going to mention him if you did not. >=20 > Our apartment in Parkchester would cost us far into four digits in > Manhattan, Bklyn or Qns--it's a good one bedroom, with a kitchen you > can actually work in comfortably--the building is immaculate, right > down to the brass mailboxes--new plumbing, windows, and electric--and > our rent is in three digits. That's right, kids, under a thousand, > which in this town is incredible.   BEYOND incredible. But BUY, don't rent. >=20 > And there are TREES outside!   My front yard (and everything within sight of it, a few hundred feet in any direction) looks absolutely like the Poconos or even the Adirondacks! Really! Right now. > > Now, there are a few drawbacks with the 'hood. There are, for example, > very few "mom restaurants"--cozy places where I'd take my mother for > brunch, unless she developed a taste for Cuchifritos, which are fried > entrails...not likely. (But we do have a Starbucks, and a Macy's, and > a movie theater...) >=20 > Also, there is a small but nagging level of petty crime. Better by far > than many areas, but still not a good thing.   True. You keep your eyes OPEN. I've been mugged (unsuccessfully) once in 25 years here. (Twice in my 3.5 years in the Heights, both unsuccessful. = A separate story=8Bthree themes: I'm too dumb, I'm too strong, and I'm too fast--or was, then) . >=20 > There is also the occasional racial tension, but compared to Chicago, > which is frankly a boiling cauldron of open race-hate, the Bronx is > paradise. Spanish and English are spoken about equally here, blacks > form a plurality among the many diverse groups, and for the most part > people live and let live.   Agree, most thoroughly. >=20 > Add to this mix a fantastic old-time butcher shop and an Italian deli > around the corner, laundromats everywhere the eye can see, a good fish > market, and of course the nail salons, and you have a surprisingly > livable and affordable place. AND don't forget the Bangladeshi dollar > store where we bought our spanking white fiber-optic Xmas tree last > year! Wa-HOO! >=20 > Best, >=20 > Jon (10462) Alan (10463--upped you by "1"!) >=20 Nobody on PipeChat can top us, and I hope they'll for for this digression.