Wednesday, November 21, 2007


Happy Thanksgiving!

Wherever you are, whoever you're with, whatever the menu, have a lovely day and a very Happy Thanksgiving!


Yesterday we saw the concrete dye-wash work of the guy who poured the great room floor and hand-troweled the expansion joints into it. He’d done an office building in Exeter where we could see his textures and color full-sized rather than by photographs or small samples. So, we went off in the snow—a very gloomy day here—and liked what we saw.

We need only about half of the first floor of the house done; the great room, master bedroom and the entrance hall between them. A lot of the effect is dependent on the concrete itself, the way it was poured and smoothed, and whether a plank was laid across it for the guys to walk on as they did the work. Everything that happened to the concrete before it fully dried and cured affects the denseness and grain across the entire surface. To some extent it’s an art of chance. The acid washer can apply several layers to deepen a color, layer different colors one over the other, put chemicals into the concrete before the colors go on to change the colors or their texture. We came away with sample charts from three different companies.

The insulator has now joined the party. For the past two days, he’s been foam-sealing every single open crevice in the walls of the house.

The well was drilled on Monday, successfully, by Digger Day’s Artesian Well Co.—“For a Well That Won’t Go To Hell.” At 320 feet down they got a rate of 8 gallons a minute, which didn’t sound like a great deal to us but everybody else involved was quite happy. Before we’re allowed to hook up the well to the house, a chemical analysis has to pass the local building inspector. For now it’s capped pending the approval.

Siding, plumbing and electric are all going along well. I accepted the estimate of one of the propane companies this morning, so our gas supply is in the works, and the solar energy company representative has been by to finalize the location of the photovoltaic panels. With my ankle broken, I wasn’t able to clamber up the hillside to help choose the site, but Fritz did the work and they picked a spot directly above and behind the house about 25 feet or so back from the edge of what we call “the cliff” that remains from the blasting into the rock ledge. Things progress!


Ted at The Neighbors Will Hear posted this Seven Deadly Sins survey and, as a fully invested gay man, I was very happy with the results: Lust predominates (can I get an Amen?) and I can justifiably say I’m proud of the fact that Pride comes in at #2. It’s quick and it’s fun and the questions aren’t always what you’d think.

Sloth:Very Low
Envy:Very Low
Lust:Very High

Discover Your Sins - Click Here


Changing of the guard at the Boston Lyric Opera. In response to the current demographics of arts audiences, BLO General Director Janice Mancini del Sesto announced a retreat to the very standard core repertory, an “all top 20, all the time” approach that’s actually a paraphrase of her own statement. It hasn’t worked. Large numbers of subscribers cancelled, BLO tickets are now being dumped for half price at the BosTix booth, and our other company, Opera Boston, is selling out with a varied and challenging repertory, and forging new artistic ties (the latest being with the New England Conservatory of Music). The Boston audience is apparently a good deal more sophisticated than she had given it credit for being. The following appeared on an arts blog at

Tuesday, November 20, 2007
Breaking: Janice Mancini Del Sesto Leaving

Earlier this afternoon, Janice Mancini Del Sesto, Boston Lyric Opera's longtime general director, gathered the staff to tell them she would be leaving. Her exit won't be until 2009, but it comes with BLO already searching for a replacement for Music Director Stephen Lord. From a just-issued press release:

"Boston, MA — Steven P. Akin, Chairman of the Board of Boston Lyric Opera (BLO), announced today that Janice Mancini Del Sesto has informed the Board of her decision to leave her position as General Director upon completion of her current contract in June 2009.

“When her contract expires, Jan will have held her post for 17 seasons and believes that both she and the organization are ready for change,” Mr. Akin said. “During the search for new artistic leadership to replace Music Director Stephen Lord, Jan concluded that Boston Lyric Opera would be better served by putting a new administrative and artistic team in place going forward. She wanted to give notice of her decision in order to provide ample time for the search and an adequate transition period.” Maestro Lord ends his tenure with the Company after 17 seasons in June 2008.

“It has been a great joy and privilege to serve as General Director of BLO,” Ms. Del Sesto said. “At this point in my personal and professional life, I look forward to new challenges when I complete my tenure in 2009. BLO has a strong staff, board and support base; a healthy balance sheet; and an excellent product, programs and reputation. There couldn’t be a better time for the Company to recruit a new administrative and artistic team.”


Sent by a friend:

Happy Holiday, Will.
Love the tinted conrete and the whole project looks swell.

your devoted Farmboyz
I feel like I know EXACTLY where you're talking about with the rooms, the cliff behind the house, etc.....OH, it's because I do!! I'm so happy that I was able to see it. Happy Turkey day to my favorite NH turkeys. Oh yeah, I almost forgot, when I suggested a concrete floor for our kitchen several years back, I was looked at like "what in the hell are you talking about...." People had no idea. Weirdos.
happy thanksgiving to both of you
lucky man to be so lusty!
Me lusty too!
Happy Thanksgiving!
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