The Boundless Vistas of Jazz Pianist Hiromi

She goes by Hiromi, the only identification needed for the Japanese wizard of the keyboard who is ranked as the number one instrumentalist in her native land. Her award-winning gold albums showcase eclectic arrangements and compositions influenced by every musical genre that strikes her fancy. In “Beyond Standard” released in 2008, she even fuses jazz, classical, rock and avant-garde in such familiar compositions as “Clair De Lune,” “Caravan,” “My Favorite Things” and “I’ve Got Rhythm.” In this and all six of her CDs and two Live in Concert DVDs, her over-the-top energy propels each number to the outer limits.

“I always give everything I’ve got and I look for that in the musicians I work with,” she says. “I play each concert as if this is the very last I’ll ever give. Fate gave me the opportunity and I must not waste it, so I play my very best to thank the audience for being there.”

Hiromi refuses to put a name on her style. A child prodigy, she began studying classical piano at age five, but her world expanded at eight when her piano teacher introduced her to jazz. She credits that “very special” teacher, Noriko Hakita, with pointing her in a wide open direction. By twelve, she knew that she wanted to be a professional musician and within two years she performed with the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra.

It’s no coincidence that the influence of jazz pianist Chick Corea, along with those of Oscar Peterson, Art Tatum, and Ahmad Jamal, bursts forth in her music. Upon meeting and hearing the then-seventeen-year-old in Tokyo during a tour, Corea invited her to play with him the next day. Their friendship and musical attunement pulsates on “Duet/Chick Corea and Hiromi” recorded live at Tokyo Blue Note.

After spending several years writing jingles for Nissan and other Japanese companies, Hiromi began studies in earnest under Jamal at Berklee College of Music in Boston. There she perfected her capacity for extracting energy wherever it exits. She proclaims that the energy inherent in classical works by Bach and Liszt is every bit as influential to her keyboard virtuosity as is that projected by powerful athletes like Michael Jordan.

Following “Another Mind,” her debut album of 2003, she released “Brain,” “Spiral,” and “Time Control.” Each is unique for intellectual pairing of swing, jazz, be-bop and rock influences and song titles that invite visual challenges. “Old castle, by the river, in the middle of the forest” appears in both “Spiral” and “Duet.” Like many of her original compositions, the piece was suggested by the places she visits throughout the world.

While she is off on her current international tour with the explosive Stanley Clarke Band, fans can luxuriate at home with “Places to Be,” a collection of songs she wrote while traveling. The locations she incorporates within range from Sicily, Bern, and the Azores to Cape Cod and the Las Vegas she captured from the daytime, gambling and show girl perspectives. It’s a given that the vistas of Russia, Spain and points in between will inspire new keyboard creations.

Nightlife in the Dominican Republic

For many people, vacation is one of the few times they can unwind and have a great time. Because of that, there is a focus on nightlife when someone is visiting a new area. If you are getting ready to go to the Dominican Republic, you will be pleased to know you will be able to participate in an amazing nightlife. There are parts of the DR that light up after hours, and you will be able to spend hours out on the town.

There are many options when it comes to nightlife in the Dominican Republic. You can go dancing, listen to live music, or hit the casinos. You will be able to fill up your nights doing exactly what you want to do. There are truly options for everyone.

If you want to have drinks by the beach, the Aura Beach House in Juan Bolio is a must. This is one of the most popular bars in the area. It attracts a diverse crowd, from wealthy people to young people just looking for a good time. With the perfect atmosphere and talented DJs, this club is a must. You will be able to dance the night away, or sit and have drinks. Since it caters to many different age groups, it also caters to different styles. You can relax or go wild.

If you want to have a wild time without limits, there is a club you can visit that is certain to deliver. Occidental Grand Punta Cana is the home of the Disco Mangu. This is a great place to go if you like a wide variety of music and you love to dance. You will be able to have a night full of drinks, dancing and fun when you go to this club.

Santo Domingo is another great place to spend the late hours. You can go to the Atlantis World Casino to try your luck at gambling. After you get done there, you can go to one of the many clubs in the area.

La Masia is one of the best clubs in Santo Domingo, thanks to the live music. When you visit the club, you will get to hear music from actual musicians instead of watching a DJ spin a record. You can listen to jazz music, along with other music. You will get to have a taste of the Dominican Republic and its musical culture when you visit this club.

If you are traveling to the North Coast of the Dominican Republic, you might want to try the Crazy Moon. This dance club is one of the most popular in the area, and for good reason. This club has a lot to offer. You will be able to dance the night away with throbbing beats, and you can hang out at the bar and get a little rest in before you start dancing again.

If you want to travel from one club and restaurant to the next, Boco Chica is the perfect place to go. You can go to Calle Duarte, which is the main street, and wonder through the area. Bars, restaurants and shops line the street and you will be able to have drinks, grab a bit to eat, or get some shopping in.

The Dominican Republic is the place to go if you are looking for a fun nightlife. You will be able to pack your nights full with all of the fun you can find in the area. You will be able to go to exciting bars and clubs, and also take in some great casinos. If you love to go out at night, you are sure to find something you will enjoy in the Dominican Republic.

Superstitions On The Roulette Table – The Meanings of Numbers

Number Meanings From 0 To 36

0 – The number 0 is one of the most significant numbers, but when it comes to roulette it’s the number that gives the house the edge so it’s not a lucky number for us, it’s a lucky number for casino owners.

1 – They say that one is the loneliest number, and that rings true even on a roulette table as the number 1 is a part of the french orphans bet. This number can represent strength. It can also represent new beginnings, which are more than welcome after a streak of bad luck.

2 – The number 2 is all about balance. According to the Pythagoreans, the number 2 is the most unlucky number, in fact they declared the second day of each month to represent the god of the underworld, Hades. In the Far East, however, they consider the number 2 to be very lucky.

So – how’s that for balance?

3 – They say that the 3rd time’s the charm, which isn’t always necessarily true while you’re at the roulette table but we’ll take any help we can get, right?

4 – Remember the Pythagoreans who thought that the number 2 was evil and unlucky? They also believed the number 4 to be a perfect number. It represents many things such as the four seasons, the four directions on a compass, the four winds and the four elements (Earth, Wind, Fire and Air.) The Irish believe in the luck of a 4 leaf clover. Have you ever found a four leaf clover on your way to a roulette table? Me neither.

5 – According to mystical numerology, the number 5 carries with it an aura of uncertainty. It’s very rare to find any certainties in life, especially in a casino, so perhaps this characteristic is true of all numbers on the roulette table.

6 – Some believe that six is a symbol of luck, but what happens when you have the number 6 three times in a row? We’ll talk more about the significance of this at the end of the article.

7 – There are seven colors in the rainbow, but just three on a roulette table. Red, black and green. Seven is often refereed to as being the luckiest number.

8 – In Asia, 8 is a lucky number for several reasons. First of all, the number 8 looks like the infinity symbol which is of great significance to Asian cultures, and also the way it is pronounced in Chinese sounds similar to the word for “wealth” or “prosperity.” I’ll take wealth and prosperity over good luck any day of the week.

9 – Known as the number of magic, heaven and the Creator. 9 is also the amount of lives that a cat has. In Japanese, the number 9 sounds similar to the word for “pain”, which is a contrast to the Chinese number 8 which we just learned about.

10 – They call it a perfect 10. In Sikhism, there were 10 gurus so this is a very significant number to them. In the Bible, Egypt was cursed by 10 plagues. One thing that’s becoming clear as we explore all of the double meanings that these numbers have is that it really just depends on how you look at things.

11 – The number 11 has been considered to be a number which represents internal conflict. Another fitting feeling that we’ve all probably experienced while at the roulette table, trying to figure out what our lucky numbers for the day will be.

12 – The number 12 is very significant across many cultures historically. There are 12 months in a year, thus 12 signs for the zodiac calendar but if you’re into Tarot cards you will know that 12 is the number of the hanged man. Uh-oh!

13 – Just as seven is lucky, 13 is often considered to be it’s counterpart as an unlucky number. Western superstitions dictate that to dine with 13 people at a table is unlucky, perhaps in reference to the Last Supper.

14 – We’ve already looked at a couple of words who’s pronunciation in Chinese and Japanese sound like other words, but try this one on for size. In Chinese culture this is an unlucky number because “one” “four”, when said, sounds just the words that mean “want to die.” Sorry for being a little morbid, we’re just the messengers.

15 – This number has some meaning for anybody who believes in equality amongst all people. Susan B. Anthony fought her entire life for women’s rights, and her birthday was on the 15th day of February. We’re not really sure what her lucky numbers were, or if she was even a fan of roulette, but thanks to her efforts there’s a little girl out there somewhere today who’s spinning a roulette wheel for the first time and she’s not going to let anybody hold her back from her dreams! Isn’t that sweet?

16 – It was the 16th amendment to the US constitution that made it lawful for the government to collect taxes from us, so this one is certainly a lucky number for a lot of people sitting in public office, don’t you think?

17 – In Tarot, the 17th card is the card of the stars and it represents hope. You know, like “Boy, I really hope this Voisins bet pays off.”

18 – Eighteen is the legal voting age! In many Canadian provinces, it’s also the legal drinking age and thus the age at which you can finally enter a casino to put your lucky numbers and number meanings to the test for real.

19 – According to the Qur’an, 19 is the number of angels which are guarding Hell. On the other hand, it’s also the title of the debut album from the beautiful songstress Adele, who’s voice has captivated millions worldwide. In Stephen King’s Dark Tower series, 19 is a mysterious number. Finally, it’s the last year that one is a teenager, still so young and ready to grab life by the horns. A great candidate to be a lucky number, if you don’t mind the whole 19 angels guarding hell thing, that is.

20 – A group of 20 of something is called a “score”, and scoring is what we’re all looking to do when we sit down at the roulette table so the number 20 gets our stamp of approval when it comes to choosing a lucky number!

21 – This is the drinking age across most of the United States of America. Yee-haw! 21 grams is the weight of the soul, according to some research that is generally considered to be absolutely meaningless and without merit – so.. there’s that too.

22 – There’s a Jay-Z song in which he rhymes the words “two”, “too” and “to” 22 times. If hearing Jay-Z say two a bunch of times makes you feel lucky, look no further than 22 as your ultimate luckiest number.

23 – The 23 Enigma is a belief that most events that happen are somehow connected to the number 23. Perhaps you have heard of the Jim Carrey movie called The Number 23 that deals with a man who becomes obsessed. If so, then you can’t you haven’t been warned about obsessing over this number!

24 – There are twenty four hours in a day, but they seem to pass a lot faster when you’re on a winning (or losing) streak. I wonder why that is?

25 – The Book of Revelation said that there were 25 thrones.

26 – There are 26 red cards and 26 black cards in a regular deck of cards. Red and black, sound familiar? Some people will actually use a deck of cards to help them choose which color to wager on in roulette.

27 – European roulette is a popular version of the game that features a single zero, rather than a double zero. Why does this matter? There are 27 countries in the European union, so could this number be lucky for someone who’s playing European roulette?

28 – The atomic mass of silicon is 28. We’ve all seen our share of silicon sitting around the roulette tables, especially in Las Vegas, and it’s often there as a form of good luck charm it seems, so take from that what you will!

29 – Tom Waits sings songs about people who are down on their luck, and just so happens to have a song called “$29.00”.

30 – Thirty minutes, half an hour, the length of the average mind-numbing sitcom and also the amount of silver ounces that it took to convince Judas to betray Jesus in the Bible. It’s up to you to decide if this number will betray you, or lead you to silver and gold.

31 – This is a lucky number for musicians because there are 31 triads in music theory. It’s music to the ears to hear that roulette ball drop into the right slot, that’s for sure.

32 – Here’s another one for the music fans. In his lifetime, Beethoven completed exactly 32 sonnets for piano.

33 – It’s said that Alexander The Great could have died at the age of 33. That certainly makes this a lucky number if you were one of his enemies.

34 – The number 34 has various significances across cultures, generally seen as a lucky number since 3+4=7.

35 – 35mm film is popular both for motion pictures as well as for photography. It’s also the former Jersey number of retired Chicago Blackhawk’s great Tony Esposito. If you’re under the age of 35 and you want to be President of the United States of America, you’re out of luck since it’s the minimum age that one must be to run for President.

36 – The 36 Views of Mount Fuji are a famous collection of paintings by a Japanese artist named Katsushika Hokusai. It’s also, of course, the highest number on the roulette table and one of either 37 or 38 total numbers when you include the zero or the double zero, depending on which style of Roulette wheel you’re playing on. The American wheel has two zeros, whereas the European roulette wheel has but one.

The Devil’s Game

We’ve seen that a lot of numbers have their own spiritual significance in numerous religions and faiths, but why is roulette nicknamed “The Devil’s Game”? Well, we mentioned that the number 666 had some significance much earlier on in our list, and the reason that this relates to roulette is quite simple. If you add up all of the numbers on the roulette board, you’re left with… You guessed it… 666, the Number of the Beast. Sometimes, however, you’ve just got to put on your pretty shoes and dance with the devil.

What Are Your Lucky Numbers?

Have any of these tidbits changed your lucky numbers? Knowing number meanings can be a fun exercise, but it’s important to remember that the roulette table is random and there’s just as much of a chance of the roulette ball landing in any given number’s slot as it has of landing on any other number. Unless, of course, you decide to believe in some of the superstitions and facts that we’ve laid out in this article, of course, in which case anything’s possible!

How to Keep From Treating People With Disabilities Differently

Workshop Goals

To understand the history of American attitudes and legislation regarding people with disabilities;

To learn how to properly assist individuals with disabilities in a courteous and respectful manner;

To practice providing assistance to people with disabilities, both fellow employees and museum guests.

In order to gain the most out of the presentation, please:

  • Listen with an open mind;
  • Be respectful of each other;
  • Challenge your thinking;
  • Be willing to learn something new that you can use on the job!

Challenge Activity

Bean Bags

  • Place a bean bag on your head
  • Move to the music!
  • If your bean bag falls off your head, freeze until another player, without losing his/her beanbag, retrieves the fallen one and replaces it on the frozen person’s head.
  • If the rescuer loses his/her beanbag, then he/she is also frozen until another person appears to rescue them both.

What is the object of the game?

How do you “win”?

What is the advantage of picking up a classmate’s beanbag?

What is the Definition of a Disability?

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), as amended by the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 (ADAAA), prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in several key areas including: state and local government services, places of public accommodation, employment, telecommunications and transportation.

The individual with a disability is a person who (3 part definition):

  • Has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities;
  • Has a record of such an impairment, even if they do not currently have the impairment; or
  • Being regarded as having such an impairment.

What is considered a disability?

The ADA does not list conditions that are considered disabilities; however it does list those which are not included.

Not covered by the ADA are homosexuality, bisexuality, transvestism, transsexualism, compulsive gambling, kleptomania, pyromania, pedophilia, exhibitionism, voyeurism, gender identity disorders not resulting from physical impairments, other sexual behavior disorders.

The ADA does not cover individuals who are currently engaging in illegal drug use.

A short-term condition is generally is not a disability. The test is whether the impairment markedly limits major life activities when assessing the duration, scope, and impact of the impairment.

Small Group Activity

Divide into small to discuss your experiences and examples of instances you have assisted co-workers or museum guests with the following disabilities:

  • Physical
  • Sensory
  • Intellectual or Developmental
  • Emotional
  • Invisible

Remember that each person’s situation is unique!

Physical disabilities: a limitation on a person’s physical functioning, mobility, dexterity or stamina; a short list of examples:

  • Spinal cord injury
  • Amputation
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Spina bifida
  • Musculoskeletal injuries (eg back injury)
  • Arthritis
  • Muscular dystrophy

Sensory impairment: a limitation of one or more of a person’s senses; including:

  • Hearing Loss
  • Tinnitus
  • Limited vision/Blindness
  • Loss of Smell
  • Spatial awareness

A person could be born with the impairment or could it could develop throughout the lifetime.

Intellectual disabilities – significant limitations in both intellectual functioning and in adaptive behavior, which covers social and practical skills. Originates before age 18 years. Affects approximately 3% of the population.

  • Autism Spectrum Disorders
  • Down’s Syndrome
  • Fragile X Syndrome
  • Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD)

Emotional

  • Mental illness has nothing to do with intelligence.
  • Mental illness is a condition that disrupts a person’s thinking, feeling, mood, and ability to relate to others.
  • Results in a diminished capacity for dealing with everyday life
  • Can include major depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), panic disorder, and personality disorder.

The Invisibility of Disabilities

Be sensitive that disabilities come in a variety of types, and each person is an individual

The impact of a person’s disability may not be easily seen.

Person may be perceived as lazy, when in fact, the disability impacts his/her ability to learn, work, and function.

Teachers and peers may see only behavior problems or uncooperative behaviors, rather than accommodating the disability.

A Brief History of Legislation

1964 – Title 7 of the Civil Rights Act

1973 – Rehabilitation Act, Section 504

1990 – Americans with Disabilities Act – First comprehensive civil rights law for people with disabilities.

History, continued

2008 – ADA Amendments Act

Expanded definition of the term disability to include individuals with amputations, intellectual disabilities, Epilepsy, Multiple Sclerosis, HIV/AIDS, Diabetes, Muscular Dystrophy, and cancer;

Strikes a balance between employee and employer interests;

Overturned two key Supreme Court decisions (Sutton vs. United Airlines, Inc. and Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky, Inc. vs. Williams), where lower courts had found individual’s situation did not constitute a disability, therefore the question of discrimination had never been addressed.

American Attitudes – FDR

Franklin Delano Roosevelt

32nd President of the United States from 1933 to 1945.

Had suffered paralysis as a result of Polio.

Although the his use of a wheelchair was common knowledge, the wheelchair was not shown by the media.

Gather Your Thoughts

How do you feel about the cloaked FDR statue?

What do you think is more important: to respect President Roosevelt’s wishes OR to reflect modern views of people with disabilities?

How could this spectrum of opinion be reflected in the workplace?

As a manager, how do you work to bring understanding and acceptance among your staff, while following current ADAAA guidelines?

Let’s examine recent examples of people with disabilities who have achieved celebrity status!

Stevie Wonder

Born prematurely in 1950 in Michigan. Suffered retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), due to too much oxygen in the hospital’s incubator.

Began playing instruments at an early age and signed with Motown Records at age 11. Has had an amazing writing and recording career.

Celebrity spotlights can aid in bringing important issues into the spotlight.

Jim Abbott

Born in 1967, in Flint, Michigan, without a right hand

Baseball star for University of Michigan

Played in the 1988 Summer Olympics

Played Major League Baseball, and pitched a no-hitter in 1993 as a NY Yankee.

Amy Purdee

Born in 1979 in Las Vegas, Nevada

Contracted meningitis at age 19, resulting in double amputation below the knees and kidney transplant

Paralympic Athlete in Snowboarding – Bronze Medalist

Terminology Over Time

Crippled – an invalid and derogatory term that is no longer acceptable to describe people with disabilities;

Retarded – a medical term that can be used as a slur; no longer acceptable in everyday language:

Handicapped – something that hampers or hinders, such as in a race; no longer used in referring to people;

Normal people – avoid using this term when making a comparison, as this implies a person with a disability is not normal. Everyone is unique and has their own identity and abilities;

Person with a Disability – “people-first” language that focuses on the individual, not their condition.

Using People-First Language

American Psychological Association Style guide

  • Person’s name or pronoun first
  • Description of impairment or disability second
  • Descriptors should not modify or limit the person

Examples:

  • A boy with Down’s Syndrome, not “the Down’s Syndrome boy”;
  • Sydney has a hearing impairment, not “the deaf girl.”

Discussion: What Do You Do?

On the Job Situations You May Encounter

A guest arrives at an event with a cat in a stroller. She claims the cat is a service animal. Do you allow her entrance?

A group of 60 children is moving from the 1st floor exhibit to the 2nd floor through the only staircase in the wing. One child is on crutches. As the group’s tour guide, how do you handle the transition between floors?

What Do You Do?

Guidelines to Follow

  • If the guest claims the cat is with her as a service animal, the cat can be permitted to accompany her into the event. She does not need to produce any paperwork to justify the service animal.
  • Review the options with the student’s teacher/chaperone. If the child wishes to take the elevator, suggest a small group of students and an adult accompany her, so she does not feel alone or singled out.
  • Ask the guest if he would like to sit or hold onto in a chair inside the ride.

Employees with Disabilities: What is Reasonable Accommodation?

A reasonable accommodation is assistance or changes to a position or workplace that will enable an employee to do his or her job despite having a disability.

Under the Americans with Disabilities Act, employers are required to provide reasonable accommodations to qualified employees with disabilities, unless doing so would pose an undue hardship

Examples of Reasonable Accommodations

  1. Providing a chair for a cashier who uses crutches so he or she can sit when not assisting customers.
  2. Reserving a parking space close to the entrance for an employee who has difficulty walking because of loss of a limb.
  3. Providing instructions and information in writing for an employee with hearing loss.
  4. Permitting a staff member to bring a service animal to work.
  5. Allowing an employee with tinnitus to play background music to help block out the ringing in his ears.
  6. Allowing more frequent work breaks or providing back-up coverage when an employee with a disability needs to take a break.
  1. Providing specialized equipment for an employee who has lost a hand or finger, such as a large-key keyboard, a one-handed keyboard, a trackball, a touchpad, or speech recognition software.

  2. Flexibility in scheduling to allow an employee with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder to attend counseling sessions or offering a later start time to a staff member with a spinal cord injury who has a lengthy personal care routine.
  3. Decreasing distractions, providing information in writing, breaking down complex assignments into small steps for a person with a traumatic brain injury.
  4. Making sure equipment is within reach for an employee who uses a wheelchair.
  5. Adjusting the height of an office desk for a staff member who uses a wheelchair, and ensuring the space is not obstructed by wastebaskets or other items.

Unacceptable Practices

Examples of A Record or History of Disability

Examples:

  • An employer refuses to hire a qualified candidate due to a history of mental illness, even though the person has recovered sufficiently to perform all essential functions of the job.
  • A dentist refuses to treat a patient because he was diagnosed as having HIV, even though the diagnosis was proven to be incorrect.
  • A retail outlet fires a woman who is pregnant, because they assume she will not be able to work during the busy holiday season.

Unacceptable Practices

Regarded as Having an Impairment

Examples:

  • An employee has controlled high blood pressure, which is not substantially limiting. However, his employer fears that the employee will suffer a heart attack and reassigns the employee to a less strenuous job.
  • A person with a severe burn or scar does not actually have a disability. He may be regarded as having a disability when he faces discrimination based on people’s attitudes toward him.
  • An overweight candidate for a bus driver position is not hired because the employer assumes (without conducting tests) that she will not be able to move fast enough in case of an emergency.

Courtesy

Gum chewing – Do not chew gum when speaking to people with hearing loss. It makes you more difficult to understand

Stand in front – When speaking to people with hearing loss, stand directly in front, so they can see your lips

Paper and pencil – Have a paper and pencil ready, in case communicating through written word may be more effective than spoken word

Sit down – when speaking to a person in a wheelchair, take a seat! Looking upward may hurt their neck, and it is common courtesy to be at eye level.

Ask if the person wants help before acting – Do not assume that someone needs help. Have the respect and courtesy to ask how you may help, and then follow directions

Be patient – Do not roll your eyes, cross your arms, or rush a person who needs extra time.

Use people-first language – always refer to the person first and do not use their situation as a descriptor.

End of Session Quiz

You are at the Information Desk and a guest in a wheelchair has a question. What is the most courteous way to approach the interaction?

An employee you are managing has been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. She begins to walk with a cane, and is able to perform her job functions as school group facilitator in the laboratory. Discuss what types of accommodations can be made for her.

A child who uses crutches wants to watch the Dive Show at the Kelp Tank. All the seats are filled and many patrons have filled the open viewing area. How do you accommodate the child, so he can see the show?

List 3 new pieces of information that you learned, which you can use on the job.

1- Information Desk

Invite the guest to the side of the counter that is wheelchair accessible.

Sit at the chair, so you are eye-level.

Answer his questions respectfully.

Ask if the guest needs any assistance.

Ask if he is familiar with the location of the elevator.

2- Employee Accommodations

Review the employee’s job duties and discuss if any accommodations need to be made at this time, such as reassignment, additional time for tasks, use of a chair while working.

Make a plan to review her situation as needed, to see if any accommodations or a reassignment needs to be made.

For example, an employee who lead the student experiments in the laboratory could be reassigned to the Information Desk to answer the telephone with a headset.

3- Viewing the Show

  • Given that the situation involves a child, consult with the student’s parents or chaperone.
  • Ask if the child would like to sit by the tank or in the bleachers.
  • Show the family where the seating area for people with disabilities is located.
  • If someone is sitting in that area, respectfully work with the guest to find a spot for the child. Posted signs indicate that the are is reserved for people with special needs.
  • If there is no wiggle room, ask if the child would like a chair to sit, or ask a guest if they would mind moving over to accommodate the child.
  • Remember that you are responsible for the guests during the dive show. Feel empowered to make the situation pleasant for the guests, in a courteous manner. Call your supervisor if you need additional assistance.

Malaysia Casinos

When you think of Malaysia the first thing that comes to mind is vibrant colors, spices and the tropical weather of a never-ending summer. Malaysia is a very popular destination for tourists around the world and for a good reason, it offers just about everything you can wish and hope to do on a vacation in order to have fun, relaxation, excitement as well as trying your hand at becoming rich over night in the famous Malaysia casinos at the Genting Group.

The Genting Group is situated about an hour drive from Kuala Lumpur, the capital of Malaysia on the top of one of the mountain peaks of the Titiwangsa Mountains at 2000 meters above sea level. Genting Group is one of the most famous resorts in Malaysia; it has the largest hotel in the world boasting 6,118 rooms, which beats the MGM Grand of Las Vegas, which has 5,690 rooms and is the second largest hotel in the world.

Genting Group also shelters the only legal Malaysia casinos and where you will be delighted to find every game you can think of and more. There are 426 game tables and 3,140 slot machines open 24 hours a day for the entertainment of the guests.

The best way to enjoy all the luxurious facilities the Genting Group resort has to offer is to stay in their hotel for the duration of your vacation; you can have access to the casino 24 hours a day and when you decide to explore Malaysia you can jump in a car and head to Kuala Lumpur as it is a short drive away.

Besides the beautiful casino, the Genting Group resort offers everything a five star hotel promises, swimming pools, shopping arcade, a variety of restaurants and even a theme park that is similar to the Disney World, which your children will simply adore irrelevant of the age group.

In Malaysia casinos you have to be 18 years of age to gamble or enjoy any alcoholic beverage. Do not venture in other casinos besides the one available in the Genting Group, as they are not government approved and therefore not legal. However, once you visit the Genting Group resort and its casino it is unlikely that you will wish to spend your time and changes of winning anywhere else in the country. Malaysia’s only casino is build to provide all the entertainment you can hope for and who knows this may be the right place where lady luck may smile down on you too.

The Myth of the Hot Sports Betting Handicapper

The most prevalent means of sports service marketing is some variant on the theme that so and so is “red hot” and you should therefore pay him your money and follow his plays. The crooked services do this by coming up with all sorts of confusing and contradictory rating systems and hyperbolic descriptions for their games. How many times have you heard a handicapper brag about being “16-2 on his 500 star MWC underdog plays of the month” or saying that his “Southern Conference total of the month is 60% lifetime”?

Basically, the bottom feeders of this industry can slice and dice their statistics all sorts of ways to make themselves seem “hot”. Or they can do what a lot of them do, and simply lie about their performance. When I was first starting out as a sports handicapper there was no such thing as the Internet (at least as it exists today) and I had to rely on a scorephone for line and score updates. This scorephone was sponsored by a group of touts not noted for their veracity, and you had to sit through a few pitches for their 900 numbers before you got to the scores. A bit of a Faustian bargain, to say the least, but it was an effective way of keeping up with scores in the pre-Internet dark ages.

So one night we’re at a party thrown by some kid that we didn’t like too much. My crew and I were racking our brains to think of some mean pranks to pull on the guy. Someone got the idea to rack up some 900# charges on our mark’s phone bill. Since there’s no such thing as 900# directory assistance, I resulted to the only 900# I could remember – one of the touts from the scorephone that had drilled his digits into my memory through the sheer force of repetition.

For the sake of argument, I decided to write down the tout’s NBA plays. I had less faith in his handicapping ability than I would in a prognostication based on a divining rod or Ouija Board, but since I wasn’t paying for the call I figured I’d just see how the guy did. I wrote down his plays and checked his performance the next morning.

To his credit, the tout went 5-3 on his 8 plays. By any criteria a 5-3 night is a solid performance. Later that day I called the scorephone and waited for the tout to start crowing about his 5-3 night. Much to my surprise, the tout didn’t say a word about his 5-3 night. That’s because he was too buy bragging about his mythical 7-1 performance the preceding day.

Now, I understand that the revelation that boiler room touts like about their performance is on par with “pro wrestling is fake” or “the games at the fair aren’t on the up-and-up” as self evident truths. The point I’m trying to make, however, is that the desire to be the “hot handicapper: is so great that the tout felt he had to embellish a solid performance the night before.

So despite the fact that some handicappers like about their performance, what’s wrong with trying to ride the hot handicapper? Plenty-it’s not only an ineffective way to evaluate a handicapper’s abilities, it also has a number of statistical and theoretical shortcomings.

The simplest way to explain what I’m talking about is to borrow a disclaimer that you’ll hear on every commercial for a mutual fund: “Past performance is no guarantee of future results”. The sports gambling milieu, like those of stocks, commodities and other financial instruments, is a marketplace and subject to a number of the same tendencies of other financial institutions (what economists call “market dynamics”).

The fact that a sports wager’s success or failure is dependent to a degree on the “whims” of a marketplace (of odds and pointspreads) and to a greater degree on other external events outside of the bettor’s control exacerbates what is already a matter of simple logic: what a handicapper does over a period of time (be it a day, week, month or season) has no intrinsic correlation between a handicapper’s performance one year and the next. In other words, the sports gambling marketplace and the random patterns of events that act upon them don’t care if I hit 60% last year. If I don’t do my work, crunch the numbers, get good prices to bet into, and catch a few breaks along the way I may end up beaten regardless of how well I performed in a subsequent period of time.

Boobala Darling Wins A Cruise: Part 5 of 9 (A Fictional Story Staged In Brooklyn)

The Opportunist: Makes His Mark

Uncle Jake was quite taken aback by the unexpected news. He was against his nephew wanting to marry at such a young age. Besides, he was not too pleased with his choice. He felt his handsome nephew deserved something better than this unattractive girl, but she might end up being a devoted wife. He turned to Harry and asked: “Do her parents know you are getting married?”

“No they don’t, Uncle Jake. They dislike me big time, and I don’t know why. They are threatening to send her to an aunt in California to keep us apart. Boobala and I love each other very much and it would break my heart if she left. Since we are of age, we have decided to elope. I am hoping as my Uncle you will give us your approval and help us out financially.”

Uncle Jake couldn’t understand the rush. “Is she pregnant?”

“No, Uncle she’s not pregnant,” he answered.

Jake was still uneasy about the coming marriage. How could he give his approval when he knew that Harry was emotionally immature and irresponsible. Of course, he had to painfully admit he was partly to blame. He was sorry that the kid got a bum deal out of life, with his mom dying when he was so young and a dad who didn’t care. Maybe that’s why he spoiled him so much. He hoped that Harry would become a responsible adult once he married. Jake agreed to get them a furnished room and kitchenette, the rent paid up for a year. He even bought him a suit for the wedding with all the accessories to match.

Harry never seemed to be satisfied with what he got. He always wanted more. In planning the wedding, Boobala had suggested to Harry that they go on a cruise to the Bahamas for their honeymoon. She had always dreamed of going on a cruise. “It’s so romantic,” she would say. Harry angrily snapped at her: “What are you crazy, I get seasick easy. Do you want me to spend our honeymoon throwing up? Besides it would be dull with nothing to watch but watch the sea, so forget about it. I’d rather go to Las Vegas where the action is. It’s more fun.”

As a last shot, to squeeze some more money out of his uncle, he reminded him about the honeymoon. “Hey uncle,” Harry turned on his famous charm, “since I’m your only kin, why don’t you send us to Las Vegas for a week’s honeymoon. I always wanted to go there.” He was looking for a way to escape his wedding night consummation, which he was not bargaining for.

Uncle Jake was annoyed. “What the hell do you think I am, a [email protected]#[email protected]% ATM? Listen dude, the buck stops here. I’ve spent enough already on this wedding. You want to go that bad, then you can work and save your money if you like.” This was the first time that Uncle Jake exploded towards him, and the first time Harry didn’t get his way. He was mad as hell. Already at 19 years of age, Harry had begun to drink and bet heavily. His best friend Billie Boy always had a stash of beer and wine on hand whenever Harry needed it. Uncle Jake didn’t even have a clue that Harry was drinking and gambling. He only knew that he smoked. In his eyes, Harry was always a good kid, a little wild-eyed but good. There was nothing about him that should cause concern.

No: 7 (9-7-2011)

To be continued: Part 6 of 9 of Boobala Darling Wins A Cruise

The Last Cowboy by Daniel Uebbing

A Western Drama in a Modern Setting

“The Last Cowboy” is a fictional story of Henry Dunn. Henry swaggered into a bar in Strickland, Oregon. His insolence offended the drunken sheriff who challenged Henry to a duel. Henry wins the duel but is forced to leave Oregon after killing the sheriff.

Daniel Uebbing has written a spoof on the West depicted by the genre of writing found in pulp Western novels and in Western movie and TV scripts. He has overlaid the Old West to a contemporary setting, with neon lights, movie stars, modern day malls and conveniences.

Uebbing follows Henry’s hardships as he travels from Oregon to Las Vegas, keeping one step ahead of the law in this tongue in cheek parody. While in Las Vegas Henry spent or lost his money by gambling, on drugs, and on prostitutes.

When Henry hit bottom, he thought of Angie, his high school sweetheart in Kansas. He decided to change his life once and for all. Henry heads east to return to Angie. In his mock epic Uebbing puts Henry in a bizarre experience with a group of drop out Bohemians. Graphic descriptions portray exaggerated sex and violence intended to satirize a seamy side of life.

Henry’s travels take him through the desert, the Grand Canyon, Nebraska, Tennessee, and the Badlands of South Dakota. His companion for much of his journey was the young son of a dead prostitute. The “Kid” was in search of the American dream, a home, a mother, and taste of idealism. He died in an accident in South Dakota and never got to meet Angie in “Mid America.”

Daniel Uebbing has captured the discrepancies between what we read in our Western novels and the actual history of the West in his book “The Last Cowboy” He uses a surrealistic satiric mock epic style to prove that we still have real cowboys today. Debauchery, drunkenness and alcohol are the evil pitted against a heroic renegade or a powerful sheriff. Add an underlying message of the American ideal and the result is a parody on the American way of life.

Robert D. Reed Publishers, 978-1934759134,

As Reviewed for Midwest Book Review

Stu Ungar – Gambler, Addict, Loser, Legend

If you chance upon a cluster of people at a party chitchatting about great poker players, there would be no doubt that you would hear the name Stu Ungar come up at least once. There are a lot of people in the poker world who actually consider Stu Ungar the greatest poker player of all time – second to none. Of course there would be those who would contest that but the greater majority would agree that Stu Ungar was one of a kind.

Born in September 8, 1953 as Stuart Errol Ungar, he was nicknamed “The Kid.” He was born to Jewish parents in Manhattan’s Lower East Side. Though Stu is most known for being a poker player, he actually started out playing gin rummy. His skills were such that at the age of ten, he won a local tournament. Four years later, he was already one of the best gin rummy players in New York. As his father had died in 1968, he dropped out of school to focus on playing at gin rummy tournaments to help support his family.

Stu’s genius in gin rummy proved to be too much for his opponents. Eventually, no one would want to play with him anymore as he beat them too badly. He soon moved Las Vegas and proceeded to make his reputation in gin rummy there as well. After a while, the same situation evolved – no one would set up a match with him as he would just grind them to pieces. That was when he channeled his attention to poker.

In 1980, Stu made a name for himself in poker when he beat Doyle Brunson, a poker legend by his own rights, at the World Series of Poker. Stu is the only poker player to have won both the WSOP title and the Super Bowl of Poker three times! In fact, by the time he was 25 years old, Stu had won the WSOP twice already. He earned his last title in 1997 when he played at the WSOP for the last time.

Stu was not only into gin rummy and poker but was a great blackjack player as well. This could be attributed to the fact that he had a very high IQ – a genius, that is – and he had a photographic memory as well. This served him well in card counting and he was eventually barred from a lot of casinos because of this skill.

Not all was rosy in Stu’s life, though. He was known for his drug abuse and troubled marriage. In those days, professional poker players were not known for their polite behavior as well. Stu was quite well known for dealer abuse. This poker great’s life ended in 1998 when his body was found at the Oasis Hotel. Autopsies recorded that he had drugs in his system though they were not indicated as the main cause of death. However, records showed that the heart failure that killed him was a result of years of drug abuse.

I think the best thing to remember Stu by would be one of his quotes: “Some day, I suppose it’s possible for someone to be a better no limit hold ’em player than me. I doubt it, but it could happen. But, I swear to you, I don’t see how anyone could ever play gin better than me.”

Poker in Mexico

Although poker in Mexico’s casinos is legal in certain areas, it is only in the last few years that the card game has become more popular among its residents and now we are beginning to see more Mexican poker players winning major tournaments around the world, on a daily basis. Take for example two of Mexico’s most successful players – Victor Perches, winner of a WSOP Bracelet in 2006, and Mexico’s most recent WSOP Bracelet winner, Angel Guillen, who took home the prize back in 2009.

Perches, originally from Chihuahua, Mexico, arrived to the United States almost 30 years ago and shortly thereafter began a successful poker career. With plans of working in a food processing plant in Oregon, Perches moved to Las Vegas shortly thereafter. Even though it wasn’t in his original plans, Perches eventually worked his way up to the 2006 World Series of Poker and won the first WSOP Bracelet in Mexico’s history. At the age of 57 years-old, Victoriano Perches cashed in a cool $157,338 and the title of being the first Mexican poker player to win a coveted WSOP Bracelet in the tournament’s history.

Angel “Boloban” Guillen is relatively new to the professional poker scene, but in his short career has already seen his fair share of big wins. It was at the LAPT in Punta del Este where he cashed in for a huge $99,920 prize and took third place in this prestigious poker tournament. Following up that big win, in 2009 the Mexico City native entered the World Series of Poker $2,500 No-Limit Hold’em event and took second place for a very impressive $312,800 cash prize. Many would have called it a day after a win like that, but Angel followed it up only 10 days later with a first place win in the $2,000 No Limit Hold’em Event and cashed in a massive prize of $530,548! With this win, Guillen became only the second poker player from Mexico to win a World Series of Poker Bracelet.

Although professional poker players in Mexico are few and far between, players such as these show promise that one day this highly-populated country will become a driving force in online and live poker tournaments around the world. “Like Chris Moneymaker did for you (in the U.S.), I want to do the same thing in my country. Hopefully, I can.” said Guillen regarding his future poker career.