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Thursday, January 21, 2010

Singer/Songwriter Billy Ocean (born Leslie Sebastian Charles), 21 January 1950, Fyzabad, Trinidad." "Caribbean Queen", "Loverboy", "When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough Get Going", "Get Outta My Dreams, Get into My Car".


Correction---Western Finance & Lease
 Classified Ads---Operations
  Funders complain about Brokers/Discounters
   by Christopher Menkin
Companies No Longer taking Independent Broker Business
 Sheldon Player explains Greyhound $75 Million Theft
  Lakeland Reports $5.4 Million Year-end Loss
Positive News at US Bancorp/Manifest
 Classified Ads---Help wanted
  Android overtaking Blackberry/IPhone
2009 CLP Accomplishment Report
 by Theresa Kabot, CLP/Chris Walker, CLP
The Lovely Bones/Red Cliff & new on DVD:
  Whip It/This Is It/Moscow, Belgium
    Reviews by Fernando Croce
 Kingwood, Texas---Adopt-a-Dog
News Briefs---
 Small Business Lending down $1 billion
  NY Times to charge for frequent access in 2011
   Pizzeria Uno parent company files for Chapter 11
    Construction Jobs Hard Hit in Washington State
   Rain Wallops SF Bay Area
 You May have Missed---
  Sports Briefs
   Gimme that wine
 Today's Top Event in History
    This Day in American History
     Football Poem
       Daily Puzzle
  Weather, USA or specific area
     Traffic Live----

New Series Monday: Success Stories
GreatAmerica Leasing

######## surrounding the article denotes it is a “press release”



Correction---Western Finance & Lease

The weather in California is very bad, rain and mudslides, power outages. In the Los Gatos-Saratoga area we have had wind up to 75mph, heavy rain, flooding, trees down, power outages, and Comcast out in the entire area; Los Gatos received the highest rainfall from the storm in the SF Bay Area: 7.56 inches.

Leasing News has DSL backup and heavy-duty batteries on the back-up computer, as well as a portable as all work is done on a “flash stick.” There have been times in the past where I had to go to Kinko’s to get an edition out.

Tuesday the power went out and I had a short time to get the edition to the web master to post as I did not know if power would go back on or how long the computer back-up batteries would last and made a poor decision. I didn’t have the time to proof anything and went for it with the Western Finance & Lease ad.

I felt like the football coach who needs to score and decides not to go for the field goal, but the touchdown. I should have been like old George Seifert and take the safe, conservative approach.

I apologize for the typo’s in the ad as it is my error for posting it.

Kit Menkin, editor

National Business Development Manager 
With seven years experience including current existing book of business. Remote Office Okay. Click here for more info.

Western Finance & Lease, a subsidiary of Western State Bank established in 1901, solicits originations throughout the US and provides
funding solutions for a wide range of industries.



Classified Ads---Operations

N. Phoenix, Arizona
Kathleen Gibbons-Erler. Eleven years experience in all office operations, including but not limited to lease processing. Excellent follow up skills. References on

Acton, MA
Strong experience in lease accounting, operations, & systems.  
Implemented lease plus, great plains, networks.
Excellent financial reporting and analysis skills. Looking for new opportunity.
LinkedIn | Resume

For a full listing of all “job wanted” ads, please go to:

Other e-Mail Posting Sites:



Funders complain about Brokers/Discounters
by Christopher Menkin

“The person with the gold, makes the rules.”
The Golden Rule

While the list of companies no longer taking independent leasing brokers has grown, some no longer in business, so has the news of funders cutting off brokers, cutting back on broker business, considering it too expensive to continue with many who seem too desperate to get the transaction done.

Information from a highly reliable source indicates that Bank of the West Leasing is close to finalizing a comprehensive review of their broker/lessor relationships, which is in a normal course of business for them.   It is believed that they will be reducing their number of active relationships by approximately 15%. 

As with other reviews by other funders, the criteria for the review consists of funding volume, portfolio performance (delinquency and charge offs) as well as other various performance criteria. This has been a long time practice by the industry.

Leasing News does not want to appear negative concerning Bank of the West as they have been servicing the needs of the broker/lessor community since 1972, remaining consistently firmly committed to this market.

It is reported after the reduction they will maintain over 250 active relationships. Leasing News is told Bank of the West Leasing will continue actively seeking new ones that are willing to commit to minimum volume and performance requirements.”

It has been the conception that the cost of doing business with a broker is “free,” meaning they get paid a commission only. The fact is that it takes a support team to coordinate application, often a different department than sales personnel on staff, as well as independents have increased their turn-down ratio, and worse, they signed-to-approval ratio, as well as a higher problem or write-off ratio than experienced company sales personnel.

Internal studies have indicated that direct sales personnel seeking vendor business is the most cost effective manner to attract and maintain business. The trend the last two years has been moving into it, thus the list of companies doing business with brokers is growing, as well as more and more brokers are being told their volume is not good, also meaning the quality and performance factors are also too high ( not wanting to go into a legal debate, often the brokers is not told the entire story by one or two funder representatives, and just as often, the broker in making the complaint about being cut off to a colleague, also doesn’t disclose the entire reasons.)

There are companies that allow independents to access their statistics so it should not come as a surprise when the volume has been down for quite awhile, or the delinquency list of transactions they have sent has grown, or the charge off record. Others print monthly reports. Whether either is available, the real truth is if there is a surprise, it is a lack of paying attention to the relationship itself.

The funder complaints are not just with new brokers/discounters, but with veteran companies, including those run by CLP’s or have the title of National Association of Equipment Leasing (NAELB) “NAELB Best Practices Broker” designation. In fact, one company who holds both has received complaints here, but to groups they are considered members. Leasing News was told by one inside source the NAELB board was considering three such member complaints, going through their Ethics Committee, the first state of member review. Contrary to perhaps popular belief, NAELB has for a long time “policed” its members and also was an active early supporter as an association, and as individual members, of

The CLP Foundation on their new web site has a section to receive complaints, and has set up a procedure to review these complaints on a formal basis.

There has been a trend for brokers to join other discounters, that not being able to get approvals has forced them to work for an agency who has a more wide variety of sources. At the the same time, the cost of a back office or the lower volume not being able to seek the volume for a “back office” company, has turned them to working for a larger lessor or captive lessor.

Several brokers have told Leasing News they have been actively engaged in loan activity, such as factoring of advance credit card programs.

Another major factor are the number of vendors who have entered the marketplace to earn better commissions on sales by participating in referral fees. This has been going on for years and many funders also publish their commission schedule for vendors ( often the same as brokers.) When sales are down, everyone is looking for a new way to make some extra money.

It looks like 2010 will be as tough, or maybe even worse for independents.


Leasing Companies Out of Broker Business

These are companies who are either out of business who worked with independent equipment leasing brokers or no longer are doing business with independent equipment brokers within the last year. This is not a list of companies who do not do business with independent equipment brokers.

ACC Capital Corporation, Salt Lake City, Utah
(no longer "application only"-new $100,000 mininum)
Advantage Business Capital, Lake Oswego, Oregon
AEL Financial, Buffalo Grove, Illinois
*(No longer taking new broker business)
Balboa Capital, Irvine, Ca
Bankers Healthcare Group, Weston, FL.
C and J Leasing Corp, Des Moines, Iowa
Chesterfield Financial, Chesterfield, Missouri
Churchill Group/Churchill Leasing, Jericho, NY
CIT Group (limited)
Columbia Bank Leasing, Tacoma, WA
Concord Financial Services, Long Beach, California
Court Square, Malvern, Pennsylvania
Creative Capital Leasing Group, LLC, San Diego, CA
Direct Capital, Portsmouth, New Hampshire
Diversified Financial Service, Omaha, NE
Dolsen Leasing, Bellevue/Yakima, Washington
Equipment Finance Partners, a division of Altec, Birmingham, Alabama
Evans National Leasing, Inc., Hamburg, NY
Enterprise Funding, Grand Rapids, Michigan
Excel Financial Leasing, Lubbock Texas
First Corp.(IFC subsidiary), Morton Grove, Illinois
First Republic Bank, San Francisco, Ca
GE Capital, Conn (limited)
Global Funding LLC., Clearwater, FL
Greystone, Burlington, MA
Heritage Pacific Leasing, Fresno, CA
Hillcrest Bank Leasing, Overland Park, KS
Huntington Equipment Finance, Vendor Finance Group,
IFC Credit Corp., Morton Grove, Illinois
Bellevue, Washington
Irwin Financial (Irwin Union Bank), Columbus, Indiana
Irwin Union Bank, F.S.B. (Louisville, Kentucky)
Lakeland Bank, Montville, NJ
LaSalle Systems Leasing
LEAF Third Party Funding, Santa Barbara, Ca.
Lombard, part of Royal Bank of Scotland, worldwide
Marlin Leasing, Mount Laurel, NJ
Marquette Business Credit Inc., Minneapolis, Minnesota
M&T Credit (Bank)
MericapCredit, Lisle, Illinois
Merrill Lynch Financial
Mesa Leasing, San Diego, California
Midwest Leasing Group,Livonia, MI
National City, Cleveland, Ohio
Navigator (Pentech subsidiary) San Diego, California
OFC Capital, Roswell, Georgia
Old National Bank, Evansville, Illinois
Pentech Financial, Campbell, CA
PFF Bancorp, Inc, Pomona, CA
Pinnacle Business Finance, Fife, Washington
Pioneer Capital Corporation, Addison, Texas
PredictiFund, a subsidiary of Capital Access Network, Inc
Popular Finance, St. Louis, Missouri
Radiance-Capital, Tacoma, WA
Rational Technology Solutions, Rolling Meadows, IL
Sandy Springs, Olney, MD
Sovereign Bank, Melville, New York
Specialty Funding, Albuquerque, NM
SunBridge Capital, Mission, Kansas
Suncoast Equipment Funding Corp., Tampa, Florida
TechLease, Morgan Hill, California
Textron Financial
Triad Leasing & Financial, Inc., Boise, Idaho
Union Capital Partners, Midvale, Utah
Velocity Financial Group, Rosemont, Illinois
VenCore, Portland, Oregon
Vision Capital,San Diego, California
Wachovia Bank Leasing
Washington Mutual Financial
Western Bank, Devils Lake, ND
Westover Financial, Inc., Santa Ana, California



Sheldon Player explains Greyhound $75 Million Theft

Greycas Inc. and another Greyhound unit, Greyhound Leasing & Financial Corp., were bilked of over $75 million by one Sheldon Player, a former Vernal, Utah, resident assumed to be in the machine and oilfield equipment sales business, who gained the money through fraudulently obtained loans from Greyhound. Greycas then devised an elaborate cover-up scheme to prevent disclosure of details about the loss.

This episode began at the beginning of the 1980's with one $600,000 loan. Player and his companies would sell Greycas heavy machine tools, lease them back and then pretend to sublease the expensive devices to end-users. In most cases the machines, which were collateral for the loans, were non-existent.

Leasing News can state the above as not alleged, as Player was convicted and sent to Federal penitentiary. On May 1, 2007 in a telephone interview, Player said those who were dealing with Equipment Acquisition Resource were aware of his background. After the alert was published, Leasing News called many of those funders recorded in UCC’s and they were not aware of his background.

After the alert was printed in Leasing News, Sheldon changed his name on his business card to Gerard and did not return the call that was to explain the “true story” of what happened at Greyhound.

Below is his explanation to one funder in his own handwriting, and a copy of one to another typed on company letterhead (they are the same story below:)

“In 1978 (at age 28) I resided in the small oilfield town of Vernal, UT, where I developed real-estate primarily for the oil industry. I built 3 Industrial Parks with 29 steel buildings which included a new overhead bridge cranes in the structures.

“Financing was always difficult in those days, especially in small towns. When I began in 1978, I was approached through a broker by Greyhound Leasing. They wanted new equipment deals for the investment tax credit.

“They proposed financing of our overhead bridge cranes systems so they could get the investment tax credit_ We successfully did a couple of buildings that way and it was fine_ They did not want real-estate, so it still left us to seek real-estate mortgages in a very tough market. Out of the clear blue one day, the lease rep suggested we add in money, as he felt the steel building structures would warrant the increased prices for the cranes. This gave us adequate money to build the entire facility.

“We leased these direct to Fortune 500 Oil Companies on 7-10 year triple net leases to Greyhound by sub-lease. Also out of the blue on several transactions, Greyhound employee stuck his hand out for cash payoffs.

“Being young and stupid, I paid him. This went on for 6 years and 29 facilities, until Greyhound auditors wanted to inspect. They of coarse determined their position was weak because they had no mortgage on the real estate.

“Second mistake I made was yielding to their request to roll all the leases over to a real estate note, which basically was a cover up and subsequently brought a stockholder derivative suit against the officers at Greyhound (who were fired later on).

“It was also discovered they took money from the rep who hit me up for money. The bottom line was, I went in and stopped all the madness, knowing what I had done wrong. I cooperated for 4 years to see that all the money was retrieved through asset sales of real estate and equipment.

“My restitution was only $500K from the entire $70M which was satisfied. I took full responsibility and made more then full apologies, plus saw it al through to the end. I do not absolve myself from making to wrong decisions. I learned some hard lessons, but learned them as well.

“When I started EAR, I vowed to do the right things the right way, which includes CPA reviewed financials, equipment inspections, and site visits. This yields much comfort for our lenders. We actually insist on equipment appraisals for each transaction.”

Below is the 1989 Court record, 89 pages, which these highlight should sum part of it up:
“…these fraudulent circumstances also resulted in four criminal convictions in the District Court for the District of Arizona. In March of 1986, Player entered into a plea of guilty before this court to two counts of interstate transportation of money taken by fraud, 18 U.S.C. § 2314, and one count of mail fraud, 18 U.S.C. § 1341. He was sentenced in December of 1988, and is presently serving his prison term.”

Handwritten Account by Sheldon Player:

Account faxed to a funder:

1989 Court Record

Previous Articles:


Lakeland Reports $5.4 Million Year-end Loss

Lakeland Bancorp, Inc. (Nasdaq: LBAI), Oak Ridge, New Jersey reports a Net Loss for the year ended December 31, 2009 of $5.4 million, compared to Net Income of $15.2 million reported for 2008. The asset of leases on their balance sheet at year end were $113.1 million from $311.4 million the previous year end.

"Total loans, exclusive of leasing loans, increased by $68 million, or 4%, for the fourth quarter," Thomas J. Shara, Lakeland Bancorp's President and CEO, said. "Non-performing loans decreased by $3.5 million in the fourth quarter, while the ratio of allowance for loan and lease losses to total loans was 1.27% at year end, as compared to 1.23% at September 30, 2009. Capital ratios remained well in excess of regulatory requirements."

Full Lakeland Bancorp Fourth Quarter report:

History from “The List:”
"Lakeland Bank ,Oak Ridge, NJ (07/09) Takes loss of $12.7 million their second quarter, they state negatively impacted by a loan and lease loss provision of $34.1 million compared to a provision of $8.2 million in the second quarter of 2008, reflecting the Company's decision to reduce exposure in its leasing portfolio. The second quarter provision allocated $28.4 million to leasing, including the previously reported charge-off of $9.5 million on the sale of $33.1 million of lease pools and a write-down for other lease pools held for sale. (01/09)"The higher provision includes $8.5 million related to the leasing division for the fourth quarter and $17.8 million for the full year. During the fourth quarter, a second leasing originator indicated that it could no longer fulfill all of its obligations under contractual recourse provisions. The Company had $37.8 million outstanding from this originator representing 860 individual leases of which approximately 83% were current or less than 30 days past due." (10/08) Lets go its Equipment Leasing Division President Stephen Schachtel by “mutual agreement, “as per the SEC filing. Chief Executive Officer Tom Shara said the replacement of Schachtel with the division's number two man, Robert Ingram, is part of a plan to downsize the leasing business. “We want to go to a local leasing platform. We don't want to do a national lease book of business,” said the former TD Banknorth executive who took over as CEO in April after former President & CEO Roger Bosma retired. Heavy losses in truck leasing reported, particularly by one major lessee."


Positive News at US Bancorp/Manifest

U.S. Bancorp (NYSE: USB) reported net income of $602 million for the fourth quarter of 2009, compared to net income of $330 million for the fourth quarter of 2008.

It appears the leasing division, US Bancorp Manifest is holding its own, only down 3.6% for the year-end, but charge offs improve and business holds its own despite the down small ticket leasing marketplace:

(in millions)
4Q 2009: $6,489
3Q 2009: $6,567
4Q 2008: $6,608
Full year (2009:)$46,197
Full year (2008:)$47,903

The US Bankcorp report also noted: "Commercial products revenue was $28 million (17.8 percent) higher than the third quarter of 2009 due to increases across a majority of products including commercial leasing revenue, standby letters of credit, capital markets and commercial loan fees."

It should also be noted allowance for credit losses has decreased:

(in millions)
4Q 2009: $33
3Q 2009: $44
2Q 2009: $55

The US Bancorp report also stated, "Net charge-offs and nonperforming assets continued to trend higher, reflecting the recessionary economic environment, although excluding covered assets, the rate of increase continued to moderate during the fourth quarter of 2009."

US Bancorp reported "portfolios. Net charge-offs in the fourth quarter of 2009 were $1,110 million, compared with $1,041 million in the third quarter of 2009 and $632 million in the fourth quarter of 2008. Given current economic conditions and the weakness in home prices and the economy in general, the Company expects net charge-offs will increase during the first quarter of 2010, but expects the rate of increase will decline."

In 2009:
* The Company acquired the banking subsidiaries of FBOP Corporation of Oak Park, Illinois ("FBOP Banks") from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation ("FDIC") on October 30, 2009. Combined, these subsidiaries:
* Expanded the branch distribution network by 150 branches in: California (113), Illinois (32), Texas
(3) and Arizona (2)
* Added $13.2 billion of loans to the Company's portfolio at December 31, 2009, and $8.9 billion of average loans for the fourth quarter of 2009. All of the loans are covered under loss sharing agreements with the FDIC, which limit the Company's credit loss exposure
* Added $14.4 billion of deposits at December 31, 2009, and $10.1 billion of average deposits for the fourth quarter of 2009

It also should be reported even with all the activity above, and the decline in the economy itself, the bank equity is increasing, perhaps going back to its:

(in millions)
4Q 2008: $26,000
2Q 2009: $24,171
3Q 2009: $25,171
4Q 2009: $25,963

Tier 1 capital ratio: 9.6%

Full 53 page US Bancorp 4th Quarter Results:


Classified Ads — Help Wanted

National Business Development Manager 
With seven years experience including current existing book of business. Remote Office Okay. Click here for more info.

Western Finance & Lease, a subsidiary of Western State Bank established in 1901, solicits originations throughout the US and provides
funding solutions for a wide range of industries.



Android overtaking Blackberry/IPhone reports mobile browsing now accounts for 1.3% of all browsing. The biggest usage share winners this holiday season were mobile devices. Both Windows and Mac devices lost a small amount of share in December, while all major mobile operating systems attained large percentage gains:

Mobile O/S Percentage Gain (November - December)
Android +54.8%
Blackberry +22.2%
iPhone +20.1%
Symbian +19.0%
Java ME +15.6%



Microsoft continues to lose its browser share as Google's Chrome browser is now the third most popular browser in usage share. Chrome recently passed Safari and now has 4.6% usage share.


2009 CLP Accomplishment Report

by Theresa Kabot, CLP, immediate past president
Chris Walker, 2010 President, board of directors

Despite a challenging year for the industry, the CLP Program had a productive and successful year. The dedication and enthusiasm of the Board of Directors together with an ad hoc task force played a large role in focusing our efforts in 2009. There is one thing that has not changed for the CLP Foundation; distinguishing yourself as a someone with exceptional reputation, experience and industry knowledge is vital - not only to success, but to survival.

In 2009 the Foundation approved and accepted 33 applications for CLP certification, an increase of 75% over 2008. Of these, five have passed the exam and earned certification and 28 are studying and working with mentors as they prepare for examination in 2010. Examinations have already been scheduled to follow two CLP Master Review Courses being offered at the NEFA Spring Conference in March and the NAELB Annual conference in April.

Photo at conference

Rob Crivello, CLP, Windsor Capital Finance Inc., Theresa Kabot, CLP,K2 Funding,
Steve Crane, Bank of the West Leasing, CLP
NAELB Regional Costa Mesa Meeting, October 2009
(Photo courtesy Theresa Kabot, CLP)

Many industry veterans have become accustomed to seeing CLP at NEFA ( and NAELB ( conferences as both associations understand the importance of CLP and have been loyal supporters of the CLP program since its inception.

Kevin Clune, CLP, Clune & Co., his wife Mary Kay Clune, Shari Lipski, CLP, ECS Financial Services Inc., Cindy Spurdle, Executive Director, CLP Foundation, and Nancy Geary, CLP, ECS Financial Services Inc.(photo courtesy Theresa Kabot, CLP)

A new focus in 2009 was the ELFA Annual Conference. The CLP program shares mutual objectives with ELFA as both organizations are instrumental in the education, training and development, as well as commitment to high levels of standards and ethics of their members. The Foundation received three applications for certification at the ELFA Conference.

CLP also launched an enhanced website in 2009, which includes a library of industry literature that can be purchased through the Foundation or via the CLP account.

New for 2010?

· A new edition of the CLP Handbook is undergoing final edits and will soon be ready for print.
· An update of the CLP Exam to match the revised handbook.
· Enhanced CLP Members Only web page that adds visibility to our CLPs.

In 2010 we will be focused on helping applicants prepare and pass the CLP exam. We will do this by matching each applicant with a mentor and encouraging them to attend a master review class before taking the exam. Review classes will again be offered at the NEFA and NAELB spring and Fall conferences. We are also investigating web based distance learning options that will allow study groups to meet more easily and at a very low cost.

((Please Click on Bulletin Board to learn more information))
(Leasing News provides this ad “gratis” as a means
to help support the growth of Lease Police)


Leasing News: Fernando’s View
By Fernando F. Croce

Acclaimed directors Peter Jackson and John Woo try a change of pace from their usual stories with “The Lovely Bones” and “Red Cliff,” while DVD releases range from girl-power crowd-pleasers (“Whip It”) to behind-the-scenes musicals (“This Is It”) to sweet and sad comedies (“Moscow, Belgium”).

The Lovely Bones (DreamWorks): After dealing with magical wizards and giant apes, director Peter Jackson (“The Lord of the Rings,” “King Kong”) switches from the epic to the intimate in this adaptation of Alice Sebold’s best-selling novel. Set in the 1970s, it tells the tragic tale of Susie Salmon (Saoirse Ronan), a 14-year-old girl whose life is cut short by an encounter with a killer (Stanley Tucci). While her parents (Mark Wahlberg, Rachel Weisz) mourn her, the girl’s soul continues to watch the actions of her family (and of her murderer) from a cosmic abode. Will she be able to reach Heaven, or will unfinished business bind her to this purgatory? Jackson mixes disturbing and poignant effects, but it’s Ronan’s performance that anchors this visually arresting fairy-tale.

Red Cliff (Magnolia Pictures): It’s been a while since an epic adventure like John Woo’s sweeping chronicle of Chinese history. Weaving together the narratives of a power-hungry general (Fengyi Zhang) and of alliance of the two rival warlords (Tony Leung, Takeshi Kaneshiro) in A.D. 208, the film offers a remarkably fluid procession of deals, vendettas, betrayals, and power struggles for control of a burgeoning nation. A master of cinematic action, Woo (better known for his violent Hong Kong thrillers) creates a gorgeous and exciting fresco of shifting alliances, stirring sacrifices and eye-filling battlegrounds. Long without ever becoming boring, the film has some of the sweep of “Lawrence of Arabia” but with a cultural resonance all of its own. With subtitles.

Netflix tip: The Palo Alto Stanford Theater is offering a comprehensive festival of Jennifer Jones movies, but you can start your own tribute to the late, great actress with your Netflix queue. Some suggestions: “Duel in the Sun,” “Beat the Devil,” “Portrait of Jennie,” and “Indiscretion of an American Wife.”

New on DVD:

Whip It (Fox Searchlight Pictures): Drew Barrymore makes her directorial debut with this vivacious comedy-drama set in the rollicking subculture of female roller derby skaters. Ellen Page ("Juno") adds another character to her gallery of spunky outsiders with Bliss Cavendar, a waitress who trades life in a small Texas town for the rough and tumble rush of skating competitions in an all-girl Austin league. Dealing with tough competitors, tomboyish friends, and possible boyfriends, Bliss finds her voice along with her footing in the derby arena. Barrymore (who also co-stars) may still have much to learn about filmmaking, but her affection for her characters and for her cast (which also includes Juliette Lewis and Marcia Gay Harden) make this good-natured tale of girl-power hard to resist.

This Is It (Columbia Pictures): With all the hoopla surrounding his eccentricities and scandals, it's often easy to forget what an astounding performer Michael Jackson really was. This unique behind-the-scenes look at the singer's last concert, made not long before his death this summer, gives viewers an exhilarating reminder of him as both an entertainer and an artist. The film has glimpses of Jackson practicing with a troupe of dancer in preparation for a London concert, and it includes generous doses of his greatest hits ("Billie Jean," "Thriller," "Beat It," "Black or White"). Director Kenny Ortega is an experienced hand at musical choreography (he's responsible for the last "High School Musical" installments), and the way he captures Jackson at work should impress fans and non-fans alike.

Moscow, Belgium (NeoClassical Films): Matty (Barbara Sarafian) is not having a good day: As a postal clerk struggling to rein in her rebellious daughters after her husband has left her for another woman, the last thing she needs is a fender-bender at the grocery store parking lot. But, as she gets to know the other driver (Jurgen Delnaet) and threats become romantic declarations, the crash may turn out to be the best thing that’s happened to her in months. That’s just the kind of unexpected delight found in Belgian director Christophe Van Rompaey, a highly appealing charmer that keeps surprising the viewer with tiny flares of humor and sweetness reminiscent of independent director Jim Jarmusch (“Broken Flowers”).


Kingwood, Texas---Adopt-a-Dog

Schultzie Male German Shepherd Mix
DOB 2/09
Contact: Irene:

Schultzie is a well-socialized, happy, healthy German Shepherd mix. He is affectionate with people and other dogs and enjoys playing with older children. Schultzie has wonderful house manners for a pup, uses a doggie door and is non destructive. Schultzie is housebroken and bilingual (German and English!). He¹s up to date on shots and neutered. If you would like more information about one of the dogs featured above, be sure to send a note to the "Contact Person." This is the person fostering the dog and they will be happy to answer any questions you have.

Twyla's Friends has dog adoption every Saturday from 1 to 4 p.m. in the parking lot at the Methodist Church in Kingwood. To get there from downtown Houston, take 59N, exit Kingwood Dr., make a right, go to Woodland Hills Dr. and make another right. Go to Crystal Springs and make a right into the parking lot. Please don't just show up at Adoption Day expecting every dog to be there. We are limited by the number of volunteers who can help at each Adoption Day.

Also, in sending your note to the Contact Person, be sure to include information about yourself, family, home, yard, fence, other pets, work situation, and pet accommodations. This information will help us make the best match between you and one of our dogs.”

Twyla's Friends
526 Kingwood Dr. #321
Kingwood, TX 77339
Phone: 832 488 7937
Email: or

Adopt-a-Pet by Leasing Co. State/City

Adopt a Pet


News Briefs----

Small Business Lending down $1 billion

NY Times to charge for frequent access in 2011

Pizzeria Uno parent company files for Chapter 11,0,3361993.story

Construction Jobs Hard Hit in Washington State

Rain Wallops SF Bay Area


You May have Missed---

Signs point to Friday farewell for Conan O'Brien



Sports Briefs----

Oakland Raiders deny reports about interviewing prospective head coaches




“Gimme that Wine”

Exploring Bordeaux’s Other Side --by Eric Asimov

Top California Wine Realtor Dies at 67

Chilean Winery Reports Huge Export Increase

Online wine seller Vinfolio takes unusual ‘insolvency’ route

Food Network Guy Fieri in Sonoma

Wine Prices by vintage

US/International Wine Events

Winery Atlas

Leasing News Wine & Spirits Page

The London International Vintners Exchange (Liv-ex) is an electronic exchange for fine wine.



Today's Top Event in History

1975- Officials at the National Hockey League All-Star game made history by allowing female reporters in the players' locker rooms, a first for American professional sports. The coaches of the two squads arranged for reporters to interview players before they took their showers.


This Day in American History


    1642 – Director of the New Netherlands colony, Willem Kieft, calls for a meeting of the Twelve (family representatives) to organize a military response to the increasing raids of the Hudson River Valley Tribe. This tribe is reacting to pressure from the growing Iroquois to the north and increasing European settlement in the south. 
    1648- Margaret Brent made her claim as America's first feminist by demanding a voice and vote for herself in the Maryland colonial assembly. Brent came to America in 1638 and was the first woman to own property in Maryland. At the time of her demands she was serving as secretary to Governor Leonard Calvert. She was ejected from the meetings, but when Calvert died she became his executor and acting governor, presiding over the General Assembly. History records this event as the beginning of the woman suffrage movement in America. In 1640, she became the first woman barrister in America, officially the colonial attorney for Cecilius Calvert, Lord Proprietor of Maryland.
    1738- Ethan Allan, Revolutionary War soldier and leader of the Vermont "Green Mountain Boys." born at Lichfield, CT, he died at Burlington, VT, Feb 12, 1789. History finds him quite an opportunist who high school history books have painted quite a different picture of his actual deeds. He actually missed most of the revolutionary war because he was in British prison. He led several movements, including a military effort, to join both New York and Vermont with Canada.
( see: Legends, Lies and Cherished Myths of American History by Richard Shenkman )
    1785 - Chippewa, Delaware, Ottawa and Wyandot tribes signed a treaty of Fort McIntosh, ceding present-day Ohio to the United States    
    1801 -- "Federal Bonfire Number Two": a mysterious fire sweeps the offices of the Department of Treasury, destroying books and papers, after Republicans demanded proof that the expenditures of Timothy Pickering, the recently replaced Federalist Secretary of War, could be properly accounted for. He was censured by Congress. He was re-elected to Congress for two more terms, then retired.
    1812 - The famous Y-bridge in Zanesville, Ohio, was given approval for construction.
    1824-Birthday of Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson, Confederate general and one of the most famous soldiers of the American Civil War, best known as "Stonewall" Jackson. Born at Clarksburg, VA (now WV). At the first Battle of Bull Run on July 21, 1861, Union forces under Gen. Irvin McDowell were defeated by the Confederates. McDowell delayed the attack for two days, allowing Confederate Gen. Beauregard to call on reinforcements from the Shenandoah Valley. Their arrival late in the day gave the Confederates a numerical advantage. It was in this battle that Confederate Gen. Thomas J. Jackson was nicked named ‘Stonewall” for his firm stand at a crucial moment. May 2, 1963, General Stonewall Jackson, leading a large part of General lee's army, delivered a devastating blow on General Hooker's right flank. The Battle of Chancellorsville, 50 miles southwest of Washington, DC had started the day before. It was Lee goal to capture Washington, and the chance encounter in Gettysburg stopped him. In this battle, General Robert E. Lee won his greatest victory over huge Union forces under General Joseph Hooker, considered a military idiot, who allowed his men to party and bring prostitutes along ( thus the name Hookers ). In the North, 17,275 were killed or wounded; in the South, 12,821. Reconnoitering with his staff at day's end on May 2, Jackson and his group were mistaken for Union Soldiers and fired upon by their own forces. Jackson's shattered left arm had to be amputated. While he was hospitalized pneumonia set in; his death came on May 10 th in Chancellorsvile, VA.

    1844- John Browning, world famous gun maker and inventor who was taught gunsmithing by his Mormon pioneer father, Jonathan Browning, was born at Ogden, UT. Starting the J.M. & M.S. Browning Arms Company with his brother, he designed guns for Winchester, Remington, Stevens and Colt arms companies, as well as American and European armies. Browning had more gun patents than any other gunsmith in the world. He is best known worldwide for inventing the machine gun in 1890 and the automatic pistol in 1896. He died suddenly Nov 26, 1926- at age 71, while at Belgium on business. The company he founded, known now as Browning Arms Company, is located at Morgan, UT.
    1853- Dr. Russell L. Hawes of Worcester, MA, received a patent for an envelope folding machine that proved practical commercially. It was not self-gumming, but nevertheless it enable three girls to produce the finished product at the rate of about 25,000 envelopes in 10 hours, thus allowing “junk mail” to be economically sent..
    1863 - A severe coastal storm dropped heavy rain on the Fredericksburg area of Virginia. It disrupted a Union Army offensive in an ill famed "mud march"
    1867 -- Patrol Special Officer, Armand Barbier, arrests His Majesty Norton I, Emperor of the United States and Protector of Mexico, for involuntary treatment of a mental disorder and thereby creates a major civic uproar. San Francisco Police Chief Patrick Crowley apologizes to His Majesty & orders him released. Several scathing newspaper editorials follow the arrest. All police officers begin to salute His Majesty when he passed them on the street. 
    1880- the first sewage –disposal system separate from the city water system was built in Memphis, TN, under the direction of George Edwin Waring. The pipes were sewage only and kept constantly cleansed with water and were well ventilated. Other cities copied this new “sewer system.”
    1884- Roger Baldwin, founder of the American Civil Liberties Union, called the "country's unofficial agitator for, and defender of, its civil liberties." Born at Wellesley, MA, he died Aug 26, 1981, at Ridgewood, NJ.
    1943-Birthday of bass player Steve Gilmore, Trenton, NJ
    1915- First Kiwanis Club chartered at Detroit, MI.
    1917-Birthday of pianist Billy Maxted, born Racine, WI. Great pianist, he wrote many arrangements for Ray Eberle; Red Nichols; Will Bradley, and even Benny Goodman. At the end of the big band era, Billy has his own band briefly.

    1920 -- Palmer "Red" Raids now target labor activists and radicals for US government repression. Attorney General A.Mitchell Palmer orders the roundup of all suspected for prosecution & deportation where possible. The man in charge is J. Edgar Hoover. Thousands of people are arrested in a nationwide sweep, most arrests are illegal, without warrants or justification. Thousands are eventually deported.
    1920 -- Author Ernest Hemingway returns to America after his World War I experiences.
    1936-Birthday of Malka Cohen, of the 1960's Canadian folk duo of Malka and Joso, was born in Israel. She met her singing partner, Joso Spralja, in the early '60s at a Toronto coffeehouse, Yorkville 71. The couple toured Canada, and in 1966 appeared at Carnegie Hall in New York. The following year, Malka and Joso appeared before Princess Margaret in England. But 1967 also marked the end of their partnership. Malka Cohen began a second career as an independent radio interviewer.
    1936-Birthday of New Orleans blues singer and guitarist Snooks Eaglin.
    1938- “Wolfman Jack” born Robert Smith at Brooklyn, NY. He became famous as a disc jockey for radio stations at Mexico in the 1960s. Wolfman Jack was influential as a border radio voice because the Mexican station broadcast at 250,000 watts, five times the legal limit for American stations at the time, and therefore he was heard over a vast part of the US. During his night shift he played blues, hillbilly and other black and white music that wasn't getting a lot of exposure. He later appeared on American radio, movies and television as an icon of 1960s radio. Wolfman Jack died July 1, 1995, at Belvedere, NC.
    1940- golfer Jack Nicklaus born Columbus, Ohio

    1941—Birthday of singer/song writer, guitarist Richie Haven

    1942- Duke Ellington records C Jam Blues, Perdidio.
    1943-Birthday of bass player Steve Gilmore, Trenton, NJ
    1946 - On ABC radio, "The Fat Man" debuted, starring J. Scott Smart as the portly detective, who weighed 270 pounds in real life. This was one of my favorite radio shows that I remember listening to, perhaps in the late 1940's. “There he goes. Into that drug store. He's stepping on the scales. Weight? 237 pounds. Fortune? Danger. Whoooo is it? The FAT MANNNNNNNNNNN.” Later I learned perhaps my favorite author Dashiell Hammet was involved in writing for the radio show.

    1949—Top Hits 
Buttons and Bows - Dinah Shore 
A Little Bird Told Me - Evelyn Knight 
On a Slow Boat to China - The Kay Kyser Orchestra (vocal: Harry Babbitt & Gloria Wood) 
I Love You So Much It Hurts - Jimmy Wakely
    1949- First Miles Davis Birth of the “Cool” session, Capital 1762
    1950-Birthday of singer Billy Ocean, musician, songwriter, born Leslie Charles, Trinidad, West Indies.
    1951 - Mildred (Babe Didrikson) Zaharias set a new women's golf record when she won the Tampa Women's Open with a medal play score at a record 288 for 72 holes. In the 1932 Olympics, Babe won two gold and one silver medal for the javelin throw, the 80-meter hurdles and the high jump, respectively. She also skilled at basketball, baseball, billiards and golf. As well as being a member of the International Women's Sports Hall of Fame, LPGA Hall of Fame (Babe was a founding member of the LPGA), National Track and Field Hall of Fame, Olympic Hall of Fame and the World Golf Hall of Fame.
    1953- the first gas-turbine car made was the XP-21 Firebird, built by General Motors. The 370-horespower Whirlfire turbojet was installed in the rear of the car. It had a plastic body and accommodated only the driver. Its speed was 150 miles per hour, but it was believed capable of 235 miles per hour. Since it consumed fuel faster than conventional cards, it was not commercially produced.
    1954 - The first atomic-powered submarine, the "Nautilus," was launched in Groton, Connecticut, after First Lady, Mamie Eisenhower, christened it with a bottle of champagne.
    1954 - In New York City, the gas turbine automobile was introduced with a 370 horsepower, ‘whirlfire' turbopower jet powering it.
    1957---Top Hits 
Singing the Blues - Guy Mitchell 
The Banana Boat Song - The Tarriers 
Young Love - Tab Hunter 
Singing the Blues - Marty Robbins
    1957- country singer Patsy Cline won an Arthur Godfrey's "Talent Scout" show, singing "Walking After Midnight." Her single of the contest-winning song was on both the country and pop charts for a number of weeks. During the next few years, Patsy Cline became one of the top female country singers. She was killed in a plane crash in 1963.
    1959 - The Kingston Trio, with members Bob Shane, Nick Reynolds and Dave Guard; was awarded a gold record for their single, "Tom Dooley", about a man named Tom Dooley who was going to be hanged - "poor boy, you're bound to, die." The Kingston Trio recorded many other hits, including: "Greenback Dollar", "M.T.A.", "Reverend Mr. Black", "Tijuana Jail", and the war protest song, "Where Have All the Flowers Gone?".
    1961- The first cabinet member who was the brother of the president was Robert F. Kennedy, who took office as attorney general in the cabinet of President John F. Kennedy in Washington, DC. 1962- Snow falls in San Francisco
    1964 - After 3 years, Carl Rowen took over for Edward R. Murrow as head of the United States Information Agency (USIA), managing force of the worldwide Voice of America. Rowen had something else in common with Murrow, they both came from news backgrounds, Rowen from NBC, and Murrow from CBS.
    1965---Top Hits 
Come See About Me - The Supremes 
Love Potion Number Nine - The Searchers 
Downtown - Petula Clark 
Once a Day - Connie Smith
    1966 -- promoter Bill Graham began his notorious three-day "Trips Festival" at the Longshoreman's Hall in San Francisco. Music and LSD were available in large quantities.. The Festival at 400 North Point St. featured the Grateful Dead, Big Brother & the Holding Company, The Loading Zone, Chinese New Years' Lion Dancers & Drum & Bugle Corps, Stroboscopic Trampoline, & 
Ken Kesey & His Merry Pranksters 
"Pray for the (grateful) dead & fight like hell for the living!"
— (with apologies to) Mother Jones
    1967 -US female Figure Skating championship won by Peggy Fleming
    1968 --Battle for Khe Sanh begins
One of the most publicized and controversial battles of the war begins at Khe Sanh, 14 miles below the DMZ and six miles from the Laotian border. Seized and activated by the U.S. Marines a year earlier, the base, which had been an old French outpost, was used as a staging area for forward patrols and was a potential launch point for contemplated future operations to cut the Ho Chi Minh Trail in Laos. The battle began on this date with a brisk firefight involving the 3rd Battalion, 26th Marines and a North Vietnamese battalion entrenched between two hills northwest of the base. During the 66-day siege, U.S. planes, dropping 5,000 bombs daily, exploded the equivalent of five Hiroshima-sized atomic bombs in the area. The siege was finally lifted on April 6 when the cavalrymen linked up with the 9th Marines south of the Khe Sanh airstrip. The official casualty count for the Battle of Khe Sanh was 205 Marines killed in action and over 1,600 wounded (this figure did not include the American and South Vietnamese soldiers killed in other battles in the region). The U.S. military headquarters in Saigon estimated that the North Vietnamese lost between 10,000 and 15,000 men in the fighting at Khe Sanh.
    1969 -- The Navajo Community College, the first tribally established & operated community college in the U.S., opens at Many Farms, Arizona. Now called Dine College.
    1970 - ABC-TV aired "The Johnny Cash Show" in prime time, after its run as a summer replacement ended. The regular season series was a shot in the arm for country music. Cash wore black, his signature, in the all-color show.
    1970- Boeing, Seattle, WA introduced the Jumbo Jet, Boeing 747. It could carry up to 490 passengers, plus could be handled by terminal facilities of the time. the wide-bodied, two-decked aircraft was taller than a six-story building and could carry up to 490 passengers, more than could easily be handled by the terminal facilities of the time. The first 747s went into transatlantic service for Pan American Airlines.
    1973---Top Hits 
You're So Vain - Carly Simon 
Superstition - Stevie Wonder 
Crocodile Rock - Elton John 
Soul Song - Joe Stampley 
    1974 -- Four-day postal strike begins at Jersey City, N.J.
    1975- officials at the National Hockey League All-Star game made history by allowing female reporters in the players' locker rooms, a first for American professional sports. The coaches of the two squads arranged for reporters to interview players before they took their showers.
    1977 -- President Jimmy Carter issues unconditional pardon to most Vietnam draft resisters on his first full day in office. Affects between 100,000 to 500,000 people.
    1978 - The soundtrack to the film "Saturday Night Fever" reached #1 on the album chart (BeeGees)
    1979 -- Terry Bradshaw passes for a record four touchdowns to lead the Steelers to a 35-31 victory over the Cowboys in Super Bowl XIII. The Steelers become the first team to win three Super Bowls.
    1981---Top Hits 
(Just Like) Starting Over - John Lennon 
Love on the Rocks - Neil Diamond 
The Tide is High - Blondie 
I Love a Rainy Night - Eddie Rabbitt 
    1982 -- Blues guitar giant B.B. King donates his entire record collection (including about 7,000 rare blues records he played when he was a disc jockey) to the University of Mississippi's Center for the Study of Southern Culture.
    1982 - The second of two major snowstorms to hit southern Minnesota came to an end. Minneapolis received 20 inches of snow in 24 hours to break the previous record of 17 inches in 24 hours established just a few days earlier. A record 38 inches of snow covered the ground following the two storms, with drifts ten feet high.
    1984 - Van Halen's single, Jump, entered the Billboard pop charts on this date, and later was in the Number 1 spot for 5 weeks, remaining on the charts for a total of 15 weeks. It eventually was certified gold.s for a 6 month stay.
    1984-Yes hits number one on the Billboard Hot 100 with their only Top Ten hit, "Owner of a Lonely Heart".
    1985 -19ºF (-28ºC), Caesar's Head, South Carolina (state record) 
    1985 -34ºF (-37ºC), Mt Mitchell, North Carolina (state record)
    1985- Don DeLillo wins the American Book Award for his breakthrough novel,White Noise .
    1985 - Actor Patrick Duffy announced he was leaving the CBS show, "Dallas", at the end of the television season. His request that the character of Bobby Ewing not be recast by another actor was thankfully heeded as Bobby showed up in the new season, after a miraculous rise from the dead. His first appearance after his resurrection was in the shower, when he had clearly been killed in a tremendous car crash the previous season. And Duffy continued in the role of Bobby Ewing through the final episode in 1991.
    1985 - Three days of snow squalls at Buffalo NY finally came to an end. The squalls, induced by relatively warm water in Lake Erie, produced 34 inches of snow at the International Airport, with up to 47 inches reported in the suburbs of Buffalo. The New York "blizzard of 85" left many counties disaster areas. (19th-21st) (Weather Channel) (Storm Data) President Reagan was sworn in for a second term in the coldest Inauguration Ceremony of record. Cold and wind resulted in wind chill readings as much as 30 degrees below zero.
    1986 - Former major-league baseball player, Randy Bass, signed a contract making him the highest-paid baseball player in Japanese history. Bass signed for three years at $3.25 million to play for the Hanshin Tigers.
    1986- more than 100 students from Purdue University ran naked through the streets of West Lafayette, IN, in the schools quite unofficial Nude Olympics. the runners were undeterred by a temperature just a few degrees above freezing.
    1987-The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inducts the Coasters, Eddie Cochran, Bo Diddley, Aretha Franklin, Marvin Gaye, Bill Haley, B.B. King, Clyde McPhatter, Ricky Nelson, Roy Orbison, Carl Perkins, Smokey Robinson, Muddy Waters, Hank Williams and Jackie Wilson.
    1989---Top Hits 
Two Hearts - Phil Collins 
Don't Rush Me - Taylor Dayne 
Armageddon It - Def Leppard 
She's Crazy for Leavin' - Rodney Crowell
    1990- Tennis player John McEnroe's temper tantrum at the Australian Open got him disqualified form the tournament McEnroe, leading his match against Mikael Performs, became the first player ever tossed from this tournament.
    1990 - Unseasonably warm weather prevailed across the state of Florida. Eight cities reported record high temperatures for the date, including West Palm Beach with a reading of 86 degrees. Rain in southern New England changed to freezing rain, then to sleet, and then to heavy snow during the late morning. Most of Massachusetts was blanketed with 6 to 10 inches of snow.
    1994 -- Lorena Bobbitt found temporarily insane for chopping off spouse's penis.

    1996-- US male Figure Skating championship won by Rudy Galindo

Superbowl Champions This Date

    1979 Pittsburgh Steelers


Orange Bowl 
Miami Florida 
Attendance: 79,484







Pittsburgh QB 
17 for 30 318 yds 
4 TD 1 Int



Football Poem

The Super Bowl

Jack Kerouac, who's football scholarship got him into Columbia Unversity in New York.

"But then they danced down the street like dingledodies, and I shambled after as I've been doing all my life after people who interest me, because the only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn, like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centerlight pop and everybody goes "Awww!""

Jack Kerouac (1922-1969), U.S. author. On the Road, pt. 1, ch. 1 (1957). In an interview in Playboy, June 1959, Kerouac explained the origin of the label "Beat Generation": "John Clellon Holmes ... and I were sitting around trying to think up the meaning of the Lost Generation and the subsequent Existentialism and I said, 'You know, this is really a beat generation' and he leapt up and said 'That's it, that's right!'" The phrase also appeared in Holmes's novel, Go (1952).

Born Jean-Louis Lebris Kerouac, in Lowell, Massachusetts, to a family of Franco-Americans. His parents, Leo-Alcide Kerouac and Gabrielle-Ange Lévesque, were natives of Quebec. Like many other Quebecers of their generation, the Lévesques and Kerouacs emigrated to New England to find employment. Jack didn't start to learn English until the age of six. At home, he and his family spoke Quebec French. At an early age, he was profoundly marked by the death of his elder brother Gérard, later prompting him to write the book Visions of Gerard.

Later, his athletic prowess led him to become a star on his local football team, and this achievement earned him a scholarship to Columbia University in New York. It was in New York that Kerouac met the people whom he was to journey around the world with, and return to write about: the so-called Beat Generation, which included people like Allen Ginsberg, Neal Cassady and William S. Burroughs. After breaking his leg and arguing with his coach, the football scholarship did not pan out, so Kerouac left to join the Merchant Marine in 1942. In 1943, he joined the United States Navy but discharged during World War II on psychiatric grounds.

In between his sea voyages, Kerouac stayed in New York with his friends from Columbia. He started writing his first novel, called The Town and the City, which was published in 1950 and earned him some respect as a writer.

Kerouac wrote constantly, despite not publishing another novel until 1957 when On the Road, published by Viking Press, finally appeared in print. From the point of view of the character Sal Paradise, this mostly autobiographical book dealt with his roadtrip adventures across the United States and into Mexico with Neal Cassady (represented as Dean Moriarty). The novel is often described as the defining work of the post-war jazz-, poetry-, and drug-affected Beat Generation. He wrote it in an extended session of "spontaneous prose", or stream of consciousness, which created a style of writing entirely of Kerouac's own making. He was hailed in some circles as a major American writer, and reluctantly as the spokesman for the Beat Generation.

His friendship with Allen Ginsberg and William Burroughs, among others.




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