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San Clemente, California

The iFinancial Group is looking for highly motivated individuals with experience originating equipment lease transactions .  We offer a relaxed work environment, provide leads and offer above industry standard commission. Call Todd Clark 888-852-5155 x223

Ten years providing financing nationwide

Friday, May 22, 2009

On Memorial Day the flag should be flown at half-staff from sunrise until noon only, then raised briskly to the top of the staff until sunset, in honor of the nation's battle heroes. Remember: The flag should be briskly run up to the top of the staff before being lowered slowly to the half-staff position.

It is also proper to display the flag without being attached to a pole or if attached rigid in full position.


Memorial Day---Kit & Dash
  Archive May 22, 2001
     Classified Ads---Controller
        Largest Bank in Florida Fails
  Good News--Foreclosures Drop in California
    Medical/Dental Sales Group Home Search-Up-Date
  Top 25 Most Influential Leasing People
HL Leasing going into Receivership?
  by Christopher Menkin
  Classified Ads---Help Wanted
     Survey---Need your Opinion
        2,300 sign up for "SmartBrief"
Terminator Salvation/The Girlfriend Experience
Man Who Shot Liberty Valance/Zabriskie Pt/Man Hunt
Fernando's View By Fernando F. Croce
  FDIC Approves GMC Financial $7.4 billion TLGP
News Briefs---
     $200 Million Wine Country real estate Ponzi scheme
  J.G. Wentworth BK (A Marlin Leasing Investor)
New Mark-To-Market Accounting Boost Banks' Equity
  Auto sales forecast falls to 10 million
    Satyam still losing clients
      Dollar tumbles against euro
        Xerox's Mulcahy to retire as CEO
    Liddy to leave AIG
      American Idol
   Idols on the iTunes Top 100 list
You May have Missed---
    California Nuts Brief---
      Sports Briefs---
        Gimme that Wine"
    Today's Top Event in History
        This Day in American History
Baseball Poem
        Daily Puzzle
    Weather, USA or specific area
        Traffic Live----

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


This standard is displayed by immediate family members of a person serving in the Armed Forces during a period of war.

(My son Dash is in Iraq on his fifth mission to this area. He has asked me not to write about him at this time.

(My old friend Larry Blazek (( he was the manager at Barclay's Bank, Santa Clara, California where I personally banked and then went into leasing, still works for Pentech Financial)), his son Eric is to graduate soon from Great Lakes, Illinois. So in his honor, I show a photograph of my son Dash and myself at his graduation at Great Lakes. Will be glad to print a photo of Larry with his son Eric at his graduation. Kit Menkin.)




Archive May 22, 2001

Kit Menkin wears his "Walter Winchell Press Hat"* at the National Association of Equipment Leasing Brokers (NAELB) Conference at the Hilton Riverside Hotel, New Orleans, Louisiana. It was presented the day before with the condition that he was to wear this hat at every NAELB Conference he attends.

*Walter Winchell Press Hat---Well known syndicated columnist, and the picture above his column had him wearing a dark hat with brim, with his press card showing in the band. In the old days, a newsman would put his press credential in his hat band to access a news scene or event.

(I still have the hat today on top of the bookcase in my office. Kit Menkin).



Classified Ads---Controller

Boca Raton, FL
CPA w/ Sarbanes Oxley/ 15 years management exp. as CFO/ Controller/5 yrs w/ PWC Extensive exp providing accounting/ tax guidance for the equipment lease industry. Willing to relocate.
Chicago, IL
experienced in lease accounting, operations, management, and Sarbanes-Oxley. Seeking position with equipment lessor. Would consider contract assignments or relocating.
Southeastern, MI
Controller & Management experience w/ equip lessors &broker. MBA, CPA w/ extensive accounting, management, securitization experience with public and private companies. Willing to relocate.

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

To place a free "job wanted" Leasing News ad:

ELFA Career Center: Job Seekers (free):



Largest Bank in Florida Fails
by Christopher Menkin

BankUnited FSB, Coral Gables, Florida became the 34th bank to fail this year. With about $13 billion in assets as of May 2, it called itself the largest banking institution headquartered in Florida. The FDIC took over the bank and sold it to a group of investors who will operate it as BankUnited.

Only IndyMac, which failed in July, beats the numbers of UnitedBank. It cost the FDIC $11 billion. The FDIC estimates that the cost for the Florida Bank to its Deposit Insurance Fund will be $4.9 billion. BankUnited's acquisition of all the deposits and assets of BankUnited, FSB was the "least costly" resolution for the DIF compared to alternatives.

BankUnited's 86 offices will be open today, Friday, during normal business hours. BankUnited, the successor institution, will be the largest independent bank in Florida, as was its predecessor (BankUnited, FSB). The management team is headed by John Kanas, a veteran of the banking industry and former head of North Fork Bank.

Bank United, FSB had assets of $12.80 billion and deposits of $8.6 billion as of May 2, 2009. The new BankUnited will assume $12.7 billion in assets and $8.3 billion in nonbrokered deposits. The FDIC and BankUnited entered into a loss-share transaction and will share in the losses on approximately $10.7 billion in assets covered under the agreement. BankUnited will recapitalize the institution with $900 million in new capital.

BankUnited will not assume the approximately $348 million in brokered deposits. The FDIC will pay the brokers directly.

In addition to the management team led by John Kanas, ownership includes WL Ross & Co. LLC; Carlyle Investment Management L.L.C.; Blackstone Capital Partners V L.P.; Centerbridge Capital Partners, L.P. LeFrak Organization, Inc; The Wellcome Trust; Greenaap Investments Ltd.; and East Rock Endowment Fund.

The last bank to be closed in the state was Riverside Bank of the Gulf Coast, Cape Coral on February 13, 2009.

Bank Beat in the Leasing News Tuesday edition will focus on a bank that claims it need not be closed, from an insider.

There is one thing to be learned from the list that follows, many banks are still in trouble, and certainly we are not out of the real estate down turn yet.

List of Bank Failures:

Where Banks are Failing:



Good News--Foreclosures Drop in California

"Although it is hard to see right now, the real estate market in Northern California is improving," said Serdar Bankaci, founder of Default Research, whose daily pre foreclosure lists, which also include commercial properties, are e-mailed directly to real estate professionals in the region. "The real estate indicators show a steady decline in home inventories in 2009 and an increase in median home prices in the past 60 days."

"Our commercial property lists have been expanding for the last several months in our extensive coverage area. With overall consumer spending declining and the slowdown in the economy, lenders are enforcing more stringent requirements to underwrite mortgages and businesses are ending up in foreclosure."

The hardest hit counties, which are measured by households in foreclosure, were San Joaquin (9.05 percent), Solano (8.31 percent), Contra Costa (7.53 percent), and Sacramento (7.13). For more detailed Northern California foreclosure statistics listed by county, please visit

Southern California dropped about four percent from March 2009 when there were 32,845 foreclosures to April 2009 when the number fell to 31,331. With 9,867 unique foreclosure filings, Los Angeles County, the nation's largest county, saw a decrease of approximately 10 percent. For more detailed Southern California area foreclosure statistics listed by county, please visit

"While there are a lot of misguided statistics being reported that show foreclosure activity higher than it actually is, our more accurate method of counting foreclosures indicates continued improvement in the region," he added.

According to Bankaci, the three hardest hit counties in Southern California, which are measured by percentage of households in foreclosure, are Riverside (10.25 percent), San Bernardino (8.99 percent), and San Diego (5.12 percent). Housing indicators in the region are consistent with many parts of the country, with a sharp decrease in home inventories in the past four months and median home sale prices that have increased slightly in the past 60 days.

"There are a lot of great deals out there and the savvy investors and homebuyers are certainly taking advantage of our fresh pre foreclosure lists," said Bankaci, whose daily pre foreclosure lists, which also include commercial properties, are e-mailed directly to real estate professionals in the region. "The Default Research clients are the first to approach homeowners in distress and they are reporting multiple offers on the properties they purchased at discounted prices."

Deals are also there to be made in the commercial section of the Default Research foreclosure lists. More commercial and retail buildings are facing tough times as the jobless rate is spiking and consumer spending is down. Most Default Research clients are finding that when the business owners have their commercial loans due, the property owners are unable to refinance, and the land goes into commercial foreclosure.

"Although banks may not be lending money now, private equity may come into play when financing commercial projects," said Bankaci. "Statistics have shown that commercial properties tend to lag behind the residential properties; therefore, while the residential foreclosures have peaked, the market is still seeing commercial foreclosures continue to increase."



Medical/Dental Sales Group Home Search-Up-Date

May 13, 2009, Leasing News announced an Ex-HPSC/GE Capital sales team headed by Anthony Chan looking for bank or direct lessor that is interested in expanding financing efforts in dental and optical industries by hiring sales team with great vendor contacts.

His staff today have been going on their own, as brokers or working for independents on a commission basis. He states they are mostly family men, who would prefer working as a group for one company, sharing leads and information as a close working team.

Unfortunately, he did not have much luck from the May 13th announcement, telling Leasing News most of the inquiries he received were from brokers and super brokers, no banks. It appears both LEAF and Main Street Bank are not taking on new programs.

"Most of the companies cannot handle our type of deals, 10 year terms, high soft costs. I think that some of the companies were just hoping to pick up some deals that we might be working on. Some of the companies are discussing if they can handle a group like ours.

"Hopefully there are still some companies that saw our story and are intending to call me in the near future. I am planning to sending Bruce Kropschot an e-mail to see if he might know of any companies that might be interested. He might be able to make income as a recruiter for us.

"Thanks again!"

Anthony Chan

Medical/Dental Sales Group Looking for a "Home"



Top 25 Most Influential Leasing People

Nominations are still open. The person nominated must still be alive, but does not necessarily have to be active in the leasing industry today.

Send nominations to:

New Nominees:

Joe Bonnano, CLP--He and Barry Marks should be credited with the great help they gave in the formation and beginning of the National Association of Equipment Brokers. In 1998, Barry left from alternating as the Legal Counsel for the association. Joe has not only contributed much here, but also to members and non-members with legal questions and dilemma's, and brought the progress of education, ethics, and good will, including serving on the CLP Foundation board for many years. A major influence in the leasing industry, always available to answer questions, seemingly day and night.

Clark Covert: Original developer of the small-ticket, vendor leasing program & platform for the PC market. He designed and built Dell's vendor program in 1988, then later introduced the model to CompUSA, Staples, NEC, Micron, Gateway and others. He built proprietary workflow systems and automated documentation systems in the early 1990's, which produced faxed contracts and 2 hour turn-around times from application to equipment release. He introduced today's major PC funding sources to the idea of funding this equipment, and coached them on the importance of this market.

Elaine Litwer. Elaine dedicated herself to improving the leasing industry. She fought tirelessly to abolish lessor vicarious liability in New York State. She was involved in the auto industry from almost every aspect, being a lessor, a sales rep, working in the offices at GM, lobbying in Albany. She was involved in the National Leasing Vehicle Association at the state and national levels. She always was there to answer other lessor's questions.

Paul Menzel, CLP - Highest of ethics, good clean portfolios, quality leader. He has been active in two leasing associations himself, also supporting others, giving his time to the industry for many years. Paul is a leader who believes in "do as I do, not as I say". He has set a great example for all his years in the industry. (He also is the First Leasing News Person of the Year: editor)

Descriptions up-dated:

Jim Adler-Jim created a lease document that was the most widely used in the industry while at Colonial Pacific Leasing Corporation. All lenders accepted it and many lessors made it their standard document. Jim being available to explain the document and how to use it to my advantage in marketing and enforcement. Though this is a marketing driven industry without an ironclad document; none of us would be successful

Those who make the nomination are not named should be sent along with the name.

"Influential" as "a person whose actions and opinions strongly influence the course of events" {Online Dictionary}.

Current Top 25 Influential List:




"We have just received conclusive evidence of a vendor in the Tustin, California area who is setting up masked sale/lease back-working capital deals for local medical practitioners. This vendor was formerly in Rancho Santa Margarita, California and his corporation is currently suspended by the California Secretary of State. He also uses two other DBA's. Please call me if you currently have now any matching applications or have had some in the past. We already have one charge-off in our files on this vendor as he has been operating locally for at least 5 years."

While the names and other information are available only to subscribers, Leasing News asked Lease Police Chief Bernie Boettigheimer, CLP, for more information:

"In the course of our investigation, we discovered a non-Subscriber that had a dual collateralized deal with one of the vendor's sister companies in June 2005. Both deals resulted in total losses for the Lessors. Each victim never reported this to anyone outside their company. Meanwhile another leasing company recently did 20 deals and is now facing a large loss.

"Instances of fraudulent vendors are at an all-time high in our industry's history. Desperate times can bring out the worst in people, and many of the recent frauds involve vendors doing working capital loans disguised as equipment leases. In the past, a lack of a centralized location for industry data on higher risk vendors hindered attempts to stem vendor fraud abuse. Just as big a cause for vendor fraud is the fact that when Lessors in our industry suspect fraud as a potential reason for a default, they keep silent with this knowledge. Like Pogo said "THE ENEMY IS US". This particular vendor has been in operation since 2003 and there is no telling what the final losses will be from his activities!

"LeasePolice now tracks these firms with more than word of mouth information. We are the only source of information in the industry that is matching portfolio losses to the vendors that sold the leased equipment. As a result we can spot trends in vendors and notice those with excessive losses. These losses can be caused by poor equipment quality, high pressure tactics, excessive promises, and in some cases fraudulent activities. Together with the participation of our Subscriber base, we combine information for a large amount of the leasing community. I also, however, welcome the involvement of non-Subscribers. It really is everyone in our industry's duty to report any suspicious activity. Our leasing community has seen a number of fine companies and lifelong industry veterans and friends leave during this recession. Everyone must help! We suspect that leasing fraud results in industry losses of $150 million dollars each year. We also suspect that a mere 5% of the entire legitimate vendors' population accounts for almost 30% of all credit losses. Identifying these vendors could be saving someone's job - and that somebody might be you! "

Bernie Boettigheimer, CLP
Lease Police, Inc.



HL Leasing going into Receivership?
by Christopher Menkin

Over 1,000 investors in HL Leasing, Inc., Fresno, California are waiting to see what happens, many afraid to hire an attorney or investigator or to find out what assets are available, and in Fresno a group is being formed under an attorney allegedly who's firm was originally recommended by the president of HL Leasing Dan Ramirez, others may be able to write off their investment less interest received, and no one knows the total dollar amount, originally guessed at $132 million, then up to $200 million and a few now say $300 million (the actual dollar is not known.) Ramirez told one investor that last year it could have been $65 million invested in "American Express" leases.

It appears the dollar amount may be $132 million, as reported by HL Leasing's attorney as well as Dan Ramirez in an earlier interview, but the fact is no one knows, nor do they know what is left of the money invested. Authorities believe it was spent to make the monthly interest payments and the Ponzi scheme had lost its momentum; basically fell apart.

The latest development now has Karen Patterson, attorney for the California Department of Corporations (tel: 916-322-6737) recommending that all HL Leasing Investors file a complaint using the California Department of Corporation complaint form:

From the complaints, a Receiver will get appointed quickly and will freeze assets, conduct financial inquiries as to the disposition of assets and money, and will sue those insiders who have received disbursements over the past few years. Of course, the problem with any Receivership is that the investors lose individual control over their fate, and can not direct the Receiver. And the investors are also at risk from the same fraudulent conveyance law used against the principals, a double edged sword if there ever was one. Meanwhile most of the investors do not want to talk with the news media, seemingly afraid what will happen next.

The major problem right today appears to be what got investors involved with HL Leasing in the first place, they are listing to each other on what to do; not consulting an attorney or other professional who can best give them alternative action to take that is in their best interest. They appear afraid to seek professional counsel, something that led them to originally invest; repeating the same mistake again.

Reaction ranges from:

"I am angry, embarrassed and devastated over this matter. How could we have not seen this?? I have been involved with John Otto and Dan Ramirez for over 18 years...... I introduced friends and family to this nightmare."

"I am devastated. I am single middle age mom who has been unemployed for a year and a half with 65% of my cash assets and 100% of my retirement with HL. I am at a lost. Why can't all of us as a group with the Fresno attorney and then file a class action? I don't know if I'll ever be able to make the right decision."

"My wife and I have lost tens of thousands to what happened and don't know what to do about it... I would like to remind everyone that we need to get all the facts straight before any one is hung. Personally I'm hoping for a positive outcome, it's the only hope I have. And in my mind its worth holding on to."

"My husband and I had many hundreds of thousands of dollars invested, and may be able to recover some small percent of the money. I have been freaking out like the rest of you....but I must accept the reality, count my blessings, and remember to breathe. Losing sleep had not been doing me any good....the heart palpitations, guilt, stress had been making me sick...."

"I am having an emotional day. I am worried that now I am going to loose my home. I lost my life savings with HL over 700K and believe me I have had the EXACT conversations with Dan over the seven years of knowing him. ...I am scared." There is a lot of animosity and hard feelings, as you can guess, primarily directed at HL Leasing, Inc. President Dan Ramirez, who was the person most investors spoke with and met, not John Otto, the man behind the company. In earlier times, 15 years ago, Otto was more active in the meeting and speaking with investors, many said. He was an active visitor to the Elbow Room in Fresno when he was in town, many ex-employees said. The time to talk to him was before 11am, after lunch it was quite different.

There are other corporate officers and employees who may plead guilty and cooperate for a reduced sentence, certainly the FBI along with the U.S. Attorney General Fresno Office will be collecting evidence to bring to a Grand Jury or direct indictment. As to what assets remain, it appears HL Leasing, Inc. was a shell, Heritage Pacific Leasing became a skeleton staff in 2007, other assets are in Otto Trust, and at this time, any financial recovery appears will rest with the California Department of Corporation Receiver. A lot of people have lost their life savings, their plans for the future, their children and grandchildren, and many were relying on the monthly payments to make daily ends meet.



Classified ads---Help Wanted


San Clemente, California

The iFinancial Group is looking for highly motivated individuals with experience originating equipment lease transactions .  We offer a relaxed work environment, provide leads and offer above industry standard commission. Call Todd Clark 888-852-5155 x223

Ten years providing financing nationwide


Like selling vendor programs and large transactions?
Enjoy international financing programs?
Prefer the advantages of a commission only environment with the security of health and welfare benefits?

CLICK HERE to find out how to have fun again.



Survey---Need your Opinion

At one time the Certified Leasing Professional membership was at 225. Today it is 179. The CLP Foundation has offered $100 off, a mentor program, private tutoring, and a thrust to revive the membership with a new manual due out this fall, and an effort to find out how well their programs are known to the industry.

Why I Became a CLP



2,300 sign up for "SmartBrief"

2,300 readers have signed up for the free Equipment Leasing and Finance Association (ELFA) "SmartBrief" Daily Reports, ELFA announced.

This week, the most popular stories in ELFA SmartBrief were:

ELFA voices concern over FASB paper on accounting for leases

Suicide complicates investigation into possible Ponzi scheme

Credit still hard to find for smaller companies







    Fernando's View
    By Fernando F. Croce

    Audiences can choose between huge ("Terminator Salvation") and small ("The Girlfriend Experience") in theaters, and from three classics on DVD.

    In Theaters:

    Terminator Salvation (Warner Bros.): One of the most memorable villains of the 1980s, the Terminator just won't stay down. In the first chapter in the series not to star Arnold Schwarzenegger, this fast-paced entry focuses instead on John Connor (Christian Bale), the one man able to lead the human race in its fight against the vicious machines that have taken over the world after Judgment Day. Making his way through a landscape of devastated cities and industrial wastelands, John and his ragtag group of survivors struggle to stay ahead of armies of robots, a mission made even more difficult by the appearance of a mysterious warrior (Sam Worthington). Viewers may miss the human relationships from the James Cameron 1984 original, but audiences looking for an adrenaline rush of action will leave the theater more than satisfied.

    The Girlfriend Experience (Magnolia Pictures): As unpredictable as ever, Steven Soderbergh follows up his mammoth two-part epic about "Che" Guevara with this small-scale but often witty, dry comedy about the risky areas where business and emotion meet. Chelsea (Sasha Grey) is a high-priced call girl making the rounds of Manhattan, dealing with her boyfriend, and trying her best to remain aloof and professional in an unpredictable profession. Shooting with digital cameras that allow brisk and intimate moments, Soderbergh creates an engaging and ultimately quite barbed portrait of how even feelings can be turned into consumable products. Keep an eye out for critic Glenn Kenny in a hilariously slimy cameo as one of the heroine's least savory acquaintances.

    New on DVD:

    The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (Paramount): As he so famously once put it, John Ford made Westerns. By 1962, however, the changing times had caught up with the great director, and this movie, possibly his last masterpiece, reflects that feeling of aching loss. It tells the story of a renowned politician (James Stewart) who returns to the Old West town that made him famous and remembers his confrontation with a vicious outlaw (Lee Marvin) and his friendship with a tough cowboy (John Wayne). At once a marvelous Western and a profound metaphor for the death of a genre and the passing of an era, this is a must-see for any film lover. Don't miss the new, two-disc centennial DVD release.

    Zabriskie Point (MGM): A staple of the international art-house scene in the 1960s with classics such as "L'Avventura" and "Blowup," Italian master Michelangelo Antonioni came to America in 1970 to make this underrated tale of social restlessness and youthful rebellion. Focusing more on atmosphere and oblique emotion than on plot, it follows a couple of youngsters, an anthropology student (Daria Halprin) and a dropout (Mark Frechette), as they venture into Death Valley following a clash with authorities. Though perhaps too slow and enigmatic for viewers looking for action, the film is consistently ravishing in its visuals, and Antonioni's take on generational conflict and political wastelands is just as provocative as when this was first released.

    Man Hunt (Fox): For viewers who couldn't buy Tom Cruise as a renegade German officer in "Valkyrie," give this tight, suspenseful, shamefully unknown 1941 thriller a try. Walter Pidgeon plays a British hunter who finds himself with none other than Adolf Hitler in his rifle's sight while vacationing in Europe. Captured as a spy, he must escape the Nazi authorities and make it back to London with the important information he's gathered. The venerable director Fritz Lang ("Metropolis") creates a tangible atmosphere of danger and mystery, with violence erupting in sudden and vivid ways. Also starring a very touching Joan Bennett as a doomed prostitute, and George Sanders and John Carradine as memorable baddies.



    ### Press Release ##########################

    FDIC Approves GMC Financial Services Participation in TLGP

    The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) announced today the approval of GMAC Financial Services to participate in the Temporary Liquidity Guarantee Program (TLGP) allowing the company to issue up to $7.4 billion in new FDIC-guaranteed debt. GMAC will pay a fee to the FDIC for this guarantee.

    In connection with receiving FDIC approval, GMAC has committed to develop a funding plan. The plan will reflect GMAC's management of the bank's funding and deposit costs with a focus on diversifying funding sources and reducing the bank's overall cost of deposit funding. GMAC and the bank have also committed to maintain bank capital at a level well above the regulatory minimums. These commitments, combined with the current level of TLGP-generated fees and the newly enacted holding company assessment authority, will fully protect the deposit insurance fund.

    The participation of GMAC Financial Services in the TLGP is consistent with the parameters in place of the broader TLGP program. The program will expire on October 31, 2009.

    Congress created the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation in 1933 to restore public confidence in the nation's banking system. The FDIC insures deposits at the nation's 8,305 banks and savings associations and it promotes the safety and soundness of these institutions by identifying, monitoring and addressing risks to which they are exposed. The FDIC receives no federal tax dollars - insured financial institutions fund its operations.

    ### Press Release ############################



    News Briefs----

    $200 Million Wine Country real estate Ponzi scheme

    J.G. Wentworth files for bankruptcy (A Marlin Leasing Investor)

    New Mark-To-Market Accounting Rules Boost Banks' Equity

    This year's auto sales forecast falls to 10 million

    Satyam still losing clients

    Dollar tumbles against euro on investors' unease about inflation

    Xerox's Mulcahy to retire as CEO; Ursula Burns to take reins

    Liddy to leave AIG

    American Idol

    Curious? Idols on the iTunes Top 100 list



    You May have Missed---

    Town rises up for bakery



    Sports Briefs----

    Raiders on Michael Vick



    California Nuts Briefs---

    Schwarzenegger abandons budget borrowing idea



    “Gimme that Wine”

    R.H. Phillips winery to close

    Wine Matters: Texas Tech viticulture program first in state

    'California's best Zinfandel' in Lodi

    American billionaire set to buy Left Bank chateau in Bordeaux

    Hollywood stars come out at Mumm show

    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

    1990-Microsoft unveiled Windows 3.0 at gala events in twenty cities around the world, linked by satellite to a theater in New York City. The show featured a speech by Bill Gates, as well as laser lights, videos, and surround sound. Microsoft spent $10 million publicizing the new release in what was generally regarded as the most expensive software introduction to date. While PIK, IMB, Apple and others tried to promote their operating system, even with 12 floppy disks, Microsoft sold three million copies of Windows 3.0 as it was quite "user friendly."


    This Day in American History

        1798 -- Canada: Chippewa cede 28,000 acres in Ontario, including present-day site of Toronto, for 101 British pounds.
        1802-Martha Washington, our first lady, passes away; quite a remarkable woman who was also “first in our hearts of her country”
        1804 - The Lewis and Clark Expedition officially began as the Corps of Discovery departed from St. Charles, Missouri.
        1807 -- Former Vice-President Aaron Burr on trial for "assembling an armed seize the city of New Orleans...and to separate the Western from the Atlantic states."
        1843-1,000 men, women, and children climbed aboard their wagons and steered their horses west out of the small town of Elm Grove, Missouri. The train comprised more than 100 wagons with a herd of 5,000 oxen and cattle trailing behind. Dr. Elijah White, a Presbyterian missionary who had made the trip the year before, served as guide. The first section of the Oregon Trail ran through the relatively flat country of the Great Plains. Obstacles were few, though the river crossings could be dangerous for wagons. The danger of Indian attacks was a small but genuine risk. To be on the safe side, the pioneers drew their wagons into a circle at night to create a makeshift stockade. If they feared Indians might raid their livestock-the Plains tribes valued the horses, though generally ignored the oxen-they would drive the animals into the enclosure. Although many neophyte pioneers believed Indians were their greatest threat, they quickly learned that they were more likely to be injured or killed by a host of more mundane causes. Obstacles included accidental discharge of firearms, falling off mules or horses, drowning in river crossings, and disease. After entering the mountains, the trail also became much more difficult, with steep ascents and descents over rocky terrain. The pioneers risked injury from overturned and runaway wagons.
    The 1,000-person party that made the journey in 1843, the vast majority of pioneers on the trail survived to reach their destination in the fertile, well-watered land of western Oregon. The migration of 1844 was smaller than that of the previous season, but in 1845 it jumped to nearly 3,000. Thereafter, migration on the Oregon Trail was an annual event, although the practice of traveling in giant convoys of wagons gave way to many smaller bands of one or two-dozen wagons. The trail was heavily traveled until 1884, when the Union Pacific constructed a railway along the route.
        1844- Mary Cassatt, only U.S. painter to exhibit with the French Impressionists. She is known for her paintings of women and children because, some say, such subject matter did not challenge any male egos and it was the price she had to pay to be accepted into the French impressionists school. In fact, she liked to paint women and children and it enabled her to expand in an un-crowded field. The natural posing of her subjects is still unsurpassed. She resided in France most of her life and in her late 50s began to have eye problems until forced to stop painting at age 70. Although often described as a "old maid," her diary reveals love affairs - some with women.
        1861-the first Union solider killed in the Civil War was Bailey Thornsberry Brown, Company B, 2 nd West Virginia Volunteer Infantry. He was engaged in obtaining recruits and ambushed by Confederate pickets at Fetterman, near Grafton, WV.
        1892--Birthday of Ralph Peer, the most notable talent scout of the 1920's, was born in Kansas City, Missouri. Peer, who discovered such artists as Jimmie Rodgers and the Carter Family, was appointed recording director for Okeh Records in 1920. He first began recording blues artists, but when the rival Victor Company scored a hit with Wendell Hall's hillbilly song, "It Ain't Gonna Rain No More," in 1923, he was authorized to organize field recording centers throughout the US South. Peer's first session with Fiddlin' John Carson proved to be a landmark in country music. By 1927, Peer was working for Victor records, and in August of that year assured himself a place in country music history by recording the first sessions of both Jimmie Rodgers and the Carter Family. In 1928, Peer formed the Southern Music Publishing Company, which continues today as the Peer-Southern Organization, a multi-million-dollar concern. Ralph Peer died in 1960.
        1902-One of the world's deepest lakes, Crater Lake was first discovered in 1853. In 1885 William Gladstone Steele saw the lake and made it his personal goal to establish the lake and surrounding areas as a national park. His goal was attained 17 years late.
        1902- Marie Poland Fish birthday, ichthyologist. At 21 she discovered where eels laid their eggs, a puzzle that for 2,000 years was one of the great mysteries of science. Eels are a staple food source in much of the world and the discovery enabled the enlargement of the crops. In later years she was awarded U.S. Navy's Distinguished Public Service Award for her work in oceanography and as a marine biologist. Her inventions enabled the Navy to distinguish between large schools of fish and enemy submarines with sonar.

        1911 - the temperature at Lewiston, Maine soared to 101 degrees. It was the hottest reading ever recorded in New England during the month of may.
        1914-birthday of Herman (Sonny) Blout, better known as “Sun Ra,” a pioneering and innovative jazz musician whose avant garde performances mixed elements of theater with his surreal composition and performance style. Ra was born at Birmingham, Al, and died there May 30, 1993.
        1924-Birthday of French singer Charles Aznavour.
        1928 –Singer Jackie Cain birthday.
        1930-Birthday of Harvey Bernard Milk, gay rights activist and San Francisco city Supervisor, (early nickname "Glimpy Milch, Woodmere, Long Island, New York.
        1934-Brithday of pianist and conductor Peter Nero.
        1937-British jazz traditionalist Kenny Ball was born in Ilford, England. He had a string of hits during what was known as the "Traditional Jazz" (Dixieland) craze in Britain in the early 1960's. "Midnight in Moscow" was Ball's only hit in North America. A similar arrangement of the tune is used by Radio Moscow as its signature on English-language shortwave broadcasts.
        1947-Congress approved the Truman Doctrine in order to contain Communism after World War II. It provided for US aid to Greece and Turkey. A corollary of this doctrine was the Marshall Plan, which began sending aid to war-torn European countries in 1948.
        1950-- pop lyricist Bernie Taupin was born in Sleaford, England. Taupin has been closely linked throughout his career with rock star Elton John, and for most of the 1970's the two were a virtual hit factory, putting 23 singles in the Billboard Top 40, including five that made number one. Among the chart-toppers were "Crocodile Rock" and "Bennie and the Jets."
        1950---Top Hits
    My Foolish Heart - The Gordon Jenkins Orchestra (vocal: Eileen Wilson)
    Bewitched - The Bill Snyder Orchestra
    If I Knew You Were Comin' I'd've Baked a Cake - Eileen Barton
    Birmingham Bounce - Red Foley
        1952 - San Francisco's first Jazz Festival on Sunday Evening will be headlined by Luis armstrong and his troupe. Also on the program are the Dave Brubeck Quartet, Anita O'Day and the Four Freshman.
        1953-Charlie Parker produces begins the recording session that produced some of his unforgettable albums with strings and voices This day he cut “Old Folks, “ “If I Love Again,” “ and “In the Still of the Night.” A jazz genius and performer. The background may sound “tinny” due to the recording abilities in those days, but Parker's alto saxophone solo's shine through today with brilliance and his melodies are quite apparent, something questioned in 1953. I listen to this album quite often and have never been bored hearing it again. In fact, it is really a classic, as each time I play it, I swear it is better and I hear something I did not before.

        1955 – Comedian Jack Benny signed off his last live network radio broadcast after a run of 23 years. Joining Milton Berle and his best friend George Burns, his television shows became as popular as his radio shows, as he brought along with him his announcer Don Wilson; bandleader Phil Harris; Eddie ‘Rochester' Anderson; singer Dennis Day; and his wife, Mary Livingstone.
        1955--Police in Bridgeport, Connecticut cancel a dance at the Ritz ballroom featuring Fats Domino. Authorities say the cancellation is because they discovered that "Rock and Roll dances might be featured" and justify their action by citing "a recent near riot at the New Haven Arena" where Rock and Roll dances were held.
        1958-Jerry Lee Lewis arrives at London's Heathrow Airport to begin his first British tour, along with his new bride, 14 year old third cousin, Myra. Although advised not to mention it, Lewis answers all questions about his private life, truthfully. The public's shock over Lewis' marriage marks the start of a controversy which eventually ruins his career. The London Morning Star runs an editorial calling Lewis "an undesirable alien" and calls for his deportation, leading to his British tour being cancelled after just 3 of the scheduled 37 performances.
        1961-the first revolving restaurant was dedicated, The Top of the Needle, located at the 500-foot level of the 500-foot-high steel and glass tower at the Century 21 exposition, Seattle, WA. It contained 260 seats and revolved 360 degrees in an hour. Above the restaurant was an observation deck and above that, a beacon. It was designed by John Graham and Company.
    Today, there is the SpaceNeedle, privately owned and operated.
        1958---Top Hits
    All I Have to Do is Dream - The Everly Brothers
    Return to Me - Dean Martin
    Johnny B. Goode - Chuck Berry
    Just Married - Marty Robbins
        1958- singer Jerry Lee Lewis announced his marriage to his 14-year-old cousin, Myra, as he arrived in London. The resulting controversy caused Lewis to be booed off stage and forced the cancellation of all but three of the 37 scheduled concerts on his British tour. It would take years for Lewis's career to recover.
        1963-Mickey Mantle of the New York Yankees hit a home run off Bill Fisher of the Kansas City Athletics as the Yankees beat the A's, 8-7. Mantle's blast caromed off the rooftop facade at Yankee Stadium and came within a few feet of becoming the only homerun ever hit out of that park.
        1965-The Beatles attained their eighth Billboard number one hit with "Ticket To Ride", on which Paul McCartney, not George Harrison, played lead guitar.
        1965 - The Beatles got their eighth consecutive number one hit as "Ticket to Ride" rode to the top of the singles list. The song topped the charts for one week.
        1966- Bruce Springsteen and his band, the Castiles, recorded two songs co-written by Springsteen. The recordings, Springsteen's first, were never released. He and the Castiles did, however, perform several dates at New York's Cafe the following year.
        1966---Top Hits
    Monday Monday - The Mamas & The Papas
    Rainy Day Women #12 & 35 - Bob Dylan
    When a Man Loves a Woman - Percy Sledge
    Distant Drums - Jim Reeves
        1967-Premeire of “Mr. Rogers” on TV. “Won't You Be My Neighbor? “Presbyterian minister, Fred Rogers, hosted this long-running PBS children's program Puppets and human characters interacted in the neighborhood of make-believe. Rogers played the voices of many of the puppets and educated young viewers on a variety of important subjects. the last episodes of the program were filmed in 2001. Almost 2,000 episodes were produced over the show's history.
        1970 - The “Guess Who” from the Winnipeg, Canada area earned a gold record for both the album and single, "American Woman". It would be one of three million-seller awards for the group. Their other hits included, "These Eyes", "Laughing" and "No Sugar Tonight". The group, which dates back to 1963, disbanded in 1975, with several reunions since then.
        1972-President Richard Nixon became the first American president to visit Moscow. Four days later on May 26, Nixon and Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev signed a t5reaty on antiballistic missile systems and an interim agreement on limitation of strategic missiles.
        1972 - No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: "Oh Girl," Chi-Lites.
        1974---Top Hits
    The Streak - Ray Stevens
    Dancing Machine - The Jackson 5
    The Entertainer - Marvin Hamlisch
    Country Bumpkin - Cal Smith
        1977-Janet Tuthrie became the first woman driver to qualify for the Indianapolis 500 with an average speed of more than 188 miles per hour. She lasted only 27 laps in the race, dropping out when her car broke a valve seal.
        1979-Cheap Trick's "Live at Budokan" LP was certified gold in the US. It eventually sold more than one-million copies, delaying the release of the follow-up album, "Dream Police."
        1982---Top Hits
    Ebony and Ivory - Paul McCartney with Stevie Wonder
    Don't Talk to Strangers - Rick Springfield
    I've Never Been to Me - Charlene
    Just to Satisfy You - Waylon & Willie
        1985 - “Fortune” Magazine named Sears, Roebuck as the nation's largest retailer for the 21st year in a row.
        1985 - No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: "Everything She Wants," Wham!
        1987 - A powerful (f4) tornado obliterated the small southwest Texas community of Saragosa, destroying 85 percent of the structures in the town. The tornado claimed 30 lives and injured 121 others in the town of only 183. The twister hurled trucks and automobiles through adobe and wood-frame homes with some blown over 500 feet. Many of the victims were parents or grandparents of children who died sheltering them from flying debris during a ceremony for head start for four-year-olds.
        1990-The Cincinnati reds intentionally walked outfielder Andrew Dawson of the Chicago Cubs a record five times in a 16-inning game. Dawson's five free passes broke the record held by Roger Maris and Garry Templeton. Perhaps Barry Bonds will beat it this year.
        1990-Microsoft unveiled Windows 3.0 at gala events in twenty cities around the world, linked by satellite to a theater in New York City. The show featured a speech by Bill Gates, as well as laser lights, videos, and surround sound. Microsoft spent $10 million publicizing the new release in what was generally regarded as the most expensive software introduction to date. While PIK, IMB,Apple and others tried to promote their operating system, even with 12 floppy disks, Microsoft sold three million copies of Windows 3.0 as it was quite “user friendly.”
        1990---Top Hits
    Vogue - Madonna
    All I Wanna Do is Make Love to You - Heart
    Hold On - Wilson Phillips
    Walkin' Away - Clint Black
        1992-After almost 30 years as host of the "Tonight" show, Johnny Carson hosted his last show. Carson became host of the late-night talk show, which began as a local New York program on Dumont than was purchased by NBC, and Steve Allen was the first on the network show. October 1,1962, Carson took over from Jack Paar with side kick Ed McMahon and Doc Severinsen, longtime band leader. In a split with the network, David Letterman went to CBS as Jay Leno was chosen to take over the spot.
        1992-- Replacing Tom Runnells , Felipe Alou is named as the manager of the Expos. The eventual second-place Montreal club is 17-20 at the time the Colorado native firing.
        1993-the first movie was broadcast on the Internet by its director David Blair. It was his cult science-fiction film “Wax: Or the Discovery of Television Among the Bees.” Blair uploaded the film in digital video format for viewing world-wide.
        1996- Garth Brooks celebrated his 60- millionth album sold with a 1960s theme party in Nashville. The Recording Industry Association of America said Brooks was the best-selling country artist of all-time and the second-highest selling artist ever in the US. Only the Beatles had sold more. Third place belongs to Billy Joel, who has not released a new song in a decade.
        1997- The hit-making Fleetwood Mac lineup of Mick Fleetwood, John McVie, Christine McVie, Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks reunited for their first full-fledged public performance in 15 years. The show, on a soundstage at Warner Brothers studio in Burbank, California, was one of two taped for an MTV special and a live album. Nicks stopped the concert - twice - because she forgot the words to "Dreams," Fleetwood Mac's only number-one single.
        2001--- For the second time this season, Barry Bonds homers in six consecutive games. His nine homers during this span games establishes a National League mark. Senators' slugger Frank Howard's 1968 feat of hitting 10 homers in six games major league is the major league record.
        2003-- Arturo Moreno purchases the World Champion Angels from Walt Disney for $184 million to becoming the third owner in the 43-year history of the franchise. The 56-year-old outdoor advertising tycoon, who is a fourth-generation Mexican-American, is the first Hispanic to have a controlling interest in a major league club.



    Baseball Poem

    I Dream of a Baseball Star
    by Gregory Corso

    I dreamed Ted Williams
    leaning at night
    against the Eiffel Tower, weeping.
    He was in uniform
    and his bat lay at his feet
    -- knotted and twiggy.

    Randall Jarrell says you're a poet!" I cried.
    "So do I! I say you're a poet!"

    He picked up his bat with blown hands;
    stood there astraddle as he would in the batter's box,
    and laughed! flinging his schoolboy wrath
    toward some invisible pitcher's mound
    -- waiting the pitch all the way from heaven.

    It came; hundreds came! all afire!
    He swung and swung and swung and connected not one
    sinker curve hook or right-down-the middle.
    A hundred strikes!
    The umpire dressed in strange attire
    thundered his judgment: YOU'RE OUT!
    And the phantom crowd's horrific boo
    dispersed the gargoyles from Notre Dame.

    And I screamed in my dream:
    God! throw thy merciful pitch!
    Herald the crack of bats!
    Hooray the sharp liner to left!
    Yea the double, the triple!
    Hosannah the home run!





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