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July 2013

June 2013

Minister pitches Inky subscription

Sells Inquirer subscriptions

Andy Autrey, a resident of the Hill House in Chestnut Hill, has long been in professional sales – cars, life insurance – and now is pitching subscriptions to the Philadelphia Inquirer. His engaging approach at the Flourtown Walgreen’s won your correspondent over to re-upping with a subscription. An on-the-spot Walgreen’s gift card and the fact that disadvantaged youth will be treated to a Phillies game as part of the promotion clinched the deal. Autrey considers his sales work part of his mission as an associate minister involved with youth programs at the Embracing Truth Church in West Philadelphia. Watch video here.

Vaulting bride and groom sculpted by blind uncle

Vaulting couple marries

Michael Gieschen, left

Because Mike Gieschen’s niece met her fiancée while competing at vaulting event, a passion they share, the blind artist decided to create a wedding gift depicting their shared hobby. (Vaulting is essentially the striking of gymnastic poses atop a horse).

Constructed of celluclay and smoothed with joint compound, built over a wire and paper armature, a male and female couple are shown, each standing on one leg atop a horse with an arm around the other’s waist, the other arm extended horizontally forward and the other leg extended horizontally back as if they were flying. Taking artistic license, not knowing whether this is an actual vaulting pose, Gieschen, in this work, expresses his hope that the newlyweds will soar together and happily in their new life together. The couple marries today

watch video here

Exercise science major no meathead

Exercise science major no meathead

College students majoring in exercise science are not just a bunch of meatheads who love to work out and run around lifting up things, says Tristan VanderMeer, majoring in the field at Grand Valley State University in Michigan. VanderMeer was drawn to the field as a way of learning more about his body and how to live a healthy life. Graduates in the field can work in a variety of careers such as in nutrition, physical therapy or as a personal trainer but for VanderMeer, it will be a component of a nursing career. 

He explains the metabolic and hormonal basis of why he advocates a high non-saturated fat, low carb and low processed food diet. He also stressed the importance of regular exercise, getting out and moving about whether it’s biking or walking, and getting some strength training in.

For some “action” scenes, VanderMeer indulged your correspondent by demonstrating some beneficial exercises- hanging from rungs while twisting his trunk like a windshield wiper, sprinting barefoot and doing push-ups.

Watch video here. (At the J.S. Jenks children's park, Chestnut Hill, Philadelphia)


Exercise science

Philly Film Society Renovates Roxy

Philly Flim Society renovates Roxy

The Philadelphia Film Society is renovating the venerable Roxy Theater on Sansom Street downtown, installing new seats and screens and converting to a digital projection system. Marketing Director Katie Powell is excited that the Roxy could become a cultural, film epicenter for the year-round showing of art house, independent and foreign films. In partnership with the Philadelphia Film Office, the Roxy will mount “Filmadelphia,” a once-a-month showing of a film created and produced in Philadelphia. At her booth at the Inliquid “Art for the Cash Poor” arts show at the Crane Building, Powell was encouraging visitors to enter a raffle for the chance to win two free tickets to PFS’s “biggest, baddest” event, opening night at the Society’s premier project, the fall Philadelphia Film Festival. watch video interview here.

Installing replacement windows

Installing replacement windows

As he goes about his work of installing replacement windows in an old house, Paul Piccone, an installer with  Matus Windows of Glenside, PA describes the process.

After carefully prying apart the wooden trim holding in the old window, he chisels away the blind stops on the window opening. Then he test runs or dry fits the new window to see if it’s necessary to further chisel the rabbet (a recessed cut that matches with a “tongue”) for the screen rail to go in.

Meanwhile, on a machine outside, partner Jim Caroll forms bends in a sheet of flat metal into the shape of the sill which will be attached to the exterior. 

The men then put the frame and window in and finish up by capping and sealing it all.

Piccone likes what he does, getting to see inside different homes, some very grand, but especially enjoys working with his crewmates.

Watch video here.

Bhutan refugees renew farming in Philly

Bhutanese women farmers in Philly

At the age of six, Bishnu Kamar (left) fled her native Bhutan where, she says, the government was trying to kill its own people. She lived the next twenty-two years in a bamboo house in a refugee camp in Nepal, to where many ethnic Nepalis fled, under harsh, cramped conditions. She and her companions, Dropada Kafley (middle) and Mon Maya Bastola (right), now live with their families in South Philadelphia. With the help of an American friend they started a community farm and now tend nearly 100 beds. In Nepal, they had farmed rice, corn and “all kinds of vegetables.”

On Thursdays the threesome takes the bus up to the Weavers Way Henry-Got-Crops Farm in Roxborough to better learn American farming techniques.

In addition to farming, Kamar takes care of her mother-in-law, works in a pre-school and, after an intensive 6-month study of English, also works as a Nepali language interpreter in a hospital. 


“It’s awesome. Because we spend our life -is a very good way. We are good now. And I think my future can be good. I can try hard…”

Watch video here.