September 24, 2009


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His reporting on “9-11”was heartbreaking
Wyndmoor author tells how to keep your job in this economy

A little more than a year ago, Wyndmoor magazine writer and business book author Bob Calandra got a phone call from his agent with a book proposal. He said that a publisher he knew wanted a book written on “how to keep your job while everyone around you is losing theirs.” This was several months before the near-Depression collapse of the U.S.economy, fueled by countless home foreclosures, unwise mortgage loans, overextension of credit, etc.

Calandra, 57, contacted a friend, Michael J.Kitson, a Coatesville resident with an MBA and 35 years experience as a business consultant. The two knew each other from playing ice hockey together at least once a week for the past 25 years. (They now play with a bunch of other guys from ages 20-something to 61 every Sunday morning at the University of Pennsylvania ice hockey rink.)

When Kitson gave his buddy the go-ahead, they signed a contract on September 7 and agreed to have the book completed by January 1, 2009. Then, exactly eight days later came the catastrophic news about the economy imploding. “I thought we were geniuses,” said Calandra. “Suddenly, it was a perfect time for a book like ours. The publisher (F+W Media, Inc., of Avon, Massachusetts) quickly moved up the deadline to December 1, and there were many 15 to 16-hour work days after that, including every weekend.”

Buddakan, Continental in A.C. defying the odds

The view from The Pier at Caesar’s is truly breathtaking.

You might say the national economy is so bad that atheists are now going to church just for the free wine and wafers. On the other hand, you can’t always believe what you read. The conventional wisdom for the past couple of years is that the casino-hotels in Atlantic City are on a slow death march. Even before the economy imploded one year ago, the casinos were bleeding money, largely because of the new slots parlors in Pennsylvania. (Nine are now up and running in the Keystone State, with five more, including two in Philadelphia, scheduled to open.)

A few months ago we walked through the casino at Trump Taj Mahal, and it was as quiet as a mouse sleeping on cotton. So when we stayed at Caesar’s Casino-Hotel from September 9 to 11, we were shocked to find huge crowds in both the casino and the restaurants. I overheard one portly gentleman even complain that all of the “Village People” slot machines, obviously his favorite, were occupied (and there were two rows of them).

Fine art auction in West Mt. Airy to aid disabled

“La meuele” (The Haystack) is by Blanche Hoschedé-Monet, a protégé of famed Impressionist, Claude Monet.

Fuller’s Fine Art Auctions at 730 Carpenter Lane in West Mt. Airy will be  conducting an auction of 19th and 20th century fine art on Saturday, Oct. 3, starting at noon. The auction will feature works of art from the Estate of Betty Gordon of Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania.

A mother, journalist and generous patron of the arts, Gordon avidly collected what she liked. Gordon’s eclectic collection reflects her passion for superior art, literature, travel and fine furnishings. Gordon’s commitment to the cause of helping persons with emotional, developmental and educational disabilities through her support of the Devereux Foundation was paramount. Proceeds from the Oct. 3 sale of items from Gordon’s estate will ultimately support Devereux’s mission to change lives and nurture human potential.