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Wednesday

Simply refreshing Gazpacho


Gazpacho
By J.B. Blocker
   When my eat healthy gene kicks in I have a tendency to go on auto-pilot when I grocery shop around the fresh produce section.  
  That is when the spirit of my recently passed chef mentor, the great French Master Chef Jean La Font speaks to me.
  “Gazpacho”, he whispers! 
It has become one of my go to dishes. My really healthy comfort food. It gets even better on day two and three but it rarely last that long. I don't even use a bowl. I fill a mug and add some chilled shrimp if I have it ready.

Sunday

Liver and Onions for Mom

  
jb blocker

  Liver and Onions? There was no escape when mom made liver and onions for dad. No excuses and no substitutions. As an adult, I no longer hate them.
  I ate lunch at Furr's Cafeteria in Plano on I-75 this weekend. I filled my plate with things my mom would have made. It's kinda like going to a Sunday pot luck dinner. I fill my plate with some of my childhood least favorites boiled cabbage, turnip greens, broccoli salad, jello salad, etc.. If they had Salmon Patties it would be complete. The meal is saved by a slice of roast beef, baked fish, and an average meatloaf. My mom's meatloaf became average when a former secretary Shiela Williams blew my mind.
  I make a point to get a nice helping of liver and onions smothered in the gravy. Some times throughout the year I go to Furr's with a friend, but at this time of year, I make to point to go on my own and take my time talking to my mother.
  Nancy Lea passed 20 years ago but continually rides on my shoulder. For those who knew her at Sunray Sunray Church of Christ. She was a Texas small town Martha Stewart and Barbara Walters rolled into a dust bowl Okie, WWII Wave, and author.


  I was her adopted Japanese, Irish, German, Korean, French personal project. No racism existed in her world. Cultures did. She embraced the world. We had friends from around the world from Navy days. When we reached America, for most of my childhood the only other 1/2 Asian I would know was my baby sister Eri.
   Mom owned a pottery and craft shop in our tiny town of less than 2000. Because of the Handicraft Shop in Sunray, I have committed knitting, crocheting, sewing, cooking, baking, cleaning, pottery, pouring molds, firing them off, painting Roosters and Pitcher/Bowl sets, macrame, and every other art or craft known to man in the '70s. I have read the Bible thoroughly, many times, as well as the dictionary, and encyclopedia. She made me read Lord Byron, Thoreau, Shakespeare and tested me on them. 

 
Mothers three favorite books.

  Nancy Blocker collected all of her Bible notes, lessons, maps, and drawings to publish Pearls in the Sand. She also hand wrote three cookbooks. She was proud of her penmanship and calligraphy.  I can easily read a book in a day, and because she convinced me that my brain would not explode, I still have 3 or 4 books going at a time. 

  I am proudly OCD and a library resides in my head because of MOM.
  I was sitting on the front porch this morning reading a historic western and listening to Con te Patiro by Andres Buchelli, which I am trying to learn. Because my mom drove me 40 miles twice a week for years to a voice teacher, I can sing arias in German, Russian, and many in Italian.
  Sometimes I feel her flick the back of my ear as she would often to show disapproval. She didn't chastise me openly, but that flick was a signal that we would be talking about this later. And that I was probably going to have some new Bible verses to memorize...


  So every mothers day weekend, I make sure to have lunch with mom.

- J.B. Blocker is a media consultant based in Collin County in North Texas. Advertise with J.B. by calling 469-334-9962.

Friday

A Voting Disaster



Voting or Not Voting for the Wrong Reasons. jb blocker
So you think your candidate has it locked up because their district is heavily GOP. Or you think your district will carry the DEM for the same reason. Guess again. There are several factors that could completely flip your reality. Here is just one.

Part I: Weather or not…Voter turnout is on the line.
Complacency is growing as quickly as confusion and frustration while candidates all over Texas and the rest of America campaign for seats from the Top on down.
If you are a candidate, this should concern you. If you are a Republican you have a bit of an advantage when the weather acts up. Here is an approach you should consider.

The Postman’s Pledge: Herodotus
  It is said that as many days as there are in the whole journey, so many are the men and horses that stand along the road, each horse and man at the interval of a day’s journey; and these are stayed neither by snow nor rain nor heat nor darkness from accomplishing their appointed course with all speed.

  What I suggest is that you gear your campaign toward pledges to vote no matter what! Not just for you, but for our country. If you are speaking, texting, or social mediaizing express the importance of committing to vote! Vote early if possible! And if they can’t do that, tell them to have their all weather gear ready. This should be your campaign at this point. Taking anything for granted is a mistake.
 

Lewisville hits the Jackpot

 Music City Mall welcomes Zion Market Center
By J.B. Blocker
Lewisville wins the Asian market Lottery with the addition of Zion Market to the Music City Mall!
  With the recent acquisition of the former Sears building of the Music City Mall complex in Lewisville by Zion Market partnered with a prominent local management company, all the advantages go to the future Zion Market Center.
  
  There is an estimated 100,000 Korean population in the North Dallas region of DFW alone. Along with a significant number of Japanese, Vietnamese, Indian, Thai, and Chinese, the Asian population is an economic force as well as a culinarians dream.
  
  All of these cultures are seeking a reliable source for fresh produce and complimentary supplies and services.

  The influence of H-Mart in North Dallas was a springboard for an explosion of successful Asian Centers led by the Asian Town Plaza on the George Bush and Denton Road in Carrollton.
  
  Another Korean center recently broke ground in North Carrollton off Highway 121.
But both centers are going to take an instant back seat to the advantages the Lewisville Music City Mall will offer!
  The Dallas Korean Festival will be held on Saturday, November 10th at the Asian Town Plaza. Last years attendance was estimated at 40,000 and this year promises to be an equal success.
  With a coordinated effort to speed up the development of the Plaza, The 2019 Dallas Festival is poised to be hosted by the Zion Plaza at Lewisville’s Music City Mall!

Location, Location, and Proven Management


  •    Located on the I-35 corridor between Highway 121 and the George Bush Tollway. This Asian center is easily the most accessible to significant travel.
  •    Being part of the Metro-Plex’s newly developed Music City Mall is a double advantage. Asians now have movie theatres, major nameplate retailers, and family-oriented resources to enjoy. Traditional mall goers now have new and easy access to a host of Asian dining and services.
  •    Zion has wisely partnered with The Way Management. TW Realty Advisors is credited with leading the Carrollton Asian Center to the huge success it enjoys today.
The Way Realty Advisors

  Richard Kang leads a team of local visionaries and partners who not only developed the Asian Market Center in Carrollton, but also have helped to bring many successful Asian businessmen, restauranteurs, and entrepreneurs together throughout the DFW Metro-Plex and all the way to the East Coast.
  He talks about how Kyu M. Hwang was investigating the opportunity to bring Zion Markets to North Texas. It has taken three years of considering the best options and locations to entice the prominent West Coast Asian Market chain to plant their flag in Texas.
  When the opportunity to buy the former Sears building came up, all the stars had aligned! The Way Management was established and poised to bring the 38 restaurants, retailers, and professional services to round out the Metro Plex’s most dynamic Asian concept.
  Their team was already skilled with state and local regulations and had established relationships with the local authorities. 
  Richard Kang has been a resident of Lewisville for the past eighteen years as a realtor and property manager. His team not only developed the Carrollton Asian Center but also guides Multi-Use Development projects across DFW already.
  
  I asked Mr. Kang about how this all came to be. “Throughout my experience with Mr. Hwang, I was pleased to discover many things that made our partnership an easy decision. 
  It is obvious that the Hwang family have proven to be very successful businessmen. Not only have they been courteous and very approachable, but in addition, Kyu has proven to be extremely responsive in his follow-up and always good to his word. His heart is good.
  He has proven that he cares about his employees, his community, and his associates. It has been a pleasure to be involved with such a man. I expect this project to be a great success.”


  The former Sears building is a 150,000 sq. ft. two story building with a prominent view of I-35.
  The flagship will be the 50,000 sq. ft. Zion Market on the ground level along with featured restaurants and access to family activity centers.
  The Second level will include over 20,000 sq. ft. in restaurants, retail, and professional services. A total of 38 separate business will employ over 500 full-time staff.
  It is anticipated that the Asian influence will bring an average of 30,000 shoppers per week, 120,000+ monthly, you do the rest of the math!
  The economic impact could easily bring in $150 Million dollars to Lewisville by offering an extraordinary array of options and adventures for the North Texas communities.
  Trying to calculate the impact of traditional mall goers with the opportunity to engage in Asian culture is impossible to anticipate. But given the way North Texans have embraced the foods of the Orient, this looks to be a new and exciting gateway to even more integration of cultures.

Like I said, Lewisville just hit the Jackpot!


- J.B. Blocker is a media consultant based in Collin County in North Texas. Advertise with J.B. by calling 469-334-9962.

Thursday

Zion, the Promised Land

Another American Dreamer
By J.B.Blocker
  Kyu Hwang, pronounced Q, was 25 when he completed his 3-year service as a Corporal in the Air Borne Division of the South Korean Army.
  Along with his father, mother, and sister, the Christian South Korean family found sponsorship to the U.S. and a brighter future. In their homeland, they were among the very poor and like many of that time, the American dream was freedom of religion and the opportunity to find work. And work he did!
  In 1978, the family arrived in San Diego. The family spoke little English and Kyu began working in the back of a kitchen washing dishes. He worked many jobs and many hours over the next three years including becoming an insurance agent for New York Life before his opportunity to make his own path presented itself in a little empty building in San Diego. The growing local market demand for Asian produce welcomed the addition to the community.

Zion: A Biblical term for The Promised Land

  Kyu and his brother-in-law started their own family grocery store in a 2000 sq. ft. location in 1981. Zion Market was born! Under his guidance and determination, by 1985 revenues reached $56,000 monthly and grew $3000 every month over the next three years. In 2000, they added another 4000 sq. ft...    By 2002, the market moved to a 30,000 sq. ft. location.

Zion Market Center 1 is now occupying a 100,000 sq. ft. The Zion Market itself takes up 60,000 sq. ft. and employs over 120 full-time staff. Its annual revenues exceed $38 million dollars! 

  The other 40,000 sq. ft. holds 38 other vendors and professional services with revenues of around $12 million dollars.
  This Korean Center has been a welcomed fixture in San Diego supporting the vast Asian community that has grown around the Naval port. The years of servicemen spending tours of duty in Asia has created a warm reception for Asian cuisine and a growing and welcomed comfortable relationship with products of the Asian culture.

San Diego has a 2018 population nearing 1.5 million and over 15% of the residents are of Asian descent.
  The same can be said of Texas and the tens of

Wednesday

Amusing God



I think
it amuses God to amaze us.
The more we know about this world,
the more we experience it,
the more we will be Amazed,
and the more God will be Amused.

With this reality
I am compelled
to Taste, Smell, Feel, See, and Experience
New Things.
                        
To see them with open eyes.
To experience them with moderation!
In order to amuse God.

 jbblocker

- J.B. Blocker is a media consultant based in Collin County in North Texas. Advertise with J.B. by calling 469-334-9962

Tuesday

Coffee, News, Interesting People, and Tasty Treats

Romancing the Bean Series
by Caffeine Cowboy

Tales from the Old County

Coffee Cantata by Johan Sebastian Bach


  “No daughter of mine will drink coffee!” declares Schlendrian. (Stuffy in German)  “­­But father, if I don’t have at least three small cups a day, I’ll soon be as dried-out as an un-basted roast!”

  Cleverly, Schlendrian proposes, “Fine, then make your choice, a husband or coffee!”  His willful daughter seemingly demurs to her fathers restriction but with a stage-whisper tells the audience, “Any man who wishes to win my hand must first promise to supply all of the coffee I want!”

  Amused by the Parisian fad for coffee, Bach asked the famed poet and satirist Picador to write a libretto with coffee as its theme.  The story mirrored the attitude of the German elite toward women and the middle-class. Coffee was too special for the commoner and coffeehouses were no place for a lady!


  Before public music halls existed in Germany, caf├ęs attracted music lovers by sponsoring performances by collegia musica (the association of private musicians).

  From 1720 to1740, Bach performed for the public and experimented with new pieces at Zimmerman’s Kaffeehaus in Leipzig.  The Coffee Cantata was first performed there in 1734.  It was a musical and community success.

The most famous coffee snob:


Wednesday

Recruiting a Winning Team

The Andrew Principle
Campaigning 101
jb blocker

John 1: 40  One of the two who heard John speak and followed Him, was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother. 41 He found first his own brother Simon and said to him, "We have found the Messiah” (which translated means Christ). 42 He brought him to Jesus. Jesus looked at him and said, "You are Simon the son of John; you shall be called Cephas" (which is translated Peter)
  
  You don’t hear much about Andrew the apostle. We know he was one of the first to be chosen by Jesus along with James and John. Later in the Bible, he is the one who brings the boy to Jesus with the fish and loaves that feeds thousands. He is also at the resurrection. But Andrew is also mentioned for one other thing that has resonated throughout the ages.
  You see, Andrew met Jesus and went to his brother Simon to tell him he had found the Savior! Simon's named was changed to Peter. "Upon this rock I will build my church."
  That is some really good recruiting! That is like finding Babe Ruth and introducing him to baseball. 

I call it ‘The Andrew Principle’.
  In campaigning for a civic office, you really need a few Peters. He or She are the one who thousands listen to. They have a network, respect, and usually access to donors.
  But Peters are hard to get to.  They are very protective of their resources and are exceptionally aware of how their good name can be used or misused.  You often have to go through others they trust just to get to them.
  Every Peter has their Andrews. They can’t be that successful without dependable trusted people in their lives. Whether those are family or friends, they are the people who can unlock the doors that lead to the Peters.

Looking for Andrew