June-July 2011 - Concepts Direct, Inc.



June-July 2011 - Concepts Direct, Inc.
J U N E / J U LY 2 0 1 1
River Jam!
Building Your
College Resume
Ghost Stories
QE3 and High
Balance Loans
More 50 Ways
The Grass Was Greener...
l when
kids like it! My
I co
. You’ve made
olly O. (Salisbury)
my life so muc
V o lu m e 2 , I s s ue 3
J U N E / J U LY, 2 0 1 1
Robious Corridor Magazine is a bi-monthly
publication of Concepts Direct, Inc.
Cleaning the Robious Corridor for 10 years!
★ Flexible cleaning schedules & services
★ Whole house cleaning or just certain rooms
★ All equipment & supplies provided
★ Always the same professional team
★ Licensed, insured & bonded
★ All jobs are 100% guaranteed!
Suzanne Hayzlett
SET Cleaning Services
(804) 598-1005
[email protected]
6 Surviving The Road To College
....………………Caitlin Phelan, Contributing Writer
9 QE3, Home Values, and High Balance Loans
...………………Danny Murphy, Contributing Writer
12 Notes On The Run
....……………Monica Cassier, Contributing Writer
For advertising, please call us at (804) 241-0378
or email [email protected]
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Magazine are re-printed with permission and
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All rights reserved. Any reproduction in whole
or in part of any text or photograph without
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is prohibited.
15 50 Ways to Feed Your Lover
…………………Jenna Weaver, Contributing Writer
16 Exit Laughing
…………………Michele Dixon, Contributing Writer
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3 River Jam!
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5 It’s Just My Opinion
:: 2 ::
RobiOus Corridor :: June/july 2011
James River High School’s “River Jam”
Raises $1,000 for Charity
iver Jam, a live music festival
and charity fund raiser hosted by
James River High School’s Student
Council Association (SCA), is easily
the school’s biggest social and musical
affair of the academic year.
This event took place on Friday, May
20th, inside the gymnasium at James
River High and brought together
students from around the Robious
Corridor community with live music
from 10 local bands, games, and fun
to help raise more than $1,000 for the
American Cancer Society.
Students insist that scheduling River
Jam to take place during the last
quarter of the school year is a much
needed diversion in getting their
minds off of SOLs and final exams.
But preparing to host such a large
undertaking is no easy task. “We all
get excited for River Jam months
before it even gets here. A large
majority of James River students
attended the event as well as other
students from surrounding schools
and children of all ages” said SCA
member, Luke Jefferson.
SCA officers, Liz Peters, Sam Reid,
Leslie McCrea, Maridee Rabb,
Mahiar Rabie, JT Scherzer, and
Hannah Hoffert, along with teacher
sponsor Katherine Ruse, are the
leadership team that planned the
event, but many other James River
clubs participated in the process
and played a large role in making
reservations, communicating with
bands, and working out logistics.
The rest of 30 SCA Senators provided
input and worked with various
committees to iron out minor details.
Additionally, there was a heavy
reliance on parent/teacher chaperones
and many parents answered the call
to serve. Tickets sold for $10 which
gave attendees access to all of the live
music, inflatables, and games. The
SCA held auditions for 15 local bands
to earn spots for 10 performances
during River Jam.
The music groups submitted their
music on CDs and the SCA listened
and selected their top 10 favorites.
The group that was the most
popular was Safety Word Orange,
an alternative band with a refined
sound and these seasoned performers
enjoyed the biggest crowd response.
One of Safety Word Orange’s band
members is a former James River
alumnus. Other bands that played
live were Tayj, First Class Liar, The
Echo Room, Capital 7, The Greater
The Risk, Mayfair, Joy Island, and
River Jam was scheduled to be held
outside on the school’s football field,
but due to weather, the festival was
moved inside to the gymnasium.
Although having River Jam inside
is not the ideal setting, the event
was successful in showcasing local
talent, helping young students plan
and manage a large scale event,
bringing together students across our
community, raising money for charity,
and helping students forget about
year end academics challenges for a
little while. 
(Mid-Life Crisis)
Corporate Outings
“The Right Music
for the
Right Event”
For Bookings
and more Information:
8 04-5 3 9-6 5 2 9
:: 3 ::
RobiOus Corridor :: June/july 2011
Enjoy the pool all
year long at acac!
New indoor aquatics center coming fall 2011:
• family splash pool
• warm water pool
• oversized whirlpool
• lap swim pool
• activity pool
11621 Robious Road, Midlothian | 804.378.1600 | acac.com |
Live your best.
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Coaches will emphasize a priority to family and school before pursuing
responsibilities associated with football.
6 before 8/1 and cannot turn 8 before 8/1
Must be 8 before 8/1 and cannot turn 10 before 8/1
Must be 10 before 8/1 and cannot turn 12 before 8/1
Must be 12 before 8/1 and cannot turn 14 before 8/1
All players learn about the game of Football, come to understand the value of teamwork,
and most importantly have fun!
WAA Football is open to students who live in the following elementary school districts:
Please register online at www.weaveraa.com
Questions? Contact Jeff Hester: : 4(Football
Director) @ 804-594-0778
RobiOus Corridor :: June/july 2011
It’s Just My Opinion: The Deer Must Die
A Commonsense Approach to Keeping Ourselves, Our Children and Our Vegetables Safe
by “Anonymous”
Folks, the Robious Corridor has a
deer problem. I know they’re adorable.
I know that finding them in your
backyard can feel like a magical Disney
moment. But that feeling passes.
All you need to do is look around
at anything growing in your yard to
realize that they are not cute. They
are animals. Monsters. Insatiable
eating machines.
Sure, right now it’s just random
munching on tomato plants, tulips,
and hostas. But what’s next? Our
lawn furniture? Our children? I don’t
want the deer to eat our children.
That’s why I’ve taken steps to do
something. I did something drastic
and serious and not for the faint of
heart. I posted an ad on Craigslist. It
ran under the “Help Wanted” section
under a subcategory labeled “Albino
Deer Killer.” It probably helped boost
response that my ad was the only one
in the category. To be honest, I was a
bit worried that all of the responses
would be from nut-jobs and weirdos.
But I was pleasantly surprised. It was
only about half nut-jobs. Maybe a
third weirdos.
Many who emailed sounded
like dedicated professionals who
understood the gravity of our
situation. Most importantly, several
of them had firsthand experience with
eliminating an elusive albino animal.
They believe, like I do, that the entire
deer organization is run by one
albino doe.
At times, we’ve all seen more than
one albino deer, but that’s just meant
to confuse us. You see this is the same
tactic practiced by the mafia. Big
bosses hire body doubles to throw the
FBI off of their scent. Same deal with
the Pope. Six Pope-Mobiles leave the
Vatican garage. Which Pope is the
real Pope? Nobody knows. Except
maybe God. So my strategy is that if
we take down the Salisbury Albino
Deer, the rest of the deer’s “criminal
empire” will collapse. I know this isn’t
a popular position. I know that “Alby”
is a beloved figure in our woods, in
our back yards, and on the golf course.
But who cares? I’m not running for
office. I’m just a man trying to save
his Big Boy Beefsteak tomatoes. If
anyone is interested in joining me,
you can contact me through this
publication by going to www.facebook.
com/RobiousCorridor to post a
comment. The plan is coming along
nicely and I hope to raise enough
money to hire someone by the end
of summer. Here are four of the
most promising email responses I’ve
received so far from Craigslist:
Quint1975 wrote - “Y’all know me.
Know how I earn a livin’. I’ll catch this
deer for you, but it ain’t gonna be easy.
Not like going down to the James River
chasin’ bluegills and hookin’ large mouths.
This deer, she’ll swallow you whole. Little
shakin’, little tenderizin’, an’ down you
go. I’ll find her for three, but I’ll catch her,
and kill her, for ten. For that you get the
head, the tail, the whole damn thing.”
CapnAhab wrote - “From hell’s heart
I stab at thee; for hate’s sake I spit my
last breath at thee. Ye damned deer. I’ll
follow her around the 14th green, and
the fairway of 15, and around perdition’s
flames before I give her up.”
SarahPalin2012 wrote - “This sounds
like a job for a maverick. I’m a maverick.
Did I mention that? I recently took a
break from the public sector and
I’m looking to get back to my roots
as a woman of the wilderness. You
see, I was raised in Alaska where you
basically grow up with a shotgun in
one hand, a crossbow in the other and a
machete in your back pocket...because we
can see the communists (Russia) from our
back yard! I’ve killed all kinds of things
and the way I figure it, an albino deer is
just like any other of God’s creatures that
was put here to take a bullet. And heck,
it will definitely be easier to spot from my
hunting helicopter. Is it humane? You
betcha! I’ll kill it and then, just like we
used to do when I was a little girl, we’ll
cut it up into little pieces and use every bit
of it. It’s probably delicious because it’s all
white meat, right? Even if I don’t eat the
albino doe personally, you have my promise
that somebody will. I’ll probably give it to
Todd. He’ll eat anything.”
SealTeam6 wrote - “We got this.”
Remember, if we work together as a
community, we can free ourselves from
the tyranny of the Salisbury Albino
Deer. Then, and only then, can we
deal with the squirrels!
See recipe for “Fried Venison
Medallions with Feta Dipping Sauce”
on page 15 courtesy of Paula Dean. 
:: 5 ::
RobiOus Corridor :: June/july 2011
Surviving the Road to College:
Building Your Resume
by Caitlin Phelan
When you’re not out visiting
colleges, being at home during
the summer months is the best
opportunity for building your
resume and making yourself a
more marketable college applicant.
Colleges today are not looking
for average people. They want
to see you up and moving, trying
new things, being adventurous,
and testing the waters. As a result
from these experiences, they hope
that you have grown into a more
confident, interesting, and unique
person, who would be a great asset
to their university. Ultimately, you
need to stand out. As defined by the
overly used dictionary on my laptop,
stand out means to “project from
the surface, be easily noticeable, be
clearly better or more significant
than someone or something”.
So, yes, just like it sounds, colleges
want you to… STAND OUT.
What is a Resume Anyways?
A resume is your long list of
“Awesomeness” that you type up
nicely to look fancy and official for
the college admissions officers. You
put just about your entire life story
of high school on your resume,
from your freshman year to today
(or the most recent moment before
you attach it with your application
and send it in). Your “entire life
story of high school” includes, (but
is definitely not limited to!), the
• Sports- how many years you have
played, leadership roles, and any
• Performing Arts- how many shows
you have done, solo singing parts,
leadership or standout roles, and any
• Visual Arts - how many years of
study you have completed and any
• Volunteering- how many years and
hours, your role and responsibilities,
and any awards
• Academic awards and other honors
• Job Experience
• Clubs and extracurricular activities
inside school
• How you spend your time outside
of school- if you’re on a travel
soccer team, dance five days a week,
participate in youth group, or are
involved in boy or girl scouts, say so!
• Anything Unique- did you win the
Pie-Making Contest at the town fair?
Have you participated in pageants?
Are you SCUBA certified? Have you
visited eight different countries? Did
you study for six weeks at Boston
University? Do you enjoy running
half marathons? Did you conduct
field work in Africa last summer?
Anything unique that would separate
you from everyone else is critical and
important information. You’re trying
to stand out, remember? (Funny
how the words, STAND OUT, keep
showing up!)
The Summer Before Your Senior
Year - The summer before your
senior year is absolutely crucial.
There have been application
questions and essays in previous
years that have straight up asked
“What did you do last summer?” If
you’re freaking out reading that last
sentence, then this article has now
become extra, extra important to
you! If you haven’t been out building
your “Awesomeness” for your resume
these past two summers, and you’re
a rising senior, now is your chance to
So How Do I Build My Resume?
Right now, you have your entire
summer in front of you. Here are
your two options:
• Relaxing on a lounge chair by the
pool doing absolutely nothing.
• Creating a bigger, better, more
awesome you by getting involved and
trying new things!
Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know what you’re
thinking. You’re thinking that you’ve
been stuck in school for the last nine
months, having your brain fried
like an overcooked chocolate chip
pancake, and that summer is your
chance to turn your brain off, and let
it melt to mush like a slushy in the
ninety degree Richmond humidity.
However, is that the best option?
Even if you’re thinking yes, the
answer is actually no! So, we’ll go
with choice number two. Here are
some local ideas for building your
resume this summer:
• Get a job- yes, the beginning of
June may be a little late to start job
Continued on next page ➥
:: 6 ::
RobiOus Corridor :: June/july 2011
hunting, but it never hurts! Even if
the job is not your dream job, the
entire point of getting one is to gain
the experience, meet new people,
make some money, and of course,
build your resume.
• Volunteer- organizations always
need help and are usually more than
willing to accept teenagers with open
arms. Some of my favorite local
(Richmond) organizations include
Habitat for Humanity, Special
Olympics, and Comfort Zone Camps.
Though, there are many, many, many
other amazing organizations in the
area too.
• Summer School- this idea looks
absolutely horrible at first glance, but
is actually full of creative, stimulating
learning opportunities. Schools such
as the University of Richmond and
Virginia Commonwealth University
have an abundance of summer classes
available to teenagers. You can study
journalism, fashion, a new language,
math, science… you name it! Summer
classes are your opportunity for
staying engaged outside of the usual
classroom, and opening yourself up to
a whole new interest.
Here are some farther distance
ideas for building your resume this
• Leadership Programs- I absolutely,
positively love attending leadership
programs. They can be for a long
time (six or eight weeks!) or even
just a weekend. These programs
enable you to meet a wide variety
of new people, while gaining a new
perspective on life, your future, and
even your own self! Don’t ask me how
many times I have googled “summer
programs for high school students”.
There are plenty out there, with all
different focuses, that are sure to
satisfy any high school student!
• Worldwide Community Servicethere are hundreds of organizations
out there, (yes, I have searched them
up on Google!) that enable high
school students to travel the country,
and even the globe, volunteering
for different organizations and local
peoples. Habitat for Humanity
offers their Global Village building
opportunity, while other companies
let students ride elephants in
Thailand and surf in Belize, all the
while serving others.
• Summer Programs and Plain
Ole Camps- whether you study
creative writing or criminal justice,
or splash into a lake from a tree or
roast s’mores by a campfire, these
adventures for high school students
are opportunities for major growth.
There are thousands of traditional
camps, as well as all kinds of programs
held at universities across the country,
that enable teenagers to have these
life changing experiences!
Your Senior Year - At my school
at least, your senior year is not only
known to be the most fun year, but
also the hardest and most stressful
year of your life. Even in your senior
year, no matter those stress levels, it
is still important to stay involved in
school and extracurricular activities.
If you haven’t gotten involved already,
here are some ideas for building your
resume your senior year:
• Join a club (or two or three!)especially at a bigger school, getting
involved in clubs is a great way to
meet new people. You’re able to take
part in something you really like, and
gain new friends and new experiences!
• Participate in sports- I know not
all schools have “no cut” policies,
so playing a sport might not be an
option at all schools. However, even
managing a team can still get you
involved with that sport, allowing
you to become a part of the team
even if you are the one sitting on the
sidelines keeping score.
• Performing Arts- whether you
think you are secretly destined for the
spotlight or think you have the eye for
creating the perfect lighting effects,
there are usually more than enough
opportunities for participating in
theater, on or off the stage.
When you lay them all out, there
really are so many options to build
yourself a wonderful resume!
However, the important thing to
remember is that colleges want
quality over quantity. Getting
involved in a ton of different areas
is definitely great, but colleges want
to see commitment. For example, it
looks better to be involved in three
clubs, where you may be President
of one, Secretary of another, and an
average member of the third, rather
than be a member of ten clubs, where
you hold no leadership positions and
don’t seem to do much. But other
than remembering that old saying
(the quality over quantity thing!),
I hope that you feel prepared and
energized to enter this summer with
The school year is finally coming
to a close, and the light at the
end of the tunnel (also known as
summer!) is right at our fingertips.
In response to that wonderful feeling
of accomplishment, identified as “I
actually completed my junior year!”,
I will definitely be chilling on my
lounge chair this summer. However
it might be with my required reading
or a draft of my next article. So, soak
up that sun… while making smart
choices. You’ll feel good, gain new
experiences, build your resume, and,
oh yeah, STAND OUT! 
:: 7 ::
RobiOus Corridor :: June/july 2011
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RobiOus Corridor :: June/july 2011
:: 8 ::
QE3, Home Values, and High Balance Loans
by Danny Murphy
Robious Corridor Magazine
Danny Murphy
“There are rumors of a possible third
round of economic stimulus. How
does this affect mortgages?”
“There is no “quick fix” solution
in sight for home values. It’s going
to take time and patience. CaseShiller reported in May that the
excess inventory in housing is
somewhere between 2 and 2.5
million homes. These homes need
to be sold just to get back to normal
inventory levels. Foreclosures have
yet to peak so the pressure to lower
home values continues. In fact, after
reviving somewhat with the new
homeowner tax credit, prices are
essentially back to their April 2009
lows. Case-Shiller predicts that in
2012 bank foreclosures will peak.
Once this happens we should see
a recovery in home prices.”
Danny Murphy
“The second round economic
stimulus known as QE2 ends June
30th 2011. Before the Federal
Reserve implemented the QE2,
mortgage rates were at an all time
historic low of 4%. However, by the
beginning of January 2011, mortgage
rates had risen above 5%. I would
expect the same thing to happen if
there is any kind of QE3.
Fortunately, mortgage interest rates
dipped again this May and the 30
year fixed rate is once again below
5%. Any type of artificial economic
stimulus is only going to hurt those
low rates. It will create the future
fear of inflation which is the arch
enemy of interest rates. Higher
inflation means higher rates. The
Federal Reserve needs to allow the
economy to begin to recover on its
own. Then we could continue to see
low mortgage rates throughout the
remainder of 2011; but if the Federal
Reserves continues to operate the
printing press to buy US Treasuries,
then it will be inevitable that
inflation will rise as well as mortgage
rates. Stay tuned.”
Robious Corridor Magazine
“What will this mean for our
home values?”
Robious Corridor Magazine
“High balance loan limits are due
to expire September 30, 2011.
What are high-balance loan
limits and how will this affect the
housing recovery?”
mortgage financing. Allowing these
temporary limits to expire is a step in
that direction.
For example, currently the federal
housing agencies, Fannie Mae,
Freddie Mac, Federal Housing
Authority (FHA), Veterans
Administration (VA), and USDA
Rural Development purchase and
guarantee 87% of all new mortgages.
By limiting Fannie Mae and Freddie
Mac to only purchase loans under
$417,000 it forces borrowers to put
more money down to get under this
limit. If your mortgage falls into this
category and you haven’t refinanced,
now is the time to review some
options, so please feel free to contact
me for a free consultation.” 
Danny Murphy
“In Richmond and surrounding
counties, high balance loans
are mortgage amounts between
$417,001 and $535,900. Congress
set up these “temporary” high
balance loan limits in 2008 through
the Economic Stimulus Act. Each
year since 2008 Congress has
extended these temporary limits.
However, Congress has recently
made it clear that they want a
significantly smaller role for the
government when it comes to
Danny Murphy
Vice President
10800 Midlothian Turnpike
Suite 206
Richmond, VA 23235
Office - 804-897-9120
Cell - 804-651-4939
Fax - 804-419-8160
[email protected]
:: 9 ::
RobiOus Corridor :: June/july 2011
your area within your price range. And together we will sell your home, for as much as
the market will bear, and as quickly as possible.
Contact us with confidence!
Top Local Real Estate Experts
Contact us with confidence!
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Jay Long
804-897-3041 (Direct/Voice Mail)
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[email protected]
“Dedicated to Making Your Dreams a Reality!”
“Committed to Your Success!”
2051 Carbon Hill Drive
$292,500 | 4 Bedrooms | 2 Full/1 Half Bathrooms
2,504 Square Feet | MLS# 1032115
Napier Realtors ERA ® Dianne W Long (804) 897-3041
Robious Forest
3406 Robious Forest Way
$475,000 | 5 Bedrooms | 3 Full Baths
3,350 Square Feet | MLS# 1037856
Napier Realtors ERA ® Dianne W Long (804) 897-3041
2840 Barrow Place
$579,000 | 6 Bedrooms | 4 Full/1 Half Bathrooms
4,486 Square Feet | MLS# 1101774
Napier Realtors ERA ® Dianne W Long (804) 897-3041
2721 Arrandell Road
$400,000 | 4 Bedrooms | 3 Full/1 Half Bathrooms
3,316 Square Feet | MLS# 1111394
Napier Realtors ERA ® Dianne W Long (804) 897-3041
13301 Edmonton Drive
$749,950 | 5 Bedrooms | 6 Full / 1 Half Bathrooms
5,170 Square Feet | MLS# 1113099
Napier Realtors ERA ® Dianne W Long (804) 897-3041
RobiOus Corridor :: June/july 2011
1970 Castlebridge Road
$360,000 | 5 Bedrooms | 2 Full/1 Half Bathrooms
2,556 Square Feet | MLS# 1033845
Napier Realtors ERA ® Dianne W Long (804) 897-3041
Reeds Landing
11130 Buckhead Terrace
$519,000 | 5 Bedrooms | 3 Full/1 Half Bathrooms
3,533 Square Feet | MLS# 1100069
Napier Realtors ERA ® Dianne W Long (804) 897-3041
2800 Barrow Place
$625,000 | 5 Bedrooms | 3 Full/1 Half Bathrooms
3,712 Square Feet | MLS# 1106054
Napier Realtors ERA ® Dianne W Long (804) 897-3041
2030 Thornleigh Road
$469,000 | 5 Bedrooms | 2 Full/2 Half Bathrooms
4,685 Square Feet | MLS# 1105989
Napier Realtors ERA ® Jay Long (804) 516-3722
2701 Barrow Place
$600,000 | 5 Bedrooms | 4 Full/1 Half Bathrooms
4,128 Square Feet | MLS# 1106762
Napier Realtors ERA ® Dianne W Long (804) 897-3041
Queens Grant
14130 Riverdowns South Drive
$715,000 | 5 Bedrooms | 3 Full/2 Half Bathrooms
5,260 Square Feet | MLS# 1103094
Napier Realtors ERA ® Dianne W Long (804) 897-3041
Reeds Landing
2520 Rochester Court
$525,000 | 5 Bedrooms | 3 Full/1 Half Bathrooms
3,832 Square Feet | MLS# 1031996
Napier Realtors ERA ® Dianne W Long (804) 897-3041
2910 Mount Hill Drive
$419,000 | 4 Bedrooms | 2 Full / 1 Half Bathrooms
2,706 Square Feet: :| MLS#
1 0 : : 1111402
Napier Realtors ERA ® Dianne W Long (804) 897-3041
3871 Reeds Landing Circle
$815,000 | 5 Bedrooms | 4 Full/1 Half Bathrooms
5,102 Square Feet | MLS# 1107999
Napier Realtors ERA ® Dianne W Long (804) 897-3041
Kings Farm
3506 Knights Run Court
$560,000 | 5 Bedrooms | 5 Full Bathrooms
4,184 Square Feet | MLS# 1109712
Napier Realtors ERA ® Dianne W Long (804) 897-3041
Expires 07/31/2011
Expires 07/31/2011
Expires 07/31/2011
:: 11 ::
Corridor ::1June/july 2011
6/2/11 9:15:58 AM
Notes On The Run
“Ghost Stories”
by Monica Cassier
I recently went to Boston for a work-
related day trip. I foolishly left my
phone charger behind and this small
omission I’m convinced resulted in an
upending of karmic forces that caused
the delay – and finally – cancellation
of my flight home to Richmond. I
found myself in the unenviable
position of being at the airport, my
iPhone running on fumes, and not
even a toothbrush in my possession.
After grumbling to the USAirways
representative about the weather
(she unsurprisingly grumbled back.
Airline counter people are rarely
known for their sunny dispositions), I
made my way to the ironically named
“Customer Services” desk to try and
get a hotel for the evening. The
closest hotel was not exactly close,
located in the town of Winthrop.
The hotel wasn’t your generic type
of lodging, but an inn that the shuttle
driver told me was a converted
Jewish Community Center. I was
later to be told it was a converted
school. Regardless, it was a converted
something and I noted wood floors
throughout and very high ceilings
as I made my way to my room with
complementary toothpaste but no
brush. When I’d asked for both,
the desk clerk went to a closet and
rummaged through a small plastic
basket. Apparently they don’t often
cater to stranded travelers. I was
convinced my room was a converted
squash court and soon discovered
that the wood floors, high ceilings,
and – I swear - paper maché walls
resulted in it having the effect of an
echo chamber: I heard people walking
overhead and down the hallway all
evening. Voices carried, heels on the
floor reverberated; it was like trying
to sleep at a Celtics game.
I awoke the next morning having
gotten approximately 37 minutes of
sleep (none of it consecutive) and felt
a displacement and weariness down
to my bones. The weather didn’t
help: it was overcast and sprinkling
outside. The inn was without a
restaurant and the front desk clerk
directed me to “walk two stop signs
up the street” to a place called “The
High Tide.” The walk up the street
was longer than I’d anticipated, and
depressing: every house seemed gray,
and trees were dropping blossoms
that were mashed and tattered on
the damp sidewalk. The whole place
looked tired. I entered the small
town center I saw the effects of the
recession everywhere: shuttered up
business, empty storefronts. Peeling
signs on stores that hadn’t had a
person cross the threshold in many
a moon. One hardware store was
still operating, rakes and shovels
stacked against the end of one wall.
I opened the door to “The High
Tide” and a bell jangled. Every head
turned and looked at me from the
counter and I felt like I’d interrupted
a conversation. It was the kind of
place that has disappeared from most
towns and been replaced by generic
chains with food as predictable and
unremarkable as the clientele. It had
a long counter with stools, a large
grill at one end of the counter, a few
tables, painted blue and white tin
signs on the walls touting breakfast
specials, the prices taped over many
times. I was clearly a stranger here
and after an awkward moment of
silence that felt like an hour but was
probably more like 5 seconds, I shook
off my self-consciousness and made
my way to the counter and sat down.
I needed coffee and badly. I ordered
my food and the cook – a thin, craggy
older guy dressed in a ball cap and
plaid shirt and who looked like the
love child of actor Steve Buscemi and
Gilligan – got busy on the grill.
I was clearly a
stranger here . . .
These were clearly locals and
regulars; they knew each other and
their banter easy, their regional
accents thick as chowder. Their
dress reflected their blue-collar lives
and I couldn’t have been more out of
place in my business attire if I’d come
dressed as Scarlett O’Hara. One guy
got up to pay his bill, easily chatting
with and hitting on the waitress. I
guessed him to be in his 50’s, she a
good 20 years younger, and he asked
her to go to Vegas with him when he
and his brothers take their mother
for her 80th birthday. Apparently, I
found the place in the world where
an appropriate birthday celebration
for your elderly mother is a trip to sin
:: 12 ::
RobiOus Corridor :: June/july 2011
city. He was loud and standing right
next to me and it was all I could do
not to turn and just look at him, to
see what a character like this looked
like. I somehow had the feeling that
he wanted me to, so he could size up
the stranger in their midst, quiz me
on who I was, where I was from, what
I was doing here.
As I was sipping my coffee, I looked
around the room and marveled that
this place had, for the most part,
probably remained unchanged since
it opened. The only exception came
when the waitress brought me my
juice in a small plastic cup and was hit
with disappointment that it wasn’t in
one of those heavy contoured glasses
found at diners. The plastic was
an anachronism here, a disposable
item in a place that had endured
the years. The remaining patrons
chatted about the murder of a young
boy at the hands of his mother, his
body found on a remote road in New
Hampshire. “I just don’t understand
it…why didn’t she just drop him
off with someone, a relative?” “It’s
like that mother in Houston who
drowned her five children….” They
debated the topic for a while – never
once suggesting that perhaps mental
illness was at play – and an elderly
heavy-set guy two stools down from
me finally shook his head and ended
the discussion with “She’s not from
around here. She’s from Texas.”
My food arrived, my plate heaped
with eggs, bacon, toast, and
homefries. I could have taken the
plate and shaken it and the food
would have remained stationary:
this café was either unaware or
unconcerned with the ill effects of
saturated fat. It tasted good. Really,
really good. I’d bought a book at the
Airport and had it on the counter
next to me. The man, who’d neatly
explained the crime as a by-product of
the suspect’s geography, looked over
and asked “What are you reading?
Is it good?” I explained that’d I’d
bought it at the airport, but hadn’t
started it. He asked where I was
staying and I told him about the inn,
and then offered up the information
about the wood floors and the noise.
He then offered up that the building
was in fact a converted school…
and the noise I heard? He had
an explanation for that too. “Old
buildings make noise. I didn’t used to
believe in ghosts. But then I moved
into the house of my neighbors.
She’d died of cancer. He was so sad
I said – without
thinking – “You’ve got
a YANKEES cap on?
Are you nuts?”
that he committed suicide after.” My
first thought is WHY on earth anyone
would willingly want to live in a
house with such a history. But being
the outsider I just nodded my head.
“So, we had a ghost in the house.
I’m sure it was him.” He went on to
explain that he was an amiable spirit
who didn’t like discord. If he started
arguing with his wife or daughter-inlaw, the ghost would turn on the TV
or make things fall from the table.
“He liked the house peaceful. He’s
not in the house anymore though. He
left when my daughter-in-law moved
out.” He spoke so matter-of-factly,
and the only thing I could manage
to ask was “Do you miss him?” He
replied with quiet sadness “Yeah, I do.
He was a nice ghost.”
Another man got up and made his way
to the cash register. He saw my book
and asked “Whatcha readin? Is it
good?” This question is evidently the
local icebreaker. The cook and two
guys in stools at the other end of the
counter started arguing about sports.
Boston fans are passionate about
their teams, and it was at this point
that I noticed the cook was wearing
a New York Yankees cap. In Boston,
this would be the same as wearing an
“I Heart Bin Laden” shirt at ground
zero. I couldn’t believe the chutzpah
of a chowderhead rooting for the
Yankees. I said – without thinking
– “You’ve got a YANKEES cap on?
nuts?” He smiled at me and opened
the buttons on his navy and white
checked shirt to reveal a Yankees
t-shirt underneath. “I gave up rootin’
faw the Red Sawx in 1968. What
– I was supposed ta wait 86 yeahs?
Fahget it.” I shook my head “Wow,
you must catch a lot of flack.” He
shot back quickly “I cook ya food – no
one says nothin” and laughed.
I paid my bill – where can you get
breakfast for $6.25 anymore? – and
made my way on the damp streets
toward the inn and the shuttle to the
airport for my flight home. During
the trek back I had this thought that
these were the most real people I’d
met in a long time. But later, on
the flight back to Richmond, then
it occurred to me that maybe they
weren’t, that if I were to go back to
the café tomorrow, I’d find “The
High Tide” long ago boarded up,
it’s tin signs peeling and hanging
neglected on the walls and discover
that the folks I’d met weren’t in fact
real, but spirits from another time. 
:: 13 ::
RobiOus Corridor :: June/july 2011
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:: 14 ::
RobiOus Corridor :: June/july 2011
by Jenna Weaver
ts officially grilling season and I
couldn’t be more excited to cookout!
Who doesn't love cooking, eating,
and relaxing outside on warm summer
nights? Grilled sea bass is an elegant
(and delicious) dinner idea for two.
This recipe is quite simple and makes
for a perfect dinner date at home.
Grilled Sea Bass with Pineapple Salsa
(serves 2)
✽ 2 Atlantic Sea Bass fillets (about 6
or 7 oz. each)
✽ Olive oil - a few tablespoons to
cover the fish
✽ One clove of garlic (I used elephant
garlic which is larger yet milder)
✽ Salt and pepper to taste
✽ Lime wedges
✽ Fresh parsley garnish
Pineapple Salsa
✽ 1/2 cup corn
✽ 1/2 cup crushed pineapple
✽ 1/2 jarred tomato salsa
✽ 1 small green onion - chopped
✽ Cayenne pepper to taste
Fried Venison Medallions with Feta
Dipping Sauce (from page 5)
Total Time: 25 min
Prep: 15 min
Cook : 10 min
Yield: 8 servings
Level: Easy
Feta Sauce:
• 8 ounces feta, crumbled
• 12 ounces sour cream
• 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
• 2 tablespoons freshly chopped dill
• Salt and freshly ground black pepper
• 2 (12-ounce) venison tenderloins
• 2 cups all-purpose flour
For the Sea Bass: Pre-heat grill to
medium-high heat. Since sea bass
is a delicate fish, you will need to
cook on a grill grid/grate to prevent
the fish from sticking directly to the
grill. Spray grid/grate with non-stick
cooking spray. Coat fillets with olive
oil and add salt and pepper to taste.
Chop garlic into fairly large chunks
and place directly on fish. Cook
on skin side down for about 12-15
minutes until fish is opaque.
Spoon salsa over fish when done.
Serve with lime wedges and brown
rice. Garnish with fresh parsley.
Pair with a nice, chilled glass of
Sauvignon Blanc (or Champagne,
why not?!)
For more ways to feed your lover,
visit my blog at www.jennaweave.
blogspot.com 
For the salsa: Combine jarred tomato
salsa with the rest of the corn,
pineapple, green onion,
and cayenne pepper; mix together
with spoon.
• 1/4 cup dry mustard powder
• 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
• 2 teaspoons grey salt
• 1 teaspoon black pepper
• 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
• 1 tablespoons whole-grain mustard
• 3/4 cup olive oil
For the sauce:
In a small bowl fold together the
feta, sour cream, garlic, and dill until
combined. Serve on the side with the
For the venison:
Slice the venison tenderloin into 1/3-inch
slices. In a shallow dish, mix together the
flour, mustard powder, cayenne, salt and
pepper. In a separate shallow dish, mix
together the buttermilk and whole-grain
mustard. Dredge the medallions in the
buttermilk mixture for a minute. Then
coat with the flour mixture. In a cast iron
skillet over medium-high heat, heat the
oil. Fry the venison until golden brown
on both sides. Place on a paper towel
lined plate to drain. Serve with feta sauce.
:: 15 ::
RobiOus Corridor :: June/july 2011
Exit Laughing: “The Grass Was Greener…
When I Was 8 Years Old”
by Michele Dixon
How could I have done something
so stupid? I am the daughter of a
woman who seamlessly combined
common sense with awe-inspiring
style and class and a man who can
figure out the most efficient way
of producing any desired result. I
graduated from Penn State with a
3.94 GPA and I’m halfway through
completing my Master’s degree in
Getting the Teenagers Out of Your
House. I should be able to make
informed decisions, right?
Well, apparently not. It seems that
I’m still harboring a pre-teen crush
and that crush caused my brains to
go straight out the window. Most
people get over a crush as soon as
they can separate fantasy and reality.
I must have been in the wrong line
when they were handing out that
skill, though – there’s one infatuation
that still clings to my heart, blots out
my intellect, and makes me ignore
all the warning signs of impending
doom. Disaster, thy name is…
David Cassidy.
Let’s be realistic: it’s highly likely
that some reader will hold your hand
to your heart and swoon just a little
bit. The odds are on my side – the
majority of my generation watched
The Partridge Family, decorated our
bedroom walls with David Cassidy
pictures, and can still sing all the
words to “I Think I Love You”.
The problem, I realize, is that most
women of my generation grew up.
Except for me, an admitted David
Cassidy Über Fan.
I went to a David Cassidy concert.
This would be forgivable if I said I
was 8 years old at the time but…it was
To clarify: I didn’t simply go to a
David Cassidy concert…I actively
sought out a David Cassidy concert.
I planned the trip and I happily
drove 300 miles to Atlantic City
(Disappointment Assurance Indicator
#1). I’d never seen him live before,
he was within my reach, and a little
disposable income will make you do
dumb things.
Most people get over
a crush as soon as they
can separate fantasy
and reality. I must have
been in the wrong line
when they were handing
out that skill.
Cementing my berth in Hell, I
dragged a (relatively) innocent
bystander along with me. I needed
the company of someone who
wouldn’t throw the obvious absurdity
of the adventure in my face, someone
with a good sense of humor, someone
who would stick by me like Lancelot
to King Arthur. Choosing a victim
was easy for me.
I have a friend; we’ll call her “Barbie”,
who exceeds these qualifications.
We work in the same department
and bonded immediately over our
independent observations of the
freakishly large size of Troy Aikman’s
hands and a shared appreciation for
Zac Efron’s abs. Barbie is a stunning
woman unhindered by ego, as nice
as can be, and funnier than she
realizes. I consider it my personal
Olympic sport to scribble down
things she says that, when taken out
of context, are absolutely filthy; I have
an entire notebook page of Barbieisms and torture her by quoting them
back to her. My project-from-hell
was winding down just as hers was
ramping up so I figured she was ripe
for a road trip. I pounced.
Now, Barbie says she’s a David
Cassidy fan. I believe her, even
though she consistently misidentifies
the song “Bandala” as “Bandaleea”
and didn’t even know which episode
it was in (the block party at the
Detroit firehouse, co-starring Lou
Gossett, Jr. and Richard Pryor). Her
enthusiasm over the trip made her
watery fan status a flaw that I could
live with – like a true Apostle, she
believed wholeheartedly in me, even
if her faith in the quest would waver.
And when I warned her that, “What
happens in Atlantic City…will end up
in this column”, she didn’t bat an eye.
Continued on next page ➥
:: 16 ::
RobiOus Corridor :: June/july 2011
After I had Barbie on my side, I
told my husband about my plan.
It is a credit to his generosity for
immediately offering to “sponsor”
Barbie and me but I also recognized
the oh-dear-God-don’t-make-mego look on his face just before he
handed me his Amex. I love him
completely and understand that he
(barely) tolerates the tuneless, painful
renditions of Partridge Family songs
that come out of my mouth when I’ve
got my iPod headphones on. Asking
him to sit through a David Cassidy
concert would constitute a violation
of the marital Geneva Convention.
Barbie and I headed into the swamps
of Jersey early on a Saturday morning.
An easy traveling companion, her
only necessity was easy access to
Starbucks and issued only one
demand: we had to stop at a Roy
Rogers’ restaurant. She was adamant
that it be a Roy Rogers because, if
I got to realize my pre-teen dream
of being in the same room as David
Cassidy, she was going to relive her
teenage days as a Dale Evans-ish
burger-slinging buckaroo.
Now, I haven’t been to Atlantic
City – Las Vegas’ trashy stepsister
– since the 1980s when the city’s
excess was appropriate to the era.
The city is still as tacky as it ever
was, the ocean is still a dead gray
color, and the crowd has changed
– everywhere we looked, we saw
creative interpretations of the Snooki
look. I can chunk down an order
of fried pickles but I can’t rock the
Bumpit hair and bad taste in clothes.
To compensate, I troweled on another
layer of eye makeup before heading
off to see David, Live and In the
Flesh (Disappointment Assurance
Indicator #2).
David Cassidy was…bad. The
show, the live experience of David
Cassidy, was…pathetic. Painfully
melodramatic, he acted out the lyrics
with over-rehearsed histrionics,
flinging his arms out on the final
beat of the songs as though crucified
and generally behaved like a tired
exaggeration of a rock and roll star
turned Lounge Lizard. A Miss
America contestant singing about
a dying puppy would be more
believably sincere. Too embarrassed
to get up and leave, Barbie and I
cringed in shame and squirmed in our
seats like two half-dead fish flopping
around on the deck of the SS What
The Hell Are We Doing Here?
Adding insult to injury, I discovered
that we were probably the only two
people who had actually paid to see
this train wreck. The theater was full
but, as the older couple at our table
explained, the sold-out show was
most likely produced by the casino
comping tickets to frequent gamblers.
That explained the unlikely senior
citizen demographic but also made
me feel like a fool. When I explained
that I’d also driven up from Virginia
for this torture, our tablemates
scooted their chairs a little bit further
away from me, just in case my
stupidity germ was contagious.
I think Cassidy was brainwashed
sometime over the past 40 years. I
bought all the fan magazines when
I was young and not only believed
every word that was written about
him but believed that he was the one
who wrote those “David’s Personal
Love Letter to YOU” items that I’d
tear through, searching for the name
“Michele”. Cassidy, it appeared, had
finally drunk the Kool Aid that his
publicity machine fed to me decades
ago. He committed the ultimate
sell-out by climbing into the very
caricature that he hated. I’ve read
both of his autobiographies, hell, I
own both of his autobiographies; he
vehemently denounces the Keith
Partridge image and whines about
never being taken seriously as an
actor or singer. (I have to ask;
which is more idiotic, writing two
autobiographies or buying both of
them? Who’s laughing now?)
Still, I wanted him to be the Cassidy
of my youth and, when I sat there
with my eyes closed, he was. When
I opened my eyes…he was a little old
guy sporting a crew cut and too many
plastic surgeries. And he was wearing
– not jeans, not khakis, not even
slacks, but shiny trousers of 100%
synthetic fibers, a pair of Sansabelt
pants for scrawny old men. And black
loafers. Really…who imagines their
teen idol in polyester pants and dress
shoes? I think he could charge more
for tickets if he wore that blue velvet
tunic suit…I’m just saying…but I
would have paid more to see them so
I’m probably not the best judge.
Overlooking the fact that he
overlooked some of the lyrics, his
voice was still good – but I wanted to
hear the songs exactly the way they
were originally recorded, not the new
hip-hop arrangements that he played.
I didn’t want the songs to be different.
I didn’t want him to be different and
I didn’t want him to be old. I forgot
that I’d become different and old(er),
too. He closed the show with “I
Think I Love You” and, thankfully, he
sang it straight and true. I kept my
eyes closed.
Barbie and I raced out of there as
soon as the lights came up; Cassidy
doesn’t do encores and we were scared
of the creepy guy sitting behind us, a
Continued on next page ➥
:: 17 ::
RobiOus Corridor :: June/july 2011
Cassidy fan more über than I who
tore into Barbie when she snickered
at Cassidy’s dance moves. More than
anything, we needed a drink, badly.
Slumped against a casino lounge bar,
we listened to a husband/wife lounge
act, taped music but decent pipes,
and tried hard not to look at each
other. Tellingly, witnessing the slow
death of my David Cassidy dream was
less disturbing than the sight of the
lounge act’s #1 fan – a dancing guy
whose lolling tongue and tripping feet
were moving to 2 entirely different
beats. Hey, at least this guy meant it.
We slunk back to the Trump Plaza,
drained of any energy to do more
than shovel some mediocre food into
our stomachs and fall asleep. By the
next morning, we could laugh about
the experience – but it was the kind
of laughter punctuated by a little
sympathetic headshake. Thankfully,
Barbie hasn’t held the experience
Tellingly, witnessing the
slow death of my David
Cassidy dream was
less disturbing than the
sight of the lounge act’s
#1 fan – a dancing guy
whose lolling tongue
and tripping feet were
moving to 2 entirely
different beats.
against me but I’m sure she doesn’t
want to hear Partridge Family tunes
coming out of my cubicle any time
soon. Frankly, I couldn’t listen to it
either – it just served to remind me
that my fantasy tasted better than
the reality I was served. The grass
was greener when I was 8 years old,
when I was too innocent to be this
dumb. Next time I want to pluck at
my heartstrings, I’ll pull out a picture
of my husband, circa 1976. His shag
haircut is vintage David; he’s wearing
a snap-front Huckapoo shirt and
only needs a pooka shell necklace to
complete the image that I used to
And I’d like to thank a friend, a
real guy’s guy, for owning up to
having had such a powerful crush
on Susan Dey that he wrote her a
fan letter. I found my vindication in
the dreamy look on his face when he
admitted this to me – he looked just
like me. Stan, if she ever comes to
Richmond, I’m sure that Jim will buy
you a ticket! 
Dr. Mosher is a Salisbury resident and has been serving the Robious Corridor community for 18 years.
Dental Care
For Your
Entire Family,
Adults and Children!
1320 Alverser Plaza
Midlothian, VA 23113-2604
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Fri. - 8:30am-12pm
:: 18 ::
RobiOus Corridor :: June/july 2011
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:: 19 ::
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:: 20 ::
RobiOus Corridor :: June/july 2011