Women Art Artists and Works of Art – by Gary Smolker




The woman wearing those red suede over the knee boots is Sequoia Emmanuelle.


Sequoia is an artist, an art director and a work of art.

Sequoia’s body is a canvas on which she wears her art, on which Sequoia places signs which send messages that make statements about who Sequoia is, what Sequoia thinks, and how Sequoia will conduct herself.


Look at Sequoia’s legs.

Sequoia’s legs are great legs on which to put those over the knee red suede boots.

Art Director

You can tell by what she is wearing that Sequoia is an art director able to tell many stories through art and that Sequoia has many stories to tell.

Sequoia’s red suede boots partially covering Sequoia’s legs in combination with the partial view of Sequoia’s bare legs is an artful blend which unmistakably makes the statement: I am a smart lively woman.


Making a statement is what style is all about.

Without a doubt, all women are artists and art directors.


All women tell us who they are by the wearable works of art (shoes, clothing, masks, makeup) that they put on their bodies and by everything they carry (hand bags, etc.) with their hands, put on their head, etc.

Each combination of shoes and clothing a woman wears, the bag or clutch she carries, the jewelry she wears and all her accessories is a work of art designed to send a message to everyone who looks at her.

Women constantly make nonverbal statements.


What a woman chooses to wear tells you her state of mind, her interests, and who she is.


Compare what Sequoia is wearing and the message Sequoia is sending (the statement Sequoia is making by the clothing and shoes Sequoia is wearing) with the statement the woman below is making by what she is wearing.

Compare the statement being made by the clothing (i.e., the mask, etc.) being worn by woman pictured above with the statement being made by the clothing being worn by the woman in the picture below.

By the way, I have a sweet tooth.

I love confections.

Below is a picture of me eating/drinking an Oreo cookie malt.


The clothing you wear creates an image, an immediate impression.

The clothing you wear sends a clear message.

For example, compare the photo above of me taken a month ago in Beverly Hills, with another photo to me, the photo below taken of me last week in South Dakota.


Gary Smolker, Fashion Blogger
Dude's Guide to Women's Shoes

Copyright © 2017 by Gary Smolker, All Rights Reserved

Reprinted with permission of “Dude’s Guide to Women’s Shoes” – originally posted at https://dudesguidetowomensshoes.com/women-art-artists-works-art-gary-smolker/


Lunch at Fina Estampa – by Gary Smolker


During lunch today (April 26,2107), at the Fina Estampa Restaurant in Chatsworth, California, the owner of the restaurant (Kathy Schultz) came to my table and asked me how my daughter Leah and I were enjoying our lunch.

I replied:

“I am so happy that I hope you have a jail cell you can lock me up in until I settle down enough to go outside.”

To this Kathy replied:

“You must try our desserts.”

At the end of our meal, Kathy brought  two desserts (pictured above) to our table: a Leche Asada and Hellado de Lucuma.

When I told Kathy we were too full to eat any dessert, Kathy packed up the desserts and told me to take them home immediately to put them in my refrigerator before the ice cream melted and the Leche Asada (which has egg in it) spoiled.

I did as I was instructed.

That is why I did not go back to my office to work this afternoon.

Picante de Mariscos

For lunch, Leah had Picante de Mariscos.

See photo above of Leah’s lunch.

Picante de Mariscos is a seafood stew simmered in red wine with onions, tomatoes served over boiled potatoes.

The Picante de Mariscos  served at Fina Estampa is a world-class dish.

Peruvian Cuisine

Fina Estampa serves Peruvian cuisine.

Peruvian cuisine is rich in ingredients, influences and nuances.

Its influences are varied and historical –

There are 84 different ecological zones in Peru, each with its own species of plants and animals.

Ancient Peruvians

  • cultivated potatoes and corn in the Andes;
  • pumpkins and Lima beans on the coast;
  • they discovered and used aromatic herbs and Chile peppers as well as fruits of the Amazon region;
  • they also ate fish and mollusks and Llama meat and poultry.

The Spaniards who conquered Peru followed by the Viceroyalty brought with them

  • rice, onions, citrus fruits, wheat, vineyards, olives, pigs, cows and hens;
  • Arab-Moorish  and African touches introduced by workers who arrived to toil on ranches and farms.

Chinese “”coolies” arrived in Peru as migrant workers in the nineteenth century bringing their customs and recipes with them.  They also introduced techniques such as sautéing over a high flame, splashing soy sauce into beef stir-fries, and the tradition of eating white rice.

Japanese immigrants arriving at the end of the nineteenth century, introduced the Japanese love of seafood, subtley of flavoea, and care in haddling ingredients.

Another important influence on Peruvian cuisine is Italian immigrants.

Peruvian cuisine has many influences, including the fusion of influences from distant foreign lands, unique exquisite dishes in each region of Peru based on local customs traditions, ingredients and recipes passed from generation to generation.

By the way, Peru is the gastronomical capital of South America and Lima is the culinary capital of Latin America – a city that journalists, chefs, and visitors from all over the world travel to in search of new dishes and chic places to dine.

In Lima, food is religion.

Cooking professionally has become something to aspire to, and about 80,000 young people are currently studying to be chefs, in schools scattered across Lima.


During lunch Leah and I discussed why we like to travel.

Leah and travel together because we like to see beauty, we like to see history, and we like to eat some of the best food in the world.

For lunch today, I had Sopa Wantan.

Sopa Wantan is a Peruvian version of Chinese Won Ton soup.

See photo below of the Sopa Wantan that I ate for lunch today.


Leah and I believe that the benefits to us of traveling are

  • traveling allows us to see how beautiful the world is; and
  • traveling enables us to feel more strongly connected to the beauty of the world.

Next, Leah and I will be going to Sicily together.

We will arrive in Sicily on May 21 and return back to California on June 4, 2017

Below is a photograph of an Itinerary for our upcoming trip to Sicily Leah which jotted down while we were eating lunch today.

Leah and I discussed that Itinerary in great detail while we were eating lunch.

By the way,

  • Sicily has better preserved and more spectacular Greek ruins then Greece.
  • The Norman Palace in Palermo (Palazzo Reale) with the Palatine Chapel is fantastic – a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • The island of Ortygia is an ancient district of Siracusa (Syracuse). In the the city’s Jewish quarter until 1493 (in the Giudecca) is the oldest Mikvah known to survive in Europe.
  • Judaism was present in Sicily way before the arrival of Christianity on Sicilian shores.
  • It is thought that while in Syracuse (AD (CE) 59, Paul of Tarsus preached to Jews as well as to Greeks.
  • The Mikvah in Siracusa dates from the Byzantine period following the fall of the “western” Roman empire to invading forces (in Italy mostly Vandals and Visigoths) in the fifth century.

Leah and I will be flying out of LAX (departing from Los Angeles) on May 20, 2017.

It will be a long flight.

We will not land in Sicily until May 21, 2017.


Copyright © 2017 Gary Smolker, All Rights Reserved


People Know How to Have Fun – by Gary Smolker


When I got out of Mendy’s Gym Sunday night (April 23, 2017), I walked less than one block up Van Nuys Blvd. ,to the intersection of Van Nuys Blvd. with Victory Blvd., to see what was going on.

Above are photographs I took as I was approaching the giant multicolored Ferris Wheel.

I continued past the barrier and Ferris Wheel, up Van Nuys Blvd.

Past the barrier, Van Nuys Blvd. was packed with people having fun.

The next three blocks Van Nuys Blvd. were packed with street fair activities: rides, games, food for sale.

Below are photographs I took as I continued to walk up Van Nuys Blvd.,  after I passed the barrier on Victory Blvd.









Imagine bringing children here.



The were activities for everybody.

The fair was for all ages.

Young adults and grown-ups had lots to do and lots of fun doing everything.


Fair Food

I couldn’t resist buying a corn dog.

Corn dogs, cotton candy, snow cones, churros, popcorn, ice cream, lemonade, soft drinks and bottled water were for sale.

See photos below.

Mariachis Serenading Police Officers

A band of Mariachis serenaded those police officers who were on duty at the Los Angeles Police Department Van Nuys Community Substation located in the midst of the street fair.

The Mariachis and I, and I’m sure everyone else at the street fair, appreciate that the police protect and serve us.

See photos below, taken by me at the street fair Sunday night.

Fundraising to Provide Support for Community Youth Programs

The Street Fair on Van Nuys Blvd. was put on by the Van Nuys Substation of the Los Angeles Police Department to raise money for youth programs.

I think that is a wonderful thing for a Police Department to do.

I never heard of that being done before.

Painless Donation

Being at the street fair was like being in another world.

As a donor, paying for what was offered at this street fair was a Painless Fun Fundraising experience for me.


I had a great time.

It looked to me like everyone else was having and had a great time also.

Next Adventure

I will be flying to South Dakota on Thursday, April 27, 2017.

There is a large herd of wild mustangs in South Dakota.

The mustang with its mane flying and its hooves thundering has a hold on my imagination.

To me the mustang is a symbol of power and breakneck freedom, and of the untamable frontier spirit.

While in South Dakota, I will also check out Mount Rushmore, the badlands, and other sights of interest to me in South Dakota.

Copyright © 2017 Gary Smolker, All Rights Reserved

Art, Books, Culture, Food, Inspiration: An Awesome Four Day Weekend (Part One, Friday) – by Gary Smolker

Art, Culture, Inspiration

This is an informative report on a fun weekend, a culturally intense inspiring long weekend that took place from April 7  to April 11.

I spent that weekend with my family in Marblehead, Massachusetts.

When I was not with family members, I wandered alone, at my own pace, exploring unique historically significant sites, eating at a particularly fun oyster bar, viewing magnificent exhibits at the Peabody Essex Museum and having a great time browsing in museum book stores and buying books in close by neighboring towns.

Salem, Massachusetts – home of the Peabody Essex Museum and National Maritime Historic Site

Once upon a time, Salem was a leading city in America.  It had a great amount of mercantile activity related to exporting fish and timber and importing things not available in America.

Salem has a world class world famous museum,  the Peabody Essex Museum.

The Peabody Essex Museum, in Salem, is the oldest continuously operated museum in America.

See http://www.pem.org for further information.

The Harvard COOP

On Monday, I visited the Harvard COOP for a few hours, while on my way to Logan Boston Airport to fly back to California.

The Harvard COOP is located in a stand alone four story brick and mortar bookstore across the street from the Harvard Yard at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

The Harvard COOP has an inspiring collection of books for sale filling up all four floors of the Harvard COOP.

See photo below taken by me on the second floor of the Harvard COOP while I was looking down at the ground floor of the Harvard COOP.

In Defense of the National Endowment for the Arts, Endowment for the Humanities, and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting

Many decades ago, public education sought to create well-rounded and informed citizens.

That is not the goal today.

  • Public education seeks to ensure that students excel on standardized tests that purport to measure learning.
  • “Elite” schools support efforts to insure their money oriented students get into college.

I am firmly convinced it is important to learn how to think critically about cultural issues as well as money issues.

That is the educational service provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, Endowment for the Humanities and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

Putting America At Risk

It is critical to be familiar with values, ideas, and ideals in order to be able to deal with complex issues that will shape the future of our nation and the world.

Everything we do is underpinned and shaped by cultural ideals and values.

These ideals are the realm of the arts and humanities.

For those reasons, and for many more reasons,

  • it is necessary to have familiarity with the arts and creative expression in the arts and humanities; and
  • it is imperative that federal funding for the National Endowment for the Arts, Endowment for the Humanities and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting not be cut.

Books, Books, and More Books

I am a book addict.

During my long weekend visit, I purchased a total of 22 books on a variety of topics of interest to me.

National Historical Maritime Site

On Friday, April 7, 2017, at the National Maritime Historical Site National Park Service gift shop I purchased five books.

Below is a photo of a book cover of one of those books: “The Ice King – Frederick Tudor and His Circle.”

  • In the early 1800s Frederick Tudor became obsessed with the idea of exporting and shipping ice to the tropics, i.e. to the West Indies.
  • At the time, this was a completely novel idea.
  • From exporting ice Frederick Tudor made a fortune and became one of America’s first millionaires.

Peabody Essex Museum

On Saturday (April 8, 2017) I visited the Peabody Essex Museum.  While there,  I purchased 12 books, including “Men and Style”, “Women Know Everything” and “Muses Women Who Inspire.”

See photos of book covers below.

Below is a direct quote of what is written on the back cover of  “Muses Women Who Inspire.”

“For centuries, women have fascinated and inspired the greatest writers, painters, photographers, and musicians to create their most poignant works of art, and these muses are as many and varied as the artists themselves.  From American model and photographer Lee Miller, who drove her mentor – the surrealist artist Man Ray – to distraction, and almost to suicide; to film director Josef von Sternberg’s movie star creation in the form of Marlene Dietrich; or from Alice Liddell, the ten-year-old-inspiration for Lewis Carroll’s ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’; to painter and photographer Dora Mar, whose profound influence can be seen in her infamous lover Pablo Picasso’s ‘Weeping Women’ series.

“The lives and characters of these women were dissimilar in so many aspects, yet they all shared the ability to awaken fervor within some of the most significant artists of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, and to influence the work of their Pygmalions. Revealing the passionate relationship between the artist and his muse – from devotion to tormented obsession, and sometimes subjugation – author Farid Abdelouahab recounts the stories of thirty women who, through their temperament, beauty, talent and pure magnetism, enthralled society’s artistic geniuses and inspired the creation of some of the greatest works of the past centuries.”

On Saturday, April 8, 2017, I purchased the EXHIBITION CATALOGUE for the wearable art exhibit I viewed that day at the Peabody Essex Museum.

Below is a photograph of the cover of that catalogue.

This exhibition presents 32 award-winning fantastic ensembles.

The clothing ensembles on display at the exhibit were stunning.

Below are photographs I took, while I was at the exhibit, of the ensemble shown on the cover of the catalogue.

The clothing ensembles on exhibit at this exhibition have been described as being a part of a clothing world where art and and the human form combine, “where the lines of  fashion and art merge and combine as one.”

Harvard COOP

I purchased seven books at the Harvard COOP on Monday, April 10, 2017.

Below are photographs of the book covers of a few of the books I purchased at the Harvard COOP on Monday April 10.

According to the back cover of “Social Physics”, the book explains how ideas flow through social networks and how these ideas are ultimately transformed into behaviors.

The author, Professor Alex Pentland helped create the MIT Media Lab and co-leads the World Economic Forum Big Data and  Personal Data initiatives.

A Sushi Boat

Friday night (April 7) , my eldest daughter Terra and her husband Scott served a Sushi snack in a Sushi Boat to immediate family members before we all went to Friday night services together at Temple Emanu-el.

See photos of Sushi Boat [below].

These photos were taken by me on Friday night, April 7, 2017.

Coffee Shops on Derby Street

Before going to Terra’s home on Friday (April 7) night, I spent the morning walking up and down Derby Street in Salem

Everywhere I went I encountered people who had a joyful spirit.

Below is a photo of a t-short worn by a barista in one of the coffee shops I visited on Derby Street.

Below is a photograph of the store front of another and different coffee on Derby Street.

Below is a close-up photo of Derby Joe’s front door.

A Historic Candy Store on Derby Street

The oldest candy store in the United States is located in Salem, Massachusetts on Derby Street.

See photos below, taken by me on Friday, April 7, 2017.

Unforgettable Lunch

I had the most unforgettable lunch on Friday, April 7, 2017 at the “Sea Level Oyster Bar & Restaurant” on Pickering Wharf in Salem Massachusetts, a “Baked Seafood Pie” consisting of Lobster, scallop, shrimp, Ritz Crackers, sherry cream, vegetables and mashed potatoes.

Baked Seafood Pie

See photos below I took of the “Baked Seafood Pie” I had for lunch on Friday, April 7, 2017.

By the way, the DESSERT MENU is unconventional.

The Dessert Menu is on a stamp.

When you ask to see the dessert menu, a stamp containing containing the list of desserts is brought to your table.

See photo of “Dessert Menu” Stamp below.

The server presses down on the “Dessert Menu Stamp” and vol la an impression of the dessert menu appears on your table.

See photo below.

Of course, I had to have a Salted Caramel Cookie Pie.

But, I had no room for it.

Clever T-Shirts

The wait-staff at the Sea Level Oyster Bar & Restaurant wear the most clever t-shirts.

See photographs below taken by me on my eventful delightful time there on Friday, April 7, 2017.


Late Friday night, I came back to the Sea Level Oyster Bar & Restaurant determined to eat a Salted Caramel Cookie Pie, which I enjoyed with a cup of strong black coffee.

Copyright © 2017 by Gary Smolker, All Rights Reserved


Real Beauty – by Gary Smolker

Sunday Morning, March 12, 2017

Sunday morning I went to Noah’s Bagel (on Ventura Blvd. in Sherman Oaks, California)  to get a cup of coffee.

After getting my cup of coffee I sat at a big table.

Soon after I sat down a little girl and her young brother sat down at the same table with their grandmother.

The little girl ran away, disappeared for a moment.

Then she came back a few minutes later with a bottle of chocolate milk for herself and a bottle of chocolate milk for her little brother.

She was so cute I couldn’t resist taking a picture of her.  See picture below.

I recommend Noah’s Bagel on Ventura Blvd. in Sherman Oaks as a delightful place to meet families with children.

What Does It Mean To Be Beautiful?

The little girl in the photo above is self-confident and comfortable with herself.

I think that is what real beauty is.

Sunday afternoon, March 12, 2017

Sunday afternoon I went to Fina Estampa (on Winnetka Avenue in Chatsworth, California) to get a bowl of soup.

The soup smelled so good and looked so delicious I took a picture of it and asked a waitress to take a picture of me eating it.  See collage below.

The name of the soup is Parihuela.

Parihuela consists of an array of seafood simmered in a flavorful soup including fish, shrimp, squid, & crab legs.

Smell the cilantro.

I recommend Fina Estampa as a perfect place to sample a variety of authentic Peruvian cuisine.

Not only is the food good, the service staff is friendly, helpful and pleasantly outgoing.

Beauty Everywhere

I am surrounded by beauty everywhere I go.

I discovered Fina Estampa on Wednesday (March 8, 2017) when I met my daughter Leah at a restaurant next door to Fina Estampa.

The next day (Thursday, March 9, 2017), I enjoyed eating and drinking the most wonderful milkshake I have ever eaten or seen.

When I stopped at Le Mervetty (on Cannon Drive in Beverly Hills, California) to meet my lady friend Alanna,  Alanna insisted that I try an Oreo Milkshake.

The master-pastry-chef-owner insisted that it be her treat.

See photos below.

First photo is a collage of three photos showing the milkshake before I ate it, me eating the meringue that came with the milkshake, and showing the frosted glass the milkshake came in after I finished eating and drinking the milkshake.

That is chocolate you see on the edge of the frosted mug the milkshake is served in.

When you are done eating/drinking the milkshake you can eat the chocolate that remains on the outside of the frosted mug is is served in.

Below is a close-up photo of the milkshake.

This milkshake is called an Oreo milkshake.

You are looking at Oreo cookies on the outside of the mug and Oreo crumbles on top of the whipped cream.

“Inside” the milkshake mug is ice cream and chocolate covered coffee beans.

I recommend Le Mervetty as a place to give your sweet tooth the perfect gastronomical treat.

Everything at Le Mervetty is high quality but not stuffy.

The staff is not stuffy.  You can practice your French with them, if you care to do so.

The confections at Le Mervetty are lavish and creative.

Thank Heavens for Little Girls

Life is about being comfortable in your own skin.

Little girls remind me of that.

Thank heavens for little girls.

Every girl, woman and lady in my life is beautiful.

Thank heavens for that blessing.


Copyright © 2017 by Gary Smolker, All Rights Reserved







My Thoughts About Statins Prescribed to Prevent Heart Attacks – by Gary Smolker


I’ve struggled for more that three years trying to decide whether I should take the “recommended” dosage of a statin medicine to prevent having a heart attack.

Various of my friends have struggled with the same question.

Below is a copy of a string of emails between me (Gary Smolker) and my good friend Paul Cook about whether he or I should take a statin prescribed by our physicians.

I have struggled with that questions for years because I never received a satisfactory answer to my question why should I take a statin, even though I’ve asked many physicians for their answer and have read more than ten books on diet, exercise, life style/healthy living in terms of what to do to prevent heart attacks/heart disease/diabetes, etc. etc.

The Unanswered Questions

I would like to know how much longer I would live if I took the recommended dosage.

I would also like to know what harmful/distasteful side effects would I experience if I took the recommended dosage.

What would be my quality of life over time if I took the recommended dosage vs. if I don’t take the recommended dosage?

My Personal Belief About Longevity

The principle which I used to make my decision about what dosage of statin, if any, to take was based on the following personal belief and principle.

“Its not the years in your life that counts its the life in your years.”  – Abraham Lincoln

My Personal Belief About Diet

Your diet consists of more than the food you eat.  It’s also the books you read, the shows you watch, the people you associate with, the people you are surrounded by, the people you meet, the places you see, the things you do, what you think about, your total environment.  Your “diet” also consists of what you drink and the air you breathe (i.e. second hand smoke from tobacco products, etc.), and especially including the water you drink.

My people believe the water they drink is poisoned (Flint, Michigan), the air they breathe is poisoned (Beijing) and food we all eat causes medical problems, including deformed babies, drug addicted babies, and miscarriages.

According to a recently published WHO (World Health Organization) Report, exposure to polluted environments is associated with more than one in four deaths among children under the age of five.  Research finds that some 1.7 million children’s death across the globe are attributable to environmental hazards such as exposure to contaminated water, air pollution, and other unsanitary conditions.

Exposure to hazardous chemicals through air, food and products used in every day life is also associated with hindered brain development in children.


In my opinion:

  • The poorest man is not the man without a penny.  It’s the man without a dream, a man without a purpose.
  • Work without passion is slavery.
  • There are seven days a week and “someday” isn’t one of them.
  • An ambitious person working  9 to 5 their entire life is like a lion choosing to be caged at the zoo.
  • HEALTHY LIVING is a giant multidimensional topic.

Drinking And Wellbeing

I’ve read that there are thirteen minerals that are essential for human life and all of them can be found in wine.  Coincidence?  I think not.  Is that true?  I don’t know. I would like to think so.

Hard driving stressed-out men, imagine this situation: It’s overcast today,  You chill by the fire with a pair of cocktails for yourself and your lady.  You each each have the following drink in your hand:  Anejo tequila, washed in browned butter, in a cup of coffee, garnished with Netflix and a warm blanket.


  • 1 oz browned butter washed Gran Centenario Anejo
  • .75 oz Borghetti coffee liqueur
  • .25 oz Cynar 70
  • Barspoon 2:1 demerara – 3 oz hot coffee
  • Top with hand-whipped cinnamon cream

Don’t Just Exist.  Glow.

Does the woman in the picture below look like she is having a good time?

She is totally focused on her work.

Does the woman in the photo below look like she is going to have a good time?

Have A Good Time.

Make sure you have a good time.

Laugh a lot.

Laughter is good medicine.

My Personal Belief About Mistakes

Creative people don’t make mistakes.  They make discoveries.

Creativity is contagious.  Pass it along.

Personal Correspondence

Below is a copy of recent personal correspondence between myself (Gary Smolker) and one of my friends (Paul Cook) about taking stains to prevent heart attacks/heart disease.

The last [most recent] piece of correspondence is at the top, the first piece of correspondence is at the bottom of the string of email correspondence below.

Neither Paul Cook not I are/is a physician.

Neither one of us has any medical training.

Both of us have declined to take a dosage of a statin drug that we have been told/advised that we should take in order to prevent having a heart attack.

Thoughts for the Day

Consider the following before reading the correspondence below between Paul and me.

  • Science is not decided by vote.  There is no consensus, there is only our best current understanding.
  • If the “experts” had it right we would be living on a “flat Earth” around which the Universe revolves praying to Zeus for our lives.
  • The practice of medicine today is better than it was fifty years ago and in fifty years from now the practice of medicine will be better than it is today.
  • TODAY: More people commit suicide than are killed by soldiers, terrorists and criminals combined.
  • TODAY: The average human is far more likely to die from binging at McDonald’s than from drought, Ebola, or an aL-Qaeda attack.
  • With respect to taking steps to have a high quality life, prevent heart attacks, etc we are dealing with (a) lots of uncertainty, (b) incomplete information, (c) a very complex situation, and (d) lack of significant and/or meaningful understanding of physical, biological, biochemical, and physiological processes and in particular we have an almost complete lack understanding of brain function brain health brain chemistry and cognitive processes.
  • Risk changes as we get older.
  • Much to my astonishment I read that taking statins can lower testosterone (in effect eliminate/lower sex drive and sex function), destroy cognitive function (make it more difficult to process information and to think, destroy short term memory, destroy long term memory), increase the chance of having Alzheimer’s disease, increase the chance of having diabetes, and speed up the aging process.  I don’t know if any of that is true (i.e., if there is any correlation between taking a statin and losing sex drive, or getting Alzheimer’s disease or if any of those dreadful potential side effects would happen to me if I took the recommended dosage of statin, now or when I became older (later)).



Saturday, March 4, 2017


Thank you for the vote of approval and confidence in my point of view.

According to David B. Augus, M.D., a pioneering cancer doctor and researcher  [he is a professor of medicine and engineering at the University of Southern California and heads USC’s Westside Cancer Center and the Center for Applied Molecular Medicine), the top ten causes of death in the United States for the 2010 calendar year according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention expressed as deaths in the United States for the 2010 calendar year were:

  1. Heart disease: 597,689 deaths
  2. Cancer: 574,4743
  3. Chronic lower respiratory diseases: 138,080
  4. Stroke (cerebrovascular diseases): 129,476 deaths
  5. Accidents (unintentional injuries): 120,859 deaths
  6. Alzheimer’s disease: 83,494 deaths
  7. Diabetes: 69,071 deaths
  8. Nephritis, nephrotic syndrome, and nephrosis: 50,476 deaths
  9. Influenza and pneumonia: 50,097 deaths
  10. Intentional self-harm (suicide): 38,364 deaths

Assuming you are going to eventually die, if you had a choice of cause of death which cause of death would/do you prefer?

For example: Do you prefer to die of heart disease or cancer?

In general, chances are if you don’t die from heart disease, you most likely will die from (1) cancer, or (2) chronic lower respiratory disease, or (3) stroke or (4) an accident/unintentional injury, or (5) Alzheimer’s disease, or (6) diabetes, or something else listed above.

Do you have any idea what it would be like to die from a heart attack or from cancer?

By the way, statistics are valuable  for understanding a population as a whole, but much less valuable for predicting an individual.


—–Original Message—–
From: Paul Cook
To: Gary Smoker <gsmolker@aol.com>
Cc: Many
Sent: Sat, Mar 4, 2017 6:18 am
Subject: Re: Context: The Missing Ingredient

You are Exactly right!
Sent from my Verizon, Samsung Galaxy smartphone
——– Original message ——–
From: Gary Smoker <gsmolker@aol.com>
Date: 3/4/17 2:51 AM (GMT-08:00)
To: Paul Cook
Cc: Many
Subject: Re: Context: The Missing Ingredient
What meaningless garbage.
What is the “risk?”  How does (percentage) risk change over time?
What is the probability you personally would lower the “risk”?
How much longer can you personally expect to live without having a heart attack or strike if you take one dosage vs another dose or none whatsoever?
The problem with living longer is that you live longer at the end of your life at a time you might be in a dreadful physical and/or mental state.
You might be extending your life while you are an immobile deaf and blind person who can barely breath, and at a time on your life when you pee and shit in your pants all the time and are on dialysis and your body is in constant pain
It would be much better to extend your life when you are young, fully functional and at the top of your physical and mental game.


Sent from my iPhone

Gary S. Smolker
On Mar 3, 2017, at 4:09 PM, Paul Cook  wrote:

Thanks Gary,

I appreciate your input! I was told that if I took x mg of Statin I would lower the risk of stroke and or heart attack some exact %…. not necessarily so. But that’s what his computer said!


On March 3, 2017 at 3:50 PM Gary Smolker <gsmolker@aol.com> wrote:

FYI—–Original Message—–
From: Gary Smolker <gsmolker@aol.com>
To: Mayer
Cc: Many
Sent: Fri, Mar 3, 2017 3:48 pm
Subject: Context: The Missing Ingredient

Mayer,My criticism of advice regarding what to eat and do to accomplish the goal of preventing heart attacks and other physical, mental and medical disasters is that RAW DATA is only useful when we put it in context.

The advice given is usually too general or too wrong headed or on mere speculation.

ALWAYS medical advice given to me regarding taking statins has never been a full disclosure of what is known of practical significance.

Compounding the problem the public on the whole would be like swine being fed pearls if anyone would attempt to provide HONEST FULL DISCLOSURE of the plus and minus and percent chance of achieving various results.

Too little is known for any MD to be able to say with a high degree of certainty if you take a statin of any particular dose you will live a specific amount of time longer.

Best regards,


—–Original Message—–
From: Mayer
To: undisclosed-recipients:;
Sent: Mon, Feb 20, 2017 6:19 pm
Subject: Fwd: Home Remedies That Work (and Some That Don’t)

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: WebMD <health@messages.webmd.com>
Date: Tue, Feb 14, 2017 at 8:38 AM
Subject: Home Remedies That Work (and Some That Don’t)
To: Mayerblah blah

Copyright © 2017 by Gary Smolker, All Rights Reserved

Nature vs. Nurture by Gary Smolker

I take my coffee seriously.

So do Sicilians.



At dinner last night (February 23, 2017), my youngest daughter Leah (age 29) and I decided that we would go to Sicily together instead of going to Italy, Croatia, Montenegro, or Russia.

We discussed possible things and places to see and experiences to have in Sicily.


Leah is presently attending law school full time.

Lean and I  “plan” to take our trip to Sicily either during Leah’s Spring Break or during Leah’s Summer Break.

Leah has traveled to 30 different countries.

Leah publishes a travel blog at https://easytospell03.wordpress.com/2017/02/07/beautiful-and-unique-places-in-europe/

Leah loves traveling.

I love Leah.

I love taking trips with Leah.

The Big Question

After she got home from dinner, Leah sent me the following note, via email:

Do you still want to see nature over city? 

“Do you want me to make an itinerary that favors nature in Sicily over urban scapes.

“Sicily has a balance of both beautiful nature and Baroque cities.”

My Answer

That sushi place you love in Santa Monica started following me on Instagram @garyspassion.

“I think I prefer nature over man built but I am open minded … whatever is the best example (if there is such a thing) of what it is is what I want to see.

“I want to see the “best” of everything so I will be better able to compare things.

“Most people can tell the difference between something that is bad and something that is good, ut only a rare individual can tell the between the best and the very best.

I want to be among those rare few who can tell the difference between the best and very best.

“You are already among the very few who can do that.

“Amazingly, you and your sisters Judi and Terra can do that in more than one field of expertise.

“I am so happy you share your good taste and discernment.”

Personal Information

I love good food, long meals and lazily drinking good coffee.

Below are photographs of two pages in one of the travel books that Leah and I looked at during our dinner last night.


Thoughts for the Day

You will not be able to figure out what you really want unless you try everything. – GSS

“Enlightenment is a destructive process. It has nothing to do with becoming better or happier.  Enlightenment is the crumbling away of untruth.  Its the complete eradication of everything we imaged to be true.” – Adyashanti

There Is Always A Trade-Off


Copyright © Gary S. Smolker, All Rights Reserved

This is the sixth of a series of articles I intend to post on the Gary S. Smolker Idea Exchange Blog at http://www.garysmolker.wordpress.com on “LIVING THE ENGAGED LIFE.”

I have constantly made posts on Instant @garyspassion on “LIVING THE ENGAGED LIFE” and intend to continue to do so.

Follow me on Instagram @garyspassion

I intend to publish a series of articles on “HIGH ENERGY COMMUNICATIONS” on the Gary S. Smolker Idea Exchange Blog at http://www.garysmolker.wordpress.com.  I began writing the first article in that series this morning (Friday, February 24, 2017).

The Active Life – by Gary Smolker


Hockey Players Live An Active Life

Look at the hockey players in the collages above.  They are living an active life.

There is is no doubt in my mind that someone playing hockey like those hockey players is getting lots of powerful physical activity.

Look at the single frames below of NHL hockey players on the ice.

Look at their vitality.

Look at the physical strength and fitness they are projecting, the energy they are expending in this activity, while “playing” hockey.



I, on the other hand, live a sedate life.

I Live A Sedate Life

I am living a sedate life: no hockey, no lacrosse, no fencing, no rollerblading.

I was a lot more active when I was 13 years old.

Living the Engaged Life Is In the Eyes of the Beholder

  • Exercise is in the eyes of the beholder.
  • Fitness is in the eyes of the beholder.
  • Health is in the eyes of the beholder.

I live on the West Coast, in the Van Nuys Sherman Oaks area of Los Angeles, California and work in Encino, California.

My 13 year old grandson Nate lives on the East Coast, in the greater Boston area of Massachusetts.

Nate plays hockey.

Nate is the goalie on his team.

The job of the goalie is to defend the net, to prevent the opposing team from shooting a puck into the net.

Nate is a spectacular goalie.

I don’t play hockey.

Different Strokes/Activities for Different Folks

Nate and his family are visiting Los Angeles.

Yesterday, Nate and his mother, father and 15 year old sister went to Hermosa Beach to go biking and rollerblading on the beach.

Tomorrow, Nate and I are going to a Barnes & Noble Book Store in Santa Monica at 9:00 a.m. and bowling afterwards.

After bowling, Nate and I are going to meet up with his mother, father and older (15 years old) sister who will be taking a UCLA tour from 10:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.

Living the Engaged Life

Nate, his older sister, his mother, his father, and I are living the engaged life.

Living Life Powerfully

Nate, Nate’s older sister, Nate’s mother, Nate’s father, and ME (Nate’s grandfather) are living life powerfully.

Age is a factor.

Copyright © 2017 Gary Smolker, All Rights Reserved

This is the fifth in a series of articles I intend to post on the Gary S. Smolker Idea Exchange Blog at http://www.garysmolker.wordpress.com on “LIVING THE ENGAGED LIFE.”

I have continuously made posts on my Instagram account @garyspassion on “LIVING THE ENGAGED LIFE,” and intend to continue to do so.

Follow me on Instagram @garyspassion





What Would Life Be Without Hope? – by Gary Smolker


What are we without hope?

American Supermodel Marissa Fashionista  (age 15) is visiting the greater Los Angeles area today (February 18, 2017) where we (everyone who lives in Los Angeles and Santa Monica) are experiencing heavy rains.

Marissa is wearing a skirt in hope it will bring skirt weather to Santa Monica and Los Angeles today.

TAKEAWAY: Attitude is everything.

  • Marissa is living the engaged life.
  • Americans (before and after President Donald Trump) are great because of their drive, their ruggedness, their unquenchable optimism and zeal and elan.
  • It is easy to understand America and Americans: The drive of Americans, their ruggedness, their unquenchable optimism and zeal and elan go back to the challenges of the untrammeled wilderness.

Living the Engaged Life

Supermodel Marissa Fashionista lives on the East Coast.

Marissa is visiting the West Coast for one week.

Marissa refuses to wear long pants or tights when the temperature is above fifty degrees centigrade.

Go for it Marissa.

Go for it.

Demand the Impossible

Your potency, your total emotional immersion in what you are doing, you being into it, your heartfelt intensity, your total attention to detail, your individualism represents what is best about being human.


“Action is the foundational key to all success.” – Pablo Picasso

Anything of real quality and substance will be enduring, will stand the test of time because people will realize it represents the very best in its field of particular expertise. – GSS

You will never find peace of mind until you listen to your heart. – GSS

Photographs of Supermodel Marissa Fashionista

Below is a photograph of Supermodel Marissa Fashionista, her 13 year old brother, and me taken on Saturday, February 18, 2017, in Van Nuys, California.


Below is a picture of Supermodel Marissa Fashionista sipping a Banana Soda drink in a Honduran Restaurant (El Katracho Restaurant) on Saturday, February 18, 2017, located at 14836 BurbankBlvd., Sherman Oaks, California.


By the Way

I strongly recommend the Banana Soda and the Tamarin Soft Drink at that restaurant, the El Katracho Restaurant.


This is the fourth in a series of articles I intend to post on the Gary S. Smolker Idea Exchange Blog at http://www.garysmolker.wordpress.com on “LIVING THE ENGAGED LIFE.”

I have continuously made posts on my Instagram account @garyspassion on “LIVING THE ENGAGED LIFE” and intend to continue to do so.

Follow me on Instagram @garyspassion


Copyright © 2017 Gary S. Smolker, All Rights Reserved

Not Virgin! – by Gary Smolker



Whoever designed the container shown above has a lot of brain power.

Whoever designed the labels on that container has a lot of brain power.

Whoever designed the paper bag shown above has a lot of brain power.

What you see above is not just a container.

What you see above is not just a paper bag.

What you see above is an example of the creative communication of a sales pitch presented as a message.


You are looking at a container with a story and a message.

You are looking at a bag with a story and a message.

The stories on that container and on that bag trigger action.


Q: Is that a container of ice cream, or a container of hand and body lotion?

A: No.  It is a creative advertising masterpiece.

Q: Is that a paper bag?

A: No.  It is a creative advertising masterpiece.


The “Charity Pot” container looks like a container of ice cream.

I like ice cream.

The label on the top of the container states, “BY BUYING CHARITY POT YOU SUPPORT GOOD CAUSES…”

I am in favor of supporting good causes.

Another label on the container states, “NOT VIRGIN! Pot made from 100% recycled plastic.  Recycle it or bring it back.”

I am in favor of recycling.

The bag states the following:


Those are all appealing stands on social issues.

All of the above influences influenced me to buy that “hand and body lotion.”


Wealth at its deepest root is the product not of physical labor but of intelligence, of creative vision.

Action is required to actualize the vision, but physical labor not guided by human intelligence is virtually worthless.


All business is fundamentally about brain power.

Without the guidance of an idea, action is just mindless motion, without direction, purpose or value.


There is no maximum to potential.


Some people live life fully.

They know:

  • You have to know what you need in order to find what you want. 
  • You can’t figure out what you really want unless you try everything.


People who don’t believe in magic, don’t find it.

Life isn’t magical on its own.

We make it magical


In the evolution of advertising, and in the evolution of business, Lush Cosmetics is not a virgin

Lush Cosmetics is a magician who speaks and does business in the language of popular culture.

Lush Cosmetics realized that people have a social conscious and that people are health conscious.

With that realization, Lush Cosmetics became a game changer, a rebel who never stopped redefining the business of cosmetics and never stopped redefining the business of creative communications.

The photographs above show part of the picture of how Lush Cosmetics got from there to here and now…. in the health conscious cause conscious popular culture and…. in the cosmetics industry.


Story tellings is fundamental to our lives.

We all love stories.


It is a testament to the extraordinary world we now live in that Lush Cosmetics is a huge business success.



  • The future is hyper-connected.
  • People want to participate in causes.
  • Lush Cosmetics lets them do so.

“Participate in an important social cause” is the central message of Lush Cosmetics advertising: that message is on the labels on “Charity Pot”, and in the statements made on its paper bags, etc.


People connect with others not just with similar passions and interests, but around the causes that most resonate with them.

More and more, brands are identifying with a cause, and making that identification a central part of their ethos.


I believe in magic.

I am not virgin.

I am 100% in favor of powerfully “living the engaged life.”

Gary Smolker

Copyright © 2017 Gary Smolker, All Rights Reserved

This is the third in a series of articles I intend to post on the Gary S. Smolker Idea Exchange Blog at http://www.garysmolker.wordpress.com on “LIVING THE ENGAGED LIFE.”

I have continuously made posts on my Instagram account @garyspassion on “LIVING THE ENGAGED LIFE,” and intend to continue to do so.

Follow me on Instagram @garyspassion