Would you stay at this cool place?

As I've noted previously, I work as a writer in the hotel/lodging industry. (This blog, of course, is my side gig.)

I'm a hardcore history buff, so it comes as no surprise that the hotels I enjoy learning about the most are those that have stood the test of time.

One such historic property is the Beekman Arms and Delamater Inn, which is situated in the center of the Village of Rhinebeck in the Hudson Valley.

The Beekman Arms has operated continuously since -- get this -- 1766, melding colonial charm and character with modern conveniences.

In 1766, Arent Traphagen relocated his father's tavern to what is now Rhinebeck. The Bogardus Taven was made of sturdy timber and stone to protect against potential Indian attacks. 

The inn hosted notable revolutionaries including George Washington, Alexander Hamilton, and Benedict Arnold. The 4th Regiment of the Continental Army drilled on the lawn and and the townspeople took refuge here when the British burned the state capital at Kingston, just across the Hudson River.

Sold to Asa Potter in 1802, the property was the hub of political and social life in the community. It was inside inn that rivals Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr exchanged insults on the road to their infamous duel. 

Years later, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who lived in nearby Hyde Park, began every one of his campaigns for governor and president from the front porch of the Beekman Arms. 

Today, the complex includes the Delamater Inn and Conference Center, a collection of seven buildings -- both old and new -- that is located one block north of the main inn. A rare example of American Gothic architecture, the Delamater was designed by Alexander Jackson Davis in 1844. 

A member of Historic Hotels of America, Beekman Arms and Delamater Inn exudes historic charm. 

Would you stay here if you were visiting the Hudson Valley? 

CAN'T-MISS: Love is like...a fart?

A while back, I came across a rather amusing quote:

"Love is like a fart. If you have to force it, it's probably shit." 

I don't know who the source of the comical quote is, but he or she was spot on.

Love should never have to be forced. If one or both people in the relationship are forcing it, that raises a critical question: Why are they even together?

Either the chemistry is off, one or both individuals has grown bored, or, worse yet, they've fallen out of love altogether.

As I've noted in prior posts, once a couple passes the honeymoon stage, people's true colors emerge and the relationship begins to feel a little more like "work." Quirks about your partner that once seemed cute may begin to get on your nerves. As passion gradually gives way to complacency, partners may cease doing the little things that so endeared them to each other.

You know you're with the right person when:

  • You can be yourself around him or her
  • You share common interests, values, and beliefs
  • You can't picture yourself with anyone else
  • Picturing your partner with someone else engenders feelings of jealousy in you
  • You imagine yourself spending your whole life with the person 
When one or more of these is lacking, it signals that something in the relationship is off-kilter. 

Whoever feels as though they're forcing or feigning their love should be upfront about it. That way, they can end the relationship and each find someone with whom they're more compatible. Otherwise, the disinterested individual is wasting his/her time and that of their partner.

When a man or woman is truly in love, they'll stop at nothing to show it. They'll do whatever it takes to reel in and keep the other. They're committed to making it work.

I'm of the firm belief that you're better off single than in a bad relationship. Imagine being stuck in a relationship with someone you have no feelings for. It isn't fair to either of you.

Even if it takes longer, wait for that special someone. (Of course, you need to put yourself out there; true love doesn't merely fall into your lap.) Don't simply settle for the first person who comes your way if you know deep down they're not who you seek. And once he or she comes into your life, be sure to never take them for granted, for you may not get a second chance.

Cant-miss tip for getting in a good mood

I have found that nothing puts me in a better mood than distracting myself -- even if momentarily -- from the present.

That can mean picturing myself lounging on a sun-dappled beach, surrounded by turquoise water (not as good as actually being there, but I'll take it); spending a few moments watching bloopers or videos of adorable animals; immersing myself in a compelling book; or listening to my favorite songs on my iPod Touch.

The key is to disconnect from the moment.

If you spend ALL your time ruminating on your carries and worries, life will become very monotonous.

Sometimes you just need a short break from your annoying coworkers, nagging neighbor, and others who drive you up the wall. Such an intermission -- however brief -- can leave you feeling more relaxed and/or energized.

I realize this is easier said than done for some people. Not everyone lives in their head or has the inclination to do so, especially those who tend to be more outgoing.

However, everyone I know whose given it a try says that the strategy succeeds at redirecting their often-negative thoughts toward positive stimuli, whether it be kittens or feel-good lyrics to songs they love listening to.

Escapism can be healthy so long as you remember to come back to the real world eventually.

Every now and then, allow your mind to focus on things that actually bring a smile to your face. Do and think about whatever induces in you a sense of joy. Life is too short to spend it fussing over work, chores, and other things that can leave us feeling down and drained.

A positive mindset yields positive outcomes!

You won't believe what this place has...

On this day in 2000, as part of the Out of the Blue Closets exhibit at the National Museum of Health and Medicine in Washington, D.C. the bones of President James Garfield’s spine were put on display one last day. The exhibit featured medical oddities from the museum’s archives.

The display of President Garfield’s spinal column showed exactly where one out of two assassin’s bullets had passed through it on July 2, 1881. The first bullet grazed Garfield’s arm, while the second bullet lodged below his pancreas.

Alexander Graham Bell, known for patenting the first practical telephone, was one of Garfield’s physicians at the time. He attempted to use an early version of a metal detector to locate the second bullet, but failed.

Historical accounts vary slightly as to what exactly led to Garfield’s death. Physicians may have given him treatments that expedited his demise, including the administering of morphine, quinine, calomel, and brandy; he was also fed through the rectum.

Others contend Garfield died from an already-advanced case of heart disease that the trauma of the shooting only worsened. Autopsy reports described how pressure from the pancreatic wound induced a fatal aneurysm. Whatever the cause, Garfield succumbed to complications from his wounds 80 days after the shooting.

In addition to Garfield's spine, the museum also owns some of Lincoln’s skull fragments and President Eisenhower’s gallstones.

Pretty bizarre items to put on display, don't you think?

Relationship tip: Don't be a hypocrite

Some people are simply the epitome of hypocrisy. They don't tolerate certain behaviors from their partner -- cheating, wasteful spending, getting drunk -- and yet they carry out those very behaviors themselves in disguise.

It's because of this double standard that so many relationships go down the drain. People who have certain expectations of their partner that they themselves can't live up to -- those who don't practice what they preach -- shouldn't commit to anyone in the first place. It demonstrates selfishness, a lack of maturity, and the inability to consider their partner's feelings.

The golden rule of relationships is to treat your partner the way you want to be treated. If you don't want your partner to cheat on you, remain faithful. If you don't want your partner running up credit card debt, spend responsibly. If you don't want your partner making a fool of herself after having one too many drinks, drink in moderation yourself.

The rules should apply to your partner just as stringently as they do to you. When one person thinks they can get away with bending those rules, they go down a rabbit hole that will spell trouble -- if not the end -- for the relationship.

Both partners should make the conscious effort to avoid situations that may cause problems later on -- from flirting with co-workers and going on shopping binges to acquiescing to their beer-swilling friends' demands to drink without restraint.

As long as both individuals are on an equal playing field, the relationship can prosper. If you want the relationship to last, you must be willing to consider your partner's feelings before your own. You should always be asking yourself what consequences your actions can have on the relationship. And if your partner betrays your trust while you've remained on the up and up, you have every right to end the relationship and find someone else who shares your high standards of integrity. No one in a relationship is above the other person.