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Old 09-01-2008, 01:04 PM   #1
charlene
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Default My Dinner with Florian

Two nights ago on Saturday night in Toronto I had the wonderful pleasure of dining with our dear Florian!
A vacation/travel excursion with his mum had them visiting Toronto on their way across the U.S. and then up into the Vancouver area and he kindly asked me to join them.

Well of course I would! My goodness I (and everyone else there) had not seen the young fellow since his fleeting appearance at Massey Hall back in May 2001. No sooner had hellos and hugs been given that he disappeared and was not seen again!

Well I was determined to make sure that didn't happen again and that we would actually spend some time together!

I am SO glad I did. I met with them at a restaurant near the foot of Yonge and just east off of Church St. a block or so from the lake. What followed was not only a delicious meal but 3 hours of talking and laughing with two lovely, lovely people. I had the best time!

It seems our young Florian (he will be 34 on Dec.4) has his mum to thank for his Lightfoot obsession!

Back in 1968 Mum and Dad came to Toronto from Vienna, Austria when she was 20. She told me that she first heard If You Could Read My Mind back then in a store and that was it! She fell in love with the songs and voice of Gordon Lightfoot. After a few years the decision to move back to Austria was made and in 1974 young Florian joined his older sister in the Bodenseher household in Vienna.
And Gordon Lightfoot went with them..

Mum had never seen a Lightfoot concert until 2001 in Las Vegas. For this current trip they are on she compiled 3 or 4 songs from each era of Lightfoot music for the part of the journey that will be by car.
It sounds like a marvelous journey - planes, trains and automobiles - Bodenseher style!
lol

It was so interesting to hear about politics, education, music, travel from their perspective as citizens so far removed from what I experience daily here in Canada. They had as many questions about things here in Canada/U.S. and I tried my best to answer them!

The time passed much, much too quickly though. I'm sure we'd still be sitting there talking if not for real life stepping in and sending us on our separate journeys.

I thanked Florian, for all of us, for this website and message board and laughingly mentioned that over the years some people have asked if he even existed..lol
His beautiful laugh and sublime accent assured me that since I had taken a couple of pictures that I now had proof that yes, he does exist!

I told him that one day I'd be knocking on his door over there in Vienna - a MOST beautiful city from what I've seen on-line and in travel magazines over the years. I've spent many an hour taking the virtual tour of the museums there!

I certainly hope he and his mum make it a priority to come back to Toronto for the Massey shows in November 2009. Are you listening Florian??

Thanks for inviting me and I hope to see the two of you in November 2009!. Travel safe and hugs to both of you!
Char
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Old 09-01-2008, 01:32 PM   #2
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Default Re: My Dinner with Florian

Excellent. Thanks for thanking him on behalf of those who enjoy this forum.

Does he regularly view postings here, or has he delegated such tasks to his whip-snapping moderator ?
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Old 09-01-2008, 01:34 PM   #3
charlene
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Default Re: My Dinner with Florian

he sees all...

but he's much too sweet so he leaves the whip-snapping to the seasoned pro..

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Old 09-01-2008, 01:50 PM   #4
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Default Re: My Dinner with Florian

Quote:
Originally Posted by charlene View Post
I thanked Florian, for all of us, for this website and message board and laughingly mentioned that over the years some people have asked if he even existed..lol
His beautiful laugh and sublime accent assured me that since I had taken a couple of pictures that I now had proof that yes, he does exist!
Thanks Char, I had secretly wondered who Florian was and/or if he actually existed.... thanks for the answer and thanks for extending our appreciation for this site!
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Old 09-01-2008, 01:57 PM   #5
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Default Re: My Dinner with Florian

Thanks Char ! Great picture.

I've known that the great Florian actually existed for quite some time but it's always nice to get confirmation. You both look great !

Thank you Florian for keeping this website alive, we all appreciate it very much !

Bill

and yes I'm online at work, LOL !
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Old 09-01-2008, 02:49 PM   #6
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Default Re: My Dinner with Florian

I would also like to thank Florian for providing this wonderful website. Although I rarely post here (193 posts in 5-1/2 years!), I do check the site almost daily. And thanks to our Charming moderator as well! We "lurkers" appreciate both of you and all you two do to maintain this forum. Best wishes,

John in California
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Old 09-01-2008, 04:27 PM   #7
Jesse Joe
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Default Re: My Dinner with Florian

Thanks for posting this Char. Just looking at the pic he looks like a wonderful person. I somehow always thought Florian was an older man... Just wish he would post more often.

Thanks from me as well Florian for this fine Site, devoted to a great "Poet Genius"...

You & your mum have great taste in music !

All the best,

~Jesse Joe~
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Old 09-01-2008, 05:37 PM   #8
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Default Re: My Dinner with Florian

Thanks, Char, for sharing your corfidian visit and posting a pic of the elusive Florian. (although I am still holding out that the man in the pic may very well be a poor unsuspecting gentleman you shanghaied in the restaurant with you immeasurable char(m) ) .

Hope Florian can make it to Massey in 2009. There is no small amount of people that would like to shake his hand and say "thank you".

Diane
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Old 09-01-2008, 06:15 PM   #9
Peter Bro10
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Originally Posted by Sundown17 View Post
Thanks, Char, for sharing your corfidian visit and posting a pic of the elusive Florian. (although I am still holding out that the man in the pic may very well be a poor unsuspecting gentleman you shanghaied in the restaurant with you immeasurable char(m) ) .
Oh great, planting the seed of doubt!
and such a clever plot, too!!!!
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Old 09-01-2008, 06:26 PM   #10
RM
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(although I am still holding out that the man in the pic may very well be a poor unsuspecting gentleman you shanghaied in the restaurant with you immeasurable char(m) ) .
I'm not much into conspiracy theories, but this one sounds more than plausible.
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Old 09-02-2008, 10:19 AM   #11
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Default Re: My Dinner with Florian

Thanks Florian!
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Old 09-03-2008, 12:02 PM   #12
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Default Re: My Dinner with Florian

Quote:
Originally Posted by charlene View Post
Back in 1968 Mum and Dad came to Toronto from Vienna, Austria when she was 20. She told me that she first heard If You Could Read My Mind back then in a store and that was it!
Char
Another CHaracteristically interesting and well wriitten report by the CHarismatic CHar but I am going to quibble about the above quote. By 1968 I considered myself a diehard Lightfoot fan.Indeed I attended two concerts in Montreal's Place Des Arts in that year and listened avidly to the radio.At no time before I left Canada in November 1969 do I recall hearing IYCRMM on the radio in a store or a concert.Nor did Gord sing it at the summer 1969 Charlottetown Festival.
(yet at a late 1968 concert in a JimNasium at McGill University I clearly remember being impressed by "Go My Way" (not released until a couple of years later))
I do remember however being pleasantly suprised in 1970 to hear IYCRMM on BBC Radio 1 where it was played nearly every day for a long time by the disk jockey Noel Edmunds who thereby made it into a major UK hit record
By The Way Noel is currently impersonating the Canadian Howie Mandel as the host of the UK version of Deal Or No deal, albeit Noel has rather more hair!!
Now where was I oh yes IYCRMM
the sheet music actually gives a copyright date for IYCRMMM of 1969 and I believe that the album IYCRMM a.k.a. Sit downYoung Stranger was recorded in late 1969 (Go My Way in the Summer Side Of Life sheet music book is shown as having a 1966 copyright.)
I know it is now 40 years later but dare I suggest that Florian's mother's memory is wrong on this point,
or did she mean soon after her arrival in Canada in 1968??
I do remember being briefly introduced to the elusive Florian at Massey in May 2001 but we missed him at the Orleans Las Vegas in 2005 because we only found out that Florian was going after the event.
I too hope he makes it to the grand reunion in November 2009 celebrating ten whole years since Jenney's fantastic first convention
I first heard of Florian when he posted as "corfid" on the Newsgroup in 1999 with a rather nice explanation of "That Same Old Obsession". I had the url of that posting and of his subsequent announcement of http://www.corfid.com but mysteriously google groups are now unable to find either posting
I have compiled a brief history of the Newsgroup in which I linked to a couple of postings on that once important message board
see:-
Newsgroup History
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Old 09-03-2008, 06:12 PM   #13
charlene
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Default Re: My Dinner with Florian

Perhaps here in Gordtown (Toronto) the radio station here was playing it? Perhaps it was just once or twice and she heard it?

Back then, as now, I'm sure Radio Montreal played a much different songlist..

I can't say for sure but all I can do is recount what was told to me. Regardless of when she heard it the point is that she did while living here in Toronto and then thankfully passing on that "same old obsession" to her son..

I was listening to the radio in my friends car 5 hours ago and under threat of death I couldn't recall to you what I listened to..

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Old 09-03-2008, 09:54 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BILLW View Post
Thanks Char ! Great picture...
yes, Great mug shot

char & flor look pretty good too!



who's face is on that mug, anyhow? a Mountie or Austrian figure?

ps)
thk you, Florian, thk you, Char, thk you, Mother Bodenseher

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Old 09-03-2008, 11:10 PM   #15
charlene
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lol JJ!!
that was a little gift from Florian - an Austrian porcelain cup/mug filled with Austrian chocolate..the face is that of the native son of Vienna - Wolfgang A. Mozart - 1756 - 1791.
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Old 09-05-2008, 10:22 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by charlene View Post
lol JJ!!
that was a little gift from Florian - an Austrian porcelain cup/mug filled with Austrian chocolate..the face is that of the native son of Vienna - Wolfgang A. Mozart - 1756 - 1791.
ahhh, couldn't place the face but the name is familiar

yeah, I think he wrote a few jingles, lol

save me some chocolate
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Old 09-06-2008, 11:30 PM   #17
charlene
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ahhh, couldn't place the face but the name is familiar

yeah, I think he wrote a few jingles, lol

save me some chocolate
you must be kidding..that choco was LONG gone.. I didn't even share with Florian and his mum..Lisa got 2 pieces..
lol
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Old 09-06-2008, 11:37 PM   #18
charlene
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What a great experience for you, Char! Florian has such a great smile!

Has he ever met Gordon? Wouldn't it be great if he could get backstage at Massey Hall in 2009? I am, of course, assuming you'll be there!
Florian hasn't met Gordon but if he comes to Massey in 2009 I will make sure he does!
and I hope he brings mum. The first thing Gord asked me this past May was "What's new on the web Char?" so it would be great for him to meet the guy behind this message board!

I'll be at Massey - oh yeah..I won't miss it!
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Old 09-08-2008, 02:35 AM   #19
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Char, thanks for posting the great story about your meeting with Florian and his mom.
Very interesting to a new person on board.

He seems like a nice man and I really enjoy the site he created. Thank You, Florian! It's very much appreciated.
Yes, and Thank You Char for keeping all the yahoo's in line around here...lol

Only a woman with a tattoo could manage that, don't cha know.
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Old 10-04-2008, 04:47 PM   #20
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Nightingale,

- A portion of your post made me recall a very enlightening story from my childhood, and also won of my favourite songs ! :

Quote:
Yes, and Thank You Char for keeping all the yahoo's in line around here...lol

Only a woman with a tattoo could manage that, don't cha know
Quote:
- and coupled with you signature:

Time has been wastin' away...You know time doesn't wait for nobody to find what they're after
It just keeps on rolling down the deep canyons
And through the green meadows
into the broad ocean..."

G. Lightfoot "Tattoo"
Made me pretty sure you are the proud owner of a tattoo, or two, too, to proudly wear to where ever you go to, you and your tattoo, or two. -sigh- -I fear I've read too much Dr. Seuss to my daughter, Mamie ! She loves (loVed ; she's now 26!) them ! - I sort of encouraged her appreciation of the North-Going Zax versus the South-Going zax; then there were the Star-bellied sneeches versus the sneeches with no stars on their bellies, all such great metaphors for teaching children the ingnorance-and-fear basis of prejudice, and how it can be overcome.

Then, these two stories even addressed the breaking of the cycle of the third element of prejudice in this very commonly-held belief of the sad cycles of prejudism, learned behaviour from parents, role models, and authority figures.

The words are black; the page is white; together we learn to read and write.... who was that group, ahead of its time "Blood, Sweat, and Tears?" - The lead singer sounds like it too me.

Reason I thought of this seemingly unrelated subject - Dr Seuss, Prejudice, it all actually ties together with the otherwise lighthearted brief casual mention of tattoos in the thread that made me think of it.

I think tattoos are cool, if tasteful, of course that's subjective - all art is. But self expression ought not be guided by a desire to please others and strictly avoid offending their sensibilities; with a modicum of good taste in mind and reasonable limits, its intended to be a great release of self-expression, isn't it ?

So I admire it, and had to overcome a mild case of almost learned prejudice of it when I was a young teenager around 13 or so. I had a friend I wanted to have for a sleep-over, but he had a tattoo. He was encouaged to get it by his parents, who had tasteful, artistic ones too. At least I thought so at 13 ! On the kid, my friend, it was a simple tattoo of a dirt-bike - the aspirations of the boy at that age. Cool, I thought.
And I told him, when he expressed his apprehension over my parents and what they might think, naw man, my parents are totally cool in THAT area (laugh) - My Mom is Still in college and gonna be a shrink; her and dad are real newthinkers, or somethin like that.

Dad said "NOT Liberal (harrumph), just not stupid ! We don't hold with things based on ignorance and fear (or something like that!) - and they were almost rabid anti-racism neo-activists - mom would hold cook-outs for her psych sorority or whatever it was, and ake a point of filling the yard with every color on the big guys pallette.This, all for the neigborhood we were to see in full color , in that had some real dangerous racists in their 'Middle-Class Neighborhhod". Mom and Dad would not attend the racist neighbors "meetings: when a "questionable family was going to move in"

Dad would smoke his piipe and smile approvingly, so many of his work colleagues, scientists, engineers, were people of all colors in the rainbow. What matterred to Dad was could they, incuding the white folks, do the job, and with good values, character, and integrity. Thats all that mattered, he said. Not what color they were, or other words I didn't understand that he said had to do with religions other than ours; different ethinc ways if life, and creeds.

Then my Mom saw it (the tattoo on the boy I wanted to be in the sleep over) and unbelievably: an educated, intelligent, poised and open minded woman who vehemently taught that prejudice was terrible, and all forms of it were based on ignorance and fear, and learned behaviour in cycles, too. Yet, she did not want this boy to sleep over; thought he'd have a bad influence on me ! I was flabbergasted ! It was against every grain of tolerance and clear-thinking her and Dad held with, and taught me.

DAD, however, listened to Mom telling me this in almost another voice I had not heard; it was apparently the learned behaviour from her grandmother, who held with an old prejudice that tattood people in the turn of the century were marked in the old country for crimes committed, branded in verious manners of transgressions revealed.

Dad calmly read his paper, smoked his pipe, and a said to mom; I'll never forget it: 'Lois, we've spent 13 years teaching Steve to think for himself and also embrace our core values, which include zero tolerance for prejudism. And in 5 minutes , you've almost undone all of that in one fell swoop. Do you think perhaps its your Grandmother's childhood fears and norms coming out in you ? I thought you despised her thinking ! And now I hear it in you ! Teaching it to our son ! . I had NEVER heard mom and dad argue before. It was more of a lecture by dad.

Mom allowed as how Dad was right after thinking about it; told me so, and why, and Dad openly praised her. I had the sleep over. Jeez, nowdays thats nothing ! A tatoo !.. Gordon has/had that cool rose tattoo in one of my favourite songs, as in your signature ! Well, Mom replied afterwards to dad, and rightly so, that one value, or lack thereof she did not want her and dad to teach me was open argument in front of the children.

Dad responded: "how are Steve and Bill ever going to know its OK to argue, and get over it in front of them too, so they know its not the end of the wolld when it happens in their relationships when they love a woman and have children ?. IT HAPPENS. What do you think ? She said : -sigh- you got me again, Russ. Boy my grandparents really affected me more than I ever knew. Something like that anyway(best of my memory for the whole thing; really).

Tattoos are cool. My dad taught me and my mom that.... funny how breaking cycles can go right.
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Old 10-05-2008, 01:25 AM   #21
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Tattoos are cool.
fine stuff, gman...any thoughts or anecdotes re body piercings?
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Old 10-07-2008, 12:47 AM   #22
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The revelation of Florian being an actual real person came to me the same way as it appears to have come to other folks; that is as being somewhat of a mythical character.
It's very wonderful that the encounter between Char and the real Florian happened because I honestly thought that it was always Char. I thought her real name was "Charlene Florian."
And from what I understand there are others who were in the dark on this one as well.
It was always a great feeling though, and now an even better feeling knowing that we have the combined strength of these two very "present" folks who do this for us "for free."
There are no fees, dues or whatever for this fantastic service, unless I'm missing something, other that the internet connection that we all pay for regardless.
It's clear that the information that gets posted here is read by many but not all are necessarily into the "posting" mode regularly and I'm like that, but I find that the timing, mood, or whatever, has to be there in order to put something up that I feel will make a contribution.
But as fans of the music of Gordon Lightfoot, what a wonderful thing we all truly have here at this wonderful site.
I for one, and I'm sure that there are many others who visit here are very thankful to all who make these enormous contributions in bringing forth the ever expanding joy that we derive from all matters pertaining to the music of Gordon Lightfoot.
The tentative Nov 2009 Massey Hall concerts seem to be gaining momentum and what a wonderful party it would be if we could have "the real Florian" join us to make it a most joyous occasion. Looking forward and onward.
Stay loose, Ron J.
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Old 10-07-2008, 01:09 AM   #23
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There are no fees, dues or whatever for this fantastic service, unless I'm missing something
I've seen the books, and you are $65.00 in arrears.
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Old 10-07-2008, 10:57 AM   #24
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I've seen the books, and you are $65.00 in arrears.
lol
pay up!!

(am i getting a raise?)

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Old 10-07-2008, 11:12 AM   #25
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Ah yes. I clearly forgot to mention that nice round figure Ron.
But I have an explanation. It's an excusable debt that went in lieu of "Guinness" for all the thirsty folks who attended the pub jam gigs last May.
Now if you can make it aboard the ship and join us as part of the 2009 gigs some of that fine Porter could come you way because there will be more forgivable debt in the offing.
But we'll need to get a song or two from you with us up there on that stage.
Cheers, Ron J.
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