PROMISES, PROMISES, PROMISES… We heard them all: Affordable healthcare for all, free community college, a 1,900-mile-long wall on the southern border, $15 minimum wage, deporting 11 million hard-working Latinos, strengthening our nuclear and non-nuclear military capabilities, carpet bombing ISIS, etc.

It never fails to amaze me how many things are being promised by presidential hopefuls without telling us exactly how we are going to pay for all of it. If you believe “The Donald,” Mexico will at least pay for the wall (which of course is not going to happen), and if you are feeling “The Bern,” the 1 percent will pay for most of it — never mind that his proposed tax reforms will not pass unless Congress shifts to a Democratic majority.

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Jessie Peterson Tarazi’s studio is tucked into a basement in Manhattan’s Chinatown, down a set of pre-war iron steps, past two pet pigeons roosting in their cage. Not hers, she adds. We’ve arranged to meet in a brief window before she’s off sending Kiawah residents into Southern nostalgia. She’s agreed, gleefully, to their offer to be Artist-In-Residence and to give her first artist’s talk, that is—on her own work.

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lori marc16I’m not the biggest “Star Trek” fan, but I was moved by the final message tweeted by Leonard Nimoy before he passed away last year. “Life is like a garden,” he wrote. “Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory.”

For as long as I can remember, the garden has been my happy place. There’s just something about breaking new ground and working in the dirt that gives me energy. It also reminds me of those I love most.

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marco freyA quick scroll through my Facebook feed reveals the inevitable Bernie Sanders ad, my friend posts, “Maybe Canada should be president of the U.S.,” and my Brooklyn neighbors sharing the latest addition to their family, a rescue dog they’re naming “Ladies and Gentleman.” Have no doubt, we’re talking about my very own artsy, liberal Facebook feed. If you’re like me, you’ve pruned yours of caustic friends, chatter boxes and broken records. Instead, you’ve groomed your feed to show posts you care about, that share your interests, or highlight news that confirms what you already believe. It’s your personal online gated community.

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As I enter Think Coffee, Chris Schembra is joking with the table to his left, a couple I assume he has brought along.

It turns out that in the short time he’s waited, Schembra has befriended a theater producer — by no small coincidence. I’ve done a bit of homework. Schembra is himself a producer of the five-time Emmy Award-winning one-man play “The Little Flower,” and he is an investor in two Broadway shows. I’ve scanned his LinkedIn profile and watched his segment on Bravo’s “The Singles Project” and, more importantly, his Times Square Light-a-Candle charity flash mob. 

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IF THE U.S. WANTS TO LEAD THE WORLD, WE FIRST NEED TO ELECT A VISIONARY TO LEAD OUR OWN COUNTRY.

Our current global system is in need of a major revision. The focus needs to be on building sustainable economic environments all around the world rather than relying on growth at all cost driven by shortterm greed. The global playing field is not only changing around us, it is changing at an accelerating rate.

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lori febr2016If you do good things and treat people well, good things will come back to you.

This is how I’ve always lived my life. I firmly believe that compassion, kindness and patience for others are especially important in a small community such as this one. You never know when your paths will cross again.

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masksTHERE ARE ONLY TWO KINDS OF PEOPLE. GOOD PEOPLE AND BAD PEOPLE.

It’s not a question of gender, race, religion, geographic location or wealth. Regardless of any of the aforementioned attributes, there are good people and there are bad people — it is just a simple as that.

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lori jan2016This is our 19th year “Intriguing People of the Lowcountry” issue — and it’s a little hard to believe that we haven’t featured everyone who lives here by now. To this day, I am amazed at the number of people with incredible backgrounds, talents and interests who choose to make the Lowcountry their home.

And this year is no exception: Wait until you read about Holocaust survivor Allen Kupfer, sixth-generation native islander Alex Brown or Kroger chief financial officer and executive vice president Mike Schlotman.

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The rebellious city on the Pacific Rim is offering a glimpse into the future.

San Francisco was 15 years old when the San Francisco Chronicle started to publish its first edition 150 years ago. Much has changed since the early days, and will continue to change. What has not changed is that the Bay Area remains a magnet and kaleidoscope of influences from around the world and all walks of life.

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hhmholidayDecember is the time when we cherish all that is important to us.

Personal beliefs, no matter what they are, that teach us the importance of peace. Friends and neighbors who share in our joys and support us through our sorrows. Even the simple things, like the twinkle of lights in the streets, are enough to remind us of all our blessings.

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There are hundreds of small business owners in the Lowcountry, solo entrepreneurs, family-run organizations, larger companies with management teams and even some that have boards.

Together, they drive the vast majority of our economy since we don’t have government branches, military bases and only a few institutions that provide employment in our region. Most cater to local needs but some do the inverse, meaning they are located here but their customer base is not local.

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lori nov2015Luxury is a word that gets thrown around a lot. People use it to describe everything from expensive jewelry to free time spent with family. What does luxury mean to you? Does it conjure up images of the unattainable: private jets, hotel suites or something as brazen as a Bentley? Is it long walks on the beach or a glass of wine while watching the sunset?

Whatever your definition the Lowcountry is steeped in it.

If somebody handed you $5 million right now, there are 20 homes for sale on Hilton Head Island and in Bluffton you still couldn’t afford. Walk around any of the island’s marinas and count the number of extravagant yachts you stumble across. You will quickly run out of fingers

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marc lastcallAs Hilton Head Monthly celebrates its 30th anniversary, it seems appropriate to contemplate what the next three decades have in store.

It’s hard to believe that 30 years ago, the following things did not dominate our daily lives: cellphones, emails, portable personal computers that connect via Wi-Fi nearly everywhere, high-definition TV with hundreds of channels, and the Internet that ushered in the connectivity revolution.

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