Thursday, March 31, 2011

Good People

Good time for an April Fool’s joke, but I’m no fool and it hardly feels like April what with the winter weather that never ends…

So it is time for a review.

At Manhattan Theatre Club’s Broadway theater we went to see GOOD PEOPLE by David Lindsay-Abaire, with Frances McDormand, directed by Daniel Sullivan.

So many reviews have been written as if this play is a class warfare sort of thing. But really, it’s about Irish pride, seems to me.

I did not necessarily believe the play, the set-ups, etc. But I really liked it. Sometimes, you can see a conceit and you just go with it.

I always try to write things as close to what I know about people as possible, even the humor stuff. But I can understand arranging things so you can get the maximum bang out of your story.

The acting is fantastic, though even this late in the run there were line flubs. Estelle Parsons and Becky Ann Baker as the Southie fly-girls were brilliant. Frances McDormand rocked it.

There are few plays each year that are produced on Broadway that are not either tribute musicals or some sort of Sea World thing for tourists, so it is always great to see a play, a real one. Absorbing, funny, thoughtful, alive.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Jersey Shore

What a thing!

Having plunked down the thousand bucks for a 42 inch Vizio internet television, I had no intention of sending another load of cash every month to Time-Warner Cable, a company that is, at best, a thieving pig hole.

Between Netflix (comes right into the television for 9 bucks a month), Hulu Plus (comes right into the television for 8 bucks a month), Internet Service (45 bucks a month), and then all the free online stuff on the computer HDMI-cabled to the television, free local Networks (bundled into our internet automatically, but they don’t tell you that, but it’s there, you just need a splitter), our total monthly cost is 62 dollars. It’s hodgepodge. We are medium adapters. Of course, you can buy all sorts of one-time deals from I-Tunes (through the computer) and Vudu (right in the television).

So it is easy now to poke around and look for new things. And what did I decide to watch for the first time? Just to get a grip on the anthropological-entertainment phenom that is part of reality television? Jersey Shore.

Can this really be happening? Can that really be a show? I have never watched anything like it. I know. I’m behind. I’m slow to know. I first found out about Rufus Wainwright years ago by reading Newsweek.

But Jersey Shore?---the stuff is so scripted. The actors on the show are clearly acting. The whole thing looks like just one big union-buster to me. It’s absolute garbage? No? Why on earth would anyone watch this? Is it time for me to die? Is that it? Is my time on earth simply over?

I felt like I was witnessing some sort of post-apocalyptic version of humanity-entertainment. Like the nightmare portion of It’s a Wonderful Life.

Friends, I know it’s not all about me. I get it. I mean, I am not the standard bearer. Fine. But can anyone on earth explain to me who watches this and why? Catch me up. Speak real loud into my hearing aid.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Tea Discovery

You know---this Trader Joe’s Herbal Tea, the RELAX one---is actually great for writing.

So there you are, in the seat, and you have lots to do. This is a very juicy situation. It already has all this energy.

Somehow, when you down the RELAX tea (licorice, clove, fennel, etc…those kinds of things)—the script in front of you seems completely doable.

Adding a donut might be fun.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Not That I Don't Think Anything Will Ever Change But...

I get the sneaking suspicion that what we are calling a recession could possibly be a foreverum.

Now, I admit that I am not one to understand that things change. Whenever I am in some sort of pain (except for maybe stubbing my toe) I have a dread feeling that it will never end.

The idea that things change is hard for me to understand. Perhaps it is steeped in some sort of wish I have that I will find the perfect feeling—and then that feeling will never go away.

So I am probably very wrong since I cannot be trusted.

HOWEVER—if I were to use my analytical skills--of which I have little of but enough to conjecture something—could it be that the downward--flattening trajectory has nothing to stop it?

And if this is so, then this is the new reality. Forever.

The only thing I can think of that will stop this mess is to stop all these wars. But we are war people and as long as GROWTH is what capitalism is based upon and as long as we require resources from all over the planet to maintain this growth, we will continue to fight these wars in order to get those resources.

And I do not see people wanting less in the future. It seems to me that people only want more.

I hope you got yours when you could. If you did not, I am sorry. If you are planning to get some in the future, I suggest the financial sector or the war sector.

Big hug.


Sunday, March 27, 2011

Renaissance Hotel---Empire State of Mind

Okay, I have never been a food or hotel critic and I am not really starting right now. But a friend of mine is staying in town at the Renaissance Hotel in Times Square and there is a sky lobby/bar, of which there are many on earth, except brilliantly enough this is on the second floor of the hotel facing south at Seventh Avenue and 48th Street. The view is the view you see of Times Square when you watch it on New Years Eve, just above the TKTS booth (which brilliantly appears at the end of the Empire State of Mind tuber below). This is quite a view, as if you are perched within some absolutely huge manmade snow globe. You get to experience all that crazy Times Square stuff from the comfort of an overstuffed chair. And because this is only on the second floor, you get to see all the action up close, but up high as if you are in a tree, right above the parade. Someone mentioned that it felt like a cruise ship cruising through town.

Open to the public, it is worth the quick elevator ride up one story. You can get snacks, a coca-cola, what-have-you…

I give it many stars if I were a star giver. Hit it.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Desperate Living

I love this clip of my friend Mink Stole. This is quite a performance.

Rent Desperate Living Today.

Mink is coming out with a CD of new songs soon with her band. Get ready for it!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Oh, Bama

Oh, Bama. In Libya. Doing the “We choose the other guys” thing.

At least he did not lie about weapons of mass destruction. I mean, people do.

But still, all this war?

I often wonder, with all of our technology, how hard it would be to simply invent a Gaddafi seeking missile. Surely his DNA can be swabbed from something. And then can’t some sensor go after that? One wonders. (Wim Wenders).

It is difficult to deal with a despot, I know. I have myself.

But there you are. And there one is. And there it is. And how do we know what we are doing is right?

Funny, it is easier for Democrats to pull triggers. No one expects it of them. And when they do, the Dems just keep quiet, “for the team,” and the Repubs seem usually happy whenever we are killing anyone. A love of force, you see.

I am a little ridiculous about armed conflict. I do not believe in war at all. But I also feel, in my schizophrenic way, if you are going to take some sort of high road against violence, this is the way to do it:
If some country gets way out of hand, we should warn them to stop. If they do not, we should simply obliterate the entire place with nuclear weapons.

There, I said it. It’s horrible. But that’s how I feel. It would be fast, cheap and easy.

Oh wait---that was not me typing. Some evil force just possessed my hands. I’m back, hi!

Okay, if some country gets way out of hand, well, I don’t know what to do. I have a Biology degree and then I went into entertainment. My opinion is useless. Dancing dolphins to calm everyone down? A humorous ribosome to tickle the kids into getting along? How about Michael the Mighty Mitochondria appearing monthly with a mawkish mother problem since all mitochondrial DNA is matriarchal? Shit, I don’t know. I’m just upset about this misery.

Gaddafi is absurd. He needs to be taken out. Maybe Obama is doing the right thing. And I admit, and I have admitted publicly, that even though I loathed the Iraq war (mostly because Georgie Porgie Bush promised me in my dreams that he would never lie to me) I also thought that maybe he had a point---get in there, domino effect some revolutions. Shit, being a wild person with a righteous cause that God handed down worked for Joan of Arc. Maybe on future S.A.T. tests they will ask a question that goes something like this:

R Reagan is to the downfall of European Communism as GW Bush is to the destruction of ____________.

A. The Texas Rangers
B. Colin Powell
C. Functioning Democracy
D. Dictatorial Muslim Nations
E. All of the Above

Sunday, March 20, 2011

You Need Both

I think, during these Libyan and Japanese times, you need these.

Jane Eyre and Get Me Bodied

Thursday, March 17, 2011


The Merry Christmas salute of St. Patrick’s Day seems to be FUCK YOU DOUCHEBAG!

I have heard it three times today, bellowing up from the street.

In New York City, St. Patrick’s Day is the year’s biggest happy hour gone wild. The traffic is thick all day long and the idea seems to be that one should get drunk as early as possible. Lots of people in their twenties in Green I HEART NY T-shirts and plastic green Mardi Gras beads. And a whole lot of cursing.

It all feels very aggressive, a bit dangerous and certainly pre-sidewalk-pukey.

I celebrated by taking a seven mile walk in Central Park. It is spring now and it feels wonderful to be out of our Anasazi dwelling that hovers over 8th Avenue as much as possible. I got to one part of the park where water was seeping up out of the ground. Lovely. Central Park has springs and waterfalls. Real ones. Completely enjoyable.

And not a douchebag in sight.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Thank You Bradford

Best Video of the Day.

Never would have known.

Well OK Honey. Jenny O.

(Karen, too)

Monday, March 14, 2011

Nuclear Fallout and You

Luckily, you live nowhere near the mess of Japan. I assume.

Simple Question: Why are nuclear power plants built anywhere near where people live?

Of course, George Will would say, “Too bad, the market chose for it and the poor people who are not rich enough to not live there, well, they are collateral damage to cheap efficient energy.”

Then I would say, “George, are you still talking?”

Next simple question: If you have a way to make energy whose spent rods are completely lethal---why are you making that kind of energy?

I always want to find a place in my heart to sort of love nuclear energy---not just because whenever you go to France the air is so damn clean---but also because, hell, it can be done. It’s like little suns encased in steel and cement. It still is so damn futuristic in a way. But then I come to the wasted rods…and I think, “This is insane.”

I have driven by Three-Mile-Island many times and the reactors on the edge of California, too. They seem so peaceful, right?

Volatile world.

But you still have to leave your house.

Poor Japan. All that footage of the ocean coming in.

You are not in control. Love everyone. If you can.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Spring Love

Spring has arrived, clearly, in Maryland. You wonder how anything on earth could be this wanted.

It's beautiful.

We visited Adam's father before his big trip West, and of course the Bomo clan. On the way home, our smokey-engined bus was taken out of service. This, of course (and trying the bus at all) was something less than romantic.

Waiting for another Bolt Bus to come down to get us stranded travelers at the Turnpike rest stop, a Greyhound on its way back from Atlantic City had pulled in because their toilet was broken, had empty seats. We asked the driver if he was headed to New York. Yes. We quickly peeled off a twenty and asked if he would take us there. He snatched it and was full on, "Get on in."

That pooch road that turnpike like I used to do bitches in college. (Excuse me, I was just possessed by some maniacal and very bad, clearly misogynistic, beat poet.)

She pulled into the basement level of Port Authority and we were home.

It was worth the bus hustling to get down to spring.
The driver patted me a thank you as we left (since some other Bolt people got on, too. But they had A tickets, based on their early purchase, and some deal was struck on some cell phone between Bolt and Greyhound.)

Interesting slog up the mid-Atlantic.

Trains are better.


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Thursday, March 10, 2011

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

What Can You Say? Entropy

There is something about imperfection that is wonderful. We purchased a tension pole lamp. It was great for two weeks. Now, the bottom lamp has gone limp, the hip joint out of socket.

Calling around, it turns out the best way to fix this problem is the same way to fix an old man’s wacked spine. Fuse it.

Krazy Glue is the answer.

You can’t turn it again. But it will stay in place where you choose--once.

It’s a great reminder of imperfection, that nothing will ever really turn out perfectly, that no matter how hard you try, you’re still going to fail-die-fartatthewrongtime.

But at least you have your sanity. And now, friends, this:

I worked with Chuck Lorre for five years. He is a taskmaster. Warm and cuddly? No. Does he deserve this? No. But we deserve it. Take ten minutes.

Video streaming by Ustream

Tuesday, March 08, 2011


Look, I read the Michael Moore emails.

And yes, he is right. Something like 2 people in this country have the same wealth as the next 100 million. Okay, I exaggerate a little.

But really---it’s not the fault of the corporations and the monster Wall Street people and the Health Care lobby. Basically, it’s the fault of the culture. We are simply a culture of people who believe in wealth. At all costs.

This is taught from birth.

So how can we blame anyone for being wildly greedy in the United States of A?

The monkey mind is plastic. It becomes what it is taught. Also, there are rapacious monkeys. So sometimes it’s even natural. Do we fight all this? Yeah, yeah, fight.

The next truth is---I hate fighting.

I throw up my primate arms and go, “Well, I’ll just quietly eat my banana over here. Well, not really quietly, but with the awareness that the one banana, at this moment, is enough.”

I don’t know even one of the richest monkeys. If I met her-him on the side of the road, I probably would think it was a different species.

Keep fighting, Michael M. I can’t do it.

Monday, March 07, 2011

Come On In

If I had a pillbox hat, a good cameraman and some more time I would give the personal tour of our manse. However, this is much easier...and I'm not feeling all that hammy.

People want to see it. Perhaps it is tacky to give an online tour of your "done" place. But, well, it sure is easy.

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Look Around

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Who Ever Dreamed of 42 Inches?

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La Cuisine

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The Dance Floor

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Good L-shaped Living

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Looking Back Up

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James Mowten--Descendent of Second Boaters?

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Always a Fine Photo for the Bathroom

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Living Angel Wing Begonia-Thanks S

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Sunday, March 06, 2011

Eight by Ten: A Story of What is Possible

We finished. We moved into our swank/AARP white brick apartment L-shaped alcove box on December 23 and now all of our stuff is here. It is basically done. Art hung. New furniture sat upon. Screeners witnessed on the new flatter. Easy twenty-first century living. Lucky us.

This is the great news, in addition. After all is put away and put into service, there is an 8 X 10 foot space down by the windows that is empty. Completely empty.

We have everything we need and we have an 8 X 10 empty space. This is unheard of in Manhattan if you are not Carnegie-esque.

What does this mean? It means everything is possible. It means a dining room during dinner parties. It means a dance floor. It means move the table into it so the area by the kitchen can become the guest room. It means multi-purpose room. It means musical rehearsals (the piano is right there next to it). It means caucuses, floor shows, spontaneous expressionistic/anachronistic appreciations. It means God might show up.

You have to have an open space. Leave room open. New and surprising things love to show up if you leave the space for them to arrive.

And right next to it is the shelf-garden. Open space next to paradise.

Open to anything.

Thursday, March 03, 2011

The Couch

I never thought I would care that much about a couch. In the olden days, one would say sofa. But I think that word has decayed, much like other words that were once considered fancy and then fell into tackiness with arriviste overuse. Couch is couched in directness. You cannot destroy a direct word.

Our brown number from Crate & Barrel (a store that I first experienced in Cambridge, MA in the 80’s---I assumed it was very fancy) is now plunked in the apartment. It makes all the difference.

I guess after not having a couch for over a year, one does miss having such a thing.

The joy of a couch is the knowledge that no matter what happens outside your door, in your life, around your life, in the world, you can always just say, “Fuck it. I’m sitting on the couch.” And you can just sit there. You can read there. You can stare into space. You can get your feet rubbed. You can watch the 42 incher. You can say to yourself, “I live in a civilized world and part of that glorious civilization is they make this thing called a couch that you can buy and then whenever you want to, you can just frigging sit on it.”

--Right on your ass--


Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Bat Shit Housewives

I do understand why women of yore went a little batty and could not focus. The men went out and did their focused work in the world and the women did everything else. In order to do everything else you have to pay attention to everything. This paying attention to everything makes you a little batty.

To boot, and I mean that in the older way, not in the press-the-button-on-your-computer-1990’s-way, these women were underappreciated, which made them not only batty but also angry-mad, or perhaps even a bat out of hell.

Luckily, my Recognized-by-the-State-of-California-Domestic-Partner is grateful for my multitasking days. So I do not get angry. But I do get batty.

And I don’t even have to drive kids anywhere or take grandma to dialysis.

I have these little fantasies about having everything DONE so then I can just write and focus on making it all as good as I can. But then if I had everything done, how on earth would I procrastinate?

Meditation. Time for it.

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Godson on Earth

I have never written a blog entry about my Godson. My nephew. And today (well, yesterday now) he turned 21.

Not having children has not helped me with my time distortions. But having a nephew does help a little. Plus, it is pretty great to watch someone grow up. The changes are huge. It’s interesting. And it is family so it is positive.

I remember when Dan was born. I was there that day. Then, oddly, I went on a job---a theater tour of The Wizard of Oz and I was the Tin Man, truly, in search of my heart. We were not allowed to leave the tour---but I broke the rule and jumped on a plane in North Carolina back to New Jersey for the Christening and was back on tour in my silver make-up, not missing anything.

I am not religious, but it is nice to know that there are little rituals we do at different times of life. (Though they really might as well save Penance for the day before you die.)

I have thought, lately, that some sort of religious conversion is essential or all I am ever going to do is try to become more successful and then just keep buying stuff. But I hate the lack of humor of religion.

Judaism seems to have the most humor because at least they have the tradition of arguing a point---and seeing both sides of something often leads to laughs. But that particular religion just seems so old to me, something that might as well be released.

Every Western Buddhist I have ever met has been annoyingly righteous.

Catholics are often easy going mostly because most of them are lapsed. But real Catholicism is fetishy and conservative and is close to sacrilegious in its practice.

Protestants, all of them, are insane. The culture believes in perfectibility and so they are cut off from their true natures. Drives monkeys mad.

Islam. Forget it.

Have I offended everyone yet?

But I do believe in this Godfather thing. If nothing else, it gives childless uncles some sort of son. And it is warm. I guess it is Catholic warm. But really, it’s life warm.

Why don’t they just make up a religion that includes the bare bones essentials and just call it life?


I have friends who are producing PRISCILLA, so go see it. I’ve seen snippets. It’s purely enjoyable.

It’s going to be fun. And it’s time for our Trans friends to have their Trans moment in midtown Manhattan. (It’s at The Palace.)

I personally do not find stories about people rising up out of shame and into glory that satisfying. I mean, everyone kind of has to do that, no matter who they are and with whatever peculiar affliction. So go for the color and the fun.

When I was a kid, and this is true, I did not understand why almost every song was about falling in love or losing love. I used to think, “Why is there not a song that explains to you how a clock works?”

Seriously. Why isn’t there? It could be so enjoyable.

I understand the need for people to increase their self esteem---but in order to write that story, you have to assume that people start at a lower place. Seems so linear.

But people like the feel of something linear. Give it to ‘em girls!