Monday, November 30, 2009

Santa Claus is Coming Out

Okay---you get that invitation to a one man show and you just GROAN!


Honestly, this is one of the funniest things I’ve seen in forever. Written and performed by Jeffrey Solomon and directed by Joe Brancato—you must jump on it.

It closes December 20.

Santa Claus is Coming Out

I have never been to a one person show where the characters and the accents were so clear and differentiated. The jokes were so surprising and original.

When you order tickets, use this code for a discount: STAF

Rock on Santa Claus!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Kandinsky at the Guggenheim

I am not going to review Kandinksy. That would be silly. However, I will say it is worth the trip over to Fifth Avenue and 88th Street. The show is in chronological order. The helix of the museum accentuates any time-hung show. I particularly liked his middle period, the paintings he is famous for. Less did I enjoy the paintings that were Miro or Klee inspired. I think as Kandinsky got older he did not have the strength to resist the style of the era. But, that happens. Okay, I reviewed it.

I am so happy, so very very happy, to go see art, especially art that arises from someone in a very strong, personal way. It gets me so excited and calm at once. Excited, because visual art is often fresh, unique and energized. Calm, because someone else on earth had the balls to be themselves and to put it “out there,” and they didn’t drop dead from ridicule (like I fear might happen to me one day).

Plus, I am not a visual artist, so the pressure is off and my competitive side is not too aroused.

It makes me want to write…and often it makes me want to write things that are not at all narrative, or linear or contextualized. Free. A yam. A string. A song. A bone. Something pushed inside a hole.

This blog entry, and more like it, is from

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Thankful as Hell

Please have a wonderful time this Thanksgiving week with family and-or friends or alone if you choose! I know some people love to be alone.

I have had a great life…and before I commit suicide, I just want to say---

Okay, let’s try this again.

I have had a great life and I would like to say I am grateful for:

My Martin Guitar
My friends from High School, College, Acting School, writing classes, my twenties in New York, friends from LA, my new friends in New York, my friends all over the country, my family, my dead dog.
My father having had the audacity to open a bicycle shop in the ‘70’s
Cheap TJ wine
Joni Mitchell
Imperfect Democracy
Sean Penn
Joan Didion
Macaroni and Cheese
Meryl Streep
Fuel efficient cars
Mary, Jeff, Anne, Noel, Margot, Bradford, Noel, Karen, Tecia
Upstate New York
New York City
Virginia Woolf
Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?
Sarah and Jeff
Dan and Leslie
The Neighborhood Playhouse
The Periodic Table of Elements
Noam Chomsky
T.S. Elliot
Richard Ford
My producers
My agent
My Yamaha electric piano
My Baldwin Hamilton piano
My Los Angeles kitchen
My studio apartment in Queens
Adam, always Adam, Adam
The Weather Channel online
The Ramapo River
Janet, Don, Sally & Greg
West Coast Ensemble
The Production Company
Palm Springs
Big Sur
Joshua Tree
New Jersey
Hewlett Packard
Megan, always Megan
Adam’s family, all of them
Cigarettes, when necessary
Good Musicals
Music theory
Voice lessons
Simple food
The George Washington Bridge
The Hollywood Hills
South Beach
The Enlightenment
Woody Allen
Lanford Wilson
Aaron Copland
The Pompidou
Kathy K and Stacy K
Henry and Zoe
Expensive Chocolate
Flowering trees
Sweet dogs
Funny cats
The Middle Class
Fat people and Smoke people (Plays)
Overcast days
Cheap imitation Claritin
Canada Pharmacy
Physical Therapy
Allergy Shots
Hair dye
The gym
The Hudson River
Santa Monica
Book shelves

This blog entry, and more like it, is from

Monday, November 23, 2009

List Time

I think being a vegetarian is not a bad idea. But I do not know that I could do it.

Squirrels have a 4 – 7 year lifespan. Shorter in cities.

Bill Paxton is a good actor.

Small ideas can become large ones if paid attention to.

Thanksgiving is fine. I think it would be interesting if holidays were every other year. Or, you could have the same holiday, but it could be practiced differently every year over a five to seven year cycle. Could really give you that big arc feeling about living.

I look forward to snow. The colder it is, the fewer allergies I suffer from.

Since we all die, I still strongly feel that throwing our bodies into a huge compactor could give us fuel. And maybe even water. Separate the oil and the water.

Turns out that many people from my high school are now gay. We could have had a club--Other than “Boys who cut gym to hang out in the piano room and the girls who love them.” Thank you Facebook.

I never leave my apartment. I’m writing a lot. I did go to the bakery yesterday and to Walgreens today.

I am becoming a hunchback. I need a new desk.

The problem with the world is over population. Truly. And there is no way to solve this problem. Colonization of other planets?

Never a new thought. Never a new moment. And then it’s all new.

Smallish green men, in the form of pigeons, are no longer living on my air conditioning window ledge because we put in those plastic pigeon spikes. Sorry birds, but we weren’t in the mood.

I am an outer borough leaf lover.

Strange, if you eat less, you do feel and look better.

Living in a clean space is relaxing.

Weaker men than I have done greater things. I must keep moving.

If I had children, I would not buy them colorful, plastic toys. I just wouldn’t.

I need to read fewer New Yorker articles and more books.

I love Megan’s squash lasagna. You must go to Epicurious.

Squash Lasagna

I have nothing to prove. Yet I try.

This blog entry is from

Sunday, November 22, 2009

When Everything Was Great

As we know, Conservatives have been on the wrong side of everything since forever, since before the Haldron Collider. It is hilarious to watch them all puffed up like, well, puffer fish in their latest near-blockage of health care. The big concern? IT’LL COST TOO MUCH!

Well, it already costs too much. Health is a dying industry. Everyone dies and along the way, you try to prevent it but you can’t. This gets real expensive. But we do eventually give up and die. Imagine trying to hold a large beach ball under water. That takes energy. And if you are trying to hold down millions of these beach balls, it would get very expensive. It’s a losing business. Losing businesses bleed money. That’s just how it is.

Given that healthcare is ultimately a cash-loss game for the bodies—but actually, one notes, very helpful for productivity while the bodies still work—this healthcare thing is something we have to do. We have no choice. It simply must be done. It’s not even a moral thing. It’s fucking practical.

So, back to the Conservatives. What will they say in a hundred years after this is all over? “Wasn’t it great back when health care cost private citizens billions of dollars and bankrupted all kinds of folks and then there were the people who died because they couldn’t get access to health care from anyone? I LOVED THAT! And then, there were all those middle men who made wild decisions, based on their profit motive, to get as wealthy as possible off the carcasses of dead people? THAT WAS THE WAY! IF ONLY WE COULD HAVE THOSE DAYS AGAIN!”

I always think of Progressives as those who are simply going back to the future. It’s like, there is this great state we can all live in (Some call it Sweden)—and it is taking us all this effort to fight against those who would have us not return to the natural, better state.

Sad little people.


Yeah, it is. Just means a few less luxury items for the CEO of Blue Cross.


Oh honey, just shut up and go find another path.

This blog post and others at

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Here Comes Our New Health Plan!

Oh MY! It's so Socialist, right? Come on people. You know, it looks like, now, we might have the votes. And if it passes, well, it's law. And if it's law, well...we are in for a new era.

I thought today, "How many people have died, truly died, because of our heinous health care system?"

I wish there were a way to count it. It makes you sick even thinking about it...but until health care passes, don't think about it, because you don't want to get sick before the new legislation!

Look, so many people think they will not be affected---but everyone will be affected in three major ways.

1) The tension that you feel at the doctor's office will be much less.
2) You won't sweat your medical bills.
3) The national and WORLD economy will improve.

So, put down those pork skins, get on the treadmill, and do your part to keep the United States trim and healthy. And rest assured--when the huge corporations give you cancer as a byproduct of all the other "great" things they give to you, at least they can't do that final sweep after your death and take up all your money for healthcare bills, too.

People hate sharing. It means they have to forego the idea of endless wealth. Ugly gorillas.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

I'm Writing a Movie

I usually don’t talk too much about what I am writing. I mean, it is one thing to write but then to write about what you write? (And it requires a certain amount of writing to even figure out what you are going to write and then once you figure that out, there is all this writing that happens to organize the writing so you can get down to writing.)

Clearly---a chore-filled thing to do. So why would anyone want to hear about these chores? My father was an accountant at a car dealership. He never talked about his work. But my mother, who was kind of chatty, talked a lot about her work in a doctor’s office, which was just talk about work. I was always amazed how my father never said a word about what he did. But I kind of liked it, too, because he was very present, over the minute steaks or meat loaf or chicken under canned soup, and we did not have to listen to how his day was put together.

So, whether I have made a choice to not talk about my writing for some esoteric reason or I am simply modeling my father’s behavior or I would rather wait until my writing is complete so I can yell, “Surprise!” when I unveil it, will remain a mystery to us all.

But breaking tradition, and using this blog entry as a bit of procrastination between hour long bouts of movie writing, I am announcing that I am writing a movie. And it is enjoyable. There is much planning that goes into a movie. And lucky for me, I am working closely with a company that has made some big movies, so I am getting notes, really good ones, in fact, the first good notes I’ve ever gotten, so I am not flying blind. This feels perfect. And, if you are going to write something commercial (that is also, hopefully, unique) you might as well make sure it has a commercial swing to it.

So, I am writing a movie. I said it. It’s comedic. There is a murder-by-negligence that gets the story really moving. One world falls apart to reveal another one. Right now---I am finishing up the major scaffolding. Scenes to fly out shortly.

If you are writing a movie, I hope you are having a good time. I survive on homemade vegetable soup with lots of cabbage (Thank you my Recognized-by-the-State-of-California-Domestic-Partner Adam), Typhoo tea (I reuse the bag about six times so the tea just gets weaker and weaker---like I’m an old lady on a fixed income), almonds, and those digestif cookies that are really crackery with a glaze of good chocolate over the top. That’s enough.

And—my new computer with the 4gig Ram. RAM ON!

I like movies. I always have. They can be very crisp, bright events. They can carry you off. They are a good break from that dull life of shoe laces and email. And even though they say film is a visual medium, I can assure you, words, words, words are the basis.


Let’s all face the truth. New York is all about money and that’s a problem.

I love the subways. But I have never been anywhere on earth that is more about the greenback than New York City.

It is no wonder they flew the planes into the World Trade Center. I would have, if I was some sort of religious freak.

This town is out of control when it comes to cash. It is expensive and the simplest dinner costs a hundred bucks.


Sunday, November 15, 2009

I'm No Criminologist

I am no criminologist, but I do enjoy math.

Currently in the United States, 1 in every 31 adult persons is either in jail or prison or on parole or probation. That amounts to 7.3 million Americans and a cost that exceeds $68 billion annually. This figure does not include juveniles accountable to the U.S. correction system.It breaks down like this:

1 in every 45 Americans is on parole or probation

1 in every 100 Americans is in jail or prison

1 in every 11 African American adults is in jail or prison

1 in every 27 Hispanic American adults is in jail or prison

1 in every 45 White American adults is in jail or prison

It’s ridiculous and we lead the world. By far.

I will post the full wiki entry about it below. I know, I know, “Wikipedia is often wrong.”

Actually, in this case, upon surfing the internets (We love you George W!), it pretty much turns out to be the same numbers everywhere you look.

What on earth is going on?

We are such a nonintegrated nation. People are so incredibly rich or poor. And so many of the poor end up in jail. I HAVE NO ANSWERS! Except, maybe a total redo? OY with all this liberty!

I just, there are all these people eating artisanal cheese and then you throw everyone else in the pokey?

Very upsetting stuff.

You can’t fight with math. Math is math is math.

This shit feels very military dictatorship to me.

And then, people have such a hard time figuring out where to send their kids to school. I don’t know about you…Less prisons, more schools, maybe?

This upsets my stomach. I have to take a shower.

Read on. Hunker down. Keep your nose clean---you might be the next one behind bars.

Incarceration in the United States is a concurrent power under the Constitution of the United States, which means that prisons are operated under strict authority of both the federal and state governments. Incarceration is one of the main forms of punishment for the commission of felony offenses in the United States.

Less serious offenders, such as those convicted of misdemeanor offenses, may receive a short term sentence to be served in a local city or county jail, or to alternative forms of sanctions such as community corrections (halfway house) or house arrest. Different U.S. prisons operate at different levels of security, ranging from minimum-security prisons -- that mainly house non-violent offenders -- to Supermax facilities that house the more dangerous criminals such as Oklahoma City bomber Terry Nichols and September 11 conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui.

The United States has the highest documented incarceration rate in the world. It also has the highest total documented prison population in the world. As of year-end 2007, a record 7.2 million people were behind bars, on probation, or on parole, with 2.3 million of those actually incarcerated. More than 1 in 100 American adults were incarcerated at the start of 2008. The People's Republic of China ranks second with 1.5 million, while having four times the population, thus having only about 18% of the US incarceration rate.

The federal government, states, counties, and many individual cities have facilities to confine people. Generally, "prison" refers to facilities for holding convicted felons (offenders who commit crimes where the sentence is more than one year). Individuals awaiting trial, being held pending citations for non-custodial offenses, and those convicted of misdemeanors (crimes which carry a sentence of less than one year), are generally held in county jails.

In most states, cities operate small jail facilities, sometimes simply referred to as "lock-ups", used only for very short-term incarceration—can be held for up to 72 business hours or up to five days—until the prisoner comes before a judge for the first time or receives a citation or summons before being released or transferred to a larger jail. Some states have "unified" systems, in which all the jails and prisons are operated by the state. The federal government also operates various "detention centers" in major urban areas or near federal courthouses to hold criminal defendants appearing in federal court.

Many of the smaller county and city jails do not classify prisoners (that is, there is no separation by offense type and other factors). While some of these small facilities operate as "close security" facilities, to prevent prisoner-on-prisoner violence and increase overall security, others may put many prisoners into the same cells without regard to their individual criminal histories. Other local jails are large and have many different security levels. For example, one of the largest jails in the United States is Cook County Jail in Cook County (located in Chicago). This facility has eleven different divisions, including one medical unit and two units for women prisoners, with each of the eleven divisions operating at a different security level, ranging from dormitory-style open housing to super-secure lock-down.

In the state of California, to prevent violence, prisoners are segregated by race, ethnicity, and sexual orientation while held in county jails and in the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation's reception centers, where newly committed prisoners are assessed prior to being transferred to their "mainline", long-term institutions.

Thursday, November 12, 2009


Apparently, some sort of Ida leftover is about to pummel the East Coast. I love a good storm. And I know they love me.

So--what will it be? A flooded New Jersey? Trees down across Connecticut? High winds blowing geese into buildings?

Or will it be something simpler? Like, maybe, nothing at all?

I loathe anticipation without payoff.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


I have come to the simple conclusion that if these narly men in the senate do not pass the healthcare bill, then there is something effective we could choose to do to get wholesale change: Boycott.

That’s right. Tell your employer, “No need to pay for insurance any longer. I am not interested in fattening up the middle men for mismanaged care.”

If we can get just 32% of the population to do this, the insurance industry will collapse and the government will have to take EMERGENCY measures, which will mimic the post WWII environment that so brilliantly brought national health care to most of the civilized world.

How hard is it to boycott? It just means asking your employer to KICK YOU OFF the insurance list or to discontinue your COBRA payments or whatever overpriced hell-plan you are involved with.

We have the choice. How hard can this be?

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Did You Know Who Fela Was?

I sure didn’t. I mean…what a life!

My favorite part of the play was when he explained how he put the music together. It’s African drums with Cuban horns and then American Funk---it’s Afrobeat.

Plus, it’s not only brilliant music pastiche, the shit got political.

I walked into the theatre having no idea what I was getting into.

Bill T. Jones choreographed and directed and even wrote (along with Jim Lewis). They used the original music and lyrics of Fela Aninkulapo-Kuti. In essence, this play is jukebox musical meets polemic biopic. That might sound awful, but it is anything but. Bill T. Jones is an award winning genius. Look him up. I have met him a couple of times. He is tall and in charge in the greatest way.

The set, lighting and costume designs are so damn smart and beautiful.

The dancing and the music, that intoxicating Afrobeat music, the sexy smart pride, all of it, I’m all for it. And you might as well be, too…because if you let yourself experience this great thing, you will be so much happier.

The cast is past solid, they are spectacular. And when Momma riffs a cappella for what feels like three minutes, when the music returns, she has not flattened, not a hair, you could fall down.

Fela started as a musician and got worked up into being very political. He suffered at the corrupt hands of the horrendous Nigerian government.

Sure, you could save your money and miss this and add it to the other cash you are saving for a trip to Madrid, but I think this is better. (When you see the play, you will get the Madrid joke.)

If you do not live near New York, well, I am certain there will be a very cool movie made of this.

This review is not a scam email asking you to give me money.

Back Up in a Day

Pardon me for this very dull posting…I just have to be practical, here.

Spent the day buying a computer, loading it up and troubleshooting.

The biggest waste of time? Itunes. Something about getting the music right…

It doubles things. It will not behave. Definitely a case of the tail wagging the dog, even though I have never fully understood that expression.

I’m hard on computers. My hard drives burst, bubble and die. Backed up, always backed up. Stay backed up. Back up some more.

On a more natural note: it is spring in New York. Just has that feeling. One last blast of easy air.

Makes for a good time. For everyone.

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Happens All the Time


My computer died today. R.I.P. Being a conservationist-sort, over the past five years, when my computer would fall apart, I would buy a new hard drive and rebuild the beast---keeping the old box.

But finally, and this is four hard drives later, I have decided to let go of the ghost and get a new Windows 2007 jeeber.

Here we go.

Enjoy your Monday. Everything is in retrograde and there is no turning back.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Weekend List

The Public Health Option will increase the rate of divorce.

Shoes are best worn on your feet.

Los Angeles is a town of tyrannical happiness. New York is a town of violent greed.

True screwball comedy needs to make a comeback. With today’s sensibility. I do not mean fart jokes.

Everyone projects in their own special way. If you find yourself about to pass judgment for what someone is doing, you are only talking about yourself.

Very successful people all have similar catered parties. Miserable failures decorate their lives uniquely.

Mold is the next plague.

All opinions are self serving.

Bananas are Allah’s way of reminding you every morning that you are not quite enough.

Paris is expensive and full of Americans.

Ned Beatty is a wonderful actor.

Almost every story wraps up in a way that is untruthful.

Germans are violent romantics.

Long walks in the woods are necessary for all mankind.

Siblings are the victims of Darwinian competition, to each other.

Do not eat chocolate before going to bed.

Right Wingies are right: maximized liberty will maximally destroy the planet, which is what we are here to do if the Second Law of Thermodynamics is, indeed, true.

The shorter you are, the harder your life.

Ego kills, but first, it makes you survive.

If you have a baby hand, shake with the other one.

Remember: Christ died for your sins, but all the other guys on all the other crosses were criminals.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Illegals and More

There is much talk about illegal immigrants and the horror (imagine the horror!) of giving them health coverage.

Well, if an unwanted guest came to visit you and he was stung by a bee on your porch, would you not give him some mud, maybe a couple of pain killers and a shot of Benadryl or Epinephrine, if necessary?

If one does not want unwanted guests on his porch, wouldn’t it be best to make sure that no one could get on it?

I am all for math and I understand the accretion of human beings taking over the land, uninvited, is a problem. But Righties hate taxes and then they hate that there is no money in the government to patrol the border.

If people are here illegally and they are sick, maybe they can be sent back to their mother country? Even if the trip kills them? Is that the answer? Really?

* * *

I was at the gym today, running, here in Queens, land of the diverse and the new. I was surrounded by mostly Colombians and Peruvians, not very tall, and almost all, overweight and in my opinion, unsightly. After having spent years running with young wannabe-movie-stars in Hollywood who are thin, trim, keeping me firmly in their blind spots, my current experience of sweatin’-with-the-chubbies from another continent is, at worst, repellant and at best, kind of sweet.

I often feel, in Queens, that I am living in the coda of a Twilight Zone episode where I am a racist and some big shenanigans has gone down, tailored perfectly for me, and now, I have to live among the “others.” This is good for me in many ways. Though I do miss the trim ass of whitey in Hwood.

If any of these people were to get sick, and from the looks of things they certainly will---and assuming at least some of them are illegal, I say, “Haul ‘em over to the doctor’s office and give them what they need!”

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Wishful Drinking

I have always wanted to see Carrie Fisher’s one woman show, Wishful Drinking, and tonight, I sat down at Studio 54 and watched it.

Carrie Fisher is funny and smart and likeable.

She did not need to do this thing in two acts. One long one would have been plenty.

The best part of the whole play was when a board came down showing head shots of her family tree and all the linked divorces and children. Her father left her mother for Elizabeth Taylor who left him, quickly, while on the set of Cleopatra.

Look—Carrie Fisher has the gift of very down-home humor.

One of the most fun nights I’ve ever had was listening to her commentary on the DVD of Postcards from the Edge. She sounded tanked. Usually, the DVD comments are puffed up with ego and self-importance. Her comments were so self deprecating and witty. It was this DVD commentary that made me a fan of hers. I think I have listened to no more than two of these things in my life. Glad Carrie Fisher was one of them.

I don’t know if you need to break a sweat running to Studio 54 to see this show. But, if you are in town and you want to sit and smile and have a good time, jump in! You can get tickets for half price, easily.

Carrie Fisher makes you feel like she is your friend, really talking to you. That’s a performing gift. Her perspective as a former movie icon come poster child for bi-polar disorder is quite unique. And she thinks it is funny.

And so do others. A good time. Certainly.

Monday, November 02, 2009

People...Lots of 'em

All this abstraction and blame!

People are very judgmental about (yet very involved with) twitter, facebook, you name the mess.

But how dare they? It’s just the natural evolution of society.

Simply, people are isolated by overpopulation and they want to be with other people. But there is no town square. There is no town.

It is just a swamp of mankind…hurling around in their mini coopers and their mini vans.

So let’s give eggs a break. Let people tweet and post.

The only thing that concerns me is---all this time sitting in front of a computer screen—how can that be good for your health?

I am certain that people who spend more time with other people in real town squares are much happier and healthier than people who spend mountains of time, alone, behind a computer screen.

People are reaching out. But in a weird way. We move away from interaction. We become more silicone every day.


Everyone tries to be a star, in their own little online way, because they want to be seen. This is also normal. Though twisted.

Kings always received their witnessing by others. Democratization brings upon kingships, albeit in a pared down manner. Kings didn’t do what they did because of some abstraction thrust upon them. It was monkey behavior, the natural outcropping of human desire left unchecked.

And now, all the monkeys have the time and the resources at their disposal to make themselves seen and heard, or at least give the impression that that is going on.

Fun. Right?

Sunday, November 01, 2009


Susie and Bart tied it on Halloween.
In Athens, Georgia.
They are in love.

It was a great weekend party. Attention to beauty and detail was all there. Soft Autumn color in hilly Georgia. Our best LA friends convened. Good red dirt. The Oconee River.

Congratulations on your marriage. Yes. Love.

Posted by Picasa