Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Bah Humbug #1

Today is the official Christmas season kickoff in NYC.  Tonight is the over produced, over pre-taped, over the top lighting of the Rockefeller Christmas tree.  It is the time of year when traffic in midtown virtually crawls and then stops and then crawls some more.  It is the time of year that I scratch my head wondering why everyone is so fascinated by the tree. Everyone has seen a Christmas tree in their own towns, own homes, the movies, on television, and yet, Rockefeller Center year in and year out is the mecca for Christmas tree viewing.  Now, granted, it is a beautiful tree, but is it worth fighting the masses of people, the traffic, and the cold to see it?  Clearly, it is for most; I am in the minority.  I steer clear of midtown as much as possible from now until January 2nd.  

I came to New York City for the first time during the Christmas season.  I fell in love with this city during that vacation.  The Big Apple rises to the occasion with all the lighted trees down all the Avenues, bows, spectacular department store windows, and the general "goodwill to all men."  I moved here nine months later.  I don't think any other city does this time of the year better.  Everything glistens and sparkles. It's just turning cold and crisp.  Perfect weather for this time of year.  But, in the thirty one years since, everything has gotten more, more more. More crowded, more done up, more shopping hours, more pushing, more lines, more money, more everything. 

When they used to light the tree, it was a sweet event.  Live event.  Short and sweet. If you blinked, you missed the moment when the switch was flipped and the tree was aglow for the first time. Now, it is a two hour extravaganza with largely pre-taped songs and skating.  If you blink, you can see the replay over and over again.  So clearly, I have mixed feelings about this time of year.  It is a love/hate relationship.  I do adore the beauty that pops up all over the city. I hate the traffic and crowds.

Oh, and speaking of traffic.  Can anyone tell me why the DNC didn't know today was the date for the tree lighting?  President Obama is coming to town for 3 fundraisers today.  Really?  Couldn't they have done this yesterday?  The city will come to a literal stand still, even before the Presidential motorcade. If fundraisers don't annoy me enough, this tops it all.  Did I mention that 2 billion dollars will be spent on the Presidential election?  How can anyone not think that we need campaign finance reform when you hear that? 

I digress. If you are lucky enough to be in New York City, use your feet to get around or take the subway.  It is the only chance you have to enjoy your time here.  Bah Humbug.

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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Words, Words, Words

I have been shocked that the word "uppity" has been designated to black people.  I love the word.  Never thought that it was a pejorative word to black people.  I thought it was possibly a negative word, yet descriptive to the British.  Really, there have been so many great characters in fiction and in real life that have been uppity.  How many incredible characters played by the superlative Maggie Smith could be called uppity?  Does this all go back to Clarence Thomas and the Senate hearings?  And now, Rush Limbaugh about Michelle Obama? Other than those two examples, can you tell me others?  I don't want the word to become defined so narrowly to one specific segment of the population.  As far as I am concerned, the word has been used far more in novels, plays, and movies toward white women than black people.  Maybe I should be insulted for all white women when the term is used towards them, but I think it's a great word. I like the way it sounds. I like the way it feels to say it.  I am here to take back the word!

Have you seen the commercial for D'Noir Prunes?  Noir is and has always been a French word pronounced n-wahr.  Film noir?  On the commercial for Sunsweet they sat in their marketing meeting and decided to pronounce it Duh-Nor.  Really?  Are they kidding me?  Duh-Nor?  Noir means black in French.  Why are the advertisers bastardizing another language? L'Oreal has a new mousse called Sublime.  Sublime has always been pronounced sub-lieyme.  Not the L'Oreal mousse.  They are calling it Subleem.  Really?  How is it even possible to get through all the levels that have to sign off on product names and scripts?  It is truly unbearable to hear words mispronounced on the subway, but now in products and commercials?  Do you know anyone that pronounces negotiate as ne-go-see-ate?  It's making a comeback.  It is the English pronunciation not the American English pronunciation.  I knew someone who one day heard an English person say negosiate and from that point on said it that way.  Really?  I have heard people on the news saying it and it's not Piers Morgan.  Why doesn't anyone say anything?  Art directors? Teachers? Spouses? Producers?  Someone?  Anyone?  

Sidebars: I am deeply disheartened by the announcement that Congressman Barney Frank will not be running for re-election.  He is without question the most uncensored voice in the Democratic party.  You may not always agree with what Barney Frank has to say, but he doesn't mince words.  He stands on his own and stands up for both his constituents and all Americans.  Congress will be just a bit more homogeneous without him.

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Monday, November 28, 2011

Let Them Eat Cake

My head is swirling again.  The sights and sounds of Black Friday disturbed me beyond recognition.  All I could think of is imperious leaders tossing coins to the peasants.  It is disgusting, gross, and turns otherwise "normal" people into criminals and bullies.  That people were killed, attacked, pepper sprayed for "fabulous" deals, is so distasteful.  The image of rich puppeteers pulling the strings of the marionettes, the Marie Antoinette feel of Black Friday "let them eat cake," the mayhem from the cinematic images of raining down dollar bills, it just keeps playing over and over again in my mind.  Which part of this is good for the people?  Which part is good that workers had to leave their families' Thanksgiving gatherings to go to work on Thursday night to begin the outrageous craziness of shoppers?  Which part is in keeping with the Christmas spirit?  Christmas has gotten so far afield from it's original intent.  Religion is so far removed from the day and it's all about consumption.  I find it more and more depressing every year.  The Emperors of Capitalism couldn't be happier with the fight to the death attitude of Black Friday.  Who are really the winners?

Speaking of Evil Empires. Nike has always been a thorn in my side.  I don't like their far reaching hold on consumers, high schools, colleges, and professional teams.  Their control was never more apparent than watching the Stanford-Notre Dame game last night. Growing up a Stanford fan, red and white were the glorious, clean, crisp colors of the Cardinal uniforms.  In last night's game, the Stanford team were all in scarlet/maroon uniforms from shoulder to shin, wearing black helmets.  It was so unsettling and for a life long fan, very confusing to watch.  I had to re-adjust my vision and expectation every time I was watching the teams march down the field.  Notre Dame were wearing their crisp white and gold uniforms, looking sharp and clean against the thug wear that Nike sold to Stanford.  I don't know who is getting what out of changing a long held tradition, but I do know that Nike is making money.  I just can't understand why Stanford, deep into tradition and long in school spirit would make such a radical and ridiculous change. Isn't it enough that we had to change the mascot from Indians to Cardinal?  Isn't that enough change for any Stanford lifer?  

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Friday, November 25, 2011

Working It Out

Honestly, I hate to work out. I have never felt that endorphin rush that others thrive on and brag about and keeps them going back for more and more and more.  Not ever.  I don't get it.  I get the piece of it that it is imperative for good health to not just sit down on the couch all day.  I do get that, but it is so much more enjoyable.  Going to the gym for me is so boring.  Don't like to have to look cute in a public gym. Don't like to have to be fashionable in my garb. Don't like to see people working out.  Much happier taking my walks all over NYC.  Love watching people, seeing the buildings, the dogs, the trees.  Love it!  

Unfortunately, in the past couple of years, it has become much more difficult for me to walk either because it has been so incredibly hot or incredibly cold and inclement.  When my kids were younger, I dropped them off at school and almost everyday went to breakfast with Moms.  I'd have an all white omelette with cheese, whole wheat toast, and coffee.  That was almost daily.  I'd walk home from there about a mile.  I was at my best fighting weight. Since my kids go to school on their own, there is not Mom's breakfast, and I am not walking home.  So I am eating less (theoretically), maybe walking less during the height of the summer's heat and the winter's wind chill, and have gained weight.  

I hate thinking about weight.  Hate it.  I don't own a scale so I only weigh myself at the doctor's.  I started taking Tamoxifen two years ago, which has wreaked havoc on my weight.  I am going to try to move my body daily, no matter what.  I have to if I want to feel better again.  Maybe when I stop taking the Tamoxifen, things will move back to where they belong. So, it isn't a New Year's resolution, it isn't even a day after Thanksgiving resolution.  I have been thinking about it for awhile. Sometimes I feel if I think about it a lot, it's almost as good as doing it.  It is a "I went to the doctor and got on the scale" resolution.  This resolution is one day at a time, otherwise, I will absolutely fail.  I will pat myself on the back for each day I do something. That's all I can do.  

Sidebars:  Surprised that a renowned producer, L.A. Reid, trashed a song for being too grown up for a teenager to sing on the X Factor when it was originally a Demi Lovato song.  I thought he'd know that or ask first before he made such a national faux pas.  Hope everyone survived Black Friday!  

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Wednesday, November 23, 2011


Thankfulness.  This year my thankfulness is closer to home than in past years.  I am very thankful for my husband, my children, my Mom, my sister, and all of my dear friends.  I am thankful for being relatively healthy. I am thankful for my sweet dog that loves me more unconditionally than any one person in the world.  When I walk through the door, she dances on her hind legs until I give her some loving.  She is understanding that I have bags in my hands and keeps dancing until I have my hands free.  

I am not thankful for our politicians that can't see past themselves. I am not thankful that we are still in two countries, fighting. I am not thankful for 3D movies.  I am not thankful for the bastardization of the English language. I am not thankful for the thinly cloaked racism. I am not thankful for ignorant people. I am not thankful for all the unrest and sadness in the world. 

So this year, I am going to focus on all the good in my immediate vicinity.  Pull the goodness a little bit closer, a little bit tighter.  Cherish the moments with loved ones. Live in the moment. Take a private moment and count your blessings instead of sheep. Hug the people you love a little bit longer. Happy Thanksgiving! 

Sidebars:  JR Martinez won Dancing With the Stars.  It was the perfect ending to the season and especially for the week of Thanksgiving.  How could you not root for a talented, likable, Iraqi war veteran?  He absolutely deserved to win over Rob Kardashian.  Though, Rob Kardashian really did great and hopefully evolved out of being his sisters' punching bag.  
Justin Bieber live on The Today Show. Biggest crowd ever.  Why, oh why, does Justin Bieber have to wear his pants below his butt?  It isn't a good look and today he kept pulling his sweater down, so what's the point?  He has to replace his stylist, whomever that may be.  His outfit escorting Selena Gomez to the AMA's looked like it came out of Carson Kressley's closet.  For all the money he earns....
On a more personal note, the woman that I learned more about singing and voice than any other, Muriel Brown Older, died.  I started taking lessons with her when I was 16, as soon as I could drive myself.  I have carried her words of wisdom and kindness in my heart for all these years.  Wherever Muriel is, she is singing up a storm to her beloved Vern.  
Again, H-A-P-P-Y T-H-A-N-K-S-G-I-V-I-N G!!!!!!!!!

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Tuesday, November 22, 2011


It has been a very long time since I longed to be twelve years old, but last night at Madison Square Garden, I did.  My husband and I went to see Taylor Swift at the "new and improved" Madison Square Garden.  Hard for me to tell in the concert setting if it's better.  They made the common areas large so everybody can spend ridiculous amounts of money on food and merchandise.  The entry ways into the seats are narrow so pouring out of the Garden all at the same time is a bit dicey.  Back to being twelve.  We got to the Garden for an 8pm concert and, lo and behold, it began at 7pm.  We missed most of the opening act which was as loud and ear busting as ever.  We got to our seats and saw a sea of mostly young girls.  They were dressed up in fancy clothes, Taylor Swift t-shirts, Xmas lights blinking, signs lit up, and the excitement was palpable.  

At about 8:20, the huge red curtain began to move.  The shrieks and screams began.  The curtain pulled back and there she was...Taylor Swift.  Taking in each and every second.  Inhaling New York City.  Inhaling the screams. Inhaling the sea of people adoring her.  There are people that aren't sure if she is for real. There are people that think that she does the same looks of appreciation at every concert. I think she is one of those rare birds and she takes nothing for granted.  She loves her fans and shows her love.  She holds meet and greets before every concert.  (Such a Country music thing to do).  Astonishingly, she walks from the main stage through the crowds, touching as many people physically and spiritually as she can. She climbs upon a small little platform and takes in the new view and sings 3 songs.  In the middle of the third song, she makes her way back on the other side of the floor, reaching out, hugging, smiling until she retains her rightful place back on center stage.  

It is remarkable.  I have been to many concerts in my life.  I have never seen any performer soak in the experience so much and co-mingle with her fans. I am unabashedly an admirer.  I only wish I could have been like one of the many young girls who sang every lyric to every song.  It might be something to strive for for the next tour....

Monday, November 21, 2011

Super What?

 I consider myself a very pragmatic person.  I spent my career compromising and negotiating. I negotiated contracts for actors for over 20 years.  I understand all the ins and outs of making a deal.  Sometimes you are deliriously happy and proud, other times feeling screwed. The best deal is always the deal that both sides think they could've done better.  That's negotiating.  

The people in Congress have no clue.  They are obstructionists.  Everyone is supposed to compromise.  Everyone.  You give a little, I give a little.  We inch closer and closer until the deal is done.  The members of Congress, that signed Grover Norquist's no new taxes Pledge, must take full responsibility for destroying this country. In their twisted sense of what is right, they are unyielding, unbending, and unbearable. Their argument is if you raise taxes it will stymie economic growth.  How is that possible?  Could it be more stymied than it is already? Who is creating jobs?  Real jobs?  No one.  Congress will not pass a jobs bill because they won't increase revenue.  They have dug their heels in so deep, they have no wiggle room. 

I really don't understand the position.  If the point of not yielding is because they signed the Pledge, they all need to re-assess.  Look around.  What is better for most?  If members of Congress are worried about the Norquist backlash, then it's time to take back Congress.  It really always comes back to dollars.  Take the money out of politics, once and for all.  No lobbyists to run our government.  It is decimating our system.  If all politicians only worry about getting re-elected, the system is toast.   

The Super Committee is anything but super.  Dumb name from the start. Frozen, unyielding, unbearable. They were chosen to come to terms with the budget.  They have come up with nothing. Hours and hours of wasted time and posturing.  If you don't do the job that Americans sent you to DC to do, can we get our money back?  Let me in there and I will make big cuts in Congressional perks, pensions, health insurance, etc.  So the Super Committee began in September, they will stop in two days, no closer than two months ago.  

Sidebars:  I am seeing Taylor Swift tonight at MSG, finally. Everyone in my family has seen her live in concert.  I, unfortunately, got scammed buy a ticket seller a year ago.  Showed up with great tickets at MSG and they were counterfeit.  It was shattering.  Hopefully, tonight will replace that memory. 
If you're home, watch the Dancing With the Stars finale. 

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Thursday, November 17, 2011

Marginally Enjoyable

The other day I thought, I'd treat myself to a movie during the day.  I had really wanted to see the movie, Margin Call.  My husband and Regis both liked it a lot.  Regis had said it really help to clarify the whole financial debacle.  Besides, it has a great cast.  So I got to the movie and there were ten people scattered throughout the theatre.  The previews began and the opening credits started.  Five minutes into the movie, two people arrived late with gigantic tubs of popcorn each.  I thought, "great, now I will have to hear them chomping during the whole movie."  If only.  These people talked, made weird noises, were disruptive. Another patron told them sternly to be quiet.  They didn't care. There were shhhhh's from others.  The male spoke back to the screen or tried to finish the sentence of an actor on the screen. Really???  

The movie experience has deteriorated so much, at least in New York City.  The theatres are not movie palaces anymore. The cost is ridiculous for seeing the movie and buying treats.  And now, every week when movies open on Friday, there is always a movie in 3D.  Really?  3D?  That means that the price of seeing a movie goes up at least 25%.  I don't want 3D movies.  Never did, but now it is becoming common place.  

Remember, for those older readers, when you went to the movies there were ushers?  The ushers walked up and down the aisles periodically to make sure that the patrons were acting correctly or not making out.  It made the movie experience more comfortable.  Now, if there is a problem while in the movie, you have to miss a chunk of the story to track down someone to do something.  We are paying more and getting far less for our dollars.  There is no security, no ushers, and no manners.  

If you arrive late, don't sit in the seat in front of me!  If you arrive late and don't get to see the little vignettes about how to act in the theatre, err on the side of quiet.  If you arrive late, don't come in with a lot of noisy shopping bags.  The people that are there, paid their money, planned their time, didn't miss the beginning of the movie, and deserve courteous behavior.  Do not speak aloud ever unless a crime is occurring.  

As far as the movie even with all the distractions, I really liked Margin Call. Found it fascinating and it has stayed with me.  When I got home and talked to my sister, she hated it.  Had to laugh. The complete opposite spectrum.  I do recommend it. 

Sidebars: The X Factor had rock and roll night.  The singers were supposed to pick songs from the incredibly large annals of rock music.  Only 3 out of 9 hit it.  I would have thought that it would have been a piece of cake to pick a song, but clearly, the contestants and judges had a myriad of opinions of what denotes a rock song.  Big demonstrations for Occupy Wall Street today.  The producers of the thought provoking movie, Race to Nowhere, are taking the next step. They want parents, students, and teachers to sign a pledge for no homework on weekends and vacations.  I am all for that.  If you haven't seen this movie go to and see where it is screening near you.  

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Wednesday, November 16, 2011

A is for Alabama

Okay, people, I have been alive for 52 years.  I grew up in the great State of California.  I grew up hearing about political unrest, be-ins, love-ins, migrant farmworkers, Cesar Chavez, women's lib, Gloria Steinman, and human rights.  What I learned from those many years, clearly, the Governor of Alabama didn't. 

Governor Bentley signed into law the most severe immigration law in the country.  The Federal government is suing Alabama just like the other States that are making it a State issue over Federal, but I digress.  All the farmworkers from Mexico fled in fear of being picked up by the police.  Can anyone guess what is happening to the farmers in Bama?  Any guesses, people? You got it.  The fruits and vegetables are rotting.  

Why can't lawmakers understand that the problem isn't simple? There are many layers, but the fallacy that has been used all these years...illegal immigrants are taking the jobs away from the citizens of the USA. That is the biggest bunch of bull that has been handed down for decades.  Illegal immigrants are not executives at Apple or Alabama University.  They are working in the fields for fourteen hour days, they are taking care of your children, your lawns.  Seriously, if Governor Bentley's supposition was correct, the farmers would have lines and lines of out of work Americans lined up to work in the fields.  Ha! Americans don't want to do that kind of back breaking grueling work for peanuts! It's been proven time and time again.

Now, I know that there are serious issues regarding the stress illegal immigrants put on school systems, hospitals, etc., but a sweeping ban on illegals will not work. The Mexican immigrants that cross into this country are willing to do the seriously hard labor that the fine citizens of this country will not do.  There has to be a better way.  Just wait until the produce prices go up at the market.  Do you want to hear that outcry?

Sidebars:  Justin Bieber's pregnant accuser drops her suit.  He is now suing her.  Perfect!  Maksam and Hope Solo tossed from Dancing With the Stars.  And finally, I want to correct myself on the Sandusky interview.  I watched it in its entirety and from a psychological standpoint, it was fascinating. Bob Costas did a great interview.  Albeit, one of the creepiest interviews I have ever seen or heard. Thrilled to see that the Gabby Giffords interview opposite the Sandusky interview crushed them in the ratings.  A ray of hope for this country. I'll take it.

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Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Broadway Nightmare

One of my worst nightmares is about to premiere on Broadway.  Tomorrow, November 16th, Mandy Patinkin and Patti LuPone are starting their limited engagement concert on Broadway.  I can't think of anything worse.  I may be in the minority here; so be it.

I was a huge fan of Mandy Patinkin years and years ago.  He had a beautiful voice.  On the concept album of South Pacific with Kiri Te Kanawa, he sang the role of Lt. Cable.  When he sang Younger Than Springtime, it was like honey oozing all over me.  Then, horrors of all horrors, The Public Theatre did a musical called The Knife starring Mandy Patinkin.  It was a musical about a sex change operation.  Cutting edge.  Mr Patinkin found his falsetto.  From that show on, he never sang low again. As far as his acting goes, I love him.  I think that he is a compelling actor. Just don't sing.  Okay, no one is making me see my nightmare show, but just knowing it's out there....

Patti LuPone singing is like nails on a chalkboard.  Her vibrato and loosy goosy jaw can send me screaming into the night.  And yet, again, I think she is a wonderful actress.  Every time I have seen her, sans singing, I have enjoyed her work.  Together?  Oy, I can't think of anything more painful.  They are doing 63 performances together.  That is 63 performances too many for me. 

Sidebars:  Jerry Sandusky interviewed by Bob Costas.  Did anyone think that he'd admit anything?  A waste of airtime.  Creepy factor very high. 
If you want money out of politics, don't forget to go to and sign the petition.  

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Monday, November 14, 2011

Party, party, party

Party over country.  I don't get that philosophy.  I have said it before and I will say it again.  I know some very educated and smart Republicans.  What I don't understand is supporting a "less than" candidate.  I know friends that will vote Republican over voting for Barack Obama no matter what.  That is hard for me to swallow.  The candidates on the Republican side are less than stellar.  They may be nice people in their private lives but in their public lives facts and integrity are a slippery slope. 

In my voting life, I have never felt that both candidates for President were worthy.  I understand that the Presidential election of Nixon and Kennedy was the last set of worthy adversaries.  Both smart, experienced, and educated.  Since then, not so much.  I often feel like it is the lesser of two "evils." Now in the 21st Century it is evolving into who is smarter, knows history, isn't deluded by religiosity.  What kind of election is that? 

Why is it acceptable to support candidates that don't have knowledge?  Why is it acceptable to support candidates that are hypocrites. Why is it acceptable to support candidates on private, religious views and not facts?  The Republican party has changed so much to my dismay.  I think many prominent Republicans, like Carl Rove, think things are going too far.  To lead this country, the candidate needs to support the majority of the people's views.  Politicians have cut themselves off so much. They only want to be confronted by like minded people.  I think that began with George W.  The people in his crowds were always "his" people.  They didn't want any opposing speech during his rallies.  I don't recall that ever happening so blatantly.  That makes the candidates and the President sheltered and removed from all Americans. 

Why don't the smart, educated conservatives demand more from their candidates?  If Republicans would take the Jesus out of politics, they would be more palatable.  As long as Republican candidates want to shout loudly about social issues and not National issues, they are less than and not moving forward or for that matter, living in the present.

Sidebars:  The Duggars announced last week that they are having their 20th child.  Hard to explain why that is so yucky. 
An addendum to my thoughts and feelings on Regis Philbin, I didn't realize that they pushed him off his throne.  It all came to light for me this past weekend.  Those executives at ABC are ruining daytime television.  Wonder how big their bonuses are....

Friday, November 11, 2011

The King

Oh, my goodness.  I never imagined that in the years 2011 that I would say goodbye to All My Children, and now...Regis.  I have watched Regis Philbin since I went to UCLA.  He had the local morning talk show on KABC with Cyndy Garvey.  I loved him right away.  Funny, charming, and curmudgeonly.  He was the first person that I saw to interview on the "red carpet" at the Academy Awards.  It was the perfect pre-party in those days.  It was local and not the current over the top extravaganzas.  I moved to NY in 1981 and had to say "goodbye" to Regis.  

How could I have ever imagined that Regis would follow me to NYC.  He started another local talk show here on WABC.  My mornings were revived.  I was so happy and felt like home was complete.  Horrors upon horrors, Cyndy left.  What would happen to the chemistry now?  Ann Abernathy came in.  A Southern woman who became an ample foil for Regis.  When she got married and moved away, more auditions were held for Regis' co-host.  Auditioning was Kathie Lee Johnson (now Gifford) whom I always was irritated by on Good Morning America, but when she sat down next to Regis...magic.  They were a perfect match.  Funny, irreverent, self-deprecating. After fifteen years and probably  one year too long, Kathie Lee left to seek new horizons. Enter Kelly Ripa, darling, funny and personable, star from All My Children.  Eleven years later....

Regis is leaving his morning talk show.  The one he created, originated, and inspired countless copy cats.  Regis is one of a kind.  Born and raised in the Bronx.  Fit seamlessly into life in Hollywood and returned to his roots in New York almost thirty years ago.  He has represented New York well.  He has shared thousands of stories and relayed them in his own inimitable fashion.  Regis Philbin is of the old school but kept evolving into an iconic television star.  There will never be another like him.  I don't think that there will ever be someone else that spent their lives in front of the cameras.  In today's market, it's too difficult.  He is the hope diamond.  He will not be replaced.  I am sorry that in all these years in New York together we never got to have lunch.  I don't know where this chapter of his life will take him.  I am guessing back to Los Angeles to be near his children and grandchildren.  Always a die hard Yankee fan and New Yorker.  Regis, you will be sorely missed.  I never ever thought this day would come.  I really didn't.  Your gain is our loss.  The New York landscape won't be the same. 
Regis, I love you!

Sidebars:  If you have never taken the time to watch Regis, it isn't too late. Next week is his last week.  Friday, 11/18/11 is his last day.  Hope that Kelly Ripa who just signed a 5 year extension can thrive.  Good luck, Kelly!  

Happy weekend!  Happy Veteran's Day!  It's 11/11/11.

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Thursday, November 10, 2011

The Winningest Coach

This is a very difficult one.  Sorting out the feelings about Joe Paterno.   When the story first broke earlier this week about alleged child molestations by assistant coach, Jerry Sandusky, it was shocking and appalling.  Two other Penn State employees were also on the hot seat.  There was a brief sigh of relief that it wasn't going to stain the reputation of the great and legendary Joe Paterno.  As the hours and days passed, the story got worse and far more disturbing.  True, from where it stands now, Coach Paterno didn't do anything "wrong."  He passed the allegations on to others at Penn State to look into, deal with, sweep under the carpet.  Until yesterday, I was having many conflicting feelings and then I listened to an MSNBC host, Martin Bashir, who likened Penn State to the Catholic Church.  The fog lifted.  It all became clear.  The "good" people of Penn State, including Paterno, put institution, money, reputation, football ahead of the victims of alleged crimes.  

One of the mothers of the victims got relief, finally after years.  Someone believes the allegations.  Someone believes that her son was molested.  Paterno's crime is that he passed the buck and didn't follow up.  He could have been a hero if he had acted swiftly, called the police, forced the administrators to deal head on with Sandusky.  Now, he is a fallen football icon.  The winningest coach in the NCAA.  There are no excuses.  The Catholic Church scandal had already happened, so they should have learned from that.  What happens to natural instincts?  Is power, money, and blind support too much?  Does it dull down one's natural reactions?  If I heard about the possibility of sexual molestation, I would sound a horn.  I am sure it would be scary and uncomfortable, but a child's well being is at stake.  Certainly, there will be more boys coming forward.  I think they are up to 9 right now.  How many of those could have been stopped if Penn State and Coach Paterno did the right thing?
Time will only tell how many more boys were allegedly molested by Sandusky since the first horn was sounded in 2002.  Time will only tell how Paterno will be remembered after this.

Sidebars:  Rachel Crow, a 13 year old, on the X Factor is staggeringly good.  She is both adorable, likable, and deeply talented.  Her depth is far greater than her 13 years.  If you haven't seen her, youtube her.  You won't be sorry. 
Rick Perry has become his own SNL skit.  He is just handing comedians a buffet on a silver platter.  And again,  Mario Batali stepped in it when he was using Hitler and Stalin to describe Wall Streeters.  Really?  Again, why is Hitler the go to guy.  Why don't people learn from others.  In the past decade, Hitler's name has been carelessly bandied about. No good comes from it. Take Hitler out of the vernacular.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Proposition 26

As I sat here on election day, hearing reports that the Mississippi Proposition 26 is too close to call.  I was thoroughly shocked and appalled.  I don't understand why pro-choice isn't enough.  If you are a religious person that believes that life begins at conception, then don't have intercourse, use contraception, and if God forbid, you get pregnant, have the baby.  What if you don't believe that life begins at conception, you are having sex, using contraception, get pregnant, and choose to make the painstaking decision to have an abortion and the laws say you can't?  What then?  I feel pro-lifers think that people who choose to have abortions, take it lightly as if they are throwing out the garbage.  Women that I know that made the difficult decision to have an abortion agonized over what to do.  There is no easy answer, but choice is imperative for women.  Why are we still arguing about abortion after 40 years of legalization?  Why are "we" so fixated on such a personal decision? Why do we allow religiosity to infringe on all of our rights?  No one is making pro-lifers to have an abortion.  That would be something, wouldn't it?  Any unwanted/unexpected pregnancy was forced to be terminated.  That would be turning the tables.  It is ludicrous to think that the government could/would do that, so why isn't it true the other way?  Why do all women have to live by the beliefs of some?  This is so unbearable that we keep coming back to this.  This country and it's politicians are so shortsighted and so committed to the minutiae.  We need visionaries!  Proposition's like 26 makes me want the South to secede from the USA.  

I stayed up late last night to hear the results and it was too close to call way past midnight.  Waking up this morning the final count wasn't in the Times or the Post.  Proposition 26 did not pass.  Maybe there is a God?

Sidebars:  Nancy Grace is finally off Dancing With the Stars.  Tom Bergeron is discussing that Dancing With the Stars may need to pare down to one season a year.  Their ratings are down 14%.  Maybe it would help if there wasn't so much filler and the show could take up less time per week.  All these shows should take a page from The Amazing Race. One hour, chockful of action, leaving you wanting more....

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Deep Sigh

What's the deal?  It is very difficult for me to understand Republicans.  I admit it.  It was difficult enough when Reagan was the President, when Newt was Speaker of the House, but this group of Republicans is unbelievable.  They make my bobble- head keep bobbling.  Facts and history don't matter and if they do, like to Mitt, no one has the guts to stand up and go against the far crazy right. How am I supposed to figure how the blatant and covert racism since Obama has been President is bizarrely muted towards Herman Cain?  Cain can do or say anything and his polling goes up?  How can "religious" people stand by a person who has clearly made some bad judgments towards women?  Not only do they stand by, they like him even more?  My frown lines are getting deeper and my shoulder muscles are getting tenser. It makes no sense.  Why does the Republican party not ask more from its candidates?  I know many educated and learned Republicans.  I don't understand how they can align themselves with a party that in its current state is embracing the dumbing down of their candidates and their people.  I don't get it.  It really went full blown with Sarah Palin and hasn't righted itself since.  

I am a registered Democrat but don't feel that aligned with them.  I would become an Independent but I don't like to give up my right to vote in the Primary elections, so I stay registered as a Democrat.  Not thrilled with the Democratic party either.  The Democrats don't support ignorance and denial, which works better for me.  They just seem so weak.  They are chihuahuas to pit bulls of the Republican party. They don't espouse religiosity.  I am sick of religion in politics.  Sick of it.  After the poison of money, religion is ruining our political system.  Can you believe that Congress spent a vote re-making "In God We Trust" the National motto??  Really???  The Economy has tanked.  Millions are out of work.  Healthcare is still a disaster and the only thing Congress can agree on is the National motto?  It is a bloody outrage.  Washington DC is broken.  I don't know how it can get fixed.  Well, I know how, but it won't happen.  Get the money out and dissolve the lobbyists.  Turn K Street into a beautiful mall of shops and stores.  Put lobbyists on unemployment.  

Aren't Senators and Congressmen supposed to be lobbyists for their constituents?  Isn't that why we send them to DC?  Do what's best for their town, state, country???  Where did it all go wrong?

Sidebars:  Dancing With the Stars is down to its final five.  If Nancy Grace doesn't go home tonight....Called it right on the revival of Godspell.  Times and NY Post critical of the updating of the script and musical arrangements. How long will it run now?  

Monday, November 7, 2011

You Don't Know Jack!

Last night on 60 Minutes, they did a piece on Jack Abramoff.  He is the disgraced and convicted lobbyist from K Street.  Jack Abramoff raised the level of lobbyist to whole new heights.  He bribed/dangled, trips, money, meals, private planes to many members of Congress so his clients could get what they wanted.  He went to jail for stealing 45million dollars from Indian tribes that he represented to get Congress to okay casinos.  

As many of us are outrage at the amount of money in politics and elections, we have to get lobbyists out of Washington, DC.  It's another part of the corrupt system.  It has grown into one of the most profitable arms of DC.  The lobbyists don't have the American people's concerns on their minds.  No, they only are worried about their clients, no matter what.  Really?  It's like defense attorneys all over DC doing whatever is needed to get their client off.  In this case, it is at the expense of all citizens of the United States of America.  

The historical lore of lobbyists is during President Ulysses S. Grant's term as President, he sat in the lobby of the Willard Hotel in DC, a stone's throw from the White House, have a brandy and cigar, and Senators, Congressmen, and the like would pitch their needs to the President.  They knew he'd be there and they did what they could to persuade him to their side.  Times have changed.  It isn't innocent anymore.  There is too much money at stake.  No one is inured.  I can keep talking about this forever.  Money has poisoned politics and the system created by our forefathers.  

So as we are angered by the amount of projected money spent on the Presidential election, 6-8 billion dollars, let's not forget that lobbyists have had a very strong hand in ruining government.  Let's take the money out of the entire system in DC.  Let's go back to the days that being a Senator or Congressman is a civil servant job.  Not a lifetime career.  Let's take the country back from the lobbyists!

Don't forget to sign if you agree.  It's a beginning.

Sidebar:  Tomorrow, Tuesday, is election day all over.  No election is more important than in Mississippi for all women.  Proposition 26 must fail.  Even staunch pro-lifer Governor Haley Barbour is against it.  He says it goes too far and is poorly written. If you know anyone in Mississippi, let them know how important their vote is and if you have an election in your area, don't forget to vote.

Friday, November 4, 2011

A Little Bit of This....

Money in politics is bad.  There is no ifs, ands, or buts about it.  Did you know that 94% of the candidates that won elections spent the most money?  Really?  How does that help the country?  It sounds like it is an auction for open seats in elections.  All elections.  Even judges are not immune anymore as they once were.  How do we get the best candidates this way? The answer is we don't.  It is so incredibly clear.  The obscene amount of money spent in elections over the past 20 years or so, could have been used to improve thousands of communities, school systems, healthcare, teachers, firemen, police officers.  We, the people, would have been grateful for the windfalls, instead of those seeking glory.  It's not realistic, I know.   It needs to change.  We are missing great people that don't have the ways or means to get into a race.  People that are thoughtful and have ideas.  They can't get into any race.  Tick tock, the game is locked.

MF Global, a company run by former US Senator, head of Goldman Sachs, and Governor of NJ, Jon Corzine, has filed Chapter 11.  How can that be?  They can't find over $600 million.  Really?  After Bernie Madoff, there were no signs?  Of course there were signs, but people were asleep at the wheel.  Now the SEC and the FBI are investigating.  Now?  I am not sure if it is better late than never.  The money is gone. The SEC hasn't learned a thing.  (Jon Corzine resigned his post today).

Sidebars:  Okay, people, Justin Bieber has allegedly fathered a "love" child.  The woman who has accused Justin is now getting death threats from "Beliebers."  Who are these "Beliebers?"  Are they young girls, mothers? Who would be that crazy in love with a celebrity to send death threats.  It isn't their first time down this path.  They did it to Kim Kardashian and Selena Gomez.  I was a teenager.  I had my teen idols.  It would have never occurred to me to send death threats.  It was a fantasy and a distant love, not anywhere in the realm of reality.  Have these "Beliebers" lost their sense of the real world?  What do they think?  Justin Bieber isn't going to date, fall in love, get married, have children?? As far as the young woman's story, a little DNA will take care of the whole situation.  If I were he, if he didn't have sex with her, I'd definitely have the DNA test.  If he did have sex with her, well, then, he is stupid like so many before him and cha-ching to her and her "love" child.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Oh, Sigh

I am in a quandary.  There is so much going on in the world, and, yet, I am feeling a bit defeated by it all.  The people at Occupy Wall Street are committed to staying where they are through snow, sleet, wind, and hail.  They are risking everything for what they believe and then a few are spoilers in the group causing unrest with police.  The Oakland Police, really??  Really??  Have you missed the riots and confrontations with "the people" since the early 70's?  Did they not learn the history of Oakland?  Didn't the Mayor of Oakland just say no more tear gas into crowds?  If I heard it in NY, why didn't the police?  Believe me, I am not so naive to think that there aren't some opportunistic protesters with their own agendas, but the Oakland police have a history of brute force.  I remember the newscasts from my childhood.  It is vivid in my memory and looks much like today.  The protesters can't allow vandalism and looters.  That will not help further the cause.  OWSers need the support of all the 99% to make changes occur.  Don't let the waters get muddied. They had a victory with Bank of America  taking back their announced debit card fees under pressure.  Congratulations! Don't muddy the waters.

If you haven't heard about Proposition 26 in Mississippi, time is running out.  You can read my rant about it or Google it yourself.  Please don't let this go by without noise.  Women and men need to be concerned with the assault on Women's rights.  It affects us all.  Go to  The election is Tuesday.  If it passes in Mississippi, it will get to all of our doorsteps soon enough.  

The grass roots petition to get money out of politics is slowly growing.  If you want to sign the petition go to,  Money is destroying our political system.  There is no level playing field.  It has to stop or this system as we know it will explode.  

Sidebars:  Crushed that David Arquette was kicked off Dancing With the Stars.  He was a sheer delight and so fun to see his little girl, Coco, and ex-wife Courtney Cox rooting for him.  Do you think they knew in advance that he was going?  It was the first show Coco and Courtney weren't present for.  Can't believe that Nancy Grace has that many fans. 

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

I Did, but....

Okay, in some ways no surprise, but really 72 days???  Really Kim Kardashian?  Just when embarrassingly I was coming around about you, you hoodwinked me, your devoted fans (whoever they may be) and your pitiful husband.  I saw a few episodes over the summer of Keeping Up With the Kardashians and thought, man, tough crowd.  It seemed impossible to get into the family.  Even Bruce Jenner has difficulty and he is the patriarch. That group of women are as thick as thieves and have each other's back.  It's the Kardashian mafia.  It is ruled by the women without question.  Even Rob fights for a place among his sisters; he had to go on Dancing With the Stars to find his own identity. After spending 10 million dollars on an over the top wedding, raking in over 17 million dollars on countless interviews, tabloid articles, and a two night special on the E channel, it's over!  It is an embarrassment. It is such a "sucker's born every minute" moment.  This time there are millions of suckers.  

Kim even used her deceased father to pry some tears out of herself and fans.  Bruce Jenner brought her all these shirts of her Dad's so she could sew a piece into her dress.  Kim openly wept over the shirts and her father's "smell." She took Kris, her fiance, to the cemetery to have a moment at her father's graveside.  Really, Kim??  Using your dead father?  So distasteful, nauseating. 

Kim and Kris were such a mismatched couple from the outset, but they say opposites attract.  She didn't believe him that he wanted to live in Minnesota and he clearly didn't know Kim.  She was never going to live out of the limelight. Won't this hurt Kim's branding?  I have really never understood why people are so enamored by the Kardashians.  Can this huge, public debacle be the end of the Kardashians?  Could we get that lucky?  

So, as heterosexuals mock marriage, why are there still people in this country that don't support marriage equality?  Gay couples can't do worse....

Sidebars:  Don't forget to pass the word around regarding Mississippi's misogynistic Proposition 26.  For more information,