Sunday, February 01, 2015


Dullest day I've had in an age.  After our walk--and boy, was it cold, I thought my cheeks would freeze--and breakfast, I didn't do much productive.  Should have been continuing my forever chores, but just didn't feel like it.
Called Barb H. to ask what I should bring to the Super Bowl party and she suggested broccoli slaw.  Went to Acme, but didn't like the packaged broccoli--I never buy it that way--so got what's called "sweet kale."  I'll make some of the Bobby Flay dressing and put that on.
Drove to Manahawkin for some important items; I can't even remember what.  Photographed my champagne glasses and sent them to Denise at Downtown Consignment, but she decided to pass on them.
I actually took a nap for an hour or two on the couch--just overcome with ennui.  I hate the cold weather and can't wait to get to that other place.  Yes, it gets cool in the winter, but it never snows and that's fine by me; if I want snow, I'll start snorting it.

Saturday, January 31, 2015


My recycle container, which is provided by the township and is very large, was filled so high yesterday I could barely wheel it to the curb.  I discarded an enormous amount of paper, plus various things made of glass and metal, plus a lawn chair that had been my mother's, plus lots of other stuff.  It gave me a great deal of satisfaction to see it hoisted high by steel arms and dumped into the trash truck.
Made an interesting find: a shoebox-sized container filled with foreign and domestic bills and coins. Not sure if some could be worth something, but will find out.
My friend came at 3:15 to get my Lucite radio and box camera down from the high shelf in the study.  She then loaded my "lady desk" and other consignment items into my car.  She also delivered the money realized from the the sale of my car for scrap. Then she insisted I take the dough from selling the snow-blower my husband had given her and her husband when we moved here.  I argued she should keep that money--the blower was theirs, not mine--but she refused, so here I am, stuck with a total of 400 bucks--woe is me (heh, heh).
She no sooner left than I jumped in the car and drove to Downtown Consignment in Manahawkin.  I was pleased that proprietor Denise accepted all my stuff and approved most of the prices I wanted to realize.
Bought a piece of salmon at Acme to celebrate; enjoyed that and enjoyed even more a virtual visit with the baby doll in Tokyo.

Friday, January 30, 2015


Off we went at 9:15 to breakfast at John & Sonya's.  We duplicated last Thursday's meal and activities, but that's okay.  I don't mind being in a rut if it's comfortable.
After dropping Aline off at the library, I went home and packed up the additional D.Q. items, took the box to the P.O., then stopped at various places for errands. Took a bunch of wires for electronics to Best Buy, dropped off a printer cassette at Staples (you get a coupon for two bucks for each), and picked up lettuce and rice cakes at Acme.
When I started my car, the horn suddenly came to life and blew over and over; I must have accidentally hit the "trying to steal my car" button on the key holder. I should be embarrassed to admit it (but I'm not) that I didn't know how to turn it off.  I finally did, but I'm not sure how. Should I read the manual?  Nah.
Wrote a letter to my old boss at Rider, Shirley Turner, and enclosed her thirty-three-year-old, five-dollar check.  E-mailed her to alert her to that, as I haven't seen her for six years.  She's now retired from the university, but is still a state assembly senator.
Spent more time in packing things up for the thrift store; will take it tomorrow when they're open late.
Betty called to say Mary H. had had her surgery, and was doing reasonably well, although it was a bad break.
I made myself throw my silver vegetable dish cover away.  The handle is broken and, according to the jeweler, base metal isn't worth being melted down, so out it goes. I'm steeling myself to do the same with the big silver tray I always liked, too.  Handle is off and it doesn't shine up as well as it did, so there's no point in keeping it. They were both wedding presents...
Don't know why I'm so damn sentimental.  Geez, they're just hunks of stuff, yet I have to hold back tears when I think of throwing them away.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

An Okay Day

Received from my Florida brother, Larry, a copy of the draft of a letter my father wrote in 1935 to a former employer.  He mentions "an addition to my family."  Yes, that would be my brother, Frank (California), who marked his 80th birthday last week.  Called Larry to thank him and we had a nice talk.  Later, I typed out Daddy's letter and sent it as an attachment to my sibs. Got a nice e-mail back from brother, Jim (Virginia), who remembers that era.
Aline called and we caught up with each other.  She suggested we go to breakfast today; I'll pick her up at 9:15.  In the afternoon, I went to the library and saw her there.
Other than that: continuing on with my clean-out.  I went over an enormous number of papers--literary ones, that is, ranging from my religious period (pious poems and essays), to my college years (various papers, almost all of which I threw out), to my years of employment at Rider (a few shows and other writings), to more recent Players & Playwrights and LETCO (lots of  material, some of which isn't bad).  Weeded a bunch of them out and stored the rest. I was chagrined to find yet another container of Dionne Quintuplet material; I had thought I sent all to the west coast.  I'll go through this, though, pack it up, and send it off.
I bought a bag of shredded cabbage and carrots the other day and yesterday, put together a dressing for it; found the recipe on line, of course. Incredibly, that's the first time in my life I ever made Cole slaw. It's okay, but the next time, I'll jazz it up a bit and will shred my own cabbage and carrots.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015


The snow was indeed a bust and a ho-hum.  By noon, the streets were pretty clear and our driveways and sidewalks had been done. Spent practically the whole day going over a huge box of memorabilia, almost all letters from my two sons 25 or more years ago. The elder was already in Japan and the younger in California, then Hungary and other parts of Europe.  I can't bear to throw them out, so I organized them into his, his, and miscellaneous, and put them back in the box--which felt as if I had spun my wheels all day. Had a bowl of pea, then lentil soup, for lunch and followed that with a big bowl of steamed spinach, which I like better cooked than fresh.
Brother Frank called, checking to see if I was freezing in a snow drift somewhere, and we chatted a bit.  Betty ditto; I think Absecon Island got less than we did.
In between the letters stuff, I washed the bathroom rugs and cleaned the floor.  Will do the rest tomorrow.
Gave myself a respite from my labors by driving to Shop-Rite for a few things.  The place is usually jammed, but yesterday I guess everybody was convinced the snow would be lethal, so there were few shoppers.
Bought a get well card for Mary H. and sent it off.  Worked a bit more on converting my short story, ("Burning Bright") to a play. It's shaping up fairly well, but there's a lot more to go.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Snow and the Sniper

Okay, the snow arrived stealthily last night--looks to be about three inches, if that, so hardly the storm of the century. Yesterday, there was just a dusting when Susan and I took our walk; no ice, I was happy to realize.
As soon as I got home, I drove to Acme to get ONLY split peas, so I could make soup with the ham bone. Of course, I came out with lots of other non-essentials, including a big bag of lemons, most of which I cut into wedges and froze.
At the store, I had an odd experience:  I saw a woman who looked just like me.  Now, I'm sure there are other women who look like me (especially in Ireland; I favor the paternal side), and maybe elsewhere, too, but I've never seen anyone with so striking a resemblance.  I actually followed her around a bit and finally, wanting to see her more closely, I approached her, excused myself and said, "Are you Marilyn's mother?"  "No," she said, rather curtly, and I apologized and moved on.  I'm thinking about a possible play with a theme like this, as I've always been fascinated by the doppelganger idea.  Later, when my friend came over, I told her about this and we mused over the idea that it wasn't me sitting there talking to her, but the woman in Acme.
My friend brought me an electric heater and informed me she had sold my old car for $250--yay!  As I often remark, there's nothing like money to make people happy.
Put the peas, plus carrots, onions, potatoes, and broth in the slow cooker, and set it a-simmering. Polished some silver and cut up the lemons. Sectioned both halves of my grapefruit and put them in the fridge for breakfast. Had a bowl of my soup--it came out great--and took some over to Susan.
Betty called and we chatted for quite a while, both snug in our homes, weather be damned.  I was sorry to hear that a mutual friend and fellow HSHS '54 grad, Mary H., was in the hospital with a badly broken ankle.  She'll have surgery on Friday.  I called and spoke to her sister.
David C., the son of an acquaintance, called and I filled him in about LETCO.  The information was sketchy, but hey, that's how our group operates; I said I'd call him when we start meeting or rehearsing for the April show.  I'm a bit concerned by his diction, as he doesn't seem to articulate well, but maybe will improve.  E-mailed the other members of the board about him.
Got up to good news just now: an e-mail from Mike saying he'd be here next month from the 13th to the 16th on his way to Texas. Happy day--I can't wait to see him!
WIDER:  The popularity of that sniper movie makes me despair.  It seems a perfect manifestation of Orwell's last lines in 1984:  "If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face--forever."

    Monday, January 26, 2015

    AJL, Dinner. and Stuff

    As noted here, I had spent hours removing the pages of American Jewish Life that contained my articles.  However, it still looked like too high a pile of papers, so I decided to cut all the pieces out.  Did so, which took me all afternoon, but I was able to whittle the pile down, then stow them all in a container.  Will consolidate by adding other copies of my deathless prose.
    Speaking of which:  I came across an old short story of mine called Burning Bright which isn't half bad, if I say it myself.  Think I'll revise it into a play and, if I ever get back to Players and Playwright at the Jersey Shore, will submit for a reading.  
    Susan called in the middle of all this to invite me to dinner.  Oh, sure, don't have to ask me twice.  She had ham, with lots of sides and good wine, plus Molson--a Canadian beer and one of my favorites--then insisted on packing up some of everything to send home with me.  That means I won't be found dead of starvation during the blizzard--
    --which had manifested itself when I got up this morning with a light fall, maybe an inch.  Presumably, the rest of the twenty feet or whatever the latest terror news tells us, will be coming shortly.  My friend asked if I wanted to come up there, but no thanks.  I'm snug and warm in my own place, have food enough to last until spring, plenty of good neighbors in case of any problem, and I'm staying put right here.