Sunday, August 31, 2014

Cemetery And Videos

Met Betty at noon at her husband's grave in the cemetery.  Wes has been gone now for forty years--bewildering to contemplate--and they were married for only thirteen. We decided to go to Outback for lunch and I led the way.  We had no sooner turned onto the Black Horse Pike, though, than we were halted by a huge backup. I don't know how long we would have sat there, but I wasn't about to, so indicted to Betty we should turn around and go to the Dubliner, an Irish pub in the opposite direction.  We did so and had a nice lunch.
When I got home, I was pleased to find that Tonya N.'s husband, Bob, had come through and sent via e-mail a four-part video of Tony and the Heiress.  It was great fun seeing it and I started noting the elapsed time (not sure what it's called) up to when I appear. Will send to my children and Betty and tell them if they'd rather skip the full show, they can view my parts only.
In addition, just now I saw that Tonya had finally, at long last, sent same of Hedda Gabler, which we did almost seven months ago. Usually, I hate seeing myself in any kind of pictures, but am anxious to view this.  It was a meaty part and I think I can more objectively assess my performance than in more recent efforts. And, happy day, I open the first and fourth acts, so don't necessarily have to sit through the rest of it.
Started going through pictures and got so frustrated I had to stop.  I must, must, must follow some kind of system for discarding them, otherwise, I'll never get out from under.  

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Going Through

I continue to dig out, go through, and get rid of.  Opened a container of wedding memorabilia (not mine) and discarded the flowers carried and worn by participants, along with a lot of paper. Put the rest in two small boxes and stowed them in the garage.  I'm not sure why I didn't just toss them; guess I'm not ready to do that yet, as they are, after all, part of family history.
I had accidentally deleted a picture of the hall table I want to sell, so took another.  Measured that and some bookcases and went through a few other things.  Spent a good part of the rest of the day with the clearing out chores which, seemingly, will go on forever.
Called brother Larry, who said he was short of breath and seemed a bit "down," very unusual for him. Of course, he did recently have major medical procedures of a heart valve replacement and a bypass, but he was so unlike his usual cheery self, I was concerned. I called his daughter, Jeanne, who is an R.N. and whose husband is an internist, just to get the lowdown.  She reassured me that his pulse ox showed adequate oxygen in the blood, and that his slight melancholy (which she had seen, but only occasionally) was not a regular condition.
Aline called.  She's going back to New York today to help her sister-in-law, but we made a date to go to the Mutter Museum in Philly on Tuesday.
Went to Target for a card and present for my precious grandson, soon to have lived in the world for a full year. It's so hard to believe he even exists, let alone that he's come so far.  What a gift!    
Meeting Betty at the cemetery, then we'll go to lunch.  This is the fortieth anniversary of her husband's death.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Farm and Pool

We were treated to a farm bonanza yesterday: In the barn, we got squash, cucumber, shallots, onions, and three kinds of tomatoes (regular, heirloom, and sauce), then picked string beans, raspberries, and beautiful flowers (marigold, sunflowers, purple something, and white something).  Some of it was pretty far out in the fields, so we were at the farm longer than usual, but it was worth it.
Back at my friend's, we divided the spoils after I oohed and aahed over her newly renovated bathroom: fresh paint, deep tub, new mirrors--it looks great.  I borrowed her husband's slide projector so I can go through the hundreds of my husband's teeny-tiny slides you can barely see just holding up to the light.
Before hitting the road, I stopped at Dawn's, my friend's neighbor, and bought New Jersey peaches, for which I've had a hankering. Don't give me Georgia peaches or Florida peaches or California peaches--Jersey's are the best and so are our tomatoes.  
A young couple got in touch and will be here Sunday for my guest room beds.  Actually, they want only the mattresses, but will pay the price I had the included bed frames and bedclothes.  Wish they'd take them, too, but if not, will re-advertise. If they don't sell, I'll donate them, as I want to re-do the guest room.
Took pictures of the table and mirror in the foyer, plus four bookcases and put the two former on the FB Atlantic County Yard Sale page.  By that time, it had gotten so hot (I usually don't turn the air on until after dinner) that I jumped up, changed into my bathing suit, and went to the pool.
It was heavenly: just warmish/cool enough and so refreshing. There were only about eight people there; talked to Norma and Art M., plus the C.'s down the street while I splashed around.  Left when I was satiated, after about forty-five minutes.  (It seems a crashing bore to stay longer at any watering spot, although I know lots of people who spend all day.  They do that at the beach, too--I couldn't stand it.)
Went to the library after dinner to ask if donated books were still being accepted. Yes, indeed, and I'll start bringing in some of the dozens I have.  Ran into Mary Ann Van O. as I was leaving and we chatted. She has her house (a Bayliner, one of the smaller), up for sale.  Said she was furious at the people down the street who sold their much larger Mariner for the same amount she's asking, then this exchange ensued:
"Have you considered dropping the price?"
"No, because that's what I need to move north."
I kept my big mouth shut for a change, but that simple-minded answer reminded me of my employment manager days. Every so often, an interviewee would say I should hire him or her because "I need the job." If jobs were offered or houses sold on the basis of need, it would be a different world.
Got a call from Joe Bihlmier, Jack's son.  Said son is into genealogy and asked if I could put him in touch with my friend, Florence W., as there's some relationship there.  Called her and, as I've heard every time I have, the L.'s inbox is filled.  Called her cell, left a message, then called Joe back to give him her number.
Settled down to my popcorn and wine, in which I'm indulging again, at least for a time.  All in all, it was a good, productive, and interesting day.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Getting Things Done

Now I'm cookin'!  I've received a fair amount of interest in some of my listings on Facebook's Atlantic County Yard Sale, notably my rattan chest, twin beds (with matching bedclothes), and armoire. However, the person interested in the last needed it delivered and I can't accommodate, haven't heard back about the chest, and now I'm having second thoughts about the beds.  I think it might be better to keep them for "staging" when I sell the house.  As for the wine stuff, that's small enough for me to take with me to the flea market in a few weeks.
I spent a lot of time emptying the chest.  There were mostly pictures in it, along with some of the mountain of memorabilia I've accumulated over the years.  Tossed some and was able to get the rest in a smallish container, which I labelled and put in the guest room.  My goal is to sell a lot of the Christmas items at the sale and put the boxed "to go" stuff in the garage so it will be ready for the movers.
Realizing I had a $4.00 "Staples rewards" coupon that expired at the end of August (I'd turn blue and collapse if I wasted it), I drove to Manahawkin and got ink for the printer.  Bought a "see through" container--very convenient, but I have a labeler, and some empty opaque ones, so maybe won't need many more.
After dinner,  I was at the computer when the phone rang.  "Hello, this is Carol," a woman said.  Because I know roughly a dozen Carols, I was silent, then realized where I had heard the voice before:  more than a month ago, when I tracked down and called my late husband's friend, Carole Liberty, after finding several letters she had sent him sixty years ago.
Carole had received the letters I sent and had read the first one, she said. Unfortunately, she had suffered a stroke--not sure when--and then was in an accident, so said her memory wasn't what it used to be.
We talked for a few minutes, with info coming mostly from her.  I had included a short synopsis of Pat's and my history in with the letters, and she remarked on "what a wonderful life" I had had. ("Yes, indeed," I wanted to say, "and it's not over yet!")
Carole told me she had married, divorced, and remarried, but is now separated; has four children, ten grandchildren, and five great-grands.  She said she'd call me again after she reads the rest of the letters.
That was an interesting interlude, but it reminded me that I have still more old letters to Pat that I want to send to relatives of the writers--must get on with that.
In the same vein, I have several hundred slides that I need to look at and keep or discard.  This is farm day and I'm going to borrow a projector from my friend's husband, so I can go through them.    

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Books and Stuff

I continue to enjoy these waning days of summer, although they don't include many firm plans--maybe that's why I'm enjoying them.
Made a big salad--geez, I seem to do that every day--and had it for lunch, adding the last of the pork roast, cut up.  Drove to the Shop-Rite in Waretown to pick up various items, then to the post office and library.  Took back two books on Johnny Carson--I'm over him now--and got a new bio of John Wayne. Dipped into it last night and it looks absorbing.
Earlier in the day, I had started a book by the mother of a Downs Syndrome child, but will probably put it aside.  I'm not sure why this kind of thing appeals to me. anyway--other people's woes.  I'm afraid it isn't for any benign reasons. but most likely because they make me so grateful I'm not the author or the subject.
Further "booking": Using the last of Mike's generous Mothers' Day gift, I ordered Roz Chast's Can't we Talk About Something More Pleasant: A Memoir,* from Amazon.  Am also awaiting from Amazon, Jesse James, Last Rebel of the Civil War. That may seem a peculiar topic for me, but I became interested after reading a rave review.  The author, a distinguished historian, outlines what he sees as the sociological reasons for James' criminal activity. Guess it would be included under "Why People Do What They Do," and that's a topic I find endlessly fascinating.  
Put my sale items on Facebook, then the twin beds and the maple table on Craig's List.  Actually got some interest--one woman left me a private message on FB, I called her and she said she was interested in the armoire.  Unfortunately, she needed me to deliver it (to Mays Landing) and I'm not able to.  We agreed cordially it wasn't to be.
Somebody else does want to buy the rattan chest.  Darn, I asked only ten bucks for it and I bet I could get twenty...
...aagh--what an idiotic reaction!  I've had the damn thing for twenty years or more and the only function it serves is to contain things--pictures, mostly--that I never even look at.  Good grief, I should pay her to take it away.
Called my cousin, Marifran, in Ohio--to me, she's my "Cincinnati Sis"--and we had a good long talk.  She's had cancer for five years and is treating it with alternative medicines--oh, please, let them work.
Betty called. We'll meet at the cemetery on Saturday, the fortieth anniversary of her husband's death--how could that possibly be?--then go to lunch.
*I've been a Roz Chast fan for years.  Her cartoons, instantly recognizable, appear regularly in The New Yorker.  They're invariably comments on modern life and are subtle, but not obscure (as some New Yorker cartoons are), and always more gentle than nasty.  The book is concerned with the drama surrounding the aging of her parents and, I understand, includes her art, as well as photographs, and writings.  Can't wait for Roz and Jesse to get here!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014


A delightful day.  Got back in the groove with Susan at seven on a sunny and just-warm-enough walking morning.  After breakfast, I cut up the two large onions, three shallots, and purple pepper, added a little oil and seasonings, and put them to simmer in the slow cooker.  Did a wash and a few other things before the phone rang.
It was my friend asking if I'd like to go to the lake.  Sure thing and we met there about 2:00.  Had a few hours of lazing at the lake--went in up to our waists, but it was a bit breezy and that was as far as we wanted to venture.
I told her I had photographed and posted on Facebook my dining room set to sell.  Hmm...she said, maybe it would be better to keep that in the house for now for staging purposes and advertise smaller items.  I had never thought of that, but instantly realized she was right.
Removed the pics when I got home and, instead, photographed and posted my armoire*, the guest room twin beds, a wine rack, and a few other items.  They're on my own page and on "Atlantic County Yard Sale" (or whatever it's called), and I'm going to add others. Will also put them on Craig's List and anywhere else appropriate I can find.
Later, I greatly enjoyed another Breakfast with Baby, thanks to Skype. The Tokyo Tot now initiates such intellectual and sophisticated actions as saying "eeeeeyawee" and rubbing his sticky hands over his hair, as well as pointing and waving.  He gets a great kick out of Nana doing the same--and so does she.  He eats with gusto--if sloppily--and I still think he says "Mama," although Daddy tells me the articulation could mean other things.  What a thrill it is to realize he sees and reacts to me, the little precious.  It still seems an impossible dream that he actually exists, 32 years after my first grandson was born.
* Darn it all, I can't spell it and neither can SpellCheck.  

Monday, August 25, 2014

Dine Around And Whether God Blesses America

"Slept in," as the peculiar saying goes (as opposed to "slept out"?) until after 7:00.  Betty called early and we made a lunch date for Friday.  Went to Shop-Rite for supplies. Made a big salad and had it and the rest of the slow-cooked squash for lunch.  Revised my theatre/acting resume to include T. and the H. and did other computer stuff.
Showered and dressed, then picked Aline up for Dine Around.  Yet another annoying feature of living among the doddering is their tendency to be not just early, but extremely early for every gathering.  We got there at the stated start time of 5:00 only to find everybody else already seated and settled.  In addition, although we had both responded in the affirmative to our invitations, there were not enough empty seats. I was wedged in at the intersection of two tables and and Aline was seated across the room. (It was not a problem that we were separated; we're together so much it's just as well we get to talk to other people now and again.)
Anyway, people I didn't know sat adjacent to me on both sides, which was enjoyable, as they were sociable and so am I.  They were also different from the run-of-the-mill, which I liked:  My right-hand neighbor was Serafina, who lives in Cranberry Creek. In a strong Italian accent, she managed to tell me her life story within about ten seconds.  It includes the melancholy fact that her daughter died of cancer at 29, four months after diagnosis, leaving Serafina to raise her three grandchildren, the youngest of whom was only two. However, he's getting married shortly and she, a cheery, optimistic person, made ninety meatballs for the bride-to-be's shower, her meatballs being the best there ever were in the world.  I loved her and I bet I'd love her meatballs even more.
I also enjoyed the neighbors on my left, Joe and Barbara.   They've lived on Windstar for twelve years, yet I never met them before last night.  They were both drinking martinis--exotic for this crowd--and told me they weren't married, just lived together.
An illicit love affair?  A flaming passion?  Or just a practical, share-expenses arrangement?  Dunno, and I didn't have a chance to ask, but would have if I had gotten around to it.
After the usual tiresome, second-grade-level question/answer session ("name a movie star that starts with 'A'"), and dollar store prizes, Roman K. rose to make an announcement.  He and Judy more or less run Dine-Around, although it's ostensibly arranged alternately by attendees. He said they were "going on hiatus" until probably after the new year because it had gotten to be just too much work.
Now this "work"--the quizzes and prizes dreamed up and instituted entirely by the K.'s--was not an original component of Dine Around and could just be dropped in favor of reverting to the original once a month dinner out.  Nobody suggested that, though, and frankly, I probably won't miss Dine Around.
What infuriated me was that after Roman made his announcement, he told us all to stand and sing God Bless America.  Everybody else in the room--a gathering of sheep, no question--did exactly that.  But damn, I refuse to contribute to the idea of exceptionalism celebrated in this dreary little ditty.  The music, lyrics, and sentiment are on the most infantile, banal, and anti-cultural level imaginable, and I won't even pretend to accept such an odious combination.  I stormed out of the room and didn't come back until it was over, then confronted Roman.  I told him I don't subscribe to the simple-minded ideology the thing celebrates and what was the big idea in directing a sing-a-long?  He smiled complacently and proceeded to assure me that, yes, I am patriotic and religious, I just don't know it!
Of all the gall!  This officious ass is telling me what I think in opposition to what I just made clear--California is looking better all the time!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Show and Cast Party

As far as I can remember, this is without precedence: I slept until 8:20.  At that point, I got up, and immediately got a call from Mary Ann V. O., telling me how much she liked the show.  I had seen her in the front row, but was surrounded by others after, so didn't get a chance to chat afterward with her.
Later, I did something again without precedence: I sat and watched a DVD in the afternoon.  This was Up In The Air, which I saw twice in California when it first came out.  I liked it so much, I wanted to see it again, so bought it from Amazon.
Why do I enjoy it so much?  Lots of reasons, but prominently including the fact that the movie revolves around George Clooney as a human resources person (as I was at Rider) with commitment problems.  There's a lot more, too, and I thought the story absorbing and the performances spot on.
I actually ate lunch while watching, skipping dinner until after a show, as I always do.
Tony and the Heiress was again well-attended and enthusiastically received.  All members of the cast agreed, I modestly state, that I got the biggest laughs with my lines, some of which I contributed myself (with Jim's permission, of course).  More of my friends were there last night and, of course, it was great fun to be greeted and complimented.
After, we all went over to the cast party at the H.'s.  There was every libation imaginable (I stuck to Corona and wine--one each) and a terrific spread, including  pulled pork; sausage, peppers, and onions; pasta salad; mixed fruit; and a plethora of other goodies. The party flowed from the big rec room to the kitchen to one of the many out-buildings on the property, a sort of large, rustic, open-sided hut with a bricked floor and ceiling fan.  There we talked and talked and talked, then talked some more, and laughed and teased and hashed over the show and started looking toward November, when we have Surflight Theatre once again.
Didn't get home until 1:00 am after a weekend that couldn't be better: shows and a party.  Seems to me that's what life ought to consist of, I only half-jokingly assert.  Anyway, those two activities sure support what may be the whole purpose of this earthy existence: to have fun.    

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Opening Night

Starting with the last--but best--first:
WOW!!  The show was a smash hit!  The Community Center was filled almost to capacity and the audience loved it!  (Okay, I'll stop with the exclamation points.)
Tony and the Heiress went off without a hitch--well, there were a few, but since they weren't noticeable to the only ones who matter, that was okay. A large number of my friends and neighbors were there, of course, and I expected that, as it's only ten minutes away from where we live. However, I was amazed and gratified at those who came from Players & Playwrights and live on Absecon Island: Bobbi C., Anita, and two other women, plus, of all people, my pal, Grey.
Grey knows Desi, Jim, and Neil, as he had met them when he was originally cast as my nephew, George, in Hedda Gabler.  Early on, he had to pull out because of illness, but not before he and Neil developed a great dislike for each other.  I have no idea why; if I was in the habit of using the trendy psycho-babble with which some enlard their airheaded opinions, I might say it was the alpha male thing, but who the hell knows.
Had a ball accepting appreciation and congratulations from other friends and attendees I didn't know--anybody who performs and denies that's the reason is a friggin' liar.  We stayed until after 10:00, talking and laughing and agreeing it could hardly have been better. Can't wait to do it over again tonight.
Back to morning: Met my friend for breakfast up in Whiting and we had a good breakfast and even better talk.  Much was about my husband, Pat, who died five years ago yesterday, but not all.  We discussed our plans for shaking the Jersey dust off our feet and taking off for less mundane parts.  Once this show is over, I'm going to concentrate on that.
Home before noon, I washed, chopped, and otherwise prepared a lot of the veggies from the farm and put them to simmer in the crock pot. Didn't do a lot productive otherwise until it was time to prepare for the show.
Hey, we get to do the show again tonight--yay!  Here, I must repeat my mantra: THERE'S NO PLACE ELSE I'D RATHER BE.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Fifth Anniversary And The Lesser Evil

Cut our walk short and left for my friend's about 8:00, got there at 9:00, and we were up at the farm by 10:15.  The largess included beets, shallots, collards, egg plant, squash, onions, and garlic, as well as lovely marigolds and sunflowers.  We spent about 45 minutes gathering and picking, then zipped away, divided the goodies, and I left, but not before making a date with her for today, which is the fifth anniversary of Pat's death.
Stopped for gas and got home about 11:15, so had time to get gas, clean up, change, apply make-up, and leave by 12:25 to pick up Mary Jo, two streets over.
Dennis died only five months ago, and widowhood is new territory for her, so it's very tough, but she's doing okay.  We went to The Old Causeway, where she had never been, and she liked it a lot. This is a seafood place, but MJ had the pulled pork and soda, I a fried oyster po' boy (irritating name, especially as probably no actual po' boy could afford one) and an IPA beer, exactly what I had the last time I was there.  In a rut, I guess.)
Of course, we talked and talked about Pat and Dennis.  I refrained from sticking a fork in her eye when she referred to the fact that Dennis had "passed."  ("Passed what, dammit, the school bus?" I always want to shout.  I hate euphemisms.)
We had plenty of laughs, too.  I picked up the check--just wanted to--and told her she could the next time, after that we'd go Dutch.
Got home before 3:00, so had time to put away the costume parts and other stuff I had strewed practically all over the house.  Studied my script to learn the words to the song choruses--geez, it's about time, we open tomorrow--and was set for our last rehearsal at 6:30 after picking up Aline.
It went well and was lots of fun.  We're all very exuberant, as well as "loose"--that is, don't necessarily adhere exactly to the script--and I think the audience will have a ball.
WIDER: I was wistfully hoping "St. Pete's For Peace," mentioned here, was a Catholic peace group, but that'll be the day.  I have yet to meet a committed Catholic who is also a true pacifist, although I'm pretty sure there are some.  Here's a good look at the "lesser thing" re St. Barack.  It mentions SPFP, which I joined on Facebook and will investigate further.

Thursday, August 21, 2014


Pulled a costume together--such as it is--and just did householdy stuff until time for rehearsal.
Picked Aline up for our "call" of 6:30 and did a lot of the songs, then the second (last) act.  It went very well, although my damn hat is unwieldy and uncomfortable.  Unbelievably--this outfit knows how to spend money--it was custom made by some milliner or costumer in NYC (for me to wear in Hedda Gabler) and the bill is still in the box: $175.  Considering the ribbons to tie it under the chin are too short and it's a bit off-center, not mention top-heavy, seems like highway robbery to me.
Asked Jim if I could bring a deck of cards, so Aline and I aren't just sitting at a table all night and looking at others.  He approved, and I will.  Took some pictures of cast members during rehearsal, so I can update LETCO's Facebook page.
Got an e-mail from former classmate Jeanne, who will be here for the reunion--such as that is--and will probably stay over at my place. I'm still not looking forward to it with much happy anticipation, but of course, I'll go; I never really considered doing otherwise.
Got some darling photos and a video of cutie-pie K. in a baby pool. He was a bit hesitant at first, but soon got into and splashed with abandon.
I've got some stuff going on today: Will leave early to go up to my friend's and hit the farm, then I'm picking Mary Jo F. up for lunch at 12:30; we meet again for rehearsal at 6:30.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

The Show and Torture

During our walk, Susan mentioned the pool closing party next month and said tickets were being sold for the last time on the eighteenth, yesterday.  Went to the clubhouse after breakfast, saw a few neighbors at their Stitch and Bitch meeting (they're all knitters, quilters, sewers, etc.), chatted and found out that yesterday was...
...yes, the nineteenth.  However, Jack D., activities chair, happened to come in and said, yeah, yeah, you can come, but this time I hope your check doesn't bounce...
...he's a card.
Before I left, talked with Howard R., who had been president of our board of trustees for many years.  He's a sharp guy and he and Diana are one of the few couples that come from the Philly area rather than north Jersey; they used to go to Atlantic City every year as kids.  We discussed the woeful economic times in A.C. and agreed there's a broader situation: the whole country seems to be slipping into something different from what we had always known. No empire lasts forever and ours, we believe, is going down.
Picked Aline up and we went to The Grapevine for lunch.  They've improved, I think, and we were satisfied.  To Wal-Mart after, where we both got this and that; dropped her off about 3:30, then picked her up again at seven.
Last night was tech rehearsal, so was a bit chaotic, but the show is shaping up very well (good thing, as we open the day after tomorrow).  Also, we're now in the venue where we're having the show, always a relief.  Set looks great and is at an angle, i.e., diagonally across a corner, an imaginative innovation.  We rehearsed several songs and went over the first act. Tonight: dress (I want to work up a great costume) and a full run.
WIDER:  Following is one of the best treatises about torture I've read.  What kind of filth are we bathing in when we pass this off as excusable for ANY reason?  It's disgusting and shameful.

Breakfast With Baby

Just an everyday day.  Cleaned the master bath, washing rugs, scrubbing shower, mopping floor and so on.  Went to Shop-Rite for chicken, made a big salad (why aren't I skinny as a rail?), and otherwise occupied myself with activities too boring to list.
Got a call from brother, Jim (Virginia).  Happily, he's well and his wife, Therese, is doing reasonably all right after surgery on her neck. She's out of rehab and can drive, but can't fully turn her head; not sure if this is something that will right itself in time or not.
Jim and I discussed the heart valve thing.  He's the oldest of my three brothers and had his replaced first (pig), about eight years ago. A few years later, youngest brother Frank (California) got a cow part at the Cleveland Clinic (both his sons are doctors and decided on there as the best place to have it).  Now, of course, Larry (Florida) is recovering from his bovine implant.  Oink, moo, moo.
High point of the day was Breakfast with Baby, which I've enjoyed several times before (it's evening for me, of course).  His Mommy and Daddy put a phone on the table (a phone that takes pictures--wow!) and precious little K. shows off his eating prowess (messy, but effective) while his adoring Nana interacts with him.  He now imitates others and what fun it was to clap, put my hands on my head, lean over, and have him follow suit.  He even initiated actions, saying "waw, waw, waw," touching his ears, and so on, and was delighted when I repeated.
He wasn't so delighted when Daddy tried to get him used to a bicycle helmet. They just bought a new bike with a seat for Baby and he must wear a helmet, but if yesterday was any indication, they'll have a war on their hands getting him to keep it on.  K. emphatically rejected it--doesn't like hats of any kind and this is hard plastic.  Let's hope he gets used to it eventually or excursions will be limited.
Aline called after; she saw The Book of Morman on Broadway on Sunday and I can't wait to hear all about it.  We discussed our date for today (we usually spend Tuesdays, her day off, together).  Will go to lunch, pick up a few things at Wal-Mart, then attend rehearsal tonight.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Fine and Fun

Now this was a fun day.  I left early to meet Betty in Margate for lunch; thought I'd be held up on the Parkway, but wasn't, so stopped at Mary H.'s.  Had a nice chat with her.  Jokingly asked if she was going to the reunion, but I knew she wouldn't, as she hates them. Said she went to the twenty-fifth and the fiftieth, so would attend every twenty-five years.  She pointed out that the only people from our class she wanted to see, she already did, and she had a point. Said there were too many people who considered high school the best part of their lives and thought what came after was mostly downhill.  Yep.
Left Mary's with a good fifteen minutes to get to Margate and the restaurant--plenty of time. However, I hadn't remembered the damn parking situation.  Drove around for more than twenty minutes, trying to find a spot; what a drag.  Finally parked back on Monmouth Avenue, several blocks from the restaurant.  Got there in an annoyed mood, vowing never again to meet somebody on the island in the summer for lunch...
...which was silly, and I simmered down quickly.  Had a rare, rare--yum!--hamburger and a Blue Moon.  We got to the theatre in plenty of time; show was at 2:00 and we had excellent seats on the third row aisle.
The show was terrific.  It was The Sound of Music, performed by congregants of Beth El Synagogue, many of whom are friends of mine from Players & Playwrights.  (P & P was founded by people from that temple.)  I never cared for the movie; I think the story line--heavily fictionalized, whether people know it or not--is saccharine and what's sung might realistically be called "McMusic."
This, however, was a stage play, of course, and we found it greatly enjoyable.  My friend, Dayle F., played a nun, but was just in the chorus.  It was double-casted (why don't we do that sometimes?), and my friend, Denise B., who has a fairly major supporting role in half, was to go on in the evening performance.  Sorry I didn't get to see her on stage, but she was there after and we chatted with her.
Left about 5:00 and happily, traffic was light.  All in all, a fine, fun day.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

P & P Meeting and High School

Got busy yesterday.  Stripped my bed, washed those sheets and another load, re-made it, showered, put on my new top, and high-tailed it down to Egg Harbor Township for our Players & Playwrights meeting.
It was there because somebody--I'm not sure whose responsibility this was--neglected to reserve either the Ventnor or the Margate library branches.  I can't understand why this isn't done for the whole year: every third Saturday from 1 to 4 pm, but somehow it wasn't; last month, we met at Bernice's in Margate.  It's a pain in the rear not to have a public meeting place.
The traffic going south on the Parkway was beyond belief.  I sat for a good twenty minutes halted in a long, long line trying to exit to the various beaches.  However, I got to Rachel's in time.
We read the first act of my Fatal Family Reunion, which I explained was a dinner theatre murder mystery, and it went very well. I took the part of Aunt Barbarella Corpuscle-Crenshaw myself.
The critiques were generally favorable and I got some useful suggestions, too.  I plan to revise and bring the second act next time.
We also read Joe L.'s short play.  Joe is over 90, a retired oncologist, and can no longer type; he dictates to an assistant.  His play was fair, but not great.  He's very prolific and what's funny is that he usually includes a lot of sex in his plays.  We remarked on that and he cheerfully admitted it.
The other play was a tedious re-write by Jim L.  Very slight, if you ask me and, frankly, my mind wandered while it was being read. He may or may not ever get it done and I don't care one way or the other.
I found it annoying that Bobbi and Alexis walked in at about 1:10, but at least we hadn't quite started. However, Linda came a full 45 minutes late, along with the man she had brought--late--last time, too.   I'm not clear on whether he's a relative or she's his caretaker or something, but I find it hard to be patient with people who are chronically tardy.
Good meeting, though.  Our leader, John P., is having one of his plays performed in November at Johns Hopkins.  I'm toying with the idea of possibly going south for it.  My nephew, Patrick, is an otolarynologist there.
Met Betty after for early dinner at Applebee's and my pal, Louise S., came along.  I'm not a big fan of the restaurant; had salmon, which was so-so, but enjoyed the social aspects.
Got home to find a message from brother Frank, Patrick's father, and I called him back.  He wanted to ask me about having the Fitzsimmons girls and Betty for lunch; he went to school with Margaret Mary and he'd like to get back in touch with her. I'll send her phone and e-mail address.
We talked about my upcoming reunion, which I'm still not sure I'll attend, although I got a message from classmate Jeanne P., urging me to.  I mentioned to Frank that high school was about the most miserable time of my life, although I don't think others realized that.  Frank said he felt the same way.  At one of his reunions, he said, a classmate stood up and said they were the best years of his life. And who was that?
It was Jim "Mo" McHale, late brother of my friend and fellow blogger, Pat R.  Mo was a good basketball player, also tall and handsome, and I assume popular, which is the be-all and end-all of high school life, so I guess he was in a different strata.
As for Frank and me--we survived it, but would never want to go back.

V. and S. and Assassination

Various and sundry.  Went to stores in The Big City (Manahawkin) and got--well, various and sundry.  Called Mary Jo F., who lost her husband a few months ago (he and I had been in the drama club together) and we made a date for lunch next week. Betty called; I'll meet her at Applebee's for early supper after the P & P meeting today.
Made a big salad for lunch.  Trimmed, washed, sliced, and diced Swiss chard, onions, and garlic and stowed in it fridge for dinner; stirred fried it with hot dog "coins" and a little American cheese and it was tasty.
Late in the day, old school friend, Betty Mae McG. W. called.  Her present residence is an "independent" (or "assisted"; can't recall which) living facility in northern California.  She has some vision and other physical problems, so she needs to be there.  She had had a good-sized home, but is reconciled to being where she is.  We talked about the fact that I, too, will be moving from a pleasant, roomy--if not palatial--home to a small apartment.  I'm not sorry about that decision--family trumps all and I'd live in a rooming house if I had to--but I may look back on it with a little sigh.
Betty Mae recently lost her sister, who was only thirteen months older than she and they were very close.  Two husbands and a son also "preceded her in death," as the obits say.
We discussed the upcoming sixtieth class reunion for our alma mater, good ol'--or bad ol,' depending on how you look at it--Holy Spirit High School, in Atlantic City, New Jersey.  We agreed it was one of the miserable times in our lives (although it didn't seem that way from the outside).  In my case, with a few notable exceptions, I don't care to associate with my fellow grads.  Don M., for instance, is a religious fanatic and never lets one forget one is destined for hell unless one is on exactly the same cockamamie track he is.  Many of the women, conservative, righteous, soulfully Catholic, and yearning for the old days when they wore pointy bras and the colored knew their place, are such crashing bores it's a chore to interact with them. Will I go?  Dunno, as I seem to have misplaced the invitation, sent--of course, why would anyone think otherwise?--via snail mail.  Betty Mae wants me to report back on it, so maybe I'll ask Betty for the address.
Maybe?  Who am I kidding?  The day may come when I'm able to resist such an occasion, but it ain't here yet.  Sure, sure, I'll go and then kick myself, maybe.  
WIDER: I don't know why I continue to be so shocked and disheartened by items like the following.  I must remember to keep repeating, "this is the way it is, this is the new normal, this is the way it's supposed to be, now just ignore it and shut up." 

Friday, August 15, 2014

Farm, Rehearsal, and K.

Skipped the walk and got up to my friend's house by a bit after 9:00. Rode with her to the farm and we got onions, tomatoes, Swiss chard, watermelon, garlic, and squash.  Divided it back at her house, then she and hubby left for a family (his) reunion, and I drove home.
Spent time preparing some of the veggies, with other chores, and on the computer.  Later went--well, somewhere or other, but so mundane an activity, I don't even remember.  Picked Aline up for rehearsal at 7:00.
Last night, we just "read lines," but it was so much fun. We added and modified a bit--opening night is a week from today, so we have plenty of time (ha!)--and had a ball. Desi seemed in a better mood than usual; he was a bear all through Hedda, which may reflect the directorship burden.  He suggested a slight change in my delivery of a particular line, and it was a good idea.  He did it respectfully, with an implied compliment, too, and I thanked him.
Neither Tonya (taking daughter Emma to college in Texas), Dave (also out of town), Bob, (dunno), Brittany (ditto) nor the mayor (ditto) were there, so Jim filled in for all.  Great hilarity all around.
As we finished up (before 9:00, which always pleases me), we started talking about the fact we have Surflight Theatre for November.  We discussed a radio show play, which met with great approval and excitement, especially by Jim and me.  I recall seeing one years ago by the theatre arts department at Rider and it was terrific fun and so enthusiastically received.  It demands little in the way of sets and hearkens back to the forties, the heyday of radio. I love the idea and definitely want to be involved.
I'm late with this deathless prose, as I just spent a good portion of an hour viewing adorable little K. in various videos.  I had requested more--I really feel I'm there when I see him--and his parents were kind enough to promptly respond.  Loved seeing the little angel--a full year old in less than a month!--eating a meal, playing with a balloon, then books, and especially, having fun with Daddy.  How he laughs and what a lucky little boy to be born to such parents!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Fatal Family Reunion and Corruption

Spent a lot of the day editing, revising, and generally shaping up the first act of my Fatal Family Reunion.  Sent it, along with an explanation (it's a murder mystery dinner theatre, so pretty broad and outlandish), title page, and cast list to John P., our director of Players & Playwrights.  It will be read at the meeting on Saturday and I want to play Aunt Barbarella Corpuscle-Crenshaw myself.
Roasted chicken pieces and had them for a meal I often eat about 4:00 or whenever I feel like it; guess it could be called "linner." Trimmed and otherwise prepared squash and onions and popped them in the slow cooker; stowed in fridge.
Called Miami brother, Larry, to extend best wishes for his valve replacement surgery tomorrow.  My other two brothers, Jim and Frank, had the same procedure several years ago, and came out fine.  Larry said they gave him a choice of a pig or cow valve and he chose cow.  Guess he didn't want to be associated with a pig--he's had a weight problem most of his life--but I told him now he might start giving milk.
Drove to Manahawkin to pick up a few items, then down Dock Street to the water.  We had had heavy rains yesterday and the road was partly flooded, so I didn't park.
Will go up to my friend's shortly and we'll pick at the farm, then she and her hubby will attend a family reunion (his side) in the Catskills over the weekend.
Rehearsal tonight at the H.'s tonight; looking forward to when we can get into the Community Center--I think, Tuesday.
WIDER:  How people can still put their faith and trust in any elected "representatives" is just beyond belief.  Can't wait to get this add-on operational--devised, incidentally, by a 16-year-old high school kid:

Lunch And Rehearsal Yet Again

We finally got to The Old Causeway for lunch. Picked Aline up at our usual--12:30--and traveled to Bay Avenue, Manahawkin, under cloudy skies.
Susan had asked me to give her a full report on the place, as it's her turn shortly to host her dinner group.  I can tell her the food was excellent; I had a "'po' boy" (fried oyster sandwich), which was delish washed down with a cold one on draft.  Service was friendly and efficient, although the place was packed.  Nice atmosphere, also, without too many cliche-ridden decorations (the nets and oars and lobster traps in most of these nautical-themed places leave me cold), and big windows looking out over the marsh.  The only negative, it seemed to me, was that the place was rather noisy--not, though, due to my pet peeve, loud elevator music, but simply with people talking, so it wasn't a big minus.
After, we explored a bit, then drove to the SOCH Thrift Store, which I had enriched with my treasures a few days prior.  Aline wanted to look for a top to wear in the show. Tried a few on, but didn't find any. I then took her to Unshredded Nostalgia to see the fabulous room after room of antiques and "collectibles"--every item imaginable--over which she oohed and aahed.
After--by this time, it was pouring--I took her to my place to see the Little Precious on the whistle-blowing video, plus some of the American Jewish Life newspapers, for which I wrote so long ago.
Took her home about 4:00, then jumped in the shower, dressed, and drove back to pick her up for rehearsal.
Because it was raining, we met inside, concentrating on the second act.  It was great fun to sing in the chorus and back up the soloists; all are just terrific.  The show includes "an unknown stranger" and the guy who's going to play it (a very small part) is our mayor, Art Midgley.  He came last night and gamely, if woodenly, recited his lines.  I thought it was a stroke of genius on Jim's part to invite him to be in the show; not only should it--we hope--draw other township officials, but it'll be funny and cute to have the well-known mayor of Little Egg Harbor Township on board.
Art himself seems the quintessential small-town official.  Short, chubby, and bland as only a small-town official can be, he's about 60 or so, and puts me in mind of one of those old-time character actors who used to make a good living in Capra movies.
Still raining when we got home, but it was before 9:00, which was fine by me.  My wine and chips, then bed, and slept like a babe.  

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Old Papers, Rehearsal, and Robin Wiliams

Hauled out two big boxes that have been moldering--maybe literally--in the garage for years, and before that in the basement on Lower Ferry.  One contains newspapers and a few magazines headlining "historic" events, such as Nixon's resignation, a man on the moon, the assassinations of the Kennedys, and so on.  Would love to sell them, but somebody told me those kinds of publications are the ones people save, so weren't uncommon.  Think I'll ask Jim at Unshredded Nostagia.
The other box contains copies of American Jewish Life, for which I wrote for years when I lived in Ewing.  (The publisher, Sam Jacobs, lived next door to us in Ewing.)  Read some of my articles, and they're okay, I guess; similar to the profiles I now write for The Breeze.
Aline was working until 6:00 and, as we had arranged, I picked her up at the bank where she got off the bus and went directly to rehearsal.  Went through the whole production, including the songs, and it's shaping up very nicely.
After dropping A. off, I didn't get home until 9:30 and, for the first time in several months, I had Chardonnay with my chips.  I had been substituting iced tea--didn't want to get in the wine-every-night habit--but now that I've opened the bottle, I may continue, as I feel no ill effects
WIDER: The outpouring of shock and dismay at Robin Williams' death could have been predicted, of course.  He was famous and rich and accomplished; we all felt we kind of "knew" him. I think that gives the lie to the oft-repeated pretense that all lives are equally precious.  Surely not.  What about that four-year-old blasted to bits in Gaza?  What about that semi-literate bum "accidentally" strangled by a police officer?  What about the rabbi swept away in the Nazi Holocaust? What about the slave in 1820 Mississippi? Are they worth as much as Robin Williams?  If so, where are the solemn words of grief for them?  

Monday, August 11, 2014

Not A Lot And Bombs Away

Before our walk, I brought Susan half of the big watermelon I got from the farm.  She was pleased, as her in-laws are renting a house on Long Beach Island, and she'll take it there.
Did lots of wash, put together a salad, prepared beets and other veggies from the farm, and otherwise completed chores.
Worked for several hours on the first act of Fatal Family Reunion, which I intend to have read on Saturday. I'm annoyed with myself because I have several different versions and am not sure I dug out and am honing the best.  Also, this is a murder mystery dinner show--not the usual with Players & Playwrights and don't know how it will be received.
Recorded my "cue lines" for Tony and the Heiress and rehearsed.  I should be off-book for rehearsal tonight.
Took a drive to Forked River to clear my head in the afternoon and to Acme after dinner.  Betty called and we chatted, making a tentative date for early dinner on Saturday; I'll be in the area for the P & P meeting.  Other than that, not a whole lot went on.
WIDER:  "When countless innocent people are facing a massacre, and when we have the ability to help prevent it—the United States can’t just look away," the President said. "That’s not who we are. We’re Americans.  We act.  We lead.  And that’s what we’re going to do on that mountain."
The Dear One was, of course, talking about those sitting ducks in Gaza. Bombs will be dropped on Tel Aviv, in order to save the Palestinians from the on-going slaughter....  
Oh, wait just a minute--I've got the wrong innocent people.  It's Iraq's innocent people we're bombing, I guess.  Well, what the Hell; there are innocent people all over the world just waiting for us to come and bomb them.  I mean, bomb their oppressors. That is, bomb them and their oppressors.  Or something.... BOMBS AWAY!

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Fiasco and Capitalism

Okay, I made fifteen dollars.  And that doesn't count the gas it took to drive to Manahawkin.
All that work; all that hard work; all that moving and lifting and packing and unpacking and arranging and then doing most of it in reverse a few hours later, netted me just fifteen measly bucks.
I got there about 6:30 and my friend came shortly thereafter.  We set up--her SUV and my car were jammed with my "stuff"--and settled down to wait for the hordes of customers.  Ho, ho, very funny, everybody was probably at the beach.
Anyway, to cut it short, we packed up about noon and went directly down Bay Avenue to the SOCH Thrift Store, where we left most of my priceless treasures. They included--and this was a wrench--the bassinet where all my babies slept when they came home from the hospital.
Said goodbye to my friend and we both drove home.  I admit I still have some things I decided I don't want to part with--yet--but most of the stuff is gone.
Actually, even though it was a financial fiasco, it was fun and I'm glad we did it.  We chatted with a number of fellow sellers, enjoyed the interaction with "customers," and generally had a pleasant day. Also, we didn't stay until it was over--it closes at 3:00--so didn't have time to consider it too much a drag.
Took a drive in the evening, then enjoyed video calls in quick succession from Mike, who is en familie in Hong Kong--precious little Violet was the only other one up--and the big eleven-month-old in Tokyo.  Prepared lemon pepper chicken for the freezer and watched television for almost an hour after.  I hadn't watched for several weeks and got out of the habit; didn't miss it at all.
WIDER:  From our earliest years, we've been fed the line that capitalism is the best possible financial system.  Oh, it is--for the upper class.  Here's a simple illustration:

Saturday, August 09, 2014

Flea Market

Drove up to the Manahawkin Flea Market to get the lay of the land. Discovered that the fee is $10 and one provides one's own tables. There's no shade, either, which may discourage shoppers, darn it. Went to Shop-Rite and got a rotisserie chicken and a few other things.  Had the drumsticks and other stuff for lunch and will slice down the breast meat for a sandwich for tomorrow.
Went to the bank to get different sized bills; I already had coins, as I save my change.
Later in the afternoon, I packed up the car.  The truck, the back seat, and the passenger seat are completely filled.  Put the two folding tables in, also, and assembled the other things I want to take, such as jacket, sun hat, table cloths and so on.
I hope there's a big crowd there, that's all I have to say.  My friend will meet me at the place and I'll sure have a lot of stuff to sell.  Let's hope it's going to be worth the time and effort...
I'll soon find out; I'm off to Manahawkin.

Friday, August 08, 2014

A Variety

Called my sister-in-law, Regina, to see if she got the postcard her husband sent mine in 1943.  I had sent it to her after going through the trove of letters Pat had kept from so many years ago.  She had gotten it and enjoyed showing it to family.  We chatted and I promised to get up there again someday.
Otherwise, made a big salad and put broccoli, onions, and seasonings in the crock pot.  Assembled a few more things for the flea market, to which I'll go tomorrow.  My friend came about 1:00 and loaded up her SUV with same.  Geez, I hope this wasn't one of my why-did-I-ever-think-this-was-a-good-idea schemes, but oh well, now I'm committed.  I'll spend a lot of today preparing, also.
We had planned that I'd meet Aline up at the library, as she was working until 4:00, but driving there, I saw her walking and picked her up.
We rehearsed only the singing parts of the show and, luckily, did the ones with choruses first, so A. and I were released at 8:30 or so. Dropped off my partner in crime and went home to have another late supper of spaghetti and sauce with Swiss chard.

Thursday, August 07, 2014

The Old Causeway

Gave Susan the menu I had picked up on Tuesday and, yes indeed, we were at the wrong restaurant.  Determined to find The Old Causeway, I drove down there--had to pick up meds at Wal-Mart, anyway--and here, it's right next to Mud City, which we mistook for it. I went in, asked about their large-party facility, and picked up a menu for Susan.  Looks like a nice place, and Aline and I will go there on our next outing.
Home, I trimmed and stir-fried Swiss chard with garlic and onions,  and stowed it in the fridge.  Did the household chores bit, showered and changed, and picked A. up for rehearsal.  It went well--I have a good, happy feeling about this one.  I think the audience is going to love it, especially after the dreary/unhappy marriage/unrequited love/despair/suicide frolic with Hedda Gabler.
We rehearsed only dialogue last night, but will concentrate on the music tonight.  I'll bring my various hats as possibles for the other characters; as for me, I'll wear the Aunt Julia one from Hedda.
Added spaghetti sauce to the stir-fry and had some for a late supper when I got home.

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Seafood and Corporate Greed

Picked up Aline at the Stafford library in Manahawkin and we went to the newly-opened The Old Causeway for lunch--
At least, I think it's called "The Old Causeway."  The wait staff were all wearing shirts with "Mud City" on them and a sign on the roof said the same.  It's out in the middle of the swampy area before the bay on, appropriately enough, Bay Avenue.  I wasn't terribly hungry, so ordered what was listed as an appetizer--three each of oysters, clams on the half shell, and you-peel shrimp. You can't beat fresh seafood at the Jersey shore, say I; it was so fresh and so good.
Took Aline to my house after.  She oohed and ahhed over the new videos of Booful Baby, then went next door to Frank's, as they were distributing flyers about Tony and the Heiress around town.  Frank then dropped her off at her house; I picked her up for rehearsal a few hours later.
We did the second act and included the singing part--hey, it was terrific.  I forgot what a good voice Jim has; in addition to his solo, Neil, Brittany, and Mary sang.  Desi was supposed to sing, also, but he fell asleep and, when aroused, said he had to go home.
Aline and I both think Desi is fading.  He's over eighty and seems to out of it a lot of the time.  He plays "a curmudgeon" (type-casting at its finest) and has only a few lines, but delivers them in a vague, distracted manner.  He left early, too.
We broke up at 8:30--fine by me--but will rehearse tonight and tomorrow night, also.  I want to be off-book tonight and, considering the few lines I have, that shouldn't be difficult.
WIDER:  Could this be the opening gun in the battle to wrest this country from the clutches of the wealthy?  I fervently hope so:

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Lunch and Tony

Things are looking up.  I called Betty to see if she could meet for lunch, as I wanted to go the Produce Junction for a few items.  She could and we did.  Stopped at P.J. first for broccoli, lettuce, and a pretty mum plant I couldn't resist, then met at Outback.
Had a good lunch and better talk, then parted.  Went to the sixty-nine cent store for a few things, then home.
Checked at our library for the new (-ish; 2013) Johnny Carson bio, but they didn't have it.  I noted it was at the Stafford branch, so drove there in the evening and picked it up.
Aline called.  As is our habit on Tuesdays, I'll pick her up at that branch, where she works (not sure why she had to go in, as it's her day off), then we'll go to Old Causeway, the new restaurant I've been wanted to try.  A. asked if we could go back to my house after, as she wants to go with Frank-Next-Door to distribute flyers for Tony and the Heiress.  That will work out, as I'll just shower and change for rehearsal while she's here.
I'll show her the new videos of Adorable Baby Boy I received lately, as she's crazy about him.  In one, he's blowing a whistle--very proud of himself--and in another, he waves bye-bye, a momentous occasion I love to watch over and over.

Monday, August 04, 2014

Still a Lull and Mighty Dull

The lull continues.  Did several loads of wash and other household chores.  Drove up to Manahawkin to get two more pair of "close" glasses.  It's still incredible to me that I can pick them up at the dollar store; when I was myopic, my glasses cost roughly $450 each and I had to wear them all the time.
Bought lettuce and made a big salad for lunch.  Printed out the revised Tony script with most of my additions included.
Other than that, just everyday householdy stuff went on.

Sunday, August 03, 2014


Yesterday wasn't exactly an earth-shaker.  In truth, I did very little and nothing either creative or productive.
It was pouring, but of course, we walked anyway; had to change when I got home, as I was soaked, even with umbrella.  The rain soon stopped, but it was still overcast and gloomy.
Drove to the Shop-Rite in Forked River. There are closer ones, but I was just wasting time.  Got a few items and drove home.
Had leftover spaghetti and meatballs for lunch then, overwhelmed with sleepiness, lay down on the couch and napped for several hours.
Puttered around with this and that, and took a drive later, but all in all--nuthin' much.

Saturday, August 02, 2014

Lunch, Tony, And Sweetie Pie

Went with Susan and Walter to The Breeze lunch at Tuckerton Grille.  We were a little late and the only seats left were at the end of the table next to Georgette S., whose eyes bulge out.  I can't remember what that might signify--high blood pressure?--but it's a bit disconcerting.
The rest of the editorial staff was there, too, as well as "feature writer" Norma H., whose pieces are interminably long and exceedingly dull.  Anyhow, it was a nice enough lunch.
Spent a lot of the rest of the day re-writing and adding to Aline's and my parts in Tony and the Heiress, then sent them off to Mary to be incorporated into the script.
I was delighted to get a phone call from Tristan--seven years old today--thanking me for the birthday gift I sent via Amazon (a remote controlled metal bug-type thing).
In the evening, I was doubly delighted to get a video call from the little dynamo, K., in Tokyo, so I was "there" while he had breakfast (they're twelve hours ahead).  He now pulls himself up and walks all around the furniture with ease, sometimes holding on with just one hand.  Very soon now, he'll let go and walk on his own--what a sweetie pie!

Friday, August 01, 2014

Farm And Rehearsal

It was pickin' day and I drove up to the farm early.  Got potatoes, onions, tomatoes, blueberries, squash, beets, Swiss chard, and herbs.  Stopped at my friend's on the way back, divided the produce (two-thirds for her, one for me), and left hers on the porch.
Home, I worked on my additions to our parts in Tony and the Heiress, adding some funny bits.  All are subject to director Jim's approval, of course.
Aline called to ask that I pick her up for rehearsal at the library, as she would be coming from work. Fine by me, as it's closer, anyway. We had agreed to meet a bit early, so we could go over my changes and we did, then took off for the H.'s.  We rehearsed in their "barn," really a kind of out-building on their nicely-landscaped, several-acre estate, where Jim had constructed the set.
Just did the first act and Jim was very receptive when I said I had added to Aline's and my parts.  We did two of the new shticks, which I was pleased Jim and the others liked.  Mary asked that I send her them, as she's re-doing the script because of Kevin's departure.  Tonya--no actress, I'm afraid, but she has a good voice--has been written in and all-in-all, it's shaping up okay.