Saturday, July 04, 2009

You Go, Girl!

Men are fine. No, really. But don't you love this? It is a shop window in NYC. Saks Fifth Avenue, I think. They posed the wedding dresses on bald models with little plastic cake top grooms. I think big weddings are stupid, of course We went to a wedding celebration, post-wedding, at a barbecue joint last week. That was nice.

Sometimes men are so pompous, though. Not many of them here in the U.S. of A. Some, though. Do I really care who the governor of S.C. thinks is his 'soul mate?' I do not.This pomposity is rampant in Iran, and in all those countries where religions have told the males that they are the chosen sex, chosen by God. I, for one, vote no on 'reaching out' to a country where women are chattel. Unclench your fist AND free your women!

Don't know where that came from except that all the celebrity death nonsense makes me wonder if we understand what is happening around the world and then, of course, I chose this picture for this post. And it's just frivolous and fun. So am I serious or not. You decide. Other people have trouble telling sometimes.

I haven't written anything longer than a tweet in a while. One post from our NYC tour. A vacation, catching up on parent duty when we returned, catching up on errands and such and, I must admit, all that tennis on TV...I've felt really busy.

I really did enjoy New York. We did a lot of eating and activities, but there was a lot more that I wanted to do. Highlights? OK, here goes.
  • We got to eat at some favorite places but there just wasn't time or appetite for all the eating we would have liked! Old favorites Artisanal, DB Bistro Moderne, Orsay were visited. Greek fish restaurant Avra was right next door to the place where we stayed. Ate there twice, once entertaining six diverse friends for lunch (playwright, construction expert, computer expert, financial expert, assistant on the Letterman show and technology teacher). Discovered a new place, Commerce, in a precious part of the Village (on Commerce near the intersection of Bleeker/Seventh). They do well with parts (offal) and fish and have a great vibe in a historic little space near the Cherry Lane theater. Our last night there we ate a Giambelli's, a very traditional NY Italian joint we found in the neighborhood for a meal after an afternoon matinee and some packing. We had a nightcap at the Waldorf bar that night, too. Expensive, buy hey.... We ate a pub lunch on the day we celebrated Bloomsday.
  • We really got to see a lot of cabaret this trip which was fine with me because I love sipping a cocktail and listening to classic old tunes. Marilyn Maye did a Johnny Mercer tribute at the Metropolitan Room. We went to Cherry Lane Theater to see Jim Caruso, Billy Stritch, Klea Blackhurst, Christine Ebersole and an up and coming jazz guitarist, Aaron Weinstein, do another tribute to Mercer. The book is big and two nights of Mercer was fine. At the Metropolitan Room we drank cocktails, but the second show was a theater setting and so we discovered the aforementioned Commerce almost next door after for apps and drinks after. (We returned for another meal, so impressed were we.) We also went to the Blue Note (first time I'd been there) and heard Jane Monheit. Enjoyed the people we met at these places, too.
  • We went to the Metropolitan Museum and saw the Francis Bacon exhibit and the fashion exhibit and another special exhibit of pictures and painting from the '70's I think. Also went to the International Center for Photography for a show of Avedon fashion photography. We wandered the MOMA, too. That's just an obligatory stop for us on most of our trips.
  • We saw "Hair" on Broadway. It was entertaining enough but the relevance seemed to be gone from it as it was sung and acted by youngsters who would have to volunteer to get sent to war.
  • We really enjoyed visiting with our friend Barbara Hammond. She joined us for the lunch at Avra (she is the playwright mentioned above), we caught up with her at the Ulysses reading (see below) and we had a theater evening with her. Dinner at Joe Allen and a play, "August: Osage County," that left all three of us nonplussed. I was expecting a serious play with some humor from the down home circumstances in the 'provinces' of Oklahoma. There was more farce than I expected and little subtlety in using dramatic devices like family conflicts, unexpected parentage, etc. It was great having a New York theater evening with a NY playwright. We hope to be able to go back some time and see one of her plays produced.
  • Our original impetus for going to NYC at this time was for Bloomsday. The event at the downtown pub Ulysses' Folk House was so much fun. We got there early, ate the carvery lunch, drank a bit. Weather was rainy and blustery but the reading in the outdoor part of the pub on Stone Street went well with the weather holding off. Guinness had a big ice sculpture and they were giving away oysters on the half shell and oyster 'shooters' that careered through the sculpture to land in a cup with sauce (giving them an extra chill and some drama). The pub gave away little plates of gorgonzola and glasses of red wine, too. (Leopold Bloom's pub lunch at Davy Bryne's in the novel was a glass of burgundy and a gorgonzloa sandwich.) We met two Chrises there and they decided on the spot to join in the reading and did a bang-up job. We stayed so long downtown that we were a little late to the more formal reading at Symphony Space. But it was only about a half hour in when we arrived at that Upper West Side theater. We stayed until the end which was a complete reading of Molly Bloom's soliloquy. (You go girl, indeed. Yes.) A lot of the segments were devoted to the parts of the novel referencing food in this performance which was cool given our affinity for food.
  • We had lunch one day with some kids we met in Austin at the (sadly now closed) Taste Select Wines. They hope to move to Austin. They are young and smart and have been battered by the economy.
  • If I could transport one thing from NYC to Austin it would be Artisanal Fromagerie/Bistro/Wine Bar. Just a place to get a basket of those gougeres would be thrilling. Cheese puff doesn't begin to describe it.
So yeah we had good luck with the trip to NYC and good luck coming and going on Jet Blue. (Except the TVs at our seats didn't work on the way home, but they sent us a $15 credit each so if we fly them again within the year, there is that.) I wish we could go somewhere in July especially since the temps promise to melt us here, but I'm also a little glad we are staying put and getting some things organized. We are, aren't we? Still I want to travel more. That was the idea of retiring and of downsizing. Wasn't it? There had to be some point.

LB and Barbara Hammond at Ulysses' Folk House.

Yeah, so here I am blogging. I'm sure not many are reading and this rambling doesn't induce me to put a link to this on facebook or twitter. No, better to natter away in this lonely corner.

1 comment:

Bitsy Parker said...

Until this moment, I had never heard of Bloomsday. Now I know!