Thursday, April 30, 2015

a lovely, inspiring film

Here is Seymour Bernstein in the Steinway (store) concert hall and outside we
see NYC bustling by. Yesterday we saw the most wonderful movie about
this elderly genius piano player. The movie is simply called Seymour and
it is currently playing down at the tiny Opera Plaza. What a tremendous
and life-affirming experience this was for us. I don't do it justice, so I just
ask that you see this as soon as possible and enjoy, enjoy...

Wednesday, April 29, 2015 likes the spices

We took Ceci to Holy Kitchen on 24th Street last night and I forgot
my iPhone (horrors!) so I didn't get a photo of her or any of the
dishes. (The above is a stock photo.) We did have chicken, lamb and
Plottie has taught us about the gobi (cauliflower and potatoes) so
we enjoyed that too. They were busier than usual and for that we
are thankful as the restaurant business is not easy.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

even better than expected

Usually when something is over-hyped I under-react, but such was NOT
the case last Sunday night when we spent a glorious evening at the
Orpheum Theatre. The Book of Mormon is a joy because it is so full
of energy and the humor is beyond belief. From the first symphony of
doorbells ("Hello!") to the last poignant "Tomorrow is a Latter Day!"
we are reminded that yes, we are our brothers' keepers and part of our
job on this earth is to help the less fortunate.

Along this vein, what is the best way to donate to the victims in Nepal?

Oh, and now we are huge fans of Goldstar. We saved a bundle and our
seats up in the mezzanine were just fine. Go - this is an unforgettable

Monday, April 27, 2015

sunday lunch

I met dear Dancing Jen yesterday and we a good heart-to-heart over
our salads. When she ordered iced tea the waiter suggested the vodka
martini with strawberries and we declined. Kuleto's is a fine and
quiet spot for girl talk - then I scurried home to get ready for The
Book of Mormon which I will review tomorrow.  ***** (5)

Sunday, April 26, 2015

oh, Marge, thank you

The scent of apple cake

My mother cooked as drudgery
the same fifteen dishes round
and round like a donkey bound
to a millstone grinding dust.
My mother baked as a dance,
the flour falling from the sifter
in a rain of fine white pollen.
The sugar was sweet snow.
The dough beneath her palms
was the warm flesh of a baby
when they were all hers before
their wills sprouted like mushrooms.
Cookies she formed in rows
on the baking sheets, oatmeal,
molasses, lemon, chocolate chip,
delights anyone could love.
Love was in short supply,
but pies were obedient to her
command of their pastry, crisp
holding the sweetness within.
Desserts were her reward for endless
cleaning in the acid yellow cloud
of Detroit, begging dollars from
my father, mending, darning, bleaching.
In the oven she made sweetness
where otherwise there was none.

Marge Piercy

Made in Detroit
Alfred A. Knopf

Saturday, April 25, 2015

a Saturday off!

So down we went to the Farmers' Market at the Embarcadero. We met Ginger
for lunch at Plant (Pier 3) and I tasted turkey bacon for the first time ever
and it was just fine. Then G. and I sat on a bench for a couple of hours (with
our lattes) to let the famous San Francisco Bay calm our souls. Such a nice
day and just what all doctors (and even politicians) everywhere might order for
every single person. Sit, talk, appreciate.

Friday, April 24, 2015

simply The Best

Last night we watched the 16th episode of Rectify, streamed from the
Flix® because we don't get the Sundance channel where it originated.
Two seasons over and already I await the third. Set and filmed in
Georgia, about a murder and a man (forefront) who was in prison for
twenty years and then DNA other than his turns up. A family full of
secrets - just like real life. Great plot, rich characters. You'll see.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

and there was

Husbando and I didn't expect too much from this play by Kwame Kwei-
Armah - he grew up in the Southall area of London, the son of immigrant
parents from Grenada. Then walking in, hearing Nat King Cole, seeing
the colorful West Indian front room setting and then Let There Be Love
unfolded and by the end of the second act I was scrabbling around for
my Kleenex®. Even though the understudy played the main character
yesterday, he was terrific and so was the play. A black father-daughter
and a white Polish caretaker - three amazing and believable people in
this story of love and redemption. I say, see this if you possible can.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Tiapos 2015

We had a FULL house on April 2nd and that's unususal for this group
of writers. I'm glad I'm using these pictures here because when they were
emailed to us two key figures were missing for me: Eric (top photo, bottom
right) and Jane here with her martini glass in the lower right. It's not
normally female vs. male like this, well maybe in some ways...

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

three pups

Back at the SPCA which is always filled with dogs and pups. There is
still so much interest in the Korean dogs that I suggested they change
the back stories of our basic American canines who have been with
us for too long. The above three are brand new and adorable.

Monday, April 20, 2015


This Botticelli to Braque (from the National Galleries of Scotland) exhibit
opened March 7th and I haven't been working at the deYoung at all, but
I did yesterday,  and appreciated it for the first time. I will return. There
are fifty-five paintings including Sargent (above), Monet, Degas,Vermeer
and Gauguin. It was a bit crowded because it was the last Bouquets to
Art day, and by now I'm used to solo gallery visits, so the show is back on
my To Do list. Closing May 31st - visit this if you can.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

the old, the new

Top - I loved the many venerable homes in and around downtown San Diego.
Bottom - view from the brand new nine story Library where Tanya works.
(And thus ends my trip notes - thank you!)

Saturday, April 18, 2015

a bit of Balboa Park

an Atheist booth!

a convention of big, black dogs

San Diego celebration too - not just SF
A week ago today I spent many happy hours in Balboa Park. Above are a
few of my discoveries that sunny day in the park. Why is that I can sit and
observe when on vacation but at home I always have to be "doing"?

Friday, April 17, 2015

San Diego scenes

my hotel was located in Little Italy

the Harborview Hotel (with my view of parking lot in back)

gentrification happens
I think my batteries are now fully recharged and I actually started writing
again this morning. I have been working all week but today is a day off
to catch up with Costco, the gym, the nap and then I have class tonight.
That is the shot in the arm that Ellen and I need currently. I now have a
new character named Lori who used to live in San Diego.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

finally, Ms. Mantel

I told my friend Frances that I was a little intimidated by Hilary
Mantel (who knows so much) and she suggested that I start with
Every Day is Mother's Day written back in 1988 (I think). I put
the book on my LindaKindle2® and have been reading it slowly
and enjoying it tremendously. It is dark, funny and tragic and very
well-written, so I'll try some more of Hilary's writing now.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

inside Petco Park

Despite the fact that the Giants are not exactly on a winning streak, I had
a great time at the beautiful stadium Saturday night. The dome in the distance
is the new Library where Tanya works and it is impressive and welcoming.
She took me on a quick tour before the game. Then the sun goes down and
the lights of the city come on and it's still warm in San Diego - very special.
See the orange square in the bottom photo? That is an electric SF logo! Sorry
the photo is so poor, but I knew you would want to see that. And of course
the location is ideal, right downtown where the action is.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

early dinner in San Diego

Queenstown Public House

Tanya and Scott
One of the nice surprises about leaving one's beloved San Francisco is the
fact that other cities have reasonable restaurant prices and such was the
case at the Queenstown on Columbia Street. I had walked by this house
with wide and shady porches (on the front and side) on a previous walk.
We three had our pre-baseball dinner there on Saturday. Burgers, fries and
and a "Mexicoke" for me. I did love all the walking in San
hills, mostly wide sidewalks and surprisingly few other walkers. Some
small cottages and big old houses amidst tall city buildings - I'll save
those pix for later. I have a busy work week starting today because it's
the dreaded Bouquets to Art - thankfully I'm out at the Legion where it
will be business as usual. Quiet business, I hope.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Gravity and Grace

Yesterday morning I walked a few blocks down to the Museum of Contemporary
Art San Diego and imagine my delight to find this splendid exhibit by El
Anatsui. The deYoung used to have a big wall hanging by him, but it isn't
there currently. He is African and works with "leftover stuff" like bottle caps,
cigar wrappers, etc. And he doesn't tell the museum staff how to drape or
hang his pieces. I so enjoyed those three rooms. By the way, I get into ALL
museums free by showing my badge - one of the perks of my job which I
so appreciate. And yes, I'm home but I will continue to post San Diego memories
because I had such a fine, fine time.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

watching the bikers

I'm here at my Starbucks seat and there is a large bike race right in
front of me. Just finished my apple juice and banana and now some
cofffee as I prepare for my last day here in San Diego. Yesterday was
lovely with coffee and playground with Tanya and Ruby, then back to
Balboa Park and the Photography Museum, which I loved. A late
lunchh at Queenstown Public House on Columbia then we three
walked to the ball park, first hitting the impressive new library where
Tanya works - 9 floors and beautiful. We sat across from it at Petco
Park and that is a game that I don't care to discuss. Poor Giants.
We are dooomed, as notthat might say. We walked home and now 
I know where Scott and Tanya met, where the bus station was, 
where they each worked and lived before I knew them. This has
been a perfect few days for me, just what I needed. 

Saturday, April 11, 2015

and on to Balboa Park

Yesterday I did get to the San Diego Museum of Art and loved it.
This morning I will return for some more museums and some
sitting by the reflection pool ~  people watching is superb at
Balboa Park.
Tonight is the ball game with Tanya and Scott and Mad Bum
is pitching. Beautiful weather here and I actually slept well
last night. Yess!

Friday, April 10, 2015

our day at the zoo

We had a delightful day and now I'm sitting in Balboa Park with a latte and free wi~fi.
Ruby has grown into a sweet three year old and she can spell her name and she
knows EVERY animal at the zoo. Truly. I'm now going to visit a couple of museums,
have a light supper and watch tonight's baseball game on TV. I'm so glad that I'm
here for a few special days. Lucky me!

Thursday, April 09, 2015

from San Diego

I have been walking and enjoying myself immensely - lots of Giants fans here
and tons of Padres too, naturally. Great weather. Dinner soon and big day
with Tanya, Ruby and Scott tomorrow. 

Wednesday, April 08, 2015


In December I was attempting to buy tix to Book of Mormon which
opens any day now. I think they were $180 each and I was working
on the aged computer at the Legion of Honor and it rebelled when
I clicked on the "pay now" button. I used my computer at home the
next day and the price had jumped to about $200 per ticket and I
got annoyed about that and bowed out. But I've been thinking about
this and yesterday I received an email from Goldstar that we could
purchase orchestra tickets for the Mormons for $75 each. At the
end of this month we will finally see this musical and now I am a
huge Goldstar fan.

Tuesday, April 07, 2015

a walk with camera

I left the garbage cans in this bottom photo so you'd know I was on
city streets, not some bucolic country road. Despite the drought, the
gardens are filled with color, all native plants that thrive on sun and
gentle morning fog. Our garden needs work and that will happen,
but this morning we awoke to RAIN and more is expected. They
even had snow up in the mountains - oh, hoooooray!

Monday, April 06, 2015

posh Easter dinner

Sour cream waffles, bacon, coffee - yum. Another quiet (yet special) day
with a touch of morning rain, just to get our hopes up. We did go to the
Asian Art Museum but it was packed with visitors as it was a Free
Sunday. Great parking spot, so that helps. I reworked some Ellen writing
and then later mourned the loss of Lon Simmons, a baseball (and football)
radio announcer who was important to us when we first started falling in love
with the Giants. Ironic - the 2015 Season opens tonight for us in Arizona.

Sunday, April 05, 2015

the night before Easter

Of course we were enthralled by The Imitation Game which just came
out on DVD. Thanks to the Flix® for such great service and to Benedict
Cumberbatch for being for intensely gorgeous.

Saturday, April 04, 2015

glorious passover 2015

the setting

a Jewish man and his wife

sam and sarah

the host and hostess - note matzoh apron
Many laughs, good conversation and delicious food. Sounds like the
Great Plotniks, doesn't it? Barb and Doug go all out and it was even
better (we thought) than the eight previous years. It was a truly fine
evening of symbolism (egg, lamb bone, parsley) and the story of the
Jews escaping oppression in Egypt - we never tire of that one.

Friday, April 03, 2015

not our friends, thankfully...

Let’s meet in a restaurant

Is food the enemy?
Giving a dinner party has become
an ordeal. I lie awake the night
before figuring how to produce

a feast that is vegan, gluten free,
macrobiotic, avoiding all acidic
fruit and tomatoes, wine, all nuts,
low carb and still edible.

Are beetles okay for vegans?
Probably not. Forget chocolate
ants or fried grasshoppers.
Now my brains are cooked.

Finally seven o’clock arrives
and I produce the perfect meal.
At each plate for supper, a bowl
of cleanly washed pebbles. Enjoy!
- Marge Piercy

Thursday, April 02, 2015

morning becomes my city

I rush to try to catch the early morning sun as it lights up the Mission and
Twin Peaks. My photography never really does justice to the beauty before us.
"Come look!" from me to Husbando or vice versa, because no two days are
ever alike. I often try to capture the downtown buildings reflecting (for just a
minute or two) this amazing, never ending sun majesty. But here is the view
from our left, on our back stoop - and then, gone. Fleeting. And isn't that
such an important part of the glory of it all?

Wednesday, April 01, 2015

family fun

Another Netflix original series - Bloodline is set in Key West, Florida, with
a loving dysfunctional family of three brothers and one sister. Soap opera!
Sissy Spacek is the matriarch and Sam Shepard is papa.  Also Chloe Savigny
is part of the cast and we love her from Big Love. Escape time.