Paris 2010

Paris 2010
Garden at Versailles

Monday, December 31, 2012

New Year Quote

Here is a good quote for New Year's Eve from Ogden Nash -

“Tonight’s December thirty-first,
Something is about to burst.
The clock is crouching, dark and small,
Like a time bomb in the hall.
Hark, it's midnight, children dear.
Duck! Here comes another year!”
 


 
 

Friday, December 14, 2012

Good Quote

This quote is from Shakespeare's "Romeo and Juliet" -

"When he shall die, take him and cut him out in little stars, and he will be in love with night and pay no worship to the garish sun."







Sunday, December 9, 2012

I Will Remember You

This is a beautiful song by Sarah McLachlan called I Will Remember You.  It was used on the soundtrack for the movie "The Brothers McMullen" which is a great movie from 1995.

Here is the video for the song -

http://youtu.be/uHooH4464dQ

And here is a link to the movie reviews, although I would give it at least 8 stars.  I am a big fan of Edward Burns -

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0112585/

Monday, November 26, 2012

Review of Law Man by Shon Hopwood

I just finished reading a great book called Law Man by Shon Hopwood (with Dennis Burke).  I loved this book! Probably because I'm a paralegal (although I'm not working as one at this time) and I could relate to Shon learning to love the law. I'm also originally from the Midwest and so is he. Of course I can't relate to the fact that Shon robbed banks and spent over 10 years in prison.

I thought it was funny that Seinfeld reruns are played endlessly in prison! As a huge Seinfeld fan, that made me laugh out loud!

It was very sad that Shon's dad died of cancer while he was still in prison. The passage where Shon wrote that his dad told him,"I want to see you in heaven," brought tears to my eyes.

Law Man is also a touching love story with a happy ending - Shon marries the love of his life and has 2 children with her. He gets accepted to a prestigious law school and moves to Seattle with his family. I think he will graduate in 2014. He'll be a great attorney!


Here is one of my favorite passages, a letter to Shon -

"Shon,
Just know that I am carrying you in my heart, saying lots of prayers for you and your family, and I promise to be here for you and help you in any way that I can, both now and in the future. Although you haven't asked this of me, I have grieved hard this week, both because of my own sadness and for you. I sobbed so hard and felt such sadness as I also grieved the loss of the hopes and dreams of experiences you were counting on having with your dad after your release. I know that sadness myself as I, too, had to deal with the overwhelming shock of my mom being yanked from my life and the shattering of all the dreams of experiences we would have together throughout my life. It is strangely ironic that five years ago, you were there for me when I lost my mom and now I am here for you as you have lost your dad. We are very blessed to have each other, indeed.

I love you, Shon. And your family loves you. We are all praying for you and looking forward to next October.

Peace and Love my dear friend, Annie"


This book is about friendship, family and overcoming adversity and will restore your faith in human nature. I highly recommend it.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

I just signed up for a Book Club Bash Read-A-Thon.  The details are here -

http://bitsybling.blogspot.com/2012/11/book-club-bash-read-thon-sign-up.html

It looks like fun.  Charlie Courtland, the founder of Betsy Bling Books, is a Goodreads friend of mine.  She is an author, although I haven't read any of her books yet.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Rise Up

My friend Mary sent me this video of Spring Lake and Sea Girt in New Jersey after Hurricane Sandy.  It's beautifully done with Bruce Springsteen singing in the background.  New Jersey will rise up!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I2rAdrWhNiU&feature=colike

Friday, November 9, 2012

Thanksgiving Quote

Here's a good quote from actress Gwyneth Paltrow on what to be grateful for this Thanksgiving -


"Mostly, make sure that no matter what type of meal you are having, you take a moment to think about how much you do have (health, love, friendship, passion, perspective, appreciation, intellect, reason, kindness) and reflect on how you can share more of it with others."

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Kings of Madison Avenue: the Unofficial Guide to Mad Men

I just finished reading Kings of Madison Avenue: the Unofficial Guide to Mad Men by Jesse McLean.  I really liked this book but I think you have to be a big Mad Men fan to truly enjoy it.  However, if you've never seen the show and are a history buff, there are tons of historical details regarding events that took place in the 1960's.

This book only covers the first 2 seasons of the show and it's been on for 5 seasons now.  I've been a huge fan from the start, so this book was right up my alley.  It includes cast bios of Jon Hamm, Elisabeth Moss, John Slattery, Vincent Kartheiser, Christina Hendricks, January Jones and Robert Morse.  I knew a lot of the info about these actors already but there were some things I didn't know.

I also liked the recommended reading and viewing sections of the book, such as "The Apartment" and "Lover Come Back; plus The Feminine Mystique and Sex and The Single Girl. The author describes how Matthew Weiner (the series creator) was influenced by those books and movies. 

I really liked this book but I think you have to be a big Mad Men fan to truly enjoy it.  However, if you've never seen the show and are a history buff, there are tons of historical details regarding events that took place in the 1960's.

This book only covers the first 2 seasons of the show and it's been on for 5 seasons now.  I've been a huge fan from the start, so this book was right up my alley.  It includes cast bios of Jon Hamm, Elisabeth Moss, John Slattery, Vincent Kartheiser, Christina Hendricks, January Jones and Robert Morse.  I knew a lot of the info about these actors already but there were some things I didn't know.

I also liked the recommended reading and viewing sections of the book, such as "The Apartment" and "Lover Come Back; plus The Feminine Mystique and Sex and the Single Girl.  The author describes how Matthew Weiner (the series creator) was influenced by those books and movies.

Roger Sterling's critique of the movie "The Apartment" - "Oh, please.  A white elevator operator?  And a girl at that?  I want to work at that place."  If you haven't seen the movie, I highly recommend it!

Some quotes from the book -

"It's Don Draper's World and we just live in it."

"Happiness is the smell of a new car.. a billboard at the side of the road screaming that everything you're doing is okay...that you are okay."

Don Draper - "I have a life and it only goes in one direction... forward."

This book includes cocktails of note that the Mad Men would be drinking. Recipes are included at the end of each section.  At the end of the book, the author gives his suggestions on "How to party like the Mad Men" and an itinerary for touring the locations highlighted in the show.

Other trivia -

Jon Hamm won the Golden Globe for Best Lead Actor but has never won the Emmy for Best Actor - incredible!  He really deserves to win every award he is nominated for! 
 
John Slattery who plays Roger Sterling so brilliantly, has stated that he has a fairly cynical sense of humor.  He directed at least one episode of the series so far.  Christina Hendricks (Joan) on Slattery: "He's got such a sense of humor and charm...that while he's saying these horrible things you can't keep your eyes off him."

Joan shows Peggy the latest in office technology, the IBM Selectric, "so easy a woman can use it."

Burt Cooper is influenced by Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged - I think he gave a copy of the book to Don to read.
 
Quote from Bobbie Barrett - "This is America.  Pick a job and then become the person who does it."

Roger Sterling's philosophy - "Do I need to remind you of the finite nature of life?"  Like the song says, enjoy yourself, it's later than you think.

Quote from Joan to Peggy, "In a couple of years, with the right moves, you'll be in the city with the rest of us.  Of course, if you really make the right moves, you'll be out in the country and you won't be going to work at all."

Quote from Don Draper - "It's your life.  You don't know how long it's going to be, but you know it's got a bad ending." And - "I have been watching my life, it's right there.  And I keep scratching at it trying to get into it... but I can't."

Creator Matt Weiner was influenced by Helen Gurley Brown's classic book, Sex and the Single Girl.  Her book lead to the popular TV shows, "That Girl" and "The Mary Tyler Moore Show."  Helen Gurley Brown left her hometown, moved to the big city and reinvented herself, just like Don Draper and Peggy Olson.

Quote from Vincent Kartheiser (Pete Campbell) - "Mad Men was one of those pilots where I read it and after I was done I wanted to read it again.  There was this swagger about the script that was different from so much I had read in the last few years.  I knew it was something I could do."

This book includes cocktails of note that the Mad Men would be drinking. Recipes are included at the end of each section.  At the end of the book, the author gives his suggestions on "How to party like the Mad Men" and an itinerary for touring the locations highlighted in the show. 

I recommend this book for Mad Men fans but maybe those who haven't watched the show yet will be inspired to watch after reading it. Every season is now on DVD and the cast has recently begun filming the 6th season.  I wish I didn't have to return this book to the library as it is a good resource.  Jesse McLean has not written another book covering seasons 3 - 5 or at least my library doesn't have it.

 
Mad Men cast at the New York Stock Exchange, 2012
 

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Mr. Monk has a New Author!

Here's some good news for Monk fans - Lee Goldberg, who wrote the book series, has announced the name of the new author taking over for him on his website -

"Good news: My friend Hy Conrad, a writer/producer on MONK from day 1, is the new author of the MONK books! He will be picking up the story right where I left off with my last book, MR. MONK GETS EVEN, which comes out in December. Hy is a terrific writer, a great mystery-plotter, and has written many beloved episodes of show. Fans of the MONK books can rest easy -- the series couldn't be in better hands!"

I've read several of Goldberg's Monk books and I'm glad they found a new author to continue the series now that he wants to move on.  I think Hy Conrad is a wonderful choice; I remember seeing his name on the credits for the show.  I wouldn't be surprised if he wrote some of my favorite episodes.



Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Review of Shockaholic by Carrie Fisher

I just read Shockaholic  by Carrie Fisher.  This is a short, quick read (I read it in a few days but I'm sure I could have finished it in one sitting). Carrie has an interesting take on what it means to be famous i.e. her story about dating Senator Chris Dodd in 1985 and being friends with Michael Jackson.

Although I didn't like this book quite as much as Wishful Drinking which I gave 5 stars on www.goodreads.com, I would still recommend it. I especially liked the chapter about her father (Oy! My Pa-Pa) which was very sweet and sad. She had a complicated relationship with him over the years, much as I did with my own father who passed away suddenly on September 10, 2012.  Eddie Fisher died shortly after falling and breaking his hip (which is also what happened to my dad).  Carrie had been taking care of her father but unfortunately was not with him when he died on September 22, 2010.  We also have that in common. 

The title of this book comes from her experiences using ECT treatments for depression and the subsequent memory loss. "You haven't lived vicariously until you've done it through me," Carrie writes.  Only Carrie Fisher can write about this topic so frankly and hilariously. If I ever get the chance to hear her speak in person, I would definitely go!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Mad Men's Matt Weiner Honored

TheHollywoodreporter.com has listed Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner as one of the Top 50 Showrunners for 2012.  A showrunner is generally the writer/producer of the TV series i.e. the executive producer.  Here is the link to the article and the interview with Matt Weiner (I think he's brilliant!) -

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/showrunners-2012-mad-men-matthew-weiner-376006

Mad Men end of Season 5

 
 

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Quotes for Today

"The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall."
- Nelson Mandela


"Do not wait for your ship to come in -- swim out to it."
- Unknown author


"You've achieved success in your field when you don't know whether what you're doing is work or play."
- Warren Beatty 


 

Monday, October 15, 2012

Skyfall

You may already be aware that the latest James Bond movie will be released soon - fans in the United Kingdom will get to see it beginning on October 26 and it will start here on November 9th.  My husband and I are big fans of the franchise and this will be the 23rd adventure for Bond.  Here is the link to the official website -

http://www.skyfall-movie.com/site/

Fans of Daniel Craig will be interested in this link listing the "19 Reasons to Love Daniel Craig" -

http://www.glamour.com/entertainment/blogs/obsessed/2012/10/daniel-craig.html

My favorite Bond is Sean Connery, followed by Pierce Brosnan and Daniel Craig.  The early reviews of Skyfall have been raves -

http://www.celebuzz.com/2012-10-15/skyfall-rave-reviews-are-in-for-new-james-bond-thriller/

 
Daniel Craig as 007
 

Friday, October 12, 2012

Little Bee

Recently, I started reading Little Bee by Chris Cleave.  It was a Goodreads Choice Award Nominee for Fiction in 2009.  Here are some reviews from the author's website -

http://www.chriscleave.com/books/little-bee/reviews/

A friend whose book club read and loved this book, passed it on to me.  I'm not very far into it yet so I'll let you know what I think once I've finished it. 

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Achieving Goals

I read a helpful article about achieving goals when you are depressed and thought I'd pass it along here -

http://www.hopetocope.com/Item.aspx/610/putting-the-go-in-goals

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Happy Birthday, Mr. Monk!

Just a quick post to say happy birthday to one of my favorite actors.  Tony Shalhoub, who is best known for playing Adrian Monk on the USA series Monk, is 59 today.  I must be one of his biggest fans!  Hope he had a special birthday today and many more to come!  I have the entire series on DVD and was planning to watch an episode today but didn't get to it yet.  It's such a wonderful show!

 
 

Thursday, October 4, 2012

The Impossible Dream

When I was growing up, my family and I always watched Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C starring Jim Nabors and Frank Sutton.  This classic show was a spin-off from The Andy Griffith Show and you can still watch full episodes on YouTube and it's available on DVD.  Jim Nabors is a wonderful singer and I thought I'd post his version of "The Impossible Dream" here as a tribute to my father who passed away last month.  As I recall, he loved Gomer Pyle...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oqJ2jYumJJo&feature=colike

The show ran from 1964 to 1969.  According to Wikipedia, "Gomer Pyle" has become U.S.M.C. slang for "a recruit who continually messes up or needs extra training."  But I think Gomer had a wonderful, optimistic, sweet nature and even Sgt. Carter eventually learned a few things from him.  Gomer would often say, "Surprise, surprise, surprise!" and "Shazam!"

Here is a list of interesting trivia about the show from www.imdb.com -

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0057752/trivia


My husband and I were able to see Jim Nabors perform in Hawaii when we were there on our honeymoon.  He has lived there for many years.  I seem to remember that I shook his hand after his show.  Hope you enjoy this walk down memory lane!


Thursday, September 27, 2012

Mad Men snubbed at the 2012 Emmys

I still haven't gotten over the fact that Mad Men failed to win a single Emmy this year!  They were nominated for 17 Emmys and failed to take home even one!!  As I have noted in previous posts, Mad Men has received the Emmy for Best Drama for the past four years in a row which was a record.  But this year the Showtime drama Homeland starring Claire Danes and Damian Lewis took home the top drama prize.  Danes and Lewis also won best actor and actress in a drama.  Jon Hamm had to leave empty handed again - how disappointing.  Claire Danes was quoted as saying, “We didn’t make our show just to undermine them.  “I don’t think anybody expected to be recognized this way right off the bat. But it feels pretty nice."

Damian Lewis gave a very gracious acceptance speech and since I haven't seen Homeland yet I really can't say he didn't deserve to win.  But today I picked up the series on DVD from the library so I will soon find out what all the fuss is about.  I'll post my opinion of the show soon.

By the way, AMC will rerun the fifth season of Mad Men beginning this Sunday, Sept. 30th.  Check your local listings for the time and you can decide for yourself whether the show deserved to be snubbed this year at the Emmys.

Here is some more news from the Mad Men blog -

http://blogs.amctv.com/mad-men/2012/09/press-roundup-0921.php?utm_campaign=MM_Retargeting_Tracking_9.24.12&utm_medium=Email&utm_source=MarketTraq&utm_content=MM_Retargeting_Tracking_9.24.12&utm_term=218876

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Fall TV Shows

Here are Entertainment Weekly's predictions for the shows that will be hits or misses on TV this fall -

http://insidetv.ew.com/2012/08/27/fall-tv-predictions/?xid=email-top25-today-Fall+TV+predictions%3A+10+hits+and+misses

I can't get too excited about most of these.  What I want to know is when will Mad Men be on again?

Birthday Greetings

I celebrated my birthday recently and one of the greetings I received was from ING Direct and I thought it had a nice message.  Enjoy -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rfY_vbrQrDQ&feature=colike


Saturday, August 25, 2012

End of the World

I was watching a Mad Men rerun the other day and they played the song "End of the World" by Skeeter Davis at the end of the show.  I haven't heard that song in a long time so I'm posting a video of it here -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NZ5WeXtOacU&feature=colike

It is a sad song but it's beautifully done and the video is lovely.  Here are the lyrics:

Why does the sun go on shining?
Why does the sea rush to shore?
Don't they know it's the end of the world,
'Cause you don't love me any more?

Why do the birds go on singing?
Why do the stars glow above?
Don't they know it's the end of the world.
It ended when I lost your love.

I wake up in the morning and I wonder,
Why everything's the same as it was.
I can't understand. No, I can't understand,
How life goes on the way it does.

Why does my heart go on beating?
Why do these eyes of mine cry?
Don't they know it's the end of the world.
It ended when you said goodbye.

Why does my heart go on beating?
Why do these eyes of mine cry?
Don't they know it's the end of the world.
It ended when you said goodbye.


 
 

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Who will win Best Actor Emmy?

As unbelievable as it may seem, Jon Hamm has yet to receive the Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series despite being nominated 5 times.  Tune in on September 23rd to see if he wins this year.  In the meantime, check out his competition in this article -

http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118057557?refcatid=14

I've seen all the other nominated actors except for Damian Lewis in Homeland.  I do have the DVDs of Homeland on request at the library though and I hear it's good.  But Jon Hamm did such excellent work on Mad Men this year (as always) that I really think he deserves to win for once.  I'm keeping my fingers crossed for him!



Jon Hamm as Don Draper




Thursday, August 16, 2012

Facts about Labor Day

Since Labor Day is coming up soon I thought I'd post these facts about it -

Peter McGuire, co-founder of the American Federation of Labor (AFL) and general secretary of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners, is often recognized as being responsible for the first suggestion of Labor Day. An issue with recognizing McGuire as the first person to suggest Labor Day is a man named Matthew Maguire.
Matthew Maguire was a machinist, secretary of Local 344 of the International Association of Machinists. Those who believe that Maguire and not McGuire first suggested Labor Day assert that Maguire made the suggestion while he was secretary of the Central Labor Union in New York in 1882.
 
It was indeed in New York City, in 1882, that the first Labor Day observance was held, when more than 10,000 workers walked off their jobs, parade-style, on a Tuesday. The majority did so without permission.
The Central Labor Union suggested that labor unions in other cities join in to celebrate the contributions of working men. The idea quickly spread from New York to other industrial areas by 1884.  Despite the efforts of workers in New York, Oregon was actually the first state to make Labor Day a holiday in 1887. By the end of the year, New York and three other states followed suit.
 
After hundreds of employees were laid off in 1893, the Pullman Strike led to the nationwide boycott of trains with Pullman Cars, rioting, and the deaths of two striking workers.  Although he'd been a staunch opponent, President Grover Cleveland made Labor Day a federally recognized holiday in 1894, pushing it through Congress in just six days.
 
Canada also celebrates Labor Day on the first Monday in September. But several other countries celebrate it on May 1.  The fashion faux pas of not wearing white after Labor Day is history. Wearing white after Labor Day is quite acceptable and promoted in many stores.
Labor Day is the “official” end of hot dog season. According to the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council, Americans eat more than 7 billion hot dogs between Memorial Day and Labor Day.
Detroit was responsible for a shortened workday during the early labor movement. Houston’s Mix 96.5 says Detroit workers demanded a pay raise of $2 per hour and that the workday be shortened to 10 hours.
Labor Day is the unofficial end of the summer season, a time for one last barbecue or dip in the pool. However you celebrate, make the most of your day and raise a glass to the holiday's history.
 
- from the BWM Northwest newsletter

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee

I just watched Jerry Seinfeld's new web series called Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee.  In the first episode Jerry picks up his old pal Larry David and they go out for breakfast together.  It's fun to watch but evidently there is a British web series called Carpool that is very similar.  Here is the article that talks about it -

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2012/08/02/jerry-seinfeld-s-comedians-in-cars-web-series-ruffles-u-k-feathers-with-similarity-to-british-carpool.html

Seinfeld's web series will appear every second Thursday of the month.  Check it out on www.comediansincarsgettingcoffee.com.  Ricky Gervais appears in the second episode.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Remembering Sherman Hemsley & Chad Everett

Actor Sherman Hemsley, best known for playing George Jefferson on All in the Family and the spin-off The Jeffersons died on July 24th at the age of 74 of natural causes.  The Jeffersons ran from 1975 to 1985.  Here is a great clip from the show -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lkvWvgST5HU&feature=colike

Actor Chad Everett also passed away this week.  He was 75 and had been suffering from lung cancer.  Chad was best known for playing dashing Dr. Joe Gannon on the TV drama Medical Center in the 70's.  That show ran from 1969 to 1976.  He also had a memorable role in "Airplane 2: the Sequel"  from 1982 -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BrRdy4BAYp0&feature=colike

Rest in peace to both of these television icons.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Mad Men nominated for Emmy's again!

Mad Men has been nominated for 17 Emmy's this year including Outstanding Lead Actor for Jon Hamm, Outstanding Actress for Elisabeth Moss, Outstanding Supporting Actor for Jared Harris, Outstanding Supporting Actress for Christina Hendricks, Outstanding Directing for Phil Abraham and three Outstanding Writing noms.  Mad Men reigns as the only television series in cable history to win the Emmy for Outstanding Drama Series for 4 years in a row (2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011). 

Here is the link to all the nominations -

http://www.emmys.com/nominations?utm_campaign=AMC_News_Emmy_Nominations_7.19.12&utm_medium=Email&utm_source=MarketTraq&utm_content=AMC_News_Emmy_Nominations_7.19.12&utm_term=201443

I really hope Jon Hamm wins this year - he is long overdue to receive an Emmy!


Jon Hamm as Don Draper


Sunday, July 15, 2012

More Books Like 50 Shades...

Just in case you've read the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy and are looking for similar books, here's a list from The Daily Beast -

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2012/07/12/more-books-like-50-shades-of-grey-naughtiest-bits-from-12-other-erotica-bestsellers.html

I'm waiting for the third book in the trilogy to come from the library.  No, they are not great literature but they are entertaining!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Rest In Peace Andy Griffith

I was sad to hear that Andy Griffith passed away today at the age of 86.  I posted several clips from The Andy Griffith Show earlier on this blog of Andy singing.  I hope you check them out in his honor today.  It is such a wonderful, classic show that still holds up today. 

Here is a good article including photos of Andy -

http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-31749_162-57465667-10391698/andy-griffith-dead-at-86/






Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Good Quote

Here is a great quote from The Sopranos, one of my favorite TV shows of all time -

"They say every day is a gift.  But why does it have to be a pair of socks?" - Tony Soprano



Tony & Carmela Soprano

Rest in Peace Nora Ephron - gone too soon...

Legendary screenwriter and director Nora Ephron died of acute myeloid leukemia and pneumonia on 6/26/12 at the age of 71.  I was shocked and saddened to hear this news.  Nora earned three Oscar nominations for writing the screenplays for "Silkwood," "Sleepless in Seattle," and my personal favorite "When Harry Met Sally..." from 1989.  I always list "When Harry Met Sally..." as one of my favorite films of all time.  I also read several of her books including Heartburn and I Feel Bad About My Neck: and Other Thoughts on Being a Woman.  Nora directed eight movies including "Sleepless in Seattle," You've Got Mail," and "Julie and Julia." 

Here are the thoughts of Rob Reiner, who directed "When Harry Met Sally..." -

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2012/06/27/rob-reiner-remembers-nora-ephron-the-sally-to-his-harry.html

And here is an article from the Huffington Post which includes videos and quotes from people who knew and worked with Nora -

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/26/nora-ephron-dead-dies-age-71_n_1627757.html

Nora Ephron married her third husband, the author Nicholas Pileggi in 1987.  He wrote Wiseguy, one of my favorite books which was made into the classic movie "Goodfellas."  Nora had two sons Jacob and Max Bernstein with her second husband Watergate journalist Carl Bernstein. 

I love this quote of hers - "Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim."  Nora Ephron will be truly missed.




Tuesday, June 26, 2012

The future for Peggy on Mad Men

I just read an interview where Elisabeth Moss who plays Peggy on Mad Men discusses season 5 and whether Peggy will be on the show next season.  Of course, she won't give anything away...

http://www.gq.com/entertainment/tv/blogs/the-stream/2012/06/elisabeth-moss-talks-about-the-mad-men-finale-and-looks-forward-to-season-6.html




Sunday, June 24, 2012

Woody Allen's new film

I just read a good review of Woody Allen's new movie "To Rome with Love."  Here is an article about it -

http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/envelope/cotown/la-et-ct-woody-allen-rome-love-20120624,0,85973.story

Of course my favorite Woody Allen film has got to be "Annie Hall" from 1977.  It's one of the few comedies to win a Best Picture Oscar and Diane Keaton also won Best Actress.  Woody also won the Oscar for Best Director and Best Original Screenplay (with Marshall Brickman).  If you've never seen this classic romantic comedy, do yourself a favor and check it out.




Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Possible movie for Jon Hamm

I just read in www.showbiz411.com that Jon Hamm is being considered for a role in the next Larry David movie.  Here is the article -

"Exclusive: Jon Hamm has proved himself so adept at comedy on “30 Rock” and “Saturday Night Live” that it’s about to pay off in movies. I’m told that Hamm is about to sign on to play Larry David’s nemesis in the still being worked out improv film David is set to shoot this fall. The film, without a title, will star David as a Larry David like character–but with a different name. He’ll get into the same kind of situations as Larry David on “Curb Your Enthusiasm.” Greg Mottola is directing, and the “script-ment”–a script-slash-treatment–is being worked up by David and his “Curb” and “Seinfeld” writers. Fox Searchlight will distribute. All of this is still in the planning stages, which means it will be some time before we see another season of “Curb” on HBO. But Don Draper as Larry’s sparring partner could be very funny. Hamm’s recent turn on the live version of “30 Rock” showed that he’s capable of a lot more than smoking and brooding."

I am a big fan of Larry David and would love to see him in a movie with Jon Hamm.  Let's hope this works out!  Jon deserves success on the big screen.




Friday, June 15, 2012

Mad Men Finale discussion

I just read a great summary of the finale of Mad Men and several other key episodes this season.  Here it is -

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2012/06/10/mad-men-finale-and-video-of-best-season-5-moments.html

I am definitely going through severe Mad Men withdrawal!  Can't wait for season 6, whenever that might be.




Thursday, June 14, 2012

Dreaming of Paris...

I was thinking about our trip to Paris in 2010 and wishing we could go again.  I happened to find this blog post on Gwyneth Paltrow's blog Goop where she talks about a trip to Paris that she took with her father.  The post includes places to eat and places to stay.  I'm not sure we could afford to stay at The Ritz but I can dream can't I? I would also love to stay at the Plaza.

I would love to return to London again someday as well.  I really enjoyed our time there.


http://goop.com/newsletter/23/?utm_source=Goop+Newsletter&utm_campaign=554390499f-Goop_Newsletter_182_06_14_2012&utm_medium=email



The Plaza Athenee


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Vincent Kartheiser interview

I just read a great interview with Vincent Kartheiser who plays Pete Campbell on Mad Men.  It's full of interesting little tidbits such as the fact that Vincent shaved his hairline back this season.  Pete is one of my favorite characters on the show.

Enjoy -

http://www.vulture.com/2012/06/mad-mens-vincent-kartheiser-on-petes-hairline.html?mid=agenda--20120613


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

He only lives twice..

At the end of the season finale of Mad Men on June 10th, the theme song from You Only Live Twice was played.  The classic James Bond film starring Sean Connery, came out in 1967 which is when the episode took place.  It's a great song by Nancy Sinatra and fits Don Draper perfectly since he lived two lives (as Draper and Dick Whitman).

Hope you enjoy it -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XgFtQPgHyek&feature=colike

You Only Live Twice or so it seems,
One life for yourself and one for your dreams.
You drift through the years and life seems tame,
Till one dream appears and love is its name.

And love is a stranger who'll beckon you on,
Don't think of the danger or the stranger is gone.

This dream is for you, so pay the price.
Make one dream come true, you only live twice.

And love is a stranger who'll beckon you on,
Don't think of the danger or the stranger is gone.



Scene from season 5 finale




Sunday, June 10, 2012

Mad Men Season Finale


The season five finale of Mad Men airs tonight on AMC.  Here is an article that summarizes the season - it's full of spoilers so don't read if you plan to watch the series when it comes out on DVD.

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2012/06/10/mad-men-finale-and-video-of-best-season-5-moments.html




Friday, June 8, 2012

When a Woman Loves a Man

One of my favorite movies is Bull Durham starring Kevin Costner, Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins.  This romantic comedy from 1988 is about a fan who has an affair with a minor league baseball player each season.  This time she can't decide between the experienced catcher (Costner) and the up-and-coming new pitcher (Robbins).  The song "When a Woman Loves a Man" is by Joe Cocker and plays at the end of the movie.  Hope you like it as much as I do -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sl6-vonIlpw&feature=colike



A Major League Love Story in a Minor League Town


Wednesday, June 6, 2012

I just started reading...

the hot book everyone is talking about - yes, Fifty Shades of Grey!  I'm only on page 88 so I don't have much to say about it yet. 

Here is the description of the book from goodreads.com -

When literature student Anastasia Steele goes to interview young entrepreneur Christian Grey, she encounters a man who is beautiful, brilliant, and intimidating. The unworldly, innocent Ana is startled to realize she wants this man and, despite his enigmatic reserve, finds she is desperate to get close to him. Unable to resist Ana’s quiet beauty, wit, and independent spirit, Grey admits he wants her, too—but on his own terms.

Shocked yet thrilled by Grey’s singular erotic tastes, Ana hesitates. For all the trappings of success—his multinational businesses, his vast wealth, his loving family—Grey is a man tormented by demons and consumed by the need to control. When the couple embarks on a daring, passionately physical affair, Ana discovers Christian Grey’s secrets and explores her own dark desires.

Erotic, amusing, and deeply moving, the Fifty Shades Trilogy is a tale that will obsess you, possess you, and stay with you forever.


Hmmm, sounds intriguing... I'm already thinking of who I would cast in the movie version.  Unfortunately, Jon Hamm is probably too old to play Christian but how about Michael Fassbender (or is he too old too?)  Maybe Robert Pattison from the Twilight series or perhaps Ryan Gosling?  Alexander Skarsgard might be good but I think I'll stick with Michael Fassbender (if you have seen his nude scene in Shame you'll know why!)  I haven't decided who I'd like to see play Ana yet.  I'll keep you posted as I get further into the book.  I took a look at the reviews on goodreads and they are really all over the place.  It seems to be a love it or hate it type of book.  We'll see...



Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Quote of the Day

Today's quote is from Desiderata: A Poem for a Way of Life by Max Ehrmann -

“Go placidly amid the noise and the haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even to the dull and the ignorant, they too have their story. Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit.


If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain or bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself. Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.

Exercise caution in your business affairs, for the world is full of trickery. But let not this blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals, and everywhere life is full of heroism. Be yourself. Especially do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass. Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.


Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness. Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore, be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be. And whatever your labors and aspirations in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul. With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams; it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful.


Strive to be happy.”  


Desiderata is Latin for "things desired as essential" and this poem was written in 1927.  It is timeless and beautiful.



Sunday, June 3, 2012

Rita Hayworth is Stayin' Alive

My friend Sue just sent me this great clip from YouTube where someone spliced dance routines of Rita Hayworth in sync with the Bee Gee's classic song "Stayin' Alive" from the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack.  Saturday Night Fever is one of my favorite movies.  Some clever person did an outstanding job putting old movie clips together with the music.  I thought it was a nice tribute to the memory of Bee Gee Robin Gibb who passed away on May 20, 2012 of cancer at the age of 62. 

Enjoy -

http://www.youtube.com/watch_popup?v=mz3CPzdCDws


Friday, June 1, 2012

Seinfeld news

As you know I am a huge Seinfeld fan (see earlier posts) so whenever I hear that Jerry will be making an appearance somewhere I make a note of it.  I just read today that he will guest star on the FX show Louis starring the comedian Louis CK.  I am not a regular viewer of this show although I have seen it a few times.  The following article doesn't say when Seinfeld will appear but the show begins it's third season on June 28th -

http://www.hollywood.com/news/Jerry_Seinfeld_Guest_Star_on_Louie_Season_3_EXCLUSIVE/29273620

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Health advice

Here is some good advice on how to live a healthier life from Gwyneth Paltrow's blog Goop.  The article includes advice from three different doctors.  It sounds good but the hard part is actually taking the advice and putting it into practice.

http://goop.com/newsletter/6/?utm_source=Goop+Newsletter&utm_campaign=5d059dc16f-Goop_Newsletter_181_05_31_2012&utm_medium=email

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

You Really Got Me

At the end of the most recent episode of Mad Men, they played a song by the British group The Kinks called "You Really Got Me."  The song came out in 1964 and is one of their biggest hits.  Mad Men really uses music well.  The scene where Peggy says goodbye to Don really got me!

Enjoy - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dk3Ei_yoI4c&feature=colike


Tuesday, May 29, 2012

My next book...

I just picked up my next book at the library today.  It's called Mr. Monk on Patrol and is the 13th book in the Monk series written by Lee Goldberg.  I've read several of the Monk books in this series since I'm a huge fan of the USA television series that ran for eight seasons.  I own the entire series on DVD. 

In this book, Monk and his long-suffering assistant Natalie, are called to Summit, New Jersey to help former SFPD lieutenant Randy Disher who moved there when he married Monk's previous assistant Sharona Fleming.  Randy is the new police chief in Summit and is dealing with a wave of residential robberies which escalate to murder.  It sounds good and I'm anxious to get started on it.  I'll let you know what I think of it once I've finished it.



"Hilarity abounds at the Taxi garage"

Jon Hamm is going to appear on a new show on the IFC channel called Comedy Bang! Bang!  It's a stream-of-consciousness music-as-comedy show and Jon does a hilarious riff on the 70's classic TV show Taxi.

Enjoy -

http://bcove.me/8qwbsu9y

The show premieres on June 8th on IFC.

Mad Men musings

Spoiler warning - Do not read this if you haven't seen the May 27th episode of Mad Men called "The Other Woman" if you plan to watch it! 

A major development was that Peggy decided to leave her job at SCDP to work for a rival agency.  Entertainment Weekly has posted an article on Peggy's potential future which is really clever.  Here it is -

http://popwatch.ew.com/2012/05/29/mad-men-peggy-elizabeth-moss/

It seems hard to believe that Peggy will be off the show but you never know with Mad Men.  There are only two more episodes this season.  Stay tuned!


Peggy leaving

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Quote of the Day

Here is a quote I like from John Greenleaf Whittier's poem "Maud Muller" -

God pity them both! and pity us all,
Who vainly the dreams of youth recall.


For of all sad words of tongue or pen,
The saddest are these: "It might have been!"


Friday, May 25, 2012

Happy Anniversary

May 26th is the anniversary of the day my husband Jackson and I got married in 1980.  It's hard to believe it has been that long.  On the other hand it seems like it was just yesterday that we began our life together.  I'm so very lucky to have found such a wonderful man to spend my life with. Here's to another 32 years together!  Cheers!


In Paris 2010


Green Eggs and Ham

My friend Brad Simkulet from goodreads.com recorded his clever review of the Dr. Seuss classic Green Eggs and Ham.  Here is the recording for your listening pleasure -

http://soundcloud.com/bradsimkulet/green-eggs-ham-review-at

Say! I love Green Eggs and Ham.
I do! I love it Seuss-I-am.

So I will read it with Miloš
Or he will read it cause he's precoš.
And I will read it with my Të
And we will read it night and day.
And I will read it to my Scout
And she will love it, I have no doubt.
And I will read it in the rain.
And I will read it on the train.
And I will read it in my socks.
And I will read it with a fox.
And I will read it in the shower.
And I will read it every hour.
And I will read it doing dishes.
And I will read it with the fishes.
I will read it here or there.
Say! I will read it ANYWHERE!

I do so love Green Eggs and Ham.

Thank you. Thank you, Seuss-I-am.

Thanks Brad!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Love lilacs...

We have a lilac bush in the backyard that took forever to grow.  But now it's quite large (I have to stand on my tiptoes to reach the top) and is in full bloom.  I absolutely love the smell of lilacs!  One of the best parts about Spring is being able to cut some lilacs and put them in a vase on the kitchen table.  I should have taken a picture to post with this but I haven't done that yet.  Anyway, I hope you have a chance to stop and smell a lilac bush while they are still blooming!

My next book...

I picked up a book by Laura Lippman at the library a few days ago.  It wasn't on my list but I have heard of the author before and it looks interesting so I grabbed it.  It's called The Most Dangerous Thing and was written in 2011.  Laura Lippman is married to David Simon who is the creator of the critically acclaimed TV series The Wire.  The book jacket states that she has been awarded every major prize in crime fiction.

The Most Dangerous Thing is about five best friends who grew up in Baltimore and have come together again when one of them dies suddenly.  The chapters alternate between the past and the present.  I'm about half way through and I'm curious as to what happened in the past that haunts the characters.  I'll let you know if I think it's worth your time once I've finished it. 

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

20 Best Series Finales

Entertainment Weekly posted their top 20 best TV series finales online today.  See if you agree with their choices -

http://www.ew.com/ew/gallery/0,,20593459_20387623,00.html?xid=email-top25-today-20+best+TV+series+finales+ever#20603553

I agree with most of them, especially Six Feet Under, The Sopranos, The Mary Tyler Moore Show and The Wire.  I would not have included the Seinfeld finale because as much as I loved the show, I felt the finale was disappointing.

All Out of Love

I heard this classic song by Air Supply on the car radio when I was on the way home from the gym today.  Hope you enjoy it too -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iKvNiYHOTHA&feature=colike


Thursday, May 17, 2012

The end of The Closer

One of the shows that my husband and I never miss is The Closer on TNT starring Kyra Sedgwick.  This is the seventh and last season and the final six episodes begin on Monday, July 9th.  Check out their website for details -

http://www.tntdrama.com/series/closer/

As Brenda would say, "Thank yew!"

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Some good books...

I just read a good memoir called Kiss Me Like a Stranger by the actor Gene Wilder.  I didn't know a lot about Gene's personal life other than his marriage to the late Gilda Radner.  It was fun to read about his time making two of my favorite movies from the 70's - Young Frankenstein and Blazing Saddles (although he didn't write as much about Blazing Saddles as I would have liked).  I didn't know that Gene had gone to the University of Iowa, which is my alma mater.  This memoir was written in 2006. It was a quick read and I do recommend it especially if you are a fan.

I am now in the middle of another memoir called But Enough About Me: How a Small Town Girl Went From Shag Carpet to the Red Carpet by Jancee Dunn.  This coming-of-age, funny memoir from 2007 is about a Jersey girl who was a writer for Rolling Stone magazine.  The parts where she talks about how to interview celebrities are especially fun.  I found this in the bargain book section and I'm glad I did since I've really been enjoying it.  I'm waiting for my copy of Fifty Shades of Grey to come in at the library.  Due to all the hype surrounding this book and the other two in the series, a lot of people have requested it from the library.


Thursday, May 10, 2012

Keiko Matsui

Last Saturday night my husband and I went to a jazz club in Seattle aptly named Jazz Alley, to see the jazz pianist Keiko Matsui.  I think this is the fourth time we have seen her and she never disappoints.  The Jazz Alley is a great venue for her too as it's not really huge and we got a table close to the stage and could see and hear her really well.  The serve dinner but we just had dessert and drinks. 

Keiko has a new album out called The Road and her website has a video on it of the title song.  Enjoy -

http://www.keikomatsui.com/

Friday, May 4, 2012

Southland

I just noticed that the cop drama Southland has been renewed by TNT for 10 episodes airing next February.  Here are the details -

http://www.thewrap.com/tv/article/southland-renewed-tnt-38566

It's one of the shows that my husband and I never miss.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Downton Abbey song

My husband and I enjoyed both seasons of Downton Abbey on PBS.  Here is a clip of that lovely song that Mary and Matthew sing -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cuhq8nzXb9c&feature=colike

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Moonlighting

One of my favorite shows from the 80's was Moonlighting starring the great Bruce Willis and Cybill Shepherd.  I have the first and second season on DVD.  Here is a classic clip from the episode called The Murder's in the Mail.  Enjoy!

http://youtu.be/20Mh3n6ffl4

Remember NYPD Blue

I used to love NYPD Blue, especially the first season with David Caruso.  Here is an article about a recent reunion of the cast -

http://blog.zap2it.com/frominsidethebox/2012/04/nypd-blue-partner-david-caruso-had-to-suffer-through-quite-a-bit-says-dennis-franz.html

Monday, April 23, 2012

Garden

Garden
Versailles

The Louvre

The Louvre
Paris

Paris

Paris
The Seine

Arc de Triomphe

Arc de Triomphe
Paris

Paris in May

Paris in May
Paris

The Louvre

The Louvre
Paris

Chihuly glass sculpture

Chihuly glass sculpture
Victoria & Albert Museum, London

Monet's Water Lilies

Monet's Water Lilies
Orangerie Museum, Paris

Westminster Abbey

Westminster Abbey
London

Bruges

Bruges
View from our hotel window

Amsterdam

Amsterdam
canal

Arc de Triomphe

Arc de Triomphe
Paris

Lilacs in London

Lilacs in London
St. Paul's Cathedral

The Royal Guard

The Royal Guard
London

Music man

Music man
Bruges

Joy at the Palace

Joy at the Palace
London

Guard

Guard
Tower of London

Jackson in Bruges

Jackson in Bruges
Belgium

Canal bridge

Canal bridge
Amsterdam

Houseboat

Houseboat
Amsterdam

British police

British police
London

Oscar Wilde's Grave

Oscar Wilde's Grave
Paris

Rhododendrons in the park

Rhododendrons in the park
Amsterdam

Versailles

Versailles
Joy in the palace

Winter scene

Winter scene
wow!

Chinese New Year

Chinese New Year
dragon

Sweet peas

Sweet peas
love 'em

Pretty bouquet

Pretty bouquet

Princess Diana Fountain

Princess Diana Fountain
Hyde Park

Gardens

Gardens
Versailles

End of summer daisies

End of summer daisies
Our yard

Cool art

Cool art
Tate Modern, London

Penguin party

Penguin party
penguins

Pretty kitty

Pretty kitty
My sister's cat

Jon Hamm

Jon Hamm
Is he a great looking guy or what?

Mad about Don

Mad about Don
Mad Men

Love Monk!!

Love Monk!!
Love To Tony

January and Jon

January and Jon
Beautiful people

Jon and January

Jon and January
Mad Men actors

Mona Lisa

Mona Lisa
The Louvre

Royal Crescent

Royal Crescent
Bath

British phone booth

British phone booth
London

Harrod's Department Store

Harrod's Department Store
London

Versailles

Versailles
bedroom

Trafalger Square

Trafalger Square
London

Tower of London

Tower of London
London

Seattle Public Library

Seattle Public Library
Seattle

Lavender

Lavender

Lighthouse

Lighthouse

Hydrangeas

Hydrangeas
beautiful

Coffee love

Coffee love
yummy