I’m excited about the revamping and the updates on the website. Thanx to my wonderful web mistress who understands my vision and was patient with me. A great start to 2011- Happy New Year everyone!
Therapy can be expensive. I think I have discovered a free and wonderful alternative. Although I’m Jewish and have studied Buddhism, I was raised celebrating Christmas. About 10 years ago, I noticed the mailbox for Letters to Santa at one of the main post offices. I decided to write “Santa” a letter about a relationship issue I was dealing with for many years. I felt a sense of relief as I dropped the sealed envelope in the box. I realized a few months ago that the matter I had written about had been resolved. So I decided to do it again. This time, I chose a different location. No not the post office. My letter was totally anonymous. I assume I gave some vastly underpaid employee ( or employees) a voyeuristic thrill into my personal life. As I dropped my letter into the “mailbox” , I felt a sense of relief and “letting go” of the issue. I don’t know when the issue will be resolved. It might take months or years; maybe not even in this lifetime. However.At least in that moment, I felt a sense of relief and feeling better than I used to feel is always a constant goal for me.
Speaking of this past holiday season, I stumbled upon more wonderful art created by children. I was attending the annual Paper, Book & Scissors event at the Central Library in Philly. I wandered into the Children’s library and discovered sculptures based on the characters from the Nutcracker Ballet created by students at the Cecil B. Moore School in Philly. I loved all the sculptures and took a ton of photos. I was a little sad there were two long rows of sculptures on high book shelves that were difficult to look at from the ground. I feel the library should have exhibited them differently but I’m so glad I had the opportunity to see them. I have posted a few on this blog.
I enjoyed the first season the HBO series BOARDWALK EMPIRE . I was especially loving the presence of a store front fortune teller who appeared briefly in one of the first few episodes. However, in the episode which aired October 3, 2010, a fortune teller was featured giving a tarot reading to the character (played by Gretchen Mol ). I screamed out loud when I saw the deck was the Luigi Scapini Medieval Tarot Deck. This deck was created by Mr. Scapini ( a sculptor from Italy) who is very much alive. It came out I believe in 2001. Not during the time period of BOARDWALK EMPIRE . I own this deck and use them all the time. The cards are gorgeous but are not of the right time period. I have uploaded a photo of my Scapini tarot cards .
I just finished reading ” JUST KIDS” by Patti Smith which won the National Book award and is a fascinating account of her relationship with photographer Robert Mapplethorpe before they both achieved fame and success. Ms. Smith’s writing style is so smooth and easy that I devoured it like a box of chocolates. Reading this book made me want to write more. I saw an exhibit of Mr. Mapplethorpe’s photographs at UC Berkeley Museum in the late 80s while I was still in art school. The images were intense, disturbing and haunting.
The 1971 John Cassavette’s film MINNIE AND MOSKOWITZ has been playing frequently on cable. When I first saw the film ( last year), I hated it. But then I watched it several more times and I think this film is brilliant. I love this film for so many reasons. Cassavettes cast his own mother in the role of the mother of Seymour Moskowitz ( the iconic Seymour Cassel) and Lady Rowlands, Gena Rowlands real life mother played her mother in the film. The film is full of humor and Pathos. The funniest scene of the whole film occurs in a restaurant towards the end of the film when the main characters and their mothers all meet each other. The film explores loneliness and the attempts to connect to another person. Mr. Cassavettes focusses on this in many if not all of his films. The characters in this film are carrying heavy emotional baggage. if you keep in mind that they are struggling for freedom from their past ( especially Gena Rowland’s character Minnie), then you begin to see the genius of Cassavettes. His film becomes a therapy session which compels the characters to move forward and conquer their inner demons. It is only then, when Minnie becomes empty that she can let Moskowitz into her heart. On the superficial level I love this film for its small moments of style and fashion. Ms. Rowlands is undoubtedly one of the most stylish women of the cinema. I couldn’t take my eyes off her tiny red rose barrettes, her oversized Italian smokey tinted sunglasses or her black turtleneck sweater and matching cigarette pants that she wore with ease. Her ensemble was very reminiscent of the outfit Audrey Hepburn wore in FUNNY FACE when she did that strange, funny dance in the underground boho cave nightclub in Paris. I also loved the giant eye mural in her apartment and the raven in trees with apples mural in the house the character John Cassavette ‘s character lives in. The final scene of this film is so beautiful that it reminds me of the Sun card of the tarot deck. Celebration with children,love, laughter and happiness in visual motion.
As far as cooking and eating is concerned, this March will mark my first year anniversary of going meatless. I couldn’t give up fish and seafood. I also decided going Vegan was too extreme for me. I’m learning to make peace with tofu. I’m going to be honest. I will never love tofu-ever! I did buy a food dehydrator and have made tofu jerky a few batches using a homemade Teriyaki marinade. It tastes pretty good but not as good as real beef jerky. I have had several dreams of eating Korean fried chicken ( the best tasting fried chicken). When I awoke, my pillow was covered with drool and I felt guilty. My reasons for going meatless have solely been driven by health issues, not politics or morals. I love animals but I will probably eat chicken again at some point in the future and when I do it will be Korean fried chicken. I don’t miss the massive amounts of meat, pork, and lamb I used to eat.
I love homemade Ceasar Salad with homemade croutons. I know this sounds a bit egotistical but my Ceasar salad makes me swoon. One of the issues I was concerned about was using a raw egg in the dressing. Luckily , I discovered an easy way to coddle ( partial cook) the egg to avoid any i possible health concerns. I put the egg in a small ceramic dish ( an individual ramekin or a glass pyrex pudding dish). I then put that dish in a large pot. Meanwhile I bring a large saucepan of water to boil. I then SLOWLY pour the water in the pot until the ramekin and egg are completely submerged. Timer is set for exactly 60 seconds . When you crack the egg, the white will look like it is just starting to form. I add a few dashes of hot sauce into my salad dressing mixture and I use the best bread i can find for the croutons ( from Metropolitan Bakery here in Philly). I usually get a french baguette or sourdough loaf.
Well that’s it for now. I hope to write this blog more frequently.