Sunday, April 29, 2012

"Z" is for Zeal. The Fitness Kind. (4.30.2012)

Caution: This blog post could seriously improve the status of your fitness, but might scare you to death.


Love this story in The Times, alas, the last one in the A to Z Blogging Challenge which prompts me to write about the letter "Z". I thought I would try to end the alphabet with a bang and hopefully induce a motivational jump-start to my own fitness zeal. You see, I had my latest motivation interrupted by scheduled ACL reconstruction surgery. (Think "D" for Drat!) So I need all the small steps, scare tactics, atta-girls and anti-depressants that I can muster.


Ever the optimist, here's the good news: I am no longer using crutches, and I have a much better sense of the fitness road ahead of me. I am three weeks out from surgery and probably have about five more weeks of physical therapy and then some strength-building for the sports I want to go back to (like skiing, cycling, jogging and rough sex). First sport on the list: walking without a limp. 


Here's the really funny part, which except for about 15 years of dance when I was a kid, I can't account for: I seem to be the resident Ripley's Believe It or Not specimen in my physical therapist's office. I had a 90-degree range of motion one week after surgery. One and a half-weeks later, I have a 130 degree range of motion. I am the talk of the office. Again, apparently this is not common for 56-year old women and certainly not even common for 25-year old women. Maybe I should post a profile for my youthful knees on match.com (along with my sports activities...). 


Although range-of-motion is certainly a nice-to-have, it is still frustrating knowing that I've got several weeks to go before they cut me loose. And in the meantime, if my spectacular range-of-motion continues, maybe I can get a part-time job with the circus.


So back to The Times story. I work with several people who are good role models for reminding me to move around more during the day. I mean, we are writers after all and that's what we do -- we read huge state bids and bask in the glow of our dual computer monitors while we conjure up solutions to current Medicaid challenges. (We are a smart group but we do get some help with this.) Not much walking involved there, but plenty of opportunity to snap-on your headset, stand-up and walk around while you are Being Here Now for the requisite two-hour meeting. And several of my colleagues do just that. Pre-surgery, I used to be one of them. Note to Self: Suck it up, quit your whining and start moving around more. 


One other note: if you look at nothing else in this story, take a look at the wonderful story illustrations by Anna Raff. I would reproduce them here, but I promised a certain someone that I would renounce my copyright-bashing ways and stop reproducing photography and original artwork in my blog (I'm on-board, EG. Pinky-swear.). Suffice to say, they are so powerful and funny that I think I will post them at my desk. If that doesn't scare me into standing and hobbling around, nothing will.
--------------------------------------------
Link to The Times story:
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/29/sunday-review/stand-up-for-fitness.html?src=ISMR_AP_LO_MST_FB

Link to Illustrator Anna Raff's Web Site:
http://www.annaraff.com/
--------------------------------------------
Author's Note: 
In the month of April, I participated in the A to Z Blogging Challenge. 
And if you didn't know that already, you just haven't been paying attention. 
Or, you are a lovely new visitor to my site :-)
(for details, see my previous posts for the month of April). 
Today is the last day of the 2012 Challenge ("Z") and I have mixed emotions.
It's been a fabulous month of connecting with other writers, finding new friends 
and of course --exploring The New York Times

Saturday, April 28, 2012

"Y" is for Yellow. Cool! (4.28.2012)

Not sure about this color.
It might look like
Beetlejuice on.
Nails are in the news. Yellow ones that is. And green. Of course, we've all seen the intricate patterned nail styles which I'll admit that I haven't yet tried.
I would totally wear this!
I am always on the lookout for fun, fresh nail colors almost as frequently as I am on the lookout for shoes and lip gloss. Since I get my nails done every two weeks (Gel!) and keep them very short, I have more than enough opportunity to try out new shades. And for some reason, I still have the soul of a 12-year-old girl when it comes to nail polish. These new shades are pretty subtle though, and will keep me away from my natural attraction to shiny, sparkly, blingy nails. 
Love this.
Wore it last week.
Other colors that I've seen that I might be willing to try are Lemonade, Green With Envy, Here Comes Trouble, Green Apple, Happy Go Lucky and Frisky by Orly. And if you are anything like me, these are well considered choices having to do with the season, my mood and my general level of boredom. And some people think it's just so easy being a woman.
 -----------------------------------------------------------
Link to The Times stories:
Yellow and Green Nail Shades for Spring

No Nail Biting as Polishes Boom
Once Staid, Nail Polish Becomes Fashion Accessory

 -----------------------------------------------------------
Author's Note: In the month of April, I am participating in the A to Z Blogging Challenge. The idea is to blog about something every day, starting with the first letter in the alphabet ("A") and continuing through all 26 letters (to "Z"). We get Sundays off for good behavior. In order to make this fun and challenging, I've decided to theme my A to Z blogging. Here's the plan: since I love reading The New York Times, and since I always find no shortage of frightfully interesting stories, I am going to center my blog on the stories I find in The Times. One thing I promise: an A to Z ride through The Times as diverse as the Gray Lady herself. Hang on for some fun. Or as Kevin said in Home Alone (one of my favorite lines), "I think I'll give it a whirl..."

Friday, April 27, 2012

"X" is for X's and O's and...Oooops! (4.27.2012)

Say It Ain't So, Bobby!*
Well, you can add Bobby Petrino, the controversial but winning coach of the Arkansas Razorbacks, to the short but growing list of public figures caught in the wrong place at the right time. It's a frequent and common recipe for public disaster that usually goes something like this:




Recipe for Meltdown Stew

Two parts well-seasoned, powerful older man* 
One part fresh, beautiful blond employee 
Mix in a devoted wife and four kids
Add a dash of weekend and a Harley-Davidson
A pinch of money and lies
Pour into an out-of-town getaway
Cook over high heat.
Do not freeze.
(Will keep for as long as it's covered.) 

*Now that the rumors are flying of naked photos of Bobby Petrino being sent by text, you might want to peel before cooking.

---------------------------------------------------
Link to The Times Story:

Scandal Involving Petrino Goes Beyond X’s and O’s

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/07/sports/ncaafootball/bobby-petrino-scandal-goes-beyond-football-acumen.html?pagewanted=all

*Photo licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License.
---------------------------------------------------
Author's Note: In the month of April, I am participating in the A to Z Blogging Challenge. The idea is to blog about something every day, starting with the first letter in the alphabet ("A") and continuing through all 26 letters (to "Z"). We get Sundays off for good behavior. In order to make this fun and challenging, I've decided to theme my A to Z blogging. Here's the plan: since I love reading The New York Times, and since I always find no shortage of frightfully interesting stories, I am going to center my blog on the stories I find in The Times. One thing I promise: an A to Z ride through The Times as diverse as the Gray Lady herself. Hang on for some fun. Or as Kevin said in Home Alone (one of my favorite lines), "I think I'll give it a whirl..."

Thursday, April 26, 2012

"W" is for Wheels. The Sporty Kind. (4.26.2012)

O.K., I'll just admit it: I am a "ho" for wheels. I just am. For years, I was not really that interested in cars. And then it happened: I had my first test drive of an Audi A4 the first year they were re-designed (like 1997?). It took my breath away. It was such a fun experience I felt like I needed to smoke a cigarette when I was done. My ex and I bought that A4, a red one, and drove it and drove it until one day, it just stopped. This was actually good news as we could no longer afford the $1,000 a month maintenance habit at the local Audi dealer after it went off warranty. 
Photo Credit: Porsche North America
In 2003, I let go of the A4 and leased a post-divorce BMW 328xi. My first BMW. The 328xi was the equivalent of buying a red convertible. It was fast, it was silver and it drove like a sports car. I had a BMW bike rack on the roof which I used frequently to cart my bike all over the place and I thought I was da bomb. Fun! 
From 2006 to about 2009, I toyed with being responsible and actually purchased a Honda CRV. Part of the decision to buy a car was the expectation that there might be some family-blending going on in the near future. I can't say I really enjoyed owning it that much. For me, it was one more thing I didn't really want to maintain and while it handled very respectably, it didn't drive like a sports car. And then one fine day I broke up with the camping-skiing-hiking guy and his kids (see Love in The Time of Baked Beans, 2/7/12 ). I waited a few years before I traded it in for a beautiful white bachelorette car: a BMW 328 x-drive with a cinnamon interior. Loved that car. 
Photo Credit: Porsche North America
A few months ago I leased a BMW X3 so my 6'1" son Sam would fit in my car without his head jutting out of the sunroof. Don't get me wrong: I really love the X3. And as well as it handles, it just doesn't have that low-to-the-ground sport suspension that makes you feel like you're hugging the road and the road is hugging you back. It's a great car, and it's a lush drive. It's just not a sports car.


How cool would I have looked 
driving to school in
my OLL uniform and 
knee socks in this little number?
The mind reels.
Forever and always, I have wanted to own a sports car. And I remember when my well-meaning parents ruined your life and denied me my dream all at the same time: It was the day my parents refused to let me buy my older brother's little green MGB GT convertible for $800 when I was 16. Buying a sports car now will no longer make me one of the coolest kids in high school as it would have then, but I just don't really see why I should leave this earth without fulfilling this desire. And as desires go, it's such a small, succinct, manageable one that hurts only the status of my carbon footprint. Don't you think? And maybe if I stick with my plan, I could end up being the coolest kid in Assisted Living. It's all relative. 


So take a look at these.  See what you think. Just don't touch because I saw them first.
---------------------------------------
Link to The Times Review:
Wheels: The Nuts and Bolts of Whatever Moves You
The Porsche 911 Carrera S

Wheels: The Nuts and Bolts of Whatever Moves You
A Brawnier Boxster for 2012


---------------------------------------

Author's Note: In the month of April, I am participating in the A to Z Blogging Challenge. The idea is to blog about something every day, starting with the first letter in the alphabet ("A") and continuing through all 26 letters (to "Z"). We get Sundays off for good behavior. In order to make this fun and challenging, I've decided to theme my A to Z blogging. Here's the plan: since I love reading The New York Times, and since I always find no shortage of frightfully interesting stories, I am going to center my blog on the stories I find in The Times. One thing I promise: an A to Z ride through The Times as diverse as the Gray Lady herself. Hang on for some fun. Or as Kevin said in Home Alone (one of my favorite lines), "I think I'll give it a whirl..."

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

“V” is for Vows, Sweet Vows. (4.25.2012)

Ever since beginning the A to Z Blogging Challenge I have wanted to do a post on the Weddings/Celebrations section of The New York TimesYears ago (when I was in primary marriage mode) we used to refer to it as The Women’s Sports Pages. The Times' Weddings/Celebration pages have changed a lot since then, and the most notable change is the acceptance of announcements from same-sex couples as of September 2002. So maybe it should more appropriately be referred to as both the Women's and Men's Sports Pages. Nonetheless, it is still the go-to scorecard for any self-respecting social climber.


The Bride's Bouquet
Being one of the couples who gets a wedding announcement in The Times is one thing. But scoring the feature story in Vows is the large Cartier diamond on top of the Honeymoon Solitaire setting. That's why after seeing this sweet, sweet story of a couple who didn’t meet at Harvard and who are not now attending John’s Hopkins medical school together, or who only trace their ancestry back to Joplin, MO and not Jamestown, VA, I had to share.


I picked this story largely due to the charming photos taken by Steve Herbert of The New York Times. There is sweetness and innocence that comes through in these photos, just as it comes through in the story about this young couple, just 21 and 22 years of age, who have learned how to survive a tornado and how to accept the kindness that arises out of acknowledging imperfections in the person you love.


I hope you enjoy the story and the photos as much as I did. Sniff, sniff. 
Photo Credit: Steve Hebert for The New York Times
Photo Credit: Steve Hebert for The New York Times
Photo Credit: Steve Hebert for The New York Times
Photo Credit: Steve Hebert for The New York Times
Photo Credit: Steve Hebert for The New York Times

Here is the link to the story about the 
Hogue-Foster wedding:


Here is the link to the complete photo slide show:

------------------------------------------------------------------
Author's Note: In the month of April, I am participating in the A to Z Blogging Challenge. The idea is to blog about something every day, starting with the first letter in the alphabet ("A") and continuing through all 26 letters (to "Z"). We get Sundays off for good behavior. In order to make this fun and challenging, I've decided to theme my A to Z blogging. Here's the plan: since I love reading The New York Times, and since I always find no shortage of frightfully interesting stories, I am going to center my blog on the stories I find in The Times. One thing I promise: an A to Z ride through The Times as diverse as the Gray Lady herself. Hang on for some fun. Or as Kevin said in Home Alone (one of my favorite lines), "I think I'll give it a whirl..."

Monday, April 23, 2012

"U" is for Utopia. With No Cell Phones? (4.23.2012)

I don't buy it, I tell you. I just don't buy it. A story in The Sunday New York Times Opinion pages, written by a psychologist and professor at M.I.T., Sherry Turkle, opines that "we have sacrificed conversation for mere connection".
We are tempted to think that our little "sips" of online conversation add up to a big gulp of real conversation. But they don't. E-mail, Twitter, Facebook, all of these have their places -- in politics, commerce, romance and friendship. But no matter how valuable, they do not substitute for conversation.

So here's what I'm not buying: I don't buy that cell phones, iPads and all the apps that run on them are the new bogeyman of our generation. I don't agree that technology is creating a generation of kids and adults who have lost the ability to have conversations in person because they are so busy texting. 
I just don't buy it. A 16-year-old boy who relies on texting for almost everything says almost wistfully, "Someday, someday, but certainly not now, I'd like to learn how to have a conversation."
Really? Now if this young man had autism (like my son does) that would make sense and it would be a skill on his IEP to build toward. But seriously. Is this really supposed to be the next big fear for our kids? That they text so much they will lack the ability to hold conversations? 

Frankly, I don't think most 16 year-olds are very chatty anyway, especially with their parents. And if I were to I suddenly lose my ability to chatter and hold conversations I know some people --men especially--would probably like me better. 

So all that being said, I don't disagree with everything.  Here are the things I agree with:
  • Human relationships are rich; they're messy and demanding. 
Yup. Got it. 
  • Connecting in sips may work for gathering discrete bits of information or for saying, "I am thinking about you." Or even for saying, "I love  you."                                                     
Maybe we can program a cell phone to send such messages at intervals? Men would buy this app. We could do a B.F. Skinner variable reinforcement version and call it, "I love you sometimes." It could be killer.
  • In conversation we tend to one another...We can attend to tone and nuance. In conversation, we are called upon to see things from another's point of view.                               
True. But what about those who are far away? Agree, a conversation would be best. But sometimes a phone call, email or IM gives us a chance to express important feelings when we can't be there in person. And if someone IMs or emails at you instead of with you, you know its time to text: "CRACKLE, CRACKLE...Oh sry u r breakg up...we'd better talk in person." 
  • To make room for [conversation] I see some first deliberate steps. At home, we can create sacred spaces: the kitchen, the dining room. We can make our cars "device-free zones." We can demonstrate the value of conversation to our children.
Totally agree with this. And this recognizes that there is value in communication as long as it's just that: a back and forth experience that builds a relationship and not just "sides". One other thing: I think we can create sacred "cell-free" spaces in the workplace. Like the bathroom. 
So what do you think? Would love to get a few spirited, spunky, sassy comments going. Oh, but whatever you do, don't call me at home. 
----------------------------------------------------
Link to The Times story:
The Flight From Conversation


CAUTION: 
Texting 
While Walking 
Can Be Dangerous 
To Your Survival

Check out the survival tips 
in the short, funny, 
video link below:

100000001269189/texting-while-walking.html


----------------------------------------------------


Author's Note: In the month of April, I am participating in the A to Z Blogging Challenge. The idea is to blog about something every day, starting with the first letter in the alphabet ("A") and continuing through all 26 letters (to "Z"). (We get Sundays off for good behavior.) In order to make this fun and challenging, I've decided to theme my A to Z blogging. Here's the plan: since I love reading The New York Times, and since I always find no shortage of frightfully interesting stories, I am going to center my blog on the stories I find in The Times. One thing I promise: an A to Z ride through The Times as diverse as the Gray Lady herself. Hang on for some fun. Or as Kevin said in Home Alone (one of my favorite lines), "I think I'll give it a whirl..."

Sunday, April 22, 2012

"T" is for Times Style and Tom Bull. (4.23.2012)

As I was stumbling through The New York Times, I came across the video blog section related to New York Fashion Week (September 2011). The Times' video diary series on the new "it" model on the scene, Tom Bull, caught my attention. Tom is an Aussie from Perth who made a name for himself last spring by opening the show and the finale of the Perry Ellis Men's show, and being part of several high profile campaigns such as Ralph Lauren and Banana Republic.


It's a funny thing looking at a top male model in clothes. One of the things that strikes you is that they were meant to wear clothes, unlike most humans. They are built, understandably, like lean, toned race horses. A different breed entirely.


The other striking thing is that they seem to blend. My brain can logically acknowledge that they are attractive, but not so attractive that they distract from what they're wearing. This might be the case for female models, but I look at them differently. And that is one long story that most women can relate to. 


Tom got to be my "T" today (lucky Tom!) because I began watching several of the New York Fashion Week behind-the-scenes videos. I just found the behind-the-scenes fascinating. Not a glimpse into the world of modeling I am ever likely to see. We've all seen models on America's Next Pretend Top Model going on "go-sees" and getting rejected. But here is someone going on go-sees and booking major international campaigns and shows. Looking at someone like Tom Bull, you can see why a major brand might want to be associated with his "look". Indeed, a different breed. 


Tom's video diary includes a few standard issue model subjects: casting, eating healthy, a fitting, a show and a conversation about his "look" (the beard). It's all discussed in a disproportionately casual way but it's clear that this week-long diary provides a glimpse into big time, modeling -- where appearance, style and facade are everything. No "do-overs" allowed.

Tom Bull is far right. For those of you who are regulars,
 please note: Karen Elson (far right), Jack White's soon-to-be ex-wife.
Just a note about the video diaries: they are very short, informal and entertaining. Also, if the hubs or significant other doesn't have rippling abs, you might want to take a look for the purposes of the old memory bank.


Here is the link to 
The New York Times Magazine's Men Style 
New York Fashion Week Video Diaries for Tom Bull:

September 8, 2011
Tom on Casting

September 10, 2011
Tom on Eating Healthy

September 12, 2011
Tom at the Marithé + François Girbaud Fitting

September 15, 2011
Tom Opening Perry Ellis Show 

September 16, 2011
Tom on 'Why The Beard?'

Saturday, April 21, 2012

"S" is for Summer, Smiles and a Short Film (4.21.2012)


This is a video blog.
It is meant to make you SMILE, but I bet it will make you laugh and cry too.


The next time you have a day when you wonder about
the state of the world
and how people are with each other,
watch this short film.



There is also a nugget of an idea here for how we can
 inspire our kids to stretch their imagination
and help them build their dreams.

------------------------------------------

Link to The Times story:
The Genius of Unstructured Summer Time
------------------------------------------
Author's Note: In the month of April, I am participating in the A to Z Blogging Challenge. The idea is to blog about something every day, starting with the first letter in the alphabet ("A") and continuing through all 26 letters (to "Z"). (We get Sundays off for good behavior.) In order to make this fun and challenging, I've decided to theme my A to Z blogging. Here's the plan: since I love reading The New York Times, and since I always find no shortage of frightfully interesting stories, I am going to center my blog on the stories I find in The Times. One thing I promise: an A to Z ride through The Times as diverse as the Gray Lady herself. Hang on for some fun. Or as Kevin said in Home Alone (one of my favorite lines),
 "I think I'll give it a whirl..."


"R" is for Racing with the Wind. (4.20.2012)

One of the fun challenges of the A to Z Blogging Challenge and the theme that I've chosen is picking a story from The New York Times out of the hundreds published that prompt me to want to write. Some days it can be painful to find stories through the lens of the alphabet. For example, there aren't many stories in The Times where "K" factors in prominently if you don't count "Korea" or "Kew Gardens". Just sayin'. And no offense to either Korea or Kew Gardens in that regard.


Today however, I am presented with a smorgasbord of "R" stories right on the front page. And my experience with "K" and "R" has been a lot like life: Sometimes when you're frantically searching for something, it eludes you. And then when you've incorporated that into your view of the world, an "R" comes along to smash all the rules. Of course, in the A to Z Blog Challenge as in Life, you only need one "R" story. Having 17 of them is kind of useless.


Which made me think of the Alanis Morrisette song, Ironic, which I include for your listening and thinking pleasure:



O.K., so on to the smorgasbord of "R" stories. No worries. I did pick a spectacular one out of the entrants:


Rapper: T Magazine: A Rapper's Strange Trip toRussia
RecountsWoman Recounts Quarrel Leading to AgentScandal
Red Sox: Bats: Red Sox Toast 100 Years at Fenway
Reinventing: Reinventing the Third-Year Medical Student
Remembering: Remembering Dick Clark
Rent: The City of Sky-High Rent
Reprimand: Vatican Reprimands a Group of U.S. Nuns and Plans Changes
Rescue: A Filly’s Unlikely Journey From a Rescue Project to the Racetrack
Returning: Returning to the Sermon on the Mount
Review: Theater Review: ‘Clybourne Park’
Rich Ross: Rich Ross, Disney Studio Chairman, Is Forced Out
Rock 'n' Roll: An Appraisal: The Man Who Made Rock ’n’ Roll Safe Enough for America
Rodent: Looks Like a Rodent, Croons Like a Bird
Romance: Nicholas Sparks’s Well-Hydrated Romance
Room: Room for Debate: Is Legal Prostitution Safer?
Rough-Throated: Levon Helm, Drummer and Rough-Throated Singer for the Band, Dies at 71
Runneth: On Sundays, the DVR Runneth Over


So after sifting through all of these, I found The One:  A Filly's Unlikely Journey from Rescue Project to the RacetrackA few notes on this story:

- This is the first story from the Sports section of The Times.
- I am really not into horse racing at all, but do love horses. 
- It's a beautiful story of rescue, redemption and possibilities. It's worth the read.

Notinrwildestdremz, who began life as one of the
177 horses that were starving and all but abandoned.
 







Oh, and I almost forgot:  Since the subject of the story was the 5R Racehorse Stables (signifying rescue, rehabilitation, racing, retraining and retiring) I figured that if I couldn't recognize that as a sign of the "R" story I should write about, then I needed some of the 5R stuff for myself.

Read the story. It's very cool. Enjoy.

Link to The Times story:
--------------------------------------

Author's Note: In the month of April, I am participating in the A to Z Blogging Challenge. The idea is to blog about something every day, starting with the first letter in the alphabet ("A") and continuing through all 26 letters (to "Z"). (We get Sundays off for good behavior.) In order to make this fun and challenging, I've decided to theme my A to Z blogging. Here's the plan: since I love reading The New York Times, and since I always find no shortage of frightfully interesting stories, I am going to center my blog on the stories I find in The Times. One thing I promise: an A to Z ride through The Times as diverse as the Gray Lady herself. Hang on for some fun. Or as Kevin said in Home Alone (one of my favorite lines),
 "I think I'll give it a whirl..."

Thursday, April 19, 2012

"Q" is for Questions, Questions, Questions. And Dating.

Every once and a while I come across a story in The Times and think, "I could have written that story. Why didn't I write that?" And Devoted But Dateless is just such a story.


The author, Hannah Brown, who lives in Jerusalem for God sake's (no pun intended) and is the film critic for The Jerusalem Post, has written a beautiful, witty memoir about dating and the not-so-small fact that she is the mother of an autistic son. 


How much time do you have?


I love everything in this story, and every bit of it is true. From the inability to run out the door to meet for coffee without having a back-up plan, to trying to explain why your son does not live with you during the week (he lives in a group home...and no, I am not a crack-addicted mother who lost custody of her son, thank you.)


And even as I write that, I feel humiliated to admit that, just like her, there was a time when I felt I had to have a dating strategy for explaining Sam. I mean, let's face it: those of us who are on dating websites probably scroll way more than we date. You scroll, you scroll, you read. You look. You think. You scroll, you scroll, you read. Repeat


Sometimes the most idiotic things can cause you to keep scrolling ("likes canaries").  I do it too. And in your 50's you are looking for someone -- as I always say -- who either travels light, or who carries their own baggage. The whole complications thing? Who wants to deal with that? And the fact is that, just like when we were in our 20's or 30's, we still have this urge to break ground. To be with someone who hasn't done it all yet and who maybe only has one ex-spouse. Two, tops. Finding an aging ingenue is not the easiest thing to locate at this point in our lives.


Two other things about this story interested me: One is that I've had the exact opposite reaction from a date when he learned I had a son with autism. That's because he had a daughter with special needs. That was a non-issue for me and I welcomed the special bond that came from being able to discuss our children. However, there was a big issue between us: did we even like each other? Take the status of our kids out of the equation and was there any there there? I can recall a First Date Drink with this man and being worried that he might propose, he had so made up his mind that we should be conjoined. It was sad. I understood it. But I wanted more than my son's diagnosis to be our bond. 


The second thing about the story that was good to know was that apparently this issue extends to men who live in a 60 mile radius of Jerusalem. This means that, despite my attraction to Jewish men, life is still pretty much the same there. One less place to trouble myself with to look for a mate.


In many ways, I suppose I am the dating equivalent of the guy with three or four ex-wives. It's not that you don't wish them well. It's just that you foresee a little more involvement than you're really ready for in a dinner and a movie date, and the mind does wander about why there are so many ex-Mrs. Smith's. Too many bags.


So ultimately, like Ms. Brown, I came down on exactly the same side of the fence as she did:


"Does this imbalance make me crazy? It certainly does. But Danny is my life. These men are people who may or may not become a part of my life."


And the same is true for Sam. I got to the point in my dating development that I could no more dissemble about Sam than I could about having two arms and two legs. He is a part of me. He is my everything. Do I have room for a Mr. Everything? You bet I do. And it's the most fun package deal you could ever imagine. But I guess I will just need to keep carrying my own "bags" and enjoying my family (which begins with the letter "S" for Sam) until I scroll over the right man.


----------------------------------
Link to The Times story:
Devoted But Dateless

----------------------------------

Author's Note: In the month of April, I am participating in the A to Z Blogging Challenge. The idea is to blog about something every day, starting with the first letter in the alphabet ("A") and continuing through all 26 letters (to "Z"). (We get Sundays off for good behavior.) In order to make this fun and challenging, I've decided to theme my A to Z blogging. Here's the plan: since I love reading The New York Times, and since I always find no shortage of frightfully interesting stories, I am going to center my blog on the stories I find in The Times. One thing I promise: an A to Z ride through The Times as diverse as the Gray Lady herself. Hang on for some fun. Or as Kevin said in Home Alone (one of my favorite lines),
 "I think I'll give it a whirl..."

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

"P" is for The Art of Pillow-Fort Design. (I couldn't resist).

Only The New York Times would do a story with two jump-pages on the joys of constructing pillow forts and practical tips. (I see a Pillow Forts of The TimesPart 2 of The New York Times Magazine somewhere on a saavy editor's desk right now.) And only in The Times would they consult an architect and a civil engineer about building pillow forts, and then suggest that pillow forts provide a great opportunity to discuss "tension and compression" with your kids. You just gotta love The Times.


Of course, your kids may have their own ideas
about this subject, as well they should:

“We just did it our way, and our way was the right way, and it always turned out right,” Benjamin said, adding of the adults:
“I guess we didn’t need them.” 

 One of my favorite passages in the story comes at the very end:

"Remember, it’s the children’s space, not yours.
Tether your sheets and blankets securely,
but try not to get too attached yourself."


(Aw shucks. Whyyyyyyyyyyy can't I play too?)

Take a look at some of these photos and see if the urge to re-modulate your modular sofa with the addition of a few old Pratesi sheets and cashmere blankets doesn't grab hold. Remember: Easter and Passover are in the past and Thanksgiving isn't until November. Might as well let your kids put that dining room table to good use.


Whether you consult an architect or your 7 year-old,
 YOU CAN DO THIS!

The perfect solution for all those extra decorative bed pillows! 

Who wouldn't enjoy a cozy nook?
Add a DVD player or a small TV and before you know it,
you might find The Nook has gone Co-op.



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Link to The Times story:
And the Walls Came Tumbling Down, Again:
Lessons in the Art of Pillow-Fort Construction

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/19/garden/lessons-in-the-art-of-pillow-fort-construction.html

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Author's Note: In the month of April, I am participating in the A to Z Blogging Challenge. The idea is to blog about something every day, starting with the first letter in the alphabet ("A") and continuing through all 26 letters (to "Z"). (We get Sundays off for good behavior.) In order to make this fun and challenging, I've decided to theme my A to Z blogging. Here's the plan: since I love reading The New York Times, and since I always find no shortage of frightfully interesting stories, I am going to center my blog on the stories I find in The Times. One thing I promise: an A to Z ride through The Times as diverse as the Gray Lady herself. Hang on for some fun. Or as Kevin said in Home Alone (one of my favorite lines),
 "I think I'll give it a whirl..."