Sunday, July 31, 2016

Culinary Eulogy by mail

BJ, JOEY, PETER

Hearts cry from the empty place left by our wonderful Julie.
The sad news came only when I felt well enough to finally opened the tons of emails.
...
The memories come flooding through ... the birthday card and favorite cake for each employee... fried zucchini... the spring pilgrimage to El Cholo for green corn tamales... the pot of her senate bean soup that chased the gray day away... San Louis sour dough bread.. .M&M chocolate peanuts that appeared out of nowhere and so very much more. A premium invitation was an invite to partake of Julie's famous "rigs" gratefully devoured by the assembled . And it goes on. The accolades seem endless. She was the goddess of morale that kept us afloat amid the show biz chaos.

Marilyn and I are devastated by the loss of Julie.

All the best,
Judy

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Julie's Bougainvillea.


Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Moving On

Julie left us yesterday morning. Joe and I were standing at her bedside and Peter was descending at LAX just as Julie's spirit rose aloft. Julie chose this house to live in and to die in. When her final wish was granted, it was with peace and grace in the care of a commendatory hospice service. It is at times like this that the purpose of love is most understood.

Monday, November 02, 2015

The Daylight Savings Time conumdrum solved.


Those who prefer Daylight Savings Time love the extra hour of afternoon sunshine. Standard  Sun timers hate the later morning darkness. There is a simple solution that benefits both camps and also ends the twice a year clock confusion. On day one, all clocks will be set on sun time at midnight, allowing for an early morning sunrise. Then at noon, all clocks will be set on Daylight Savings Time, giving us that extra sunshine into the evening. Then at 1:AM, all clocks will be set back to Standard Time, repeating the earlier morning sunrise. This cycle will repeat every day of the year, giving both camps maximum satisfaction throughout the year. I would expect  full  Congressional support and bi-lateral unity on a bill with this proposal. Enjoy!

Friday, October 16, 2015

Language as conundrum

According to Glenn Ford, who knew Will Rogers from the stables, the droll humorist never said, "I never met a man I didn't like." Or that is what he did say, but it was out of context. His complete statement was primarily about horses: quote, "I never met a man I didn't like who didn't like horses."

All well and good; but here is where I have a problem. Grammar. What is the difference between :

I never met a man I didn't like who didn't like horses - and -

I never met a man I like who didn't like horses-?

Both "like" and "didn't like" seem to express the same opinion in this matter. How is it explained?

Any help in clarification will be appreciated and I thank you for your patience.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

DUI on Santa Monica Blvd. circa 1996

The 20th anniversary of a famous trial verdict reminds me of an incident that occurred about a year later. I had just left a friend’s house after watching Evander Holyfield knock Mike Tyson around on PPV and I guess I was feeling my oats. Driving home on Santa Monica Boulevard in my VW Rabbit, I began to feel encroached upon by an erratic driver in a small white sedan. The situation became more irritating through Century City as the driver would speed up, cut me off, change lanes, stop at a green light; then charge through the red as I approached.

The sedan stopped behind a long back-up at Beverly Glen Blvd. so I was able to pull up alongside. Inside were two black men in the front seat and a third in the back. I signaled the passenger to roll down his window. When he did, I ordered the driver to cut in front of me and pull over to the curb across the intersection.
Somewhat hesitantly, the sedan moved to the curb lane and gradually came to a stop as I followed behind. Following standard TV Police Show procedure, I left my vehicle and approached the driver. I told him to turn off the ignition and give me the keys. I ordered the driver and his front seat passenger out of the car and to step to the sidewalk. The guy in the back seat, it appeared, had fallen asleep.

Under questioning, I found that these were three young men from the American south, seriously soused, who had come to L.A. seeking a good time. I could tell the driver was too drunk to drive so I explained that his erratic driving was about to lead to an accident or, at least, the lockup, and I could not let them proceed. The passenger, however, indicated that he was not seriously under the influence so, since I was tired and wanting to get home and felt I had shaken them up enough, I gave him the car keys and suggested they stop up ahead for some fast food and coffee.
As he started to get behind the wheel, the replacement driver asked if he could have a hug. I okayed it, and the late night motorists in Westwood were treated to the sight of a big Black man and old White guy embracing in the street.

I got back into my car, but the original driver jumped out of the car and came to my window. “I need a hug, too,” he said, and reached in to hug me.
I told him to have fun but drive safe. He told me he would do that, and added that, though the trial was over and the verdict was now history, he wanted me to know he thought O.J. did it. So I went home.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Fallen Angel


At the time of his death, George was my oldest living friend. During those 60-some years, I lived a fairly satisfying , generally easy and not seriously challenged life. George, on the other hand, met with many serious challenges throughout his life, not all of his own making, and most at which he failed. Yet, despite his neuroses, addictions, debaucheries, failures and the losses, progressively, of everyone and everything he loved and treasured, including the body he wrecked and ruined through his unwholesome appetites, he persisted to live beyond the span of years most of us hope to attain.

At times George seemed to revel in the fact of his bad health, but frequently, in the final years leading to his death, he complained about his frequent falling down. It is common for the elderly to fall down, which can lead to hospitalization and death. And George lived in San Francisco near the top of the very steep Grant Avenue so caution was his byword.

Very near the end of George’s life, my son Joe happened to be having an espresso on Columbus Avenue when George walked by. He greeted George and took this picture, but George didn’t stop to chat and quickly moved on. It appears that this is the last picture taken of George as he was found dead a few days later, on the floor beside the bed he had fallen from.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Beyond thought


I saw something about fifty years ago that I still remember so clearly I know I will never forget. I was taking coffee at my regular spot on the Sunset Strip when I noticed a car moving slowly down the slope leading to the Sunset-Holloway intersection and Tower Records. The driver’s face had a look of frozen terror.

Suddenly, the young executive from the car leasing company next door ran from his office, darting and dodging through the traffic of the broad thoroughfare, getting an angle on the rolling sedan. Somehow, he caught up with the car, got the driver door open and was able to bring the car to a stop before it reached the busy intersection or crumpled into the parked cars that lined the street.

I was on my feet by then, watching in amazement. Paramedics soon arrived on the scene and the young leasing agent returned to his office. I asked him what had happened and he said the old guy had some kind of attack or seizure and froze at the wheel. Seated at his window desk, some perception or instinct made him recognize that the driver was not in control, causing him to spring into action to help.

 My view of the terrified driver and his young, white-shirted rescuer is a tape that my memory replays often. I wish you could see it. I tell you about it because I know we all want to be that kind of person who sees what needs to be done and is not hesitant to do it. It is a divine impulse.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Language as conundrum

According to Glenn Ford, who knew Will Rogers from the stables, the droll humorist never said, "I never met a man I didn't like." Or that is what he did say, but it was out of context. His complete statement was primarily about horses: quote, "I never met a man I didn't like who didn't like horses."

All well and good; but here is where I have a problem. Grammar. What is the difference between : I never met a man I didn't like who didn't like horses - and - I never met a man I liked who didn't like horses-? Both "liked" and "didn't like" seem to express the same opinion in this matter. How is it explained?

Any help in clarification will be appreciated and I thank you for your patience.

Monday, February 09, 2015

Family terror

Watching a segment on Masterpiece Mystery tonight, I was moved by a sub-plot involving a middle-aged couple with a large, healthy family who were traumatized because their infant son had a persistent high fever. My own parents, in their mid-twenties, I am sure also suffered when their 2-year-old son and 19-month old daughter came down together with typhoid fever. The daughter, Marcella Ruth, died, as it were, that I might live.

Four years later I contracted a crippling polio virus; I was old enough by then to observe the stress my illness and treatments caused them as the years went on.

But all this must have been overshadowed about six years into this when my 6-year-old brother Brendon John, was bitten by a rabid dog and suffered for months before he died.

Predictably, the TV show child's fever went down and everybody lived happily ever after.

But this is my blog; and with apology to Martha Ellen, I am the only one left to grieve for my parents and their losses..

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