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December 20, 2014
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In My Humble Opinion

Past-Present-Future

Although I’m in no mood to think about a certain ho-ho-holiday looming on the horizon, I have spent the past week or so ruminating on the past, since Rosh Hashanah (the Jewish New Year) has already come and gone. While I may not have worn a funny hat or used a noisemaker (I make enough noise all year long), I did celebrate in my own way prior to the most solemn day in Judaism—Yom Kippur.  Read more

I heard it through the grapevine

If it’s second-hand conversation, is it gossip? My dictionary suggests that gossip means “casual or unconstrained conversation or reports about other people, typically involving details that are not confirmed as being true.” It goes on to give me synonyms such as “tidbits, whispers and canards.” I always thought “canard” was French for “duck,” so I looked that up too, just to be sure. Sure enough, “an aquatic bird” came up (www.dictionary.com) along with “an unfounded rumor,” and my newest favorite word took flight. Canard.  Read more

If it looks like a duck…

Looks can be deceiving. A perfect example hit me this morning, when I looked out the window as the Wonder Dog whimpered for a walk. Blue skies and fluffy clouds scudded by, but when I checked the thermometer, it read 37 degrees. Yep—it’s fall. Not a bad thing, but when I went to bed, the leaves were still green. This morning? Not so much. “Don’t forget the camera,” I thought, as I grabbed the leash and put a jacket on for our stroll.  Read more

‘Fashionably late’

For me, the term itself borders on the oxymoron. Early in life, my mother drummed punctuality into my head and insisted that bad manners were not to be tolerated. “It’s rude,” she’d say, “and there is nothing fashionable about it.” Even as a youngster, I had a secret desire to be popular and left no stone unturned in my quest. I struggled to develop personal style and was never very good at dressing myself, so I pursued other avenues with which to appear worldly. One day I strutted into the dining room (late for dinner) and thrust the dictionary into my (very stylish) mother’s lap.  Read more

Shine on harvest moon

Yes, it’s here. Actually, by the time this column hits the stands, September’s full moon will have come and gone, but still… even if I wanted to stop the seasons from changing I cannot. Autumn has many glorious aspects to embrace, including (but not limited to) the burst of fall foliage that sweeps across the Upper Delaware River region and the plethora of festivals celebrating the annual harvest.  Read more

The times, they are a-changin’

Some of us embrace it, others tend to balk. It’s the six-letter word that often strikes fear in the hearts of even the strongest. Change. Whether we like it or not, it’s the only thing that remains constant and that, in itself, aggravates me. One would think that by now, I’d be used to it… but no. As I wend my way through the Upper Delaware River region, I hear whispers of malcontent. “What happened to summer?” folks ask, as if I have the answer. “Where did it go?” I understand that it’s all about perception. In truth, the seasons have the same lifespans that they have always had.  Read more

It ain’t over till it’s over…

Don’t tell the boss, but I played hooky yesterday. Oh, sure, I’ve been busy. Zooming around the Upper Delaware River region in my chariot, I managed to exhaust myself (doesn’t take much) crossing the mighty Delaware to check out a festival, (www.wallylakefest.com) and escorting the pup (www.facebook.com/DharmaTheWonderDog) to her personal appearance with the kids in Callicoon, NY (www.delawareyouthcenter.org) so that she could help raise funds for the Grover Hermann Hospital and the auxiliary’s goal of acquiring new sonogram equipment.  Read more

‘The best of times is now’

Those six words inspired legendary composer Jerry Herman to write a song with that theme for his smash-hit musical “La Cage aux Folles,” currently playing at the Forestburgh Playhouse. Based on the 1978 French-Italian film of the same name, “La Cage” began as a stage play, was transformed into a film (remade in English as “The Birdcage,” starring Robin Williams) and back to the stage again as a musical, with music and lyrics written by Herman, and the story penned by Harvey Fierstein.  Read more

Encore! Encore!

You know what they say: “everyone has an opinion….” and while that is certainly true, not everyone has a public forum with which to express theirs. I often feel like the luckiest guy in the world, since the powers that be at The River Reporter have given me a wide berth to do just that—offer my “humble opinion” on the world of arts and leisure here in the Upper Delaware River region, but rest assured, I don’t take the responsibility lightly.  Read more

Empty nest syndrome

I thought that it was a thing of the past. More than 20 years ago, my little one toddled off to pre-school as I wept copiously, longing for the day when she still needed her diaper changed. It seems like only yesterday that she wouldn’t go anywhere without holding my hand, or gazing lovingly into my eyes for the approval that has never waned. That little girl is all grown up now and doesn’t need me in the way she used to, and the melancholia that swept over me during the “empty nest syndrome” has faded from memory. Until now.  Read more

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