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September 17, 2014
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In My Humble Opinion

‘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

I got ‘shushed’ at a Lard Dog show!

Was I talking during the show? Yes. Amidst the flurry of activity surrounding the Celebrate Callicoon Street Fair, (www.visitcallicoon.com) and surrounded by scores of kids who were shrieking with glee, I stopped taking photos for a moment to greet pal Cooper Boone (www.cooperboone.com), while dodging flying pretzels, beach balls and balloons being flung at the crowd by the Lard Dog himself. As the confetti of rolled oats rained down on the audience, I dared to speak.  Read more

Deeds to do, promises to keep…

I don’t want to bum you out, but… summer is half over. Hard to believe, right? Around Memorial Day, I vowed to “stop and smell the roses” and take my time this season, relish the moment and drink it all in. You know, be in the now. Maybe I should have just made a decision to begin drinking. With a firm resolve to spend the lazy hazy days of summer “feelin’ groovy,” I made sure to have my Simon and Garfunkel CDs in the truck, to facilitate the notion that their advice—“Slow down, you move too fast”—would magically empower me to feel like “kickin’ down the cobblestones” etc.  Read more

LBJ took the IRT down to 4th St. USA

While these words strung together might seem esoteric, they are ringing in my ears as I review where I’ve been over the last few days. The reference is to a song from “HAIR” (the tribal love-rock musical) written by James Rado, Jerome Ragni and Galt McDermot, and that particular tune is strung together by a collection of acronyms (a word formed from the initial letters of a compound term—think NATO, radar or laser). As I darted to and fro with the Wonder Dog in tow, I couldn’t help but notice them popping up.  Read more

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