Gregory Hines

I was very saddened a few weeks ago when I heard the news that Gregory Hines had passed away. He was so young, I really didn’t expect it.

He was a kick-ass dancer. Wow! I am a fan of him. He can MOVE. He is so smart about it, he can do all kinds of things.

I don’t know what his last role was, I last saw him in Waiting To Exhale. He did not dance in that movie, which is a shame.

My FAVORITE Gregory Hines movie is White Nights. This movie is one of my favorites in general, because it goes into the communist life of Russia. It treats Russia very, very well. Meaning, it gives a really good view of what it was (is?) like there. Some of the things in that movie are difficult to grasp until you’ve actually been to the country. It was so, so real.

Except the KGB parts. I couldn’t tell you about that.

But the part where Barishnikov and Hines dance off, where they are talking about dance and freedom and poverty and culture, is my most most most favorite part.

It is worth seeing. The movie is a treasure.

I am sorry that I will not get to see Gregory Hines dance again.

Def Poetry

At my favorite open mike night, the only one I go to really, I got to hear Gina Loring.

She huffed and puffed and blew my house down. She’s a poetry slammer, the kind that make me think I can’t write poetry, that I have no idea what it’s about anyway. And she can sing so beautifully. She actually mixes the two, poetry and singing, which is amazing, really.

Really amazing.

She’s been on HBO’s Def Poetry Jam, which is a show I have not seen, but have heard great things about.

Amazon does not have a DVD of her performance available (Darn them!). But there is a def poetry on broadway performance. These kinds of things are worth seeing. So check it out.

Donald O’Connor is dead

This man was incredibly talented, and his “Make ‘Em Laugh” routine in Singing in the the Rain will bring joy to the hearts of many for years to come.

Dancing can be such an expresson of joy and humanness, and I loved the way that O’Connor moved. He loved what he did; there is no way he could have learned the types of moves that he mastered without that love.

The English Roses

Madonna is writing children’s books.

You’ve probably heard this already, but it is still kind of amazing.

The Material Girl, the Pointy-bra Diva, the perennial object of lust is writing children’s books.

Well, she is a mom now. I am not a mother, but if I ever become one, I could see a certain shift in my life happening.

Madonna seems to LIKE being a sex symbol. And apparently she likes being a mom.

I guess there is room in her life for both.

But it was very very sweet, a nice lesson about not judging people, and being happy with your life. A lesson mothers would like their children to learn.

And all I can say is, “good for you, Madonna!”

Some of the people who know me have heard me talk about this site.

It’s a great site.

My OWN curly headedness has began to be spread around the ‘net. The lovely ladies at have contacted me to ask if they can put up my Curly Top story on their site.

I said yes, and I am pleased to be part of their outreach.

Check it out, they really are great!

Ever bump your head and not remember

then later, you are sort of rubbing your hand over your head and you find this spot that’s really sore?

Maybe it’s just me.

But I would not be surprised if I’d been knocked unconscious at some point this week, and that I wouldn’t remember it.

It’s been that kind of week. Work is insanely busy. I know some people regularly work 60 hour weeks, but I am quite upset when I have to work 50.

I HAVE to have boundaries, I have to have more than just the one thing MY JOB that I do.

So, I’ve also been trying to sign up to do other things. Just took a dance class last night. It was great. All the Femmes in the room were fun and supportive.

Trying a new eating plan. Don’t like the word diet. It involves more vegetables that I can believe I will really eat. At least I fear I will not be able to eat them before they go bad.

They give you a shopping list. What Kind of nonsense is a shopping list that says

1 Large Stalk of Celery
3 Tbsp. Peanut butter

I hope they want me to eat the rest of the celery later. That’s all I can say.

Well, I just wanted to post something. It’s been a while, I know.

Quite possibly the best job in the world

Jane and Michael Stern are roving reporting, travelling the nation for the best road food. They do a column for Gourmet magazine called “Two For the Road”.

I am in absolute green envy. How idyllic is this? You are with the love of your life, your spouse, travelling all over the world, anywhere you want to go. And you are SUPPOSED to eat at all those great places, the ones that say, “Famous for Pies” that always seem to zip past tantalizingly on my journeys

I heard these guys on “The Splendid Table“, an NPR radio show about food and eating. I love their attitude and their stories.

Some people have all the luck.

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Just finished the movie, and I am left really thinking about a lot of things. That’s what make s a movie good, right?

It’s about piano playing, and it’s about mental illness. Kind of both. David was supposed to be this raging genius, but right when he showed everyone that he was so extraordinary, he goes insane.

Or just gives in to his insanity, maybe.

What I can’t help thinking about though, is what Gillian was thinking. What woudl life be like married to an insane person?

Of course, insane has many levels. David’s level seemed to be mostly pleasant. But what kind of partnership would a marriage like that be? I guess there are all kinds of marriages, like there are all kinds of people. It blows my mind. I cannot imagine myself in that position.

It’s also interesting to think about what constitutes genius and what constitutes insanity. Haven’t we all been aware of the relationship between the two?

An insane person sees things differently than regular people. A genius does the same. Maybe it’s only a matter of labels.

I also wonder about the idea of classical music. I play the piano. Rather badly at this point. Technique was never anything I worried about. I just wanted to play. And I always wanted to play new things. I hated practicing. I wanted to learn to play a song, and then just PLAY.

Originality is key. Play the same song, but play it in a new way. Put a new twist on it. Practicing seemed going backwards.

But classical musicians play the same stuff over and over and over. 8 hours a day of practicing. Insane! How could you do that?

Don’t get me wrong. I love the idea of reinterpretation. I think that the jazz standards can be done endlessly, and always be new.

But I will never understand the idea of playing the same thing, exactly the same as the guy before you. Maybe this is a throwback to a time before we had recording technology.

Interesting that jazz took off right after we had the ability to record stuff. Hmm….

Well, I recommend the movie.

The names

Don Delillo wrote this book about a murderous cult in the middle east. I read it on accident, because I thought it was the one my book club was reading.

Turns out we are reading White Noise. I’ll tell you about that one when I’m done with it.

But The Names was depressing. Man! a story where a man living in the middle east, where he thinks all the time about their political situation, who finds other things to be MORE depressed about.

I guess murder is pretty depressing.

Mainly, I was depressed because he seemed to have such a tough time showing love to his wife. Sad Sad. I like to see love enjoyed. But the main guy didn’t know how to enjoy his love at all. He seemed stuck.

Delillo had a lot a lot of internal thoughts about words and meaning. It was interesting, but still had a hopeless theme.

I think it was worth reading. It made me want to finish, for sure. But I was sad the whole time I read it. It made me sigh a lot.