Going to the dogs

dogYou walk into a  well-known New York City bakery, and not only is there a fairly large dog holding court in the middle of the floor, but the ladies who work there have come from behind the counter to coo and pet him.

This makes dogs in theaters seem like a welcome sight.

Also see https://tandbontheaisle.wordpress.com/2019/02/18/doggone-it/

On this date, March the 2nd, 2019, I add to my pet peeve (with a little apology for the poverty of the pun) by noting that a woman walked around Agata & Valentina with a dog on her hip while her companion shopped. She could have waited outside. Worst of all, when I asked the manager if I was the only one bothered by a dog in a food shop, he said that dogs were not allowed in the store. The woman was standing right behind him a minute before he made this startling announcement to me. He did not notice. The cashier said something about service dogs– emotional support animals– and  I simply stared at her. At Bed, Bath and Beyond, a dog was barking on the checkout line. They, too, sell groceries and this pup and another wandered about the store on leashes.


My dog Chippy in the 1960s

The point I am making in all this: if you are so much in need of emotional support that your husband cannot shop for groceries without you walking around carrying your pet, I think you should probably stay home while he ventures out to get supplies.

My dog was chained outside the A&P when I was a kid, while I went in to purchase food. Couldn’t you make a similar arrangement?


What’s so funny? — Our Theater Blog: TandBOnTheAisle

There is a type of comedy in which the hero (or heroine) allows a sketchy friend to help him/her make a sketchy choice. Poor judgement is funny, or at least leads to comic situations. Jason Bateman’s character in Extract, for instance, is lead down this path by Ben Affleck’s Dean, a dodgy fellow if ever […]

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Face it

1checkmarkMy spin instructor this morning shared a conspiracy theory he was able to document with chilling details. He said that FB posted links in his news feed based on phone and personal conversations he had had. The latter were conducted while he was on his mic on his laptop in class.

His suspicion was that Facebook is listening in. In this case, specifically to the phone call he had in which he told his friend that he could give him a WW scale. The next day, FB offered him ads for WW. In his class, he was randomly discussing how much revenue the state made from licensing betting operations. Next time he went to his FB pages, he found links to Sports Betting sites.

The FB logo

FB must have been paying very close attention, and jumping to unwarranted conclustions about his interests and needs.

If Facebook can overhear and monitor private conversations on devices where their apps also appear, how come they could not identify Russian trolls when they popped up?

Anyone: a dialog

Photo © Tamara Beck

Anyone can vote? Why is that? Anyone? They need a leader who can change all that. You, you are the perfect one to lead them out of this, how do you say, quagmire. You are a changer. What do the Americans say, a game changer! That definitely describes who you are, you know.

I’m happy to do it, of course. I would be the best president ever. I know that. So, what do you need? I like uncertainty and a bit of disruption.

Change the game, is all we ask. And maybe, just maybe, if it comes up on your agenda, when the time is right –close the government. Perhaps for a, you know, game changing period of time.


The theme is

Curation is a fancy word for what I do in my imagination, organizing lists in which films intersect via a variety of varied characteristics. I rearange the criteria. The lists change accordingly.

Baseball movies make the cut almost everytime I create a new curation. Whether the film is about the game and the players, minor league or the majors, or the fans, baseball pictures are a beloved subset of the scrappy category of Sports Films.

I know you expect the big ones, like Bull Durham or A League of Their Own (which make my Chick Flick list as well) or Fever Pitch (in the trailer above). Field of Dreams is on most people’s favorite baseball fantasy. The dreadful Sandlot and Sandlot 2 (both also with James Earl Jones) -there is apparently a third one as well; oh well- likely do not make it to most best of lists. Jones also participated in The Bingo Long Travelling All-Stars & Motor Kings, a midling and entertaining view of Negro League baseball. Eight Men Out and Pride of the Yankees are two greats, and The Natural is a strange but enticing film, based on a strange and enticing true story.

I add to my personal favorites in the subgenre, a wonderful film called It Happened in Flatbush with Lloyd Nolan and Carole Landis.



cropped-bebrilliant.jpgA dog, specifically, though it hardly matters, a labradoodle, answering to “Plato” may have been named after:

  1. the Sal Mineo character in Rebel Without A Cause
  2. the ancient Greek philosopher
  3. the man who was responsible for the familiar relationship meme, “Just Friends” (see above)
  4. a corruption of the term for a gooey children’s creative toy that can be made with flour and water and a little coloring
  5. most of the above but I am not sure which
  6. some of the above, ditto
  7. none of the above
  8. all of the above

Explanation for choosing 7. may be that his owner –in facr–has an uncle she admires named Plato; she, being a millenial, has never heard of Rebel Without A Cause or Sal Mineo.


December 18

With Christmas a week away, the New Year is also around the corner.It is generally a festive time in NYC, with the jollity reflected in so much bustle and hustle on our streets.

This year, the goodwill of the season seems to have been worn away. It might be because rancor, rage and ingratitude are more appropriate reactions to the daily news. It’s a not so wonderful life in 2018.

BurtSmilingFDR78-9Personally and on a personal level, I am thankful for many things. My life is wonderful in many ways– the news cycles notwithstanding. I am grateful for a loving husband, a decent life filled with plenty of leisure; I have quiet moments and times bursting with activity.

And New York is a lovely city. Even in its diminished stature. Empty storefronts, with ubiquitous signs suggesting that commerce is not as robust as it might be. Public transportation that is more public than transport, with long waits between subways and longer ones for buses. Mobs of folks enforcing their individuality with little regard for each other. Christmas lights are twinkling dimmer.

We could all use a little more of the spirit for which this season is so famous. May it grace us everyone.


MTA_Bus_5206November 5th

There’s a small town feel on the M31 bus.

The driver knows (and waits for) one of his regulars. Their greeting is cordial.

Going across arguably one of the most urban of the city’s thoroughfares, 57th Street, he moses in and out of traffic at what can only be described as a got-all-the-time-in-the-world pace.

I, of course, am in a hurry and impatient with his Mayberry approach.


By Unknown – White, Frank Marshall. “The Passing of ‘300 Mulberry Street'” Harper’s Weekly Vol. 52 No. 2665 (January 18, 1908), p. 17, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=41396804

A recent incident in my immediate nabe alerted me to the existence of apps (apps, mind you, plural!) that connect you to police scanners.

The scanners in turn allow you to track any activity in your surroundings.

A Bing and Google search for these connections to dispatch yielded a nice selection for Android and iPad, and Windows 10; all that and  “top 5” reviews.

It is clear that this sort of monitoring is a popular pasttime.

What is not clear is if I want to go to that soft underbelly of hubbub and agitation.

#PhantomFashion30 — Our Theater Blog: TandBOnTheAisle

The mask from The Phantom of the Opera is one of the more theatrical flourishes in a very theatrical musical play. Fashion is a kind of theater, too. Fashion designers will help The Phantom of the Opera celebrated its 30th anniversary this past January 26th with proceeds going to Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. #PhantomFashion30 will […]

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