Quote of the day: MARRIAGE

March 17, 2015

MARRIAGE

What does a good marriage have in common with good writing? Consider these rules from Strunk and White’s the Elements of Style: “Place yourself in the background.” “Avoid the use of qualifiers.” “Do not take shortcuts at the cost of clarity.” “Do not overstate.” “Do not explain too much.” To which I’d add: Show, don’t tell – though an occasional “I love you” never hurts. And avoid the passive voice – especially of the passive-aggressive variety.

54th Birthday Party for Cleo Laine
The comedian Henny Youngman’s most famous one-liner was “Take my wife – please.” But he and his wife, Sadie Cohen [above], were apparently very close. She didn’t mind being the butt of his jokes and often accompanied him on his tours. I read recently that Sadie was terrified of hospitals and, during the prolonged illness that led to her death, Youngman had an intensive-care unit built in their bedroom so she could be looked after at home. When she died, they’d been married more than sixty years.

— Sy Safransky’s Notebook, The Sun, March 2015


Photo diary: March miscellany

March 17, 2015

(click photos to enlarge)

birthday lunch with Michael at a fancy sushi joint called Sushi Sen-Nin

birthday lunch with Michael at a fancy sushi joint called Sushi Sen-Nin

3-11 sen-nin

We didn't try the fog or the dew but the eel was pretty good and so beautifully presented, as was Mt. Fuji (below)

We didn’t try the fog or the dew but the eel was pretty good and so beautifully presented, as was Mt. Fuji (below)

3-11 mount fuji

I spent the weekend on a personal writing retreat at a dreary airport hotel in New Jersey where the food choices were less glamorous

I spent the weekend on a personal writing retreat at a dreary airport hotel in New Jersey where the food choices were less glamorous

3-12 vending machine

have you noticed that no one loves grape jelly? it's the choice always left over at breakfast in diners everywhere

have you noticed that no one loves grape jelly? it’s the choice always left over at breakfast in diners everywhere

3-15 glamorous hotel vista3-15 sapphire room3-16 normal doorknobs


Quote of the day: BOOKS

March 8, 2015

BOOKS

Books can be mentors, even providing a moment of initiation. R.D. Laing, writer, philosopher, and revolutionary psychiatrist, tells of this discovery in a small public library, while he was still an adolescent in the 1940s. He came upon Kierkegaard while

eating my way through the library. I mean I was looking at all the books…working my way from A to Z…The first major thing of Kierkegaard that I read…was one of the peak experiences of my life. I read that through, without sleeping, over a period of about 34 hours just continually….I’d never seen any reference to him…that directed me to it. It was just this complete vista…It just absolutely fitted my mind like a glove…here was a guy who had done it. I felt somehow or another within me, the flowering of one’s life.

This moment of initiation is also like a ritual of adoption. Kierkegaard – along with Marx, Freud, and Nietzsche – became one of Laing’s spiritual parents, a member of the family tree that nourished his acorn and fed his intellectual fantasy. You expect less from your natural parents, and they become easier to bear once you have discovered the other family tree on which the life of your soul depends.

–James Hillman, The Soul’s Code
Kierkegaard


Photo diary: wintry mix

March 8, 2015

(click photos to enlarge)

2-13 botero sculpture at Time Warner Center2-13 zoom city arena2-18 reject if damaged2-27 bubby's breakfast2-26 andy dz bw2-18 solo diner2-28 syndromes and a century3-1 savory breakfast3-7 tartan week


Quote of the day: ACTING

March 6, 2015

ACTING

I’ll tell you, all the film and television things—you do them, and everyone gets so excited about them, and then they disappear so fast. Whereas I’m always amazed about the shelf life of a theatre piece. {Edward Albee’s] The Goat was on Broadway, the longest run I had ever done, I think it was seven months, and 600,000 people saw that. That’s a bad night for a movie or a TV show, where if you get 10 million, that’s a disappointment. But people always come up to talk to me about [Edward Albee’s] The Goat, and that TV show I did shortly before? Twelve years later, no one has mentioned it. The theatre has more staying power than you think. Maybe it’s a smaller pool of people, but the integrity of the experience stays with them.

— Bill Pullman
Bill-Pullman-head-shot-by-kim-butler


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