Archive for the ‘Celebrity Birthdays’ Category

September Wrap-up

September 30, 2010

Man alive, can you believe today is the last day of September? With that in mind, I thought you might like to know Toohoolhoolzote, a Nez Perce indian prophet, died in battle 133 years ago today. Question is, did he foresee his own demise? If he had, maybe he’d still be alive today. Just sayin’.

Today is also Barry “Greg Brady” Williams’ 56th birthday. Oh, Greggie. And The Flintstones premiered on television 50 years ago today. The Flintstones, as you know, was the first animated program to show two people of the opposite sex in bed together. It was also the first animated primetime series that lasted more than two seasons, a record that wasn’t surpassed until The Simpson’s third season. It’s no secret The Flintstone was based on Jackie Gleason’s The Honeymooners for which Gleason had considered suing the producers of the cartoon, but let it pass and after Alan Reed, the voice of Fred Flintstone died in ‘77, Gleason, (for whom Reed did voice over work in his early movies) was told by his lawyers he could have the show yanked off the air, but was advised by those same lawyers that he’d be forever after known as the guy who yanked The Flintstones off the air.

First we had a tornado warning on Tuesday that fizzled out and now today, we have flood warnings because we are having monsoonal weather but even though we had planned to walk in the rain (we have appropriate gear for that), taking into consideration how most often what the weathermen say usually doesn’t pan out. Well, I was up before my alarm (one day out walking and already my internal clock is playing havoc with my beauty sleep) the rain was coming down in sheets. Needless to say, we didn’t walk. And somehow I think that means there’ll be no Lou Crew today. Call me crazy, but I just have that feeling. There was no Lou Crew yesterday either which means my fan wasn’t installed again. I got tired of not having any new pictures to post, so here’s a  picture of the much lauded ceiling fan.

Oh, come on, you didn’t think I’d show it to you yet, without it being in place, did you? But here’s the one light fixture that was installed when they were last here.

And on a final note, thanks to Ariel, I shot off a text to my Dead Celebrity players, well, Bobby, and raked in the points for Tony Curtis (or, Stoney Curtis, speaking of the Flintstones)…dead at 85 of cardiac arrest.


The Cupboard Is Bare

August 3, 2010

The one question we continually get when we talk about the construction on the house, is why, with the house being the size it is, do we need another room? I answer simply because there are two of us here, after all, and ten rooms cannot possibly be enough. Ariel has the less sarcastic answer and says that it all began with wanting a pantry closer to the kitchen, rather than at the opposite end of the house and that we needed a room for the pantry to sit in.

But, now, as it turns out, the room is also going to be built around another item. The ceiling fan. We got a catalog in the mail a while ago and flipping through it I fell in love with and had to have, a particular ceiling fan. In my life, I’ve fallen in love with only a few things that I had to have, among them, my dear departed beagle, the black and white painting of a waterfall and the very house I live in… oh, yeah, and the big juicy bacon cheeseburger that once, but that was a short-lived attachment.  Last night, during a more careful examination of the fan’s specs, while we shooed out the smoke from the salmon I was nearly burning in the broiler, we discovered a nine foot ceiling for this luscious fan is recommended. Our new room will only be a standard eight. “Maybe we can duck around it”, “maybe we can put a table underneath it” and “maybe it can go in the corner over the breakfast nook”, were my desperate attempts at not giving in that we’d need a different type of fixture.

“If they’re still out there when I finish my dinner,” Ariel said, referring to the Lou Crew who was still at it up until just past 7 last evening from about 7:30 in the morning, “I will go talk to him to see what can be done.” As a result, the ceiling will be recessed enough to accommodate this fan I just have to have.

In this picture, the subfloor is down and the framing was started. The opening closest to the house on the right side of the picture is for the sliding door; a window will go in the spot next to it, as well as along the entire outside wall and in the front part of the left side. Against the house on the left, where the center upright is being held into position with the two angled 2 x 4’s is going to be the pantry.

Get our your atomizers, today is the American Idol try-outs in East Rutherford, New Jersey. For those of you who might have missed it the first time around, or for those of you new to this blog, you can read Commander’s Interview with a former American Idol hopeful by clicking here and scrolling down to the Robin Lennox Interview.

Remember that guy who made himself throw up on an off-duty Easton, Pennsylvania cop and his daughters at a Philadelphia Phillies game back in April? Matthew Clemmens and his friends were heckling police captain Michael Vangelo and his two daughters and after one of the hecklers was ejected at Vangelo’s request, Clemmens stuck a finger down his throat to make himself vomit. Well, he was sentenced to 30-90 days in jail, 2 years of probation and 50 hours community service. Lindsay Lohan, meanwhile, served 13 days in jail for violating probation. And now she’s off to three months of rehab.

HAPPY 84th BIRTHDAY, TONY BENNETT!  He’ll be performing at the Paramount  Theater in Asbury Park on August 21.

A Wednesday Smorgasbord

July 28, 2010

I’m sitting here, in  my less than one month old brand new office chair that no longer reclines thinking, (already) what, oh what, will I have for lunch today. Maybe some boiled ham and cheese.  Maybe some salami, some capicola ( I’ll never understand the gabigool pronunciation, or how manigawt means manicotti. I had some spirited debates with the people I used to work with, especially when it came time to order lunch) some proccuttini, lettuce, tomato, onion, heavy oil and vinegar. And if I’m feeling really rambunctious, a tiny smear of mayo. That sounds an awful lot like a #5 super sub from Tastee Sub Shop in Edison, the institution since 1963. I always marveled at how orders could be taken from as far as three people back in line (I might want to swear it could be more, but that might be my wild imagination, you know, when you’re talking something up to impress someone else). And it’s always fun to go during their busy hours when the line literally snakes around the close quarters of the small store, and even intersecting itself at times. But the result is worth it because you come away with one of the best sub sandwich experiences you’ll ever have. I used to go there quite often when I lived in Edison and even now, for a treat, I’ll take a drive every once in a while and pick up sandwiches for dinner.

Oh, but I can’t go there today. It’ll be too hectic a day. President Obama is going to be there, after having been invited by the mayor of Edison to head a roundtable discussion to promote the Small Business Jobs Act which he hopes the Senate will pass this week. Owners of three other small businesses in New Jersey will also attend.

There’s always Five Guys. My niece never heard of Five Guys so I told her I’d put a link on here so she can see what it’s all about. Like I told her, the juices from their burgers will drip down your arm if you let it and their fries have been classified as the most unhealthy in all the land, but their crispy greasy goodness, dusted with some Cajun goodness are intoxicating. I wonder if each


store charges its own prices because I go there sometimes for lunch, just up the road from Tastee Sub Shop and I don’t remember it costing as much as it did the other night when we stopped after the movie at a different store. Two bacon cheeseburgers (which is a double patty–a small is a single patty, toppings are free), a large fry and two medium sodas came to over $23 dollars. I gasped, but I paid it. I needed solace after that movie.

Funny how some areas around the country don’t have things others do. For instance my family in Illinois can’t get a Devil Dog. For Heaven’s sake, they don’t even know what a Ring Ding or a Yodel is out there. The natives, that is. Or Dunkin Donuts. What’s with that?  I saw a Dunkin Donuts in Chicago when I was there a few years ago, however. And it was a long time before my sister could get Ronzoni macaroni. Well, of all things, you would never think Wise potato chips would fall into oblivion, but somewhere between the east and west coast they are unattainable.

This shot is a slightly different angle otherwise that stack of cinder blocks would hide the left corner:

And I would remiss for a second time if I didn’t post a happy belated birthday wish to Bugs Bunny. It was his 70th birthday yesterday!

In Colorful Company

October 7, 2009

It’s a busy day here at My Life And I’m Sticking To It. I wanted to make a simple blog listing names of people with whom I have this day in common and there were some names I just had to include while eschewing others. Then I thought, maybe it would be nice to actually see who I was talking about. That was a last minute decision, but I searched and searched….and searched for photos. And now that I’m running late for work, I present you with this not so comprehensive list of people born on this day. Maybe next year I’ll fill in with those I left out this time around and see how their stories stack up on the “interesting” scale.



sir ralph abercromby 1734: Sir Ralph Abercromby. No M. No Fitch, but still sylin’. He was a British lieutenant-general who served in the Seven Years’ War and The French Revolutionary Wars. 

Henry Rutgers 1745: Henry Rutgers, the American soldier for whom Queen’s College, Rutgers University is named. Queen’s…hmm, I wonder if that’s where the Olde Queen’s Tavern in New Brunswick down the road a piece got its name.

jean-baptiste vuillaume 1798: Jean-Baptiste Vuillaume, noted violin maker and invent0rwho made over 3,000 instruments in his lifetime, all of which are numbered and created the hollow steel bow and the “self-rehairing” bow. Among the notable names who have played a Vuillaume is Efram Zimbalist, Sr.

Uncle Dave Macon 1870: Uncle Dave Macon, also known as the Dixie Dewdrop, was an American banjo player, a comedian and a singer/songwriter. Among the title of songs he played was a ditty called “The Arkansas Traveler” which strikes a note with me from a recent McGinty installment. I better look into that.

Henry A Wallace 1888: Henry A. Wallace, the 33rd American Vice-President under FDR, 11th Secretary of Agriculture, and the 10th Secretary of Commerce. And the first Vice President to be on my list.

Herman Dooyeweerd 1894: Herman Dooyeweerd. He’s on the list mainly because that name is priceless. But he was a Dutch juridical scholar, a philosopher by vocation and also the founder of a new approach called ‘the philosophy of the cosmononic idea. You figure out what that means, I’m just gonna keep saying his name over and over.

Heinrich Himmler 1900: Heinrich Himmler, one of the most powerful men of the Nazi Regime, heading up the Gestapo who oversaw the concentration and extermination camps. Not very amusing, but an historic figure to be sure. Gotta take the good with the bad, I guess.

Andy Devine 1905: Andrew Vabre “Andy” Devine, known for his raspy voice, was featured in more than 400 films, including Stagecoach with John Wayne and was noted for his portrayal of “Cookie” opposite Roy Rogers.

June Allyson 1917: June Allyson. Does anybody else remember the Depends adult diaper ads she did on TV? I’ll bet Turner Classic Movies is showing some of her films today. Betcha!

guido aristarco 1918: Guido Aristarco, decano della critica cinematografica…. uh, never mind.

Al Martino 1927: Al Martino, singer of Red Roses For A Blue Lady. They do exist. Ever see the Blue Man Group? Smurfette? I rest my case. If you look real quick, don’t you see Tony Bennett?

Desmond Tutu 1931: Desmond Tutu, South African cleric and activist, who during the 1980’s rose up against aparteid, and also campaigns to fight AIDS, tuberculosis, homophobia, poverty and racism. Don’t mess with my….

Thomas Keneally 1935: Thomas Keneally, who wrote Schindler’s Ark, which was later renamed Schindler’s List. I still haven’t seen that movie, even though it’s been stored on my DVR for over a year.

Oliver North 1943: Oliver North, recipient of the Silver Star, the Bronze Star and two Purple Hearts during his combat service as a platoon leader in Vietnam…oh yeah, and he’s a NY Times best selling author, but he is best known for his role in the Iran-Contra scandal. I get that one and the Anita Hill-Clarence Thomas nonsense confused. Were they even around the same time?

John Cougar Mellencamp 1951: John “Cougar” Mellencamp. A little ditty about Johnny Cougar, John Cougar, John Cougar Mellencamp, John Mellencamp (is that all of it?) is also a painter who has been compared to German and French impressionists. Cougar is a stage name given to him by his agent.

Tata Vega 1951: Carmen Rose “Tata” Vega. I just keep thinking about you, baby. She’s an American soul singer who was featured on The Color Purple soundtrack and I have a 12″ disco mix of “I Just Keep Thinking About You Baby,” from 1979 on Motown Records that was featured on 92.3 FM WKTU way back when. Now KTU is at 103.5 and isn’t what it used to be.

Yo Yo Ma 1955: Yo Yo Ma, world renowned cellist. I was up and down about this one. That was dumb.

no picture available 1957: Judy Sams, golfer and winner of the1994 du Maurier Ltd Classic. Du Maurier caught my eye and I came to learn that even though the du Maurier cigarette was created by Peter Jackson in 1903, for Sir Gerald du Maurier, the British actor who wanted a smoother, less irritating cigarette. Sir Gerald, incidentally, is the father of Daphne du Maurier, one of my most favorite author’s who wrote Rebecca, one of the best novels I ever read.

simon cowell 1959: Simon Cowell. Who… the bloody hell… cares? Am I relevant, Simon?

Brian K Sigley 1960: Brian K Sigley. Yep, your’s truly.

Toni Braxton 1968: Toni Braxton, singer (Un-Break My Heart) and actress (Belle) on Broadway’s Disney musical Beauty And The Beast, while enduring bankruptcy proceeding, with the distinction of being the first African American woman to play a leading Disney role on The Great White Way. She also appeared on Dancing With The Stars in season 7 and was ultimately voted off in week five.

And that’s just a small slice of the colorful and varied October 7th birthday cake.

Hittin’ The Dirt

September 3, 2009

I’m kind of disheartened this morning. The houseplant, the philodendron, I’ve had for more years than I can remember, looks like it finally bit the dust. That in itself isn’t the sad part. The sad part is that it was a shoot from the original that Grandma B had from before she moved to NJ back in 1950-something. It was looking a little bit unhealthy and I tended to it as best I could and it finally started coming around. I was even going to post periodic pictures of it as it continued to flourish. But this morning, all that’s left is a leafless vine. I’ll keep at it, and maybe, like what happened with Grandma’s, that it stopped growing and she threw it outside and there it began to grow and she had it ever since, it’ll start coming back for me.

This is a recent finer moment.


grandma's plant 2

So, switching gears for a sec, I’m wishing today was the 5th. It’s Be Late For Something Day, instead of it being Skyscraper Day today. And it’s Charlie Sheen’s birthday (1965), Alan Ladd (1913-1964) and Kitty Carlisle (1910-2007).

Today’s also the day Michael Jackson will finally be interred at the Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, CA. That’s where such luminaries as Clark Gable, Jimmy Stewart, the aforementioned Alan Ladd, and L. Frank Baum, author of The Wonderful Wizard Of Oz have been laid to rest. It’s been determined that the Jackson estate is liquid enough that it can pick up the undisclosed “extraordinary” tab for the funeral, unlike the cost for that life celebration thing back in…whenever it was…the city of Los Angeles took up a collection for to pay for all the police and craft services and whatnot.

I’m also just less than two hours away from my weekend beginning, thanks to having worked last Saturday. I won’t be blogging until Tuesday and that will be, of course, part 4 in the “Florida Story” and the newest installment of McGinty Chronicles will be up and running.

Have a great holiday weekend!