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Archive for May, 2010

It’s official. New York/New Jersey will host the February 2014 Super Bowl in the new Meadowlands outdoor arena. Yes, it’s the first time a Super Bowl will be hosted in an outdoor stadium in the middle of winter but we New York and New Jersey people are a hardy bunch. Actually, we’re delirious about hosting the Super Bowl. We’ll be there, whether or not our beloved Giants and/or Jets are playing.

 fans   (Image courtesy NY Daily News)

Given the stadium cost a sweet 1.6 billion, I think more than a few of us might want to see where our money went. Yeah, I know it was mostly privately financed but enough of the cost came out of our pockets.  I’m just sayin’.

 global warming It’d be nice to imagine the 2013-29014 season will prove to be unusually temperate, thanks to global warming. Of course as those  very few who understand the concept realize, “global warming” doesn’t mean that each year the winters are necessarily warmer, although the average temperature is rising a few degrees each year. No, global warming simply means that whatever you’ve grown accustomed to in terms of weather, fuggettabout it! 

(image at http://science.howstuffworks.com/global-warming2.htm)

Like I said, we New Yorkers will be there come hell or high water–or several other possible weather scenarios–but for the other folks we might have to let into our stadium, here are some suggestions:

·         Snow: Stay warm with a smart Giants parka

GiantsCoat  

·         Rain: Don’t forget your Jets umbrellaumbrella

  • Ice: Have your ice scraper ready  

 

 ice scraper

  •   Hale:  You’ll feel like a real New York construction Yorker in these smart hats images
  • High winds: smart winter fans use bungee cords to stay in place: available in your team’s colors

 

bungee cords
  •   Tornadoes: this will involve a little setup, so leave yourself plenty of time before the game

 

  tornadoshelter

  •  Hurricanes: bring your own shutters to the game and hang on! (sorry, ours blew away)

 

stadium

  • Earthquakes: these are notoriously hard to predict in advance but if you have Super Bowl tickets, you probably have lots of   connections. Rent a blimp and get a bird’s eye view of the action

 

  • Volcanic  ash: breath easy with a simple face mask; available in Giants blue and Jets green. Also available with oxygen hookup

mask 

  • Locusts:  It’s an off year. You’ll be fine 

 

We hope these tips will help would be travels to the greatest stadium just outside the greatest city in the world in 2014. But know this: no matter what the weather, we’ll be there. You know what I’m talking about. 

Product information /image credits below   

http://www.womenswintercoats.org

  http://www.footballfanatics.com/NFL_New_York_Jets_Gameday_And_Tailgate_Rainwear http://www.products.sellstrom.comhttp://www.phoenixrope.com/elastic.html www.ingroundtornadoshelter.com/features.htmlhttp://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.rollingshuttershouston.com/images/hurricane.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.rollingshuttershouston.com/Service.html&usg=__qz3w2CCfwVKA5D-1xI27JZ4S0PI=&h=267&w=400&sz=23&hl=en&start=13&um=1&itbs=1&tbnid=DdmKFGkEPKTTbM:&tbnh=83&tbnw=124&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dhurricane%2Bprotection%26um%3D1%26hl%3Den%26sa%3DG%26rlz%3D1G1GGLQ_ENUS358%26tbs%3Disch:1http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2007/09/05/sports/05stadium.1.600.jpg&imgrefurl=http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/showthread.php%3Ft%3D137381&usg=__GSB30oMCkbfybgwCI6Or2lcLkGQ=&h=369&w=600&sz=163&hl=en&start=4&um=1&itbs=1&tbnid=cemSWIvZaQwAZM:&tbnh=83&tbnw=135&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dmeadowlands%2Bstadium%26um%3D1%26hl%3Den%26rlz%3D1G1GGLQ_ENUS358%26tbs%3Disch:1

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Oh no, not another one. Not another smart, ambitious, career-oriented, fifty-something single woman nominated for the Supreme Court. What is the President thinking? It’s not just that she knew what she wanted to be early on and focused on achieving her goals. It’s not just that she’s excessively bright; nor is it about her baseball playing prowess. This nominee has never been married. She can’t know what it’s like to be a working mother. She doesn’t understand how she might balance the demands of growing children, equally striving (or supremely threatened) working (or jobless) husband, and stressful, high-powered job. She has some questions about the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy. In other words she’s (wink, cough, chuckle, cue the innuendos) “completely out of touch with the average American,”  or so says former GOP Sen. Rick Santorum , who knows a thing or two about being out of touch.

(By the way, the above picture of Kagan in the early nineties ran on the front page of the May 11th, 2010 issue of the Wall Street Journal and has provoked intense debate about what the Journal was “hinting.” )

Are we really having this discussion? Even behind closed doors or the backs of our hands, online or on Fox News?

KaganJoan Vennochi, writing in the Boston Globe on Sunday, asked: “why does a single career woman with short hair always have to answer the is-she-gay question?” A better question is: why should anyone, male or female, who is unmarried, have to address questions as to whether he/she is gay, straight, uninterested, unable to find the time to forge a long-term commitment, unable to find an equal partner, uncomfortable with the idea of matrimony, or perfectly content with things as they are? Of course, when it comes to matters of the heart, or perhaps something much lower, Americans display both easy offense and prurient interest in equal measure. (image downloaded from lawyersusa.com)

Single American women, however, are particularly distrusted, it seems, especially if they’re a bit older. From divorced cougars to “black” widows, popular culture maintains the stereotype of a woman on the prowl for a suitable mate. The fabulous forty, strong women, coming-into-our-own narrative is a lie; what we all really want is a nice guy to settle down with.

That’s a whopping generalization to make about what  Page Gardner, founder of Women’s Voices. Women’s Vote, has identified as one of the fastest growing demographics in this country–single women. Absolutely, there are many women who’ve hoped that circumstances would present themselves and stars would align so that they might discover (or rediscover) their soul mate. But those women are still leading their lives. Some are shattering glass ceilings or bounding over barriers; others are celingstepping over small obstacles or pushing past resistance every day. Along the way, some may have of necessity put the thought of a romantic pairing out of their minds; rather than being out of touch with average Americans, though, they are average Americans.

The successful, smart and lucky women, like Elena Kagan and yes, Condoleeza Rice are those who have discovered joy and satisfaction in their work and in being the trailblazers and why not? Love and marriage work for some and if it happens, it happens. In the meantime, there are places to go, people to meet, friends to cherish and trails to blaze.

(above image downloaded from nurses.com)

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By now everyone and their mother has heard about, read about, or seen Betty White’s star turn on “Saturday Night Live.” White, at 88 the oldest host the show has ever had, was recruited thanks to a huge fan movement on Facebook. Mission accomplished: White demonstrated why shn266442514828_8596e remains not just a show-business legend but a consummate performer with pitch perfect timing. 

In a night filled with the pleasures of seeing returning veterans like Cheri Oteri, Rachael Dratch, Ana Gasteyer, Maya Rudolph,Amy Poehlner, and Tina Fey, White more than held her own. The show tackled the age difference between the cast and its guest (about half a century or more) head-on in a way that was funny, yes, but also generous and even celebratory. The generation gap was nowhere in evidence; clearly bawdy humor knows no age restrictions. 

White’s skill as a television comedian isn’t a surprise, given her years of experience, some 56 years by her own account. But the excitement generated by her eighty-eight and a half year-old presence seemed to mean something more. Sure, Betty White is the grandmother (great-grandmother?) the audience probably wants. She’s also, in an age of heightened awareness of our own and our loved ones’ morality, the antithesis of the despair that old age represents. In the real world, there are wheelchairs and nursing homes, strokes and Alzheimers, isolation and depression; on “SNL” there is Betty White. Who among us would not be pulled in and held in a state of hopeful suspended animation by the thought of being half the active, engaged and thoroughly entertaining Ms. White deep into our ninth decade?

On the other hand, Betty White gave a kick-ass, thoroughly invested, totally funny performance. At any age, she is a television treasure. Rock on, Betty.

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One of the biggest challenges any writer has is to balance between putting too little or too much of himself into his work. Too much, and the writer’s voice threatens to overwhelm the material. Too little and the narrative takes on a detached quality, which is often less interesting to the reader. Many wrleg2iters I know tend to over-invest; I’ve got the opposite problem: how to be sufficiently objective without creating an unbreachable distance between me and my work. I finally get it; I’ve got to show a little leg.

The big reveal has its place, especially in a memoir and more power to the brave people deliberately choosing to let us in. But when it comes to everyday online information, I subscribe to the theory that less is more. I’ve made peace with the account information my various financial institutions require, although I’m trying to get more creative with my passwords but I prefer remaining circumspect about the minutia of my daily life. Who cares what and where I’m eating, drinking, reading, or fornicating?

My friveilends do, at least if I’m a technologically savvy under-thirty-something. Today’s hipster uses not only text and Twitter but also Foursquare, Skimble, Blippy, and Doppir  to let friends, acquaintances and, inevitably the world at large know where they’re hanging, how many crunches they’re doing, what they’re buying, and where they’re traveling. Since the companies behind these nifty communication aids seem to be raking in the bucks, apparently no one is worried about putting their itineraries out there, although one funny Dutchman suggested they might want to think twice about over-sharing with a website called Please Rob Me.

For the ultimate in over-sharing, social networking sites currently rule, although You-tube seems to appeal equally to the flasher2 exhibitionist and the voyeur. Each of these sites requires a combination of tact, fortitude and a firm grasp of social boundaries. I have a close friend who uses an online addiction site for support; he says the stories he sees on Facebook rival anything he’s encountered in his anonymous support group. For the record, I enjoy Facebook; I use it like I might a meeting of casual acquaintances at a coffee shop to exchange pleasantries and information and yes, to connect. But just as I don’t mistake my friends for therapists, I don’t conflate social networks with the confessional…or the bedroom.

If it’s hard for adults to know where the line is and when to draw it, it’s nearly impossible for teenagers. News stories abound about online bullies and their vulnerable and often socially awkward classmates. The group Common Sense Media is offering in-school seminars to grade schoolers on how the web really works: how information gets shared, stored, hacked and breached. Even the youngsters who realize their most private communications could potentially be seen by a wider audience (and you’d be surprised how few of them really get it) can’t wrap their minds around the idea that their online moves might come back to haunt them.Teens and tweens tend to revel in their invincibility or rebel against the idea of a grown-up version of themselves feeling mortified at youthful indiscretions.  chagrined

All this may seem obvious upon reflection but most of us, when posting, commenting, texting or chatting, don’t reflect: we react. I have great respect for the written word but emails, posts, texts, tweets and such don’t represent conversation. They’re monologues masquerading as dialogue, great for casual connections and providing duck and cover on occasion but lousy for building, maintaining, sustaining or even ending a relationship

How much is too much? It’s a decision we make each time we share anything with anyone.With the wisdom of hindsight MMand the benefit of many mistakes in the early years of email, I might suggest a form of rationing as opposed to regurgitating. Reveal something (you are trying to connect, after all) but pay attention. A little goes a long way, trust me.  

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