Friday, August 29, 2008

Thursday, August 28, 2008

What Hillary Clinton's women want

What Hillary Clinton's women want


Thursday, August 28th 2008, 7:50 AM

Hillary Clinton's speech before the convention on Tuesday night was brilliant. It reminded me of the one that Jesse Jackson gave in 1984 after a very contentious primary, when his name would be put into nomination the next evening and his 465-1/2 delegate votes would be recorded in the history books. His speech soared with reminders of a historic campaign, thanked supporters and recognized it was time to move on as a unified party.

Hillary's remarks, however, went even further than Jackson's did 24 years ago - by pressing for support, over and over, for her former opponent, Barack Obama, and urging party unity as the only way to defeat John McCain in November.

She could not have done more. And despite what some of Obama's supporters seem to feel, responsibility for a contentious campaign does not rest solely on her shoulders.

It seems to me there are now three distinct groups of Hillary Clinton supporters.

The first are the PUMAs - which, as everyone now knows, stands for "Party Unity My A--." For them - and over the last two weeks I have received hundreds of letters from women who consider themselves PUMAs - nothing Hillary could say or do would move them. They are livid at the sexist way that Hillary was treated by the media, and even angrier at the Obama people, the Democratic National Committee and Howard Dean as chairman, for not speaking up against it.

They believe that sexism is larger than this presidential race, that it seeps into the fiber of our country and must be stopped. They are convinced that if the media had been racist against Obama, Howard Dean would have been shouting from the hilltops - and so would have Hillary. They feel the party accepted a double standard, and many have indicated that they will either vote for McCain, write in Hillary's name or just not vote for President.

Those people were outside of Hillary's reach on Tuesday night.

A second group of Clinton supporters is those who chose her over Obama but who consider themselves good Democrats and will vote for the nominee. They also would never think of voting for McCain, primarily because of two vital, closely related issues of their concern: the Supreme Court and abortion.

That leaves the middle group. These are the women (and in smaller numbers, men) to whom Hillary was reaching out in her speech. They were on the fence; some of them remain there. They were disappointed when she didn't win the nomination and let down further when she wasn't chosen, apparently wasn't even seriously considered, to be Obama's running mate.

They were not only a significant number of the delegates in the convention hall on Tuesday night, but they are also the blue-collar ethnics and older voters in Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Florida, who came out in large numbers for her toward the end of the campaign.

These are the ones of whom she asked, after recounting the stories of three people in various parts of the country who were having problems with health care or trouble making ends meet: "Were you in this campaign just for me?" And then, again referring to those people, she rhetorically asked, or "Were you in it for all the people in this country who feel invisible?"

She then went on to point out that Obama was the person who could meet those tough challenges. And that he was the leader we need.

Hillary has done her part. Now it's Obama's turn. Some of that third group at the convention were swayed by Hillary's speech. Some are still waiting for Obama to assure them about his experience and ability to handle the job. Some of them are waiting to hear if he really does understand them and their needs.

They want to be sure that when Obama said so frequently in the primaries that "Our time has come," that it didn't mean their time had passed.

Thursday night, we will find out.

Ferraro, former U.S. representative from Queens, in 1984 became the first female vice presidential candidate on a national party ticket.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Remarks of New York Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, for her address to the Democratic National Convention on Tuesday night in Denver:

Remarks of New York Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, for her address to the Democratic National Convention on Tuesday night in Denver:

I am honored to be here tonight. A proud mother. A proud Democrat. A proud American. And a proud supporter of Barack Obama.

My friends, it is time to take back the country we love.

Whether you voted for me, or voted for Barack, the time is now to unite as a single party with a single purpose. We are on the same team, and none of us can sit on the sidelines.

This is a fight for the future. And it's a fight we must win.

I haven't spent the past 35 years in the trenches advocating for children, campaigning for universal health care, helping parents balance work and family, and fighting for women's rights at home and around the world ... to see another Republican in the White House squander the promise of our country and the hopes of our people.

And you haven't worked so hard over the last 18 months, or endured the last eight years, to suffer through more failed leadership.

No way. No how. No McCain.

Barack Obama is my candidate. And he must be our president.

Tonight we need to remember what a presidential election is really about. When the polls have closed, and the ads are finally off the air, it comes down to you — the American people, your lives, and your children's futures.

For me, it's been a privilege to meet you in your homes, your workplaces, and your communities. Your stories reminded me everyday that America's greatness is bound up in the lives of the American people — your hard work, your devotion to duty, your love for your children, and your determination to keep going, often in the face of enormous obstacles.

You taught me so much, you made me laugh, and ... you even made me cry. You allowed me to become part of your lives. And you became part of mine.

I will always remember the single mom who had adopted two kids with autism, didn't have health insurance and discovered she had cancer. But she greeted me with her bald head painted with my name on it and asked me to fight for health care.

I will always remember the young man in a Marine Corps T-shirt who waited months for medical care and said to me: "Take care of my buddies; a lot of them are still over there ... and then will you please help take care of me?"

I will always remember the boy who told me his mom worked for the minimum wage and that her employer had cut her hours. He said he just didn't know what his family was going to do.

I will always be grateful to everyone from all fifty states, Puerto Rico and the territories, who joined our campaign on behalf of all those people left out and left behind by the Bush Administration.

To my supporters, my champions — my sisterhood of the traveling pantsuits — from the bottom of my heart: Thank you.

You never gave in. You never gave up. And together we made history.

Along the way, America lost two great Democratic champions who would have been here with us tonight. One of our finest young leaders, Arkansas Democratic Party Chair, Bill Gwatney, who believed with all his heart that America and the South could be and should be Democratic from top to bottom.

And Congresswoman Stephanie Tubbs Jones, a dear friend to many of us, a loving mother and courageous leader who never gave up her quest to make America fairer and smarter, stronger and better. Steadfast in her beliefs, a fighter of uncommon grace, she was an inspiration to me and to us all.

Our heart goes out to Stephanie's son, Mervyn, Jr., and Bill's wife, Rebecca, who traveled to Denver to join us at our convention.

Bill and Stephanie knew that after eight years of George Bush, people are hurting at home, and our standing has eroded around the world. We have a lot of work ahead.

Jobs lost, houses gone, falling wages, rising prices. The Supreme Court in a right-wing headlock and our government in partisan gridlock. The biggest deficit in our nation's history. Money borrowed from the Chinese to buy oil from the Saudis.

Putin and Georgia, Iraq and Iran.

I ran for president to renew the promise of America. To rebuild the middle class and sustain the American Dream, to provide the opportunity to work hard and have that work rewarded, to save for college, a home and retirement, to afford the gas and groceries and still have a little left over each month.

To promote a clean energy economy that will create millions of green collar jobs.

To create a health care system that is universal, high quality, and affordable so that parents no longer have to choose between care for themselves or their children or be stuck in dead end jobs simply to keep their insurance.

To create a world class education system and make college affordable again.

To fight for an America defined by deep and meaningful equality — from civil rights to labor rights, from women's rights to gay rights, from ending discrimination to promoting unionization to providing help for the most important job there is: caring for our families. To help every child live up to his or her God-given potential.

To make America once again a nation of immigrants and a nation of laws.

To bring fiscal sanity back to Washington and make our government an instrument of the public good, not of private plunder.

To restore America's standing in the world, to end the war in Iraq, bring our troops home and honor their service by caring for our veterans.

And to join with our allies to confront our shared challenges, from poverty and genocide to terrorism and global warming.

Most of all, I ran to stand up for all those who have been invisible to their government for eight long years.

Those are the reasons I ran for president. Those are the reasons I support Barack Obama. And those are the reasons you should too.

I want you to ask yourselves: Were you in this campaign just for me? Or were you in it for that young Marine and others like him? Were you in it for that mom struggling with cancer while raising her kids? Were you in it for that boy and his mom surviving on the minimum wage? Were you in it for all the people in this country who feel invisible?

We need leaders once again who can tap into that special blend of American confidence and optimism that has enabled generations before us to meet our toughest challenges. Leaders who can help us show ourselves and the world that with our ingenuity, creativity, and innovative spirit, there are no limits to what is possible in America.

This won't be easy. Progress never is. But it will be impossible if we don't fight to put a Democrat in the White House.

We need to elect Barack Obama because we need a President who understands that America can't compete in a global economy by padding the pockets of energy speculators, while ignoring the workers whose jobs have been shipped overseas. We need a president who understands that we can't solve the problems of global warming by giving windfall profits to the oil companies while ignoring opportunities to invest in new technologies that will build a green economy.

We need a President who understands that the genius of America has always depended on the strength and vitality of the middle class.

Barack Obama began his career fighting for workers displaced by the global economy. He built his campaign on a fundamental belief that change in this country must start from the ground up, not the top down. He knows government must be about "We the people" not "We the favored few."

And when Barack Obama is in the White House, he'll revitalize our economy, defend the working people of America, and meet the global challenges of our time. Democrats know how to do this. As I recall, President Clinton and the Democrats did it before. And President Obama and the Democrats will do it again.

He'll transform our energy agenda by creating millions of green jobs and building a new, clean energy future. He'll make sure that middle class families get the tax relief they deserve. And I can't wait to watch Barack Obama sign a health care plan into law that covers every single American.

Barack Obama will end the war in Iraq responsibly and bring our troops home —a first step to repairing our alliances around the world.

And he will have with him a terrific partner in Michelle Obama. Anyone who saw Michelle's speech last night knows she will be a great first lady for America.

Americans are also fortunate that Joe Biden will be at Barack Obama's side. He is a strong leader and a good man. He understands both the economic stresses here at home and the strategic challenges abroad. He is pragmatic, tough, and wise. And, of course, Joe will be supported by his wonderful wife, Jill.

They will be a great team for our country.

Now, John McCain is my colleague and my friend.

He has served our country with honor and courage.

But we don't need four more years ... of the last eight years.

More economic stagnation ... and less affordable health care.

More high gas prices ... and less alternative energy.

More jobs getting shipped overseas ... and fewer jobs created here.

More skyrocketing debt ... home foreclosures ... and mounting bills that are crushing our middle class families.

More war ... less diplomacy.

More of a government where the privileged come first ... and everyone else comes last.

John McCain says the economy is fundamentally sound. John McCain doesn't think that 47 million people without health insurance is a crisis. John McCain wants to privatize Social Security. And in 2008, he still thinks it's OK when women don't earn equal pay for equal work.

With an agenda like that, it makes sense that George Bush and John McCain will be together next week in the Twin Cities. Because these days they're awfully hard to tell apart.

America is still around after 232 years because we have risen to the challenge of every new time, changing to be faithful to our values of equal opportunity for all and the common good.

And I know what that can mean for every man, woman, and child in America. I'm a United States senator because in 1848 a group of courageous women and a few brave men gathered in Seneca Falls, New York, many traveling for days and nights, to participate in the first convention on women's rights in our history.

And so dawned a struggle for the right to vote that would last 72 years, handed down by mother to daughter to granddaughter — and a few sons and grandsons along the way.

These women and men looked into their daughters' eyes, imagined a fairer and freer world, and found the strength to fight. To rally and picket. To endure ridicule and harassment. To brave violence and jail.

And after so many decades — 88 years ago on this very day — the 19th amendment guaranteeing women the right to vote would be forever enshrined in our Constitution.

My mother was born before women could vote. But in this election my daughter got to vote for her mother for president.

This is the story of America. Of women and men who defy the odds and never give up.

How do we give this country back to them?

By following the example of a brave New Yorker, a woman who risked her life to shepherd slaves along the Underground Railroad.

And on that path to freedom, Harriet Tubman had one piece of advice.

If you hear the dogs, keep going.

If you see the torches in the woods, keep going.

If they're shouting after you, keep going.

Don't ever stop. Keep going.

If you want a taste of freedom, keep going.

Even in the darkest of moments, ordinary Americans have found the faith to keep going.

I've seen it in you. I've seen it in our teachers and firefighters, nurses and police officers, small business owners and union workers, the men and women of our military — you always keep going.

We are Americans. We're not big on quitting.

But remember, before we can keep going, we have to get going by electing Barack Obama president.

We don't have a moment to lose or a vote to spare.

Nothing less than the fate of our nation and the future of our children hang in the balance.

I want you to think about your children and grandchildren come election day. And think about the choices your parents and grandparents made that had such a big impact on your life and on the life of our nation.

We've got to ensure that the choice we make in this election honors the sacrifices of all who came before us, and will fill the lives of our children with possibility and hope.

That is our duty, to build that bright future, and to teach our children that in America there is no chasm too deep, no barrier too great — and no ceiling too high — for all who work hard, never back down, always keep going, have faith in God, in our country, and in each other.

Thank you so much. God bless America and Godspeed to you all.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

The Passage of the 19th Amendment, 1919-1920

Modern History Sourcebook:
The Passage of the 19th Amendment, 1919-1920
Articles from The New York Times

The following document comprises a series of articles from the New York Times detailing the passage of the 19th Amendment to the US Constitution in Congress and the battle to get the Amendment ratified by the states. The Amendment was passed by Congress on June 4, 1919, and ratified on August 19, 1920.

Thursday, June 5, 1919

Suffrage Wins in Senate; Now Goes to States

Constitutional Amendment Is Passed, 56 to 25, or Two More Than Two-thirds

Women May Vote In 1920

Leaders Start Fight to Get Ratification by Three-fourths of States in Time

Debate Precedes Vote

Wadsworth Explains His Attitude In Opposition - Resolution Signed with Ceremony

[See here for a picture of the New York Times Front Page, June 5, 1919]

WASHINGTON, June 4 - After a long and persistent fight advocates of woman suffrage won a victory in the Senate today when that body, by a vote of 56 to 25, adopted the Susan Anthony amendment to the Constitution. The suffrage supporters had two more than the necessary two-thirds vote of Senators present. Had all the Senators known to be in favor of suffrage been present the amendment would have had 66 votes, or two more than a two-thirds vote of the entire Senate.

The amendment, having already been passed by the House, where the vote was 304 to 89, now goes to the States for ratification, where it will be passed upon in the form in which it has been adopted by Congress, as follows:

"Article-, Section 1. - The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.

"Section 2. - Congress shall have power, by appropriate legislation, to enforce the provisions of this article."

Leaders of the National Woman's Party announced tonight that they would at once embark upon a campaign to obtain ratification of the amendment by the necessary three-fourths of the States so that women might have the vote in the next Presidential election. To achieve this ratification it will be necessary to hold special sessions of some Legislatures which otherwise would not convene until after the Presidential election in 1920. Miss Alice Paul, Chairman of the Woman's Party, predicted that the campaign for ratification would succeed and that women would vote for the next President.

Suffragists thronged the Senate galleries in anticipation of the final vote, and when the outcome was announced by President Pro Tem. Cummins they broke into deafening applause. For two minutes the demonstration went on, Senator Cummins making no effort to check it.

The Vote in Detail.

The roll call on the amendment follows:


Republicans - 36.

Capper, Cummins, Curtis, Edge, Elkins, Fall, Fernald, France, Frelinghuysen, Gronna, Hale, Harding, Johnson, (Cal.,) Jones, (Wash.,) Kellogg, Kenyon, Kayes, La Follette, Lenroot, McCormick, McCumber, McNaty, Nelson, New, Newberry, Norris, Page, Phipps, Poindexter, Sherman, Smoot, Spencer, Sterling, Sutherland, Warren, Watson.

Democrats - 20.

Ashurst, Chamberlain, Culberson, Harris, Henderson, Jones, (N. M.,) Kenrick, Kirby, McKellar, Myers, Nugent, Phelan, Pittman, Ransdell, Shepard, Smith, (Ariz.,) Stanley, Thomas, Walsh, (Mass.,) Walsh, (Mon.)


Republicans - 8.

Borah, Brandegee, Dillingham, Knox, Lodge, McLean, Moses, Wadsworth.

Democrats - 17.

Bankhead, Beckham, Dial, Fletcher, Gay, Harrison, Hitchcock, Overman, Reed, Simmons, Smith, (Md.,) Smith, (S. C.,) Swanson, Trammell, Underwood, Williams, Wolcott.


Ball and King, for, with Shields, against: Calder and Townsend, for, with Penrose, against; Gerry and Johnson of South Dakota, for, with Martin, against; Gore and Colt, for, with Pomerone, against.

Absent and Not Paired.

Owen, Robinson, and Smith of Georgia. The vote came after four hours of debate, during which Democratic Senators opposed to the amendment filibustered to prevent a roll call until their absent Senators could be protected by pairs. They gave up the effort finally as futile.

Changes Defeated.

Before the final vote was taken Senator Underwood of Alabama, called for a vote on his amendment to submit the suffrage amendment to Constitutional conventions of the various States, instead of to the Legislatures, for ratification. This was defeated by a vote of 45 against to 28 in favor.

Senator Gay of Louisiana offered an amendment proposing enforcement of the suffrage amendment by the States, instead of by the Federal Government. Senator Gay said that from a survey of the States he could predict that thirteen States would not ratify the amendment, enough to block it. His amendment was defeated, 62 to 19.

During debate, Senator Wadsworth of New York, who has been an uncompromising opponent of woman suffrage, explained his attitude as being actuated by the motive of preserving to the States the right to determine the question, each State for itself.

"No vote of mine cast upon this amendment would deprive any of the electors of my State of any privilege they now enjoy," said the Senator. "I feel so strongly that the people of the several States should be permitted to decide for themselves, that am frank to say that, if this amendment, instead of being drafted to extend woman suffrage all over the country, were drafted to forbid the extension of the franchise to women in the States, I would vote against it. Even though one might be opposed on general principles to the extension of the franchise to women, one cannot logically object to the people of a State settling that question for themselves.

"It seems to me that it is incumbent upon a Senator in considering his attitude on this matter to regard the nation as a whole and to give consideration to the wishes of the people of the various States which have expressed themselves from time to time."

Overriding State Votes

Senator Wadsworth spoke of the results in Massachusetts, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Louisiana, Texas, Wisconsin, and other States where woman suffrage was defeated at the polls.

"Now the question is," he resumed, "whether the people of these States are competent to settle the question for themselves. There is no tremendous emergency facing the country, no revolution or rebellion threatened, which would seem to make it necessary to impose on the people of these States a thing they have said as free citizens they do not require or desire. Is it contrary to the spirit of American institutions that they shall be left free to decide these things for themselves?

"My contention has been, with respect to an amendment to the Constitution, that, if it be placed there, it should command the reverence and devotion of all the people of the country. The discussion here yesterday makes it perfectly apparent that, in part at least, in a certain section of this country, this proposed amendment will be a dead letter. No pretense is made that it will be lived up to in spirit as well as in letter. That same attitude has been manifest in the discussion of the last amendment to the Constitution, ratified last Winter. Today there are thousands of people all over the United States who are attempting to contrive ways by which the prohibition amendment can be evaded. This attitude shows an utter lack of appreciation of the Constitution as a sacred instrument, a lack of realization of the spirit of self-government."

Senator Smith of South Carolina opposed giving women the right to vote, he said, because to allow it would induce "sectional anarchy."

Signing of the Resolution

Immediately after its passage by the Senate the Suffrage Amendment was signed. In appreciation of the fifty-year campaign of the National American Woman Suffrage Association, the guests were limited to representatives of that association and members of Congress, and the gold pen used was presented to the national association. The women chosen to represent the national association were Mrs. Wood Park of Massachusetts, who for two years has been in charge of the association's Congressional work: Mrs. Helen Gardener of Washington, D. C.; Mrs. Ida Husted Harper of New York, Mrs. Harriet Taylor Upton of Ohio, Miss Mary G. Hay, and Miss Marjorie Shuler of New York.

Besides Speaker Gillett, who signed the bill, the members of the House present were Frank W. Mondell, majority leader; Champ Clark, minority leader and ex-Speaker, under whom the amendment first passed the House, and John E. Raker, Chairman of the committee which won the suffrage victory in the House last year.

The Senators present at the signing of the bill for the Senate were Albert B. Cummins, President Pro Tempore, who signed the measure; James E. Watson, Chairman of the Suffrage Committee; Charles Curtis, Republican whip; A. A. Jones, Chairman of the Suffrage Committee in the last Congress; Thomas J. Walsh of Montana, Morris Sheppard, Joseph E. Ransdell, and Reed Smoot.

To celebrate the passage of the amendment the national association will give a reception next Tuesday evening at its Washington headquarters to the members of the House and Senate who voted for the resolution and to their wives. These will be the only guests.

Miss Paul, Chairman of the National Woman's Party, issued a statement, in which she said: "There is no doubt of ratification by the States. We enter upon the campaign for special sessions of Legislatures to accomplish this ratification before 1920 in the full assurance that we shall win."

"The last stage of the fight is to obtain ratification of the amendment so women may vote in the Presidential election in 1920," said Mrs. Carrie Chapman Catt, President of the association. "This we are confident will be achieved. The friends of woman suffrage in both parties have carried out their word. In the result we can turn our backs upon the end of a long and arduous struggle, needlessly darkened and embittered by the stubbornness of a few at the expense of the many. 'Eyes front', is the watchword as we turn upon the struggle for ratification by the States."

Prospects of Ratification

Suffrage leaders say quick ratification is assured in twenty-eight States in which women now have full or Presidential suffrage. These States are Wyoming, Colorado, Utah, Idaho, Washington, California, Kansas, Arizona, Oregon, Montant, New York, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Michigan, Illinois, Nebraska, Rhode Island, North Dakota, Iowa, Wisconsin, Indiana, Maine, Minnesota, Missouri, Tennessee, Arkansas, Nevada, and Texas.

Legislatures now in session are: Illinois, will adjourn late in June; Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, adjourn end of June or first of July; Wisconsin, Florida, in session until June 1, cannot ratify, because an election must intervene between submission of amendment and ratification.

Legislatures to meet comparatively soon, or with prospects of meeting soon, are: Michigan and Texas, extra sessions called in June; Georgia, to meet this month; Alabama, to meet in July; Louisiana, possibility of extra session before September; New Jersey, movement for extra session soon; Maine, special session in October; Iowa, special session in January; Kentucky, South Carolina, and Mississippi, meet in January; Virginia, meets in February; Maryland, meets during 1920; Ohio, meets in June.

Today's victory for suffrage ends a fight that really dates from the American Revolution. Women voted under several of the Colonial Governments. During the Revolution women demanded to be included in the Government. Abigail Adams wrote her husband, John Adams, "If women are not represented in this new republic there will be another revolution." From the time of the Revolution women agitated for suffrage by means of meetings and petitions. In 1848 a woman's rights convention was held at Seneca Falls, N. Y., arranged by Lucretia Mott and Elizabeth Cady Stanton as the first big suffrage demonstration. From 1848 to the civil war efforts were made to have State laws altered to include women, and Susan B. Anthony became leader of the movement.

For five years after the civil war suffragists tried to secure interpretation of the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments which would permit them to vote. In 1872 Miss Anthony made a test vote at the polls, was arrested, and refused to pay her fine, but was never jailed. In 1875 Miss Anthony drafted the proposed Federal amendment, the same one that was voted on today. In 1878 the amendment was introduced in the Senate by Senator Sargent of California. It has been voted on in the Senate five times, including today. In 1878 the vote was 16 yeas to 34 nays; in 1914 it failed by 11 votes, in 1918 it failed by two votes, and on Feb. 10, 1919, it failed by one vote. It has been voted on three times in the House. It failed there in 1915 by 78 votes. In 1918 it passed the House with one vote to spare. On May 21, 1919, it passed the House with 14 votes more than the necessary two-thirds.

Foreign countries or divisions of countries in which women have suffrage are: Isle of Man, granted 1881; New Zealand, 1893; Australia, 1902; Finland, 1906; Norway, 1907; Iceland, 1913; Denmark, 1915; Russia, 1917; Canada, Austria, England, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Poland, Scotland, and Wales, 1918; Holland and Sweden, 1919.

Copyright 1919 The New York Times

Second-Place Citizens

Op-Ed Contributor
Second-Place Citizens

Published: August 25, 2008

San Francisco

MUCH has been made of the timing of Hillary Clinton’s speech before the Democratic National Convention tonight, coming as it does on the 88th anniversary of women’s suffrage. Convention organizers are taking advantage of this coincidence of the calendar — the 19th Amendment was certified on Aug. 26, 1920 — to pay homage to the women’s vote in particular and women’s progress in general. By such tributes, they are slathering some sweet icing on a bitter cake. But many of Mrs. Clinton’s supporters are unlikely to be partaking. They regard their candidate’s cameo as a consolation prize. And they are not consoled.

“I see this nation differently than I did 10 months ago,” reads a typical posting on a Web site devoted to Clintonista discontent. “That this travesty was committed by the Democratic Party has forever changed my approach to politics.” In scores of Internet forums and the conclaves of protest groups, those sentiments are echoed, as Clinton supporters speak over and over of feeling heartbroken and disillusioned, of being cheated and betrayed.

In one poll, 40 percent of Mrs. Clinton’s constituency expressed dissatisfaction; in another, more than a quarter favored the clear insanity of voicing their feminist protest by voting for John McCain. “This is not the usual reaction to an election loss,” said Diane Mantouvalos, the founder of, a clearinghouse for the pro-Clinton organizations. “I know that is the way it is being spun, but it’s not prototypical. Anyone who doesn’t take time to analyze it will do so at their own peril.”

The despondency of Mrs. Clinton’s supporters — or their “vitriolic” and “rabid” wrath, as the punditry prefers to put it — has been the subject of perplexed and often irritable news media speculation. Why don’t these dead-enders get over it already and exit stage right?

Shouldn’t they be celebrating, not protesting? After all, Hillary Clinton’s campaign made unprecedented strides. She garnered 18 million-plus votes, and proved by her solid showing that a woman could indeed be a viable candidate for the nation’s highest office. She didn’t get the gold, but in this case isn’t a silver a significant triumph?

Many Clinton supporters say no, and to understand their gloom, one has to take into account the legacy of American women’s political struggle, in which long yearned for transformational change always gives way before a chorus of “not now” and “wait your turn,” and in which every victory turns out to be partial or pyrrhic. Indeed, the greatest example of this is the victory being celebrated tonight: the passage of women’s suffrage. The 1920 benchmark commemorated as women’s hour of glory was experienced in its era as something more complex, and darker.

Suffrage was, like Hillary Clinton’s candidacy, not merely a cause in itself, but a symbolic rallying point, a color guard for a regiment of other ideas. But while the color guard was ushered into the palace of American law, its retinue was turned away.

In the years after the ratification of suffrage, the anticipated women’s voting bloc failed to emerge, progressive legislation championed by the women’s movement was largely thwarted, female politicians made only minor inroads into elected office, and women’s advocacy groups found themselves at loggerheads. “It was clear,” said the 1920s sociologist and reformer Sophonisba Breckinridge, “that the winter of discontent in politics had come for women.”

That discontent was apparent in a multitude of letters, speeches and articles. “The American woman’s movement, and her interest in great moral and social questions, is splintered into a hundred fragments under as many warring leaders,” despaired Frances Kellor, a women’s advocate.

“The feminist movement is dying of partial victory and inanition,” lamented Lillian Symes, a feminist journalist.

“Where for years there had been purpose consecrated to an immortal principle,” observed the suffrage leader Carrie Chapman Catt, her compatriots felt now only “a vacancy.”

Even Florence Kelley, the tenacious progressive reformer, concluded, “Keeping the light on is probably the best contribution that we can make where there is now Stygian darkness.”

The grail of female franchise yielded little meaningful progress in the years to follow. Two-thirds of the few women who served in Congress in the 1920s were filling the shoes of their dead husbands, and most of them failed to win re-election. The one woman to ascend to the United States Senate had a notably brief career: in 1922, Rebecca Felton, 87, was appointed to warm the seat for a newly elected male senator until he could be sworn in. Her term lasted a day.

Within the political establishment, women could exact little change, and the parties gave scant support to female politicians. In 1920, Emily Newell Blair, the Democratic vice chairwoman, noted that the roster of women serving on national party committees looked like a “Who’s Who” of American women; by 1929, they’d been shown the door and replaced with the compliant. The suffragist Anne Martin bitterly remarked that women in politics were “exactly where men political leaders wanted them: bound, gagged, divided and delivered to the Republican and Democratic Parties.”

Male politicians offered a few sops to feminists: a “maternity and infancy” bill to educate expectant mothers, a law permitting women who married foreigners to remain American citizens, and financing for the first federal prison for women. But by the mid ’20s, Congress had quit feigning interest, and women’s concerns received a cold shoulder. In 1929, the maternity education bill was killed.

Meanwhile, male cultural guardians were giving vent to what Symes termed “the new masculinism” — diatribes against the “effeminization” that had supposedly been unleashed on the American arts. The news media proclaimed feminism a dead letter and showcased young women who preferred gin parties to political caucuses.

During the presidential race of 1924, newspapers ran headlines like “Woman Suffrage Declared a Failure.” “Ex-feminists” proclaimed their boredom with “feminist pother” and their enthusiasm for cosmetics, shopping and matrimony. The daughters of the suffrage generation were so beyond the “zealotry” of their elders, Harper’s declared in its 1927 article “Feminist — New Style,” that they could only pity those ranting women who were “still throwing hand grenades” and making an issue of “little things.”

Those “little things” included employment equity, as a steady increase in the proportion of women in the labor force ground to a halt and stagnated throughout the ’20s. Women barely improved their representation in male professions; the number of female doctors actually declined.

“The feminist crash of the ’20s came as a painful shock, so painful that it took history several decades to face up to it,” the literary critic Elaine Showalter wrote in 1978. Facing it now is like peering into a painful mirror. For all the talk of Hillary Clinton’s “breakthrough” candidacy and other recent successes for women, progress on important fronts has stalled.

Today, the United States ranks 22nd among the 30 developed nations in its proportion of female federal lawmakers. The proportion of female state legislators has been stuck in the low 20 percent range for 15 years; women’s share of state elective executive offices has fallen consistently since 2000, and is now under 25 percent. The American political pipeline is 86 percent male.

Women’s real annual earnings have fallen for the last four years. Progress in narrowing the wage gap between men and women has slowed considerably since 1990, yet last year the Supreme Court established onerous restrictions on women’s ability to sue for pay discrimination. The salaries of women in managerial positions are on average lower today than in 1983.

Women’s numbers are stalled or falling in fields ranging from executive management to journalism, from computer science to the directing of major motion pictures. The 20 top occupations of women last year were the same as half a century ago: secretary, nurse, grade school teacher, sales clerk, maid, hairdresser, cook and so on. And just as Congress cut funds in 1929 for maternity education, it recently slashed child support enforcement by 20 percent, a decision expected to leave billions of dollars owed to mothers and their children uncollected.

Again, male politicians and pundits indulge in outbursts of “new masculinist” misogyny (witness Mrs. Clinton’s campaign coverage). Again, the news media showcase young women’s “feminist — new style” pseudo-liberation — the flapper is now a girl-gone-wild. Again, many daughters of a feminist generation seem pleased to proclaim themselves so “beyond gender” that they don’t need a female president.

As it turns out, they won’t have one. But they will still have all the abiding inequalities that Hillary Clinton, especially in defeat, symbolized. Without a coalescing cause to focus their forces, how will women fight a foe that remains insidious, amorphous, relentless and pervasive?

“I am sorry for you young women who have to carry on the work in the next 10 years, for suffrage was a symbol, and you have lost your symbol,” the suffragist Anna Howard Shaw said in 1920. “There is nothing for women to rally around.” As they rally around their candidate tonight, Mrs. Clinton’s supporters will have to decide if they are mollified — or even more aggrieved — by the history she evokes.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

All Roads lead to Ten Kennedy ......or reasons why Hillary Clinton Will be in HInderland

Kennedy leads renewed effort on universal healthcare

Senator Edward M. Kennedy's office has begun convening a series of meetings involving a wide array of healthcare specialists to begin laying the groundwork for a new attempt to provide universal healthcare, according to participants.

The discussions signal that Kennedy, who instructed aides to begin holding the meetings while he is in Massachusetts undergoing treatment for brain cancer, intends to work vigorously to build bipartisan support for a major healthcare initiative when he returns to Washington in the fall.

Those involved in the discussions said Kennedy believes it is extremely important to move as quickly as possible on overhauling the healthcare system after the next president takes office in January in order to capitalize on the momentum behind a new administration.

Kennedy was an early endorser of Senator Barack Obama, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee who is also a member of the Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, which Kennedy chairs.

Obama's Senate staff has attended the roundtable discussions. If Obama is elected, Kennedy's effort to identify points of agreement among senators could smooth the way for the new administration to press ahead on universal healthcare, which Obama has promised to implement within four years.

The last time a national healthcare plan was attempted, under President Clinton in 1993, the presidential panel charged with devising a proposal was widely criticized for not consulting enough with Congress, and protracted disagreements erupted, delaying its progress for months and ultimately resulting in its demise. Kennedy's effort appears to be designed to identify areas of common ground between Democrats and Republicans, business and labor, providers and insurers, and others before the new president takes office.

"The senator is trying to learn from health reform attempts in the past and to build a fair amount of consensus among his Senate colleagues, House colleagues, and the Obama campaign . . . and find a strategy that could carry with some momentum into the new administration," said Dr. Jay Himmelstein, a health policy specialist at University of Massachusetts Medical School and a former Kennedy staff member who has been involved in the talks.

The initiative also suggests that Kennedy, who has made healthcare his signature issue in his 45-year Senate career and who is fighting an aggressive brain tumor, is considering his legacy as a new administration arrives in Washington - a moment many see as the best chance for widespread changes in the healthcare system in 15 years.

"You have got to think this will be the Ted Kennedy Health Reform Act, because he's a beloved figure and he's championed the issue for so long," said John Rother, policy director for the AARP, which has been involved in the discussions. "There are a lot of unknowns right now, but what we do know obviously is he is very close to Obama, and he also has quite a network of health policy experts that he can draw from.Melissa Wagoner, spokeswoman for Kennedy, added that "Making sure each American has access to quality, affordable healthcare is the cause of Senator Kennedy's life."

Kennedy played a critical role in helping Massachusetts create a healthcare overhaul proposal in 2006 by aiding the state in obtaining the federal money needed to subsidize it. It appears he is now looking to Massachusetts to help shape the debate in Washington. Earlier this year, Kennedy recruited John McDonough, executive director of Health Care For All in Boston and a major player in the Massachusetts healthcare overhaul debate, to lead the new health initiative.

Aides to Kennedy have also assembled a network of Massachusetts advisers, including healthcare lawyers, economists, nonprofit leaders, doctors, and health insurers who may be asked to work on specific aspects of a national plan. At a recent meeting in Boston, the group discussed how different elements of the Massachusetts approach might work on a national level.

Rob Restuccia, executive director of the national healthcare advocacy group Community Catalyst and one of those who attended, said the group considered questions such as whether the Massachusetts Health Connector, the quasi-public entity that helps uninsured people obtain coverage, might be structured on a national level.

"I believe we will have a great story to tell about how national health reform can learn from what we've done in Massachusetts," said Jarrett Barrios, president of the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation, who also attended one of the meetings.

Kennedy is not alone in trying to get a head start on the healthcare debate. Senator Max Baucus, a Democrat from Montana and chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, held a healthcare summit in mid-June, and a bipartisan proposal to make private insurance accessible to all Americans has been put forward by Senator Ron Wyden, a Democrat from Oregon, and Robert Bennett, a Republican from Utah.

Intraparty disputes were one reason Clinton's 1993 proposal foundered. Back then, Daniel Patrick Moynihan, the Democratic chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, dismissed the financing of Clinton's plan as "fantasy" just before the president presented it to Congress.

Ron Pollack, executive director of Families USA, a healthcare consumer advocacy group, said Kennedy was trying to avoid division by having senior staff members meet with their counterparts on Baucus's committee.

"If the two committees are working cooperatively together and developing a common legislative proposal, it means that the process is less likely to get bogged down because of jurisdictional and substantive differences," he said.

Even though health costs have soared along with the number of uninsured over the past 15 years, the defeat of the Clinton health overhaul plan was so politically devastating to the administration and to efforts to enact universal health insurance law that nothing approaching such a large-scale effort has been tried since. One purpose of the roundtable discussions, participants said, is to educate Senate staff on broad issues that have not been seriously debated in years.

Kennedy's committee has held two meetings so far - one with healthcare coalitions, the other with physicians' groups. Eight more will be held by the end of the month. The meetings are attended by aides for committee members of both parties, said Craig Orfield, a spokesman for Senator Mike Enzi of Wyoming, the ranking Republican on the committee.

Whether the two parties and myriad interest groups can overcome their differences over the next year remains to be seen, but several of those participating in the discussions expressed optimism about that possibility.

"There's been talk about the healthcare crisis for years, but I think in the last year and a half, the system is failing so many people and becoming so costly, that I don't think there's anybody who doesn't understand there's got to be fundamental changes to the system," Orfield said.


Bill Clinton Blames Kennedy for No Child Left Behind Flaws

February 01, 2008 4:39 PM

ABC News' Sarah Amos and Jennifer Parker Report: While stumping for his wife at an Arkansas high school Friday, former President Bill Clinton seemed to blame Sen. Ted Kennedy, D-Mass., along with President Bush for the failure of the No Child Left Behind Act to live up to its promises.

Watch the VIDEO HERE.

"The President made a deal with Senator Kennedy and neither one of them meant to mess it up," Bill Clinton told a crowd of about 400 teachers and students in Texarkana.

"The deal was supposed to be, we will give the schools more money and get rid of two programs that Bill Clinton actually started -- hiring more teachers in the early grades which actually does help performance and help schools with construction needs if they are overcrowded," he said.

"And we will not put anymore money in the after school programs, which does help, and we will raise school performance by telling people their money depends on how their kids do on tests and we are going to give five tests five years in a row, and we will cut the states a check based on how they are doing. And then the law kind of winks at the state of Arkansas and says, 'don't worry about it too much because you get to pick the test and the passing score.' Now think about that you get the worst of all worlds," Clinton said.

Clinton mentioned Kennedy's association with the No Child Left Behind Act - a federal education law unpopular with public school teachers -- in the same week that the liberal icon passed over his wife to endorse her Democratic rival -- Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill.

The former president mentioned Kennedy yesterday while explaining his wife's pledge to radically overhaul the education law.

"I want you to think about this, and I have to say, this was a train wreck that was not intended. No Child Left Behind was supported by George Bush and Senator Ted Kennedy and everybody in between. Why? Because they didn't talk to enough teachers before they did that," Clinton said yesterday at Arizona State University, according to the Associated Press.

But today marks the first time the former president seemed to blame Kennedy for the bill.

In 2001, Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., voted for the No Child Left Behind Act, but has since said it was mismanaged and should be replaced.

"I believe that every child should be taught by a qualified teacher and that schools should be accountable to the parents of the children they serve. That is why I supported the No Child Left Behind Act in 2001 and continue to believe in the principles behind the landmark law. When the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLBA) was enacted, I viewed it as a historic promise between the federal government and educators -- schools would be held to higher standards than ever before and the government would make a record investment in those schools to ensure that they would be able to meet the new expectations confronting them," reads a statement from Hillary Clinton on her senate office website.

No Child Left Behind
Bill Clinton says “No Child Left Behind” a train wreck


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Associated Press
Published: February 1, 2008

TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) - Former President Clinton said that if his wife is elected president she would radically change the “No Child Left Behind Act,” which he described as an education disaster initially supported not only by President Bush, but liberal icon Ted Kennedy.
Clinton’s association of Kennedy with the No Child Left Behind Act - a federal education law unpopular with public school teachers, a key Democratic party constituency - came just days after the Massachusetts senator passed over Hillary Rodham Clinton to endorse her rival for the Democratic presidential nomination, Sen. Barack Obama.
“I want you to think about this, and I have to say, this was a train wreck that was not intended. No Child Left Behind was supported by George Bush and Senator Ted Kennedy and everybody in between. Why? Because they didn’t talk to enough teachers before they did that,” Clinton told more than 2,400 people in a speech Thursday night at Arizona State University.
Hillary Clinton, a New York senator, also initially supported the No Child Left Behind law but has since said it has not been properly financed or run, and should be replaced. She has proposed $10 billion for universal preschool, more money for special education, and incentives for teachers who work in places and on subjects where shortages exist.
Obama, an Illinois senator, has said he also would change No Child Left Behind “so that we’re not just teaching to a test and crowding out programs like art and music.” He has also said he would encourage but not require universal pre-kindergarten programs, expand teacher mentoring programs and reward teachers with higher pay not tied to standardized test scores in an $18 billion plan to be paid for in part by delaying elements of moon and Mars missions.
Bush modeled the federal No Child Left Behind Act on a Texas education law adopted while he was governor. It aims to prod low-performing schools to improve by tying government aid to performance standards.
“The idea was we will increase funding to the schools - which they did once but they didn’t continue it, so they made it an unfunded mandate,” Bill Clinton said, adding that the law also did away with programs from his administration that were helping to modernize old schools, build new schools to alleviate overcrowding and provide after school care.
Instead, the Bush law requires “our kids take five tests five years in a row,” but allows school districts to “pick the test and the passing score, so you wound up with the worst of all worlds ... You could wind up lowering the quality of education,” Clinton said.

my olympic crush


Published: August 22, 2008

Her teenage grandson, who has all the shortsightedness of youth, finds it hard to grasp that the gentle, Bible-quoting Lucretia Edwards was a seriously sensuous woman back in the day. But anyone who sees Leslie Uggams’s performance in the Signature Theater Company’s smooth revival of “The First Breeze of Summer,” Leslie Lee’s less-than-smooth drama from 1975, should have no difficulty connecting Lucretia’s disreputable past with her decorous present.

Leslie Uggams, left, as a grandmother and Yaya DaCosta as her younger self in Leslie Lee's play, at the Peter Norton Space.

This is not just because this show, the opening entry in a season devoted to the work of the estimable Negro Ensemble Company, offers an onstage version of Lucretia’s younger self in the exquisite form of Yaya DaCosta, in a lovely New York debut. As played by Ms. Uggams, a mind-boggling 41 years after she became a Broadway star in “Hallelujah, Baby!,” Lucretia exudes a sweet grandmotherly serenity, for sure.

But you’re also aware of ripples of distraction within the calm, the kind that besiege old people toward the ends of their lives, when early memories speak loud and clear. And if you squint, you can see the beguiling and easily beguiled girl of long ago beneath the arthritic movements and matronly clothes.

Ms. Uggams’s subtle, contradiction-embracing portrayal provides a welcome ballast for a show that never fully weaves its disparate strands into whole cloth. Watching Ruben Santiago-Hudson’s appealingly acted production, which opened last night at the Peter Norton Space, you can understand why “First Breeze” won an Obie Award for its Off Broadway incarnation and a Tony nomination for best play for its subsequent, brief Broadway run. Its soft-spoken virtues remain clear. But three decades on, its flaws emerge in starker relief.

In an era when African-American plays tended to fiery and polemical confrontation, “First Breeze” was a return to the quieter domestic naturalism associated with “A Raisin in the Sun,” Lorraine Hansberry’s breakthrough Broadway drama of 1959. Part of what many critics found refreshing about “First Breeze” was that it didn’t scream its themes or spell out an agenda.

Tracing just a few days in the home of a small-town Pennsylvania family headed by Milton Edwards (the excellent Keith Randolph Smith), who runs his own plastering business and is Lucretia’s son, Mr. Lee shows big issues refracted through small, quotidian events. Ethnic oppression, economic struggle, the consolations of evangelical religion, sexual conflict, fine shades of racism within a single family: all of these turbulent elements are manifested obliquely in dinner-table conversations, casual business meetings, an after-church hymn-singing session, a surprise birthday party and a Scrabble game.

In counterpoint to this thick slice of life from the 1970s are Lucretia’s living memories, which take form in the guest room where she is staying, of her relationships with her three children’s different fathers: a railroad porter with dreams of self-improvement (Gilbert Owuor), the maverick son of a rich home where she works as a maid (Quincy Dunn-Baker) and a shy, strapping miner who hopes to become a minister (John Earl Jelks).

Without joining the dots in big, bold lines, Mr. Lee makes it clear how the past is the parent of the present, how the historic implications of Lucretia’s love affairs continue to resound in her children’s and grandchildren’s lives. If the flashbacks have a shimmer of the sudsiness associated with Barbara Taylor Bradford novels and Lifetime movies, Ms. DaCosta and the actors playing her lovers are admirably credible.

It’s in the present that “First Breeze” gets into trouble, despite Mr. Santiago-Hudson’s fluid and often astute direction. Mr. Lee is clearly aiming for the accelerating tension of a denial-plagued family in close quarters found in classics like “Long Day’s Journey Into Night” and “The Glass Menagerie.” But in trying to provide chances for everyone in the Edwards clan to emerge as an individual, he winds up shortchanging all of them.

In addition to Lucretia’s troubled relationship with the past, “First Breeze” takes on the emerging Oedipal frictions between Milton and his older son, Nate (Brandon Dirden); the struggles of Milton’s younger son, the bookish and sensitive Lou (Jason Dirden, Brandon’s real-life brother), with his nascent sexuality; and the sibling resentments of Milton’s half-sister, Edna (Brenda Pressley). And that’s just for starters. It’s kind of a relief that Milton’s wife, Hattie (Marva Hicks), doesn’t seem to carry a lot of baggage of her own, although when she’s asked to play a central role in the highly emotional final scene you’re not prepared for it.

You’re not really prepared for any of the melodramatic family fireworks that erupt at the end, though Ms. Uggams does splendidly by them. The scene ties together a lot of separate threads that have been so slender as to be almost invisible. And you may find yourself thinking: “Wait a minute. This was all supposed to be about his relationship with her?”

The real problem with “First Breeze” is one of ambition: it takes on so much, it becomes cross-eyed in trying to fix its focus. (It feels all too appropriate that Michael Carnahan’s impeccably detailed multiroom set seems to sprawl right off the stage.) Fortunately, the double portrait of Lucretia provided by Ms. Uggams and Ms. DaCosta remains sharp. It deserves a less cumbersome frame.


By Leslie Lee; directed by Ruben Santiago-Hudson; original music and music direction, Bill Sims Jr.; sets, Michael Carnahan; costumes, Karen Perry; lighting, Marcus Doshi; sound, David Margolin Lawson; fight director, Thomas Schall; production stage manager, Winnie Y. Lok; associate artistic director, Beth Whitaker; general manager, Adam Bernstein; production manager, Paul Ziemer. Presented by the Signature Theater Company, James Houghton, artistic director; Erika Mallin, executive director. At the Peter Norton Space, 555 West 42nd Street, Clinton; (212) 244-7529. Through Sept. 28. Running time: 2 hours 40 minutes.

WITH: Harvy Blanks (Reverend Mosely), Yaya DaCosta (Lucretia), Sandra Daley (Gloria Townes), Crystal Anne Dickinson (Hope), Brandon Dirden (Nate Edwards), Jason Dirden (Lou Edwards), Quincy Dunn-Baker (Briton Woodward), Marva Hicks (Hattie), John Earl Jelks (Harper Edwards), Tuck Milligan (Joe Drake), Gilbert Owuor (Sam Green), Brenda Pressley (Aunt Edna), Keith Randolph Smith (Milton Edwards) and Leslie Uggams (Gremmar Edwards).

Summer review

The Summer has passed so quickly, it seems like only yesterday, I was making decisions about Appel Farm (which turned out to be a hot decision but the rain held off) and to skip Clearwater Festival. Due to my wednesday night class, I pretty much missed most of the Madison Square park concerts and some night shows.

I then spent the summer in observation or the training room watching the next incarnation of the casework training....two months of sitting without saying a word but following a curriculum and seeing what the trainers were training.

It seems that I spent the summer music season in BIG STADIUMS. What a contrast to my usual small venue- Springsteen at Nassau and Giants Stadium. I am not sure I will go to Jersey anymore. The traffic and 20.00 parking are a deterrent. Jones Beach on a Summer night without rain was a great place to see James Taylor, but Great Woods is better. The Garden: REM, Police and Neil Diamond. I am still a little surprised that I jumped on the cult (its like the same cult of fan admiration that I belong to- so i understand this dancing crowd)

the Guy who struck me most, was the tall grey haired guy who did a recitation of " I am, I said" while looking up at the rafters... He was in a zone and this guy was seriously praying " i am, i said"

Then there is Billy Joel....I was so thrilled to get tickets to the LAST SHOW AT SHEA, well it turned out to be the Next to Last show. Billy joel added a show and i wasnt gonna pay an arm and leg to go again. so he invited John Mayer, Don Henley and John Mellencamp to our show...The Friday show, Paul MCCartney, Roger Daltry to the Friday show to represent the Beatles and Who, both who played Shea. I was a hater for a while, til i realized that it was 99 degrees and i should be grateful to be at one of the two shows. Perspective....

Then there was falcon ridge. I had a great time at Falcon Ridge- the friends, lack of stress (that i put on myself) and then ofcourse the rain. The most stress was getting my car down the hill. Once I was leaving during the rain, I could relax. I volunteered for FUV and though I expected a different Falcon Ridge for 20th anniversary, it was great for what it was

I was at the XPN event for one day outdoors and caught Red Molly and Anthony and Abbie. Finally, I made a House Concert at Gene and Isabel's house. Anthony and Abbie at the Living room with the Kennedys. The places where i was were great fun.

I am ending the summer with three shows by Suzanne Vega. Tarrytown, Brooklyn and Westbury. Last night in Westbury, Suzanne was with Marc Cohn. I happened to be early and went by the venue to find that the show started at 7pm not 8pm. This is the second time this summer. I was 10 minutes late for the two opening acts for REM. and was able to make Suzanne as she started for Marc. The place was rather empty so as i did in the Garden for Neil Diamond and at Tarrytown, i moved around. I sat front row at Tarrytown and last night in Westbury for Suzanne.

Each was different and some of the people at the shows were strange. Why do you need binoculars in the third row? Tarrytown was an older crowd and I was in my car by 1015. Brooklyn, hipsters and Europeans and FUV Suzanne fans all in the Masonic Hall. The treat was there were seats in what i believed was a standing show. and finally last night it was a small Marc Cohn crowd and a few SV fans. I had a great three shows.

I also did a Hudson River Cruise and Raul Malo was the artist. it was good to see him and hear those old Maverick songs.

Summer comes to a close and I have Joan Baez tour and Dar to look forward to. But as for the summer, not enough Dar and clearly the Mary Chapin Carpenter who toured most summer was missing and missed.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Main Type
Overall Self
Take Free Enneagram Personality Test

Enneagram Test Results
Type 1 Perfectionism |||||||||||| 50%
Type 2 Helpfulness |||||||||||||| 58%
Type 3 Image Focus |||||||||||||||| 62%
Type 4 Hypersensitivity |||||||||| 38%
Type 5 Detachment |||||||||| 34%
Type 6 Anxiety |||||||||||||||| 62%
Type 7 Adventurousness |||||||||||||| 58%
Type 8 Aggressiveness |||||||||||||||| 62%
Type 9 Calmness |||||||||||||| 58%
Your main type is 8
Your variant is sexual
Take Free Enneagram Personality Test

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Capricorn Horoscope for week of August 21, 2008

Capricorn Horoscope for week of August 21, 2008

Verticle Oracle card Capricorn (December 22-January 19)
"The bewilderments of the eyes are of two kinds, and arise from two causes," wrote Plato in The Republic, "either from coming out of the light or from going into the light, which is true of the mind's eye quite as much as of the bodily eye." He goes on to say that when a person leaves the light and enters into the shadows, his vision in perplexed, being unaccustomed to the dark. And when he moves from the murk into the brightness, it takes a while for his sight to adjust to the dazzle. According to my analysis of the astrological omens, Capricorn, you had to deal with the first kind of temporary blindness about three weeks ago, and will begin experiencing the second kind any day now.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Capricorn Horoscope for week of August 14, 2008

Capricorn Horoscope for week of August 14, 2008

Verticle Oracle card Capricorn (December 22-January 19)
It's clear to me that a part of you needs to come out of hiding. I'm not exactly sure what that means, though. Maybe there's a talent you've buried that's ready to emerge into the light. It could be that a question you've been trying to ignore is finally ripe to be asked. Perhaps you've been stoically putting up with a tweaked situation that you really should rise up and transform. What do you think it is, Capricorn?

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Your result for The Perception Personality Image Test...

NBPC - The Daydreamer

Nature, Background, Big Picture, and Color

neil diamond

Neil Diamond @ MSG

"The power of the Jewish Elvis can not be denied. One of the best entertainers in rock 'n' roll, a living legend and a must-see for anyone who's an avid convert goers began night one of his four stand tonight at Madison Square Garden. It's everything I ever wanted to see from the man -- heartfelt classics, crowd pleasures and soul stirring epics in a two-hour show. He just didn't wear those shimmery, reflective shirts.

Before you ask, show started at 8:20pm. You'll have plenty of time to enjoy the early bird special."

Neil plays three more shows in the same venue this week (tickets). More pictures and the setlist from last night's show (August 12, 2008) below...

Aug 14, 2008 - Neil Diamond @ MSG, setlist

Holly Holy
Beautiful Noise
Street Life
Love on the Rocks
Play Me
Cherry Cherry
Thank the Lord for the Nighttime
Home Before Dark
Don't Go There
Pretty Amazing Grace
Crunchy Granola Suite
Done Too Soon
Brooklyn Roads
I Am, I Said
Solitary Man
Kentucky Woman
Forever in Blue Jeans
Sweet Caroline
You Don't Bring Me Flowers
Song Sung Blue
I'm a Believer
Man of God
Hell Yeah
ENCORE: Cracklin' Rosie
America (TODAY!!!!!)
Brother Love's Travelin' Salvation Show

Monday, August 11, 2008

The Marriage of Bette and Boo

Published: July 14, 2008

“Little blessings!” titters one of the female characters in satisfaction in “The Marriage of Bette and Boo,” Christopher Durang’s carousel of horrors masquerading as a bubbly comedy. Little blessings? You would need a superpowered microscope to detect the glimmers of benevolence, charity or happiness glinting amid the misery in this breezy cavalcade of scenes from a dreadful marriage, first produced in 1985. It should be noted that the affable woman who makes that exclamation about life’s sweet gifts has just gone deaf, and this affliction is among the cheerier events in the play.

John Glover and Julie Hagerty as the groom’s brutish and piteous parents in Roundabout’s “Marriage of Bette and Boo.”

The subject of Mr. Durang’s comedy, which opened Sunday night at the Laura Pels Theater in a new production directed by Walter Bobbie, is that American evergreen, the family hearth as a crucible of despair. Evidenced by the success of the latest major drama along these lines, Tracy Letts’s “August: Osage County,” the durability of this theme never seems to wane. And while this uneven Roundabout Theater Company production succeeds better at milking the play’s broad laughs than acknowledging the rich seams of anguish that feed them, Mr. Durang’s trademark blend of zany humor and grotesquerie remains unsettlingly potent.

To concoct “Bette and Boo,” Mr. Durang cross-bred two effective genres, the memory play and the comedy sketch. In the original production at the Public Theater, Mr. Durang himself played Matt, the narrator trying to trace the roots of the family’s legacy of woe. Here portrayed by the boyish Charles Socarides, our tour guide to three generations of discord steps forward in the opening moments to remind us that “if one looks hard enough, one can usually see the order that lies beneath the surface.” And yet as the snapshots from domestic gatherings across several decades flicker by, it is the god of chaos that seems to rule in the comfy parlors of these friendly middle-class folk.

Bette (Kate Jennings Grant), the devout Roman Catholic who embarks on her marriage to the respectable Boo (Christopher Evan Welch) with a smile of satisfaction on her face, hopes above all else to have a sumptuous brood of children. But after the arrival of Matt, she endures a series of stillbirths.

Perhaps only the fearless Mr. Durang would have the nerve to present the deaths of babies as a running gag. As the extended family assembles to celebrate the hoped-for arrival of a new member, a doctor ambles casually on, plops a swaddled parcel on the ground and announces, “The baby’s dead,” as if noting that his watch has stopped. The dissonance between the ghastliness of the events being depicted and the continually chipper tone in which they are greeted by the characters is the play’s signature leitmotif, the chugging generator of its biggest laughs.

And yet as the panorama of cruelty and disappointment widens — Boo slides quickly into unregenerate alcoholism, Bette’s sister Emily (Heather Burns) has a breakdown, Bette keeps praying for a miracle and littering the stage with little corpses, and Matt withdraws into the comparatively sunnier world of the novels of Thomas Hardy — glimpses of the consuming darkness beneath the giddy joking are hard to ignore.

Mr. Durang keeps the comedy crackling along, culminating in the ludicrous marriage counseling session during which the presiding priest takes a break from delivering useless platitudes and unhelpful advice to impersonate a piece of bacon frying. (Terry Beaver is terrific as both the frying father and the baby-dropping doctor.) But as the tug of existential horror increases, the discordance between the play’s bleak philosophy and its bubbly surface threatens to still your smiles entirely. “I don’t think God punishes people for specific things,” Matt says at one point. “I think he punishes people in general, for no reason.” Has a bleaker punch line ever been written?

Mr. Bobbie’s production never quite finds a way to blend the two impulses smoothly, so that we can feel the truth of the characters’ pain while enjoying the release of laughter. Ms. Grant is at her best in a pitifully sad monologue in which Bette phones an old friend to conjure up a few happy memories, but finds herself cheerily recounting the miseries of her life. Her utter solitude tears at you. Elsewhere she jumps nimbly from sunny to shrewish, bravely smiling through another stillbirth one minute, screeching about Boo’s drinking the next. But the character’s humanity tends to get lost for long stretches; the performance lacks the kind of emotional through line it needs, although it cannot be easy to establish an inner core for a woman who keeps morphing into a cartoon.

he same is true for Boo. Mr. Welch is a fine comic actor, but Boo does not allow much scope for his skills in this regard. And Mr. Welch does not fully transmit the pathos of the distance between father and son.
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Scenes From a Marriage
Dysfunctional Since Before It Was Cool (July 6, 2008)
Times Topics: Christopher Durang
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The garish sideshows surrounding the central marriage contain some of the more bitingly funny material. John Glover is rightly appalling as Boo’s casually brutish father, Karl. Victoria Clark beams with ferocious maternal cluelessness as the mother of the bride and Bette’s two equally unsatisfied sisters. “There are many pleasant things in the world,” she says to one in a crisis. “Think of them.”

As Boo’s mother, Soot, the inimitable Julie Hagerty is piteous and hilarious as she greets Karl’s skin-flaying insults with embarrassed giggling: “Soot is the dumbest white woman alive” is a typical endearment. And yet the searchlights in her sad eyes speak more eloquently of the cost of that laughter than anything else in the production.

Mr. Socarides plays Mr. Durang’s alter ego, Matt, with a sense of quizzical sorrow that can be affecting, but he is not really a comedian. Some of the joke-riddled monologues (“Holidays were invented in 1203 by Sir Ethelbert Holiday, a sadistic Englishman”) don’t pack the punch they probably could. But I don’t regret not having seen Mr. Durang in the role. There is so much acute pain howling through this semi-autobiographical play that it is hard to imagine laughing along as the author cracks jokes in front of you.

As it was, I found myself squirming in discomfort more often than I would have liked, not laughing but wincing and sensing a desperation in the play that the production keeps at bay, that perhaps Mr. Durang could not bring himself to confront.


By Christopher Durang; directed by Walter Bobbie; sets by David Korins; costumes by Susan Hilferty; lighting by Donald Holder; sound by Acme Sound Partners; production stage manager, Robyn Henry; production manager, Kai Brothers; general manager, Rebecca Habel; associate artistic director, Scott Ellis. Presented by the Roundabout Theater Company, Todd Haimes, artistic director; Harold Wolpert, managing director; Julia C. Levy, executive director. At the Laura Pels Theater, 111 West 46th Street, Manhattan; (212) 719-1300. Through Sept. 7. Running time: 2 hours 15 minutes.

WITH: Terry Beaver (Father Donnally/Doctor), Heather Burns (Emily Brennan), Victoria Clark (Margaret Brennan), John Glover (Karl Hudlocke), Kate Jennings Grant (Bette Brennan), Julie Hagerty (Soot Hudlocke), Adam LeFevre (Paul Brennan), Zoe Lister-Jones (Joan Brennan), Charles Socarides (Matt) and Christopher Evan Welch (Boo Hudlocke).

What I did instead of Sunday of XPN -NOVEMBER closing matinee

Mamet, Cornered in the Oval Office

Published: January 18, 2008

You may have been wondering just how all those gagmeisters who make their livings contributing jokes to television talk show monologues and sketch reviews have been occupying their time during the long-lived writers’ strike. Well, one possibility would be that they have been funneling their one-liners — and not always their best ones — directly to David Mamet.

This is probably not really the case, since Mr. Mamet is a writer famous for doing things his way, or sneering in quotable contempt when forced to do otherwise. But in “November,” his glib and jaunty new play about a sitting president, which opened on Thursday night at the Ethel Barrymore Theater, darned if his way doesn’t sound an awful lot like Jay Leno’s way.

President to his lawyer, regarding his rock-bottom poll numbers: “What is it about me that people don’t like?” Lawyer: “That you’re still here.”

President on possibility of being exposed for illegal acts: “I can resign tomorrow and my vice president — what’s his name? — will pardon me for crimes yet uninvented.”

Lawyer to president: “We can’t build the fence to keep out the illegal immigrants.”

President: “Why not?”

Lawyer: “You need the illegal immigrants to build the fence.”

Heard these before? So, I imagine, had most of the folks with whom I saw the show, which stars Nathan Lane (as the cheerfully corrupt, torture-happy president) and Laurie Metcalf (as his loyal, lesbian speechwriter). But that didn’t stop the audience from providing a wall-to-wall laugh track.

I suspect that people who tittered uneasily during the recent Broadway revival of the Mamet masterwork “Glengarry Glen Ross” are guffawing with side-slapping gusto during this production, which also stars Dylan Baker (as the president’s lawyer) and is directed by Joe Mantello. Maybe it’s because there’s a dearth of new scripted television comedy.

But even more, I think, “November” allows mainstream theatergoers to feel comfortable with Mr. Mamet in a way they haven’t before. After all, with George W. Bush’s own poll status bidding fair to rival “Gandhi’s cholesterol numbers” (as the play puts it), and headlines regularly promising new accounts of bad behavior in high places, much of America is on the same cynical page when it comes to national politics. The first glimpse of the Oval Office (rendered for the stage by Scott Pask) is enough to set off giggles.

“November,” which portrays Mr. Lane’s character, Charles Smith, as an unpopular president up for re-election, might have been an act of daring four years ago, when Mr. Bush was running for a second term. But in the twilight of his executive tenure, the American presidency has become a fish in a barrel for everybody’s target practice.

Despite the thick swarm of obscenities that are de rigueur in a Mamet play, there’s nothing remotely shocking about “November.” If the play had been acted in the old Mamet tradition of louts stewing broodingly in homicidal rage and exasperation, it would probably be more unsettling when the president disgorges racist, sexist and xenophobic diatribes.

But, hey, it’s Nathan Lane playing the president. Everybody loves Nathan, with his leprechaun smile, semaphore eyebrows and “how-sweet-it-is” inflections. People wind up rooting for Charles Smith even at his nastiest, the same way they once rooted for Carroll O’Connor as Archie Bunker or W. C. Fields as W. C. Fields.

Mr. Mantello, who directed the superb revival of “Glengarry Glenn Ross” three years ago, also directed Mr. Lane in the most recent revival of Neil Simon’s “Odd Couple.” And it’s the Neil Simon mode that prevails here. The production has the air of a “Saturday Night Live” sketch retro-styled to resemble a Sid Caesar comedy revue of the 1950s.

In other words, “November” is a David Mamet play for people who don’t like David Mamet. Being a long-time Mamet devotee, I cannot say I see this as a cause for rejoicing. Finding the singular Mamet voice (I mean, other than in its “#@$+*!” verbal punctuation) requires hard listening.

If you keep your ears peeled, you’ll be rewarded by passages that confirm Mr. Mamet’s enduring fascination with language as a shield and weapon. The speeches that Clarice Bernstein, Ms. Metcalf’s character, comes up with impromptu for her boss are smooth, canny embodiments of the seductive spiels that Americans can’t help falling for during campaign season. The president respects Bernstein (as he calls her), despite her “loathsome and abominable” sexual practices, because she’s a pro. You sense that Mr. Mamet feels the same way about her verbal facility.

Mostly, though, “November” — which also features Michael Nichols as one mad Indian chieftain and a winningly understated Ethan Phillips as a representative of turkey by-products manufacturers — is played as an easy laugh machine, with lines thrown buoyantly into the audience like brightly striped beach balls.

Mr. Lane, it goes without saying, knows exactly how to pitch such lines, with a time-honed style that allows him to put the maximum spin on poisonous zingers and still keep the audience on his side. He doesn’t create a real character here. (And he’s certainly capable of complex portraiture, as he demonstrated in plays like “Lips Together, Teeth Apart” and “Mizlansky/Zilinsky.”) But character, in any sense, isn’t called for in “November.”

Ms. Metcalf, a fine actress, does a variation on the doormat character she played for years on “Roseanne,” and does it well. Mr. Baker — who appeared earlier this season in a Mamet-play manqué, Theresa Rebeck’s “Mauritius” — keeps the requisite straight man’s straight face, even as the farce climbs into stratospheric absurdity.

For “November” features subplots — involving the rights of Thanksgiving turkeys, the Indians’ claims on Nantucket and a pork industry-sponsored “piggy plane” for the exportation of dissidents — of a surreal silliness that brings to mind another political satire, and I don’t mean “Wag the Dog,” the enjoyable 1997 film on which Mr. Mamet worked as a screenwriter.

No, I’m thinking of a show about a presidential candidate whose party is in trouble because it sold Rhode Island and decides to base its platform on love, something “that everybody’s interested in and that doesn’t matter a damn.” That’s the 1931 Pulitzer Prize-winning Gershwin musical “Of Thee I Sing,” which featured a book by George S. Kaufman and Morrie Ryskind that reflected the country’s dissatisfaction with its leaders, including poor old Herbert Hoover, in the midst of the Great Depression.

Hmmm. Timing is everything, isn’t it? As for me, I might warm more to “November” if it were a musical. After all, Mr. Mamet’s favorite obscenities, with their simple Anglo-Saxon kick, are easily rhymed and thus far underused in the Broadway musical.


By David Mamet; directed by Joe Mantello; sets by Scott Pask; costumes by Laura Bauer; lighting by Paul Gallo; production stage manager, Jill Cordle; technical supervisers, Hudson Theatrical Associates; general manager, Richards/Climan Inc.; company manager, Bruce Klinger. Presented by Jeffrey Richards, Jerry Frankel, Jam Theatricals, Bat-Barry Productions, Michael Cohl, Ergo Entertainment, Michael Filerman, Ronald Frankel, Barbara and Buddy Freitag, James Fuld Jr., Roy Furman, JK Productions, Harold A. Thau, Jamie deRoy/Ted Snowdon and Wendy Federman. At the Barrymore Theater, 243 West 47th Street, Manhattan; (212) 239-6200. Running time: 1 hour 35 minutes.

WITH: Nathan Lane (Charles Smith), Laurie Metcalf (Clarice Bernstein), Dylan Baker (Archer Brown), Michael Nichols (Dwight Grackle) and Ethan Phillips (a representative).

the police

Published: August 8, 2008

The final concert by the Police, at Madison Square Garden on Thursday night, could have felt like any number of things: a victory lap, a spectacle, a backward glance, an amen. It was all of the above to one degree or another, but what it ultimately suggested was the last day of school. At the close of a reunion tour that stretched past a year, reaching well over three million fans and earning more than $350 million, this three-piece rock band seemed not only festive but also relieved, and frankly giddy at the prospect of freedom.

“It’s been a huge honor to get back together,” a full-bearded Sting said several songs into the show, before thanking the group’s drummer, Stewart Copeland, and its guitarist, Andy Summers, “for your musicianship, your companionship, your friendship, your understanding, your patience with me.” Have a nice summer, he could have added.

Instead he sounded a note of jocular confession: “The real triumph of this tour is that we haven’t strangled each other.” Not that it hadn’t crossed their minds, he added. The crowd roared knowingly, well versed in the history of a band that broke up in 1984, at the pinnacle of its success, in a bitter haze of clashing egos.

So the tour, which began in May 2007, has apparently been more of a diplomatic rapprochement than a sentimental journey. But it has also been a chance for the band to revisit its pioneering sound, a sparse but kinetic hybrid of reggae, punk and new wave that conquered charts and airwaves from the late 1970s to the mid-’80s. The grand finale on Thursday, a benefit for the New York public television stations WNET and WLIW, was no different in that regard: it confirmed the unusual chemistry that always bonded these artists, musically if not personally.

Along with most of its bigger hits, like the tersely reverberant “Walking on the Moon,” the band played a handful of less celebrated tracks, including “Hole in My Life,” a jaunty complaint, and “Demolition Man,” a hard-charging boast. Social commentary arrived in the form of songs like “Driven to Tears” and “Invisible Sun.”

There was ample opportunity to savor the atmospheric and judicious guitar playing of Mr. Summers, and the propulsive, breezily intricate drumming of Mr. Copeland. Of course Sting’s soaring vocals were front and center throughout, as were his mostly durable songs.

In a nod to the setting, the group welcomed nearly two dozen members of the New York City Police Department band near the start of the show, for a souped-up version of “Message in a Bottle.” This did nothing to improve the song, but it was welcome stagecraft, even if Sting looked patently silly in a police cap.

There were other anomalies. The opener was “Sunshine of Your Love,” and the first encore was “Purple Haze.” This was a nod to two other lean and flexible rock trios: Cream, which had its own blockbuster reunion not long ago, and the Jimi Hendrix Experience, which never got the chance. Obviously the Police were staking a claim here, and the point was well taken, though neither cover felt half as strong as the original.

Sting had other points to make. Introducing “Don’t Stand So Close to Me,” he recalled his early career as a schoolteacher, mock-lamenting his wayward path as a rock star. This would have been insufferably smug, if not for the tableau presented before the encore: after leaving the stage, Sting settled into a barber’s chair backstage, preposterously, for a shave and a manicure. His shirtless image, projected onto the large screen above the stage, elicited hoots and cheers, especially when Mr. Copeland entered the frame to deliver a kiss on the lips. Everyone was in on the joke.

But the concert’s closing moments — involving a crew member in costume as the fat lady singing, and an audio clip of Porky Pig stammering “That’s all, Folks” — came across like a fizzy drink with a bitter aftertaste. It was a prankish, almost flippant way to go, but its sharp ambivalence felt totally honest.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Capricorn Horoscope for week of August 7, 2008

Capricorn Horoscope for week of August 7, 2008

Here's a passage from Kurt Vonnegut's novel Breakfast of Champions: "Kilgore Trout once wrote a short story which was a dialogue between two pieces of yeast. They were discussing the possible purposes of life as they ate sugar and suffocated in their own excrement. Because of their limited intelligence, they never came close to guessing that they were making champagne." This scenario has some resemblances to what you're doing, Capricorn. Fortunately, you're much smarter than the two pieces of yeast, and so you will not do the equivalent of drowning in crap. But I bet you'll create something comparable to champagne.

Monday, August 04, 2008

I cant believe that it is august already. July started with a weekend in New England. For the first year in 10, i skipped the New Bedford Summerfest. I could have gone to see Red Molly and Lucy Kaplansky but when Richard Shindell cancelled due to chopping off part of his finger, I decided to spend the day with my parents. I could have stayed for Sunday but I would have missed another Gene and Isabel House Concert. I missed two and was determined not to miss the 3rd. I am so gald that I saw Anthony and Abbie at Gene and Isabel's house.

I was able to see a free screening of Dark Knight and also went down to Camden NJ to see Dar at the XPNonenial festival. I saw chuck prophet, Alejandro escovedo and Beth orton too. Dar played a new new song and i boogied back to Brooklyn.

Saturday, I went to the Brooklyn Cyclones for Billy Joel night and saw then lose. The Cyclones are great fun.

Sunday, August 03, 2008


this weekend, I went back to the Cyclones for the second ticket that i bought. It rained all morning and i thought maybe given the forecast, i would have gotten rained out.

This weekend was Bank Of America free museum weekend so i went to the Aquarium for a few hours before the Game. I saw the Sea Lion show and walked around and then walked down the boardwalk. It was Ladies night and the Cyclones were giving away pink teeshirts.

Today, I used my Bank of America card again and went to the Metropolitan Museum. I started on the roof at the Koons and then went through the Turner. I wandered through the impressionists and American contemporary art. I saw Manet, Monet, Picasso, Degas, Rodin, Rothko, Calder, Warhol, Pollack, Pizarro, Van Gogh. I walked whereever my legs took me, I had no plan, I skated through the Asian, African art and went to places in the museum that i had never been.... Greek and Roman and the Roof. The view of Manhattan is picture perfect and there is a bar up there for lunch. I wandered in to the costume area and saw original movie superhero outfits and designer interreptation of the costume. Batman, Spiderman, Wonderwoman, Catwoman

the day lent itself for a rooftop visit to the Met.....

Thank you Bank America for the free visit..

the weather was like an indian summer september day and I then went across the park at 72nd to the west side. Laughed at the Tourist bus all taking pix of the Dakota on Cue. I spoke to a little girl in a stroller. like a CP stroller and her pink sunglasses that made her look like a rock star. I then we through a street fair on Colunbus and then back to 78th street from 68th to Fairway and home. Only to do more wash

School is out for 3 weeks so i am now free on Wednesday nights til August 27th. School then breaks for Labor day and then i start saturdays again...