Not much said of the dynamic young president after these 53 years. But I remember and I pause today on the anniversary of an evil deed that changed the history of the world. Rest in peace, JFK
Tuesday, November 22, 2016
Saturday, April 30, 2016
With the demise of Al Jazeera America in April, I am lost and saddened; with no viable news source other than the usual hot air and ego on cable or the incredibly superficial hash coming from broadcast networks. I am sentenced to Trump Trivia 24 hours a day with no end in sight (well, maybe November). Still, after the election, there will be other celebrities that our ratings obsessed stations can fawn over.
And that’s what it’s about -- celebrity. It’s about gossip. It’s about the lewd and the profane; it’s about reporting the most trivial remarks that require the dutiful and meaningless “apology.” About who said what to whom. It’s about the glitz and the sets and the perky weather girls, the strong jaw line and cute banter.
It is show biz, folks.
Carl Bernstein, one of our most respected journalists, has been aware of the lack of content from the news media for decades:
"In actually covering existing American life, the media--weekly, daily, hourly--break new ground in getting it wrong. The coverage is distorted by celebrity and the worship of celebrity; by the reduction of news to gossip, which is the lowest form of news; by sensationalism, which is always a turning away from a society's real condition; and by a political and social discourse that we-the press, the media, the politicians and the people-are turning into a sewer."
(The Oregonian, June 21, 1992).
And, it’s worse today by far.
The oil rich emirate of Qatar took a chance on us but it didn’t pay off financially – nobody watched. I should say, some of us watched, and re-discovered how satisfying investigative journalism can be. Staffed with hard-working American journalists from CNN, and the broadcast networks, Al Jazeera America filled a crucial void for many of us who are sick of the show biz approach to the news.
There is nothing that comes close to the last 2 ½ years of hard-hitting stories and the sharp, insightful features like Fault Lines and America Tonight – not cable, not BBC, not the DW from Berlin.
RIP Al Jazeera America. We will miss you.
Back to bland pap and regurgitated commercialism.
Thursday, March 24, 2016
"The Good Wife" is becoming a bad girl.
That’s just part of it.
Grace’s maturity makes her mother’s school-girlish, over-the-top, giggly advances towards her current flame, Jason, seem even more ridiculous. Eroticism, no. Embarrassing, yes. To believe that a forty-something well-respected and professionally successful woman -- the governor’s wife, no less -- would compromise herself and her staff in order to indulge in a lewd and unnecessary scene of public sex, is not only ludicrous, it is stupid.
But that’s not all that’s stupid! The intellectually bland and boring drip of this season's scripts, filled with sex, careless decisions, betrayal of long standing friendships, and stupid, STUPID, antics of previously sensitively portrayed characters in the series, is unforgivable.
To wit: the judge who spends an entire scene on his hands and knees trying to swat ants or some kind of bugs from under the desk – while conducting a session in court; the brilliant (but quirky) female attorney who performs Yoga postures while conducting a business meeting; her former husband, another attorney played by an otherwise believable actor, who cuddles his pet pooch wherever he goes – even while pacing the hallowed halls of the Courthouse. And lastly, dear Eli, who is still standing on an upturned trash can in order to eaves-drop on hearings through the vent in the handicapped bathroom.
It is sad to see the decline of a once intellectually entertaining series that was believable and viable – and, on broadcast TV. What a wasted opportunity to be relevant!
Thank goodness for "Madame Secretary.'
Wednesday, February 3, 2016
Has anyone been to Costco on a Saturday the end of the month when all the local weathermen are predicting at least ten inches of snow over the next 24 hours? No?
My husband and I are usually diligent in planning ahead so we can get to the store immediately upon opening or on a Monday towards closing. We sort of suspected it would be crowded this trip, so we cautioned each other to stay calm and breathe deeply.
As I enter the store, I am on my third aoummmmmm, releasing the air with a soft, low hum. After flashing our card to the cart monitor on duty, I almost run over two middle aged women who stop mid aisle appreciating the cute little pajama sets that would make a perfect birthday gift for little Elizabeth. Ohhhnnnooo, I whisper as I screech my cart to a halt, deftly avoiding taking one of them out.
Why are we surprised? It was after all lunchtime and everyone knows that Costco serves food samples at multiple stations, strategically placed throughout the store.
No matter, I think. We have a relatively short list and can be in and out of here in ten minutes. “You run and get the chicken and the salmon,” I say, “and I’ll take care of the produce. Ooops, so sorry,” to a Costco-size lady wheeling a cart full of paper products and children. She comes close to running me over in order to get to the “delicately fried cheese ravioli with just a touch of corn relish” that is being devoured by lumber jacks, Summo wrestlers, Bronco tight ends, cheer leaders with orange pom poms as well as small children darting between the legs of larger adults, running interference for their parents, standing guilty across the aisle, hoping their brave little progeny will not be pinned, tackled, trampled, or pummeled by the hungry hoards waiting in line.
As I finish my list, I am somehow trapped with my back facing one of the food troughs and look into the face of a severely determined woman eyeing ham and biscuit delectables on the stand behind me. I try to catch her eye, but she is looking over my shoulder with her cart three inches from my middle. “Please,” I beg. “Please let me by.” She glares at me, her beady eyes watching the plate behind me slowly being emptied by everyone who is fortunate enough not to have me between them and their food, and slides on past mumbling something that I’m glad I don’t hear.
We breeze through checkout, expertly stacking our goods on the belt, flipping out the Costco card once more and pay our bill. In the parking lot, a car waits for our spot as we stuff the trunk, return the cart to the caddy, click our seatbelts. When we pull out, there are at least seven cars piled up behind him. Honking.
My husband pats my knee as we head for the highway. “You okay?”
"Never again,” I say. He smiles, knowing that once I’ve removed my knee pads and body armor, things will return to normal.
Until next month.
Posted by The Voice at 10:26 AM