Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Pre Holiday Post


Saw revival of Terence Rattigan’s mid 20th century “Man and Boy” earlier this month. Guess we can thank Madoff for making this so timely.
We can also thank Alan Driver and Frank Langella for their performances as the boy and the man, and Maria Aitken for directing it at a brisk pace, which allowed little time for thought but enough time for enjoyment.
I first saw Langella many years ago at the Berkshire Theater Festival when I went up to interview William Gibson. Frank was portraying Shakespeare in Gibson’s “A Cry of Players” in its pre-Broadway run. Gibson thought him a brilliant actor but I was unimpressed. I continued not to respond to Langella until the film THOSE LIPS, THOSE EYES in which I thought him perfection. It is astonishing to realize how many years have passed since then, almost as many as have elapsed since Rattigan first wrote this play about big business frauds!

Saw The Ides of March film this month as well - again, a matter of corruption and how a naïve innocent can be turned into a martyr or a moray eel stinging those who attempted to maneuver him. Enjoyed the film and the strong performances of its talented cast.

On that political note, I am delighted to read that President Obama has finally decised to abandon his dream of a bi-partisan congress and is concentrating on doing the things he set out to do when first elected.
It bothers me so many people felt him weak because he attempted to negotiate and conciliate with a party whose main platform appears to be his destruction, rather than the reconstruction of the America we knew.
I attended a celebration of the life of one of TnT Classic Books’ authors, Doric Wilson, at the Lucille Lortel Theater on Columbus Day. A touching and humorous program assembled with all the care and love that he so richly deserved. So many familiar faces talking about their warm and humorous memories of this lovely man.
It occurred to me Doric, with his dauntless sense of humor, would have gotten a kick out of the apt choice of date. Columbus set off on uncharted seas in a supposedly flat world and discovered a continent. Doric sailed off into uncharted seas in a closed world and through TOSOS (The Other Side of Silence) revealed the world of a still prejudiced against minority. He also gave that population a strong and loving voice through his own plays, such as those published by TnT – “A Perfect Relationship”, “Forever After”, “Street Theater” and “And He Made a Her” which appears in my prize winning anthology Short Plays to Long Remember.


Despite my distaste for authors who continually write sequels to Jane Austin’s books, I enjoyed Carrie Bebris’ The Intrigue at Highbury. Though not difficult to solve the mystery, it was a good read.

Also read Daphne du Maurier’s The Glass Blowers, which I think her best book ever. I enjoyed her writing in my, youth, but was utterly absorbed and entranced in my dotage with this family history. She so deftly recreated that long ago world, and made us care so much about the people of whom she wrote. I came to Daphne long after I had been smitten by the writing of George du Maurier, her grandfather, who favored the mystic and paranormal as much as I do.
When I, a teenager, saw her by line in a book my mom was reading and learned she was the daughter of his actor son, I immediately began reading the lady du Maurier’s books as well.
Am plowing through a book on Vita and Virginia, their relationship and influence on each other and how it is reflected in their work.

How fortunate I am to have a bibliophilic good pal who loans me half a dozen books every time I see him. Like having a personal librarian!

I have been busy writing part two of my memoir, the disruptive years when my folks dragged a kicking and screaming 7 year old me from my beloved Brooklyn to Boston, where my father had finally found a great job in those devastating years of the Great Depression.
As well as proofing the final book in the children’s series,
Gremlins, Genies and Trolls, Oh My!
am pleased to read occasional quotes of mine on other sites plus reviews of my work such as
My contribution included in a Carol Roth listing – this one is
60+ Tips for Hiring Your First Employee I’ve moved up in her world – my suggestion is number 17. The last several times she quoted me I was much further down in her listings.
More significantly a mom blogger has given me another great write-up about my children’s read-to-me fantasy book series – read her comments at

I really believe that the bedtime story habit can help young people learn to love books, can give some much needed private parent/child time and help fight illiteracy because children can realize the powerful joy of using their imagination as they listen or read for themselves, not to learn, but to experience and enjoy, with learning an unexpected and often unrealised by-product.