rounding up

Hannah and ze kidz in the departure lounge at Queretero Aeropuerto.
A lot going on lately.
Hannah got trolled on Instagram yesterday when for Charity Tuesday she donated 15 percent of sales to Planned Parenthood. Some said they were no longer buying Calm-a-Mama products, many more cheered her on.
Here is a link to Donna Ferrato's Vanderbuilt University show about domestic violence. You can also see my panels of text under the exhibition link.
Meanwhile Peter Meyer is all about education these days. He has a compelling newsletter about  college level that ranges from the Yale-Harvard football game to self-censorship on campus. In addition he has started a program called School Life News to teach young kids journalism so that they can learn skills and be better able to distinguish false news. You can see a video about the program here if you enter the password slmvideo.
Found a new mag I like, The Bitter Southerner. I'm not sure if it's in print as well as on line, but I like the writing and the pix.
A doc is coming out on photographer Harry Benson. I'm pretty sure Ed already has his copy. Trailer here.
And speaking of Harry, Donna ran into him at the Time magazine do for The 100 Most Influential Photographs of All Time, where they were both being honored. You can see a video of Donna and her subject being interviewed about the picture.


the ugly horse

This painting is one Douglas's father and mother acquired (for reasons unclear to me) that he thought I might like to have. They were emptying the barn, so it needed to be stabled somewhere, if only the dump. It was covered with cobwebs and mouseshit and held together with duct tape. And deplorably brown. But there was something about it—I think the size and the frame—that fit into the old men's club ethos of the Dowling Intercontinental, New York City. So, with some little trouble (and help from Doro who cleaned it), I took it off island and installed it in the hall. What do you think?


it begins at home

Mind you, the sign was produced by another. But the silencing was her idea. No one told her to be quiet (at least not then), but they will begin soon enough. Good little girls are seen and not heard; little boys are rambunctious. This message comes even from us, the die-hard feminazis who had to fight to get every word in edgewise. It's just part of the cultural cloud, automatically downloaded. It is doubtful that Mr. Trump will off the patriarchy, so it's up to the rest of us to teach Camilla that every voice matters.


great american eating ceremony

Yep. Here we are again! I notice that we're skewing younger—only three medicare types in the group this year (including myself). Many beautiful people. Not enough diversity except in age, where we did pretty well. Love you all, and very grateful for my intimates.


great american eating ceremony begins

The Saga of the Love Bath will be continued at a later date (it ain't over til it's over). Meanwhile, it is the commencement of The Great American Eating Ceremony. The shopping and lists have begun in any case. Mo' later.


the tub, part 2

The tub, the truck and I made it from my sister's house to the ferry. Thinking ahead, I called Ana for rescue and help unloading. She has some strong guys in her family.
Made it onto the boat, though I must confess I asked the guys to back it on. I am poor in reverse at the best of times, and given the lack of line of sight in the current instance, decided to bury my pride.
From this point on, my documentation is poor. Mainly because I was terrified. Not only that the tub that had come all the way from mainland China to Hong Kong to New Jersey by boat, to Boston by truck and by my aegis to Block island would be already broken, but that the guys would get hurt.
They rolled it home. After uncrating on the porch (appeared undamaged), they rolled it indoors. Then, slipping and sliding, as we argued about whether to get some more guys (the thing weighs about 500 lbs!), they rolled it over rugs up the stairs to the second floor. I was so scared someone would get killed that I did not take any pictures, instead running around with pieces of carpet and wringing my hands.
And them, miraculously, it was done. Rub-a-dub-dub


wtf's in the truck

The saga begins.
 I blame myself. But I also blame my daughter and son-in-law. I have a tub. A nice round tub. From China. But the Jacuzzi jets don't work because the touchpad doesn't work. I have  new set of electricals for it, but it has to be unplumbed and turned upside down to get at the electricals. Also to get at the faucets. Which, my son-in-law told me, were loose and needed to be tightened. He suggested cutting a hole in the side to get at them. I decided to get a new tub that would be easier to repair and have no jets to malfunction. Rental house.
But then my daughter posted a picture of the old tub on social media and there was an outpouring of yearning. So I thought, OK, another round tub. On line the only round tubs I could find were from China. Seemed cheap too. And after all, my other tub had come from China. Free shipping right to my door on Block Island.
Enter Danilo.

I did not realize at first that due to the fact that my original tub was already sitting in a California warehouse my second experience would be quite different. That I would become (pre Trump!) an importer of goods from China and would wind up paying more than double the quite modest cost of the Love Bath itself in fees and duties. Not to mention that I would have to fetch the thing from customs in Boston. The timing sucked—houseguests in New York and Thanksgiving next week and a $60-a-day fee to leave it in the Boston warehouse. So as soon as I got clearance and paid up via wire, I drove through the pouring rain praying that I would find someone to help me load the thing sideways in a too small truck. The kid from Montego Bay said I needed to get another truck. I begged. He got his boss. I begged some more. I signed my life away in case of breakage, and  they figured it out. Maybe because it was prominently labelled "Love Bath." And then the kid from Montego Bay loaded it and helped me strap it down. In the pouring rain. I was going to drive to my daughter's in Providence and let her see what she had wrought, but they all had the flu, so I went to my sister's instead. Driving very carefully.


friends and family

It's all about friends and family right now—and, yes, home decor. About to head to Boston for a bathtub. Don't even!



Yes. I have utterly retreated into home decor, the ultimate in comfort, um, porn. Above is the sofa I inherited from my brother- and sister-in-law in Block Island. I had long craved it, and they offloaded it when they sold their place. (They also convinced me to take the weird china art thingy on the wall—and the mirror image one in the other corner—to Claudia's Surf City.)
 My sister-in-law from Santa Fe spotted the lookalike Fendi sofa in a magazine. Score!


let there be light

There are many chandeliers in my life. I have two plastic ones in Block Island, acquired an unelectrified beauty from the dump, just put one up in New York, got another from New York, and now the building handyman has salvaged me this beauty. Maybe I'll switch out one of the plastic ones. . . Meanwhile it's resting on this chair.
Also, see Chien-Chi Chang's post election entry in Time.
Our favorite comedian/real estate agent Sarah Fearon was covered in the Times.
Tonight Donna Ferrato is holding a fundraiser for a women's shelter in Illinois. Invitation here. If you can't go, you can still donate and help them keep the doors open.
And in other presidential (?) news, Ed Barnes writes about the first 100 days of Aung San Suu Kyi for a new mag called Geneva Global.


too young to vote

Eight years ago, at age five, my daughter Hannah's half brother Simon expressed his political preference. Today, at 13, he has strong opinions once again.

And lest you still believe that electioneering in the home goes over the heads of the younger set, consider the opinions of Hannah's daughter (and Simon's niece) (and my granddaughter) Camilla as she got ready to head off to kindergarten this ayem. 

"Oops," texted Hannah. "I came down and she had drawn this."
That's S for Stupid over the crybaby D on the left and G for Good over the H on the right (perhaps the positions should have been reversed?).
And this in a house with no television.
Camilla and Simon have their opinions and they're with her.
So there!


what's in the truck?

Mostly art. Two beautiful paintings by Kate Knapp that are for sale— and one ugly brown horse painting that I thought I had just the spot for. That is yet to be seen. There was also the usual assortment of foodstuffs (some of which is extremely well travelled from NYC to Missouri, back to NYC and then to Block Island and back. Sigh.) and odd castoff furniture. There were also about eight gallons of paint I was afraid would freeze and planned to truck back to NYC for the winter.  But at zero hour en route to the boat I found a friendly basement to store them in. Saved. And I could not leave the roses.


the day after

The old post office was embellished on Halloween night. Or, rather, the trees around it were. Apparently the owner of the current occupant of the building, a bagel store, had hosted a festivity for those just too old to trick or treat. Presumably they'll be cleaning up presently.