We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Spent the past two days banging around NYC, like a tourist, with visitors from California (who headed off last night to Brazil to tour that famous tourist trap, the Amazon River). All I can do is to offer kudos to Mayor Bloomberg. His polls indicate plenty of people agree (although his assertion that NY will not profile for terrorists is either ridiculous or disingenuous - I hope the latter). I thought Guiliani had done a good job with my favorite American city, but NY now looks and feels as wonderful as it did when I was a kid. NYC requires a world-class manager - not a politician - and that is what it has. There are millions of people on the streets til late at night, happy-looking cops walking their beats instead of prowling in cars, young familes and packed open-air restaurants everywhere, and a feeling of safety and festivity which is pure delight in a place that saw some bad times in recent history. The parks, large, medium, and small - are the most striking change. Rather than being filled with dog and human feces, drug addicts, criminals, winos, and the occasional dead person, with dead plantings and menacing vibes, they all look immaculate, with healthy lawns, musicians, tasteful plantings, great looking people, and a welcoming and civilized atmosphere. My poor shot of the eastern edge of Union Square Park here reminds me of what that park was like in the 1970s when I lived nearby on University Place, when you would cross the street to avoid getting near it. Now it is everything - and more - than Olmstead could have imagined. Interestingly, four of New York's ten most popular restaurants are now in the recently-abandoned Union Square area.
Union Square is just a block from the Lee Strasberg Theater Institute, where on Sat night we saw the world premiere of Patrick Feigelson's one-act play "World Premiere." Patrick is pals with our California friends, and now Patrick and the French playwright David Valayre have just completed translating their "Edellstein" into English, a dark drama set in German-occupied Paris. We wish them good luck with that play.