Celebrity Death Watch: Nick Kotz was a journalist who wrote primarily about politics. Peter Hunt directed the musical 1776. Robert May did significant work on chaos theory. Denis Goldberg was an anti-apartheid activist. Gale Halderman co-designed the Ford Mustang. Robert Park was a physicist and critic of pseudoscience. Sam Lloyd was an actor who was best known for appearing in Scrubs and Galaxy Quest. Gil Schwartz was a humorist, who wrote under the name Stanley Bing. Samuel Roger Horchow was a theatre producer and catalog purveyor. Don Shula was a Hall of Fame football player and coach. Michael McClure was a beat poet. Barry Farber was a conservative talk show radio host. Iepe Rubingh was the founder of chess boxing, a rather unlikely combination of the two forms of competition. Moon Martin was a a singer-songwriter, most famous for “Bad Case of Loving You.” Carolyn Reidy was the CEO of Simon & Schuster. Jorge Santana was a guitarist, who was a lot less famous than his brother, Carlos. Fred Willard was an actor, who worked on several Christopher Guest mockumentaries. Wilson Roosevelt Jerman was a White House butler, who spent over 50 years on the staff at that facility. Lucky Peterson was a blues musician. Ken Osmond was an actor, best known for playing Eddie Haskell on Leave It To Beaver. Willie K was a Hawaiian musician. Annie Glenn used her role as an astronaut’s wife for activism regarding speech disabilities. Alan Merten was the president of George Mason University during a time of its significant expansion. Mory Kante was a Guinean singer and bandleader. Stanley Ho turned Macao into the Las Vegas of Asia
Irrfan Khan was an Indian actor. He is best known in the west for his Hollywood work, which included Life of Pi and Slumdog Millionaire. But I would particularly recommend The Lunchbox as an interesting movie he co-starred in.
Maj Sjowall was a Swedish mystery writer. Her Martin Beck series, co-written with her late husband, Per Wahloo, was a particularly good example of the use of police procedurals for societal criticism.
Jean Erdman was a dancer and choreographer, who incorporated myth into her dancing. She was also Joseph Campbell’s widow. She earned me 25 ghoul pool points (13 for her position on my list and a 12 point uniqueness bonus.)
Little Richard was a rock and roll legend. From the mid-50’s on, he influenced numerous other singers and pianists with his lively style.
Barbara Sher was a lifestyle coach and writer. I know several people who were devotees of her book Wishcraft. Later on, she tackled what she called “scanners,” i.e. people who have multiple interests and don’t want to focus on just one. I actually went to one of her day-long workshops on that subject and found it somewhat useful in my life, mostly as reassurance that I’m not alone.
Jerry Stiller was a comedian and actor. I have to admit I found his work with his late wife, Anne Meara, much funnier than his acting roles on TV shows like Seinfeld.
Phyllis George was Miss America 1971 and went on to a career as a sportscaster at a time when that was pretty much unknown for women.
Last week: Monday night I played board games with the usual group I play with.
Tuesday night was the kick-off for The Great Big Jewish Food Fest, with David Sax interviewing several deli owners about how things are going for them in these times. The answers were more hopeful than I expected, with a lot of take-out business, but it is still difficult, given that restaurants are low margin businesses. It was an interesting program. And, by the way, David Sax is very good-looking.
Wednesday night was book club. We had a lively discussion of My Mother’s Son by David Hirshberg. I liked the book, though it started out a bit slowly. Most of the group liked it, but one person didn’t care for it at all. It actually makes for better discussion when we have dissenting opinions.
Thursday night was a Better Said Than Done storytelling show. I particularly liked Anne Rutherford’s story. And, of course, Andy Offutt Irwin is always a hoot.
Friday night was a reading of my friend, Patrick Cleary’s play Parthenogenesis, which involves interesting questions about what fatherhood means. One nit is that a mother with Type AB blood cannot have a child with Type O blood.
Saturday included zooming into two virtual Balticon sessions - one on Amazons of the Dahoney Kingdom and one on Jews in Space. Both were good, but the latter was particularly entertaining. I zoomed into a session on Sunday about Weather Satellites, which was okay, but didn’t really cover anything I didn’t already know. And I zoomed into a session on Monday (Memorial Day) called The Left Fin of Darkness, which was an interesting attempt to find animal models for the sexual lives of the Gethenians in Ursula K. LeGuin’s The Left Hand of Darkness.
Other things I did on Sunday evening were a story swap (hosted by Community Storytellers in Los Angeles) and a chavurah tag-up. And I played board games again last (Monday) night.
In between that, there was work and some errands on Sunday.
Cooking For the End of the World: I tried a new chicken recipe, which involved a marinade that had olive oil, lemon, garlic, ginger, and cumin. To go with it, I made tahini-glazed carrots, which involve olive oil, tahini, cumin, and curry powder. It was a nice change of pace, a good break from my usual stir fried random odds and ends. I have a slightly different tahini-glazed carrot recipe I want to try, which includes silan (date honey) so I bought some of that on this week’s grocery excursion.
Ink!: The most exciting news of the past week was that I got an honorable mention in the Style Invitational (the Washington Post’s humor contest) for my “fictoid” about spring. Namely, “most tulips actually have four to six lips.” So I am no longer a one-hit wonder!
Don’t Analyze This Dream – Part 1: I was at a zoo and there were two large kiddie pools filled with whales. There were also creatures that were a sort of cross between whales and giant humanoids lounging in overhead bins above the pools. A child I was with was given a beeper to follow a red path around the zoo.
Don’t Analyze This Dream – Part 2: I was in Singapore for a job interview. The person interviewing me was upset when I refused to eat raw vegetables on the grounds of hygiene. He proposed that we should eat in Chinatown the next night. I complained that my hotel room had not been cleaned sufficiently, as I found noodles in the kitchen drain. Also, for some reason, Singapore was only an hour flight from Boston.