Friday, July 19, 2013


Al Hirschfeld

Dancer, actress, philosopher, author extraordinaire, that's Shirley MacClaine.

How many times have we fallen in love with the characters she's played -- suffered with her, prayed for her, laughed at her and with her?

She doesn't play the leading roles anymore.  Age, time -- becoming over the hill happens to you and me and happens also to famous actresses. --Susan Sarandon, Jane Fonda, Sally Field, and most certainly iy happened to Katherine  Hepburn,

And others -- Goldie Hawn, Melanie Griffith, Faye Dunaway -- hey, you can add to this list quite a few of your favorite  female and male celebrities, because the latest, big-money-making films  usually feature younger generation stars.

I can't help thinking about the remarkably talented Jane Fonda, who can handle so many different roles. Her highly publicized, recently face-lifted self, I think, gets in the way of our accepting what she's playing in current movies. (We're distracted, checking her out, thinking, gee, she looks great -- gee, she's a lot older than she looks.)

So now, rule-breaking Shirley M, age 79, has been joking about her age, and, not subtly, bragging a lot about how many men she's slept with -- and like Jane with her facelift, Shirley is getting herself news alerts, headlines, guest spots. With honest bravado, she's telling the truth, but will it get her jobs?

Dear Shirley MacLaine,
with what you did in "Terms of Endearmeant," in "Some Came Running, in "The Apartment,"  in "Postcards from the Edge" .... Yes, oh yes, you are here, you don't to sell us, tell us, brag or promote anything -- we love you, you are here.


Wednesday, July 17, 2013


Watching news about Yahoo growing, I'm back at Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center, watching a performance of "Babar the Elephant," that I staged with a orchestra and cast in cardboard elephant outfits, using my husband, John Cullum, as the "Ringmaster."

Using a vacuum we brought from home, John blew up a weather balloon on stage -- it went from being pancake flat to a four foot, to an eight foot, then a ten foot, twelve foot, fifteen foot monster white ball -- oh my, what a sight! And with a gentle push -- John launched the giant balloon out into the sold out house where the children and their parents ooh-ed and ahh-ed!

What a moment -- it floated -- would it fall -- would it land in the balcony or hit the chandelier -- it was riveting, thrilling, spectacular, till if finally nested on the ceiling.

That's what I feel when I read about Yahoo buying TUMBLR, an ever-expanding social media Website with 111 million bloggers, lots of users under 25, with tag-able porn, often 75.8 million posts on its pages each day.

Oh Lordy me oh my, why oh why do we need another social network -- plus the other guys that Yahoo's courting for a merger -- PINTEREST where you pin info and photos on a scrollable wall; SNAPCHAT where you can share pix, vids, text that self-destructs after 10 seconds, SOUNDCLOUD where musicians play their creations, find backers, and listeners; WAZE -- driver's navigation land for routes and traffic reports; DROP BOX where you can put anything from any device that can be viewed.

Will Yahoo shove over -- yikes -- Facebookery likes, or Google's kit and caboodle, while Yahoo's  intertwining, combining, controlling, patrolling, directing, protecting, infecting the ooh-and-ahhing me and thee, as it as sails out over the whole world?

Dear God, please -- JEEZ -- I'm on my hands and knees like the guy in this video.

Monday, July 15, 2013


 New things for one's home or office are always time-consuming to shop for and install, When the display on Emily's computer monitor, a 24-inch, old-
fashioned, huge Sony Trinitron, suddenly turned dark pink, John and Em were forced to learn in one day, all they could about monitors.

Describing how they ended up ordering and returning wrong size-wide screen monitors, and the help they needed in installing it, Em suggests that Amazon is not only underpricing everything, "They're taking over the world."