Thursday, November 17, 2016


Like most couples who share a bed, as the seasons change, AIR and the COVERLET become major issues.

 John Cullum and wife, Emily Frankel, joke about their tussles in the bedroom over window open or closed, about more or less blanket.

Sunday, November 13, 2016


On Twitter, Martha Stewart says about herself, "Curious, inquisitive, experimental entrepreneur who cares about the world we live in."
Back in our "Shenandoah" days when my husband, John Cullum, and I began to have money for renovations, I started decorating our home. I was very aware of Martha Stewart's thoughtful, practical, always neat, gracious taste.

Nevertheless, I went with what appealed to me, and ignored the Martha Stewart recommendations for furniture, floor coverings, curtains, silverware, dinnerware, as well as glasses, wine goblets. The ultra fancy stuff that lyricist Alan Lerner bestowed upon us (8 huge, Baccarat crystal beer mugs), and other expensive treasures from other famous pals, sit on the high shelves above our uniquely orange and black kitchen. (Not colors that M.S recommends.)

No doubt about it, Martha Stewart is a towering authority, a living encyclopedia on ways to handle one's life style. Before writing this, I browsed Wikipedia. Under "career" you'll see her domain -- Living Omnimedia Inc. You name it, and she is planning to do it, or has already done it, and written a book about it. She's 74. She started writing at age 41 in 1982. She has published 141 books.
Okay, I am not a fan. I have never bought a Martha Stewart book, though I admire her queenly, confident, courageous dealing with the good and bad things that came her way, especially the way she handled being in jail, back in 2004 and 2005. For lying to federal investigators about a stock sale that the IRS deemed, "inside information," Stewart received the minimum sentence: 5 months in prison, 5 months of home confinement, 19 months probation,  a $30,000 fine and all court fees.

Since then, aided by guesting on television shows, and the press coverage of her many, many appearances at openings, celebrity gatherings, and award ceremonies, Stewart's been expanding her name and her domain.

Her latest venture is Martha and Marley Spoon. She is now offering and promoting what quite a few companies have been offering since 2014 -- meals in a box. Dinner arrives in a box filled with all the raw material (ingredients and seasoning), and a beautifully printed, easy-to-follow routine. Follow it and in about a half hour you can be a gourmet cook.

My opinion: Meals in a box is not what the younger generation -- generation that's younger than Martha, or younger than me (whatever age you think I am) -- wants or needs. I think that youngers want to be IN with other people -- they want to go out, be out, do things their own way, try different things, even exhaust themselves doing whatever they feel like doing.

Hey, I bow respectfully to Martha Stewart, but now seems to be a time for fun -- pleasuring, amusing oneself, and being bravely outrageous.

How do I know?

I see it, feel it, sense it, have been  studying, researching, talk-writing about it, while functioning creatively in the real world. I am in the real, real world, much more than Martha Stewart. 

The look of Martha in this photo could be her reply.


This is me.