Archive for the ‘Entertainment’ Category

Service of Reruns

Thursday, May 25th, 2023

Blue Bloods, November 16, 2018

Watching reruns is soothing. Top of my list is the original Law and Order with Jerry Orbach and I’ve had a decades long crush on Sam Waterston. I once saw him on the train I took upstate every Friday after work. He could take a limo home but prefers public transportation. Nobody bothers him. I am the worst celebrity identifier, but I also saw other favorites on that train—Christine Baranski and Robert Clohessy who plays Lt. Sid Gormley on Blue Bloods.

I look for old Blue Bloods episodes because I was late to the game and missed the early ones. I find comfort in watching Seinfeld, Law and Order SVU and if I’m in the mood, Friends.

If I could find these series–The Odd CoupleAs Time Goes By with Judy Dench and Geoffrey Palmer and the original All Creatures Great and Small–I’d like to see episodes again. I do love the current version of All Creatures. Kudos to that production company.

Which reruns do–and would–you watch?

Law and Order SVU

Blog Service of Boring

Thursday, December 1st, 2022


Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay 

I’m not sure why but I’ve developed a dislike of the word boring. When young I’d get bored but haven’t for decades.

Political pundits and morning show hosts whine about a politician being boring which is why, they drone on, he/she isn’t a good candidate. Vision, intelligence, ethics, spot-on decision-making take a back seat. Some once praised a recent president for being hilarious and when, in a recent speech he was no longer, they complained that he was not amusing, energetic and vibrant—in fact, he was boring. Kiss of death!

Must we always be amused? Have you met slick-mouthed people who can sell butter to a dairy who are useless doing their jobs? They drop more balls than beau mots. I have stories….

It helps if a teacher isn’t boring. But we don’t all agree about that. I remember one—Dr. Blackwood in college—who put others to sleep yet his words resonated with me.

In addition to deadlines, obligations and chores, there is so much entertainment at our fingertips from streaming services with all range of series and films and podcasts covering cooking and philosophy to politics and gardening as well as news shows that dissect every angle of the political and international landscape and thousands of digital games.

There are so many books to read or museums to visit or walks to take or languages to learn or trips to enjoy or recipes to master or friends to meet or dogs to walk or children to coach in addition to people to help—and of course, there is work or homework. So where is there time for boredom? Do you get bored?


Image by 14995841 from Pixabay 

Service of Dreading the End of a Beloved Book or Series

Thursday, October 8th, 2020

Belgian Neuhaus chocolates

As I reach the end of a much-loved book or Netflix series I dread the anticipated feeling of loss. I’ll miss the characters I’ve befriended, fiction or non. With options to mingle and in-person entertainment cut off–especially for the covid-cautious–it helps to have something to look forward to if there isn’t a good movie on Turner Classic, a scheduled live online concert or event or reruns of a favorite series like “Blue Bloods” or “Law & Order.” [I miss Jerry Orbach.]

The only reason I dislike e-books is because I can’t gauge when the end will happen–how many pages or chapters I have left. So how can I slow down so the book lasts longer? I want to pace my reading as I do consumption of fancy chocolates. I try to eat only one a day.

I borrowed Erik Larson’s “The Splendid and the Vile” from the New York Public Library at a busy time and hardly started it when the library took it back. I’m now #195 in line for 255 copies. I haven’t mastered the pace and timing of borrowing. When I select a few books they all seem to arrive in my virtual book box at once.

I try not to binge watch episodes on Netflix of “West Wing,” “Call My Agent,” “Broadchurch,” and “The Crown” that I save for late night. I even split into two nights a good flick “The Half of It.”

E-books at the NY Public Library

I was disappointed by the first episodes of Darren Star’s new series, “Emily in Paris.” Maybe I’ll become fonder of the characters as I continue to watch.  He also created the iconic and fun “Sex and the City” among others. While the City of Lights never looked better and the fashions are terrific, so far the dialogue is predictable and characterization of the Americans and French clichéd, the former optimistic, friendly and creative, the latter luddite, unsociable and grumpy. Paris is also a highlight of  the “Call My Agent” series but the characters and situations are quirky and funny. [One of the actors called her agent because the director insisted she lie nude in a casket. The nude part was OK but being depicted dead in the altogether not so much.]

What entertainments do you look forward to during the pandemic? If you borrow e-books from a library how do you time your reservations so you don’t end up with either none for days or too many at once? Can you recommend some books–e, audio or traditional–TV series, movie or programs on a subscription-based streaming service? How many services like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, HBO Max, or Disney do you subscribe to? Which is the best? How do you find time for more than one?

Service of Fakes: Phony Laughter Doesn’t Cheer

Monday, July 20th, 2020

The first “fakes” post in 2016 was about food. A bunch of others followed on various aspects of fakery mostly published in 2019.

Laughter has been a most welcome part of my life. If I’m at a restaurant and see people at an adjacent table doubling over in hysterics I enjoy the scene even if I don’t know what’s tickling them. However just as I don’t like the aftertaste of faux sugar–I’d rather not have any diet ice cream, cookie, yogurt or soda–I don’t react well to pretend laughter.

Since the pandemic started, the weekday morning talk show hosts I listen to on a commercial NYC radio station increasingly roar at nothing hoping to achieve a cheery atmosphere. I realize they are trying to mitigate these calamitous times but their mirth is phony and the triggers childish–often mean-spirited–hardly worth a mild chuckle. NPR isn’t exempt. On one of its Saturday morning programs involving a host and a few participants the grating, forced mirth of one of them, shrieking at every sentence uttered by the others, pierces my eardrums and annoys me in equal measure.

I laugh all the time without being prompted by soundtracks while watching programs on Netflix such as “West Wing,” “Call My Agent,” or “The Gibson Girls;” favorite vintage movies like “Auntie Mame” on Turner Classic Movies or while reading a book–The Gentleman from Moscow these days.

An exception may be the late night show host-comedians Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Fallon, Seth Meyers or Jimmy Kimmel. They might need an audience soundtrack as their pandemic format suffers without the jollity of a live audience.

Does hearing someone laugh–even if the person is faking it–cheer you? What makes you laugh these days? Is there anything that you should like or appreciate that you don’t because it’s ersatz or fake?

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