This Is How We Do It – Jersey Style

Wow! I haven't had a birthday like this since I was 8 years old.

Seafood on the ocean for supper. An array of fabulous gifts. A surprise floral delivery from California from a little boy who now is a man. Treated to a Kung Po luncheon. A festive cake. Serandaded 6 times in person, by telephone, voice mail and intercom. People I haven't heard from in three years popping in to wish me well on my birthday.



 This is New Jersey, people.The weather was perfect for eating supper on the patio right next to the boardwalk. This is a cellphone shot taken during a lull between the King Crab Oreganato and The Angry Lobster. Where are your Soprano and turnpike jokes now? It's as good as being in Laguna Beach only we don't have to pump our own gas.

Ted bunch

Happy is she who has raised a real man who remembers his mother's birthday without prompting and is excited about surprising her with a thoughtful present. I am a rich woman.

The youngest member of the family turns out to be the actual Birthday Fairy. She does, as she puts it, "pay attention". Here is her hand at work:

  • a DVD of Pride and Prejudice. I mentioned this so long ago that even I forgot about it. I hope it rains over the weekend so we can hunker down and watch this straight through. Otherwise I shall be sorely vexed. It would be too much to be borne if the sun was out and I had to make a choice.
  • The Jet As Art. Wow – I wish you could see the beautiful photography in this book. It's so much better than I anticipated. Requires study – expect to hear about it again.
  • a cordless illuminated flamingo. On at dusk/off at dawn.
  • a homemade Tre Leches cake ablaze with some diplomatically chosen candles that avoid the indelicate "how many?" question.


"I'm Mr. Darcy – Fly Me."
Okie dokie, Mr. Darcy!


I bet you don't have one, do you?
Your light-up flamingo probably has a cord.


And one to grow on – there were actually four leches involved in this cake.

I was so focused on working up enough wind to blow these all out that I forgot to make a wish. If it's not too late, let me make it now: I hope everyone of you has a birthday celebration this good.


FYI – The Thursday Night Martini Club definetly has to relocate to the place where we had the birthday dinner. It's only about 4 miles away from our usual spot and it has an outdoor bar, live music and an ocean. Of course, we'll have to get there at 2 in the afternoon to get a seat, but everything is a trade off, is it not? 

If we do move there, the Thursday Night Martini Club might have to have a seasonal change in designation. Just call us the Thursday Night Steamed Clams and Cold Beer Club.

One More Candle On The Cake

f today is your birthday …Happy birthday, Gemini! Your friendly spirit and communicative personality make it easy for you to converse with just about anyone. Usually inspired by academia, you're a smart thinker and an astute businessperson. These skills will be put to good use in the coming year as an opportunity to vastly increase overall wealth and prosperity comes your way. This year brings status and financial gain to enjoy a luxurious, exciting lifestyle. Lucky you!

Today is my birthday and boy, that NY Daily News astrologer really knows what she's talking about – I'm already well on my way to status and financial gain. So far, I've received a birthday card from QVC and an email from Houlihan's for a free entree. What a birthday it's shaping up to be!

Lucky 7

Today's the day, peeps. I started this blog 7 years ago today. Since that time, I started many others. Some of those, like The Soup and  The Garden State, were long-time features in my life and quite a few others  lasted only a week or two. But this one – this one, no matter what I call it – is my refuge.

During that time, I've encountered some jerks, been a jerk myself, met some top notch people – some of which turned into real-life friends. I've received business offers, participated in world-wide practical jokes and took up the cyber-cudgel on other's behalf. I've been a nobody, a wannabe, a superstar and a misunderstood recluse. Blogging earned me trouble and also enriched me.

I developed my own never-stated standards of what I find  acceptable and not in blog and link behavior.There were times that the comments made me cry with happiness. I've been gripped by the sitemeter and disdainful of it almost at the same time.  I wouldn't trade my little band of regulars for any mega numbers anywhere.

So thank you, internet, for keeping me company and keeping me busy for 7 years.

Whatsa Matta You? Gotta No Respect?

If I haven't mentioned it before, let me go on the record right now one of my favorite musical ditties is Shaddup Your Face, produced in Australia by an American singer. I know it's wrong but I cant help it  - it never gets old for me.

But that was yesterday. Today I discovered the theme song to the Italian version of Fresh Prince of Bel Air, also known as Willy Il Principe di Bel-Air – Il Balletto Di Willy.  Woo!

Tell me you don't love that.

Awww …

[There are some places around the internets that are just too much of a challenge for me to leave comments. One of those places is Dyslexic Chicken. For a while, I was successful registering under different names and email addresses, but even that fails me now.]

Happy news – long-time internet presence Faith of Dyslexic Chicken is pregnant. It's early in the game but it's  long-awaited and very welcome news. If I could leave a comment over there, this would definately be the time for it. Since I can't, let me just say it right here: nice work, Faithie.

In Which Two Out of Five Senses Disagree

It finally became clear to me this morning – while I am a big fan of things that are flavored primarily with vanilla, I cannot abide things that are scented primarily with vanilla.

My first choice in ice cream, icing and cake is always vanilla. My first reaction to candles, body wash and cologne that are vanilla scented is avoidance.  That's why, when the dental hygienist suggested I "rinse now" with Vanilla Mint Listerine, I wanted to decline the offer. And I would have except that at that particular moment, I was in dire and immediate need of rinsing with something and there she was putting a cup of it into my hand. I did not hate it.

And so I've been a bit unsettled these past few days by the experience of not hating it until it all became clear to me this morning. This is the best I can do for a post on a holiday. Return to your barbeques.

Come On Summer

The decorative elements of summer:

Originally a windspinner, then an outdoor lighting fixture, now a windspinner again. Soon to be electrified once more. This whole thing looks a bit crooked, doesn't it? In person, it looks fine if you just slump to the side in your chair. Try slumping in your desk chair as you look at this – it helps a lot.

Plastic frog makeover.
Lazy Sunday + shoebox full of acrylic paints + shabby pot feet = voila! The old resin froggy pot feet
are looking mighty fine now, don't you think? Never one to leave well enough alone, I'm considering highlighting the toes, eyes and mouth with a light rubbing of chartreuse paint. As a general rule, just mark me down for excess.

Picture if you will, the big empty urn holding vines of morning glory and moonflower making their way up a twine trellis until they reach the rain gutter and then making a sharp right. Good idea, Gregor! You can see that I've already lost my nerve for this and installed a pink geranium for insurance in case the vine thing doesn't work out. Today I found three little sprouts poking up from the dirt and I feel fairly confident that the rabbits won't get to them up here. Squirrels are another story, though.