July Already? Or What Happened to June?

The tips on how to see movies in a cheaper way. Umm, if the theaters are showing less matinees at matinee rates, then I’m not sure what would be the best of solutions…

Slate’s Dahlia Lithwick on the significance of the US Supreme Court in this year’s presidential election – whether people get it or not.

Oh, my Lithwick and Slate host the annual Supreme Court overview.

Tom Brokaw as the interim moderator on “Meet the Press” – well, I watched most of his interview with Arnold Schwarzenegger and the discussion with Chuck Todd. Tom’s the fair choice – he won’t ruffle feathers too much, he’ll do the job, and all that. NY Times’ Alessandra Stanley has her write up on Tom’s “Meet the Press” appearance, and she concludes:

It’s hard to know whether NBC has bigger plans for Mr. Todd, who, like Mr. Russert in his early days as Washington bureau chief, is a political savant first, on-air personality second. But no single journalist in NBC’s large pool of talent seems ideally suited to replace Mr. Russert. If that is impossible, then it makes sense to recast the job and return to the early days when guests really did meet the press, answering to a panel of inquisitors who together did what Mr. Russert did alone.

I like Chuck Todd too, and would love to see PBS’ Gwen Ifill back on network tv (“Washington Week“‘s almost like “Meet the Press,” only without the grilling of politicians). but I kind of see Stanley’s point – maybe it is time for a return to a more truer “Meet the Press” by actually having the press back on the show again.

Other Sunday stuff — watched most of Channel 13/WNET’s airing of “SundayArts” – with the opera in French: “La Fille Du Regiment.” I’m hardly into opera, but the good stuff can be good for you. Singer Natalie Dessay was funny and has such a voice as Marie, the daughter of the regiment; and Juan Diego Florez has a fantastic voice and he’s somehow both hot and cute. 😉 (I thought he was great as Count Almaviva in the previous airing of “The Barber of Seville“).

Waterfalls in the city — I’m going to have to see them – do they meet the hype, or is it over-hyped? Hmm…

Stuff to note just before the July 4th holiday… Slate’s Jacob Weisberg on the cool stuff out there in books and the web on early American history.

This will have to do until the next posting…


A pretty Saturday – such nice weather in the city! Did some ambling and shopping in midtown, after a writers group meeting. How nice and relaxing!

Argh — Time’s critic, James Poniewozik, on the probability of another tv strike, only by the actors. Please, SAG, don’t take the tv actors into a strike; losing a huge chunk of the 2007-2008 season was bad enough! I don’t want any more crappy replacement tv!

Seriously, I wanted to throw up as my family’s tv was on FOX’s “So You Think You can Dance” – why they were watching it, I don’t even know. The fact that I preferred PBS’ airing of “Swan Lake” on “Great Performances” (while still not quite understanding what this ballet is about) – well, goes to show you that I must be a tv snob, since I so can’t stomach various elements of reality tv.

Thanks to my friend (you know who you are), BBC has this fascinating story about Chinese-South Africans – who could be considered “black,” since being categorized as “white” hadn’t helped and the apartheid era categorized them as “mixed” or “colored.” Kind of reminded me of how Chinese Americans and Asian Americans generally are in this weird position in American history of race relations.

The NY Times’ Mark “the Minimalist” Bittman on banana paletas – basically banana sorbet popsicles. In the on-line video, Bittman makes the popsicles with the sort-of assistance of the mini-Minimalist. Aww! A mini-Minimalist!

NY Times’ Jennifer 8. Lee on the translation of Chinese food, pre-Olympics. Translating is complicated stuff.

A Newsweek article on how night owls may become morning people. The hard part would be following the tips; I’m sooo not a morning person!

NY Times’ Alessandra Stanley on Michelle Obama’s guesting on “The View” on ABC; Stanley raised some interesting points on how Michelle Obama had a somehow be real, but not too real (she apparently emphasized her mom role – a no doubt real role – but less on her law career – a real part of herself, too). I haven’t watched “The View” in years, but I must admit – it’s tough to be a prospective First Lady (Spouse) these days, since it means doing what you might not want to do to either combat looking too real or too fake – and downplaying who you really are.

For Sunday’s anticipation: Masterpiece Mystery! is airing Inspector Lewis episodes! It’ll be interesting to see how Lewis proceeds as his own man, now that he’s no longer Inspector Morse’s sidekick. The pilot episode of Inspector Lewis from a year or two ago made Lewis into a widower in mourning. Considering he was the good family man to contrast confirmed bachelor/beer-swilling Morse, I thought it was sad that they made Lewis into such a loner – so it’d be nice to see a somehow happier Lewis (to some degree; losing his wife and Morse to the afterlife were blows to the man).

NY Times’ Ginia Bellafante reviews the Lewis episodes and she says they’re good – and she notes the class/power dynamics between Lewis and his partners. My quibble: Morse may have been the erudite one – but was he more of a higher class than Lewis? If I remember correctly, he was a university drop-out and his parents were working class – but he did listen to way much more opera than Lewis would have cared. Lewis’ new partner is much more a clear upper class type — well, young Sergeant Hathaway isn’t Morse, that’s for sure.

Interesting little story – the inspiration for Kermit the Frog (or the source of Kermit’s name anyway) – a childhood friend of Jim Henson, passes away.