Spring break: Havana.

This may be the single best tweet I saw yesterday as the news about the Cuban situation unfolded:

Of course this is great news. Our Cuban policy has been a disaster, kept in place by a tiny cadre of older Cubans in south Florida. It hasn’t worked on any level, except to cement Castro in place for decades and, of course, propagate itself. If you want Cuba to be free, expose them to the closest free nation where many members of Cuban families have settled. Besides, with money pouring into the place from Europe, and with Raul Castro in the same generation as his ailing brother, it’s only a matter of time before Cubans learn the joys of capitalism, American-style: Ruinous health-insurance premiums, minimum-wage jobs at Walmart and, of course, new parts for all of those old cars.

And the best part of it all? Exploding heads.

Of course now I’m sorry I didn’t go before. I remember telling Alan, when the Soviet Union was falling apart, “Cuba will be next, and we can go there for our honeymoon.” We’ve been married 21 years. Which is sort of the point, isn’t it?

Consolation prize for the exploding heads: Elian Gonzalez can come visit the Miami relatives.

So what else is going on? The terrorists finally win one, and it’s to torpedo a Seth Rogen movie. I know I should disapprove, and I do, but part of me wonders if we can make a similar arrangement for the next Adam Sandler project.

Thanks to Jolene for finding this:

So great. It was originally embedded in a Vanity Fair post, where the writer referred to it as a Motown hit. Sigh. Deep, deep sigh. Kids these days.

Posted at 7:56 pm in Current events |

113 responses to “Spring break: Havana.”

  1. candlepick said on December 17, 2014 at 8:19 pm

    Elian, subject of one of my all-time favorite topical jokes: Why were New Yorkers so sympathetic to Elian Gonzalez? They knew what it was like to be held hostage by Miami relatives.

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  2. FDChief said on December 17, 2014 at 8:40 pm

    It’s about time that the United States gave up on the Batista regime. I mean, damn, guys, the old bastard’s been dead for 41 years now; I’m guessing that even another decade or so of embargoing Count Chocula wasn’t going to help put Zombie Fulgencio back in charge in Havana…

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  3. Sherri said on December 17, 2014 at 8:49 pm

    I’m glad Obama has moved in to this phase. I wish he’d done it earlier. I’m also endlessly amused that Harry Reid managed to get a bunch of Obama appointments through the Senate because Ted Cruz forced the Republicans into an own goal.

    James Fallows on finally ending the stupidest part of US foreign policy: http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2014/12/dont-do-stupid-st-has-its-virtues-as-a-foreign-policy/383865/

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  4. alex said on December 17, 2014 at 10:10 pm

    An early fuck-you gift to Jeb Bush, who will carry his own state, and that’s about it.

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  5. beb said on December 17, 2014 at 10:22 pm

    Rather saying the terrorists won one with the cancellation of “The Interview” I’d like to think of it as the chickens coming home to roost. I mean, what a horrible idea, targeting a living, actual dictator who was not known for his sense of humor. It was bound to end badly. And of all the people who threaten to blow up theaters, these people seem like the ones most likely to do it.

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  6. LAMary said on December 18, 2014 at 12:39 am

    I get invitations almost everyday to free films at USC and I could have seen The Interview free on the day that was supposed to be the premiere. It was sort of a last minute invitation and frankly, I had no interest in seeing the movie because it looked lame. Now I’ll never know.

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  7. Sherri said on December 18, 2014 at 2:50 am

    As a staunch supporter of civil liberties and a proud ACLU member, I support the right of Seth Rogen to make terrible movies. That support does not extend to actually watching a Seth Rogen movie, mind you, nor does it extend to watching an Adam Sandler movie (I’ve done that, thanks, no more.)

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  8. Dexter said on December 18, 2014 at 4:14 am

    Amidst my joy I got a great laugh too as Jeb Bush had just made a speech about a stronger sanctioned Cuba until the “dictatorship” can be smashed. You’re right Alex, a real “go fuck yourself you idiot” to Bush.

    I have a friend who hung around these radical people in NYC back in the 1970s. Each year since 1969 they joined the Venceremos Brigade and journeyed to Cuba to help with the sugar cane harvest and exchange goodwill with Cuban people. One woman had met Fidel there, and I heard her tell of the trip as she gave a speech in a New York ballroom event. Here is a blurb from a press release from those folks from 1994: “1994 is the 25th Anniversary of the Venceremos Brigade. Our
    comrades have participated in each voluntary work brigade since
    it began in 1969, organizing delegations for over 20 years…”
    So this day is a real , truly important day for great celebrations in the world.

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  9. adrianne said on December 18, 2014 at 5:59 am

    Well,we finally got non-Indian casinos in the great Empire state, so next stop, obviously, is Havana. There’s a great book about Meyer Lansky and the mob establishing casinos during the Batista regime, and then literally grabbing handfuls of cash and heading for the exits as the Castros and their army sweep in. It’s by the same author who wrote about the Irish gangsters of the West Side, but I can’t recall his name or the Cuba book right now.

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  10. Linda said on December 18, 2014 at 6:08 am

    Sherry, I think the reason it took so long to move to the f-you stage of his presidency was various midterms and reelection. Now that we know that right wingers will show up all the time, while his core constituency won’t, and that Obama haters are irrational and implacable, why not say a big f-you?

    The press seems flummoxed that he isn’t going quietly into that good night of a lame duck term. It’s not the script they wrote, or that Sunday show talking heads wrote. Good for him!

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  11. David C. said on December 18, 2014 at 6:22 am

    My favorite Cuba tweet so far.

    Cuba? At this point, Obama is just trolling wingnuts. Tomorrow he will rename Reagan Airport to Alinsky-Ayers-MalcolmX airport.

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  12. Jolene said on December 18, 2014 at 7:15 am

    Another good tweet re the Cuban decision:

    BREAKING: President Obama issues Executive Order changing the term “Lame Duck” into “Untethered Badass.”

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  13. Jeff Borden said on December 18, 2014 at 8:11 am

    I wish the O-man had acted like this sooner, but better late than never. Someone once suggested the prez played three-dimensional chess while the wing nuts were still playing checkers. I won’t give him that much credit, but he shrewdly played the right-wingers right out of their shoes when Teddy Cruz threw a wrench into the gears. He’ll get a raft of judicial appointments he might not have been able to find approval for and he undercuts again any shot they have at the Hispanic vote.

    And the Cuba announcement vastly overshadows the announcement of Jeb Bush. Imagine, the fellow who moved heaven and earth and shit on the Florida constitution to grab headlines in the Terri Schiavo case is now considered the moderate adult in the party. Pathetic.

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  14. coozledad said on December 18, 2014 at 8:22 am

    Pepole are always speculating about which one of Barbara’s kids are the smartest. I believe the only one of them who could have even been toilet trained is in a jar in her hall closet.

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  15. coozledad said on December 18, 2014 at 8:22 am

    Christ, my typing.

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  16. alex said on December 18, 2014 at 8:24 am

    Cooz for the win!

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  17. brian stouder said on December 18, 2014 at 8:52 am

    What Alex said!

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  18. Julie Robinson said on December 18, 2014 at 8:57 am

    Isn’t it great that Obama has finally located his manhood? This is the guy we all voted for.

    When Bush announced I could hear my sister’s scream all the way from Florida. As a state employee she got screwed by him coming and going, and she has quite a bit to say about his wife, too.

    Thanks for the love from Love, Jolene. That song and the meatball on top of the tree were always highlights of the holiday. We don’t watch Letterman anymore but are looking forward to the Colbert takeover of the time slot.

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  19. Jolene said on December 18, 2014 at 9:39 am

    Check out the front page of the NY Post. Too funny.


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  20. Dorothy said on December 18, 2014 at 10:14 am

    And Jay Thomas’s story about meeting the Lone Ranger, Julie!! I found this anecdote about the song Darlene Love sings on another website:

    Each year’s twist involves how red-suited saxophone player Bruce Kapler will appear for his solo: One year he burst through a chimney. The widow of famed sax session-player Steve Douglas, who played on the original “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)” recording, sold Shaffer the horn used on that session, and Kapler borrows it each year for Love’s appearance.

    Letterman’s staff has a real emotional connection to the song, enhanced with the passage of time, Burnett said.
    “Every year there’s a moment in the song, where she is hitting it full blast and the confetti comes down, just about every staff member — even the toughest stagehand — you can see just choking it back,” he said.

    All of it — the football, the meatball, the anecdote, and the song — make for an odd mix. But Letterman can be an odd man. “If Dave didn’t enjoy it, it wouldn’t be on TV,” Burnett said.

    The only Adam Sandler movie I have ever seen was Punch-Drunk Love and it was really enjoyable. I can’t even remember what it was about anymore, but I know I liked it and was surprised how much I liked it.

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  21. brian stouder said on December 18, 2014 at 10:34 am

    assuming that this movie-hack really DID come from NK (and who the hell knows?), might it be a visceral response to Sony’s Japanese roots, as much as anything else? (Korean hostility toward Japan is nothing new)

    In any case, all I think I know about computers/internet/cyberspace is that “up” is always “down” and there is a quantum uncertainty (with regard to the question “what do we really know?”) that always increases.

    Sony made a mistake pulling this movie; they could have left the stink on the theater chains that backed away from showing it

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  22. Jolene said on December 18, 2014 at 10:41 am

    Glad you liked the video, Julie. Dorothy’s excerpt captures part of what’s great about it. It’s a very skillful piece of video editing. Love’s rich voice and joyful singing style dominate, but it’s also fun to see all the variations in staging over the years–not only the different ways the saxophone player entered the scene but also all the different choruses, backup singers, and instrumentalists who’ve been part of her performance.

    However corny it may seem, I’m really going to miss Dave. As a lifelong night owl and fan of smartasses, I’ve been watching him for years. The show has changed a lot over the years. There’s much less goofball humor now, but getting older, becoming a husband and father, and having to confront his failings on national TV seem to have led him to be a warmer, more interested, and more interesting human being.

    This essay, which popped up in my Twitter feed yesterday, gets at that idea toward the end.

    Despite my anticipatory sadness about Letterman’s departure, I, too, am looking forward to having Stephen Colbert take over the show. He’s very smart and has many talents; it’ll be a very different show, I expect, but still a good one. Also, he’s substantially younger than I am, so it’s nice to know I’ll have good company in my nocturnal dotage.

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  23. coozledad said on December 18, 2014 at 10:41 am

    I’m old enough to remember when fat-chested nakey boy Vladimir Putin was a Republican dreamboat and he was going to whup Obama with his whiteness and strengthiness.


    Add the Russian economy to the list of everything Republicans don’t know jack shit about.

    Normalization of relations with Cuba should probably be seen as the US pulling it back into its orbit (or Cuba drifting back). Isn’t it strange that Obama can piss off the Republicans and Putin at the same time?

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  24. jcburns said on December 18, 2014 at 11:08 am

    It boggles my mind: “they” (experts! top men!) really don’t know for sure, for sure where the Sony hack came from.

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  25. brian stouder said on December 18, 2014 at 12:06 pm

    jc – may I ask a stupid question of you?:

    Theoretically – a computer is impossible to hack, unless it’s connected to the internet, yes? So that if a company wants to have an intranet, and did not have that part of their system connected to the internet, it would be unhackable, yes?

    Or is this one of those Pandora’s Box things, where any connection, at any point, by any authorized system user to the internet potentially exposes everything else that that user is connected to?

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  26. MarkH said on December 18, 2014 at 12:20 pm

    I have thought for some time that there should be some sort of survey, or examination, of not only who reads what, but what is retained from checking in here at nn.c. Here’s a perfect example.

    No disrespect to Jolene, of course, but not only is the Darlene Love mash-up three years old, it was first revealed and posted here at that time by, well, check post #39…


    With all the love for Darlene here at nn.c, and how viral the mash-up has gone in since its release, I’m surprised it’s new to all of you here. No matter, it’s priceless, great fun and brings a tear to the eye.

    One question about the final rendition tomorrow night: will Bruce Kapler reappear for his ritual sax solo with the treasured instrument, and how will he enter? He has been gone from the CBS Orchestra since February 2012.The show should be a ratings smash.

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  27. Jolene said on December 18, 2014 at 12:20 pm

    Here is Hank Stuever’s excellent requiem for The Colbert Report.


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  28. Julie Robinson said on December 18, 2014 at 12:30 pm

    Wow, MarkH, long memory. Whatever, it’s just as sweet the second or third time around, and for sure, it’ll be in my head all day.

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  29. MarkH said on December 18, 2014 at 12:40 pm

    Absolutely, Julie. Darlene’s performances do more for my Christmas spirit than anything anymore. Thanks again to Jolene for spreading the joy once more.

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  30. jcburns said on December 18, 2014 at 12:55 pm

    If your network is internal-only, there’s no way to hack it unless you physically break into the (say) Sony Studios complex, walk in, and sit down at one of the machines and start typing.

    If your laptop has all network interfaces turned off, it’s not connected to the outside world and can’t be hacked from there.

    There are even fancy ways to set up systems where the networking is internal (that is, the file sharing capabilities only work inside the intranet) but they also have what amounts to read-only browsing–you can look at web pages but you can’t interact with them. Of course in this day and age people COUNT on interacting–to make flight reservations, to buy things, to comment on blogs, to write an email in a browser.

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  31. MarkH said on December 18, 2014 at 12:57 pm

    jc (and Brian) — The government is about to announce that it’s ‘official’ that North Korea is behind the Sony hack. As jc said, how do they know? On CBS This Morning a reformed hacker, formerly associated with ‘anonymous’, claims that not only does no one know, because hackers are famous for cloaking themselves geographically, but NK specifically lacks the technical capacity, or bandwidth, to for a haul of such a massive amount of information. More here:


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  32. Jolene said on December 18, 2014 at 1:12 pm

    Impressive memory, indeed, MarkH. I remembered that we’d talked about Darlene Love here before, but didn’t specifically remember the mashup.

    Somewhere along the line, though, things have gotten confused. The video I linked to appeared in two, just-published articles, one in Vanity Fair and one in Variety. The Vanity Fair piece specifically said that it was assembled to mark her final appearance on the show. And, on YouTube, that video has only about 60,000 views, which seems odd for a three-year old piece. The video at the link you pointed to is no longer active, so it’s impossible to tell whether they’re the same.

    So, either there are two mashup videos, or the description in Vanity Fair is inaccurate. Once again, we learn, things on the Internet may not be what they seem.

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  33. Dorothy said on December 18, 2014 at 1:22 pm

    That confused me, too, Jolene. Because of the reference to her last appearance tomorrow on Letterman’s holiday show. It doesn’t surprise me that there would be mashups before because she’s been doing the song for around 30 years now. No matter – it’s something to celebrate. I know I had bought a copy of the song sung by Darlene on iTunes a couple of years ago so I found it this morning (on a CD I burned) and listened to it on my drive to work today. That and Bruce Springsteen’s Merry Christmas, Baby and Santa Claus is Coming to Town make the start to the day so much better.

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  34. Bruce Fields said on December 18, 2014 at 2:01 pm

    “If your network is internal-only, there’s no way to hack it unless you physically break into the (say) Sony Studios complex, walk in, and sit down at one of the machines and start typing.”

    Almost nobody’s network is really “internal-only”, though. At a minimum a lot of employees need to be able to browse the web, and people find exploitable bugs in web browsers all the time.

    And the network isn’t the only possible path. Once upon a time virus-infected floppies were a big annoyance. These days people worry about USB devices.

    Computer security is hard.

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  35. Dexter said on December 18, 2014 at 2:01 pm

    The 1938 “A Christmas Carol” starring Reginald Owen, tonight, 8:00 PM, TCM.

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  36. Julie Robinson said on December 18, 2014 at 2:31 pm

    A guy I know used to work for a local defense contractor. He had one computer on his desk that was connected to nothing. I never thought of asking how he transferred files, but now I’m wondering.

    BTW, if you like unique arrangements of Christmas music, try Pentatonix. It’s definitely not easy listening, but you’ll be rewarded for following the meandering melodies and complex harmonies. I tend to like really traditional stuff like Handel’s Messiah and Julie Andrews from the 60’s, but as a musician myself I love their work.

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  37. Sherri said on December 18, 2014 at 2:46 pm

    For grabbing stuff off of Sony servers, if they were truly on a “air-gapped” network that wasn’t connected to an outside network in any way, I think you’d need an inside guy, who could walk out with thumb drives. But I doubt that Sony was disconnected from the outside network; that would be very inconvenient for the employees, who need to be able to communicate with the outside world.

    There is evidently a thriving market in USB thumb drives in Iraq and Afghanistan; they’re not very secure and easy to lose.

    And maybe it wasn’t Sony’s computers that were the initial point of attack; apparently in the Target hack where the debit and credit card numbers were stolen, the hackers got in by first attacking Target’s HVAC contracter. They exploited that software, installed on the other side of Target’s firewall, to then gain access to Target.

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  38. Deborah said on December 18, 2014 at 3:18 pm

    The Darlene Love / Letterman link made me happy, thanks for that. I needed it.

    I listened to part of Fresh Air today, with Stephen Colbert as the guest. The part I heard was him talking about interviewing Sondheim on his show, they played a clip of that and it was fabulous, as Colbert is a broadway musical fan too. What a talented person. I only got to hear part of Fresh Air while I was in the car doing errands this morning, so I’m going to listen to the whole thing online later. I have to drive to Albuquerque later today to pick up my husband at the airport, meanwhile my Jeep is in the shop getting a tire fixed first.

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  39. brian stouder said on December 18, 2014 at 3:32 pm

    I always find it unsettling to have my car in the shop, and a relief to get the thing back

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  40. Kirk said on December 18, 2014 at 3:37 pm

    U.S.-Cuba voice of reason: Rand Paul

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  41. brian stouder said on December 18, 2014 at 4:29 pm

    Kirk – amazing, isn’t it?

    The Clown Car will start filling up fast, I think.

    Honest to goodness, and really truly – I remember when people would (seriously) refer to the Republican party as the “grown-ups”.

    I suppose I was delusional, when (30 years ago) I believed that

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  42. Suzanne said on December 18, 2014 at 6:12 pm

    Because, Brian, 30 years ago, things were different and I think a lot of Republicans were the grown ups. Now, they are a bunch of money grubbing naysayers who seem to love only the wealthy. The rest of us are expendable.

    With all the bad stuff happening in the world, getting closer to Cuba seems like a wise move. If the US doesn’t get friendly with them, somebody we don’t like surely will. And then we’ll have a Bay of Pigs thing all over again.

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  43. MichaelG said on December 18, 2014 at 6:13 pm

    One thing that surprises me about the Republicans, the party of business, is how they are so willing to totally blow off the enormous $$ potential this Cuba thing represents. I think they truly do inhabit an alternate universe. In particular, the money on offer for South Florida will be very large, very quickly starting with the cruise ships. Havana is a perfect three or so day cruise from South Florida. No need for much infrastructure. They could start in ninety days. I’m sure the hotel, restaurant and casino chains have had plans in the works for years now.

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  44. LAMary said on December 18, 2014 at 6:49 pm

    I keep thinking of The Godfather and Michael Corleone’s trip to Havana.

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  45. MarkH said on December 18, 2014 at 7:12 pm

    Brian —

    You missed Kirk’s point completely. Clearly you haven’t read anything of Paul’s views on the subject, so take a look and learn. He’s on your side:


    People need to keep in mind that this major change in policy doesn’t change everything. Cuba is not backing away from their way of governing, which is a brutal regime, and it will take an act of congress to change most of our current stance, including our classification of Cuba as aiding terror.

    As MichaelG said, why the resistance to shining a capitalist light on Cuba? It is a great, long overdue start. Colin Powell has an evenhanded view of developments.


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  46. brian stouder said on December 18, 2014 at 8:16 pm

    MarkH – indeed, I did understand that Ron Paul sounds eminently reasonable on this whole subject, in fact more reasonable than any other major Republican figure.

    See, that was what caused my lamentation. Ron Paul is the voice of reason? He’s alone among major Republicans (so far) in this?

    Ron Paul?


    Raphael Cruz is revving the engine of the clown car, and Marco Rubio is grabbing at the steering wheel, and Jeb Bush is clearing his throat and wondering what would happen if he smacked Raphael with an umbrella

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  47. Jolene said on December 18, 2014 at 8:37 pm

    Rand Paul. Ron is the dad. But I knew what you meant.

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  48. Deborah said on December 18, 2014 at 9:20 pm

    There’s a really good movie called “I Am Cuba” by a Soviet director, made in the 50s or 60s. It’s all in black and white and was said to have highly influenced Coppola when he made Apocalypse Now. Scorsese remastered the movie in the 90s, I think it was. It has an amazing opening scene of a hotel in Havana. The shot starts up high on terraces and ends up underwater in the hotel pool. This was done before all the gizmos had been invented to make that smooth and uninterrupted that they have now. Scorsese said he had no idea how it was done. The scenes looking down onto palm trees from above were directly copied by Coppala. It’s a great movie, highly recommended if you haven’t seen it yet.

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  49. alex said on December 18, 2014 at 11:16 pm

    What’s making Republicans shit about Cuba is the same thing that makes them shit when people reconsider our position with regard to Palestine. The vast public is coming to recognize that small and very vindictive minorities hold outsize influence in politics where ordinary well-meaning people like me and you have none.

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  50. MichaelG said on December 18, 2014 at 11:21 pm

    I think the anti-Cuba crowd is just like the anti-gay marriage crowd. Dead enders. I think that with Obama pulling the string, the whole thing is now a fait accompli. The dead enders, Rubio, Bush and the rest can whine all they want but the tide of history is on its way. This thing is a done deal just like gay marriage and what remains is cleaning up the details. I still can’t believe Bush and Rubio. I mean it’s their state that is going to be the principal beneficiary. What planet do those two live on? The ancient, creaky malcontents in Miami’s Little Havana are nobodies. They have zippo influence any more outside of a few cafes.

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  51. Kirk said on December 19, 2014 at 1:19 am

    The thing is that it’s such a waste of time to consider Cuba any threat to the U.S.A. 52 years ago? Sure as hell. But times have changed over two generations. And, as someone said, maybe here, the Castros aren’t long for this world. It will be be eastern Europe all over again.

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  52. Deborah said on December 19, 2014 at 1:24 am

    Did any of you listen to the final Serial episode? If you did I’d love to hear your take on it, especially you Journalists. I found the whole series compelling.

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  53. Jolene said on December 19, 2014 at 9:21 am

    Not to be tiresome, but here’s a piece from today’s NYT re Darlene Love. Posting mainly because it has a cool picture of her. Click to enlarge it.


    And here is the clip from the Oscars. More fun.


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  54. Jolene said on December 19, 2014 at 10:03 am

    In addition to being consistently smart and funny for nine years, Stephen Colbert has sold a lot of books. After appearing on his show, authors routinely get a big bump in sales–the Colbert bump.

    At the link below, there are clips from some of his interviews with authors. The best is his two-part chat with Maurice Sendak. He met with Sendak not because Sendak was selling a book but because he wanted to get Sendak’s ideas on how to write a children’s book of his own. Sendak, of course, has lots of opinions.


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  55. brian stouder said on December 19, 2014 at 10:22 am

    Jolene – C-SPAN is the tv show that sells books to me, all the time.

    Aside from that, it will be interesting to hear what the President of the United States has to say about this whole movie/hack thing, this afternoon as he departs for Christmas.

    I’m honestly flummoxed by the spectacle of a computer hack derailing a major motion picture release. We seem to be through the looking glass on this stuff, where words like “warfare” get thrown around, even though an observer from another world would literally see nothing at all indicative of “war”; and where – no matter how many “if”s and “or”s get inserted, we have no firm idea WHO did really did the hack.

    Lawrence O’Donnell makes the point that the liability lawyers for Sony and the theater chains (et al) are the ones who pulled the plug, even though – at this point – I’d pay full-price admission to see the picture, just to answer back the chuckleheads who did this.

    Really, THAT reaction (which I bet many would share) makes one suppose if this news event was a movie itself, then in the end Sony would be behind the hack, for the greatest publicity stunt of all time!

    And forward we go….to somewhere or another

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  56. Sherri said on December 19, 2014 at 12:44 pm

    I read that Sony had insurance that paid out for total loss of the film, but not partial loss. They may have decided that pulling the film and collecting the insurance was a better bet than releasing it to a greatly limited audience, since the major theater chains had pulled out.

    The theater chains made the not unreasonable calculation that they didn’t want to limit the box office for some of their other potential big movies (Into the Woods, Unbroken) if people were afraid to go to the theater.

    Had this been something like a big summer blockbuster, Sony and the theaters might have made a different calculation. The Interview wasn’t likely to be a huge movie.

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  57. MichaelG said on December 19, 2014 at 1:38 pm

    Off topic, my daughter is taking me to dinner at the French Laundry this evening. I’m really looking forward to it. I persuaded her to let me pay. She made the arrangements and she’s driving. That’s enough.

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  58. Jolene said on December 19, 2014 at 1:41 pm

    Exciting, MichaelG. We’ll be looking for a full report.

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  59. Carolyn said on December 19, 2014 at 1:48 pm

    Bill and I saw Darlene Love last week during her Christmas concert swing through Stuart, Florida.
    Of course, she closed with that song. Snow came falling down on us just like on TV. Pure joy.

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  60. LAMary said on December 19, 2014 at 2:56 pm

    Deborah, check these out:


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  61. Jolene said on December 19, 2014 at 3:18 pm

    How fun, Carolyn. She is such a powerful and appealing singer; it’s amazing she hasn’t had a career like Aretha. But this reminds me that I want to watch 20 Feet from Stardom again. I vaguely recall that the reason she never became a major soloist had something to do with being screwed by Phil Spector.

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  62. brian stouder said on December 19, 2014 at 3:50 pm

    If lightening strikes and this person wins her lawsuit, Fort Wayne might make the national news for a minute or two


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  63. brian stouder said on December 19, 2014 at 4:44 pm



    I mean – WOW!!!

    I know this will be appealed and appealed – but the right side prevailed today


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  64. alex said on December 19, 2014 at 5:41 pm

    Brian, I think the jury had little choice after listening to how two married male teachers who got caught visiting a strip club had a disciplinary hearing where the authorities made small talk about sports instead of giving them the same sort of tongue-lashing they gave this poor woman for wanting to have a baby. That and the fact that half the faculty have been divorced, which everyone knows is a major sin in the eyes of the church, whereas it didn’t dawn on anyone, including the school authorities who’d known about it for years, that the church would object to a married couple trying to conceive.

    Too bad Pope Francis isn’t a micromanager who’d come to a place like Fort Wayne and smack these idiots around.

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  65. brian stouder said on December 19, 2014 at 6:18 pm


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  66. Deborah said on December 19, 2014 at 8:26 pm

    Thanks LA Mary, those reusable filters look like the ticket.

    Good for the Fort Wayne woman who won her case for having invitro. Shame on the hypocrites.

    Wow, MichaelG, the French Laundry, fancy. We watched the movie “Chef” a couple of nights ago, since then I’ve been craving a Cubano sandwich.

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  67. Kirk said on December 19, 2014 at 10:25 pm

    Maybe I didn’t read enough, but how did the church/school even know that this woman was committing the heinous sin of trying to have a test-tube baby?

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  68. Sherri said on December 20, 2014 at 12:52 am

    Dahlia on the Supremes’ latest: http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/jurisprudence/2014/12/heien_v_north_carolina_as_the_rest_of_the_country_worries_about_police_overreach.html

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  69. brian stouder said on December 20, 2014 at 1:20 am

    Sherri, as usual, that’s a superb Lithwick article. When she quotes the Court (or Roberts) saying

    “To be reasonable is not to be perfect, and so the Fourth Amendment allows for some mistakes on the part of government officials, giving them fair leeway for enforcing the law in the community’s protection.”

    one wonders whether they’d ever say any such thing if “reasonable” “not perfect” government officials infringed some lunatic’s “gun rights” (not to say fetish-isms); or some millionaire’s off-shore “property rights” (not to say money-laundering rights).

    It seems like official sloppiness is acceptable whenever it revolves around tea-party Republican wing-nut backed bills of attainder (more fashionably referred to as an anti-voter fraud schemes, such as are aimed at college students and low-income/minority voter photo-ID laws), or militarized police over-kill (even in the literal sense), and only then.

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  70. alex said on December 20, 2014 at 10:37 am

    Kirk, the school authorities knew about it because she had to schedule time off for the medical treatments. She had been doing this for a couple of years. Nobody thought anything of it because it’s not common knowledge that the church condemns in vitro fertilization. It was only after the principal learned of the church’s position from a magazine article that the principal took the matter to the monsignor, who then went apeshit on the teacher.

    In vitro doesn’t rank up there with the other Catholic bugaboos that have been hammered into most people’s consciousness. During the pendency of this case, I’ve heard many lifelong Catholics express utter amazement that the church would object to married couples receiving medical help in their efforts to procreate and are sympathetic to the teacher.

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  71. alex said on December 20, 2014 at 11:00 am

    And for a little fun this weekend, the James Flacco Name Generator. For those who missed the president’s press conference yesterday, he goofed up James Franco’s name while talking about Sony’s cancellation of the movie The Interview.

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  72. brian stouder said on December 20, 2014 at 11:11 am

    Alex – good stuff! My Obamaified name is…

    “Brian Shuler”

    And then I thought ‘what the hell’ and wanted to see what our Proprietress’s Obamified name would be, and got this:

    Nancy Newton Druckenmiller”

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  73. Sherri said on December 20, 2014 at 2:17 pm

    Ladies and Gentlemen, may I present Prosecuting Attorney Robert McCulloch: http://www.stltoday.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/some-witnesses-lied-to-michael-brown-grand-jury-mcculloch-says/article_fd6effff-fc82-5df2-a248-cb93587847c7.html

    I’ll remind everyone that witnesses before grand juries are not cross-examined.

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  74. Jolene said on December 20, 2014 at 3:50 pm

    Sherri, what a prick McCulloch seems to be. How, if at all, you think these revelations will affect the DOJ investigation re whether Michael Brown’s civil rights were violated? As I under it, that investigation is focused on the shooting rather than the legal aftermath. I wonder if it can or does include both.

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  75. coozledad said on December 20, 2014 at 3:53 pm

    They’ll have to convene a federal grand jury and get it as far away from that shitshack Missouri as they can. Missouri would have joined the treason states but for the fact they lacked a sufficient commitment to treason.

    By the time the Feds get an indictment for Darren Wilson, he’ll have assaulted a family member or blown a neighbor away. He’s going to fuck up. He comes from a family of criminals, and he’s a vicious cop what cain’t cop no mo.

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  76. Sherri said on December 20, 2014 at 4:08 pm

    The Supreme Court has pretty much insulated prosecutors from any consequences of misconduct. In Connick v. Thompson, the Court overturned a $14 million wrongful conviction award because the New Orleans prosecutor’s habit of failing to turn over exculpatory evidence to the defense didn’t actually constitute a “pattern.” (Harry Connick, Sr makes McCulloch look like a victim-loving, ACLU card-carrying, soft on crime liberal caricature.)

    So, no, I don’t think it’s likely that McCulloch will face any consequences from the DOJ. Accountability decreases the higher up the food chain you go. There’s some possibility that Darren Wilson might face trouble from a federal grand jury, but nobody higher than him.

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  77. MichaelG said on December 20, 2014 at 4:44 pm

    Michael Griese here.

    So to get the most important part out of the way, the restroom was pristine. Yes, that’s ‘restroom’ singular. The French Laundry has a single, one for all and all for one restroom. I used it when we arrived at about 5:30 and again around 9:00 when we left. It was as clean and shiny at 9:00 as it had been when the place opened. They must clean it every ten minutes.

    The restaurant is a fairly small place on a ruralish road just north of Napa and across the street from its own large garden. This is all readily viewable on Google Maps or Google Earth.

    The place is fairly intimate with tables situated in several rooms on two floors. It has a warm and welcoming ambiance and I immediately felt at ease. The staff is smiling and friendly. There is no trace of the snottiness or snobbishness that one might expect in a world class restaurant that has several times been called the best in the world. We were met at the door by a smiling woman who seated us immediately. The tables seem to be each as good as any other. I didn’t see any tables that would be more or less desirable than any others aside from the usual one or two next to the restroom.

    The wine list is presented to you in the form of an I-Pad and is 83 pages long. No, I didn’t buy any of the $12 or $13,000 bottles of Bordeaux. Wines by the glass aren’t cheap but then, nothing here is. I went with the glass. My daughter stayed with non-alcoholic stuff. She was the driver.

    The menu is a prix fixe deal with two choices: the ‘Chef’s Menu’ or the veggie menu. We chose the ‘Chef’s Menu’. Our parade of courses began with the French Laundry’s signature appetizer: salmon in a teeny ice cream cone.

    The salmon set the stage for the balance of the menu. It is an explosion of cool flavor in the mouth. Delicious. One can’t help saying it out loud. Mmmmmm. I was reminded that most restaurants serve food that has little flavor. I’m sure this blandness is deliberate in an effort to appeal to as many people as possible and to offend as few as possible. Too bad. Real flavor is wonderful.

    I won’t catalogue the courses but a couple stood out. One was a truffle risotto covered with shaved white truffles. The lovely, smiling waitress showed up at the table with two assistants. She and one of them each carried a covered dish which proved to contain the risotto. They placed and uncovered the dishes simultaneously and the first assistant withdrew with the lids. The second assistant bore a red box. The waitress opened the box to reveal a large white truffle and several good sized pieces of truffle. She had a little shaving gizmo and proceeded to shave an astonishing amount of truffle onto our risottos. There must have been an ounce or two. I mean there was a lot of truffle covering the risotto and spilling off the plate. This dish reduced me to a quivering mass, slumped back in my chair moaning with the pleasure of the tastes and textures. Again I said it. In a whisper. “Holy Fuuuccckkkhhhh.” This one was simply beyond words.

    Another dish was a chicken thing with a small slice of white meat with sausage on one edge (as if it were fat), some green stuff and a bit of mashed potato. Simple but once again, the explosion of pure flavor, chicken this time, was beyond anything I have experienced. It was so soft, moist and flavorful. I have no idea how it was cooked. Maybe sous vide.

    The meal ended with three tiny little deserts. Just when I had finished, was sipping the last of my cappuccino and thinking of letting my belt out a notch, the waitress and an assistant showed up with a blizzard of treats. Donut holes fresh from the heat, more ice cream, several other types of there made candies and I can’t remember what. I was overwhelmed and couldn’t eat anymore. We brought it home and I gave it all to my daughter for her kids. The many small courses add up and take you by surprise in the end. I was flat stuffed.

    I had been expecting dinner to consist of a raft of strange looking deconstructed stuff, and that was there but there were other, relatively standard things also. Altogether, it was a most pleasant, relaxing and comfortable experience. The staff showed us a world class experience rather than telling us how wonderful they were. They didn’t act superior, they were superior. The whole package is there. The ambiance, the décor, the staff, the food. All of it. It’s easy to see where the reputation comes from and the place exceed my high expectations. It was a wonderful, relaxing and flavorful evening. There is nothing intimidating or overwhelming at all. I was really taken by how comfortable and easy the whole thing was. It’s also stupendously expensive. I loved it. No buyer’s remorse here.

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  78. MichaelG said on December 20, 2014 at 4:54 pm

    The only sour note of the whole French Laundry evening was the couple who insisted on taking pictures of each other and the food. I think the nasty stares from the other tables got to them because after a little while they quit. C’mon, people. Taking pictures in a restaurant (a good restaurant – nobody gives a shit about McDonald’s) is gauche, rude, disturbing to other diners and just plain bad manners. Please don’t.

    We did get to see the great man. There was an elderly single diner sitting behind my daughter. All the staff stopped by to pay their respects at one time or other. Finally, Chef Keller showed up and spoke with the old man (old man, listen to me) for a couple of minutes. Then he walked right past me and smiled. I could have spoken to him but was tongue tied.

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  79. Basset said on December 20, 2014 at 5:14 pm

    MichaelG, not to be too crass about it but how expensive is “stupendously”? Sounds like it was worth it at any price.

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  80. MichaelG said on December 20, 2014 at 5:47 pm

    Under $2000.

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  81. Kaye said on December 20, 2014 at 6:11 pm

    I enjoyed your restaurant review MichaelG.
    What a wonderful experience to share with your daughter.

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  82. Jolene said on December 20, 2014 at 6:24 pm

    Great report, MichaelG. So great that you could have this experience.

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  83. Sherri said on December 20, 2014 at 8:09 pm

    Just wonderful, MichaelG.

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  84. Basset said on December 20, 2014 at 8:30 pm

    Two thousand? Dollars? Ffuuckk indeed. I couldn’t enjoy a meal at anywhere near that price, I’m not qualified to eat at a place like that.

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  85. Dexter said on December 20, 2014 at 8:33 pm

    What an experience, MichaelG. Good for you. I had dinner back about 1985 just after Shaw’s Crab House opened in Chicago. I was celebrating a great year and a big bonus check and I took my brother there (21 Hubbard Street) and tried to spend as much as possible on drink and food but I couldn’t have matched you in that department. I wouldn’t know a truffle if it bit me on the arse.

    Darlene Love did it again, but the thunder was stolen by that opening of Craig Ferguson’s show…did you see that? It’s on YouTube…”Bang your Drum”…video of celebrities banging drums all set to a great backdrop and Craig on a desk keeping time…it was simply unreal!
    And today was an “oh shit NO ” day…computer crashed four times and I had to call support for another “tune up”. I should have just gone and bought a new desktop for what I paid for the online technical support. These calls take at least 4 hours. My wife simply uses her tablet, while mine is used sparingly. I like a big monitor and a large keypad, damn it. But … I either gotta buy a new desktop or just use the tablet. Why do I keep messing with a 6 year-old computer? Good question. No good reasons left.
    Wife is off in Toledo on three day baking mission at daughter’s home. I made dinner: imported jar of curry sauce dumped into large skillet. Added sliced carrots, pea pods, broccoli, bamboo shoots, and three fresh chunked peeled turnips. (turnips are great cooked in curry sauce). Cottage cheese on the side to cut the curry taste. Hunk pulled off a French bread loaf and slathered in strawberry preserves and a cuppa chai.
    “Scrooged” is on NETFLIX someone said…so I shall investigate.

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  86. Jolene said on December 20, 2014 at 8:52 pm

    I don’t know if I would say that the Craig Ferguson piece stole Love’s thunder–especially as it occurred afterward–but it was very good. See link below.


    Hard to judge, really, which is the best of this week’s televised farewells. Steven Colbert’s certainly takes the prize for most celebrities in one place.


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  87. Jolene said on December 20, 2014 at 8:53 pm

    Very sad news from NY, and the head of the police union seems to be doing what he can to make things worse.

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  88. Jolene said on December 20, 2014 at 9:00 pm

    Here’s what the head of the police union said:


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  89. MichaelG said on December 20, 2014 at 9:48 pm

    Jolene, I saw this police union guy after the Garner choke hold killing. He’s one of those unstable, bug-eyed, twitchy, over loud assholes. He was screaming that there was no choke hold and that the guy who killed Garner was perfectly justified etc., etc. He’s a stone loon. Doesn’t make him any less harmful, though.

    Dexter, you can get a large monitor for a couple of hun, a keyboard for $15 or less and hook them to your laptop. I don’t know about a tablet.

    Less than $2000 means a bill of closer to $1500. Plus tip. Sorry to be misleading. I’m not watching my expenditures as if I plan to live for another twenty years. I don’t. So far I’m not dipping into savings. My income has been sufficient to cover things. The way I’m going, though, I don’t know. I’ve got bucks put away so there’s no worry. What’s to save it for when I have stage four lung cancer? I feel perfectly healthy now and plan to have as much fun as I can while I’m still feeling good. I’m starting another round of chemo in Jan.

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  90. brian stouder said on December 20, 2014 at 9:52 pm

    MichaelG, you are the MAN!

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  91. Jolene said on December 20, 2014 at 10:09 pm

    Have been checking Twitter. That “we’re at war” statement may not be authentic, but another organization of police officers, the Sargeants Benevolent Association (@SBANYPD) tweeted this:

    “The blood of 2 executed police officers is on the hands of Mayor de Blasio. May God bless their families and may they rest in peace.”

    Just awful for anyone in any position of responsibility to say such a thing.

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  92. Joe K said on December 20, 2014 at 10:12 pm

    Two police officers executed sitting in there police car in New York,
    Putting wings on pigs today they take one of ours we take two of theirs. This was on the shooters Twitter sight, fucking savages, and people are putting on social media that this is the police fault, what the fuck. If I was a n.y. Pd officer I think I would have a hard time putting my life on the line for these ass bags, but I bet you the majority would still go when called.
    Pilot Joe

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  93. Jolene said on December 20, 2014 at 10:28 pm

    MichaelG, you might be interested in reading Being Mortal by Atul Gawande. Deals with making decisions in the face of life-threatening illness. Has gotten great reviews and is winning awards. Have just ordered a copy for myself.

    It sounds, though, like the decisions you are already making are consistent with what I understand to be the central idea of the book, which is that, when death threatens, we should think primarily not about how we gain time but how we can make whatever time we have as rich, joyful, and comfortable as possible. Can’t think of a better way of doing that than having an unforgettable meal with someone you love.

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  94. Jolene said on December 20, 2014 at 10:30 pm

    What I have seen, Pilot Joe, is people saying it is the mayor’s fault, Eric Holder’s fault, President Obama’s fault, the protesters’ fault–just about anyone’s fault other than the actual shooter.

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  95. Dexter said on December 20, 2014 at 10:32 pm


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  96. Jolene said on December 20, 2014 at 10:57 pm

    Much better link to the Craig Ferguson farewell, Dexter. Thanks for posting it.

    The NYT is updating news and reactions re the NY police shooting at the link below.


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  97. Joe K said on December 20, 2014 at 10:59 pm

    So Al Sharpton who mister Obama appears to agree with leading a protest where the chants are “what do we want?, dead cops!, the ny mayor saying the two officers on the Brooklyn bridge were allegedly assaulted, when the vidieo shows different, yea it’s the shooters fault. Read the tweets that are showing up. People think this is justified. I had 2 cousins that were indiana state police and played rugby with numerous Fort Wayne officers, sorry I take the side of the police instead of the person breaking the law, are there mistakes made? Yep, but people make mistakes, I’ll always believe the police until the facts show differently. How the mayor of ny thru the police under the bus just makes me want to puke.
    Do I trust and respect police officers? Damn right I do.
    Pilot Joe

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  98. Deborah said on December 20, 2014 at 11:05 pm

    MichaelG, your description was so good I felt as though I had eaten that meal myself. Bravo, and good for you for making the most of the life you have left. Really all of us are in the same boat, who knows when it will be your last meal. The vet who did the deed with our cat dropped off Ursula’s ashes yesterday. And in our conversation about the naturalness of life and death she relayed a conversation she had with her dying mother. Her mother lamented that she wasn’t going to die in an exploding plane over some exotic place or another but instead was relegated to her couch, in other words she would rather have been in that plane experiencing the exotic drama rather than the mundane existence she was forced to have. I thought that was pretty interesting, something I hadn’t thought about before, but will certainly contemplate now.

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  99. Basset said on December 20, 2014 at 11:36 pm

    MichaelG, I have just been looking at the French Laundry’s menu online – if I’m reading it correctly that was a $175 risotto on top of the $295
    Prix fixe? That said, if I were in your shoes I’d probably be thinking the same way, on a much smaller scale.

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  100. MichaelG said on December 21, 2014 at 1:39 am

    You are correct, Basset, and there were other upgrades like the $75 for caviar, all times two plus wine for me. And the wine was very good. Yes, I could have shaved a few hundred off the price by taking every opportunity to save a buck. But why? I don’t see the point of going to a place like the French Laundry and then trying to economize. You need to understand in advance that it’s going to be expensive and be ready for it. I would have felt really badly the next day if I had passed on the risotto. It turned out to be the highlight of the dinner and for my money worth every penny of the $175. I’ve never really had truffles before and have read about them for years and years. The plate was beyond fabulous. Everything good you have read about truffles is true. The amount shaved onto the risotto seemed enormous and given the price of truffles, I’m certain I got my $175 worth. The whole experience had a value for me that exceeded the dollar price I paid for it. Trying to cheapen the price would have cheapened the experience. And, OK, I hadn’t planned on doing this but the tab was $1589.76. Plus tip. Do your own math.

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  101. MichaelG said on December 21, 2014 at 1:47 am

    I’ve gone back and read the whole of Regina’s posts regarding her lung cancer experience. It was very moving and when it gets bad, I hope I have a tenth of her grace. But the thing now is that I feel just fine. I had that large sarcoma removed from my leg and that’s it. The lung cancer is spots on an X-Ray and gray shades on a CT Scan. What I fear is that when things go bad, it might happen fast. I had planned to go back to Spain in Jan but now I have to do more chemo and the doc had me postpone my trip. God, I feel like I’ve hijacked the whole thread. Sorry.

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  102. Sherri said on December 21, 2014 at 2:51 am

    Don’t apologize, MichaelG. I’m just sorry you have to postpone your trip. I was looking forward to vicariously experiencing another trip to Spain.

    Here’s hoping that chemo goes well and you’re soon winging your way back to Spain, first class all the way.

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  103. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on December 21, 2014 at 7:29 am

    MichaelG, thank you for sharing your experience with us. That was a lovely way to start the day. And I feel like I should pitch in $25 now for my share of the meal! Maybe a Paypal . . .

    Blessings of the season with you and your ongoing treatment.

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  104. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on December 21, 2014 at 7:31 am

    I thought SNL did a good job on gently mocking “Serial.” It was both impressive and oddly unreflective at times. But let’s give them this: it’s harder than it might seem to not end up becoming “Dateline” with Keith Morrison on these things. They avoided that pitfall.

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  105. Jill said on December 21, 2014 at 8:50 am

    Carpe diem, MichaelG. Why not enjoy yourself? I think you’re smart to pick some great experiences and go for them, and I’m glad we’re all along for the ride.

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  106. alex said on December 21, 2014 at 8:55 am

    Read the tweets that are showing up. People think this is justified.

    Reading the tweets that are showing up on Fox News, are you? No wonder you’re having a hissy, Joe. Of the millions of people who are tweeting about this, only a tiny few heartless trolls would argue that this is justified, but Fox would have you believe that this is the view of all liberals. And that it’s all the fault of Obama and Eric Holder, etc.

    From Think Progress:

    Fighting back tears, New York City Mayor Bill DeBlasio described the murders as “an assassination” that were carried out in “execution style.”

    Doesn’t sound like DeBlasio is saying anything about “allegedly assaulted,” and I’m 100 percent sure Al Sharpton isn’t leading chants calling for dead cops.

    Quit watching that garbage. It’s sucker bait and it’s making a fool out of you. Fox has no respect for your intelligence, and as long as you keep watching it and accepting it as gospel truth, neither do I.

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  107. Basset said on December 21, 2014 at 8:58 am

    I understand what you’re saying, MichaelG – in a situation like that you surely want to go for the whole experience and not hold back. And I don’t mean for you to take my questions as any kind of criticism, it’s just such a foreign concept to me – like talking with someone who’s been to the moon or something.
    (Which I had a chance to do years ago, Neil Armstrong was in our newsroom in Wichita for some reason I don’t remember and I didn’t hear a word he said, just kept thinking “damn, this guy walked on the moon. On… The… Fucking… Moon!”
    So I suppose that if we ever met in person I’d be thinking “he ate that awesome dinner.” One other question, if I may… the menu says “service included,” but I guess they don’t mean it? The competition to wait tables there must be fierce.

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  108. Basset said on December 21, 2014 at 9:06 am

    Meanwhile, going back up the thread to the changes in late-night tv hosts… I never watched Ferguson even once, caught the start of his show a couple times when we left the tv on after Letterman and he just seemed smarmy and uninteresting. Colbert, never got even that far – I’m not sure Comedy Central is even on my cable plan. I do miss NBC News Overnight with Linda Ellerbee and the original Nightline with Ted Koppel.

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  109. Kim said on December 21, 2014 at 9:19 am

    MichaelG, really fine report on your meal experience. Thank you for that. I have read Being Mortal – picked it up in mid-October at Barbara’s at O’Hare while returning from the last time I would see my mother – and it sounds like you and your family need no instruction on how to finish. That is not to say avoid the book; it’s wonderful and gave me the spine during a very difficult end-of-life time for my mother to question thoughtfully any treatment (and there were many, even in her last week) designed to extend but not improve her remaining days. That didn’t unring any bells, but it did allow me to have conversations with her I probably wouldn’t have had otherwise. And that, ultimately, is what we are left holding: experiences.

    Here’s to more for you and yours – and all the NN.C-rati.

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  110. coozledad said on December 21, 2014 at 9:39 am

    Yep, but people make mistakes, I’ll always believe the police until the facts show differently.

    Nu-uh. Facts don’t mean shit to a good little authoritarian toad. You’ll believe the police until they’re standing on your throat.

    Or they catch Rush Limbaugh fucking Dominican boys again.

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  111. coozledad said on December 21, 2014 at 9:58 am

    Afterwards, the head of the city’s largest police union blamed de Blasio and recent anti-NYPD protests for the shooting.

    “There’s blood on many hands tonight,” Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association President Pat Lynch said. “That blood on the hands starts on the steps of City Hall, in the office of the mayor.”

    This isn’t about two dead cops, who were killed by a psychopath who had just killed his girlfriend, is it?

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  112. Kirk said on December 21, 2014 at 11:25 am

    Great report, Michael G. If you’re going to experience something like that, there’s no point in not going all the way. We and some friends spent a pile of money on a weekend at Blackberry Farm in east Tennessee last summer. At dinner, you could get a splash of wine to go with each course of a great meal — for $65. At that point, 65 more bucks a head was no big deal.

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  113. LAMary said on December 22, 2014 at 9:14 am

    Michael, your meal sounds wonderful. I got Thomas Keller’s cookbook last year but there’s no caviar or white truffles happening at Ranchito LAMary. There’s very nice pink grapefruit cake recipe in that book.

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