Old Levis…Old Friends

My jeans should be willed to the Smithsonian, they’re that old and tattered…sewn, stitched, patched, the original denim humbly peeking through.

If they could only talk, the tales they could tell.

We’ve been through a lot together, well traveled, zipped on and off in choice hotels, on lover’s couches, draped drowsily over a chair.

I remember once leaving them behind after a break-up, the man in question mailing them back UPS. It might have been the nicest thing he ever did, returning them, since I’d be lost without their familiar feel.

The cotton is so soft from how many washings, a few hundred at least?

A tailor I’d bring them to, one day refused to fix them again, said I couldn’t even make proper napkins out of them.

I recall getting mad, calling him a snob, and he was, being the tailor to the stars, which was why I employed him because my jeans deserve the very best.

Signature possessions are important. They represent who you are.

I’ve never been a faddish girl who shopped through the eyes of Vogue or Harper’s Bazaar. I had my own style, according to my mother, from the time I could walk.

She did tend to exaggerate. What, did I have diapers in assorted colors? She never said, and now we’ll never know.

But the fact that my wardrobe in general never changes, needing only occasional replenishment, like if a pair of pumps or Chucks wear out, or tights that have seen their day, will tell you a little something about me.

I’m solid, sated in tradition rather than the ephemeral.

There’s comfort in continuity…flow in the familiar, like my trusty Lees, their pockets still keeping my thumbs warm as I hook them in their folds.

How they loiter around my hips even when belted.

Loose, soft and comfy.

What else can I say except, putting them on is like coming home.

thumbnail-1.jpg That’s us, me and Lee, payin’ the rent.

SB

 

 

Posted in creative writing, Culture, Fashion, Home, humanity, Love, New York City, travel, words, writing | Tagged , , , | 27 Comments

Avenue In The Rain

Avenue_in_the_Rain.jpgBy Childe Hassam (1859-1935), hung in the Oval Office requested by John F. Kennedy from Washington’s National Gallery, during the 1000 days of his short, but memorable administration.

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I’m a Yankee Doodle Dandy

images-4One of my favorite all time films is, Yankee Doodle Dandy.

When James Cagney, as George M. Cohan, tap dances down the White House Steps, I’m always up from my chair, tappin along with him.

I make no apologizes for being such a patriot, regardless of the events our noble Country is enduring.

There’s a reason I cry when I see the Statue of Liberty.

I simply love my Country, for better or worse.

When I went to the Antietam Battlefield, the bloodiest single day of war in American History where 3,660 men died and 17,300 wounded, and thought I heard the sounds of battle, I knew what George Patton was talking about, who heard them too.

The ground so soaked with the blood of the brave, can’t help itself.

It remembers…

it reminds….

it humbles, history, our greatest teacher.

July 4th is a great day, so my heart filled with remembrance, will joyfully celebrate my country on her 244th birthday.

She still looks pretty good, even after all she’s been though.

images-3

In 1936, President Franklin D. Roosevelt presented, George M. Cohan, the Congressional Medal of Honor for his war songs, Over There and The Grand Old flag, the very first medal of its kind, given to a person in the arts. (1878-1942)

Over there, over there
Send the word, send the word over there
That the Yanks are coming
The Yanks are coming
The drums rum-tumming
Everywhere
So prepare, say a prayer
Send the word, send the word to beware
We’ll be over, we’re coming over
And we won’t come back till it’s over
Over there        George M. Cohan…1917

James Cagney (1899-1986) won the 1943 Best Actor Award for Yankee Doodle Dandy as George M. Cohan, and to think he initially refused the role, feeling he was too old to play such a man.

God Bless America!

  SB

 

 

Posted in Beauty, Culture, Faith, Gratitude, History, humanity, inspiration, Love, media, Politics, words, writing | Tagged , , , , , | 33 Comments

A Coupla Cats Sittin Around Talkin

I’m here with Pat the Cat, aka Patrick, my neighbor next door.

His owner for once, knows that he’s here since he’s visiting upon request.

I needed a sit down, okay on the floor, but still, with someone I could talk to who wouldn’t argue through his mask.

Of course a few sardines never hurt.

It’s about the PANDAMMIT and all that’s going on.

My library for instance, that’s only taking returns you leave in a big box out front that will be quarantined for 3 days.

Really?

Yes.

If I want a book, I email, and they leave it in a paper bag on another table with my name on it. It’s left me quite sad not being able to go in. I know it’s all there is right now, but I ask you…

how did this happen?

How did our world become incarcerated by an invisible foe that we’ve yet to conquer.

English Susannah, English.

Sorry Pat.

When will there be a FUCKING VACCINE?

Is that better? Blink twice for yes.

Then we have my building that’s decided, any guests have to sign a book, like registered sex offenders, so they know if there’s an outbreak, who was here.

How bout a break out instead, beginning with…

ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?

Pat, I see you’re now blinking like a traffic light.

Then a friend called who was invited to a party where rules will apply…an outdoor barbecue with space to spare.

I don’t know of they’ll be chicken Patrick, but he’s afraid to go.

No, you can’t go in his place, but I told him, pull yourself together, buy a nice bouquet and make an appearance. If it’s too uncomfortable you leave.

What do ya mean, why a bouquet? Because you bring something when you visit someone. It’s obvious you’re not from Connecticut.

I told him, you can’t live this way. You take care of yourself within the parameters of calm rationale.

Oh for Christ’s sake…

YOU WEAR YOUR MASK, WASH YOUR HANDS AND STAY 6 FEET OR MORE AWAY.

Jesus Patrick, when did you get so persnickety?

Shit, I forgot, you’re a cat.

Alright alright, milk comin up. Is 2 % okay?

Humor folks, might be all we have left.   

Sigh

SB

Posted in animals, creative writing, Culture, humanity, humor, New York City, words, writing | Tagged , , , | 59 Comments

When God Speaks Through Others

I was having a bad day.

There’s a quote from the film, Body Heat, when Ned, played by Bill Hurt, says...sometimes the shit comes down so heavy, I feel like I should wear a hat.

It was one disappointment after another, never realizing, how hard it is to have a good mewl while wearing a mask.

That said.

I’m sitting on a bench in the Park midday, something I rarely do. I choose a place with no one close by, so I can take off my mask to sob in peace.

ENTER…12 year-old boy on bicycle.

He sits next to me, in his mask. So I naturally now, have to pull up mine.

He says, “Wouldn’t it be better to just leave it off? I saw you crying. It’s why I stopped.”

Kids.

“That was nice of you,” I say, “but I’m really fine.”

“That’s what my mom always says, but I know she’s not.”

“What’s the matter with your mom?”

“She misses my dad.”

I pause, before asking, “What happened to him, did he leave?”

“Yeah.”

“Sorry, that happens sometimes. But at least you get to see him, right?”

He looks at me like a doctor about to give you a bad test result. “Well, no I don’t…see, he was real sick. Had cancer. He died in April.”

I sit there feeling now, even worse, because a young kid who lost his father, is trying to do for me, what he clearly can’t do for his mother.”

So alas, we bond.

“I lost my dad too,” I tell him, “when I was a little older than you. I didn’t get to see him. Were you with your dad?”

He solemnly shakes his head no. “They wouldn’t let us in the hospital, cause of the virus.”

Suddenly my woes pack their bags without even a wave, this kid’s stoicism showing them the door.

“My name’s Susannah. What’s yours?”

“Jake.”

“Nice to know you Jake. I’m real glad you stopped.”

He shakes my hand and asks, “Want some gum?”

“Sure, I’d love some.”

    images.png

SB

 

 

 

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Mewling…A Cry and a Whimper

I use the word mewl a lot when I’m upset over something.

Finally, a friend asked, what the hell does mewl mean exactly?

Sometimes my affair with language gets out of hand, without me realizing I may sound slightly smug or snooty. Never the case, but when you read as much as I do, you pick up vernacular that lingers in your mouth.

Mewl: verb…cry feebly… to whine…whimper, moan and wail. Bleat, bawl, squeal and yelp…to be fretful, irritable, testy and cross.

A personal howl at the moon.

Think of a dog when it’s hurt, or a baby tiring itself out in its crib.

There are no words, just the primitive, residing in any species with a heartbeat.

Makes you wonder, do fish mewl? Turtles? Bumblebees? Those water bugs bebopping from under the fridge?

I’m voting yes.

To mewl is to express, to make our feelings known.

A lot can be said, for having a good old-fashioned mewl.

images

How’s that?  🙂

SB

 

 

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Best Story of the Week…June 25

I’m in my friend’s gourmet store.

He’s ordered pizza for his whole staff.

A masked woman comes in, her Louis Vuitton opened with a Yorkie, that could fit in your purse, peeking out.

She lowers her mask and sniffs the air.

“What’s that greasy smell?”

In unison, 8 happy guys yell, “PIZZA”!!!

She then says, before pulling up her mask, “I soooo hate pizza.”

Everyone looks at her as they chomp and chew.

My friend, who’s Italian, his mask stained with sauce, says,

“Anybody who hates pizza is mentally ill.”

The staff claps.

The dog barks.

She slams her gum, Diet Coke and Pirate Booty on the counter, then leaves.

I say, “Anthony, I think you may have lost a customer.”

He says, “Ya think? Good, cause nobody should hate pizza.”

“That’s the spirit,” I say, as I help myself to a nice, greasy slice.  🙂     images.jpeg

SB

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Joy Over OY

I went to see my friend Mary, the framer, along with Gary Cooper whose paper got wet as a result of a recent leak.

I expected her to be so happy after being closed for three months.

NOPE!

She bitched and moaned the whole time I was there.

If I heard Taps mewling in the background, it wouldn’t have surprised me.

I said, “Mary, you’re finally open. How great. Business can resume.”

Let’s just say, if she could have stabbed me, she would have.

I can see the headline in the Post now…

‘POLLYANNA FATALLY FRAMED ON UPPER EAST SIDE’

Is bitching just a bad habit, like biting your nails or chewing your hair?

When my dear Governor finally allowed us to go from red to yellow, I expected a celebration, not a funeral cortege snaking down the ave.

In any event, when I was able to tool into the Discount Depot to stock up on Swiffer refills, I was kicking up my heels.

Swiff-ly.  Unknown

Pollyanna, with clean floors.

 

 

 

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Urban History

I didn’t go to college, therefore when I tell a historical tale, it’s without pedantic bells and whistles.

But what better way to learn, I say, and a lot more interesting to decipher what you read in your own words.

June 5, 1968  Los Angeles, California.

Robert Francis Kennedy is on a respirator after being gunned down in the kitchen of The Ambassador Hotel.

Here he is, sprawled on the tile floor, a 17 year-old bus boy comforting him. Unknown

He utters a few short sentences, before never regaining consciousness.

Mrs. Kennedy and Ted, the last brother left, are told there is no hope, but can’t bring themselves to shut off the machines keeping Bobby alive.

Jacqueline Kennedy is en route from New York to hold vigil with her late husband’s family, particularly close to RFK, who never left her side when Jack died 5 years earlier.

She’s the one who tells the doctors, on behalf of the Kennedy family, to cease the artificial means, allowing her beloved brother-in-law to peacefully die, with dignity.

26 hours after he’s shot, Robert Francis Kennedy is no more.

He’s 42.   Unknown-1

I’m forever amazed by this story, how once again, Jackie’s strength is called upon as young as she was…34 when she led the country in 1963, 39 as she more or less went through it again.

Where, pray tell, does strength like that come from, and is it fair to have to always be the one to hold everyone else up?

No matter.

What does matter is, knowing that it happened, that in the worst of times, courage rides in on her charger.

I think it was no accident how much Jackie herself, loved to ride.

Unknown-1 Waterford, Ireland 1967.

I have this photograph framed, in my living room.

SB

 

 

 

 

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A Miss Understanding

I hate being called ma’am. It makes me think of my grandmother when she’d roll her stockings down to her ankles, to cool off, she’d say.

It sure must have cooled off Grampa.

It explained all those Miss Rheingold Posters he had hanging in the cellar.  beer-miss-rheingold-1948-quinlan

But back to me.

I still prefer being referred to as…MISS.

Hey, call me crazy, and you will after this.

What brought this on?

Charlotte, at J. Crew Factory.     Unknown

Can’t a girl order socks without feeling decrepit?

After the 6th ma’am, I went off on poor Charlotte.

Granted, tempers taunt easily during this tender time, but I still owed her an apology.

Of course, after slamming down the phone, what are the chances of getting her again.

Well God, that little prankster, when I phoned planning on confessing my meanness to the next lucky recipient, guess who answered?

Good afternoon…J. Crew Factory…how can I assist you TOOODAY!!! Charlotte speaking.

Charlotte, it’s me, don’t hang up.

SB, in her Gucci Hair shirt.

J. Crew, unfortunately, doesn’t make one.

 

 

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