Song of the Week: “Ya” by Factory Floor


“Ya” by Factory Floor is reminiscent of “Oh Yeah” by Yello, perhaps even less lyrically challenging, but I can still envision it played over an action montage in an 80s comedy.  It’s Labor Day Weekend after all, and the workers of the world don’t want to think too hard, but they do want to dance.

Photopost: Farewell Summer, Farewell Papi


The kids & I visited Fenway Park on Tuesday night, taking advantage of their free Kid Nation tickets on Xander Bogaerts bobblehead night.  This was our last Red Sox game of the season and thus most likely the last time we ever saw David Ortiz play in person.  Sadly, it was not a great game…

Book Review: The Golem and the Jinni by Helene Wecker


Author: Helene Wecker Title: The Golem and the Jinni Narrator: George Guidall Publication Info: Blackstone Audiobooks (2014) Summary/Review: This engaging novel is set in the immigrant communities of lower Manhattan circa 1900. A woman made of clay – a golem named Chava – finds herself stranded alone in the Lower East Side after the man who would’ve…

Book Review: Keeping Score by Linda Sue Park


Author: Linda Sue Park Title: Keeping Score Publication Info: New York : Clarion Books, c2008. Summary/Review: This brilliant children’s novel is set in Brooklyn in the 1950s, the golden age of New York City baseball. Young Maggie, a devoted Dodgers fans, listens to games with the firefighters at the local station, until one day a new guy…

Photopost: Boston Harbor at Sunset


Last week, my daughter Kay was invited to go on a Pirate Cruise with her friends. My son Peter didn’t want to go on a pirate ship, but he did want to go on a boat, so we rode the ferry from Long Wharf to Charlestown and back. We even passed the pirate ship, and…

Photopost: Mother Church


The Christian Science Center looked lovely this morning against the blue sky so I snapped a couple of pictures with my phone.

Book Review: Blizzard of the Blue Moon by Mary Pope Osbourne


Author: Mary Pope Osbourne Title: Blizzard of the Blue Moon    Publication Info: New York : Random House, c2006. Summary/Review: This may be my favorite Magic Tree House book yet.  Jack and Annie are sent to Depression-era New York City to find a unicorn (SPOILER: If you didn’t guess, it’s in the Cloisters museum, although there’s a…

Book Review: Becoming a Citizen Activist</em< by Nick Licata


Author: Nick Licata Title: Becoming a Citizen Activist Publication Info: Seattle, WA : Sasquatch Books, [2016] Summary/Review:  A Seattle city councilor provides ideas, strategies, and practical advice for how any citizen can effect positive political change in their communities. It includes tips on how to deal with elected officials as well as demonstrating a cause to the public at…

Podcasts of the Week for the week ending August 21


Fresh Air – “Creamed, Canned and Frozen” The interview with Jane Ziegelman and Andy Coe, authors of A Square Meal, discusses culinary history of the Great Depression when food choices were informed by the science of nutrition and new food production technologies, but not by taste or cooking traditions.  A fascinating topic. Science Talk – “Grand…

Song of the Week: “O B 1” by Jagwar Ma


“O B 1” by Jagwar Ma is reminiscent of the industrial dance music inflected alternative rock of the early 1990s, a style of music that seems to be overlooked in 90s music retrospectives, but one I dug.  The Australian band will release their full album Every Now & Then in October. More at KEXP Song…

Beer Review: Mystic Table Beer


Beer:  Table Beer Brewer: Mystic Brewery Source:  Draft Rating: ** (6.7 of 10) Comments:  A hazy golden brew with a bread crust aroma and a mild banana flavor.  It’s light, refreshing, and low alcohol and drinkable if not very exciting.  Seems like a good summer beer for people who do not like bold beer flavors.

Photopost: Baked Big Apple Crisp


My daughter and I visited with my mother in New York this weekend and it was blazing hot. Nevertheless, we spent a lot of time outdoors at Bryant Park, Summer Streets, an Upper West Side street fair, and inevitably at playgrounds in Central Park.  Here are some of my more arty photos from the weekend.

Musical Guilty Pleasures


Last Wednesday I was due to post my Album of the Month reviews for August, and this Wednesday is supposed to be a Musical Discoveries post, but I have listened to nothing so I have nothing ready to post.  So, I’m moving Album of the Month to next Wednesday, August 24th and a Music Discovery…

TV Review: BoJack Horseman (2016)


Title: BoJack Horseman Release Dates: 2016 Season: 3 Number of Episodes: 12 Summary/Review:  This is the third series of the animated Netflix show that is laugh out loud funny, acerbically satirical, emotionally raw, and thoroughly depressing.  Two plots are intertwined through the series: BoJack making the circuit of appearances in hopes of getting an Oscar nomination for the…

Book Review: Bel Canto by Ann Patchet


Author: Ann Patchet Title: Bel Canto Narrator: Anna Fields Publication Info: Blackstone Audiobooks, 2001. Summary/Review: This novel is set in an unnamed Latin American nation that lures a powerful Japanese business man to a birthday party in his honor with an intimate performance by his favorite operatic soprano.  A group of revolutionaries attacks the mansion and takes…

Book Reviews: We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson


Author: Shirley Jackson Title: We Have Always Lived in the Castle Narrator:  Bernadette Dunne Publication Info: Blackstone Audio, Inc. (2010) Summary/Review: This mystery/thriller focuses on the survivors of the well-to-do Blackwood family six years after most of the family met their end when a poisoner put arsenic in the sugar for their dessert of berries.  The novel is…

Podcasts of the Week – Week Ending August 14


BackStory – “Another Man’s Treasure” Several fascinating stories of the history of trash in America. Have You Heard? –  “The Middle Class Myth: Why College Doesn’t Solve Poverty“> Another myth of the meritoricracy busted.  Attending college actually creates debt rather than raising people out of poverty, especially if they’re unable to graduate Sound Opinions –…

Beer Review: Sierra Nevada Otra Vez


Beer: Otra Vez Brewer: Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. Source: 12 oz. bottle Rating: *** (7.6 of 10) Comments: This beer is brewed with prickly pear cactus, which reminded me of the time I fell into a prickly pear cactus and since there were no tweezers handy I tried to extract the needles from my hand with…