songbird's crazy world

life in and around NYC is insane

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

I'm talking baseball...

The glass ceiling shattered Tuesday night.  It was a wonderful night in Philadelphia. 

But I wasn't watching the proceedings on TV.  We had tickets for a baseball game.

Or rather, two games.  We had tickets for a single game Tuesday night, Mets vs. Cardinals.  The Mets game scheduled for Monday night was rained out, so last night they played a single-admission double header.

We had great seats, on the third base line, over the visiting team dugout. There were a handful of Cardinals fans in the stands, and they were all seated in our section.  Stands were half empty for the first game, which began shortly after 4:00 in the afternoon.  Packed house for the second game.

 The weather cooperated, neither too hot nor too cold. 

I wore my Mike Piazza jersey, he's being honored this weekend, his number will be retired.

Syndergaard pitched the first game.  Usually he's a joy to watch, but this time around he struggled.  and he committed a fielding error that cost him the game.  Game was slow to watch, with a few brief moments of excitement.  They lost 3-2.

Colon pitched the second game, which was a more interesting game.  They won 3-1. 

The view from our seats -- yes, that is a plane over the Coca Cola sign, he's landing at La Guardia.

Pennants flying:

Number 31 will be added this weekend:

And the jets just kept on coming:


Tuesday, July 26, 2016


Since Paul Simon, Demi Lovato and Boyz II Men performed at the DNC convention last night, and since future DNC events (on the main stage and elsewhere)  include performances by Lady Gaga, Lenny Kravitz, Idina Menzel, Cyndi Lauper, Snoop Dogg and Katy Perry....

...I don't think Hillary will have any problem getting licenses to play music at her campaign events.

hospitals suck

So last week my mother was feeling under the weather.  It didn't seem too serious.  But on Sunday morning, her situation deteriorated, and my sister took her to the emergency room. 

And the  ER doctors felt the situation warranted a short stay in the hospital, so they admitted her. It's not terribly serious, they think she'll be going home today or tomorrow.

It was eerie driving up there to visit her yesterday, eerie to walk those halls again.

She's on the same floor where my father was a patient last September and October.  Some of the nurses even remember my father, remember our family.

It was hard to keep perspective, hard to keep from getting over emotional. 

Hospitals suck.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Star Trek Beyond (spoiler alert)

So we still do summer blockbusters, but now the experience is more civilized. Almost every motive theater is the region has now converted to  armchairs and reserved seating. We chose our time to see Star Trek Beyond based on where we'd be able to sit.  Lovely experience.  (Just don't remind me about the increase in the cost of a ticket.)

And of course we had to see Star Trek Beyond, we loved the original series, we love the spin offs, and we're really enjoying the reboot.

the internal logic of the rebooted series involves time travel.  A Romulan form the 24th century travels back in time, arriving in the 23rd century, specifically on the day James T. Kirk was born.  the timeline is therefore altered, everything we, the audience, thought we knew has been erased.  Essentially the creative team hit the "reset" button.

Star Trek often employs deep character interaction and heavy doses of philosophy and moralizing.  This is not one of those times.  The plot is basic, the movie focuses on epic battles between spacecraft, stalking/shooting scenarios and hand-to-hand combat. The special effects make the movie -- see it in IMAX 3D if you can.

The storyline is basic.  The Enterprise is restocking at the Yorktown Space Station when an alien makes a dramatic entrance, and begs assistance for her stranded crew.  The Enterprise  goes on a rescue mission, only to be attacked.

But what makes the movie so enjoyable...the "Easter eggs", the little "Extras", the in-jokes and references.  This movie pays homage to every version of Star Trek that has gone before.  We caught quite a few of them.  Example, early in the film Kirk mentions that they've spent 966 days in space -- the original series premiered in September 1966. Kirk complains that his life feels "episodic". In a salute to Star Trek: Voyager, Kirk reports to Admiral Paris.  The bridge of the USS Franklin looks much like the bridge of Scott Bakula's Enterprise. 

But the funniest Easter egg?  The set up happens at the very beginning of the movie, the punch line isn't delivered until the very end of the movie. 

At the beginning of the movie, in a scene reminiscent of The Wrath of Khan, Kirk and McCoy are having a drink in honor of Kirk's birthday.  McCoy has purloined a bottle of Scotch from Chekov's locker.  He comments, "I always thought he was a vodka man."  Later, at the end of the movie, Chekov delivers a line:  "Scotch was invented by a little old lady in Russia."

Now where did we hear that line before?  David Gerrold must be kvelling.

The most intentionally poignant moments come when Spock is told that his other self, Ambassador Spock, has died, and later, when he goes through Ambassador Spock's personal effects. A fitting tribute to Leonard Nimoy. 

But Anton Yelchin as Chekov....sigh.

Not the best movie in the series, but we really enjoyed it.

If you want to find more of the Easter eggs, I've included several links:

Seven Easter Eggs
All the Star Trek Beyond Easter Eggs
25 Easter Eggs

Friday, July 22, 2016

what do they all have in common?

Elton John
The Rolling Stones
Earth, Wind and Fire
George Harrison
The Turtles
Luciano Pavarotti

They, or their representatives, have all told Trump to "cease and desist".  He can't use their music in his campaign.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

the Republican fiasco

A modern political convention should be a very scripted piece of theater. 

The GOP 2016 is turning into a trashy  reality show. 

But what can you expect, look who they nominated!

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Another this and that

Nothing like a political convention to bring people together.  I haven't spoken to my cousin Don in months, but last night we were texting our comments on the RNC fiasco.  Can't wait to see what happens during the DNC convention next week...

Seems like old times...Back in the day, whenever a new Harry Potter book was due out, I had to order three copies, one for each of the girls and one for myself.  I just paid for three Kindle copies of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, I treated my now-adult children....

The Rio Olympics are coming up next month, and with the games we will get a mega dose of Brazilian culture.  Drew's Aunt Pierina used to live in Rio, and when I first met Drew she frequently took us to a great Brazilian restaurant in Manhattan. I think I  want to go out for Brazilian BBQ now...

We are seeing the new Star Trek movie Saturday.  Drew already bought the tickets and picked out our seats.  What a difference from the very first Star Trek movie, when I stood on line in the coldness of an Albany winter,  waiting to get in...we sat in the very front row of the theater, and were glad to be inside, instead of  waiting for the next showing...

All eyes will be on Cooperstown this weekend, as Mike Piazza is inducted into the Hall of Fame.  One of my favorite players, if for no other reason than 9/21/2001.  I guess I can wear my Piazza jersey to Citi Field on Tuesday night, we have tickets to a game...

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