Stories

Enough

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by Michael Tucker

pastaitaly.jpg“With all that great food in Italy, how do you guys stay so thin?”

This kind question came during a book talk we gave last Monday night in Holbrook, New York – at the Sachem Public Library. It was very generous of the questioner to include me in the “thin” category along with Jill, but indeed I still wear the same suit size I did back in our L.A. Law days twenty-some years ago. I’m not thin, but at least I’m not any fatter than I was then.

We answered her by pointing that Italians don’t eat much processed food and that makes it much easier to keep our weight down over there. But of course it’s not just what they eat that allows them to maintain una bella figura, it’s also how much they eat – or how little, I should say. Italians don’t pile it on like we tend to do over here. A bowl of pasta is not intended to fill you; it’s to prepare your mouth and stomach for your second course.

This truth was driven home dramatically a little later in the evening.

Lake House

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by Fredrica Duke

lakehouse.jpgI’m a looky-loo. I real estate dream shop online, a lot!!!! Late one night when my husband was safely sleeping,  I forwarded a photo of a house on a lake I had found and the subject said, “Lets buy this instead of doing an addition to our house.  It’s MUCH cheaper.”

So, instead of doing construction , we bought a house online in Quebec.  Doesn’t everyone in L.A. do that?  Come on.  You know you do.

Well, we did.

So, there we were that first week, enjoying our pristine lake when we got our first and possibly only visitor.  It was our neighbor, the retired judge who lives up the road on our quiet lake.

He was there to inform us about ecology and keeping the lake from getting that nasty blue algae that was killing a lot of the other lakes.  First we heard of that.  Perhaps we didn’t research enough.

Finding My Place (and Peace) in the October Landscape

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by Susie Middleton

next-mist_1.jpgThere’s a reason I don’t work in an office any more. It’s called October. Something to do with the sun on my face and the warm breeze at my back as I hike through the swaying grasses and the prickly scrub across the stone-splattered fields behind my house. Up to the spent cornfield I go, watching a thousand geese lift off in unison, honking like so many commuters in Time Square at 5 o’clock. Only it’s not Time Square or I-95 or even somewhere that has stoplights. It’s West Tisbury, where more of my neighbors are sheep than people.

By day, the strange silver light of fall sparkles through the still-green leafy maples and bounces off the crimson spokes of sumac leaves crisscrossing the meadow; by night, the man in the full moon winks, and the lights go on—an inky football field of black sky suddenly punch-holed with bright stars and planets that are mine to gaze at for as long as I like. Without city lights for miles, the Vineyard sky is unblemished by artificial luminescence. By dawn, I know the October kaleidoscope will shift again, this time turning a firey, blood-red sunrise into a gauzy grey-blue morning where the fog hovers just over the edge of the horizon, leaving you to guess what lies beyond.

Multi-Function Forms, Friends, Foods

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by Melanie Chartoff

kleenexshoes.jpgAs the world becomes shortage and space obsessed, I realize how ahead of the curve I've been in making myriad reuses of everything and everyone. Call me frugal/economical and/or exploitive/anal.

I reuse big tissue boxes as snowshoes for a friend's kids (kids become two-pronged sources of love and laughs, lumbering around like "transformer bots"); I use their abandoned toy cars as conveyances for salt and pepper shakers glued on top, as "pass the salt" makes the dining room table a speedway.

The Perfect Crime

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by Paul Mones

penn stateOn the surface, the Penn State scandal would seem to be another example of an institution of trust failing in its moral obligation to protect children. In fact, what the tragic web of human actions and inactions behind this outrage really shows us is that child sexual abuse is close to the perfect crime.

As the choruses of bloggers and essayists who have rushed to print in the last week have reminded us, perpetrators can rely on the majority of children to tell no one about their sexual abuse; most will carry the secret to their graves. Child molesters, especially trusted and respected adult authority figures like priests, coaches and teachers, gain control of their prey gradually rather than  resorting to violent assault. They know how to target children with low self-esteem or poor parental support, and then spend weeks or months working their way into the child’s life with gifts, praise, and outings.  First physical touching, the stroke of a knee or a hug, becomes a normal part of the ‘relationship’, and when the more invasive forms of abuse begin, the child’s fate is sealed.

 

restaurant news

Code Ko
New York
by Paul Mones

kodoor.jpgI was lucky enough to snag a seat at the hallowed (and reservation demented) Momofuku Ko in New York in early October because someone had (oh my god!) cancelled and I was quick enough to grab the...

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Bistro du Midi
Boston
by Kitty Kaufman

bistromidiBistro du Midi is all about location. Facing the Public Garden and adjacent to the Four Seasons in Boston, it lives on Boylston Street not where you live, at least not where I live. But it's where...

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Local Events: Santa Monica’s “SM Pier Seafood” Reopens as “The Albright”
Los Angeles
by The Editors

Albright Outdoor-IndoorLongtime Santa Monica Pier staple, SM Pier Seafood, has officially re-launched as The Albright. After 35 years, the family-owned and operated restaurant has passed down from mother to daughter and...

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My Comfort Zone
Los Angeles
by Sara Mohazzebi

darya painting sm
In Persian, Darya means sea
Darya in West L.A. 

 

I wish my comfort food was as simple as mac and cheese or ice cream with chocolate sauce and gobs of whipped cream.  But I grew up with a...

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