Monday, November 30, 2009

More Flair!

My Aunt Ann, the firey siren, second from the left.
Circa late 1960's
- - -

Ann Minihane was a certified music arranger and a fixture in the Ramapo Valley New Jersey Chorus as long-time choreographer and associate director, a certified music judge, an International faculty member, a regional education leader and the lead for 10 years of the New Dimension quartet, Region 15 champions and international semi-finalists. She had flair.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving, Everybody

Sure, the Thanksgiving tradition is plagued with controversy (we decimated the Native Americans and still go to town on the turkeys every year), but the sentiment is a good one: a Time to Give Thanks. Life isn't perfect, but there are always some things to be thankful for.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Did You Know?

Did you know that it's Let's Make a Deal where the audience members dress up in silly Halloween costumes and not The Price is Right?

I didn't, until I saw it just now, home today waiting on a delivery of a new kitchen appliance compliments of my Mom.

That's correct, kids--I'm home on a weekday, just like rich people, watching the Let's Make a Deal and the Price is Right. I can't say I hate it.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Urawaza: Secret Everyday Tips and Tricks from Japan by Lisa Katayama

I was over at my pal Julia's (Genius Organizing, co-producer of Mortified) in Brooklyn the other night and she had this great book called Urawaza: Secret Everyday Tips and Tricks from Japan by Lisa Katayama. It's no surprise Julia would have something like this on her spotless coffee table as she's a professional organizer and whatnot, and the book is chock full of clever, cheap, and convenient solutions to everyday problems.

For example: Got dull hair? I do! Want to make it shiny? Yes! Make a vinegar rinse with 1 part vinegar and 8 parts water and use it after you shampoo. Okay! Urawaza also tells you why the tricks work: Dull hair is caused by build-up of residue from hair products in the hair making ragged cuticles. Vinegar closes the cuticles and makes hair shiny. Believe it. I will!

Need to get gum out of your hair? Stop a baby from crying? Make a tiny piece of soap bigger? Prevent body odor? Clean up broken glass in your sink? Urawaza can help you with all of it. Makes a great gift!

An Educated Consumer was His Best Customer (and Still Is)

I love Syms.

(photo via Washington Post / credit: Syms)

A Baby Straight out of Central Casting


Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Dad and Glade Uptown

Pouring over Altman Family photos with my grandmother was one of my favorite past times. Gram had a few very old albums which were organized accurately by event or year, but the majority of the picture books had no rhyme or reason to them, and many snapshots were tossed into boxes with other ephemera. For example, a picture of her grandfather and perhaps her elementary school graduation program would be in the same box as a Polaroid of my cousins from the 1970's and a light bill from the 1980's. Frustrating as it was, the lack of organization made sense considering Grama had ten children and those children had children--like me--and we'd all been looking through and messing up the photographs for fifty years.

One time when I was visiting from college, I made a stab at putting the pictures in some kind of order. With Grama at my side, I'd pull a photo from the box, flip it over, and if it was blank and I couldn't identify the person, I'd ask, "Ok. Who's this?" and so on. I didn't recognize the two dudes in the photo below. Grama said, "Oh, that's Dad and Glade uptown."

"Dad" referring to her husband (my Grandfather), and Glade referring to his uncle Glade Merryman (so close in age, they were more like cousins). Suspicious, I looked at the picture again. Neither of these dudes is Grampa nor Uncle Glade. Not even close. Not on a good day, a bad day, a snowy day, there isn't a trace of a resemblance nor a chance in hell. Thus, I found her answer hilarious, and it quickly became a little family joke. Even though we don't know who the Dad and Glade doppelgangers are or where they're standing, it's still a great photo and always makes me laugh.

Without further ado, please enjoy "Dad and Glade Uptown" knowing that the only accurate part of the title most likely is the uptown part; I'd have to have an Olean native confirm that.

"Dad and Glade Uptown" ~ Olean, New York ~ Circa 1950's

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Some Couples Really Admire Things in One Another

And in this case, those things happen to be almost everything.
(No, they're not brother and sister, and yes, they're married. Click on the images for more WTF)
Downtown 6 Train, NYC ~ November 16, 2009

Monday, November 16, 2009

What Up, Monday?

Monday Morning in NY City ~ 1906

Friday, November 13, 2009

Friday the 13th with Miss Rose Cade, Queen of the Lemons

Miss Rose Cade had also been nominated as Southern California's "Swat the Jinx" girl. Pictured here dressed in model of large lemon, Rose points to a calendar dated Friday, February 13, 1920. Awesome.

Source: Keystone View Co., Inc. of N.Y
Photo taken by unknown photographer employed by Keystone
Courtesy of the U.S. Library of Congress.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Them Are Some Funny Lookin' Watermelons, Yo

Smolak Farm, North Andover, MA ~ November, 2008

What Would I Do for a Klondike Bar?

These days? A lot of things. I won $15 bones on a Win for Life ticket yesterday; unless I die this evening, $15 won't get me far through life, but it could get me a couple o' Klondikes.

Mortified NYC! Holiday Angst on Ice! December 17 @ 92Y Tribeca!


Thu, Dec. 17, 2009, 9:00pm

92YTribeca proudly presents Mortified, a comic excavation of teen angst artifacts (journals, letters, poems, lyrics, home movies, stories and more) as shared by their original authors before total strangers. Mortified has been hailed a "cultural phenomenon" by Newsweek and was celebrated by the likes of This American Life, The Today Show, The Onion AV Club, Esquire, Entertainment Weekly, Daily Candy and more. As the largest and longest running project of its kind, Mortified's grassroots comedy collective has spent years sifting through hundreds of otherwise forgotten notebooks on a mission to celebrate the extraordinary lives of ordinary people—all in the noble pursuit of self-degradation.Mortified is produced in NYC by Anne Altman and Julia Wright.


Date & Time: Thu, Dec 17, 2009, 9:00pm
Location: 92YTribeca, 200 Hudson Street
Venue: 92YTribeca Mainstage
Code: T-MM5CM06-01

Price: $15.00

Come share the shame! Holiday style!

*Not really on ice. But super cool.

The Way We Get By: A Documentary About American Troop Greeters

The Way We Get By, a documentary by Aron Gaudet on American troop greeters in Bangor Maine premiered last night on PBS's POV. Initially, I wasn't going to watch it--I try to limit my consumption of war-related media--but I was taken with the movie because it wasn't really about war afterall.

It's about a man and his dog. A woman and her family. A man and his farmhouse. And what these three share: Being old. Greeting the war-weary with warm thanks, coffee, cookies, smokes, and free cell phones to call home the minute they step foot onto US soil at the airport in Bangor. Love. Finding a purpose in life. Reasons to go on living.

I was smitten with Bill Knight, Jerry Mundy and Joan Gaudet (mother of the filmmaker); their lives extraordinary only in their commitment to something other than themselves, and beautiful in a way that the examined ordinary life can be.

Watch The Way We Get By online here (available until December 12, 2009).

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Hey! You! Get Mama's Smokes!

Ridiculously cute cousin Patty, circa 1968

Any kid o'mine who don't get me my smokes spends a night in the box.

A Cat, A Sink, A Cat in a Sink

Doodle, NYC ~ November 10, 2009

Unseasonably warm weather has motivated Doodle to take a timeout from the heated donut bed and get back into the sink. I should pick up some Drano.

Adorable fur bag with an attitude, that Doodle.

Thank You, Vets

1909 ~ Honoring US Civil War Soldiers

Yes, thank you for your service, vets--of all flavors, not just the white dude pictured above.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

When Mens Were Mens

A Dude in Giant Pants, Bill Wentzel, Great-Grandfather Patrick Finn
Shadowy blousy broad in the background (Any relation to me? Perhaps)

Happy Birthday, Ricki Lee Jones

How come he don't come and p.i.p. with me
Down at the meter no more?
How come he turn off the t.v.
And he hang that sign on the door?
We call and we call 'How come?' we say
What could make a boy behave this way?
He learn all of the lines, and every time he
don't suffer when he talk
And it's true! It's true! He sure has acquired a
cool and inspired sorta jazz when he walk
Where's his jacket and his old blue jeans?
If this ain't healthy is it some kinda clean?

I think Chuck E's in love

I don't believe what you're saying to me
This is something I gotta see Is he here?
Look in the poolhall Is he here?
Look in the drugstore Is he here?
No, he don't come here no more

I'll tell you what I saw him
He was sittin' us down at the Pantages
And whatever is that he got up his sleeve
I hope it isn't contagious
What's her name? Is that her there?
Christ, I think he's even combed his hair!
Is that her? What's her name?
Oh, it's never going to be same.
But that's not her
I know what's wrong--
Chuck E's in love with the little girl who's singing this song
Chuck E's in love with me


Ricki Lee Jones, Chuck E.'s in Love, 1979

Ricki Lee Jones turned 55 on Sunday, it's the 30th anniversary of her album, Ricki Lee Jones, and she's got has a brand new album out which dropped this week called Balm in Gilead. Rock on, Ricki!

Monday, November 09, 2009

How Does This Grab You?

This flavor for the living room. Enough color to make it interesting, but not enough to choke you.

Just One More

"Have you ever noticed that anybody driving slower than you is an idiot, and anyone going faster than you is a maniac?"

-George Carlin

Dumb Dumb Dumb

"Think of how stupid the average person is, and realize half of them are stupider than that."

-George Carlin

Sunday, November 08, 2009

If You See Me

If you see me purchasing bleach, cleanser, paper towels, rubber gloves, duct tape, deodorizers, a dozen car air fresheners, an odor-absorbing mask, and the like, I'm not planning on covering the evidence a dead body.

I'm simply dealing with the cat piss deposit in a brand new carpet compliments of Doodle.

*The duct tape is for my mouth to silence the sound of my screaming.

**Though I was tempted to make Doodle a custom-made suit out of the tape, fit for her launch out the window.

When She Was Good She Was Very Very Good and When She Was Bad She Pulled Your Head Off

Holy crap. University of New Mexico (former) soccer player Elizabeth Lambert redefines dirty in this game vs BYU. Dirty, dirty, dirty girl. That ain't soccer that's UFC.

American Gentleman

Fall Fashions for Men, Autumn 1915

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Genius Organizing: It's Genius!

My dear pal (and fellow producer of Mortified NYC ) has exceptional skills, one of which is helping folks like me organize their stuff and discard their clutter. Julia Wright has recently teamed up with Nicole at Genius Organizing and the two professional organizers are on a mission to make life less overwhelming, simple, clean, and fun for all. Are you buried under a mountain of junk you can't seem to make sense of? Call Genius and let them help you cut the crap.

Read about Genius Organizing in Time Out New York! (photograph by Diana Sonis for TONY)

and now they've got a blog, yo!

Friday, November 06, 2009

What's That Noise? What's that Shaking?

Oh that's right, the Yankee Parade; up here on the 28th Floor you can hear it and feel it. I don't have a view, but theres a ton of confetti flying by my window.

It'd be nice to be a Yankee Fan today, I imagine.


I can't imagine.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

A Gentleman Might Also Offer a Shirt to a Topless Violinist

But who am I? What do I know about gentlemen? Or topless violinists?
Maybe they play better with a breeze betwixt the old cans?
I don't know anything.

Doodle Doesn't Need Friends, Thank You Very Much

Doodle and Visitor, NYC ~ 11/5/2009

When Biddies Were Biddies

Wedding Shower at McGrath's House ~ 1949
Wakefield, MA
From left to right: Aunt Katy, Unknown Biddy, Katy Murray, Grammie Finn, Mary Ester, Mary Gibbons, Mary O'Connor.
Is there a Mary in the house?

Ann and Jack

My Grandmother Anna and Jack.
Wakefield, MA? ~ Circa 1940

Yanks Win the 2009 World Series

In a related story:

***BURP! ***

"It's good to win after all these years," Girardi, Posada, Matsui, Jeter, etc...

All these years?

9 years?

Blow it out your Cubs hole, Yankees.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

C'est Moi

Got Flair?

My Aunt Ann, the firey siren, second from the left.
Circa late 1960's
Ann Minihane was a certified music arranger and a fixture in the Ramapo Valley New Jersey Chorus as long-time choreographer and associate director, a certified music judge, an International faculty member, a regional education leader and the lead for 10 years of the New Dimension quartet, Region 15 champions and international semi-finalists. She had flair.

Even Doodle Was a Baby Once

Doodle, NYC ~ 1999

Two Can Anne: Your Go To Source for Classy Information You Need Right Now

3 Nov 11:26:59 PM good things to say to a douchebag

4 Nov 02:47:26 AM is bologna and hot dogs the same product

Happy Birthday, Big Bird!

Sesame Street Turns 40!


I love you, Sesame Street.

Here's a pic of the original Gordon and original (orange) Oscar singing "I Love Trash."


Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Anne's in Love with New York

East Village, NYC ~ 2/14/09

Doodle for Governor

Let's give Doodle a hand tonight, shall we?


She ran around the apartment for a few minutes because she had to take a dump. At one point, she spent a few seconds sniffing out the corner of the "new" bedroom carpet (in the place of the old carpet formerly known to her as My Other Toilet --which now is simply the old carpet but re-vamped by the carpet guy by cutting out the piss part and re-stitching it into a smaller carpet) wondering why it didn't have that familiar My Other Toilet smell when I interrupted her, and she remembered the Original Toilet (also known to most of us as a toilet), ran her scrawny ass in the bathroom and did her business.

Crisis averted.

Friskies Meaty Bits Chicken Dinner in Gravy all around, folks!

Monday, November 02, 2009

Sphinxy Doodle

Doodle, NYC ~ November 1, 2009
aka: Happy Day After Halloween Leave Me Alone You Stupid Jerk from Mz. Cranky Pantz

Go Topless or Go Home


Let's go, Philly. Make this a Series. Please. I can't have a topless, gode chayned A-Rod chasing me around the bases in my nightmares anymore. Thanks.