Friday, December 19, 2008
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
There was one such occasion when the theater was having some sort of fundraiser for a forgettable Upstate New York charity back in 1983. They were showing REDS with Warren Beatty and Diane Keaton with a lovely intermission included. My friends and I thought it would be great to attend, bring dinner in and have dessert at the theater during intermission. We ventured over to Peking, a local yocal Chinese sit-down restaurant owned by a classmates family. Turns out that they also did take-out and didn't proof for liquor...can you see where this is going? We ordered Pepper Steak, Moo Goo Gai Pan and two huge containers of Mai Tai's to go. We smuggled it into the theater easily, but it's hard to hide the stench of freshly cooked Chinese food. People were commenting on all sides of us but no one knew who had the Oriental chow and as we scoffed it down quickly, we openly slurped our Mai Tai's out of plastic food containers all while watching an aging Beatty play an inquisitive writer during the Russian Revolution. By the time intermission came, we were all three sheets to the wind, slurring our words and sloppily ordering fancy cheesecake with small tumblers of champagne. I was 15 years old and living the high life, so I thought. I was ions away from my life at Blessed Sacrament just two years earlier. I had on Levi cords, a lovely Shetland Faire Isle sweater and a turtle neck with little wales on it. I'm sure I had Bass Penny Loafers on with wool socks and my Etienne Aigner box bag jacked high, HIGH on my left shoulder. It was the days of preppy everything and I was a faithful follower of LL Bean, Talbots and Cohoes Mfg. The Preppy Handbook was my life back then and when I couldn't manage it any longer and plaid pants quickly lost fashion value, I traded my loafers in for sleek black scrunchy boots, curled and teased my hair and bought a truck load of Girbaud jeans.
After chowing down even more food and drink, we silently went back to our seats and finished watching this mammoth saga set in 1917 Russia. It was a non-romantic wannabe Dr. Zhivago. I enjoyed it at moments but the movie should have been edited down quite a bit. I own it now in my own movie library simply for nostalgic reasons.
When the movie ended, we still had a good buzz going and decided to sit on the large, concrete turtles in front of the Price Chopper grocery store and smoke Newports. I hated Newports but beggars can't be choosers and it was a short walk back to casa Giminiani and I needed to get my ya ya's out before entering the house. I also needed to de-stink myself of booze and stogies. I was being a bad little girl back then and I enjoyed the deception. I was good for so long that I needed to spread my wings, experiment with lots of poisons and people until it wore out its welcome. I'm not drunk or junkie so I suppose I was able to outgrow my pubescent urges to drink till I puked and smoked till I puked. I'm a doubting Thomas. Until it happens to me, I am a disbeliever. In 1985, I drank 10 gin and tonics at Hurley's on Clinton Avenue and puked all over Tim Sullivan in my 74' Dodge Dart. We broke up soon after.
Saturday, December 13, 2008
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
Back to Bogies....once I got in, I'd order a Gin and Tonic or sometimes a Whiskey Sour to pay homage to my swinging parents and light up a stogie. I think I favored Dunhill's back then and even had a fabulous gold and pearl encrusted cigarette case that I had purchased at Daybreak, a wildly inexpensive second hand store on Central Avenue. A friend of mine bought me a red plastic cigarette holder with tiny rhinestones set all over it, which made me look like an 80's version of Gloria Swanson, waiting for her proverbial close-up in Sunset Boulevard. I took my usual seat with my gal pals, waited for my band to take the stage and scouted out the scene. It was mostly SUNY Albany people as well as "Rosebuds" from the Catholic college down the street. I wasn't really looking for love back then...maybe a quick feel or a strong, powerful kiss from a college guy to hold me over because I was there to have a good time and that meant dancing up a storm, beers in-hand, with my friends. Maybe I was a bit rough around the edges back then but I think I still am. I enjoy that part of myself, which is sometimes street and other times, out of control. It's the very heart of my personality, the insight into who I really am and today, I'm sick and a little lonely, but the loneliness is my friend from afar that visits often these days to remind me that her day of reckoning is coming quick. I'm never going to be ready.
Friday, November 28, 2008
My question still stands: How far have we moved forward since 1988? In a time when leg warmers are making a strong comeback, The new Killer's album sounds like a bad rip-off of Eurasure and The Communards and heavy metal is slowing creeping back into our lives (Gun's n'Roses' Chinese Democracy) our culture hasn't evolved very much. Why can't we create something new?
Thursday, November 27, 2008
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
"I'm am not going to let you bring my holiday down nor am I going to give in. It's going to take a lot more than vanilla comments to deter me. I never enter sinking ships and I won't start now."
.....wait, I think I can hear the small cries of a fat lady singing.
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Friday, November 21, 2008
Thursday, November 20, 2008
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Monday, November 17, 2008
Sunday, November 16, 2008
Saturday, November 15, 2008
Blue, songs are like tattoos
You know Ive been to sea betore
Crown and anchor me
Or let me sail away
Hey blue, here is a song for you
Ink on a pin
Underneath the skin
An empty space to fill in
Well therere so many sinking now
Youve got to keep thinking
You can make it thru these waves
Acid, booze, and ass
Needles, guns, and grass
Lots of laughs, lots of laughs
Everybodys saying that hells the hippest way to go
Well I dont think so
But Im gonna take a look around it though
Blue, I love you
Blue, here is a shell for you
Inside youll hear a sigh
A foggy lullaby
There is your song from me
Friday, November 14, 2008
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Monday, November 10, 2008
Sunday, November 9, 2008
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
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Peace & Obama...Rene'
I have no issue paying more taxes to help out the poor of our nation but what I do have a problem with is paying for this war. I would never write a check for death and destruction, murder, rape and torture, but I suppose that's what we've all been doing for the last eight years. If given a choice, I'm sure most Americans that live in progressive areas of the country would stop payment on that check...once and for all!
Obama was not my first choice in the beginning but when I opened my mind to him, his philosophies began take root. John McCain is a not such a wonderful person (read the Rolling Stone article and I'm sure you'll not feel the same way) and being tortured does not give you carte blanche to be the president. America needs to be healed from all the horrible things that have happened over the last eight years of a Bush administration. He is the worst president we have ever had and I've protested against him since the very beginning. Conservatives use fear and religion as their platform, which sickens me! They say they support life (pro life) yet they support the death penalty and oil wars. Over four thousand Americans and countless innocent Iraqi's have died because of his vile lies. Saddam Hussein had been evil for decades and if you research, you'll find out that America gave him plenty of weapons in the late 1970's and early 80's to fend off Iran, our then arch enemy. He was committing genocide on his own people for years before we intervened.
I'm sure that Obama is more than a good speaker. His story is what you say you respect....someone who came from nothing to be educated in Ivy League schools and to become the first black president of the USA. His wife has a similar story. They both credit their families for their amazing success and honestly, if all those "do nothing" people had that type of support everyday, they would probably be out there clambering for jobs with the rest of us poor slobs. I believe that an Obama presidency will usher us into a new decade of hope, where capitalism and greed will not rise to the forefront as it has done in the past. He's not a miracle worker but he's exactly what we need to bring people together rather than perpetuate the divisive behaviors and ideologies that have literally torn our nation in two. Don't be afraid of the left, the water is much warmer on this side of the fence!
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Obama has energized the base of the Democratic Party as well as the disenfranchised portions of our population who have finally engaged in the process. He made them believe in hope and change, just like he did with me. Let me be the first to admit that this was not Hillary's time, as much as I would have liked it to be. Right now, America needs a healer who can reach out to all Americans with a true message of change...change from the last eight years of Republican torture. America is ready for this presidency. We've been waiting for this for a long time but now is really Obama's time. I feel proud to say that I voted for him. He truly is, The One.
I'll set the scene:
Folding tables and chairs, fluorescent lighting, musty stench in the air, antiquated lever style voting machines, stained wall-to-wall carpeting.
Poll workers: Paunch old men wearing miss-matched clothes, middle aged women with bad hair, outfits from low couture Wal-Mart fashion house, heavy older women with nasty demeanor's and crocheted poncho's.
Middle Age Poll Worker: What's your name? (leafing through the voting book).
Rene': Rene' Giminiani-Caputo, but it may be under Caputo or Caput0-Giminiani. The county can't seem to get my name correct. It's only been thirteen and a half years......
Middle Age Poll Worker: OK, look under Giannooni....
Rene': No, that's Giminiani with a G
Middle Age Poll Worker: Aaaaa alright. Look for Caputo.
Rene': (thinking this woman is a moron and the look on her face shows it)
Pauchy Old Man Poll Worker: Are you Rene'?
Rene': Yes, that's me.
Middle Age Poll Worker: Sign the book by your name. (To the Old Man Poll Worker) Write her name down on the list and give her a number. She's a De......
Rene': Don't you dare reveal my party affiliation. How dare you! That is totally inappropriate and against voting rules. Aren't you even going to id me?
Old Man Poll Worker: Oh no, the machine is down again. Don't let the next two voters go in until the mechanic gets here and fixes the machine.
(Enter the voting machine mechanic who probably works but one day a year)
Middle Aged Poll Worker: Sign the book now.
Rene': I will not sign the book until it's time for me to vote. How long will it take for the mechanic to fix the machine? I have to go to work.
Middle Aged Poll Worker: (in a nasty tone) Well, I'm going to take your off the list if you don't sign the book.
Rene': Listen, when it is time for me to vote, I will sign the book. Not now! I'm going to report voter irregularity if you don't stop.
Middle Aged Poll Worker: Fine. You can stay in line then. (in a huffy tone).
They continue to let the two people ahead of me vote, while the mechanic worked on the machine. When I asked if our votes were counting, the poll workers kept saying it did not affect the presidential race, just the one for judges. What happened to "every vote counts?" They assure me that the machine is fixed, so I hesitantly enter the booth as the older woman behind me picks up my fight. "I'm not voting in this machine if it doesn't count," she said in a loud voice. "I want my vote to count!" As she
clammered away out there, I took my trusty cell phone out and took pictures inside the booth (to post later tonight)...only a couple. I felt I wanted to document Obama's moment and wished I had brought my regular camera to get a better shot of lever laden field of candidates. The only one I was concerned with was presidency. It was nice to see Obama's name listed in the number one slot on the machine. I still had a bit of angst wishing it was Hillary but for now I've moved on and have pledged my vote for a clear path to hope and change...and most importantly, to END THE WAR!!!
I turned my polling place into the Board of Elections, The Nassau County League of Women Voters, the Obama website and 1-800-OUR-VOTE. I cannot believe this nonsense is going on but in the same breath, I anticipated it. I'm sure anyone living in a diverse, multi-cultural area, will see much of the same. When people start screwing with our votes the end of democracy is near. If you experience any voter irregularities, turn them in to your local Board of Elections. These heathens must be stopped!
Monday, November 3, 2008
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
I haven't been around for a few weeks due to an adrenaline shot of familial stress brought on by an ill mother who was staying with me for about a month. I couldn't find enough time to devote to my words and thoughts, let alone combining the two. I've let off some steam by walking at the beach, listening to an infinite play list of dance music and classic rock with a little Dave Brubeck mixed in there for good measure and a slightly cultural experience.
There is nothing quite like caring for an elderly person who isn't feeling up to snuff. I know how I feel when my back is in a horrid spasm, so I tap into my empathetic side, trying to motivate my mother who is now suffering from pulmonary hypertension, as well a myriad of other ailments.
The daily in's and out's of elder care is more than difficult, it's downright depressing. I love my mother. She gave me life and has continuously motivated me to be a better person in a million different ways, showed me how to cook everything from home made pasta to simple light fare like Frittatas and a wide variety of tasty soups to the secrets of her elegant yet hearty Italian tomato sauce (please don't call it gravy people...I really hate that!). I never really did learn how to sew or knit but I make a mean crocheted granny square and can refinish any antique piece of furniture at will....simply because this wonderfully talented woman took the time to nurture my interests as well as turn me on to her own. Even when the Grateful Dead came to Albany back in the late 80's, she embraced the culture that I loved until a car load of Deadheads pulled over and yanked out my mother's flock of Echinecea flowers that she had meticulously planted around our wrap around porch. I'm sure they did it merely for the flower power look of things, but my mother, furious in her stance, awkwardly looked at the small hole in the ground, cursing Jerry Garcia and all his hippie dippy followers. I suppose that was the end of my mom's dalliance into counter culture, thirty years after it was fashionable!
I've been quite busy these last few weeks between meeting Gloria Steinem, Mario Cuomo, Richard Haas, DeDe Myers and Ari Fleischer, as well as George Stephanapoulos. It was like a political Woodstock here for a solid month prior to the October 15th presidential debate held at Hofstra. It was a proud moment for all of us and although I would have loved to attend the event, I was more than happy documenting the days happenings through photographs taken alongside picketers and protesters who loudly expressed their disgust with John McCain but moreover with the oil war that has taken more than four thousand American lives and countless Iraqi casualties. I'm a peace nick if you haven't noticed and refuse to support a war that will soon know no borders. When will the madness stop and when will America get mad..downright pissed off at the happenings of the last eight years. Maybe we'll see that fury tomorrow as we all head out to our local polling places filled with pride, hope and yes, a little fear that those nasty red states will somehow get redder. The truth in each one of us lies in our decision tomorrow. We can either vote for hope or vote our fear. Pick one and commit to it. I openly choose hope but there are those citizen's out there who will let their primal fears strangle their very chance to once again actively participate in our democratic government. I again will remind you that I am and will always be for Hillary but I do believe Obama has an innate quality that my candidate does not possess. His ability to reach people in an empathetic, understanding way will catapult his political career and solidify his rightful place in history. He's one of us, not raised as a senator's son with the proverbial silver spoon sticking out of his mouth. Obama understands what it's like to live through the years of divorce, familial instability and humble beginnings. I realize he's no Superman, Shaman or healer but he is going to lead America into a new world for better or worse. Cast your votes tomorrow and make sure you vote for Hope!