Minutes Before Mohonk


We have to take off for Mohonk Mountain in about 35 minutes. Of course, we left the packing until this morning. Of course. Because we HAD to watch the Republican debate and the Daily Show Finale last night. HAD to.

We’re heading to Mohonk Mountain to celebrate my 50th birthday. We went there when I turned 40, and it’s now a tradition. I think twice makes a tradition, don’t you?

Mohonk is a throw back to 19th century Robber Barons and all. I think Grover Cleveland slept there. It keeps the old ethic of healthy, vigorous living. So, it’s low on technology and big on bracing swims in a cold mountain lake. And there’s really good food. Formalwear must be worn for dinner at this place, so Steve ran out to Macy’s last night to get himself a new jacket. I have a suitable preppy dress to wear.

July didn’t feel like summer. Jonah had SAT classes, driving lessons, track practice, and an online finance class. It felt the regular school year. Well, we’re slowly saying “fuck it” to everything, and now summer is here. Summer means “fuck it.” So, we’re drinking at a tiki bar on the beach at 12 in the afternoon. We’re dumping the kids with my parents for some preppy cocktails. We’re playing drums loudly.

How great was the Republican debate last night? And Jon Stewart’s finale

Bruce is on the stereo. Sneakers and random t-shirts are being thrown into a suitcase. Hopefully, things will match. If not, eh. It’s summer. So, fuck it.

The Trump Show and Good-bye to Jon

Oh, there’s going to be fun TV viewing tonight. And tweeting, I’m sure.

First up is the Trump Show at 9. And then later it’s Jon Stewart’s finale.

I have to watch the Stewart finale, because I remember watching his first episode. Steve and I were about the only people who faithfully watched the original Daily Show with Craig Kilborn every night. Stewart’s first episode was so memorable, because he was so, so, so nervous. His guest, that comedienne who originally hosted the Simpsons (forgot her name), patted him maternally on the leg. After the show, we debated whether or not Stewart was up for the job.

Living Well

I love these two profiles at the New York Times about Dan Buettner, a longevity expert.

I entered a cooking depression last week. Sometimes it feels so pointless. All that work goes into a product that is instantly gone. It’s not a book or a painting that will be there for eternity and has the potential to be appreciated by thousands. A meal is for a handful of people for an hour at most. When I started logging my calories into the iPhone app, food became a number, which made the whole process of cooking even more dull.

But there is more to food than a number. It shouldn’t be an artform either. It’s best when it’s fun and simple and honest.



I was always one of those people who was effortlessly thin until about five years ago. Somehow, I blinked, and I was ten pounds too heavy. Well, I was ten pounds heavier than I felt comfortable. If I caught myself at the wrong angle in the mirror, I saw a stranger.

So, I decided to do something about it. I moved the scale from a box in the basement into the bathroom. No more denial. I started counting calories on an app on my iPhone. I also switched my gym schedule.

I used to go to the gym in afternoon after I got some work done. I did a little treadmill action, while watching Kardashian reruns. That wasn’t good enough, so I’m taking morning spin classes instead. I need a professional to kick my ass. I’m not sure I’m losing weight yet, but I’m definitely stronger.

This new routine has thrown me into the gym culture big time. In the afternoons, the gym is pretty much empty. It’s me and one 70-year old woman who reads People magazine on a bike. The mornings are packed. After three weeks, I’m starting to recognize the regulars. I know which guys are the projectile sweat-ers in my spin class. I know which instructors play the best music. I also know who has exercise-anorexia.

There are a few women in my spin class, who after doing ten miles on their bikes, will get on the eliptical machine for an hour, and then come back in the evening for another class. Three hours at the gym per day. That’s a little weird. There are a few hardcore cases that require professional intervention and a brownie sundae.

I need to get to that place in between chubby girl in the mirror and gaunt woman in the spin class. That place is ten pounds.

To lose this weight, I’ve made several tough changes. Pasta and bread are gone — not easy, but necessary. The leasurely Kardashian workouts were tossed. I’m going to give my body another month before I take more drastic steps, but wine and cheese will be the last thing that I’ll fling off this boat.

Too Big To Fail

As Jonah and his friends are entering into junior of high school. This is the year that will determine which college they attend, what kind of jobs they’ll have, whether they’ll have a cushy job at a law firm or whether they’ll be living in the basement in their 20s. Their whole future is boiling down to the next 12 months!

Of course, that’s not true. But that’s what everyone tells me. I’m particular fond of those conversations with other parents, where they subtly brag about their kids and poke to find out tidbits about Jonah. What colleges is he looking at? What honors classes is he in next year? Is he on the varsity cross country team? These comparisons — the weighing of the kids — is all very subtle, but it’s there.

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I have exactly 30 seconds to spit out a few links. I want to retreat to a coffee shop for an hour before Ian gets back from camp. I’m not really working for the next six weeks, but I sorta want to finish off a couple of lighter pieces.

Yesterday, I spent an hour reading through the New York Magazine article on Cosby, and checking out the accompanying interviews. Very powerful work. Top notch journalism. This was the best article that I’ve read in months.


Check out Manute Bol’s son.

The University of Pennsylvania girl who committed suicide last year was a local. It touched home for many of us, not just because she grew up about 10 minutes from my house. We all know about the pressure cooker of perfection.