Tag Archives: Graphic Lessons

NYMysteries Aug. 6 – Aug. 11

It’s been a busy week in hot and humid NYC. 

The annual Frick Staff Education Day was held on Monday.  Emma Capron, the 2016–18 Anne L. Poulet Curatorial Fellow and an authority on Netherlandish art, gave a talk and slide show on The Charterhouse at Bruges: Jan van Eyck, Petrus Christius and Jan Vos. It was a tasty preview of the special exhibition opening on September 18. There were a variety of activities for Staff Education Day: a discussion about the future of the Boucher Room, a demonstration of sun printing and painting faux marble. Shadow profile portraiture was a popular activity in George Washington’s time. This activity ties in with the current Canova’s George Washington exhibit. Participants created their own examples.  There was also bowling. Let us not forget that in the early 20th century no mansion was complete without a bowling alley. The Frick’s is a beauty – all polished wood. The Staff Art Exhibition, Exquisite Corpse, was a knock out.

A friend and I visited the Morgan Library. After a very tasty lunch of cold soup, deviled eggs and delicious pinot grigio, we went to Morgan’s wonderful library on the first floor.

J. P. Morgan’s Library

On Friday I went to the first of three days of the Writers Digest 2018 Conference. Today was  dedicated to query letters. Janet Reid has been educating and terrorizing writers for years. QueryShark.blogspot.com. is where she lays down the law about writing in general and query letters in particular. Her talk was witty, biting and cogent. Paula Munier gave an interesting session on Beginnings: Your first 10 pages. There was lots of talk about pitching i.e. selling your story to an agent in 90 seconds. Tomorrow, I do it. Groan. 

Graphic Lessons: NYPD Detective Steve Kulchek is assigned a murder case at the  prestigious Windsor School. What’s bugging him? His partner being stabbed while Kulchek was buying cigarettes? Escaping an attempted car bombing?  His hated boss, Captain Dick Holbrook, being a trustee of the Windsor School?  Losing his girlfriend to Holbrook? 

Graphic Lessons: What do a teacher, a nine-year-old and an eighteen year old have in common? Murder. Millie Fitzgerald applies for a private school teaching job, faints on a  dying man in the school kitchen, deals with a troubled nine-year-old, the only witness to the stabbing and with the eighteen-year-old niece of the murdered man..

Graphic Lessons: Nine-year-old Dana is the only witness who overhears a person fighting with George Lopez, the soon to be stabbed Windsor School kitchen worker. Who can she tell? Her mother who never listens or accuses her of lying? Her father who’s started a new family in Singapore? She tells Millie. 

Mary Jo Robertiello

http://www.nymysteries.com

NYMysteries in Portland,Oregon –  July 15 – July 21

 

Sleep walking in Portland. a few days ago I went to a birthday party, had a great time, and drank a little too much beer and wine. Back at the Inn at Northrup Station I fell into a deep sleep. At 3 a. m. I found myself  in the Inn’s corridor. The click of the door’s lock had awakened me. I’d sleepwalked. With nothing on but a modest nightgown I went to the front desk, way down the corridor. The night clerk, a millennial with a goofy hairdo, behaved with aplomb. Is he used to older women arriving at his counter in nightgowns at three in the morning? He gave me a swipe card and I went back to my room.

This year’s Inn at the Northrup Station’s corridor carpet.
David Edward’s Longevity scroll at the Oregon Historical Society
The Inn at Northrup Station’s last year’s corridor carpet. Which do you prefer?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Portland Museum’s Car Show. A Stout Scarab
The Portland Art Museum’s car show. The Aeromobile

 The sign at the Oregon Historical Society stated that Japanese calligraphy is an art form. Chinese characters are imported to Japan and still used today. I went to the Historical Society’s beautiful,  small exhibit.  David Edwards was represented by two scrolls, entitled longevity. He belongs to the Meito Shodo-Kai Calligraphy Association.(Shodo)

We went to the Portland Art Museum Car Show: The Shape of Speed, Streamlined Automobiles and Motorcycles 1930-1942. Nineteen cars, many one offs, were on display.  The 1936 Stout Scarab was $5000 in 1936 but didn’t attract buyers.  The Aeromobile speaks for itself.

 

 

 

Graphic Lessons: NYPD Detective Steve Kulchek is assigned a murder case at the  prestigious Windsor School. What’s bugging him? His partner being stabbed while Kulchek was buying cigarettes? Escaping an attempted car bombing?  His hated boss, Captain Dick Holbrook, being a trustee of the Windsor School?  Losing his girlfriend to Holbrook? 

Graphic Lessons: What do a teacher, a nine-year-old and an eighteen year old have in common? Murder. Millie Fitzgerald applies for a private school teaching job, faints on a  dying man in the school kitchen, deals with a troubled nine-year-old, the only witness to the stabbing and with the eighteen-year-old niece of the murdered man..

Graphic Lessons: Nine-year-old Dana is the only witness who overhears a person fighting with George Lopez, the soon to be stabbed Windsor School kitchen worker. Who can she tell? Her mother who never listens or accuses her of lying? Her father who’s started a new family in Singapore? She tells Millie. 

Mary Jo Robertiello

http://www.nymysteries.com

NYMysteries June 24 -June 30

Pride Sunday. In the late seventies, when it was called the Gay Day Parade, my boyfriend and I would arrive at a gay friend’s apartment on Hudson, drink champagne at ten a.m. and smoke perfectly rolled cigarettes. I was titillated by the largely homosexual crowd expressing surprise that I was gay. Then we strolled up Fifth Avenue, slightly stoned. It was a leisurely walk, hardly a march.

 

 

For this Pride Sunday, The Judson Memorial Church’s staff created  evocative and heart breaking posters of the past LGBT community.

 

 

 

Saint James Baldwin
Saint Christine Jorgensen
Saint Alan Turing
St. Harry Hay

A friend and I go to the movies in hopes we’ll break the spell of choosing long, boring movies. The three most recent stinkers: The King, Phantom Thread, Gone Girl. 

The King, at IFC, ropes you in because it’s supposedly about Elvis Presley. Actually it’s a self serving vehicle about the director, Eugene Jarecki, who informs us that he’s anti-Trump and supports Black Lives Matter. What does this have to do with E. P.? Jarecki criticizes Presley for not participating in civil rights marches. Presley was a musical genius. That’s it. He might have been a dope but who cares? Speaking of vehicles, Jarecki has the usual tired celebrities such as Alec Baldwin ride around in Presley’s Rolls Royce.  Avoid. 

Paul Taylor Anderson’s Phantom Thread is so boring. Daniel Day-Lewis walks on water for some. In this long affected movie he treads on cloth. If you suffer from insomnia, this is the flick for you.

We saw David Fincher’s Gone Girl in a glorious Amsterdam art nouveau movie theater, Pathé Tuschinski. I’m a fan of Gillian Flynn’s flinty, non-flinching descriptions of everyday life and of her sense of humor. None of which is present in the film adaptation. And to put the nail in the coffin Ben Affleck wanders through the plot in his usual sleepwalker’s stance. 

I had to meet a friend for drinks at Bemelmans Bar after seeing Always at the Carlyle. Sitting in the twilight of Bemelman’s wall paintings, listening to someone slinging Cole Porter and sipping champagne is certainly the way to spend the cocktail hour. 

 

Graphic Lessons: NYPD Detective Steve Kulchek is assigned a murder case at the  prestigious Windsor School. What’s bugging him? His partner being stabbed while Kulchek was buying cigarettes? Escaping an attempted car bombing?  His hated boss, Captain Dick Holbrook, being a trustee of the Windsor School?  Losing his girlfriend to Holbrook? 

Graphic Lessons: Recent thirty-five-year-old widow Millie Fitzgerald applies for a private school teaching job, faints on a stabbed and dying man in the school kitchen, deals with the only witness to the stabbing – a troubled nine-year-old, develops a crush on a NYPD detective and her dog dies.

Graphic Lessons: Nine-year-old Dana is the only witness who overhears a person fighting with George Lopez, the soon to be stabbed Windsor School kitchen worker. Who can she tell? Her mother who never listens or accuses her of lying? Her father who’s started a new family in Singapore? She tells Millie. 

Mary Jo Robertiello

http://www.nymysteries.com

June 18 – June 23

By the time you read this, it will be too late. There’s a Tapas Bar on Clinton Street where we had delicious tiny dishes for an early supper before NYC ’s Secrets and Lies at Caveat. The Iranian owner has sold Tapas. Let us hope the new owner has was much culinary skill and style. We then went down, down down to Caveat. What a great nightclub. This evening event consisted of  five women conning us with incredible or credible stories about NYC. Four were truthful. One was a lie. The place was packed. Is Manhattan thirsty for nerdy fun? I think so.

Three day s later, after dinner at Gigino’s we went to Highlights in Jazz. We were saying good bye to Jack Kleinsinger’s longest running jazz series in NYC, as Kleinsinger is so fond of reminding us. We had decided that the series was old and dusty. This evening proved the series still has lots of life. It was a tribute to the guitarist, Russell Malone. He was joined by the drummer, Lewis Nash, Gene Bertoncini, the guitarist, and other stellar musicians. A lovely evening. 

Graphic Lessons: NYPD Detective Steve Kulchek is assigned a murder case at the  prestigious Windsor School. What’s bugging him? His partner being stabbed while Kulchek was buying cigarettes? Escaping an attempted car bombing?  His hated boss, Captain Dick Holbrook, being a trustee of the Windsor School?  Losing his girlfriend to Holbrook? 

Graphic Lessons: Recent thirty-five-year-old widow Millie Fitzgerald applies for a private school teaching job, faints on a stabbed and dying man in the school kitchen, deals with the only witness to the stabbing – a troubled nine-year-old, develops a crush on a NYPD detective and her dog dies.

Graphic Lessons: Nine-year-old Dana is the only witness who overhears a person fighting with George Lopez, the soon to be stabbed Windsor School kitchen worker. Who can she tell? Her mother who never listens or accuses her of lying? Her father who’s started a new family in Singapore? She tells Millie. 

Mary Jo Robertiello

http://www.nymysteries.com

NYMYSTERIES MAY 2 – JUNE 8

 

Off to Yonkers. We decided to go to Untermyer Park and Garden and ignore rain threats. It paid off. We had a delightful sun filled stroll around the forty plus acres. To the west is the Hudson and the Palisades. The fragrant gardens are being restored. We visited the mysteriously named Persian Garden which is filled with copies of Greek statues and columns. Around us, restoration work was being done on the 1899 structure. So quiet, so green: a perfect antidote for the NYC bustle. 

Untermyer Park and Garden
Untermyer Park and Garden

I confess. I saw Always at the Carlyle. I can claim I’m a native New Yorker and the Carlyle is part of my DNA. The real reason I went to the restored Quad was to see all the celebrities in the documentary who can afford $10,000- $20,000 a night.

 

 

 

 

 

Studio 5 Celebrating Bernstein and Robbins

Boo-hoo. We attended our final Studio 5 presentation. It was dedicated to Leonard Bernstein. Bernstein, as everyone knows, would have been one hundred this year. We were treated to music and dance created by Bernstein and Jerome Robbins. 

 

 

 

A friend and I planned our visit to the Cloisters’ Heavenly Bodies so that we’d arrive early and escape before the crowds arrived. After going through several cloisters, halls, and rooms to look at and drool over the fabulous and enormous exhibit which is part of the Fashion and the Catholic Imagination at the Metropolitan and the Cloisters, we felt peckish and went to New Leaf, a charming restaurant in the park.

It’s been a week filled with gardens and views of the Hudson.  

 

Now: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination at the Cloisters

 

 

Then: Tomb of a Lady and probably a saint. The Cloisters

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Graphic Lessons: NYPD Detective Steve Kulchek is assigned a murder case at the  prestigious Windsor School. What’s bugging him? His

partner being stabbed while Kulchek was buying cigarettes? Escaping an attempted car bombing?  His hated boss, Captain Dick Holbrook, being a trustee of the Windsor School?  Losing his girlfriend to Holbrook? 

Graphic Lessons: Recent thirty-five-year-old widow Millie Fitzgerald applies for a private school teaching job, faints on a stabbed and dying man in the school kitchen, deals with the only witness to the stabbing – a troubled nine-year-old, develops a crush on a NYPD detective and her dog dies.

Graphic Lessons: Nine-year-old Dana is the only witness who overhears a person fighting with George Lopez, the soon to be stabbed Windsor School kitchen worker. Who can she tell? Her mother who never listens or accuses her of lying? Her father who’s started a new family in Singapore? She tells Millie. 

NYMysteries.com May 27 – June 2

May 27 —  June 2

What a week! Part of my birthday package was going to Coney Island. All New Yorkers know that weekend travel on the subway is an adventure unto itself. Eventually, I met my pal at Stillwell Avenue, the last stop on the D. She had wanted to knock off some barbecue but I used birthday rights and so we stood in line for about three days to get Nathan hotdogs, fries. We then strolled them off (ha!) on the boardwalk, stopping for a restful merry-go-round ride. Lots of crowds, lots of families, lots of lovely sea air and sunshine.

On Tuesday, I went to Caveat, the nightclub/ speakeasy on Clinton, to watch and marvel at one of my friends talking about her alter ego. Her performance was part of a Generation Women program in which women between the ages of twenty and eighty plus tell their stories. Caveat is a gem. The atmosphere is one of happy expectation coupled with wine, Get It Girl White Blend, that supports Planned Parenthood. 

I went to Invisible Julliard. We all know that every organization wants money, right? Some, like Juilliard, do it with class.  Lovely champagne followed by an hour sample of  classes: Drama Voice, Drama Movement, Ballroom Dance, Juilliard Dance, Basics of Singing -the selections seemed endless. I chose Drama Voice. It was held in an enormous black box and the instructor, Susan Finch, put about fourteen of us thorough our paces. Lots of movement and walking in circles while we trilled and buzzed our vocal cords. Afterwards, there was a buffet supper. A friend (Drama Movement) and I shared a table with some new friends from Drama Voice and Drama Movement including a Juilliard graduate who had majored in dance and who explained how daunting, thrilling, scary and life affirming it was to attend Juilliard.  A delightful evening.

 

Generation Women at Caviat

 

 

 

Graphic Lessons: NYPD Detective Steve Kulchek is assigned a murder case at the  prestigious Windsor School. What’s bugging him? His partner being stabbed while Kulchek was buying cigarettes? Escaping an attempted car bombing?  His hated boss, Captain Dick Holbrook, being a trustee of the Windsor School?  Losing his girlfriend to Holbrook? 

Graphic Lessons: Recent thirty-five-year-old widow Millie Fitzgerald applies for a private school teaching job, faints on a stabbed and dying man in the school kitchen, deals with the only witness to the stabbing – a troubled nine-year-old, develops a crush on a NYPD detective and her dog dies.

Graphic Lessons: Nine-year-old Dana is the only witness who overhears a person fighting with George Lopez, the soon to be stabbed Windsor School kitchen worker. Who can she tell? Her mother who never listens or accuses her of lying? Her father who’s started a new family in Singapore? She tells Millie. 

NYMysteries: May 20 —  May 26

Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination

Catholic clothes at the Metropolitan Museum

 

One Size Fits All

Aside from one incredibly rude guard who would be at home torturing Riker inmates, it was a lovely visit. In the Anna Wintour – What a giggle – Costume Center, Catholicism displayed its visual strength through gorgeous costumes and stunning jewelry. Hushed, like a church, people gazed or frowned at the jewel infested crowns, some muttering about how many poor people the cost of that crown would feed. Catholic hierarchy understood how beautiful architecture, sculpture, paintings, seep into an innocent’s subconscious, establishing an eternal bond. The wily Jesuits claimed that if they got you by seven, you were theirs for life. Seventeenth century popes, Urban VIII and Alexander VII, were forerunners of today’s CEOs. To counter the reformation, in addition to the Inquisition, they worked Gian Lorenzo Bernini’s pious fingers to the bone. I took this photo at Villa D’Este, a sixteenth century summer palace for one of the Estes family.  It’s Bernini’s Oval Fountain, set against a rustic shrine dedicated to a nymph. Among his many masterpieces, Bernini is known for The Ecstasy of Saint Teresa, Apollo and Daphne as well as his work on St. Peter’s and the Four Rivers Fountain in Piazza Navona.  

 

 

Bernini’s Oval Fountain, Villa D’Este

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Graphic Lessons: Recent thirty-five-year-old widow Millie Fitzgerald applies for a private school teaching job, faints on a stabbed and dying man in the school kitchen, deals with the only witness to the stabbing – a troubled nine-year-old, develops a crush on a NYPD detective and her dog dies.

Graphic Lessons: Nine-year-old Dana is the only witness who overhears a person fighting with George Lopez, the soon to be stabbed Windsor School kitchen worker. Who can she tell? Her mother who never listens or accuses her of lying? Her father who’s started a new family in Singapore? She tells Millie. 

Graphic Lessons: NYPD Detective Steve Kulchek is assigned a murder case at the  prestigious Windsor School. What’s bugging him? His partner being stabbed while Kulchek was buying cigarettes? Escaping an attempted car bombing?  His hated boss, Captain Dick Holbrook, being a trustee of the Windsor School?  Losing his girlfriend to Holbrook? 

nymysteries May 14 —  May 18

 

I met Ginny and Lenny Fox at Judson Memorial Church. Ginny died the day after Mother’s Day. She hadn’t eaten in years. She drank some stuff that sustained her physically. Intellectually and emotionally, she sustained the rest of us. She and Lenny, her late husband, traveled. He carried her supply of  canned nourishment and they had a ball. At different times, they and I had stayed at the Pensione Accademia in Venice. She and I enjoyed talking about the pensione and Venice (duh). Ginny and I were supposed to have gone to the Remnick-Comy New Yorker interview at Town Hall but she had returned from Greece the day of the event, not well. Her impeccable manners reigned. She emailed me, suggesting I ask someone else. Her daughter posted heartfelt news about her mother who had hospice care at home. This poems will be read at Ginny’s memorial. I looked up Laistrygonians on Wikipedia. They were man-eating giants who ate most of Odysseus’s crew. 

Entrance to Pensione Accademia
A quiet niche at Pensione Accademia
The one and only Ginny Fox

Ithaka

BY C. P. CAVAFY

TRANSLATED BY EDMUND KEELEY

As you set out for Ithaka

hope your road is a long one,

full of adventure, full of discovery.

Laistrygonians, Cyclops,

angry Poseidon—don’t be afraid of them:

you’ll never find things like that on your way

as long as you keep your thoughts raised high,

as long as a rare excitement

stirs your spirit and your body.

Laistrygonians, Cyclops,

wild Poseidon—you won’t encounter them

unless you bring them along inside your soul,

unless your soul sets them up in front of you.

Hope your road is a long one.

May there be many summer mornings when,

with what pleasure, what joy,

you enter harbors you’re seeing for the first time;

may you stop at Phoenician trading stations

to buy fine things,

mother of pearl and coral, amber and ebony,

sensual perfume of every kind—

as many sensual perfumes as you can;

and may you visit many Egyptian cities

to learn and go on learning from their scholars.

Keep Ithaka always in your mind.

Arriving there is what you’re destined for.

But don’t hurry the journey at all.

Better if it lasts for years,

so you’re old by the time you reach the island,

wealthy with all you’ve gained on the way,

not expecting Ithaka to make you rich.

Ithaka gave you the marvelous journey.

Without her you wouldn’t have set out.

She has nothing left to give you now.

And if you find her poor, Ithaka won’t have fooled you.

Wise as you will have become, so full of experience,

you’ll have understood by then what these Ithakas mean.

 

 

 

 

Graphic Lessons: Recent thirty-five-year-old widow Millie Fitzgerald applies for a private school teaching job, faints on a stabbed and dying man in the school kitchen, deals with the only witness to the stabbing – a troubled nine-year-old, develops a crush on a NYPD detective and her dog dies.

Graphic Lessons: Nine-year-old Dana is the only witness who overhears a person fighting with George Lopez, the soon to be stabbed Windsor School kitchen worker. Who can she tell? Her mother who never listens or accuses her of lying? Her father who’s started a new family in Singapore? She tells Millie. 

Graphic Lessons: NYPD Detective Steve Kulchek is assigned a murder case at the  prestigious Windsor School. What’s bugging him? His partner being stabbed while Kulchek was buying cigarettes? Escaping an attempted car bombing?  His hated boss, Captain Dick Holbrook, being a trustee of the Windsor School?  Losing his girlfriend to Holbrook? 

NYMysteries May 6 – May 12

@Generation Women shared secrets on April 25. It was  story telling by women in their 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s. Each participant had seven minutes  to tell her secret and the fun began at 7 pm. It was at the Caveat Theatre, a  New York speakeasy, on 21 A Clinton Street. 

See my performance on YouTube:  https://youtu.be/-NejHvdUcOE

Read it here.

Generation Women  is an organization founded and run by Georgia Clark.

April 25 My Biggest Secret performed at Caveat 

There are those secrets we tell our ten best friends. For example: I just signed with an agent. Please don’t tell anyone.(Dear Reader, This is a figment of my imagination.)  Or, after a glass of wine or two, Did I ever tell you about the times I went to Plato’s Retreat?  Plato’s Retreat was a 1970’s sex club. When I submitted what I thought was my final draft of My Biggest Secret to Georgia Clark, she assumed it was a partial draft. Oh, yeah? Our Georgia wants details about Plato’s Retreat. Those Australians… all sex crazed. Dropping the Plato’s Retreat name among the elderly is a fun secret that makes your friends envious of your long ago dissolute life. How innocent my boyfriend Seymour and I were. In the late seventies he phoned Plato’s Retreat, landline, and asked if we should bring bathing suits. A guy with a very NY accent snickered and said, “Well, if you want.” So we arrived at the Ansonia Hotel located between West 73rd and West 74th Streets and went to Plato’s Retreat in the basement. This was the late Seventies. Something called gay cancer was spreading through the city. My neighbor, a gay man, had purple blotches on his face. 47 year old Conductor Thomas Schippers died after a brief and mysterious illness. Seymour and I were unaware of how deadly this plague was. It was later called AIDS.  

Meanwhile, in order to seem hip and not reveal our nervousness at entering Plato’s Retreat, Seymour had fortified himself with a little booze and a lot of pot. I had fortified myself with a lot of booze and a little pot. Did you know that sex clubs, at least this one, were very quiet? Aside from moaning, groaning and women having a loudest orgasm competition, the place was silent. Somewhere there was the dripping of water from the waterfalls but who cared. We didn’t wear our bathing suits.

But my biggest secret is in the shame and anger and embarrassment category. 

I avoid the word, family. My secret is I don’t have a family. The word I hate is mother. I didn’t have one. I had a younger or older sister, depending on the mood of the woman who gave birth to me. She hated and was afraid of other people. That included her three sisters and two brothers all of whom died alone. Therefore, there was no family creation. My father died when I was two. My mother never mentioned him. I never saw my mother kiss or hold hands with another man.  My father had worked on the New Orleans paper, the Times Picayune, moved east to work with Dorothy Day and in World War II his merchant marine ship was torpedoed. Every year I make a pilgrimage to the Merchant Mariners’ Memorial in Battery Park. My father died at 37 in 1942. He was a socialist and my mother was a social climber. I’m a combination of the two.     

You know how it is: when you don’t have something, it’s always there. If you’re poor you hear only the word, money. If you’re hungry, it’s the word, food. It’s the same thing with the word, family. I don’t hate Paul Ryan because he’s a Republican. I envy him because he’s surrounded by family. 

Every day remarks such as, “My kids keep me posted about Facebook. I never go on it myself.” Swamp me with visions of successful, beautiful/ handsome millennials texting mom.  Another example is, “I had to fly home. We had an intervention for my cousin who’s in and out of drug rehab.” How cool is that? An intervention, relatives with the same last name all in the same room.

I created a fantasy family following literary protagonists who have no family such as the early Harry Bosch, Cornelia in the PD James mysteries and Sneaky Pete. 

Sub-secret Number 1: I was going to include more literary names, racking my brain for the lack of family in Virginia Woolf or Zadie Smith. Any way to get away from my shameful secret, the longing for a family. 

I have written two police procedurals. My lead detective, Steve Kulchek, has a shaky family life: one beloved daughter, one divorced wife and his uncle in Florida, a retired cop. I enjoy writing from a man’s point of view. Maybe it’s because I can make him the guy I want. 

Secrets are the heart beat of most mysteries. They are cause and effect in fiction and in life. Do secrets breed phobias or vice versa? 

Sub-secret number 2: Since childhood I was afraid of being trapped in an elevator and no one would rescue me. Living in NYC and in Rome it was a problem for me and a nuisance for others. I’d watch a stranger go into an elevator or come out of one and I’d feel a chill. Being alone in a moving box? Worse still, what if it stops? Like a wild animal, when I had to take one, I was aware of mechanical sounds and speed, as if they were out to get me. I had a great companion who was getting tired of my out bursts after refusing to get into an elevator. You know how shame and fear equal anger and losing your temper. I didn’t want to lose him so I found a clinic at St. Roosevelt Hospital. A wonderful social worker dealt with anxiety. There was a woman who couldn’t be alone. Her fiancé was waiting for her outside. There was a woman who said she would welcome be trapped alone in an elevator for the rest of her life. Two of us were afraid of elevators and took over the sessions. Every session the social worker would trot us out to the elevator and try to convince the other woman and me to get into it. He, the social worker, explained that there were some theories about not trusting a parent that contributed to this fear.  No kidding. Thanks to this wonderful man and the fact that I moved into a Stuyvesant Town apartment on the twelfth floor, I got over the elevator phobia. Never mind the fact that for the first three months I climbed the twelve flights. 

I have a surrogate family that consists of my super friends in NYC and Portland, Oregon. My longing for family gets played out in my detective procedurals. So there! Into my seventies, bloody but unbowed. 

Graphic Lessons: Recent thirty-five-year-old widow Millie Fitzgerald applies for a private school teaching job, faints on a stabbed and dying man in the school kitchen, deals with the only witness to the stabbing – a troubled nine-year-old, develops a crush on a NYPD detective and her dog dies.

Graphic Lessons: Nine-year-old Dana is the only witness who overhears a person fighting with George Lopez, the soon to be stabbed Windsor School kitchen worker. Who can she tell? Her mother who never listens or accuses her of lying? Her father who’s started a new family in Singapore? She tells Millie. 

Graphic Lessons: NYPD Detective Steve Kulchek is assigned a murder case at the  prestigious Windsor School. What’s bugging him? His partner being stabbed while Kulchek was buying cigarettes? Escaping an attempted car bombing?  His hated boss, Captain Dick Holbrook, being a trustee of the Windsor School?  Losing his girlfriend to Holbrook? 

NY Mysteries

April 28—  May 5

Paul Ryan repents! 

Jesuit Fr. Pat Conroy, 60th House Chaplain had been forced to resign by Paul Ryan, Speaker of the House. Ryan acknowledged his mistake and Father Conroy is back in the pulpit. Was it because of this prayer or because Fr. Conroy had invited a Muslim  cleric to say an opening prayer? 

“May all Members be mindful that the institutions and structures of our great Nation guarantee the opportunities that have allowed some to achieve great success, while others continue to struggle. May their efforts these days guarantee that there are not winners and losers under new tax laws, but benefits balanced and shared by

Before the Curtain rises: HERE’s presentation of Basil Twists (and Hector Berlioz’s) Symphonie Fantastique

all Americans.”  

By the way, why do we have anyone leading prayers in the House given the country’s grounding in the separation of church and state?

Generation Women shared secrets on April 25. It was  story telling by women in their 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s. Each participant had seven minutes  to tell her secret and the fun began at 7 pm. It was at the Caveat Theatre, a  New York speakeasy, on 21 A Clinton Street. The April 25 event was sold out but please come to the May 29 event. 

Boo-hoo. The Frick concert series is over. What a lovely way to spend two late afternoon hours on a Sunday. The Music Room has a gentle atmosphere. The architect, John Russell Pope, altered the original building, a private home, in the 1930s  to become a museum. Originally named the auditorium, the Music Room was intended to be used as a lecture hall and art gallery. 

On Wednesday there was a burst of summer. Friends and I had dinner at Aquagrill and then went across Sixth Avenue, walked past the gorgeous motorcycles in Dugati and arrived at HERE. We were there to see Symphonie Fantastique, a twenty years old puppetry event by Basil Twist. It takes place in an aquarium with live music by pianist Christopher O’Riley. Hector Berlioz’s Symphonie  thundered across the small dark theater. 

 

 

Graphic Lessons: Recent thirty-five-year-old widow Millie Fitzgerald applies for a private school teaching job, faints on a stabbed and dying man in the school kitchen, deals with the only witness to the stabbing – a troubled nine-year-old, develops a crush on a NYPD detective and her dog dies.

Graphic Lessons: Nine-year-old Dana is the only witness who overhears a person fighting with George Lopez, the soon to be stabbed Windsor School kitchen worker. Who can she tell? Her mother who never listens or accuses her of lying? Her father who’s started a new family in Singapore? She tells Millie. 

Graphic Lessons: Something’s eating at NYPD Detective Steve Kulchek: a stabbed partner? surviving a car bomb? his girlfriend marrying his corrupt boss? screwing up an important case?  It doesn’t matter because he’s relentless.