Posts Tagged ‘Martini’

Letter from Claverack 04 19 2017 A painful evening…

April 20, 2017

Outside, it is grey, drear, damp and dank.   Twilight is beginning to gather around the cottage; I have made myself a martini and am looking out at the still bare trees, thinking that tonight, I am screaming for real spring, real green, and real warmth.

Tonight, I did something that is going to make one of my friends very angry with me and it was something I had to do.  He sent me some suicidal texts and I couldn’t ignore them.  Since he had stopped communicating, I called the police and asked for a welfare check.  It will not endear me to him and I would not have slept tonight if I had not.

So bloody strange is life.  It would be great to say this was a night full of hygge.  It’s not; it will be a night of doing hygge sorts of things to get back to a hygge state.

Jazz is playing.

This morning I did my radio program and it went tolerably well, now three weeks in, I am beginning to get the hang of it.

Tomorrow, I am going into the city only to turn around and come back because tomorrow we are having a birthday party on the train for four of our Regulars, one of whom is making a birthday with a zero.

It will be fun; I will be playing bartender and am concocting a drink to celebrate the coming of summer – a “summertini.”

And, truthfully, I am looking forward to something fun after this afternoon.

Not probably having fun is Bill O’Reilly, who got booted this afternoon from Fox News, where he has been the cock of the walk for ever so long.  Truthfully, I was a little surprised it happened.  The allegations of sexual harassment had reached a fever pitch and name advertisers were leaving in the dozens but his ratings remained high.

It seemed to me they would send him off for a while, like Brian Williams, to do penance and then bring him back after a cooling off period.  But no.  Walking papers.

My suspicion:  James and Lachlan Murdoch apparently had had enough, convincing their father time was nigh after $13,000,000 in settlements by Fox News over 15 years for allegations of sexual misconduct by O’Reilly, with more coming in on a regular basis, including one by an African-American staffer that he referred to her as “hot chocolate.”

Don’t cry for his next meal.  He will, I’m sure, walk away with millions.

Fox News will suffer.  He was their highest rated star, making millions and millions for them.

Chief beneficiary:  the bow tied Tucker Carlson who will be getting his slot.  Wouldn’t want that pressure.

Jon Ossoff, a young, charismatic candidate in a special election in Georgia, failed to get the more than fifty percent he needed to win outright so there will be a run-off election in June but he came damn close.  It will be a fight to the finish.  The seat has been safely Republican for years and now an energized number of Democratic Georgians have put it in play.

Aaron Hernandez, once a rising star with the New England Patriots, was found dead in his cell in the prison where he was serving a life sentence for murder and everyone is asking how such a promising life went so far askew?

Venezuela is about, it seems, to explode.  Hundreds of thousands have been marching in the streets against Maduro, who succeeded Chavez when he died.  The country is in economic tatters and Maduro doesn’t seem to be able to fix it so he is blaming everyone and is threatening to bolster the militia he controls from tens of thousands to a half million.

This is an elected official on his way to dictatorship.  Which is what we must be aware of these days. Look at Erdogan in Turkey; elected and moving toward dictatorial powers.  Same in a dozen countries in Africa.

And I am looking at the pearl grey twilight of Claverack and am about to go on to some amusement as I need amusement while I wait to hear if my friend is okay.

Letter From Claverack, written on 3/29/17 Some things are harder than others…

March 30, 2017

There is sometimes nothing in the world quite like a vodka soaked olive and so when I made myself a martini tonight, I used olives instead of the traditional lemon twist.

To be truthful, I wasn’t sure I was going to put my fingers to the keyboard tonight.  It’s been a cranky day; out early in a chill drizzle doing unpleasant errands, I got home around ten this morning and determined I was not leaving the comfort of the cottage.  The fourth straight day of cold grey drizzle had me crying for mercy.

It’s been an emotional couple of days.  First, most importantly, young Nick, who helps me is going through a rough patch again and that weighs heavily on me.  Which is why I was up early today, to give him support in a rough moment.

As some of you know, I was one of the founders of Blue DOT Indivisible Hudson, a group intended to be politically active in this most distressing of political times.  On Monday evening, using a word much used in Washington these days, I “recused” myself from anything more to do with Blue DOT and that was hard, even harder than I had expected it to be.

It was difficult to discover that there was no room for me there and seeing no way there would be, I bowed out.  Of the original five, two of us are now gone, one wavering.  To say I wish them well is an understatement.  And I had to leave.

There are other things I can do, have been doing and will continue to do.

Thus, it has been an emotionally charged couple of days.

That all said, I am at the cottage, the day is closing, jazz is playing, it warm and hygge in the cottage.  Saturday will see another dinner party here and I am snuggling into figuring it out.

There were two good calls for the Miller Center for the Presidency today, both exciting in their own way.

The creek is very high because of the rain and it flows swiftly toward the pond now, abandoning for a moment its usual gentle course.

And like the creek today, nothing is gentle.

The Senate Intel Committee is about to launch hearings and is promising to be more aggressive than the House Intel Committee, led by Devin Nunes, who has found himself with his underwear wrapped in knots.

He has muddied the waters with his meeting with some source on the White House grounds that informed him that Trump and his team may have been incidentally listened in on by government agencies.  Which lead to Trump feeling “somewhat vindicated” about his, to date, unproven charge that Obama ordered “wiretapping” on Trump Tower.

Truthfully, I have trouble unwinding what the hell is going on.  And I’m not the only one.

So, the ball has been moved to the Senate where both the Republican and Democratic leaders of the committee want to know what went on.  Those Senators, Republican and Democratic, are talking about this as the biggest thing since Watergate.

And while all of this is going on, the world is facing the greatest humanitarian crisis since the end of World War II.

Millions are starving and we are not paying attention because, basically, we don’t know.  The Trump Show is consuming the headlines.  South Sudan is a catastrophe.  Syria is a catastrophe. Yemen is more than a catastrophe.

Should I, a man who has no real obligations, go to one of those desperate places and offer help?  I am thinking about it.

 

 

 

Letter From Claverack 12 10 2016 The rollercoaster has left the station…

December 11, 2016

Here I am at the cottage; the floodlights are lighting the creek and I have been putting together my Christmas presents so I can ship them out on Monday.  My skills at wrapping are negligible and have been forever so the invention of gift bags has been a Godsend.  Right now, I am at a dead stop as I have used up all the bags I purchased yesterday and still have presents to go.  So, tomorrow morning I will be up and out early to get more.

It’s complicated this year as the people with whom I traditionally have shared Christmas are scattered and my living room is now littered with segregated piles.  This gets shipped to New Mexico, this goes to Boston, this goes to New York, this goes to Minneapolis…

Monday morning, I need to show up when the UPS Store opens to get this all off and I will get it done.

And in the midst of all of that, I seem to have been abandoned by young Nick, who has been my partner in crime since he was fifteen.  I am not sure what I have done but he has decided to jettison me from his life.  Speculation is useless and I now need to accept he no longer finds me a person of consequence.

I am on my own.  Today, I went out and started to make my Christmas come together.  Not quite sure how it will all be but it will be.

Just as it will be that Donald Trump is going to be President of these United States.

When I am looking at the New York Times I find myself gravitating to the Food Section, obsessively saving recipes.  My solace is in cooking these days, thinking of meals I will serve, planning table settings, decorating.

It is all diversion.  We will see how all of this plays out.  As I have said to many people: the next four years are going to be experiential.  He will be a different kind of President.

We will see how that plays out.

And now it is Christmas and I am sitting listening to Christmas Carols and, I must admit, sipping what I think is a much-deserved martini.

As I sit here, I am looking around my little cottage and am so grateful I am here, able to look out at the creek, illuminated by floodlights, and to listen to Christmas Carols on my Echo, sit wrapped in the warmth of my home and know that I will be engaged over the next four years as part of the loyal opposition.

We’re in for a wild ride.  The rollercoaster has left the station.  Hang on and let’s see what happens…