Monday, February 13, 2012

Young at Heart

Paul and I decided to return to Michael Feinstein's club this past weekend. Petula Clark was singing and we thought it would be fun to see her in person. Feinstein's is an intimate restaurant with a small stage for the performer. The band consisted of a pianist, two guitars and a drummer. We arrived early enough to enjoy dinner and take the measure of the people sitting next (very close) to us. The woman at the table to our left was an elderly widow, but it was apparent she was not a first timer. All the waiters seemed to know her and she even waved to Michael when he entered with his dinner guests. She had invited a younger man (he was about 70) to join her. During their conversation she mentioned that her building had "gone condo" and he asked if she had bought her apartment that she had lived in for 35 years. She replied that she hadn't but had two years left on her lease and judging from her frail state, she probably wouldn't need to renew. The two guys who were sitting just in front of us were a couple in their late 30's. The one guy was explaining that he loved Petula Clark and had grown up listening to her music. This was quite apparent when as each song started he stood up clapping and then proceeded to sing along. Clearly a fan.
Here is the one detail I left out of the story and which makes it rather funny. It never occurred to us until just before Ms. Clark arrived on stage that she could be much older than about 65. I don't know why, but it just didn't seem possible that she could or should be much older than that. In truth, she is 79. While she gave it her best shot, there was a lot to be desired. She pulled out all the tricks like having the audience sing along, having us all clap loudly while she attempted to sing, saying the lyrics rather than singing them, telling long stories in between each song so she could catch her breath. I won't even go into her attempts to dance to the music----it wasn't pretty. But we came away with fond memories of when Petuta could sing and we loved her songs---Downtown, Don't Sleep in the Subway, I Know a Place, My Love----A few clicks on ITunes and we found the Petula we remembered. But it was still a lovely evening and I had a very handsome date who bought me dinner and made me laugh.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Big Blue

I consider myself a sports fan. Win or lose, I was always a loyal Burley High Bobcat fan. I have also been a loyal to the BYU Cougars, Boston Red Sox and the Celtics. I climb on the bandwagon when the Bruins are winning and I have even been known to cheer for UT and UVa. It is rare that I don't have some team preference for any sporting even that I am watching. This year's Super Bowl was no exception. While I really like both teams, my heart was with the Giants. What's not to like about Eli Manning? But that wasn't why I was cheering for the Giants. I wanted them to win so I could stand in the Canyon of Heroes for their ticker tape celebration parade. And that is where I was on Tuesday morning. I jumped on the subway which was already packed with Giants fans and we headed down to Park Place. Right away I noticed that I was a little bit different from the other parade goers. First of all, I wasn't wearing a Jersey nor was I speaking 'Jersey.' Honestly, I am pretty sure I didn't hear one sentence that didn't contain the "F" word at least once. And second, I didn't have beer with my breakfast which seems to have been a common breakfast "juice" for most of the guys I met along the way. We waited pressed together for an hour before the first of the players floats came by. During that hour I saw two people chased, brought down, and cuffed by the police and one fight which resulted in a guy being taken away for stitches. Honestly, the crowd was fascinating. The parade lasted about 15 minutes, confetti streamed down from the windows of the office buildings, the players waved as they rode past us on big trucks and for a brief moment I was a true Giants' fan. They won the Super Bowl in an incredible game, I live in their town, Eli's such a good ol' boy, and they made it possible for me to stand in the Canyon of Heroes. A wonderful New York moment.