Thursday, July 20, 2006

Hot Stuff, In Varying Degrees

Marilyn Monroe would have celebrated her 80th birthday last month, were she still alive. I mention this because (a) I find it hard to believe that much time has passed and (b) I caught a very good TV show last evening about still photography featuring Monroe. The installment of “American Masters” featured interviews with many of the photographers that “shot” Monroe, archive film footage of the star, but most and best of all, hundreds, if not thousands of still photographic images of Marilyn. Miss Monroe was more than a star, more than an icon of her age, her persona and sheer physical presence almost defies description. Monroe was many things to many people, and some say not all those things were good, especially for Monroe herself. But above all the woman was photogenic. Oh, My!… was she ever photogenic! Watching that show last evening brought back a lot of memories for me, as I “came of age” during the time she was omnipresent. I still remember the buzz she created when she married Arthur Miller, and I also remember feeling there was hope for us nerds (and I was one, although that wasn’t the term at the time). I thank Miss Monroe for that, at the very least.

I give you that PBS link above not for the Gloria Steinem essay that is so prominently featured on the site (and which I only read about five paragraphs before going “Sheesh!”), but for links to Monroe’s photographers and to watch the trailer, should you be so inclined. Just sayin’.

HOLY Crap! Any man who has ever had even a fleeting thought of cheating on his wife (and I’d say that’s about 98.72% of us) needs to stop what he’s doing right now and go here. Immediately, not later, but NOW.

I've had a busy day. I began the heart-breaking process of clearing Steven's crap out of the house. It's not what you think. His belongings will not be stuffed into the garage. I will take meticulous care with his valued goods. Starting with his extensive wine collection. His pride and joy. His baby. I remember when we were looking at houses and how this one was the “one” because it had room for a wine cellar. He had the racks custom-made and filled them up with countless bottles. Some nights, I found him sitting down there listening to his jazz with a glass of his favorite vintage. Kinda spooky, actually.

Steven's always been big into charities. For me, there's something about charity that scares me. But I do like to give. So I drove around the neighborhood and personally donated a bottle of wine to all the hard-working landscapers. The smiles on their faces were priceless! It felt so good to just give. Oh and, Steven-honey? That Chateau La Mondotte Saint-Emilion that you've been saving for just the right moment - well that moment finally arrived! We may not be able to write this off, but can't you feel the goodness manifest in your heart. I'll be curious if they can tell the difference between the Henschke and the Bettenelli Cabernet Sauvignon. I couldn't. I think it's because I have, what Steven likes to refer to as, an “unsophisticated palette.”

I’d say Steven’s f!cked in the drive-thru, if’n you know what I mean…

OK…it’s a scam “viral marketing campaign, but it’s a damned good one! (By way of explanation…I followed Morgan’s first link, read the entire “Emily” blog, wrote the narrative above, went back to Morgan’s place and followed the second link, whereupon I realized I’d been HAD. But…the blog is cleverly written, you should go. And it’s indeed a cautionary tale for would-be philanderers.)

This is interesting… “Leading Saudi Sheik Pronounces Fatwa Against Hezbollah:

CAIRO, Egypt — One of Saudi Arabia's leading Wahhabi sheiks, Abdullah bin Jabreen has issued a strongly worded religious edict, or fatwa, declaring it unlawful to support, join or pray for Hezbollah, the Shiite militias lobbing missiles into northern Israel.

The day after Hezbollah abducted two Israeli soldiers on July 12, Sheik Hamid al-Ali issued an informal statement titled "The Sharia position on what is going on." In it, the Kuwaiti based cleric condemned the imperial ambitions of Iran regarding Hezbollah's cross border raid.

The surprising move demonstrates that Sunni Muslim fundamentalists in the Middle East are deeply divided over whether Moslems should support Hezbollah, Iran's Shiite proxies in the war raging in Lebanon.

While the Gulf's ascetic Wahhabi sects, who are closer to the ethnic fighting between Sunnis and Shiites in Iraq, have opposed Hezbollah in its stand against Israel's forces, other Sunni fundamentalist groups, such as the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood, have pledged their solidarity. On Friday, the brothers will host a rally in support of Hezbollah at Cairo's most influential mosque, Al-Azhar.

I’m not at all sure what this means in the larger geo-political scheme of things other than the obvious, i.e., the schism between Sunni and Shia seems to be getting wider. I do think it’s a good thing that monolithic Arab opposition to Israel has passed into history. But the larger meaning? God, or Allah, only knows.

It’s still HOT here in P-Town, 91 degrees as I go to press, on its way to 100 or slightly better. And so it goes…


  1. I caught part of the Marilyn thing. It was very interesting.

  2. Thanks for the link, and for the birthday wishes.

    Hope that sunny Portales weather is giving you a breather now and then.


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