My First Film Festival!

Over the past several days, I've been attending the Winter Film Awards here in NYC.  Gemma & The Bear! is an official selection - one of only five selections that fall under the "web content" or "internet programming" category.  And we're really proud!  We're also really impressed with the other content we've seen in the screenings as well as with the amazing organization of the festival itself. 

Before this, I never would have considered going to a random film festival screening as something to do in my leisure time, but now I totally would.  Moreover, there are film festivals happening all over the country (I know because I've done a bunch of research submitting Gemma & The Bear to many of them) which means that everyone has access to this high-quality yet non-mainstream content.  It's exciting and inspiring! 

Anyway, here are some photos of our festival adventures if you'd like to see:

Kevin heading in to the opening reception party!

Kevin heading in to the opening reception party!

Inside the party. 

Inside the party. 

Before the screening. We were excited to find our logo on the festival poster!

Before the screening. We were excited to find our logo on the festival poster!

Here we are pretending to watch the screening before the lights go out. :)

Here we are pretending to watch the screening before the lights go out. :)

Kevin on the big screen! (see the floor lights and exit sign? we're LEGIT in a theater!)

Kevin on the big screen! (see the floor lights and exit sign? we're LEGIT in a theater!)

Stacee Mandeville (AD), Matt Scott (Director), Kevin & Me outside the theater after the screening.

Stacee Mandeville (AD), Matt Scott (Director), Kevin & Me outside the theater after the screening.

As part of the festival, I also had the opportunity to attend a presentation by the New York State Governor's Office about how NY supports/encourages film production.  They said things like "If your budget is under fifteen million . . ." but even though we're not anywhere near that level (YET) they were so positive and helpful, it was really inspiring. 

Do you attend film festivals?  What are your pro tips? 

How I Read The New Yorker (A Holiday Gift of Hubris)

Be free, my friends, from your stacks of New Yorker magazines!  No more need they pile up beside your bed or commode.  Unburden yourself of the guilt of vast swaths of the periodical unread! 

You have ONE WEEK to digest a New Yorker before the next one comes.  What you need is a process for finding and reading what's most important to you in any given issue and then the willingness to let the rest go. 

Of course you needn't take in the New Yorker in exactly the manner I do - I encourage you to find your own best practices - but, if you don't have a strategy already in place, I offer you mine as a jumping off point. 

Here's what I do:

Begin with the cover.  It's a piece of actual art that arrives in your hands every week and it's easy to overlook.  If you, like me, take pleasure in art, take that pleasure here and now with the cover.

Turn to the table of contents.  Go right to the bottom and note the title of that cover.  Hmmm. Interesting.  Next, from the top, scan the names of contributors (Tad Friend, Nick Paumgarten, Emily Nussbaum and Malcolm Gladwell are all must-reads for me).  Who wrote the fiction? What's the movie review?

Now begin the skim-through.  This involves paging through the magazine at a moderate pace to get a general overview.  On this first pass I read the short stuff: any arts notices that catch my eye, restaurant reviews that interest me, and all of the cartoons.  I also go ahead and read The Talk of the Town during this phase (I begin each essay to decide if I will continue, but rarely do I read them all) as well as Shouts and Murmurs. The skim-through ends with the caption contest on the back page. 

Now, I have a sense of the magazine.  I know what longer essays and articles are of greatest interest to me.  I usually continue my ramp-up with TV, Film and Theater reviews (always TV because: Emily Nussbaum; Film and TV depend on whats being reviewed) before diving into the meatiest stuff.  The real trick is to be honest with yourself about what you want to read.  Life is short, you are busy, and another New Yorker is right around the corner.  Read what moves you and recycle the rest. 

Voila!  Your New Yorker stack is diminished!  You are more relaxed and happy! 

Leave me a comment if you have your own way to read The New Yorker.  Or, if you try my way, let me know what you think! xo



We had a party!  For Gemma & The Bear!  And It was GREAT!

A whole bunch of wonderful people showed up.  We watched the whole first season all together on a big screen.  We played a fun drinking game.  There were Goodie Bags.  And everyone seemed to have a great time!  

Here are some photos.  (Scroll down past the photos to learn how to re-live our fun party in the comfort of your own home!)  

Me and Marley who plays Gemma, age 9.

Me and Marley who plays Gemma, age 9.

Goodie Bags for the Party!

Goodie Bags for the Party!

Sexy people at the party enjoying the show.

Sexy people at the party enjoying the show.

Me and Kevin aka Gemma & The Bear

Me and Kevin aka Gemma & The Bear

Attractive and delighted crowd

Attractive and delighted crowd

Me, Marc Sinoway who plays Adrian

Me, Marc Sinoway who plays Adrian

Kevin, Debargo (who plays Tom), and Me

Kevin, Debargo (who plays Tom), and Me

Want to catch up on the fun?  Just CLICK HERE to watch Season One and then follow the rules of our very own #GATBLive drinking game below.  

Feel free to take photos of YOUR event - we'd love to see!

Finish Line

The sixth episode of Gemma & The Bear - the Season Finale - was released this past Monday, and I've been crabby all week.   

Tuesday night found me sitting on the kitchen floor, reading Facebook on my phone, eating old pistachio gelatto out of the container and blowing off the gym.  Basically: willfully feeling bad about myself.  

What the . . . ?

I wrote a bit about the Gemma & The Bear journey here.  What I don't think I expressed was the extent to which the whole experience has felt like an intensive graduate program in content creation.  I know so much more than I did and am so much stronger and more capable in this area than I was a year ago.  It's kind of incredible and, looking at what I personally spent, it was probably a bargain.

So here I am.  A recent graduate without a job; in that middle place between being still tired and frayed from the final push and not yet having begun moving towards the next thing (whatever it is).  

My plan is to spend September (and maybe some of October) figuring out what the next thing might be and making an action-plan to move towards it.  August saw me struggling more and more to meet my own blogging and newsletter deadlines and so, while I hope to put more here during the next few weeks, I'm not making any promises.   I've got other writing to do in other places.  I've got a little boy starting a new school.  I'm hoping to do some quality big-picture thinking and take care of a bunch of housekeeping along the way.

In the meantime, I hope you will enjoy Gemma & The Bear.  For all of my crabbyness, it feels really good - and I'm extremely proud - to have reached this particular milestone.  Can't wait to share the next thing with you soon . . . 

Words to live by


Way back in February, I read a short essay by Nick Paumgarten in The New Yorker about the magazine's move from Times Square down to the Financial Distrcit.  One passage, as he wrote about the difficulties of getting ready for the move has stuck with me:

The process felt a little like going through the belongings of a dead loved one, except that the dead loved one was you.  What was worth saving?  Not as much as you'd anticipated, once you got into the spirit of paperlessness.  Pile up those mine carts with fool's gold.  The thing that's worth keeping is the thing you do next. 

At the time, I was in the process of emptying - one way or another - and selling my childhood home.  His analogy wasn't an analogy for me.  When I found myself briefly crippled by grief or nostalgia (or both), overwhelmed by what felt like impossible decisions, I would repeat his words to myself - "The thing that's worth keeping is the thing you do next."  They helped me pull myself together; helped me move forward and feel pretty good about my decisions in the process.

We closed on the house in April (the single most horific experience of my life; real-estate is an ugly business) but I've found that Paumgarten's words continue to provide guidance.  

The thing that's worth keeping is the thing you do next. 

Okay.  Here we go.   

Tick-Tock! TICK-TOCK!!!

When I joined the New York Neo-Futurists (NYNF) in 2006, one of the most joyful aspects of the experience was being able to recommend the show (Too Much Light Makes The Baby Go Blind) without hesitation.  Up 'till then, I'd done a bunch of plays here and there in NYC, but they often suffered one way or another from being off-off-Broadway productions (lack of time, lack of money, etc.)*.  But the Neo's were different.  They had figured out how to make those limitations work for them and it felt so good to be so proud of something I was a part of.

I feel the same way about Gemma & The Bear.  Like Too Much Light . . . , Gemma & The Bear (GATB) is actually for something of a niche audience and I don't actually think that either is for everyone; certainly neither is perfect.  I do think both are, in turns, innovative, delightful and well-made and I am uniquely unabashed in my promotion of GATB as I was with Too Much Light . . . .

So, it has been a bit of a frustrating surprise to grapple, these last couple of months, with just how difficult marketing a (micro-budget) web series can be.  I recently watched a popular vlog that argues that the internet creates a meritocracy in which "if the video you're making is interesting to anyone . . . all you have to be concerned with is making something that someone else wants to watch."  This was more or less my assumption going in to Gemma & The Bear, but here in the episode-release-and-marketing phase, where the measure of marketing success - views on YouTube - seems to have been equated with the quality of the content (at least as far as generating press, industry attention, etc.) and where spending money to boost posts seems like the only way to be seen at all, that argument about meritocracy feels a bit false . . . or at least naive.

I've been naive all my life.  Also: impatient.

The other night, at a birthday gathering for a neighbor, I had a conversation with some people I'd just met about the social norms of meeting new people (how meta).  I was expressing my frustration with the apparent taboo of asking people what they do.  They countered that "what are you up to?" or "what's new?" or "how do you spend your time?" are completely acceptable alternatives.  I'm not sure I agree but, in any case, those alternatives don't address my real want which is to grab these new acquaintances by the lapels (maybe just figuratively) and say something like "who are you?! what's your story?! tell me everything!!"  I don't want to be coy, making small talk and teasing out the information slowly; I want the story up front!  (Looking back, my entire first date with my husband was just me interrogating him the entire night including important questions like "what are your three favorite sounds?"  I guess his tolerance was an early good sign?)

Too Much Light Makes The Baby Go Blind wasn't an overnight success; the company has gone through tremendous growing pains and, while they've come incredibly far, they're still working hard to grow and improve.  And, of course, that's the story almost everywhere.

So maybe it isn't that the meritocracy of the internet is false (although marketing dollars certainly play a role, albeit a complicated one), maybe it's about staying the course so we can find our audience . . . or they can find us. 

I really wish they'd hurry up about it, though. 


*To be very clear: I think off-off-Broadway is great and of tremendous value.  All artists need a place to practice, experiment and grow and for theater artists in NYC, OOB is often it.  Furthermore, over the past decade, I've seen the OOB community as a whole grow and improve the quality of its work.  So, no dig at OOB.  I love it, in fact.

Please adopt me, Bob Garfield! OR Everyone: Listen to THIS

Do you listen to On The Media?  It's really good.  Before I had a kid I listened religiously to the broadcast; these days I keep up with the show via their weekly podcast.  Listening the other day it kind of reminded me of a non-satirical version of The Daily show: smart, nuanced analysis of the media from the past week. 

Along with reading the NY Times on my phone instead of looking at Facebook, listening to On The Media always feels like I did something good for myself AND I always like it better than the alternative.  It's like choosing the healthier breakfast option that's ALSO more delicious.  Anyway . . .

I have not been able to stop thinking about last week's episode.  It's a great episode - they start with Trump, they end with David Foster Wallace (well, David Lipsky who did the interview with DFW that became the book and then the movie) but in the middle, almost hidden, is the thing over which I am obsessing: Bob Garfield's interview with Charles A. Allen, Deputy General Counsel for International Affairs at the Department of Defense, about their recently released Law of War Manual's problematic implications for journalists.

WAIT!  COME BACK!  I know that last sentence was full of wonky/nerdy/soporific words but that's not the point.  THE POINT is that Bob Garfield, in that interview, does the hardest thing: he keeps asking questions - pointed, challenging questions - without becoming either aggressive or apologetic - and, at the end, holding Charles Allen to account, he asks when they can speak again to follow up on their conversation.  WHO DOES THAT?!  IT WAS AMAZING!!

Listening to Bob Garfield conduct that interview made me feel so many things: it made me feel safer than I've felt in a long time, like someone smart is watching out for what's fair and right in this country; it made me feel SO impressed with his skill as an interviewer; it made me wish he could be my tough-conversations-mentor (aka Dad?).

There has been more in the media lately about how women undermine themselves and are undermined by others in conversation.  There's Mansplaining, 10 Simple Words Every Girl Should Learn (side note: "Girl?" really? Not "Woman?"), and Amy Schumer's amazing "I'm Sorry" sketch.  I think that's all great and valuable.  Being effective and powerful as a woman in conversation (not to mention negotiation), having been socialized in the standard U.S.A.-way, is something I think about and struggle with.  However, I think Bob Garfield's example pertains beyond gender divisions; I know plenty of guys who don't know how to "disagree without being disagreeable."  I guess I just think that, in this particular way, Bob Garfield is a great role model and most of us could stand to learn a thing or twelve from his example.

You can listen to the whole excellent episode HERE or, if you're short on time, the Bob Garfield interview is HERE.  Follow Bob Garfield on Twitter HERE.

Facebook, Online Videos, and You

I read this article recently about Facebook and video. 

It talks about how Facebook's algorithm strongly favors "native" video (that's video uploaded directly to Facebook, not a link to video on a separate site like YouTube) and how that's resulted in videos being ripped off of YouTube and posted by other folks in such a way that robs the original creators of both credit and income.  It also talks about how Facebook counts views and what that means for online content.  Spoiler alert: it's not great news. 

As a creator, it's frustrating because being a "little guy" was already tough and this makes it all tougher.  As an individual Facebook user and YouTube viewer, I'm not excited about what content may be dropped from my feed because of the algorithm.  Sure I'm not psyched about "overly promotional" content in my feed (Facebook's purported reason for the change), but I also don't want to miss out on cool, independent content because the creators don't have a big budget to advertise on Facebook. 

On the one hand: Facebook is free, so what right do we have to complain?  On the other hand: Facebook has become so culturally central that it isn't exactly optional any more. 

If you're on Facebook and/or you ever look at videos on YouTube, it's worth a read. 

The video content itself may remain unchanged, but the extent to which content is pushed or buried and credited or not credited has an impact on viewers (you. me. us.) as well as the creators.  We are savvier consumers of media when we understand these machinations. 

Good Idea: toddler open mics

Previously, my kiddo went through a phase where he told kid-style jokes which he mostly learned from a library book about Fozzie Bear (whence he also learned to punctuate his jokes by saying "wokka wokka") and popsicle sticks.

Currently, he has moved into a phase in which he makes up his own jokes.  For instance:

So here is my idea: an open mic night for toddlers! (and their parents!)

I imagine it would happen on, say, a Sunday around 5PM - early enough for the kids (aka "the talent") not to be melting down because its too close to bed time, but still late enough for the adults to enjoy a cocktail in a socially-acceptable way.  The venue could be pretty much anywhere, though it would be imperative that adults be allowed to bring in kid snacks.

The kids could go up and tell jokes and stories and do impressions.  I feel like it would be all kinds of good practice for them in terms of public speaking, being a good audience member, empathy, delayed gratification . . . And while non-parents would think it was a horror show (and they wouldn't be wrong), parents would find it totally entertaining (and maybe a good way to make other parent-friends?). 

This would NOT ever be an opportunity for scouts to come find child stars of the future.  It would be purely for the entertainment and gratification of kids and their parents.  And while I'm sure much of the time it would be a mess, I'm also sure that it would yield Andy Kaufman-worthy moments of avant garde comedy GENIUS! 

What's your best kid joke?  Post it in the comments!

Awesome Grants

A long time ago, my dad said something to me like: what sets the successful people apart is that they DO their ideas, they don't just have them.  That's a terrible paraphrase, but I've thought often about his point: we all have ideas about things we want to do, things someone should do, something it would be really cool to have in the world, but we usually stop there; it takes a lot more effort and commitment to keep going.

The Awesome Foundation has the potential to make the leap from having the idea to doing it just a bit easier.  I read about them in the NY Times last week.  A group of ten Trustees each put in $100/month and then award a $1000 grant each month to help fund an awesome project.  And it can be anything.

I was even more excited, when I visited their website, to discover that there are currently 80 chapters in 18 countries!  It's not just a NY thing!  And the projects that have been funded already are really cool - it's inspiring just to go poking around their website. 

I don't know what I may apply for a grant to do or make or accomplish, but next time I have a great idea, it's encouraging to know that the Awesome Foundation is out there to help make awesome ideas happen. 

What would you request a grant for?

Summer reading for Peanuts

My kiddo - who is 3.25 years old - has loved stories pretty much forever.  He loves to be read to and he loves to be told made-up stories.  I noticed a while ago that, if we were making up a story for him, he had a pretty high tolerance for a story much longer than the average picture book.

We dipped our toe in with The Invention of Hugo Cabret which alternates a few pages of plain text with many pages of text-free illustration.  Later, over the course of a couple of low-energy sick days, we plowed through Peter Pan.  So we continued. 

Mixing longer books in with the picture books kept me from getting really sick of reading and re-reading the same five-minute story over and over again.  Longer stories have also been great as a way to enjoy some quiet time after a big day at camp or on the playground, and they keep us all entertained on longer car rides or the occasional flight. There's also something nice about having more entertainment in a smaller, lighter volume given all the other stuff we're inevitably schlepping around.

Early on, we had some hits and some misses.  The Wizard of Oz was great . . . except for that scary chapter where she sends her pack of wolves to attack Dorothy and friends (yikes!).  The Enormous Crocodile was a pretty big (if slightly intense) hit which got me excited for more Roald Dahl, but The Magic Finger which focuses on characters who hunt ducks introduced a slew of concepts we weren't necessarily excited to discuss and Esio Trot was too much about spelling or romance (or both).  James and the Giant Peach seemed like it would be a good idea, 'till I started to read it and realized that James' parents are killed by an escaped rhino in the first two pages.  Duh, mom.

But, with the help of the wonderful people at our favorite local book store, Bank Street Books, we've really hit our stride this Summer.  These books all hit the sweet spot of being a great story, but with mostly accessible vocabulary for a younger kiddo, a picture on every page or two, and content that doesn't venture too far beyond their years.  And they're fun to read as an adult.

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl.  I'm a lifelong fan of Dahl, but most of his books are too edgy for our kiddo right now.  Not so Charlie and the Chocolate Factory which we borrowed from the library and read all the way through at least four or five times before returning it a couple of weeks later. 

My Father's Dragon by Ruth Stiles Gannett.  This is a trilogy, although I happen to like the first book the best.  Each is about 70 pages long with a picture on every other page or so.  They are stories of a young, kindhearted and very independent little boy going on an adventure to find and rescue a captive baby dragon and the adventures that ensue. 

Mercy Watson series by Kate DiCamillo.  There are six books in the Mercy Watson series beginning with Mercy Watson to the Rescue, about the (mis)adventures of a toast-loving pig named Mercy, her owners Mr. & Mrs. Watson and their neighbors on Deckawoo Drive.  All the books are lushly illustrated in full color by Chris Van Dusen.  The books feel old-fashioned and wholesome though they are contemporary.  The characters are a bunch of delightful oddballs.

Bink & Gollie by Kate Di Camillo & Alison McGhee.  We discovered Bink & Gollie through the Mercy Watson books.  There are currently three books in this series about a pair of best friends who love roller-skating, pancakes and each other most of all.  These books feel a bit like the Elephant & Piggie books for the next age group up and they're the shortest books on this list.

The Magic Treehouse by Mary Pope Osborne.  This is a fun series because it involves time travel and magic.  The first book in the series - Dinosaurs Before Dark - was an instant favorite.  A word of caution, though, as other books in the series dip in and out of being little-kiddo appropriate.  A book set during the Civil War, for example, (which I never should have agreed to read, so that's on me) prompted a discussion of war in general, and an explanation of slavery - it was just a lot for a 3 year old.  So these are recommended but not without some parental vetting. 

The Boxcar Children by Gertrude Chandler Warner.  Because the first book is about kids who are alone in the world, fending for themselves, we skipped it and went right on to Book Two: Surprise Island which is delightful old-fashioned.  Four siblings are allowed a summer largely to themselves on their wealthy grandfather's private island where they gather and prepare their own food, craft their own museum, and discover American Indian artifacts.  These books are probably the biggest wild-card of the group and, like the Magic Treehouse books, should probably be vetted on an individual basis for appropriateness, but the kiddo and I are well into the Woodshed Mystery (#7) and having a great time with it. 

What are you reading with the kiddos in your life this summer?  Leave a comment! 

Happy Birthday, America! You don't look a day over 223 . . .

This time every year, I can't help but think of this amazing video:

I love this video for its own sake, but I especially love it because it reminds me of this:

Click on this image to go to a modern edition via Amazon.

Click on this image to go to a modern edition via Amazon.

If you don't know, this book is where that cherry tree story comes from ("I cannot tell a lie") and many others.  Weems made stuff up to build up America (and for personal profit).  It was a new country and it needed some stories, some culture, some history of its own to help it feel established and viable and "real."  And Weems wasn't the only one on this band-wagon.  There's a reason so many buildings were built with Greek-style columns (the Greeks had credibility, they had gravitas) and I'll always remember learning, when I toured Yale, that the windows were intentionally cracked and then repaired and that worn cobblestones were imported from Europe to give the place an older, more established feeling. 

To me, the Cox & Combe's video is just taking absurd part in (and, sure, poking fun at) this same tradition. 

I love that tradition.  Well, I don't love the making-stuff-up per se, but I love the spirit of re-invention.  I love self-determination and being the author of your own story.  I love Jay Gatsby inventing a new, fabulous life for himself.  I love that no matter where we're born, we don't have to feel destined to end up there. 

Yup, there's a lot that's wrong with our country.  Jay Gatsby is a fiction and a white, male one at that. 

Nevertheless, on the anniversary of our country's independence, I like to appreciate that dyed-in-the-wool of America is the energetic belief that each of us is free to pursue his dreams and to be whoever he or she wants to be.  It might not happen for everyone but it wouldn't happen for anyone if we didn't begin with the assumption of that possibility. 


A good idea I had (about buskers)

I had this idea: 

How great would it be if the street musicians you see performing in the subway or in busy public areas let you sing with them live-karaoke-style?! (Answer: pretty great!)

Hear me out.

  • It wouldn't work for every musician.  It has to be someone who does covers.  And they'd have to be fine just playing and singing on their own; it couldn't hinge on the event of karaoke.
  • Live Karaoke is already a thing - a popular and very cool thing.  I've done it.  It was fun.
  • The transit system (and the street) are venues where, for performers, engagement is already really low; people aren't there to hear this band or musician.  Defying expectations by engaging a member of the public - both for the person brought temporarily into the band and for casual observers - grabs attention and turns the energy way up by introducing an element of risk.  The performance becomes a special event, not just background noise.

That's all.  I think it would be a MAGICAL development in street performing if, occasionally, a performance was built to accommodate (but not dependent upon) the participation of passersby.  At the very least, I think some marketing campaign could co-opt this idea to good effect. 

You're welcome!

What's your latest good idea? Leave a comment! The world need to know!!!

M.C. Double-E

That's my rap name.  Okay.  Not really.  BUT my rap video did just come out.  You're saying "WHAT?!" I know.  It's a little "off brand," as they say. Here's the story . . .

Surveys are FUN!

The other day, I found myself googling one of the people in my community.  I'd visited the website of a local business to get the phone number and, while I was waiting for the call to go through, saw the full name of one of the delightful employees.  So I started Googling. 

I've done this before.  Kind of a lot.

I get fascinated with someone - for any number of reasons - and it just isn't socially acceptable to start interviewing people with whom you have only a passing acquaintance, you know?  So . . . Google.

Two things about this:

  1. I've been surprised by who is easy to google and, conversely, how many folks are really hard to find on the internet.  Sometimes it's just a common name, but more often it seems like a lot of people just don't show up on the web and that kind of fascinates me.
  2. It occurred to me to wonder, in my most recent bout of "research," how normal this is.  Do YOU do this kind of Googling?  

Then I thought, I can ask people!  You! I can ask YOU!  But asking for your response in the comments - especially about something like this that might feel embarrassing to have on the record - seemed like not a great way to find out.  So . . . (drum roll) . . . I made a SURVEY!!  It's short - only six multiple choice questions - and in a few weeks, I'll share the results.  HERE IS THE LINK!

FUN, right?  Or is this just another way that I'm weird . . . ?  You can leave your answer to that question in the comments, no survey required.  ;)

The One I Love

The weekend before last, my husband and I found ourselves in the rare position of having an evening to ourselves (the kiddo was asleep early) and enough time to watch an entire movie in one sitting.  Hot Damn!  

Some quick googling of "best date movies" led us to The One I Love staring Elisabeth Moss and Mark Duplass plus Ted Danson in a small supporting role.  It's currently streaming on Netflix which describes the movie this way:

Confronted with the potential end of their marriage, Ethan and Sophie take off for a weekend together, hoping to negotiate their future. When they reach their idyllic destination, however, the couple strolls into a bizarre new brand of trouble.

We really enjoyed it.  I wrote before about another Mark Duplass movie, Safety Not Guaranteed, and what both of these movies have is a kind of eerie magical realism that works really beautifully. 

Also, as a recent producer of video content (aka Gemma & The Bear) it was hard not to be impressed with how the movie really only has two actors in it - such a smart way to have room to focus on excellent acting (which The One I Love has in abundance) and great production values. 

If you watch it - or if you've seen it - leave a comment and let me know what you thought!

I scream, you scream, we all . . . ARTs-cream!!

This past weekend, my husband, the kiddo and I explored a cool public art exhibit that's going in in Central Park right now.  Presented in conjunction with Creative Time, the exhibit is called Drifting in Daylight (all the info if you click on that link).  It's based in the northern parts of Central Park and it happens Friday and Saturday afternoons through June 20th.

Mother's Day at Storm King

We had the most beautiful Mother's Day!   

Have you been to Storm King?  It's an open-air museum full of mostly-but-not-only large-scale modern sculptures, situated beautifully on a large campus about an hour outside of NYC.  You can bring a picninc.  You can rent bikes to toodle around.  It's gorgeous AND it's a great place to go with young kids who can run and make noise and explore and enjoy nature as well as taking in the art.  Here are some photos to give you a sense:

The open space, the woods at the borders, the sun, the smell of the air all combined to evoke so many happy memories of my back yard, summer camp at Cornell, time in England, time at Vassar, biking in France with my husband.  The biggest gift was how it all combined to make me (allow me?) to feel more expansive, happy and optimistic than I have in a really long time.

I don't imagine that Storm King will provide such a profoundly joyful experience for everyone as it does for me, but I do encourage you to go for a visit if you have the chance.