Thursday, March 29, 2007

More Clean Up.

3-29-07 SHORT HILLS: A bit cooler today, but sunny. I finished cutting down the yew and then cut it up for firewood, did a bit of hemlock pruning and pool clean up and pool fence repair. We took away a lot of the rotted pool fence wood. I may replace it if I can find the right stock. I also finished siphoning the winter precip out of the pool, leaving the level down about two feet.

New Blooms: more crocus.

For AF, the centerpiece with Lily:

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Work Day.

3-28-07 SHORT HILLS: Another pretty day. I took down a dead yew tree and an invasive wild rose and did a bit of pruning and more dead fall removal.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Another Try at Spring.

3-27-07 SHORT HILLS: Warm, sunny and moderate breezes, I can hardly believe it isn’t snowing. The crocuses took advantage of the day and weather and popped out, and here they are. I spread over 100 pounds of fertilizer on the evergreen shrubs and spring bulbs, did a bit of deadfall removal and enjoyed the day.

New Blooms: red maple, elm, crocus, andromeda, vinca minor.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Lily's Weekend.

3-26-07 SHORT HILLS: Lily’s Bat Mitzvah happened over the past weekend. It was a show. I am almost at a loss for words to describe it all. Needless to say, the principal was magnificent. The Frankel and Fagin families turned out en masse, notice the French, for the occasion. The food, the clothes, the booze, the dancing, the photography were all outstanding. I’m sorry to say that it appeared as though the dance contest was fixed. The best couple was over-looked. Here is a link to my pix: Congrats again to Lily who did a fabulous job, to her parents who must have been working overtime, and to her sister for suppression of sibling rivalry above and beyond the call of duty. There were children present in huge numbers and from far corners of the USA.

Lily at the Bat.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Rachmaninoff by Olga

3-19-07 SHORT HILLS: The last snow is slowly melting as the days lengthen. We saw The National Philharmonic of Russia [NPR] at NJPAC yesterday afternoon. The featured piece was the Rachmaninoff Second Piano Concerto performed by a very blonde and beautiful Olga Kern, the only woman to have won a Van Cliburn Competition. She did two encores in response to the continuous ovation.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Barber and Snow

3-18-07 SHORT HILLS: The middle of the week was beautiful. The temps were in the 70’s and the snow melted. The breezes were warm on your cheek. That is my definition of spring, by the way. But—now we are back in winter with more shoveling, plowing, cold wind, boots and gloves. Here is the reason we call them snowdrops:

Last night Judy and I hosted Val and Steve, Alison and Dan, and Maggie, Lily and Anna at the Met for “Il Barbiere di Siviglia” by Gioachino Rossini with Peter Mattei, Juan Diego Florez, Joyce DiDonato, John Del Carlo and John Relyea as the principals and Maurizio Benini as conductor. It is a new production, but not the premiere, and will be video-casted in movie theaters next weekend. We all loved it. I thought the restored aria added by Florez before the end went on too long, but what do I know? We had dinner before the opera at Fiorello’s across the street from Lincoln Center. The restaurant is a favorite of ours and lived up to its usual standards. I could eat there a couple times a week.

For anyone interested, here are a couple wikipedia references to Bearmarchais, the author of the play that Rossini adapted in creating Barbiere:ère_coupable

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Snowdrop Exposé

3-11-07 SHORT HILLS: First day of Daylight Savings Time is bright and sunny, but cool and windy. I did spend some time outside with the dogs and did a bit of clean up. Here’s a candid, intimate shot of the Snowdrop that I showed on the 1-12-07 post as almost open. The freeze froze its progress until now—about a two-month delay. I hope the pollinators were able to wait. The snow is again gone except for the plow piles.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Reddy for Spring.

3-10-07 SHORT HILLS: Another Artic cold wave just abated leaving us with hopes for spring weather. It wouldn’t be an early spring at this point, but welcome nonetheless. The ground hog was wrong this year, and, perhaps, the magnitude of his error has yet to be fully tabulated.

The feeder has been busy. The cardinal liked it so much that he called all his pals.

Checking out the scene.

The whole posse. How many can you spot?

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Strings and Winds.

3-6-07 SHORT HILLS: After two spring-like days at the beginning of the month, we are back in the deep freeze with gusty wind. In three months we will be complaining about the heat and humidity. I hope.

We heard Lily play her cello in a recital string orchestra in her birthday. They were quite good.

Da Da Da Duumm

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Impeach Bush.

3-1-07 SHORT HILLS: The mess at Walter Reed Army Hospital reveals another example of incompetent management by the administration. It’s another Good Job, Brownie moment. I am so sick of #%&*#ing Bush. He’s a trained monkey; make that an untrained monkey. He lacks all intellectual curiosity and intellect, for that matter. He even seems to delight in appearing obtuse. All the malapropisms must be studied; they couldn’t be real, could they? He researches nothing. He makes rash and impetuous decisions. His intuition or ESP or whatever he uses to make decisions is just laziness rather than investigation. He is pig-headed and stubborn, and once he has made a bad decision, he adheres to it blindly ignoring signs and evidence of his mistake. And everything has been a mistake. Oh yes, the religion in place of science is a fundamental flaw. If there were a God, He would have burnt the Bush. And the other one, the hunter, should have been indicted in the CIA/Plame scandal. They should both be impeached and convicted.

Hail to the Chief