Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Interesting rating

Manohla Dargis gave an exceptionally good review to the new film The Savages in today's New York Times. But what I found most interesting is the followup line the paper always includes in film reviews about its rating. "The Savages is rated R (under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian). The film has raw words and open wounds."

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Thankful for our Friends & Family -- Days 3 & 4

The morning after -- or maybe it was the afternoon after -- brunch at The Flying Biscuit was followed by a fun walk through the Historical Oakland Cemetery.

After that we were chilly and thirsty, so we headed over to Cabbage Town and the 97 Estoria Bar for some great beer and a crazy game of Wikipedia charades, devised on the spot by Grant and Thom. Amazingly, we were actually able to decifer random article titles such as Bilingual Communes in Poland.

Saturday morning those of us who remained headed over to the Chattahoochee River for a walk, before we got in the car for the long ride home. A great visit, worth all those miles.

Thanks, Barbara, for some of the photos.

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Thursday, November 22, 2007

Thankful for Our Friends & Family -- Days 1 & 2

We celebrated Thanksgiving in Atlanta once again, with great friends & family. We drove up to Barbara & Steve's house on Wednesday, Sarah & Andy flew in early Wednesday from San Francisco, Ariana flew in Wednesday morning from Austin, Jesse, Thom & Jasper flew in from New York. Krin drove up from Gainesville later in the day and we all met, with Barbara & Steve, and Grant, at a great Italian restaurant in the city for Thanksgiving eve dinner.

Thanksgiving day, at the Schindlers started with breakfast, good Atlanta bagels and fresh fruit salad. After that, some people went on a hike, a couple practiced yoga, some prepared for dinner.

By late afternoon we were joined by Joanna, and also her sister, Rebecca, Rebecca's husband Andy and their new baby Anna, and Steve's aunt Lillian.




and Sarah,

almost time for dinner.

We've been taking group photos in this same spot for many years.

Right up front are Charlie, Rebecca & Andy's old bassett, and Baxter, Joanna & Grant's young bassett.

You can find three Oliver poodles, Dylan (with Mark), Marley (with me), Jasper (with Jesse).

Dinner was collaborative and delicious, and afterwards we all relaxed in the cozy, sleep inducing family room, until we ate again...and again.

Thanks to Barbara for some of the photos.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Super New York Weekend -- Day Four

On Sunday, we had another celebration, Helen's birthday brunch at Artisanal. Jesse and Thom gave Helen art for her birthday too, a beautiful picture of the Brooklyn Bridge embroidered with one piece of black thread.

This was NOT followed by great theater as planned (the stagehands strike started the previous morning and shut down Broadway), but by an afternoon of wandering the magnificent Central Park and then warming up with cold beers at Dive 75, a neighborhood bar near the park.

Wonderful friends and family, wonderful city. Thank you so much to everyone who joined us in celebration -- Barbara, Steve, Judy, Billie, Jesse, Thom, Helen, Eleanor, Susan, Paul, Jerry, Marjorie, Val, Tony, Meryl, Alec, Susan, Heather, Steve, Matthew, Melissa. And thanks to Barbara & Steve for some of the photos.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Super New York Weekend -- Day Three

Saturday morning and Mark's 60th birthday! The reason for the whole trip! We headed over early toward's Jesse & Thom's for brunch, stopping briefly at Grand Army Plaza to see the Brooklyn Public Library and the greenmarket. Then great food and fun Barbara & Steve, Judy & Billie, in Jesse & Thom's very cool old home in Crown Heights (very near our future home). Jesse & Thom gave Mark his birthday gift, a bearded man print by Ashley G that looks very familiar!

Next, we headed into the city for a sort of surprise party at Otto, pizza and gelato right by Washington Square, one of Mario Batali's places. It was really a surpise for Mark when everyone joined us there, in addition to the Friday night crowd, and Jesse & Thom, there was Val & Tony, Susan & Paul, Helen, Eleanor, and Mark's brother Jerry, his wife, Marjorie, Mark's sister Susan, her daughter Heather, Heather's husband Steve. A fabulous time was had by all and an amazing Black Hound cake topped it off.

After that, most of us headed uptown to the Beacon Theatre to hear the brilliant Bill Maher. Afterwards, we continued the party for a while in a nearby Starbucks and Susan serenaded Mark with a tune specially written by Paul and Susan for Mark's birthday.

Listen & watch Susan sing the song above/read the lyrics below.

Mark Oliver’s Birthday Song
(attempt to sing to the tune of “It’s all happening at the Zoo”)
Something tells me it’s all happening at the zoo
The one in Tampa, that’s run by Mark and Sue...woo-hoo
You can hear the animals chattering away
“It’s hard to believe, Marks turns 6-0 today!” ...woo-hoo
Once there lived a lizard there, and cats and dogs and birds to spare.
Now Dylan, Marley, Daisy, Jules, and a bird named Hallie rule
At the zoo, at Mark and Sue’s...
They didn’t know what was in store the day they met
She wanted pet food, and he made her his pet
No regrets...lots of pets...
They were so creative they made up their last name
As Jesse grew up, she learned to do the same...they’re all insane
They moved away from city lights and now want to be in Crown Heights
Meanwhile Mark's still making waves, teaching kids in his own way
Not since Noah and his ark has there been a sailor good as Mark
Dolphins fish and manatees can’t believe that he’s sixty
If animals could talk you know, they’d say you’re great, as humans go
We think of you as our hero
Please enjoy your big 6-O
It’s true...Life’s zoo...
Happy Birthday to you....
Lots of love, Paul and Susan

Friday, November 9, 2007

Super New York Weekend -- Day Two

Friday was even busier than Thursday! Up and out early, Judy, Billie, Mark and I started out in midtown, seeing the wintery Bryant Park, the 42nd St. Library, Rockerfeller Center (and the just arrived tree), headed uptown through Central Park, enjoying pizza, beer, chestnuts, as we wandered. Finally had to jump on the bus, try for a cab, back on the train, to get downtown just barely in time (actually quite late) to meet Barbara, Steve, Alec (Barbara's brother), Meryl (Barbara's cousin), Matthew (Meryl's son), & Melissa (Matthew's girlfriend) at Joe's Pub in the Public Theatre to end the night with good food and the fabulous Lucy Kaplansky.