Archive for November 2019

91 days to go before I become an adult!   1 comment

12th  Birthday February 29, 1984 South Florida

Leap Year 12 Michaels house Leap year


In 1984 Leap Year fell on a Wednesday. Following are some of the notes from my diary: Party at Mike McCarroll’s house on Tuesday February 28–Bill G gave me a framed posted of “La Cage Aux Folles” the last show we saw together (which I still have in 2020!) John Connolly came in from St. Louis and Buddy Vest from NYC.  Buddy played Zach in the touring company and was responsible for me and Dr. K seeing the show in NYC on September 29, 1983 when it became the longest running show in Broadway’s history and became the most exciting performance I ever saw in a theatre! 


I don’t believe I wrote the following but it is my handwriting and I had been sober for  3 years by then: too much food–3 cakes!


The next evening Thursday February 29 I gave a party at Bobby Rubbino’s Restaurant in Fort Lauderdale for the crew at Wag’s where I was working–as a surprise Shirley, Mike’s mother, came into town and joined us–the next evening we took her to La Vielle Masson–an excellent French restaurant in Boca Raton.

Bob Schink, the ‘last’ Fuller Brush salesman’ in Broward county, was at all events and  took a load of pictures but I don’t seem to have any except at Mike’s house.


For the record: all the restaurants I mentioned have closed but more importantly Mike, Buddy, Dr. K, Bob and Shirley plus some in the picture have died.



Posted November 30, 2019 by greatmartin in LEAP YEAR BIRTHDAY, LIFE EVENTS

“Knives Out”–movie report   1 comment

Either I have been going to the movies far too long or I have become jaded–maybe a combination of both!
I’ve seen at least a dozen different films in this genre with one of my favorites being “Murder On The Orient Express” with Ingrid Bergman and Lauren Bacall . It was an Agatha Christie movie made with a group of stars revolving around who committed a murder. In this case the screenplay and direction is by Rian Johnson which brings in some current hot topics like immigrants with references to Lin-Manuel Miranda  and a snippet of a song by Steven Sondheim among other things.
The story is basically about patriarch Harlan Thrombey, played by  Christopher Plummer, has become a multimillionaire by writing novels. We meet him at his 85th birthday on the night before he  accidentally killed himself or was accidentally killed by  his Latina immigrant nurse Marta, whose mother is here illegally. She is played by Ana de Armas who, as Marta, is filled with kindness and always throws up when she tells a lie.
In the cast are Daniel Craig who appears as  private detective Blanc, hired secretly, and uses a horrible southern accent without reason, Jamie Lee Curtis as Harlan’s daughter Linda, married to Don Johnson and they are the parents of ‘Ransom’ played by Chris Evans. Curtis gives the best performance in the movie,
Michael Shannon as Walt is Harlan’s youngest son, is married to Riki Lindhome, playing Donna, and they have a child, Jacob, played by Jaeden Martell, who is sort of an ‘odd’ bird. Toni Collette is Harlan’s daughter-in-law who was married to his deceased son and Harlan’s granddaughter  Megan, played by Katherine Langford. The latter’s character was completely unnecessary to the movie and whose major scene could have been cut without an effect one way or the other except cutting the film down to a 2 hour running time.
Lakeith Stanfield and Noah Segan are detectives involved in the mystery who seem to allow Craig’s detective take charge though it really doesn’t make sense that they do.
Three other characters are played by Edi Patterson as Fran, Harlan’s housekeeper and K Callan as Wanetta, Harlan’s mother—remember Harlan is 85!—and Frank Oz as Harlan’s lawyer.
The only interesting aspect to me was the Gothic house which has layers of hidden doors, windows and rooms and when you see all the things in the house you will feel sorry for the poor housekeeper!
“Knives Out” was a disappointment to me but in the film’s defense most critics seemed to love it!

Posted November 29, 2019 by greatmartin in FILM REVIEWS, MOVIE REVIEW

Only 92 days to go!   Leave a comment

11th Leap Year Birthday February 29, 1980 South Florida

I returned to South Florida in 1979 and got an apartment right off I-95 and Davie Boulevard. Two blocks west was the restaurant/bar called the Sandpiper. I quickly became friends with the bartender Bruce and some of the regular customers like ‘Teacher Mike’, ‘Movie Mike’, ‘Ice Skater Mike’ and Gino. The bar was unique in the sense that the whole top of a long u-shaped bar was the top of a fish tank! You try having a few scotch on the rocks on top of fish!

In any case I had my eleventh Leap Year birthday there and I still have the “Happy Birthday” round pin that I wore all night.

The three Mike’s have passed on but I have many pictures and memories of the 3 of them. Guess where I had my 12th Leap Year birthday party? Just keep reading!


Posted November 28, 2019 by greatmartin in LEAP YEAR BIRTHDAY, LIFE EVENTS

10th Leap Year Birthday February 29, 1976 Memphis Part 2   Leave a comment

 A jazz cocktail hour with finger foods then a complete sit down dinner with the main course Prime Ribs with baked potato, salad, fresh vegetable, open bar, soft drinks and coffee for 300 people.
A live band with a singer first presenting a show and dancing.
A 4 tier cake for dessert and an after dinner drink.
Hired Margie’s son to take pictures.
All this and I don’t remember a thing though I was told I did give a ‘speech’ welcoming everyone and the fact that I was drunk wasn’t obvious. I look at the pictures and it is all a blank! Was I singing with the singer or was I just talking to my guests using the microphone?
I would stop drinking 5 years later!

Posted November 27, 2019 by greatmartin in LEAP YEAR BIRTHDAY, LIFE EVENTS

10th Leap Year Birthday February 29, 1976 Memphis Part 1   Leave a comment



1976 Collage 1

















Posted November 26, 2019 by greatmartin in LEAP YEAR BIRTHDAY

  1 comment

I don’t recall any birthdays between the first and this except when I was ‘5’ I remember taking over the Alley Bar in Miami Beach and celebrating the birthday but I have no pictures from that time. I really started the big events in 1972.

9th Leap Year Birthday February 29, 1972 Weight Watchers  Memphis


Posted November 25, 2019 by greatmartin in LEAP YEAR BIRTHDAY

Starting a photo album celebrating my birthday!   1 comment

I started working on a Leap Year Memory Photo Book for my birthday– this was my first and I made the front page of a newspaper—have no idea of what paper or who the other people are in the picture–maybe this way I’ll find out!

First Leap Year Birthday  February 29, 1940 1 year old


Posted November 24, 2019 by greatmartin in LEAP YEAR BIRTHDAY, LIFE EVENTS

It’s a new phenomenon!   1 comment

Birds after the rain Nov 14 2019
It was very rare to see a flock of these birds but now it seems every rain they gather around and go ‘hunting’ for worms, seeds and whatever else the waters bring them.
Also in every group there is usually a black/brown feathered bird. I don’t know if it is a male and this is his ‘harem’ or a baby of one of them. Males are usually the more colorful one when it comes to birds but then again many chicks change colors as they grow.
I can never understand anyone that says they are bored! All I have to do is look out my window and Mother Nature is always putting on a show and a different one every day!

Posted November 23, 2019 by greatmartin in MOTHER NATURE

“Ford v Ferrari”–movie review   Leave a comment

Ford 2
I can count on 1 finger how many racing car movies I have seen and though I may recall who was in them I don’t remember any of them and, sadly, because I had heard good things about “Ford v Ferrari” it will probably be in the same category. Based on a true story, the screen writers Jez Butterworth, John-Henry Butterworth and Jason Keller, juggle 4-5 different stories to add human drama to the film while eliminating any one of them would have brought the movie in at a reasonable showing time, way less than the 2 hours and 30 minutes it runs.
At the same time the director James Mangold has one too many race scenes, one too many shots of a foot hitting the brakes, more shots than necessary to prove Ken Myles is eccentric or business owners and their employees can be  underhanded and ruthless.
 Caitriona Balfe, though a bit difficult to understand, impressed me playing the wife of Christian Bale, who as driver Ken Myles, has been getting raves for his role, left me cold and also hard to understand. Matt Damon is, as always, impressive in a strong, somewhat silent way, as former champion driver and now designer of race cars. Tracy Letts in the role of Henry Ford II has a 2 minute moving and at the same time funny scene while being solid in the rest of the film. Josh  Lucas as the boss’s right hand man is an effective villain even if the role is a bit overwritten and obvious.
The banter between Damon and Bale tells a lot about both men but one segment, meant to be funny is only funny due to the reaction of Balfe while Bale’s scenes with Noah Jupe, just right as his son, shows the man to be a good father.
The behind the scenes of business life certainly isn’t new but the behind the scenes of the racing sport and business aspect of it and car companies is interesting.
Though you may know who the winner is, or will be, in “Ford v Ferrari” it will entertain you if you can get through the 30 to 40 minutes unnecessary segments.

Posted November 22, 2019 by greatmartin in ENTERTAINMENT, FILM REVIEWS, MOVIE REVIEW

I really don’t understand it!!!   Leave a comment

Pick any month, week or day of the year and my Geraniums, Begonias and/or misnamed Christmas Cactus are in bloom! I look for the reasons and I really don’t have an answer. It is not the sun and the window they are in because some are in the east, a few in the north and a load in the south.
I thought it might be the temperature in the apartment which would explain, maybe, the Christmas Cactus blooming all year round as I do keep it cool–though some may call it cold! Still that doesn’t explain the blooming Geraniums and Begonias or the yellow blooms of the Cuban plant. It might explain the green peppers growing as they need temperatures between 60 & 90 greens, though it is never 90 degrees inside my apartment yet it could be the sun shining through.
The only problem I have are getting Poinsettias to bloom after they lose their red leaves (‘blossoms’). Every December I buy two of them and though they last all year they never get red bracts again but I will try again this year.
Meanwhile I will just enjoy the blooms I see every day inside my apartment! (If you look you will see a new pepper forming on the plant in the first picture.)
Plants blossoming 1 November 2019

Posted November 21, 2019 by greatmartin in GARDENS, MOTHER NATURE, PLANTS

%d bloggers like this: