Archive for June 2021

Summer, Working Out, Park, Mother Nature & Home   1 comment

Better explain that ‘working out’ first! I watched the guy in photos #11 & 12 for about an hour. They lifted weights, jumped rope, ran around the soccer field, used the fountain edging for stepping–for an hour but I didn’t lose an ounce!!! Something is wrong there!

I say it often because I truly am constantly amazed by what I see.  Mother Nature comes up with things that just make me stop such as the iguana in the tree in picture # 10 who blended so well I didn’t see him until someone pointed him out! By the way she also provides us with the following spectacle!!

Photos #1 & #4 are plants in my house that I have ‘grown’ just by trimming their mother plantand sticking them in a pot!Between the flowering trees and the watering of the fields you forget the heat and humidity that equals summer in Fort Lauderdale! (Those guys were sweating so much I should have lost a few pounds!!)

After being closed for a year and 4 months we got the notice about the pool reopening!

Posted June 30, 2021 by greatmartin in HOME, LIFE, MOTHER NATURE

Masterpiece “US”–PBS–MUST SEE TV!   Leave a comment

Can be watched on PBS (check local listings), or  or here
“US” is a 4-hour film/limited series on PBS  in 2- 2 hour showings. Connie Petersen (Saskia Reeves) has decided her relationship with Douglas Petersen (Tom Hollander) after 25 years, including 20 years married, is over now that their son Albie (Tom Taylor) is off to college and agrees to go on the 3-week vacation that was planned previously. 
As they leave for Paris each goes over highs and lows in the years they have built a life together from when they were young—played by Iain De Caestecker and Gina Bramhill–and Connie, an artist, was intrigued by brainy, well organized Douglas, fell in love, gone through the loss of their first child, thrive on the birth of their son and while Connie concentrates on making a home for her son and husband leaving her artist side behind. 

While Albie and his mother get along famously he and his father are always at odds with each other. Albie meets a girl, Kat, (Thaddea Graham) in Paris and through her actions Connie sees her husband reacting and knows then and there their relationship is over and goes home while the next day Albie and Kat take off.

Douglas decides to go after his son which is very unlike him.”US” will make you want to go to Venice, Paris, Amsterdam, Barcelona, among other places, as they are an important part of telling the story just as the humor, sadness, drama, arguments and the lingering thoughts in the back of your mind whether it will a ‘happy ever after’ or is Douglas meeting divorcee Freja (Sofie Grabol) a ‘red herring’?

At about the 3 hours & 40-minute mark there is a twist that took me completely by surprise and is just one of the many storylines that the screenplay writer, David Nicholls who also wrote the book the film is based on, bring together in rational ways explaining what is happening.

The lead actors Reeves, Hollander and Taylor are a family with Taylor looking more like his mother than his father, including an important scene where father and son are bare-chested and while the father is very hairy the son doesn’t have any hair on his chest making you laugh while the scene is moving your emotions.

Masterpiece “US” is excellent and worth your time–must-watch TV!

Streaming reviews for week of June 20, 2021   Leave a comment

1) “It Runs In The Family”–Prime Amazon–movie–1 hour & 49 minutes–4 members of the Douglas family (Kirk, Michael, Cameron & Diana) star in the movie with Micheal producing and other family members in the credits–throw in Bernadette Peters & Audra McDonald–and the cast makes the movie worth watching–THE JOKING BETWEEN KIRK & MICHAEL PLUS A MOVING SCENE SHARED BY THEM MAKES THIS A WINNER.

2) “The Jane Austen Book Club”–Netflix–movie–1 hour & 43 minutes–interesting to see the screenplay give each couple a Jane Austen counterpart and tries to pull it all together–GOOD ‘LEARNER’ FOR THOSE NEW TO JA AND FUN FOR THOSE WHO KNOW HER BOOKS AND TAKE NOTES

3) “I Love You Phillip Morris”–HULU–movie–1 hour & 40 minutes–based on a true story–a con man and his lover–more ‘vivid’ sex action than any gay film and more cursing than any nongay film–11 years later Ewen McGregor is once again playing a gay man in “Halston”–I HAVE NEVER BEEN A FAN OF JIM CAREY AND THIS DOESN’T CHANGE THAT

4) “Where Hope Grows”–Prime Amazon or HULU–movie–1 hour & 35 minutes–a by the numbers movie but the ending took me completely by surprise–stay through the end credits–EVERYONE SHOULD HAVE A ‘PRODUCE’ IN THEIR FAMILY

5) “Lupin”–Netflix–series–season 2–5 episodes–3 hours & 42 minutes–Omar Sy is a winner as he was in the first season–it is hard to tell which is more entertaining: him or the story–let’s make it both–HIGH ENERGY, SMART DIALOGUE, ACTION, FUN–A MUST SEE

6) “Lucifer”–Prime Amazon–series–season 6–10 episodes–9 hours & 21 minutes–considering that the novelty of Lucifer being on earth has worn off using the story of God retiring and one of his children taking his place, one possibly being Lucifer, keeps the fun going–KEEPS UP THE PACE OF THE FIRST 5 SEASONS

Posted June 27, 2021 by greatmartin in ENTERTAINMENT, FILM REVIEWS, Series, Streaming

Being Transgender: 2 documentaries and 1 ‘Hollywood’ film–reviews Gay Pride Month June 2021   Leave a comment

As a gay man I have been puzzled about transgender people because, in spite of what was said about gay men 70+ years ago, I never wanted to be a woman nor have I been exactly PC with drag queens. I did at one time, in the 1950s, have a relationship with Paul who I thought was a crossdresser but now that I think of it he might have been transgender though little was known about it at the time. This was just before Christine Jorgensen, an army veteran, who in 1951-1952 had sex reassignment surgery and made headlines when she came home from Sweden. (As an aside she went to Christopher Columbus High School which I, also, went to 2 years after she graduated but she is never mentioned there.)

It wasn’t until 22 years later that Renee Richards, a tennis champ, came out as transgender and battled to play in the women’s division!

Due to “Changing the Game” and “Growing Up Trans” I have become more understanding of transgenders and though we have many things in common regarding being ‘different’ and ‘coming out’ they have a much harder time and looked at differently than gay people, even from those of us who should know better. The more I learn about them–and I have a lot more to learn–the more I admire their tenacity, their struggle and their bravery.

“Changing the Game” (HULU) follows 3 high school athletes and how they navigate, fight to stand/play where they belong. “Growing Up Trans” (Prime Video) focuses on children and how they are handling their sexuality, mainly before puberty, of who they know they are and how the parents deal with it, in most cases with the father having the hardest time. It also emphasizes how doctors and researchers acknowledge the kids are pioneers. For the record “The results included the following LGBTQ suicide statistics: LGBTQ youth were 3.5 times as likely to attempt suicide as their heterosexual peers Transgender teens were 5.87 times more likely Gay and lesbian youth were 3.71 times more likely Bisexual youth were 3.69 times more likely to attempt suicide than teens who identified as heterosexual.” (


“Adam” (HULU) is a ‘Hollywood’ satirical look, and not too good, at the above problems

Posted June 25, 2021 by greatmartin in GAY, Transgender

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This “Old Man” almost gets scammed!   1 comment

You are officially an old man in South Florida when a con artist tries to scam you: scam–definition “A scam is a deceptive scheme or trick used to cheat someone out of something, especially money. Scam is also a verb meaning to cheat someone in such a way. Example: Banks will never call you asking for your credit card number or social security number over the phone.

“Only 2 problems with this con: 1) I don’t have ANY money and/or 2) Recently AARP did a story on scams and one of the ‘red flags’ was misspelled words.

I was approached on facebook with a PM saying “I‘m excited I got $100,000 from the on-going grant Program when I applied and it isn’t a loan you don’t have to pay it back” and I was given a ‘government agent’ to contact via a text. I am not naming names as there will be an investigation made and I don’t want to wrongfully accuse anyone. The agent replied and had that red flag of misspelled words. Also, I don’t believe that the person who first contacted me knows her name and facebook page (or copy) is being used.

I could continue on–I have kept ALL the facebook PMs–and if you are that interested just email me but I felt uneasy about the whole thing and checked the government grant page  

‘Social Services Block Grant’ which started me on a hunt. I finally emailed *someone I have complete faith in and they responded with: “The Social Services Block Grant (SSBG) does not provide direct grants to individuals; SSBG does not charge a fee for receiving a grant. If you receive a message offering you a SSBG grant or requesting a fee, please contact the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Fraud Hotline at 1-800-447-8477.”

I have heard neither from my ‘friend’ or the ‘agent’ but I did want to make you aware what happened!

Now this ‘old man’ is going to console himself with some carrot cake before another con person wants to steal what little carrot cake money I get each month from Social Security!!!

Posted June 23, 2021 by greatmartin in LIFE, LIFE EVENTS

Streaming Movies for Gay Pride Month June 2021 Part 4   Leave a comment

1) “Shared Rooms”–Hulu–American film–1 hour & 15 minutes–frontal nudity–3 gay couples–Christmas holiday–how they make families (or not)–WASTE OF TIME

2) “I Want Your Love”–Prime Amazon–American film–1 hour & 11 minutes–with nothing to say it throws in soft porn and MAKES MOVIE SEEM LIKE 71 HOURS

3) “Trade”–Prime Amazon–film–1 hour & 53 minutes–Coco Shawn (played by T. Ashanti Mozelle) is a hustler and Michael (Austin Miller) a lawyer–the former educates the latter– COCO’S STORY MORE INTERESTING AND MORE REALISTIC THAN MICHAEL’S

4) “Naz & Maalik”–Prime Amazon–American film–1 hour & 26 minutes–2 Black Brooklyn Muslim boys confront their sexuality–aspect of gay life with people not usually seen in a movie–RIDICULOUS FBI STORYLINE THAT GOES ASTRAY BUT MAKES IT MOVIE LENGTH

5) “BWOY”–Prime Amazon–1 hour & 27 minutes–a married man, has an affair with a young Jamaican man starting online–except for ‘soft porn’ this shows an aspect of gay life very rarely spoken about–anyone familiar with this storyline knows where it is going–YES THERE ARE GUYS LIKE BRAD WHO SHOULD KNOW BETTER

6) “CIAO”–HERETV–American film–1 hour & 27 minutes–two guys have a friend who recently died–Andrea, a cyber friend of Mark, from Italy, is invited to visit Texas by Jeff who was Mark’s best friend–too many ‘fillers’, unnecessary scenes, makes IT SEEMS TOO LONG AND BY THE TIME YOU GET TO ‘CLIMAX’ IT IS ANTI-CLIMATIC–PUN INTENDED

7) “I Am Michael”–Netflix–American film–1 hour & 45 minutes–is he Gay? Straight? Bi?–who cares?!–BASED ON A TRUE STORY–JAMES FRANCO MORE BELIEVABLE AS GAY MAN THAN STRAIGHT PASTOR IN HIS TRANSFORMATION–TRUE (?) STORY

Posted June 22, 2021 by greatmartin in GAY, MOVIES, Streaming

Streaming Movies For Gay Pride Month June 2021 Part 3   Leave a comment

1) “My Best Friend”–Prime Amazon–Argentinian movie–1 hour & 31 minutes–we get to know Lorenzo and Caito as they get to know each other–whether the former is gay and the latter isn’t won’t be answered until the end and then it doesn’t even matter–ANGELO SPINETTA  AND LAUTERO RODRIGUEZ AS THE LEADS ARE ATTRACTIVE AND TERRIFIC AS 2 YOUNG ADULTS WHO NEED A FRIEND AT THIS TIME IN THEIR LIFE

2)”Dear Ex”–Netflix–Taiwan film–1 hour & 39 minutes–a man leaves his life insurance to his male lover instead of wife and kid–the widow is infuriated and the kid caught in-between her and his dad’s lover–A FUNNY ROM-COM THAT TURNS INTO A FAMILY DRAMA

3) “Just Friends”–Prime Amazon–Dutch movie–1 hour & 20 minutes–an easy going sweet love story about opposites attracting–DELIGHTFUL FROM BEGINNING TO END

4) “Shelter”–Prime Amazon–American film–1 hour & 28 minutes–Zach basically brings up his nephew, takes care of his sick dad and helps his sister who is only interested in her own welfare–it is also the story of Zach falling in love with his best friend’s brother–SIT BACK, RELAX AND ENJOY THIS REALLY SWEET MOVIE WITH AN ATTRACTIVE CAST

5) “Test”–Prime Amazon–American film–1 hour & 29 minutes–if there is no other reason, and there are many, you should watch this to see what a ballet dancer, in this case Scott Marlowe, can do with their bodies–unbelievable–it’s 1985 in San Francisco–Rock Hudson was on the cover of Newsweek–WE WATCH 2 MEN AND THEIR REACTION TO THE AIDS VIRUS WITHOUT HISTRIONICS

6) “Dancing Queens”–Netflix–Swedish film–with a title of a movie being Dancing Queens and the song “I Will Survive” as the center of 2 production numbers in a drag club you know this is disco and fun–Molly is a straight woman who pretends to be a man in order to dance as a drag queen in a gay club–the choreographer of the club helps her disguise herself–talk about ballet dancers and what they can do with their bodies (see the review of Scott Marlowe in “Test” and)  Fredrik Quinones in this film–except for a secondary storyline which is somewhat of a downer  and a few storylines are not resolved it sort of redeems itself by showing the actor, their real name and the role they played at the end credits–THIS IS LAUGHS & FUN AND YOU CAN NEVER GET TIRED OF GLORIA GAYNOR DOING THE DISCO ANTHEM

Posted June 21, 2021 by greatmartin in ENTERTAINMENT, GAY, Streaming

Week in June 2021   1 comment

No matter how much doctors and hospitals try to drive me crazy Mother Nature and life always keeps me sane! I may be put on hold for 39 minutes—see photo #3— but then I look at the canal and there is a swan float—#2–going up the canal without any visible strings pulling it!!

Of course at this time of the year and I can look out my window and, if I wanted to, could dive into a tree loaded with Queen Crepe Myrtle blooms–#4.

I didn’t know whether to laugh at the iguana who was afraid of me enough to scamper up a tree–see #7– or shake my head at the lack of a classic building–#5–that was built to honor the men and women who served in WW 1 & 2–being torn down to be made into a modern skating rink for the Panthers hockey team to train in and open to the public at other times. I am curious to see what they will come up with as they also ‘redoing’ the Parker Playhouse which is perfect as is and, so far, they haven’t changed much on the outside.

Though it is our rainy season we have been having a lot of sunny weather and there are always people in various vessels going up and down the canal–#6–but no, none were pulling the swan!

Last, but not least, there is always Bette Davis–#1–to look at (sometime I am going to have to take a week of pictures of her different outfits–sorry you really can’t see this one, matches the colors on the weatherboard!), tell us the weather and even downplaying the 30% chance of rain on Father’s Day!With the medical department against Mother Nature I would bet on the latter with a little good human nature thrown in!

Posted June 19, 2021 by greatmartin in LIFE, MOTHER NATURE

Getting back to ‘normal’!   1 comment

Little by little ‘normal’ is coming back in my life though at the same time it can be shocking as in this case eating out in restaurants. Prices have almost doubled in most places and even lunch is now getting into the $25-$30 per person.

After not accomplishing anything at the hospital and Rion having to sit around for 5 hours I took him for lunch and we went to the new Tacocraft without knowing it was Taco Tuesday (all tacos $3) or that Margaritas were $5. We both had 2 tacos (I had the shrimp–and it lived up to its name!) and he had a Margarita. The check was around $20 plus a tip based on what it would have cost. I was very disappointed for a couple of reasons, such as not being given napkins, but the main reason was that the tacos were so small I hope they don’t have these servings when at regular price. Were they good? I am serious when I say that they weren’t big enough to get any taste! Oh, did I mention they serve water at room temperature?

For a late lunch one afternoon Allen and I went to JMarks where they have a special lunch menu but we were too late for that and ordered off the regular menu. He usually has the 10 ounce NY Strip steak which costs $19 at lunch and $24 at dinner. I have been looking for a good ‘old-fashioned’ Shrimp Scampi and so far haven’t had any luck though this was close. So far in the restaurants I have tried it they have either breaded the Shrimp or cooked it in a heavy sauce if they even sauteed it! Though this one wasn’t cooked in JUST garlic and oil (had a light lemon cream sauce) it did taste okay. The price was $26 so with tax and tip it was a fairly expensive lunch.

Last, but not least, we went to Big Louie’s after the Friday movie to have pizza and, as always, didn’t disappoint. We had the medium—yes, medium, not large!–12 inches with 5 toppings for $15.99 plus tip and tax and a soda we got away for less than $20 each and with 4 slices of pizza each more than satisfied—though I can remember back in the ‘old days’ I could eat a large one all by myself and have dessert after. LOLOh, yes, the first picture is of Jordan, Becky’s great-grandchild, and one of the very few times he wasn’t smiling. Next time I will catch his priceless smile which makes everyone who looks at him smile back!By the way, the other baby is me—smiling and not!

Posted June 17, 2021 by greatmartin in RESTAURANTS

UNBELIEVABLE!!   1 comment

When I woke up Monday morning I was sort of concerned about my right where they had put in a stent to open a blocked artery last Wednesday.It was red, swelling, felt warm, painful and because I am taking 3 blood thinners I wasn’t really concerned about a blot clot but ?????????????

Took Allen to the airport and asked Rion to come along as I wanted to go to the ER on the way back and I was concerned about driving if they gave me some muscle relaxer, pain killer or antibiotic that may make me drowsy.

We got there about 9:30 AM and at 11 AM they put me on a bed in the hallway in the ER section. A little after 12:30 PM they took me for a 10-15 minute ultrasound and said the results should be fairly quick and finally at 1:30 PM I went to the nurses station and asked if they could find out anything and within 10 minutes ‘my’ nurse handed me a batch of papers–well 11 to exact–and said I was discharged and should see my primary doctor within a week to 10 days–at 2:08 PM (see bottom, right hand corner of  photo!The diagnosis was ‘puncture wound’ followed by a list of home care, mainly the possibility of pain killers or antibiotics and then came the ‘kicker’—seek photo below with has “When to seek medical advice” or go to the second sentence in this post!!!


Posted June 15, 2021 by greatmartin in HEALTH

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