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Monday, December 19, 2016

The Writer's Life 12/19 - Short Takes

Sign of the times: Italians may no longer have to promise fidelity in wedding vows. A new bill proposes to remove the clause from marriage contracts. Some politicians are pushing for the amendment to the Civil Code because it no longer represents marriage in the modern day. “It’s the legacy of an outdated and antiquated vision of marriage, family and the duties and rights between spouses," said a Senator. I've never been married. People are flawed, stuff happens, but if I ever tied the knot I'd expect both of us to be faithful. What's the point of marriage if the bar is set so low?

The Fast Takes column in today's NY Post reports that the NY Times does not practice what it preaches when it comes to diversity. Only two of its 20 reporters who covered the election were black. None were Latino or Asian. That's a lesser percentage than the appointees Trump has thus far selected.

The Weird But True column cites an unusual obituary headline used by a family upon the passing of a 67-year-old man: "Irishman dies from stubborness, whiskey." The comment has attracted so much attention that police have been called to manage traffic at the funeral.

There's an interesting development in major college football, where, in a sense, all bowl games but those involving the playoff have become meaningless. Two star running backs, Leonard Fournette of LSU and Christian McCaffrey of Stanford, have chosen to forgo their teams' bowl appearances in order to avoid the risk of an injury that might hamper their NFL draft status. An article at Yahoo Sports believes the floodgates have opened and many more athletes will follow suit. The farce that is major college football deserves it.

RIP Zsa Zsa Gabor, 99. Born in Budapest, she and her sisters, Eva and Magda, found fame and fortune in America. There are 76 credits listed under her name at IMDb, mostly in film and TV. She also did theater occasionally. But her most memorable appearances were on talk shows, where she was a lively presence. She was married nine times, divorced seven, one union annulled. Here are two of her most telling quotes: "I am a marvelous housekeeper: Every time I leave a man I keep his house." When asked, "How many husbands have you had?" she said: "You mean other than my own?" The most famous quote regarding her may never have occurred. During a visit on The Tonight Show she allegedly brought a cat with her and asked Johnny Carson: "Would you like to pet my pussy?" To which he supposedly replied: "I'd love to, but you'll have to move that damn cat." Many tapes of the show have been lost, so this has never been confirmed. What a great find it would be - if it actually happened. In 1994 she did this hilarious four-minute film with David Letterman:

There was abundant sunshine, which mitigated the bite of the cold temperature and allowed the floating book shop to open. My thanks to the gentleman who purchased Danielle Steel's Star, and to Monsey, who bought Gentle Closings: How to Say Goodbye to Someone You Love by Ted Menten. The best thing that happened today is the arrival of a copy of my new novel, which I will begin proofing shortly.
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