Tag Archives: New Jersey

Nursing Homes: A Stain on the NY & NJ Response to Covid-19

A few years before my late maternal grandmother passed away, my family made a decision that she could no longer take care of herself. The only option was to move to a nursing home. To say that it was not an easy process is a understatement.

Across the country, millions of families have repeated this process. The last thing anyone wanted was to make it more complicated via Covid-19.

After three months of sheltering in place and wearing protection when going outside, it appears that the virus’s hold on New York and New Jersey is starting to break. Those of us who live in New York and New Jersey should be congratulating ourselves, as should those in the halls of power. But there is one issue that must be overcome before we can say we are in the clear: nursing homes.

As of the end of May, 20% of all Covid-19 cases in New York were found in a nursing home or long term adult care facility. In New Jersey, just above 50% of those who died from the virus were either lived in and/or worked in one of these organizations.

It should be considered that back in March and early April, we did not have the information we have now. This led to doing the best that was able to be done at that point. However, that does not excuse the major miscalculations that were made and the loss of life that may have been prevented.

Governors Andrew Cuomo and Phil Murphy have done an admirable job in trying to control disease that takes no prisoners. However, the fact that far too many nursing home residents and employees died is a stain on their response to Covid-19.

Leave a comment

Filed under National News

Throwback Thursday: Cake Boss (2009-2017)

For those who love to be in the kitchen, baking is more than final product that comes out of the oven. It is the love and pride that comes with creating something for someone else to enjoy.

Cake Boss aired on TLC from 2009-2017. The show followed Buddy Valastro, the owner of Carlo’s Bake Shop, located in Hoboken, New Jersey. Audiences were introduced to Buddy, his staff and his family as they created edible masterpieces for their customers.

I really like this show. It is entertaining without the mind numbing feeling that comes with some reality shows. As a viewer, I enjoy the challenge of watching these cakes go from conception to reality.

I recommend it.

Leave a comment

Filed under Television, Throwback Thursday, TV Review

Throwback Thursday-Cheaper by the Dozen (1950)

Our families are at the core of our societies. It is not a stretch to say that stories about families continue to appeal to us generation after generation.

Cheaper by the Dozen premiered in 1950. Based on the book of the same name, the film starred Clifton Webb and Myrna Loy, the film told the story of the Gilbreth family and their brood of 12 children. Living in Montclair, New Jersey in the early 20th century, parents Frank Sr. and Lillian both work as engineers. Their professional training extends to their home life, as everything is done to maximum efficiency. But this is starting not to sit well with their older daughters, who are eager to stretch their wings outside of the family nest.

There are certain movies from this period that modern audiences go back to again and again because they have a timeless quality to them. In a sense, this movie is timeless, but there are scenes that are definitely showing the film’s age.

Do I recommend it? Maybe. As much as I adore some movies from the ’50s, this film is not one of my favorites.

By the way, the movie was remade in 2003 starring Steve Martin and Bonnie Hunt. It is as bad as one might expect it to be.

1 Comment

Filed under Books, Movie Review, Movies, Throwback Thursday

Indignation Movie Review

College, from my experience, at least, is a transitional period in our lives. We are not children anymore, but we are not adults yet either. It is that strange place when we are starting to figure out who we are and what we want out of life.

The new film, Indignation, based on the 2008 book of the same name by respected writer Philip Roth, takes place in 1951.

Marcus Messner (Logan Lerman) is a young man of Jewish descent from Newark, New Jersey. He spends his days working with his father, Max (Danny Burstein) at the butcher shop that bears the family name. Life is about to change for Marcus. He is about to start college at Winesburg College in Winesburg, Ohio.

The first person in his immediate family to attend college, Marcus is looking forward to not just the educational opportunities, but also the distance between college and his father, who is becoming irrational about many things, his son included.

Marcus develops a crush and has a date with Olivia Hutton (Sarah Gadon), one of his classmates. Olivia may appear to be healthy and normal, but underneath, she is dealing with a host of complicated issues. Marcus continues to spend time with Olivia, despite the concerns of his classmates and even his own mother, Esther (Linda Emond).

Set in a time of repression and the expectation to fit in, this film is the story of a young man trying to find his own way. While certain sections of the narrative seemed a little slow, the ending was completely out of left field. I walked out of the movie theater with the thought that my mind was blown.

I recommend it.

Indignation is presently in theaters.

1 Comment

Filed under Books, History, Movie Review, Movies

Don Jon Review- There Is A First For Everything

Tonight, I saw the writing and directorial debut of Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s film, Don Jon.

Jon (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) is a twenty something Italian male from New Jersey who is fixated on the external images of himself and his world. While he has no problem finding female companions, he prefers pornography over the real thing.

He meets Barbara (Scarlett Johansson) at a club and they start a relationship.  But Jon is still addicted to porn, despite his promise to Barbara to stop.  She also encourages him to attend night school where he meets Esther (Julianne Moore).

Included in the cast of characters are Jon’s friends, Bobby (Rob Brown) and Danny (Jeremy Luke) and his family.  His parents,  Jon Sr, (Tony Danza) and Angela (Glenne Headley) and his sister Monica (Brie Larson).

There is a first for everything. While the lead character is certainly compelling, it is a very stereotypical view of Italians and more specifically, those of Italian descent who live in New Jersey. To paraphrase another reviewer, the character is almost out of Jersey Shore.

It an admirable first film for Gordon-Levitt, as a writer and director.  But it not the best film I have seen this year and I hope he will take both the good and the bad from this film and apply those experiences to future films.

1 Comment

Filed under Movie Review, Reviews