PRESORTED STANDARD PERMIT #3036 WHITE PLAINS NY Vol. X, No. IX Westchester’s Most Influential Weekly Thursday, March 5, 2015 • $1.00 It Was A Lonely And Mildly Terrifying Time... Adventures in Existential Terror: FBI Queries, Investigations and Plain Bullying By Steve Mayo, Page 2 WWW.WESTCHESTERGUARDIAN.COM Page 2 THE WESTCHESTER GUARDIAN Thursday, March 5, 2015 Government/CommunitySection community Adventures in Existential Terror: FBI Queries, Investigations and Plain Bullying By Steve Mayo Ever been queried by the FBI? I can tell you, it’s not a pleasant experience; not for me, not for anyone I know. Talking to a couple of G-men can be awfully disagreeable. And being lectured by even one can be positively revolting. Read on and I’ll explain. About 25 years ago, my company had almost completed construction of a new wing to our manufacturing plant in the Bronx. A fairly simple affair: a lot had to be cleared of old structures, the ground “scraped” and excavated and a new basic and plain design out of beams, purlins and prefabricated walls and a roof erected in its place. As a small manufacturer, based in the Bronx and Manhattan since 1921, the company was desirous of state and city certification as an Industrial Development Authority (IDA) project, which would afford us loan terms generally unavailable to firms of our size, as well as exemptions from sales tax on construction-related materials. The process involved meeting with the then-constituted Community Planning Board whose “check-off ” was required before the IDA would grant certification and a certificate of occupancy obtained for use of the space. Turns out that one member of the panel, let’s call him “Tony S.” (name changed to avert complications and expense) required a closer inspection and a meeting with the principals. Introductions were made and when questions became too technical for the owner-family’s understanding, he saw the general contractor in charge of the project day-to-day. We learned second-hand that the builder would be forced to “do his part” for minority employment and hire a sufficient number of local-area residents and a stated complement of minority-group members. After further consideration of the bureaucrat’s “concerns,” apparently a deal was struck to ensure a satisfactory number of Bronx residents of diverse backgrounds were achieved. Shortly later, amidst the bustle of workers and humming of industrial equipment, two well-dressed men entered our main building seeking the company principals. Representing ownership, I introduced myself, and led them to our offices. After being requested their identities, they produced badges and business cards issued by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. After offering the barest niceties, they asked if we had ever heard of Tony S. I answered, “Yes,” and then proceeded to tell what I knew about him. This seemed the proper course as I had learned that the Community Board member so named had caused the general contractor unbudgeted additional costs, considerable uncertainty, delay and not inconsiderable grief in complying with his unanticipated laundry list of “concerns.” As in the movies, the carefully groomed lawmen spoke in clipped sentences and answered my questions about the target individual with assiduous equivocation. After a considerable time relating the now-obviously sordid tale, the interview ended and I returned to my duties running the plant. I felt relief, having unburdened the company of satisfying “requirements” that seemed to have no basis in New York City / New York State rulebooks or official texts. As applicants to the state Industrial Development Authority, we had been obligated to complete an array of applications conveying our legal and financial worthiness, committing us to remain in the Bronx for the life of the loan, making good faith efforts to retain employees and transmit regular accounting data. Tony S.’s new demands seemed to emerge from nowhere other than his fevered and fertile imagination. Barely a week later, we received a Certified letter from the office of the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, directing us to contact them regarding an ongoing subject of their investigations. What followed was a five-week ordeal relating our honest attempt to expand operations in the Bronx and take advantage of government incentive programs designed to encourage increased employment of semi-skilled and unskilled borough residents. Community.............................................................................2 Community.............................................................................6 Prescription..............................................................................6 Eye on Theatre.........................................................................7 Travel-Gaston..........................................................................8 Travel-Levy...........................................................................10 Film Retrospective.................................................................12 Calendar................................................................................14 Cultural Perspectives.............................................................15 Mary at the Movies...............................................................16 Continued on page 3 Mission Statement Table of Contents Creative Disruption.................................................................5 Informal contact with the office proved to be inadequate, so we hired a law firm made up of ex-prosecutors of the state and federal “bars.”There is a long-standing tradition of prosecutors working for the feds or state offices; the sharpest and most financially- orientated opt out after a while and go to work for an over-priced partnership like the one we engaged. Those sharpest and most politically ambitious prospects stay in the public sector and hope to run for public office: more on this later. We were obligated to describe the origin of the construction project and how we came to know “Tony S.,” who, it turned out, had been a target of law enforcement for some time. Staff members lost work time visiting the lawyers and explaining their roles. Others lost sleep, concerned that their honest work complying with seemingly legitimate government requests was being misconstrued by an overly zealous U.S. Attorney’s office. Altogether, it was a lonely and mildly terrifying time. More than once, one of the prosecuting office’s “young Sam Zherka, Publisher Mary Keon, Acting Editor /Advertising Publication is every Thursday Write to us in confidence at: The Westchester Guardian Post Office Box 8 New Rochelle, NY 10801 Send publicity 3 weeks in advance of your event. Ads due Tuesdays, one week prior to publication date. Letters to the Editor & Press Releases can only be submitted via Email: [email protected] [email protected] [email protected] Office Hours: 11A-5P M-F 914.216.1674 Cell • 914.576.1481 Office Read us online at: www.WestchesterGuardian.com The Westchester Guardian is a weekly newspaper devoted to the unbiased reporting of events and developments that are newsworthy and significant to readers living in, and/or employed in, Westchester County. The Guardian will strive to report fairly, and objectively, reliable information without favor or compromise. Our first duty will be to the PEOPLE’S RIGHT TO KNOW, by the exposure of truth, without fear or hesitation, no matter where the pursuit may lead, in the finest tradition of FREEDOM OF THE PRESS. The Guardian will cover news and events relevant to residents and businesses all over Westchester County. As a weekly, rather than focusing on the immediacy of delivery more associated with daily journals, we will instead seek to provide the broader, more comprehensive, chronological step-by-step accounting of events, enlightened with analysis, where appropriate. From amongst journalism’s classic key-words: who, what, when, where, why, and how, the why and how will drive our pursuit. We will use our more abundant time, and our resources, to get past the initial ‘spin’ and ‘damage control’ often characteristic of immediate news releases, to reach the very heart of the matter: the truth. We will take our readers to a point of understanding and insight which cannot be obtained elsewhere. To succeed, we must recognize from the outset that bigger is not necessarily better. And, furthermore, we will acknowledge that we cannot be all things to all readers. We must carefully balance the presentation of relevant, hard-hitting, Westchester news and commentary, with features and columns useful in daily living and employment in, and around, the county. We must stay trim and flexible if we are to succeed. THE WESTCHESTER GUARDIAN Thursday, March 5, 2015 Page 3 that new resources may be required to assist the lonely, imperiled individual officer in his Herculean physical and Solomon-like ethical and intellectual responsibilities? Might some cutting-edge enhancement of computer hardware and Artificial Intelligence software be suggested to these sorry and doleful tasks? He doesn’t say. Blessed by a great and considerable public office with an unparalleled platform for public reflection and speculative problem solving, he cops out. Against considerable evidence to the contrary, he decides that the wholly understandable (if scientifically imprecise) practice of ethnological and racial profiling “complicates the relationship between police and the communities they serve.” What is his conclusion? “Conversations - as bumpy and uncomfortable as they can be – help us understand different perspectives….” Un-oh! Here we go again with the “conversation” business. Favored by amateur Dr. Phils and Ruths: reliant on suspect, theoretical socio-political conflict resolution, blandly dismissive of the overwhelming evidentiary incidence of minority-on-minority violence and decades-long welfare dependency and joblessness. Where anecdotal and statistical evidence point to the saliency of family cohesiveness and favorable job-creation policies for empowering “persons of color,” this national executive crime-fighting boss peddles excuses! For ignoring fundamental lessons of economics and resorting to moral scolding (“resist bias and prejudice”), Comey reveals his thorough unsuitability to the challenge. Stating “We have spent the 150 years since Lincoln … treating a whole lot of people of color poorly…. We must account for that inheritance” and “speak to each other honestly about these hard truths” he displays an almost childlike preference for amiable weightlessness. For what “hard” lessons can law enforcement take from Comey’s hectoring? Nothing of a curriculum for an improved course of police training and certainly no guidance for minorities seeking a way out of a troubling history of self-fulfilling self-defeat. The leftist guilt-ridden board and staff at the New York Times must have been impressed by the Director’s descent into self-flagellation and societal chiding, but it is doubtful that the public or police rank-and-file could have comprehended any useful remedy or course of conduct therein. Comey may have earned himself a shot at nomination for higher future political office (and the accolades of Democrats seeking that moderate Republican “ideal,” so community Adventures in Existential Terror: FBI Queries, Investigations and Plain Bullying Continued from page 2 of the state prosecutorial mechanism, one of a different nature and more caustic than we sampled in the Bronx decades ago. But similarly, his case exemplifies the pitfalls of placing so considerable an amount of latitude and discretion in the hands of lawyer posses. According to the local Gannett outlet and the Westchester Guardian, Mr. Zherka has been held without bail in pre-trial detention since September 18, 2014, despite the recommendation of the federal Pre-trial Services office that he not be detained. Charged with allegedly submitting false statements on bank loan applications, a tax issue and witness tampering, he has denied the claims, attributing them to the political establishment’s opposition to his editorial independence, TEA Party affiliations and pursuit of malefaction by political figures. While the validity of the charges is beyond the purview of this article, it is clear that political machines do not mourn his misfortune or begrudge the uncustomary denial of bail; this is not surprising. What does cause wonder is the failure of the daily broadcast and print media to raise alarms about the plight of so prominent an advocate of First Amendment rights; one who has obtained judgments against those who have tried to extinguish the distribution of the very newspaper you are now holding in your hands. How to explain their silence? Do these paragons of New York’s media “establishment” types disdain Mr. Zherka’s consistent advocacy of conservative and free-market views? Perhaps they begrudge his successful entrepreneurial career, which has included stints in real estate, restaurants and strip clubs. Whatever the cause, the conduct of local federal law enforcement and the indulgence of their excesses by the established “press” seems like more business-as-usual in the five boroughs and the suburban counties of Westchester, Nassau and Suffolk New York and perhaps the New Jersey ones of Bergen and Passaic. Our last example in the annals of “law enforcement Fear and Loathing” in the metropolitan area emerges from the fervid imagination of FBI Director James Comey, a Yonkers native. In remarks at Georgetown University early last month, he let loose with his analysis of the relationship “between law enforcement and the diverse communities we serve.”Pledging a laudable “honest discussion” about the “disconnect between police agencies and many citizens,” he then veers into the miasmic wasteland of sociological speculation and psychological demon dispossession. “Much research points to the widespread existence of unconscious bias” and “people in our white-majority culture have unconscious racial biases,” he reports. To this outbreak of “latent biases” he proposes “to design systems and processes that overcome that very human part of us all.” This new approach to law enforcement is supposed to stamp out “flavors of cynicism” and “mental shortcut(s)” that compound the “disproportionate challenges faced by young men of color.” He acknowledges that “young men of color” are responsible for a disproportionate percentage of street crime and then lambastes a hypothetical police officer for turning toward one side of the street where minority kids are present and not toward one where whites are. Does this compel him to conclude that law enforcement work is difficult or impossible in today’s atmosphere of critically spotlighted and second-guessed police behavior? Does he suggest Continued on page 4 “The doctors understood how important it was to get me back to work in a week.” C M Ricky R., colon patient Y CM MY CY CMY K ©2014 Hudson Valley Surgical Group | All Rights Reserved. pups” really lost his head (or at least his sense of perspective) and threatened to send my colleague “up the river” unless he agreed to “cooperate” according to our attorney. Specifically how any of us had failed to “cooperate” fully with the investigators was never explained, as every question posed to the employees was answered in full. Another petulant prosecutor offered “serious hard prison time” to staff members who failed to “give up the goods” on the errant civil servant. (Not once, however, were any of us referred to as a “scum bucket;” this was years before the proliferation of the CSI and SVU series on television and their limitless proliferation of spinoffs, sequels and prequels, and their parodying in the media). The case ended with a whimper and not a bang: no phone call clearing our company or finally disposing of the investigation. I do not know if “Tony S.” got nailed, did time or even if he is still plying his trade intimidating and “holding up” legitimate business in New York for his “ticket to the play land.”One thing is certain however: the $10,000 retainer that we coughed-up to the law firm matched precisely their billings in the case and no refund was obtained. And how to divine the terrifying torrent of threats, verbal brickbats and B-movie lawyer jibber-jabber? That was nothing more than prosecutor oratorical excess over the invariably Democratic party city machines and their complex networks of subsidiary boroughs, wards, precincts, water districts and community planning boards. And the cold, heartless re-delivery of such threats by our defense team? Hard to say, but one attorney-friend not related to the case said this was just more or less “returning a favor” by a lawyer to a law school classmate. And perhaps also, a bit of “Kabuki-theater” necessary to justify the great expense of criminal defense, courtesy of grand traditions of the legal profession. (Ultimately, the building was completed and integrated into the factory’s production system to our profit and the benefit of our unionized workforce in gainful employment, decent salaries and benefits for nearly three more decades.) Westchester Guardian publisher Sam Zherka has tasted another version The Advantages of Laparoscopic Colon Surgery Hudson Valley Surgical Group’s Minimally Invasive Center oﬀers patients a better choice for colon surgery. Hudson Valley Surgical Group 4000+ laparoscopic surgeries performed providing patients the latest in Minimally Invasive Surgery while utilizing the most advanced technology. Robert Raniolo, MD & Har Chi Lau, MD Castle Connolly’s Top Doctors™ Hudson Valley Surgical Group MINIMALLY INVASIVE CENTER 777 N. Broadway, Suite 204, Sleepy Hollow, NY 10591 914.631.3660 | HudsonValleySurgeons.com Page 4 THE WESTCHESTER GUARDIAN Thursday, March 5, 2015 community Adventures in Existential Terror: FBI Queries, Investigations and Plain Bullying Continued from page 3 mythologized by the metropolitan political chattering classes), but those seeking solutions for the continuing tensions in minority community policing will have to search elsewhere. Residents of New York and New Jersey have seen a parade of aggressive prosecutors over the years. From Thomas Dewey to Rudolph Giuliani, Jeanine Pirro to Janet DiFiore, Chris Christie to Eliot Spitzer to Eric Schneiderman. The best have led with principle, through crime waves to terrorist attacks. Others have undertaken more benighted missions, through personal and family scandal, to brazen political glory and office seeking; some New Rochelle: Police Initiative and Nissan Rentals By Peggy Godfrey The issue of community policing has been a frequent topic at New Rochelle City Council meetings. This month, the day before the city council meeting, Councilman Jared Rice proposed that a Committee on Community Policing be formed, which could recommend to the City Council “ways to improve community policing in New Rochelle.” Rice’s memorandum notes that the loss of 30 New Rochelle police officers has resulted in the loss of community policing: the PACT (Police and Community Together) was “functionally disbanded because of the funding dilemma. In 2012 the Citizens’ Panel on sustainable Budgets pointed out that with a diminished policing presence, the Police Department’s ability to “prevent crime” and engender trust, is “likely to degrade.” In Rice’s view, the national rank of New Rochelle as one of the country’s safest cities would be enhanced if up-to date safety community “policing initiatives,” could be used and then he referred specifically to areas of concern in the city such as the Lincoln Avenue corridor, “some parts of the West end and downtown.” Rice cited the United States Department of Justice “community policing” initiative, which supports both the use of partnerships and techniques to address the solving of problems. The “most relevant community policing issues relate to “crime, social disorder and the fear of crime,” he said. The $170,000 that Council approved for overtime in the 2015 police budget included $47,000 for optimal programming. The YPI or Youth and the Police Initiative was given informal approval, according to Rice, and the City Manager can proceed with YPI program to achieve “overall crime prevention.” A Committee on Community Policing should report on present policing policies in New Rochelle which fulfill these considerations: the current community policing practices; short term initiatives which will require short term recommendations needing little or no funding, and longer term suggestions for additional resources. Most important was the desire to “increase positive dialogue” between the police and the with dignified resolve, others through simple bullying. In pursuit of the loftiest of objectives, it seems Director Comey has neglected the lawyerly craft of factual research and mastered only intellectual bullying. Stephen I. Mayo is an attorney, owner of Mayo Linoleum Works, LLC and host of “The Steve Mayo Show” with Cornelia Mrose on WVOX radio, 1460 AM; Mondays from 6 to 7 PM. www.thestevemayoshow.com community. Since Monroe College and Iona College have offered their support for stronger “community policing activities,” Rice proposed Cathryn Lavery, Chair and Graduate coordinator of the Department of Criminal Justice at Iona, and Michele Rodney, Esq., Dean of Criminal Justice Monroe College, as co-chairs of this initiative. He also suggested that the City Manager appoint 15 members to the committee, including three members selected by the Police Commissioner. Other experts in the city’s departments should be asked to supply “information and advice.” He suggested that once assembled, the committee would need no more than four to six months to develop recommendations agreed to by a twothirds super majority, which can then be presented to the City Council. Rice suggested “New Rochelle can be a national model for the best community policing practices”. He concluded by asking the council for suggestions and support. At the council meeting on February 24, 2015 Councilman Rice initiated the discussion on this proposal for a committee on community policing noting the recent approval of the $47,000 for “optional programming.” Mayor Noam Bramson was supportive of using administrators from Monroe College and Iona College’s Criminal Justice departments. Likewise, Councilmen Barry Fertel and Ivar Hyden were supportive of the initiative. Councilman Lou Trangucci expressed a sentiment often heard, that the PACT officers need to be brought back because they integral to explaining Police functions to the community, especially with regard to young residents. St. John’s Episcopal Church, Yonkers February 20 – Downtown Yonkers: In the spirit of the renaissance of downtown Yonkers, St. John’s Church is offering beautiful music, sung by a professional four voice quartet, and special talks making ancient insights relevant to our daily lives. Intended especially for those not currently attending a house of worship, the program, entitled Drinking Deeply from the Well, will take place during the church’s weekly services, beginning Sunday, March 1 at 10:15 A.M. and continuing each Sunday through May 24, 2015. The talks, entitled “Spirituality When Religion Fails”, intend to share timely insights for both those who are and those who are not religious. Many people thirst for a relevant spirituality, yet feel that religious institutions are failing them Though established as a parish of the Church of England in 1684, St. John’s has always had a tradition of ministering to the needs of the community, regardless of religious affiliation, building St. John’s Hospital and creating agencies serving the homeless. The present church is 197 years old and efforts are underway to restore the bell, the in Yonkers, which has been stuck for four years. Located at 1 Hudson Street, at the intersection of South Broadway. Parking is available and the church is handicapped accessible. (914) 963-3033 or write [email protected] Website: www.yonkerschurch.org. ADVERTISE YOUR DISPLAY HELP WANTED ADS IN THE WESTCHESTER GUARDIAN! Do you have jobs available at your business? The Westchester Guardian publishes every Thursday and we would love to run your Help Wanted Display Ads, due Wednesday one week prior to publication date. Call today to reserve Display Ad Space in our next issue: 914.216.1674 THE WESTCHESTER GUARDIAN Thursday, March 5, 2015 Page 5 2 billion shares. Additionally, he developed new and innovative systems to allow its customers to maximize stock loans, automate its cashiering operation, and move into real-time trade processing. George Davidsohn’s impact on the securities industry cannot be overstated yet his name is known by many on Wall Street only through the firm Davidsohn Global Services, now managed in continuity by his son, Joseph Davidsohn, who grew up with the firm (I was present at his bris on Thanksgiving Day, 1973). While there was only one George Davidsohn in the development of Wall Street systems, there were many “George Davidsohns” throughout the development of the technology that supports just about our every action today. We should remember that the first working electronic computer, the ENIAC, only went live in 1946, less than 70 years ago and, in that time we have gone from floor-size computers to handheld ones; from punched card input to on-line interaction, from hand carried reports to instant transmission by satellite, and on and on. The very successful movie, “The Imitation Game,” highlighted the contributions to technology of Alan Turing, one of the mathematical theoretical geniuses whose vision predates actual working computers but provided the path, into focus for many. While most know the names of recent important innovators such as Steve Gates and Bill Gates, most have never heard of the George Davidsohns who brought technology to the airlines, major retailers, banks, government agencies and other industries while developing minicomputers, microcomputers, handheld computers and the Internet. I think that is a shame – we tend to take such development for granted and, from someone who has “been there”, it shouldn’t be! There is an old African proverb, “If you don’t know where you are coming from, you don’t know where you are going.” In this case, I would modify the proverb to “If you don’t appreciate where we have come from, you won’t appreciate (or perhaps understand) where you are going.” Now for another 150. CREATIVE DISRUPTION The 150th Column + 1 by John F. McMullen This Sunday, I was reading one of my favorite comics, “Pearls Before Swine” (yes, I read comics -- I read the New York Daily News comics daily, paying particular attention to “Dilbert,” “Pooch Café,” “Zits,” “Doonesbury,” “Red and Rover,” “Soup to Nutz,” and to the wonderful Pearls Before Swine written by the talented Stephan Pastis), and I was struck by how relevant the comic was to not only the present but to a project that I’m working on at the present. In the first frame, “Pig” (the characters, other than the author and an occasional neighbor or bar buddy, are all animals but deal with modern life) says to his friend “Rat,” “Hey, Rat, take a picture of me in front of this tree with my Smartphone;” Rat complies with the request and Pig then takes a “selfie” of the two of them together. Rat then has Pig take another selfie of the two of them with his Smartphone. As they walk home, they pass a store with a rather sad proprietor looking out the window. Pig notices him and says to Rat “What the heck was that guy selling?” To which Rat replies “I dunno. Let’s take his picture.” The rather sad looking man was selling cameras – traditional film-utilizing cameras! No wonder he was sad! The point of the story is that our technologysavant heroes have no idea of what came before or who George Eastman was or how those pictures were developed, enlarged, or printed. This mindset is not unique to comic strip animal heroes. I see it often when I talk to my students or other younger people about the days before Smartphones, the World Wide Web, or microcomputers. To them, I might as well be talking about Hannibal crossing the Alps or the Spanish-American War. This thought particularly resonated with me in relation to a project on which I am currently working. In conjunction with an upcoming business announcement by the Wall Street technology services firm, “Davidsohn Global Systems,” I am working on a biography of the firm’s founder, George Davidsohn. While George, unfortunately, can’t tell his own story as he suffered a stroke over two and a half years ago, I am fortunately in a position to do so, having worked with and for him three times over the last fifty years. It is a story that should be known because George, like many others, was responsible for technology innovation that brought American business to where it is today. George, born in Uruguay, came to the United States at the age of ten and wound up handling “punched cards” in the Electrical Accounting Machine Department of Dean Witter & Co. when the firm decided to plunge into the new world of “computing.” George and six others had the highest marks of a firm wide “Programming Aptitude Test” given to fill the position of “computer programmer” and were chosen to design one of the first computer systems installed on Wall Street. George was given what was arguably the most difficult of the assignments, developing a Margin Accounting System. This required him not only to amass an understanding of computer systems and the necessary skill to program IBM’s most powerful business computer at the time, the 7070 (less powerful than your present Smartphone) but also to develop an in-depth knowledge of Margin processing, the management of the accounts of the customers of the securities firm. It was necessary for the system to insure strict adherence to both Securities and Exchange Commission regulations for maintaining customers’ securities as well as the Department of Treasury’s “Regulation T” for the lending of money to customers and the calculation of interest on such loans. In those days – late 1950s and early 1960s, firms ordered large computer systems a year or more before they were actually available so George and the other Dean Witter programmers had to attempt to program the 7070 long before the firm’s actual computer was available – it was the third or fourth (depending on who you speak to) 7070 to be delivered in the world. This was before industrywide programming languages, such as “COBOL,” “Fortran,” “C,” “BASIC,” or “Java” were developed so George and the others had to learn a language, “Autocoder” that was unique to the 7070 -- a language that mandated the understanding of accumulators, memory, indexes, and the arcane instructions of the language (ex –“ZAI 3956” – “Zero out Accumulator 1 and Add to it the contents of Memory Location 3956” or “ST2 Net” – “Store the contents of Accumulator 2 into the Memory Location that has been previously defined as ‘Net’”). In spite of the very steep learning curve required of all the programmers and the need for testing their programs in far from Wall Street as IBM locations in such distant places as Poughkeepsie and Endicott, NY, the system “went live” in 1961. Once the system was completed, George took over the management of the three shift Computer Operations Department, contained in a room a quarter of the size of a large office floor in Two Broadway in lower Manhattan. This responsibility included the staffing of the department, implementing procedures for delivery of reports to Kennedy Airport each night for flights to San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Chicago, and development of procedures for backup and testing. This broad experience in problem definition, systems design, programming, and management served George a few years later when he chose to go out on his own as an entrepreneur and found Davidsohn Computer Services. Drawing on his experience at Dean Witter, he developed computer systems that, in one form or another, handled the processing of brokerage firms as the daily NYSE volume grew from under 10 million shares a day to upwards of Creative Disruption is a continuing series examining the impact of constantly accelerating technology on the world around us. These changers normally happen under our personal radar until we find that the world as we knew it is no more. Comments on this column to [email protected] gmail.com John F. McMullen is a writer, poet, college professor and radio host. Links to other writings, Podcasts, & Radio Broadcasts at www.johnmac13.com, his books are available on Amazon, and he blogs at http://open.salon.com/blog/ johnmac13. © 2015 John F. McMullen Commercial • Industrial & Residential Services Roll-Off Containers 1-30 Yards Home Cleanup Containers Turn-Key Demolition Services DEC Licensed Transfer Station www.citycarting.net City Carting of Westchester Somers Sanitation B & S Carting AAA Paper Recycling Bria Carting City Confidential Shredding DEP Licensed Rail Serve Transfer & Recyling Services Licensed Demolition Contractor Locally Owned & Operated Radio Dispatched Fully Insured - FREE Estimates 800.872.7405 • 203.324.4090 On-Site Document Destruction 8 Viaduct Road, Stamford, CT 06907 Same Day Roll Off Service Page 6 THE WESTCHESTER GUARDIAN Thursday, March 5, 2015 COMMUNITY Work Place Stress and Mental Health of Officers Should Be Examined More Closely By Municipalities By Damon Jones February 23, 2015: White Plains NY The unfortunate incident of retired White Plains police officer, Glen Hochman, 52, who is accused of killing his two of his daughters, Alissa (17) and Deanna Hochman (13), before killing himself brings into question: are municipalities addressing the issues of work place stress and the overall mental health of law enforcement officers throughout Westchester County? The pressures of the badge put officers at increased levels of destructive stress hormones, heart problems, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), suicide and alcoholism. In 2012, 126 police officers ended their own lives, according to a national study of police suicides, by the Badge of Life, a Connecticut based website run by active and retired police officers, medical professional and family members of suicide victims. According to Badge of Life, police officers commit suicide at a higher rate than persons in other occupations, with the exception of military personnel. “Suicides can happen in any profession, but they occur 1.5 times more frequently in law enforcement compared to the general population,” psychiatric nurse Pamela Kulbarsh R.N, BSW wrote in an article for Officer.com. Kulbarsh also writes that the top predictors for suicide for anyone are: a diagnosed mental disorder, alcohol or substance abuse, loss of social or family support, and the availability and access to a firearm. 90% of officers, who commit suicide, do so using a gun. Additionally, about 90% of the time, an officer is drinking heavily when he/she kills himself/herself. Statistically, most of the officers who commit suicide are white males, working patrol and are entering middle age. They have experienced a recent loss, real or perceived. Most shoot themselves while off-duty. Unfortunately, crime does not occur during typical working hours like 9-5 or 10-6. In this post 9/11 era, our country has become much more of a military state. Safety and security are major concerns. Law enforcement professionals in Westchester County, police, correction and probation officers and sheriffs have responded to these concerns by increasing work hours, adapting to new federal policies and procedures and sacrificing time with family and loved ones in an attempt to keep our communities safe. Even with health and safety precautions, Law Enforcement Professionals face exposure to diseases such as Aids, MRSA, Hepatitis and more recently, the H1N1 virus. With all these dangers, they must still don the uniform of Justice, go to work, and remain extra hours when needed to keep our streets and jails safe for the communities they serve. Nobody can deny that law enforcement professionals have one of the most stressful jobs in the world and it tends to be regarded as inherently stressful because of the personal risk of exposure to confrontation and violence and the day-to-day involvement in a variety of traumatic incidents. The FBI has found that agencies often use a late stage treatment strategy because police managers sometimes lack faith in early detection approaches and view them as ineffective. Yet, if agencies intervene before officers get into trouble, they can help officers onto the road to recovery, avoiding damage to both their personal and professional lives. The FBI also recommends numerous strategies for early intervention for Law enforcement departments • Help to improve the fitness and well being of officers • Provide information on lifestyle • Initiate stress management programs • Shift the responsibility of detection to individuals other than the affected officer There is a real need for Psychological interventions in our many law enforcement departments. This should include programs to build resilience among law enforcement personnel and their family members. Police psychologists offer numerous services to benefit employees and the families they serve. They strive to prepare law enforcement employees to be better prepared to deal with the stressors of their jobs, to make healthy adjustments when confronted with difficult situations, and to affect the culture of policing by likening therapy to going to a family physician or dentist. It is incumbent upon local law enforcement unions and fraternal organizations to maintain better relationships with the communities they serve. Taxpayers should know what our job entails, completely. We cannot continue to allow others to tell our story for their own political reasons when it comes to addressing the issue of mental health for officers. Sometimes we must abandon political correctness and speak the truth on the safety of our members. It just might save a life. Damon K. Jones, New York Representative, Blacks in Law Enforcement Prescription Drug Insights for Senior Citizens The Westchester Mall, Food Court Level, Friday, March 6, 9AM Learn about a broad range of topics regarding the use of prescription medications on Friday, March 6, 9AM at The Westchester in White Plains as part of the Mall Walk program. Tom Grandville, Director of Pharmacy Services at the Burke Rehabilitation Hospital, will educate seniors about prescription medication including, the side effects of medications, drug interaction and adverse reactions medications may have on each other, tips on how to read labels, potential hazards of multiple drug use and the difference between generic and brand name drugs. The program will take place at the Food Court on Level 4 and is sponsored by The Westchester County Parks Dept. Both the program and admission are free for registered members of the Mall Walk Program: register at the Horse Fountain plaza near Crate and Barrel on the Retail Level Two on Tuesdays and Fridays during the program. The Mall Walk program offers indoor Health Walking on Tuesdays and Fridays from 8 to 10 AM throughout the year. A special guest speaker is presented on the first Friday of each month, offering information on health issues, safety and nutrition. The Westchester Mall is located at 125 Westchester Ave., White Plains, NY. For further information call the Westchester County Parks Dept at: 914-231-4645. FLEETWOOD THE ROMA BUILDING RENOVATED APARTMENTS FOR RENT Prime Yorktown Location Beautiful, Newly Renovated Apartments COMMERICAL SPACE FOR RENT Great Visibility • Centrally Located STORE 950 Sq. Ft. Rent: $3250 /Month OFFICE SPACE: 470 Sq. Ft. Rent $850/Month • 1160 Sq. Ft. Rent $1650/ Month 914.632.1230 2022 SAW MILL RIVER RD., YORKTOWN HEIGHTS, NY 1 Bedrooms Starting at $1400/month • Studios Starting at $1200/month Brand New Kitchens, Living Rooms & Bathrooms • Granite Counter Tops • Laundry On-Site New Cabinets, Stoves & Refrigerators, Credit Check Required Elevator Building • 1 Block from MetroNorth Fleetwood Station • Monthly Parking Nearby Available Immediately Call Management Office for details: 914.632.1230 80 West Grand Street, Fleetwood THE WESTCHESTER GUARDIAN Thursday, March 5, 2015 Page 7 EYE ON THEATRE Hysteric and Historic knows how to write dialogue that manages to be both utterly benighted and totally believable. And, in John Rando, he has, as usual, the ideal director, who finds the perfect physical analogues for mental befuddlement or quirkiness, and manipulates a fabulously flexible cast to riotous effect. In this case, they are Arnie Burton, Carson Elrod, Rick Holmes, Kelly Hutchinson and Liv Rooth, ruthlessly having us roll in the aisles. By John Simon Lives of the Saints David Ives is a very funny fellow—he may well be the funniest American playwright around, with only Chris Durang and A.R. Gurney for conceivable competitors. He possesses a uniquely fantastic imagination and when the wit and fantasy fuse, there is no stopping him from splitting our sides. Equally remarkable about him is his mastery of the one-act play of which he has written only heaven knows how many. Now when you are offered a smorgasbord of six or seven of those, the quasi-infinite variety adds immeasurably to the fun. The ironically titled “Lives of the CARSON ELROD and RICK HOLMES in CARSON ELROD and RICK HOLMES in Lives of the Saints; © 2015 James Leynse. Hamilton Lin-Manuel Miranda, who gave us the charming “In the Heights,” is back with the more spectacular musical, “Hamilton.” Based on Ron LIV ROOTH and CARSON ELROD in Lives of the Saints; © 2015 James Leynse. Saints,” comprises six one-acters, some new, some old, but just as fresh. The first half begins with “The Goodness of Your Heart,” wherein friendly neighbors Marsh and Del are enjoying twilight beers in the latter’s back yard. Marsh complains about his rotten old TV and suddenly suggests that Del should buy him one like his own fancy largescreen, out of the generous quality of the playlet’s title. When the stupefied Del is finally shamed into complying, he expects the customary two words of gratitude, but Marsh cannot begin to think of “Thank you.” “Soap Opera,” in a takeoff on the loafing repairmen of the Maytag commercial, has a Maypole repairman arrive at a fancy French restaurant asking the maitre d’ for a table for two: himself and his date, a beloved Neptune IT-40 (From Left) ARNIE BURTON, RICK HOLMES, KELLY HUCHINSON, AND LIV ROOTH in Lives of the Saints; © 2015 James Leynse in the Primary States production of Lives of the Saints by David Ives. Directed by John Rando at The Duke on 42nd St., NYC. KELLY HUCHINSON and LIV ROOTH KELLY HUTCHINSON HOLMES in Lives of the Saints; © 2015 James Leynse. washing machine. The Maitre d’ is dumbfounded, especially as it emerges that the guy has a perfectly good girlfriend tailing him. But it turns out—or, rather, up—that an amorous, glamorous, demanding female pops halfway up from the machine, and complications ensue. As well as word play: Ives, a pundit of puns, comes up with more play on wash and washing than a lesser punster could dream of. In “Enigma Variations,” a pair of female “doppelgänglers” are patients of a pair of “doppelgängler” doctors. That extra second L is one hell of a duplication and, like so much else, doubles the fun. The girls are Bebe 1 and Bebe 2; the doctors, Bill 1 and Bill 2, in a barrage of Bs, until an androgynous Fifi shows up as a solitary double F. The second act starts out with “Life Signs,” in which at the bedside of the decorously dead Helen, we find son Toby, daughter-in-law Meredith (whose name everyone bungles) and Dr. Binkman, all platitudinously signing off on the deceased. As Toby murmurs goodbye, Helen utters “Hello.” To general consternation, the puritanical mother proceeds to Rabelaisian memoirs of the most pornographic nature, evaluating lovers (the Doc included) according to the size of their genitals, far superior to those of her husband and son. Discomfiting revelations about Meredith and mama’s boy Toby ensue. In “It’s All Good,” New York writer Stephen Rivers leaves his wife for a lecture in his native Chicago. There, on a train, he encounters Steve, a man who turns out to be married to Amy, the girlfriend Stephen left behind. He accepts Steve’s invitation to dinner, where he meets the now frumpy Amy, and, in Steve, the lower-class self that, as Rivzikowski, he was and could have gone on being. Finally, in “Lives of the Saints,” two middle-aged, lower-middle-class women, Edna and Flo, are preparing a post-funeral breakfast for twelve. They titanically cook up every imaginable Polish dish while indulging in the most stereotypical dialogue, but all in pantomime on an empty stage, with only the sounds of it ghoulishly vivid. At one point the back wall disappears, and we see three stagehands creepily contriving those sounds. Ives has a way of surrounding one weird, preposterous given with the most commonplace, pedestrian people and actions, making by contrast the torpid or philistine even more laughable. He Daveed Diggs (center), Anthony Ramos, Carleigh Bettiol, and Thayne Jasperson in Hamilton, with book, music, and lyrics by Lin-Manuel Miranda, inspired by the book “Alexander Hamilton” by Ron Chernow, with choreography by Andy Blankenbuehler, and directed by Thomas Kail, running at The Public Theater. Photo: c. Joan Marcus. Lin-Manuel Miranda and the company of Hamilton, with book, music, and lyrics by Lin-Manuel Miranda, inspired by the book “Alexander Hamilton” by Ron Chernow, with choreography by Andy Blankenbuehler, and directed by Thomas Kail, running at The Public Theater. Photo c. Joan Marcus. Page 8 THE WESTCHESTER GUARDIAN Thursday, March 5, 2015 EYE ON THEATRE Hysteric and Historic Chernow’s 800-page biography of Alexander Hamilton, this is the truthabiding story of an obscure Nevis island orphan (absconded father and slatternly, soon deceased mother), who makes it big among the Founding Fathers in American politics. Miranda handles it with cogent compression: five minutes for Chernow’s first hundred pages, Of major interest is the multicultural casting: Washington (Christopher Jackson), Lafayette and Jefferson (both Daveed Diggs), Aaron Burr (Leslie Odom, Jr.), Madison and Hercules Mulligan (both Okieriete Onaodowan) are all black, as are several others. As for the famous Schuyler sisters, Angelica, Hamilton’ soul mate (Renee Elise Goldberry) is black, Eliza, eventually Mrs. Alexander Hamilton (Philippa Soo) is Asian-American, and Peggy, later Maria Reynolds, Alexander’s adulterous, scandalizing lover (Jasmine Cephas Jones) is light-skinned black. But they are all perfectly convincing, regardless of race or ethnicity. Of further interest is that Miranda has written a largely through-composed score, for which his steady collaborator, Andy Blankenbuehler, has provided nearly through-danced choreography. The eight capable dancers, four men and four women, keep weaving into most of the proceedings, front, rear or on the sides, all to good effect. Of the 34tunes, I found only “Washington on Your Side” memorable, but none less than serviceable. The lyrics can be quite clever: “Alexander is penniless’/ Ha! That doesn’t mean I want him any less.” Or, about Washington, “The best he can do for the Revolution is turn n’/ Go back to planting tobacco in Mount Vernon.” I do not mind his use of near-rhyme, e.g. “abolitionists/ ammunition is” or “Movement/ prove went,” but I do mind not infrequent anachronism, showy borrowings, and poor grammar. Another problem is repetition. “The room where it happens” or “happened” is repeated 41 or 42 times, not consecutively to be sure, but still excessively. Yet at its best, we get about Alexander: “Our Phillipa Soo, Renée Elise Goldsberry, and Jasmine Lin-Manuel Miranda (center) and the company of Daveed Diggs, Okieriete Onaodowan, Anthony Ramos, Cephas Jones in Hamilton, with book, music, and lyrics by Hamilton, with book, music, and lyrics by Lin-Manuel and Lin-Manuel Miranda in Hamilton, with book, music, Lin-Manuel Miranda, inspired by the book “Alexander Miranda, inspired by the book “Alexander Hamilton” and lyrics by Lin-Manuel Miranda, inspired by the book Hamilton” by Ron Chernow, with choreography by Andy by Ron Chernow, with choreography by Andy “Alexander Hamilton” by Ron Chernow, with choreography Blankenbuehler, and directed by Thomas Kail, running at Blankenbuehler, and directed by Thomas Kail, running at by Andy Blankenbuehler, and directed by Thomas Kail, The Public Theater. Photo c. Joan Marcus. The Public Theater. Photo c. Joan Marcus. running at The Public Theater. Photo c. Joan Marcus. TRAVEL Barcelona: City of Genius, City of Gaudí By Author Rozsa Gaston Antoni Gaudí’s genius imprints itself on Barcelona in a way no other artist leaves so singular a mark on any other world-class city. Gaudí’s mystical blend of architectural virtuosity rooted in forms found in nature will leave an unforgettable impression on you. It is impossible to walk away from any of Gaudí’s greatest works without feeling a profound dislocation: have I viewed something ancient and gothic? Have I viewed something so post-modern and surrealistic that Pixar should be making a movie out of it? What exactly have I seen and why does it make me so uncomfortable? At first glance, Barcelona’s Sagrada Família Basilica looks like a standard gothic cathedral. Then one draws close and the mouth gapes. What are those fruit clusters doing on top of those towers? Who scrawled red graffiti on the stonework behind them like tattoos on the fingers of someone’s hand? Gaudi, of course. Who else could it be? Antoni Gaudí (1852-1926) was not only ahead of his time, he was ahead of anyone’s time. What first looks like whimsy, on closer study turns out to be the most profound workings of a genius who drew from nature and grounded everything he did in the most simple, elegant, and geometricallybased designs. Example? His use of the catenary arch as a solution to Gothic architecture’s biggest problem: the need for support. Gaudí used arches with the most natural curve of all—a curve created by the weight of a structure hanging from two ends, like a chain would hang from two posts at either end. For math majors to visualize, a catenary curve looks like the hyperbolic cosine function on a graph. Goodbye, flying buttresses! Second only to the Sagrada Família, Gaudí’s most well known structure in Barcelona is undoubtedly the Casa Battlò. Visit it, enough said. The Gaudí building I recommend touring is the Casa Milà, more commonly known as La Pedrera, an apartment building designed between 1906-1920 with man saw his future drip dripping down the drain/ Put a pencil to his temple, connected it to his brain/ And he wrote his first refrain, a testament to his pain.” The fine actors are neatly directed by Miranda’s steady collaborator, Thomas Kail. David Korins has designed a simple unit set that really works. There are idiomatic costumes by Paul Tazewell, and Howard Binkley’s lighting has a good period feel. In the comedic role of King George, Brian D’Arcy James is hilarious, but has to leave for another show by the time you read this; too bad. Miranda, in the lead he has written for himself, manages to be surprisingly unassuming. The show, sold out, will transfer to Broadway in July, after, we are told, “some fine-tuning.” But what does that mean? How and why do you “fine-tune” a show that already received universally glowing reviews? John Simon has written for over 50 years on theatre, film, literature, music and fine arts for the Hudson Review, New Leader, New Criterion, National Review, New York Magazine, Opera News, Weekly Standard, Broadway.com and Bloomberg News. He reviews books for the New York Times Book Review and for The Washington Post. To learn more, visit his website: www. JohnSimon-unsensored.com THE WESTCHESTER GUARDIAN Thursday, March 5, 2015 Page 9 TRAVEL Barcelona: City of Genius, City of Gaudí Europe’s first underground parking garage below. Night tours of La Pedrera are spectacular and surrealistic. Gaudí’s stone structures on its rooftop will inspire science fiction fantasies of extraterrestrial visitations. The interior of La Pedrera at night looks like a combination of a super hip night club on South Beach with Fred Flintstone’s fantasy vacation with Wilma in a 5-star luxury cave. Nighttime tours end with a glass or two of local cava in the main foyer, reinforcing the exclusive nightclub ambience of the experience. Gaudí was the first noted artist of his day to incorporate waste materials into his works, using bits and pieces of discarded colored ceramics, known as trencadís, to decorate his curved designs. Parc Güell, Barcelona’s most famous park, designed by Gaudí from 1900-1914 is decorated with walls and sculptured animals made out of trencadís. The cave-like overhang along Parc Güell’s most famous walkway curves like a giant seashell in Gaudí’s signature style, rooted in nature and geometry. Walking under it is a mind-bending experience. Barcelona is a city of zest and color, easy to access with direct flights from New York, and delightful for children, due to its ambience of playful whimsy. There are two tourist bus routes: the East Route and the West Route. The East Route stops at Gaudí’s most famous buildings in Barcelona’s bourgeois and fashionable neighborhoods, although Antoni Gaudí was neither bourgeois nor fashionable. A man of simple tastes and profound religious beliefs, Gaudí was fortunate to find a patron in Count Eusebi Güell, a man of deep pockets and considerable taste. The West Route takes one to the outskirts of the city, where Barcelona’s story becomes much larger and more political. On the less fashionable West Route one is likely to see plenty of Catalan graffiti scrawled on scruffy walls, offering insights into the separatist history of this proud capital of Catalonia, Spain’s richest region and one that has frequently not been part of Spain at all. Gaudí died in 1926 at age 74. Run over by a tram while crossing the street in front of the Sagrada Família Basilica, he was taken for a beggar and sent to a public hospital where he lay unidentified for several days, until he died. He is buried in the crypt of his beloved masterpiece, in which he lived and on which he exclusively worked the final eleven years of his life. The Sagrada Famiília Basilica is scheduled for completion in 2026 and is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Archbishop of Barcelona proposed Gaudí ‘s beatification, in 1998. The outcome is as yet undecided, hinging upon verification of Gaudí producing at least two miracles. I vote yes. About the Author Rozsa Gaston is a Bronxville author who writes playful books on serious matters; women getting what they want out of life is one of them. To learn more, travel online to www.rozsagaston.com or contact her at [email protected] Page 10 THE WESTCHESTER GUARDIAN Thursday, March 5, 2015 TRAVEL NICE—More Than A Nice Vacation By Richard Levy If it were not for Bridget Bardot, I would never have fallen in love with the French Riviera. When I was 19 years old I went to the Jewel Theater in Brooklyn to see “And God Created Women”. This movie not only made Bardot famous, it turned the Côte d’Azur into the Mecca for the rich and famous, and to confess, I became obsessed by this French sex-kitten. Unfortunately she was spoken for and too old for me. So that Summer I went to the Côte d’Azur to find my “Bridget Bardot look-a-like”. Alas, I did not fare too well, because the bronzed, bikiniclad French beauties I encountered wanted nothing to do with me. You see, I only knew a few French phrases and couldn’t compete with the bronzed French guys wearing Speedo bathing suits. (I wore boxers and was as pale as the boiled chicken my mother made on Friday nights.) Well, I never found my “Bridget”, but did fall head-over-heels in love with the Côte d’Azur: a love affair that’s lasted over fifty years. There’s no place in my travels that compares to the special “Joie de vivre” you experience with every breath you take on the Côte d’Azur. The special mystique of the French Riviera oozes from every portal: an air of excitement, tranquility, mystery and romance you don’t feel anywhere else. Even the wind here is intoxicating as it softly embraces your face: fragrant, sweet and salty, with a hint of the French beloved Gauloise cigarettes. As you sit in a sun-drenched Building Façade photo c. Atout-France / Cedric Helsly oceanfront café taking in the magnificent view, you’ll feel like you’ve escaped reality and are instead perhaps an extra in a French movie, expecting to see Jean Paul Belmondo seated at a table nearby, smoking a cigarette and slowly sipping Absinthe. Love is in the air; and on the Côte d’Azur, you can almost taste it.This Promenade des Anglais at Night / Hotel Negresco c. Atout-France / Emanuel Valentin the perfect place to escape for romance. You can let your hair down and allow “the other you” to come out. The Impressionists descended upon the Côte d’Azur to capture “the special light” of the sun here, which has inspired some of their most famous paintings. Bay des Anges; Quais des Estats Unis c. Atout-France / Robert Palumbo Château de la Messardière (Hôtel de Prestige). View from the grounds. Photo c. AtoutFrance / Cedric Helsly (Take a lot of photos: the “special light” advice: wear clogs and rent a beach chair will enhance them.) Pack a small canvas or straw mat; a towel does not offer sufboard and painting kit, get up early and ficient cushioning.) Topless bathing is create your own Côte d’Azur master- the custom in France. It’s distracting piece. Picasso lived in a village behind at first, but by the end of your first day Nice for many years, once he became you won’t even notice; so if you want to famous. He’d venture into a beachfront blend in with the locals, don’t gawk and café and while lingering over a glass of don’t forget the sunblock! wine or grilled sardines, with a twinkle You’ll love the ocean on the Côte in his eye, make a quick, simple drawing d’Azur: it’s the bluest blue: very clean on the paper tablecloth and sign it. Then and gentle. Folks on the Côte d’Azur are as soon as he’d leave, the cafe owner quite friendly and hospitable. They love would pounce on these “original Picasso it when you attempt to speak French drawings”. He’d also buy Côte d’Azur to them, as it demonstrates your effort picture postcards, make quick drawings, appreciate their culture. sign them and mail them to friends. What makes Nice very special When to go to Nice? Not in May besides the spectacular weather and when the “Cannes Film Festival” and fashionable beaches is the old, charming “Monaco Grand Prix” take place and city: “Vieux-Nice”, filled with narrow don’t go in August when all of France cobblestone streets, colorful cafes, restautakes their vacation. The best time to go rants, food markets and great shopping. is March, April, June or September. Be It hasn’t changed much since the 1700’s. advised that the beaches in Nice are not On your first day, take a 20 Euro tour covered in white powdered sand; they in an open-topped bus with “Nice Le are disconcertingly full of small stones Continued on page 11 that take time to get used to. (Take my Yachts moored at Cannes harbour at night. The château is in the background. Photo c. Atout-France / Robert Palombo THE WESTCHESTER GUARDIAN Thursday, March 5, 2015 Page 11 TRAVEL NICE—More Than A Nice Vacation Continued from page 10 Grand Tours”. This is a great way to get an over-view of Nice and you can get on and off the bus at 14 stops. The main street along the beachfront is “The Promenade des Anglais”, a majestic walkway adorned with towering palm trees: take a stroll from end to end. The Côte d’Azur also has many small, first-class museums and galleries with paintings by the “new impressionists.” Nice is ideally nestled between the sea and the Maritime Alps and the scenic foothills just beyond the city are dotted with picturesque villages. You will be astonished by all the impressionist paintings that cover it’s walls of the famous Colombe d’Or restaurant, located in the little village of St. Paul ‘d Vence, not far from Nice. Many years ago, still unknown French impressionists were starving artists, so they traded paintings for room and board with the art-smart owner. Even the terrace walls are covered with impressionist paintings and you’ll gasp as you pass a Picasso, Matisse and Renoir unassumingly hanging on the walls, on the way to the restroom. The food here is also artistic, expensive and worth it.) After lunch, museum hop: The Fondation Maeght presents modern and contemporary art; open every day, without exception. The Matisse Chappelle Du Rosare is located inside an old church which Matisse decorated with his huge paintings. Both museums are located in St. Paul d’Vence. The Renoir Museum is not far away, in the village of Cagnes-Sur-Mer visit. (Art lovers will feel as if they were in Impressionist heaven.) A short trip to Grasse is a visit worth taking. Grasse is famous for it’s perfumeries and fields of violets, roses, mimosas and orange blossoms used to make perfume and you can have your own scent created for approximately 69 Euros. Village of Eze, overlooking the Mediterranean sea and its luxury yachts. Photo c. Atout-France / Franck - Charel Tram in Place de Messina Photo c. Atout-France / Nicole Lejeune Baskets of Roses in Grasses photo c. Atout-France / Emmanuel Valentin Fondation Maeght, Museum of Modern and Contemporary art in Saint-Paul-deVence, near Nice. Photo c. Atout-France / Cedric Helsly One night, drop by the old-world Nice Casino. Be sure to dress up, and guys, if you are wearing Gucci loafers, wear socks (!) -- or they won’t allow you in. For a memorable brunch, make reservations at classic “Hotel D’ Cap” in Antibes, a short taxi ride from Nice where they offer a wide selection of fish that were swimming just that morning. Brunch includes the hotel amenities, including their scenic sunning-terrace over-looking the sea. Afterwards, stop by the “Antibes Picasso Museum. For an exciting day-trip rent a car (splurge for a sports car) and drive to Monaco on the famous “Grand Corniche”, one of the world’s most fabulous vista drives. Spend your day exploring the old city of Monte Carlo, have dinner at a beachfront restaurant and go to the classic Monte Carlo Casino where you’ll expect to see James Bond playing at a table near by. (Bring a change of clothes as you must dress up.) Where to stay in Nice? Two lovely and not too expensive beachfront hotels are the “Le Perouse” and “Hotel Villa Rivoli.” For a splurge, stay in the NeoGothic, famous “Hotel Negresco” on the Promenade des Anglais. When dining on the Côte d’Azur, order anything from the sea: it’s local, freshly caught and simply grilled with butter and local herbs. The popular local wine is a refreshing pink Rosé, inexpensive and of course, looked down upon by Parisians. Try their delicious Bouillabaisse (shellfish and fish stew with broth that’s to die for.) Two lovely restaurants which won’t disappoint you are “Le Bistrot d Antoine Brasserie” with it’s traditional but creative local specialties and The Olive & Artichoke with its’ inventive French-Fusion dishes. For lavish, traditional French cuisine go to the “Le Chantecler” located in the Negresco Hotel. In Nice, I usually prefer eating in one of the many beachfront outdoor Cafe’s on the Promenade des Anglais, where local dishes are served at reasonable prices and you get to watch the parade of tourists strolling by. (Wear sunglasses at night in restaurants and in the Casino so the other tourists will think you’re somebody famous.) One morning, take a 2 ½ hour cruise to St Tropez, bronze yourself on their great beach and have lunch in the scenic harbor lined with luxury yachts. The best way to get to Nice is on Air France, with non-stop flights every day. But I actually prefer flying into Paris. I spend a couple of days there and then take the superfast TGV EuroStar train to Nice, which takes about five hours. (Do the same on the way back.) For a relaxing vacation, spend 6-7 days in Nice and 2-3 days in Paris. To get the most out of your few days in Paris, (assuming you’ve already been there), don’t try to do too much. (Stay mellow the way you were in Nice.) Stay in my favorite, “Hotel Luxembourg Parc” and spoil yourself: it’s that special. (You deserve it.) Or stay at the lovely, less expensive Hotel Odeon Saint-Germain. (Check Trip Advisor for the hotel that tickles your fancy and wallet.) If this is your first time in Paris, in one day you can easily visit the, “Eiffel Tower”, “Arc de Triomphe and Cathedral de Notre Dame; then take a scenic boat ride the historic canals of Paris. Stop by Hemingway’s favorite café, Les Duex Magots for a Pastis. Splurge for an amazing dinner at “La Table d’ Eugene” recently rewarded its’ first Guide Michelin Star. This will be one of the best meals you’ll ever have. Make reservations before you leave NY. (I’ve discovered that the “OneStar” restaurants try harder.) Try to plan time to visit some museums: my favorite is the “Pompidou Museum” in Les Halles with great bistros nearby. And you must visit the Louvre. If you are pressed for time, be sure you at least see: the Winged Victory of Samothrace, the Mona Lisa and Venus de Milo. The Impressionist collection is now housed at the Musée d’Orsay. Make reservations for a very entertaining show at “Moulin Rouge”. Before you go pick up Hemingway’s “Moveable Feast,” and read about his wild and crazy days in Paris of the 20’s when he schmoozed with Gertrude Stein, got drunk with James Joyce and boxed with Ezra Pound. If you go, be sure to visit: us.rendezvousenfrance.com for further information about Nice, the Côte ‘Azur and the beautiful country of France. Many thanks to the staff at atoutfrance.fr who hold the copyright on all photos used to illustrate this story and graciously made them available to us. Page 12 THE WESTCHESTER GUARDIAN Thursday, March 5, 2015 Film Retrospective Citizen Kane By Robert Scott On a warm July day in 1939, a freshfaced young man sat in the Hollywood office of George J. Schaefer, president of RKO Radio Pictures. His name was Orson Welles. Barely 24 years old, he was there to discuss a contract as a film producer. Orson Welles Only eight years before, he had been in the 1931 graduating class at the Todd Seminary for Boys, an unusually permissive prep school in Woodstock, Ill., a northwestern suburb of Chicago. Orphaned at 15 and forgoing college, upon graduation young Welles made his way to New York intent on a Broadway career. In three years, he was acting in a lavish Katharine Cornell production of Romeo and Juliet. A month after the close of the Cornell’s Shakespeare play, Welles opened in Panic, an ambitious musical by Archibald MacLeish that lasted only two performances. Undaunted by this disaster, Welles formed a new acting company. Its first offering, a modern version of Julius Caesar, received rave reviews at its new home, the former Comedy Theatre on West 41st Street, newly named the Mercury Theatre. A series of successful Mercury Theatre stage productions followed. Radio work by the Mercury players culminated in the sensational 1938 Halloween broadcast of the Welles version of H.G. Wells’ classic War of the Worlds. So realistic was the Welles script, it convinced the entire country a Martian invasion was taking place. Hollywood took notice. Movie magnate Schaefer lured Welles--widely described as a “boy Orson Welles in an iconic scene from Citizen Kane wonder—away from New York with a two-film dream contract guaranteeing a broad degree of artistic control unusual in the highly compartmented movie industry. Welles’s first film was to be an adaptation of the Joseph Conrad novel, Heart of Darkness. But Conrad’s novels are not easily adaptable to the screen, and the film’s million-dollar budget made it difficult to find outside financing. The project was eventually abandoned, leaving Welles at loose ends. Another project, The Smiler with the Knife, an adaptation of a mystery novel by Nicholas Blake (British Poet Laureate Cecil Day-Lewis), was briefly considered. It, too, was allowed to die. Citizen Kane Is Born At this point, the idea for what would become known as “RKO Production #281,” the movie that would eventually be titled Citizen Kane, came into being. To create a script, Welles immediately sought the services of a screenwriting professional, Herman Mankiewicz, a heavy-drinking newspaperman. Mankiewicz moved to Hollywood in 1926 and soon became the movie industry’s highest paid screenwriter. His famous telegram to Ben Hecht back in the East summed up his amazement: “Millions are to be grabbed out here and your only competition is idiots. Don’t let this get around.”[ For Welles, Mankiewicz came up with the idea of a biographical film loosely based on the life of newspaper and magazine publishing tycoon William Randolph Hearst. The story would be told retrospectively in a series of flashbacks after his death by those who knew him best. With Mankiewicz’s story line, Welles at last had found a movie subject that offered timeliness, vast wealth and fodder for tabloid gossip. The subject was also tailor-made to suit Welles’s own reputation for daring brashness and love of publicity. Mankiewicz, aware of the cumbersome nature of multiple, repetitive flashbacks, came up with the idea for an ingeniously simple plot gimmick. A mysterious deathbed utterance would be the key to the film’s subject, Charles Foster Kane. The film opens with a tight close-up of the mouth of an aged Kane voicing the single word, “Rosebud.” Not until the final scene is the significance of “Rosebud” revealed. A child’s sled with that trade name is consigned to the flames of a bonfire during the disposal of items hoarded by now-deceased publishing magnate Kane. Years later, in a 1989 article in The New York Review of Books, novelist Gore Vidal revealed that Mankiewicz had slyly chosen the word “Rosebud” because Hearst’s alcoholic mistress Marion Davies had told friends that it was Hearst’s pet name for an intimate part of her anatomy. To create a script, Mankiewicz, who had a serious drinking problem, was sent to a desert ranch at Victorville, Cal., miles away from the temptations of Hollywood. Welles’s Mercury Theatre associate John Houseman was delegated to watch over him. A secretary accompanied them to transcribe his dictation. Six weeks later Mankiewicz produced an overlong 250-page script with the working title of The American-later changed to John Citizen, U.S.A.), embodying many of the elements that went into the final film. Welles and Mankiewicz next set out to reduce its length. During this process, Welles supplied many details from his own life and experience. Which of the two collaborators made most of the changes to the original script is still in dispute to this day. With fierce proponents for each side, the question may never be settled. Three months later, a seventh draft labeled “Third Revised Final Draft” was accepted and became the shooting script. (The film had been titled Citizen Kane ever since the fourth preliminary draft.) A total of $1,082,798 was budgeted. More than a million dollars was not Continued on page 13 THE WESTCHESTER GUARDIAN Thursday, March 5, 2015 Page 13 O’Neill it was nominated for the 1941 Academy award in that category. Such technical advances opened a new world of striking visual effects for Welles in Citizen Kane, including long takes, daring camera angles, and the absence of conventional back-and-forth intercutting between players in a scene. so a private showing was set up for her. Parsons stormed out while the film was still running when she realized how unhappy its thinly disguised portrayal of Charles Foster Kane would make her boss. Hearst eventually heard about the film and banned advertising it, reviewing it, or even mentioning Citizen Kane in his newspapers. With the pages of Hearst newspapers closed to ads, exhibitors declined to book the film. Word next spread that Hearst’s papers were about to print editorials attacking Hollywood’s use of refugee directors and actors in jobs that could have been filled by Americans. To placate Hearst, alarmed movie moguls got together and offered to reimburse RKO for the total cost of Citizen Kane if the studio would burn the negative and destroy all prints of the film. RKO President Schaefer later revealed that he had not disclosed this offer to his board of directors out of fear that they would have agreed to it. When management at RKO’s flagship theater, the Radio City Music Hall, succumbed to pressure and canceled its premiere of Citizen Kane, RKO opened the film at the studio’s Palace Theater in Times Square, followed by openings in other major cities. Reviews everywhere were universally positive, with encomiums like “staggering and belongs at once among the great screen achievements,” and “one of the outstanding films of all times.” Despite widespread predictions that Citizen Kane would win most of its nine Academy award nominations, it received only one Oscar--shared by Welles and Mankiewicz--for Best Writing (Original Screenplay). Following its initial release, Citizen Kane was neglected and forgotten until RKO became one of the first studios to sell its film library to television. Over the years, this trail-breaking film has become widely recognized as one of the greatest films ever made. In an annual poll, the British magazine Sight & Sound placed Citizen Kane first on its Top Ten list starting in 1962. In 1998, the American Film Institute named Citizen Kane as #1 in its list of 100 best films in 100 years of filmmaking. It retained the top position when the AFI repeated the poll in 2007. Film Retrospective Citizen Kane Continued from page 12 considered excessive for an A-type production, but a budget crisis at RKO reduced this number to $737,740. Welles cast the film largely with Mercury Theatre players imported from New York. Joseph Cotten, Everett Sloane, Ray Collins; Agnes Moorehead and Paul Stewart all went on to have long careers in films and TV. Welles himself played Kane as a young man and, with elaborate makeup changes, at all the stages of his life until the deathbed scene. The final film actually came in at $823,240 (over budget by $85,500). Set construction costs for Citizen Kane totaled only $59,207. Compare that figure to RKO’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame for which the set cost was $243,838. Youth Predominates Director and lead actor Welles was 25. No small part of the critical success of Citizen Kane as a film can be attributed to the work of two other comparatively youthful professionals: art director Perry Ferguson, 39, and cinematographer Gregg Toland, 36. Ferguson made Kane’s Xanadu even larger and more baronial than Hearst’s own castle at San Simeon in California. Welles later said proudly that Citizen Kane looked like it had cost more than it actually did. Toland broke many of Hollywood’s filming rules to give Citizen Kane a Release and Reception Orson Welles in Citizen Kane new and startlingly dramatic look. A diminutive man (he stood a little over five feet tall), Toland was an innovative giant and a veritable human dynamo as a cinematographer. Welles later called him “the greatest cameraman I ever worked with—and also the fastest.” Toland would die in 1948 of a coronary thrombosis at the comparatively young age of 44. Cinematographer Toland also introduced Welles to deep-focus photography, made possible by a series of technological developments. In 1932, the Mitchell Camera Corporation Orson Welles in Citizen Kane introduced a new motion picture camera, the BNC, which incorporated a built-in noise-damping device. Eastman Kodak introduced its new Super XX film stock n 1938, four times faster than its Super X. In 1939, light transmission in lenses was improved by coating lens surfaces with an ultra-thin layer of magnesium fluoride. Toland had used BNC cameras on Wuthering Heights, the film for which he won the 1940 Academy award for black-and-white cinematography, and on John Ford’s The Long Voyage Home. Based on four plays by Eugene Filming began on June 29, 1940, and was completed five months later. By maintaining a closed set, limiting access to dailies (Hollywood’s term for the unedited prints shot the previous day) and closely managing publicity, Welles downplayed the film and William Randolph Hearst’s connection to it. The title character was actually an amalgam of several well-known wealthy tycoons. Having grown up in the Midwest, Welles had “borrowed” several details from the life of Samuel Insull, Chicago utility magnate, who had built that city’s huge Civic Opera House for his wife, an aspiring opera singer. With a planned release date in February of 1941, it became necessary to make arrangements for advance screenings to meet magazine deadlines. Citizen Kane quickly became too hot to handle. A rough cut was prepared and previewed by a number of carefully selected writers. When it was discovered that Hedda Hopper, one of the two bitter rivals among Hollywood gossip columnists, had not been invited to any of the screenings, a private showing was hastily arranged for her. This made Hearst writer Louella Parsons furious, Orson Welles Page 14 Community/Gover COMMUNITY Thursday, March 5, 2015 THE WESTCHESTER GUARDIAN Westchester Community College Unde CALENDAR By NANCY KING News and Notes from Northern Westchester By Mark Jeffers Open 7 Days A Week NYC’s #1 TOPlESS SPORTS BAR • Gentlemen’s Club • sushi RestauRant • Fine DininG NYC’s oNlY BoDY SUSHI 252 West 43rd St. 212-819-9300 (Between 7th & 8th Ave.) www.mycheetahsnyc.com FREE ADMISSION WITH THIS PASS The New Don’t Don’t Waste Waste Your Your Time Time Anywhere Anywhere Else Else LE G A L N O T I C E S Club Club New York NEW YORK’S NEW YORK’S PREMIER PREMIER GENTLEMEN’S GENTLEMEN’S CABARET New York CABARET Escape Reality… Escape The VIP Club! Escape to Reality… First Class Adult Entertainment, Sushi Bar and Lounge. HAPPY HOUR @ Entertainment, THE VIP! First Class Adult 2-For-1BarDrinks Sushi and Lounge. Mon – Sat Before 9PM As always, the Academy Awards Show was filled with moving music, heartfelt tributes and touching acceptance speeches, speaking of touching, what was with John Travolta grabbing Idina Menzel’s face on stage, well his weird actions gives us our opening for this week’s “Oscar Oddity” edition of “News and Notes.” Just in time for Easter, the Westchester Rabbiteers will teach you everything you ever wanted to know about rabbits on Sunday, March 29th, 1-3pm at the Muscoot Farm on Route 100 in Somers. Do tax woes keep you up at night? Help is available free of charge, every Thursday at 11:15am from now until April 9th an AARP tax aide is available to answer questions and help you prepare your forms at the Ossining Library’s Budarz Theatre. I always thought birds flew south for the winter, but that is not the case check out “Project Feeder Watch” on Saturday & Sunday, March 7 & 8 at the Croton Point Nature Center, in Crotonon-Hudson. Join members of Saw Mill River Audubon to identify and count birds at the feeders. The Small Town Theatre Company will produce a staged play reading of “Orphans” at two local venues. “Orphans” will be performed at the Katonah Village Library on Friday, April 17th and Saturday, April 18th as well as The Hergenhan Center in Armonk Thursday, April 23rd and Saturday, April 25th. Bring the family and your appetite to Trailside Nature Museum at Ward Pound Ridge Reservation in Cross River on Saturday March 7th at 10am for a Pancake Breakfast; pre-registration is required at (914) 864-7322. An information session on the recently updated Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) will be held on Wednesday, March 11th at the Westchester County Center in White Plains. The FIRMs, which identify Escape to The VIP Club! HAPPY HOUR @ THE VIP! COMPLIMENTARY ADMISSION 2-For-1 FOR TWODrinks WITH THIS PASS Mon – Sat Before 9PM 20 W. 20th ST. (btwn 5th & 6th) COMPLIMENTARY ADMISSION 212-633-1199 FOR TWO WITH THIS PASSs thevipclubnyc.com 303 TOWER DRIVE, LLC Articles of Org. filed NY Sec. of State (SSNY) 1/23/15. Office in Westchester Co. SSNY design. Agent of LLC upon whom process may be served. SSNY shall mail copy of process to Mr. Luis Otero, C/O SKD Capital Corp. PO Box 1311 Yorktown Heights, NY 10598. Purpose: Any lawful activity. SIMON PRODUCTIONS, LLC Articles of Org. filed NY Sec. of State (SSNY) 1/6/15. Office in Westchester Co. SSNY design. Agent of LLC upon whom process may be served. SSNY shall mail copy of process to The LLC 200 West End Ave Apt 19B New York, NY 10023. Purpose: Any lawful activity. Ruth DeLuca, LLC Articles of Org. filed NY Sec. of State (SSNY) 01/28/15. Office in Westchester Co. SSNY design. Agent of LLC upon whom process may be served. SSNY shall mail copy of process to The LLC 3 Lincoln Ave. E. #2, NY 10604. Purpose: Any lawful activity. STARLIFTER 6TH PROPERTIES LLC Articles of Org. filed NY Sec. of State (SSNY) 11/24/14. Office in Westchester Co. SSNY design. Agent of LLC upon whom process may be served. SSNY shall mail copy of process to The LLC 14 Burling Ave White Plains, NY 10605. Purpose: Any lawful activity. PALMIERI ARMONK, LLC Articles of Org. filed NY Sec. of State (SSNY) 11/26/14. Office in Westchester Co. SSNY design. Agent of LLC upon whom process may be served. SSNY shall mail copy of process to C/O Anthony Palmieri 820 S Fulton Ave Mt Vernon, NY 10550. Purpose: Any lawful activity. 149 LOCKWOOD AVENUE, LLC Articles of Org. filed NY Sec. of State (SSNY) 2/5/15. Office in Westchester Co. SSNY design. Agent of LLC upon whom process may be served. SSNY shall mail copy of process to C/O John Flannery 19 Gray Rock Lane Chappaqua, NY 10514. Purpose: Any lawful activity. MIGHTY SYSTEMS, LLC Articles of Org. filed NY Sec. of State (SSNY) 1/29/15. Office in Westchester Co. SSNY design. Agent of LLC upon whom process may be served. SSNY shall mail copy of process to The LLC 11 Forest Ct Larchmont, NY 10538. Purpose: Any lawful activity. HASTINGS ELECTRIC & MECHANICAL SERVICES, LLC Articles of Org. filed NY Sec. of State (SSNY) 9/17/14. Office in Westchester Co. SSNY design. Agent of LLC upon whom process may be served. SSNY shall mail copy of process to The LLC 618 Warburton Ave Hastings-On-Hudson, NY 10706. Purpose: Any lawful activity LITTLE BEAR ASSOCIATES LLC Articles of Org. filed NY Sec. of State (SSNY) 1/13/15. Office in Westchester Co. SSNY design. Agent of LLC upon whom process may be served. SSNY shall mail copy of process to The LLC 7 Little Bear Dr Yorktown Heights, NY 10598. Purpose: Any lawful activity. MLG PROPERTY LLC Arts. of Org. filed NY Sec. of State (SSNY) on 12/1/14. Office in Westchester County. SSNY desig. Agent of LLC upon whom process may be served. SSNY shall mail process to: c/o Link NY Realty LLC, 141 Parkway Rd. Suite 13B, Bronxville, NY 10708, Purpose: any lawful activity. 20 W. 20th ST. (btwn 5th & 6th) WESTCHESTERsGthevipclubnyc.com UARDIAN LEGAL ADVERTISING 212-633-1199 [email protected] 914.216.1674 • M-F 11A- 5P PUBLICATION EVERY THURSDAY SUBMIT ADS TUESDAY, 10 DAYS PRIOR TO RUN DATE Westchester Community College is the latest public institution to at-risk areas ofcome flooding in the Long under scrutiny of the Island Sound and Hudson River coastal New York State Inspector municipalities of Westchester County, General was revealed that a former are usedwhen by itinsurance companies to assistant basketball coach falsified academic determine a property’s flood insurance transcripts and forged an administrator’s requirements. signature. As a know result, the Did you thatcommunity nuts aren’college t just has canceled its 2014-2015 Basketball an important part of many healthy diets; season. the story doesn’ t stop they are However versatile ingredients that can be there, because many student athletes use used in many different cuisines. From Westchester Community soups to salads to healthyCollege desserts,asyoua springboard to play at NCAA four-year can make nuts a star of your cooking. If colleges; now then spanned you are the nutsscandal abouthasnuts, youseveral will states and severalout teams. want to check Chef Peter Kelly in the “Teaching Kitchen”High in School Cortlandt Former Mt. Vernon star, Manor on Friday, 20th. This class Jamell Walker was March a star player for WCC will the school healthon benefits differand explore was at the a full of basketball ent nuts and show you ways to feature them in several dishes. COMMEMORATION Get ready to sing along as Yorktown High School presents “Hello Dolly” on March 6-8. The Katonah Village Improvement Society’s inspired program series NANCY KING presents “TheByScience of Yoga” on Friday, March 6th, at On 7:30-9:00pm a frigid the Katonah November Village Library. Learn evening, a the research findings that demonstrate was held in front yoga’s health vigil benefits for Diabetes, scholarship. He played on the award winning team was granted, uponMental completion of Heartand Disease, Trauma, Illness what was thought to beDiseases, a two-yearplus: stintmeet with and Auto Immune WCC, a fullstudio scholarship to play with local yoga owners and ball teachers nationally ranked Florida A&M University. who provide these benefits daily. Not One long after hiswife’ arrival at Florida A&M, of my s favorite local resan anonymous tipster informed the taurants, Le Chateau, in South college Salem and the NCAA that Walker’ s scholarship at has closed its doors after over 40 years… WCC been stripped a year prior, it Ahad Corporate FunRun willafter take th was he only July taken16one at the placerevealed on Thursday, atclass Purchase SUNYInCollege. Westchester 5k atis college. order to The maintain a scholarship a workplace fitnessmust event, an unbeatthe college, a student be matriculated ablea full team -building for credit load. platform and the summer’ s best office party (beer,it food, Upon further investigation, was music) all wrapped into one.other You simply revealed that there are several former create students a team, who ask are co-workers to basjoin WCC also playing your team and then enjoy yourselves on ketball for Division 1 schools and that they race night. I can only assume the beer too might be at a new school under less and food are post 5k… than transparent circumstances. St John’s Congratulations to our friend University, famous for their Red Storm Leeza Gibbons and her charity the team, has opened an investigation into the Leeza Care Connection for taking the crown on Donald Trump’s NBC show “Celebrity Apprentice,”way to go Leeza. My spirits are lifted a bit from this long cold winter as each day is brighter, for longer, then the day before. Sitting on my porch for my evening beverage is of Plains Department of lessthe of aWhite dream and more of a date now Public to gone commemorate the that the Safety snow has down from two third anniversarythat of the death feet. Remember weshooting spring forward of KennethMarch Chamberlain Sr. The 68 on Sunday, 8th at 2:00am. Spring is around corner…see week. year old the former marine you wasnext shot to eligibilit WCC l Connect scripts o who also College. and SUN all of th to their attendin At assistant Last m provided an adm so. Odd anything thought Nearly e athlete w script fra Community Marks 3 Years Since Reserve Now for Holiday Parties! ITALIAN CUISINE Zagat Rated “Excellent” Voted “Best Italian Restaurant ” Westchester Magazine, 2006 Open 7 Days : Mon.-Thurs. Noon - 10PM • Fri. Sat. & Sun. Noon -11PM RESERVE NOW FOR HOLIDAY PARTIES 2 PARTY ROOMS AVAIL. SEATING 75 & 100 914.779.4646 www.ciaoeastchester.com Ciao • 5-7 JOHN ALBANESE PLACE, EASTCHESTER, NY 10709 death b the earl 19, 201 went o mornin that he he wan should check officers elderly the eld more ag Chamb killed b alleged, Sho Attorne Grand and of the dea justifiab that th him wa in perc officer inciden Hart. H out the In Chamb Chamb THE WESTCHESTER GUARDIAN Thursday, March 5, 2015 Page 15 and The Wicked Lady (1983), a costume drama starring Faye Dunaway. The duo of Golan-Globus then went on to produce action films: Death Wish sequels that revived Charles Bronson’s career; the Missing in Action Trilogy and The Delta Force and Invasion U.S.A. with Chuck Norris. Cannon films launched the career of Michael Dudikoff through American Ninja and that of Jean-Claude Van-Damme through Cyborg. There is lot of fun stuff about these action films that the audience will discover as they watch the documentary, so I will not give away “behind-the-scenes” secrets. I will only mention that Missing in Action 2 was released before the first one because they thought it was a better film. Golan also paid Sylvester Stallone somewhere between ten to twenty million to star in Over the Top, a film I personally enjoyed and I have had its poster in my bedroom since I saw in the film in 1987. The soundtrack includes a very nice song by Kenny Loggins called Meet Me Halfway. Stallone later starred in Cobra, produced by Cannon and distributed by Warner Bros. Cannon was also responsible for casting Italian star Franco Nero as the blue-eyed ninja in Enter the Ninja (1981) along with two sequels. Ninja III: The Domination was described as a cross between Enter the Dragon, The Exorcist and Flashdance! Believe it or not, after making these super commercial films along with strange musicals like Breakin’, Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo, Golan-Globus went on to produce Art House films with internationally renowned directors, including Love Streams (John Cassavetes), Otello - a film version of the Verdi opera (Franco Zeffirelli), Tough Guys Don’t Dance (Norman Mailer) and Runaway Train with Jon Voight who received an Oscar nomination for his role (Andrei Konchalovsky’s). Following Golan’s departure from Cannon Films, he became the head of the 21st Century Film Corporation. Golan continued to produce and direct films until his passing on August 8, 2014 in Tel Aviv. Globus is now the president of Globus Max, which produces and distributes films and also operates a 140screen cinema chain in Israel. Last May, another Israeli documentary called The Go-Go Boys: The Inside Story of Cannon Films was also shown during Cannes Film Festival. CULTURAL PERSPECTIVES Fun Documentary on Z-Films Sherif Awad One of the important features at the International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR) is Signals, which explores cinema’s treasure trove, screens restored classics, inexplicably forgotten masterpieces and films and documentaries that center on cinema itself. Showcased in that section, this year was the fun and fast-paced documentary Electric Boogaloo: The Wild, Untold Story of Cannon Films, directed by Mark Hartley and produced by Brett Ratner. The documentary tells the story of Director Mark Hartley Menahem Golan, the Israeli-born producer who came to Hollywood along with his cousin Yoram Globus in 1979 to take over a failing production company,The Cannon Group, Inc., from its founders Dennis Friedland and Christopher C. Dewey. Initially, Cannon mostly specialized in American and European-imported soft porn, but under Golan-Globus’ control, Cannon grew from a small company, making a few obscure pictures a year, to a studio that produced 35 pictures in 1987 alone ranging from romance and action, to comedies. We learn that Golan grew up as a film buff, as well as a man obsessed with moviemaking. He, and we are quoting one of Boogaloo’s interviewees, “was capable of mortgaging his wife and kids in order to wrap a film production.” Globus was the shrewder businessman who often put the brakes on some of Golan’s decisions and the combination of Golan-Globus was exactly the right one to secure loans from American banks in order to get their films produced. Golan had a really crazy approach for getting money: he created teaser posters of still-unmade films and publicized them across US trade magazines in order to get some cash on the table, beforehand. The documentary is highlighted with dynamic videobytes and interviews with Golan-Globus former collaborators: editors, directors, and actors like Richard Chamberlain who starred in two Cannon’s B-movies playing Allan Quatermain with a then-unknown blond newcomer called Sharon Stone; Catherine Mary Stewart who made her debut in The Apple (1980), dubbed as the “Mount Everest” of bad musicals;” and Bo Derek, who starred in Cannon’s Bolero in which she spent much time unclothed. Golan-Globus also produced erotica films, including Lady Chatterley’s Lover (1981) and Mata Hari (1985), starring Sylvia Kristel; The Last American Virgin (1982) a remake of Lemon Popsicle (1978), an Israeli teen sexy comedy produced by Golan in his homeland before coming to Hollywood Masters of the Universe Poster Sylvie Kristal in Mata Hari Menaham Golan and Yoram Globus Over the Top Born in Cairo, Egypt, Sherif Awad is a film/video critic and curator. He is the film editor of Egypt Today Magazine (www. EgyptToday.com) and the Artistic Director for both the Alexandria film Festival , and the Arab Rotterdam Festival in The Netherlands. He also contributes to Variety, in the United States and is the Film Critic of Variety, Arabia (http://amalmasryalyoum.com/ennode189132 and The Westchester Guardian: www. WestchesterGuardian.com Page 16 THE WESTCHESTER GUARDIAN Thursday, March 5, 2015 MARY AT THE MOVIES McFarland USA Whites recruits seven Mexican immigrant teens who get up at 4:30 A.M. to pick crops, go to school and then return home for a few more hours By Mary Keon of work. These are tough, resilient kids Uno, Dos, Tres, McFarland! Let’s who are in phenomenal shape already hear it for all of the dedicated coaches, and who long for the opportunities that who give so much of their time training their white schoolmates are able to take student athletes to achieve their true for granted. Coach White determines, potential! correctly, that these kids also have the Set in 1987, McFarland USA tells mental toughness to become track stars, the story of High School teacher Jim if someone just takes an interest in them. White, played by Kevin Costner, who Once the students are on board, the moves his family to the small town of parents must be won over as well. There McFarland, CA, one of the poorest is a hard economic calculation here since school districts in the state, where he the teens make a significant contribulooks forward to coaching high school tion to their family’s income. football. As often happens in life, things White, or Blanco, as his Mexican don’t exactly go as planned and football students fondly or disparagingly (as circumstances warrant) call him, struggles mightily to understand the lives of his track team, ultimately winning the support of their families, as well. Never doubting that his students will be among the elite runners in the state, he points out that success on the track field will likely lead to college scholarships and better lives for the them and their families; something their lives, to date, had not prepared them to even contemplate. Based upon a true story, the actual Coach White, in fact recruited many more than seven runners and the story line compresses his seven-year effort to create a championship team that went on to win nine state Poster byWalt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, titles in fourteen years. An uplifting story, McFarland quickly becomes a no-go. When White realizes that some of the school’s USA demonstrates how one man’s Mexican students can run really fast, he commitment to a group of students is motivated to organize their first Cross changed the lives and the expectations of a desperately poor immigrant comCountry team. “Jim, let me ask you something,” munity. Please do not head for the exits says the dubious principal: “You have early - stick around and find out what coached Cross Country before?” “No,” became of these students as they grew says White. “Track? “No.,” he replies. into adulthood. Costner does great credit to Jim “But you ran… competed in high school maybe?”“No.”“Well, you sound perfect,” White. Carlos Pratts is excellent as the he says, happy to empower anyone who frustrated Thomas Valles who despairs volunteers to do anything for his under- over his prospective future as a croppicker and channels his frustrations into served students. success as a runner. I urge all of our readers to see this film, to better understand the lives of the hard-working people who literally put food on our tables. I promise you that having seen this film, you will never again take for granted, the produce that fills our grocery stores and you will have new respect for the back-breaking efforts of crop-pickers, who come here for jobs and who are willing to work really long hours at jobs that no-one else WWW.WESTCHESTERGUARDIAN.COM wants, for their shot at the American dream. Directed by Nick Caro for Disney Studios; Cinematography Adam Arkapaw. Running time 129 minutes. MPAA Rating PG.
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