Monday, November 30, 2009

Monday - Billi Pod's Next Nine Days

It is a dark and gloomy afternoon here in The Greatest City in The World, but no problem - it has given me the opportunity to complete my entertainment schedule for the next 9 days and it is a very eclectic mix, I think you will agree, and it looks like this --

Tonight, Monday, November 30, I will go to one of the theaters on my block to see the Off Broadway comedy, “Santa Claus Is Coming Out,” which I described is an earlier posting.

When my show is over I will meet up with Bruce Davidson and Tony McCormack, from Atlanta, who are back in the city for a few days following the completion of an outstanding 2 week Caribbean cruise aboard The Queen Mary 2. They will be seeing the excellent musical “Next to Normal” and afterwards we will have dinner at my favorite theater district restaurant, Angus McIndoe.

Tuesday is a double header (kinda unusual for a Tuesday), starting with the 1:00 staged reading of “Salvage,” described in an earlier posting, and then in the evening the drama “A Steady Rain” starring Daniel Craig and Hugh Jackman, also discussed in a previous posting. I think you will agree that Tuesday should be a lot of fun.

Wednesday - 12/2 - 7:30 - New York Philharmonic Orchestra @ Avery Fisher Hall - “A Concert to End Polio” - featuring Itzhak Perlmen, violinist. The program is: “Listz - Les Preludes; Bruch - Violin Concerto No. 1; Tchaikovsky - Capriccio Italien; Williams - Theme from Schindler’s List; and Kresler - Tambounn Chinois.” (full price ticket)

Thursday - 8:00 - “So Help Me God” - Off Broadway. The press blurb is: “Kristen Johnston, two-time Emmy Award-winner for 3rd Rock from the Sun stars in the revival of this comic collision between 42nd Street and All About Eve. This comedy is the story of a diva who decides she wants to do serious drama just so long as it's fabulous and the innocent, young ingenue from Cincinnati who wants to take her place.” (discounted TDF ticket). The show is still in previews but has received a lot of early favorable buzz.

Friday - 8:00 - “Post No Bills” - Off Broadway, “This World Premiere tells the story of Reyna as she flees the Texas border town she grew up in and arrives in the big city, with nothing but her dream of becoming a singer/songwriter. Taking up with a pair of street musicians, she discovers that love is violent, friendship is pain and the true music comes from the depths of your soul. (complimentary ticket).

For whatever reason I have been delaying seeing this show despite the fact that it has gotten very favorable reviews. It suddenly dawned on me that I better see it before it closes, so ...

Saturday - 4:00 - Gators vs. ‘Bama. SEC Championship (CBS). May the curse prevail.

Sunday - 2:00 - Vienna Boys Choir @ Carnegie Hall. The press blurb is: “The program features Austrian folk songs and waltzes, classical and popular songs, medieval chants, and holiday favorites. (full price ticket).

I have seen this world famous choir several times and they are wonderful. It is a great way to begin the Christmas holiday season

8:00 - “LMAO” - Off Broadway. “Surviving every test possible, LMAO is now running off-Broadway at the newly renovated Midtown Theater in Times Square. The cast of LMAO delivers high energy, nonstop hilarity as it navigates today's hot topics through original song and sketch comedy. You never know when a celebrity or politician might take possession of a performer. With sharp wit and improvisation, the cast adjusts to a dizzying mix of ever-changing challenges from the audience, complete with spot on rhythm and rhymes.” (complimentary ticket).

Monday - 12/7 - “Mike Daisy - The Last Cargo Cult” - Off Broadway. The edited press blurb for this show is: “Groundbreaking monologist Mike Daisey returns with the story of his journey to a remote South Pacific island whose people worship America and its cargo. This narrative is woven against a searing examination of the international financial crisis that gripped the globe at the same moment. Confronting the financial system that dominates our world, Daisey wrestles with the largest questions of what the collapse means, and what it can tell us about our deepest values.” (discounted TDF ticket).

I have seen Daisy perform several times and he is very entertaining and always on the cutting edge - look forward to this show which is still in previews.

Tuesday - 7:30 - New York Philharmonic Orchestra @ Avery Fisher Hall. The program is: “Bartok - Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta; Ravel - Piano Concerto in G; and, DeBussy - Le Mer.” (season subscription series).

Wow!! So there you are my loyal and faithful readers - Billi Pod’s entertainment schedule for the next 9 days: 1 Broadway show; 6 Off Broadway shows; 3 classical music concerts; and, 1 Gators kicking ass performance. Not bad, not bad at all, in The Greatest City in The World.

Go Gators!!

Billi Pod

“Don't pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you.”

Monday - A Curse On You Crimson Tide!!

As much as I would like to say that I am looking forward to a “good” game Saturday between my Florida Gators, led by Superman aka Tim Tebow,

and the Alabama Crimson Tide, led by Mark Ingram, in the name of complete and honest disclosure - I honestly want the Gators to kick ass big time, beginning with the opening kickoff and ending with the final play.

In order to assist my Gators, I have just completed my internet research and have placed a curse on ‘Bama and all of their cracker followers --


Go Gators!!

Billi Pod

“Don't pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you.”

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Go Gators!! F**k the 'Noles!!

Good morning my loyal and faithful readers. It is a beautiful day here in The Greatest City in The World as I anxiously await the Gator vs. ‘Noles game, shown on CBS beginning at 3:30.

Am I nervous? Yes, one has to always be nervous before “big rivalry” games where current records take a back seat to intense hatred and a desire to even past scores. Just ask ‘Bama or Longhorn fans - their teams had battles down to the final minutes against their respective in-state rivals.

Will the Gators win? Oh, yes - there ain’t no way Tim Tebow is gonna lose his final game at The Swamp. The first half will be kinda close but in the second half the Gators will pull away and the final score will be - tada - 42 - 10.

I have done some extensive internet research regarding esteemed ‘Nole coach Bobby Bowden, who I hope remains in charge and responsible for the ‘Nole football program for the next 8-10 years, and have found some very interesting material that I will share with you loyal and faithful readers, without the necessity of any further comments.

Yes, it is my duty to report and it is yours to decide.

Go Gators!!

Billi Pod

“Don't pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you.”

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Wednesday Addition

Good morning my loyal and faithful readers. I don’t know what the weather is like “out there” but here in the Big Apple it is gray and gloomy with rain in the forecast for later in the day. It also looks like there will be a good chance of light rain for tomorrow’s Macys Thanksgiving Day Parade. No problem for me since I have no intention of being there - “been there, done that” as they (whoever “they” are) say.

Anyway, still haven’t made up my mind about what I am going to do for tomorrow. Will have to decide not later than 4:30 today.

I have added a show to my schedule for today. In a bit I will head down to The Village for the 2:00 matinee of an Off Broadway show, “The Lady With All The Answers,” a one-woman play about Ann Landers. This is the press blurb: “Two-time Tony Award winner Judith Ivey reprises her role in this New York premier. With wit, charm, and chutzpah, Ann Landers provided millions of Americans their daily dose of advice, etiquette, and encouragement. And for nearly half a century, one Eppie Lederer was Ann Landers. In this one-woman play, drawn from her life and letters, Eppie comes to life on stage as she writes perhaps her most challenging and personal column.” (complimentary ticket).

This show has gotten very good reviews and I have been wanting to see it. It showed up on one of my ticket services and I immediately booked it.

Last night’s New York Philharmonic concert was super-excellent.

Got things to do before I head out, so ...

Go Gators!!

Billi Pod

“Don't pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you.”

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Monday Night in The Big Apple

I just got in from seeing a very good Off Broadway comedy/drama called “This” at Playwrights Horizon, the theater immediately next door to 420 W. 42nd Street. It has just opened and has received very good reviews. I found it to be funny and also thought-provoking at the same time. It came up at the last minute on one of my services and I snapped it up - had been planning to see the movie “2012.” This is the press blurb for the show:

“Jane is not okay. She's a promising poet without a muse, a single mother without lessons to pass along. In a world of BabyBjörns, bitchy best friends, and trés beau French doctors, how's a single mom & poet to navigate the murky waters of the late-thirty something NYC dating scene?" (complimentary ticket).

Except for Sunday I have pretty much filled my entertainment schedule for the upcoming 9 days and this is what Billi Pod has booked in The Greatest City in The World --

Tuesday - 11/24 - 7:30 - New York Philharmonic Orchestra @ Avery Fisher Hall. The program is: “Liszt - Les Preludes: Elgar - In the South; and, Prokofiev - Romeo and Juliet.” (season subscription series)

Wednesday - 8:00 - “Julie from Staten Island” - Off Broadway. “This one-man comedic performance follows Gambuto from the fifth and oft-forgotten borough of Staten Island to the ivy-covered gates of Harvard Yard to the streets of South Brooklyn." ($9.00 TDF ticket).

This show is playing at a theater on my block.


I have several open options for the day, one would require a trip up to Westchester and the other to a posh apartment in the Upper Westside. At this moment I am not certain which one I will choose. I may just opt to have my first Thanksgiving Dinner in Penthouse C. Anyway, have a very interesting show scheduled for the evening.

8:00 - “Newsical, the Musical” = Off Broadway. “No one in the news is safe in this musical/comedy lampooning current events, headlines, newsmakers, celebrities, and politicians. In addition to the crazy news headlines (like Balloon Boy), politics (Obama, Hillary, Sarah Palin, etc.), we have celebrity spoofs including Nancy Grace, Glenn Beck, Celine Dion, Joan Rivers, Fran Drescher, Suze Orman, and Kate (from John and Kate!).” (discounted TDF ticket)

Friday - 8:00 - “The Common Air” - Off Broadway. “Alex Lyras' solo comedy-drama The Common Air links six distinct characters during the mother of all delays at JFK Airport. The reason is unknown and a spiraling game of "telephone" ensues in an effort to uncover the truth. Characters include an Iraqi cab driver with a winning reality show idea, an art gallery owner seduced by ancient Greek cave art, a corporate attorney imparting rapid fire, ethically gray advice, a sample-stealing DJ named PJ, a sinister Philosophy professor mixing logic and irrationality in a west Texas accent, and an Iraqi-American just returned from civil war in Baghdad.” (complimentary ticket)

Saturday - 3:30 - Gators vs. Florida State (CBS). After the Gators kick ‘Nole butt I will probably catch a movie. Go Gators!!

Sunday - open at the moment (gasp). Not to fear - I am "confident" I will find something to do.

Monday - It is time to start the holiday countdown toward December 25th, so I have scheduled a little something to get me in a “holiday mood” - 8:00 - “Santa Claus is Coming Out” - Off Broadway. “A theatrical mock-u-mentary about the worldwide scandal surrounding the outing of Santa Claus. Writer-performer Jeffrey Solomon traces the intensely personal struggle of this great holiday icon, as he tries to reconcile his love relationship with Italian toy maker Giovanni Geppetto with his passion for giving to the world's children. A young lad asks Santa for a doll for Christmas, which leads to the revelation that Santa himself is a bit "jollier" than previously thought. America reacts as one might predict, and the whole North Pole is engulfed in a scandal called "Santagate.” ($9.00 TDF ticket)

Tuesday - 12/1 - I:00 - “Salvage” - Off Broadway. “SALVAGE is a new rock musical that follows the story of Skyler Golden, a found object artist, who wants "to see the world different...literally." While trying to transform a self-destructive thrift shop beauty, a rich kid who wants to make his own way in the world, and maneuver through an art world working to strip his integrity, Skyler must learn to transform his own life the way he does with his art and finally salvage himself.” (staged reading) (complimentary ticket).

This is a staged reading for potential financial backers. In the cast is Ben Curtis, who played The Dell Dude in the Dell Computer commercials until he got busted for smoking pot.

7:00 - “A Steady Rain” - Broadway. This is the press blurb: “Daniel Craig and Hugh Jackman star in this highly anticipated theatrical event about two Chicago cops who are lifelong friends and whose differing accounts of a few harrowing days change their lives forever.” (full price ticket).

This is a limited run and despite lukewarm reviews it is one of the top weekly grossing new shows of the season. It has been selling out almost every performance. I am really looking forward to seeing it.

Well, my loyal and faithful readers, I am sleepy (yes, even Billi Pod gets sleepy once in a while) so it is time to post this and then crash. I do want to make some comments about the great shows and stuff I saw/did last week but that will have to wait until later.

Go Gators!!

Billi Pod

“Don't pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you.”

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The Rest of the Week - AMAZING!!

I just got back from a wonderful concert by The New York Philharmonic Orchestra, a part of my 3 subscription series. It was sunny but brisk out for most of the day and right now it is in the high 40s. Tomorrow, Wednesday, is also supposed to be bright and brisk.

The remainder of my week has been finalized and, frankly, I think I would be remiss if I didn’t use the word “amazing” (I have deliberately been avoiding the use of this word) to describe what the next 5 days will be entertainment-wise for Billi Pod, in The Greatest City in The World. It will be 7 shows in 5 days (gasp), as follows:

Wednesday - 11/18 - 2:00 - “The 39 Steps” - Broadway. This long running comedy will close on January 10, 2010, after 771 performances. I saw it early in its run and enjoyed it a lot. When it showed up on one of my ticket services I just couldn’t pass the opportunity to see it one last time, especially with a free ticket. This is the press blurb: “This Olivier Award winning comedy is adapted from the Alfred Hitchcock film. This 'unstageable' thriller is staged, with four cast members playing a minimum of 150 roles. The story revolves around an innocent man who learns too much about a dangerous spy ring and is then pursued across Scotland, before returning to London to foil the villain's dastardly plans. The 39 Steps contains every single legendary scene from the award-winning movie - including the chase on the Flying Scotsman, the escape on the Forth Bridge, the first theatrical bi-plane crash ever staged and the sensational death-defying finale in the London Palladium.” (complimentary ticket).

8:00 - “Race” - Broadway. This new play by David Mamet is: “an incendiary story about the perceptions and realities that color our world... and the subtle shades between being a victim and being victimized.” (discounted TDF ticket)

Thursday - 8:00 - “Dreamgirls at the Apollo Theater - Off Broadway. “Dreamgirls is the story of a young female singing trio from Chicago, and their rocky road to superstardom. The original Broadway production opened December 20, 1981 and won six 1982 Tony Awards. (discounted TDF ticket).

The Apollo Theater is located in Harlem at 125th Street. No problem getting there. I walk the block and a half to The Port Authority Terminal, catch the uptown A Train and I am there in 2 stops.

Friday - 8:00 - “Girl Crazy” - Broadway. This is part of the Encore Series performed at City Center. It is classified as a “staged reading” but they are usually totally, 100 percent, a finished product. This is the press blurb: “Girl Crazy, a Depression-era musical comedy with music and lyrics by George Gershwin and Ira Gershwin. The tale of a sophisticated New Yorker marooned in a dusty Western cow-town with no one who understands him but the Yiddish-speaking cabbie who brought him there and no one to love but the only woman within 50 miles, the show gave birth to one of the all-time flashiest Broadway scores, featuring I Got Rhythm, Embraceable You, But Not For Me and Boy! What Love Has Done To Me among others.” (discounted TDF ticket)

Saturday - The Gator vs. Florida International game is not being carried locally.

7:00 - “The Arrangement” - Off Broadway. “An unfairly dismissed Public Relations executive is caught between two agonizing choices: an insider trading scheme that can give him the compensation he feels cheated of, versus walking away and starting a new but meager life. And then the plot thickens!” (complimentary ticket).

Sunday - 3:15 - “Wolves at the Window” - Off Broadway. “Enter the offbeat world of Saki - one of the twentieth century's greatest satirists.Wolves at the Window encompasses a world full of macabre, acid and very funny characters, a world that drives a knife into upper class Edwardian life.” (complimentary ticket).

7:00 - “Idiot Savant” - Off Broadway. This show is playing at The Public Theater, stars Willem Dafoe, and has received very good reviews. The press blurb: “Marie asks the Idiot Savant (Willem Dafoe): “But what makes certain words magic?” What follows is a wild theatrical odyssey that could only have sprung from the fantastical mind of Richard Foreman (THE THREEPENNY OPERA), New York's legendary avant-garde genius. This new work is a philosophical comedy, in the great tradition of Ionesco and Preston Sturges. From precise existential and metaphysical acrobatics, to a ridiculous game of inter-species golf with Giant Duck, IDIOT SAVANT is a fresh, bracing and hilarious exploration of the boundaries of the legitimate.” (discounted TDF ticket).

Without a doubt, this will fall in the love it or hate it category.

So, my loyal and faithful readers, there you have it. I leave it up to you to decide if Billi Pod's schedule for the upcoming 5 days is indeed “amazing.”

I report - you decide.

Go Gators!!

Billi Pod

“Don't pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you.”

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Saturday - ????????? - WTF!!

Man, Saturday turned out to be a strange day/evening. What do I mean you loyal and faithful readers are doubtlessly asking? Well, first the weather was nasty and it rained most of the day and into the night, lightly at first and then it picked up as the evening began and wore on.

As you know, I was pacing around PHC waiting for the Gators vs. South Carolina Limpcocks ... ooooooops, sorry I meant Gamecocks, game to begin at 3:30. I had predicted the score to be 27 - 13 and the actual score was 24 - 14, but the game was much much closer than the final score indicates. During the game my grandsons Lex and Topher and I texted our concerns about the Gators and the game.

Yes, I know, the Gators won and they have the longest winning streak in the country and are going to play Alabama for the SEC Championship, with the winner advancing to the BCS Championship game, probably against Texas, yet ... this team isn’t the team that won the BCS last year. The following is a excerpt from Sunday’s New York Times ....


“For Gators, Winning Margin Doesn’t Include Style Points. COLUMBIA, S.C. - As this Florida season teeters on the verge of history, The Gators continue to beat their opponents and lose to their toughest competition.

Top-ranked Florida moved closer to its second consecutive national title Saturday with a teeth-gnashing 24-14 victory over South Carolina. Throughout their undefeated season, however, the Gators cannot seem to control their biggest nemesis - the past dominance of Florida teams. Expected to be a team of historic production, the Gators have simply settled for being stellar. . . . As Florida chases football history, it could win the national championship and never beat its toughest opponent this season - its own history.”


I think this pretty much sums up how I feel. Have we Gators become spoiled? Probably, but nonetheless, this is how I/we feel and I must report it in the name of fair and unbiased reporting.

When the game was finally over it was time for me to head down to The Village for the 8:00pm performance of “The Gayest Christmas Pageant Ever,” which I described in an earlier posting. It was raining fairly heavily. It was 7:00pm when I was ready to head out. I checked my email just before I walked out the door. Thank God I did, because I had an email from my ticket service that said the following: “We are sorry to inform you that the box office just called and told us that tonight’s performance is oversold and all comps have been retracted.”

OMFG!! Thank God I checked my email. I think I would have gone postal if I had arrived at the theater box office, soaking wet and cold, and been told that I didn’t have a ticket. Technically this can happen at any time with complimentary tickets (meaning free) but it very very rarely does.

OMFG!! It was Saturday night, nasty and rainy, and Billi Pod’s entertainment schedule was suddenly open. WTF!! The only movie I had any interest in was "2012," and, frankly, I wasn’t in the mood to sit through 2 hours of death and destruction, so what did I do?

First of all, I reminded myself that one of the benefits of being an active retiree is that every night is a Saturday night, so staying in is not a major grievance. Yeah, right ... that argument didn’t make me feel any better. But, I did stay in for the remainder of the evening, watching football games played by teams I didn’t give a fuck about, until it was time for Saturday Night Live.

And, guess what? This SNL was one of the lamest I have seen in a long long time. Man, even The Discovery Channel and The History Channel programming was lame.

When I crashed around 1:30am (30 minutes earlier than usual) I acknowledged that even Billi Pod can have a kinda strange day/evening in The Big Apple. Oh well ...

Go Gators!!

Billi Pod

“Don't pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you.”

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Saturday - GO GATORS!!

It is nasty out in The Big Apple this afternoon as I anxiously and nervously await the beginning of the Gators vs. South Carolina Limpcocks - oooooooops ... sorry, I meant South Carolina Gamecocks @ 3:30 on CBS.

Yes, I am walking around sucking my thumb - get over it.

I predict this will be a close game until the beginning of the 4th quarter. Then Tebow will take charge and the Gators will win 28 - 13.

I am ready for the game to begin. I wish I was in Columbia tailgating with Kathi and John and grandsons Lex and Topher.

Go Gators!!

Billi Pod

“Don't pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you.”

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Tuesday - Billi Pod And The Next 9 Days

Good afternoon my loyal and faithful readers. In response to all of those nice emails - let me get back into my reporting routine by providing you Billi Pod’s entertainment schedule for the next 9 days in The Greatest City In The World. Here it is:

Tuesday - 11/10 - 8:00 - “After Miss Julie” - Broadway. The American premiere of Patrick Marber's new version of August Strindberg's drama about class and sex transposes Miss Julie to the English countryside on the eve of Labour's landslide victory in the summer of 1945. Young Miss Julie crosses a dangerous line when she engages in a forbidden flirtation with her father's handsome chauffeur, John. Over the course of one passionate and unforgettable night, their steamy affair escalates into a high-stakes power struggle that takes a shocking turn.” (Roundabout subscription series). This show has received very good reviews.

Wednesday - 8:00 - “What Once We Felt” - Off Broadway. “Lincoln Center Theater presents the world premiere of a new play by Ann Marie Healy. Set in a darkening future it follows a writer's journey through the political world of publishing, as her book becomes the last print-published novel ever.” (complimentary ticket). This show has just opened and has received generally favorable reviews.

Thursday - 8:00 - “Loaded” - Off Broadway. This is the press blurb for this show in previews at a theater on my block: “In this new play by Elliot Ramn Potts, two men attempt to see if their casual sexual relationship has the potential for something more. Instead, the generation that separates them leads to a series of misunderstandings. 47-year old Patrick is accustomed to having the upper hand in his intimate encounters, both sexually and intellectually, until he meets Jude, an equally intelligent, quick-witted 24-year old. Their attempt at playful banter starts to open wounds and expose their arrogance and hypocrisies. Their conversation turns from the darkly comic to the serious, ultimately leading to a tragic turn of events.’ (discounted TDF ticket).

Friday - 8:00 - “Bye Bye Birdie” - Broadway. “It's 1960 and hip-swingin’ teen idol Conrad Birdie has been drafted into the army. But don’t worry, girls! His manager Albert has cooked up a plan to send him off with a swell new song and one last kiss from a lucky teenage fan...on The Ed Sullivan Show! In the all-star cast are John Stamos and Bill Irwin.” (Roundabout subscription series)

Interestingly, this show was just beaten to death by most of the critics and on the chat boards but it has developed an audience (much to the chagrin of the neigh-sayers) and will probably recoup. I don’t recall ever seeing a production of this show so I am looking forward to seeing it.

Saturday - 3:30 - Gators vs. South Carolina (CBS).

8:00 - “The Gayest Christmas Pageant Ever” - Off Broadway. I’m sorry, but I just couldn’t resist the press blurb for this limited-run show: “It's time for the annual holiday production for a struggling gay theatre company in West Hollywood. Jim, the pot-smoking straight tech guy, offends M&M, the eclectic playwright, causing him to walk out and take his script with him. Now the crazy and drama-addicted team has just a few weeks to produce The Gayest Christmas Pageant Ever. This holiday camp-fest is a fast-paced comedy packed with hilarious dialog and over-the-top characters. (complimentary ticket).

Sunday - 3:00 - “Zero Hour” - Off Broadway. “Zero Mostels comic genius is recreated in this award-winning play. Zero Hour is set in Mostels painting studio on West 28th Street where a naive reporter attempts to interview the famously volatile artist, prompting an explosion of memory, humor and outrage. Mostel is remembered for his comedic genius and his definitive roles, but in the 1950s he was equally known for his place on the infamous Hollywood blacklist.” (discounted TDF ticket). This show is in early previews and it sounds very interesting, don’t you think?

Monday - 11/16 - “Broadway Unplugged @ Town Hall” - Off Broadway. “Marc Kudisch (9 to 5, Thoroughly Modern Millie), Emily Skinner (Side Show) and Daniel Reichard (Jersey Boys) lead an all-star cast in a concert featuring songs from musicals, with the performers singing without mikes.” (discounted TDF). This is one of my favorite concert events.

Tuesday - 7:30 - New York Philharmonic Orchestra @ Avery Fisher Hall. The program is: “Haydn - Symphony No. 95; Martinu - Piano Concerto No. 4, Incantation; and, Sibelius - Symphony No. 1.” (season subscription series).

Wednesday - 8:00 - “Race” - Broadway. This show is in very early previews and it is yet another David Mamet play (gasp). This is the press blurb: “Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award winner David Mamet (Glengarry Glen Ross, Speed-the-Plow, American Buffalo, November) returns to Broadway with his new play, starring James Spader, David Alan Grier and Richard Thomas Race is an incendiary story about the perceptions and realities that color our world... and the subtle shades between being a victim and being victimized.” (discounted TDF ticket).

Yes, I know, I know - I have a love/hate relationship with David Mamet and his works, almost all of which have pretty much pissed me off in one way or another. Why then am I seeing this show you are no doubt breathlessly asking? Well, simple - it is a David Mamet play.

So, my loyal and faithful readers, the upcoming 9 days are yet another example of why I LOVE living in New York City and why I never intend to voluntarily live any place else.

Tomorrow I plan to post some comments and observations on some of the shows and events that I have seen in the past two weeks. Stay tuned.

Go Gators!!

Billi Pod

“Don't pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you.”

Monday, November 9, 2009

October Was A BALLERRIFIC month! Oh yes!!

Good afternoon my loyal and faithful readers - I hope each of you had a great weekend, I know that I did, but more about that in a later posting.

This posting will be about what a BALLERRIFIC (have I created yet another new word??) month October was for Billi Pod in The Greatest City in The World. Oh, I knew it was good but not until I checked my daily log (log, not diary - real guys don’t keep diaries) did the full impact of the month become apparent. Mentally I was concerned that my almost obsessive following of the Yankees, even when they were playing out-of-town, would have a negative impact on the number and diversity of things and stuff I did during the month. Well, I will give you the numbers and let you be the Judge, in other words: “I report - you decide.”

During the month I saw/did/attended the following:

5 Broadway shows (“Memphis;” “Brighton Beach Memoirs;” “Oleanna;” “Finian’s Rainbow;” and, “In the Next Room or the vibrator play”); 8 Off-Broadway shows; 2 New York Philharmonic Orchestra concerts; 7 Yankee post season games; and, 2 movies: (“Zombieland” and “The Boys Are Back”).

The 7 post season games were: 2 in the American League Division Series; 3 in the American League Championship Series;, and 2 in The World Series. The Yankee’s record for these games was 6 wins and 1 loss. As you know, the Bronx Bombers went on to win The World Series on November 4th, and, of course, I was there.

I get a kinda “gulp-factor” when I next report that during the month I actually stayed in PHC 5 days/nights (gulp) without attending some entertainment event. The reason, which I am sure you know, was to watch The Yankees and/or The Gators on TV. Yeah, I know - I am an avid fan of both teams, but still, it does cause me to gulp when I report the numbers.

I was able to spend some quality time with Michele Purcell and her friends Mary Ann Pipping and Mayme Clark of Polk County, FL. We had a great after-theater dinner at Angus McIndoe and then I took them to 420 W. 42nd Street for a tour of Penthouse C and its awesome views of The Big Apple. Also on the quality time list was face-time, twice, with student/bartender/manager Scott Reed.

I posted 15 times to this blog, double the number for September.

So, when you factor in all of the post season games together with the other entertainment activities I respectfully suggest that October 2009 was a BALLERRIFIC month for Billi Pod, but it is up to you, my loyal and faithful readers, to determine because ...

“I report - you decide!”

Go Gators!!

Billi Pod

“Don't pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Friday - A 2009 Season Wrap Up

I want to make a few observations about the 2009 season and what it meant to me to have been part of this inaugural season in the new Yankee Stadium, then I will put baseball to rest until Spring Training 2010. And, yes, I can hear the collective sighs of relief from many of you otherwise loyal and faithful readers.

When the season opened I was still in the throes of deciding where I was going to live, having not yet made my decision to move from Midtown East to 420 W. 42nd Street in Penthouse C. I wasn’t overly pleased with the new stadium and/or my 41 game partial season ticket plan seat location. Early-on the stadium gave me the feeling of watching the game in a sports bar. Slowly, however, my perception began to change.

In all of my partial season ticket packages in the past (beginning in 1999) I was never in the same seat for consecutive games. I was always moved around, and, frankly, I liked that because I could cocoon if I wanted to without having to worry about hurting anyone’s feelings. I didn't have to interact if I didn't want to. With the new 41 game package I am in the same seat, Main Level, Section 212, row 5, seat 17. Interestingly, everyone seated near me, to the sides, front and back, are all full-season ticket plan holders, I am the only partial plan holder.

In the 4 seats to my immediate left are: Erik (a pharmaceutical salesman), Anthony (a CPA) and Mark (a personal injury lawyer). They have been friends since college. During the season they rotated the seats so I got to meet family, business associates, boyfriends, girlfriends and just friends. I can say we, too, became friends over the season.

When the postseason arrived there developed a real closeness between all of the “group” around me and everyone was into each game from the first pitch to the last out. During the World Series games I would estimate we all stood about 75% of the time.

It is impossible for me to describe the elation when Mariano got the final out and the Yankees become World Series Champions for the 27th time. There was hugging and fist bumping and hand slapping and, yes, even tears of joy. It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience, without a doubt. I add being in Yankee Stadium on Wednesday night to my list of awesome Yankee moments, which includes being present for David Cone’s perfect game and Aaron Boone’s 2003 ALCS winning home run.

Everyone plans to renew their same plans for the 2010 season, including me, again for the 41 game partial plan.

The final game was my 56th game and the Yankees record for those games was 38 wins and 18 losses. Being the statistic nerd that I am I determined the following: home games started on April 15 and ended on November 4, for a total of 203 days. I spent almost 30% of those days/nights at Yankee stadium. Also, the Yankees played a total of 89 home games (including the postseason) and I was there for almost 65% of them. Yeah, you might say that I am an avid baseball fan.

But, I opted not to attend the parade this morning. Been there and done that, first in 1996 and last in 2000. Huge crowds (estimated in the millions) kinda spook me out, sorta like being in Times Square on New Year’s Eve for the dropping of the ball or at the lighting of the Christmas Tree in Rockefeller Center - everyone should do it once, but once is enough.

So, now my loyal and faithful readers, much to your relief - baseball goes on the back burner until spring.

Go Gators and Go Yankees in 2010!!

Billi Pod

“Don't pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you.”

Thursday, November 5, 2009

The Yankees Win The World Series

The final out in Game 6 was recorded at 11:50pm and the new Yankee Stadium erupted in a combination of raucous excitement and deep-felt relief as the Yankees won their 27th World Championship by defeating the defending World Champion Phillies by a score of 7-3. Andy Pettitte did what was required of him. I was thrilled to have been a witness to the culmination of an outstanding season. This is another “first” for Billi Pod to add to his resume.

The fact that the Series MVP was Hideki Matsui, who drove in 6 of the 7 runs, gave the evening an almost surreal feeling because he is the Designated Hitter and was only able to pinch hit during the games played in Philly.

The stadium remained virtually full after the game for the awards ceremony. George S. was not in attendance.

It was 1:04am when I opened the door to PHC. I am very tired but not sleepy. I ate a slice of pizza (thankfully the neighborhood pizza place stays open late) and then watched several recaps of the game and analysis on ESPN’s Sport Center.

It is now 2:30am and I will try to get some sleep.

Go Yankees!!

Billi Pod

“Don't pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you.”

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Wednesday - World Series, Game Six

OMG!! Game 6 tonight with Pettitte going on 3 days rest against Pedro “Who’s Your Daddy” Martinez - could there be more drama? I think not!

Since the Yankees failed to clinch in Philly I have been fraught with nightmare visions, such as --

“Game 6 - Phillies lead 5-6 into the bottom of the 9th. The Yankees have the bases loaded with 2 outs. Teixeiro runs the count to 3-2 and then swings on a pitch out of the strike zone to send the Series to Game 7.

Game 7 - almost the same scenario - Phillies lead 1-2 into the bottom of the 9th. Yankees have the bases loaded with 1 out and A-Rod at bat. He runs the count to 3-2, then swings at a pitch out of the strike zone and grounds into a game-ending, Series-ending, mojo-ending 6-4-3 double play.”

OH MY F**KING GOD - don’t let this happen!! Please!!

I will head out to the stadium around 6:00. Now I gotta post this and suck my thumb and walk around in circles.

You know, I will either be the witness, ultimately, to my first World Series Championship win, or to one of the greatest chokes in Yankee history. One or the other. OMG!!

Go Yankees!!

Billi Pod

“Don't pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you.”