A Baby Boomer’s Belated Blog to George Will

A Baby Boomer’s Belated Blog to George Will
Dear Mr. Will, Hello. How are you? I am sorry that it has taken me so long to write to you. Almost 25 years, I suppose. I see that you are a very popular man to attack on The Huffington Post these days, what with your recent “controversial” article about sexual assault on college campuses, where in the interest of full disclosure, I have worked for the last 28 years, albeit only as a “crazy theater professor” at the University of Southern California, which I’m not sure qualifies for true condemnation or contempt in your morally superior world of intellectual and...
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Childhood Heroes, Part 2, Cassius Clay aka Muhammad Ali

Childhood Heroes, Part 2, Cassius Clay aka Muhammad Ali
Cassius Marcellus Clay. The “Lousiville Lip”. “The Greatest” heavyweight boxing champ of all time. “Floated like a butterfly, stung like a bee!” My second boyhood hero… long before he became known as the most famous man on the planet, Muhammad Ali. In 1960, when i was 13 years old, 18 year old Cassius Clay burst onto the national sports scene by winning the Olympic gold medal. He was brash. Talented. Faster than lightning. And he couldn’t be beat. With the help of loud mouth and equally-brazen sportscaster, Howard Cosell, Clay brought entertainment,...
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July 4th: Re-Discovering America Through Immigrant Eyes

July 4th: Re-Discovering America Through Immigrant Eyes
Re-posted from The Huff Post, June 21, 2014 I brought my wife-to-be here to LA from Indonesia on August 3, 2001. We had met on the lovely island of Bali a little over a year before in the early summer of 2000. We e-mailed each other for several months, she in “broken English”, and I went back to visit her for almost a month around Christmas time and New Years. We traveled across the island of Java together, taking night buses through the drenched green rain forests for 10 hours at a haul, touring the great Buddhist temples in Borobudur, riding small horses up into the active volcanic crater...
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Woodshop, for Dad

Woodshop, for Dad
my father used to be a carpenter a master craftsman a cabinet maker extraordinaire he’d turn these perfect round cherry wood salad bowls on his lathe dove tail smooth fitting mahogany joints on his meticulous router pull his whining De Walt table saw over huge planes of wood that   would magically become with his love and care and endlessly detailed patience kitchen tables with white inlaid formica tops custom built wall units complete with knotty pine bookshelves for the World Book Encyclopedia and antique scrolled top desks with french wire netted doors that were sanded smooth as a...
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childhood heroes, part 1, mickey mantle

childhood heroes, part 1, mickey mantle
june 10, 2014 i’ve been blogging a lot about my childhood lately. my first discovery of anti-semitism on valentines road (http://www.erictrules.com/blog/there-was-a-horse/). my horrendous, forced-upon-me  bar mitzvah at temple sholom (http://www.erictrules.com/blog/bar-mitzvah-blues/) . a lot of pain, a lot of negativity, blah blah blah. we all have it. so what? can i really transform the microcosm of my own pain into the universality of art? make it the story of other people’s pain and suffering? like o’neill? arthur miller? tennessee williams? the 3 greatest american playwrights....
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The “R” word

The “R” word
5/13/14 It used to be the “C” word. C-c-c-ommitment. Normally a young man’s word. Why ever get married, settle down, have a family, limit your (sexual) options? What about freedom? Opportunity? Spontaneity? Improvisation? Living in the moment? Be here now? What about the 60s? Sex, drugs, and rock ‘n roll? I’ll tell you “what”. Life is what. It has a way of catching up with even the best (free-est) of us? Leaving us older, lonelier, less and less healthy and attractive with each passing year. Maybe even sadder, wiser, but more isolated… eventually, if we...
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bar mitzvah blues

bar mitzvah blues
5/17/14 today, a scorchingly-hot, sunny california day in LA, i went to my friend’s son’s bar mitzvah. sheldon mandel, let’s call the friend… or the son. doesn’t matter. a double jewish name, with a particularly challenging first name to bear, for whoever of the two was the name bearer. what were the parents thinking? sheldon? so obviously a name of head turning, of eye-rolling, of clucking… in modern-day america anyway. but perhaps also … to some… maybe the parents… a name, too, of… tradition? a name of weight and beauty… hebrew,...
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for mom

for mom
5/13/2014 a couple of days ago it was mother’s day. no big deal. my mom passed away in 1999. suddenly… from a cerebral stroke. she never knew what hit her. it’s been a long time. fifteen years, seems like fifty to me. it’s too bad she never got to meet my young indonesian wife when i got married for the first time at age 54. i wonder if they would have liked each other. my mom always wanted me to find… companionship. i’ve found it, i think. i hope she’d be happy for me. but i’m not a father. my wife’s not a mother. we have no children together....
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there was a horse

there was a horse
may 7, 2014 there was a horse. a golden palomino. ginger. like her color. a perfect, golden palomino. no bridle, no saddle, just naked and free. across the street on valentines road. on the bolson estate. tall oak trees, green grass, and a golden horse. she would come up to the fence and let us pet her. or sometimes, feed her apples. whenever she felt like it. she was there before us. the first horse i remember. probably the first i ever saw. ginger. we were the newcomers. 1953. i was six years old. my sister had just been born. in levitttown, new york. long island. the first suburb in america. built...
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on the bus to palookaville

on the bus to palookaville
may 3, 2014 it’s another nocturnal and nefarious crime caper. naturally, i’m with my uncle harvey, the black sheep of the rosenberg clan and “the con” in my documentary film, “the poet and the con”. we’ve stolen a bus. not ken kesey’s bus. no merry pranksters here. something like the team bus for the lakers, or maybe the ascendant LA clippers. but donald sterling’s not on the bus. who the fuck would want that scumbag, racist b-ball owner, after the un-civil comments he made this past week that inflamed the whole multi-cultural nation? certainly not...
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