It’s in the air….

What could possibly make me think of romantic comedies today?

I’m thinking perhaps it has something to do with it being Valentine’s Day, the holiday of romance and chocolates, flowers and cute cupid notes.

Vegan meal “selfie” by our granddaughter

So, is this a good time to begin making lists? Of course, it is. For me, most days are a good time to create curations of films, or theater, and such.

Today is a great day to appreciate the rom-coms. So here we go:

  • Anyone of a number of sometimes very moving Hallmark, yes that Hallmark, Channel films. Of particular note, 
  • Elevator Girl. although many others have elicited tears and joy.
  • Serendipity is underrated by most, but very appealing, and perfect for this category.
  • Bull Durham has always been the top choice for most romantic film story of all-time for me.
  • Like the Drew Barrymore rom-com, Fever Pitch, Bull Durham has both hearts and baseball in its corner.
  • Barefoot in the Park has recently become an obsession. It has the advantage of pairing Jane Fonda at her most charming and the droll and handsome Robert Redford.
  • Speaking of Redford, he also stars opposite Barbra Streisand in the most delightfully sad-lovely tale The Way We Were.
Celebrate Valentine's Day with a movie and roses.
Blossoms in a teapot (c) Tamara Beck

Lists like these are fraught with the dilemmas that choosing always brings us. They are also patently absurd, and ever so restrictive. And of course, totally incomplete. It is also nearly impossible to truly pick a favorite. The very process of creating an archive like this is exhausting!

  • Moonstruck is definitely a love story that makes the list for V’Day viewing.
  • Diane Keaton is still churning out romantic comedies, including the current Book Club
  • but her preeminent role was as Annie Hall.
  • Something’s Gotta Give makes this list, as well, in another Keaton led romance.
  • Her co-star in that lovely little love story, Jack Nicholson is truly romantic in Anything Goes and also in
  • Terms of Endearment, with Shirley MacLaine, a bitter-sweet story that pleases and pains.
  • Waiting to Exhale is very romantic and one of my hubby’s favorites, as is it’s star, Whitney Houston.
  • Angela Bassett can be found there as well as in How Stella Got Her Groove On
  • Bassett also appears in an anti-Valentine, as it were, the classic What’s Love Got to Do With It, (it makes the list for its portrayal of resilience
  • Let’s not make an unValentine list just now!
  • Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan made their contribution to the genre with Sleepless in Seattle and
  • You’ve Got Mail, a remake of
  • The Shop Around the Corner, remade as
  • In the Good Old Summertime, a musical vehicle for Judy Garland, Van Johnson and SZ Sakall.
  • Deliver Us From Eva is a romance of empowerment and love
  • along the lines of Kiss Me Kate and let’s add another 
  • Gabrielle Union picture Two Can Play That Game

It’s Valentine’s Day, so I will now retire with a cup of hot, rich coffee and admire the roses my husband put in my window!


Witchy ways

Are premonitions part of your repertoire? Do they come with a nose-itching certainty?

Do you gather inspiration from the text of Bell, Book and Candle? Is Bewitched an all-time favorite on TV, so much so that you just had to see the movie?

Grab a broom, and come join us around the cauldron. A witches’ brew may be just the drink for this day in time!

Cast your spell.

Words cannot express

with my mother and her favorite cousin. both now gone.

When I lost my mother tongue

I gave up my otherness

It was important to me, once,

I thought, to be different, to

Avoid  the chameleon cloak of

Conformity, the pull of belonging.

When I lost my native language,

I gave up the tribe to which I

Was born, where I belong is

Here, reflected in the speech

I now speak, the other forgotten,

Left behind in dim memory and

Recollections of a foreignness I

Once valued. Now I am native here.

This is where I belong, now

So close…Can’t wait…Here it goes…

Here. at midnight on the 31st of December, the ball will drop and you–even from your couch at home– will join the throngs in yelling out Happy New Year! Photo © Tamara Beck

via Daily Prompt: Finally

You waited 364 days for this one. Or is it 363 this year? Whichever it is, finally the anticipated New Year is upon us.

Well, in truth, in some locales around the globe it has already peaked, but here in NYC we await the balldrop some 13 plus hours from now, and counting.

One two three … midnight and happy new year.

Honestly? Honestly!

By P.D Jankens – Fred Chess, Public Domain,

via Daily Prompt: Confess

In an era of frankness (well not in the political arena or in our “civic” lives, but certainly in films), why do so many bio-pics present such a bowdlerized view of their subjects? Sanitizing and censoring the lives that the persons of interest led seems an unpardonable treatment.

It may be possible to excuse Hollywood for masking Lorenz Hart’s sexual inclinations in the 1948 film, Words and Music. But the times they are a-changin’ as Bob Dylan would put it. Shouldn’t we be more forthright about who Cole Porter really was in De-Lovely than we were in 1946 in Night and Day? The Kevin Klein version from 2004 hints only slightly at the double life Porter had.

The facts of a person’s life may not be as straightforward or as simply depicted as we’d like to think. Allowing for artistic license and interpretation as well as for the p.o.v. of the auteur, the life on the screen cannot replicate the life as it was lived.

The movie about Sylvia Plath’s relationship with Ted Hughes, Sylvia (2003) is based on a collection of his poems. To the survivor belongs the turn of the tale. Even the esteemable Richard Attenborough while harnessing the talents of the superb Robert Downey, Jr. misses the mark in revealing Chaplin to his audience. While I will confess to having it liked it, I agree that the movie underplays the dramas inherent in Charlie Chaplin’s rich and controversial life.


Quiet waters © 2015 Tamara Beck

via Daily Prompt: Cherish

Cherish life, appreciate love,

Worship, if you must, all that

Lies before you, the golden

Treasures of each lovely day

Cherish memories, appreciate

Everything you are given,

The moon, the river, time as it

Passes, like the waves from

Shore to shore, all this is

Precious, hold it close to

Your heart where all that

Is dear belongs, cherish the

Life you have, appreciate

Your love and hold it close


At Play

Photo © Tamara Beck

The waters ripple in the evening
Tide, the moon, their soul mate,
Hidden in a darkened sky is not
Playful, even as the river scampers
Across from shore to shore, released
From its daytime duties, away from
The sun, cloaked in darkness
Does it search for the moon’s light?
Or, is it content, running rapidly
On its own, hosting brightly-lit
Boats that appear like beacons
From time to time, lighting up
The dark riverscape, even if the
Moon will not peek out to help
Clarify and inform the water’s path