As the last combat troops leave Iraq, I have one question, “Can you drive from the airport to Baghdad without security?” When the Saddam statue toppled you couldn’t. How many lives, dollars, years later, can you now? Surreally tragic.

I came out of my writing bunker to watch the few embedded reporters all these years later. It breaks my heart, so much for so little.

May Trek’d

Beautiful Memorial Day weekend-perfect weather, fun times with family. Jake met brothers, more cuzins, Aunt Jean Jean. Wonderful porch talks with Jame and Ben. Great party, hamburgers, hot dogs, all the fixin’s thanks to Deb, more in freezer for next barbecue. Sunday with Sylvia, went to old hippie throwback for lunch in Great Barrington, “the Gypsy Joynt”, homemade food and music nitely.

Joe will launch the re-make of “My Three Sons” as Steve Douglas (Fred MacMurray), Wes will play “Bub” and Gary as Uncle Charlie.  The updated version will have Alison as Steve Douglas’ trophy wife with whom he has the youngest son “Chip”.  Deb will produce, CP will write. Yay, now we all have jobs.

Looking forward to Hornet’s Nest this week al fresco, t.v. in heavy re-runs and weather too nice. Here’s to a great May, welcome June. Birthday shout-out to Kimmy Pants manana, miss the old Finn tourney.

Ben Trek

Hi all of you Trekkies…I’ve hijacked my mother’s blog for the day and disgusting profanities and turns of phrase are bound to rear their ugly heads. However, before my Tourette’s-like diatribe ensues, I just wanted to reflect on the fact that, as I’m sitting here facing my senior year of college, I’m really able to appreciate this quaint little town that I grew up in and…yes…my family. That was a lot of punctation in one sentence.

With that crazy family in mind, I’m looking forward to spending the Memorial Day weekend with all of them. More importantly, I’m looking forward to teaching my mother how to add tags to her blog posts so that her page is easier to navigate and so that Google is more likely to catch her posts and introduce the world to her “unique” view of things. To that end, I just wanted to tell all of you that I’m having a really great time at my internship with New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand. We’re all hoping that the Top Hat/Top Kill/Hot Tap/whatever idiocy BP is trying now is going to work, but we also have to keep our struggling journalists in mind–those tragic scenes of oil-covered pelicans really make for great TV.

Anyway. That’s enough for now. I think I can begin my “tagging” lesson. Until next time, happy Memorial Day to all.

Mama Treks

I never understood why Mother’s Day triggered the need for kids and even more bizarre, husbands to give Mamas gifts. As a Mom I am happy that I’ve had the experience. There’s no better gift than being a Mother. I didn’t seek it out, but it’s been the most gratifying, fulfilling role I can imagine. Whatever I’ve done is not out of a sense of obligation, but joy.  There are sacrifices that both parents make which they should.  When we take on the parenthood thing, we become forever committed and responsible for the happiness and welfare of our kids. For me, Mother’s Day is silly, everyday is mother’s day and it’s the best thing in the world.

That said, we are going to spend the weekend with a most determined new Mom and Great-grandma Betsey a wise and funny matriarch. We’d do it whether it were a Hallmark holiday or not.

So, thanks Ben for making me the most incredibly proud Mom, and just study for finals no gifts!

Weekend Treks – May Daze

This just in- Kirsten Gillibrand, U.S. Senator (D) New York will have a very enthusiastic intern from NYU this summer-Ben Levine. Congrats!

Cuzin Ben met Jake yesterday and was won over by the tiny one’s charms. Lots of aunts, cuzins, and grandmom coming to adore. Jordan and Joe must be smoking ceegars and beaming! Won’t be watching Tiger this weekend. Have to pick Sidney’s Candy for the derby. A very happy birthday to godson Jamison tomorrow, can’t wait to be with him in Maine to celebrate his wonderful accomplishments in a coupla weeks. Shout out to A-man and GQ, you know why.

Speaking of Papa Joe, he was fond of a silly ditty, “hooray hooray the first of May, outdoor blanking starts today”. It is going to be 80+ degrees today, so?!

Oh Baby!

Welcome to the world,  Jake Jordan Colitti! He arrived this morning healthy and gorgeous, 6 lbs. 10 oz., 20 inches.  His Mama Alison is smitten and Daddy Joe relieved and in love.  Mazel tov!  Can’t wait to meet him.  He emailed after his “bris” and he’s a Tiger fan, and of course loves the Mets like his Mom.

Wolf Treks

Local newspaper, Daily Hampshire Gazette, has taken to putting headlines above each obituary. This one caught my eye the other day, “Helen Lavalle, 94, advised Elizabeth Taylor”.  Amongst her many jobs, Helen was a waitress at the former Williams House, where “she was the only waitress who could tell Elizabeth Taylor that one lobster was enough.” Therein lies her illustrious advisory career.

Ms. Taylor was here at Smith College in the 60’s filming “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf”, assume that’s when she may have tried to indulge in local lobster binge-ing. Of course, the old Williams House was famous for its haute cuisine brought to the Valley by Jim Wolf, both featured in Table’s Edge.

Good news, Alice Waters is coming to television, the pioneer of green cuisine actually started the notion that real food is better than all the processed crap we were brought up on. We do need new cooking people on t.v., cannot stand Rachel, Paula, Emeril. Now that aging hair and skin have been covered, it’s time to talk diets. Shorts season is upon us. I have gone back to actually skipping dinner, rather than pretending to skip dinner, and it’s helped. Last night’s Final Jeopardy was about Danielle Steel’s book “The Ghost”. It’s the only Steel book I’ve ever read, really. But, it was well researched about the French-Indian-Anglo skirmishes around Deerfield, Ma. It was fun and I learned stuff.

Ben Meets Frank

When Ben Levine was invited to sit in on a New York Times editorial board meeting yesterday, he ran into a familiar looking guy. Frank Rich. “Frank” asked what brought him to the meeting. Ben told “Frank” that he was the Editorial Board Chair of NYU’s newspaper.  “Frank” said, “oh, the Washington Square News!” Ben was surprised and impressed and had a great time sitting in on the meeting- found the discussions to be heady and educational. Outsiders are rarely invited to the ‘Times’ inner sanctum, so quite a coup.

See Trek Books for March List.

Carol Colitti Levine – I Heart Men

I “heart” men. There I said it. I think they get a bad rap. It started with The Berenstain Bears series. Wife and kids ridicule the ever silly things Dad does. Look at most current TV commercials. Wife wiltingly indulges her dolt of a husband’s feeble attempts at one thing or another. Kids giggle as Mom makes him feel bad by doing it better. They give him a look of pity and derision. Women who make jokes about how lame men are. Do they have sons? Why make it us vs. them? Men are not perfect. Neither are women. Men are not from Mars. Women are not from Venus. Bottom line. It’s about the person, not the gender.

Aside from that, Nancy and Bronco celebrated her bday together in Boise. Welcome to all you Facebook people. Love to have your book, movie, political, restaurant, recipe ideas here!  Oh, yeah and Phippy still can’t putt.