Tag Archives: Dorothy Parker

Dorothy Parker 125th Birthday Celebration

Wish I were in New York for this year’s birthday party! Here’s what’s happening at the Celebration.

“In youth, it was a way I had
To do my best to please,
And change, with every passing lad,
To suit his theories.

“But now I know the things I know,
And do the things I do,
And if you do not like me so,
To hell, my love, with you!”

—“Indian Summer” by Mrs Parker


“Five Years, That’s All We’ve Got”

Well, that was fast…

I started posting these notes five years ago today, and 1,645 postings later, I’m still at it. Today I took a look at some of the items I ran during my first few weeks online.

Some Things Haven’t Changed

Music Videos

Here’s the first video I ever posted: “70 Million”, by the Paris-based, Franco-American band Hold Your Horses.

It was complemented by another video about the inspirations for the images in the “70 Million” video. Try playing them simultaneously.

Still posting music, and still love this one.

Saying Goodbye to Breaking Bad

Was it really five years ago? For me, Breaking Bad was the Greatest Series Ever, and I still post about it at the drop of a pork pie hat.

No change; still obsessed.


Rule Britania.

Dorothy Parker said she hated to talk to people from the UK, because they made her feel like she should be carrying a papoose on her back. I, on the other hand, am a pushover for anything said in one of the 684 recognized British accents.

And I love British comedy. Here’s Chris Turner, performing at The Glee Club, Cardiff:

Still a passionate Anglophile, still posting a disproportionate number of entries about the UK, even though Britain’s future looks grim, because of the self-inflicted damage resulting from Brexit. But then, it’s probably inappropriate for an American to criticize Brexit, since that was only the second most idiotic electoral result of 2016.

Restaurant Week

Summer Restaurant Week 2013 was what gave me the incentive to start blogging, and gave me the material I needed to get through the first few weeks.

Still at it. Posting Summer Restaurant Week 2018 pictures over the next two weeks.

 Some Things Have Changed, Thank God

On the left, the first Home Cooking picture I ever posted, long before my self-improvement Cookery Project started in 2016. On the right, the most recent Home Cooking picture

2013’s Poached Halibut and Asparagus with Basil-Tarragon Sauce vs 2018’s Cajun Chicken and Rice

I remember being so proud of the halibut, because I’d never poached fish before that.

I think my skill set and style have improved since then.

Much more to come in the next five years!

It’s Dorothy Parker’s Birthday

Dorothy Parker (22 August 1893 – 7 June 1967)

It’s been 124 years since the birth of Dorothy Parker. Poet, critic, short story writer, political activist, and one of the greatest wits of the 20th century.

I do not like my state of mind;
I’m bitter, querulous, unkind.
I hate my legs, I hate my hands,
I do not yearn for lovelier lands.
I dread the dawn’s recurrent light;
I hate to go to bed at night.
I snoot at simple, earnest folk.
I cannot take the gentlest joke.
I find no peace in paint or type.
My world is but a lot of tripe.
I’m disillusioned, empty-breasted.
For what I think, I’d be arrested.
I am not sick, I am not well.
My quondam dreams are shot to hell.
My soul is crushed, my spirit sore;
I do not like me any more.
I cavil, quarrel, grumble, grouse.
I ponder on the narrow house.
I shudder at the thought of men….
I’m due to fall in love again.

― Dorothy Parker

A Little More Dorothy Parker — A Medley of Extemporanea

…because there’s no such thing as too much Mrs. Parker.

Anne Hathaway reads part of Dorothy Parker’s 1928 short story, “The Garter”.

The Dorothy Parker commemorative postage stamp.

The trailer for the 1994 film, Mrs. Parker And The Vicious Circle, in which Jennifer Jason Leigh played Mrs. Parker.

And one perfect poem.


Dorothy Parker, Born This Day, 1893

“By the time you swear you’re his,
Shivering and sighing.
And he vows his passion is,
Infinite, undying.
Lady make note of this —
One of you is lying.”

The Young Dorothy Parker

The Young Dorothy Parker

Dorothy Parker was a writer, political activist, and poet.  She was also one of America’s great wits.

I’ve been a life-long fan, ever since my mother introduced me to her works when I was but a callow schoolboy.  Parker gave me an early glimpse at the possibilities of life in the city, where charming people traded sophisticated banter.  So very different from the conversations in my isolated little hometown, where the most passionate discussions centered on how many days were left until the start of deer hunting season.

Parker’s heyday was the 1920s, when she wrote for Vanity Fair and The New Yorker.  She was one of the original members of the Algonquin Round Table, an ever-changing group of newspaper columnists, actors, novelists, painters, and playwrights who lunched at New York’s Algonquin Hotel.  Having a seat at The Round Table meant that you’d reached the absolute pinnacle of that part of New York society that lived for glittering repartee.


“Razors pain you,
Rivers are damp,
Acids stain you,
And drugs cause cramp.
Guns aren’t lawful,
Nooses give,
Gas smells awful.
You might as well live.”

Many of the Algonquin set have faded into obscurity—there’s not a big readership for 90-year-old theatre reviews or newspaper columns—but Dorothy Parker has held up better than most.

There’s a small but lively Dorothy Parker Society, which conducts a Dorothy Parker Upper West Side Walking Tour, sometimes followed by lunch at the Algonquin.  The Society will be celebrating  the 123rd anniversary of her birth with the walking tour on Monday morning at 11:45, and a birthday party at 7:00 PM.

The Los Angeles Chapter will raise a toast as well.  Details at the link.

“In youth, it was a way I had,
To do my best to please.
And change, with every passing lad
To suit his theories.

But now I know the things I know
And do the things I do,
And if you do not like me so,
To hell, my love, with you.”

Happy Birthday — A Day Late — to Dorothy Parker



Dorothy Parker, one of the great wits of the 20th Century, was born 122 years (and one day) ago, on 22 August 1893.   Some words of wisdom from Mrs Parker:

“Beauty is only skin deep, but ugly goes clean to the bone.”

“If you want to know what God thinks of money, just look at the people he gave it to.”

“If you have any young friends who aspire to become writers, the second greatest favor you can do them is to present them with copies of The Elements of Style.  The first greatest, of course, is to shoot them now, while they’re happy.”

“Don’t look at me in that tone of voice.”

“You can’t take it with you, and even if you did, it would probably melt.”

“This wasn’t just plain terrible, this was fancy terrible. This was terrible with raisins in it.”

“The first thing I do in the morning is brush my teeth and sharpen my tongue.”

“The cure for boredom is curiosity.
There is no cure for curiosity.”

“That woman speaks eighteen languages, and can’t say ‘No’ in any of them.”

“It serves me right for putting all my eggs in one bastard.”

 “By the time you swear you’re his,
Shivering and sighing,
And he vows his passion is
Infinite, undying –
Lady, make a note of this:
One of you is lying.”


Devo — “Beautiful World”

Woke up to this classic New Wave hit from the 80s.  Devo played at the Warner Theatre in Washington when the song was new, and it was one of the best live shows I’ve ever seen.  One of the people I was with that night was so knocked out by the performance that he went to the box office between songs and bought a ticket for the second, late night performance.

“Beautiful World” reminds me of one of my favorite Dorothy Parker verses:

“Oh, life is a glorious cycle of song,
A medley of extemporanea;
And love is a thing that can never go wrong;
And I am Marie of Romania.”

–Dorothy Parker