Linda Novit, ENV Magazine
New Orleans, even more dear to us now, since Katrina. But the places on high ground, such as the French Quarter, and the famed (mainly through Ann Rice),Garden District were not affected, apart from the loss of business and power outage.
Besides going to party down in the French Quarter, you can lay back and relax in the Garden District, which also has fine restaurants, access to street cars, even if they’re not called Desire, A 24 hour Tavern called The St. Charles Tavern, ask for Jay, he’ll tell you stories, a very knowledgeable man. There’s also “The Green Fork” a totally organic bistro, started 5 years ago. It had it rough for a while, but has prospered the last two years, as the people of New Orleans go more and more organic.
Then there are the wonderful (at least I think it’s the best way to travel) B&Bs. I picked one called the Fairchild House (located at 1518 Britannia St – www.fairchildhouse.com) run by Brazilian New Orleanians Beatriz Bentley and her mother Rita. They started their business 21 years ago, and they love it. As they lovingly call it “Faulty Towers” The breakfast array is wonderful and Kosher, which means they don’t mix meat with dairy (comes from the Jewish “Thou shalt not eat the calf in it’s mother’s milk)
And when you’re in the mood, it’s only about ten minutes to the French Quarter, with all it’s excitement, and what I most appreciate, live music everywhere!!! I even found a hidden historic treasure, teaching me more about the city. I found the “Tango Bar”, the only one left since the 30’s. At that time, tango was the thing, and there were 30-40 tango bars. Although music on Bourbon Street is entertaining, along with all the shops, and you can barter at their Farmers Market. Near the Farmer’s Market, lies Frenchman Street, where the avante garde jazz is happening There’s also, on one corner of the French Quarter, Louis Armstrong Park, beautiful, and nice to spend time in.
In between the French Quarter and the Garden District lay a huge Museum dedicated to WWII. I entered and felt chills. How could they change the Swastika, which used to be a symbol for peace, into the face
Beatriz of Fairchild Gardens
of evil and horror!! Yes, someone in my family died in the camps.
Anyway, right next door, was the Contemporary Art Museum, which this week featured Teen Art.
And now to the food! I went back to a restaurant where I’d dined last year, and had fond memories of, the Pier 424 Seafood Market, on Bourbon Street, a special restaurant, the locals had guided me to last year. I then had some scrumptious Filled Portobello mushrooms. At the time I and another table were the only diners. But word travels fast, now it was packed!!
For my first course, besides the introductory drink, a chocolate martini, to die for! I am a chocoholic, , so from their wine list, which even educates you about wines, I chose one that went well with chocolate. Really good! I had oysters, that tasted so good, you’d think they had just brought them up from the beach and shucked ‘ em. They were so good I almost turned gay !!! To follow was a gigantic catfish that was so tender , it just fell off your fork, into your mouth, along with them I had
At Pier 424 with Carlos and Paul
some fried button mushrooms, mushroom freak as I am. Then, the Grande finale! I really felt like a VIP when I was served cheesecake with berries. Wow, so we splurge a little now and then. Many thanks to Paul, server extraordinaire, Manager Karl, and Morgan in marketing. We love you madly! I’ll be back to the gym next week.
Louis Armstrong Park Café du Monde
Contemporary Art Museum French Quarter
Artists display their work outside Café du Monde
Our heartfelt thanks to Christine and the others at New Orleans Conventions and Tourism bureau!!!
DIDATO, RICHBERG SPARKLE IN PERFECTLTY SCRIPTED COCK –
THE LATEST OF ADLER’S PRODUCTIONS AT GABLESTAGE
Ron Levitt, ENV Magazine, Florida Media News
CORAL GABLES, FL — With such a provocative title, Cock – the current production at GableStage – will either intrigue theatre-going audiences that they are in for some X-rated material or preclude it by saying “no-no.” Both are wrong.
Instead they will get an intelligent, astutely directed production with some of the finest acting seen in South Florida in many years. Cock could have been named “cockfight” due to the unusual staging in a partial boxing ring. It is the appropriate site to mouth the words of young British writer Mike Bartlett as a quartet of actors battle with verbiage to determine just what “love” is.
In its simplest terms, Cock is the story of a young man John (Ryan Didato) who has had a long-term gay relationship with the older M (Nicholas Richberg) before his world is turned upside down when he has an unexpected affair with a woman W (Julie Kleiner). He is put in the position of choosing to continue his gay relationship or accept the reality that he is bisexual and capable of a loving future with this woman, even with the objection of M’s father–F (an explosive Peter Galman).
But there is nothing simple about this script nor the plot And, certainly, nothing simple about this production of a play which was a big hit in London and New York. This is Joseph Adler’s 92nd production at the Biltmore site and his adroit direction is apparent as the four actors dominate the stage. It is by no means a simple reminder of why Adler has the most production and directing Carbonells of anyone else in South Florida. Once again, his mark of excellence is apparent.
Lest we ignore the dominant characters, let us heap praise on both Didato and Richberg. Both obviously have anchored their characters with English accents that seem real. There is no sense that the accents or dialects are for stage use only. Richberg, in addition, fills every pre-conceived and stereotypical movement of the effeminate homosexual as envisioned in Bartlett’s extraordinary script. Richberg is truly brilliant as the deeply hurt partner – joining with the superb performance of Didato as the confused John – a frustrated fellow who doesn’t seem to know what he wants!!. What a topnotch twosome!
The writing of Cock is witty, filled with truisms, and words which tell more about these characters’ premise of love than any action might produce. It is a delicious script peppered with language one would expect of some twenty-somethings in urban London. What a pleasure to witness such reality!!
Kleiner, whose attire is somewhat dowdy for such a bright character, and New York actor Galman, are up to expectations in their supporting roles, as well. Adler obcviusly chose this cast with care. It would be half as much fun in lesser hands.
Lyle Baskin uses symbolism in his set design – one half of a boxing ring in which the characters battle. Matt Corey handles the sound; Jeff Quinn the lighting, and Ellis Tillman, the costumes.
Cock runs through June 16th, Call 305 445 1119 for tickets.
Have you been lied to about the health benefits of canola oil?
If you’ve been following my fitness newsletters for some time, you may have noticed that I NEVER include canola oil in any of my recipes or any of my lists of healthy foods.
Many people have asked me why, because all they hear in the mainstream media is that canola oil is “heart healthy” and a good source of monounsaturated fats similar to olive oil.
Well, first of all, you need to realize that much of what you hear in the mainstream media has been influenced by heavy handed marketing tactics by big food companies. Canola oil is cheap for them to produce so they want to fool you into thinking it’s a “health oil” so that people, restaurants, etc will buy it up as their main oil of choice.
The dirty truth about canola oil
Yes, it’s true that canola oil is high in monounsaturates, but let me explain why canola oil is anything but “healthy”.
Canola oil is made from something called rapeseed. Rapeseed actually had to be bred over the years to reduce the percentage of a problematic component of rapeseed, which is erucic acid.
Important note on canola oil “urban legends”: There is a problem with most websites that DEFEND canola oil, saying that internet “urban legends” on the dangers of canola oil are unfounded. The problem is that these websites that defend canola oil ONLY talk about the issue of erucic acid. The issue of erucic acid IS an urban legend, because erucic acid has been bred out to very low levels over the years, so it is a non-issue.
However, these websites that defend canola oil are barking up the wrong tree because they don’t address the issue of the processing of canola oil and oxidation of the polyunsaturated component of canola oil, which is what makes it unhealthy for human consumption. THAT’S the real issue that they either don’t understand (because they are not nutrition experts) or are simply ignoring.
Let’s look at the REAL issues with canola oil:
Canola oil typically ranges between 55-65% monounsaturated fat and between 28-35% polyunsaturated fat, with just a small amount of saturated fat.
While we’ve been led to believe that high monounsaturated fat oils are good for us (which they are in the case of virgin olive oil or from unprocessed nuts or seeds), the fact is that canola oil has more detriments than it does benefits.
As you may have heard me talk about in other newsletters or in my Truth about Six Pack Abs program… one of the biggest problems with highly processed and refined vegetable oils such as corn oil, soybean oil, and yes, even canola oil, is that the polyunsaturated component of the oil is highly unstable under heat, light, and pressure, and this heavily oxidizes the polyunsaturates which increases free radicals in your body.
The end result of all of this refining and processing are oils that are highly inflammatory in your body when you ingest them, potentially contributing to heart disease, weight gain, and other degenerative diseases.
The reason that extra virgin olive oil is good for you is that it is cold pressed without the use of heat and solvents to aid extraction. EVOO also contains important antioxidants that help protect the stability of the oil.
Canola oil, on the other hand, is typically extracted and refined using high heat, pressure, and petroleum solvents such as hexane. Most canola oil undergoes a process of caustic refining, degumming, bleaching, and deoderization, all using high heat and questionable chemicals.
Does canola even have trans fats?
Even worse, all of this high heat, high pressure processing with solvents actually forces some of the omega-3 content of canola oil to be transformed into trans fats.
According to Dr. Mary Enig, PhD, and Nutritional Biochemist, “Although the Canadian government lists the trans fat content of canola at a minimal 0.2 percent, research at the University of Florida at Gainesville, found trans fat levels as high as 4.6 percent in commercial liquid canola oil”.
And this is the crap that they are marketing to you as a “healthy oil”!
As you can see from the details above on how canola oil is processed, it is barely any healthier for you than other junk oils like soybean oil or corn oil. The bottom line is that it is an inflammatory oil in your body and should be avoided as much as possible.
The only canola oil that might be reasonable is if you see that it is “cold pressed” and organic. Most canola oil is NOT cold pressed or organic, so you might as well choose oils that you know are healthier.
Your best bets are these truly healthy oils:
- extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) - for lower temperature cooking or used as a healthy salad dressing oil
- Udo’s Choice Oil Blend – NEVER use this for cooking as it has a higher polyunsaturated fat content (therefore heat destroys the benefits of this oil, and increases it’s inflammatory properties), but it is a cold processed blend of healthy oils that mixes well with olive oil for salad dressings.
- Virgin coconut oil – great for all temperatures of cooking due to its super high stability under heat. A great source of healthy saturated fats in the form of medium chain triglycerides (MCTs), one of which is Lauric Acid, which helps support the immune system and is lacking in most western diets.
- Organic grass-fed butter – I like to use a mix of grass-fed butter, coconut oil, and a small bit of olive oil for most of my cooking. Grass-fed butter is a great source of the healthy fat, CLA, which has even been shown in studies to have muscle building and fat burning properties. Grass-fed butter also has a much healthier omega-6 to omega-3 ratio than standard butter at your grocery store. Kerrygold Irish butter is my favorite grass-fed butter.
So don’t be fooled by food labels claiming that they contain “healthy canola oil”… as you can see, this couldn’t be further from the truth! Choose some of the healthier options above and your body will thank you!
By the way… Are you eating these unique power-foods that FIGHT aging in your body, normalize blood pressure, improve brain function, and even help BOOST your metabolism?
SIX COMIC PERFORMANCES, ASTUTE DIRECTION ARE A HOLE IN ONE
DESPITE THE PREDICTABLE OUTCOME OF THE FOX AND THE FAIRWAY
Ron Levitt, ENV Magazine, Florida Media News
CORAL GABLES,FL — When you pack the stage with six top-of-the-line actors, put them together with a sharp director and a plot reminiscent of the farces of the 1930s, you hope that you are in for laughs That’s the challenge of The Fox and the Fairway currently taking over the balcony theatre at the Actors’ Playhouse at the Miracle Theatre.
Yes, there are laughs and it is fun, Plus, after all, it is a pleasure to watch so much talent. But –like so many farces — the outcome is much too predictable and in back of your mind is the question “can this latest work by Ken Ludwig, author of the successful Lend Me A Tenor go anywhere beyond regional theatre? “ It is not your typical Broadway fare!
Despite what could be called Ludwig’s latest silliness, however, The Fox and the Fairway does hit the green in the acting category and direction. It is pleasurable to watch the superb comic timing of the six people one sees on stage plus the knowledge that you know someone (David Arisco) put together what has the making s of an admirable comic piece.
There is plenty to offer the audience, despite the predictability of what is going happen next! The Fox and the Fairway offers six of South Florida’s favorite actors – many of whom are known for their dramatic ability — a chance to show how well they can handle comedy. Ken Clement, Clay Cartland. Todd Allen Durkin, Betsy Graver, Amy McKenna and Margot Moreland all deliver superior comic performances.
Here’s a short version of this play, courtesy of the Internet. Bingham (Clement, president of the Quail Valley Country Club, is in a difficult position, less by finding out that his newly hired hand, Justin ( a terrific prat-falling Cartland), is in love with Louise (the lovely Garvey) , the waitress at the club house, but by the discovery that the golfer he thought would play for his club has switched sides recruited by his counterpart and opponent, the cocky and arrogant Dickie (the multi-talented Durkin), and the huge bet he had foolishly wagered is now likely to be lost. Fortunately, he discovers that Justin is actually quite a good golfer and finagles his nomination. Justin does not disappoint and has a huge lead, when close to its end the tournament is interrupted by bad weather. When Justin learns that Louise has lost the engagement ring he gave her – she accidentally flushed it down the toilet – he becomes unglued. The game resumes the next day, but Justin loses the lead, and, upset, takes an unfortunate swing breaking his arm. Bingham is desperate, and the appearance of his wife (Moreland) complicates the matter, as she catches him much too close to Pamela, his sex-starved vice-president (a stunning McKenna). Can Bingham find a replacement for Justin to win the game, win the wager, and get his life in order?
Somehow or other, we think you know the answer well into the two-act script by Ludwig, But, after all, it is a farce, so who cares? Just don’t take this plot too seriously and you will enjoy the performances. Those six actors are reason enough to see The Fox and the Fairway.And, if you are an avid golfer, you will find lots of on-course humor to keep you entertained.
Gene Syfer’s set is a tribute to any golf country club. It looks comfortable and Ellis Tillman’s costumes (especially Durkin’s outlandish golf attire) is reason enough to see this show.
runs through June 2. Call 305 444-9293 for tickets
“WAR HORSE”ALLOWS ONE’S IMAGINATION
TO BE SET FREE AS PUPPETRY REIGNS IN BROWARD
Ron Levitt, ENV Magazine, Florida Media News
FORT LAUDERDALE This is what theatre is supposed to be about – creativity, ingenuity, imagination and powerful surprises. And, to think we have to learn that from horses!
Of course, we are referring to War Horse, the brilliant National Theatre of Great Britain production, currently capturing the imagination of the crowds heading to the Broward Center of the Performing Arts. And, it appears this bit of theatrical magic will continue to draw big crowds through its run on May 19th.
War Horse is a two-act play, based on Michael Morpurgo’s novel intended originally for young readers and a theatrical script by Nick Stafford. It became a Broadway sensation after the British-bred production premiered at the Lincoln Center in New York to rave notices. Armed with a cast of 34 and featuring the life-sized horse puppets whose movements are mysteriously in synch – played by humans depicting the equine species.
The story follows the relationship between Albert (Alex Morf). a young man in agricultural Devon, and a stallion which he names Joey. Joey is part thoroughbred and part draft animal. Joey comes into Albert’s life when his drunken father (Todd Cerveris) outbids his brother (Brian Keene) for the foal at an auction. When Britain enters World War l, the father – much to the chagrin of his mom (Megan Loomis), and Albert—whose closeness between him and Joey – exceeds far beyond the norm — sells Joey to a miitary man (Jason Loughlin) for 100 pounds and the horse follows his lieutenant into battle in France. Meanwhile, Albert – despite his age (16) – enlists and eventually re-connects with his beloved animal, in thanks partly to the sketchbook of this valiant horse captured in print by the lieutenant. It is a story based on loyalty and betrayal while exhibiting the horrors of war.
The amazing human-footed horses in this production are the creation of Adrian Kohler and Basil Jones of the Handspring Puppet Company. These sure-footed puppets are simply remarkable. While it is easy to praise the work of the “horses” on stage, it in no way demeans the work of the many human actors in this production. It is an outstanding ensemble of American actors, directed by Bigan Shelibani.
Among the many talents on stage is actor/singer John Milosich, whose Irish tenor voice weaves throughout the two hour 20 minutes of story-telling.
Technically, once again, this crew is exceptional, You will feel the horrors of war thanks to Rae Smith’s simple but effective settings, drawings and costumes, the sound by John Owens and Christopher Shutt, the lighting by Paule Constable and Karen Spahn, as well as background music by Adrian Sutton. It is difficult to seperate the technical superiority from the puppetry skills and excellent acting in this extremely special story for all age groups.
War Horse is a play you will long remember.