Thar She Goes…

Tuesday, May 31, 2005 3:51pm  |  COMMENTS (8)


Another tear down, this time at the prominent intersection of Watchung and Upper Mountain Ave. in Montclair. Captured, of course, by ace lensman Scot Surbeck.

Tea for Three — Free!

Tuesday, May 31, 2005 2:00pm  |  COMMENTS (3)


If you missed Elaine Bromka’s performance in "Tea for Three" at 12 Miles West this January, you’re in luck. She’s doing a special show — free — at the Bloomfield Public Library, June 12 at 2 pm. In the one-woman show, Bromka plays Lady Bird Johnson, Pat Nixon and Betty Ford, and the results are both poignant and hilarious. For info or reservations, call 973.566.6200 ext. 212.

Half Full or Half Empty?

Tuesday, May 31, 2005 11:49am  |  COMMENTS (1)

Iris_1 Iris_2

We’re halfway through iris season, according to the official "bloom status" page of the Presby Memorial Iris Gardens. Many of the tall bearded irises are blooming late, thanks to the unseasonably cool weather. Baristanet readers Jessica Sporn and Martta Rose visited this weekend and sent in their pix.

Rail Seat" href="" rel="bookmark">Talk About Your Third Rail Seat

Tuesday, May 31, 2005 9:53am  |  COMMENTS (15)

Three_seaters_2 According to today’s New York Times, NJ Transit has finally gotten the message: nobody wants to sit in that middle seat. They’ve ordered up "double-decker" coaches with two seats on each side. (We’re having a hard time wrapping our minds around an upstairs/downstairs Midtown Direct.) Still, all the social engineering in the world won’t stop jerks from being jerks, will it? Commuters: chime in any time.

Outward Bound for Baristas

Tuesday, May 31, 2005 8:45am  |  COMMENTS (9)

Double_duckie_2Sunday of Memorial Day Weekend, and the Barista is on a double duckie on the Youghiogheny River in Pennsylvania. This kayak trip down the Middle Yough is the centerpiece of the Memorial Day family reunion (other side of the family, you can be sure) and is billed thusly:

The ultimate family float trip is how most refer to the Middle Yough. Its calm and scenic Class I and II rapids are gentle enough for the young and enjoyable enough for the young at heart.

Hmmm. We saw it a little differently.

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Beyond Barbecues

Monday, May 30, 2005 4:58pm  |  COMMENTS (9)

Memedgmnt6_1Scot Surbeck captures  beautiful moments of Memorial Day in Edgemont Park. His shots tell the story of the day as throngs gather at a well-attended ceremony, including resident Canada geese having a "collective nervous breakdown from being pushed off their island, with the exception of one momma bravely sitting on her nest."

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Never Forget

Monday, May 30, 2005 10:45am  |  COMMENTS (96)


Cartoon courtesy

But We Wanted The Big Store

Monday, May 30, 2005 9:30am  |  COMMENTS (24)

Is bigger always better? Not if it’s a big box retailer like a K-Mart, but a mega Whole Foods? Bring it on. Unfortunately we’re not getting it. Seems Cary Africk has been doing some investigative reporting (he has his own "Deep Throat") and posted on the Watercooler comfirmation that West Orange will score a giant Whole Foods (someting akin to the monster that ate Columbus Circle) and of course, the requisite huge parking lot. Of course, readers of Barista knew that already. Africk does stir the pot — asking why we let that big fish get away…

The ex-Pathmark building, on Prospect next to the K Mart, will shortly be turned into one of Whole Foods "large" stores. This is great news for fans of the store (of which I am one). These stores, such as the one in New York City, are astonishing! But I did have one question: Why West Orange and not Montclair? What with Montclair’s eagerness to bring "ratables" into the town, did our officials meet with Whole Foods and try to convince them to build in Montclair, rather than West Orange? A store the size of the new Whole Foods will bring in considerable tax money, not to mention jobs and shoppers who would have brought additional revenue to Montclair’s other restaurants and stores. What did we do to go after this "business?"  Presentations?  Meetings? Tax breaks? Why did we lose? And although my "source" said the Montclair store will remain open, Why would it? In fact, the store in Montclair just transferred their liquor license out of the store. A prelude to closing?

OK, officials, or others in the know, — tell us, did we even stand a chance of getting a bigger Whole Foods? And what about the scuttlebutt over a potential Trader Joes?

Memorial Day Observances

Monday, May 30, 2005 6:55am  |  COMMENTS (1)


  • The Bloomfield Parade kicks off at 9:30am.
  • The Montclair Memorial Day Observances will be held at Edgemont Memorial Park at 10am. The Montclair Community Band starts playing at 9:45am. In case of rain, the ceremony will be held in Montclair Township Hall at 205 Claremont Avenue.
  • The Glen Ridge Parade kicks off at 11am with services at the memorial in front of Ridgewood Avenue School. The parade and services are followed by a townwide picnic at Hurrell Field.

Photo by Scot Surbeck.

Love Verging on Brutality

Sunday, May 29, 2005 11:22am  |  COMMENTS (2)

Sudden Rain, by Maritta Wolff. Scribner, New York, 2005. 435pp., $26.00.

Sudden_rain_2 Maritta Wolff wrote her first novel, Whistle Stop, in an undergraduate English class at the University of Michigan. It was published to immense critical acclaim in 1941 when she was twenty-two years old, and five years later was made into a film featuring Ava Gardner in her first starring role. Wolff√¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢s seventh and last novel was completed in 1972 and stashed away in manuscript because the author refused to promote the book and, further, refused to approach another publisher. After her death three years ago, Ms. Wolff√¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢s estate discovered and released the book — Sudden Rain √¢‚Ǩ‚Äú- for the great benefit of all of us 21st century fiction lovers in desperate search of an engrossing read, something harder and harder to find in this postmodern world where narrative is becoming a dirty word.

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Featured Comment

Sad. Let's hope that this is not its "Last Tango." One of the most beautiful and iconic buildings in town. Valentino, Garbo, Keaton must have played there.

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