Being a New Yorker, a Virgin Islander, and a member of the professional theater community, I’m used to coincidences. All my life, wherever I went in the city, on the island of St. Thomas, or around America to do summer stock and regional plays, no matter how remote, I always found that I knew at least a couple of people there. Even so, my usual coincidence history didn’t prepare me for the BIG coincidence I found when I went to NYU-Langone’s medical clinic here in NYC for some health tests last week.
The pretty young intern/MD-in-training who interviewed me and administered my heart stress test asked me if I was experiencing any special stress at the moment. I said yes, I was in the process of selling my Greenwich Village apartment and moving to Bayside, Queens, to live with one of my oldest friends from college and his wife, in a separate apartment in their house.
“Bayside?!!” she asked, clearly surprised.
“Yes,” I said. “A house on Bell Boulevard.”
She was even more surprised. “That’s where I live! Where on Bell Boulevard?’
I smiled. “You can’t miss it–it’s the house with the front lawn that includes bright fairy lights, big plastic sunflowers, and flamingoes.”
Now the young woman was dumbstruck. “The house with the flamingoes?!! I love that place! I smile every time I pass it. Our local legend lives there, his name starts with an ‘L’…Lon! His name is Lon! He’s the Neighborhood Angel!”
“That’s right,” I said, surprised that she knew my friend’s name. “How do you know him?”
“Oh, everybody knows about him!” she cried. “He helps people move and clean and–I don’t know what all, but everybody loves him. You really know the Neighborhood Angel? And you’re going to be living in his house? Wow!!!”
I smiled again. “So, we’ll be neighbors. You must come over and meet him and his wife, Joanna. They’re wonderful people.”
“They must be!” she said. “They help everybody. I’d love to meet them!”
And so she shall, as soon as I move there and get settled in. In the meantime, I’ll reflect on the fact that one of my oldest friends now has a successful business that makes moving or just sorting and clearing unwanted stuff out of your house a lot easier to manage. Lon and his crew also offer a host of other solutions to pesky everyday problems around the home, and their prices are more than reasonable–they’re downright generous. No one in the current NYC market can compare to him. The name of his business isn’t facetious–it’s heaven on earth. He cleared out my cluttered Village apartment in a matter of hours and found new homes for all my old stuff. If that isn’t a miracle, what is? Thanks, Neighborhood Angel!
The late, great Jerry Herman gave Broadway some of its most memorable musical scores, notably HELLO, DOLLY!. MAME, and LA CAGE AUX FOLLES. He wrote several other shows that were not smash hits, even though they had interesting–and in some cases, inspired–music and lyrics. Continue reading
After all the hype, I just had to give THE UNDOING a look. HBO’s most recent lavish miniseries about the trials and tribulations of rich, privileged white people (or RPWP, for short) was just too provocative to ignore. Continue reading
All of us who were alive then remember exactly where we were and what we were doing at approximately 10:20 pm (EST) on the evening of July 20, 1969. I was 13, in summer camp on Long Island, and Continue reading
My publisher, Penguin Random House/Alibi, is offering the ebook of MRS. JOHN DOE at a special bargain price for a limited time. This is the first title in the series, the one that introduced Nora Baron, my actress-drama teacher-wife-mother-homemaker…and CIA operative. Continue reading
Nora Baron’s fourth adventure, The Devil and the Deep Blue Spy, is now available everywhere ebooks are sold. Nora and her husband, Jeff, are on a “second honeymoon” cruise in the Caribbean—but that’s merely their cover. They’re actually on a mission for the CIA, following and observing a Continue reading