Tina Fey turns 39 today. Film producer Marty Bregman is turning 78. New York Times columnist Clyde Haberman is 64. Singer-songwriter Jack Johnson is turning 34. Former Yankee Reggie Jackson turns 63. Country music singer George Strait is 57. Hong Kong movie star Chow Yun-Fat is turning 54. Reality TV guru Mike Darnell is 47. Retired French tennis star Yannick Noah turns 49. And child actor Spencer Breslin, the older brother of Abigail Breslin, is turning 17 today.
Yesterday Times fashion writer Cathy Horyn gently rebuked Barack Obama's sartorial tastes, implying his "dad jeans" made him look like a sitcom character from the 1990s. ("When he wears them with white sneakers and a windbreaker, one could almost say he had stolen the look from Jerry Seinfeld's character on the television series.") The criticism isn't likely to convince Obama to break out the baggy jeans. As the President-elect made clear a few months ago, he's no fan of the belted-around-the-thighs look style favored by many young black men: "Brothers should pull up their pants," he told MTV viewers in a pre-election appearance. "You are walking by your mother, your grandmother, your underwear is showing... Some people might not want to see your underwear. I'm one of them."
Cranky Times columnist Clyde Haberman has a long list of (really good) questions for the banking industry, like why banks can't seem to figure out how to provide pens that actually work. ("How can people feel confident that their money is being managed wisely if those in charge can't even provide a functioning pen?) But he also has an interesting conspiracy theory to share with the world. It seems Banco Santander, which announced the purchase of Sovereign a few weeks ago, is now advertising itself in the Times as just "Santander." "Want to bet that Santander left out "banco," except in very small type at the bottom of the ad, so that few would see right away that another piece of America had been acquired by a foreign institution?" Click through for Haberman's litany of complaints.
Every so often we find it necessary to check and see what kind of fish are swimming around in Times crotchety grandpop Clyde Haberman's particular barrel, and today, he's in his patented folksy heartwarmin' mode, eulogizing a man who, though he had no apartment, had "a home in the hearts of 21st street. " The column begins:
In a Black Friday column bemoaning the state of patriotism and consumerism (or something, it's Clyde Haberman, so it's hard to tell), Clyde Haberman mentioned an excursion
We were recently directed to PX This., the "witty, irreverent (star-studded) four year journal of a struggling New York commercial-artist/fashion-designer moonlighting as a maitre d' at some of Manhattan's most well-known restaurants." While perusing its contents, we came upon the following entry (all contents completely [sic]):
Mayor Bloomberg has signed a proclamation honoring Sigmund Freud here in town, which provides The Times' Take-A-Senior-To-Work-Day columnist Clyde Haberman yet another opportunity to dial it in. Haberman, who's never met a bad joke he didn't like or an easy assertion he wouldn't make, turns his laserlike acuity on the fact that, well, a lot of New Yorkers are in therapy. He suggests a variety of reasons, including the predominance of shrinks who settled in town during the war (World War II, that is, although he probably remembers the shifting demographic patterns of the city after the War of 1812), the stresses of living in such a hard-charging city, and, of course, New Yorkers' natural introspection and curiosity about themselves. Not mentioned: Having to read crap like this twice a week. Can we get someone to take Clyde out for a ride into the woods already? Just be sure you don't turn on your cell phone until he's completely out of the car.