I think I may grow a beard.
It was another spectacular day in Columbia County. Playing what may be the last round of golf for a while, Trey and myself got out for 18 at Copake Lake Country Club. We had two no shows, some excuse about a knitting club.
Copake may not be the best golf club in the county but it’s the most beautiful. Is sits high over Copake lake with panoramic views of the surrounding Berkshire Mountains. The Greens, the clubs attached restaurant, is one of the best in the region. It’s usually open year round.
Today was amongst the busiest days I’ve seen at Copake Country Club. People are taking to more outdoor activities it would appear. They do walk at the appropriate social distance of course. They charged no fees if you walked the course today (I always walk) and only $10 to drive a cart. It’s encouraging to see these businesses do the right things to keep up community spirit. I played the ladies tees again.
So recommendations. My top show from last year, and an excellent 20 episode binger, is Succession on HBO. The storyline centers on the Roy family, the majority owners of a global media empire. The Murdoch family comparisons are not subtle.
When I watched the first episode, back in 2018, I found all the characters so despicable that I left it on the shelf. But realizing that even I can be wrong sometimes , I went back in last year and got hooked.
This Roy family is toxic. But what’s more fun than watching really rich assholes behave really badly. The dialogue is whip smart and quotable. Watching this You’ll wonder why you care about any of these hateful selfish characters. But surprisingly you do.
The standout amongst the flawless cast is Brian Cox (the first and best Hannibal Lecter), as patriarch Logan Roy. It’s Dad’s seat on the throne his aggressive offspring are vying for.
Much of the Succession is filmed downtown Manhattan by our TransRe office building, One Liberty Plaza. I did see co-star Kieran Culkin riding the 4 Train beside me one morning, obviously on his way to set location. He looked like he needed a good scrubbing. I’d have approached him but I hate to have to talk to anyone in the morning, especially not on public transportation. This is Manhattan – the original training ground for social distancing.
Succession is my best show of 2019. I even downloaded that ever repeatable opening theme onto a playlist. I plan on rewatching both seasons , as soon as I catch up on Westworld.
Continuing with my rich people behaving badly theme, my book recommendation is A Season in Purgatory by Dominic Dunne.
Dominic had a real issue with the rich getting away with murder. The Bradley family at the center of this novel are rich Irish Americans , who probably made their money in organized crime and have their eyes on the presidency. This family is based in Connecticut, but sounds very like another clan of narrow backs who summer in Hyannis.
Dominic Dunne became obsessed with the judicial system, and how it interacts with the wealthy, after his daughter was murdered in 1982. His child Dominique played the part of the oldest daughter in the original Poltergeist. The rich behaving badly and the failure to get true justice are common themes in Dunne’s writing. All his novels are extremely readable.
On the movie side, and positioned firmly in the rich behaving really badly corner, we have The Wolf of Wall Street. As none of us are too happy with Wall Street these days, this may just be the time to watch and hate on the story of corrupt broker, Jordan Belfort. This was my first time seeing Margot Robbie in a movie. All of Margot Robbie. I only paid attention to what a great actress she is later when I watched I, Tonya (another recommendation).
Since TWOWS is one of only a few comedies Scorsese directed I’m also giving a shout out to another favorite of mine – The King Of Comedy. This odd pairing of DeNiro and Jerry Lewis will make you cringe. Watch it just to see what an influence it had on Joker. There’s a double bill for you.
Wolf is the only one of Scorsese’s films I have truly liked since Casino. Just rewatch De Niro in last year’s (overrated) The Irishman giving that guy a beat down outside the deli and you’ll have to admit, The Irishman is no Goodfellas. That’s how I’d imagine my granny would look mugging a homeless person.
This note and photo are from my good friends Rick & Jane in Florida. Their beautiful new home overlooks the community golf courses.
Our neighborhood gater, Alex, is staying close to home during the pandemic. Greetings from Wellington. We’re hunkered down in the good weather.
New York is now limited to essential travel . Let me know what you’re up to.