Monday, September 21, 2015

Back From Vacation

Our European trip summary is coming soon.
Meanwhile the fall theatre season has started. We have been attending many Opening Night productions. Here is a picture of us all dressed up for the San Francisco Opera’s Opening Night. We clean up nicely. Check out Eddie's reviews at Theatre Eddys

One interesting piece of travel news. Our last piece of luggage FINALLY showed up 6 weeks after is didn’t make its connection. It was suppose to arrive in Rome back on August 8th. British Air finally 'expedited' delivery of this 'priority' piece of luggage at 11:55pm on Saturday night, September 19.

The bag contained all our shoes for our vacation: walking shoes, dress shoes, running shoes, sandals, slippers, flip-flops. It would have been nice to have them all on the trip but we are nevertheless glad to get them back.

Friday, August 07, 2015

Vacation Time

I’m in the middle of a 24-week chemotherapy cycle. I’m on chemo (FOLIFIRI with Avastin) for three days every two weeks. This is to treat stage-4 cancer in my lungs that started as colorectal cancer. It is really hard and it has taken quite a toll on me. The good news is I’m going to take a 5-week break from it. Three of those weeks will be traveling in Europe.

We are off to Rome for 5 days. I’ve never visited it but Eddie has. We are mostly going to play tourist there and see the historical sites and museums. Then we are boarding a gay cruise from Rome to Istanbul. The cruise is charted by Atlantis Events on the Celebrity Equinox ship. This promises to be fun. We have done quite a few gay cruises (the last one in February in Cuba) but none this big. The itinerary is:
Rome, Naples, Catania, Chania, Mykonos, Santorini, Bodrum, Kasadasi and Istanbul.



Our cruise ship


We will spend a few days in Istanbul and then finish the 3-week vacation in London to visit friends and catch some theatre. More details and photos when we come back.


Wednesday, August 05, 2015

Rabbi recommended

Eddie in the mid-90's working with temple youth.
Our synagogue recently celebrated its 60th anniversary. It threw itself a big celebration. Unfortunately we could not attend because of family obligations.  But we heard it was a great success and enjoyed by everyone.  The recent synagogue newsletter arrived with a wonderful tribute to my husband in it written by Rabbi Marder, our Senior Rabbi. It talks about his leadership involvement back in the’90’s.

…Over the course of decades lay leaders have been intimately involved in educational innovation at Beth Am. And yes — they volunteer by the hundreds, serve on committees, lead our affiliates — Beth Am Women, Beth Am Men, BATY and BAJY — and if they’re especially dedicated and talented, they’re honored by being elected to the Board of Directors. 
When I began my work at Beth Am, one of the first things I noticed was its distinctive leadership culture. Those chosen for high positions are intelligent, thoughtful and constructive in their approach. 
Leaders treat one another — and professional staff — with respect and courtesy. Differences of opinion are freely shared, but in any discussion the focus is on what’s best for the congregation, not personal agendas. Our leaders tend to be modest rather than ego-driven. They take the work of temple governance seriously, but not somberly; the atmosphere at meetings is relaxed and leavened by humor. And our leaders are not afraid to try something new. 
At our festive anniversary weekend, I had the pleasure of paying tribute to the people who most exemplify this positive culture of leadership: Beth Am’s 32 past presidents. Of the 20 still living in our area, all remain active in the congregation — a remarkable fact in itself. Within this outstanding group, there are two I want to single out in particular. Eddie Reynolds could not be at our anniversary dinner because of a family commitment on the East Coast, so I wasn’t able to present my personal tribute to him that night. But everyone who knows Eddie appreciates his very special qualities. Tall, lanky, effervescent and positive-spirited, Eddie exudes enthusiasm. He’s especially passionate about theater; he and his husband, Ed, see more than 80 shows a year and Eddie reviews them on his blog, Theatre Eddys
Partnering with Rabbi Block, Eddie provided expert leadership during the early 1990s, when Beth Am helped pioneer the Experiment in Congregational Education (ECE), an HUC-JIR project designed to employ learning as a path to synagogue transformation. Eddie’s role as an organizational development consultant made him especially fit for the presidency at this critical time, and he facilitated many a retreat and board discussion, guiding a diverse group to fruitful creative endeavors — including Beth Am’s nationally-known family education program, Shabbaton. Over the years he’s continued to share his talents with our congregation. He’s a loving dad, a loyal friend and a man who lives by his deeply-held values…
Synagogue newsletter
Interesting fact about Rabbi Marder, a straight, married women with a family, from her bio: In 1983, she became the first ordained rabbi of Beth Chayim Chadashim, a Los Angeles synagogue with special outreach to lesbian and gay Jews. During her five years with that congregation, she founded NECHAMA, a Federation-funded program of AIDS education for the Jewish community.
Beth Chayim Chadashim was founded in 1972 as the world's first lesbian and gay synagogue recognized by the Reform Jewish community. In addition it was also the first gay religious organization of any kind to be officially recognized by a major American religious denomination.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Rob Lowe Redux

This week my celebrity buddy, Rob Lowe, was all over my FaceBook and blogosphere feed. He was showing off is hunky, handsome, shirtless body.  As a 51-year old father, he truly rocks the Dad Bod look to the max.

I only met Rob Lowe once back in the early ‘90s. You can read about it here. And yet another entry here. I have found him to be a fascinating, talented actor and have enjoyed his movies and TV shows. He is also an author of two autobiographical books.

I don’t want to brag but I’ve discovered that several rare pictures of me shirtless from my Flickr account have been used in a number of blog and news stories about the “Dad Bod” meme craze that started a few months ago. Interestingly they have used photos of me from my 20’s through my 50’s. One even calls me the classic Dad body. Whoo-hoo. Someone get this daddy a latte.
Pic of me hiking in Scotland in summer 2011

Pic taken in 1985. I'm in my mid-20s.

Pic on right taken in 2014. I'm on chemotherapy for stage 4 cancer.

Cropped pic from 2014. Bloated from the chemo drugs.
If you click on the pictures you can see a larger copy. Embiggen all the images!

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Artistic Dad and Husband

I have always been attracted to artistic and creative people. My husband is no exception. In his youth, Eddie was very creative and artistic. He could have been a singer, dancer, actor, stage performer, poet, writer, and even a party planner. He did spend a major part of his youth singing. It was a passion he carried through college. But once he started his career, got married, had kids, got involved in a number of non-profit boards, music took a back seat.  Luckily, thirty years later he came back to it. Four and a half years ago he decided to audition for the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus, the oldest and one of the most prestigious gay choruses in the nation. He had to prepare a solo and present it in front of the audition committee. He made the cut. The chorus took about half of the men who audition. He has been performing with them ever since. I love watching him sing on stage. He has such focus and intensity when he sings. It is not an easy gig. They have a 3-hour rehearsal every Monday night, plus sectionals and retreats throughout the year. All the music has to be memorized and they have to learn choreography that goes along with performance.

His newest artistic passion is writing reviews of the plays and musicals we see. It began in January when I set up a blog for him to post reviews ( The theatre community noticed the reviews and he was asked to join the San Francisco Bay Area Critic Circle. The purpose of the SFBATCC is to promote and serve theatre of all types and sizes throughout the nine Bay Area counties. Then about a month later he was ask by a national theatre ( site to be the primary reviewer of South Bay theatre. And then most recently, he was accepted as a member of American Theatre Critics Association.
Update: He has now no longer just a reviewer for the San Francisco Bay Area at Talkin' Broadway, he is the primary reviewer for the new section San Jose/Silicon Valley at

Eddie’s reviews are very supportive of theatre and promote the notion of going out and attending a live performance.  He wants to excite the reader to be motivated to go see a show. He also presents an audience viewpoint of the various elements of the show: acting, sets, direction, music, etc. He then offers a critical analysis where the production excels or falls flat.

Personally, I enjoy it when he reads his drafts to me and we discuss the finer points of the production. We both have a great love and passion for theatre.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Marriage Equality is Here but there is still more to do

Our legal wedding in 2008 is now valid in all 50 states.
Last Friday was the 10-year anniversary of our religious, Jewish wedding. (See previous entry.) This Friday marks the Supreme Court decision making marriage equality the law in all 50 states.  Our marriage is now legal in all 50 states!

As we celebrate this momentous win, let’s not forget there are still many issues and struggles that the LGBT community still faces today in the United States.

* LGBT individuals can still be fired, simply for being who they are. Yes, you can be married on Sunday and fired for being gay on Monday. There is no federal law protecting LGBT workers against discrimination based on their sexual orientation. And while some states and cities have passed their own protections, there are still 29 states where you can actually be fired for being gay, leaving more than half of all total workers vulnerable to employment discrimination. The Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), which was first introduced in 1994, passed in the Senate in 2014 but has since stalled in the House because of arguments around religious exemptions.

* Sexual orientation and gender identity still aren't protected under the hate crime statutes of more than 20 states. In many places it is not a hate crime to beat up a queer.

* LGBT individuals are still denied basic public accommodations because of their sexuality or gender identity. Twenty-nine states have no laws protecting queer people from being denied basic accommodations, like getting admission into a movie theater or even ordering customized baked goods.

* As of April 2014, 17 states either have not yet formally repealed their laws against sexual activity among consenting adult, or have not revised them to accurately reflect their true scope in the aftermath of the Supreme Court's 2003 ruling in Lawrence v. Texas. 14 states purport to ban all forms of sodomy, some including oral sex, regardless of the participants' genders: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Utah. Four states specifically target their statutes at same-sex relations only: Oklahoma, Kansas, Kentucky, and Texas.

* Sexually active gay men are still banned from donating blood. This outdated policy is both homophobic and life-threatening.

* Same-sex parents struggle for the custody rights that heterosexuals are automatically granted. Most states still don't allow a second spouse in a same-sex couple to gain legal recognition as a child's parent and guardian, creating a second-class legal status for that excluded parent and the entire family.

* LGBT Youth Homelessness: Up to 40% of homeless youth are gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender. Queer youth homelessness is often caused by homophobia. Many teens have positive, supportive coming out experiences, and families who provide unconditional love. However, in far too many cases, teens that come out are explicitly told they are no longer welcome at home. For others, living at home becomes so unbearable that leaving may seem like the safest option.

Friday, June 19, 2015

10 Year Wedding Anniversary

This morning Facebook reminded us that today is our 10th wedding anniversary. It is not our custom to celebrate our anniversary on the calendar day. Instead we choose to acknowledge it on Fathers Day every year. We were married in a big Jewish wedding on Fathers Day, June19, 2005.

We will be celebrating Fathers Day and our anniversary on Sunday. Our oldest daughter is hosting a BBQ at her place in SF.
A kiss, a toast, and cake.

The ceremony under the chuppah

Us and our six kids

Our ketubah
Blog entries about the wedding can be found here:

Our big, gay, Jewish wedding was not a legal wedding. That would have to wait until 2008. We had an official California wedding during the brief window it was legal in California before Proposition 8 passed and made it illegal again. The US Supreme Court overturned Prop 8 in June 2013.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Elton John Sing-Along

Elton, Eddie, Steve and friends at SFGMC.
It is not too late to join my husband, Eddie, and his friends as they sing with the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus at their next concert: "ELTON, The Sing-Along": SFGMC's Friday, June 26 (8 pm) & Saturday, June 27 (3 & 8 pm). The concert features more than 2 dozen of Elton’s greatest, most loved hits from rock, Broadway & film. Wild costumes, fabulous choreography, dance lines, drag queens in addition to drop-dead, gorgeous singing. And, YOU get to join in on all your favorite choruses. Buy your tickets today at

But we can't do it without your help in belting out some of Sir Elton's most iconic melodies!   This is truly a sing-along, and there will be video screens with words and song sheets to help.  You will have a chance to join in on your favorite choruses to his iconic songs.  We may even have you dancing on your feet before it's over.

So dust off your bedazzled spectacles; strap on your platform shoes; and grab your boa for “Rocket Man,” “Crocodile Rock,” “Can You Feel The Love Tonight,” “Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me,” “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road” and many, many more!

After you get your tickets, let us know what performance you are coming!  See you there!! Tell your friends, colleagues, and family.  And, this is a VERY family-friendly show!

Saturday, June 06, 2015

Meeting Eddie

Early picture of the 2 of us, Eddie & Ed, in 2003.
I met the man that was to be my husband 13 years ago on June 7th.  He responded to a posting I had placed on Yahoo Personals looking for a buddy. We corresponded back and forth several times online over a period of several days. Finally we decided we would meet in person over lunch in downtown Palo Alto. I was working at Stanford University and was somewhat familiar with Palo Alto although at this point I almost never left the campus during the day to go downtown.  Eddie lived in Palo Alto. He suggested we meet in front of The Old Pro restaurant on Ramona Street.

I set out for lunch that day thinking I had plenty of time. However, I soon learned that parking is a bitch downtown. (And it still is.) I am now walking double time from the parking lot to the restaurant in order to get there in time. I don’t want to be late. I don’t want Eddie to think I was one of those flaky people that are never on time or worse that I wasn’t going to show.

We didn’t know what each other looked like at this point. All our writing back and forth was with email. In the early years of 2000, most people didn’t have digital pictures to exchange. Camera phones would not be popular for a couple more years. All I knew of his appearance was that he was tall and trim. I told him I would be wearing a plaid shirt and glasses.

I nervously stood outside the restaurant waiting and hoping that I wasn’t going to be stood up. Within a minute or so, I felt a tap on my shoulder. I turned around toward the person and looked up. There, silhouetted against the sun, was Eddie. A shiver ran down my spine. He was good looking with a sexy vibe to him. I felt this was going to be an interesting lunch.

We went inside and got a table in the back. We ordered sandwiches off the menu and proceeded to talk for over an hour. I became totally enchanted by this man. My stomach was tense. I had goosebumps on the back of my arms. The little voice in my head was chanting, “don’t screw this up; don’t screw this up; don’t screw this up.”

We talked of our passion of theatre. I had worked as a theatre arts administrator for almost 20 years. He had recently finished a term as the board chair of a major regional theatre company.  We had a lot of mutual interest in the arts.

We both loved running and made plans to run the hills on the backside of the Stanford campus, aka the Dish. We both liked biking and hiking with Eddie having done many over the top adventure travel vacations associated with these endeavors. This was the start of many future plans.

After lunch we continued our meeting at his office. I was totally blown away by this guy. He was everything I was looking for in a best friend and lover. Our first meeting was followed up with lots of back and forth emails. We started running together at lunch and doing bike rides on the weekends. At the end of four months we came out together, left our wives and moved in together. A whole new chapter of lives opened up.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Dad Humor

Here is a little Dad humor to lighten up the place.

My all time favorite dad joke. I have been using this joke on my kids for over 25-plus years. It still kills.

I am also an uncle. I have nothing more to add to standup comic Steve Hofstetter's routine except he speaks the truth.


Finally, this really cracks me up. A closely cropped body shot of me is used from my Flickr account to illustrate a story published in dozens of radio station blogs about the current topic of “Dad Bod.” I am honored that even in my over-the-hill age, I was considered the epitome of the "Dad Bod."

Here is the Daily Show with Jon Stewart video about "Dad Bod" that the above story with my enticing picture linked to.

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