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When Tara Met Blog
Tuesday, July 12, 2005
My Dad's Bench
Me on my dad's bench, two years ago My father's favorite song was "Under the Boardwalk," oh and "Maggie May," but for the point of this story let's focus on the Boardwalk. When I think of summers growing up, I can't help but think of weekends at the New Jersey Shore with my dad and aunts, uncles and cousins. I used to go with my mother too, one week with her and then my father would head down, spend a day or two that would overlap, but my parents were always good friends even after they separated, so that was fine. Then I'd spend the rest of the week or a weekend with my father. We'd go to Pt. Pleasant, it was more family friendly than the nearby Seaside, which I'd venture later as I became a teenager. We'd stay at a hotel right on the boardwalk so we could enjoy the beach, pool and activities on the wooden pier. It really became a special annual trip for me and my dad. He taught me how to dive there and would spend way to much trying to win me a porcelain doll and Yankee jacket, both of which I still have and sadly still fit into (didn't grow too much).

So, when he passed away five years ago, my aunt who now has a condo in Pt. Pleasant had heard you could pay to get the new benches on the boardwalk personalized and dedicated. We immediately knew we had to get one for my father, Benny.

A few weeks ago, I got an email from an editorial intern at The Islander, which is a free publication in Pt. Pleasant and for the Shore asking if I was related to the Benny Settembre that is mentioned on the boardwalk bench, "Unforgettable Benny." I replied yes, that I was his daughter and answered a few questions for his article about the dedicated benches up and down the pier. It was definitely weird being on the other side of an interview, especially since the topic made me very emotional. Apparently he had found my email address via my blog, since I recenlty posted about my father on his birthday and included his full name. Pretty impressive investigative skills on his part!

Here's the article that resulted: Many of us simply take for granted the benches that line most boardwalks. They provide a place to sit and watch the waves or enjoy an ice cream cone.

For many people in Point Pleasant Beach, however, these benches honor and memorialize loved ones. (more) .

Posted by Tara at 9:01 PM PDT
Updated: Wednesday, July 13, 2005 6:29 PM PDT
Movie in the Park
Last night, on a beach towel, with a bottle of red wine, cheese and crackers, and Mike and Ikes, me and two girl friends and thousands of strangers watched the Fred Astair, Ginger Rodgers film The Gay Divorcee in Bryant Park. It was really cute and the dancing of course amazing and beautiful, although I like them in Top Hat better "Dancing Cheek to Cheek."

Every Monday, Bryant Park, just between Times Square and Grand Central plays a film on their big screen near the large lawn behind the New York Library. The lawn opens at 5, so I briefly snuck out of work and walked the two avenues over to the park and waited around the square lawn with a hundred of other eager visitors. They kept counting down the minutes over a microphone, going "The lawn will open in 5 minutes, please do not run, there is plenty of lawn for everyone." Then 2 mins, and when she said, "Please do not run, the lawn is now open." Everyone ran to claim a spot. I got a great area right up front, underneath the screen. I laid down my towel and my friend came to relieve me while I headed back to work for another hour before joining her and my other friend.

We picked a really hot day to be out there, but it was still nice, mugginess and all. The bottle of Merlot, I'm sure helped make us more chill too. As the sun set, a constant stream of people trotted on our towels to find any corner of grass still available. Behind the screen the Verizon sky scraper looms overhead, making a sharp contrast between the cozy picnics in the park and being in Midtown Manhattan. It's really bizarre, but in a good way.

Last year, we saw the Bogey/Bacall flick, The Big Sleep (although I had seen it a dozen times before). HBO sponsors the series and always shows a Loony Toons cartoon before the real film, it's pretty cute. Later after each dance scene, everyone would clap, as well as each time Fred or Ginger entered the screen. It's fun to watch the older movie especially, because there's always that unexpected laughter from innuendos that were not intended when they made the film but are present now in todays pop-culture.

Posted by Tara at 6:25 AM PDT
Updated: Tuesday, July 12, 2005 1:49 PM PDT
Sunday, July 10, 2005
How far can a dollar go?
Well, apparently mine has traveled 208 Miles in 114 Days, 18 Hrs, 40 Mins at an average of 1.8 Miles per day.

Let me explain, the other day I received a dollar bill back from the Buritoville delivery guy (everything in this city can be delivered, even McDonald's and Subway) and on it is a stamp that reads . So being a curious geek, I go to the site and type in the serial number and found out the above information. The bill started traveling in Fort Washington, Maryland and is now in the Meat Packing District of New York City. Next stop? The Victoria Secrets register on 34th--It's the Semi-Annual sale, and I stopped there after work last week. You can also go to the site and register your own buck and then track where it heads.

AP Article: Bloggers Learn Price of Telling Too Much I was actually interviewed for this story, but they didn't go with my quotes, probably not scandalous enough ;)

Posted by Tara at 9:01 PM PDT
Updated: Monday, July 11, 2005 8:20 AM PDT
Friday, July 8, 2005
What I Learned During a Mobile Conference Meeting
Now in 2005, there are 200 million cell phone users.

86% of wireless users access the Internet via their cell.

75% of households belong to a rewards program, IE credit cards that offers free miles, CVS, grocery store cards, chain stores, etc.

According to a Nielsen rating, an average household has 11.6 credit cards!!!

11.6 blew me away, but I guess it makes sense because I have 5 myself. I keep needing to get a bigger wallet, it begs the question of how much can you stick in there? No wonder why they started moving credit cards and reward cards to key chains. Pretty soon you'll be able to pay for purchases with your cell phone. It's already feasible in Boston with MobileLime.

PS: I just donated.

Posted by Tara at 2:52 PM PDT
Updated: Monday, July 11, 2005 1:43 PM PDT
Thursday, July 7, 2005
It's good to have a mother in the adult beverage industry. She spent 10 years as the Director of HR at the liquor distributor Alied Domecq (Courvoisier, Beefeater, Sauza, Kahlua etc) and now recruits executive level marketing positions for all the major liquor companies (Bacardi, Absolut, Pernod, Remy). Growing up our liquor closet was a basement and I got to do a tequila shot way before I should have. Went VIP to all the clubs in Vegas during my spring break senior year of college and now it's another VIP event in the city tonight.

I belong to GenArt and every year they have an annual Ignite party. It's really big, there's art galleries, film shorts, open bar, entertainment, DJ's etc. Last year Alize Bleu launched at the party and my mom called in her Alize contact and got me and a friend in VIP. So it was champagne all night in a roped off section. I even got to paint a wall blue. I'm not an artist, so I just painted the word ME on the wall in white over the blue and everyone cheered me for it. I felt very creative if not self indulgent. Women were also getting their bodies painted and opting for the paint and glitter instead of their shirts, believe me, I didn't go there!

So this year the event is hosted by Stella Artois so I figured I'd have to pay the regular admission and be with the hoi poi because I sure as hell was not paying $100 for the VIP ticket. So my fabulously connected mother called InBev and LaBatt who distribute Stella and she got me in VIP again. How awesome is that? The theme this time is early nineteenth century Carnival/Circus. I have a short suede skirt in mind that I think will go, my friend has final approval though.

So I'm running home after work, jumping in the shower, styling the hair and then getting my friends advice on an outfit and heading to the party. Can't wait.

Posted by Tara at 11:00 AM PDT
Updated: Thursday, July 7, 2005 1:09 PM PDT

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