Posts tagged ‘entertainment’

The Devil Made Him Do It

DamnYankees2If you’re looking for a fun afternoon or evening, you might want to consider getting tickets to see the Torrance Theater Company’s upcoming summer musical, Damn Yankees playing from August 1-15 at the James Armstrong Theatre. It’s one of the few musicals I can think of that appeals to both males and females and it’s set in the heart of the Boomer era. For those unfamiliar with the story, a middle-aged baseball fanatic, Joe Boyd, trades his soul to the Devil (the charming but devious Mr. Applegate) for a chance to lead his favorite team to victory in the pennant race against the New York Yankees.

The play was first performed on Broadway in 1955 and while I never got to New York to see the production (I was rather young and living in California), I did watch the 1958 movie starring Tab Hunter, Gwen Verdon, and Ray Walston numerous times. The songs were clever and tuneful and the story sweet and nostalgic even back then.

Click here to listen to a selection of a favorite song that my friends and I sang along with.

The Katy Geissert Civic Center Library owns a copy of Damn Yankees in videocassette format if you want to familiarize yourself with the story before you go see the play. The Library also owns several other great baseball films on DVD and/or videocassette:
The Natural
A League of Their Own
Field of Dreams
Pride of the Yankees
Major League
Bang the Drum Slowly
Bad News Bears
Bull Durham
Eight Men Out

Do you have a favorite baseball film or story? Please add a comment and let us know.

July 24, 2009 at 5:42 am Leave a comment

Reinventing Date Night for Boomers and Others

CB106693Reading about and watching all the coverage of President Obama’s date night – a trip to New York City to see a Broadway play – reminded me of an article I read in the New York Times several months ago. The article, entitled “Reinventing Date Night for Long-Married Couples,” talks about how to make “date night” – a regular evening out with friends or at a favorite restaurant – more meaningful and fulfilling.

The article’s author, Tara Parker-Pope, offers a summary of research conducted by Dr. Arthur Aron, professor of social psychology at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. Dr. Aron believes that couples need to design their date nights around new and different activities and not the old and familiar. The goal is to find ways of adding novelty into existing relationships.

Over the past several years, Dr. Aron and his colleagues have tested the novelty theory. In one experiment, couples were told to spend 90 minutes per week doing pleasant and familiar activities, like going to a movie or out to dinner. Couples in a second group were asked to spend 90 minutes a week doing “exciting” activities that appealed to both the husband and wife, but were not things they typically did – for example, attending concerts or plays, hiking, skiing, or dancing. A third group was not assigned to do any particular type of activity. After 10 weeks, the couples were tested about the quality of their relationships. Interestingly, those in the “exciting” date night group showed a significantly greater increase in marital satisfaction than the “pleasant” date night group.

As with many experiments, there were a number of variables that could have affected the final results, but it makes sense that experiencing fun and vibrant activities with someone you care about would result in a greater sense of satisfaction and excitement about being with that person.

So next time you and your long-time companion think about your standard Friday night dinner at (fill in your regular haunt), try something new, unusual, or adventuresome! And don’t forget to consult the City of Torrance Events Calendar – you may find a great inexpensive or free activity close by to rekindle your sweetie’s affections.

Have any great ideas for novel places in the South Bay or its environs that you’d recommend for date night? We’d love to hear your suggestions.

June 7, 2009 at 6:34 am Leave a comment

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