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  • Because I like reading the real estate section in the Sunday New York Times, it was no surprise when I saw a headline on Aug. 24 that began “Full of Character for a Lot Less. . . .” But when I read the rest of it, I let out a loud “Wow.” The full headline was “Full of Character for a Lot Less in Bayonne, N.J.”

  • The year was 1971. Nelson A. Rockefeller was Governor. Having three young children and living in a place that felt remote, I had not been particularly involved in the civil rights movement of the '60s. Now, an uprising at the Attica Correctional Facility in western New York State and its aftermath gave me a chance to be counted.

  • It’s been at least 10 years since people started asking me if I had retired. Even habitual readers seem surprised when I tell them I work a whole lot, and that the boss, my son David, finds plenty of jobs to assign me. I guess my title of publisher doesn’t make that clear.

  • We already suspected what the public perception of us was, but now we have something akin to hard proof: In a “readers choice” survey by Condé Nast Traveler, “the Hamptons” was rated as the eighth most unfriendly city in the United States among a list of 10. Newark, N.J., at number one, was the worst, and Miami just made the list, at number 10. Imagine! “The Hamptons” was only two slots friendlier than Detroit and — if that doesn’t make your hair stand on end — four slots better than Atlantic City. 

  • Fifty-four years ago this month — almost to the day, actually — The Star ran a review of a new musical that was running at the John Drew Theater of Guild Hall. The play was “The Fantasticks,” and I wrote the review, one of its first. Today, The Star is to publish another review I wrote of a new musical. This time it is “My Life Is a Musical” at the Bay Street Theater. Plus ca change, plus c’est la meme chose? 

  • Take whatever musical comedy you recall and be ready to suspend disbelief when you go, as you should, to see “My Life Is a Musical,” which had its world premiere at the Bay Street Theater on Saturday night.

    Adam Overett, who wrote the music, lyrics, and book, knows what’s been on stage and in film in the last few decades, and he draws upon that familiarity in a two-act tour de force, which is both satiric and sentimental with a bit of pop psychology, romance, and Marx Brothers mayhem. They’re ingredients for success.

  • Summer as a child on my grandparents’ farm in the Catskills was fun. We played in a cold brook, picked blueberries on the hills, and invented fantastic worlds on the third floor of the barn, where a carriage had long been abandoned. Once, on a neighbor’s farm, I was allowed to attempt to milk a cow. 

  • Back when summer was new, The Star sent out its interns to gather up all the free magazines they could find and put a brief rundown of them on our website. The interns came back with 13 glossies. Thirteen! A few, like Hamptons magazine, have been around a long time, but most are relatively new here and some are pop-ups (to use the term now popular for the sudden appearance of a shop or restaurant).

  • Toys and toothbrushes may be turning up in peculiar places, but I wouldn’t trade this month for anything. It is said that grandparents have all the fun when it comes to child-care, but none of the responsibility, and I say, “Hurray.” I suppose that for those grandparents who are charged with caring full time for grandchildren, the fun can wear thin, but there’s no sign of that at our house, even though two of my grandkids are now into the third week of a monthlong stay.

  • July Fourth isn’t what it used to be. It’s been six years or so since the last Declaration of Independence party hereabouts, an annual ritual that lasted for some two decades. It was extraordinary and all-American, a coming together of like-minded individuals to recognize the best things about the United States, things from which we all have benefited. The Declaration was read, a brass band played marches, and the Union Jack was lowered. Guests were then invited to speak or read from pertinent material.