Tag: friendship

Baltimorean Reed Cordish Reportedly in Talks to Join Trump Administration

Reed Cordish. Photo via cordish.com

In the 1970s, a Baltimorean named David Cordish joined President Jimmy Carter’s administration to help the president focus on ways to revitalize cities. This year, one of Cordish’s sons is drawing attention as a likely candidate to follow in his footsteps by joining the administration of President-elect Donald Trump.

Reed Cordish, a principal in the Baltimore-based Cordish Companies, is expected to serve as Assistant to the President in the Trump administration, according to reports by Jewish Insider, The Jerusalem Post, Forward.com and JP Updates.

Myra and Mom

image via weheartit.com
image via weheartit.com

Baltimore writer Gay Jervey remembers her mother’s most enduring–and exciting–friendship.

Not long ago, I received the news that I had been dreading for months: Myra Shannonhouse, my honorary Godmother, ally and bridge to so much that had come to shape me, had died after the long, wrenching free fall that so frequently accompanies illness, old age and the kind of greedy bad luck that just won’t back down.

My Dear Boys



Even before I was old enough to drink, I was desperate to get into the El Moroccan Room. I didn’t know why I thought I would feel more at home in a gay bar with a drag show than I did in the straight teenaged world of my New Jersey high school, nor did the bouncer at the door. When I produced a fake ID, he invoked No Open-Toed Shoes to keep me out.

I switched to saddle shoes and returned with a couple of swishy senior boys from the Drama Club. Success. I saw my first Tallulah, my first Judy, my first Liza. They were outrageous — husky-voiced, garishly painted, gleefully lewd.  Threading my way to a spot beside the runway, I stared up in admiration.

I had been having a rocky coming-of-age as a young woman; femininity felt like a put-on. All around me, girls seemed to be magically metamorphosing into silky, alluring creatures; I was still looking for the teen magazine that would tell me how. Vamping down the runway in their clodhopper high heels, those reckless, ironic drag queens appeared as beacons to me, fur-coat aunties from somewhere in my spiritual family tree. What a little pioneer of gender dysphoria I was.

    Knowing When to Mind Your Own Business, or Not


    scotchHey, Whit,

    On a recent flight, I bumped into the new live-in boyfriend of a very good friend.  He was in first class, so he got on the plane before me. Of course, I stopped to say hello when I boarded the plane – and was a bit surprised that he was having a cocktail (light brown drink – ice – stirrer, NOT a bloody mary) at 7 a.m. My wife thinks I need to tell our friend, but I won’t, because I don’t want to look like a schoolyard tattletale. Is there any way that it’s not a big, red flag that someone is drinking at 7 a.m.? Could the drink have been something else? Really watered-down Coke? Bitters?

    Do you think I should tell her or is this just none of our business?

    Stirred Up

    Dear Stirred:

    First, I believe that your instinct to stay out of other people’s business puts you on solid ground, so we could leave it at that.  From what you say, however, I gather that your wife is on the more squishy turf of offering unsolicited information and poised to lean in. That being the case, let’s organize your decision-making. Drawing on my Marine Corps training as well as business school experience, the question I have for you is, “What do you hope to accomplish?” Then the logical follow-up, “Can you accomplish it?” and, if so, “How can you accomplish it?”

    What you hope to accomplish, if I read you correctly, is to let your friend know that her live-in boyfriend has a drinking problem. You base that conclusion on having seen the guy at 7 in the morning drinking something that looked like a cocktail. As you say, you’re not sure if he was actually drinking alcohol, but let’s assume that he was.

    You ask, “Is there any way that it’s not a big, red flag?” Several factors could explain his having a drink at a time when most people who don’t have a drinking problem would not be drinking: This could be the last connecting flight for him; he could be coming back from a business trip to China, where the time is early evening and a more acceptable time to drink. Maybe he is unwinding from some kind of tense, business negotiation or other similar situation. Possibly he doesn’t like flying and finds that a drink helps to calm him down.

    The Southern Gentleman: Some Memories of A Friend

    Dudley Clendenen
    Dudley Clendinen’s author photo from his book, A Place Called Canterbury

    Last night was the opening of the new show at the American Visionary Art Museum, in which my friend from Woodstock, Steve Heller, has five pieces. I was extra excited about this because I introduced Steve to Rebecca Hoffberger, the director of the Visionary, whom I met at a dinner at Dudley Clendinen’s house five years ago.

    Dudley! The thought of him gave me such a pang. One of the hard parts of losing someone is the way things just keep happening that you so wish the person could know about. At the time of Dudley’s death in May 2012, his niece Lucy Alibar had just released her movie, “Beasts of the Southern Wild,” which ended up with four Oscar nominations. I could only hope they get Entertainment Weekly in heaven.

    I pulled out a copy of Dudley’s book, A Place Called Canterbury, to show Steve and his wife Martha. Canterbury is the Tampa retirement home where Dudley’s mother spent the last part of her life. Dudley clocked 400 days and nights there with her, documenting how the first generation of super-old people was dealing with life in their 90s and beyond. His author photo is nothing but hot: classic features, tanned skin, a shock of gorgeous white hair, rock-star sunglasses.

    He died without ever getting very old at all.

    I met Dudley in 2008, about twenty-five years after he changed his whole life by quitting drinking, coming out, and leaving his wife all at once. I instantly loved him; he had a deep, luscious Southern accent, a courtly manner, and a wicked sense of humor.  His apartment was like an outpost of the Visionary, the walls covered ceiling to floor with paintings, some by his partner, Josh Batten. You could generally find Dudley in the kitchen, scrambling eggs for a lunch party or baking cheese grits and a pork loin for dinner.

    This Week in Research: The Aphrodisiac Power of Double Dates



    Gone on a double date recently? If you haven’t, it might be time to call up some friends to make plans:  according to new research out of the University of Maryland, married couples that hang out with other couples have stronger relationships — and are more attracted to their partners.

    “We found that there was a number of benefits to having couple friends,” said Kathleen Holtz Deal, UMD associate professor. “One of them is people actually use their couple friends as a model to emulate and a model to say, ‘Let’s never do that.’ ”

    How I Found Myself at Skateland


    Baltimore writer Elizabeth Hazen describes a life-changing summer outing on wheels

    It was an early summer idea. Why not roller-skate? My friend Jane had recently taken her five-year-old daughter to a birthday party at Skateland, and her appetite for wheels had been whetted. She tried to articulate her desire to skate, but all she could say was, “It was so much fun. I had so, so much fun. We need to go back.” I was skeptical, but it was June. School was out, the weather was hot, and we all needed something to look forward to.

    Documentary Explores the Drama of the Journey on the Appalachian Trail


    Adventure, romance and conflict!  The new documentary Beauty Beneath the Dirt is a far cry from your typical outdoor adventure travelogue. Unlike other Appalachian Trail documentaries that focus on camp life and the natural environment, Director Katherine Imp takes a raw and uninhibited look at what happens to the mind, body, and soul over the course of a 2178.3-mile journey.

    “I’ve always had a fascination with nature’s ability to transform, ever since my days of working for Outward Bound,” says Kate. “And though none of us were looking to be ‘transformed,’ I knew that five months on the trail would change each of us in some way. And I wanted to capture that change on film.”

    Jordan Faye Contemporary will screen Beauty Beneath the Dirt on Friday, June 22nd, at 7 p.m. A Q&A with Director Katherine Imp and Cast Member Brandon Imp will follow the screening.



    There is no better place to run into friends than Stone Mill Bakery at Green Spring Station. Stacy Lebow and Elise Morris, old friends, both showed up wearing Lululemon tops. (And they didn’t even call each other!) The hot Vancouver-based company sells yoga-inspired athletic clothing that has become the uniform for chic exercising moms. We’re lucky enough to have a Baltimore store on Aliceanna Street in Fells Point (soon to move to Harbor East, we hear).

    Stacy Lebow and Elise Morris, Stone Mill Bakery, Green Spring Station

    We talked to Stacy first.

    Hi. I love your top.

    Thanks. It’s Lululemon, my favorite thing to wear when I work out.

    How would you describe your fashion style?



    That would explain the feather I see in your hair. 

    It’s trendy fun! It comes out in a week. Like nail polish! 

    What do you wear for an evening out?

    I dress according to what fits my body. And I love scarves and wraps and shawls — and dresses! I do get my hair blown out occasionally. That’s my one indulgence. My mother
    was a photographer so I’ve always had pictures taken of me. And pretty hair is an important accessory!


    How do you two know each other?

    We met when our children were very young at preschool.


    And Elise, where did you spend your morning?

    I just came from playing tennis!


    And you both love Lululemon! Are you sure you didn’t plan your matching tops.

    Of course not!  But I’m glad we ran into each other!  (Stacy)  

    The Difference a Dress Makes


    Olga Etkina and Andrea Witkowski

    When you’re young, it doesn’t take much more than a simple skirt or dress, casual hair and a pair of flip flops to look photo ready. These two friends on their way to a night out in Canton, exude simple style, youthful confidence and fun.  They make us want to horn in on their Girls Night Out.

    The puppy might ward off some would-be suitors.  Maybe that’s the idea?



    You both look so colorful tonight. What made you dress up?

    We are celebrating because we are both moving.

    Where are you moving?

    Olga – I am moving to New York to go to school.

    Andrea- I am moving to Patterson Park.

    Olga, what is your personal style? Do you have any fashion icons?

    Usually, I like traditional classic clothing. I like the way Scarlett Johansson dresses, she always look put together.

    How about you Andrea?

    I am more bohemian with a touch of rocker. I like Free People and Urban Outfitters.