2001-12-01 / Columnists

Dorothy Dunne

Even with so much tragedy around us, there was still a great deal to be thankful for and celebrate this past Thanksgiving. A gap in one’s life, for sure, and for some, heartaches abounded, but sunshine, regardless, in other’s lives. The Danzilo’s, Peter and Helene for instance, thankful for their new twin grandchildren, a boy, Peter named after grandpa, and a girl, Annabelle. Patty Crowley, is always ever thankful she has hubby, Bobby Crowley and lovely daughter, Nicole. I, of course, thankful for my family, my sons and my grandchildren, but also thankful for a great turkey dinner, prepared by master chef, Joe Fata with the able assistance of his wife Caryn and her mother, Gladys Crowley. Many of us were thankful just to be here and around to share the day with those who care. We must look for the positive things in life and be thankful for whatever we do have. Pain from great loses will in time lessen. As I wrote last week, Dr. Robert (not William) Schuller said," Tough times pass on………….Tough people don’t. And, now is when we have to be tougher than ever.

Afghani women are much in the focal point of the news today and the fighting in Afghanistan has increased our awareness of the deplorable conditions under which the Afghani women lived. My heart breaks for them. No one knows better than I, (as a former battered wife), how it feels to be physically beaten and verbally abused and humiliated. Many times I needed an Afghanistan " Burka" to cover up my black eyes and bodily bruises. And, when I called for help from the police, it was of little use in those days, especially since my husband was in law enforcement. I am sure even the records at 100 Precinct have disappeared. More than that, the constant fear I lived through did terrible things to my whole being. It is not fun, folks. It is not fun at all. Thank God domestic violence laws have been changed and now do protect women somewhat.

Because of promises after promises, it took me seven years to find my way out. To this day, I get down on my knees and thank God I do not have to live under those conditions anymore. It wasn’t easy being a single MOM and having to raise two very young, very energetic little boys. But, far better than the life of anguish, pain and fear.

That is why, with deep compassion, I look at these poor wretched women in Afghanistan who have lived under such horrific conditions in constant terror with no hope of escape. You can see their great joy as they finally appear and show their faces behind their burkas. As we attend to the formation of a new government in Afghanistan, we must include all those women and allow them to have their say. The cruelty and wickedness they endured all those years will insure civility to the country. They are our strongest allies and will be forever grateful to Allah and the USA for freeing them from bondage. And, they, too, will get down on their hands and knees every day, as I do, and thank God for their release. Hopefully the UN forces and the Coalition as well as the United States will bring peace to this devastated country and to the people of Afghanistan so that they will be able to live their lives in happiness which has been denied them far too long. A world of peace, love and respect for one another all over the world will be the answer to our prayers.

Speaking of civility and graciousness and a kind way of life, Charlotte Ford launched her new "21 Century Etiquette" book she wrote with Jacqueline de Montravel. With the changing times, etiquette has changed. Charlotte Ford gives a very informative guide to the "right" thing to do and say under the most important circumstances in our life; be it marriage, divorce, extended family, entertaining, etc. This book is an excellent guide to treating people properly. Kindness is the first rule of good manners. The charming room above the lobby entrance stairs at the Four Seasons Hotel was the launch pad for the 21st-Century Etiquette and it was filled to capacity with celebs such as: Charlotte Ford, herself, Helen Gurley Brown (former Cosmo Editor, now since retired), Dominic Dunne and many others. A very chi, chi party indeed. Pictures next week.

Of course, we have read about the journalists in Afghanistan who were killed just doing their job.

The past week, I attended the Committee to Protect Journalists at their 11 annual International Press Freedom Awards. Tom Pitman, CEO of Time Warner, chaired the dinner; Tom Brokaw, NBC Anchor, was the Host and Dan Rather was among the other distinguished speakers. Joseph Leluveld received the 2001 Burton Benjamin Memorial. Four International Journalists Honored were: Jiang Weiping veteran journalist currently imprisoned in China for revealing state secrets; Geof Nyariota, editor of Zimbabwe’s only independent daily newspaper has been threatened and jailed and his paper bombed twice; Horatio Verbitsky blazed a trail for Argentina’s press by exposing government corruption and past atrocities; Mazen Dana, a cameraman for Reuters in the West Bank city of Hebron who has been beaten repeatedly and shot while covering clashes between Palestinians and Jewish settlers…….It is a hazardous job these journalists take on and they belong in the category of brave heroes. Too many times they put their life on the line.

On a lighter note, there was a de-delicious tasting at the well renowned and elegant restaurant Daniels on East 65th Street in Manhattan where a new cookbook, "The Elements of Taste" by Gray Kunz & Peter Kaminsky was presented. It makes one salivate just to recall the marvelous flavors tasted in their original dishes. This is a book you must have if you love good food. Every recipe is conceived according to the interplay of fourteen categories of taste. They tell you exactly how to make delicious dishes and tell you how and why they work. Truly inspired combinations include Halibut with spring Onion Stew in Watercress Mussel Broth and many, many more. There are 130 recipes you can try and enjoy.

Fran Pierce celebrated her 40th birthday with hubby at the Waldorf Astoria with all the fan fare, wine and fruit welcome and tickets to The Full Monty, which they both truly enjoyed. To top that, Duke Pierce presented his wife, Fran with diamonds to blind one’s eyes. Now, that is an appreciative husband. Congratulations, Fran.

Caryn Crowley is going to reach a big rounded number this December 19th. My son, Jimmy Matuozzi, one year behind her will mark another year on his birthday calendar, Dcecember 27. Congratulations to you both.

Through March 3, 2002 Norman Rockwell pictures of the American People will be at the Guggenheim Museum.


QE2 Blues Cruise Dec. 11 -11 days Southampton to Fort Lauderdale, cruise only $999; Air/Cruise $1,199

Club med , Sandpiper , Florida $699 3 nts, 7 nts $790. including air. Cancun, Mexico $619; Paradise Isle, Bahamas $670. Scotland, $399 with Iceland Air , 2 nts. Extra nt. $39.

Jazz Festival in Barbados Jan. 14 to 20. ; Yangtze River Cruise, China , 8 days $999; Beijing , 8 days $599; Rio , 7 days $699; Costa Rica, 4 days $499; Volcanoes and Beaches, $849; Panama , 6 days $499; Highlights of Panama $699. Austrian airlines RT from JFK ad 4 days in Vienna, Budapest and Prague ONLY $399. London, air/Hotel Virgin Atlantic $399..Stay 4 nts., pay for three at Millennium.

Ski Specials: Copper Mountain, Colorado 7 nts. $999Rio, Carnival 7 days, Air/land $859.

Rome/Florence/Naples $599.

Air/Land; Venice $699 Dec. 15, Jan 4,\and Mar. 10 air/Land. Senior Splendor from $2359, 13 days, 2 nts. Istanbul 6 nts. Greek Island cruise 3 ntes.

More travel specials on WBYX-TV Mon. thru Fri. UHF Chs. 26,35 and 39.

E=mail dorothydunne @yahoo.com.


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