Please accept vilaine fille's best wishes for health, joy, and love in 2005.
A New Year's present for you, courtesy of the Rosa Ponselle Charitable Foundation: Ponselle's 1926 recording of Francesco Paolo Tosti's delectable "'A vucchella" (English translation here). Update: Sound file no longer available. Please visit vilaine fille early and often! Ponselle's performance combines that peerless voice of "port wine, roses, pansies, velvet, [and] cream" with an irresistible warmth and authenticity. (The song was not twenty years old when Ponselle recorded it, and the lady had a superb command of southern Italian dialects.) More vilaine fille-approved New Year's music here.
As is her wont, vilaine fille will spend a quiet New Year's Eve at home with friends. Lentils will be on the menu—Italian lore holds that lentils on 31 December bring wealth in the new year—with marrons glacés for dessert. (The finest French marrons glacés come from… Italy. Surprise, surprise.)
We will resist the temptation to pull out the "Fantasticks" OCR: "Deep in December, it's nice to remember, without a hurt, the heart is hollow…" Jerry Orbach was a mensch, and we think that he would have wanted everyone to be glad on New Year's Eve. (Silly bean that she is, vilaine fille blubbered through "Law & Order" the other night.)*
*[If you're not a New Yorker, you probably won't understand.]
We'll give thanks for 2004's blessings (our Front Page Award most of all); set aside bitterness over the year's letdowns (the elections, the ALCS…); and resolve to meet 2005 with hope and grit. Hey, is obama.senate.gov up yet? Have you ordered your Jews for Jeter t-shirt?
Around midnight, we'll repair to the roof to watch what we can of the Times Square commotion. We'll also sing "G-d Damn Republicans," to the tune of "G-d Bless America":
G-d damn Republicans,
scum of the earth!
We will meet them, defeat them,
and win back the dear land of our birth!
From a-Wall Street comes a-Wilkie.
He's a silky S-O-B!
G-d damn Republicans,
There are other, more up-to-date verses, but that one should bring good mojo to Eliot Spitzer.
vilaine fille returns on 3 January. Again, all the best in 2005! *smooch*