At the end of Cookman, by Bonney Read on a Wednesday evening. 7 pm photo. Paul Goldfinger.  10/13/21.


Bonney Read. Wide spacing and high ceilings make it comfortable. 10/13/21. Blogfinger photo.


By Paul Goldfinger

We went to Bonney Read at the end of Cookman Avenue’s restaurant row in Asbury Park. It was a Wednesday night–arriving early at 5 pm  allowed for comfortable spacing, but it got quite busy by 7 pm.   Outdoor eating was going on at about 6 places including Bonney.

Overall, it is a very enticing menu, and there is something for everyone.   We were 4 adults and one small child. The bill came to $328.00 with tip, tax, and a  3% processing charge. It felt too high, but all the parts do add up.—

Most everything was delicious, but when we went in the remote past it seemed like a more economical place.

Here are some examples as to how our bill wound up over $300.00.

18 oysters   $61.00

2 Tito’s martinis   $27.00

Pint US beer:  $8.00

Bowl of New England clam chowder  $11.00  (share)

Caesar salad  large  $16.00  (share for 2)

Iced tea:  $4.50

Diet coke   $4.50

Fish and chips for 3:   $69.00

Fried shrimp:  $24.00

Kids shrimp   $10.00

Slice of NY  cheese cake  $6.00

And some misc. items.–no wine.

The menu is small but very nice.  They have categories such as small plates, handheld, grill, kettle, raw bar, fried and extras.  There is even a Bonney Burger for $20.00, buttermilk fried chicken $18.00,  a lobster roll for $30.00, and a wide selection of cocktails, beer, rum flights, wine and bubbles.

So we can recommend Bonney Read for a wonderful meal, but all the extras do add up quickly.  The service is excellent, and  baby, it’s cold inside.

And, one more thing:  no hot coffee!


NORAH JONES:    “Back to Manhattan” for an affordable dinner?



Noah finds people in his room. Ocean Grove. 10/12/21


FRANK SINATRA   From Sinatra at the Sands. LIVE  from Vegas with the Count Basie Big Band.  This was one of the first albums I bought.


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Rutherford High School  (NJ) Yearbook.   RHS Dance Band  (Rutherfordians)  on top. I am third sax from the left.  We wrote and put on a variety show. Students volunteered.   Who knew that some of our classmates were talented—their performances were magic moments. Greg Thompson was a photographer for the school newspaper, but this day he was Fred Astaire—a magic moment for sure.   And Carol in the left lower corner: Wowee!


The gorilla suits were my idea–to mock the hoods from Lyndhurst High. It was Sharon and Janie inside.  When they came running down the center aisle, that was magic.   For those of  you who are wondering, we are missing our baritone sax player for the photo.  Yes, you are correct–a sax section has 5 players, with the baritone on the right side end. We’re still searching for him.


By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @ Blogfinger.net   (Former sports editor at the R-Hi)

It begins at a very early age:  we teach children to imagine magic.  It’s in so many of the books for kids, so we can’t be surprised if they engage in magical thinking as they grow older.

But even as adults, we still  have magical ideation to help us deal with the realities and challenges of the world around us.  We use such  thinking to see into the future and foresee perfect moments.

Such moments, even if the magic fails us, tend to stick in our minds.

I recall three such events from when I was 16 or 17 years old,  a senior at Rutherford (NJ) High School:

The first  moment to remember was on the stage with the  “dance band” –The Rutherfordians.  I played lead alto sax.  My sound was admirable and I was competent at sight-reading music, but I had no idea how to improvise a solo, and nobody in the band was advanced enough for that.

We were rehearsing the “Theme from Peter Gunn”–a raucous tune to open our forthcoming show. The music reached a point where a sax solo was desirable, and the boys in the band were encouraging me to do it—“Come on Goldie; stand up and play  it.”  I demurred , knowing that I couldn’t do it, but they persisted, and I somehow envisioned a magic moment.  So I stood up and tried, but it wasn’t there, and I had to sit down—–a failure of magical thinking.


The second took place on a chilly autumn day, on a muddy soccer field.  As a senior varsity player for the RHS Bulldogs, I desperately wanted to do something for the team and to justify their playing me at center forward.

I won a starting position out of sheer good fortune—we barely had enough players to field a team and we were losing every game, and I wished for a magic moment.

It came in the second half.  Our goalie, Tim Krupa, was an amazing all-state player  (who later played for Columbia)  and he could kick the ball a mile. He sent one up the field—high and long, and I raced to catch up with it.  The ball bounced and bounced towards the opposing goal, with me trying to catch it.  I could hear the team yelling from the bench and I really needed some magic.

Here was the magic moment:   I was pursuing the ball while the goalie prepared for our arrival.  It should have been a heroic moment, but just as I caught up with the ball, it bounced off my chest and lamely dribbled into the hands of the goalie.  Ignominy–not magic.


And finally, I was playing on the RHS junior varsity in basketball.  But the varsity coach needed to fill his bench for a big game–So I got to sit on the varsity bench for that game knowing that I was there just for the optics.  Anyhow, late in the game coach put me in.  The game was already decided–we were losing.  I went onto the court, and we had the ball. A pass was tossed to me. I took one dribble, tried a jump shot and then I was clobbered by a nasty foul.

So I went to the line for 2 shots.  I can’t imagine how I could possibly hit even one……but I hit two.  A roar went up from the stands.  And so, a bit of magic, and I am in the RHS varsity basketball record books forever!

But isn’t it funny how such moments stick with us and how, no matter how old we get, we still can experience some  magic moments and failed magic moments, and we still retain them along with the accompanying feelings that never diminish?






Paul Goldfinger photo early morning. with the lights still on.   Oct. 12, 2021. Click to enlarge.


Here is a link to a Blogfinger post about this lovely town just 10 minutes from the Grove.  Drive along the river.

We have two winners for our “name that town” contest:  Kevin is disqualified because he is a professional. But Regina wins the Jack Bredin print.—PG





THE HEART BEATS  “A Thousand Miles Away”   but daddy will be home soon to pay the taxes on this modest shore house.  Name that town: Blogfinger @verizon.net



Lovely Meghan and Mollie the smiling dog. Paul Goldfinger photo OG boards. Oct 12, 2021. Click to enlarge.


In my day “walking the dog” was a yoyo trick which I never mastered.  Growing up in  apartments, we never had a dog. My mom was afraid of them, and picking up after your dog was unheard of. My brother and I had a parakeet. who didn’t require walking or poop bags.

As we noted recently, the dog population in OG has increased substantially with an emphasis on bull dogs and tiny rat-size creatures who bark a lot.

The DPW worker who showed up today to place a fresh pile of biodegradable bags at Firemen’s Park agreed about the increased dog population. “There are a ton of them,”  he said.



And,  little boys on bikes love that ramp by the Laingdon (north of the pavilion.)   Noah raced down the hill, and his dad had to carry the bike up the hill.  We need something like a ski lift over there.


We should allow cock horses on our boards now that the crowds are gone.






Paul Goldfinger photo. October 12, 2021. Kitchell Field. Oakhurst at the Jersy Shore.  Click to enlarge.  Blogfinger.net. ©


By Paul Goldfinger, MD, Editor Blogfinger.net


Rising Treetops at Oakhurst (formerly Camp Oakhurst), located near the New Jersey shore and 55 miles from New York City, serves children and adults with special needs, including autism and physical and intellectual disabilities through summer camp and respite programs. ”

They have been helping disabled kids and adults since the early 1900’s.  I drove by their 111 Monmouth Road campus many times and was  drawn to their seemingly abandoned facility this past summer, but evidently they are open all year to provide respites. support services and programs such as sports.

Kitchell Field reminds me of summer camps and ball fields that I saw in the Catskill Mountains (“Borscht Belt”)  when I worked at the Hotel Nemerson in South Fallsburg, N.Y.  It brought to mind softball games when hotel athletic staffs would compete. And the male guests would choose up sides for games.

Soft ball, basketball, and hand ball were big New York City sports and were popular in “The Mountains.”  After athletics came endless card games (with small change at stake) for the men, and mah jong and sunbathing for the women.

When visiting softball teams came to the hotel, they often brought “ringers” with them—“windmill (underhand) pitchers” who would come up on weekends from “The City” just for the  games.  They got paid, and there was gambling at the competitions .

So I look at the empty Kitchell Field and I see the ghosts of ball games past.


Dr. John:


Eileen. Firemen's Park. December 19, 2015. Ocean Grove. Paul Goldfinger photo. © Blogfinger.net

Eileen. Firemen’s Park. December 15, 2015. Ocean Grove. Paul Goldfinger photo. © Blogfinger.net


Soon the temperature will be in the 60’s here.  Eileen is out with Chico, the Blogfinger mascot and assistant reporter. He can smell a story from afar.


Below is Kate McGarry singing “It Might as Well Be Spring” with the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra led by Wynton Marsalis. The album is ” Big Band Holidays.”    McGarry is an acclaimed jazz singer who is from Massachusetts, but now she is best known in the Los Angeles area.


Paris playground…

Place des Vosges in the Marais District. Paul Goldfinger photo and darkroom print.  Click to enlarge.


TANIA MARIA , a Brazilian performer  from her album  Viva Brazil   “Petite Fleur”   The song was written by the African-American jazz saxaphonist/clarinetist Sidney Bechet who was born in New Orleans and who wound up his career in Paris where he was loved by the French;  less so in the US..

Tania Maria creates a lively jazz/samba style for Bechet’s song.  Here she sings in Portuguese.  After all, she is Brazilian.



Tania Maria

Corner of Mt Tabor and Delaware Avenue. Paul Goldfinger photo. ©

Corner of Mt Tabor and Delaware Avenue. Paul Goldfinger photo. ©  Click to enlarge


Cottage on the banks of Wesley Lake. Ocean Grove, June, 2015. Paul Goldfinger photograph.

Cottage on the banks of Wesley Lake. Ocean Grove, June, 2015. Paul Goldfinger photograph.


By Paul Goldfinger, editor @Blogfinger

Demographically , Ocean Grove is quite diverse.  The income data  for the Grove from the 2010 census shows many people with low numbers.  On the other hand, we are having a bit of gentrification as individuals from New York City or other cities buy second homes here.

There are many properties that look pretty shabby without meeting the criteria of being “derelict.”  However some of those places do have a certain “shabby chic” quality.  You don’t need a lot of money to add some character and charm to your home.  I’ve always enjoyed looking at Captain Midnight’s place on the Grovarian side of the New Jersey Avenue bridge.  To see a photo of the Captain’s place, go to this Blogfinger link:



EMILIO DE BENITO:   “Granada” from the movie Vicki Christina Barcelona



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