All posts for the month June, 2013

Family Fun

Published June 30, 2013 by Maryanne

SAM_1396Me, Uncle Duke, Sister Kim

Today we celebrated my nephew Matthew’s 12th birthday (July 2).

It was a blast hanging out at my mom’s with my husband, sister, uncle and his wife Kathy, Mom and Matthew and the puppies. My family is so much fun and we all have a great sense of humor. Life is good!

SAM_1395Ally Marie Paige, Matthew and Kim

SAM_1428We played Pin the Tail on the Donkey

SAM_1430Guess who won?!

Sometimes I Just Like to Monkey Around

Published June 30, 2013 by Maryanne

SAM_1374Rain Forest Cafe, last night

Dennis and I went for a few drinks at the Rain Forest Cafe last night. Much deserved after all the stress of taking care of Billy Cat. (Who is actually improving a little. One day at a time.)

This picture inspired me to share some super cool monkey songs, since there are so many good ones to start off a Sunday.


Patti Smith – “Space Monkey”

Iggy Pop & James Williamson “Lucky Monkeys”

Cramps “Monkey With Your Tail”

Pixes “Monkey Gone to Heaven”

Beatles “Everybody’s Got Something to Hide Except for Me and My Monkey”

Plasmatics “Monkey Suit”

Rolling Stones “Monkey Man”

Dim Stars “Monkey”

Loving Hut (Vegan Restaurant), Matawan, New Jersey

Published June 29, 2013 by Maryanne

SAM_1364Lentil, chick pea, mushroom soup

SAM_1365Mango bubble tea with almond milk

SAM_1368Vegan stir fry with faux “shrimp” and brown rice

Dessert was a vegan coconut cake…

But it disappeared before I could get a shot — yum!

SAM_1372Darlene and Maryanne, happy about our happy meal

For more information on Loving Hut:

Acupuncture for pets and children

Published June 27, 2013 by Maryanne

SAM_1361My baby, Billy Cat, age 19, receiving acupuncture treatments

Today Billy received his second acupuncture treatment to assist in healing his hypothyroidism which affected his hind legs. The condition depletes the nutrients from his body so his hind legs aren’t strong enough to walk. He has minimal feeling in his back legs.

With acupuncture treatment we hope to see him walk again in a few months. This condition is more common in dogs and many people have healed their dogs with acupuncture. Billy is also receiving laser treatments to help him heal faster. He will be going once a week. And of course he is on medications, both regular and holistic. We’ve covered all grounds, plus Dennis and I give him light massages and lots of love.

Dr. Aleda Cheng from the American Animal Hospital ( is treating him and said he is getting stronger, although he did lose a little bit more weight. It is good that he is eating A LOT.

Billy is also making a major effort to try to get up. His little legs are always going and stretching. The little guy is a trooper!

And last week I had the honor to go to St. Joseph’s hospital in Paterson to cover this story about acupuncture for children with cancer:

It was such an honor to be in the company of these very brave children!

A Moment of Peace

Published June 26, 2013 by Maryanne

SAM_1359Paterson Great Falls (photo by Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta)

This morning I had a writing assignment in Paterson, near the Great Falls. So it was nice to catch a breather and take in the sight. It’s a gorgeous day in New Jersey. A bit overcast, but I love that when I have nothing else to do but stay home and write. (And watch over my sick kitty, Billy, who is still being a trooper).

Even during rough times, life is good. And sometimes it’s so nice being out and about so early in the day during the week. You can definitely see the world from a different prospective. Right before lunch is the best time to be out and about in a heavy populated area. I think that’s the time where there is the least amount of traffic and people are pretty mellow. I had fun shopping at Fairway too. The supermarket that is always crowded was practically empty at this time.

Peace feels nice.

As the Violent Femmes song goes, “Good feeling, won’t you stay with me, just a little longer.”

Why Are Women Catty?

Published June 25, 2013 by Maryanne

catty Why are women catty?

I don’t know, I can’t relate to that mindset. I’m a lover not a fighter. I’m a person who compliments to your face, not one who stabs you in the back.

But nevertheless, it goes on and on and on.

Years ago, I read a letter to Dear Abby. A woman said that she was very attractive in her younger day and that women were always taking cheap shots and throwing digs to make her feel worse about herself. She wrote that now she was a middle-aged woman and happily married. And while she was still attractive to her husband, people viewed her as a middle-aged woman and she wasn’t subjected to cattiness anymore, so on the whole she felt better.

I wish I could say that this was me who wrote that letter. But sadly it wasn’t. Just a few weeks ago I was once again victim to catty behavior. What did I do? Nothing. I let it go, as always. I continue to be pleasant and nice to these women who I can’t figure out why they have to go out of their way to try and make me feel bad. Sometimes I think if I be very nice (not phony, but just giving my best shot) sooner or later I might get through to their thick skulls that I’m not the enemy.

Since I am not close to them, I can only guess why they see me as such a threat. Maybe their husbands don’t give them enough attention. Maybe they didn’t get enough attention as children. Maybe they don’t like the way they look. Maybe they are jealous of how I look. Maybe they hate my tattoos (which is ridiculous). I don’t know. And I don’t think I want to know either because catty people scare me and I don’t want to figure them out. I only want to be in their company as little as necessary. Maybe enough to see if they changed, but they usually don’t. Catty seems to be a way of life for some.

You can try anything to make it stop, but I choose to do nothing because catty women are often in denial. Nothing works anyway. I’ve tried everything. If you confront them, they may apologize to high heavens, but only to do it again in the near future. Or they’ll pull the “I was only kidding” card. But honestly, what is funny about hurting someone’s feelings and being mean?

Women who have mastered catty are very smart. They have a secret way of getting away with being cruel. They will fool their own husbands (some of the worst offenders have wonderful husbands) their family, their friends … They will make up lies about other women just so others can share in their hate. And they know exactly who to target: girls who are sweet, girls who don’t do catty, girls who are happy, girls who are unique, and yes, girls who are probably prettier than them and even if they aren’t they will still hate someone who has a little extra they believe they don’t.

You know the deal.

Years ago, when I just turned 31 and was working as a waitress at Cozy End in Montclair, as I tried to get my writing career going, one of my customers was a gorgeous young woman named Delilah (I think her real name was Deborah, but we all knew her as Delilah). She was one of the prettiest girls I’ve ever seen in my life. Delilah had perfect posture and always wore her jet black hair pulled back in a severe high ponytail. And she had eyes like a cat with a piercing stare. And boy, was she stylish! Like a retro Hollywood movie star. Delilah was the kind of girl that when she walked into a room, everyone turned around to look.

Delilah and I got along great and I always looked forward to when she came to eat at Cozy End because we’d have amazing conversations and she was an absolute doll. I also loved that she was a strong woman. I was in awe of her.

One day, out of the blue, Delilah said, in a voice loud enough for the entire eatery to hear, “Why are women catty?”

I knew I heard her correctly, but asked to make sure. “What?”

“Why are women catty?” she repeated in the same loud tone.

She had the undivided attention of the entire little restaurant.

“What do you mean?” I asked again. I knew what she meant, but she was obviously looking to me to be a part of whatever she was about to aim for, so I went along because, yeah, I was con-catty women too. Whatever she was about to say, I was all for it. I waited for her next words with baited breath.

“That group of women over there …” She pointed to the table. It was a table of middle-aged women. They all shut up to listen to Delilah, who continued. “Their friend just left and they all started talking about her! C’mon, that’s your friend!”

I was so proud of Delilah for speaking up, not just for the friend, but for all women who are victims of catty behavior. She shut an entire table of women up. No one dared argue with her because they were wrong and she shamed them. Little by little, the women got up and left, quietly.

Perhaps that is what needs to be done. If a person is a victim of cattiness, defending herself may fail because like I said catty women are sly as a fox, but if someone else defends the victim, it could be a well deserved slap in the face to the offenders.

Delilah, where ever you are, I still love you for what you did, fall/winter of 1994 to 1995!

If you know someone who is catty, try not to be in a situation where you are alone with them. Always make sure another women (one who isn’t catty, preferably someone like Delilah who will defend you) is in the room with you. But definitely do not be alone with a catty woman and a man — even if he’s the greatest guy in the world, guys can be clueless when it comes to women being catty with each other. Sadly, the dig will go right over a guy’s head in 90 percent of the cases and he won’t understand why you’re upset. Guys, even the great ones, need to be taught how catty women operate in order to be more compassionate towards a victim (who could be the woman they adore).

I don’t know how to make the hurt any easier. It’s just so difficult when someone has it out for you, or just dislikes you for no reason, when you are always nice to them. It’s something a good person just doesn’t get.

You can always vent to caring friends. Or even blog about it. Perhaps they will see this blog some day and think, “Hey, that’s me” and either get professional help or make a conscious effort to make a positive change in their life.

When women resort to drastic measures like making other women feel bad about themselves, it’s truly pitiful. Jealousy is ugly enough on it’s own, but when you throw catty into the mix, it’s absolutely hideous.

Someone once told me that if someone is catty toward you, take it as a compliment because it means they are threatened by you. I will not take such disturbing behavior as a compliment. The best I can do is just erase such people from my psyche. People who behave like that do not deserve a ranking of “co-star” in my life. I consider them mere “extras” — background people that don’t count. And they put themselves there so I don’t feel bad. I mean, really, how much hostile behavior can a person take? And that’s exactly what a catty woman is — a hostile, frustrated person who is holding something deep inside her. Think about it … will a catty woman tell her husband what she is doing to other women? No, she’s keeping a secret. She’s letting her ugly behavior manifest inside her. So ashamed of what she is doing, of course she won’t share with her husband.

That is why catty women are repeat offenders and you can’t trust them unless they get psychological help and try to change for the better. Catty women are like roller coasters: very moody, one minute they are nice and back stabbing or throwing digs the next. So  you never know what to expect from them. Stay away from them. They are poison.

Well, in the end I’m happy I’m not like they are. Thrilled, actually.

As Iggy Pop once said on his Metallic K.O. live record, “You can throw all the ice cubes you want, your girlfriend will still be in love with me.”

YEAH! Throw all the digs you want, I’m still fabulous Maryanne! HA!


Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at:

She is available for blogging, ghost writing, writing, and motivational speaking engagements. She is the author of the following books :

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: Ten Ways to Become Your Own Hero” will be available October 2019. To pre-order, go here:

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here:

Billy Cat Update

Published June 24, 2013 by Maryanne

SAM_1220Billy Cat, 19, had his first acupuncture treatment on Thursday.

The pet acupuncturist said he has a lot of life in him and thinks he can get better within three treatments.

Friday he was doing better, but Saturday he took a turn for the worse. He’ll have another treatment this week in addition to yet another trip to the regular vet.

We are doing everything we can to get this cat walking again. His poor thyroid is depleting the vitamins and not allowing him to keep weight on (he’s eating A LOT of healthy stuff!) so it’s affecting his back legs and now it seems his front legs too. As for now, he can’t walk at all and goes to the bathroom on himself. Dennis gives him a sponge bath twice a day and we massage him too. He is bright-eyed, alert and purring like crazy. So it breaks my heart when people tell me to put the cat down, which is mean and ridiculous as he is NOT in pain! No cries, no yelps, just purrs whenever we are near him. Hasn’t stopped purring at all. He’s alert and his eyes follow us everywhere.

Every night, we lay with our baby on the living room floor since he can’t climb the stairs to sleep with us anymore. I fall asleep as Billy holds me with his paw.

This is breaking my heart. This is a good cat that I’ve had since he was a kitten. He wouldn’t have lived so long if I wasn’t a good cat Mommy.

I’ve been crying for two days straight now. We had a wonderful weekend at the concerts, but by Sunday I was simply exhausted holding in my feelings about my kitty. I could barely move to do anything and we got to the church picnic very late and by then everyone was packing up, so we basically missed it.

My stomach was burning this morning, I couldn’t eat breakfast.

I don’t know what the fate is for this cat. The pet acupuncturist has high hopes. I hope she is correct. There is nothing wrong with this cat except he can’t walk. I’ve seen pets that got by beautifully that had no legs. (Not saying he’s going to be amputated, just saying that his health is not bad and I’m so mad at anyone who suggests putting him down!).

I’m sad and mad and miserable. It was fine being distracted with my work today. Now it is night. Another night to cry and hold my beautiful cat.


Jesus Comments Accepted and Welcome Here!

Published June 24, 2013 by Maryanne


I just stopped following a blog I regularly follow because the person was putting down Christianity and I defended my religion. Sad to say, my moderated comment was never accepted.

Second time this week, mind you.

I think it’s beyond pathetic how people like to keep Jesus in the closet because they feel that it’s not “cool” to be a Christian. It’s A-OK  to be a Jew, or a Buddhist, or a pagan, or an atheist or a satanist … but God forbid you talk about God or Jesus!

Well, let me enlighten you. Nothing is cool. Cool is OUT. So you can all re-think your mission of keeping Jesus in the closet. Because even though you never accepted my moderated comment, it’s not going to stop me from posting about my Savior here.


That NOT ALL CHRISTIANS  judge people!

That the pastor at my church does a lot of interfaith work.

That on Martin Luther King Day, our church joined with another church to give a service. My pastor spoke. So did a rabbi. So did a priest. The good word, is the good word, no matter who delivers it!

That there are cars parked in front of my church that have pagan “co-exist” bumper stickers on them and that is FINE because my church welcomes EVERYONE!

That I — A CHRISTIAN — have done more for gay/bisexual/transgender rights than any other straight person or Buddhist or athetist or fill-in-the-blank new-age hipster of the momenteer that I know!

What have YOU done for anyone lately?!

But I can talk until I’m blue in the face because people have to have their silly, ultra-ridiculous Christian stereotypes embedded in their pea brains because they need something to poke fun of to make themselves feel better about themselves. Ain’t that always the way. And of course we live in a “me, me, me” world, so people can’t have anyone say anything about anything unless it isn’t directly about THEM.

“Oh, not my religion, let me make sure everyone knows that!”

“Oh, I’m not religious at all … gotta get that out there … don’t want anyone to mistake I might be Christian.”

“Oh, it’s not hip to be Christian. No, can’t have that. No, I’m cool! I’m cool!”

“I’m not religious. I’m spiritual.”

WHATEVER! I’ve heard it ALL!

How many posts I wrote about my positive experiences in church and people just have to share that Christianity ISN’T their religion. It’s like they can’t press “like” and be happy for me without also expressing that is NOT their religion. Maybe if they fail to do so the world will combust and they will die tomorrow or something. Who knows?!

But this anti-Christian trend has to stop. It’s annoying. We, as Americans, put down people for being racists, so let’s do the same for religion-ists who hate Christians!

People fear Christianity because they see it as some sort of judging religion, when here they all are, the pots calling the kettles black by being ever so haughty themselves with their condescending put downs towards Christianity.

Well, with this post, I’m taking Jesus out of the closet! I don’t moderate comments about Jesus. Fellow Christians, feel free to share your positive stories here.

With 500+ people clicking on my blog each day, I think the word will be spread pretty quickly.


Someone had to say it, guess it was me!





Paterson’s Historic Hinchliffe Stadium

Published June 23, 2013 by Maryanne


Hinchliffe Stadium is an historic 10,000-seat municipal stadium in Paterson, built in 1931-32, above Paterson’s National Historic Great Falls. Hinchliffe Stadium was designated as a National Historic Landmark in March, 2013 and a Paterson Historic Landmark in May 2013.

The deteriorating stadium is still an eyesore, but Friday morning I had the pleasure of seeing an art project the Paterson students in School 5 participated in, as they vision Hinchliffe Stadium.

You can read the full article here:

As I mentioned in my article, Brian LoPinto, co-founder of Friends of Hinchliffe Stadium, also assisted in judging and presented each student in the winning class with a baseball “to tie in with the stadium.

What was really cool, for me as a journalist, was that after the students received their baseballs, at least 10 of them asked me to autograph their baseballs!

It’s always moments like this that make my life so rewarding.

Fab Faux @ Count Basie Theatre, Saturday, June 22, 2013

Published June 23, 2013 by Maryanne

The Fab Faux

Last night Dennis and I went to Count Basie Theatre in Red Bank to see The Fab Faux ( perform The Beatles “White Album” in entirety.

This was part of my birthday gift to Dennis (his birthday was back in January, which is when I gave him the tickets). And this was also special for me because the “White Album” was the first Beatles record I owned — at age 13 or 14. The album was released in 1968, but by the time I discovered it, it was the summer of 1976. Still a time where great music was banged out left and right, and the almost 10-year-old White Album held up to the time.

The double album is a masterpiece with a variety of songs of all styles (which is why it always blows my mind when people say they don’t like the Beatles. How can you not like a band that is so eclectic and changed so much in the short time of their career?)

This was my third time seeing the Fab Faux and they are always impressive. Again, not a band that is trying to be the Beatles, but rather capture their catalog of work and entertain the audience no matter how many people they have to get onstage to do it, including a horn section and harpist. After all The White Album wasn’t just the Beatles — it had a ton of guest musicians and session musicians playing.

The did each and every song, on the White Album, in order. Perfection is an understatement. They truly went above and beyond. But the moment I was waiting for all night was the second to last song — Revolution 9, an art piece written by John Lennon, Yoko Ono and George Harrison.

The Fab Faux pulled off this experimental piece brilliantly with tape loops and sound effects and spoken word vocals.

As a young teen, that sound always scared me. It was a creepy cool freak-out to go back to that place last night. This You Tube clip isn’t from the show we saw last night, but from just two months ago. I encourage you to check it out:

Followed by “Goodnight” written by Ringo Starr, the Fab Faux took their bows and then returned with two more Beatles songs that weren’t on The White Album, “Please Please Me” (I love that song! My husband’s band Pharoah played that song early in their career) and “Hey Jude.”

It’s such a blessing that we have musicians such as Fab Faux to carry on the legend of The Beatles. It breaks my heart when you see shows like American Idol and the young performers have no idea who The Beatles are. It’s tragic. Musicians should always know their roots and without The Beatles, we wouldn’t have a lot of music!

As a diehard Queen fan, I can hear so many of their influences in the Beatles music, especially The White Album.

The Beatles are the one band, where the production of their work is so pristine you can listen to their songs out of one speaker and still get something out of it.

And hearing, a live version of a record, played in order as it should be, was truly a euphoric experience that took me back to teenage years.

Bassist and founder Will Lee is my favorite Fab Faux. His energy is through the roof, jumping around, joking. He’s super great. Guitarist Jimmy Vivino plays in the house band for Late Night with Conan O’Brien. He is also the brother of NJ legend Uncle Floyd Vivino. Other current members are: Rich Pagano, drums, vocals; Frank Agnello, guitar, vocals; and Jack Petruzzelli, keys, guitar, vocals. Plus a ton of guest musicians.

I was lucky, years ago, to have been backstage and interviewed them for The Montclair Times. It was on New Year’s Eve too, one of the most magical New Year’s Eves of my life! I had front row to see three Fab Faux performances. Jackie the Jokeman from Howard Stern show was also in the audience that night.

I look forward to seeing more performances from Fab Faux as they never disappoint!