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Weekly Features
Letter from New York
Mathew Tombers is Managing Director of Intermat, Inc., ( a television company which executive produces programs and consults with industry companies on a variety of issues. Intermat, Inc. is currently involved in approximately thirty hours of television in various stages for a variety of networks. He is one of the Executive Producers of OFF TO WAR, a ten hour series for Discovery Times and for a one hour on international adoptions for Discovery Health. He has consulted a variety of companies, including Ted Turner Documentaries, WETA, Betelgeuse Productions, and Creation Films, Lou Reda Productions as well as many others.

January 18, 2007

The inconvenience of this time…

Tombers ruminates on things that have caught his attention this week…

As I prepared to write this, I kept thinking about what I might write about – generally during the course of a week there is something that grabs my attention and holds it, becoming the focus for what I write.

This week – nothing grabbed me about the throat and caused me to think, think deeply enough that I could write. It was a thought that plagued me as I was at a party at the oh so trendy SOHO House in New York to celebrate the three programs Engel Entertainment is producing for Discovery Health: Runway Moms, Get Fresh with Sara Snow and THE DAN HO SHOW. I was, of course, there because I am Dan’s manager and am the person who brought Dan to Discovery Health.

So as I was riding to the train station in a taxi, I thought about what had caught my attention this past week in the media noise that surrounds us.

The first thing I thought of was an article sent to me by Mary Ann Zimmer, my faithful, patient attorney and long time friend, from a newspaper out of Melbourne, Australia. It was about the new embassy being built in Baghdad for the U.S. Now I knew there was a new embassy being built; I even knew it was big. What I didn’t know was that it was larger than the Vatican, the postage stamp sized realm of the Roman Catholic Pontiff. Do we REALLY need an embassy the size of a postage stamp COUNTRY? That question grabbed my attention.

What also grabbed my attention this week was a meeting I had with a network that has pretty much shunned dealing with Iraq but which has now expressed interest in doing something to cover it. War weariness has been replaced by war awareness; a sense there is a shifting in the American consciousness about the war – that we need to finally pay attention. It has been going on a long time. We have crossed the line of 3000 dead – a statistic not as well noted by the press as the 2000 dead mark. What the network has noticed is that the war is getting a new focus, a new attention.

Among the folks I know, there is unfailing support for the men and women serving, while even my most steadfast Republican friends have begun to suspect their President has not been as straightforward as they had believed.

What also thrust itself into my consciousness this week was the growing sense of dis-ease that has permeated the Northeast. It is mid-January; there has been no snow to speak of and a week ago most folks were running around in shirt sleeves because the temperatures were in the low 70’s.

A new cottage industry has exploded in the geographical community. There is big business, in a way, in charting all the islands being exposed by the melting of the ice caps.

And while the east coast has had no snow, I was on the phone today with a business acquaintance who was talking about the snow in Malibu. Snow in Malibu? That got my attention.

The stories and the facts add up to a deep sense of being ill at ease; of wondering what the hell IS happening?

For a period of time it seemed, people were inured to whatever happened in Baghdad. Now it is too much to ignore. We have bombings, botched executions and a government that seems to be, according to Senator Clinton, only giving lip service to America.

At the posh party at SOHO House I passed a conversation with an elegantly dressed woman sharing with her group that she was now taking the green scene seriously because she had seen the Al Gore movie, AN INCOVENIENT TRUTH.

The reality is that it is all now inconvenient and is, unfortunately for all of us, likely to become more inconvenient.

So what grabbed your attention this week?

A post script: Art Buchwald died this past week. God rest his merry soul.