Finding Happiness, Kinky Boots on Broadway and the Princeton Club

Friday, January 30, 2015


“Mom, come sit with us.”  

“In 5 minutes, kids.”

However, sometimes 5 minutes actually means 30 minutes or more.

When was the last time you sat down on the couch with your children, and just that – sit?

With everyone’s hectic schedule, it is so nice to take time to just sit next to each other – under a warm blanket.

You will be surprised by the conversation that results from a simple act of snuggling with your kids.

“Are you happy?” is the question I frequently ask my kids, and they reply with questions.

 “Mom, how do you know that what you’re doing in life is making you happy?”

“How old were you when you found happiness?”

“Do you know what makes you happy?”

“Mom, I am not sure if my job or career choice makes me happy. I can pay my bills, and buy "things" that make me happy. But, am I happy?




Honesty.  Being true to yourself is the first step in finding happiness. What kind of person do YOU want to be? True, parents explore different opportunities for their children, but, in the end, only YOU know what makes you happy. Not what society expects you to have or want, but what YOU need, and want, to accomplish. The worst thing you can do is pretend that you are happy, because you are only fooling yourself.

However, at the same time, you can’t live life half-empty. Not everything we do in life is fun. Being happy does not mean a 24 hour cycle of fun. You go to school not only to have fun, but to learn. You learn to analyze, you learn acceptance, you grow in character, you learn to embrace knowledge and life. You learn to be grateful for the opportunity to learn. As time goes by, you also learn that all of this knowledge prepares you for the journey that is your life after school.  You will get a job, and find that the things that make you the happiest are possible to obtain. You are multifaceted, there is so much to look forward to and accomplish. Your life, like a good book, has many chapters. Write your book, one chapter at a time. Remember, most of all, to enjoy the journey.

Show someone that you care. Life is short and unpredictable. It is important to focus on what makes us happy. Being with family is the most important aspect of our life.  If you are blessed with a loving and supportive family, spending time and showing them how much you love them only results in pure joy and happiness.

A tight hug, saying “I love you” or showing affection does not come easy for some people (cultural or generational), but we need to try to overcome such barriers. Spending a few minutes listening, making time to catch up, picking up the phone to ask how their day is going – all these gestures can make people we love feel special and loved.

So what does “Kinky Boots” have to do with finding happiness?

For 18 months, my sister(in-law) and I had  been planning to see “Kinky Boots” on Broadway.  Our plan was to meet in New York on a Wednesday afternoon and purchase the tickets on that day.

Last Sunday, while I was shopping for groceries in preparation for the Blizzard of 2015, my sister was excited to tell me that she got tickets – front row seats for Wednesday, January 28th.  

I had mixed emotions because there I was planning a whole week’s Snowmageddon, while my sister probably didn’t realize a snow storm of epic proportions was on its way to the New York area.

Needless to say, when the NJ Transit suspended service until Thursday, excitement turned into disappointment. Luckily, the snowstorm wasn’t as bad as predicted, and the train schedule resumed on Tuesday.

Going back to making time for people we love…

Winter is not my favorite season.  If possible, I prefer to stay at home. But to maintain and grow relationships, we need to make time.  Luckily I did.

My sister and I had a few hours before the play. We shared Chicken Caesar salad and Bloody Mary at Iron Bar and Lounge on 8th Avenue, and talked about life. Salad was delicious and plenty for both of us, the Bloody Mary had a perfect combination of ingredients and didn’t taste like tomato juice, and our conversation was engaging, funny and exciting.

The only thing I knew about the play “Kinky Boots” was that the music and lyrics were composed by Cindy Lauper. I was a fan of Cindy Lauper. I must have listened (over and over) to her song, “Time After Time” when I first migrated to America 30 years ago. 

So I figured, Punk rock and Kinky  - totally unconventional, right? So the play has got to be rambunctious, risqué, loud and shocking.  Well, it wasn’t. (Except, perhaps, if you haven’t seen a drag queen, or haven’t heard the word “sex”.)



The main story is about Charlie Price (Andy Kelso), the heir to the shoe factory, “Price & Son” and how and why he chose to face his destiny on saving the 4th generation family factory from closing.

Who would have thought that there are quite a few life lessons emphasized in the play? It is not a story of sequins and 6-inch heels, but a story about compassion, acceptance, relationships and new beginnings.

There is something about the play that makes you think behind the obvious. Lola (Timothy Ware), when being who she really is - the drag queen and performer, exudes confidence larger than life. However, when she tries to be someone she isn’t, such as dressing up as a man, her personality comes across timid, suppressed and restrained.

Just like in real life, there are people who are mostly in the background, but can surprise you by their sincerity, passion and silliness. Lauren (Jeanna De Waal), one of the factory workers, was that person.  The line that touched me the most was when she was relaying the story about her father’s funeral. Lesson emphasized: It’s not about the material things left behind by our loved ones – it’s "US" - that’s what matters most.

The story is about accepting who you are, valuing friendships and relationships, what being a man truly means, father and son relationship – or lack of, accepting other people for who they are, realizing what makes life worth living – finding happiness.




Here are a few memorable lyrics from the play:

Take What You Got

You can't move on if you're still in the past
         You've gotta take what you've got
         Even when your life is in knots
         You take aim, take your shot
         Sometimes, you've got to re-write the plot

Step One.
I may be facing the impossible,
I may be chasing after miracles.
And there may be the steepest mountain to overcome.
         But this is step one.


Raise You Up/Just Be.

Change the world when you change your mind!
         Just be. Who you wanna be.
         Never let them tell you who you ought to be.
         Just be. With dignity.
         Celebrate your life triumphantly.

Needless to say, amid my sister’s warning, I shed a few tears on top of laughter, giddiness and joy.

My sister and I left the Al Hirschfeld Theatre filled with emotions. Being seated in the first row was a special treat. The performers winked, blew kisses, waved and made contact with us. We even got to chat with the Musical Team during intermission.

After the play, we walked to the Princeton Club.




Who knew? Sisters from two continents: One from a Third World Country and the other from Bensonhurst, Brooklyn would be celebrating life at the Woodrow Wilson Dining Room at the Princeton Club. My husband joined us as we celebrated a wonderful day and the fulfillment of nice milestone. We talked and laughed about our growing family, the trips we've taken together as the “Furer Nine”, new business ventures, the prospect of writing a screenplay about our hilarious parents, my “Good Wife” obsession, and the deflated balls of the Super Bowl, all while enjoying a scrumptious dinner and dessert of bread and rice pudding – something that even our gourmet chef of a Mom would approve.

Cheers to family! ( Thank you sis)



You see, in our day-to-day hectic life, we can always find ways to be happy. Making time to be with the people we love is unparalleled happiness.

So…


Are you happy?




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2 Comments

  1. You can watch live events from the best artists when you purchase the right tickets here.Kinky Boots Tickets!

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  2. Gratitude is the key to a happy life, because if we are not grateful, then no matter how we have, we are not going to be happy - because we always want something else or something more steadily."
    - David Steindl Rast -


    Read More here

    How to Find Happiness in 5 minutes?

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