Thursday, September 20, 2018

So how does this work?

Do I pick one from each column or do I get to mix and match any three like on the Denny's value menu? Or is this one of those brain teasers where I have to re-organize the list so the first letter of every line spells a common phrase or a popular song title? Or maybe I have to clear the board--which automatically disqualifies me because I refuse to be yoga pants as a matter of principle. They should really pass out leaflets with the rules spelled out clearly or nobody's going to play ... which means nobody will ever win Eternal Damnation.

#NotVeryIntelligentlyDesigned

I’m wearing my new shirt with two people having a knife fight on the sleeve!

Also: BLUE CAMO CARGO SHORTS!

Imma be catnip to the ladies ALL. DAY. LONG.

Just between you, me and this lamppost ...

1. The good news is my knee didn’t hurt.
2. Well, MOSTLY didn’t hurt.
3. But I found myself still in the habit of favoring it as I ran.
4. Which is a good way to get hurt.
6. I just accidentally typed 6 instead of 5.
7. But I’m too lazy to go back and fix it.
7. So I fixed it this way instead.
8. MATH!
9. So ... three miles ...
10. It was pretty rough.
11. And I mean rough as in it felt like I’ve never run a step in my life.
12. I wanted to stop the whole time.
13. Especially—ESPECIALLY!—at my two-mile wall.
14. Because I have a two-mile wall.
15. Most runners have a 20-mile wall.
16. I have that as well.
17. But nobody—NOBODY!—has a two-mile wall.
18. At least I’m pretty.
19. Right?
20. RIGHT?
21. Thankfully, Rob got up in the early darkness (dark earliness?) and ran with me.
22. I haven’t seen him since the NewBo half marathon almost three weeks ago.
23. So it was nice to catch up on all our disparate theater adventures.
24. Plus it was a great distraction from all those damn walls.
25. Scott selfishly did NOT join us.
26. Because of his kids, he said.
27. His kids whom I HAVE NEVER SEEN.
28. So I have my suspicions about this friendship.
29. We replaced him with this lamp post in our selfie.
30. Because he lights up our lives.
31. He gives us hope.
32. To carry on.
33. He lights up our days.
34. And fills our nights.
35. With.
37. Song.
38. It can’t be wrong.
39. When it feels so right.
40. ‘Cause he ...
42. He lights.
43. Up.
44. Our.
45. Lives.

It’s my first run ...

1. since my knee blowout at the NewBo half marathon almost three weeks ago
2. without wearing sunglasses
3. in a shirt off of which I haven’t cut the sleeves
4. pretending to care if I end sentences with prepositions
5. sporting my new haircut
6. at

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Flashback Wednesday: Sheer, Abject Terror Edition

"Rappel down the side of a 31-story building," I said. "It'll be fun," I said. "Plus it'll give me an interesting story to tell everyone," I said.

"Just lean back off the roof and hold onto these alarmingly tiny ropes that we guarantee won't snap and send you plummeting to your death," they said. "Look around and enjoy the view that very few people get to see," they said. "Keep yourself horizontal to the building," they said.

"STOP SHAKING YOUR DAMN LEGS. YOU LOOK LIKE A LOW-RENT ELVIS IMPERSONATOR," they said. "GET YOUR SHIT TOGETHER OR WE WON'T LET YOU RAPPEL," they said.

"I've taken the training and paid the money and I'm not giving up now," I said. "I won't look down at the pavement where I could easily splat and die in abject terror," I said. "I won't look down at the pavement where I could easily splat and die in abject terror," I said. "I won't look down at the pavement where I could easily splat and die in abject terror," I said.

"Here I go, shakes and terror and all," I said.

"Holy shit I hate this I hate this I hate this eyes on the ropes squeeze your hands hard don't look down don't look down to hell with looking around at the view I hate this I hate this I hate this is it over yet," I said.

"Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee," I said.

Yes, I literally made the noise "Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee" all the way down the building.

"I'M BACK ON SOLID GROUND AND IT'S FINALLY OVER," I said. "I AM NEVER NEVER NEVER DOING THIS AGAIN," I said. "I HAVE NEVER BEEN SO FUCKING SCARED IN MY ENTIRE LIFE," I said.

"I NEED ALCOHOL," I said.

Yes, I really said "I NEED ALCOHOL" because I was still shaking in my legs and tummy and though I've barely had any alcohol in my life and I had no idea what an entire drink would do to me, I WANTED SOME DAMN ALCOHOL.

"I'll have a Tom Collins," I said to the waiter. Because someone recommended it and it sounded interesting.

I drank my Tom Collins, still shaking in my legs and tummy. And it was GOOD.

The end.

Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

Today be Talk Like a Pirate Day! For realz, Matey.

A pirate walks into a bar. The bartender says "Do you know you have a steering wheel coming out of your crotch?" The pirate says "Aaaarrrrrgh! It's drivin’ me nuts!"

Monday, September 17, 2018

Don't say that ... it's "whom."

There is a moment near the end of The Goat, or Who is Sylvia?—Edward Albee's 2002 play exploring the outer limits of love, fidelity, morality and tolerance—where the emotional crisis at the center of the narrative boils over into such catastrophic levels of heartache and rage and such Greek-tragedy levels of destruction and retribution that the first time I saw it—and the second time and the third time and the fourth time—the audience collectively gasped to the point of almost screaming and then sat rigidly and almost palpably silent until well after the final stage light had extinguished and the last emotionally drained actor had silently moved into position for the company bow.

It's one of my two favorite—if there even exists a favorite-not favorite continuum of cataclysmic emotional destruction—moments in modern theater ... the other being the last three seconds of David Mamet's Oleanna before the stage becomes abruptly, dreadfully dark.

Though he's largely a genre unto himself, it's difficult to pigeonhole Edward Albee as a playwright. He wrote or adapted about 30 works that epitomized movements like Theatre of the Absurd and brought popular works of fiction like The Ballad of the Sad Café and Breakfast at Tiffany's to the stage and screen.
My favorite Albee works—Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (embodied in this photo by the incomparable Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor playing the American-experiment patriarch and matriarch George and Martha), The Play About the Baby and The Goat, or Who is Sylvia?—all share the format of four characters on stage and one character who may or may not exist offstage. It's an intriguing conceit, and one that keeps bringing me back to these three plays for my own contemplation. In an odd double standard, though, I can't stand reading them; the characters for me seem to have no depth on the page but they grant a glorious latitude for actors to make fascinating choices as they flesh them out.

I'm a day late in this tribute, but yesterday was the second anniversary of Edward Albee's death. I'm not one to be sad when famous people I've never met pass away—and having seen only six of his works (that I can remember) I'm certainly no slavish Albee devotee—but I'm profoundly thankful for the emotional roller coasters he's put me on over the years ... and for the body of work he's left that I can continue to explore in my own way and on my own time. I have a couple favorite quotes I'd love to mention here, but they're all potential spoilers. So I'll just lift a glass of bergen to his memory.

After surviving an invasion by a foreign royal lineage, beheading the Groom of the Stool (it’s a legit title! look it up!), tooting the court jester’s horn and making a gratuitous dictatorship pun,

I have hereby abandoned the royal wee, abdicated the porcelain throne and rejoined the peasantry in the Commonwealth of Arby’s.

Sunday, September 16, 2018

All Liquids Day!

(I’m capitalizing it now because it’s fast-tracked to be designated a national holiday and I don’t want to have to search through my archives to update this post.)

I’m more than happy to spend the day consuming nothing but not-alarming-when-it-comes-back-out-red liquids, but it would be immeasurably easier if the hospital’s instructions didn’t make things on its do-not-eat list sound so deliciously tempting:

Saturday, September 15, 2018

The Mrs. Higgins to my Lord Boxington, the assistant director to my unlearned Fuddy Meers lines, the mother of two dear friends I’ve known since high school ... Cherryl always makes my theater life loverlier just by showing up

And we get to attend a horse race AND a swanky, waltzy ball together in My Fair Lady. Plus my hair part is again award-winningly on point in our selfie here. It’s been a wonderful night.

Live blogging again from backstage at My Fair Lady Act II Scene mcmlxxiv!

I’ve known these dear ladies since before you—or even we—were born. Because THAT is the magic of good theater lighting. We’ve been through rich and poor together, happy times and sad ... all depending on whatever the show we’re all doing says about us. We’re currently in Edwardian England, which is DEFINITELY before we were born. Well, allegedly. And it’s just loverly.

These people

You should hear them all sing. No really. YOU SHOULD COME TO OUR SHOW AND HEAR THEM ALL SING. The talent in this show is humbling. And the people in this show are delightful. And I’m being all sappy because I’ve had two Diet Cokes so my guard is down and I’m so embarrassed that I let you all see me this way so I’m going to stop typing now so I don’t embarrass myself any further I could have danced all night on the street where you live wait why am I stringing together random song titles from My Fair Lady oh right it’s because I’m IN My Fair Lady and I’m in it with these lovely people plus a lot more lovely people so GET YOUR BLOOMIN’ TICKETS AND COME SEE US, PEOPLE I think I need another Diet Coke.

Friday, September 14, 2018

Oh, nothing

Just not-fiber-eating at our My Fair Lady opening-night party with the Lady to my Lord Boxington after our STANDING OVATION.

How’s YOUR night?

Live! Backstage at My Fair Lady!

Henry and Liza are fighting onstage as we speak. Soon they’ll be singing about fighting. Then they’ll fight about singing about fighting. Then I CAN’T TELL YOU WHAT HAPPENS AFTER THAT. Get your bloomin’ asses to Theatre Cedar Rapids and find out!

Just a little bit! Just a little bit! Just a little bit of our cast backstage at opening-night intermission!

I worry that we’re creating unhealthy body-image issues here for both women and men, but I can’t think that right now because I got a show to do!

Also: Super-cute Snoopy rainbow shirt!