Monday, March 27, 2017

(Punctuation is my passion

I stole this from someone who no doubt stole it from a long line of other stealers, but I am now and forever in love with the original designer and his or her unmasked clip-art frog.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

My American Nephew

This -- THIS! -- is what I love love love about being the weird corrupting uncle to two smart, clever kids.
Forget the hugs. Forget the pride over choir concerts and sports awards and valedictorianships. Forget the realization that I will gladly do everything in my power to make sure my niece and nephew are always safe and fed and happy and educated and financially secure and able to achieve anything they set their sights on achieving.

The only reason I'm sticking with this uncling gig is to exchange intellectually and socially irresponsible texts as part of my master plan to set a catastrophically bad example for two amazing young adults I've been telling underpants jokes to since Booth totaled his Lincoln.


Pssst. Don. "Laughingstock" is one word. Aside from that, your message is totally on point without a whiff of irony. Your inability to spell or capitalize like a big boy notwithstanding.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Loser. Loser loser loser.

There IS no "we will all," Donald. You can't even get your 100% majority rank-and-file to back your biggest campaign platform. You know: The one you've bellowed loudly and repeatedly to be your first-order-of-presidential-business art-of-the-deal priority for well over a year. Yeah, that one.

What's that playground word you can't stop using because you're too stupid to know any other words? Oh, yeah: Loser.

It's surprisingly difficult to find the right shirt and shoes to match your new faggy red jeans

Friday, March 24, 2017

Who's the "loser" now?

I just got home from rehearsal to find our petulant, inarticulate man-boy president going on record on the national "fake news" he whines pathetically about but he knows he'd die without to call the Democrats "losers" because HE couldn't get his dangerously hasty piece-of-shit legislation passed by his own rank-and-file majority party.

Unless he's claiming credit for momentum from Obama's economy, nothing is ever his fault. His entire fake presidency has been a bubbling swamp of failure, blame, desperation, hyperbole, ignorance, lies, diplomatic embarrassment and narcissistic waste of taxpayer money.

Still proud of your Trump vote, anyone?

The Art of the Fail

GOP House. GOP Senate. GOP "President." Eight years of whining and criticizing and blaming and grandstanding in which they had ridiculously abundant time to craft viable, bipartisan legislation to replace the whipping-boy Affordable Care Act that their hatred for has nothing to do with the fact that Barack Obama is black nope nothing at all.

Instead they sat on their whiny, incapable hands for eight years and in the 26 days between their dear leader declaring that "nobody knew that health care could be so complicated" and today's GOP-controlled Art-of-the-Deal flaccidly-aborted-at-the-last-minute non-vote, they hastily cobbled together a criminally and intellectually and morally incompetent replacement proposal whose most celebrated feature was that it used less paper than the Affordable Care Act did.

THEY FAILED. CATASTROPHICALLY. AT THE ASTRONOMICAL EXPENSE OF OUR CONFIDENCE AND OUR RESPECT AND OUR TAX DOLLARS. They wasted almost a decade of time and resources and money and bipartisan goodwill and public trust whining impotently about how (they barbarically hoped and prayed) the Affordable Care Act was failing and solemnly lying that they were going to "fix" it.

And our petulant, inarticulate man-boy president immediately -- IMMEDIATELY! -- blamed the Democrats for his controlling party's catastrophic failures today and dismissed this entire colossal waste of time and money and potentially lives as an inchoately threatening lesson in "a lot about loyalty."

He's been an Art of the Failure at almost everything he's done in his pampered, self-aggrandizing life. And now he's dragging our entire country down his narcissistic, intellectually bankrupt rabbit hole with him. And there's very little of consequence we can do but wait until he uses his favorite big-boy word and implodes. And it's looking to be an excruciatingly long, painfully slow self-immolation.

The Art of the Deal

How tall ya feeling NOW, Paul? How big are your ignoble accomplishments? How towering is your integrity? Where do you stand in the public's estimation? Why is your hat on backwards?

Flashback Friday: Name This Theatre Edition

When I lived in Chicago, my office in the Loop looked down on the marquee for the Bank of America Theatre, which was built in 1906 as the Majestic Theatre -- where I saw zero shows -- then renamed in 1945 as the Sam Shubert Theatre -- where I saw Broadway national tour of Cats in the 1980s with my family but we were seated so far away in the top balcony that my dad complained it should have been called Kittens -- then renamed in 2006 as the LaSalle Bank Theatre -- where I totally sided with Cherry Jones in Doubt -- then renamed in 2008 as the Bank of America Theatre -- where I got to sing Happy Birthday to Dolly Parton when she was there for the Chicago premiere of 9 to 5 -- then renamed in 2015 as the PrivateBank Theatre -- which was right after I moved away so I didn't get a chance to proofread the marquee and point out that it was missing a space but now the damage is done so whatcanyoudo?

While I worked across the street from the theater and could look right out my window to watch happy theatergoers enter the theater as I toiled away making money so I could keep going to the theater myself, I witnessed the entire seated runs of Jersey Boys -- still one of my dream shows to be in -- and Book of Mormon -- and I have my tap shoes with me at all times in case I get the call that I've been cast as a Broadway elder. Ahem.

The PrivateBank Theatre currently houses the seated national tour of Hamilton.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Happy birthday, Stephen Sondheim!

Thank you for redefining musical theater. For redefining music. For redefining theater.

Thank you for composing music that's at once asymmetrical and balanced, halting and fluid, atonal and lush, messy and perfect.

Thank you for finding lyrics that explore the outer limits of rhythm and structure and rhyme, that tell a story or define a character or celebrate a moment or break a heart in sometimes just a handful of words, that always seem fresh, that always seem timeless, that always seem effortless.

Thank you for creating an apotheosis of order, design, tension, composition, balance, light and harmony.

Thank you for inspiring as only you can an enraptured little boy to think outside his own thoughts, to feel outside his own feelings, to never stop searching for the perfect word or the lyrical phrase or the essential defining idea in a universe of creative entropy, to always make sure he's proud of how he creates and proud of what he writes.

And thank you for the phrase that I rely on to pull me out of inertia and propel me sometimes through a bipolar fog and sometimes just through my own complacency to run a marathon, broaden my perspective, upgrade to a more challenging tap class, find a solution, emerge unscathed or at least unbroken, or some days to just show up.

Careful the things you say; children will listen. And sometimes they'll turn your words into kick-ass tattoos.

Feel the flow,
Hear what's happening:
We're what's happening!
Long ago
All we had was that funny feeling,
Saying someday we'd send 'em reeling.
Now it looks like we can!
Someday just began.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Happy 332nd birthday, Johann Sebastian Bach part 2!

Fun Bach fact 2: The formal title of every work composed by Bach is followed by a BWV (Bach-Werke-Verzeichnis or Bach-Works-Catalogue) number. First published in 1950 by Wolfgang Schmieder -- who was probably very boring at parties -- the BWW system assigned a unique number to each of the 1,126 known written works of Bach. 

Unlike the far-more-useful-in-my-humble-opinion Köchel catalogue that assigns numbers to every known work of Mozart chronologically, the BWW assigns its numbers by genre. Which isn't even a German word.

Happy 332nd birthday, Johann Sebastian Bach!

Fun Bach fact 1: Johann Sebastian Bach is considered to be one of the definitive composers of the Baroque Period in music, which lasted from 1600 until the year of Bach's death in 1750. Following the Renaissance Period, which explored independent, interweaving melodic lines in a style known as polyphony, Baroque music introduced the concept of tonality, where music was written in an established key. The highly ornamental and often improvised music of the Baroque followed the key-based chord progressions played by the lower instruments of the basso continuo.

And though all symphonic music from the Baroque Period forward is collectively known as "classical music," the official Classical Period as we define it today directly followed the Baroque, lasting from 1750 to 1825. Its definitive composer was Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.

Monday, March 20, 2017

I think it's time for bed. Good night, everyone.

Follies spacing rehearsal! We're running a lot of numbers.

Get your Follies tickets here already

Things to do on the vernal equinox

1. Welcome the first day of spring after surviving a brutal spring-like winter.
2. Tell the crocuses that all that previous warm weather was a cruel false alarm and that it's probably safe to come up now and fill our gardens and lives with white and purple and yellow joy. But especially yellow. Because I like yellow crocuses the best. No offense, lesser white and purple crocuses.
3. Marvel that humankind has figured out the rotation of the planets and the tilting of the earth's axis and the location of the equator and the EXACT FREAKING SECOND that the sun crossed it today as the earth's axis reached its momentary equilibrium and tilted neither toward or away from the sun.
4. Recalibrate -- if necessary -- your internal compasses by observing the due east and due west locations of today's sunrise and sunset. (Equinox nerds only.)
5. Softball "Fascism Forever" club founder, Constitutional "originalist" and declared Constitutional "faithful servant" Neil Gorsuch through confirmation hearings for a Supreme Court appointment that Constitutionally belongs to someone else.
6. Indulge in the sadly-once-a-year crispity, crunchety, maltedy, chocolatey, fatassy, lightly speckled deliciousness of Brach's Malted Milk White Fiesta Eggs.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Attend the tail

Don't laugh but we used to have two sister cats named Sweeney Todd and Mrs. Lovett. I SAID DON'T LAUGH. They were stripey in a gorgeous spectrum of ochres and chestnuts and they totally matched our umber marble sink, where they frequently held court for their Council of Cute Conclaves and were obsessively photographed in adorably languorous poses.

So the obvious takeaway from this memory is that umber marble is easier to say than Irish wristwatch. WHO'S LAUGHING NOW?

Saturday, March 18, 2017

C'mon! Xanadead!

People. This is comedy GOLD here. I'm an international Twitter sensation and THIS is the response I get to my movie title/violent demise mashups? Angela Merkel would show way more respect for Donald Trump's intellectual accomplishments. Assuming he had any intellectual accomplishments. And they deserved any respect. He probably can't even spell eleprosy. Or mashup. Or Merkel. Or integrity. Or weekly golf vacation. But on the off chance he can, I sincerely hope he's spelling it at Malaria-A-Lago.

I'm a sensation!

As you may know, I'm relatively new to Twitter and -- as we new Twitterfolk are wont to do -- I've been clumsily trying to get more followers. I've recently discovered the list of trending hashtags on the home screen and I've thrown a few hopefully clever tweets into those rings in the hopes of maybe finding a few new followers. Or being propelled to Broadway stardom. Whatever. I'm not picky.

So. This morning, something called #igot7selcaday was trending and I couldn't even figure out from the tweets under the hashtag what on earth it meant. My hissing Bitch Kitty picture had gotten a lot of attention on Facebook earlier so just for completely random schizophrenic fun I tweeted it under that hashtag as I walked from my car to the grocery store to buy, of all things, white-meat cat-food pâté for Bitch Kitty's increasingly discerning palate.

Then I didn't log on to Twitter for six hours.
See those little icons directly under our picture? They mean reply, retweet and love. I think. If I'm extremely clever and extremely lucky, I may get a 0,1,1 under those icons for a tweet. Now look at the numbers Bitch Kitty and I got in the last six hours. As one of the replies I got for this tweet said, "congratulations papa UR internationally famous."


I will not lie. There is more than a bit of a thrill involved in being a 15-second international Twitter sensation. Especially at the age of exactly one month shy of 49. And I'm getting comments in languages I don't even recognize -- all from what appear to be quite young fans of what many have explained to me is a kpop band from I have yet to figure out where.

Anyway, it appears I still have the bona fides to be down with the kids, yo. Even though one of them called me papa. And so far I've gotten a whopping seven new followers out of my still-growing international population of 2,500+ retweeters. Which doesn't quite meet my budget goals.

But still. I am as of this writing the international king of kpop kitty tweeting. And it feels kinda kool.

Friday, March 17, 2017

Why I loathe my CPAP

1. It honestly doesn't make me feel any different when I wake up every morning.
2. My bedroom light switch is clear across the room so I have to lay out the headgear on my bed in a way that I can find it and put it on right-side-up in the dark, cross the room to turn the lights out, come back to my bed and feel around for the headgear and put it on right-side-up in the dark, and crawl into bed without inadvertently yanking the whole thing off my head so I have to get up and turn on the lights and start all over.
3. The nose pillows -- as I shit you not regarding what they're called -- rarely form a workable seal on my nostrils so the machine usually ends up sending a tickley jet of air whooshing up my face.
4. Nose pillows.
5. It's impossible to breathe or not feel like I'm being waterboarded when I have a stuffy nose as the nose pillows struggle to obstruct my nostrils.
6. And I really don't want to think about where any stray snot may end up when I jam those nose pillows up into my stuffy nose.
7. Gross. I just thought about it.
8. Nose pillows.
9. Sometimes I wake up in the morning with the headgear around my neck and the nose pillows spraying what I'm sure we can all agree is by now aerosnot all over the sheets.
10. Twice I've awakened with the snot-spraying nose pillows in my mouth.
11. Twice.
12. In. My. Mouth.
13. I bought the bedside table at Gordmans, which we desperate-discount shoppers all know just filed for bankruptcy so of course I can't return it and get my $21.87 back.
14. That fancy Target-brand distilled water cost 97¢. Also unreturnable.
15. Nose pillows.
16. In. My. Mouth.
17. I can't just lie and say I'm using my CPAP when I'm not because the damn thing records every time I turn it on and off, how my breathing pressure changes as I sleep with it on, and how many apnea episodes I have in my sleep. Then every day it sends all that information wirelessly to the woman who sold it to me so she can adjust the pressure remotely and confirm with the insurance company that I'm actually using it.
18. For. Real. Just like a microwave.
19. I wonder if Gordmans has any of their other breakable furniture or prison-track blingy gang attire on clearance yet.
20. Nose pillows. In. My. Mouth.

Pet. My. TUMMY.

Bridget and I both forgot to wear green today but we're partying so hard for St. Patrick's Day that I just engaged in some heavy petting and she totally peed on the lawn.