Update

Dec. 25th, 2015 09:46 pm
ceebeegee: (Default)
 So, Tatia seeeeems to be doing much better. She is active (relatively), she is eating and drinking, she hisses at her brother (she’s gotten quite feisty actually) and she cuddles on Mommy’s lap like it’s her day job. The vets are still reserved about her long-term chances—they say her kidney numbers aren’t that good (or at least as high as they’d like) and they want to run some more blood work on her next week. But they did say how she does at home is a stronger indicator of her health than the numbers...so we shall see. I am optimistic that my fuzzy precious one will be with us for a little while longer.
 
Also—saw the new Star Wars movie! It was EPIC. I absolutely loved it! I think the new characters are great and I loved the grandeur and, well, pictures. It was wonderful to see all the old favorites again--I (along with the audience) cheered whenever Han and Chewie, or C-3PO, or Leia came into view. The Falcon! So great to see everyone again. And I loved the new characters as well--Rey and Ren were great, loved Finn and BB-8.  Love it, love it, love it.
 
Also—money. The vet bills are pretty big, almost $3,000 (it’s worth it to have Tatia but still—ouch). But the good news is that my parents gave me a decent amount of cash for my birthday and for Christmas, and then I also got decent bonuses from the bankers for whom I work. Plus charging so much on my card does at least generate 1% cash back. So all of this adds up to a nice chunk of change and in fact nearly half the bill so far. Which is obviously incredibly relieving. I doubt I’ll be able to go to Oslo this spring as I’d planned but it’s not because of the money, it’s because Tatia needs nightly medication and fluids. I just don’t feel right about having someone else do that right now (although it’s possible I could change my mind if she remains stable). I certainly don’t want to miss out on Oslo but my precious Lady Stompalot is more important.
ceebeegee: (Macbeth)
So we've had our first few rehearsals for Macbeth, which I'm dramaturging/AD-ing for Andrew. (I frankly attach more importance to the former title than the latter--he told me I could do anything I wanted, I chose dramaturg, and later he added the AD function.) Rehearsal for this week has been all readthroughs and table work and hence at Christine's apartment down in Chelsea. I got there after 7 each time, since I get out of work after rehearsal starts so I didn't really get a chance to meet the cast per se but just sort of jumped in. Most of them are terrific--I especially like our Macbeth, Ross, Malcolm, Banquo and Porter. The first night I introduced myself after the readthrough had ended, and tallked about the various themes in the play and said "this is my favorite Shakespeare tragedy, not least because I'm related to the actual Macbeth." I looked at the guy playing him. "So don't fuck it up." (I said this humorously.)

I told them about Shakespeare's Advice to the Players and talked a little bit about the techniques discussed therein, and handed out some pages also discussing caesurae, scansion, etc. Andrew talked a little bit about my schedule--basically, very busy--mentioning that I was "going for her master's in history" and the guy playing Macbeth was asking me about that. I had to clarify--"yes, I'm going for it but I'm not actually in grad school right now, I'm in a program, at Columbia called the Post-Baccalaureate Studies Program. I'm trying to build a third major."

Last night (I can't do rehearsal on Sunday or Tuesday nights because of class) we had our second night of table work and I was on fiyuh. I really am Hermione in these situations--I have to force myself not to dominate the conversation too much. I talked about themes some more--time telescoping into itself as the plays approaches its climax (with the corollary that the witches are outside of time) was one. But I guess it was well-received--the two guys playing Malcolm and Ross were literally following me around during the breaks, and the Ross said to me "I love you--I want to squeeze every bit of knowledge out of your head!" I think I won him over when he asked me about a line in the beginning of the Lady Macduff scene--he wanted to elide two syllables to make it scan and wanted to know if that was okay. I whipped out my copy of the First Folio and said "that's the way it is First Folio so ask yourself this--why did Shakespeare add the extra syllable? Can you find an emotional reason for that? Maybe Ross is more nervous than he's letting on to Lady Macduff--he's stumbling over his words." He gave me this amazed look.

During Macbeth's Act V scene when he's struggling to put on his armor, I also talked a bit about clothing metaphors and how important clothing was as social/class signifier to the medieval/Renaissance mindset, how you could only wear certain materials/colors. There are a lot of clothing images throughout the play--I also talked about the body politic: the state of the nation is reflected in the body of the king--and this plays into the idea of Man is a micro-universe (the microcosm), which then leads to the blood imagery which saturates the play. (As I put it, "the blood in this play is like the elevator sequence in The Shining.") The complete disarray of the macrocosm, the body politic, is symbolized by the life's blood of the microcosm--the king whom Macbeth murders.

When we discussed the Act V battle, I brought up the fact that we see little of it--mostly we see Macbeth fighting one person after another. The Porter said something about a typically medieval mounted pitched battle and I said "that is actually less typically medieval than you'd think--it depends on the time period of course, and already for this production we're talking about three time periods--the mid-11th century, when the actual Macbeth lived; the early 17th century, when the play was written; and the 1930s, when this production is set. But there were a lot more sieges and raiding in certain periods than dramatically pitched battles." After rehearsal Banquo was asking me about medieval battle tactics and I launched into a discourse about the The Battle of the Golden Spurs, the ascent of the infantry in the 14th century, and how military tactics never really change or evolve, name-checking the Battle of Hoth at the end.
ceebeegee: (Ben on Tatooine)


I love this! I've been laughing about it all day. "Aw, man..."
ceebeegee: (Straighties)
I had the ducklings over last night for an Admit Impediments cocktail party--almost everyone was there (Booth was the only one missing, due to his recent bereavement) but Jason was there and since Jason is Joshua is Booth is Jason....it all worked out. Jason and Paula also brought Benjamin, who was very well-behaved and also seemed intrigued by Dada's Scotch. He's learning ;-) All kidding aside--and of course I make many jokes about the manifest nature of cocktails in my family history--I don't at all approve of kids drinking. I related a story of one of my ex-BFs, who came from a real low-rent background--we were at his brother's house and the brother had a toddler son who was running around, and every now and then stopping to drink from his dad's beer can. I was horrified. That's just not cool, you're programming that kid to be an alcoholic. Even I knew, growing up, that alcohol was an adult thing. I have no patience with parents who want to do everything with their kids, who act like friends and not parents. My parents had clear boundaries between them and my brothers and me--we were very aware that there were things that were appropriate for adults, and when we grew up, we would get to enjoy them as well.

I mostly served high-end Scotch--Susan has been giving me some great stuff lately--a single malt, a blended version and two "micro brew" Scotches that were AMAZING. The "micro brews" (not sure how else to describe them--that is, not made by a long-established company but by a trio of Scottish guys) came in "Rich and Spicy" and "Sweet and Mellow"--both were very popular. Tony brought two bottles of wine because he doesn't drink Scotch, and later on I made mojitos. For food, I served some cheeses--brie, horseradish cheddar and a big hunk of gruyere (mmmm)--and later on made several big piles of nachos.

Nick arrived first and rather early, at 4:30. I chatted with him as I raced around trying to finish cleaning the apartment. (Newsflash--my kittehs shed a LOT. Oh my Lord. Scraping the cat hair off the futon chair and the knitting bag where Tatia flops on top of the fridge was quite a fuzzy task. Thank goodness no one was allergic--actually I think Tony said he was, but he said he wasn't having any problems.) Nick brought a lovely hostess gift, the libretto for Carousel. One of my favorite R&H shows! Such a beautiful score.

Jason and Paul arrived next, Benjamin in tow, and Don and Alex came with flowers! What thoughtfulness--a lovely little bouquet of mini-sunflowers (mini-blackeyed Susans?). I put them in water and set them on top of the armoire:



Tony asked about my grandmother's wedding portrait that sits atop my armoire and I reminisced about her with him, telling him about her and my family. Of all my female cousins, physically I'm perhaps the most like Nina (small, thin, athletic build. She also loved sports). She had an interesting life--I told Tony that the demi-monde in Anything Goes was her life. She took cruises and drank champagne and threw lots of cocktail parties.

Later on Duncan and I came up with a "cast shot"--we experimented with several combinations of Scotch, Cointreau, Chambord, Jack Daniel's, vodka, etc. We settled on one, and then I changed it again, adding mint leaves, sugar, etc., and poured 7 shots, but I don't think it tasted great. I was going to bring the cast shot in for Booth but I think I'll just give him a shot of one of the micro-brew Scotches instead.

At one point I was showing off my Star Wars toys, including my "Anakin and Obi Wan Fighting on Mustafar" ornament. (God, I love that toy. I love how it's all backlit, and I LOVE that I can cue Obi Wan screaming "You were the Chosen One!" anytime I like just by pushing a button.) I also tossed down my Anakin action figure and displayed my Emperor pez dispenser, opening it up to pop out the candy and saying menacingly "you want thisssss....don't you?" Don commented approvingly on my Fox Mulder action figure as well. I just love all my toys. Paula was telling Nick (?) about my love of Star Wars and mentioned my vintage Luke Skywalker Empire tee-shirt, upon which I immediately donned it. And of course I had to pull out my "Star Wars Holiday Special" DVD.

At several points during the evening, it was demonstrated exactly how Joshua was based on Jason for the uninitiated (Nick and Tony, since neither of them knew Jason). The one I remember best was when we were talking about the "micro brew" Scotch--it's made by three guys named something like Rob, Joe and Babbo. Someone said "Manny, Moe and Jack?"--that is, the Pep Boys. Duncan commented on the frequency of Moe namings and Jason came in with "I know, like, five guys named Moe." Someone said something about "pulling five guys named Moe out of your ass" and Duncan said "that's why they're called 'Moe.'" Everyone died laughing.

Duncan pulled out his ukulele at one point and played "We Belong" and then "Calypso" by my man John Denver. I asked if he knew "The Eagle and the Hawk"--he did not and it seemed few people even knew the song at all. I cued it up on my iPod and played it--SUCH a terrific song. "I am the eagle, I live in high country/In rocky cathedrals that reach to the sky/I am the hawk and there's blood on my feathers/But time is still turning, they soon will be dry/And all of those who see me, and all who believe in me/
Share in the freedom I feel when I fly...." The whole verse is sung so high--Denver just BELTS the crap out of it, soaring up and up with no falsetto. It's amazing. The man was such a talent.
ceebeegee: (Ben on Tatooine)
I had no idea there was even such a thing as Star Wars Day. I just found out on Yahoo! Buzz. Aaaaugh!! My Star Wars geek credentials may be lifted!!! What else don't I know about??
ceebeegee: (Ben on Tatooine)
Can't. Wait. FINALLY, the man sees the light. I don't care about Hayden Christiansen at the end of ROTJ, and I actually liked seeing the celebrations throughout the galaxy and the new song ("Celebrate Tonight" was pretty craptastic, guys, let's admit it). But Han Shot First, dammit!

I am so George Lucas's bitch.

Thalia

Jan. 12th, 2006 10:39 am
ceebeegee: (Me)
Last night Jason took me out to eat at a restaurant of my choice, to pay off the bet he lost to me about Star Wars. Paula joined us as well. We ate at a restaurant I've always wanted to try but never have, Thalia at the corner of 8th Avenue and 50th Street. What a delightful experience in every way--the food was fantastic, every bite. Paula and I ordered the baby spinach salad (with candied walnuts, roasted apple slices and a maple syrup vinaigrette) and the crab cake appetizers to share, and Jason got this mushroom, polenta and truffle reduction combo. Then Paula and I each ordered pumpkin crusted scallops, and I think Jason got either the halibut or the salmon. We tried to figure out what to drink with this and settled on a nice fruity white wine--I generally prefer red but if there's a white with some fruity/berryish notes to it, I like those. (I am no oenophile so bear with my utilitarian vocabulary!) For dessert we shared the chocolate tasting plate. I will say, all that rich food is a little difficult on my system right now, and I had a hard time sleeping last night but it was worth it--I had such a good time. The wine was so good, and it was wonderful spending time with my ducklings. I also loved the atmosphere--environment is a big part of my enjoyment at a restaurant, and this place had beautiful colors, all warm oranges and browns and recessed lighting and shadow boxes. I found it interesting that the restaurant "works" as an upscale environment, considering that 1) it's on 8th Avenue which can be poretty honky-tonk, because it's so close to Times Square, and 2) it's so big. But with the proper lighting and layout, you can achieve intimacy anyway. A work of design genius!

Thank you Jason!!
ceebeegee: (DV at the beach)


Of course I am. I would make a great space pirate.

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