Apr. 21st, 2014 01:49 pm
ceebeegee: (Default)
I have to say, loud screamy sneezers annoy the hell out of me. Seriously, you can't control that at all? You really have to scream like that? It just seems like such a cry for attention.

And am I the only one who cannot stand Al Roker? Every time he starts his schticky schtick on Today I cannot lunge for the remote fast enough. They were talking about some story about lions and one of them said they'd heard that lions sleep 23 hours a day. Immediately Dumb Al starts singing "The Lion Sleeps Tonight" and then had to up the ante but dancing around the studio. Just ugh. I think it all started when I saw him on Letterman and he kept interrupting Dave with his own jokes and then laughing at them. Let him do his job, dude.

Okay, rant over. Easter was lovely. I had lunch with an OLD friend--haven't seen her in nearly 20 years. She and Cami, Ryan and I all did shows at the Susan together--Amy was a great dancer and did a tour but then settled in Manhattan and then Austin Texas. Apparently she's been back in Virginia for a few years but I had no idea. So happy to see her! After we finished we went over to Cami's museum and said hi to her as well, yay!

The choir director of St. Andrew's, my old parish, has been asking my Mom (who's on the vestry) if I could sing (with the choir, that is) when I come home for major holidays. So I did for Christmas and then I did it this weekend for Easter. Just two things to learn (or go over), a descant for the hymn Jesus Christ Has Risen Today and the Hallelujah Chorus, which we used to sing every Easter. I literally grew up singing that every Easter in that choir loft but I haven't sung it in performance for at least 30 years. It was a trip! That piece is so well-written, I really got into it and just wailed soprano-style. King of Kiiiiiiiiiiings! And Lord of Loooooooooooords! And Lord of Lords! It's really fantastic music and I had a great time with it. And Mom was saying such nice things, saying I really sounded great and soared on my high notes (noteworthy because my mother certainly is not free with her compliments! She's not super critical either, I'm just saying that she wouldn't say that unless she really thought that).


Jul. 1st, 2011 01:43 pm
ceebeegee: (Fourth of July)
Work is a ghost town today, almost no one is here. Hurrah! Summer in New York City is so much fun--so many free fun things to do, the weather is great, I can't wait for the weekends.

I'm going home tomorrow for the Fourth, coming back to see fireworks on Monday. Mom and I are gonna grill burgers and drink mojitos on the deck tomorrow night. I loveloveLOVE Mom's deck--so adorbs, I can sit outside and enjoy that delicious humidity and breathe in the mint-scented air (Mom has LOTS of mint growing around the house).

I just love this holiday--the Fourth is such uncomplicated fun, so colorful and dazzling and loud! I see fireworks, I see the pageant and pomp and parade, I hear the bells ringing out, I hear the cannons roar, I see Americans, all Americans, free forevermore!
ceebeegee: (Columbia)
So we had our history final the Tuesday before Christmas--it was modified open book in that we were allowed to have in hand the last text we studied, Le Livre de la Cité des Dames by Christine de Pizan, and we could even have notes in it, but we were not allowed any other text. (And yet, we were expected to be able to cite and reference those texts.) So, a little different from the exams for Roman History. Naturally of course I studied like crazy for it--I went through the book with a color-coded system, highlighting 8 different themes we'd discussed throughout the semester, like the use of the vernacular, contemporary women's writings' treatment of the body, that sort of thing. This turned out to be VERY useful--once I saw what the essay questions were, I had the quotations and references immediately at hand, I just had to flip through the book, looking for the color-code for that particular theme.

However we also had to reference Roman de la Rose--from memory. Luckily I'd pulled several quotations dealing with most of the course's themes, and as soon as we received the exam I turned it over and wrote down my memorized Roman quotations. This took some time, as did my outline for my essay, so by the time I actually started writing, it was almost 45 minutes gone. But write I did, for the next two hours in a blue book. (Mom asked me if we still wrote in blue books--I said yes indeed, and I always wanted to sneak one ouot as a souvenir. But then through my proctoring I found out that's a common means of cheating--people will take them, write out the answers (presumably to advance essay questions), and then sneak them back in. So now they stamp the blue books with stamps specific to that exam period--it was a red star this past time. I still can't get over how the exams are all proctored--at Sweet Briar and, I'm pretty sure, at Mount Holyoke, all exams were on the honor system with no proctors. Sweet Briar took the honor system VERY seriously--we were required to memorize the pledge (What do you want, it's Virginia!). I still remember the final sentence--I will report myself, and ask others to report themselves, for any infraction of this pledge.) ANYWAY, I think I did okay on the exam; we still haven't gotten them back. He told us that our final papers were in his outbox so after I turned in my exam, I went over to his office and snaked it out of the box--A. Whew!

I did love the Dante, found it fascinating to write about--my topic examined circle imagery in his Paradiso.

Initially Dante’s choice of imagery seems self-explanatory—medieval pre-Copernican cosmology was rife with spheres, with Earth at the center of the universe surrounded by concentric rings wherein the planets dwelled, ultimately topped by the fixed stars, the Primum Mobile and the Empyrean. But a closer examination reveals Dante’s clever and imaginative exploration of this conceit, one which ultimately proves as simultaneously crystalline, musical and absolute as Dante’s vision of the heavens themselves.

Sooooo much to explore there--music (dance and the music's circular tonality--paging my BA in music!), Commedia's rhyme scheme (which is terza rime (ABA BCB CDC)--each triplet is a circle that sets the ground for the second line), even that the term comedy originally meant song. Against that I contrasted the idea of light imagery:

[Dante] is only a visitor to this blessed realm; he cannot wheel endlessly around the heavens basking blissfully in affirmation, he must progress as far as possible until his journey has ended. And so Dante uses light imagery to contrast with his circular musical metaphors—light for music, sight for sound, the challenging for the affirmative, an open-ended straight trajectory for that which is curvilinear and cyclical. Light of course cannot bend, and light as a metaphor for unbending truth and a vehicle by which to ascend suffuses every canto, nearly every stanza of Commedia.

And then held them up against each other:

The inherent push-pull tension between the two constructs of circle/line, music/light (“when each clock-art both drives and draws,” 91, line 142) is brilliantly illustrated by the poetic structure of the poem, those tight little aba, bcb, cdc tercets—one rhyme anticipating the next, a chain mail of circles that advance little by little, forming a rosary of epiphany and transcendence.

When I wrote the paper in early December this was all going swimmingly and I was basically in the clear, just had to write the conclusion--and then I saw that I'd missed something. The professor's notes for the paper specifically said we had to bring in at least one other contemporary writer. I PALED. I was going through all the other mid-late writers--"Who do I know? Can't write about Bacon, I've already done him [I wrote about Bacon in my previous paper]--ORESME, I know Oresme." Seriously, I was pretty much panicking. I was able to get out a few paragraphs, about a page, on Oresme and circles, then got back to Dante and squeezed out a conclusion. So, nice to know that worked out.

After the final, I could just relax and enjoy the holidays but naturally I've been anxiously checking the SSOL (Student Services Online) to see if grades have been posted. Finally, two days ago, they had--an A for the semester, yeehaw! Now, on to Laws of War (and a byGod TIMELINE) in the Middle Ages!


Mar. 8th, 2010 07:04 pm
ceebeegee: (Virginia)
Yet another one.

From now on, can we just start with the assumption that if you're an asshole homophobe who pushes anti-gay legislation, you're gay? It would save a lot of time.

Which means you're next, Cuccinelli. Oh, and can someone please tell me why all the homophobes and racists come to Virginia to spread their hatred? I mean, Senator Macacawitz was from California, and this dude is from New Jersey. I know y'all probably don't want him back but we don't want him either. Virginia has enough home-grown antedeluvians, we certainly don't need to import them. Go home.


Dec. 19th, 2008 01:29 pm
ceebeegee: (Snow on the river)
Aw. DeBaun cancelled tonight's A Christmas Carol. But the snow looks beautiful!

So, Michael and I saw Shrek last night. I thought it was great! A very tight, colorful (LOVED the scenes with all the fairy tale characters in them--just dazzling), funny show. I thought especial standouts were the Donkey and Lord Faquaad--he KILLED me. (And he's hot too...) But everyone was great. My favorite numbers were "I Got You Beat," the number that the exiled fairy tale characters sang when they first arrived at the swamp, and the number about "Let Your Freak Flag Fly." "I'm wood/It's good/Get used to it!"

I was so, so thrilled to see Ryan--my Ryan, my little brother, roommate, castmate, dear friend and partner in crime for the past 18 years--up there on stage living our dream! It was unbelievable, just incredible. My Ryan, my Henry. Oh, I'm all verklempt. I screamed his name during the curtain call (we were sitting pretty close, I2 & 4 right on the aisle). Michael and I went around to the stage door where I called Ryan who texted and called me back to come in but for some reason my phone didn't ring. Annoying. Anyway he came out and greeted us--we chatted for a bit, then he said he and a couple of his castmates, and one of their husbands, would be going out to a wine bar in Hell's Kitchen. I decided to join them and Michael recused himself as a reviewer. We went to the wine bar and the husband joined us--it was Hunter Foster. I had drinks last night with Hunter Foster! God, I love New York!

The wine bar was this adorable new place on 51st St. called Xai Xai. It's beautiful, decorated in a South African theme--I loved it, so atmospheric. Ryan and I ordered a chocolate fondue dish with sparkling wine "shooters," served in the thinnest, smallest flutes I've ever seen! Naturally that wasn't enough for me so I ordered a glass of pink champagne. We kept grabbing each other's hands and squealing. I just can't believe he's on Broadway! We were joking about the first show we did together, Oklahoma! at the Lazy Susan, and how when he'd been cast, he called his mother from the payphone in the lobby and said "I, uh, won't be studying in the dorms as much this semester...you'll be able to find me at...the Lazy Susan!" It was so adorably dorky (the Susan was a dump but he didn't know that, he was still innocent!) and I love to tease him about it. His castmates were very nice--for the most part they talked among themselves but every now and then they'd turn to me and ask me something, or direct a remark to us. I can get very shy with people I don't know sometimes especially when they're, you know, BROADWAY STARS, so I appreciated their initiating conversation.
ceebeegee: (Default)
I am so nervous about tomorrow I think I'm going to throw up. Kava kava is my friend.

Virginia, do me proud...please, please break for Obama.
ceebeegee: (Default)
And I gotta say--first off, I couldn't care less about so-called gun rights. I personally love shooting guns--love it, love shooting skeet and going to gun ranges and going at a target. I enjoy the challenge. But frankly if all guns were banned tomorrow, it would mean nothing to me. I loathe the whole "gun culture"--that picture in '98 of one of the Jonesboro murderers decked out in guns at the age of 2 is ridiculous. Who gives a toddler a gun, even as a joke? I'm totally against that obsession with guns--it just reads as a lack of masculinity to me. I am pro-gun control (though, it depends on the law)--we sure don't need even normal, law-abiding citizens toting AK-47s. There's no need, no right to that, in my opinion.

But I'm not sure any law would've caught this loser. He bought this gun 5 weeks ago. He planned this out. Yes, Virginia is gun-happy (I know Clark Brothers well, my friends--they're an institution on Rte. 29), but I honestly don't think anyone could've stopped this once his mental illness apparently slipped through the cracks. (Which, it certainly seems, it should not have. But I don't think the gun seller would have caught that.)


Apr. 19th, 2007 12:10 am
ceebeegee: (Default)
Listening to this freak's video that was sent to NBC, all this "you did this to me" and "see what you did"...at the risk of trivializing this terrible thing, but...man, what a whiny, pouty, disgusting sack of shit. I mean, in addition to the "Oooh, other people have money, boo hoo...oooh, my sense of manhood is 2 inches tall. Somehow it must be someone else's fault...Oooh, I can't write for shit [HOW he wasn't kicked out of a good school like Tech with that shit writing, I don't know--read his crappy play at The Smoking Gun, he reads like every one of those crap young male screenwriter/directors at film school--we've ALL auditioned for them, ladies] so I'll substitute violence for characterization, plot and theme. Oooh, some girl won't go out with my loser self so wah wah wah, I'll stalk you to show you how you *should* go out with me! Because I have a RIGHT to a girlfriend."

And this ridiculous romanticization of those fellow losers, the Columbine murderers, has to stop. All those stupid glorification sites, "Tears for E*** and D*****" are just beyond words. They were losers--"ooooh, someone was meeeean to me and I'll show them by killing lots of random passersby and clench my fists and stamp my baby feet!" Please, who *wasn't* picked on in high school and middle school? I got shit. Yes, I did. I got by in middle school (thank God for sports--that saved me socially) but I definitely dealt with my share of shit from both girls *and* boys. I was socially awkward and dorky and way too "I'll compensate for my dorkiness by pushing it in your face how smart I am!" and certainly didn't have a boyfriend in middle school. We all got shit. Everyone got shit from someone. If you can't handle it without bringing a gun to school and killing indiscriminately, you're a fucking loser.

What a fucking loser. There's no grand picture to this, no great wrong this asshole was redressing--he's just an angry fucking loser. The Angry Loser Syndrome--"I DESERVE a girlfriend, I DESERVE friends, I DESERVE to have everyone be forced to acknowledge how wise and evolved I am."

Watching CNN right now, there's a psychologist using the term "loser" in this totally emotionless, clinical way. Which is sort of funny in a horrible way, in these circumstances.

All those sweet young faces. All those young lives, those college students. Those young, young faces, all from towns so close to Falls Church. Centreville. Fairfax. Woodbridge. Richmond.
ceebeegee: (Eloise in mirror)
They're running an ad on NY1 right now--it features Shrek and the donkey from Shrek (I don't know his name, I've never seen the movie). The two creatures are exhorting kids to "be a player!" and to get up and go outside to play. I mean--they are actually running ads that tell kids to go outside and play. As a public service announcement. The best part is when the donkey says you can go online to check out ideas on how to play--"but don't stay too long!" I just--you actually have to be told how to play outside? By the government? Is everyone on DOPE? [/Mr. Hand] Is this a city thing? Wait, it can't be--the opening sequence of Crooklyn shows tons of kids playing in the street. Are kids today so lethargic they don't WANT to run around like demons outside? Don't they have tons of energy to work off? I mean, I just don't get it.

When I was a kid, oh my God--in New Hampshire, we played Kick the Can, Hide and Go Seek, baseball, Red Light, Green Light...Kick the Can was the best--I *loved* that game! I would play it TODAY. So much fun hiding and then sneaking closer...and closer...and closer until you burst out of hiding, sprinting toward the center of the Gaidmore's yard (we always played in the Gaidmore's back yard) to send that can flying. We played it so much we finally substituted a big pile of pillows because we were running out of cans! The New Hampshire kids had some fun rhymes for deciding who was It--one of my favorites was "Inka, Binka, bottle of ink, cork fell out and you stink." We also said "Engine, Engine Number Nine, Going down Chicago Line, if the train should jump the track, do you want your money back?" and "Bubble gum, bubble gum in a dish, how many pieces do you wish?"

I also loved climbing trees. I've always had a stereotypically boylike desire to "conquer" my environment"--anytime there was a tree, I climbed it; anytime there was a thin raised path, I walked along it, trying to balance myself; anytime there was a bar, I swung on it. In Virginia, there was a maple tree right outside my house that my friend Beth and I used to climb all the time. We named the different branches and "claimed" them and I always loved the seeds spinning to the ground in the spring. I would throw them into the air to watch them 'copter their way to the ground--I still do this! In my backyard in New Hampshire, there was a huge fir tree where my brother built a shelf to sit on, and I used to climb up there and read.

*...Every night they have a fight and this is what they say
"Icka bicka back soda cracker," out goes HE.--try getting THAT one out of your head!

I feel like I'm sitting on the porch, waving my cane at those kids in the street--except that would mean they're outsde, playing. It would be funny if it weren't sad :/
ceebeegee: (Massachusetts foliage)
Late Friday I took the train home for the holiday weekend. If you're going to be on the train for longer than a couple of hours, the Acela is really nice (although not particularly cheap). They have a quiet car which is soooo relaxing--no cell phones, no music, no noisy anybody allowed. The whole train looks so much nicer and the trays are bigger. I'd bought a magazine and The Other Boleyn Girl (a great read but boy, did she take some liberties!) and I was enjoying the ride very much until Philadelphia when this really weird older man got on and sat next to me. For a good 25 minutes this man kept standing up, sitting down, fussing, opening up his luggage, closing up his luggage, sitting down, standing up...just fussing, fussing, fussing. Dude--it's the QUIET car. People really want things to be quiet and still. No one wants to notice you. And he kept looking at me and trying to talk and then muttering to himself. I had my headphones on so I could at least give the appearance of being in my own world. Then at one point he tapped me on my shoulder so I was forced to talk to him."Yes?" "Grump grump grump...I'm...uh...going to get as horizontal as possible." WhatEVER! "Uh...sure." Then after all that he did nothing! Just sat there, still pushing papers on his tray and looking over at me. I swear, women can back me up--there is always some weird guy out there who can't stand it that you don't acknowledge him. It's the stranger who points at you and orders you to smile on the sidewalk, or when you're in a hurry, the guy who tries to get in your way. Or the friend of a friend who thinks you're cute and gets all bitter because you don't know he exists.

Anyway, so I had two and a half glorious days in Virginia. Mom and I went to the pool (she belongs to this neighborhood pool association) Saturday and roasted for a little while. I was gobbling up The Other Boleyn Girl--good gossipy beach fiction for the fan of historical trash--and eventually we went back and cooked out in the backyard. Mom's yard is very lush, with many different kinds of trees--dogwood, oak, holly, white pin--and other kinds of flora. Sooo peaceful and shady and verdant. We watched the DVD of Kingdom of Heaven later--again, fun but definitely took some historical liberties.

Sunday we went to see the Nats kick the crap out of the Dodgers. Hoo-ey! Good times. Mom was so cute--what she knows of baseball, she learned from watching me and my explaining the finer points of the game to her. So she wasn't a hardcore fan but was very proud that DC finally got a team again. When we got back home, she brought the sports page into my room, talking about how the Nats have been doing lately, noting that they'd lost to the Dodgers the day before. The thought of my mother reading the sports page and trending the home team is pretty funny.

Yesterday I slept very late, and then we got up and had a wonderfully appropriate Memorial Day. There was a parade in Falls Church, and vendors and food booths. (I snagged a Coach Scribble bag--like this but in a multi-color print, with tags and a dustbag!) We walked around the parade--sadly I didn't see any of my classmates from Mason although I know a bunch of them still live in the area. One of the booths was for the Falls Church Presbyterian Church, and they had an exhibit about their ongoing work in New Orleans. I talked to them about the possibility of volunteering--I definitely want to go for a week down there and I'm on the Habitat for Humanity mailing list for just such an opportunity. I said "I live in New York and I'm an Episcopalian so I don't know if you'd be interested..." The woman gave me a couple of email addresses of people to contact.

After that we went back to Mom's place, she got some flowers from her garden, and went over to Arlington Cemetery where my grandparents are buried. I think the last time I saw Grandpa John's grave was when Memaw died in 1999--I remember visiting as a child, and we saw the Kennedys' grave and I remember the "Baby Girl" grave, the miscarriage that Jackie had in the late '50s. (I was weirdly interested in dead Presidential children at that age--Willy Lincoln fascinated me as well.) It's such a beautiful resting place, on this hilly, grassy knoll, surrounded by trees, "below the Mason-Dixon line, which would make Daddy happy" as Mom said. I looked around and noticed some high-rollers nearby--a major-general, a rear admiral, a vice admiral. One was from Alabama--that would also make him happy (Grandpa John was from Birmingham).


Mar. 31st, 2006 12:36 pm
ceebeegee: (Default)
It always amuses me when enormous hulking athletes are called Cinderella. That said, I know Mason! It's in Fairfax County (right near where I grew up) and my friends Ryan and Kim went there, and I have driven by it many times. It's basically a commuter school so none of us really wanted to go there, although it has a good reputation. I'm actually quite surprised it even has a team. Of any kind!


May. 7th, 2004 10:19 am
ceebeegee: (Default)
Every Friday I cover for the assistant of one of the lawyers in Compliance. It's a nice assignment--lots of phone calls but peaceful other than that. The lawyer herself is very nice and low-key, and they buy our lunch up to $8. (They used to do this throughout the company--everyone in Banking, including assistants, got lunch up to $8. I called it "the days of milk and honey"; some call it "the Clinton years." They ended this perk shortly after 9/11.)

The other assistant in this section is very nice and friendly but a little too eager to hear about my acting/directing career. I like being able to talk to someone who is interested (I told her right away last week about the agent wanting to work with me)--what I don't like is walking in and hearing her say "Any new projects? What have you heard? What's going on?" Let me tell you. Because there might be nothing happening at the moment. And then I'll get the whole "That's okay." Or the rueful shake of the head: "It's a tough business." I find it condescending. I know what I'm doing. I'm very happy about what I'm doing. I don't need commiseration or sympathy, unless it's clear I'm asking for it.

I've found that most people think they can advise me on my industry. It's annoying. I got that on the ship all the time, and there's a guy from my church at home (St. Mary's in Arlington) who does that to me all the time.

Anyway. She really is very nice. This is the one thing that irks me about her.
ceebeegee: (Default)
So, yeah, enjoyed the sun in Central Park on Saturday. I was thinking of something to do and remembered Tracie had a show--called up Mike to see if he wanted to go, but then when called Tracie to make sure she was in that night, apparently she'd been written out of the show. That just--sucks. I feel for Tracie--she said she'd been calling people all day to tell them, it had just happened, apparently. So, called to tell Mike it wasn't happening.

On my way home I had a most unpleasant experience. As I was passing by the projects behind Lincoln Center, three little boys, no older than 8 years old, passed by me, posturing with their arms like rappers and saying "What up, niggah?" (they were black, although I find that word reprehensible no matter who's saying it). After I'd passed them, they started yelling at me "Hey baby, yo, shake that booty," etc. I did an instant boil, debated for a second, then turned around and said "You shouldn't say things like that to women. It's very rude." Turned back, continued on my way--they waited until I'd taken a few more steps (i.e.,so they could run away safely) and then started calling me bitch, cunt, whore. The youth of America, ladies and gentlemen. The land of opportunity--where even children can be misogynistic worthless shits! Gotta love that pop culture!

I remembered that another friend of mine was doing a show--Ryan was doing some gay play on W. 23rd Street. I asked Duncan to go and we walked down there after rehearsal. It was a triptych play, and Ryan's was the middle segment. I found it difficult to evaluate the first segment because it was so hot in the theater I literally almost passed out when I stood up. I wasn't that crazy about the woman who played Verouka--I thought she was too old, and--I don't know--off-putting. Too smiley--her grin started looking like a rictus after awhile. Or maybe I was just too hot.

The scond and third segments were better. Ryan's become a pretty strong actor. Nice to see his growth--I've known him for twelve years now. Aww. The guy who played his lover was foine. Alas, he's gay.

Afterward, Duncan and I went to the Trailer Park--good decor but the menu was ridiculously overpriced. $10 for a fully loaded hot dog? $6.75 for a grilled cheese sandwich? You're definitely paying for the erzatz experience, whereas anytime I go home I could get the real thing in Woodbridge! City Lights--ah, the days of downing cheap beers and potato chips while watching precopulatory "dancing" in the half-light. I love honky tonks.
ceebeegee: (Default)
So I'm reading Carolyn Hax's web chat on washingtonpost.com, and a post comes in about how she's found out she hasn't been invited to her imminent 10-year HS reunion (and it was deliberate), and should she crash it anyway? People weigh in on whether she should crash it to make a point (even though she lives 2500 miles away) or organize her own reunion with the others who weren't invited. Carolyn says she thinks this is an anomoly but then other people post that they too were not invited to their reunions.

Whaaaa? I...don't get that at all. I thought the point of reunions was to show you'd moved past that shit. My 10-year HS reunion rocked--pretty much everyone was better-looking, we could all drink legally, I brought two dates, we all had a blast. We're having an informal one this summer and I can't wait. I sent my headshot to the organizer and got these drooly emails from guys I'd known then. Really looking forward to it.

And I was not one of the "beautiful people" in HS. I played sports, which was cool, and I was in Student Council, but I was also on the It's Academic team (televised game show) and I lacked social skills. But none of that really mattered; we really didn't have cliques--we were too small (82 kids in my class) and most of us had known each other for a long time. I'd been in that system since 3rd grade. We weren't One Big Happy Family, but yeah, generally people got along. I've never related to John Hughes movies--the mean people in them seem like they're from another planet. Nobody in my HS ever acted that way.
ceebeegee: (Default)
Uh. Man, am I tired. I didn't get to sleep much this weekend except for Saturday, and now I look like crap. I went home for Easter--had a good time but still. Tired. Saturday night I met Allyson (friend from college) at Chevy's Fresh Mexican (or whatever it's called). I have to say, I really don't care for that restaurant. Duncan, Jason and I have gone there from time to time and I just find it loud and expensive. (Although I will say the guac is good.) We had a couple of drinks there, then went to her place. We just had a nice long conversation about our friends, currents events, religion. Just nice. I'm glad I have friends like Allyson.
ceebeegee: (Midsummer)
The Shakespeare showcase is tonight. Duncan, Jason and Paula will be there--yay! There's a champagne reception afterward and then I'm sure we'll get something to eat nearby. I love performing in the Village; I feel very close to the spirit of my grandmother.

Julie said last night that she wants to do The Last Night of Ballyhoo, which is fantastic. I'll be playing Sunny and I think Julie wants to play Boo. I really like this play. I seem to be drawn to what are generally regarded lesser plays by great playwrights--for example, I passionately love The Crucible, which is not considered the great work that Death of a Salesman. Uhry's work is so interesting--who would've thought a whole body of work (Ballyhoo, Driving Miss Daisy, Parade) could be written about Jews in the South? Who even knew they existed? I love Judaism and have Jewish relatives, and even I didn't know there were so many Southern Jews.

I was talking with someone at work today who's Jewish about how very assimilated the family is in Ballyhoo. I couldn't understand how people who self-identify as Jewish could not know what Pesach is, or its attendant traditions. Sunny has a line, talking about the big party--"Ballyhoo is asinine. It's a bunch of dressed-up Jews sitting around, wishing they could kiss their elbows and turn into Episcopalians." And I wonder, why can't they? It's your belief system that makes you an Episcopalian (not a WASP--that's a certain kind of Episcopalian), not your ethnicity. But Katie said being Jewish is more than a belief system, it's a culture which I get but isn't all the cultural baggage attached to the religion? If these people don't really know what Pesach is, they probably don't cook much kugel or gefilte fish. Or maybe they do--the whole mindset is just amazing to me. I think a lot of it can be explained by the time and the place. Even now the South is very conformist, and the '30s were so much more so, even in a sinister way. Even other Christians such as Roman Catholics stick out in the South (read Pat Conroy for more on this) and Episcopalians--well, they don't exactly stick out but they're not the mainstream the way hardcore Protestants are. (Virginia and New Orleans are the exceptions to this--RCs are very prevalent in NO, and Virginia is Hunt Country USA.)

Such a cool play. I'm really happy we're doing it.
ceebeegee: (Default)
Yesterday Mom and I went into Old Town Alexandria and visited Gadsby's Tavern, a recreation of a tavern and inn in 1785 Alexandria. It was too cool. I love visiting historical sites--there's something so...fascinating about being in the same setting as someone from hundreds or thousands of years ago, seeing what they saw, imagining what they heard and smelled. Old Town is really neat that way--the whole area is just so darn colonial, with cobblestoned paths and townhouses, narrow streets, the noise of the river nearby.

Sigh. I wish I could go back in time. There are so many interesting periods I'd love to visit, like colonial America, and ancient Greece and Rome, and Tudor and medieval England.
ceebeegee: (Default)
Yesterday, I planned to enjoy my longish train ride home by sleeping for a couple of hours on the train, and then getting a beer and a hotdog from the cafe car and enjoying them at the seat. Unfortunately my plans were ruined by the ignorant crack whore mother across the aisle from me, who allowed her hyped-on-sugar shit children to scream, jump up and down on the seats and run up and down the aisles. The only thing I could hear were these shitty kids. God, I hate negligent parents. And after this I feel like I hate kids. Oh, except wait--I saw two other kids, who I didn't even realize were there until they came to their mother (who sat immediately next to me) and quietly asked her a question form time to time. They were reading. See, that's what normal, well-brought up kids do on long train rides. They occupy themselves by reading, or playing video games, or cards. Fucking trash parents. I hate people who can't behave.

The worst was when the mother ordered her shit kids to change the toddlers diaper--on the seat. Staph infections, anyone?

So, I came into town thoroughly exhausted and frustrated, and ended up sleeping way too late today. I woke up at three in the afternoon.

But. That's all behind me, and now I feel better. Mom and I are having a reveillon tonight after Midnight Mass--this is a French custom wherein you fast all day on Christmas Eve and then eat all sorts of delicacies after church. We have red champagne, pastries, Mom's yummy spice cake that she makes every Christmas [it's so good--it's so rich it doesn't need any frosting or anything, it uses like a dozen eggs, and lots of bubbon (Bourbon, for those non-Southerners)]. Lots and lots of yummy stuff.

I checked out tomorrow's TV schedule, and they're showing the Yule Log from 9-11. I'd never heard of this until last Christmas, but apparently on Christmas morning some TV stations in some areas (it's a New York tradition originally, I think) air footage of a log burning with Christmas music. How cute is that? And then at 11:00 they're showing my favorite version of A Christmas Carol, the one with George C. Scott. God, he's good in that role. He doesn't overmotivate any of it--he's just so damn grounded in his disgust with Christmas. I saw the Patrick Stewart version last weekend and didn't really like it for that reason.

And then I think I want to go see Peter Pan.
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God, I'm still so tired. I went to bed at a reasonable hour last night and woke up at 10:00 and still my eyes were dragging today. So tired of being tired.

Yesterday was just really nice. I woke up far too late but then redeemed myself by going for a hearty 4-mile walk around Medway (which is what we call the house--Medway was the name of the plantation or some such where Liz grew up). The countryside in this area of New Hampshire is so beautiful and perfect, it's just staggering. Everywhere I looked there was a beautiful rolling field bounded by stone walls, or a quaint churchyard, or horses quietly nibbling. Just mile after mile of rural New England beauty. I could never live here again--the weather is vicious in the winter--but one thing I love about New Hampshire is how authentic it is, at least in this area.

We had a lovely yummy meal with the usual side dishes. I'd made a pecan pie--my own recipe, with rum and creme de cacao and caramel--and everyone tried a piece. I've been on a pie-making binge lately--three pies in three weeks, thanks to my oven (my last apartment didn't have an oven). I've made two pecan pies and one pumpkin. When I get back, I'm going to knock out another pumpkin, and then maybe I'll try a chess pie. Chess pie is a Southern specialty; it's like pecan pie without the pecans, and it's clearer. It's damn good. Mostly I've had chocolate chess or lemon chess pie, but my grandmother would just make plain old chess pie. So, so good.

Liz has recently learned to knit, and Karine (my sister-in-law) and I are both experienced knitters, so the three of us have been getting together for knitathons. They're enjoying themselves, because they're using big needles and have these festive yarns, whereas I'm still slogging through Ryan's sweater. I can't wait 'til it's done. I feel like I'm being punished! We went to a knitting store today and I was looking longingly at these beautiful yarns and patterns. I did end up buying a sweater pattern that will look very pretty when it's done--it's an easy pattern and shouldn't take long.

We went to my favorite local restaurant today, Peter Christian's. It's this old taverny kind of place, with rough-hewn wooden tables, cozy booths and lots of mugs. The food is great here.


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February 2017



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