Sunday, January 24, 2010
Friday, January 22, 2010
Does your momma know?
Okay, I know I'm morphing into an cranky old lady at the speed of light, but what gives with audiences at live performances these days? I attended a play last fall and far too many of the audience members behaved as if they were watching a movie in their living room where the actors couldn't hear them, nor could any of the audience members. Crackling candy wrappers, beeping watches, too loud conversations, up and down out of their seats like jacks-in-the-box... LETTING A CELL PHONE RING MANY TIMES AND THEN ANSWERING IT AND HAVING A CONVERSATION. I kid you not.
Tonight, in the same theatre for a symphony performance, it was similar. Two pieces into the show, the "ladies" next to me were still carrying on a spirited conversation. Yes, I'm talking about you, seats K39 and 40. If you have a burning need to talk that much, why not save yourself $35 bucks each and stay home? Turn on the radio! Play a CD! And shout to your heart's content without annoying anyone. Admittedly, the orchestra probably couldn't hear them as it was playing James Bond themes, but the audience members around them certainly could and I'm almost positive none of us would pay $35 to hear these two chat.*
Next to them, a woman with a baby who looked to be about 3 or 4 months old. Lady. Would not the fact that yours is the only baby in the building clue you in to the idea that perhaps... just perhaps, this is not the venue for a small baby? To be fair, he behaved himself very admirably (he was quieter than the two women between us, that's for sure) and only let out a tiny little cry on one occasion, but seriously. Get a babysitter. Or stay home. This isn't the Wiggles.
There were at least 8 people (4 couples) that I saw who arrived over 20 minutes late. And all of them had seats in the centre of the aisle. One of them I KNOW knows better because she's a performer herself.
After the intermission, a couple just behind me decided this was a fine time for a chat. I don't know. Maybe it's me. But I rarely have anything to say that can't wait until the break between songs, or the intermission or the end... if it were something like, "I'm having a heart attack!" or "I'm going into labour!" or "Fire!" I could understand, but seriously, what ON EARTH is so important that it has to be discussed right there, right then?**
Then there were the Einsteins who stopped at the top of the stairs as we were exiting to the foyer. There were at least half of the 1,000 audience members streaming out behind them. Did they WANT to risk getting pushed down the stairs? It's hard to stop 500 people when they've built up a head of steam. Then they decided that they had walk across to the other side of the top of the staircase and I heard the guy say, "ExCUSE ME!" in a tone that implied how DARE these people be in my way? Good job you're not a salmon, buddy. You don't even know there IS a stream, never mind how to fit in with it.
But then there were the charming moments. The singers (pop and big band music, not classical) had the audience joining in and waving our arms in the air (like ya just don't CARE!) and after everyone else had dropped out there was one older lady ahead of me who was ROCKIN' the arm movements. All by herself. It was so adorable.
And there was an older guy just ahead of me who looked to be about 70 or so who was rocking out in his seat so violently during one song he was moving the three or four seats on either side of him. No kidding, that whole section of the row was shakin' in time to the music. He was clearly really enjoying himself and the people around him didn't seem to mind. Of course, they were Canadian, so they'd just silently seethe anyway***, but I didn't notice any sidelong glances, which our version of, "OI! SHUT YER GOB!!"
I had to do the math, though. This was music that was very popular just after my high school years. If he's as old as he looks, he would have been in his 40s then. I could see someone my age gettin' all jiggy wit' it over this stuff because it invokes your independent but still single years when you lived to go to the clubs and you had your whole life ahead of you and ANYTHING was possible. But this guy probably had a mortgage and a couple of kids in junior high when this stuff was on the radio. Who rocks out to the music of their 40s? Go figure.
Then as we were leaving the parking lot, there was a car parked in the roadway between the two halves of the parking lot. Meaning it was narrowed to one lane. 1,000 people leaving a theatre and they have to filter through one lane to get out of the damned parking lot. I harboured tire slashing fantasies for a moment, I'll confess. If I could have arranged to have the car towed, I would have.
And I swear to God one of the trumpet players was chewing gum on stage.
But, all in all I really enjoyed the concert. And I kept thinking, "Blog fodder!" so there's that.
And now you'll have to excuse me. I gotta go tell some kids to get off my goddamned lawn.
*To their credit, they clammed up after I gave them a quick shot of the patented, Just-Wait-Until-I-Get-You-Home stare, perfected by mothers the world over.
**They, too, caved after the JWUIGYH micro-stare. It's a miracle I got out of the theatre alive.
***People think Canadians are so polite, but we're just as rude as the rest of the world. We just do it telepathically.
Saturday, January 16, 2010
Blast from my past
If we have to ask to have a door opened, my childhood friends and I still say, "Notice I didn't say 'Richard'?"
And after I joined the pipe band, you can imagine the mileage we got out of this one:
Friday, January 15, 2010
Thursday, January 14, 2010
When you have a cold, sometimes you'll do the weirdest things to try to feel better.
Remember that weird sound Felix Unger used to make in the movie "The Odd Couple?" (at 00:39) Well, that's what using a Neti pot makes me want to do.
Freaky FREAKY weird feeling. The jury is still out on whether there is any improvement.
UPDATE: It works! It actually works. I tried it once yesterday evening and only had to blow my nose twice between 7:00 p.m. and midnight. As opposed to the every 15 minute schedule my snout was on all day. Tried it again at lunchtime today and same result. Every 15 - 20 minutes with the "HONK!" all morning and since lunch? ONCE.
My top tips: 1) Make sure the water is body temp. Any cooler and you can FEEL EVERY DROP PASS THROUGH YOUR SINUSES. Not fun. 2) as soon as you break the seal in the "in" nostril, exhale through your nose gently, so none of the solution goes down the back of your throat. 3) Do not attempt this on a first date.
Saturday, January 09, 2010
316.6! Ha! Beat that, Interwebs!
Yeti Penguin Ball
Thursday, January 07, 2010
Tuesday, January 05, 2010
Monday, January 04, 2010
Because Aunt Becky said so
1. What did you do in 2009 that you’d never done before?
Worked with professional directors/actors/writers. And politicians turned actors. It was a blast!
2. Did you keep your New Year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I don't remember making any. Not because I don't think I could use some improvements, but because I am hopeless.
3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
No, but lots of friends' children had babies.
4. Did anyone close to you die?
Unusually, no. Although there are people I will miss.
5. What would you like to have in 2010 that you lacked in 2009?
A renovated bathroom.
6. What countries did you visit?
Just another province of my own country.
7. What date from 2009 will remain etched upon your memory, and why:
April 3 (performed Brahm's Eine Deutsche Requiem for the first, but I hope not the last, time) and August 15 (began vacation with dear friends and left this island for the first time in... oh... YEARS).
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
I didn't slap someone silly. You have no idea what self control that required.
9. What was your biggest failure?
I didn't keep my weight in check.
10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
A few. Most of which never happened. There was much testing. Nothing dire diagnosed.
11. What was the best thing you bought?
Um... a really nice hair dryer?
12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
D2, whose behaviour has shown a marked improvement in responsibility and maturity level.
13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
D2. On the single most stellarly dreadful occasion that it... didn't.
14. Where did most of your money go?
Roof over head, food in belly.
15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Nothing comes to mind. Now, that's just SAD.
16. What song will always remind you of 2009?
Wie Lieblich Sind Deine Wohnugen from Brahm's Ein Deutsches Requiem.
17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
i. happier or sadder? Pretty much the same, I think. Perhaps a bit sadder. I'll live.
ii. thinner or fatter? Oh, fatter.
iii. richer or poorer? Very slightly richer. Like, I'm up $5 or so.
18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Procrastinating. Eating. Sitting at the computer. Ooops...
20. How will you be spending Christmas?
I got to spend Christmas with both my daughters, including the one who lives about 3,000 kms away. So that was nice.
21. There was no #21. I don’t know why there was no 21.
So Aunty Becky made up her own question here.
Name one random thing that people would be surprised to know about you.
I was part of a drum section (pipe band) that came first place in Grade 3 (a competition level, not a year in elementary school) at the Cowal Highland Gathering in Scotland in 1974. It was the first time a North American band had won and they were seriously not considering letting us bring the trophy back to Canada with us. For which you can hardly blame them. They relented and we returned it in plenty of time for it to be awarded at the next year's games.
In fact, every time I played in a competition, the drum section came first. Which had less to do with me being there and more to do with freakish coincidence. It was only noticeable because I started later than the other drummers (about age 14 instead of 9 or 10) and we won the first time I played in competition and every time after that. It didn't half cause hard feelings with some of the other drummers and their parents, though. Eejits.
22. Did you fall in love in 2009?
23. How many one-night stands?
24. What was your favorite TV program?
Mad, mad, mad about Mad Men!
25. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
Hate? No. Distrust. Yes.
26. What was the best book you read?
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer, Annie Barrows; The Tenth Gift by Jane Johnson. Oh, I don't know.
27. What was your greatest musical discovery?
Brahm's Ein Deutsches Requiem and Lyle Lovett's CD Road to Ensenada. Eclectic genius, Renaissance woman or just no-taste hack? You be the judge.
28. What did you want and get?
30. What was your favorite film of this year?
Um... if I'd known I was going to be asked this question I'd have paid more attention? Will that do for an answer?
31. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I met D1 at the airport, seeing her for the first time in about a year and a half. I am the same age as Jack Benny. The fact that I know who Jack Benny is is a dead give-away that I could not possibly be as young as he perpetually claimed he was.
32. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
More cowbell. Ya gotta have more cowbell.
33. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2009?
Anything that fit.
34. What kept you sane?
The denizens of the Interwebs. Thank you, my peeps.
35. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
I don't really pay much attention to celebrities. Althought that Colin Firth guy is pretty hot. PHWOAR.
36. What political issue stirred you the most?
Politics and I do not engage in the stirring.
37. Whom did you miss?
D1 and, as always, my parents. And my friends that I vacationed with.
(I wanted to say 'My ex. But my aim is improving.')
38. Who was the best new person you met?
Aunty Becky. Natch.
39. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2009:
Never make a priority those for whom you are only an option.
40. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year:
Mama told me there'd be days like this,
There'd be days like this my Mama said...
So the rest of the meme calls for tagging, which meh... so rather than tag you, I’m going to tag YOU to answer this meme on your blog OR in the comments. Or as performance art in the High Street. Your choice.
Friday, January 01, 2010
A new start for a new year
I shall especially enjoy wearing the hat.