Sunday, February 8, 2009

Still Here...

I know, it's been a while. Sorry about that - I think it has something to do with hating this damn Mac computer.

Also, I've been relatively busy, oddly enough. Sarah and I went to see Billy Elliott, I went to a lovely dinner party, and we had a play reading here at the house yesterday. And an old family friend and her son are coming in to stay with me for a couple of days as of the you see, life has been busy. Oh, and I'm going to an audition on the 17th. So there. Busy, busy, busy.

To take all these mad activities in order...Billy Elliott. I enjoyed it with reservations - Sarah hated it. For a quick rundown of the plot, for those of you who may not know, it's the story of a 10 year boy, son of a coal miner, who discovers he has a talent for ballet, and his efforts to be allowed to study it. It started out as a lovely movie, then got made into a musical in London, then came here. It's set against the background of the 1980's miners' strike in the north of England - Maggie Thatcher time.

This background is problem one. I think it's pretty unlikely that most Americans know much of anything about that particular time and place, and in one scene in particular it could help a great deal - when the father breaks the picket line to do a day's work in the mine for the money. However, I suppose that's a fairly minor quibble.

The other two things that got me were 1. the fact that the choreographer seemed to be a frustrated moving man. There were all these wooden chairs on stage, and every single damn time anybody wanted to do anything, they started carrying the damn chairs around, which got to look pretty odd after a while. I mean, this was not a minimal set, people - sets rose and fell hydraulically, etc., etc., etc. But everybody kept carrying the fool chairs around and dancing with them and singing with them...

And 2., there was a dance number in the show for Billy and his older self purporting to show the dancer Billy would become. Now at the end of the movie, you see the older Billy leaping on stage in Swan Lake, which is right and proper. And it would have been quite nice on started out that way, with Billy in front and the older dancer mirroring him behind. Unfortunately, some damn fool decided to fly Billy. What's worse, they decided to fly him by the seat of his pants...literally. Even worse, you could see the older dancer hooking up the harness very clearly. I'm sorry - I took ballet for many long aching years, and I've never come across any ballet moves requiring me to have a hook in my pants.

Oh, well. I enjoyed it anyway.

The dinner party was lovely, even if it did require me to shlep out to Brooklyn, for God's sake, into what looked like the most desolate area of Bushwick. Huge looming warehouses and not a soul on the street. This was the apartment in which Sarah used to live, and I'm damn glad I never got out there because I assure you I would have made her call me every damn night to tell me she got home safe. I've never seen anything so deserted. However, wonderful food by my pal Shai (quail! coq au vin! panna cotta with rose petal sauce!). Yeaahhh.

And then yesterday my pal Caesar and a gang of people (including good old Joe, one of my favorite guys ever) came over to read Caesar's play about Balzac, in which, God bless him, he has written a wonderful role for me in which I can act my little socks off.

I'm not terribly sanguine about this upcoming audition, however. It's a play called Flamingo Court, and they want women in their 60's. Really, everybody thinks I'm nuts when I bitch about my damn face, but the fact remains that I can't get roles that are the right age for me for the simple reason that I don't look my right age. I look ten years younger. I mean, I AM in my 60's, for God's sake, and I'll bet you anything they'll tell me I'm too young. Maybe I should just have my birth certificate transferred to a T-shirt.

Joshua has found a new form of annoying behavior (God, he's good). He has evidently decided that he's going to stop me from smoking - or at least fuss about it. This takes the form of his ostentatiously refusing to share the kitchen table with me. Unfortunately, this one is backfiring on him, because A. I don't give a damn whether he shares the table (and would actually prefer him not to because he talks all the time and it's annoying), and B. I flat out refuse to ask him WHY he's eating in the greatest possible discomfort either over the kitchen sink or on a tray table in the living room. So he goes on doing this to get a rise out of me, but since I'm ignoring it, he can't get anywhere. Not to mention the fact that, particularly in the case of eating on the kitchen counter, he's right next to my cigarette smoke anyway, so I don't quite see what he thinks he's accomplishing. Anyway, as I keep telling him, it's MY damn house.

Love, Wendy

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