Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Barefoot in the stale sushi...
Wow. So the review for Barefoot in the Park came out in the Sun today and...well...I am disappointed to say the least. But also a bit bemused. For several reasons to follow.
I guess I will start with the good stuff. The one paragraph of good stuff that there was. He said our production offered "a competent cast, creative sets, period-perfect costumes and bluesy 60's music." So far so good, right?

But then he goes on to say that the play is "a stale relic of pre-lib womanhood." Ok, that is kind of true - it was written in 1963 about an upper middle class couple. Corie was certainly a virgin on their wedding night and she looks to Paul to see how much she can spend and so on. However, I doubt our patrons - most of whom live in Sun City - would call this kind of plotline 'stale'. I suspect, and correct me if I am wrong here, I suspect that such theatergoers consider this kind of showto be nostalgic. There is a difference. Especially in Bible-Belt Georgetown Texas.

Now, the reviewer is not the Sun's normal arts guy, but someone filling in while the regular arts guy recuperates from some surgery. I am not sure whether this is someone more qualified or less qualified than the regular guy, but I have my suspicions. Because in the midst of his review he quoted another review. He wrote that 'Barefoot' is currently in revival off Broadway and is receiving less than stellar reviews there. Then he said these words that even now make me smile and laugh in an odd combination of pain and glee. He wrote, "If it's any comfort to the Palace cast, (New York Times reporter) Brantley says that 'Barefoot in the Park retains its original freshness about as well as sushi."


Here is my question. Did this reviewer Google other reviews before writing his review or did he google before seeing the show? Did he GIS the New York Times current opinion of the show and bias himself against it before he even came in the door? Because, honestly, he is allowed to not like the show, but to completely discount the target audience of both our shows and his newspaper is silly. And it seems a little big-city pretentious to me, as if he is one of those people that couldn't possible like something that wasn't embraced by the NYC critics.

But it could be worse, he could have said I sucked and should never be allowed on stage again. No mention is better than a bad mention any day. And there is a great picture of Eric and me on the front of the Arts section. And it is a pretty darn good pic too.

I just can't get over how we must have tortured that poor reviewer.

Sushi indeed.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

No sleep till...Brooklyn...

Why would I title a blog with an old Beastie Boys song, you may be asking yourself. Well, it is just something that popped into my head about three this morning. What a rough night. Yesterday was Jackson's first birthday and I think the gods were reminding David and me how tired we were that first night with Jackson by keeping us awake all night on his first birthday.
First we didn't get into bed till midnight - our own fault, but since we are both in rehearsals for different shows till late, we stay up discussing how things went. And it is so hard to just come home and go right to bed. You need downtime to relax. So yes. Midnight.

I lay there for an hour as usual running lines in my head, telling myself to stop the whole time. About the time I was drifting off, in came the cat. Sam jumped onto the bed and proceeded to wake us both up until David threw him out, unsuccessfully a few times.

We had just calmed down from that when we heard the unmistakable sounds of cat-about-to-throw-up coming from the hallway outside our bedroom. It went on long enough that we simply couldn't pretend we weren't hearing it. So David - master of all gross cat things - got up, turned on the lights and spent, I swear, half an hour meticulously cleaning the carpet. Not that I am complaining that he cleaned the mess, it is just the time - 2 am - that was the problem. Afterwards he fussed around the kitchen while I listened to the unmistakable sounds of pre-dawn Captain Crunch.

I thought maybe it was over when he got back into bed, but at about 3 am I heard the plaintive cries from the nursery of a baby who cannot find his pacifier and is growing increasingly frustrated about it. Normally, I am the kind of mom who lets him work it out on his own. I don't go rushing into the nursery at night; if I did, no one would get any sleep...ever. But Jackson is just getting over being really sick and his routine is still compromised. Plus, I didn't want to listen to him yell for the amount of time it might take for him to either find his paci or get over its absence. So I dragged my arse out of bed...again...and went in. I searched the crib for one of the 3 paci's that always go missing in the middle of the night. When I found one, Jackson gratefully took it and I went back to bed.

That's when the song began in my head. "No sleep till...dun nuh...nuh nuh...duh nuh nuh....dun nuh..."

Oh man, I'm tired. Jackson awoke at his standard 7:00, and I have lots of family coming over at 3:00 for Jackson's b'day party...then rehearsal from 8:30 till the cows come home. It's gonna be a long day.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Cooties at my house...

Well, I guess I should feel extremely lucky that Jackson is just about a year old and has waited this long to have his first real illness. He has been sick for almost five days now. Hes had a decent fever (103ish), lots of sluggishness, disinterest in food and drink and just plain misery. Weve been to the doctor 3 times and had to go to the hospital for blood work.

Let me tell you, you dont know anguish until you have to hold down your screaming baby while someone does something unpleasant to him. I cried as much as he did.

It has been a long few days. Little sleep and lots of worry. But his test results are all negative for bacterial infection, which means its a virus and we just have to wait it out. I think he is on the mend. I hope so anyway.

Cause in the midst of all of this, I am in serious rehearsals for Barefoot and I have no, I mean no energy left at the end of the day. Like right now. I need a hot bath and a margarita.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

A Triad of Gross...
Lately all I write about are two things: theatre and my baby eating gross things. Since the last post was about theatre what do you suppose this one is about? That's right. The adventures of Jackson, the hand-to-mouth superhero.

I was going to spare you all the details of my life as a mouth guardian, but there were three events in the space of two days. And for some reason when things come in threes it makes me feel a hint of destiny. So here goes - apologies to the squeamish.

Yesterday morning, about 7ish, Jackson played happily amongst his toys. He had taken a number of his books and flung them here and there and was having a grand old time. I was watching TV in a way-too-early kind of funk. Then out of the corner of my eye I noticed the little boy chewing. Yup. In my house, when the boy chews and it isn't mealtime, I know there's trouble. I got down on the floor with him and investigated. With my practiced pinky I fished in his mouth and pulled out what looked like a chunk of cat food. "Hmm," I thought. "How did he get cat food? He didn't go near the bowl." Then I noticed a small pile of cat-food substance on the dark-colored rug next to his stack of books. Guess it didn't agree with the cat so she decide to regurgitate it.

OMG!!!!! My baby ate a mouthful of regurgitated cat food!!! And the little shit was pissed at me when I dug it out of his mouth, cleaned it off of his hands and refused to let him have it. I will totally be telling this story to his first girlfriend.

This morning, same time, same place. Different disgusting object. This time I saw it at the same time he did. A cricket, a big, fat, dead cricket, curtesy of the cat. Picture the slow motion dive I made from the recliner as Jackson closed his fist around the bug. "Nooooo, don't eat that!!!!" I yelled. I reached him in the nick of time and grabbed his little arm. I didn't want to touch the bug myself (eww, gross) so I took his wrist and started shaking it yelling "Drop it, drop it, drop it!" Poor little Jackson dropped the bug but was scared to death and looked at me with wonder - why had his mommy just gone off the deep end? I hugged and comforted him, simply grateful that I didn't have to pinky-search his mouth for dead cricket parts.

The third event was less exciting, just a disaster averted. As I picked up all the toys and tupperware strewn about my living room this afternoon, I found the fresh carcass of a small lizard. Tailless and plump and as beige as my carpet. I distracted Jackson with a legitimate snack, (an animal cracker, not an animal corpse) and kept him from the choice morsel on the carpet till his Dad got home. This one I let him clean up.

What is up with the cats? I know, I know, they are gifts. They want to help feed the baby of the house. But he's about to be a year old! Why can't they just acknowledge that he hasn't starved thus far and stop trying to help me mother? They are worse than any mother-in-law. At least she doesn't suggest I feed the baby crickets...

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

I think I am crazy...

So tell me, sane people. Why would anyone think it was a good idea to stage a three-act play in 3 weeks? Why would any actor decide to take a role in such a show that has about 90 pages of lines? These are the questions I am asking myself right now. Wow.

I have just spent 3 1/2 hours blocking pages at warp speed. Pages of dialogue I was supposed to have memorized already - which I don't. The next three weeks are going to be pretty crazy. I have got to learn these lines. But it is so hard to learn lines without knowing your blocking and we are only just now blocking it! So here I am. With the lead role in a pretty brilliant script. In a show that opens two weeks from tomorrow. And I don't know my lines yet!!!

OMG!! I have a recurring nightmare with nearly this exact plot. Except I don't know my lines and the curtain is about to go up. And I know I have to go out there and I haven't the slightest idea what to say. And I am begging everyone to please, please just give me a script. We can do a staged reading, please, just let me have my script...

I don't think it will be like that. I will get this. I will stay up all night for the next week if I have to. There is no way I am going to blow this. I just gotta get past the memorization part. Sigh.