Thursday, March 19, 2015

I Mean....Wow.

So in my other life, I participated in community theater productions. On stage or backstage, dancing, singing, acting, designing, sewing (or trying to do all of those things). My experience with community theater was fantastic and I hope to get back into the game once we settle in a bit more. But years ago, I was cast in a lovely production of the musical Kiss Me, Kate. Lots of singing and dancing and frilly costumes - just up my alley. Putting a big show up involved several dedicated weeks of work, first learning the music, adding the large dance numbers, then layering in the staging and scene work. So much fun, but lots of work. One evening, our director asked for the gentlemen to take the stage and attempt to run through a scene which had never been pieced together before. He admitted it would probably be a mess, but to just keep going no matter what happened so he could see what needed to be fixed. I sat quietly in the dark theater and observed the chaos ensue. First of all, even the best theater boys are - not that good at remembering their choreography. They just aren't. And the music started and some were moving, some were not, some were singing, all off-key. Lines were forgotten, someone slipped. I think a shoe even went airborne. It was nothing short of a train wreck. The play is indeed a comedy but this was just a bridge too far. I didn't realize that my friend had taken a seat behind me and I heard her utter three, oh so meaningful words.....I Katie was stunned. I looked back and saw that she really had no other words for what she had just seen. Her mouth agape, her eyes wide, her hands at her face. For her, I was saying "That was awful. That needs work. That was actually not great, and the show opens in 10 days." We began to use this phrase for anything that occurred that had no reasonable explanation. Much of the rest of our experience with Kiss Me, Kate necessitated the use of this phrase. The show opened, but barely, after a rare Virginia hurricane blew through, wiped out power for our tech week and forced us to hit opening night without a single complete rehearsal. We were jubilant during the opening night party because not only did that previously mentioned train wreck of a scene occur without a missing shoe, the entire show was a hit. I think we may have even won a few WATCH (Washington Area Theater Community Honors) Awards for our efforts. Katie and I did several shows together. She continues to be a very bright star in the theater community while I continue to use her now infamous utterance.
So I guess I'm a bit of a pack rat....I found this letter among my theater things. Proof that this phrase is not my own!!

The top picture shows us starting the dance break for "Too Darn Hot" at the top of Act II.
Katie is front and center, playing the role of Hattie. I am 3rd from the left, with the very odd, very red wig. This dance number
brought down the house. 
And that leads me to St. Patrick's Day. I'm not Irish, but I love a good green beer. So I headed out with my favorite sister-in-law and best drinking buddy Emma who is visiting for the week from Jersey. We Uber-ed (that must be a verb now, right?) to downtown Burlingame and hit the Irish pub first. Met friends, then went for dinner. Left friends and hit the only dance club in Burlingame, where even on St. Patrick's Day, there were only 12 people in the whole place. But the music was hopping and the drinks were abundant and we found our home. We danced and screamed and made new friends who danced and screamed with us. And of course we drank! And drank some more. It was absolutely entirely too much fun. We returned home at 5AM, but not before we closed down the dance club and stopped at a 24-hour diner for breakfast, though I have few words for those last few hours since I was ASLEEP AT THE TABLE. Sitting up. Emma has a photo that I won't share but - I mean, wow. And on Wednesday, which still follows Tuesday, even if you have been drinking, I had to get up and get the kids off to school and try to function. It was not my finest day, but I have lived to tell the tale. And all I am left with is - I mean, wow. I'm probably a bit too old to stay up so late or drink so much. I'm pretty sure that my muscles ache because of the 4+ hours of dancing, and it surely took me 15 hours to recover. And Emma, who is half my size/weight and matched me drink for drink - had no hangover whatsoever. We have decided that while I was snoozing, she was drinking lots of water. She also claims that because she is European, she can handle her alcohol better. I call bull pucky on that one. She took care of me on Wednesday. And my kids, too. I mean, wow.

Emma and I with new friends (and new hats) at the dance club.
Every once in a while, you just gotta let it all hang out. California has been such a turbulent journey for me. But on St. Patrick's Day, I didn't feel lost or sad or unhappy about the move. I didn't have to think about it, and then I really couldn't think about it because I was too blotto....but just the same, the pain of moving subsided, and it felt good. I am fairly certain that I will need to find a way to cope with California that doesn't involve 10 drinks, but I have no regrets about my wild and crazy St. Patty's Day. I mean - - wow.

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