Monday, October 31, 2005

The highlight

And the highlight of my Halloween Party was:

Having run short of time to invent a costume for myself, I drew on last year's standby and made a quick pregnancy pouch to throw under a jumper. It worked. I was a very cute petite pregnant woman.

At the party Matt and Kris received word that Jackson's was having a costume contest, so I drove them there. And as I was standing there, someone called my name, and there at a table was half a dozen members of my graudating class. Sean Gilbert was there as David Severn. Then he asked, "so what's your costume."

The rumors should be abounding at my ten year reunion.

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Have you ever

Funny you should ask...

So the music leader at my church asks me, "So, have you ever played keyboard in a rock band before?"

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Officially Fall

Officially Fall

Today is the first really fall day. Last night it was below freezing, and today hasn't gotten much above it. It's wonderful. My emergency pepsi was 39 degrees at noon today. There's nothing better than almost frozen pop.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Weird Day

Weird Day

Not the day itself. Although we got a shipment of clothes in, and Nancy and I weren't feeling in a customer-ish mood today, so we opted to hang the new stuff up. And amazingly - we processed an entire load in one day. It would take, and I am not kidding, a week or two for our employees to do the same amount of work. And we weren't booking it, either. Just moseying, for us.

And it was a good thing that we hid in the back, because today was Weird Day. What strange people. I came back from teaching and a lady was back in our sorting area going through bags and clothes on the racks. I assumed it was some eccentric friend of Nancy's, so I didn't say anything. Nancy was sorting clothes chatting to her. I'd hang things on our "to-be-put-out" rack and she'd take them off, try them on, wander around with them. At one point she grabbed a man's blazer off the guys side and went on and on about how lovely it was, and is it too big for me, and oh, did it come with a skirt? I told her that it came out of the guys' bag and if it had two pieces probably came with men's slacks. She was crestfallen and wouldn't believe me. I don't know if she ended up buying it or not, but she found two more pieces from formerly two piece sets and held them up for us to get a look at and made us PROMISE that we would CALL HER if the matching pieces came in. We promised. I hope she doesn't have her hopes up. We have several single shoes waiting for their mates to appear as well.

And everybody was like that! I would turn around to hang somethings on the rack, and there was someone going through it. And while I tried to keep my glaring at a subtle minimum, I also endeavored to send off some "you shouldn't be back here" vibes. And NO-body got it.

Well, I must cut this short and run. I have an original Adam West batman costume to finish before Lost comes on. Nancy and my Wednesday night girls night in. Huzzah.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Mr. Darcy's Daughters

Mr. Darcy's Daughters

I just finished reading a sequel to Pride and Prejudice. Normally I'm wary of any book that tries to copy an author's style in a sequel. There is a book out at Inklings that immediately follows the wedding, and as much as I can tell from the chapter I perused in the bookstore, it's just about them having a lot of sex. Ruined my pristine viewing and reading experience.

In Mr. Darcy's Daughters, Mr. and Mrs. Darcy don't even appear. They have been called on a diplomatic mission to Turkey. Elizabeth accompanies her husband, and the five Darcy daughters go to stay with Colonel Fitzwilliam and his wife Fanny to spend a year in Town for the Season. Sometimes the writing came dangerously close to be a rehash of the original book. Daughter number one is the beauty. In personality she is more like Mary than Jane, at first merely concerned for appearances and decency, but later she becomes an evangelical and spends most of her time at meetings and handing out tracts. Daughter number two is not a beauty, but has dark hair and "fine eyes." The majority of the narrative focuses around her time in London. She is almost engaged to a Sir Sydney, but upon being enlightened about his extracurricular hobbies she puts an end to it, causing plenty of gossip. Daughters three and four are twins, with characters similar to their Aunt Lydia (who also makes several appearances). Their fates are similar in the end, though not so dramatic, with Uncle Gardiner again having to rescue his neices. Daughter number five is a musician under the care of a governness whose attentions are more focused on her writing than her ward.

Several original Pride and Prejudice characters appear or are referenced. Lady Warren (formerly Caroline Bingley) sends her son on a mission to bring the Darcy girls down a peg. Mr. and Mrs. Gardener, whose fortunes have risen and removed the from Cheapside, are co-guardians with the Fitzwilliams. Mr. Bennet is taking care of the Darcy sons at Pemberly. Lydia, formerly Wickham, has been widowed and remarried, and now runs a rather dodgy salon in her home. The Bingley's reside primarily in the country.

All in all it was an interesting read. Elizabeth Aston does a good balance of introducing the flavor of Jane Austen without trying to copy her style of writing. Some of the subjectmatter is a little modern, but it was handled well. The only original character that comes off badly in the new version is Colonel Fitzwilliam. He was charming and easy formerly, and now is rather harsh and pedantic. And not very considerate of his wife. All in all, a good read. Not quite up to the level of the original, but it stays true to Austen's story.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

The Last Sun of the Season

The Last Sun of the Season

Finally, a whole day with nothing to do! I slept in for me, but not late, finally crawling out of bed at 9:30. I ate a leisurely breakfast, showered, and finally trimmed my hair. I've been needing to do that for a month or so. Just a trim and some shorter layers. I never thought I'd reach the day where I'm brave enough to try hacking away. But necessity is the mother of desperation...Or something.

After brunch I packed up my spending logs, calculator, and ledger and headed to the park to finally finish up my September, do my quarterly reports, and fill out spending logs for most of October. Plus updating my actual ledger part, balancing the bottom of one page, and starting a new one. I've been very bad about this since the Texas trip. It was tedious, but it's finished now. I then allowed myself the luxury of a short nap in the sun, and got a rather mean little sunburn on my back. Who thinks of sunscreen in October. That's what I get for living in a windowless apartment. Pain aside, it felt wonderful to be outside in such an Indian summer. It was perfect. Low 70's, sunny, with a little breeze just as you were getting a bit too warm. Ahhhhh. Now for the other major undertaking. Cleaning my apartment.

Friday, October 21, 2005

I love my Job

I love my job

What did I do today? Decorated one tree with red and gold ribbon and glittery apples. Made miniature blue paper chain garland and hot glued mini metallic balls on another. Bent a three inch christmas tree into a Charlie Brown tree and put one red ornament from it's tip. Then spray painted plastic easter eggs, covered them with glitter, and dried them for our Peacock tree soon to be up in the romantic room.

Where else can you do stuff like this?

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

It feels like College Again

Beginning to feel a lot like College

I was driving through my umpteenth fast food joint yesterday and couldn't figure out why it felt familiar. Then I thought back over my week. Last Wednesday - line through at Starbucks. Thursday, Friday, Saturday - Shows. Sunday and Monday - Band Practice. Tuesday Night - Symphony Chorus Rehearsal.

I remember how this goes. It's amazing to me that I'm this skinny eating as much drive through as I have been in the last month. Yesterday was KFC and Taco Time. Hurrah for the Popcorn Chicken and Crisp Meat Burritos.

Never let it be said I don't get myself involved...

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

The newest Calzone

The Newest Calzone joined a rock band. I think rock band covers it. They play covers of The Killers (My new favorite), Outkast, Greenday, Good Charlotte (yay!) and Jimmy Eat World, Queen, along with things like Money Money, My Sharona, and Margaritaville. Quite an eclectic mix.

They needed a keyboard player, and a token chick to occasionally fill in on vocals. So they asked me to sit in on a few rehearsals, and learn a couple of songs to play with them. I learned "Jenny was a Friend of Mine" and "When I Come Around". And Sunday night they asked me to join. So there. Now I'm trying to learn their original 25 songs, and the 25 they added last night. So as of last night I can play "The Distance" by Cake I think. And all of "Mr. Brightside" except the last solo. Anyway, I'm having a stinking good time. I spent three hours last night trying to futz out parts by ear. I'm getting an entire pop-music education in one week or less.

Monday, October 17, 2005

It's over

It's Over

What does it say about the show that none of the cast went to the cast party?

That's what I'm saying.

Friday, October 14, 2005


Venting Frustrations

This is officially the show that no one cares about. Not the audience. Not the actors. (I just realized it looks like I said the audience and actors don't care. Actually, it should read that we're the only people that did) Performance-wise we think it's very strong. Our house count is at aout 75% -- great for a fall show.

Backstage however, it's a "whole nother" story. We haven't seen our director in two weeks. We never have the same crew two nights in a row. Saturday we're losing three people and our sound and lighting guy to homecoming. Our dresser just isn't coming this week. The people in the light booth have been talking so loud we can hear them onstage.

There's no one giving us notes at all, and this is a tough show. I feel like I'm flying blind up there after 6 shows. We need someone to tell us what isn't working, but there's just no one around to do that. Professionally speaking, it's normal to lose the director after final dress or the first performance, but usually they appoint someone to carry on in their stead for the run.

The actual play is going very well, and we're getting great reviews, but the cast in unison agrees that after sacrificing 6 nights a week,most of saturday for months, three nights a week of performances, and one more night a week for line run throughs after our four day break, we'd like a little support from the rest of our team.

Ok. I'm done now.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

I would like to say I am here, but I'm not.

I would like to say I am here, but I'm not.

Everyone breathe a big sigh with me. Yes. And enjoy the feeling of air rushing through your nostirls, because it hasn't been doing that in mine for days. Finally I broke down and bought some Tylenol cold/sore throat/runny nose/conjestion/fever reducer/pain reliever stuff it with me...*sigh*. A sigh for two reasons. One, I can breathe again, and two, tonight I have 2 hours after work before I have to be anywhere. *sigh*

Monday night I raced from work to go hear my friend's band play, and figure out if I want to be joining it as token chick/keyboard/occasional backup vocals. Good band. I have their music burned for me and we'll see if I can transform into what they want by next monday.

Tuesday:I worked both jobs, and in the afternoon the whole world was at the shop. A slew of foreign exchange students led by my mother tackled the piles of garbage sacks full of clothes in our backyard. I was sent running errands to the mission and for pizza all afternoon, joined by Kris, who had free time after his voice lesson at 1st Pres and hung out with me as I ran errands. Then, after work we three -- Me, Kris, and Allie went out for a blizzard, which I owed her for cleaning out my litterbox. Then I ran allie to band practice, laid down for 20 minutes, then put my contacts back in and went to two hours of Symphony Chorus rehearsal, followed by Kareoke. My self imposed curfew was 11 this time instead of almost-2.

Today: Worked both jobs again, closed the doors, counted money, and *sigh*. I don't have line-through for Proof until 8 this evening. I think I'll go indulge in Chinese takeout and a good book. Or perhaps learn the rest of "Mr. Brightside" on keyboard. *sigh*

Sunday, October 09, 2005

End of Week Two

End of Week Two

Week two of shows is over. They went well, I think.

Thursday was a hellish day all around for me. I worked 7:30-5:30, spent my lunch break in a meeting with my principal, and ran to dinner and the show after that. I felt terrible. It was like pulling teeth to get up enough energy to start the show off. And then I hear the sound of my parents in the audience. The show went off alright. Kris and I nearly chipped teeth in our drunken lunge. Ouch. My folks seemed pleased with it, other than giving Kris a hard time about making out with me in front of them. And mom was upset that my black dress doesn't fit correctly. Well, it did several weeks and about 10 pounds ago. Oh well. There will be time to eat later.

Friday I called in sick to both jobs and slept all day. I felt terrible at the show, but it was a great audience. They laughed at odd stuff. Things that others didn't laugh at. It threw us off a little because we'd become accustomed to the "pause for laughter" moments, but where we paused, they didn't, and where we didn't pause, they did. Oh, and a lady in the front row had a breathing machine that sounded like Darth Vader. Every quiet moment was dominated by sssssss....tssssssss. And then she'd start choking or hacking up a lung. What a way to get in the mood in the kissing scenes, I'll tell you. And on that subject, they were much more docile after the painful night before. Claire skipped several lines in the confrontation scene, but that happened at the dress rehearsal to, so we're prepared for that jump. After that I went straight to my folks' house to watch the dog while they're away, and crashed until noon.

Last night. Wow. What a silent audience. It would have been disheartening, but we could tell they were into it, just quietly. Claire keeps getting more and more emotional in our confrontation scenes. Friday night she almost cried in the last one, and had to shove past me to get offstage. Last night she almost lost it in the second one as we're screaming our heads off about whether or not Dad should have been put away somewhere. And Dad and my cold scene has been really emotional the last few nights. He's been getting crazier as I try to pull him back inside the house and then screams at me to open the book and read him the lines, so I have more reason to be afraid of him. It works well for the audience when I'm trying to mollify him instead of just giving in to a little whining. And, the crowning moment in the first scene, Kris and I did our lines entirely out of order in one part, but we kept up with the right answer, and somehow ended up right where we needed to be, at the same time. It was lovely.

So, I'm spending the day in bed once I get home. Have a great Sunday!

Friday, October 07, 2005


And now I'm sick. Gross! Sore throat and exhaustion, I staid home from both jobs today, but I'm on call. So several times I've been downstairs in my pajamas to take care of things. yay.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

What I love about Washington

What I love about Washington

Having long, involved, passionate conversations about fry sauce.

Letters to the Editor

10/06/05 Letters to the Editor

'Proof' impresses

To the editor — My wife, Michele Besso, and I had the chance to see the Warehouse Theater's production of David Auburn's "Proof" this past weekend and were very impressed. Rachel Kunze's portrayal of lead character Katharyn was exceptional. The three other actors did a great job as well. The play explores sibling rivalry, trust, loyalty, the meaning of sanity, love and gender equality in academic circles. Congratulations to Leah Hieber on her directoral debut and bravo to all involved.

We encourage all theater lovers and anyone interested in a rich story to buy their tickets now for the remaining two weekends' performances.



Wednesday, October 05, 2005

I keep trying to catch up

I keep trying to take things one day at a time, but lately several days have attacked me at once...

I was so excited coming into this weekend about resting, finally. But it wasn't to be. Sunday I ran around half the day -- and watched about 20 friends episodes, one of Lost, and Hitchhiker's Guide. Monday I worked morning on my sleep in day because a girl no-showed again. Then Jeff came into town for a suprise -- yay -- and I spent the rest of the day with Wycliffe people until 10. Then tuesday was two jobs day, Symphony Chorus, and Kareoke. Some friends of mine have been bugging me to go for months. It..wasn't...that...bad. I had fun. But stayed a lot later than I meant to. Which brings us to today, another two job day with horrid little second graders. They are out of control most of the time. Then a line through at Starbucks. I had to eat crow and talk it out with a cast member who thought I hate him. I don't. But we got off to a bad start and never recovered. Then running lines and gabbing with Claire. And finally the new Lost episode. I'm going to bed now. Tomorrow is my 7:30-5:30 day followed by a show. Arrgh. If I can only make it to Saturday!

Monday, October 03, 2005

Review of Proof

Here is what the Herald is saying:

Human conflict propels drama past cold academics

By DEWEY MEE For the Yakima Herald-Republic

I always bristle when I have to see a play that's been heralded as a modern masterpiece. David Auburn's "Proof" has received the Pulitzer Prize and the Tony Award, but this only made me skeptical as to whether the play was worthy of the awards and acclaim.

In my mind, "Proof" is a thin, rather self-important play with grand ideas. By sheer coincidence, the Warehouse Theatre Company's production opens just as the film version goes into wide release.

It helps, though, that director Leah Hieber has a good fix on the play. She writes, "It is particularly interesting that Auburn's play combines two extremes of where we build our belief systems; mathematics and family."

Thankfully, the play is more about family dynamics than dry, academic mathematics. Subtract all the dialog about mathematical and scientific theories - and there's plenty of that - and you still have a play about family; specifically parents and children, and good and bad traits that may or may not be inherited.

Rachel Kunze gives an outstanding performance as Catherine, who has sacrificed much of her young life to care for her father. As the play flashes between the present and the past, we see Terry Langley as her father, Robert, a brilliant man who, ironically, after writing complicated mathematical theories and theories on rational behavior, has gone insane.

Langley is especially good at communicating Robert's futile attempts to grab a semblance of order and reason as both slip away from him. In addition to his death and the legacy he leaves behind, Catherine must contend with big sister, Claire, (Aimee Hostetler) who arrives for the funeral and seems intent on taking Catherine back to New York City with her.

There's also Hal Dobbs (Kristofer Sundquist), a persistent but worshipful grad student of Robert's. Hal insists on looking through all 103 notebooks that Robert let behind in the hope of finding proof that, even as late as four years ago in his last lucid period, Robert was brilliant, not bonkers.

Catherine insists that all the notebooks are full of disconnected ramblings - all except one. In that notebook, Hal discovers the gem he has searched for; a groundbreaking, 40-page mathematical proof that will confirm Robert's genius for all time.

When Catherine says it was she, not Robert, who wrote this proof, Claire and Hal react with complete disbelief. At the moment she reaches out for some desperately needed support and validation, she is literally and metaphorically slapped down by the last two people she thought she could trust. Hal, in fact, says Catherine could not have written the proof because it is "too advanced."

"Proof" is best when the characters are in conflict, either with each other or themselves. Kunze and Hostetler are especially strong in their many confrontational scenes.

But when the play tries for hope, a tidy ending, and its own theories as to Catherine's fate, it is terribly contrived. The suggestion of a romance between Catherine and Hal is worse than contrived - it's cheap, since it appears that Hal feigns romantic interest for completely self-serving ends.

Nobody is completely what he or she appears to be. For instance, Claire is not the cold, self-involved sister, and Hal comes off as less than sincere and genuine.

The only thing that "Proof" absolutely proves is that life offers proof of absolutely nothing.

But, as a theater critic I can tell you that Kunze's extraordinary performance (which earned a "Bravo!" from me at curtain call - and I never shout "Bravo!" unless it is richly deserved) elevates "Proof" to the level of greatness to which it aspires.

The Warehouse Theatre Company presents "Proof" at 8 p.m. Thursday-Saturday and Oct. 13-15 at the Warehouse Theatre in the Allied ArtsCenter, 5000 W. Lincoln Ave. Tickets are $15 for adults, $12 for students and seniors, and are available through the Warehouse Theatre box office. Call 966-0951.

* Dewey Mee has been involved in theater for more than 30 years. The veteran free-lance arts critic is based in Ellensburg.

I suppose you can't get much better than that. He was also quite impressed with Aimee, who plays my sister. And rightfully so - she's a great actress that has gotten overlooked by the Warehouse in the past. And he's right. Aimee and my scenes together are the best in the show -- thanks to a four hour shouting marathon at Starbucks one night.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Basic Exhaustion plus Euphoria

Exhaustion + Euphoria

Last night was opening night. It went very well with great feedback at the post-opening night reception. Then the whole cast went out to Gasperetti's for drinks. Not me. I mean, I went, but I had mine virgin. Anyway. Lovely flowers from Grandma and Ken and my parents. The florist was working overtime. The same shop had orders for me and for the director.

Today I was supposed to work to make up for missing Thursday. I made up 4 of the 7 hours and called it good. I'm so tired it's not funny, but I'll have a few minutes to rest before I have to be at the theater. My favorite part of the show? Sitting on stage as the audience comes in napping and reading magazines. Lovely bit of downtime.