Saturday, May 30, 2009
Thursday, May 28, 2009
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
1. I lived in Seattle, a spectacular & vibrant city that was just coming into it's own as a world player
2. I shared my very cool top floor, prewar apartment on Capitol Hill with my hot/sexy/talented boyfriend of 5 years ( 5 years?!? Who did we know that had been together that long?!?)
3. I had single digit body fat & worked out like a fiend 6 days a week
4. I had a very funny & very showy part in the biggest hit show in town (it ran for 18 months) in which I appeared almost naked (hence the gym regiment)
5. I had just signed with the best agency in town- The Carol James Agency
6. I loved being in my 30s
7. I ran with an interesting & talented crowd
8. I was a minor celebrity
9. I had hair on my head, but not in my ears
10. I was joyously & madly in love with a man, with my life, & I was 100% out of the closet
I loved the music of the 80s & I had this new invention- a WALKMAN, so I could enjoy music wherever I went. The number 1 song twenty-five years ago today was Lionel Richie's HELLO. I did NOT dig this song at the time, but it was ubiquitous that spring. I have now come to really like & admire HELLO in two cover versions in my collection. One is by Shirley Bassey & I give you the other, by last year's winner of American Idol-David Cook :
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
A book arrived on Friday & the husband was all- "what is it, what is it?". I unwrapped- The Selected Essays Of Gore Vidal (an author I collect) & the husband (quite the reader himself) looked crest fallen & dryly tossed off (in the manner of Mr. Vidal, himself)- "But, of course".
"A narcissist is someone better looking than you are"
Sunday, May 24, 2009
Saturday, May 23, 2009
The husband has long been my most loving, but toughest (& by that I mean-honest) critic of my behavior, clothing choices, drinking, drugging, garden design, acting, singing & writing. He is very nearly always correct. He is honest to a fault, as in answering- “YES” to the query- “Does this outfit make me look fat?” So… it was a bit of a surprise to discover that the husband was very unhappy about the complaints by Mr. X & that he stuck up for me, stuck by me & defended my honor.
I adore & cherish Mr. X. He is an amazing, very attractive, talented & accomplished man. I am pleased to have him in my life. I am better man for knowing him. I am not surprised that he finds pieces of my personality & lifestyle disagreeable… I am after all, very much in touch with my inner-grouch & inner-slut & I have a hedonistic bent. I own up to being opinionated & a tad bit louche. I really don’t mind that Mr. X lives a life just short of being a nun. In my defense, I am also a good & loyal friend, responsible, honest, good at my job & generous to a fault.
I really wish, beyond all measure, that the husband & Mr. X would have no bad energy between them, especially because of me. I am deeply touched & somewhat taken aback by the husband’s defense of me. When I mentioned how I felt about this to the husband, as we went to bed last night, he tenderly said- “Yeah? Well complaining about you is MY JOB & not for ANYBODY else!”
Thursday, May 21, 2009
Last night the husband & I caught the new show (we DVRed it from Tuesday) - GLEE. We laughed until we cried. The show centers around the teachers & students involved in the Glee Club at McKinley High School. It is played broadly, but avoids stereotypes & cliches. The cast is excellent & off beat & features the delicious Jane Lynch as a cheer leading coach. The pilot aired on Tuesday night & the series continues in the fall. Can't wait!
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
"If I Could Turn Back Time" Maybe you don't know, but gay men love her- Happy Birthday, Cherilyn Sarkisian Bono Allman
Chastity Bono, in Portland Oregon's Just Out Newspaper.
She has won an Academy Award, a Grammy Award, an Emmy Award, & three Golden Globe Awards for her work in film, music and television. Cher is the only female solo artist to reach the Top Ten of the Billboard Hot 100 in each of the previous four decades. Moonstruck is on of my top ten movies of all time (& one of my favorite soundtrack albums).
“Men should be like Kleenex, soft, strong and disposable.”
"Don't take your toys inside just because it's raining."
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
I have designed & planted our gardens, front & back, to attract wildlife & there is often a pay off: Scrub Jays enjoying the suet, Monarchs in the buddleia, Dragonflys in the water features, tiny little Tits in the fennel... but the encounter with the hummingbird seemed particularly thrilling.
Sunday, May 17, 2009
I was a berserk MUSICAL COMEDY QUEEN from the very beginning. When I was 10 years old, I was fascinated, entranced & obsessed with my parents' Original Cast Album of My Fair Lady. It had a Hirshfeld drawing of George Bernard Shaw as- God, the puppeteer in the clouds, with Julie Andrews & Rex Harrison as marionettes. To this day my image of God is George Bernard Shaw pulling the strings. I loved the music so much & would come home every day from school, put the album on the stereo & sing all the parts of this amazing musical. I was very effective as Alfred Doolittle, even at 10 years old (a character actor from the start). As a child, I would go to Woolworth's & scour the cut-out bin for obscure Original Cast Albums like Goldilocks, Salad Days, Greenwillow, Cindy, Henry, Sweet Henry, & the cast albums of the Finnish & Japanese companies of Hello, Dolly!.
After a few decades, I seemed to loose interest in musicals, as my tastes moved to Rock n' Roll & Pop & I opted out of the entire Miss Saigon, Sunset Boulevard, Le Miz, Cats era of musicals. I still loved performing in musicals, but I no longer spent an afternoon playing & singing along to Original Cast Albums.... until Little Shop of Horrors in 1982. This musical sent me over the edge again & I spent the summer of 1983 in our apartment on Capitol Hill in Seattle, singing Suddenly, Seymour.
Howard Ashman was director, lyricist & book writer for the 1980 Broadway musical, Smile (music by Marvin Hamlisch). Along with Alan Menken, Ashman was the co-recipient of two Grammy Awards, two Golden Globes & two Oscars. His second Academy Award in 1992 was awarded posthumously for Best Song & was accepted by his partner, Bill Lauch.
The song writing team of lyricist Howard Ashman & composer Alan Menken earned their greatest fame scoring animated classics The Little Mermaid and Beauty and the Beast. Born in Baltimore on this day- May 17th 1950, he studied at Boston University before earning his master's degree from Indiana University in 1974. He then relocated to New York City, accepting a publishing job while moonlighting as a playwright. Dreamstuff, his musical adaptation of Shakespeare's The Tempest, was soon produced at the WPA Theatre, where Ashman served as artistic director from 1976 to 1982. For 1979's musical adaptation of Kurt Vonnegut's God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater he first teamed with Alan Menken, also his collaborator on 1982's Little Shop of Horrors. Based on the 1960 Roger Corman B-movie cult classic, Little Shop of Horrors was an unprecedented success; the highest-grossing production in off-Broadway history, it earned the New York Drama Critics Award & the Drama Desk Award. The 1986 film version also earned Ashman & Menken an Academy Award nomination for the newly added song Mean Green Mother From Outer Space. With the Disney release of The Little Mermaid, they scored an Oscar for Under the Sea, & won again, two years later with the title song Beauty and the Beast. Beauty & The Beast remains the only animated film to receive an Oscar nomination for Best Film. It was produced by, screenplay by & lyrics by Howard Ashman. Sadly, Ashman died of complications from AIDS on March 14, 1991; prior to his death, he & Menken completed three songs for the 1992 Disney feature Aladdin, receiving their final joint Academy Award nomination for A Friend Like Me.
MY FAVORITE ASHMAN LYRIC is Somewhere That's Green:
Seymour's the greatest
But I'm dating a semi-sadist
So I've got a black eye
& my arm's in a cast.
Still, that Seymour's a cutie
Well, if not, he's got inner beauty & I dream of a place
Where we could be together at last
A matchbox of our own
A fence of real chain link,
A grill out on the patio
Disposal in the sink
A washer & a dryer & an ironing machine
In a tract house that we share
Somewhere that's green.
He rakes & trims the grass
He loves to mow & weed
I cook like Betty Crocker & I look like Donna Reed
There's plastic on the furniture
To keep it neat & clean
In the Pine-Sol scented air
Somewhere that's green
Between our frozen dinner & our bedtime, nine-fifteen
We snuggle watchin' Lucy
On our big, enormous twelve-inch screen
I'm his December Bride
He's Father, he Knows Best
Our kids watch Howdy Doody
As the sun sets in the west
A picture out of Better Homes & Gardens magazine...
Far from Skid Row
I dream we'll go
Somewhere that's green.
Thursday, May 14, 2009
This song is six months old. I still love it & I was thinking about it while using the cell phone this afternoon. Why? I love Adele & I am crazy for this song. She is amazing... the new MaMa Cass? A bit, but sexy & beautiful on her own.
Here is the May Mix:
RAINY DAYS & MONDAYS- Cracker
I WANT TO BE HAPPY- Ella Fitzgerald
I WANT A LITTLE SUGAR IN MY BOWL- Queen Latifah
FUNNY THE WAY IT IS- Dave Matthews Band
ALL OVER THE WORLD- Pet Shop Boys
POWER TO THE PEOPLE- The Black Eyed Peas
POKER FACE- Lady GaGa
RELAX (Ollie J Mix)- Frankie Goes To Hollywood
RELAX - Mikah
RIDE TO HEAVEN- Ari Gold
PRIDE-IN THE NAME OF LOVE- Nouvelle Vague
RAINING ON SUNDAY- Keith Urban
RAY"S DAD'S CADILLIAC- Joni Mitchell
THE RAINBOW CONNECTION- Peter Cincotti
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
“Would you pull it out so I can see how thick it is?”
Sunday, May 10, 2009
Saturday, May 9, 2009
The husband & I stumbled on Greenfingers (2000) while surfing through the offerings on "on demand" by the evil Comcast. I give a big chunk of my earnings to Comcast because I like to have every channel available to me. A boy likes to have his options open. We decided to watch it primarily because Clive Owen is in it.
Gardening is a national passion in Britain. From the designers at the RHS Chelsea Show, to rural village, to urban guerilla gardeners, everywhere you look, you will find gardens in Britain... even in prisons. Clive Owen plays a murderer who is sent to a progressive prison where he discovers he has "greenfingers" (the British equivalent of our greenthumbs).
If you believe in the restorative power of gardening, then you will like Greenfingers. It hovers in the territory of heartwarming without quite being twee, thanks to a great cast. Helen Mirren is especially fun as Georgina Woodhouse, a Martha Stewart-type garden writer.
Greenfingers is a "heartwarming comedy" in the same vein as Saving Grace & Waking Ned Devine & those like-minded British comedies. The basic plot centers around a group of hardened prisoners who become gardeners as their rehabilitation work. They gradually really love learning about how to make plants & flowers grow. Once it's found out how talented they have become, they are allowed to enter their garden in a major British garden show.
The movie stars the very talented & especially yummy Clive Owen, who I first noticed in Croupier & Gosford Park, & the great Helen Mirren. The acting is very good by all the cast & the story is interesting & up-lifting. It has a funny script with a gentle humor. The soundtrack contains great songs by U2 & Bruce Springsteen.
What I really appreciated about this film is that it is heartwarming & touching without being treacly, sentimental or corny. It's not an emotional powerful movie or loaded with slapstick humor, but the story & the way it lets you get to know each character makes this a most entertaining film. Helen Mirren is especially good (when isn't she?) & did I mention CLIVE OWEN (shirtless at one point)!
Friday, May 8, 2009
Thursday, May 7, 2009
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Monday, May 4, 2009
Saturday, May 2, 2009
Summers in Portland
Brown paper packages tied up with strings
Bed-headed skater boys
The Obama family
The first ½ hour of the Today Show
Listening to music
Thunder & lightning
The World Wide Web
Having $ in the bank
Sauvie Island & Rooster Rock
Good friends- old & new
Good movies that move me, make me think or make me laugh
(I consider it a gift from God… really. Otherwise, I would be a middle aged white straight male)
The big four award shows
A random list of things that I truly dislike:
Going to the dentist
People who walk 3 or 4 across on the sidewalk
Parking on the sidewalk
People that don’t pick up their dog poop
Talking during a movie
Inappropriate cell phone use
Crazy, berserk, fact challenged conservative Christians
Having exotic wild animals as pets
Full price retail
Racism * sexism * homophobia
Waiting in line
Comcast (although I do nothing about it)
Not using your turn indicator
People who don’t vote
Really loud music emanating from souped-up automobiles
Job hunting (I tend to stay at jobs for a long time… I am at 7 years with my current company)
Bathrooms on airplanes
The Bush Family
Winter in the PNW
I would be interested in your lists.
Friday, May 1, 2009
The protests were successful, as eight-hour work days eventually did become the norm. Labor leaders, socialists, & anarchists around the world took the American strikes & their fallout as a rallying point, choosing May Day as a day for demonstrations, parades, & speeches. It was a major state holiday in the Soviet Union & other communist countries.
Labor Day is still celebrated on May 1 in countries around the world, & it is still often a day for protests & rallies. In recent years, these have often been targeted against globalization. Portland expects at least 5000 people to participate in our annual May Day parade & rally on the South Park Blocks.