Friday, January 29, 2010

My advice? Ham it up.

This book is awful. It's sentimental, overwrought, gimmiky, and bad. For all these reasons, I love it. I mean, come on! The lives, loves, jealousies, and history of a whole town told through the voices of the dead. And they do it in verse!

My sister turned me on to it when she was in Competitive Speech and Debate in high school. Her impression of the kids competing at the meets was wickedly accurate. "Um, this room 210, Poetry?!? Oh my god! Sorry!" (It's way funnier to hear her do it than to read it).

Her favorite (and mine) was "Archibald Higbie" from Spoon River Anthology.

"I LOATHED you Spoon River," she would begin, hitting the "LOATHED" as hard as the all caps indicated. She'd start reading that poem with a level of emotional bile so operatic, you'd think she'd have nowhere to go with it. But you don't know my sister. She took that poem up, and up, and up to heights of melodrama that are usually the sole province of gothy gutterpunks who smoke clove cigarettes and glare at you for not understanding them.

And when she finished, satisfied that I was weak from laughter-my eyes scrunched up and watery, she'd take a deep, exhausted bow and blow kisses to an imaginary balcony. She'd graciously receive her well-deserved ovation of one.

When my overburdened RSS feed informed me that Project Gutenberg had added Spoon River to their catalog, I pulled up "Archibald Higbie". I read that poem aloud with every over-acting fiber of my being and, let me tell you, it is cathartic. Pull it up, my friends. Try it yourself. You won't regret it. I'll even make it easy on you. Just head here.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Goodbye, Zelda

Yeah, I met her. I'd walked into the coffee shop around the corner from my apartment and the barista says to me, "Hey, it's that lady from Poltergeist!" By the way, I think I'd rather be called a "coffee jockey" or "java jerk" over anything as pretentious-sounding as "barista".

Anyway, living in the French Quarter gives you a bit of immunity from being starstruck. After all, my immediate neighbors were an '80's sitcom/Lifetime Network legend and her nearly-as-famous husband. Still, the chance to meet the little lady who sang "Here Comes The Bride, Big Fat And Wide" in Sixteen Candles was pretty irresistible.

She was sitting at a little table next to a window. The table opposite hers was free so I sat down and pulled out a script I was working on (How clever and subtle was I?). She looked up, saw the script and said, "Excuse me, are you an actor?"

"Why yes I am!" says I.

She was funny, gossipy, interesting, and a little dirty. She told me that she always imagined that Tangina's fantasy job was to be a dealer in Vegas. I liked her a lot. We hung out for a few days while she was in town. We exchanged phone calls and birthday cards for a few years but, as sometimes happens with long-distance friendships, we eventually lost touch.

I'm not coming up with a "point" or "moral of the story" here. I just thought I should say something about Zelda. Maybe, wish her well...

Sunday, January 24, 2010

So, my friend Sturtle gave me a shout-out. And it's awesome 'cause he's so cool and smart and funny and stuff, but it's also scary 'cause people actually read his blog. Not just regular people, either. Really, really, highbrow, A-list, know-what-they're-talking-about, type people read his blog. People I really admire and respect read his blog. People with opinions read his blog.

(Did ya notice how I put the word "opinions" in italics? I did it to indicate that I mean "opinions" beyond the garden variety, "I think Brussels Sprouts are yucky," or "Glen Beck is a sphincter-face!".)

Now, I feel like I ought to make it interesting and thoughtful but all I can think of is "here's a picture of my house from when I was a kid! It's pink!"

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Morning Time

This morning, I discovered that I like the color blue, polka dots, and swirly shapes. Hm.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

My House Smells Like Dog

These are the hounds. From left to right: Cosmo, Ocho, Nelson, and not on the couch, Goober. Ocho and Nelson are a lot bigger than they look in this picture because they're all curled up against the cold.

My house smells like dog. It smells like a mixture of wet dog, dirty dog, just washed dog, dog slobber, dog fart, dog toys, chewy bones, dog food, and oh-so-faintly of dog piddle. We successfully navigated potty training a long time ago but unless you strip the floors and repaint the room, you never really get the smell out.

No matter how thoroughly we clean and deodorize, that "dog smell" hangs around. Here's the thing: I LOVE the way my house smells.

Friday, January 8, 2010

The Turban

For years, I'd hoped someone would bring back the turban. It looks like it's going to be me.

I caught a friend (occasionally NSFW) of mine doing this with his scarf while we were rehearsing a show. I'm totally stealing the idea.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Myrna Loy

For those of you who don't know who Myrna Loy is, please watch The Thin Man series. Due respect to Mr. Powell, the movies would have been nothing without her. I'm biased, of course, because Myrna Loy was my favorite type of woman. She was the type of gal that would sparkle whether you took her to an opera house or a beer hall. God bless the broad.