Monday, August 13, 2007

cloudy monday #16

My cloudy Monday posts have been few & far between of late (as have all my posts). Maybe you haven't missed them, but I have! This shot was taken across a vacant lot at the top of our hill on a stormy day late in spring. I got a series of shots that I'm ready to show you, Monday by Monday. This one is, I have to say, my favorite. Love the way the light comes from the top right across the clouds.

I'm at a conference in Orlando, staying at a really amazing resort called Universal Portofino Bay. It's modeled after a village on the Italian Riviera and it is possibly the nicest hotel I've ever stayed at. Not that I'm a frequenter of Ritz-y hotels, but back in my consulting days I did get to stay at some nice places. But this one takes the cake. The website doesn't do it justice.

There's a side of me that winces a little ... I can't help but think of the poverty I've seen in Haiti, India, Mexico, the Philippines ... but it's also certainly a pleasure to experience such comfort and attentive service.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Simba 'n' Me

Some of you have kindly asked how Simba's doing. Progress report: great! It's been nine months now since his accident, and the vet said that based on his injury and the amount of his spine that was below the injury (about 8 inches) it would be about 8 months before we'd know the full extent of his recovery. So this is probably going to be as good as it gets, and people, neither one of us is complaining. If you didn't live with him, you'd never guess he'd ever been injured. Sure, he slips a little more on the wooden floors, he doesn't jump as well as he used to, and -- I think he would complain about this if he had words -- he can't use his right hind leg to scratch himself. That's about the extent of his limitations. (He's so cute in a frustrated sort of way when he needs to scratch himself. He'll pick up his foot as best he can and then turn around and look at it, sort of sigh, and then give his head a good shake. When I see him do that I try to scratch his head & side as best I can, not knowing exactly where the itch is.)

Did you know that small dogs are prone to back injuries? The hypothesis is that over a lifetime of jumping onto very high objects (relative to their height) like beds and couches, they stress their spines. Now I pick Simba up onto things and don't let him jump off our very high bed by himself. If I ever have a little dog again I'll start these practices when s/he's young.

This pictures were taken under the dining room table, which despite appearances seems to be a very comfy bed for him. The pillow somewhat lacks, in my opinion, but it's his opinion that counts!

I was moved to post this because I'm going to be away off & on for nearly the next two weeks, and I'm missing him already! I can talk to The Huz on the phone, but Simba's only a face-to-face (or hand-to-tummy) relationship. I have a couple of posts queued up, by the way, so you may be hearing from me a little bit during my travels. The first week I'll be in Orlando for a conference (in August! hard on us pasty white Northerners), then back for a long weekend away at a camp with The Huz, then back for a day and off to a cooking gig. So the only options for posting will be from Orlando, the first week.

So, see ya later, and thanks for commenting!

Thursday, August 09, 2007

moaning meme

Given that I've been so absent from blogging lately, I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw that the lovely and loving Eva risked one of her tags on me, of all people. How could she possibly have known I was about to re-enter the brave world of blogging? Never mind, whatever the case, I was tickled pink! And lavender! And ... and then I had to sit and think of answers to all these questions ... oy, vey! So, I wasn't annoyed, exactly. More like vexed. At my own dullness of brain matter. But even dull brain matter produces results eventually, albeit sluggishly. So no more moaning about dullness of brain, Pat!

5 people who will be annoyed that I tagged them:

  • Barbara (I don't think I've ever seen her do a meme, so this is bound to annoy her)
  • Lynne (ditto, plus I know she's straight-out busy these days)
  • Jerry (who, if he does it, will be the funniest of us all, and I know whereof I speak)
  • Ilsa (because it's Time for you to start your own Blog, girlfriend!)
  • Rick (who, if he ever starts his own blog, will give Jerry a run for his money)

4 things that should go into Room 101 to be banished from the earth forever:

  • mosquitoes and all other biting bugs that keep me indoors during the nice weather months
  • high fructose corn syrup
  • greed
  • dishonesty

3 things people do that make you want to shake them violently:

  • tailgate or cut in too closely in front of you (1 car length for every 10mph, people!)
  • find something negative about every situation, and feel compelled to verbalize it
  • say they believe in tolerance but don't practice it

2 things you find yourself moaning about:

  • being too busy
  • being so far away from my bro & sis

1 thing the above answers tell you about yourself:

  • that I'm well-intentioned but still complain too much, and not nearly grateful enough for all the good stuff.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

bitten bad

As a wee person, I decided I would be a famous actress when I grew up, kind of like Marilyn Monroe but without the funny eyebrows. Life has no limits when you're wee. Of *course* I will be prettier than Miss M! At least if sheer determination could make it so. And I knew one thing for sure: I totally did not want to be a housewife.

Fast forward lo! these ahem many years, past careers and moves and more years supporting myself than would ever allow any theatrical endeavors, and here I am, married, no kids, and finally, finally allowing myself to indulge those theatrical inclinations. (Parenthetically, but with parentheses --- I heard a young woman today lovingly describe her mother as "drama-free" --- and wondering where she herself came from, as being decidedly not drama-free. Isn't that a wonderful turn of phrase? Drama-free. I'm of the "decidedly not" variety.)

I started out in the spring of 2006 with a murder mystery benefiting a friend's non-profit organization. That summer I auditioned for and got a chorus a/k/a "extra" part in large community theater organization's production of Singin' In The Rain, complete with rain. That was a great learning experience and the source of a couple of new friends. Later that summer, I acted in a Neil Simon comedy in a small community theater in a nearby town, and then followed that up with another murder mystery that was staged in February at a resort for an entire weekend, the mystery stretching across several days. And that murder mystery was subsequently turned into a regular one-night play and produced at another local community theater's playhouse over a couple of weekends in early June, with the same cast. I really grew to love those guys, it was a really wonderful experience made more so by the opportunity to stretch it out a little longer than usual. (There are rumors we may re-unite for a second production, of a new mystery, at the same resort this winter.) Finally, I had a good-sized role in a reading of Samantha's Stars in July.

April 2006.
July 2006.
October 2006.
February 2007.
June 2007.
July 2007.

Not bad for the first year or so! In all that time, I got a part in every play I auditioned for, leading me to have great confidence in my auditioning ability and, in fact, to really just relax and have fun auditioning.

Does one hear a bit of hubris in that statement? A touch of braggadocio? One hopes not. But ...

After the Neil Simon show, one of the board members for the community theater mentioned another play to me: Painting Churches. It's a fabulous script written by a woman named Tina Howe, and I just fell in love with it. Have had it in the back of my mind all year long, knowing that I would love to act in such a quality play, loving both the female lead roles. I talked about it, off & on, all year long. And encouraged my friends to try out for it too, reasoning that it was such a great play, it deserved to have the very best actors in it, even if it's not me.

So friend Robin decided to audition for it with me, but on the 40-minute drive to the theater she said she didn't want to do it if we didn't both get parts. Her main motivation was so we could hang out together, on the drives & otherwise. I appreciated it, but made sure she understood that I was making no such offer. I'd had my heart set on this play for far too long.

After the audition, on the ride home, friend Robin began waffling. Who could blame her? It's really THAT GOOD a script. The audition was a blast.

She got a part.

Guess who didn't. Yep, Miss Hubris herself.


Turns out, I was in that awkward in-between age. Not old enough for the retirement-age mother, not young enough for the daughter. Although I do believe I could have acted either role!

The woman who got the mother part did a wonderful job with it, but I can honestly say my friend Robin was the best actor up there. I was doggone proud of her. And by then, the sting had pretty much gone out of not getting a part, so I could just sit there and enjoy the wonderful, wonderful play. That was just this last weekend.

Which brings me to tonight. Auditions. For a play I'd dearly love to be in, with someone who has a reputation as a really good director. Can it be that I'm jinxed when it's something I really, really want? Will you keep your fingers crossed for me?