fauxklore: (Default)
Celebrity Death Watch: Luis Olmo played outfield for the Brooklyn Dodgers, becoming the first Puerto Rican position player in the major leagues in 1943. (Hiram Bithorn had pitched for the Cubs a year earlier.) Sam Mele played baseball for a number of teams, notably the Red Sox. Tony Alamo was an evangelist who was best known for his church’s tracts, which often got left on car windshields, at least in Los Angeles. He was convicted as a sex offender, related to his sexual involvement with young girls.

Roar: I went to the Better Said Than Done storytelling show on Sunday night. It was a benefit for the National Network to End Domestic Violence and the nine women who performed told stories about their triumphs over sexism, harassment, and violence. The stories were interesting and heartfelt, with a wide range of content and telling styles. Obviously, I thought some of them were better than others and this is the sort of material that can lend itself to a certain amount of bibliotherapy (i.e. tellers who are focused on their therapeutic needs, rather than the audience). But I am more forgiving than usual since the underlying issues are ones we need to talk about.

Office Move: The powers that be decided that my officemate, who is about 90% retired, should not have his own office space, but should use a hot desk when he comes in. So they moved me to a one person office down the hall. The move was not handled well, with it taking far longer than it should have to get my phone hooked up. And I had to battle to get a white board installed in the new office. Now, I just have to finish unpacking, which is annoying enough.

Artomatic: I went with a couple of friends to Artomatic last night. This is an unjuried art exhibit, held periodically in one or another soon-to-be-renovated office building. This year’s is in Crystal City, so was convenient to my office. We only had time to hit a small percentage of it. My favorite pieces were a series of fused glass dresses (intended for display, not wear) and a quilt done on teabags. I also enjoyed some of the poems that were written about various of the exhibits. I just wish I’d had time to see more of it.

Uighur Food: After Artomatic, we went to dinner at Queen Amannisa, which is a Uighur restaurant. We ordered several dishes to share – orange and beet salad, lamb kabobs, meat nan, and a noodle dish with chicken. I thought all of them were good, though the noodles definitely topped my list. They were, alas, too spicy for my friends. I think that, overall, the meal was a success. And we certainly had good conversation during it. It was a pleasant evening, and worth a bit of sleep deprivation for.
fauxklore: (storyteller doll)
Celebrity Death Watch: Bill Walsh was not only a copy editor for The Washington Post, but wrote three cleverly titled books on the subject of copy editing - Lapsing Into a Comma, The Elephants of Style, and Yes, I Could Care Less. Phil Garland was a New Zealand folk singer. I particularly recommend his song "To the Tall Ships" (with lyrics by Joe Clark). James Cotton played blues harmonica. Derek Walcott was a Caribbean poet and Nobel laureate. Lawrence Montaigne was an actor with numerous television and movie appearances, as well as being in the original cast of Shinbone Alley. Felicia O’Dell was the internet celebrity chef Auntie Fee. Chuck Berry was a rock and roll superstar, but you didn't need me to tell you that. Jimmy Breslin was a columnist for Newsday and Son of Sam’s favorite penpal. David Rockefeller headed Chase Manhattan and chaired the Museum of Modern Art. I have reservations about his foreign policy activities (which may have, for example, helped trigger the Iran hostage crisis) but there is little doubt that he was a significant philanthropist with broad interests. Martin McGuiness was an IRA leader who became a peacemaker. Colin Dexter wrote the Inspector Morse series of mysteries. He also wrote a book about how to solve cryptic crosswords.

Non-celebrity Death Watch: Mary Joan Trafton was a colleague and a close friend. We started working for Milo at the same time and, over the course of numerous business trips, discovered compatible ways of thinking. This was especially true on trips to Boulder, where we realized that High Crimes, a mystery bookstore, would be open late when they had a signing. She was always willing to try out new restaurants and we spent lots of evenings exploring the crème brulees of Boulder. We had similar senses of humor, which included things like buying Milo a pointy-haired boss wig, which he wore when he did our performance reviews. She had been ill with cancer for a while, so her death was not a surprise, but it is still always painful to lose a friend. I am still waiting to hear what the arrangements will be and hope I will be able to go to whatever ceremony happens. At the very least, Suzanne (our other partner in crime) and I will do something.

Mrs. Miller Does Her Thing: I saw this new show at Signature Theatre on Saturday afternoon. Mrs. Elva Miller was a real person, who achieved a brief career in the mid-1960’s as a horrible singer. Debra Monk portrayed her and did an excellent job of both the bad singing and the moments when we glimpse her self-perception. Boyd Gaines played her husband, who was convalescing in a nursing home after a stroke. He was also convincing in a role that focused on his frustration over his condition. Then there is her niece, Joelle, played by Rebekah Brockman, who is torn between the fear that she is part of a group exploiting her aunt and the knowledge that Mrs. Miller is having fun with the whole experience. There is some generation gap material and some more serious topical material (e.g. re: Vietnam). But the real point is about following dreams. That makes Mrs. Miller surprisingly sympathetic. I will note, however, that I dearly hope nobody ever decides to produce a cast album of this show!

Story Swap: Our monthly swap was on Saturday night and was, as usual, fun. I took advantage of the late arrival of our teenage tellers to perform X. J. Kennedy’s poem, "In a Prominent Bar in Secaucus One Day." Later on, I told "Tia Miseria." There was the usual wide mix of stories and, later on, snacks and conversation.

World Storytelling Project: Yesterday being World Storytelling Day, I announced a project to learn a story from every country in the world. I am using the U.S. State Department list of independent countries, which has 195 countries on it. Obviously, I already know stories from some of these (and have personal stories from a few.) This is not the sort of thing I intend to put any particular deadline on, but it should be a fun challenge. And, yes, I have picked out a story from Afghanistan to tell.

Note to Coworker Down the Hall: Close your door when you are having a conference call, damn it!
fauxklore: (storyteller doll)
Celebrity Death Watch: Marian Javits was an arts patron and the widow of Jacob Javits, who a few of you may remember from the days when there was such a thing as a liberal Republican. Joseph Wapner was the first judge on The People’s Court. Shrley Palesh played for a few teams in the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League. Howard Schmidt was a major figure in government cybersecurity strategy. Joe Rogers co-founded Waffle House, thus saving the stomach linings of many a drunken Southerner. Rene Preval served two terms as president of Haiti. Tommy Page was a singer-songwriter. Miriam Colon was a Puerto Rican actress. Edi Fitzroy was a reggae singer. Fred Weintraub owned The Bitter End, an important venue for folk music and comedy. Kurt Moll was an opera singer. Robert Osborne as a film historian and hosted Turner Classic Movies. Joni Sledge sang as part of Sister Sledge. Robert James Waller wrote The Bridges of Madison County. Amy Krouse Rosenthal was a prolific writer of children’s books, among other things. Mother Divine was the leader of a cult founded by her husband. Royal Robbins was a big name in rock climbing but, more significantly to me, founded an eponymous clothing company that makes awesome clothes for traveling, including that green plaid shirt I am wearing in the overwhelming majority of my travel photos.

Errata: I erred. It was Jason Chaffetz, not Paul Ryan who made the stupid statement about iphones and health insurance.

Don’t Analyze This Dream: I was in Japan and upset over finding I had inadvertently taken my (work) cell phone with me. I was with another woman and we went down an escalator to exit a building with a very tall skylight. We were held up at the bottom of the escalator until there was a group of 4 men and 4 women and we all had to walk through a metal detector and send our things through an x-ray machine. Then we had to sing a song together before we could exit. Afterwards, I found out there was a side exit and people waited in line to sing, with fans of them gathered at the side of the security screening.

Story Slam: This month’s story slam theme was Womanhood, so I pulled out my "Woman of Valor" story, which is starting to get to having a reasonable ending. It went fairly well, though I finished third, so didn’t walk away with any money. I do wish, however, that this would go back to being on a Thursday night, because it conflicted with The Grapevine and I had to make an actual choice.

World Baseball Classic: Oh, well. Israel had a good run, but blew it in the second round.

Culpeper Tells / Virginia Storytelling Alliance Gathering: This past weekend was the Culpeper Tells festival and, once again, the VASA Gathering was held together with it. I preferred when we had a separate retreat, which made for a different sort of event, but I’ll take what I can get. I took off from work on Friday, intending to get some household odds and ends done and drive out earlyish. But I fell prey to the lure of napping and hit the road later than I intended, subjecting me to the inevitable slog through Gainesville. I was not all that enthusiastic to arrive at the hotel and find myself parking next to a vehicle advertising Pest Control and, specifically, "thermo bed bug eradication." Either their method works or the guy with the bedbug truck was just staying overnight at the hotel, as I didn’t get bitten by anything, but it was still disturbing.

Anyway, a bunch of us went out to dinner at Luigi’s which is mediocre red sauce Italian food. At least our server was mostly up to dealing with a big group. We came back to the hotel for a concert by Lynn Ruehlmann and Megan Hicks. Lynn blended the story of Psyche and Eros with the story of her own marriage, while Megan told a folk tale and her personal love story separately. Both were very good. That was followed by a story swap.

Megan did a workshop on Saturday morning, mostly emphasizing that we are all living history. There was a lot of confusion about when we were supposed to get into the room at the library, as well as confusion over who was signed up for what.

The actual festival started after lunchtime. There were four tellers – Geraldine Buckley, Michael Reno Harrell, Adam Booth, and Donald Davis. Each of them had just under an hour in the afternoon and then another half hour in the evening concert. The highlight of the day as far as I was concerned was Adam’s telling of "Ashton," a story from his Appalachian series, involving a coal miner's wife, and the early recordings of country music. It was exquisitely crafted and well-told. I should also note that I thought it was interesting that all of the tellers were telling more or less personal stories and there weren’t any traditional stories at all. By the way, there was also a story slam, but my name didn’t get drawn from the hat, alas.

At the dinner break, I ended up with a few people at a small place called Four C’s. I have this theory that, if you see a few ethnic items on what is otherwise an American restaurant menu, you should order from those, because it means the cook is including some of his family specialties. There were several Peruvian items on the menu, so these were clearly the way to go. I ended up getting some very tasty grilled fish that way. There’s no atmosphere, but the food was good and very reasonably priced and the service was friendly and efficient. It’s a good place to keep in mind for the future.

There was another swap back at the hotel afterwards, but it was too late for me, especially what with changing the clocks.

Sunday morning had the VASA annual meeting (which hadn’t actually been mentioned on the schedule). All I will say is that I am really glad I am no longer on the board. That was followed by "sacred stories" (not my thing) and puns (very much my thing). I told "Why I’m Not a Millionaire" to transition us between the two.

Overall, it was a reasonably good weekend. I was annoyed at various little things, but being among my storytelling tribe made up for them.

Annoying Weather: We had been having lovely spring-like weather, but it changed radically for the weekend. And Monday night was a sort of winter storm. Only sort of, as the snow total can’t have been more than a couple of inches, but there was plenty of sleet. In other words, things were nasty and icy. OPM made a bad call with a three hour delay and my company made a worse call by sending out confusing emails. One said we were on a mandatory delay in the subject line, but the body said all offices were open. Another had a subject line reading "message 1 of 2" but there was no "message 2 of 2." I had brought my laptop home and told my boss I was going to work from home, so none of this affected me per se, but it made me grumpy. I dislike working from home to begin with (too many distractions, including the fact that I really need to replace my desk chair) so I was inclined to be grumpy.

I’m back in the office today. One area of my walk to the metro was treacherous, but most of it was clear. I expect it to be worse tonight, since it isn’t supposed to get above freezing all day.

More Corporate Miscommunication: We are all getting new phones. I got an email telling me mine was ready and that I needed to go to an office 30 some odd miles away to pick it up. Since that office doesn't open until 9 and we are talking about DC metro area traffic, that would kill half my day. In fact, our IT guy came around this afternoon delivering phones for the 50 or so of us in this office. This is much easier, of course, but I would have preferred them sending out the correct info to begin with.
fauxklore: (storyteller doll)
1) Thing the First is the ever popular celebrity death watch.

Sammy Lee was the first Asian American to win an Olympic gold medal (in platform diving in 1948). Pamela Robins wrote a lot of romance novels and smaller numbers of other novels. Greg Lake was the Lake of Emerson, Lake, & Palmer.

You don't need me to explain who John Glenn was. The first news story I remember being aware of (when I was about three and a half years old) was his orbiting the earth. He went on to serve in the Senate and got to fly on the Space Shuttle, too. By all accounts, he was a genuinely nice guy. Farewell to a true American hero.

2) Thing the second is an interesting idea from the conference I was at Tuesday and Wednesday.

They had 3 or 4 people each day appointed as "keynote listeners" who were charged with paying particular attention to a couple of themes and soliciting feedback from other attendees. They then summarized their observations towards the end of the day. I thought this worked well and did enhance the value of the conference, though it doesn't spare me from having to write up an after-action report.

3) Thing the third is a bit of whining about aging.

I really should have gotten an extended warranty on various body parts. A few years ago, I had issues with my left eye and my left foot. Now it appears to be the turn of my right side. Sigh.

Le Catch-up

Dec. 1st, 2016 05:05 pm
fauxklore: (storyteller doll)
Oy, am I behind. But I won’t get caught up by kvetching alone, so here is an attempt at catching up.

Celebrity Death Watch: Yaffa Eliach was a Holocaust historian. Robert Vaughan was an actor, best known for playing Napoleon Solo on The Man from U.N.C.L.E.. Little known fact is that I had a Napoleon Solo doll when I was a kid and he had a wonderful relationship with Barbie, often helping her escape from Russian spies and wild animals and so on. Leon Russell was a musician and songwriter. Gwen Ifill was a journalist, primarily on PBS. Mose Allison was a jazz pianist. Whitney Smith designed the flag of Guyana, which I mention only because he is claimed to have coined the word "vexillology," thus enabling Sheldon Cooper’s "Fun With Flags" shtick on The Big Bang Theory. Ruth Gruber was a journalist and humanitarian. Sharon Jones was a soul singer. Ben Zion Shenker was a rabbi and composer of over 500 Hasidic niggunim. Florence Henderson was an actress, best known for portraying Carol Brady on The Brady Bunch. Ron Glass was also an actor and associated in my mind with his role on Barney Miller. Grant Tinker was a television executive, including heading NBC in the 1980’s. And, of course, he was the husband of Mary Tyler Moore before that. Michael "Jim" Deiligatti invented the Big Mac. Brigid O’Brien followed in the tradition of her father, Pat, and acted.

Leonard Cohen was a singer-songwriter, who I’ve always thought of as the Poet Laureate of Depression. That isn’t intended as a negative statement. It just means that there are times when you need to wallow in despair and his music suited that mood perfectly.

Melvin Laird was the Secretary of Defense from 1969 to 1973 (under Richard Nixon). While serving in Congress, he supposedly convinced Spiro Agnew to resign the Vice Presidency. He had a lot of influence on how Pentagon budgeting is done. Most importantly, he ended the Vietnam era conscription and initiated the All Volunteer Force.

Jay Forrester was, essentially, the founder of system dynamics. I will admit to qualms about the application of systems models for economic analysis, but his work did enable the growth of systems thinking in the world at large. Hence, he made a difference in the opportunities I’ve had in my career.

And then there was Fidel Castro. He was a dictator and it’s clear that he oppressed the Cuban people. On the other hand, his commitment to education and health care was real. That doesn’t balance out the evils of his government, of course. I will note, however, that the U.S. has had a lot less animosity against lots of dictators who are at least equally bad. How much do you hear about Teodoro Obiang Nguerna Mbasogo, for example? Admittedly, Equatorial Guinea )see, I saved you from having to look him up) isn’t 90 miles from Florida, but the point remains that the treatment of Cuba has not been entirely rational. I am hoping that Fidel’s death may work towards normalizing things. I do still hope to go to Cuba at some point, since my grandfather lived there in the 1920’s and my grandparents met and married there.

Non-celebrity Death Watch: Milt Eisner was a member of my chavurah. He was a retired statistician and a puzzle person, who competed at least a few times in the ACPT.

Condo Association Meeting: Our annual meeting was right after election day. It wasn’t too painful. And they had good brownies.

WBRS Reception: Then came the William Barton Rogers Society reception. This is an MIT related thing and a reward for a certain level of donation. It was at the Mayflower, which is less impressive than one might think. They served heavy hors d’oeuvres. The speaker was John Lienhard, who is the director of the Abdul Latif Jameel World Water and Food Security Lab. He was reasonably entertaining. But, really, the value of these events is the opportunity to have intelligent conversations before the main speaker.

Housecleaning and Swap Hosting: Hosting a story swap forced me to do a certain amount of house cleaning. It is fairly appalling to turn up coupons that expired two years ago and such.

Anyway, there was a small group at the swap but it was still enjoyable. I was particularly pleased that Margaret told a First Nations story that is, apparently, in the novel Mrs. Mike, a book I remember entirely for some gruesome medical details involving: 1) diphtheria and 2) amputation.

JGS 36th Anniversary Luncheon: The meal was just okay, but the talk, by Arthur Kurzweil, was excellent. He was entertaining and inspiring. I have commented in the past about genealogy in terms of connectedness to my family’s history and I’ve also thought about that connectivity when I go to shul, admittedly all too rarely. (That is, by the way, why I prefer a more traditional service.) Anyway, as always, it is all about stories and he told good ones.

Book Club: We had a good discussion of How to Be an American Housewife by Margaret Dilloway, which involves a Japanese war bride. But I am getting increasingly annoyed at the racism (and other general narrowmindedness) of one person in the group. Sigh.

Work: Work has been particularly hectic lately. I was at a full day class one day and have been in endless meetings other days. The telephone is also both my chief tool and the bane of my existence. I’ve also been suffering a lot of IT hell, with issues on three of the four systems I use. However, I suppose it is worth it as I did get a very positive performance review.

The Secret Garden: I went with a friend to see The Secret Garden at Shakespeare Theatre Company. This is one of my favorite Broadway scores of all time. Really, almost the whole score is earworm worthy. I do still think that the book, even as somewhat rewritten here, is probably incomprehensible to anyone who have never read the original novel. But who cares when there is such luscious music with songs like "Lily’s Eyes" and "Where in the World" and
"How Could I Ever Know?" (They did, alas, cut out "Race You to the Top of the Morning.") I should also mention the excellent performances, including Anya Rothman’s as Mary Lennox,, Josh Young as Neville, and, especially, Michael Xavier as Archibald and Lizzie Klepmperar as Lily. (Note, too, that Daisy Egan, who played Mary Lennox on Broadway in 1991 and won a Tony at it, plays Martha, but that’s not an especially showy role.) Anyway, if you live here, go to see this show. If you don’t, you could do worse than to listen to the original cast recording a few thousand times.

Martinique: Finally, I went to Martinique this past weekend. It sounds unlikely, but Norwegian flies from BWI to Martinique and Guadeloupe at very low fares, so why not? I stayed at the Hotel Bambou in the Trois Islet area, which was decent enough for the price. They were very friendly, but the wifi in the room didn’t work well and, while the price included both breakfast and dinner, the dinner buffet was not very good. One expects better of a French colony.

Anyway, it was an easy ferry ride to Fort de France, the capital, where I was eager to see the Bibliotheque Schoelcher, which is very impressive indeed. It was built in France in 1889, then disassembled and shipped piece by piece to Martinique. Schoelcher, by the way, was the major abolitionist writer of the French West Indies. I spent a couple of more hours meandering around the city, which has some interesting architecture (somewhat akin in New Orleans). The Grand Marche was another highlight, especially as there was a lively band playing in front. Overall, it was worth a few hours meandering around.

My rule of thumb for travel is that I need to do something every day, so my Sunday venture was to Musee de la Pagerie, which was the birthplace of Empress Josephine. There was a special exhibit about the history of jazz, but it was dense words, entirely in French, so I didn’t read much of it. The actual museum has pictures of Josephine, along with a few of Napoleon, as well as a few artifacts, many of which I gathered are reproductions. There is also a sugar house (the family was in the sugar cane business) and attractive grounds.

Other than that, I spent time swimming, both in the pool and in the sea. And lazing on the beach. I walked up to the casino, which is remarkably unimpressive, and to the Creole Village shops, which are likewise.

All in all, it was a pleasant enough but not especially exciting trip.

Transitions

Oct. 6th, 2016 03:30 pm
fauxklore: (storyteller doll)
This is the time of year for transitions - between Rosh Hashanah and the government fiscal year. My company has a new president and CEO, as well, and I am reserving judgment on him. We had a strategic planning brainstorming session last week, at which I found myself wondering if I live on a different planet than everybody else.

As the election nears, I expect lots of senior people to resign, so nothing will get done for months. We have something we are trying to get done before then, which will be interesting because we are basically trying to do 6 months worth of work in a month. Except, of course, it isn't work per se. It's getting a bunch of people to sign off on an agreement and it should be doable if you find a way to keep the agreement from sitting on each person's desk for two weeks. The technical part - or, at least, the Geek to English translation - is easier than nagging people to review documents.

Bottom line is that my energy is focused in a couple of narrow channels. I will try to be more interesting soon.
fauxklore: (storyteller doll)
I am crazy busy right now, which is okay because the problem I am dealing with is an interesting one.

It does, however, bother me that I am often happiest with my job when all hell is breaking loose. My experiences where I have been trouble shooting a difficult issue let me use my creativity, as well as highlighting what I (and my organization) can bring to the table.

It's not like I want things to go wrong, so I feel vaguely guilty about this.
fauxklore: (storyteller doll)
Yes, I’m behind. Life gets like that.

Celebrity Death Watch: Stuart Anderson founded the Black Angus Steakhouse chain. Richard Seltzer wrote a number of books abut of popular medicine / medical philosophy. Lois Duncan wrote suspense novels for young adults. Goro Hasegawa patented the game Othello. Ralph Stanley was a bluegrass star. Rabbi Chaim Avrohom Horowitz was the Bostoner Rebbe of New York (and, later, Ramat Beit Shemesh, Israel) and wrote a lot of influential Jewish music. Barbara Goldsmith wrote several non-fiction books, including a well-received 2005 biography of Marie Cure. Alvin Toffler was a futurist and author, best known for Future Shock. Mack Rice wrote such songs as "Mustang Sally." Finally (and most relevantly to my career), Simon Ramo was the "R" in TRW, and is pretty much considered the founder of systems engineering.

The Breakfast Club: Apparently, I saw exactly one movie over the past quarter. I think I kept falling asleep on airplanes instead of watching movies. Anyway, I had somehow never seen this teenage classic before. It may be 31 years old, but I think it stands up reasonably well. Maybe I think that because my teenage years are a long time ago. It has obvious flaws – clichéd roles and an unlikely ending – but it is watchable despite those. I do, however, wish there were better female role models.

Story Swap: I had two things on my calendar a week ago Saturday night, and decided I could only do one of them. As tempting as coral crocheting at a local yarn store was, I do love story swaps. And the person who was hosting it has a particularly amiable cat. (That reminds me of The Minister’s Cat, a parlor game that way too few people seem to know. The minister’s cat is an amiable cat who adores avocadoes. The minister’s cat is a belligerent cat who batters bandicoots. And so on.) Anyway, it was a good time, with some fun stories, particularly a quest story that Eve told. I told the story I had done for the Better Said Than Done competition.

Friends in Harmony: A friend had given me a ticket to a concert that a chorus she sings in was part of. Seeing that it was very close to home, why not? The event was called Friends in Harmony and featured four choral groups - Mosaic Harmony, Olam Tikvah Chorale, Ketzal Chorus, and the Sakura Choir. The idea was to celebrate the diversity of Fairfax County, so there was an invocation by the imam of a local mosque, followed by the singing, which included gospel, Jewish liturgical, Mexican, and Japanese music. They even provided a CD to take home. All in all, it was well organized and I enjoyed most of the music.

Business Trip: Then I went off to Colorado Springs on a business trip, which meant lots of work and not enough sleep. It was reasonably productive, particularly in terms of meeting some folks in person who I had only talked to on the phone in the past. And, on the way home, I reached my million miles on United!

La Cage Aux Folles: When I got home Friday, I had time for a brief nap before driving over to Signature Theatre to see the final show of the subscription year. I had seen La Cage Aux Folles during its original Broadway run many years ago. Signature’s version is, of course, scaled down, but is still a large show for them. It was very enjoyable, with an excellent performance by Bobby Smith as Albin. I continue to believe that "I Am What I Am" is one of the strongest first act closing numbers in musical theatre. There’s Jerry Herman’s catchy music, a reasonably witty book, and fun choreography, so it made for an enjoyable evening. Given the competing drag queen stories playing local theatres now, I’d say this is well worth prioritizing above Kinky Boots if you are going to see just one of them.

Conference Going: I spent much of the weekend in a state of suspended animation, recovering from my trip, though I did get a few errands done. Then the beginning of this week involved a work-related conference that was decently informative. I am reminded again and again that space is a small world, as there were several people there who I know from various of my past lives in the business (i.e. other jobs within my company, supporting different customers). I hate to say this, but I really hope I haven’t aged as badly as some of them have.


And now I am caught up, for, oh, about 3 hours. Especially as I have theatre tickets tonight.
fauxklore: (storyteller doll)
There are some floors of the building I work in which require a key card to access. That is, people who are going to them need to swipe their card before they can press the button for those floors.

Almost every day, there is someone who presses the button several times without it lighting up, before going through their bag to find their key card. At which point, we are usually past the floor they were going to.

I can understand a new employee forgetting once or twice. But this happens so often that I have to wonder if whatever organization(s) is/are involved hires only people who fail an intelligence test.

In other news, Thursday is food truck day in Crystal City. Yesterday's offerings included an Indian place that smelled pretty good and advertised "fresh fast healthy." It took me over 15 minutes of waiting in line to order and another 15 minutes to get my food. I suppose "fast" was meant in comparison to a flight to Delhi. And, by the way, while the food was tasty, a couple of pieces of the paneer were charred to hard lumps.

I should have gotten a banh mi instead.
fauxklore: (storyteller doll)
Celebrity Death Watch: Jok Church drew the science experiment comic strip You Can with Beakman and Jax. This was, apparently, the first syndicated comic strip drawn and distributed by computer. Daniel Berrigan was a priest and peace activist.

Business Trip: I spent most of the week in Florida for a series of meetings, which were reasonably interesting and productive. The highlight was a field trip to see the last satellite of our current program and the launch vehicle which it is going to get its ride on. This was just a shoe-cover tour, versus one requiring more protective equipment, but it is still always good to get to see actual hardware.

I also got to go out to dinner (at a very good Cuban restaurant) with some old friends who live down that way and talk about international travel.

I should note that this trip was my first experience with Jet Blue. The service was fine and, most importantly for a business trip, the schedule was convenient. And their snack options include blue corn chips, which are always a good thing.

The Mystery of Love and Sex: Despite having had to get up at oh-dark-thirty to drive back to Orlando for my flight home, I went to Signature Theatre Friday night for this play. The title is terribly misleading. While the story does have something to do with people coming to terms with their sexual identities, the real issues involve broader assumptions about who people are. The basic plot involves a Jewish woman and a black man, who have been best friends since they were children and who most people expect will marry each other. The only catch is that she might be in love with a woman. And he hasn’t come to terms with being gay because he’s a Baptist convinced he will go to hell. Then there’s the problem of her father, whose mystery novels have racist, sexist, and homophobic undertones. This all sounds like one of those dreadfully serious plays that 20 year olds write when they are being proud of themselves for coming out, but that isn’t the case at all. It’s actually quite funny and an enjoyable couple of hours. Too bad about the title, though.

Caroline, Or Change: I was too exhausted to do much of anything all weekend, which means I even skipped the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival. I did, however, have a ticket to this production at Creative Cauldron in Falls Church. I’m not all that keen on playwright Tony Kushner (mostly for political reasons, which I needn’t get into here). But this was a musical at a theatre I like a lot and I got the ticket very inexpensively, due to a gift certificate at Goldstar. I am glad I went because I liked it quite a lot. The plot involves a black maid working for a Jewish family in 1963 Louisiana and her complicated relationship with the sad son of the family. Some of the clever things involve her interactions with the radio (played by a trio of women in glittery red dresses), the washing machine (a woman), and the dryer (a man). The family is consumed in the tragedy of the mother’s death from lung cancer. The father has married a friend who is not adjusting well and who can’t reach the boy. At their best, musicals use their scores to illuminate character and to enhance the mood and Jeanine Tesori’s score, with a mix of ethnic styles, did this effectively. It also helped that Iyona Blake was outstanding in the title role. I also want to offer shout outs to Ethan Van Slyke as Noah Gellman, a demanding role for a young boy, and Tiara Whaley as Emmie Thibodeaux, who gave a spirited and convincing performance. This is playing through the end of May and I highly recommend it if you are looking for something to do in Northern Virginia.

Don’t Analyze This Dream: I am a bit vague on the details, but I know it involved serving one of my government customers, who is a big burly guy, coffee in little dainty teeny tiny floral cups.
fauxklore: (storyteller doll)
I still work for the same company, as I have for over 30 years. But the short attention span method of career planning kicked in, which has me moving around every 4-6 years. My theory is that the first year, you are lost and learning your way around. The second year, you are functional. After that, you get to the "I've done this all before" phase and after a while you need to move on to keep from being bored.

That does, of course, assume you are the sort of person who needs a lot of stimulation in life. There used to be a management model that referred to the "T-shaped person." That meant that you can have a lot of breadth, while still having depth in one area. The concept is that the legs of the T vary from person to person and you need to balance those to have an effective staff. I suspect that model is not taught any more, as I've had to explain that to people I've mentioned it to. At any rate, I still find it a useful way of thinking about career planning. I have a broad top bar to my T.

In this case, I hadn't really been seriously looking yet. I had a phone conversation, however, which ended with a "by the way, would you consider coming to work for me" question and a few follow-up conversations with other people. Then there was the whole corporate process stuff, of course, so it all took a while.

I thought I had gotten a lot of the logistics moving before I went on vacation, but came back to find that it was going to take a while to get some things. Like the computer still isn't delivered (I am using a loaner laptop which took a few days in and of itself). It took until yesterday to have a phone line. But slowly slowly things are becoming functional. I do have a couple of more accounts that need to get set up. And some time in January, I need to do a "grip and grin" type trip to meet some more of the customer folks.

I'm also starting to do actual work.

I think this will be a good move in the long run, but the initial phases are always a challenge.
fauxklore: (storyteller doll)
I’ll write up my weekend trip to New York separately, but here is the rest of the catch-up.

Celebrity Death Watch: Al Molinaro was a character actor who, among other things, played Murray the Cop on The Odd Couple. Fred Thompson was an actor and senator. Helmut Schmidt was the Chancellor of West Germany in the late 1970’s. Allen Toussaint was a major New Orleans musician.

New Job: For anyone who hasn’t heard yet, I am going to be moving to a new job (within the same company) in a few weeks. I will be working on early development activities for the next generation Navy communications satellites. It should be a good challenge.

I should note that this wasn’t a matter of any particular dissatisfaction with what I’ve been doing. While I hate the building I work in, the people are fine and the work is fine. It’s just that I’ve been here over four years, so was ready when an appealing opportunity came up.

Girlstar:This new musical at Signature Theatre had a talented and energetic cast and an interesting concept. There’s a fairy tale sort of opening which gives the back story of a pair of twins (boy and girl). The girl is immensely talented, but a jealous older sister uses a magic liquid she’s found to steal that talent and store it in the belly of her pet snake. And, of course, without talent, one dies. But not before having a daughter, who is then raised by the brother and protected from music by him. Now that daughter is all grown up and ready to seek her aunt, who is the music producer, responsible for the careers of every major star.

What doesn’t get explained is why the aunt can’t use the talent herself, but needs to put it into her girlstar. There are two other stars who mysteriously die to give the girl her voice and her dancing moves, making her ready for a big concert. Everything goes bizarrely wrong, but maybe there is a happyish ending after all.

The problem is that the story doesn’t quite follow the way fairy tales are supposed to work. Overall, a lot of stuff happens out of sheer convenience, instead of making even a limited amount of sense. That’s a pity because there’s some enjoyable music. It’s really a waste of a particularly talented cast, with Donna Migliaccio giving an excellent performance as the evil aunt and Desi Oakley as the sweet niece not sure of what is happening to her.

Halloween: We had a house concert / swap for Halloween. It was a lot of fun. I told "Ida Black," which went over okay though I don’t think I told it especially well.

Knitting Group: I am officially a quarter of the way through this afghan I intended to finish by about March.

Book Club: This session’s book was Euphoria by Lily King, which is a fictionalized story about a thinly disguised Margaret Mead, Reo Fortune, and Gregory Bateson. I think having been to Papua New Guinea (and, specifically, the Sepik region – in real life, Bateson worked with the Iatmul people) did help with it. The ending of the novel, however, annoyed me.

Lost Keys: Somehow, my house keys disappeared. My best guess is that they fell out of my bag when I was pulling out my badge for the bus. And, of course, I got home from book club after our complex office was closed. The weather was dreadful, so it took a while for the locksmith to get there. Not the end of the world, but it’s annoying.
fauxklore: (storyteller doll)
Goals: I have not yet given up on my goals for 2015, but I haven’t done a hell of a lot regarding them, either. I did a little bit more afghan square knitting and a little more Bible reading (like maybe about 4 pages).

I did sort out some genealogical info and, more importantly, partially figure out how I want to file various papers related to that. I have a tree up on geni.com, though I am not really impressed with it as a tool. But a start is a start, right?

I also did 3 Volksmarch events. There would have been more, but the weather has not really cooperated.

It wasn’t quite so explicit a goal, but I’ve also made a dent in the chaos that is my house. Given the crappy weather forecast for the weekend, I am expecting further progress then.

Admirable Restraint: Nobody is allowed to bring electronics (cell phones, tablets, even fitness bands) into our suite at work. So we have this big red box at the front desk for people to put their stuff in. I guess that there was too much stuff for just one box, so this week a second big red box appeared.

I have managed to resist the temptation to go out and buy several small red boxes to scatter around the two big ones.

Strange Theory re: Ear Worms: Songs with titles referencing the names of celebrities are particularly likely to infect me. It is possible that mere lyrics involving celebrities are sufficient. The infectiousness has no correlation with how much I do or don’t like the celebrity. This may also explain why I went around singing "David Duchovny, why don’t you love me?" for much of 1999.
fauxklore: (storyteller doll)
Things have been pretty routine lately – too busy at work, but time for things like story swaps and knitting group and trying to unshovel all the clutter at my house. If I wait for something important to write about, I will never write, so …

Celebrity Death Watch: Ruth Rendell was a British mystery writer. B. B. King was one of the most famous of all blues musicians. Guy Carawan was a folk singer who popularized "We Shall Overcome" as a protest song. Happy Rockefeller was the widow of New York Governor (and later, Vice President), Nelson Rockefeller and was important largely because their relationship was considered scandalous enough to thwart his Presidential ambitions.

Should-be Celebrity Death Watch: Syd Lieberman was a fabulous teller of a wide range of stories. I think his historical stories were particularly strong. He was a kind, generous man, always encouraging to other tellers. I was privileged to have taken a workshop with him and benefit from his wisdom.

Women in Aerospace Conference: I went to the Women in Aerospace annual conference a couple of weeks ago. It was a somewhat odd mix of technical presentations (e.g. on cybersecurity) and career advice. I was going to write a bit about the career advice, but I realized most of it amounted to: 1) STEM degrees are good and 2) everyone else on the planet has read Lean In. But I did learn a couple of interesting things. To wit, only about 10,700 people have ever served in Congress. Only 313 were women, including 108 now.

I also want to pass along this wonderful explanation of my working environment. "The Pentagon is a building with 5 sides … on every issue."

Achoo!: We’ve had a particularly heavy dose of pollen over the past couple of weeks. It did not help that the lights in my ceiling fan burned out, which led me to discover that I really should have been dusting the tops of the ceiling fan blades. That added a heavy dose of dust to my already irritated lungs. And then there is a virus working its way around my office.

Let’s just say this has not been a very good week.

Used Bookstore Run: I finally made a used bookstore run last weekend. I got rid of 31 books and came home with 19 new ones. Two of those were puzzle books, however, so are transient enough to not really count. About 50 more will be going out this weekend, as I plan to stop at The Book Thing to donate them on my way to New York.
fauxklore: (storyteller doll)
Celebrity Death Watch: Richard Sher was the creator and producer of the radio show Says You! Gary Owens made Laugh-In announcements from beautiful downtown Burbank. Louis Jourdan was an actor, probably most famous as the romantic lead in Gigi. Lesley Gore sang teenage hit songs in the early 1960’s. It’s her funeral and you can cry if you want to.

Food Pornography – China Chilcano: I went out to dinner with flyertalk friends last week at China Chilcano, which is the buzzy new place by Jose Andres. It’s an Asian-Peruvian fusion small plates place and it was really valuable to go with a big group so we could try a lot of different dishes. We had quite a variety, from all over the menu. Some of the highlights were two of the four ceviches (the classico, a slightly spicy hamachi which is pretty much what I think of when I think of ceviche, and the ceviche Nikkei, made with tuna, puffed quinoa and mountain yam), papas a la huancaina (a cold potato and cheese salad), cameron saltado Maestro Wong (shrimp with fermented black beans and mushrooms), and "aeropuerto" (a fried rice and noodle dish with 20 kinds of vegetables, so named because "everything lands in it," including carrots cut to look like little airplanes.) The latter may well be the best fried rice I have ever eaten and was worth the excursion on its own. Really, pretty much everything was excellent, though the wantan especial (won ton soup) was a bit too salty for my taste and the aji de gallina (chicken in yellow sauce) was nothing special. The drink was not as good as the food. I’ve had better pisco sours. And, while there was a lot of wine, I’m just not a big wine person. The bottom line is that I’d happily eat there again.

Weather Whining: We finally got a decent size snow storm Monday night – enough to shut things down on Tuesday. I had some work I could do from home. Except that a pipe froze and burst in the next courtyard of my complex, triggering the fire alarm. Working while huddling in the clubhouse with neighbors was not happening. And more snow is supposedly coming. As well as "wintry mix" over the weekend. Meanwhile, it is just bitter cold out.

Can we please fast forward a month or so?

A Brief Genealogical Note: I am still working on tracking down the story, but it looks like the person I think of as my "rich uncle" (actually, a great-uncle, one of my grandfather’s numerous brothers) was denied admission to the U.S. after stowing away on a ship! It wouldn’t be nearly as funny if it were anyone else. (He seems to have ended up in Toronto for a while and then succeeded in being admitted to the States.)

Amusing Work Interlude: Several weeks ago, I was at a meeting with a very senior official. (I was there in case one question came up, which my boss felt I was the right person to answer.) How senior? Well, let’s just say this person has a 3 foot-tall minion plushie in his office.

Anyway, before the meeting started, he was apologizing for running late. In the following exchange, the person labeled S is the high muckety-muck and the person labeled W is my great-grand-boss:

S: Sorry I’m late. I had to prep for this dumb-ass trip to Country X.
W: Step 1. Stop calling it "this dumb-ass trip."
S: As I was saying,this dumb-ass trip...

Okay, I am easily amused.
fauxklore: (storyteller doll)
I left my planner on my kitchen table this morning, so I am spinning my wheels at work even more than usual. If I have to be loopy, this is a good day for it, since a lot of people are out. Notably, both my bosses (both government and corporate).

My mind is largely on: 1) things I need to get done, starting with decluttering at home, and 2) things I might want to do in the next year, starting with travel. Also, cats. I know it isn’t realistic for me to have a cat right now, given how much I travel. But I found out that a cat café is going to open in DC in the next year! That may qualify as something I want to do in the next year.

I have also just added to the list of topics one might think twice about discussing at work. A guy in the next aisle of cubicles is talking about giant mutant rats. I didn’t hear quite how the topic came up, but he’s now ranting about radiation that would kill people but just increases the size of rats. Hmm, maybe I need a giant mutant cat.
fauxklore: (storyteller doll)
I am tired and grumpy today, which is, I suppose, suitable for a Monday. I screwed up my sleep schedule yesterday by napping when I got home from walking. And then I couldn’t sleep well because the whole left side of my body was achy. I could have gotten out of bed and taken a Tylenol, I suppose, but that was more effort than I was willing to put in. I did eventually sleep pretty soundly – soundly enough for the alarm to wake me up. (Usually, I get up anywhere from 5 minutes to 2 hours before the alarm.)

My grumpiness is reflected in being annoyed at all sorts of little things today. Someone was already sitting in my favorite seat on the bus this morning, for example. Someone I work with (not from my organization) has a knack for trying my patience by going into excruciating detail in answering the wrong question. And someone from my organization decided that interrupting my listening to a telecom was very important despite my having told her at least 4 times that I was going to be on an important telecom during that hour. (She also has access to my calendar.) So, of course, once I got off the phone, she was on the phone. And she never puts anything on her calendar. Incidentally, it turned out that mostly what she wanted to talk about was her frustration with Mr. Excruciating Detail.

I’d like to get home early enough to drop off my dry cleaning, but I suspect the bus will be screwed up or something else will get in the way of that. And I really need to clear off the table so I can set up the menorah, given that Chanukah starts tomorrow night.

Oh, did I mention that today‘s prompt had to do with feeling overwhelmed? Some days I don’t need a prompt.
fauxklore: (storyteller doll)
It’s the first of December, which means that it’s time for Holidailies – a daily entry every day this month. It will be a bit of a challenge, as usual, but it’s good for me to challenge myself.

Celebrity Death Watch: Gary Lane played bass for The Standells of "Dirty Water" fame. Mike Nichols did comedy with Elaine May and acted and directed several major films (most famously, The Graduate) and a few Broadway shows. Claire Barry sang Yiddish songs with her sister and bei mir was schoen. Clive Palmer was a founding member of The Incredible String Band.

The two who I want to highlight in particular were both involved in crime in some way. Marion Barry was "Mayor for Life" of D.C., who got entangled in various controversies, including drug abuse and womanizing. And P. D. James wrote mysteries. The largest number of them were in the Adam Dalgliesh series, but I prefer Cordelia Grey of An Unsuitable Job For a Woman. (She brought the two characters together in The Skull Beneath the Skin, which I found surprisingly successful.)

Frustrations of the Day, Part 1: I have a form to fill out that will, allegedly, take 2 minutes. I have made three attempts to get to it so far today and given up after 20 minutes each time.

Frustrations of the Day, Part 2: I may have a meeting on Wednesday some ways away from where I normally work. It would be nice for someone to confirm whether or not it is happening.

Frustrations of the Day, Part 3: There are a couple of meetings coming up that either I or one of my colleagues should be at. It would be nice to know if I am going, because that makes planning my time easier. Especially for the meeting on the other coast.

You might have guessed that today was frustrating. Actually, I was moderately productive for the first day back after being out of the office for a week. I had 6 things on my to-do list and got through 5 of them. The odds of being productive at home are lower, though I would settle for unpacking some of the stuff I brought back from my mother’s house.

I will try to be more interesting the rest of the month.
fauxklore: (storyteller doll)
This is the more general catch-up entry. Yeah, I know.

Celebrity Death Watch: Bob Hoskins was an actor. So was Efrem Zimbalist, Jr., who people of my generation will associate with The FBI. I want, however, to highlight Al Feldstein, the editor of MAD, a magazine that was a significant influence on my childhood. My father bought it, allegedly for my brother and me, but we noticed that the fold-in was always done by the time we got it. I understand that there is a game of 43-man squamish going on right now in his memory.

Yiddish Poetry Game: I like Yiddish (though I speak little of it) and like poetry, so I thought this special event put on by the Jewish Study Center would be fun. And it was. The idea is that everyone got two cards with poetry cues and two cards with Yiddish words (with English definitions). You matched a word to a cue and offered that up as something for people to use as a rule in writing a poem. For example, my combination led to "an acrostic on the word shtetl." Then everybody had time to write a poem using at least three of the rules. The results were interesting and I could definitely see playing this again. (Note that one can, of course, play the poetry game just in English.)

Business Trip: After getting back from Northlands, I had to leave for a business trip to Los Angeles early the next morning. There was the obligatory jog across ORD when my first flight was delayed and I had less than 15 minutes to make my connection. But things worked out okay. The design review I was there for was successful for the most part, but exhausting. The highlight of the trip was getting to see an aircraft assembly line, which had nothing to do with the actual purpose of being there. But, I suppose, it’s a lot tougher to show off software development.

Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival: I always swear I will not spend money at the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival, which is the largest fiber festival in the Eastern United States. (Think of it as a cross between a county fair and the world’s largest yarn store.) And, inevitably, there is irresistible temptation. In this case, it was the Tsock Tsarina Shark Week sock kit. It will be challenging, given my history with sock knitting, otherwise known as failing to complete a pair of socks . But some day I will master these.

Rose Valley Storytelling House Concert: After leaving the sheep and alpaca and rabbits (oh, my!), I drove to Philadelphia to go to a storytelling house concert at the home of Megan Hicks and Jack Abgott. It was an excellent evening. Kitty Hailey told amusing stories about her experiences as a private investigator. Robin Bady did an excerpt from her anti-bullying story, "Every Day is Basil Houpis Day," which left me wanting to hear the rest of the story. And Tom Stamp performed a mix of unusual literary stories. There was a great mix of types of material and the audience was responsive and engaged (and mingled well before the show, during intermission, and afterwards). It was definitely worth dealing with I-95. (Note, however, that I stayed up that way overnight. I’m not quite crazy enough to drive up and back the same day.)

Three Penny Opera: I drove back from Philadelphia on Sunday morning so I could see Three Penny Opera at Signature Theatre in the afternoon. Setting the story in the present day was an interesting decision – and not entirely effective, in my opinion. For example, having people snapping cell phone photos of Macheath on the gallows is mildly amusing but doesn’t really add to anything. The performances were more effective. Nastascia Diaz was excellent as Jenny. I also want to note Erin Driscoll as Polly Peachum. I was less enthralled by Mitchell Jarvis as Macheath, though I suspect that has more to do with the character’s inherent smarminess than with his performance per se. All in all, I’d say the production is not entirely successful, but I am not sure anybody could do this show in an entirely satisfying way.

Michael Reno Harrell: Storyteller and folk musician Michael Reno Harrell was passing through town last night and Ellouise Schoettler was offering a house concert featuring him. There was a small group, so it ended up being a "sit around the kitchen table and swap stories" type of evening instead. That was still a good time.

A Brief Note on Why Women Should Run Everything: I had a meeting today. It ran from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. with no break. Only a man would schedule things that way.
fauxklore: (storyteller doll)
And so it is again catch-up time. My pre-Pesach chocolate weekend will get its own write-up, but this is everything else.

Celebrity Death Watch: Jesse Witherspoon was a country singer / songwriter. Steven A. Shaw founded eGullet. Lorenzo Semple, Jr. wrote the first few episodes of Batman for television. Rubin "Hurricane" Carter was a boxer, but better known for having been wrongly convicted of murder and vindicated after many years in prison. Mickey Rooney was an actor.

Moving on to the literary world, Sue Townsend wrote about Adrian Mole. Peter Matthiessen wrote about snow leopards (among other things). Gabriel Garcia Marquez has the distinction of being the author of the book that has been in my unread pile the longest. I bought One Hundred Years of Solitude a good 20 years ago for a book club which fell apart before I got around to reading it and, somehow, I still haven't opened it. Seeing as how I am more likely to read dead authors, maybe it’ll bubble to the top of the stack soon.

Networking: The MIT Club of Washington had a dinner talk on Orbital Debris. That being a work-relevant topic for me, of course I went. I brought along two friends, one of whom is currently job hunting. What struck me is that neither of them made much of an effort at networking. I realize that they may have felt a bit shy because they are not MIT alums, but this was an obvious opportunity. I don’t think of myself as particularly good at schmoozing people up, but it seems natural at this sort of event. (And, yes, the talk was interesting, though I can’t say I learned much.)

Pierre Bensusan: As I have inevitably mentioned before, Pierre Bensusan is my favorite musician on the planet. He’s doing a 40th anniversary tour and he played a concert at Jammin’ Java, which is very close to my house. So, of course, I had to go. I’ve seen him perform numerous times before (for over 30 years, in fact) and I am happy to say his guitar playing is as amazing as ever. I was particularly pleased that he played Agadir Ramadan. He even played some new material. And, of course, I bought his new recording – a 3 CD live collection. If Django Reinhardt were still alive, maybe Pierre would have some competition, but that isn’t the case.

Pesach: Did you know that, prior to splitting the Red Sea, Moses had to file an Environmental Impact Statement?

In other holiday news, I cooked a potato and kale frittata which proved to be a surprisingly good idea.

Don Quixote: The American Ballet Theatre was at the Kennedy Center. I went to see Don Quizote on the grounds that I prefer narrative ballets to mixed repertory programs. On the plus side, Veronika Park and James Whiteside were very impressive dancers. However, the narrative was pretty weak, at least for somebody who has actually read the novel. Beyond the tilting at windmills scene, Don Quixote and Sancho Panza were mostly spectators to village (and gypsy camp) dances.

Tender Napalm: I don’t see a lot of straight (i.e. non-musical) plays, but Signature Theatre has a few as part of their annual subscription. This play, by Philip Ridley, was interesting, provocative, and disturbing. It involves two characters (Man and Woman) who may be stranded on a desert island. There is a lot going on between them, which may or may not involve a tsunami, a sea serpent attack, battling armies of monkeys, and/or an alien abduction. What seems to have happened in the real world is the death of their daughter, possibly in a terrorist attack. The violent imagery is a bit much to handle and it’s a difficult play to watch, but it definitely held my attention. I’m glad I saw it, but I am hesitant to recommend it. It felt more like a fringe production than something at a more mainstream theatre, so maybe I can offer a cautious recommendation on that understanding.

By the way, for future reference, Easter Sunday is possibly the ideal time to go to Signature. This was the first time in ages that there were dozens of open spots in the public parking areas of the Campbell Street garage. Unfortunately, I will probably forget that by next year.

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