Friday, September 29, 2006

A desk and a chair do not a set make

Yesterday I spent a really long time crafting one of my best posts ever. I polished it all up, added an appropriate smattering of humor, balanced the humor with a perfect compliment of sarcasm, then added a few heart wrenching details. I clicked "Publish Post".

That's when Internet Explorer displayed a new page -- outside of Blogger -- with an error message telling me "the web page you are trying to access cannot be found". Desperately, I clicked the "Back" button, only to be greeted with a completely empty Blogger "Create" screen. Arrrgggh.

So I'll try again, but this time my muse isn't with me -- so I can't guarantee you'll laugh and cry the way you would've had I been able to post yesterday's masterpiece. Story of my life.

Basically, here's the deal: I'm doing costumes for a show that opens next weekend. I agreed to do this gig way back in June when I was in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest with Rene. I love to sew and I love Rene, and I wanted to support him with his next show. It is my observation that unless your show has a member of this particular theatre's highly exclusive "inner circle" in the cast, you may not receive as much support as you need. (Translation: you are hung out to dry like shit on a shingle.)

So I offered to do the costumes for Rene. Let me say that again: FOR RENE. Yeah, I love the theatre, and I love being part of the whole process, yada yada yada, but I wanted to do this FOR RENE.

Auditions were in August. Rene got sick a couple weeks later and ended up in the hospital. The assistant "director" and the stage manager took over. (Here's where, in yesterday's lost post, I said a whole bunch of sarcastic stuff that was pretty funny and sorta mean and I think THAT's why my post -- karma, you know -- ultimately got zapped; I dunno.)

After a few weeks of continuing without Rene, the stage manager bailed. 'Nuff said.

A couple of weeks ago, I took my youngest son (he's 3) to a rehearsal to get started on costumes -- take measurements, etc. The joy of doing the whole thing was pretty much gone for me since Rene is no longer involved, but I'm certainly not going to walk away from a commitment.

All I can tell you about that rehearsal is that when I left I got in the car, looked at my three-year-old and said, "They are so screwed."

Gail and I often tell a story that happened years ago when we started a theatre company. We love to tell the story of the night a cast member reeled off a whole list of reasons why the production we were working on just wasn't going to work. She ended her rather dramatic monologue with the fact that we didn't even have a proper stage, and proclaimed: "A desk and a chair do not a set make!"

So let me borrow from that experience and say:

An --

...inexperienced theatre enthusiast in charge of a group of well-meaning but unfocused individuals charged with producing a very deep psychological drama set in the victorian-era which requires sound effects technical effects and lighting which has yet to do a full runthrough with very little set no props a ridiculous budget and no support from the theatre where this prodcution is supposed to take place...

--does not a play make.

But the costumes ain't too shabby, considering I have been given NO BUDGET and my repeated attempts to contact the "inner circle" have been ignored. How the fuck am I supposed to come up with three days worth of Victorian-era costumes for six people with NO BUDGET? Don't get me started on that stupid "inner circle" of theirs. Just don't get me started.

Nine weeks of doing Cuckoo's Nest and NOT ONE PERSON FROM THAT THEATRE ever said a word to me. NOT ONE FUCKING WORD.

Okay, that' s out of my system. For today, anyway.

On to brighter news: Rene is much better and doing great. My oldest son's football team brought home its first victory this week: the Kilbourne Middle School Cougars are 1-2-2! I'm trying to talk my middle son into auditioning for Curtain's "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever" (of my three , he's the actor) and my youngest has continued his success and has remained clean and dry for several weeks now -- giving up his diapers forever.

Did you know that you can make a great looking victorian-style petticoat out of a 99 cent valance from the thrift store? Woohoo!