Friday, April 25, 2008

a hard-luck story

I answered my front door this afternoon and there was a younger 20 or 30-ish woman there. She was dressed in too-tight short shorts, sandals and a tank top and was holding an uninterruptible power supply and a large wire brush.

She asked if I knew what they were and if I might want to buy them from from her. She went on to explain that she needed the money because her boyfriend who had brought her here from St. Louis a few weeks ago had taken her to a liquor store, sent her in to buy something and then drove off.

I felt like an extra in one of those post-war Italian neo-realist films. That could be the plot for one. They basically go like this: something bad happens to someone, he spends the rest of the film trying to solve the problem, but doesn't.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Fattening Gandhi

You may have noticed that opera singers tend not to be tiny creatures. Posing behind a staircase bannister only helps a little.

It's an alternate universe in which a 300-pound man can play a teen-age boy and a 250-pound woman can be a "nymph".

None-the-less, imagine trying to cast the lead in "Satyagraha", an opera by Philip Glass (Philip Glass Philip Glass Philip Glass Philip Glass Philip Glass... that guy) about the famously thin Mohandas Gandhi. You can read about the new Metropolitan Opera production in a New York Times article Opera About a Giant’s Life, Complete With Giant Puppets in which they duly note that singer Richard Croft lost "10 pounds" for the role.

This seems to have gotten him down to somewhere between Jesse Ventura and Mussolini, I'd say. If only Ghandi had been known for wearing more slimming colors.

The NY Times also has a nice video piece about the staging and large scale puppetry in the production.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Murder, she campaigned

My 104 year-old aunt doesn't understand why Angela Lansbury is running for President and thinks she should go back to making those nice detective shows.

Monday, April 07, 2008

The whitest Indian in America

Charleton Heston just died and I realize I've mostly only seen his well-known blockbusters like Ten Commandments, Ben-Hur (he looks marvelous) and Planet of the Apes. So I went to Netflix to check up on some others.

Here's a little-known outing...Far Horizons, as described by Netflix:

At the request of President Thomas Jefferson, in 1803, explorers Meriwether Lewis (Fred MacMurray) and William Clark (Charlton Heston) set out to explore the untamed, trackless Western lands recently purchased from France (in the Louisiana Purchase).

That sounds like good casting... I'm interested... then we have this info:

Donna Reed portrays Indian maiden Sacajawea, who helps the explorers.

Now, that is Hollywood being Hollywood as only Hollywood can.