Tuesday, July 11, 2006

And Another Thing

There have been many deaths and births in my social circle lately. About a year ago I realized that whenever I heard about a birth I neurotically resented it because, since death exists to clear the way for new life, every birth is a divine assertion that I must die. Or so it seemed to me. It felt like every baby was killing me a little. That's pretty stupid, and I knew it, but it still felt true to me. Perhaps my recent fascination with vampires and the mythic warning they provide against clinging to life at the expense of others has helped heal me of that sad anti-birth viewpoint, or maybe it's just the timing of the death and birth announcements. It does seem as if every death announcement has been quickly followed by a birth announcement, establishing that birth doesn't necessitate death as I so cheerlessly believed; birth compensates for death.

Improved improv.

The Feminist Debutante Guild, an improv troupe of which I am the Zeppo, had its first show in about two years last saturday, and it may have been our best show ever! It was a variety format with several musical acts, all of which were terrif, and us doing improv and monologues. I'm usually the weakest link, and I think I was not particularly weak; meanwhile the others were in splendid form! So hurray for us. I dunno if I'll be able to do any future shows with them since I'm trying to dive back into theatre after my post-Kate break, but I'd like to see the troupe return to founder J'mel's original vision; actual long-form improv with no preordained structure. That's a gold standard for improvists, and the sooner we're willing and able to abandon preordained narrative structures the better.

Also I met a very nice lady after the show.

During the course of the show I was assigned the role of a "hard-core Republican," so of course I was rather mean to the Neo-Con artists, although if I'd been cast as a hard-core Democrat I would have been just as mean to the worst-case examples who seem to be setting the nonagenda for that party. I don't know if I was funny, but I do know I was mean. Anyway, I adlibbed a line that I've been thinking about ever since: "We're fighting them over there so they can kill us over there." I dunno how many audience members got the reference to the sound bite "We're fighting them over there so we don't have to fight them over here," but since then I've been pondering this cynical shadow side of that invasion justification. For the tiny minority of Middle Easterners who want to kill Americans, it's obviously easier to stay in the Middle East than to travel to America, so if America sends them a big batch of American youngsters it makes sense that there'll be few or no attacks on our turf. Is it really that different from sending a boatload of sacrificial Virgins to the Cretan Minotaur in order to avoid a war with Crete? Do some of the neo-cons think that it's better to let a bunch of low-income soldiers die at the hands of bloodthirsty terrorists if it distracts those terrorists from coming here and maybe taking out a plutocrat or two?

Not to turn this into a political blog, so let's shift to a subject on which I have greater expertise; my weight. Let's just say that I've got 205 flava. Oh help.

This weekend I'm doing the BATA (Birmingham Area Theatrical Alliance or something) auditions. I've got a funny monologue and a powerhouse song picked out; now let's see if I can sell them. There's a ton of local directors attending; most of them have seen me and know my parameters, but there are a few folks with whom I want to work but who don't really know me. Whether I'm doing cool theatre or doing nothing between now and the holidays will probably hinge on how I do Saturday.