Saturday, December 31, 2011


I promise myself to have more fun and worry less about money.
(I almost didn't buy a hardback book today, because of the price. When did books become luxury goods? It's Murakami's 1Q84 and I've wanted it for months. And I had a gift certificate, and yet...)
I will break out of being boring. Last year was all about money, making it, keeping it, spending it. I was so panicked about staying within the margins that I had very little "fun". Not acceptable. I don't buy anything new, except food. Fun should be a priority.
I will try and be more like Lionel in his sheer good nature and willingness to throw himself into a crowd. And talk to strangers. I'm so shy, I hide when he's speaking to someone. So I miss out on human interaction, which I crave. And I will attempt to speak to the playground mommy's even though I find them a bit scary and normal for me. I'm sure we have nothing in common. Yet I am turning into a bit of a hermit. Why is it so hard to meet new people? Where are the gentle weirdos?
I will be bold about my dreams.
I will keep working on crazy fulfilling projects that will probably go nowhere.
I will engage my mind, to stave off dementia if nothing else.
I will do a theatre project that I can't afford (babysitting) for my soul.
I will continue to dress the way I want, even if I am getting a little old to pull it off. If I keep my legs looking nice I should be able to get away with it. I might even go big this year and shave my head into a Mohawk.
I will no longer sit full of jealousy and or schadenfreude while reading about other peoples successes/failures. I'm not allowed to think snarky thoughts if I'm not throwing myself out there the way I want.
I shall wash the sheets more often.
I shall be nicer to people who irritate me, even though I'm not that good an actress, and oh so VERY easily irritated.
I will write, a lot, since it's something I can do without a babysitter. There are a lot of episodes of Phineas and Ferb to help me out.
I will be very kind to L and T, since I love them so very much, even when they both drive me to distraction.
(as in right now when L steals my laptop to watch a video and I have to download and install a new app on my iPhone to keep writing.)
I will keep the bathroom clean, even though it fills me with a searing anger and loathing of all mankind. Or maybe, back to the second point, a housekeeper can be classified as fun?
I will read more. Which means getting the heck away from cyberspace.
I will play my guitar. It's one thing that gives me genuine pleasure, yet I rarely touch it. What the heck?
And I will eat whatever the hell I want, because I always get food poisoning with normal things like packaged lunch meat, which happened yesterday which rendered me way too sick to enjoy New Years eve. The point is, I'm going to eat as much crazy food as I can.
And then I will go to the gym, which isn't a resolution, I actually like it there, but I do vow to be nice to the resolutioners in there this month, even if they are using all the cardio machines in awkward manners.
And I will make the effort to see the people I love away from cyberspace.
And finally, I will dance as much as I can, because dancing makes me happy and is fun. And I need to have fun before the world ends. (again)

Friday, December 30, 2011

Crisis in Actor-land...

Here is what acting is to me: Pretend.
I've always said (and I stole this from someone, who I can't remember) when I get onstage I put on a funny hat and trust to luck.
I'm not much into actors that "live" their characters, in all their smelly, depressed, antisocial glory. I don't particularly trust them onstage, and I've noticed that these actors will throw you under the bus for their own ends. And gladly lap up the applause at the end.
If you are working through something, please don't do it onstage. The theatre is not a couch and the director is not a therapist. If you are feeling something, great. I feel things too. Deeply, crazily, intensely. Until the scene is over. The  I go into the greenroom and play scrabble. And at the end of the show, even if I've just lost my family in a holocaust, the kingdom is on fire and my life is in ruins,  most likely all I am thinking of is how much I crave a tub of chicken liver and a nice bagel from Jerry's.
I used to be embarrassed that I wasn't intense enough. In acting school, you knew the people who took it seriously, they were wild eyed, unshaven wrecks who burned with fever onstage, and couldn't cope with their job at the donut shop offstage. I never felt legit, until I started studying in England, and realized that THOSE guys manage to stay fairly clean, and sane. My feelings of inadequacy absolutely turned around in the pub backstage at the National Theatre of Great Britain, when mere minutes after a bloody, crazy, intense INSANE performance of Titus Andronicus, Tony Sher was gleefully showing off his new pasta maker, not an angsty wrinkle in sight.
Feeling the truth of the scene is great, but please, please, PLEASE, you need to stay in control! No re drawing the choreography because you feel like doing something different.
Otherwise there would a lot of dead wispy ingenues at the end of a lot of Shakespeares.  Hmm... On the other hand...

Monday, October 31, 2011

Weighing the options

I have a confession to make, and it's a none too attractive one: I have finally lost weight. And I am irrationally, unspeakably thrilled about it.
The loss of a few pounds and the gaining of some muscle mass has made me as happy as booking a job or falling in love.
Isn't that appaling?
I was raised in the free to be you and me era! Body acceptance! Eating disorder awareness! I'm old anyway!
Being thin IS the best revenge, and you know why? Because it's HARD to lose weight. It's very, very hard work. It's boring work. It's giving up dessert and sweet potato fries and wine. There is no easy way to do it and stay healthy.
I am pretty disgusted with myself. I wish I didn't care so much. I'm not much of a feminist or a bodyist or whatever.
But this is a confession. And as such I have to admit it. I'm a woman in our society, an actress, we value our looks and fret when they begin to leave us. No not fret, we become tortured. We HAVE to look a certain way to be found attractive, because even the smart ones have to be attractive.  Even the character women have to be attractive. If not thin, then at least symetrical.
This is an exausting way to live, but much like the dog who expects his walk and treat at a certain time of day, I am conditioned to think that those four pounds mean the difference between social viability and a life in seclusion.
Good lord.
What an exhausting way to live.
Time. to hit. the gym.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Names WOULD have been changed

I have a post written about a very interesting topic, but I am actually afraid that if it gets out into the open, there might be trouble.
Might have to open up a rogue site....
I fear the vegans.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Ode to a dresser

Dear Alma,
A dresser has a lot to put up with. You help me get into my giant costume, don't flinch at zipping me up, and handle my gross sweaty self with elan. Because, oh gentle reader, no matter how NICE we look, we actors sweat. A LOT. Puddles of sweat. And Alma never recoils, at least in our presence. She puts up with helping us put on our smelly shoes, and she WASHES our appalling undergarments.
Seriously, dressers put up with a lot. "OMG its places and I only have my tights on HELP!" "OMG its places and I ripped  my petticoat, HELP" "OMG, I need to pee! Hold up my ridiculous garments!" Yuck.
Alma! Come zip me up, hold my gum, snap me into my corset, fix my ripped lace... There is a whole category or French farce devoted to ladies maids, and that is what dressers are. And I hope they know WE know we would be wrecks without them. And we worship them, and they have us over a barrel. Because, if I don't have clean tights, I can't go onstage!

OC Arts and Culture Review!

“Clothes” Makes the Musical a Snap

Posted on 31 May 2011 by Hannah Petrak
emperor2Marcus is only 14 years old and he just became the new emperor, even though he hasn’t finished reading “How to Become an Emperor” yet. He has no idea how to run a country, or even make people believe he can. Sounds like a problem only magical garments can take care of.
A musical version of “The Emperor’s New Clothes,” as part of the Theatre for Young Audiences series at South Coast Repertory, has everything to keep the children staring wide-eyed at the stage. The costumes alone were like their own exciting tales: over-the-top wigs, splayed coattails, and doorframe-wide hoop skirts; and of course, one delicate hanger holding the magical, invisible clothing to make Emperor Marcus, played by Alex Miller, a winning success.
The crowd favorite was Chad Borden as the Swindler. His flexible high-kicks and expressive face, wooed Marcus into a perfect swindle meal for a con artist like him. And 6-year-old Quinn, my date for the afternoon, poked me to whisper, “He’s funny,” the highest of accolades from this young lady.
emperor3A moon or two ago when I was Quinn’s age, I saw this play, at the Laguna Beach Playhouse, if my memory serves. Sans music, I believe. It only makes sense to add more whims to an already fantastical play. However most of this version’s music, by the Tony Award-winning duo Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty, was pretty unmemorable. Each song seemed to copycat the one before.  There was one salient number, though, that the crowd loved, repeating the lines about oatmeal and emus to one another: “Only a Guy Like You.”
The rest of the cast was just as delightful. Diana Burbano and Todd Neilsen as Deena and William were a perfect blundering support for poor Marcus; and Arno the scrub boy, played by Jeffrey Christopher Todd, helped make the forbidden relationship with the young emperor a charming necessity, and some my favorite scenes.
The actors normally come out in costume after the show to sign autographs and pose for pictures with the children, during which Emperor Marcus did cover himself after the famous entrance in which he wears his invisible clothes. “You don’t have a shirt on!” a particularly perceptive young voice called out during the climax. No. He did not have a shirt on. But that’s the only way some people learn it’s the not the clothes that make a man.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

We have opened! And we close in a week!

Weird TYA schedule! We finally open after 12 performances. It's like Spider Man. It's been pretty nice seeing how many people remember me from other shows. People who saw me pregnant in "James and the Giant Peach" ask me how my baby spider is doing, and I had a couple of kids tell me how much they love my Cat from "Bunnicula"
There is definitely a "last days of school" sense around SCR as we are the last production of the season. Most everyone is gone or packing up, and our deck crew is getting punchy. Watching Rebecca and Kristen do Arno's dance in the wings, and listening to Jenny talking about Super Coupons or Michael Jackson is highly amusing. Wendy needs a nap, Lois needs a trip, Liz needs to get to DC and Victor needs sleep. God knows what Jon needs. On top of all their concerns they know our parts better than we do!
Alex is getting flirted with a lot. Today a grown woman was the first to shout out, "You are naked!" before he even asked the kids. Slightly overexcited, if you ask me.
Lionel brought me flowers today and came backstage while I changed. He's not at all stagestruck, just amused by the nonsense of adults wearing costumes and playing with dragons. I think HE thinks we are pretty silly.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

We are in previews already and audiences seem to like us. I was accosted by a darling 4 year old in a silk shirt who ran at me and told me he LOOOVVEED me, and Alex had a little girl confide in him that she too had pink underwear. I've never worked for Disney, but have somehow perfected the Disney Princess smile and squat for pictures.
We are still ironing out some of the tech elements. And, it's a fairly athletic show. It was a little gross to go off to lunch, after setting out my tights and chemise to dry, come back 2 hour later, and they are still wet. EWWWW! And not just a little damp. I am sweating like a man. I need to get on a scale and figure out how much the costume weighs. The nerd in me wants to wear a calorie counter and see how much my heart rate goes up while on stage. I once sneaked one on, and even in a sedate drama, my heart rate goes into low cardio mode. I think that's why even the actors who don't look very fit, are healthier than the average desk jockey. Performing in West Side Story was like running a marathon. I was super skinny and ate like a Longshoreman.
Jeffery Todd relaxes in the greenroom
I came back from lunch the other day to find our director fast asleep on the cot in my dressing room. It's only because I'd like to work in this town again that I didn't put my wig on him and take pictures....

William the royal adviser
Company preview was fun, if stressful. I did my song about clothes all in tribute of the poor, overworked costume shop, but the biggest applause came when our deck crew came onstage with horns at the start of the parade and did a little dance. Our first preview coincided with "Three Days Of Rain" opening night so a bunch of us went to TGIF's in an effort to crash the opening night party, but it was a crash fail for me. Too dang tired. We TYA-ers don't get parties. And I suspect if we did the hors'd'ouvres  would be peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and macaroni and cheese. And milk.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Tech is Hell day 1.

Only amateurs call it hell week, but that doesn't mean that it's a bed of roses in the professional world.
Yesterday was our first tech-thru on the stage. That means that we are on set and the tech element take first priority.
I arrived at the theatre and prepped my own hair into pin-curls. (Ouch. I hate having my arms above my head for that long.) Put on my wig cap, then into my first layer: Colorful tights, chemise, mic-pak, petticoat. Mic is then installed and taped. Mic tape hurts like hell coming off by-the-way. My mic is placed on my forehead at my wig line. Slather on the semi-restoration make up. then corset, overskirt, shoes and at the last possible second, my 15 pound jacket.
Let me pause here to wonder why it is that, when you are doing a show as energetic and sweaty as this, costume designers are compelled to put you in the heaviest most un-breatheable fabric, and deadly cruel shoes? Ah, the look. Well we look spectacular  but I lost 10 pounds yesterday... heck why am I complaining?
On this show the first thing we worked was a series of quick costume changes for Alex. The ladies of the cloth are suffering through their last week before summer, and I know that things are tough, but know your work is appreciated and admired!(I know, I know, say it with a check) Lots and lots of elaborate costumes have been created for "Emperor", which is funny 'cause the show is about how clothes can't make you into anything you aren't, or something like that. Of course being creatures of the theatre, most of us disagree. Nothing makes ME feel better than a Betsey Johnson dress and a pair of Jimmy Choo's.
Then we started our tech-thru, where we actors are basically part of the set as we figure out how the set is going to be changed, where things have to happen, etc. The lighting designer, Tom Ruzika, is working light over us, the sound is being built and modified  in a flash by Drew Dalzell and his crew. Jenny Butler captains the ship as first chair. We are playing on a jewel box of a set by Fred Kinney, complete with fountains, beds, monkeys, an elephant and a wayward dragon. On deck we have the intrepid Wendy, Kristin, Liz and Rebecca. I hope we aren't shocking Rebecca too much.
So you can see that wrestling with all those elements make us actors relatively unimportant on these first few tech days. That's why we have to know our stuff cold. It's not about us anymore.
At the end our our 8 out of 10 day (Per AEA 8 hours working 2 hour dinner ((nap)) break) we were all flopped on the floor, if we had costumes that allowed it or leaning on walls if we didn't. Feet hurt, mic-tape was pulling, and I wanted a sirloin steak. When Jenny called it a night we didn't move from bleariness. But honestly the crew is so sweet to us, possibly more than we deserve. They had been running around pulling sets, hauling furniture, and wrangling actors, and they had to stay later than us. Of course I was too jazzed to sleep and stayed up talking to T till 1am, then got woken up by Lilo at 6:55am. And no nap for me today, I have to teach a Conservatory class during my dinner break. Hi-diddle-dee-dee!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

I will not brag, because that would be rude, but we are so ahead of schedule it's ridiculous. Nick is one of the most efficient and clear directors I have ever worked under...
What I can report is my unspeakably beautiful costume, designed by Soojin Kim, and executed by  Miz Bronwen "Wicked Wen"Burton. I guess Brides have to be fitted and have patience in the fitting room, but I doubt bridal fittings can compare to the care of the SCR ladies of the cloth. These costumes are DESIGNER. Totally bespoke, fitted to our bodies and so breathtaking. I guess it's what rich women feel when Lagerfeld custom builds outfits for them. There is such a pleasure in knowing that somone may WEAR the dress again, in fact, it's very likely, but it was made for ME. Bwahahahaha! The above picture isn't it. I'm going to save the finished product for later....

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Day.. uh...I forget.

There hasn't been much to report. Putting a show on it's feet is mainly repetition, and that is a bit boring to describe. We've been doing run thru's and refining moments, clarifying the story and "buttoning" the bits. It's good that we can get it really tight before tech, because the tech elements always throw you for a bit of a loop.
Got to try on my Amadeus/Tartuffe-y wig today. I love the way I look with white hair. I'm always trying to go lighter but I haven't got the patience to get thru the gradual stage. The wig hasn't been styled yet so I looked like Bowie in Labyrinth. In other words ALARMINGLY sexy! Can't wait to see what it will look like styled. Time to pull out the summer hats, 10 minutes in pincurls and my hair was bigger than Alfalfa's.
Nick is a fun person to act for. He's very collaborative, but he also has this way of getting you to do exactly what he wants. My show husband is Todd Nielsen, who is quite handsome, and very funny, and a dream to be onstage with. And our headmistress first chair, Jenny Butler, keeps us in line but isn't above bopping to the catchy tunes.
We are in the Co-Lab this week, which everyone suspects is haunted, but I think being in the basement just makes you crazy. Can't wait to get on the Argyros!

Friday, May 06, 2011

Dancers are not like you or me.

Damn. It's hard for me to believe I played Anita, or Lois or Ado Annie. I was always a Musical Theatre singer-who-moves masquerading as a dancer. I danced, but it was torture. I look back on the lifts, the foot work and the extensions and I promise you, I fooled myself into believing I could do those things. I was never graceful, but I was enthusiastic. I think what saved me was a "broken" body. I was short, but I had a body that wanted to pose in a Fosse fashion, so at least I always LOOKED interesting.
All of this is a preamble to praising my fellow cast member Chad Borden. What an utterly gorgeous mover he is. He dances and I can tell, it's butter for him. No overthinking, no pretending, just raw clear, clean movement. Melt, melt, melt.
I need to get back into class......

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

I can barely keep my head up to type.
Not much to report, except that the show is more or less blocked, so we are a week ahead of schedule. My favorite moment today was watching Alex Miller and Jeffrey Todd do their Oatmeal song. Utterly charming. Bringing the A game to the TYA...
My directing project, "Connecticut Yankee..." is going pretty well too. I absolutely love these kids. They are pretty nuts, most of 'em, but they are really funny. I taught them the word "Schtick" today. I didn't have to teach them how to come up with it, just what the word is. Watch out for flying splinters from these kidlets!

Sunday, May 01, 2011

God, It's only day 3? One thing theatre artists are genius at is INTIMACY. We learn to trust, love and tease someone we barely know much sooner than folks at average jobs because trust is so important in our business. We specialise in being fools. And fools are sweet and sharp and we GET each other's foolishness. There isn't any time to put up walls. Walls (besides the 4th) are the anathema of good theatre. You just have to TRUST that the person next to you is going to get his set piece in place, so you won't trip, so the play can move forward. You open yourself to vaguely inappropriate jokes and innuendos, because you won't know each other 6 weeks from now. The skill is: become a family. Love each other. Work hard. When the play is done, you will have a VERY friendly divorce. Until the next time you work together....

Friday, April 29, 2011

What would I do without take out?

Reason #273 to love Long Beach: I can walk a block, pick up an exquisite veggie and sausage pizza from Pizza Pi, and go home to eat and vegetate with pictures of Windsor hat madness.
How can so much fun be so exhausting?
Day two was more learning of music, hammering home harmonies, practicing singing to the track. (Man I miss orchestras. Someday there will be actors who have NEVER sung with a live musician. And that would suck)
I met our fearless leader today, Nick DeGruccio, it's my first time working with him and I am delighted to find that he is funny, kind and quick.
Design for my costume by Soojin Lee
After a design presentation, (No matter how many years I've done this, costume and set presentations always knock me out. The fabrics are incredibly rich! And the set! For to die.) We plunged into our first read/sing through. Always scary when you JUST learned the music, but we got through it with lots of laughs. Nick threatened us with a week of table work, but he was kidding and we started a quick and dirty blocking.
I wonder if the audience ever realizes how goofy early musical rehearsals are: We are in a room that isn't even a quarter size of the stage, we have books in hand and (I at least) are schmacting furiously while learning choreography and set dressing, blocking on the fly. While trying to imagine the size of the clothes, so you don't bump into anyone. While trying to remember the harmony. And the layout of the set. And finding a brand new character. And smooching on someone you barely know. And erasing everything after he re-blocks it.
Now I will eat my 2 slices of pizza (more and I won't fit into my corset) woodshed my harmonies, read to, bathe, and put Lionel to bed, and collapse with my script on my chest.
Criminal fun.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Music Mash

How is it possible that sitting on my bum learning music for 4 hours leaves me so tired that I need a nap? Perhaps I'm out of practice.
That's what we did today, we got ushered up to an odd little room, given a welcome speech by John Glore, the TYA guru at SCR, I got measurements taken by the ladies of the cloth, Kat and Bronwyn, then threw myself into learning music.
I am not the worlds best sight-reader. I always try to learn material as soon as possible and try and have it down cold by first rehearsal because I have this THING about perfection. Slightly problematic. Anyhow, I decided to try and be zen and come into the room and test my newly acquired sight reading skills (I acquired them by putting the score to Caddie Woodlawn into Sibelius. It was MONTHS of on the job training. Seriously, for the amount of time I put into that @#%$! Sibelius, I should've gotten a Masters in music theory.) So there I was naked and exposed (That's going to be fun for the googlers) and I think I did OK. Learning to let go of my music anxiety is a big thing I am working on.
We sang through almost the whole score. (I am loving the iPhone recording app, so easy and great sound quality.) Then we did company business, picked a deputy, (sorry Alex!) signed contracts and were let go early. Easy peasy. But it's only the first day. TYA world is taking it easy on us, because it's about to get much, much harder.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Caveat Emperor!

Well I guess it's official. I've joined the cast of Emperors New Clothes at SCR! I think I'm going to do a day to day blog, describing the process of putting up an Equity show from an actors point of view.
South Coast Repertory is a great place to work, especially in the light of all the recent season cancellations and theatre closures.  One thing that has been especially hard for union actors is the fact that due to budgetary constraints most places like to do very small cast shows. Sometimes it seems like SCR is the only game in town, and the competition is fierce. I had the very great pleasure (for a scaredy-cat like me) of not having to audition for this show. I was asked, and was able to accept. I think that is the position all actors strive for, but it's so rare to have something offered. Feels very sweet.
I'm always astonished at the organization of this machine. I have already been asked for and sent in a bio, was contacted by contracts and have been given my schedule in a clear concise manner. And my first rehearsal is tomorrow! It's going to be especially crazy because the building is humming and full to the gills with actors in the Pacific Playwrights Festival readings,  two fully produced shows, the youth and adult conservatory with its hundreds of students and the studio series Burley-Q queens(!)
It's a small bustling city, and it's a dammed exciting place to be.
Tomorrow: Music, and fittings and contracts, Oh my!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

SPS: An update

I am quite pleased and frankly amazed to report that my Loan Modification came thru and is everything I wanted and more. Re-reading my frankly hysterical last post, I wish I could hang my head in shame, say "Aw, Gee, silly me!"... But.  Big But... Bigger than any big butt you could imagine...
It took me a year to be heard and understood. A year. I was on the phone with people for hours that I wish I could bill for. And what was I asking for? A ridiculous bail out, for my foolhardy spending habits? A government handout? No dear reader, no. I was asking for a conforming loan, a non-adjustable rate loan, to leave my horrible interest only loan behind. A loan I deserve because I am a good risk, have excellent credit and pay on time. I can hardly believe it has come to pass, but it took contacting the Better Business Bureau and the company's Ombudsman to make it happen.
I am nothing if not dogged. Actually I am a terrier. I will snarl and snuffle and worry something until I get my way. Fair warning.
And if anyone out there is dealing with trying to get a loan mod,  find out who the ombudsman is and get that person to help you. Don't be defeated by the foot soldiers, the people who reject you on the front line. If you are an actor, or any kind of self employed person, it is going to be YOUR responsibility to educate the loan people. They don't know how to deal with you, so you must do your research and have the answers.
1. Learn what a profit and loss statement is. Make one now. Keep updating it.
2. Keep ALL your pay stubs.
3. Document all the places your income comes from. You are going to have to explain the concept of "residuals" several times.
4. Get ready to explain why you have w2's and 1099's. And why so many
Get smart about your finances. No one is going to bail you out except yourself.
And for anyone wondering why I had one of those horrible, recession causing, market destroying loans in the first place, I did it because no one would rent me an apartment because I had no rental history, so buying was my best and only option. But I ALWAYS paid into the principle, and I knew what I was getting into and I also knew I needed an exit strategy.
Feel free to ask any questions. I will help if I can.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Select Portfolio Servicing: Satanic or Stupid. An Actors View

Here is my experience with the dunderheads of Select Portfolio Servicing.

After a year of working with them on a loan modification, where month after month, they "need more documentation" Pay stubs, my blood in small vials, I finally figure out what the problem is.

I am an actor. My income is scattered. I am on salary for short stretches, sometimes a day.
The loan people don't understand this. "Well if you are part time with TheatreCompany why can't you go full time, pick up more hours?"  
Really? I. Am. An. Actor. We are always trying to pick up more hours. Duh.
"But you have a very LARGE check from TVPayroll , so that must be your new employer?"
How does one explain residual to a layperson?
"But it's all W2?"
Yes. Yes it is.
But self-employed people are 1099
In your little cubicle based life, I suppose that is true. I however get w2's. Many W2's Many, Many W2's.

They don't get it, refuse to get it, or are simply trying to drive me crazy so I quit.

The Satanic part? "Well after looking over your income this month (AAAUUUGGGHH!!!!) I think the best idea would be to sell your home. Here let me get you to one of our bloodsucking, red eyed demonic agents, and they will sell your home for you! Leaving you still owing us money! And nowhere to live!
I finally get it. They don't want, need or have motivation to help anyone. I am not desperate but, boy if I was, these assholes would have me out of my property and on the street faster than you could say Ben Bernanke. And the absolute worst part? I have to stay with them. I have no choice in the matter.
When did I land in Dante's 9th circle?
PLEASE file a complaint against them with the BBB!

Friday, February 04, 2011

Excerpt from "Caliban on the Sea" a new TYA play by Diana Burbano

Scene 2

Lights come up on a tropical Island, strewn with debris from last night's storm, but sunny, calm and beautiful. Perhaps the Bahamas. VI, a young girl of about 12, is asleep in the sand a blanket of seaweed on her, her clothes in tatters. CAL, a creature of myth, horned, with intelligent eyes and the ability to walk upright is singing to himself while rifling through a trunk.

Cal: (song) Full Fathom Five Thy brother lies
His bonny head is now a stone
The happy thoughts that in him lay
Are now lost, and to you gone
He does suffer a sea-change
Into something wild and strange
Sea-cows urge him to rebel
Hark! I hear them, Ding Dong Bell.

Full fathom five thy sister lay
Her fate entwined with me and mine
The rags she wears you did mislay,
And now she weeps in the moonshine
She makes unto her own sea-change
Into something passing strange
She alone must ring her knell
Hark, Do you hear her? Ding Dong Bell


Too small, too big, too odd...(Throws objects pell-mell onto the sand. Stopping to pocket a flute and to put a pair of spectacles on his head.)

VI : (Dreaming of something frightening. Trying to wake up.) Lost, blue, heavy water, stop winking at me whale!...nothing...BAST! (looking around wildly) Bast... oh.... (sees Cal) Get away from that! (tries to wrench trunk away, gets into a fierce game of tug of war until she she gets a good look at Cal.) Oh. (Drops trunk. Her hand goes to her belt where a sword should be.)

CAL: Hain't nuthin' gonna fit me nohow. Tough to pull petticoats on over the horns.

VI: Take off those spectacles, they belong to my brother

CAL: B'longed. B'longs t' me now. Found it. Founds you too.... Mebbe you b'longs to me now.

VI: You can't own another human... (considers Cal's odd appearance) creature, talking creature.

CAL: (puzzled) Course you can. Don't fret Missy, don't want you tho', eats too much probly, and cries, all girly like.

VI: I don't cry! I haven't cried since I was a baby...(Starts to sniffle. Looks out over the water) What.... what end met the ship? I lost my head when I lost hold of... (sniffs) Bast's hand. The Waves were so wild, they were almost ALIVE. I thought we were riding the backs of dolphins, because I never sank and I don't think I was breathing the sea... but... I don't remember! I saw a monster... oh... it was YOU!

CAL: That's rich. Do I look scaly to you? (scratches his head) Never mind, praps I do...(Shakes himself like a dog, scattering water droplets. Starts to walk off)

VI: Where are you going?

CAL: Dreamed of a kidlet, mirror image of ye... gonna see if he's a breather yet.

VI: Bast! Have you seen him? Did the dolphins save him? Did you?!

(Cal leaps away fast as a cat. A few seconds later the spectacles are tossed back. Vi gently polishes them and puts them in her pocket.)

Photo: Caliban Stratford 2010