Thursday, November 10, 2011

Peruvian Food and Zombies

My friend Kevin suggested a free preview of a play he'd heard of, and had a Groupon to a Peruvian restaurant about 8 blocks away, so we decided to make it a night.

The restaurant was really cozy and I liked the atmosphere. The menu had a fair amount of variety, unless you are a vegetarian, in which case your choices are variations of pasta and mushrooms. I can't eat mushrooms, so I made do with a really tasty yucca appetizer and some potato. Hey, you can't go wrong with starch. I liked the place, overall, limited food choice notwithstanding.

We walked the distance to the theater; it was a cold but calm night, so the walk was brisk and pleasant. At an intersection I recognized as the one by Fred's glass studio, and I mentioned that I'd ben thinking it was time to go back and do some more projects. I looked toward the studio, and who was coming out with his bike but Fred.

"FRED!" I yelled across the 5-way intersection. He looked up and I ran across and got a big hug.

"I thought you were mad at me," he said.

"No, I've just been busy and poor, and you know how time just passes and before you realize it a year has gone by," I said. "Can I come back?"

He assured me I could; I just had to call first to make sure he wasn't using all of the tables. I've been wanting to finish the two windows in my living room and work on something for the kitchen so I have more privacy; neighbors are very close.

Kevin and I finished walking to the theater, and made it just before the show began.

It was free, it was short, and it was an object lesson on how some actors could be less bad if they had some direction.

Set in Chicago, the play had this premise: a woman is shot at an amusement park, it's ruled an accident, but her husband believes she was murdered. She was (although why is never really explained). The husband, a newspaper reporter, works with a junior reporter to uncover the mob connection at the amusement park. They do this by working with an informant, a call girl who has been dating the corrupt alderman in hopes of bringing him down for the murder of her mother when she herself was 10. The reporter breaks the story without consulting the junior reporter (who has been the informant's contact); the mob figures out who snitched, and they kill her.

But before they kill her, she puts a Polish curse on the alderman and his henchmen. Henchmen begin to die quickly, and the ghost of the woman keeps appearing to wreak her vengeance, eventually killing the alderman as well as the male reporter who betrayed her.

The plot has its problems. Why was the reporter's wife murdered? Dunno. Why did the reporter run the story without warning his associate so she could in turn warn her informant? What kind of moron jeopardizes informants?

And why did Vengeance Woman work with a reporter to break a story that would bring down the corrupt alderman, when all she had to do was use her witchy powers to kill him? If she can come back from the dead and kill people with a gesture of her hand and some strobe effects, why didn't she just kill him when she could?

And most of all, what the hell was in the letter that was found left  for the junior reporter by the dead woman? We are never told, and this is pretty unforgivable.

"I"m so sorry," Kevin apologized later.

"Hey, I don't care, it was short and it was free," I said. "It was also educational. I did of course sit there thinking, 'and I can't get cast?!?'"

But you know, I had a good night anyway. It as one of those random, try new things, mellow deals. I like those.


karen said...

Alec and I went to see a play on Friday night, but more on that in a minute.

I agree with you. I will go see the worst of plays even if I know it is such because, well, why wouldn't you?! I would pay to be in a theatre without anything going on, I love to be in them so very very very much. So to see something someone has worked on, made the effort, even if it is abysmal, especially if it is free? I am SO there. Because you are right. There are always things to critically learn.

Sorry about the Peruvian restaurant. There was an outstanding one at Expo 86 -- I was working in a bar onsite and it was just down the way -- but you are right, it is much better if you are not a vegetarian. Lots of fish I seem to recall. But one of the best restaurants at that Expo, I can tell you. (Not that I had any money to go to the others, but it was one of the best I have ever gone to in my life (another being in Paris, France) so right up there.)

Anyway, Alec and I went to a play called The Penelopiad. And if you can get a copy of it, do, it was fantastic. Written by Margaret Atwood, who stays true not only to her voice (and the woman who played Penelope I swear did a perfect Margaret as well) but also true to the tradition of Greek theatre, with the chorus carrying much of the story and the women playing the roles of both women and men.

And thankyouverymuch Margaret, woman comes through for women again with 11 solid female roles (plus director and most others involved in this particular version being women) amazing stuff.

Seriously. Get the script, and then consider casting yourself as the main character and getting a bunch of women together to workshop this thing. It. Is. That. Good.

Sorry yours was bad. But you know, worthwhile. Like I said, I would go to anything anyday. Live theatre. But not movies. They have to be worthwhile or I come out all pissed off that my time was wasted. Funny eh?

But we saw something

JC said...

Thanks for the script tip - It sounds wonderful, and worth looking into. I just sent our for three auditions that claimed to need "men and women, all ages and types." I got one response. Wouldn't bother me so much if I didn't see so much bad acting out there.

"Kevin" and I went to dinner tonight, and as I said to him, my priorities are spending time with friends, with the activity often being secondary. I just like hanging with Kevin because we are so different that there's something nice about finally being able to relax around someone who takes awhile to get to know. If that makes sense. He;s my personality opposite, so learning how to be comfortable with someone who doesn't feel the need to fill up silence all the time is a good experience for me. So he's one of those people I just like being with, no matter what we do.

I actually love going to movies, but I am somewhat selective. I also have my theater preferences, and will wait for a movie to go someplace I like.

I'm just grateful that the Peruvian place didn't have guinea pigs for the entree. :-)