Saturday, August 30, 2003

i'm in london. we left the parents in keswick, after the monkey played a wonderful fourth wheel and didn't mind our craziness so terribly much, through northern scotland and a long drive through the west coast, and then today i finally kissed him on a train.

it's good. i'm ready to be back. i'm kind of dirty and i ran out of conditioner.

there's a tube stop on our line called cockfosters. perhaps i'm the only one who giggles.

london: stickier than manhattan. who knew? more when i've got it.

mind the gap.

Thursday, August 21, 2003

the scan shows no problem. the thing isn't bigger--and apparently doesn't really count as a tumor, yet. or possibly never. i jumped to conclusions, assuming 'spot' was a euphemism for the dirty word, when really . . . apparently, it could be inhaled fungi. relief.

we are still tired, and we are still dirty, but things are so solid, and so good, so solid milk chocolate santa good. i never even suspected how much i would like liking someone else.

Tuesday, August 19, 2003

you know, i'm tired.

i'm a little weary of being the reasonableness machine, although no one asked me to. and of performing for no one, and of not getting compliments (dumb) and of not getting paid (dumber, since i knew that one was coming) and of being so dependent, and of not having clean clothes or a bath.

the monkey's having a hard time of it, too, and i'm aghast to find myself with limited compassion for the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune that he thinks are trained on him. i hate for him to feel bad, and that's the truth, but some of the land we're navigating is a place where we feel very differently about our rights and privileges, what's owed to us, our place in the hegemony . . . perhaps it's healthier to take umbrage openly when you feel wronged, but coming from a grassroots place as i do, i watch in wonder as others seem to think that the stinky parts of this experience are personal affronts.

i worry, someday, that it'll be me who's not showing the appropriate deference, and then won't we have trouble.

but mostly i'm just tired. mom's tests come back today, and i'm frightened and weary and tired and very, very apprehensive.

Monday, August 18, 2003

the other morning, the statue of hume on high street was wearing a traffic cone on its head. when we walked through that evening, there was a man in a monk's robe and a starwars mask talking to someone dressed as a giant banana. when we passed them, we realized they were talking about shakespeare. of course.

birthday was it. we went out of town to a tiny village with white buildings and swans and had ice cream and also the best onion rings anywhere, anywhere. they were . . . like, vegetable doughnuts. and then we saw mike daisey's show, through the goodness of his heart. it was great. so was drinking wine in their beautiful temporary edinburgh apartment. ah, the life. good people.

a week left, and while we've all been okay, i'm suddenly feeling like i've been branded Unhappy Polly. so sue me. i don't mind not getting paid, and i've gotten past the general quality of the show, but notes after every performance . . . sticks in the craw. like i said, sue me.

one more week. i hope it'll be mostly good and later all of this will be good stories.

Saturday, August 16, 2003

i saw fiona shaw walk into the theatre. neener.

we saw some work done by a new york company here that rather affected me, and they remember my saying so, and they've said that they're coming to see the show. i keep freaking myself out wondering if they're in the audience and whether they like what i'm doing. dork.

and, we're back. the monkey crept out of his hole, i got my teacherfaced talking-to out of the way, and . . .

i could no more refrain from kissing the beautiful face than do a credible australian accent. oosh, my legs.

i haven't heard from the best one post-blackout, but she reads this sometimes, so: i was thinking of you, as soon as i heard. hope it wasn't too scary. i am believeing you're all right.

also, tomorrow's my birthday. don't feel like you have to get me something nice. after all, i'm . . . homeless.

Friday, August 15, 2003

the other thing i can't believe i haven't mentioned is that edinburgh appears to be made out of cat food. i mean, i smell cat food all the time. perhaps the earth's mantle has high tuna content here, and occasionally bubbles up to the surface in tiny cat food volcanoes. i am talking of course of the wet canned cat food, the kind i grew up calling "cat meat"--but had to stop when i realized other people think i mean the flesh of actual housecats. which of course i don't.

anyway, we had another meeting. a very admirable one, where the producers copped to the bad morale that's surrounded our lack of reviews and sucky houses, and admitted that coming all this way and losing money was acceptable only if we were having fun, so . . . let's have fun. i wholeheartedly admire that, and feel a bit shallow that i harbored doubts about their . . . i dunno, commonsense good will.

we met someone today who told us that new york is blacked out, and described people climbing out subway tunnels through emergency shafts. i can't imagine how scared people must be. whoever's in charge, new york could use a break.

Thursday, August 14, 2003

the best one just sent an email all about the cupcake she ate. i love her.

we melted down a little last night, but we made it through. doo lang, doo lang doo lang.

friends from home come to see the show tonight. also, we saw a much-praised work this afternoon that was complete and utter awful. through and through. it was freeing . . . who cares if the show isn't so good--it's better than crap. and if crap is garnering top stars, i'm suddenly less sad that no one's shown us the courtesy of an actual paper review.

we did, however, get mentioned in something called, "ScotsGay." i'm not joking.

and apparently, the gay scots?

they love me.

Tuesday, August 12, 2003

this is just to say,

oscar wilde's grandson came to my show last night. and went out with us for a drink after.

he's a very kind, intelligent man and i almost wet my pants.

the connection is through the producer's college professor, who knows merlin holland and is also a willy-wonka inspired creation with blue stained suit and bolo tie. mr holland just published a book containing the first complete transcript of oscar's trial, and so was at the book festival here.

he shook my hand, and more importantly, i made him laugh. most importantly, the monkey grabbed a matchbook from the restaurant so we will never forget.

Monday, August 11, 2003

there are signs everywhere on vacant buildings and offices and houses. you know, spaces TO LET. i was so surprised i hadn't thought of it first when the monkey leaned over and asked me why the I had fallen out of of all the toilet signs.

i can't quite call them toilets, and i'm surprised at myself. i'm not really one for euphemism, but . . . it just seems so bald. like, "excuse me, where is the TOILET, because in case you were wondering i'm going to POOP in it."

i'm trying "loo," but i worry i can't carry it off. kind of like how the monkey keeps saying "quid" and i can't tell him how terribly, terribly wrong it sounds, like jaques chirac asking to buy some "chronic."

Saturday, August 09, 2003

yesterday we had A Meeting. about 'strategies' to put butts in seats and blah blah blah. the survival plan that was drawn up isn't exactly draconian but is way more than i want to do. part of me is sympathetic, but part of me thinks: i could get excited about promoting the show if it were good. at the very least, if it weren't so bad on purpose. and that part was mostly your crappy decision making, so . . . my compassion is limited. also, really sorry about the thousands of dollars you stand to lose and all, but my plane ticket was nine hundred and fifteen dollars and thirty seven cents and the monkey is headed into debt at a rate of fifteen pounds a day for lunches and sundries, so . . .

we want what's coming to us.

like my friend kate's wall says, i just came for what's mine.

i said the other night: do you ever think you know exactly what's going to happen to us, and then realize that we could probably have no idea? i was saying this because i build large castles of permanence in my fancy, but really, the brain is underripe fruit, so . . . but the monkey said yes, yes, he did, but he grinned so big i could tell he thought it was the world's great gift to boys. isn't it great? he said.

ha. yep.

Friday, August 08, 2003

the mist here is almost like smog. i was prepared for the cool temperatures, but the haze really took me back. it's never clear here.

we hiked a mountain yesterday (at home, it's a hill. here, gigantic). we couldn't find the path home and these two beautiful elderly scots took us there in their nice car. we had just been looking at them--they were lying in the sun on the grass, him shirtless and her in a camisole, and we were placing bets on whether they were going to do it when they got home. i felt bad that i'd been talking about them when they did such a nice thing for us, but really it was out of admiration. they were the hottest looking old people i'd seen in a long time.

being together has to be really good to be worth being together. and funnily, it is. i was trying to articulate the series of good/ungood/good/good/great/anger/good/sleep and i can't, really, but thinking of it that way is large for me.

something about being artistically frustrated in scotland brings out the good loving, though. gracious. this body feels like it's sixteen and finding its lovelegs again. i was afraid that was gone.

Wednesday, August 06, 2003

1. so, okay. i've seen tony clifton three times in edinburgh. once watching the free belly dance performance, singing along and half-gyrating. once on a public bench wearing a red-white-and-blue lei. and once today striding through the crowd, wearing what looked like four giant cell phones in padded cases strapped to his multiple belts. sideburns, shades and creepy mustache constant throughout.

2. edinburgh has a fucking robot store. girls love it.

3. it isn't a 'store,' it's a 'shop.' i love shops.

4. host dad asked his wife yesterday to pass the cookies by saying, 'could i have a wee bickie before i go?'

5. crappy summer jobs and disgust with tourists are universal, so i don't blame you, young bagel shop workers. i wouldn't want to take my order either.

6. if the show is so crappy it's making us unhappy (and it is it is it is), i'm going to take every morning off from my incessant flyering to have a cup of coffee and read the paper. so there.

7. wee bickie, wee bickie, wee bickie.

Tuesday, August 05, 2003

bad. bad. bad. the play is bad.

last night, i felt like someone had tied me to a giant web and left me as a helpless target for passing knifethrowers. horror. bleh.

really, though, i've never felt as walled is as i do. part of it's the way the part's written and a lot of it is the anti-direction the director's responsible for, but . . . in any case, i'm not proud of my inability to break through it.

i'm trying to remember the good stories while we're here, so:

the monkey coming back from a coffee house, beaming, saying, 'they call them 'shooters' here! you don't ask for a shot, you ask for a shooter! the guy said, 'one shooter' and i said, 'no, two!''

and then he sipped, and yes . . .

shooter is shootah is shoogah is sugar. two sugars.

Saturday, August 02, 2003

oh, it's great here. even if the tech is a mess.

the house we're in is full of smells that make me think, unclean. even if really they're just . . . foreign dankness. there are funny damp air spots, and some sort of migrating cat pee whiff that darts over the bed when i can't sleep.

and i can't. sleep. i'm turning into my insomniac parents. the monkey finally admitted that he feels almost trapped in our bed, what with my crabby reactions and deep sighs and tossing and rules about available light and mid-night bathroom trips.

like i said, tech was a mess. simplicity, you'd think, would be the watchword of these trips . . . sadly, that spirit is missing. more fucking hats and jackets and ridiculous lighting than i've ever seen--the whole show is lit by down-focussed un-gelled lights. in spots. blech.

but people seem to like us. and i heart being a broad abroad.

(the sandwich man called me 'love' yesterday.)

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