I became insane with long intervals of horrible sanity.
Edgar Allen Poe

The trouble with fighting for human freedom is that one spends most of one's time defending scoundrels. For it is against scoundrels that oppressive laws are first aimed, and oppression must be stopped at the beginning if it is to be stopped at all.
- H. L. Mencken

Many people would sooner die than think; In fact, they do so
-Bertrand Russell

What I have been telling you, from alpha to omega, what is the one great thing the sigil taught me — that everything in life is miraculous. For the sigil taught me that it rests within the power of each of us to awaken at will from a dragging nightmare of life made up of unimportant tasks and tedious useless little habits, to see life as it really is, and to rejoice in its exquisite wonderfulness. If the sigil were proved to be the top of a tomato-can, it would not alter that big fact, nor my fixed faith. No Harrowby, the common names we call things by do not matter — except to show how very dull we are ...
-James Branch Cabell

August 20, 2012 - 6:44 p.m.

Return of the Living Dead ... and Marti

Think of ten words to describe me. I bet one of them is something akin to energetic. People always comment on my energy. So what did I do today? After therapy I came home and was pretty much immobile for the entire afternoon Like one of my heroes Sherlock Holmes, I can be a dynamo when stimulated but alternate that with periods of enervation. You just don't see me when I'm listless. It took two large mugs of coffee to give me the energy to write this. As for Sherlock Holmes being a hero I don't consider the fact that he didn't have to go through the wear and tear of actually disqualifies him. In fact it's an asset.

Yesterday I was not enervated so it will be a lot more interesting to write about that. My first stop was The Living Theater on the Lower East Side to see Snow White: Zombie Apocalypse.. That was the first stop but not the beginning of the story. As is so often the case the journey is important, not just destination. Google maps said it was only 3.7 miles away and the weather was perfect, so I decided to walk it. I've been wanting to walk across the Manhattan Bridge since I moved here and I finally did. I'm going to try and walk across the Williamsburg and Brooklyn Bridges too. The only one I've walked before this is the Brooklyn.

Here's the map of my walk.

View Larger Map
I love taking walks like that and I don't know why I haven't been doing it since I moved in here. I could walk to the Living Room, it's slightly closer. The Brooklyn portion of the walk was pedestrian (pun totally intended) but things got interesting on the bridge. I got to see fun things in DUMBO (Down Under Manhattan Bridge Overpass) like a rooftop tennis court. I got a nice view of the carousel by the beach near the Brooklyn Bridge. The Brooklyn Bridge is much more beautiful but you get a better view of it from the Manhattan Bridge. As I was crossing I felt so strongly how much I love this City and how much it's part of me and I'm part of it. I belong here like hobbits belong in the Shire.

If I were deaf and blind I would have known when I got over Chinatown? How? The smell! It smells like Chinese food. The rest of the country might have hang-ups about foreign immigrants, especially when they don't speak English. New York knows better. The street signs in Chinatown are bilingual. When I was a kid and there were still phone booths, they were topped with small pagodas. We didn't want to drive immigrants away. The City's attitude was, "Look people came from half across the world to live here and they brought good food with them! That's cool!" Of course New York has xenophobes and bigots but they don't want them to move back where they came from. New York's Archie Bunkers just don't want them next door. It's pretty hard to imagine the City functioning without immigrants.

When I was walking through the streets I heard traditional Chinese music and followed the sound. In a small square I found some sort of festival going on. I was the only one there that wasn't Asian and everything was in Chinese so I had to deduce what was going on. It looked like some sort of art competition. Old men came out carrying paintings. They'd unveil them when they got to their seats. People would applaud. If I didn't have to get to the theater I'd have watched longer.

I was supposed to get to the theater at 3:30. I arrived at 3:28. Not bad timing. Of course the only reason I could do that was by keeping track of the time and budgeting my sightseeing. I had about 15 to 20 minutes of wiggle room.

I'm 653 words in and I'm just now arriving at the theater and I haven't started discussing what was to me the most important part of the day, who I was going to the show with. It was Marti. Im not sure but it might have been ten years since I've seen her. She used to be one of the people I see the most often. I remember after writing this for about a year she was tied with Lisa for third in the list of people I reference the most after Carey and Leah. I was excited to see her again. She was the reason we were seeing the play. She is a reviewer.

Her timing was as good as my own. She arrived maybe a minute after I did. She drove in from Connecticut. She was quite proud of her parallel parking. You can see why she's a friend of mine. Of course I'd take pictures when I got into a particularly tight spot.

There was a little excitement in the theater before the show. The audience sat on folding chairs on risers. Behind the last row there was quite a drop to the ground but somebody thought it was a good idea to put chairs there even though there was no rail. You can see where this is leading. Somebody fell off the back of the last riser. The last row was abandoned and a new row added to the front.

The show was your typical zombies grafted onto another genre drama. It's a strange world where that last sentence makes sense. But it does. This was a story about zombies in the world of fairytales with Snow White, Rapunzel, and Prince Charming being the main characters. I wonder if Elizabeth Bennett and Darcy were anywhere in the neighborhood.

The show was lots of fun though as is often the case in comedies about 20% too long. It was jam packed with pop culture references. Entire conversations consisted of movie quotes and lines from fairy tales. They came so fast and so naturally that if you didn't pay full attention you'd miss them. I'm sure I missed a few. It was done on practically no budget. There was not much in the way of props or sets. The cast was also the stage hands. None of that took away from the show. In might have actually enhanced it.

The show was part of the Fringe Festival and there were ballots to vote for it in the Festival contest. I wasn't going to fill it out till Marti started to and came across the question, "Give three words that describe you." I couldn't resist that. I said "Smart, weird " Marti suggested enthusiastic. Which is of course true. It's a word I often use to describe myself. But instead I decided to prove the second word by making the third "monotreme." When Marti said that I wasn't a monotreme I offered to show her my cloaca. I wouldn't really do that of course. I'm far too modest. And no I am not going to define monotreme or cloaca for you. If you don't know them you'll have to look them up.

Marti of course knew what they meant. That's part of why I enjoy her company so much. I like the way Melissa once put it when describing why she liked somebody, "He can keep up with me." Marti has no problem with that. I don't have to hold back. I don't have to explain either my references or my logic. She gets my jokes and gives back as good as she gets. In other words she's smart and weird but not as far as I can tell a monotreme.

The next stop after the show was dinner. We ate at the diner on Houston Street. I bet it has a name. I don't know it. It's just the diner on Houston street to me. You'd think we'd spend our time catching up as we hadn't seen each other in so long. We didn't. we just took up where we left off. I got to hear about her going to England, or was it Scotland, to see Neil Innes. There are not a lot of people I know who would do that. I know I just caught Carey's attention.

After dinner we went to see Alter Ego-Vaudeville Surreal (Back To School Edition!). The title pretty much sums it up. It's hosted and run by Killy Mockstar Dwyer who I met on Facebook through Rachel Trachtenburg. Rachel's band Supercute was the house band for the evening. Rachel is also part of the Trachtenburg Family Slideshow Players. I saw them with Marti back I the day and they were part of the world we inhabited. So the whole thing worked out quite well.

As for the show, it was smart, weird, and I'm not betting on it not being a monotreme.

Vaudeville was as good a way of describing it as any. Supercute did three short sets. There were comedians. There was performance art. There was funny songs. There was free style rap. There was ventriloquism. I particularly liked the Ding-a-ling Sisters. That was Killy and another women doing a magic/animal act, with toy animals and not very magical tricks. It was pure Trainwreck with Clowns. That in case you haven't been paying attention is the name for the busking act that Carey and I do. Yes we only actually busked once but I still use the present tense as we do it on other people's Facebook pages all the time. The essence of a Trainwreck with Clowns act is to be utterly ridiculous and have not sense dignity. It's Carey singing Enormous Penis. It's me singing anything but especially Boob Fairy. It is deliberately doing a bad job at something that people with actual talent do well as entertainment. My inclination for it goes back at least to middle school. In the class talent show David and I did a ventriloquist act. Of course we didn't use a dummy. David was six inches taller than me so he was the dummy and sat on my lap.

There aren't a lot of people I'd invite to see something like this with, but I judged well. Marti loved it.

I forgot who it was but one of the performers started talking about balding guys with long gray ponytails. I turned to Marti to say, "He's talking about me" but she was already giving me that knowing look and focusing on my um long gray ponytail. Not only that but Rachel and Julia, she's also in Supercute, were giving me that look too. Yeah, I'm a prisoner of my hairdo. Or is that lack of hairdo.

After the show I walked Marti back to her car. Unfortunately the people parked in front and behind her had moved so I didn't see her expert parallel parking job. I did see the house where my father was born. It was right across the street from her car. I don't remember which one it is but I know it is one of three refurbished tenements that are next to each other. We said we wouldn't let it be ten years before we saw each other again.

The subway is right there so I hopped on it and made my way home and we all lived happily ever after even though Snow White: Zombie Apocalypse says that never happens.





Brother Brothers in Arms - October 01, 2017
Late to Bed and Late to Rise - September 30, 2017
On Your Feet or On Your Knees - September 29, 2017
Why Life Doesn't End on Closing Day - September 28, 2017
Anna and King of I Am - September 27, 2017



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Horvendile August 20, 2012
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