Sunday, November 23, 2008

this might be the year i hate christmas

This has been such a mixed week. Alyssa had a sore throat last weekend and she and Greg asked if I would sing her music for Lear and Measure again (which of course I did). Last Friday was Lear and at about 6:45pm (show starts at 7:30) Greg came up and asked if I would sing at intermission. I was the house manager that night but luckily Solomon didn't mind if I left for a little while. There was also a proposal on stage that night AND my friend/Playhouse Manager, Nash, was fired. We were all pretty upset about this happening. He's such a cool guy that he took it all in stride, but I don't know anyone who was happy about it.

I guess the rest of the weekend was okay... I sang again on Sunday, Johnston and I started a couple new songs for Santaland preshow and Monday I had off. Tuesday things started falling apart with one of our reports (and our box office manager is on vacation), Thursday was the all-time worst day I've ever had at a job. Our school matinee was oversold by about 30 students and we had 50 standing. It was SO HOT in the theatre and there were literally kids everywhere--sitting on the banisters in the balcony (we had to get them off), in the aisles, some just sat in the lobby for half the show. Emily and I both had to sell drinks at the intermissions and we don't have enough staff anymore to have someone else in the box office so Kristie had to be at the gift shop (and she doesn't even work in the box office) while Mary, whose last day was a week ago (and who also hadn't worked in the box office in about 6 months) came in to help for free. Then, in the middle of the show, all this beer got delivered and then 7 boxes of t-shirts for me to inventory, fold and put away. As soon as the show got out I had to go talk to tech support for the problem we were having with our reports but I had NO IDEA what to do because I don't know any of the information they needed. I kept having to call other people to ask questions and get info. It was so stupid. When Christina got in she was on the phone with tech support and I had to start the t-shirt inventory. I couldn't take a lunch and I was there for half an hour longer than I was scheduled and I was so sad and tired. I had to finish the shirts the next day (which started out as a GREAT day and then ended up just as stupid and ridiculous as the day before, in a completely different way).

So, yesterday, my Chris, Johnston, his fiance Lindsey and I all did this silly caroling thing in downtown for the Holiday Open House. We dressed in costumes from Christmas Carol and sang very religious carols (and some not-so religious carols) and all of this was happening a week before Thanksgiving. It was freezing outside but Chris and I bought long underwear and we had a ton of layers on from the costume so except for everyone's toes, we were mainly okay. We sang for about 2 hours and then I couldn't speak in anything but my head voice again. It was fine, though... no one made fun of us and children seemed to like it. We saw Doreen, JP and baby Olive and Olive was starring at us like her life depended on it.

This week has been really cold and we can't use the heater in our bedroom because it just doesn't work right. You have to turn it up really high and then it will only run for a little while and then it will click for HOURS. I can't deal with the clicking at night so we just stopped using it. So, obviously, it's really cold in our bedroom. Like 60 degrees in the daytime, colder at night. It also doesn't get much sunlight so it never gets a chance to be warm. We need a space heater but we can't afford one. We also can't run our humidifer because it's a cool mist and it makes it even colder.

I bought my Christmas tree this week. I got it for $25 from Target. It's not very big but I think it will be okay. I want to do blue, silver and gold/"champagne" ornaments only. We set it up but it's just sitting in the corner where the guitars used to be until we get back from Ohio on Friday. I won't start really decoarting it YET... although I will start listening to Christmas music as soon as i-tunes finishes installing the new version.

Tonight is the usher/actor Thanksgiving and I am really excited!! I know the ushers a lot better from working in the box office and in all honesty, that has been the only rewarding part of working in the box office. So many of them are just nice and funny people who are really supportive of the theatre. I like them a lot.

We are leaving tomorrow for OHIO! Thank God. We're driving Ginna's car up to Bethesda, picking her up from her last stop on tour for this leg, driving to Columbus, staying at her parent's house for the night and then Chris's mom will pick us up in the morning on Tuesday. This way we are able to only have to rent a car to get back to Virginia and save some money but I do wish we could have left today after the matinee and get in really late instead of getting in on Tuesday. Originally the Thanksgiving break seemed a lot longer. We have to leave on Friday but we can go at a reasonable time and still stop by and visit my Grandma. I won't be able to go home for Christmas (the reason why isn't even worth it anymore) so I'll have to make the best out of Thanksgiving.

I'm just loads of joy right now. Well, I did have a conversation that went like this today:

Chris: Are you quackers for crackers?
Me: No
Chris: Are you crackers for quackers?
Me: No.
Chris: Are you crackers for crackers?
Me: No.
Chris: Are you quackers for quackers?
Me: No.
Chris: What if I'm a quacker?

Friday, November 14, 2008

finally blogging

So it's been almost two weeks and I guess I was busy. It sure would seem that way based on how I have just been unable to find time to write something. Let's start with yesterday and g backwards in time.

Yesterday Governor Tim Kaine of Virginia came to visit the theatre. Everyone was a little bit crazy. We had a school matinee that morning and as soon as the kids got out we were running around cleaning up the theatre, sweeping and vacuuming the floors, checking the bathroom to see if the kids had destroyed them (luckily they had not. they were remarkably clean, actually) and other things that annoy almost everyone. At one point while we were waiting for the govenator, Sarah was telling Mary what her job was going to be, which included leading the governor up the stairs to the Lord's Room. She was like "I don't want to do THAT!!!" I, of course, immediately said, "I'LL DO IT!!!!!!!!" So, I did. And let me tell you, the governor is really, really nice. He remembered my name at the end of the visit (and he pronounced it correctly) and he listened to everything I said to him. I took him up to the room and then I showed him how to get out at the end. I almost wish I would have been a little bit more "Alisa" rather than "robot girl who has to be calm while talking to the highest state official" because when he was leaving and I was back in the box office I was like "I have a schedule for you!!!!!!!" (a schedule of shows) and he laughed at me and said he'd come back. He was here earlier in the year to see Volpone so we believe that he will actually return. So, you know, now the governor and I are probably best friends. He is added into my famous best friends group along with Moises Alou when he played for the Cubs.

Oh, also, when the governor was here I couldn't help but notice how much he looks like actor/comedian Larry Miller (Best in Show, among other things). Compare these photos and see if you can even guess which one is Tim Kaine and which one is Larry Miller.

On Tuesday Chris's friend James and his wife Christine came into town and I was so excited to meet them. I have wanted to meet this "Jamesy" for so long because I keep hearing these hilarious stories about him... and not only do I hear them, but half the time I think the idea is so brilliant that I steal it and use it myself (like when I convinced Raffi that "Mother Smucker" had come to see our show on tour in Orrville, Ohio--STOLEN!). Anyway, I really liked meeting both of them... Christine is so pretty and James did not let me down in the high expectations I had.

Last Sunday I did a staged reading of the play Look About You (by Anonymous), which is the most confusing read of all time. It did not help that we didn't get to read the play until Saturday night and when we started blocking (I say blocking lightly because, since it was a staged reading, blocking just includes walking up to a music stand and saying lines) we were all like "What IS THIS PLAY????" Fortunately when we actually performed it it made a LOT more sense. Never read this play. Go see the play but don't read it because you will just be confused. It's a Robin Hood play... and *I* played Maid Marian (aka, Lady Faukenbridge)!!! HAHAHAHAHA!!!!! I think they're planning on doing this play in 2010 at some point. Chris was really funny in it, and so was Emily, whose character had a horrible stutter. Scot was in it too and he wore the most ridiculous, hilarious costume so everytime I looked at him I laughed. He had coke-bottle glasses, a fake moustache, a cape, a black bowler hat... he just looked like he was going to tie me to the train tracks in a silent film. My character didn't really do anything interesting until the second half when she asked Robin Hood to disguise himself as her and she dressed up as someone else... and then hilarity ensued. Sunday basically felt like it was a non-day. I was so tired during our blocking rehearsal that I felt like I was asleep the entire day.

On November 4th, as you all know, we (SPOILER ALERT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Stop reading if you do not know who won the presidency!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) elected Barack Obama as president (along with Mark Warner, who I have ALSO met when he came to the theatre, to the Senate for VA). It was a good day for everyone... everyone except the republicans, but really, I don't know how anyone could have been SUPRISED. I was happy that Virginia was blue and that Staunton was blue, even though every county around was red. I was even happier when North Carolina and Indiana went democrat because it was like a blue melt, starting in Maine. As soon as Ohio went for Obama I knew it was over and I am glad that every county or city I've ever lived in voted democrat. Chris and I went to vote at about 10am before I went to work and then we got our free coffee from Starbucks. I don't think 10 minutes would pass without me thinking about the election that day. More than anything else, I just never wanted to hear about Sarah Palin ever again, which of course has not happened. I really need her to disappear. She's driving me nuts. At least the CNN poll asking if she should get her own TV show was like 89% NO, 11% YES. In some ways, I guess the main reason behind my voting WAS to never hear from Sarah Palin again... and so in those respects, perhaps I lost. We're ALL losers, though, in a country run by Sarah Palin. Anyway, Obama won and I watched his speech, and Chris cried and we were so happy... AND I ate whole wheat pizza from Papa John's (5 grams of fiber a slice!) and drank some diet Dr. Pepper. Also, I could not be happier that the election is OVER. THANK GOD!

Everyone has been weighing in with their opinions (who asked you anyway????) about what kind of puppy the Obamas should get. I think (because I am a hypocrite) that they should get a Bichon Frise. I also think that *I* should get a Bichon Frise. I have decided that it is 100% the best dog for my life. First of all, it's hypoallergenic and Chris is allergic to dogs. Second, it's not a barker. Third, it's a lap dog but still playful. Fourth, it's TOTALLY CUTE. Fifth, I still think I would name him Barkley, even though he's not a barker. Sixth, I want one. Seventh, it is a small dog. Eighth, the King of France used to wear Bichon Frises around his neck in a basket like a necklace. That is totally WACK. Therefore, I would like one.

How could I NOT want this dog??? Look at his FACE!!!

Sunday, November 02, 2008

a newfoundland dog can grow as big as a baby elephant

My birthday was a lot of fun. Chris and I went to Roanoke which for some reason everyone thought was like 3 hours away but it's only 1.5. We went to the Olive Garden and other such amazing places like the mall and target. There was a puppy store in the mall and HOLY CRAP did they have adorable puppies in there. We later went to Petsmart and I got to pet some kitties. I think whenever we do get a cat and dog we'll get young adults so that I don't lose my mind. I pet a big kitty named Annabelle. Chris thought I said her name was "Animal" which is now the name he wants to give a pet. After we got home we went to the gelato place and I got a big brownie sundae of which I was able to eat less than half. I felt like I was going to go into a sugar coma. I put it in the freezer.

Yesterday Chris and I helped judge a high school theatre competition. It was actually a lot of fun. A couple of the schools were AWESOME and it was just kind of nice to see something other than an ASC show. A proscenium stage??? Whaaaaaat's that? Anyway, it was fun, some of the kids were really good actors and we made $75 and got to eat a free sandwich.

Right now I am lobby sitting while the kids from the college hold their auditions in the theatre for their grad projects. This kind of thing always sucks because you can't not get bored. I'd probably just be sitting at home doing stuff online but at least at home I can play the guitar or something. There is, however, an adorable child here who has endless things to say. Her parents are British and she has this really high voice with a hint of an English accent. She really has a lot to say to her mom. It is really funny. Her mom is kind of having a meeting with a student and the little girl keeps telling her she's going to leave. "Bye, mom. See you tomorrow!" She speaks really well for a 2-3 year old and it's just really funny.

I am super tired right now even though I slept a ton this morning (thank you, daylight savings). Probably because I know how bored I am going to be until I get out of here. We have to go shopping tonight because we kept putting it off.

I can't WAIT until Wednesday, when the election is over. If there is anyone on earth who will miss this hellish time of year they are insane. I hate how every other commercial is an attack on some candidate, I hate getting mail telling to to vote for McCain (yeah right), I hate hearing about the scams going around... like the people who sent stuff out saying that democrats vote on November 5th and Republicans on the 4th. Everyone is so mean to everyone else and I just hate it. I can't wait until it is over.

Chris Johnston and I are doing the preshow music for Santaland Diaries and I am now on the quest to find music. It is hard. Sufjan Stevens has a pretty good Christmas album and you know I will of course push for "Father Christmas" by the Kinks but finding songs that meet my requirements for awesomeness is difficult.