Sunday, April 16, 2006


how can something inevitable be a game?
and now, a post balancing as precariously as that doomed tower of blocks (it's been a busy week and a long weekend and i'm just trying to get it out before i lose it):

@ 1 of our recent shakespeare gigs @ a hebrew academy we noticed this orthodox-looking-dude standing in the back of the house, eyes closed, waving his hands around and apparently praying fervently through our show. it was very distracting and disrespectful.
we were all perplexed, until cam asked around later and was told that certain orthodox forms of judaism believe that performing arts are evil. so this dude really was praying for the casting out of our evil presence.
now i'm all for everybody believing whatever gets them through the shitstorm, but his behaviour was bullshit: it was not the forum for protesting the administration's educational choices, and he was disrespectful to a group of working professionals contracted by the same school that presumably pays him too, to work with and teach their students. the school's policies clearly didn't define us as an unwanted or dangerous influence, and whatever his personal beliefs, we were there for the benefit of the students and it was neither his place nor the place to make a big show of his disapproval.
i also thought he was doing the students a disservice by creating a mixed message about a positive, enjoyable and educational experience- what were they supposed to think of what we had to offer with his extensive praying to cease our evilness undermining the value of the work? and what were they supposed to think of their school for exposing them to something apparently so bad that it required constant prayer to get us all through it alive and undamned?

in unconnected news, somebody brought it up the other day and i realised my shortlists are about equally short for jewish men and musicals.
i'm a theatre person but not a muffin (musical theatre person) and generally don't enjoy musicals because they require too large a suspension of disbelief to digest people simultaneously breaking into synchronised song+dance in the middle of the street, and i'm not that willing. but there's a short list of musicals i do like: hedwig and the angry inch, into the woods, sweeney todd, urinetown, tommy, plus the music from the gospel according to fishman. chicago's concept with underpinnings of the cult of celebrity is great, and has a few good numbers in it, but i can't say i love the show.
when comparison with potentially sexy jewish men came up, the lists were about the same length: adrian brody, jon stewart, leonard nimoy (although spock is sexier, i don't think he's jewish), jeff goldblum (that's an unconfirmed assumption), jeremy piven (because he cracks my shit up more than because he's cute), and then i ran out. i mean, there are prob'ly more, but i don't pay attention to religious affiliation, so i didn't know who else qualifies.
thing is, i feel like there must be more potentially sexy jewish men than musicals. i mean, i hate musicals, and i love men. so who am i forgetting?

and i know this is old news, but i just found out about the x-men being ruled not human in spite of their story's anti-mutant-discrimination stance and the irony hurts me. the whole thing about fighting to have them called inhuman/monsters because "action figures" get taxed less than "dolls" is saddening. grims says that marvel's about business and the anti-mutant-discrimination bit is from the artists creating the x-men, not marvel itself, but i still feel like the company should represent their shit correct.
i suppose i'm asking too much for artistic integrity and continuity to take precedence over sales...

this lady @ the radio station just made me all paranoid about dry cleaning. she thinks that the chemicals used in dry cleaning (which, due to its being "dry", i can only assume leaves chemicals on the cleaned clothing) may contribute to development of breast cancer. now she's not saying she has proof, but the theory seems logical- she points out that in the 80's-90's a lot of women went back to the workplace in positions that require business apparel. there was also a rise in breast cancer cases.
when men dry clean their suits, their shirts are often still laundered, so the clothing with the dry cleaning chemicals on it doesn't rub directly on the skin. however, women wearing silk or other non-washable tops under their jackets have just a flimsy bra, or no barrier at all between the chemicalised top and their skin. then sweat mingles with the dry cleaning chemicals, and who knows what that could lead to...
and i had to admit i could see the logic.
now i'm all relieved that i dry clean less than 5 items in my entire wardrobe (another shortlist) and wondering when they'll stop wasting money on studies that tell us shit we already know, like 'marijuana users report better moods and less depressive symptoms than non-users' and find out if i need to start wearing a bra again, at least under my dry-clean-only silk tops...

i should try and sleep before the sun rises...
walk good.


Blogger Jake said...

My short list of musicals is "Man of La Mancha," "Hedwig," and I guess "Working."

I can't stand "Tommy" personally. It was the beginning of the end for the Who, when Pete Townsend decided he wanted to write (shudder) "rock operas" instead of rock SONGS.

My problem with rock musicals is that the music never sounds anything remotely like rock 'n' roll--it's all this really polished presentational singing, like someone trying to calmly rock out in a starched polo shirt at a suburban garden party. That's why Hedwig was cool--it's the first rock 'n' roll musical with actual rock 'n' roll music.

But as a general rule, my theory is that combining music and theater tends to result in sucky results for both.

12:01 pm  
Blogger JJ said...

As dated as it is, I still love the Music Man.

I didn't know Jeremy Piven is Jewish. He is one of my all time favorite actors who is finally getting the recognition he deserves.

Religious fundamentalism is the single greatest threat in the world today, whether it's Islam, Christianity or Judaism, intolerance is poison.

12:37 pm  
Blogger JJ said...

Rocky Horror is still great, too

12:38 pm  
Blogger sweet trini said...

jake, hedwig's my #1, since the 1st time i saw it. it's actually one of my favourite shows, period. jj, thanks for reminding me about rocky horror (and you'd love hedwig). i now add rocky horror to my list. i think my list of musicals is now definitely longer than jewish men...
walk good.

4:54 pm  
Blogger JJ said...

Some Jewish men are longer than others.

1:57 pm  

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