Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Monday, April 26, 2010

Old Chinese Proverb

Confucius say,
If you are in a book store and cannot find the book for which you search, you are obviously in the
...

Friday, April 23, 2010

I Cried At Work Today

And Adam Raderer and Clive Jameson are to blame! He posted an article to his Facebook and the subject was simply too tempting not to immediately click the link and read.

Number #13 is what did me in. I was doubled over in my chair with tears streaming down my face from the laughter I was trying to contain. (I failed miserably. Betsey actually came out of her office to make sure I was okay.)

Here's what caused my tissue moment -

The Oozinator

Ah, that doesn't look too bad. Some kind of squirt gun, right? Well, here's a picture of what it looks like to be shot by The Oozinator...


A picture is worth a thousand words, and that's good because actually typing a description of what appears to be happening to the child in the above picture on an Internet site is most likely a felony in all 50 states. We will say this though: That's not water. It's "ooze."

Trust us, it's much worse in motion:

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Hmmm...

Lane Bryant Says ABC, Fox Censored Plus-Size Lingerie Ad
by Erin Donnelly

Babes in bras seem to be all over the boob tube -- unless those babes happen to be a little big.

Lane Bryant is accusing Fox and ABC of a "double standard" over restrictions for their new lingerie commercial starring a bevy of curvy cuties in their bras and panties, Ad Week reports.

A post on the plus-size retailer's Inside Curve blog -- which has since been removed, along with the ad itself -- charged that the networks had refused to air the sexy ad without substantial edits.

"ABC and Fox have made the decision to define beauty for you by denying our new, groundbreaking Cacique commercial from airing freely on their networks," the Lane Bryant post reportedly said.

According to the company, ABC "restricted our airtime" by denying it a slot during "Dancing with the Stars," while Fox "demanded excessive re-edits and rebuffed it three times before relenting to air it during the final 10 minutes of 'American Idol,' but only after we threatened to pull the ad buy."

Drama! So what got the networks -- which frequently run lingerie ads from the likes of Victoria's Secret -- so hot and bothered?

Lane Bryant reportedly claims that a heavy helping of cleavage revealed by lingerie-clad plus-size models in the ad rubbed execs the wrong way (oh, get your mind out of the gutter).

According to the blog, "The networks exclaimed, 'She has...cleavage!' Gasp!"

"Yes, these are the same networks that have scantily clad housewives so desperate they seduce every man on the block -- and don't forget Bart Simpson, who has shown us the moon more often than NASA, all in what they call 'family hour.'

"While it's no secret that Victoria's Secret 'The Nakeds' ads are prancing around on major networks leaving little to the imagination, steaming up TV screens and baring nearly everything but their souls, our sultry siren who shows sophisticated sass is somehow deemed inappropriate...

"Does this smack of a double standard? Yep. It does to us, too."

Wow. Lingerie or no, Lane Bryant isn't taking this snub lying down.

The networks, meanwhile, had no comment, Ad Week says.

We don't see what the big deal is. If ABC can show us Dennis Franz's bare butt, surely they can deal with a few womanly curves!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Kudos, Trials and Tribulations


What a fantastic job you did in ". . .Trailer Trash. . ." phenomenal!
~ML 4.20
**********
I was very impressed. I thought you were always connected and consistent. I believed you all the way. I felt for your character, was sorry for her and then mad at her. It worked. I thought the scenes between you and Mikey were especially impressive but all of it was a tight and entertaining and a thought provoking show. I laughed, I cried…well you know. But absolutely true. Great job. Wonderful job on a very difficult role.
~HK 4.19
**********
Came and saw your performance...Congratulations, you were wonderful! An honest, sincere, vulnerable and heartwrenchingly hopeful presence on stage. I truly enjoyed watching you.

What a role. You must be wiped! BRAVO!
~AD 4.19
**********
Super, fabulous, amazing show on Saturday night!!!
~NG 4.19
**********
I had to take a shower after the show this evening...I can ONLY imagine how you process this every night! Your performance was outstanding to watch, very touching.
Great work.
~BR 4.15
**********
You are doing an awesome job with Willadean...
~NU 4.13
**********
Oh My Cheryl Ann, the Show was absolutely wonderful!! You, Danya and Mikey were GREAT!!
~RRM 4.12
**********
I was so enthralled by your performance. It was honest, elegant, simple and graceful. I truly admire your talent and I hope you are as proud as you deserve to be of this show and what you are presenting.

Thanks for telling her story so beautifully.
~HM 4.11
**********
Fantastic performance yesterday! You did a beautiful job bringing Willadean to life.
~MD 4.11
**********
Incredible performance! So happy 2 see it!
~SH 4.10
**********

Monday, April 19, 2010

Love and Support

Mallorie, Mikey, Andy, Ken, Mimi, Jamie, Bill and Kathy, Chris, Beth F., Allan and Barbara, Norman, Miriam, Dad, April, Myla, Cathy, Stephen, Angela, Heather, Christina, Dillon and Karen, Beth R., Amy, Mom, Travis and Trina, David and Betsey, Allan, Don and Gina, Brian and Quiana, Michael, Gwen, Michele, Charlene, Natasha, Becki, Joe, Fran and Mary Ann, Hardy, Nanette and Craig...

thank you so very much for your encouragement, your faith, your hugs and your tears, your praise, and especially all your love and support during The Trials and Tribulations of a Trailer Trash Housewife. I could not have brought Willadean to such life without each of you sharing in her journey.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Last night Mallorie, Cade and I helped celebrate April's 50th birthday. Can you tell which one had a better time? (If you guessed April you would be correct! She received enough birthday money to purchase a Kindle.)


Sunday, April 11, 2010

The Journal Review

poignant: Play reflects dark side
By Mary Martin Niepold
SPECIAL TO THE JOURNAL

Del Shores is known for his plays that use humor to expose small towns in Texas and the stereotypical characters who inhabit them -- hypocritical Christians, hard-drinking locals and people who wear prejudice like badges of honor.

His Trials and Tribulations of a Trailer Trash Housewife, which opened Friday night at Theatre Alliance, targets something more demonic: domestic violence.

As funny as some of the lines can be -- give a boozy barmaid an opportunity to trash her own string of five husbands, and you'll get funny wisecracks -- in this play, the tone is darker. Shores places violence at the center of the action.

Willadean Winkler takes beatings from her alcoholic, rageaholic husband, and Shores' dedication of his play says, "To all the ‘Willadeans,' may you find the light."

This is a powerful play, and it isn't for young people under 18. Nor is it for anyone who doesn't want to see and hear violence.

But beatings are the reason that Willadean struggles to find her own identity. "I will not shrivel up and die," she keeps telling herself.

She is alone against her husband -- her teenage daughter died in a car wreck, and her gay, teenage son was kicked out of the house by his father.

Fortunately for Willadean, the other side of violence is liberation, and we see freedom slowly evolve, thanks to the sensitive portrayal of Willadean by Cheryl Ann Roberts.

It is 2005 in Mesquite, Texas, where we also witness strong friendships, like the one Willadean has with her black neighbor, La Sonia, played to the bone by Jae Campbell. Adrienne Smith appears as a blues singer who threads songs through the scenes as a guardian angel-like figure for Willadean. Smith's voice is a beautiful and welcome counterpoint.

But Mikey Wiseman as J.D. Winkler, the abusive husband, is why this play, ultimately, works. His performance is brilliant, and as much as you don't want to see his rage, Wiseman makes his character evolve like a coiled snake who can mesmerize, then strike, then mesmerize again.

Jamie Lawson is the director, Kevin Mundy is an onstage pianist, and Andrew Lopina's set is a true-blood rendering of the inside of a mobile home and the seedy interior of the local bar.

Sales from popcorn and drinks benefit the Family Services Shelter for battered women. It is a fitting reminder of the story that Shores tells from a trailer park, which could be from anywhere.

Theatre Alliance presents The Trials and Tribulations of a Trailer Trash Housewife today and next Sunday at 2 p.m.; Thursday through Saturday at 8 p.m.; and Saturday at 4 p.m. at 1047 Northwest Blvd. Tickets are $16, $14 for seniors and students. Call 723-7777.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

WFDD Triad Arts Up Close Interview

I was already at work when our interview aired. Betsey listened to the segment on her way in and said I sounded fine. (That's a very positive comment coming from her.) Yesterday I tried to listen to the podcast but the audio is messed up.

David does a weekend recap and our segment is included. You can listen here. (We come after an interview with Marilyn Keiser.)

Sunday, April 04, 2010

My Journal Interview

HIT: Alliance turns again to Shores play

By Mary Martin Niepold
SPECIAL TO THE JOURNAL
Del Shores, the Southern playwright with a sharp tongue, has almost become a hometown boy. His plays such as Sordid Lives, Daughters of the Lone Star State and Daddy's Dyin' have been big hits for Theatre Alliance. In the hope of keeping its winning streak going, the company is mounting The Trials and Tribulations of a Trailer Park Housewife by Shores. It will open Friday night.

Trials may be the darkest of Shores' plays. A tragicomedy, Trials examines the chaotic life of, yes, a trailer-park housewife and her strong-armed husband. When the play opened in Los Angeles in 2003, it became the playwright's most critically acclaimed play, winning numerous prestigious awards, most notably the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle's Ted Schmitt Award.

Cheryl Ann Roberts, who takes the lead, is no stranger to Theatre Alliance's audiences. She has also appeared in two other Shores plays for the company, most recently in Sordid Lives last summer.

Roberts projects a palpable presence on stage, a perfect fit for "Willadean," an abused housewife who feels lost, is wondering what to do next and must grow out of her shyness to find the strength to confront her abusive husband. Domestic violence is one of the play's themes.

Willadean is up against "J.D.," her truck-driver husband who likes to hang out at the nearby Spotlight bar. Both of Willadean's teenage children are gone. Her daughter was killed in a car accident at 16; her gay son, 18, was kicked out of the house by his father. Her best friend who lives next door is a black woman named "La Sonia," and J.D. doesn't like her one bit. Naturally, there's also a new woman who moves into the neighborhood and has an affair with J.D.

Put it all together, and you somehow get a tragicomedy musical about serious troubles. Two musicians, a blues singer and piano accompanist, will perform live on stage. The singer weaves songs into the action. Because of the language and some rough confrontations, Trailer Park is not recommended for children under 18.

For Roberts, playing Willadean is a dream come true. "When I read the script for the first time last year, I knew Willadean was one of my dream roles," she said.

"It's me. Willadean grows throughout the play, so a lot of it is about her relationships with J.D. and La Sonia. She struggles with finding a purpose. Since her children are no longer there, she no longer has a purpose. She feels like if she doesn't find that purpose, she's going to shrivel up and die."

Fortunately for Roberts (and the play), the actor who plays J.D. is someone that Roberts knows well and has appeared with in other plays: Mikey Wiseman plays J.D.

"Mikey is from Tyler, Texas, so he's very familiar with these kinds of characters," she said. The two actors have gotten together several times to work out their characters. "We're very comfortable together."

Under Jamie Lawson's direction, you can expect that Shores' talent for exposing Southern stereotypes, mores, hypocrisy, racism -- and down-home humor -- won't be lost on audiences.

"Shores might rip your skin off while you're watching, but you'll be laughing while he does it," Roberts said. "Del Shores always has a message he's trying to get across, and he uses comedy and music to keep you entertained as the story moves along."

When all is said, sung, and done, Trailer Park offers some redemption. Willadean does find a purpose, and Walmart helps her find it.
Theatre Alliance will present The Trials and Tribulations of a Trailer Trash Housewife Friday, Saturday and April 15-17 at 8 p.m.; Saturday and April 17 at 4 p.m.; next Sunday and April 18 and at 2 p.m., at 1047 Northwestern Blvd. Tickets are $16, $14 for seniors and students. Call 723-7777.

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Radio Interview

Earlier today Jae and I met with David Ford from Triad Arts Up Close to record an interview which will be aired next week.

This was the second radio interview I've done. Last year Tony and I accompanied Norman to promote Twin City Stage's fundraiser Gala as well as Moonlight and Magnolias. Following a similar format, Jae and I first recorded a short scene from our show, then we answered a few questions from David. I was very impressed with how well spoken Jae is. She answered David's questions perfectly. My responses to David consisted of a great many ums and uhs.

I'm hoping that David's editing will make me sound more intelligent. We'll have to tune in to 88.5 next Wednesday to find out!