October 24th, 2013

Cthulu cozy

Reviews:Bare("the rock musical");Roots(English socialist one);Grand Guignol & London horror festival

This week has been all about SPOOKY THEATER. We went and saw some Grand Guignol short plays on Sunday night in a pub. Every single one was motivated by jealousy. Lessons: if you're a chick and sleeping with a married dude, don't kneel in front of an open fireplace while his disabled wife is in shoving distance; if you're a married guy, you probably don't want to be in a room with your wife and your girlfriend and a gun; never, ever go to the house of the psychotic guy you maimed after you get out of jail "just to see how he's doing." Oddly, one of these plays had what I would consider a happy ending. The next night I got together with the guy who runs the festival to do a preview of the rest of the shows: the result was this writeup. We're going to see a double feature of his top pick and my top pick (a Cthulu show) Saturday night: it should be a great time!

After our fun talk about evil and hostile alien intelligences, I ruined it all by going to the Donmar to see Roots, a play written in the late 50s about an English country girl coming to realize how she lacked a true connection to the people around her - all of whom suffered with being dreadfully unenlightened to the socialist cause. Now, I'm a socialist, but this show's emphasis on lecturing people and "who do we blame for the current situation" and just underlying sense of superiority to the unenlightened made me want to puke. Well, actually, it made me want to eat strawberry ice cream "from pink cows" and maybe some trifle, but I just couldn't believe how incredibly tedious and dull the whole thing was.

I also got to see English "repression your emotions" in (theatrical) action, and I got to hear Norfolk accents all night long (music = moozik), so it was incredibly realistic, but rather feeling a sense of pity for the people who couldn't see that their self-interest lie in working together to deal with their problems (and listening to "enlightening moozik" instead of the 3rd rate pop stuff they actually enjoyed), I felt sorry for them having such a spoiled brat for a sibling/daughter. For all of her talk about how she was "no better than anyone else," in fact, it was clear that both she and her boyfriend felt they were far superior to these "idiots." It's English liberalism to its Victorian roots, I tell you: talking about how repressed people are and whose fault it is while feeling entirely superior and being intolerably bad company. Give me Oscar Wilde any day; at least he knew how to liven up a dinner party (and solving hypothetical moral quandaries is not it).

Meanwhile while A was in town last week we saw the world's most flaccid gay musical: Bare, about a bunch of Catholic high school kids dealing with being gay, but in an obvious and not very rocking way. "Bore" was more appropriate.
Sea dragon

Trimming, trimming, trimming

This has been the week where we're trying to actually get our budget adjusted to what we can afford without a roommate. J's cancelled his gym membership; I got a phone plan that I think will cost me less (and hopefully be more helpful for getting jobs as it's actually got voicemail); he's switched to a sim-only plan; I moved our electricity/gas off of rip off meisters British Gas; we've cancelled counseling for the foreseeable future; I am sadly bidding goodbye to the housecleaner. Apparently as I've been signed off for more than three months I qualify for a higher level of ESA, but only if they do an evaluation, and surprise! there's a backlog. And they don't appear to backdate the checks.

Now if only we'd done our budget earlier we might not have bought tickets to go to Inverness for Christmas and bought a dehumidifier; but none of this is refundable and I'm sure the dehumidifier is going to have to help my health, which has fallen apart each of the last three winters. But if I'm sitting around all day in an apartment that heated at around 50 degrees, I'm not sure how much the dehumidifier will keep me from getting bronchial infections. And, well, a lot of the other spending was based on being optimistic about my ability to get a job (and be well enough to keep it). It may still happen; I've had five jobs sent my way in the last two weeks and I only need one of them to work out.

One good thing is that my attempts to keep going to theater affordable by working the blog has been pretty successful: I just got free tickets to a panto at a venue I really enjoy and the person who runs the London Horror festival is comping me into the Lovecraft show I really wanted to see. I may even be able to get tickets to review some shows in the Suspense Adult Puppetry festival (otherwise way out of budget), and I'll be having my first review up on a big local blog (with multiple writers) at the beginning of November. So I can keep seeing and writing about theater without breaking the bank. Yay!

Anyway: running is free, good food can be made for cheap, and it costs nothing to play cards. And the show tonight that I'm seeing for 10 quid was paid for back in February. So this can be done. But I'd like to be making more money, no doubt about it.