Hi. I'm still here. Sorry about that. Sometimes when I am Participating, I fail on the Chronicling. But right now I will chronicle up a storm in the hopes that it will tide you over since I am hitting the trail on Wednesday morning and, as you know, I've not got much in the way of wireless devices.
Last week, I saw three plays, which is a lot, even for me. The reading of Hapgood they did at ACT was delightful; and had a joke about a lemon I enjoyed. The next day I went to Berkeley Rep to see Dear Elizabeth, a play comprised entirely from letters between Elizabeth Bishop and Robert Lowell, two poets I knew nothing about, which is unsurprising as I know nearly nothing about any poets (sorry, poets). It broke my heart. The actor playing Robert Lowell strikingly reminded me of an erstwhile friend of mine, so I took the whole play rather personally and felt a sense of loss that I cannot be certain is entirely contained in the script. Also, the water seemed extraneous. (Just because you can have water cascade over the stage doesn't mean you need do it constantly.) However, those things notwithstanding, it might break your heart too. Or perhaps it will attune you to those you love. Just after the play, when we were shuffling our tear-streaked selves out into the aisle, I heard this exchange from the white-haired couple (subscribers for over twenty years I heard them mention earlier) in the row behind mine.
She: Finishes her yawn with a little sing-song tone.
He: I love your voice. [Pause.] Maybe it's a sentimental thing to say, but I do love your voice.
She: I'm glad you do.
On Friday, I saw This is How it Goes at the Aurora. It made me uncomfortable. In a good way. I mean, not like I thought "wow! this is a great way to feel uncomfortable!" More like, "Damn. This is a pretty ballsy play. Did he just say the N word again? Yikes." Also, I have a crush on Gabe Marin. There. My secret's out. If you're reading this, Gabe Marin [sadly, you're not], I'll buy you a drink some Monday night. We've met. It won't be weird. Unless you're married, in which case, you're right, it will be weird.
On Thursday I drank a curious assortment of booze with my lovely friend Liz who (bad news) lives in Canada these days, but (good news) came to visit. We went to Novela which has only been open for about a week meaning that I am officially very cutting edge (let the record show). However, since I had only seen pictures of it online, empty and shown to attractive advantage, I had made up a whole story about how it would be that proved totally false. (Hey! Raise your hand if you just noticed an uncanny similarity to online dating.) They have this whole literary theme and I was imagining smallish and conversation-amenable, but it is largish, packed with post-work drinkers, and loud. Oh, so very loud. Why all the bass, Novela? You promised me books. Still, it's pretty.
They serve a variety of punches and, ideal for people like me who are indecisive, have them available by the flight of three. That is how I came to have rum and gin and cognac all in one sitting. Later, apparently feeling that we should drink more things, we ended up in Harry Denton's Starlight Room on the top floor of the Sir Francis Drake Hotel. I had never been up there, but that Liz, she gets around. Here is what it's like: a stranger's wedding with an impressive view and a no-host bar with expensive drinks. Curious. But if you want to do some awkward wedding-style dancing with a bunch of people of radically different ages, none of whom live here, the Starlight Room is the place for you. I think you should go with Liz because she can lip sync to a surprising number of hip-hop songs, and that will be fun for you, but, as I've mentioned, she (tragically) lives in Canada, so it might be hard to align your schedules.
Saturday featured a return to cold, damp fields, but there simply isn't time to tell you about that now. You can wait breathlessly for tomorrow. I don't mean that literally, of course. If you hold your breath until tomorrow, you won't make it to tomorrow and then we both lose.