Sunday, May 14, 2017

Mama's Talkin' Soft

Started off Mother's Day with an early work session. This being a Sunday and a holiday, we were insane all day with families picking up flowers for Mom and Grandma and barbecue fixings for dinner. The sun was in and out, and it was really windy. It even sprinkled briefly around 10 AM. Even with clouds, it was still warmer and much nicer than yesterday. I didn't mind being outside all morning, but I wish I had more help. It was hard to keep up with the carts on my own.

I was so happy to head out around 12:30! Today was my last day of work for a week and a half. I have a normal day off tomorrow, and then vacation officially starts on Tuesday when Lauren arrives. I still have things to do before she comes, so I went straight home. Besides, I was starved. I had a quick lunch while listening to one of my K-Tel 70's albums.

After I ate, I called Mom and wished her a Happy Mother's Day. I'd already ran into Jodie at the Acme and got to wish the same to her. I knew she was probably working at the Cape May-Lewes Ferry by 1 PM. I didn't expect to get her, and I didn't, so I left a message.

Rested for a bit after lunch while reading some Mother's Day material from Colliers Harvest of Holidays. The short story is The Most Beautiful Mother In the World, about a little Ukrainian farm girl who gets separated from her mother while helping with the wheat harvest. She keeps telling the people helping her look for her family that her mother is "the most beautiful woman in the world." She may not be to others, but in her daughter's eyes, she's all that's happy and safe. There were also a couple of poems.

Next on the list was finishing the spring cleaning. The trash and recycling canisters badly needed to be scrubbed. I normally do them twice a year, in May after it's gotten warm enough to turn on the hose, and in October before it becomes too cold to, but I put it off last fall. That wasn't a good idea. They were disgusting, especially the smaller container I use for recycling bottles and cans. Something must have leaked a while back and made a dark, gluey mess. Since I was out there, I washed the dirt and pollen off my bike, too.

Worked on writing for a while after I came in. Luke is getting intensely into his training with Yoda, in much the same way as he does in the film. Rusty is around to make sure Yoda doesn't push too hard on him, including after Luke sees his own face in Darth Vader's severed head in a cave. Two weeks after his arrival, he has a vision about Henry, Leia, and Charles being in trouble in a city high in the mountains. Rusty's ready to go, but Yoda's worried about him abandoning his training. Luke's torn - he's worried about his friends, but he wants to finish and become a real Jedi.

Broke around 5:30 to have leftovers for dinner and do some baking. The recipe for Chocolate Raspberry Cookies comes from that one-bowl cookie cookbook Lauren gave me for my birthday. That's rather appropriate, since I'm making them in her honor. Lauren loves raspberries. A bush of wild raspberries grew in her yard for years. This is also an opportunity to finally make some use of the bottle of raspberry extract I picked up on the Acme's big clearance sales when they remodeled last fall. They came out amazing, delicious and rich nuggets of dark chocolate-fruity goodness.

Ran a couple of Broadway cast albums while I baked. In honor of the current Broadway revival of Hello Dolly! with Bette Midler and David Hyde Pierce, I put on my favorite version. Pearl Bailey headed an all-black cast in the late 60's, and I still think no one's done it better. Wish her Horace Vandergelder, Cab Calloway, had stuck around. He's a lot of fun on the cast album. "Ribbons Down My Back" is also quite lovely.

Did Gypsy for Mother's Day. Tough Rose Hovick (played in my original cast album by Ethel Merman) is the ultimate show business mother, alternately smothering and shoving her two daughters into the vaudeville big-time. She couldn't have picked a worse time to do it. It's the late 20's-early 30's, and vaudeville is dying. Her daughters did eventually become stage comedienne June Havoc and striptease artist and mystery writer Gypsy Rose Lee.

My favorite number from this show was actually cut before opening. "Mama's Talkin' Soft" was intended for the girls to sing in counterpoint to "Small World," their view of Rose going after Herbie, while perched on a catwalk over their heads. One of the girls was afraid of heights...which meant the end of this number. Too bad. It's a great song. June and Louise basically say that they've seen their mom run through men like this before. Herbie also had a good song that got cut, his assessment of Rose, "Nice She Ain't."

Speaking of mothers, mine texted me back around 4:30. She was at work...but she'd see me next week. She asked for next Sunday off so she and Dad-Bill can come up to Rose's baby shower, too. Great! I haven't seen them since Thanksgiving, and they'll finally get to meet Lauren.

And Happy Mother's Day to all mothers out there (including those whose children are four-legged for feathered)!

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