Wednesday, August 14, 2013

The World Must Be Bigger Than An Avenue

I couldn't believe how gorgeous it was this morning. I don't think it was even in the 80s. It was probably cooler outside than in my air conditioned apartment! I opened the windows immediately, then finished Stitches In Time and wrote in my journal.

I took advantage of the cooler weather to get things done in my apartment this morning without sweating to death. I shook out rugs. I made the bed. I vacuumed. I called Stockton to find out why I hadn't heard from the career counselor yet. Turns out she's been on vacation since the end of last week and won't be back until next week. Oh pooh. I'll try her again on Monday or Tuesday if she doesn't e-mail me by then.

As you can guess on such a lovely day, work wasn't terribly busy or exciting. It was on-and-off steady for most of the afternoon. A few people had prices that didn't come up on sale, and one man made a fuss when his Jolly Rancher bags weren't priced right. Other than that, there were no major problems, and my relief was on time.

When I got home, I realized I was out of cookies and decided today was a perfect day for baking. I made simple Blueberry Muffins from one of my British baking cook books and added coconut to my favorite Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookie recipe. While they all came out tasty, I'm wondering if I should have waited until tomorrow. Between a sinus headache and the allergy medicine I took earlier, I'm really tired. My arm accidentally brushed against one of the cookie pans when I was taking them out of the oven. Ouch! I have a nice little red welt on the side of my arm now. The whiting and salad I made for dinner came out a bit better (and without hurting me).

I've decided I'm going to give the TV a break this week and concentrate on making my way through my huge collection of music, starting with three charming Broadway cast albums. By the Beautiful Sea was a charming, old-fashioned vehicle for Shirley Booth and baritone Wilbur Evans in 1954 set at Coney Island in the early 1900s. I picked up the original Angel CD release at a now-defunct small music store in North Cape May in the mid-90s. It's been re-released several times and is hard to find now. While I do like some of the songs (Evans gets the lovely ballad "I've Been Alone Too Long," and Booth has the witty comic number "I'd Rather Wake Up By Myself"), this show is really no great shakes and apparently didn't have much of a book. It's only worth hunting down for fans of Booth or 50s musicals.

No, No, Nanette was a huge hit in 1925...and proved to be even more popular with nostalgia-starved audiences in its smash 1971 revival. The 1999 Broadway Masterworks CD was one of several relatively inexpensive cast albums I bought from the Borders near the Hamilton Mall in college, and it's become a favorite of mine. My favorite number was intended as an addition to the original show, but was dropped. That's a shame, because the wistful "Only a Moment Ago," performed by Keeler and Jack Gilford as they remember how they met, is not only really sweet, but manages to encapsulate what nostalgia is all about for many people.

Nanette was such a blockbuster, the producers followed it up with another revival of a vintage favorite two years later. Irene was the major hit of 1919, and it too was successful. This time, the star the show revolves around is Debbie Reynolds, who plays the sassy Irish piano tuner of the title who falls for a millionaire. Irene was so wildly popular in 1919, it spawned a series of similar musicals about modern Irish Cinderellas who get their men, including Marilyn Miller's Sally.

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