Sunday, September 02, 2018

Once a Year Day

Tried to start off the morning with the original Broadway cast of How to Succeed In Business Without Really Trying in honor of Labor Day...but the record wouldn't play right. It kept skipping or the sound was wonky, and I know there's no scratches on that record. Turns out that the needle is both dull and loose. I'll order a new one at the end of the week. For now, I'll just be listening to CDs and the internet.

Switched to Legally Blonde: The Musical as I made Plum Ginger Pancakes for breakfast. Elle Woods (Laura Bell Bundy) is  your typical sweet blond bimbo collegiate in Southern California, at least until her boyfriend Warner Huntington III (Richard H Blake) says he's going to study law at Harvard. Determined to prove that she can be as serious as the next girl, Elle follows him cross-country, getting into Harvard through sheer chutzpah (and overwhelming the entrance committee with her personal essay, a cheer routine). She's hopelessly out of place among the dark-dressed snobs at Harvard, and her obsession with Warner is occupying a lot more time than her law studies. Poor law teaching student Emmett (Christian Borle) helps her to understand that if she really wants to be serious, she has to change her priorities and put the focus on her. Not only does she get a coveted internship, but she may be the only one who can help a popular fitness instructor who was accused of killing her husband.

This is such a cute show. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed it. It's not for those who are looking for a more serious or manly, but if you love modern rock-pop, girl-power tales, or the original film, you'll want to check this out.

Cleaned the kitchen while I listened to the show. It was a little bit messier than the bathroom. I've been eating at home a lot, mainly because I can't afford to eat out as often as I used to. (Not to mention, it's been too hot to go out a lot of the time this summer anyway.)

Broke to write for a little while at around 12:30, but I didn't really get far. Leia is forced to dress as a show girl to be one of the ones given as a "bride to the gods" in Yasmin's "ceremony." Luke has a plan to rescue Henry and the Sword, but Leia isn't entirely sure about any of it.

Headed out quickly around 2 for Dad and Jodie's party. I walked there instead of taking my bike. It was a hot and humid day, probably in the upper 80's, but I was carrying the peanut butter icebox cake. It doesn't really fit in my basket. I also had no plans to go anywhere else and didn't really feel like pulling the cover off the bike just to go to Dad's on the next street over.

Dad, Jodie, and Vanessa were the only ones there when I arrived at 2:30. I went swimming on my own for about a half-hour before Dana and Samantha, a friend of her's, joined me. Jesse came in a bit later. I'd gotten out to get a snack just as Rose and her family rolled in.  They were going to come at 2, but little miss Finley had to finish out her nap. Jessa arrived shortly before them. (She said Joe opted to clean their condo.) I went back in, watching Craig lead his daughter around in the water and trying to keep Khai from swiping her My Little Pony toddler toys. Khai's friend Chloe and her mom came over to swim at about 4:30.

Jodie had the barbecue ready around 5. Along with cheeseburgers, hot dogs, and ribs, there was a fruit tray, a Caesar salad, potato and macaroni salads, asparagus sauteed in garlic, and cucumber salad. Rose provided a cookie tray, with massive home-made chocolate chip cookies layered alongside Smores Milanos, Lemon cookies, and Gingerbread Men and sprinkled with blueberries. Jodie also had butter and lemon loaf cakes for dessert with my peanut butter cake. I never did have lunch, so I had two burgers, the salad, macaroni salad, and asparagus, plus lots of fruit from the fruit tray, several cookies, a slice of lemon cake, and two small slices of peanut butter cake.

I rejoined Khai and Chloe in the pool for a while after dinner. Had a nice chat with Chloe about her cheerleading and how I used to play field hockey in high school. She, Khai, and I had a great time splashing each other.

After we got out, Khai and Craig set off fireworks. I stood on the porch and watched while Sam, Dana, Rose, and Finley observed on the grass by the pool. They set off small upright canisters that shot off colorful sparks and made sizzling pops in the air and small circles that created colored smoke. Evidently, they didn't go quite as high or far as they were supposed to. Craig said he'd had the set around since he picked up at Acme on the 4th of July.

We all finally came in for dessert at 6. Finley cuddled up against her mama, while her brother and Chloe played with Jessa's massive Beanie Babies collection and Jessa had a serious conversation with her father. Khai and Chloe were covering each other with Beanies and "popping" out of the container when we were all ready to head home.

Rose and her family drove me to my place. I'd barely gotten out of the car when I noticed a very, very long line of tomatoes sitting on the railing of Charlie's front porch. His garden's output had multiplied again, probably the result of the rain we had last week, and he was once again trying to get rid of the windfall. I took two small tomatoes, a green pepper, and a pile of grape tomatoes.

Spent the rest of the night listening to Broadway cast albums, either about school or work. The second revival of The Pajama Game did fairly well in 2006, likely thanks to the star power of leads Kelli O'Hara and Harry Connick Jr. Connick is Sid, the new foreman at a pajama factory that's preparing to go on strike. He tangles almost immediately with Babe (O'Hara), the head of the grievance committee. The girls on the pajama-making line know there's sparks between them, but Babe needs persuasion. They seem to get on well at the company picnic, but Babe still supports the union strike...and Sid ends up firing her after she damages the machinery. Sid, however, ends up understanding her point of view when he discovers that their boss has been playing fast and loose with the accounts. Meanwhile, efficiency expert Hines (Michael McKean) is constantly jealous of all the flirting his girlfriend Gladys (Megan Laurence) does, especially after he catches her with Sid and comes to the wrong conclusion.

Three new songs were added to this production (one for Connick Jr. to sing in the second act), but my favorites are still the older ones. Connick does well by the standard "Hey There"; he and O'Hara have a blast with "There Once Was a Man." I also like "I Still Get Jealous" for McKean and Roz Ryan (as Sid's secretary Mabel).

Ended the night with the popular 1959 off-Broadway revival of the 1917 college musical Leave It to Jane. Jane (Kathleen Murray) is the daughter of the president of Atwater College, which is trying to set up a football team to defeat rival Bingham. Bessie, another athlete at the school, convinces Jane to lure Bingham's star football player Billy Bolton to Atwater. She does manage to get Billy to Atwater under an assumed name. Billy wins the big Thanksgiving Day game, but his dad catches him. His dad is a big Bingham supporter, and he tells him that Jane only wanted him for the team.  He packs up to leave Atwater, but Jane finally tells him that she loves him and will wait for him until after school.

Charming antique is the grandparent of everything from Good News to High School Musical and is a lot of fun for fans of college tales or Jerome Kern's music.

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