Saturday, May 30, 2009


Sir Ian, Sir Ian, Sir Ian.

Bonus points to people who get that reference. And no, it isn't Lord of the Rings.

So I continued my rampage of getting famous people's autographs. Let's just say I might have a promising career as a paparazzo, judging solely by the lack of shame I feel holding a camera in celebrities faces and not by the photographic quality.

I saw Waiting for Godot this week, and first off can I say that absurdist theatre is fascinating? It's tough not to try to apply symbolism to every little line, and in some ways that's part of the fun, but the pure nonsense that is absurdism is glorious. Godot in particular was just so fun to see.

This version starred Patrick Stewart (!!!) and Sir Ian McKellan (!!!!!!!!!!!!), and I don't know what to say. It's incredible how spry and coordinated Sir Ian is. He can jig with the best of them. I think he and Patrick should be best friends, they just played off each other with impeccable comedic timing. And let's just say, Jim Dale has some serious competition when it comes to narrating my life. Patrick Stewart's dulcet tones would perfectly accompany my actions. "As Cat walked down the street, she was suddenly struck with how beautiful life is, and how wonderful falafel would taste at that moment." Hmmm.

On a completely unrelated note, I've decided I want to live in Ireland.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Wolverine, I will punch you in the face.

Seriously. No joke.

So the point of this post? If you value brain cells, don't see this:

You will regret it.

This particular cinematical experience made me want to claw my eyes out. I spent well over half the movie writhing in pain and smothering laughter. SO. BAD. If you want to see a movie full of death scenes that make you laugh out loud, shoddy special effects including claws that look like cartoons coming out of Wolverine's hands, and a script that is nothing but a long laundry list of cliches, this is the show for you. Honestly, every. Single. Word sounds like it's a sound byte taken from a particularly awful B-movie. Like so:
"You shouldn't have come back here!" "I had to stop you!" "I can't be stopped!" "What you're doing is wrong!" "What would you know! You're an animal. Be the animal you are!" "I'll never look back! I am more!"
*Cat bashing her head against the seat in front of her*
Ack. So much bad movie. Well, at least I have something in common with one of my heroes, Dr. Perry Cox from Scrubs. We both share an undying and completely justified hatred for Hugh Jackman. Hugh, you're officially On Notice.

But at least something marvelous happened the next day, as if Fate was officially apologizing for awful films. I went on A Magical Mystery Tour, walking around London and checking out prominent Beatles sites! Thank you Universe!

I think I salivated appropriately over everything. Our tour guide was competent, only missing a couple of stories I found imperative. Not telling the "rattle your jewelry" anecdote? Shameful! Anyway, a couple of highlights.

Paul McCartney's office (his is the one with the arched window):

3 Saville Row, location of the last rooftop performance:

The art gallery where John met Yoko (also where Peter Asher displayed his work, co-owned by Paul):

The pub where the Beatles frequently visited, also where Jimi Hendrix was discovered:

And of course, the penultimate moment of the tour, Abbey Road Studios and ABBEY ROAD!!!:

I can die happy.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Dizzy With Absolutely Random Happiness

I've been seeing plays like a mad man (insane person, not incredibly suave and hip business person). I haven't been this exposed to that culture for years, and I guess it's working for me. I enjoy it. Whatever. It sort of makes me miss it, miss the thrill of walking on stage, taking on something other than self, convincing an entire audience that there is no possible way you can be anything other than what you tell them you are, all while you are safe behind an invisible wall.

I really missed it last night, when I saw three days of rain at the Apollo. *TEASER* It stars James McAvoy. And with that bit o' information, hold on while I wax philosophic for the next couple paragraphs.

The play was fantastic. It was technically brilliant, using a relatively sparse set design that served as the perfect space to inhabit two ages, both the modern day and 1960. But it was the lighting that carried me away. The action was all set within a loft type apartment, with huge windows completely making up one side. They shone light through those in such a way that it looked utterly natural, which is some tough stuff. Very impressive. Along with that, the manipulation of the character's shadows were obviously examined closely, with their movements precisely located so that the size and location of shadow added to the plot perfectly. Beautiful!

And then there was the acting. The other two actors were fine, and held their own, but McAvoy was why people were there, and deservedly so. As Walker/Ned, he proved that he could navigate a stage just as well, if not better than, a movie set. His characters were so different, one tortured and possibly mad, plagued by self-doubt, and the other still possessing doubt, but doubt that came through a debilitating stutter and a quiet demeanor. Both were engrossing, and he was mesmerizing to watch. I got a little choked up at the end, and that does not happen to me.

And then I had the best fangirl moment ever. One of the girls in our group wanted to wait for McAvoy at the stage door, so we huddled and waited for him. We stood there with a huge group of the most polite, calm women you've ever seen. Even when he came out of the theatre, there was no pushing or shoving or that ever-annoying shrieking that usually accompanies these sorts of things. Just people courteously waiting for him to sign their ticket. Which he did, every single person's that was waiting. I love it when people are just as nice and adorable as you always hoped they were, and he lived up to expectations. In fact, we even talked a little while he was signing my ticket. Cue nostaligic memory music and cut to the script!

Me: I loved you in Macbeth.

James (in Scottish accent): Thanks. You might want to watch out where you say that name though, we are outside a theatre. (Gives a wry half smile, signs ticket)

Me: (swoons, but just a little) Oh sorry, I mean the Scottish play.

James: Technically the Scottish TV show. (hands me ticket, may or may not wink).

Sunday, May 3, 2009


I think that is my favorite English phrase so far. That and "no more getting your dongle out", but that's a different story for a different audience. Contact me if you want a more detailed version.

Things in cheery ol' London are going swimmingly. I've been fighting jet lag tooth and nail, allowing myself one morning of exhaustion before pushing myself to get out of the flat, rarely to return. It's working out pretty well. Five to six hours of sleep a night versus twelve hours of walking a day? Where do I sign?!?

Here's some words of wise thought from my British experience:

1. Chocolate is ruined for me forever. It's so much better here! Even though I'm not sure if that's reality speaking or my expectation that all British things are hip and mucho better than America. I expect the latter. I mean, NO. Chocolate is better! And there are many more Cadbury varieties. Mmmmmmm...

2. British accents don't automatically make a boy more attractive. I know. It came as a shock to me too. They might not be the automatic aphrodisiac I thought, but seriously, they sure do help. Just not always.

3. Diversity= Goodness. I went to my ward for the first time today, and it was AMAZING. Over 75% of the members are first generation and from Nigeria or someplace similar. I love being so close to new testimonies, where everyone is full of excitement and fervor. Smaller wards are my favorite. Plus, I want a black child with hugenormous rich brown eyes, like the three year old I flirted with during sacrament meeting. Sorry redheaded babies, you've been replaced.

4. Cliques are for losers and squares. The more people you know, the more people there are to mooch off of when the occasion requires it. See? You learn something new every day.

5. Nothing can compete with Shakespeare. Ever.

So go London! Or go to London. Come on. Everybody's doing it.