Just a few things I've been thinking about . . .

Where do dirty glasses come from? I am a coffee drinker. Period. Aside from the occasional glass of iced tea, I drink coffee. Coffee requires a cup -- just one cup. I start with a clean one every morning and as I finish one cup of coffee and get ready to make another, I wash the same cup that I began the day with. The Amazing Egyptian Dude drinks a cup of coffee in the morning before he leaves for the office, and a glass of hot tea (Egyptians drink hot tea in glasses instead of cups) in the evening before he goes to bed. If he has iced tea, too, then he has used a total of 2 glasses and 1 cup. Add to this my 1 cup, and I should be washing 4 drinking vessels daily. So how come my sink is perpetually filled with dirty glasses? Where do they come from?

Ok, we do have a guest now. And the past three or four weekends, Iman, Magdy, and Basma have been here. But still, that doesn't explain how a well-stocked cupboard can go bare in a matter of minutes and my sink fill up in record time! Unless . . .

. . . is it possible that everyone but me is using a different glass or cup each time they get a drink? And if they are, why is that I'm the only one washing all of them?

Who said picnics are outdoor events? On Saturday, we went to see the opening performance of the Long Beach Shakespeare Company's production of Julius Caesar. When we've attended performances in the past, they've always been held in a park where we could bring along a picnic. So when I invited the usual group of suspects -- er, friends -- to join us, I suggested that we just continue the established pattern of everyone bringing a dish for all to share. I fried about 40 pieces of chicken, made a gigantic bowl of macaroni salad, and the Amazing Egyptian Dude filled the ice chest with water, soda, and ice.

Imagine my surprise when, as we were approaching the freeway exit, I get a call from Diana, the 4th grade BFF who joined us for the first time this year, telling me that the address from the company's website was actually a furniture building of some sort. What?! Sure enough, the performance was being held indoors at an empty furniture expo that the city of Long Beach owns. Despite the change of venue, our picnic was still on.

Although the acoustics in the building left a lot to be desired, the performance was quite good. Each member of the richly diverse cast performed his or her heart out and played as if to a full house. The dance at the Lupercalia was a bit unusual because the ancient Roman festival was celebrated to honor shepherds and this production's director turned it into a visual orgy better fitting the Bacchanalia. It is strange turns in the interpretation of the plays, like this one, that make me genuinely enjoy watching performances by local theater companies.

During the intermission, the company's Co-Artistic Director, Denis McCourt, introduced himself to us and engaged us in a friendly conversation. A very personable fellow, Denis was genuinely interested in feedback from the audience as well as ideas for future productions. It was from Denis that we learned why the venue had changed. The Furniture Expo is an empty building that belongs to the city of Long Beach. Someone, somewhere, somehow was able to convince the city to allow the building to be used for a Center for the Arts and with the city's agreement, the company is allowed to use the facility at no cost. For small theater groups such as the Long Beach Shakespeare Company, find a free venue is a godsend.

In these trying economic times, families look for things to do that cost very little. Check your city to see if they have a theater company and if the do, go see a play! It is very often free or very low cost if a fee is involved.

Here's wishing everyone the start of a great week!

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2 Responses
  1. Anonymous Says:

    I've been waiting to here about this and cannot believe they put it in a building. Sad, but I understand why. As long as you could still picnic and be with family and friends, I guess the scenery doesn't really make a difference. However, I know how much you were looking forward to it being outside. But sounds like you had a great time and enjoyed. That's the main thing...Chicken and Mac salad...mmmm mmm good

    LOL at the perpetually filled sink LOL...too funny :)

  2. Carleen Says:

    I was disappointed about the event moving indoors, too, but figured that since we were already there and it was free, we might as well watch the play. I'm glad that we did. :)

    There's a Shakespeare company in the city where we live, too, but they never do a performance in the park.

    My daughter found a company that travels from park to park throughout the summer; I think that we'll check them out next.

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