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Friday, September 26, 2008

Theres A New Hottie....Er.....Botti In Town

Last week my husband surprised me with a night at the Boston Pops. He had planned it for weeks and loves to surprise me----and I am a hard person to surprise, as I am picky about what I do when I have some time off. I don't get a lot of time off, so I prefer doing things that I love to do.

So, I was worried.

But, as we came up the subway stairs, we were right in front of the Boston Symphony Hall, so I kind of had an idea where we were going. I was excited, as I really like the Boston Pops. Bret showed me the poster as we were going in, grinning a bit as I took it all in.

The Boston Pops were welcoming a trumpet player named Chris Botti,---well, he is someone that I had never heard of, so I read on. There on the next line was a name that I was intimate with.
After all, we have had many discussions together and hung out numerous times.....well, my dreams.

Yes, you guessed it----it was Sting! He was going to be joined with several other celebrities, such as Steven Tyler and Yo-Yo Ma. (who is unbelievable in his cello playing----cello is my favorite string instrument, by the way)

I felt a little bit more of a zing of excitement then, as I anticipated the evening----and I was feeling great as we looked for our seats.

They were up in the balcony, but that was ok, because we had a great view of the entire hall---which is so beautiful, with its gilding and old archways and seating. Then it was really intriguing seeing the big cameras and the large booms that were swinging back and forth in front of the stage. Oh, right, I guess that I forgot to tell you that this was a "special" night, as they were taping a PBS special as well! So, everyone had to be aware that they could stop the concert at any time to do a part over or change something that they didn't think was right.

It brought back lots of memories of my commercial days, so it was fun to watch.

So, we sat quietly waiting to start the show. The orchestra started to play and this thin, blonde man comes on stage, impeccably dressed in an Europeon cut tuxedo. Of course, he was carrying a trumpet, so I knew who he was immediately.

"Wow!" I thought, "Wow." He was quite a hottie, this Chris Botti.

And then he started to play.

There was something ethereal about his playing----transporting one to another world. Beautiful. Lyrical. Transcendent.

Ok, so I have to admit that I was in heaven. I then remembered that I had heard Chris's playing on several of Stings albums and had loved his haunting style. So, I just sat back, closed my eyes and enjoyed the moment.

The evening turned out to be fantastic. Sting came on (AAAAAHHHHH----he is the COOLEST MAN EVER!) and sang a number with Chris, then several other girls came on and sang with him....ho, hum....not so great, and we only had to stop one time when they had to re-powder Chris's nose, and he had to re-tell a joke and told us to laugh the next time.

Oh, yeah, there was that incident when Jon Mayer was singing---oh, did I forget to mention him? Yes, he was doing some jazz number when the producer lady came and tapped him on the shoulder and stopped his song about halfway through. Oh, it was PRICELESS, the look on his face! I hope that someone captured it for a great You Tube moment!

Apparently some older gentleman in one of the first few rows had passed out and they needed to get him medical help. So, they stopped the show for about 15 minutes until the paramedics could come and wheel him out. It was pretty exciting, and after it was over, Chris and Sting and Yo-Yo Ma came out and played one of my favorite songs of all time: "Fragile" by Sting. It was a beautiful moment. Apparently they had been doing a show together when 9-11 happened and after they found out, they asked the crowd if they should go on----to which they played this number. So perfect.

So, now I have discovered a new voice. I, of course, will have a bit of Chris's playing on my music line-up, so take a few minutes to listen.

Close your eyes. Go to that happy place.

Its really nice.

Friday, September 19, 2008

I Want One Of These!

A few months ago I was visiting a woman from my church. She and I were in her dining room talking, when all of the sudden, I heard this small motor start up in the corner. I was a bit perplexed as I noticed a small round object start to move around the edge of the room.

"What is that?" I exclaimed.
I was intrigued.

"Oh, that...that's my vacuum".

Huh? What?

Ok, I knew that there were robots doing things out there, but I didn't realize that they were SERIOUSLY cleaning, and ALL BY THEMSELVES!!

Now....we are talking a dream come true. This amazing little vacuum can be scheduled to do its vacuuming, coming off its charger and going around the room or rooms, and even raising up to go into another room, if that is what you program it to do! I was in love...

So, I started hinting to my family as Mothers Day was right around the corner. ("I Robot, I Robot, I Robot," I said. I sometimes even answered questions with "I Robot")

Mothers Day came and.......I got a kayak.

Now, don't get me wrong----I do like to kayak, but I REALLY need this little vacuum!

So, I thought that I would hint some more and maybe on my birthday?

Well, you guessed it----I got a great surprise party, but no amazing vacuum.
Now I have a friend that told me her theory on why women don't get vacuums for gifts from their significant others:

*They are worried that it will look like they are trying to tell you that you are a slob and need to clean. (Which is a viable reason, because I don't HAVE a vacuum that works right now, and a lot of carpet to vacuum, so I am a slob!)
*They think that women will be upset if they get them a domestic gift.
*They are worried that you will start to love your vacuum robot more than them. (Hmmmm..... viable point)
*They won't have anything to complain about if all the dust bunnies are up off of the floor.

But what that significant other just doesn't realize that this wonderful tool would be more than just a domestic item in the house. It would be a friend. It would be a play toy for the cats and puppies. It would be a fascination for my son. It would be a conversation piece for anyone visiting or dropping by. It would become part of the family, and yes, I would probably name it....

Have I mentioned that I want one?

And, I need to find something that can do toilets.....and does that Robot come in green?

Sunday, September 14, 2008

A Bad Smell

As I have painfully made it clear, I have an acute sense of smell.
It can be my downfall sometimes, as I will come into the door of my house and sniff out a bad smell until I find it!

BEWARE if I ever come to visit!!

Well, about a month ago, as I was getting ready to go on yet another band trip, and I got in my new car (you remember, Honeydew) to leave, I turned on the air conditioner, because, was a hot day. Imagine my surprise when the air blowing from the clean new car air conditioner smelled like a dead fish!

EEEEWWWWWW, you may say. (That's what a new friend of mine said---she's really cool---read her blog here!)

Yes, it was indeed an EEEEWWWWW moment and as I tried to ignore it, and not compare it to the smell of briny shrimp that had been left out for several days, I bravely pulled out of the driveway and went on my trip.

Every day I had to go through this same ritual. Sometimes I would have one of my band mates in the car, and they would curl up their noses (how does one "curl" up their nose, by the way?) and make some remark about how I was getting stinky for a girl, or some such other disgusting banter about the smell. My poor son, Aydan, would just hold his nose and say "Yeeecccchhhh, Mom! What is that smell?

Now, you may ask why I just didn't take it in to the nearest Toyota dealer for them to take a gander at it. I wanted to, but as I said----I was traveling every weekend and sometimes during the week, as well as doing the theatre camps, etc. Oh, you know all about it...unless you haven't read my blog before or live on Mars. Or time travel back and forth through an anomaly. Hang on, that is in one of my favorite new shows from the BBC, Primeval...

So, back to my smell.

I finally got my car in on Friday.

Oh, yes, they found something. Some little curmudgeon had eaten its way through my air filter, and left lots of feces and foodstuffs, etc. Of course, IT was no longer there---dead and rotting. Noooooo, it had made its escape long ago. I thought that for sure it would be a dead fish in there, maybe flopped there during a big rain, or some large dead shrimp, hiding out after escaping from a shrimper here in the bay near Boston. My mind had conjured up all sorts of things, but it was just a rotten chipmunk or mouse---leaving behind a mess.
And a mess it was. In fact, the Toyota place had to charge me $135.00 just to clean up that mess and replace the filter.

The filter was only $10.00, the rest was "labor". It still doesn't smell that good, so I am kind of concerned. And I have to admit that I think that my car is now going to be the "new" nesting area for every rodent and chipmunk in the area.

It'll probably be a big party place. Perhaps they'll serve shrimp.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Tricky Maneuver

Every season I change the colors and look of my house.

I like change.

I crave change.

I get so excited when it is getting close to the time when I get to change my bedding, curtains, pillows, towels, etc. to the next "season". Most people think that I am crazy, but I don't care.

I like having a whole new color palette!

Well, along with this new palette, I sometimes change out things like baskets, (you know, white ones just don't go with the fall browns, golds, maroons and beige's.) Well, one such basket is in my bathroom atop my toilet.

Now, let me first say that my family doesn't really care about all the change---and they don't complain when their bed sheets have mysteriously changed to a new color and even consistency. Even my youngest, Aydan, just gets used to whatever decorative changes that go on.

Until Saturday.

It happened like this:

(I was walking on my treadmill,----I've been trying to walk for a half hour a day) Aydan walked up to me and said, "Mom, can I talk to you for a minute?"

Me: "Well,....sure....hang on." (I got off the treadmill----he looked very serious)

Aydan: "Well, I wanted to let you know that that new BASKET that you put in the bathroom isn't going to work!" (this said with lots of drama)

Me: " Oh,....why?"

Aydan: (looking at me as if I am stupid) "Well, its too BIG!"

Me: (I'm just not getting it...) "Why?"

Aydan: "It sticks out over the toilet top and the lid won't STAY UP!"

Me: (I don't get the problem, I'm thinking---just hold it up) ......

Aydan: (a bit exasperated) "Mom! It keeps falling down when I am trying know......

Me: (Getting it finally) "Oh,....oh....I'm so sorry! I didn't even think about that when I put it there! So, what did you do?" (thinking that I was in for a mess to clean up)

Aydan: (still very serious) "Well,......I just.......(and here is a long pause)....used my head to hold it up..."

Me: (speechless)

Needless to say, I took that basket right off and put a smaller one there---in the right color tone, of course, but I couldn't have my little guy stressing over tricky maneuvers.

Aydan, trying to keep afloat in my wacky world!

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Honesty....Is Such A Lonely Word

I have a very bad habit. Or maybe you would call it a weakness.

I am a trusting soul.

I tend to always believe what people tell me and trust them.

As usual, it has gotten me into trouble again.

Of course, you have read about my search for the perfect place for my new theatre ventures. Or maybe you haven't; if not, you can read about it here. I still haven't found someone to share the space with, by the way----even though I have a belly dancer who is renting it by the hour----two hours a week, anyway. That doesn't make much of a dent in the rent, but I will take what I can get...

But back to the subject at hand. I did have a successful summer in the space, doing Musical Theatre camps there, and ended up with a record number of students in my last camp, with 17 students! It was a lot of work, as I write the shows that we do and then choreograph them, and the students learn them to perform on the last day---this while trying to do acting exercises, vocal exercises, teaching costuming and stage hair and makeup! Its crazy....and STRESSFUL!

So, naturally, the week with the 17 students was the most stressful, and I now swear that I am NOT going to put more than 15 in a class----EVER!!

Well, this brings me to my weakness. There was this Dad that had put his daughter in the camps last summer. Two of the camps, actually. But he is one of these kind of Dads that show up on the first day----never pre-registered, no paperwork, hands you a wad a cash and says that his daughter is ready to take the class. Well, of course, you don't turn him away, and you scramble to get a folder and supplies ready for the girl. She is a cutie and talented, so no worries.

So, this year I got an e-mail from him at the first of the summer. I guess that he had found my e-mail on my Facebook page. (He is one of my "friends"----this is where I am making a face...)
He wanted to see when the dates for the camps were for this summer, and was interested in having his daughter take them again. Well, I was rather surprised and excited that he was trying to enroll her BEFORE the class started, so I wrote back...

He then wrote back to me a few weeks later, telling me that his daughter did, indeed, want to take my camp again,---and he told me which one----and not only that, but his other two daughters wanted to take the camp also! "Wow!" I thought, "Thats great!" He then went on to inform me that he had to figure out how they would get there---he had to arrange the rides for them, etc., as he was no longer living with them, as he was going through a divorce, etc.

"Hang on," you are saying. "Did I just read a 'red flag'?" Divorce? And what is he doing for a living? Well, he said that he was bartending, so I thought that was probably why he paid in cash.

I'm sure that you are way ahead of me by now.

You are very smart.

You are not the trusting type like me.

I already admire you for that.

So, he then wrote me to tell me that he wouldn't be able to bring the girls, as their Grandma was going to, but that he would see me on the last day, when he came to see the show, and HE WOULD PAY ME THEN.

Oh, that, Shawn. You are obviously not that stupid and moronic.

Yes, I am. I believed him. I spent that week going through the worst stress of any theatre camp I had done---busting my buttocks to work with 17 students. And when he came on the last day,
(YES, HE HAD THE NERVE TO COME AND SEE THE SHOW!!) and I asked him about the money, he had the gall to say, "Oh, my wife didn't pay? I thought that SHE was going to!"

So, he took my address and promised to send it in the mail...

Its been over three weeks now, and of course, I have not seen any of the money. I have e-mailed him, and we even went by the Grandma's house to harass her. (Bret did that, not me----I could NEVER!) We got his number----he was living with his Dad,----puh-leeeze----but his Dad said that he had moved out and didn't know how to get ahold of him----RIGHT, uh, huh... I even wrote a Facebook reminder----something like----"this is your conscience speaking".... Nothing....

The problem is that I was counting on that money to pay my rent on my new space for Sept. I have been trying to make a go of this business for about three years now----never getting any money from grants, (I'm too brain dead to know how to write to get one) and never have had a loan (my credit is too bad---because of my first marriage, but that's another story)----so I have used every dime that I have made to put right back into my business. My dream... (Cue the teary-eyed music)

Blah, blah, are saying...I don't want to hear your sob stories any more... There are people with a WHOLE lot more problems than you! I know....I hear you....

But here I am, SCREWED over again and all because I am a trusting person.

So, what is a girl to do?

It sucks.

So, do any of you have stories about your trusting nature? I could so use a few.... make me feel better.
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