Sunday, October 17, 2010


OUCH.  I would not want to be a human for anything.  Everybody tries to please everybody else and sometimes it just goes terribly wrong.

Settle in and put on a warm sweater  because it is going to get a little chilly around here.  Owner knows she’s not as “up” as Curly. If you read my posts regularly you know he’s the type of guy up for anything, any time, anywhere. Owner….not so much.  When she’s up for something she’s 100% in but if she’s not, she ain’t even showing up.  One raised eyelid over her bulging eyeball and Curly knows that his great idea has been shot down AGAIN.

So owner sat and thought about her generally less than boisterous attitude all week and decided she needed to get her act together.  I stood behind her loyally because that’s just what dogs do even though I knew it meant me being left at home alone for hours.  She came up with two great ideas.  1.  Go to a presentation at the Houston Zoo by a world acclaimed naturalist/photographer.  Unfortunately Curly couldn’t go as he had Australians he had to meet with.  OK no go, on with the backup plan. 2.  Go to some musical repertory theatre downtown.  Curly was on that like glue but  came up with his own play he wanted to go and see.  It was a one-woman comedy written and acted by a young Canadian.  NOW Owner knew she had to agree to this because a) she never wants to do anything that involves driving downtown and b) she is always telling  Curly to PLEASE pick something you would like to do.  She was between a rock and a hard place if you get my drift; she had to agree that his play was at least as good as the one she had picked out.

They looked great as they headed out the door for dinner downtown at Benjy’s. Owner remembered to put on her “I’m so excited to head out and do something FUN face.”  As a bonus  the restaurant’s waiter was very “hot” in a Brazilian kind of way so Owner enjoyed her meal very much.  However, he did take some fun out of ordering by commenting constantly on which meals would be healthy enough to eat.  Curly ended up with some tofu thing (read paw down throat!) and Owner had a hot salad…which I hear was not her favourite meal of all time. But be that as it may they were out, they were doing something FUN, and Owner wouldn’t have to come up with some great new activity for at least six months.  Things were looking up.

Dark was descending as they began their drive to the theatre.  Owner suddenly remembered Curly had made a strange statement about the theatre when she had asked where it was located.  He didn’t say where it was exactly but he did throw in the comment…”don’t worry it’s near a police station.” Owner was busy putting her makeup on at the time so the comment slid off her shoulders like water off a duck’s back.   His questionable remark hung like an echo as they drove down a dark street; the darkness seemed impenetrable.   Curly decided to follow orders and conversate, so forged ahead with a risky statement. She has been pestering him to talk so she is to blame for his incessant chatter; the old be careful what you wish for. What he said was, “well, we aren’t in the best neighbourhood but it isn’t the worst.”  Owner may need to shave her neck today because she suddenly realised how many hairs were standing up back there as he  continued his  monologue.  The next words flew at lightning speed  out of Owner’s mouth. “Oh My God, I’m pretty sure those are Crack houses!”   She did a quick estimation of the value of the BMW and how angry people would be if they asked her to hand over her purse since it had two lipstsicks and a lipliner.  Curly reverted to typical Curly…”fine, we’ll turn around and go home then.” Owner gets tired of the perpetually upbeat, everything is great attitude he always tucks into an easily accesible pocket, sort of a ‘don’t leave home without it’ accessory.   “Oh, we aren’t going to go  home,” she grumbled.  “Where the hell is the damn theatre, anyway?”   “Here,” as he drove into the gravelled lot in front of a building made out of wall panelling in a definite drive by neighbourhood. As she related the events thus far I could tell that the plans for a fun night out  were definitely on a downturn

Two ladies  parked beside them and tentatively opened the door of their van and in quavering voices, asked “have you ever been here before; we were wondering if we should even go in?”   They were obviously petrified to get out of their car and/or  leave it in this highly suspect lot.  (Hey, we watch a lot of The Closer and Brenda Lee Johnson has probably warned people about leaving their cars here.) Curly had no patience for these two  wimpy,  whiney women; in fact he had no patience for his own!  Owner told me later she slunk into the darkened  room and took her seat in one of the fifty “in need of cleaning” seats, crossed her legs, double crossed her arms,  her toes,  and made the sign of the cross with her fingers as she prayed she’d make it home in one piece.  When Curly tried to engage her in conversation she crossed her eyes.  She whispered loudly that if this had been their first date she would NEVER have gone out with him again.  Why? he asked all big eyed.  Curly has a sense of humour because he did say, “I guess you don’t want to take out a theatre membership?”   At that point there could have been a murder in the theatre and we all know who would have been doing what to whom!

She had thought she was being so sweet offering to go to the THEATRE and here she was in a building made of wall panelling.  What better target audience to rob than stupid white people going into a neighbourhood they have no business in after dark.   She prayed the theatre owner  still had a good relationship with everyone on the street, after all this building had been the store his parents ran when he was a young boy.

To be fair owner has to admit ninety percent of the people who came in the door looked quite comfortable being there.  The woman next to Owner admitted she was terrified the first time she came to see a play here also but that this was her third time returning and she hadn’t lost a car yet.  Owner snorted as warmly as she could.

Owner blames her inability to move comfortably  through neighbourhoods different from her own on her very sheltered growing up where everyone lived in  pretty much the same neighbourhood.  Nowhere was dangerous unless you count the bears that wandered the streets in the Fall and the Spring.  One night Dave Grignon’s  escaped pet skunk scared her as she came home on a date but that was about as nerve wracking as it got in Northern Ontario.  Let’s not forget that her milieu in Texas is pretty sheltered and no Canadian arrives in the States without knowing that this is a country with neighbourhoods that are different than we are used to. American TV doesn’t make us yearn for everything made in the U.S.A.

Now, let me see if I can tell you about the play. I only have a dog brain and this just doesn’t make sense to me.  We have ONE young cute Canadian actress, Gemma Wilcox,  who has come in for the debut of her show Shadows in Bloom.  Now this woman must suffer from personality disorder because in the course of an hour she was….Sandra, Pete, Kate, Louise, Flora, a torch singer in a bar, a saxaphonist, bass player, drummer, a Calla LILY, Louis the French sunflower, AND a child’s blankey. Every character had a different voice, mannerisms, needs, desires, and wants and this Gemma was up to the task.  Owner’s head was spinning as they left wondering how this young woman had been able to convince the audience moment after moment that she was who she was pretending to be …and she was each character for one, two, twenty,  forty seconds and then switched into the other character, and back and forth and back and forth.  Whirlwind effect.   You had to be there I guess because it just doesn’t make sense to me. 

Gemma worked her magic.  The car was still there. Everyone who entered the theatre left safely.  Two  women were out chatting at their fence line as Owner and Curley drove away….making the neighbourhood look, well gee…kind of like a neighbourhood.    Owner gave her head a shake, (as her brother-in-law Jim would tell her to do), and admitted the play was well done.   The car heater came on for a second  to melt some of the ice that had accumulated on those crossed legs and arms.  Divorce avoided for another day.  See ya later.   

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