Tuesday, 23 February 2010

I heart The Dench

Question: How do you enjoy exciting theatrical delights when you have no job and no money?

Answer: Volunteer! CVtastic and free theatre.

For me this means The Rose Theatre in Kingston, where I saw Dame Dench in Midsummer Night's Dream. There was a lot of hoo-haa about The Dench, which is understandable, but even without her it was pretty good...and funny, which is odd for Shakespeare; even when the dialogue is genuinely witty and great I always get too distracted by the middle-aged men laughing heartily just to show they are clever enough to get the joke.

Particularly funny in this production (and also particularly handsome) was the chap playing the weaver. This made the play quite difficult for me to focus on, as I was stuck in a fantasy world of the day we will eventually meet....we both reach for the same e.e.cummings volume in the library and because of the library's Rule of Silence, we conduct an in depth discussion of contemporary literature through mime. Once out of the library, the first words out of my mouth would be "I liked your Bottom", he would shoot my a shy and confused smile and I would clarify that I meant Shakespeare...and of course he loves rubbish jokes and innuendos, two things we go on to share for THE REST OF OUR LIVES. In the Cotswolds. With an Aga.

So, long story short if you want to know what happened in the second half you'll have to ask someone else.

Friday, 19 February 2010

Good times, I love it

Despite what some people keep saying, just because I am a fan of several female comedians that does not make me a lesbian. Having said that, I bloody adore this woman:

www.laurasolon.com. You're welcome, The Internet.

Thursday, 18 February 2010

I'll be the very model of a modern English patient

I left my last post on the glorious teetering cliffhanger of "hunchback with limp approaches job interview through the hail"...which, incidentally, is the first line of my screenplay, Unemployed and Undead...but let's ease your suspense. Addressing the major problems of the day in no particular order:

1. The stye healed up nicely and I can see again.
2. The hail stopped pretty sharpish after I delivered a strongly worded missive up to the heavens.
3. The interview went better than anybody expected and I'll be returning shortly to convince them they can't manage without me.
4. My leg, however, swelled up like a bastard and I ended up in hospital getting IV antibiotics. Which is no great shakes in itself, but it did enable me to hear the following coversation between two pensioners on the same ward...

Wife: Don't leave me here! Why can't I come home with you?

Husband: You know you have to stay here, don't make this difficult...

(I say husband/wife...I'm basing that on the fact that they seemed affectionate towards each other, though of course that is not definitive proof. They could have been lovers having an octogenarian extramarital affair. We'll never know.)

Wife: You don't know what it's like here! It's the worst place in...England. Probably.

Husband: That is not helpful Ingrid. I do know what it's like; who's been here for every hospital visit? Who's sat by you? You're just confused now - and don't say you're not cause you didn't know your own address earlier. You didn't even know who the Queen was!

Wife: I know who the queen is it's Elizabeth.

Husband: Maybe on the second go you knew but not at first you didn't!

Wife: I hate this place.


Wife: Why can't I come home with you? Why do they have to keep me here?

Husband: They need to do some tests...

Wife: Fucking tests.

Husband: Yes they need to keep you here for fucking tests, you're staying overnight for fucking tests now stop complaining

(long pause)

Wife: What would I do without you?

If someone had told me a week ago I would find eavesdropping on sick pensioners swearing at each other in a hospital an hilarious and heartwarming experience, I wouldn't have believed them. It may not fit a Richard Curtis definition of a heartwarming moment, but hearing that old man swearily berate the woman he had stood by in sickness and in health about her tests....well it was fucking romantic.

Thursday, 11 February 2010

How do you solve a problem like incompetence?

Despite the title of this post, I'm not suggesting I draft in Andrew Lloyd Webber to help me with my job search (mainly because I have a mild phobia of people who look like amphibians) ... I'm just trying to find a way of saying...I'm rubbish. On the morning of a recent interview, I woke up ready to face the world. Unfortunately, so did my stye. (For those of you unfamiliar with gross swelling eye infections...that's what a stye is.) Not to be left out, my knee decided to swell up as well until I looked like I'd been attacked by someone who knew that there's a point on the body that if you hit it the person dies, but they weren't sure if it was the eyelid or the left knee. It is in fact neither.

My top tip for job hunters? No matter how smart your interview outfit is, a tailored skirt and sensible heels will always be overshadowed by a swollen eyelid and a limp - they just scream "Hunchback of Notre Dame". As luck would have it I had listed campanology as an interest on my CV, so at least that looked authentic.

Not to be deterred, I set out for the interview, limp and all. After over an hour on the train and a rather harrowing unexpected train change, I finally arrived and promptly turned the wrong way out of the station.
After walking through a lovely park for some minutes, and wondering why none of the adjacent roads matched my map, I approached a kindly looking stranger for help. After pointing me in the right direction, he told me I needed GPS on my phone. I told him I needed GPS on my LIFE, as currently I have no direction apart from an inevitable downward spiral which is making me dizzy, and furthermore I told him to shove it
. Well, actually I thanked him for his help and hoped he would have a nice day, but my eyes told a different story... or rather, the non-swollen one did.

Back (hobbling) on the right track, I began mentally rehearsing my 5 Years Time answer: "I'm committed to a career in [insert field here], in a company like this one where I can develop my skills."...don't judge me, it's a work in progress. My knee was hurting, my eye was hurting, and I was about as likely to impress these people as I was to spontaneously sprout wings. Which would definitely solve the limping problem.

But all was not lost.....it started to hail. Big chunks of ice fell from the sky. Still, glass half-full...you're supposed to put ice on wounds, and at least it didn't rain. There's nothing less employable than a freezing Hunchback lookalike who is also soaking wet.

Thursday, 4 February 2010

Shit My Dad Says...

So, apparently Twitter "sensation" Shit My Dad Says http://twitter.com/Shitmydadsays is going to be made into a TV programme in the US...hard to see how they'll scale down the profanity and keep the funny, but there we go. If you don't already know, a 29-year-old living with his 74-year-old dad...write down stuff that he says. Does what it says on the tin.

Sample Tweet: "STOP apologizing. You're sorry, he gets it, Jesus. You spilled a glass of wine, not fucked his wife."

It probably says more about me than I care to examine but this is exactly my cup of tea. And I like tea, a lot. I once made a comic about the process of making a cup of tea that's how much I love it. (Yes, it was for a college project and yes, I know this is weird.)

If it wasn't for the fact that they practically make you get a tattoo saying "Plagiarism is Bad" across your forehead in the first week of Uni, I might be tempted to try something like this myself. I'm not sure it would really work though - my dad hasn't yet reached the Really Old Man stage where he just says whatever comes into his head, for one thing - and for another, when he's funny, it's because he tries to be. Really, really hard.

Sample Joke: "I have a Norwegian friend who only likes to eat 50% of his meals... he's a Lars Half-full kinda guy".

Think what you like, but I think this is hilarious. And I'm not ashamed to say so. (I'm a little ashamed).