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13 February 2002

It seems that my day today has been nothing but vaginas. Several patients needing exams during the day, and an evening spent at "The Vagina Monologues."

Walt and I saw this Eve Ensler play in London, but this was a production by university actors as part of the V-Day 2002 College Campaign, a worldwide movement to stop violence against women and girls and proclaim Valentine's Day a time to celebrate women and demand the end to abuse.

The audience was filled with laughing and cheering women of all ages, from young to a 70-something woman in a wheelchair, clapping enthusiastically. There was a sprinkling of "tripods," as Marn refers to men, but they were definitely in the minority.

The play is both funny and poignant, running the gamut from two very moving pieces about women under Taliban rule and women raped in Bosnia to a depiction of various types of orgasmic moans. And just about everything in between. (I particularly enjoyed a very funny bit about gynecological exams--it was like being at work!)

Unfortunately, my friend Rosemarie and I missed the first half hour because the publicity person from the university gave me the wrong time. Thank God I always try to be early to things. We arrived at 7:30, thinking the show started at 8, and it had already been going for half an hour. As it is a 90 minute one-act play, we would have missed most of it had we arrived just before we thought it began!

But we were in time for the parts that I remember most from the London production, including a touching piece about a woman who had been raped in childhood, learning to love herself and her "koochie-snorcher." (I'm sorry to have missed the opening part of this show where they list every possible euphemism for "vagina" imaginable.)

There is also a powerful segment about a woman from Oklahoma City who decided to take back the word "c*nt" and make it a powerful pro-woman word that women could embrace as a positive thing. She had the audience chanting the word with her at the end of her bit.

Now I'm going through my usual "do something else while trying to write the review in the back of my head" routine. The review is due first thing in the morning, so it will have to be done before I go to sleep this evening.

I don't know why I am unable to just sit down and write something--anything. When I'm working on deadline is when I clean the kitchen, do laundry, mop the floor, get caught up on letters I've been meaning to write and a dozen other mindless activities. Perhaps that's the key: "mindless activities." While I'm doing these automatic activities, my brain is "percolating" (that's the only way I can describe it) with thoughts and phrases and then when I'm down to the wire and it has to be done THIS MINUTE, it all comes spilling out onto the screen. It's definitely a screwy way to write. Probably why I'll never make it as a professional writer.

The day started with good news. After my workout at the club, I went up for the weekly weigh-in at Weight Watchers (didn't stay for the meeting itself, since I had to be at work early today). Last week, you may recall, I only lost .4 lbs but I made up for it this week, racking up another 3.6 pounds in the loss column, making a total of 17 to date. Baby steps, but I'm getting there.

Aside: Is anybody else as bothered as I am by those close-ups of the faces of Olympic athletes as they stand on the award podium? You just know the photographer is hoping for a glint of a tear in someone's eye. It would be one thing if he happened to catch it, but they do the tight shot on everyone's eyes, and it's almost like a winner is expected to show some emotion as the anthem of their country is played.

Also, the Canadian skaters are putting all the newscasters to shame.  I've seen them interviewed countless times since their silver-medal win last night and every single interviewer seems to be trying to get them to express anger about their loss to the Russians, but those two kids have shown nothing but pure class in their acceptance of the outcome of the competition and their desire to put it behind them and move on.  I have enormous respect for them.

I gotta stop playing around here and get this review written...

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Created 2/13/02