RIGHT BACK WHERE I STARTED FROM
9 November 2003
That's what you get when you schedule (a) an opera, (b) a symphony performance, (c) a theatrical presentation, and (d) a Veterans Day parade within the same four block radius around City Hall! It was fortunate we had left early, anticipating having lunch before the show, or we would not have been on time.
We were in San Francisco for the theatrical presentation, The Lamplighters' annual fund-raising Gala, this year entitled, "How To Succeed in Show Business While Really Trying Not To," so I was right back where I started from on many levels. I was back in the town I still call "home," and I was back at The Lamplighters, which was such an important part of my life for so many years.
I worked on these originally written shows for many years and kind of miss the fun of sitting around brainstorming and coming up with totally off the wall ideas. I could tell from this show that they had a wonderful time putting it together.
The plot (and I use the term loosely) dealt with an operetta company that can't make any money and the producer unwittingly selling his soul to the devil, who promises him a big hit with his next production. When he realizes what he's done, he sets out to find the worst script possible so the show can't possibly be a hit.
If the plot sounds strangely familiar, like something out of The Producers, it is. The show itself is an homage to the recent Broadway hits, with the opening number a parody of Chicago (called Micago), the devil business is straight out of Damn Yankees and then the "worst script" they finally choose is a dig at the implausible hit Urinetown, only this was Snot-ville. (Maybe ya hadda been there).
In between are many cleverly rewritten songs for possible candidates for "worst script," but my own personal favorite was a song called "Ahnold" from the show entitled Da Gubernator. It was set to the tune of "When I was a Lad" (which I have rewritten myself several times!) and my favorite verse went:
My first movie role
I obtained with ease
In a low budget picture
I flexed my muscles
and I mouthed each word
But they overdubbed my lines and
So I wasn't heard.
I got such practice
Being spoken for
That now I am
The California Governor!
The guy who played "Ahnold" had Schwarzenegger down pat and brought down the house. The Lamplighters never do encores or have performers step out of character to take a bow in the middle of a show, but the audience wouldn't stop applauding until he came out and did.
It was all very silly and a lot of fun.
I had been a little concerned about food for the day. I shouldn't be after all this time, but I've been so faithful on the eating plan all week and I worried that I might blow it, especially since there was champagne after the show.
Walt had suggested stopping at a fast food place for lunch (but then we never had time anyway because of the traffic), but instead I packed myself a sandwich, some slices of red pepper, and an apple.
I had checked the WW food list and decided that I could have one glass of champagne, so nursed that through the reception.
And then afterwards we went to the California Pizza Kitchen, where I had a small bowl of tortilla soup and then ordered half an order of their Salad Provencal (the least caloric-looking thing on the menu) and ordered it with fat free dressing.
So all things considered, I think I did pretty well on eating and am feeling good about myself.
Best of all, we got home too late to have to think about whether we wanted to watch the special on Jessica Lynch or on Elizabeth Smart--I wasn't interested in either.