IN MY OPINION
Books Read in 2007
Mefeedia Video Archive
29 January 2007
It's day #1 of my seven days with my mother.
I got a later start than I had planned. Walt and I went to see a wonderful production of Private Lives and the review had to be finished before I left. Ordinarily I write the review when we get home from the theatre, but it had been a three-act play and I was sleepy when I got home, so I got up at 6 to finish.
Writing a review of a play makes me realize how much I have to learn as a reviewer. I can dash off a review of most musicals in nothing flat, but I need to have a more extensive background to do a play, especially a classic like Private Lives because there isn't a particularly complicated plot and so the success or failure comes down to the actors.
I know when a play is good and when it isn't, but I can't always articulate why. When I interviewed Jack Lynn last week, he complimented my predecessor, Marilyn Mantay, who had reviewed his performance in The Heiress. He appreciated the fact that (a) she liked his performance, and (b) was able to explain why she liked it. He said that it helped him so much more than just saying "he did a good job."
Well, I'm of the "he did a good job" school and so as I wrote the review for Private Lives I was struggling to be more thorough in my explanation for why I liked it (I was also struggling to make my required length).
I did know that the previous production of the same play I reviewed, last year, paled in comparison and it was helpful for me to mentally compare the two to figure out for myself what made the current production so good.
The plan was to leave at 10, but by the time I finished the review and got the car packed, I was half an hour late. I felt bad about that because Peach and Bob had things to do at home and I knew they were anxious to get going.
As it turned out I got here earlier than anticipated and their own lives had been complicated by the fact that Peach had developed the intestinal flu that was sweeping through the nursing home, so they were only hurrying home to put her to bed.
Shortly before the "changing of the guard" took place, a eucharistic minister from the local Catholic church stopped by to give my mother communion. All four of us were offered the sacrament. I declined. I felt it would be hypocritical, though the others partook.
Then it was just my mother and me. With a gleam in her eye, she suggested a little game of canasta. We set up the cards and in two hands I had skunked her. I was gleeful. I thought of calling Bob to tell him. You just don't BEAT my mother. Incapacitated or not, she's a killer competitor.
We played a second game and my smugness dissolved as she wiped the floor with me. I didn't even bother to count my points. I just conceded that game.
And the next.
We had an otherwise quiet afternoon. My mother worked on getting caught up on her bills, I finished my book, and we watched 60 Minutes.
My mother is doing GREAT. She swings through on her walker like a senior athlete and she really is able to do an awful lot for herself (like dressing and toileting herself).
My two concerns are that (1) her arm is not getting better. They x-rayed before she left the nursing home and I hope that we can get some answers at least to what the problem, and the prognosis, are; and (2) that she is eating almost nothing. Nothing sounds good to her. For lunch today she had about 3/4 cup of soup, 3 crackers and a glass of water; later she had one scoop of ice cream and a cookie, but by dinner she couldn't think of anything that sounded good, so I ate without her. She finally had half an apple. She has lost a lot of weight and I hope that her appetite will return soon.
Tomorrow we take her back down to the car (Walt is coming down to help) and then in the afternoon she is hoping that her hairdresser (who is also a friend) will come to the house to do her hair, so she doesn't look like she has "bed hair" any more.
She's been sleeping through the night all right, so my deep sleeping may not be a problem. At least I hope it isn't.
So far, it's nice being here to help out.
PHOTO OF THE DAY
pouches for orphaned joeys
This is entry #2496