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Today in My History

2001:  On a Clear Day You Can See Forever
2002:  Keep the Candle Burning Until It Burns Out
2003:  Lucky Luciana
2004:  Secret Weight
2006:  Sex and Violence
2007:   Something Sinister
2008:  I Got Ssssteam Heat
2009:  Teddy Goes to Grandma's
2010:  It's A "Go"
2011:  First Meme of the New Year
It Wasn't a Prune
2013: Sunday Stealing

Bitter Hack
Updated: 1

Books Read in 2014
"The Ocean at the End of the Lane"

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mail to Walt


12 January 2014

My word has this been a busy weekend.

It started on Friday night with going to review Something's Afoot, about which I wrote as the Saturday entry. 

Saturday morning I woke up and made cookies for the party we were attending in the afternoon.

MalFamSm.jpg (123709 bytes)Malcolm was celebrating his 79th birthday.  We have known him and his family for most of the 40+ years we have lived in Davis.  Our kids went to school together.  We were all involved with the Davis Comic Opera Company, and, among other things, we all belong to that same damn club that nobody wants to belong to:  Their son, Ken, died several years ago.

The party was a real celebration.  I told Malcolm at one point that looking around at the crowd, I thought that the only people who weren't there were dead (a few exceptions, but there were a lot of people there!). We saw people we once knew well, but haven't seen in many years.

The march of time was readily apparent on all of us.  We were greyer, more wrinkled, more stooped.  There were people with new hips and new knees, and people with canes and one person with a medicine pack that was doing something about monitoring levels of something or other. The guest of honor had a stroke several years ago, and though recovered a lot, still suffering its effects. But it was good to see so many old friends again and once more stand around the groaning board in the family's dining room and partake of all those goodies we brought to share.

The party put us in great shape for the show we were seeing that night, Closer than Ever, a musical review for those of us who are not teeny boppers any more.  One song, "The March of Time" started out with the lyrics

I wasn't ready for the burnouts
I wasn't ready for the jokes
I wasn't set for seeing cellulite
Or being parent to my folks...

In my review I said that "this little 1989 off-Broadway revue shows that there is still relevant material to appeal to an older audience."  I don't often find it easy to review new to me material, but the review for this one just about wrote itself.

Today was the 49er game, another great win (can we do it one more week in Seattle?) and we went to watch the game with my mother and her stepson, Ed.  When the game was over, we stayed for lunch in the restaurant and then came home to get ready for tonight's event, a combination testamonial and roast for Jeff Kean, the retiring managing director for the Woodland Opera House.

Poster.jpg (75773 bytes)Jeff has been the director at Woodland for 18 years and we have known him most of that time. I interviewed him earlier this week for a story I'm doing about his retirement...I even turned off the Golden Globes to go to the reception (thank goodness for DVRs). 

What a delightful evening it was.  Jeff had told me there would be no food, but he wasn't invited to the reception before the festivities, I guess.  It wasn't exactly a groaning board, but there were some nice mini cupcakes and chocolate dipped strawberries, along with champagne or cider or (for me) water.

While I was waiting for the audience to come into the theater, I was reading my book, "Day of the Locust," for the Shakespeare Book Club (did you know Homer Simpson is a character in that 1939 work???) when a lady come in, congratulated me on reading, said she wished she had brought her own book, and asked what I was reading. When I showed her the book, she exclaimed that was the book she was reading...and asked if I was a member of the Shakespeare Club.   My first Shakespeare Club social encounter outside a club meeting!

We were all given cut-outs of Jeff's face.  There were many different choices.  Ours was from the time he was one of the two actors playing multiple characters in Greater Tuna, which we were supposed to raise whenever we heard the word "Jeff."

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The ceremony itself was quite nice.  Jeff and his fiancée were seated in thrones, given flowers, champagne and some Waterford crystal glasses.  

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Then, after a funny video, a parade of well wishers came to the stage, including the mayor of Woodland, who promised he would follow through on all the promises he had made to the Opera House (some of which, unfulfilled, had a part in Jeff's decision to leave!).   There was a state proclamation, signed by new state senator, Lois Wolk, which listed Jeff's contributions to the Woodland Opera House, including giving up his office in order to build a larger women's bathroom facility (which we females much appreciate!) In fact, when he leaves at the end of the month, there will be a little plaque installed on the floor of the 3rd stall on the right which says "Jeff Kean sat here for 18 years."

The evening ended with two numbers from Sound of Music (which we learned Jeff often called The Sound of Money), including the "good bye" song, with adults taking the roles of children, and all saying goodbye to Jeff on stage.

It really was a nice evening and his heart must be so full this evening, hearing all the heartfelt sentiments (and the funny ones) directed at him.   He really has made a difference in the city of Woodland (the mayor said he had "energized and beautified downtown Woodland").  He will be missed, but one of his accomplishments was to have built such a competent team that he is leaving the place in very capable hands.

I would like to say that we now have some free time, but actually Monday I'm having lunch at Atria again--my cousin is coming to give my mother a manicure and we are going to try a FaceTime call to Peach, since I have discovered there is wifi at Atria.  Tuesday Walt and I are going to see Book of Mormon.  My Alzheimers support group is Wednesday, I work Thursday and Friday is my eye appointment in Sacramento, followed by lunch with my friend Kathy and in the evening another show to review.

I need to get back to those long, empty days of 2013!


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Watching the 49er game

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