Saturday, June 04, 2005

Saturday, June 4, 2005
Waning Moon
Jupiter Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Chiron Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Celtic Tree Month of Hawthorn
Cloudy and muggy

Yesterday was an intense day.

I had to print something right before I ran for the train, and Microsoft decided not to acknowledge the printer. I am so OVER THIS!!! I decided that, once the full-time weeks are done at the theatre, I’m going to call Geek Squad to come in and overhaul my system – and EXPLAIN certain things to me so I’m not constantly fighting with the computer.

I was in tears on the train, in part from computer frustration and in part from who-knows-what.

I pulled it together once I hit Grand Central and headed up Fifth Avenue to the park, where I was to meet my friend. Thank goodness she arrived when she did – we met at the Strand Book stall at the bottom of the park, and I found five books before she reached me. I might not have been able to carry the books, had she not arrived then.

The books:
American Jezebel: The Uncommon Life of Anne Hutchinson, the Woman Who Defied the Puritans by Eve LaPlante. Since a parkway near me is named for her, she’s always fascinated me. When you’re six and travel in a car a lot, “parkway” has more meaning than “Puritan”.

City Dharma: Keeping Your Cool in the Chaos by Arthur Jeon. No doubt I need this one.

Educating Alice: Adventures of a Curious Woman by Alice Steinbach. Her previous book, Without Reservations, is one of my favorite travel books of all time.

The Frog Prince by Jane Porter. I needed something light and frivolous!

C’est La Vie: An American Woman Begins a New Life in Paris and – Voila! Becomes Almost French by Suzy Gershman. Because I’m going to Paris in March.

Hauling my bag of books and wishing I had a wheeled suitcase, we headed into the zoo. The seals were hilarious – boy, do they love an audience. The polar bears have so many toys that they seem like 2-ton spoiled grandchildren. Seriously, a few years back, the zoo brought in animal shrinks to work with the polar bears because they were depressed, and they are the most catered-to and indulged creatures in Manhattan right now. They’re intelligent animals, and know how to manipulate the humans around them to get what they want. The red pandas were stunning –one was OVER the little kids, and gracefully poured himself down the tree and into a hollow log away from the fray.

We progressed through the rain forest exhibit – well done – and out of the main zoo into the children’s zoo, with the petting part – the alpacas were so cute! (When I discussed my day with my SO, he gave a long sigh. “So we’re looking for land zoned for alpacas?” he finally said). Goats, sheep, pigs, a cow (or maybe it was a steer – we hadn’t been properly introduced for me to check).

Central Park Zoo has done quite a good job in its conversion from Zoo to Habitat. There’s always a mixed feeling about zoos anyway – one wants the animals in their natural habitat, but since humans methodically destroy it to build money-making operations for themselves, isn’t it better to preserve and maintain as many species as possible in controlled habitat? That’s not a rhetorical question. I don’t actually have THE answer – I merely have lots of questions.

I do think if people are exposed to and connect to and have access to and learn about different species and habitats, they might integrate it into the way they lived their lives. There were a lot of inner city kids at the zoo, and the way they lit up – even the teens most concerned with being “cool” and trying to seem unconcerned melted in the petting zoo. And to see and hear some of the self-proclaimed tough guys start asking the personnel questions about not only about the actual environments but what kind of changes can be made to preserve them was quite heartening. I think the teens coming up now – 12–17 – is one of the most socially and ecologically responsible groups we’ve seen in a long time. In the past year, the majority of humans I’ve encountered in that age group are amazing. It gives me hope.

We continued to wander through the park and ended up at the Central Park Boathouse Restaurant. What a great place to eat! The staff is incredible, the food is amazing, the prices aren’t cheap, but nowhere near as steep as many other places that don’t have near the quality. Unfortunately, many patrons are downright RUDE. The type that makes me embarrassed to be a New Yorker. Pushy, dismissive, and they think because they have a gold card (that’s nearly maxxed out), it entitles them to treat people badly.

But we had lovely food and a lovely view and stimulating conversation – what more could anyone want?

We parted ways at Bethesda Fountain after lunch – I headed to the theatre to pick up my check, she headed back to her writers’ conference. It was what life should be – intelligent conversation, good friendship, good food, pleasant surroundings.

The theatre needed me to stay, so I spent some time reading at the Coffee Pot (I couldn’t concentrate on writing) and bought a few things at Westerly Market.

Show was okay. Stagehands moved the corn so far into the wing that the girls in the ball gowns got stuck in the cornstalks. I balanced on the side of the corn, the tin man ran past, we leaped out of the corn, I had to take a few steps on stage to straighten the ball gown, and the other ball gowned actress who had to make her entrance had no choice but to run me over to get onstage. Law of physics – two objects can’t occupy the same place at the same time.

I presented the problems to those who are in a position to do something about it, and, hopefully, it will be solved. If it stays this way, actors and dressers will be hurt, and these amazing 18th and 19th century style ball gowns will be trashed. Feathered gowns and corn stalks don’t mix.

Next time it’s there and I do that track, I’m mowing it.

My feet hurt like crazy and I’m exhausted. I don’t know how I’ll live through a month of full-time.

I’ll have to figure it out.

My Canon printer outsmarted effing Microsoft. Whatever wasn’t working, it hemmed and hawed and groaned and whistled and printed what I asked it to print yesterday without reminder.

I’m tired, but I have to pull it together and put in three strong writing days. Or I’m screwed.

To the post office, and then to the writing.

For a free issue of any of the above serials, click the appropriate link and download.


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