Friday, July 15, 2011

Local Celebrity Swag-ger

I often joke with one of my coworkers that I am a "Local Personality." I've been writing this blog for a year and a half and on Twitter just about as long.  I blog and tweet about inanity, but often tweet to and about businesses and restaurants that I like.  My favorite food truck, @DCEmpanadas often gives me a little something extra when I get my lunch, sometimes I'll get free drinks at a bar, and I one time I even won a $50 Friendly's gift card.  These are the perks of local celebrity, I suppose [please note the sarcasm].  And besides, who doesn't like free stuff?

Speaking of free stuff, last night I was invited to opening night at Arena Stage's production of Oklahoma! by their publicist.  I was so flattered to be asked (as media -- imagine, me, a lowly flack by day invited as media*!), and happily accepted.  Normally WH would come along with me, but I know musicals are not his thing so my mom came with me instead.  The evening started off a little rocky.  As we sat outside eating a pre-theater dinner at Cafe du Parc (one of my favorites, btw), a bird pooped in my lap.  Only me, right?  Fortunately our waiter was quick with the club soda and an extra napkin and I was able to (mostly) de-poop-ify myself.  Hey, at least he didn't poop in my wine.

After dinner, we were off to the theater!  I hadn't been to the Stage's new location, which was huge and gorgeous!  There was not a bad seat in the house.  I met the fantastic publicity team (thanks to Kirstin, Julia, and Alexa!) from Arena Stage, and collected my tickets. 

I hadn't seen Oklahoma! in years, and had forgotten just how innocently cute it is.  If you haven't seen it, it's the story of coy Laurey and her not-so-coy cowboy paramour, Curly in the turn of the (last) century territory that would be come Oklahoma.  They were great, but the supporting cast of Aunt Eller, Will, Ado Annie, and my favorite, Ali Hakim, really made the show.  The songs were familiar and fun, but seeing the show in the round was a special treat!  I especially enjoyed Nehal Joshi's hilariously fraught Ali, the Persian peddler, who kept getting himself into trouble with the ladies.


Ali Hakim (Nehal Joshi) and Ado Annie (June Schreiner)
courtesy of Arena Stage
As with all Rodgers and Hammerstein stories, there's a little drama -- in the form of creepy fieldhand Jud -- which is resolved lickety-split, just in time for the happy ending!  If you're around this summer and need a little innocent sweetness, take a vacation in Oklahoma! (playing now through Oct. 2) -- you won't be sorry!

*Note: I am not media.  I'm not a theater, restaurant, or fashion critic--though I do love offering my opinions, solicited or not.  However, if you would like to promote your business by giving me free stuff (I'd be more than happy to weigh in on Wicked or Citronelle, for instance), I'll happily indulge.  It will go a long way to proving to my friends and family that I actually am a Local Personality, which really is the most important thing.  I promise, I won't let it go to my head.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Fucking Spongebob

Today at happy hour WH and I got into a familiar conversation.  You see, he's no fan of Spongebob.  In fact, he has full-on malice towards him.  Here's how it went down:

WH:  Fucking Spongebob.

WT: Huh?

WH: You know, they said Tom and Jerry were too violent for children.

WT: Who are they?

WH: They are they.   You know, they said the guy who made Alice in Wonderland was on acid.  They said talking animals set children up for unrealistic expectations.  They said it's not proper those animals don't have pants on.  They said all of that. 

WT: It kind of sounds like the teaparty.  Are they the teaparty?

WH:  They are they.

WT: Ok.

WH:  So with all of that corrected, they came up with the idea of Spongebob.  He's proper.  He wears pants -- which are square -- and it's unlike Alice in Wonderland, made by a sober person.  It's a fucking sponge who wears square pants and lives under the sea in a pineapple and drives a fucking hamburger car.  Now tell me, which one is on acid?

WT: Yeah.

WH:  Why is he wearing pants?  I don't get it.  Oh, and his enemy is calamari?  He's an evil calamari.

WT:  Oh.

WH:  And what does Spongebob eat?  I don't know.  I'm pretty sure he's not taking a bite of his own car.  He drives a cheeseburger.  He fights a calamari.  And I don't have any clue what he eats.  Maybe he eats soap.

WT:  Soap?

WH:  He's a sponge!  And why in the world does he live under the sea in a pineapple.  I dare somebody to find a weirder situation.

WT:  Yeah.

WH: What about a knife who lives in outerspace and in order to survive he needs to cut space cheese.  Maybe someone else can come up with a better idea, but it's still not as ridiculous as a sponge under the sea living in a pineapple.

WT:  True.

WH:  And what kind of pants do you put on a knife?  Yoga pants?  Straight jeans?  Tights?  And definitely the knife has fish eyes -- one on this side, one on the other side.

WT:  Probably.

WH:  I can imagine the face of those sweatshop workers in China, making those Spongebob toys, wondering what the fuck are these.  Why are American kids playing with these.  I'm telling you, they are ruining the kids.

WT: I guess.

WH:  Chinese children are doing math problems and playing with nunchucks in their spare time, while American kids are watching Spongebob and sucking down a Big Gulp.  And we're hoping to catch up with China?!?

And on and on.  I never realized how passionate one man could be about a cartoon character.  Though I tend to agree.  I'm not sure who they are, but if they came up with Spongebob, they should probably be in rehab.