Terror

November 6, 2011

I’m perhaps somewhat easily terrified. There have been several times when seeing only a few moments of a movie (Carrie, The Shining, Misery) have made it hard for me to get to sleep for a week or so (I’ve since seen all of Carrie and The Shining…I still can’t deal with Kathy Bates). John Lithgow’s turn as Arthur Mitchell in Dexter left me terrified for 12 weeks.

In reality? Probably like a lot of other people, severe illness. I’ve seen others deal with chronic or severe illness with grace and humour, and of course you hope you’d be able to as well. But it’s a terrifying idea.

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Favourite Public Performance

November 5, 2011

Again, I want to be able to chose about 5 favourites. Hands down, for me, favourite musical live performance: Dec. 2009, Chantal Kreviazuk at Massey Hall.

Theatre…ask to see my theatre journal sometime. Years ago my mother decided to begin taking us annually to Stratford. This tradition began with seeing Christopher Plummer in King Lear, which was incredible. One of the first times I’ve cried at the theatre, but certainly not the last. We saw William Hutt’s farewell performance in The Tempest. I have to mention their Of Mice and Men with Graham Greene, because it proved to me that being with hundreds of people in a theatre can still be a more intimate experience than watching a movie at home by yourself.  This year we saw their Broadway-bound Jesus Christ Superstar.

But let’s say, for purposes here, that my favourite public performance was one of my most recent: I had a spare ticket for the Festival’s The Misanthrope, and I got to take along a friend to her first play there!  It was a perfect day, a Stratford day, as we’ve come to call them having such good luck so much of the time, and sharing it with her led me to see it through her eyes and appreciate it even more.

 

Favourite painting

November 4, 2011

I’d be as hard pressed to choose a favourite painting as a favourite book, but for today’s exercise let’s say it’s this:

Tom Thomson’s 1915 Northern River. I worked at a small museum of (mostly) Canadian art for a few years in university, and enjoyed learning about everything and looking at our pieces and reading about artists and viewing other works by the artists and all of that. But I never really felt like I “got” the Group of Seven. I understood it as some sort of mythical Canadian wilderness, but it didn’t apply to anything I had seen.

And then I made a first memorable trip to the Algonquin Park area. And I saw places that looked exactly like these paintings. And went to Algoma, and Lake Huron, and saw places that looked like those paintings. And I finally understood what was being evoked. And now I love it.

Humour. If humour can make the guys of Top Gear appealing to me, it must be some sort of magic. I’d appreciate it if it was mostly kind humour, but that’s not a necessity.

Back in Time

November 2, 2011

“Back in Time. You can go back in time and visit any time period, date, place. Try to be specific. You cannot change that history. You can observe silently. Also, no worrying about our gender/ethnicity/culture getting us into dangerous situations. Let us just say we’re invisible.”

The stipulations are important to me…I’m the one who always thinks about the bad parts of history. When a coworker told me he wanted to be one of Butler’s Rangers, I asked how he’d like having his leg amputated with a saw and no anaesthetic.

So, if I could be somewhere without being worried about the smells or being beheaded or burned or getting the plague, I think I’d like to be in the English court through the upheavals of the Tudors. I think all the political machinations would have been fascinating, and it would have been amazing to see so much change in such a short time. I would have learned who Shakespeare really was, too 😉

Favourite childhood TV show

November 1, 2011

I was thinking of all the cartoons I remember watching: Thundercats, She-Ra, He-Man, Smurfs, Snorks, SilverHawks…

But really, a lot of my childhood was spent watching Star Trek: The Next Generation. We all watched it together, and it really sparked the imagination. Watching some of them now is embarrassing, but for the most part, I think it was a pretty great show.