Chaos Attraction

Memorial Day Weekend Yet Again

2013-05-28, 10:54 a.m.

On Friday night I saw a free showing of Bullshot Crummond, a show I'd never heard of before, but I think it fits in nicely with the tradition of melodramas and other deliberately cheesy stuff. The title character is apparently a parody of a 1930's hero named Bulldog Drummond and was written by the actors who performed n it, presumably in drag. The hero is supposedly from the Sherlock Holmes school of nitpicky detection, but literally cannot tell anyone who's in disguise at any point in time, and drives a waiter crazy. The supposed plot is that some evil Germans kidnap a British scientist who's working on synthetic diamonds and the mad scientist's daughter goes to Crummond for help. I'm not sure how well that goes.

But notable bits in the show are:
(a) They had three ensemble players setting up the sets and doing various goofy bits throughout, including one little kid who kept getting picked on. At one point he portrays a messenger pigeon...who gets beat the shit out of by someone holding a stick with a paper falcon on it. Poor little guy!
(b) One actor, billed as "The Master of Disguise," plays pretty much any role that isn't one of the lead four. This gets kind of hilarious after awhile, especially when he's playing the harassed waiter. Or the "one-armed" "cop." Or the weird hunchbacked henchman. Or the scientist who has a limp and a cane in the first scene and never again after that.
(c) The actor playing the evil German guy (note: looks like he's being played by a Jewish actor, hoo boy there) at one point also plays an American gangster. At the same time as playing the evil German guy. As in, they keep walking in and out of the main hidden part of the stage, delivering a line, and switching back constantly until finally one gets killed.
(d) At one point, Bullshot, demonstrating his Master of Disguise-ness, comes out wearing next to nothing but a pair of mismatched socks and a heavily padded pair of shorts. Padded in the front. Padded so much I think it was starting to leak. Of course he wasn't uh, recognized.
(e) I liked when Otto (evil German guy) put an obvious bug on the table, with a cord, that Rosemary had to STEP OVER when she returned to the table.
(f) There is a car chase scene in which there's one car on stage and the two pairs of actors constantly switch who's driving the car.
(g) There is also a moment where the car ends up on the edge of a cliff. That's portrayed... interestingly.... with big fake rocks. At one point Bullshot makes himself into a human bridge that Rosemary is understandably reluctant to step on, so "ahem, ahem" the ensemble stagehands have to provide a knee for her to step on.
(h) At one point, the female ensemble stagehand, who seems to be the boss of the other two, gets very annoyed and grabs one of the fake drinks off the cart and starts chugging. It's very obvious that it's a cardboard standing prop.

It's fun for what it is. I can think of several small theaters I've been to in the Bay Area that should do this one.

On Saturday, I was going to get off my ass and go to the gym or the county fair....and then proceeded to be tired enough in the morning to not get off my ass and do that. I had eventually decided to go see Iron Man 3. But I checked my e-mail about ten minutes before leaving and found out that I'd heard from Melinda finally.... she was free all weekend after 3 p.m. today! So I went to the movie and then we hung out for hours, and even did dinner. I'm not sure how much of that I want to recap...we talked about writing group friends, writing, finding what you want to do, what she wants to do, how she'd probably be better at my job than I am, my prediction fail, etc.

As for the movie, I liked Iron Man 3, which was pretty fun and funny. I don't know about the end of it when uh, I'm pretty sure the character isn't actually going to retire when Avengers 2 is in the works, though. But otherwise I think they did their best on making the whole silly "Mandarin" thing work, kinda, as best that could.

On Sunday, I went to the Sacramento County Fair. It was....somewhat better than the Yolo County Fair, which I finally went to last year and didn't stay for so much as an entire hour. This one, well, I stayed for an hour and a half, so it was a bit better. They had one small building of shopping and one building with not too many crafts in it, so that's most of my interest in going to fairs right there.

I spent the most time wandering around looking at the livestock, of which there was a ton. I saw several people trying to WALK THEIR TURKEYS DOWN THE STREET, which was.... well, hoo boy, that went about as well as you might think it does. I ate a corn dog and found another weird fair foodstuff to try, the maple bacon sundae. It tasted about as weird together as you think it sounds like, i.e. not super great combination. Oh well, still better than corn-dog-tasting fried candy.

It took me a surprisingly long time to find the place, because (a) my GPS kept trying to direct me to Exposition Parkway, GRR, and then they had you drive around for quite awhile to find where to park for the fair. I was starting to wonder if anybody actually wanted you to go to the fair....

Well, it would be hard to trump the state fair. Especially when you hold your fair at the same location as the state fair. Also, between the state fair and growing up going to the Alameda County Fair, which would spoil anyone.

I ended up spending the other half of the afternoon at Joann's--ended up going there twice after I discovered that one of my belts was falling apart and I had to go get the supplies to fix it...when I have access to a sewing machine again. I also made a brief stop at another thrift store and managed to not buy anything there, BUT I did discover Dimple Books, which turns out to be an awesome bookstore. I think that one and Beers must be the best used bookstores in Sacramento. I think Dimple has the advantage on their fiction stash, which is impressive, but I still found a lot of hippie research books and I love those.

After that, I felt exhausted and went back to L's house to hang out with the cat and watch the cable--I finally caught up on the end of Doctor Who and 2.5 episodes of Orphan Black before the cable keeled over and died on me once again. I then attempted to watch Arrested Development on Netflix on her TV, and then that literally keeled over after 2 minutes. WHY IS IT THAT CABLE HATES MEEEEEEEEEEEE????

As for Monday, it was a cloudy and cool and "probably gonna start raining at any moment" sort of day (which it did), so I didn't do much beyond watch the rest of Arrested Development and a few more episodes of Orphan Black and go to the gym. Exciting day there.

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