Other People's Romances
2014-06-21, 10:43 p.m.
On Thursday afternoon, I was reading the weekly paper and saw an ad for a play called The Brain From The Planet X. I've always wanted to see a scii-fi play (I have heard of a few cool ones going on in LA yonks ago), and this one was a cheesy musical, no less! So I bought a last minute ticket for opening night and drove down there to go see it. I've never been to Fair Oaks before, but apparently the place is overrun with chickens just like Kauai is. (I told my friend Melinda this the next day and she was all, "Oh, they're known for their chickens, it's on the sign.") But their little village seems quite cute and charming. Wouldn't mind checking it out again, perhaps. I'm just glad I didn't hit any chickens in the road, though.
As for the show, it's good cheesy fun about a stereotypically 1950's family--dad's an inventor, mom is the perfect housewife who's smarter than she seems, daughter is totally hot and horny for her beatnik boyfriend--who get involved with an alien invasion by "The Brain" (take a wild guess what he looks like) and his two assistant aliens, one gay guy and one lady who has spent 71 light years trapped with dudes who won't put out and is INCREDIBLY DAMN HORNY. (Alien girls are easy? This is PG-13, to be sure.) After the assistants zap the wife with a ray that saps her emotions, she gets a nice case of women's lib that I enjoyed mightily. Meanwhile, the military force is as cheesy as possible--most of them are cardboard cutouts and the general has one assistant named "Private Parts." The general keeps acquiring stars throughout the show, which actually lit up with every addition. I loved that. There's also the wife's father, who is....basically Einstein as a history professor, with CRAZY hair. There's tons of cheesy special effects, a TV screen in the background making its own commentary in between showing scenes from the 50's (when showing a bunch of aliens, Barney the dinosaur crops up), and they have a giant Godzilla inflating at the back of the theater at the end. I kind of felt bad that I hadn't invited Mom to this show, but she's been up here a LOT lately, ahem. Here's some song samples from the show here if you are curious.
I was pretty busy today. After going to the gym, I spent the day tooling around various parts of Sacramento:
(a) I went to Melinda's to have her help me work on my jury duty piece for the green show in August. Hoo boy, does the first draft NEED WORK. And a lot of cutting. She's pretty hopeful, but turning it into a theater piece....there's apparently a lot to do that I didn't think of. Man, I so wish I could have been a Theater Person in high school. But I couldn't act or get into any plays for shit, so that never happened and ditto that in college. I'd like to work on that, but at my age it'll be a stumper. I am trying to look into groups in Sacramento since the ones here tend to focus on kids or college students or people who can sing.
(b) After that, I went to a craft fair, where I ran into Geri, a CC person from way back when I started. Her daughter was my first CC manager. I miss seeing them around. Geri is still there but not all that often (or at least I don't see her and she had to tell me she's still around!), but her daughter is off teaching high school. Geri apparently goes clubbing a lot (for someone her age, married, etc.), which I find to be Very Impressive. I wish I went clubbing more except that I haven't had a clubbing friend since my last girl roommate moved out and I am a weirdo magnet. (Geri was all, "me too, that's why I had to drag my husband along.") She also apparently takes her daughter clubbing, which cracks me up. Her daughter is adorably cute and redheaded and has been handed some kind of VIP/get past the bouncer card at some club, but then the bouncers have to fend off creepy men around her.
The daughter (I'll call her K here, she has a distinctive first name and I endeavor to not flag ye olde Google these days, and it sounds like she's getting a much more prestigious job so let's not alert the bosses there), from when I knew her back in the day, was someone who wasn't terribly interested in dating. I don't think she was ever really interested in anybody she knew or the whole dating rigamarole, and I felt a bit like a kindred spirit with her on that front. I don't know if she ever dated anyone even semi-seriously or cared too much. Well, now she has a boyfriend. Her mom was all, "I set them up."
Oh, do tell. I have to hear this.
You see, the mother had dragged the daughter along to a club she wanted to go to in Santa Cruz, "filled with old people." I have the impression they thought the daughter would be left alone there. Well, mom spotted a somewhat-older-ish-looking fellow who looked like he'd be interested but had no idea how to ask her daughter out. So Geri ah, forcefully took steps, danced with the guy, invited him over to their table, made the guy and the girl swap digits....
I gather there's a few awkward things about it. Not only does he live in the SC area and she lives in Sac, he's....a lot older than he looked. Like, he's fifty "but incredibly fit. I thought he was in his mid-thirties." I restrained myself from actually my usual "oh god, older men, I find that worrisome" thing, but amusingly enough, Geri brought it up on her own, that most older men are skeezy and think they're entitled to a young girlfriend who's too naive to know to call them on their shit and they can be in control of the relationship. She said that K had encountered those guys who said they'd "train her" or whatever and she was all, "NUH-UH." (This does not surprise me. Her mom's comment: "she's excellent at telling people what to do." Which makes sense given K's profession.) However, I gather this dude isn't like that, or so sayeth Geri who would be a pretty good judge of creep magneting. Though she did say that K wished he was younger...and the guy's already HAD a kid that's been raised to adulthood, which makes me wonder if K is older or younger than his kid. (K is probably...nearing 30 now? Around it? I forget.) I'm happy for her, I suppose....Geri was all, "Well, the guys around her age were immature," which I gather K didn't like, and K said she didn't know what she wanted in a dude until her mom fixed her up. Hm.
It does weird me out a bit, though. 20-year-age gaps still give me the heebie-jeebies, especially given that I look super young and have attracted a fair chunk of scary people with white hair/bald heads/baseball caps. I hear stuff like that and think, "Oh god, if I ever actually date again it'll end up being some old man who wants me to be his third wife and he's already got three kids." And in all honesty, ugh on this. It bothers me that I'm immature on this topic anyway (though Melinda will wax poetic about the freedom of not having kids so I can do what the hell ever and not be trapped like she is), but the idea of marrying someone who's already been divorced with kids and meanwhile I haven't even dated since the stone age just doesn't sound right. I'm immature as as hell and they're "experienced" (barf)--it's the relationship equivalent of a kindergartener dating someone with a Ph.D. Ugh! Unequal and mismatched like that BUGS ME. I'm immature as hell, I sure am not up to being a stepmommy or wife number three. Unfortunately, the dude relationship equivalent of me at this age would be someone who's probably never dated anyone and lives in Mom's basement, so I can't find a reasonable equal on that level. But dating someone who's already been through all of the major life milestones and I still haven't even started yet? Ugh. That always seems to lead to creepy places to me, that is a power dynamic I do not like. Yes, there's the occasional older dude who doesn't act that way, but overall, I'd rather avoid it.
(c) After that, I went to Joann's to try to find a craft magazine with a dress pattern in it that I thought was cute but suspect and I wanted to examine it written out first before I bought it. I"m glad I did that because ain't no way I can do that pattern. It's made out of TINY CROCHET THREAD (think slightly thicker than the stuff in your sewing machine), for fuck's sake! An entire dress! I hate working with that stuff anyway and it would take forever! Nope, not doing it after all.
(d) After that I went book shopping in the area. I hit Dimple Books but didn't find anything and then went off to use my Barnes and Noble coupons before they expire after this weekend. I must have spent three plus hours in there. I eventually left with two paperbacks in a series that I haven't caught up on in awhile and a memoir called Romance Is My Day Job: A Memoir of Finding Love at Last.. The author's name is, apparently no joke, "Patience Bloom." FOR REALZ. Anyhoo, I haven't gotten too far into it yet, but she reminds me of me: striking out a lot from a young age on while reading a lot of books. She makes up a fake romance novel heroine named "Faun" and hero named "Devlin" and snarks about what they would do compared to what she's doing. (This kind of reminded me of some of the suggestions Melinda was making today.) I gather from looking at the cover that she eventually ends up with someone she knew from high school (the "Sam" she mentions memorably dancing with her once in the first chapter), but I look forward to reading about the bits I relate to--I liked her tone of voice, so what the heck.
(Amusingly enough, Patience Bloom's author picture? Well, she looks a LOT like K. An older version, I suppose, but they're both adorable redheads.)
I was also looking at, but eventually did not buy (maybe later, but I really flipped through almost all of the material by now) Yours for Eternity: A Love Story On Death Row. I am not super knowledgeable about the West Memphis Three beyond a bit of Internet/Wikipedia, but this book is essentially a compilation of (almost?) all of the love letters written between the authors while Damien was in jail. AND HOO BOY, THEY BE STEAMY. I haven't read so much steam in letters since reading the Griffin and Sabine first trilogy. (I would not recommend the sequel trilogy, which...just got weird. Don't know what the hell the author was thinking.) Seriously, if you remove the art and extend the timeline and put one of them in jail, it's VERY reminiscent. If you like reading epistolary romance, you should definitely pick this one up. I did find an old NYT article that gives you the general idea. Though lemme tell ya, the letters in the book are a lot better than what they excerpted.
I guess in the end the reason why I didn't pick it up was because, well....once upon a time I would have been SUPER into this whole cosmic resonating soulmates who do a bit of magick (Damien is Wiccan-- I read somewhere they live in Salem now, that's really cool), especially since it happened IRL. But these days I am a drained out, blackhearted sort who doesn't really have the emotion to get into reading all of that in the same way that I would have in the past. I guess I appreciated the art but wasn't able to feel the soul of the romance any more like I used to be able to.
On the other hand, look at the title of the book I did buy instead, huh? Hmmmmmmm.