Don't Be Shy!
2020-08-08, 4:03 p.m.
recently on Chaos Attraction
Another do-nothing, in bed till noon Saturday! I at least walked around the house today for exercise and finished one book (okay) and then read the entirety of another (actually very good). I listened to the 10 Percent Happier podcast. I caught up on my email. (According to Ancestry DNA, my aunt is my first cousin. WTF?) That's about it.
Yonks ago I signed up to watch another storytelling show tonight. I don't remember how or why, other than this one's being run by the same org that I went to some other shows by. (And then it was running the same time as the new story slams Capital Storytelling is doing, grrrr.... so I missed that for this.) Anyway, clearly I was in another cranky, "no, I DON'T want to turn on the camera, no I DON'T want to get dressed or show my smiling fucking face" mood, and there they were, encouraging people to turn on the cameras or at least chat in the chat. Because I am being The Asshole here, I will leave the name of the show out of it.
I hate when I log into a show or class or whatever and I see that there's not too many people in it. Because while most shows unfortunately start soliciting for attention like this right off the bat unless it's a webinar (God bless the webinar, nobody can camera up even if they want to), they are even worse with small crowds. In this case besides the performers, there were maybe 8 people in it, and almost everyone, like me, wanted cameras and microphone off. They kept encouraging us OVER AND OVER AGAIN to turn our cameras and you guessed it, show those smiling beautiful faces! Please chat! Aloud or in the chat! Please SAY SOMETHING GIVE US SOMETHING WE WANT FACES AND NOISE..... There was the occasional token "you don't have to if you don't want to" remark, but that was mostly drowned out by "Don't be shy!" DON'T FUCKING TELL ME NOT TO BE SHY. THAT'S RIGHT UP THERE WITH "CALM DOWN" FOR NOT WORKING AS YOU THINK IT'S GOING TO. Also, it's not that I'm "shy," it's that I have nothing to say and I don't want to smile or be social. Fuck that. I am not in the mood. I do not have the juice to give you today.
Once again: remember how when you could go to theater shows, you could just sit in an amorphous blob in the dark with other people and other than applauding, you weren't in the show? Because I certainly am a hammy performer person, but that doesn't mean that I planned on going to someone else's show and then putting on a performance of Happy At Home Audience Member Who's Your New Friend Even Though You Will Never See Me Again. I was hoping for more of the "just watching quietly in the dark" experience. I don't WANT to have to put on Smiling Beautiful Face for you, dammit. This is not my show and I don't fucking feel like putting myself on display because you need attention and are lonely or whatever. I'm still tired, I'm still in a nightgown, leave me be. Also, watching a show while being forced to watch yourself watching a show (while they watch you watch the show, up close and personal) just sucks.
So fine, one lady turns on her camera on her phone....and she's driving TO GO GET ICE CREAM RIGHT NOW. To which I was all, the fuck? Lady, you had all fucking day to go get ice cream and you choose to do it right as a show is starting? Even I think that's weird to do, and then of course she has to turn off her camera while driving for safety. Ridiculous. I know people do it during scavenger hunts, but at least they're like, doing something for the hunt.
For the record, the stories were: (a) A girl getting called names in school, as happens to us all, and then later going back for a high school reunion and everyone loves her and suffice it to say she's confused by this change. The host of the show made the point that regarding the "sticks and stones" rhyme, you can put a cast on bones, but words stick forever.
(b) A guy who was telling stories of animal death, including watching baby ducks get hit by cars and nobody cared. I DIDN'T NEED TO HEAR THAT. Then he was all, "I didn't intend to bring everybody's mood down" and I was all jeebus christ, what did you THINK would happen with what you said? To which the host was all, "Animals dying cause more consternation in audiences than any other kind of death or pain." Duh. Unless you make it funny like I do, anyway.
(c) Then the host told a story about being 15 years old and having a whopping crush on her English teacher and buying him a bunch of expensive books when he announced he was leaving. That subject matter made me sooooo uncomfortable. I never understood the people who got super inappropriate crushes on teachers or guys of legal age and I can't get past the inner SQUICK. Nothing bad happened, mind you, and even at age 15 she knew that, but still.
After that, they wanted everyone to turn on their cameras and chat! I turned the Zoom off.
Later I watched a "virtual staged reading of Act 1" of "A Little Murder Never Hurt Anybody," which is/was a show that was going to be put on in Jackson. I normally wouldn't be going to Jackson to see anything (unsure where the hell Jackson is, actually), but what the hell, this way I can see half the show at least.
Anyway, this show is FUCKED UP. The husband (Matthew Perry, hah) straight up tells his wife Julia, "I'm going to kill you before the year is out. Don't take it personally, darling." A divorce would be expensive and then he'd have to work. And gee, divorce might hurt their child. "It's much easier to say Mommy's in heaven than Mommy's with Paco in Tijuana." He makes a New Year's Resolution to kill her by January 1. It's also pointed out by his wife that he'd never chop her up--it'd be too much work and he'd have the butler do it. She says her NYR is going to be that she sleeps with someone else, but later swears that hers will be to be alive by January 1.
Then we meet their cute but dumb daughter Bunny as she is being proposed to by her boyfriend Donald. "And I get my brains from my daddy!" I will note that they kiss by holding their hands over the camera. She can't figure out he's proposing until he really spells it out. We need to pick a wedding date. "How's about January 1?" Dad says. Mom objects.
"Is this your pate or mine?" "I gave it to Fifi." Next thing you know, Fifi is dead and the dinner guests are fleeing.
Six months later, there's just been "the eighth mysterious death on the estate this year," most recently Aunt Bitsie and the poolboy. Because Matthew goes golfing on Tuesdays and isn't aware that Julia's pool schedule is a bit off due to lunch with Bitsie and ogling the poolboy. Donald's boss is suspicious as to how much time he's taken off for funerals, all the wedding guests are dying, and now they're down to only 17 pages of invitees!
"I think the gods are perspiring against us!" "Conspiring." "Whatever."
We find out that Donald doesn't know who his father is (the only thing he has of the man is a cufflink...how very Orphan Annie) because his mother ran off on him instantly. and his mother couldn't stand him and kept trying to abandon him as a child. "But she's your mother." "That's not MY fault." Bunny's idea is "We don't need her! I"ll be your mother! And your father!" Then she rethinks that. Coincidentally, we find out that the butler's wife ran out on him when she found out what his job was. HMMMMMMMMMMM.
There's an annoying detective that keeps coming around and acting like he's in a 1940's movie. He annoys everyone. Bunny: "But it takes all the fun out of buying a diamond when someone thinks you're a murderer!"
Back to Julia and Matthew: "I"m not up to dodging any murder attempts today." "Would I kill you on the day your best friend was buried?" "Yes, it was careless of you to poison my ENTIRE garden club."
"Have you noticed how you favor poison?" "You're right. I've been too fixated on poison. That's why I tried the radio." "Bitsie was going to sing at my funeral and we can't do that now, can we." "You poisoned my chicken salad! You could have killed me!" "That was the point." (Note: I am totally unclear as to whether or not Bitsie and the poolboy died of poisoned chicken salad, overnight left out chicken salad, or pool electrocution. I guess it's....this?) Julia is planning three possible funeral outfits depending on the weather when she dies, and is constantly swapping any drink Matthew passes her.
By the end of act 1 (where they stopped), Donald thinks someone is trying to kill Mr. Perry. Welp, that is certainly a warped show.