Opera and Hooters
2016-12-10, 1:39 p.m.
So on Saturday I went with Katie to a showing of the Metropolitan Opera "L'Amour de Loin" (or "Love From Afar.)--the Met streams operas so you can watch them in movie theaters periodically.
....Yeah, this is unusual for me. But heck, why not give it a shot. Katie's friend Grace (who was supposed to also be going, didn't make it, met us for lunch later) is into opera and got her into it, I figured I'd check it out.
It was interesting. The opera has a whopping three parts in it plus a random Greek chorus, takes place on a sea created in LED lights (gorgeous) and the set pieces consist of a boat and a moving staircase that goes back and forth and flattens itself out or moves itself up periodically.
Here is my rundown of the plot:
Jaufre is a prince/troubadour living in the Aquitaine who used to spend his time drinking and whoring, but now has decided to fall in love with some imaginary woman who's beautiful but not full of herself, pious but not pious, etc. His friends (which is to say, the Greek chorus out in the ocean) call him out for quitting his drinking and whoring, but Jaufre has decided to pine for the imaginary instead. The Greek chorus is all, "hey, why don't you go ask that Pilgrim dude, he's been everywhere, he can tell you that she doesn't exist."
The Pilgrim boats in and is all, "Maybe, maybe not, but I did see a hot chick answering to your description in Tripoli." Bad move, dude. Jaufre goes all nuts with his imagination. The Pilgrim is all, you want to know her name? and Jaufre is like, no, I'll just imagine that she has blue eyes and black hair. (Note: actress playing this girl has brown eyes.) Jaufre decides to go keel over on his staircase. Don't die yet, brah, it's only act one!
In act 2, the Pilgrim sails off to Tripoli to hang out with the girl, Countess Clemence. Clemence is a bit of a piner herself, but she's pining for Toulouse, where she was born and left when she was five. She mopes about wondering if anyone there remembers her. Pilgrim tells her that this random troubadour prince is pining for her, which she thinks is weird to say the least. (The Pilgrim later sums this up as being offended, resigned, flattered.) Mostly she thinks it's weird that he doesn't even know her, and for example, she may go to church but her heart is empty. Does he sing my name, she asks. (No, he doesn't know it...) Anyway, the Pilgrim recites some of Jaufre's writings to her.
In act 3, the Pilgrim returns to Jaufre and tells him that all his friends think he's mad for locking himself up in the castle all day. Do you really think I'm mad, Jaufre asks? Nah, not really, the Pilgrim says, because (I am not making this up) if you were really mad, I wouldn't tell you, we'd just all be complaining behind your back. That was my favorite part of the show right there.
Anyway, the Pilgrim tells him that the girl knows Jaufre's interested and he's mentioned Jaufre's poetry to her. Jaufre FREAKS THE HECK OUT and asks what he said and the Pilgrim is all (no joking) uh, I don't have a good memory, I sort of mumbled...Jaufre is all, I spent all this time picking out the exact right words! I'm offended! The Pilgrim tries to drop this bomb and boat away, but Jaufre grabs his stick and won't let him. Jaufre would like to see her reaction to his work directly. Oh yeah, and NOW he'd like to learn her name, please.
Meanwhile, Clemence...to be honest, I fell asleep a bit during this soliloquy, apparently according to the summaries I've read she's flattered but would rather he stay home.
In act 2, Jaufre finally sacks up and hops on the Pilgrim's boat to go meet her. However, after he has a dream about Clemence he freaks the hell out and starts chickening out and wanting to go backsies and basically flips himself out into willing himself to death by the time he arrives there. OH, OPERA.
Clemence overhears that he's arrived and is debating how she's going to react to him when the Pilgrim boats up with bad news. Let me decide if it's bad or good news, Clemence says, and then uh...it's bad news, he's dying now.
So they meet the one time and pledge their love and he asks if she'd sleep with him and she says yes and he dies happy. It occurs to me that he engineered this in order to get his way because that way she was kinda forced into insta-relationship with him and then he gets out of the situation having gotten everything but an orgasm. Uh-huh, dude.
Clemence feels bad, the Pilgrim feels bad (in the "why did I open my big mouth" sort of way, which he should feel bad about), Clemence says she can't deal with love again and will go into a convent, and now Jaufre is her faraway love.
So....yeah. Opera plots not so great. But funnier than I thought.
After that, we were all, "Hey, let's go to Hooters!" Yup, that's opera, followed by Hooters. (Katie used to go there a lot when she had a previous job.) So we met Grace there and both of them gave me very mixed bag sort of tips on applying for state jobs. As for Hooters, it's "delightfully tacky," food was pretty good, and the waitresses looked very cold. But nice, though. Apparently it'd been a boring day for them until people started coming in.
After that, we hung out in Michael's for a bit looking at Christmas décor and talking about crazy family stuff, and then everyone adjourned to go home.