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Lanky Brunettes with Wicked Jaws

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June 1st, 2009

01:22 pm - Where it's at.


May 26th, 2009

12:06 am - Rice is nice
I spent the past couple of weeks surrounded by quite a lot of rice.

The delightful British theatre company Stan's Cafe came to Toronto for the Harbourfront World Stage Festival with their awesome, rice-heavy show Of All the People in All the World, and they hired several local performers to help them put the show together and wander around wearing labcoats. I was lucky enough to be one of those performers.

In The Rice Show (check out more pictures of rice piles here), each grain of rice represents one person. Piles of rice are used to demonstrate various statistics, from the massive (the population of the U.S. - 303,000,000) to the bitty (number of people who have gone over Niagara Falls and survived - 10). The show packs a visual punch, and offers a different way to envision, for example, the number of people in North and South America who live on less than $2 a day. It's not all depressing stats - there are also silly things like the population of Pie Town, New Mexico (2,900), and the number of people fed by the world's largest pumpkin pie.

Over the course of two weeks, I touched more rice than I ever thought possible. I carried and scooped and swept and weighed and measured and counted. I explained to several children that not all kids in the world have the access to health care that they do and therefore go unvaccinated and die from diseases like polio. I erased footprints.

I met some truly lovely folks and got a brief glimpse of Canada through the eyes of a visitor. How often do you get to hear a trip to Niagara Falls recounted with childlike wonder by two grown men?

I'll miss you, Stan's Cafe. Please come again soon.


April 20th, 2009

02:03 am - There beneath the blue suburban skies
If you read the book Street Gang on the train, here is a thing that might happen.

You might reach the chapter in which the author recounts the creation of the episode where Big Bird learns about death and how Mr. Hooper isn't ever coming back.

You might now find that you have a conundrum.

For this episode always destroys you, even if you're just reading about it in a book that's full of questionable sentence structure. It's so heart-wrenching because watching it is like learning about death for the first time.

Normally, this wouldn't be a problem, considering that you love a good cry. You just went to look up the video clip on YouTube so you could happily bawl your face off.

However, ViaRail's terrible assigned seat service has put you at a four-seater table with a trio of idiot UFC-loving dudes whose sole desire is for it to be twelve hours later so they can be shit-faced and watching two large men in negligible clothing jump on each other.

You don't really want to cry in front of dudes like that. But Mr. Hooper! Are you really going to not read a chapter about the greatest episode of a children's tv series (or ANY tv series) ever, just because of some dudes whose collective IQ is lower than your bra size?

Of course not. You're going to read about how the grown-ups remind Big Bird that being dead means Mr. Hooper is never coming back and you are going to bawl your face off in front of three 19-year-olds in droopy pants and you hope it makes them damn uncomfortable.


April 14th, 2009

12:30 pm - How to live without it
Poutine with the cast of Spring Awakening made me feel old.

In other vaguely meat-related news, I made bacon cupcakes today. As an experiment. And to retire bacon from ever being put into foolish contexts ever again. This is the last time. I swear.

(In case you are concerned for my soul, I also made non-bacon cupcakes. They are banana/white chocolate/toffee cupcakes. You wish you were in my kitchen, probably. I don't blame you.)

(Yes, it's still Passover. Yes, I am the worst Jew EVER.)


April 6th, 2009

01:53 pm - The telephone is ringing right off the hook
Who cares about March Madness when vegetables are duking it out at the National Post?


April 2nd, 2009

10:46 am - I had ducked out of the rain
I think Darren O'Donnell does nifty stuff with kids, and I write a little bit about his latest in The Star.


March 29th, 2009

04:48 pm - Make of that what you will
Yes, this meshugas is my job.

The accompanying illustration (the Post has brilliant illustrators).


February 19th, 2009

08:20 am - Making the rounds, digging the sounds
Two reasons you should read this article:

1. It is my second story for The Star.
2. It is about the delightful improv troupe Impromptu Splendor. You should go see their show.


February 17th, 2009

01:01 pm - Who cares what it does since you broke my heart
I'm now on Twitter. Follow me if you must.

Web 2.0: 1. Alison: 0.


January 30th, 2009

12:36 pm - All kinds of warnings to save me from ruin
1. Sometimes I get to drink tea with Canadian theatre legends.

2. I liked Slumdog Millionaire just fine, but I'm kind of dreading My Nazi Lover, er, I mean The Reader.

3. Why, yes, I am still blogging about frivolous girly things, thanks for asking. fromaway gave me a bunch of great perfume samples, and I've been comparing them to literary figures. Either you're into that sort of thing or you're not.


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