3rd Class / Winston Checks In

As I was heading home from work tonite on the #14, I saw a pretty healthy crowd outside the Gladstone Theatre, waiting to be let in for A FLEA IN HER EAR.  I’m hoping that the news that the Gladstone has been placed on the market has rallied Ottawa theatre lovers to get out there and support some shows.  I know I don’t want to lose a great venue like the GS, especially not when I’ve only just really gotten IN to theatre.   But I digress (go Gladstone go!).

Yesterday was my third entry level acting class at the OSSD, and as always, I was wicked anxious.  A little more so this class, because I almost didn’t make it on time…more on that later.  As it happened, I was still the first to arrive, and helped prof Barry Karp set up the class (a new studio today) with some chairs and…well, more chairs.  The gang filtered in (it was a crappy night out), and I think I’ve just about got everyone’s real names now…David, Justin, Simon, Erik, Jefri, Julien, Helene, Sabrina, Julia, Katherine, Rachel, Stefan, and Vanessa.  Barry sat us around, ran us through our warm-ups and excercizes, showed us some insanely cool masks and told us an even cooler story about HIS encounters with some pretty powerful maskage indeed.  Then a little gameage, with two groups competing as we posed out various tableaux as Barry called them out.  I like to think we won the ‘Thanksgiving’ challenge because of my wonderful work as the turkey.

That's me in the middle.

After that, it was time for some HUGGING!  Seriously, we walked around made random eye contact, and just hugged.  It was, I believe, all about breaking down the natural barriers to having one’s ‘personal space’ invaded.  Later we did it with love songs.  Very cool.

But the big event of the class was learning and practicing THE SEVEN STAGES OF MOVEMENT.  A lot of this meant we got to stagger around like loons for great long periods of time, while a paid adult actually told us this was perfectly acceptable behaviour and we should just carry on.  God, I’m getting into this whole ‘acting’ thing!  But there were, of course, six OTHER bits we had to practice…I felt a little clumsy at the ‘graceful dancer’ bit, but quite enjoyed ‘neutral’ (which Barry stresses to us is kind of the crucial one).  We even have homework for next class…remind me, I need a two-minute story to tell people.  Something from me or my family and preferably not peppered with the word ‘fuck’ and lots of goofy pictures I don’t have the copyright to.  But I’ll be ready…wednesdays are the highlight of my week now.

Now, as to why I was almost late…here we must briefly peek into the strange, wonderful world of FamousActress NancyKenny (but not too long, or you’ll go mad).  As some of you may know, if you’re not actively repressing the information, Nancy is in the process of making tracks to Toronto, for the obviously ridiculous reason that it’s better than Ottawa in every measurable respect.  Phooey.  But, she needed someone to watch her beloved kitty Winston for a spell, while she gets adjusted, or whatnot.  Cat loving gentleman that I am, I offered my services.  A few days passed tho, and I figgered she had found someone else, and I went about my Visitorial duties as per usual.

This was premature.

Wednesday morning I was up oddly early for a day off, around six thirty.  I’d been abed early the day before, predictably because of a day-long hangover.  And the first thing I see on my ‘pooter when I get up is a message from the Nancy herself, asking if my catsitting offer is still good.  And so began a daylong race to clean/kittyproof my apartment, which had gotten quite bachelorific in the weeks now that I’ve been single again.  I think I managed okay, and even managed a quick race downtown for comix (no DOCTOR SOLAR?  For shame, Dark Horse, for shame).  Turns out, MsKenny was having a rather hectic day herself, what with packing and moving cities and having to schlep her kitty across town and into the hands of someone who is, and this is not lost on me, essentially almost a complete stranger.  Aside from a couple of brief beer tent run-ins at the Fringe, we’ve never really done any hanging out, and I can only imagine how reticent she must have been to leave her awesome kitty in the hands of someone whose greatest claim to fame so far is swearing on a theatre blog.  I don’t take the responsibility lightly, and will do my best to make sure the Winston is happy and well cared-for in my home.

"I think you'll find it's MY home now."

…yes  Yes, of course, sir.  I was just saying…*ahem*.  Anyways…Nancy and her ride arrived at about 5 minutes to six (about fifteen minutes before I HAD to leave for my class, because Nancy Kenny is such a committed actor she is literally incapable of doing anything in non-dramatic fashion), and we ferried Winston and his stuffs up to his new temporary digs.  He sadly committed what one might call the rude faux-pas of peeing on the aforementioned MsKenny in the car on the way over, but can you really fault him?  If you were being expelled from Nancy’s loving care, and into a pad with a skeevy guy like me, wouldn’t YOU be a little miffed too?  I mean, really, there are limits.

Now, apologies all around…I do tend to let my writing persona get away with me, and before I put my foot fatally in my mouth, I want to impart some ACTUAL information to Winston’s Mom:  We’re getting along just fine.  He spends SOME time hiding under my bed, but mostly comes out whenever I’m home, and he’s already been on my lap and everything.  I saw him eating a little food, given him some scratchin’, and tho there’s no poo YET, I have high hopes for tomorrow.  Absolutely no problems at all, and I think he’s really adjusting to being in my…

"Did I say you could leave your shoes here?"

…sir, no sir!  I’ll move them right…just, just let me hit ‘publish’ and…it’s good, it’s all good!  Look, let me get the toy mouse…see you all later,

The Visitor (and Winston)

(ps: oh shit, he’s using his scratching post RIGHTNOW!  So cute…)

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