Monthly Archives: November 2013

My Grandma made me do it — Introducing Duncan Calem in Noises Off

I hope you will allow me some indulgence as I show you my very proud mom-side. My son Duncan, who is a sophomore, just starred in his high school’s production of Noises Off. If you are my Facebook friend, you already know this because I bombarded you with notices of his performing nights, gushing about how awesome he was and all around being Ga-Ga over the entire production and cast. It was truly amazing! I wrote this post as the easiest way to share a few video clips of Duncan in action with my family and friends.

Ok, the real truth is my Grandma was so heartbroken not to be able to see Duncan perform that she guilted me into taking some video. And now, you ALL get to share her joy in seeing her great-grandson perform.

If you are unfamiliar with Noises Off, here is what says about it:

Playwright Michael Frayn created Noises Off in the early 1980s. It is a love letter and an inside joke to those of us familiar with the thrilling and unpredictable nature of the stage.

What is ‘Noise Off’ About?

Noises Off is a play within a play. It is about an ambitious director and his troupe of mediocre actors. The cast and crew are putting together a silly sex comedy titled, Nothing On – a single-set farce in which lovers frollic, doors slam, clothes are tossed away, and embarrassing hi-jinks ensue.

I already knew Duncan loved theatre and acting. He’s been in numerous school productions already. And, while they were good and of course I always enjoy watching my children do something they love, Duncan’s performance in Noises Off … well, he Blew. Me. Away!

Thursday night was his last performace. The show was extended for an extra weekend so I finally took a few videos clips so I could share my thespian with you all. All three clips are taken from Act 1.

First clip is the entrance of Roger/Garry and really sets up his character.

The following small clip shows Roger becoming unraveled and things start to really fall apart.

The last clip is my favorite. Roger is calling the police because everything has gotten out of control.  This is just a tiny snippet of what was one of my top favorite scenes in the whole play.

And that’s all I have. Hope you enjoyed seeing my guy in action. We are so proud of him.




I was tortured with string

So I got ‘Threaded’ today. I don’t know if you know what that means but I’m going to explain ALL. I had heard the term before and I knew it was a form of hair removal, like getting your brows waxed, only they use string somehow. I have friends who get threaded and they rave about it. For some reason I didn’t Google it. If I had I might have seen this video to know what I was getting myself into.

Only that girl in the video who says, “It’s painless …”

Guess what? She LIES!

So I go into my local nail spa that prominently displays THREADING in huge letters on the building. I inquire a bit about it and am told that it’s wonderful, better than waxing, only takes 10 minutes and all other sorts of accolades. I ask about the expense and am asked, “For brows?” At my nod, the woman, who at first glance doesn’t appear to enjoy inflicting pain, says, “Twelve dollars.”

Fine, I’m in.

I’m led to a room in the back with a reclined table/chair. Before I so much as settle in she’s at me armed with white string. Zip. Zip.

What sort of hell am I in?

With every zip of her thread, I’m pushing my head further back into the table. I scrunch my eyebrows up, anticipating the next attack.

“Relax your forehead”, says the woman wielding the dental floss of doom. I do my best.

I’m pretty sure I’ve lost an entire eyebrow.

Cue sneezing attack. This happens when I tweeze too. She hands me a tissue and is back to zipping in .004 seconds.

Cue stomach erupting in angry rumbling growls.

“You hungry?”

“Nope, just ate.” See, my stomach has this tendency to go into a massive fight or flight response to pain or extreme relaxation. At a recent massage, my massage therapist commented that he was flattered. Today, this was no flattery.

She asks me to use my fingers to lift up my brow with one hand and push down on my lashes with the other because ‘the tighter the skin, the less it hurts’.

Cue Ginger attempting to rip her eyelid apart.

It is explained that threading is better than waxing or tweezing because you get all the hairs, even the little, soft, downy hair that no one sees and are just minding their own damn business.

So the hairs are being yanked out by their follicles, only unlike tweezing, where you pull them out one by one, you can yank out a whole row of hairs. Lots of hairs people, all in one zippity-do-da of a thread pull.

The woman explains how waxing is bad and it damages your skin permanently. (I already know this, thank you very much.) I mention that I hardly ever wax. In fact, I add that I’ve only waxed maybe 5 times in my life.

“Hhmm,” she mumbles.

Did she just call me a liar?

As I’m enduring this treatment, I think back to her question when I inquired about the price. You know, ‘For brows’, she asked. It got me to thinking about what else might get threaded. My tender armpits? My lip? ~~shudder~~ Or what about … on no, let’s just not ever think it again. I will purge that thought from my brain forever.

She gets to the area between my brows. “Lots of hairs in the middle.”

Yes, thank you for adding insult to pain.


Holy mother of all that is merciful in the universe … be done already.

She mentions something about being painful the first time. So many hairs. Better next time.

She trashes her string. I’m pretty sure I’ve survived and she pulls out some tweezers.

Oh, kill me now. What happened to ‘all the hairs’ with the string? After she gives her last finishing touches, she hands me a mirror.

I still have eyebrows! And they look GOOOOD.

Freshly threaded eyebrows

Freshly threaded eyebrows

Thank you merciful heavens!

I pay her the twelve dollars plus I tip her 2 more. Why? Well, you’re supposed to, but also because before she started, she asked me my name, and told me hers. When I paid, she thanked me by name. I like that. (And she really wasn’t trying to be mean. Just doing her job.)

Furthermore, I have to admit that I will likely go again? What does that say about me? Maybe don’t answer that.

Tell me, have you been threaded?

WritersButt Wednesday: Getting on “The List”

Ginger's Gratitude List for Nov 7th, 2013

Ginger’s Gratitude List for Nov 7th, 2013

We are into November, the month of Thanksgiving.  Once again FB has exploded with posts of gratitude, one for each day. They are called 30 days of Thanksgiving or something similar. Because ‘Gratitude’ is a vital component in the WritersButt program, I’m all over this. It’s not like I’m not thankful all the other months of the year. I most certainly am. But in November, I make a very concerted effort to recognize something specifically unique for which I’m grateful that day and share it.

So, on Facebook this morning, a friend posted an article basically bashing this idea of sharing things publically that you are thankful for. The point of the article was that it was fine and dandy to be grateful but to share it publically could be considered bragging and might even inflict pain and suffering on others. Basically it said to keep your thanks to yourself.

What the … what??

Examples from the article suggest that if you are thankful for your children, someone reading it might be battling infertility and thus be saddened. Or if someone expresses thanks for a happy home, someone might not have a happy home life or maybe even be homeless so that little ‘gratitude’ on Facebook might plunge them into depression.

Oh, come on! That’s crazy-talk. We are not responsibly for other people’s reactions to our gratitudes in life. I derive more good feelings for things my friends and family (heck, even strangers) are blessed with. It makes me feel good to see and feel their joy. It makes me hopeful.

I’m not going to link to the article because I suspect the author might not be very happy, and maybe is finding it hard to find things for which to be thankful. So I don’t wish to inflict any negativity in that direction.

But I will offer up a challenge that I truly believe could change your life. As I’ve said many, many times in this WritersButt journey, you should be grateful every day for the things, people, and experiences in your life, big and small. Keeping a gratitude journal is a great way to experience the joy of being grateful.

Now I’d like to kick it up a notch with a new challenge.  Every day, make it your goal to get on someone’s gratitude list. That is to say, go about your day in such a way that you are looking for opportunities to positively effect the lives of others. These don’t have to be grand gestures. Something as small as a compliment on someone’s shoes could make someone’s day.

Don’t be stingy with your smiles. You can’t imagine how many people need to have one shine on them. The smile you share could be something they remember and give thanks for at the end of the day.

What kind of amazing effect would the world have if we all acted like this? If everyone was trying to positively impact others, consciously and specifically … the ripple effect would be astounding.

Make it your daily goal to GET ON THE LIST!

And SHARE far and wide your Gratitude. Be a part of the wave of THANKS and ride it with joy.


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