OMG! Superfangirl here, heart beating. My beloved is somewhere in this town! Maybe if I troll all the vegetarian restaurants, I’ll catch a glimpse. No small task in a hippy town like this, let me tell you. I may just have to settle for the concert on the 19th, fourth row centre. Macca, if you want a good book to read, please let me know. It’s about an interesting very young woman in 1964 and her love for you and your band and the music you made. Among other things.
Last night, Theatre of Living, which when I was involved was called Headlines Theatre, did a fascinating evening of … sort of theatre. Well, no, it was theatre, but without a play. Host and company co-founder David Diamond’s topic was “reclaiming hope in an age of fear”; he asked three people in the audience to tell a story about a time when they had to make a hard decision with voices of fear in their heads, and we the audience chose one of the stories to delve into more deeply. We chose a First Nations woman’s tale of learning that her father, who she felt had destroyed his family, was dying; should she forgive him? As the story was explored, more and more people were brought onto the stage in various roles, to present different points of view. It was done with enormous skill, no one was uncomfortable, and though the event was unquestionably enlightening and even therapeutic – several people wept – it was also entertaining. I was proud to have been involved in the beginnings of this fine company pushing for social change. David has made this his life’s work, and he does it well.
This morning, across town to a class called BoingBoing with the estimable Jane Ellison, genius of the body, a dancer and movement teacher who leads these wonderful classes at the Western Front. There’s a long session of stretching, exploring every inch of sinew, bone and muscle, and then my favourite part, where she puts on 3 or 4 fabulous songs and we dance, just a roomful of people flinging themselves about any which way. It’s wonderful, though I do always have the faces of my children in mind, if they happened to catch a glimpse of the goings on … it would not be pretty. But luckily they do not know and cannot see. They still make merciless fun of my dancing.
After the class and lunch with dear Margaret, who took the class too, I could hardly move. Took the bus home through the downtown East Side and was appalled – I’ve heard about it, knew it was bad, but have never seen anything like East Hastings – junkies lying in the street, garbage, clumps of people sleeping against buildings … On the bus was the saddest transsexual hooker, skinny and barely clothed in excruciating high-heels, a blonde Carol Channing wig and false eyelashes, falling asleep in her seat. And then the bus moved into the downtown core, back to the Lamborghinis and Holt Renfew, people wearing workout clothes carrying many shopping bags and staring at cellphones. Two of the circles of Hell. Surreal.
(A recent New Yorker cartoon – the circles of Hell and at the bottom, devils with backhoes digging deeper, with a sign reading, “Coming soon: Trump Circle.” Have you seen Barry Blitt’s current New Yorker cover of Trump’s short-fingered hand? Searing and hilarious, as usual.)
Now to Chris’s. He baked a cake in his baking class yesterday and is desperate to share it. It’s a tough job but someone’s got to do it. There will be champagne.