Saturday, August 30, 2008

Magneta Lane 'Broken Plates'

Oh, look! They're cute and they have a cute video.

I'm so in love

It's been a long time since I fell completely in love with a song. This is my new obsession and I can't stop playing it over and over while bouncing around my room.

Friday, August 29, 2008

I hate my job

Yesterday, I liked my job. Yesterday, I liked my job quite a bit. Everything was nice and quiet. Today I hate my job. A lot. We have a magic show tonight, tomorrow and Sunday afternoon. It's going to be loud and obnoxious and lame and there are three of them. One is irritating, two is frustrating, three just sucks nuts hard. Oh! And let's not forget that it's long! Yep, two hours plus intermission of pure, unadulterated, mid-80's inspired magic!
Yes, they actually perform a trick while prancing around onstage to the theme from The Lost Boys.
Rad? Nay, I say, nay.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Handi Man

Remember HandiMan from "In Living Color"? That show was excellent.

Last night I watched a film called a Quid Pro Quo. It was about a paraplegic radio journalist who discovers this group of able-bodied people who desire to have limbs amputated or who desire to become paralyzed. It was a strange little movie, but I rather liked it. It was interesting and different, plus it had the perfect running time of 82 minutes.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Ultra Awesomeness

The kings of radness and supercool badassity, Dragonforce, have a new album out today. It's called Ultra Beatdown. It promises to be the ultimate in awesome speed power metal.

Monday, August 25, 2008


I am so old and decrepit.
Moria Chappell kicked my booty. She kicked a lot of booties this weekend. Her workshop was ridiculously tough and challenging. Still, despite my sore muscles and aching bones, I am indeed better off for it as I had predicted.

Moria (pictured above) is not only preternaturally gorgeous and talented, she's also has an incredibly pleasant, sweet disposition. We chatted and joked about our similar names, we talked about traveling the world and whatnot. She takes her profession very seriously and it shows in her flawless appearance and spectacular performance. Anyway, enough adjectives. She danced to Tom Waits at the recital and now she's my new best friend.

When I went to talk to her about Tom Waits, I found that she's new to his music. As a matter of fact, it was the crazy veil dancer Petite Jamilla that I worked with in D.C. who introduced Moria to the music of Tom Waits! Evidently there's more to Miss Jamilla than meets the eye. Anyway, it was fun being about to school Moria a bit after she spent all day schoolin' me.

The recital was nuts. I can't even begin to post about it for fear that someone might come across some unflattering stuff. My piece went fine, it was as smooth as could be expected from amateurs. I wasn't remotely nervous and I'm just a bit relieved that it's over. There were some great dancers, then there were some not-so great dancers. There were some young, pretty dancers, but there were a great many older dancers, too. Older and more experienced does not exactly equal better. Sometimes it does. Sometimes it doesn't. I can say with confidence that Saturday's recital was one of the most bizarre things I've witnessed in my lifetime. I can't wait to do it again!

Friday, August 22, 2008

I'll need a stage name

My name has been purloined by the Bellydance Superstar, Moria Chappell. I suppose I'll have to make something up when and if the time arises that I need one. We pronounce our names in the same manner, and I just can't compete with this woman who is as big around as my pinky finger and can pull her foot behind her ear (yes, that's her in the photo above, it certainly isn't me).

Tomorrow, Maria and Moria will meet face to face in an unforgettable square-off in which only the most cunning woman will survive.

No, not really, but we will indeed meet tomorrow. She's giving an intense workshop tomorrow and Sunday at the studio where I study. I'm very anxious because Moria is an incredible dancer, she is extremely athletic and technically accomplished. Her "tribal boot camp" workshop will no doubt help me a great deal on my journey to becoming a not-quite-so-pathetically-inept belly dancer.

Following the intense five hour workshop tomorrow, it's off to the summer hafla (that's bellydance for "recital"). It's my first recital! It's the first time I've danced onstage since I was a tot in ballet classes. It should be fun, our dance is very cool and our costumes are sickeningly cute. My instructor, Dana Beaufait, is an excellent and creative tribal dancer. She's choreographed a great little number for us, plus she designed the cute costumes. She's got a DVD available, Voi, based on her interpretation of fire spinning using veils rather than fire. She's a great pleasure to study with.

I have a feeling that I'll be exhausted and barely able to function following this brutal weekend, but hopefully I'll be better off for it.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


I know that it's stupid and shallow to get excited about makeup, but I do and I am. MAC is my favorite cosmetic brand and they have released their new fall collection, Cult of Cherry. Earlier this year they had a collection inspired and designed by the fantastic French graffiti artist Fafi which was divine. This collection is not quite as exciting, but it's lush and lovely nonetheless. This collection is mainly deep rusts, rich plums and dark chocolates, it just makes my mouth water.
Yes, I realize that it's a ridiculous waste of money cause I have makeup, and I realize that I should be more concerned about world politics, human rights issues, global warming, etc. than the new fall colors. I am astute enough to understand my flaws, and I am indeed a deeply flawed human being. Yet I cannot help myself, I feel so giddy! I am a mildly apologetic consumer. Only mildly, though. If I were that ashamed, I wouldn't be blogging about this.

Don't worry, Matt, I didn't spend too much money...tempting as it may be...

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Another day on the job

Today is Day #13 of work. It's the final day and I'm down to my final 3.5 hrs. It's been a very, very long 13 days.

Yesterday my boss and I laughed for at least 5 minutes straight because he used the word "smegma" in a sentence. I don't think I had heard that word in years. He was ordering his nasty lunch (liver and onions, seriously) from the local slop house. I made a comment about how his lunch looks and probably tastes like poopie. Then, referring to my Lean Cuisine pizza, he said "Well, you're eating smegma on styrofoam". We proceeded to laugh until we cried. Then several of us launched into a debate about our interpretations of the word and its meaning.

Now he won't stop saying the word "smegma".

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Maybe he'll get a new meat body


I love, love, reading about Scientology. It's balls-out fun.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Love is a many splendored thing

Exciting events on the horizon!

Right after the Yard Dogs show in Alexandria, I get to come back home and hop on a plane to NYC! Then it's time for yoga and playing with Leah. Next up it's workshops with most revered tribal fusion dancers Rachel Brice and Mardi Love. This will be an extraordinary opportunity. Then...more Yard Dogs! I'm taking Leah to the Speigeltent for an evening of bellydance and circus sideshow delights!

I can't believe that I get to do this. I'm in utter disbelief. I get to hang with beautiful Leah, see the Yard Dogs (again), and train with two of the best tribal dancers in the world. Holy crumbs. Plus, I think I need to visit the Anna Sui flagship store again for inspiration.

Monday, August 11, 2008


What a day, what a week, what a life!

Things are marvelous. I have a whole bunch of cool stuff coming up on the horizon that I will post about very soon. In the meantime...

The picture above is my hand. Those beads are Tibetan mala prayer beads. They were blessed by His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

No kidding!

These beads were a gift from the Drepung Loseling monks and Geshe Lobsang Tenzin Negi who is a former monk and friend to His Holiness. The American Theatre staff was blessed with gifts just before the monks left after their visit this week. I feel so happy and honored and full of love and bliss.

In other news, I got to see Hellboy II: The Golden Army which was entertaining. It was perhaps not the work of art that Pan's Labyrinth was, but it was delightful nonetheless. The film is worth the price of admission just for Red & Abe Sapien's excellent rendition of "Can't Smile Without You".
Best of all, Leah's in town! Hurray! Life is good.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

May the (Dragon)Force be with you

This past weekend was a smorgasbord of metal music awesomeness.

Friday my friend Sam obliged me and went with me to the Mayhem Festival in Virginia Beach. We made it in time to avoid a lot of junk and catch the good bands (and no, I don't mean Slipknot). We caught the last song from Walls of Jericho (cool gal lead singer) and some rather bland but okay Christian metal (UnderOath) and some typical tripe (Machine Head, Suicide Silence). We caught the entirety of Mastodon. They were good, I want to get their albums. The cruddy sound of the outdoor amphitheatre does justice to no band, unfortunately. Mastodon is a tight band, but I think they need a different venue to be fully appreciated. Their set backdrop and album artwork is super killer, by the way.

And then the men we came for ...

Oh, I love DragonForce so very, very much. I think they might very well be the raddest, most awesome band that's ever been. Okay, maybe Led Zeppelin, but DragonForce is darn close.

Not familiar with the force that is Dragon? Shame on you. Briefly, DragonForce sounds like 80's power metal (i.e. Survivor's "Eye of the Tiger", Scorpion's "Rock You Like a Hurricane") except sped up to 180rpm. It's insane. Their dueling guitarists, Sam Totman and Herman Li, are virtuoso guitarists of the highest caliber. They are most impressive, more so than I can describe. All of the group members are extremely talented. Best of all, they have a keytar! Sadly, the set was only 40 minutes long, but it was the most high-energy 40 minutes I could have asked for. They bounced around, goofed off, joked and acted silly while assuming rock god poses and playing at lightning speed. They even had a fan below the center stage platform so that their long metal god hair could blow back while they posed. It was the most fun I've ever witnessed a band having while playing, and it was contagious.

So Sam and I left the amphitheatre on our DragonForce high and escaped the tortures of Disturbed and Slipknot. Hurray!

Now I'm even more excited for my next Mayhem Fest in Washington, D.C. on August 17th! I can't get enough DragonForce!

Then Saturday arrived and we visited Virginia Beach for some more heavy metal. Matt's cousin's stepson (did you follow that?) has a band called Beneath the Surface. We listened to their MySpace music and were so impressed that we decided to go support them. Turns out it was their very first live show! It was at a craphole called Steppin' Out and there were numerous metal, punk and emo bands playing this all day show. We made it in time to catch the end of one crummy band and catch all of Beneath the Surface. For a first performance, it was really impressive. The band's got a lot of talent. They are all very young (one guitarist looks about 12 years old but plays better than any local artist I've seen in a long time). I was told that they all have drivers licenses. Remarkably, these guys show a lot of potential despite their inexperience and the cruddy sound at Steppin' Out. They're Richmond, VA boys and they're planning some shows around there, so be on the lookout if you like some screamin' math metal.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Thanks Jimmy

My brother-in-law sent this. These are indeed pictures of a snake eating a frog. It was taken right outside his home in the woods of Roanoke. His wife Kellie told me about this incident, so I'm delighted to finally see the picture.
Utterly insane.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Donkey fruit

My friend fussed at me for being so slack and not posting. I have LOTS to post about my metal music mayhem weekend, but no time to write properly. It's busy at the theatre prepping for The Mystical Arts of Tibet right now. This is a crazy week that I greatly anticipate yet deeply dread each year.

I'll get to work writing about last weekend. In the meantime, enjoy the photo above. It's a fruit carving that my husband's uncle made. His uncle, Tom Rhodes, is an accomplished carver. He's published a book on carving golf balls called Golf Ball Carving Unlimited. He has a piece of property that's sort of a local park area and he's carved these interesting faces into the trees. Parents take their kids to the area and walk through what the locals call "The Enchanted Forest". He's got crazy skills and has been featured in a number of carving magazines. For our small family reunion last month, Tom made this fruit sculpture inspired by the donkey from Shrek. Somebody stuck a knife in it's head and I had to snap a picture.