When I started this blog (a week ago - it's sounds profound to begin with "when I started this blog" but really it was just a week ago so yeah anyway) I wanted to write about things that I was thinking about - possibly meaningful topics and deep philosophical conundrums that confront the modern woman in a ever- changing society. So for this week I've been pondering - 'what oh what shall I write about?'
I, of course, then proceeded on to have a full-blown Virgo moment... this blog... it must be the best blog ever written... it must be PERFECTION... when people read it choirs of angels should sing "aaaaaah thiiiiss is the beeesssst blooooooog evaaaaaaaaah aaaah"
This piece of super-rational thinking was followed by the inevitable.... complete inability to write anything lest it fall below the standard of awesomeness I wish to set for myself (and in fact all blogs ever written ever ever). So I've fallen back on that good old writers trick... just write whatever.
Keeping this in mind, I'm going to try to do one thing a week I haven't tried before and then write about it and also tell you about all the shit my friends said when we were drinking (it's going to be AWESOME). Since most of my friends are pretty smart and articulate (even after a couple of glasses of wine) I'm sure it's all going to end up o.k.
So to the task at hand. This week I went to check out the Auckland Playback theatre group. Playback theatre is a kind of improvisational theatre where the audience tells stories and moments from their lives and then the company of actors perform it. The actors are great!
So anyone can tell their story - so this is both the awesomeness and the not so awesomeness of the experience. When the stories are good - they're great but when they're bad.... well the lights are all on and you have to walk past everyone to get to the door, which is normally where the storyteller sits sooooo if the story's bad then you're not going anywhere. And not everyone is Steven King. Trust me...
One story was about the change from analogue to digital television in New Zealand and the process of getting a new television vs getting a special 'freeview box' for the current TV set which was nearly impossible but story teller 1 didn't want a new TV because the the old one had sentimental value so she would have to get a loan to pay for the changes to the current sentimental TV and because of the playback theatre format this meant the audience got to sit through the story being told and then watch the story of the analogue to digital including the telephonic loan application process being re-enacted by the intrepid theatre company. It was GREAT!
Writing the above makes me sound like a total beeeyatch - as I write it I feel bad. I feel mean and judgemental. I can see the value of the form. I can see what they were trying to do. I totally understand the process and how it's good for people to have their stories heard... but part of the way through the woman with her harem pants and bandanna discussing her aid work in India (the story involved scintillating details like a rundown of how many shock absorbers they damaged on the drive to the mountain school), I started to get that horrible feeling of claustrophobia not unlike the sensation created by the breathing-in-space noises in '2001 A Space Odyssey' (I've never watched the whole thing, I couldn't get past the breathing) or in ocean liner based disaster movies when the water is hitting your upper lip and you still haven't found a way out of the ballroom.
However there is a silver lining to all this I learnt a new word .... intersex. As in "this girl I know said that she was intersex but when she showed me her vagina she clearly wasn't. Even though my friend and I both said she looked normal "down there", she didn't believe us and so my friend had to show the other girl HER vagina to prove that there really was no difference."
Yes, this was also one of the stories.
Weirdly enough, I think I'll probably go back again. The same genetic quirk that makes us all addicted to the Big Brother Shower Hour and the Jersey Shore makes me want to go back and see what happens next. Will story teller number 1 finally get digital TV in time for her "New Zealand's Got Talent" audition? Will 'Bandanna-wearing philanthropist" get those shock absorbers fixed? What will happen to the red-head with the fear of lifts and how did two guys with highly unlikely randomly matching fro's end up sitting on opposite sides of the audience? Are they related or is it just some kind of weird synchronicity??
There's only one way to know....
Go to see some Playback theatre near you - let me know what you think....