March 27, 2006

27 MARCH 2006- Orfeo ed Eurydice

Yesterday, my friend from girlhood days, Theresa Jacobi, and I went to the last performance of Lyric Opera's regular season. While the music by Gluck was beautiful, Lyric Opera Company went "on the cheap" to mount the performance. Staging was awful - no change of scenery and what was presented looked like a sterile moonscape - all gray and craggy - with a stage front/right hole that represented entrance and egress from hades. The countertenor, David Daniels was spectacular - both in voice and appearance. Theresa and I met him after the performance while we were waiting for a cast member that we both know. T and I talked to another opera-goer who had seats on the orchestra level and paid much more for the chance to be disappointed than did T and me. I guess that at Lyric all operas are not created equally - some are spectacular while others are less so and could be just as well enjoyed by putting on a CD. Also, this version was not the same Gluck opera as the French version. After hearing the French version on radio, I ordered the CD and have listened to stirring melodies and uplifting choruses that were more enjoyable than Sunday's offering.

T and I then went to a restaurant called Dine. She had a $25.00 off coupon that could be applied when two entrees are ordered. Unfortunately, T ordered an appetizer as her entree and the coupon was denied. My meatloaf was meager and salty and cost $18.00 This is not an establishment that I will anticipate returning to in the near or distant future. While we had several definite misses, the day was fun and we laughed a lot. What more can one ask?

Posted by leah at 02:33 PM | Comments (2)

March 21, 2006


The following is posted because I thought it very funny - if not always politically correct.

You have two cows.
Your neighbor has none.
You feel guilty for being successful.
Barbara Streisand sings for you.

You have two cows.
Your neighbor has none.

You have two cows.
The government takes one and gives it to your neighbor.
You form a cooperative to tell him how to manage his cow.

You have two cows.
The government seizes both and provides you with milk.
You wait in line for hours to get it.
It is expensive and sour.

You have two cows.
You sell one, buy a bull, and build a herd of cows.

You have two cows.
Under the new farm program the government pays you to shoot one, milk the other, and then pours the milk down the drain.

You have two cows.
You sell one, lease it back to yourself and do an IPO on the 2nd one.
You force the two cows to produce the milk of four cows. You are surprised when one cow drops dead. You spin an announcement to the analysts stating you have downsized and are reducing expenses.
Your stock goes up.

You have two cows.
You go on strike because you want three cows.
You go to lunch and drink wine.
Life is good.

You have two cows.
You redesign them so they are one-tenth the size of an ordinary cow and produce twenty times the milk.
They learn to travel on unbelievably crowded trains.
Most are at the top of their class at cow school.

You have two cows.
You engineer them so they are all blond, drink lots of beer, give excellent quality milk, and run a hundred miles an hour.
Unfortunately they also demand 13 weeks of vacation per year.

You have two cows but you don't know where they are.
While ambling around, you see a beautiful woman.
You break for lunch.
Life is good.

You have two cows.
You have some vodka.
You count them and learn you have five cows.
You have some more vodka.
You count them again and learn you have 42 cows.
The Mafia shows up and takes over however many cows you really have.

You have all the cows in Afghanistan, which are two.
You don't milk them bec ause you cannot touch any creature's private parts.
You get a $40 million grant from the US government to find alternatives to milk production but use the money to buy weapons.

You have two cows.
They go into hiding.
They send radio tapes of their mooing

You have two bulls.
Employees are regularly maimed and killed attempting to milk them.

You have one cow.
The cow is schizophrenic.
Sometimes the cow thinks she's French, other times she's Flemish.
The Flemish cow won't share with the French cow.
The French cow wants control of the Flemish cow's milk.
The cow asks permission to be cut in half.
The cow dies happy.

You have a black cow and a brown cow.
Everyone votes for the best looking one.
Some of the people who actually like the brown one best accidentally vote for the black one.
Some people vote for both.
Some people vote for neither.
Some people can't figure out how to vote at all.
Finally, a bunch of guys from out-of-state tell you which one you think is the best-looking cow.

You have millions of cows.
They make real California cheese.
Only five speak English.
Most are illegals.
Arnold likes the ones with the big udders.

Posted by leah at 04:38 PM | Comments (0)

March 20, 2006

20 MARCH 2006

There is so much to catch up about. I'll start with the Karl sisters special weekend. We all met in Tyler Texas on 10 February at the perfect venue for our purpose - a B&B called Arabella Garden Retreat. On our first night, a Friday, we piled into two cars for the trip to the chicken ranch where, after donning surgical caps, masks, coverups and plastic boot covers that came up to the knee, we toured a facility operated for Pilgrim's Pride. It was amazing. There were five chicken houses; each accommodated 26,000 chickens. The chicks arrive early in life, some with remnents of egg shell still attached, and stay until seven to eight weeks of age when they are shipped to the processing plant. During the growth period, all needs are supplied electronically: food, water, heating and cooling, humidity control and ventillation. The sisters and I walked throughh one of the houses as the feathered residents cleared a path. The owner explained that they have a 3% mortality and survey all of the houses each day in order to cull the sick or injured. He found one such little chicken who had had an unbilical infection that affected his leg and overall growth. He was about half the size of the other healthy chickens. It was clear that the owner wanted to dispatch the sick bird as he cradled the chicken in his hands and extended its neck for a quick snap. Apparently, at that moment, each of the five sisters averted her eyes.............reluctantly, the owner set the chicken down and it hobbled away to live, well, who knows, for how long.

On Saturday, after a delicious B&B breakfast, we had a memorable and emotional sisterly bonding ceremony that was impressive due to Kathleen's exhaustive efforts to make it so. I don't think that any of us will forget that special time together. Then it was back in the cars to trek to our previously arranged massages. This was turning out to be a perfect day. Kathleen, Rita and I ventured out for lunch and found the perfect place - an excellent restaurant that was attached to a gift/apparal shop that was conducting an excellent sale. Soon, Margaret and Theresa joined us; we spent so much time (and money) there that we had to rush back to the B&B to prepare for supper at another perfect place - Kiepersol. Kiepersol's is an ambitious establishment and boasts a B&B that is quite pricey, a vineyard/winery, and a restaurant. We were shown to the perfect, large, round table. The food was great and unusual and, as usual, we closed the place.

After another delicious breakfast, the sisters drove to Rita's house to share our experience with Mother and to surprise Theresa with a birthday party. It was a wonderful weekend

Now, I'll talk about the disappointing experience that Cynthia and I had at the opera. It was our last, regularly scheduled opera for the season and was much anticipated - Der Rosenkavillier. Well, forty-five minutes after the curtain rose, I leaned over to Cynthia and whispered, "Are there any arias, duets, or even choruses in this opera?" Apparently not. We sat through 75 minutes of sung dialogue in Act One - not a song to be heard. We decided to give the production one more chance and sat through a disappointing Act Two. Then, we left. Cynthia couldn't remember this opera as being so awful. She had probably made a concerted effort to forget it. And, it was composed by Richard Strauss and not the celebrated creator of the delightful Strauss waltzes, Johann Strauss. Next season at Lyric Opera looks to be brilliant.

Cynthia and I returned to my little unit to enjoy unfrosted, freshly baked from a box, chocolate cake with vanilla ice cream.............and, of course, more wine.

Posted by leah at 02:00 PM | Comments (2)