Here's where I toss out my words - like words in the wind. Sometimes putting stuff out on the internet can feel like that. Hope you can catch the breeze once in awhile.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Oh OOOOpera

I like movies. I like the special effects, I like the acting, I like seeing the faces and expressions of the actors right up front. I like being able to hear what the actors are saying and, if that doesn't work, on my DVD player there's always subtitles.
And then my son took me to Phantom of the Opera. We had good seats - first balcony quarter way up - with no one sitting in front of us. I had taken binoculars. I knew, from watching movies of people watching opera, that the tiny binoculars my husband uses for spotting deer, moose and coyotes were just perfect for the Opera, dahling.
I was prepared for a good time. I was dressed up in my Christy Award Banquet dress and my son wore a snazzy suit. But as the curtain rose I had to confess I was a little disappointed that I couldn't see the actors faces like I could on television. I'd heard that the effects were amazing and was wondering how a live play could compete with Lord of the Rings. I knew most of the lines were sung, not spoken and I wondered if I was going to enjoy it a lot.
But at the point in the play when the theme music swelled from the orchestra and the lit chandelier rose from the stage and was drawn up and over the audience I was hooked. How to describe something so amazing and so compelling. All my concerns disappeared. The binoculars were fun to use but not entirely necessary. And as the play progressed and I was drawn into this opera I understood why The Phantom of the Opera is the longest playing production on Broadway. I didn't need subtitles, the special effects were truly heart-stopping and amazing. I'm a writer and I'm still trying to find the right words to wrap around this event, this spectacular event.
All I know is that if I saw it on television it would lose too much in translation and I'd find myself fast-forwarding.
But live? No comparison. I'd see it again.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Special Delivery

"I'm sorry we don't ship to P.O. Boxes. Can you give me your physical address," says the person taking my phone order.
I sigh. "Well, I could give you my physical address, but I know you won't ship to it. I'll give you . . . ."
"Fed Ex will ship anywhere." Heavy emphasis on anywhere. This person has obviously watched CastAway too many tmes.
"They won't ship here," I say full of the knowledge gleaned from approximately 287 such encounters in the past fifteen years.
Sigh from order-taking-person. "Just give me the address and I'll decide that."
"Fine." I rattle off the legal land description - the physcial address of a quarter section of land that is approximately twenty miles from the nearest town of 4,000 and approximately thirteen miles from the nearest hamlet of about 100. Where our post office is. And I hear the pause that I always hear whenever I do this. I wait, letting this sink in. It's petty of me. I know. I just don't like being treated with condescension. I've lived with teenagers. Now that the kids are all grown up condescension is no longer welcome in my home. In all my years of ordering online and over the phone, no delivery company in the entire English speaking world has EVER brought ANYTHING to my door yet. Not UPS, not Canada Post, not Purolator, not FedEx, not DHL. None of these friendly delivery people has ever driven the long miles down our gravel roads to pull up to my house with a smile and a package. Nor will they. I realize that most of these ordering places are located in the city. I understand that many of these ordering people think that the country they drive through to get from one city to another is simply there for their inconvenience. I would like these ordering type people to check out Google Earth and look at the endless amounts of roadway that cut through all the country between cities and realize that people live on those roads. And that delivery companies will most probably NOT go that extra mile to bring a package to my door. I don't have time to educate this person, however, and I'm not patient enough to try to explain that not everyone in the world lives on a paved street with street lights outside their house and that the only way I can get high speed internet is to plunk a satellite dish on the top of my house because cable companies won't drag themselves this far out either. Do you sense some frustration? You are very astute. Trouble is now that I HAVE high speed internet, I can order stuff online even faster. And every time I do I have to explain once again why I'm getting these people to deliver their stuff to the store in our small town. Where, by the way, the post office is located.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Of Tractors and Such

The job was supposed to be simple. Or so my husband assured me before he hied himself off to a very remote place where I won't be able to reach him for a few more days. All I had to do was turn the key and our new tractor would fire up and I could pick up a very large round bale with the bale forks dump it into the feeder and all would be well in my world and the cow's world who are a little short of pasture because we haven't had rain for a number of days and we're giving them hay to supplement their feed. Trouble is when it comes to me and machinery, NOTHING is ever simple. Especially when said husband is gone. Of course the tractor wouldn't start. Of course I couldn't get hold of said husband. Of course I needed to feed the cows TODAY because I put it off for a few days because the forecast called for rain. Of course it didn't rain. A few frantic phone calls and a neighbour came to my rescue, diagnosed the problem, jerry rigged it for now and promised to show up next week with a new fuel line which was the cause of my frustration. Right. I should have known that. (hand smacking forehead). Stupid of me. When in doubt, check the fuel line. So. Of course this is all my husband's fault. (what can I say, I'm petty) Of course I need to formulate suitable revenge. (try really petty) And this is it. A semi-permanent rant. (really, really petty) Of course, what bothers me the most is when my husband comes home and I tell him, he'll laugh. His standard response to any of my frustrations.