West Side Gory

theatre-critic

This weekend I attended Church Basement Ladies: A Mighty Fortress is Our Basement, in central Pennsylvania. A colleague of mine was in the show and it was truly a fun evening.

After the show I waited for the restroom as an elderly woman in a wheelchair, being helped into the handicapped stall by her daughter and an elderly friend, blocked the door. They started chatting about the show once the woman was securely seated on the toilet and the stall door was shut.

I couldn’t help but listen from my bathroom stall.

The handicapped woman said she enjoyed the show, but thought it was a bit to risqué. I had to stifle my laughter because this show was vanilla. Really vanilla.

The elderly friend added that she brought her teenage grandson to see West Side Story in September and noted her surprise at how depressing the end of the show as. She said if she had known how depressing it was, they would not have seen the show.

What?

West Side Story, the musical inspired by the play Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare?

Maybe I am not being fair here, but I assumed that most people understood the Shakespeare connection. I also assumed that most people (over the age of 30) understand that West Side Story doesn’t end cheerfully.

SPOILER ALERT! Tony, a member of the Jets (a gang), takes a bullet from a member of the Sharks named Chino. Maria is SOL as her Italian Stallion, the love of her life, lies there dead, never to return.

The woman from the restroom is right. The ending is depressing.

Just when we think that maybe this dancing gang member could turn his life around and successfully tackle interracial marriage in the 1950’s, he is murdered in cold blood somewhere in Hell’s Kitchen.

I am sure not every American has seen the stage production, but the 1961 movie of the same name won 9 Academy Awards including best picture, 3 Golden Globes, and one Grammy. It starred a woman who tragically drowned in the Pacific Ocean 30 years after the movie debuted. Another depressing ending.

So is it possible that a woman slightly over the age of 70 doesn’t know how West Side Story ends? I guess so. Memory is a fickle thing; even for the young.

I wonder if anyone using the jakes (outhouse) in 1601 after the first revival of Romeo and Juliette said, “If I had known it was that depressing, I would have stayed home.”

Maybe they did. The first known critic of Romeo and Juliet (Samuel Pepys) stated, “It is a play of itself the worst that I ever heard in my life.”

Everyone’s a critic.

Just ask Starbucks.


New news!

I have started a new blog geared towards a highly specific audience. Today readers, I am announcing it to you!

For two years I have followed a gluten-free and dairy-free diet, prescribed by my doctor. There has been a lot of discovery with this diet and mainly discovering gross products and terrible recipes.

After a year of trial and error, I finally made some culinary breakthroughs.  I started enjoying food again and decided to start testing recipes and documenting the process through photos and blogging.

The blog , Recipes That Don’t Suck,  is found HERE. I am not using FB to promote my blog, so if you want to follow, you can follow the blog directly or follow my twitter handle: @GFDFRecipes.

Thanks for reading!

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