Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Punch & Judy

punch & judy

1. mr punch                               

2.  judy (his wyfe)                                                                     

3. ye baby

4. toby (a dog)

5. ye devil

6. ye crocodile

7. a constable

8. a skeleton

9. ye hangman

10. joey the clown
(from london town)

Punch & Judy is a mini-drama performed with hand puppets, & always by a single person who does all the voices, plays the music and/ or operates the phonograph, and does everything necessary to the
 performance of these one-act, set pieces.

In addition, this "professor of punchology" carves the heads of the puppets, makes their bodies and their clothing, and even makes his own prosceneum arch and theatre booth. I can't think 
of any other dramatic mode in which  cooperative endeavor is not just frowned upon, but absolute anathema.

The emphasis on the lone puppet master makes the quality of these performances almost too easy to judge.

The best professor of the craft today is an old gentleman named Glynn Edwards, who is unfortunately nearly totally retired. What makes him the best is his mastery of the fundamentals; he moves from one voice to another seemingly without effort, and since one of the two conversationalists is always Punch, whose voice requires speaking thru a contraption called a swazzle, it can't be as easy as it sounds. The movements of Edwards's puppets are also graceful and natural, and I especially enjoy the little dog who introduces the show, and moves in a most expressive and joyful way.

I also immensely enjoy the work of Professors John Thursby and Rod Burnett, who, like Edwards, have mastered the elements of "the script," such as it is, so thoroughly that they can easily improvise to fit the requirements of any audience. I should mention here that to some extent, if you've seen one Punch & Judy show, you've seen 'em all. The scripted a elements follow each other not precisely in a strict order, but in a series of predictable vignettes which increase in violence as the show winds out its roughly 20-minute duration.

It's this violence, and the coarse and aggressive nature of Mr. Punch which has caused this show, performed steadily in England for over 350 years, to fall into disrepute amongst the PC university crowd. I'll say more about political correctness vs Mr Punch tomorrow, plus a bunch of disorganized (at this point) thoughts about this topic and others relating to the primitive but strangely engaging Punch & Judy shows.

However I've borrowed your eyes too long already today, and I need to go cook dinner.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

ye last road trip (again)

We arrived home on Monday at ye end of what I REALLY hope was ye last rode trip. Now I know you’ve heard it B4 — I think the first “last road trip” was in 2005. .


At that time I wrote," Once upon a time, when gas was cheap and motel rooms were reasonably priced, I took to the road whenever the impulse struck, often just for the hell of it. Cruising along some remote two-lane blacktop (I never liked traveling the interstates) conferred a sense of freedom and independence. It fostered an illusion of power -- omnipotence, almost -- best expressed as, "I can go wherever I want, and do whatever I want, whenever I want."
"Sure. Until the money runs out. Or more importantly, until you're out of gas. And we are.

"Among the innumerable casualties of hurricane Katrina was our notion that gasoline is an infinite resource.

"But now we've breached the three-dollar barrier, the point at which many Americans find their formerly unlimited mobility curtailed.

"It's now extremely difficult, if not impossible, for a family of four with modest means to gas up the old Ford Explorer and go tooling off to visit Aunt Mary in Lubbock."

But now we see expense is only one facet of the "petroleum problem;"there will be times when the environmental problem is that gas is too cheap and too available. We are in a radically different scenario now, what Jim Kunstler called "the bumpy plateau" in "The Long Emergency." and it's not easy 4 me, confined to a wheel chair and carrying an oxygen tank, to deal with those bumps.

As things have turned out, gas is so cheap right now that traffic is THE problem in nearly every city & town, as people for whom recreational driving had not been an option for quite a few years suddenly take it up again with a vengeance; we were in a two-hour jam on the run into Portland on our way to Seattle, & a four-hour jam leaving Tacoma for Boise & points south on a couple days later.

Some recreation. If the folks up in Washington, in Portland, OR & LA & Frisco want to have fun in their own way, that's OK I spoze (or it would be if it wasn't demolishing what's left of our optimal 80% nitrogen & 20% oxygen atmosphere). But I can tell you it makes the wheechair life look a lot better. 

That final day took a lot out of us, and a lot out of the cat (she travels with us everywhere we go); unable to drink for over 8 hrs, she was a ghost of herself the day after her return, but has since reverted to normal behavior.

Friday, August 26, 2016

j'ai un trou dans ma tete

Woozenweezer K. Trumpf

I had heard about this dude for  a number of yrns,m.  d took no more  pleasure in than I would if I was floatin down wb troubkllese
ie treek wih a 5-inch blade in my neck.

Thursday, August 04, 2016

monkey & a rangatang

Monkey & a rangatang a-settin in the grass;
one say "no" and t'uther'n say "yass."

She knows a .38 slug, Beedle-e-bom,                
He knows a .38 slug, Beedle-e-bom,           
                                               Howler Monkeys howling "No."           

Well, cain't nobody use it;
Mama got a .38 slug.