DISCONNECT THE LANDLINE

     In the previous week’s issue (Vol. 19-No. 32), this here news service reported upon people’s fixations over the use of their cell phones a.k.a. smartphones that can do anything and everything from help one find the nearest dog groomer to answer such time tested questions as what recording artist had a hit record that used only two words: John and Marsha–as well as using the hand held device to send and receive calls-its basic function!

     To prove the point on how smartphones or cell phone in general are leading the way for communication, a recent report of the National Health Interview Survey, compiled by the Center for Decease Control based in Atlanta, Georgia, stated that some 40% of household dwellings lead by an adult did not have a landline installed within the dwelling space. Although this trend slowed down a bit within the last half of 2013 (when much of the survey results were complied), the tendency of more homesteads that are wireless will increase over time.

     It’s no surprise that those Millenniums (anyone born after 1980) are the leaders in the cell phone only crowd with nearly two thirds that are not corded. Ditto for those homes where the people dwelling within are unrelated to one another (76%) either as roommates, couples shacking up, or some other arrangement. Renters are also most likely to keep their phone wherever they go (61%).

     Other finding within the report are a bit surprising. Those living in the Midwest, are male, live in or close to poverty, and are of Hispanic or Black/African American race, tend not to have a “real” phone. (The complete report is available at a downloadable PDF file at http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nhis.htm)

     Let’s face it! People tend to roam from one place to another, and always keeping in touch has its moments from being a blessing as well as becoming a curse. It’s a blessing for a lot of reasons. One might have to know what is going on within their lives in matters related to work, school, personal notes, or just being there at all times. It’s a way to keep in contact when arranging a meeting or appointment with someone or with something. It’s also a curse because one is always in reach for reasons that the receiver might find as annoying, obnoxious, or both! The caller also might find always attempting to call somebody just as annoying because they would rather not do such but can!

     Generally speaking (on the phone no doubt) that there is no longer a reason to use the excuse of missing a call become nobody was at home. There is a reason not to answer a phone for other factors, mostly from not being able to get the call become of circumstances. (Being in a place where they could not speak, not having the phone turned on, seeing the number of the screen from a source they don’t want to talk to, and so on!)

    The ever classic stand alone answering machine is becoming a thing of the past as well! First made available in the 1960’s that used reel-to-reel tape mounted on 1” sized reels to recording the incoming calls, these devices didn’t start to catch on until the early 1980’s when prices for these machines started to drop and the open reel recording method was replaced by standard sized audio cassettes, later changing to transcribing messages on a tiny hard drive using digital recording methods. (These machines, first made in the USA to later be assembled in China, became cheap and plentiful and was used often well into the early 2000s!) If anyone first got these devices made by such companies as Cobra and Pioneer and sold for $250.00–a lot of money in those days–they were able to never miss a call. And people’s reactions at the time was to wonder why somebody was using a machine to answer their calls! When these devices were sold for a lot less and were the way to answer all calls (even if somebody was there to pick up the phone receiver), just about every caller to somebody not at home was expected to hear an answering machine say “Hello-I’m-not-available-to-take-your-call-but-leave-your-name-and-number..” etc. Some folks were even creative and compiled “funny” outgoing messages hoping to bring a laugh to those calling! (Yours truly once created a funny message for a now long forgotten friend where I did a comical take off of broadcaster Paul Harvey, complete with speaking in stucco speech patters and sing song voice ending the message with a long pause to finish with a  “G’day!”)

     In spite of the cord cutting, folks will continue to ditch the old fashioned phone with a smartphone that is their home, if not their entire lives housed inside a metal and glass case that can do anything a “dumb phone” can’t! Although the average cell phone bill runs as high as $100.00 per month compared to a land line were its service can cost as little than $10.00 per billing period, it’s still the way to go while at home or otherwise. As one person this writer once knew (another long forgotten friend?) told yours truly, “You used to call a place. Now you call a person!” Then again, Poppa might have been a rolling stone, but wherever he lived, his phone is his home–if not wearing a hat first!

    (PS..for those that wanted to know the answer to the question on the recording artist whose hit recording consisted of two words John and Marsha, it was recorded by Stan Freberg and became a hit in 1951! This answer will save a bit of Google time for those that needed to know!)

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NEWS AND REVIEWS

     Hudson Theatricals presents a special detail of solo shows as performed at the Hudson Backstage Theatre in Hollywood.

     The selection emphasized in this review, CAN YOU DIG IT?, is a one man performance performed by the multi talented Don Reed, a stand up performer that recalls tales from his younger days growing up in Oakland California in the 1960’s and 70’s. Here, Don recreates the many episodes living in his ‘hood from back in the day. His father was a “manager” to a number of women that catered to men, while his mother was a one time member to a religion that went door-to-door. (Hint: This group was based in Brooklyn, New York rather than Utah!) As a child of the 1960’s (Don was born in ‘59), he spins one tale after another about his family, his homestead, the folks that came in and out from the neighborhood, his siblings he knew and ones he didn’t know he had, the period where his  race made its issued heard, and other small childhood memories that were actual from way back when that range from cute and charming to laugh out loud comical with a touch of sad and tragic. It’s not only real, but it’s all true because Don was there to live through each installment; recreating every single one of these antidotes through his voice, his physical ability, and all points in between! It’s nearly to the point where anyone who hears his tales along with the self illustrations that go with all the wordings, one will swear by the fact that they too, had seen it all!

     This solo show as performed by Don Reed isn’t just another “life story” confession that just lists what one did long before they were old enough to vote, but he paints a deep picture of what was going on within his own universe. The little antidotes he spins are wacky enough where one will believe it really did occur because one can’t make this s#it up! (It can be made up, but what would be the real point to that?) Although he does continue his mini sagas well into his adult stage of life, the real heart and soul (heavy on the soul part) occurs when he was an innocent kind living in the 1960’s where racial tensions were exploding– some for reasons of good while other were reasons for not! Allied with the story telling is the bits and pieces of the music from the era that add to the flavor of his surroundings. And Don can dance, too!

     This performance is the first part of a pair of separate shows that Don will be performing on the same Hudson Backstage Theatre space. The second show, Semi-Famous, will deal with his show biz life working as a stand up comic. This particular presentation will be reviewed in a future column.

     CAN YOU DIG IT? performed and written by Don Reed, is presented by Hudson Theatricals, and performs at The Hudson Backstage Theatre, 6539 Santa Monica Blvd. (one block west of Wilcox at Hudson Street), Hollywood, for one additional performance on Friday, September 5th at 8:00 PM. For ticket reservations, call 323-960-7822 or via online at http://www.plays411.com/donreeds

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    The Glendale Center Theatre presents THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE, a musical tale of a young woman seeking a new life for herself, and the many encounters she faces in the big urban city.

     It’s the roaring 1920’s. The jazz is hot, the cars are getting snazzier, and the booze is still flowing if one can find it. Allyson Spiegleman is Millie Dillmount, a young lady from America’s heartland who arrives in The Big Apple-New York City, to seek a new life that she couldn’t find in her home town, Fresh off the train, she hopes to perhaps find a well off man for a husband (for money than for love) so she may live that better life she hopes for. As a “modern” woman, dressing in snappy clothing setting her apart from the stiff victorian age from not so long before, she checks into The Pricilla Hotel, a place where young actresses seeking a part in a Broadway show stay. The place is run by Mrs. Meers. (Alison England) a Chinese lady that uses the place as a front to hunt for young woman, especially those that have no immediate family, as ‘white slaves’ used for devious purposes fetching big money for these victims. Millie meets up with Dorothy Brown (Deanna Bakker), who checks into the hotel. She is an actress from California from wealthy stock, but wants to know how “the other half” (poor people) live. Millie gets a job as a secretary for a big insurance company where Trevor Graydon III (Kelby Thwaites), a heir to the company and its fortune, as well as an eligible bachelor, becomes her boss. Juggling between her career, chasing the available Trevor, as well as the going ons with Mrs. Meers’ white slave trading, Millie experiences the progressive and thoroughly modern world that is well at her very feet!

      This merry little musical, with book by Richard Morris and musical score by Jeannie Tesori and lyrics by Dick Scanlan, is a real delight. There are plenty of what one would want to experience in such a musical production; A great selection of songs sung by its cast, (more on its cast members in a moment), enough tap dancing that shows its spotlight as choreographed by Orlando Alexander, and a great selection of period costumes that are so vintage, they’re nearly in fashion! (Angela Wood and Richard Campbell share the consume design credit.) A very large ensemble cast of players appear in this show that are in full form, from the for noted singing and dancing along with the comedy relief that add to the liveliness! Allyson Spiegelman as Millie is very charming in her prose, showing off her modernness with the aid of her musical talent throughout. Jason Webb appears as Jimmy Smith, a man that at first shows Millie the ropes on how to succeed in Manhattan, only to later become a different personality that is first exposed by the woman of modern means. Alison England as Mrs. Meers, is very sassy and brassy, playing a villianess with a very high comical feel. And adding to the humor, she even has two henchman assisting her, Chinese brothers Ching Ho (Anton Mikhail Garola) and Bun Foo (Hisato Masuyama). These two enhance the pleasantry factor another notch. There are also the leading men as well; Kelby Thwaits as Trevor Graydon and Jason Webb as Jimmy Smith. They take their positions in this show with their looks and appeal, and can sing and dance as well as they can act!

     Rounding out the cast is Julia Marie Rodriguez as Muzzy Van Hossmere, who appears as Jimmy’s Stepmom, with Emily A Fisher as Ruth, Rachel McLaughlan as Gloria, Laurie Anne Fedor As Rita, Christa Hamilton as Alice, Jeannette Grout as Ethel, Tiffany Labarbera Palmer as Mrs. Flannery, with Paul Reid, Jacob Krech, Christopher Curry, Kevin MacDonald, and Aron Ross.

     As to the technical side of things, Steve Applegate provides the transcribed musical direction, Alex Mackyol dispenses the sound design, and Paul Reid, who appears in a bit part in this show, provides the lighting.

     Directed by Orlando Alexander and Danny Michaels, THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE is a delight to savor within the GCT’s theater in the round, the only theater in Los Angeles proper that has the distention to host its plays and musical shows in a 360-type  stage. Wherever one may sit, one always has a full view of whatever goes on the stage floor.

    Oh yes! This musical is also based upon a feature film of the same name released in the 1960’s during a period in that decade when the roaring 20’s was making a slight comeback!

However, this showpiece is best when seen on stage, especially within the confines of this legionary theater space located just off of downtown Glendale, where family friendly fare is always presented with allure and delight.

     THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE, presented by and performs at the Glendale Centre Theatre. 324 North Orange Street, Glendale, until October 4th. Showtimes are Thursday, Friday, and Saturday evenings at 8:00 PM, with Saturday matinees at 3:00 PM.  

     For reservations or information, call (818) 244-8481, or visit the web site at http://www.GlendaleCentreTheatre.com

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TIFFI’S FRIENDS SAY…

(As posted on her Facebook “wall”)

Heading to Ritzville, Shalea “is that where they make the crackers” haha

-Sarah

I’m going for the “Damn Hot” and I might regret it! This is for my Hot Chicken Cluck’s!

-Andrea

First home football game. Luke made two interceptions in a quarter and a half then was pulled along with a bunch of other starters as we approached a running clock. Won 57-6. Proud of my boy! Go Cougars!

-Candee

I was in a bad flare up earlier. Now I feel sick. Really sick. so am going to go lie down and read Caryl Lawrence McAdoo’s new novel!

-Carrie

Editing eyes….

-Anita

As of September 1st, Tiffi has 2,182 Facebook “friends” and counting!

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WRITE TO US!!

ACCESSIBLY LIVE OFF-LINE

is a presentation of Linear Cycle Productions

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ACCESSIBLY LIVE OFF-LINE (C) 2014 Linear Cycle Productions.

All rights reserved. The views and opinions are those of the writers, and not necessarily of the staff and management. ‘Nuff said! 

 

 
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