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February 27, 2017:

ONE FOR THE HISTORY BOOKS

Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, we had us on Oscar Bash partay last night – our lowest attended partay in our history. I know why some people stayed away from watching, but that isn’t the point of our partay – our partay has always been about fun and camaraderie but that bit has been lost on folks, I guess. We had fun, those of us who were there, but gone are the days when we could get giddy with fifty pages of posts. I know Facebook and its rather odd allure is partly responsible for this, but there’s nothing to be done about that. As to the Oscars, it will go down in history for its final award, the first time a mix-up of that magnitude has ever happened. And I find that the people who immediately jumped on the bandwagon that Mr. Beatty had announced the wrong winner (he announced nothing – it was Ms. Dunaway that did the actual announcing) are incredible irritating, but that’s the Facebook way, to immediately jump to a conclusion or read something and just assume it’s correct. There was clearly something wrong the minute Mr. Beatty opened the envelope and saw the card. You can his immediate confusion, you can see him look in the envelop to see if there’s a second card, and he’s thinking about what he should do. Ms. Dunaway then looks at the card and announces La La Land as Best Picture. Then, in the middle of their speeches you can see stage managers and others running on stage with a red envelope and you knew something was amiss – and it was – they’d give poor Mr. Beatty a duplicate Best Actress envelope, hence his seeing Emma Stone La La Land and being confused. So, no, it was not his OR Ms. Dunaway’s fault. Moonlight was given its award and chaos was supreme and frankly Moonlight was denied its moment to truly shine. It’s one for the history books.

As to the rest of the show, I thought the opening number was horrible, and then I was prepared to hate Jimmy Kimmel because I’m just not fond of him, so I was surprised at how strong his opening monologue – basically, unlike other hosts of the recent past, every single joke landed. For the rest of the show his material wasn’t as strong, and there were the usual attempts to do comedy bits that have no real place on an Oscar broadcast and that just stretch the show’s running time into the ridiculous. The musical numbers were thankfully limited to the nominated songs – of those, I thought the best presented were the Moana and La La Land numbers, but each, for me, was marred by the Debbie Allen-esque choreography they didn’t need. Speeches were kept short and sweet, save for Viola Davis, who gave a nice but long speech. All in all, not the worst of the recent broadcasts, certainly a cut above the last couple of years, but then nowhere near the best of them. I felt the political stuff was kept to a minimum and done without rancor. The In Memoriam section was done nicely but boy did they leave out some people who should have been in there, and that certainly includes William Schallert, who probably made more movies than all the others included put together.

Some of the dresses were nice this year, some were horrifying, but it was some of the hairdos that really took the yucky honors this year, and yes, I’m talking to you Halle Berry, Scarlett Johansson, and Charlize Theron. I thought they spread the Oscar wealth pretty evenly, and only wish that Hidden Figures had won some major awards – it certainly deserved them. It was one of the few times in recent history where best director did not match best picture. And I found it really odd that the director and composer of La La Land found time to thank everybody and their mother EXCEPT the lyricist of the film – sorry, bad form boys. The lyricists did get to go up there because they won for best song.

Otherwise it was kind of an irritating day all around. I had a singer with a scheduling conflict who was not communicating with us and just assuming we would spend the days and hours figuring it out. We finally got it sorted out so all is well. I decided to make Margaret’s Chicken so I went and got some Ritz crackers and three chicken breasts. I did everything exactly as required by her recipe, and I pre-heated the oven to 350. It was supposed to take thirty to forty minutes to cook, but they weren’t nearly done by forty minutes. When they still weren’t done after an hour, I upped the temperature and I could see that the oven never got to 350, just 325. I let it cook for another fifteen minutes, but by that time that was too much so they were a little dry – still tasty and all and I ate all three breasts as they weren’t all that big. In fact, the three breasts together, calorie-wise, were just 600 calories, and all the other ingredients probably upped that to 900. I then went to Rite Aid and got some of my beloved Cherry Chip ice cream for a snack, came home and had a little bowl.

By that time, we should have been having lots of zany red carpet posts and yet we did not have one single red carpet post. I felt it was not very sporting and was even a little willful. And then the show began, some folks finally showed up, and WE all had a splendidly splendid time. After that, I took a hot shower, and just tried to rest my somewhat trashed voice – I haven’t been using it hardly at all, but this is what happens when I’m fighting the fight. Keep sending excellent vibes and xylophones for no sickness.

Today, we have our first Kritzerland rehearsal but in two parts, which is how we finally worked out the scheduling problem. So we begin at one, and that finishes at two-thirty, then we come back at six-thirty and that finishes an hour later. Otherwise, I’ll eat something light – I’m thinking I’ll go to Jerry’s and have some chicken soup and perhaps a half a sandwich or maybe JUST the soup, hopefully I’ll pick up some packages, otherwise I just rest and take the preventatives.

Tomorrow I have a dinner, Thursday is our second rehearsal, and Rupert joins us for that one, Saturday is our stumble-through, and Sunday is sound check and show.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, rehearse, eat, hopefully pick up packages, rehearse, and then rest. Today’s topic of discussion: Your reviews of the Oscar telecast – or if you didn’t watch, what DID you watch? Let’s have loads of lovely postings, shall we, whilst I hit the road to dreamland, happy to have seen live what will be one for the history books.

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