30 June 2009

no, I haven't said much lately ...

... but I've been doing things. I even took a few pictures along the way. And I've been thinking -- about stuff. (And this time it's not just stoned wallabies). I'll provide evidence soon, I promise. Probably waaay too much, and then you'll miss how quiet I've been.

Also, to the new followers on this un-train: halloo!! I swear, I'm usually much more interesting than this. Stick around -- you'll see.

26 June 2009

'Stoned wallabies make crop circles'

Australian wallaby - file picture
Wallabies have been observed acting strangely in poppy fiel

{We now digress from wedding talk for the most awesome news article since "Man forced to marry goat". Found on the BBC.}

Australian wallabies are eating opium poppies and creating crop circles as they hop around "as high as a kite", a government official has said.

Lara Giddings, the attorney general for the island state of Tasmania, said the kangaroo-like marsupials were getting into poppy fields grown for medicine.

She was reporting to a parliamentary hearing on security for poppy crops.

Australia supplies about 50% of the world's legally-grown opium used to make morphine and other painkillers.

We have a problem with wallabies entering poppy fields, getting as high as a kite and going around in circles. Then they crash
Lara Giddings, government official

"The one interesting bit that I found recently in one of my briefs on the poppy industry was that we have a problem with wallabies entering poppy fields, getting as high as a kite and going around in circles," Lara Giddings told the hearing.

"Then they crash," she added. "We see crop circles in the poppy industry from wallabies that are high."

23 June 2009


We just booked our restaurant for the post-ceremony dinner! (No, it's not "the reception" -- that's in L.A. Because I like to make things complicated.) The ever-amazing His Dad came through, thanks to a friend at a restaurant & a little negotiating savvy. We've got a really yummy 3-course menu (apps, entrees & dessert) that includes 2 drinks per person, plus no corkage fee for one case of champagne. Woo freakin' hoo!!

Also, it's pretty.
I don't know if this will be our space, but it's one that the website let me grab, so there you are. It's gonna look kind of, if not exactly, like this.

I am SO excited that this is done. It was one of the last major pieces missing from our puzzle, and I'm hugely relieved to have it clicked into place. Best of all: it's really close to our hotel, an easy cab/public transport ride away. (S.F. caveat to any potentially ambitious walkers: remember those streets aren't flat. They're HILLS!) Oh, and it fits our budget: just under $2800 for 43 people. Unbelieveable.

Also, a major shout-out to My Dad, who gave me a list of about a dozen alternate places to look at, if this one didn't come through. My brain was waaay too frazzled to do that -- you are a rock star.

If you're in the city, please give these people some love! Belden Taverna

"oh waiter ... a side order of crow, please"

Well, it figures. As soon as a girl goes & makes a stand about something, it bites her in the butt. In this case, my dear fiance is the one biting me in the ... wait, that doesn't sound right. Dammit. Allow me to explain:

In one of those role-reversals that never cease to amuse, Mr. UB is now on a strict diet until the wedding. I had nothing to do with it, I swear. Not only do I stand by everything I said in my rant on the subject as applicable to both genders ... but he gets to wear a suit at the wedding. Or a tux -- we haven't gotten to the details of that part yet. But either way: a freakin' suit. There is not a single garment in the female fashion world that is as instantly elegant, sexy and forgiving as a suit is for a guy. Seriously, it's not fair.

Nevertheless, he's decided that he feels a little doughy in places, and he's on a diet & workout regimen that smells vaguely of bootcamp, in my opinion. I don't mind -- in fact, one of my favorite things about him is that when something bothers him, he takes action to change it. But if he thinks that I won't be holding him to my "as long as you intend to keep those new habits after the big party" rule, well ... ahem.

Meanwhile, I'm sticking to my current regimen of donuts & milkshakes. Yes, I work out for a living. No, it's not fair. But a) my dress fits, and b) did I mention he gets to wear a suit?!?

19 June 2009

seriously? ... seriously!

I love this blog so freakin' much. "... and people laughing at you across the street" with appropriate directional arrow. Even the vicious wildlife of San Francisco is superior to L.A.'s. I so need to move back.

18 June 2009

pimping my new show

I normally think of this stuff as Shameless Self-Promotion, but what else is a blog, really?
ALL ABOUT JACK opens tonight. The life & times of Jack Nicholson, in all its hilarity and mayhem. No, I don't do a Jack impression (which is a good thing, believe me) but I do play Faye Dunaway, Cher, Kim Basinger, Shelley Duvall, Jane Fonda, one of the girls from "Five Easy Pieces" and two random bimbos.

If you're in L.A., or know people who are, come check us out. You'll laugh, I promise. Or you can just come to see if I actually make all 8 costume changes in time (it's a 75 minute show) -- I won't question your motives.

Now I have to go organize my costumes, and try not to barf.

Thursdays at 8pm
June 18th - July 23rd
Theatre 68 @ 5419 Sunset Blvd.
tickets at plays411.com
info line 888.227.2285

17 June 2009

progress report

I have been getting stuff done, honestly I have. Yes, I've been totally distracted this week with getting ready to open a show tomorrow (more on that later) (tomorrow?! holy crap!!) but I finally re-charged the camera battery last night & snapped a few pics of what I've been up to.

First, I finally completed the card box.
I'm pretty pleased with how it turned out. I followed a tutorial on Once Wed for the basic overall form, but departed from it when it came to the birds' nest.

The instructions called for something called bark-covered wire, which I didn't have. I did, however, have that bundle of twigs & crap that I got in my after-Christmas Target raid. (That's also where I acquired the berry things, which I painted a champagne-y color. Mr. UB thought I should leave them bright red ... he's so cute when he's wrong.) I also liked Lincoln Logs when I was a kid -- hello, grown-up version with hot glue gun! I found the two birds in the clearance section of the discount craft place downtown for $0.38 each. The fact that they both have slightly wonky hair pleases me, too, since the Mr. & I are no strangers to that phenomenon ourselves.

cost of materials:
3 boxes = $4
paper = already owned
birds = $0.76
berries, twigs, leaves = already owned
ribbon = $1
flowers = $1.98
Total: $7.74 + 2 minor injuries (1 hot-glue, 1 exacto-blade) ... not bad. Especially for me.

I was also busy last night with those envelope labels I made. They went from a neat stack of these:
to looking like this:
which then got turned into these:
which made another pile of this:
that finally became a nice, neat stack of these:

Now I just need to make about 30 more lined envelopes. Thank goodness for Law & Order marathons.

Oh, and the piles of sugar in my refrigerator have grown.

I had nothing to do with it ... must be osmosis. Or something.

12 June 2009


I don't know if I will wear a necklace with my dress. It has a halter neckline, which is always a little tricky to accessorize. Plus, I've already got my hat/veil thingy, my hoop earrings, and my Bonzie shrug ... I certainly don't want to end up looking like Courtney Love after a long, hard night of cruising Etsy.

But I do know this:
Me likey. I spotted this in my newest issue of Lucky ... via Banana Republic.

11 June 2009

distraction = relief

I should be calling that caterer that my friend J. recommended. Instead, I'm looking at these:

Attack Bird Chronicles
worth looking at just for the videos ... and the tag line "this bird is pissed"
(note to self: while in SF, avoid Citi National Bank on Front Street)

Design Sponge
I want a house, and I want to make it (and the stuff in it) look this cool.

F*U Penguin
Yes, I'm a child.

Okay, I'm going to work now.

10 June 2009

pictures of pretty things

I finally picked up my veil/hat/fascinator thingy (yes, that's a technical term) today.

It's pinned to my wig-styling head. You can tell that's not me because I don't have bangs.

And here's what was inside that pretty package from Etsy:

This little shrug is going to go over my shoulders, and hopefully make the top of my dress seem slightly less bare. Or, as my mom put it, less "too much boobs." Mr. UB claims there's no such animal ... all I know is I got to shop in order to split the difference. Hooray, diplomacy!

I'm glad I had these things to take pictures of today, because I needed a lift. Having something pretty & tangible on the wedding front is a nice change from all the kinda-still-feels-theoretical things, like getting bid after bid from caterers. Who, by the way, are all smoking crack, in my not-willing-to-go-into-debt-just-because-of-the-W-word opinion. (I understand paying a bartender to work our bar. But a flat fee to you, because we're providing our own booze? Yeah, good luck with that.)

Beyond that ... sigh. Just sigh. This stuff is getting to me. I'm trying very hard not to let it, but there you have it.

Fortunately, I have 4 different acting commitments between tomorrow & Sunday, so I'll be in a sleep-deprived haze & therefore distracted.

08 June 2009

the Actress Diaries, ch. 4

{part 4 in a series of strange tales from Acting Land}

Today, I am tired. I feel like I've acheived a new, higher plane on the tired spectrum. I normally hit the snooze alarm as many times as possible (Mr. UB mocks me for this, but I persist) and greet the morning with more of a groan than a smile ... but this is different. This is a bone-weary, squinting at the light, questioning why I say "yes" to so many things kind of exhaustion.

It all started last Thursday. I was at rehearsal for the Jack Nicholson show, and I'd just learned that I was adding another Random Bimbo to the line-up of characters I'm playing -- a Cuban hoochie who ends up having Fidel Castro snort cocaine off her ass. (There are some funny stories in Nicholson's life.) Castro is being played by Amy, the only other girl in the cast, so I guess things could be worse ... and the guy playing Jack is snorting coke off the stomach of our director, Patrick, who's playing a tranny hooker, but that has nothing to do with why I'm so tired.

Right after that, we started working on a scene from "The Shining," where I learned that I get to hit Patrick with a bat, so the evening wasn't a total loss. Just as that part was wrapping up, my phone buzzed. Who the eff is texting me at 2am? Mr. UB saying something naughty? Nope. It's the director from a show I did last fall.

Help! We open Sunday, and someone just quit on me! PLEASE tell me you're available?!?

Oh, crap. I don't want to. And I just realised it's 2:00 in the morning. No wonder I'm so loopy.

Me: I'm still at a rehearsal. I think so, but I can't confirm until the a.m.

Director #2: I love you.

Me: I'm going to sleep in, but I'll let you know as soon as I can.

I did sleep in ... since I teach all weekend, I've made Fridays my de facto weekends for as long as I have these late-night rehearsals to get through. When I woke up, I checked my calendar ... dammit, I am available on Sunday night. And this guy has cast me in several things. And I can't just leave him & 20 other people hanging in the wind. So I tell him I'll do it.

So yesterday, after teaching for 4 hours, I high-tailed it over to the theater, where I met the cast & walked through my scenes once, at around 6:30. There was another show at 8:00, so we couldn't keep rehearsing. And then at 9:30, I went on.

I'm not sure who was more terrified -- me, trying to remember a show I hadn't done in 8 months, and figure out how the idiosyncracies of the new cast affected my part, or them, already amped up for opening night, sizing up a total stranger they'd never even rehearsed with. The one reassuring thing about the whole mess was that the actor playing opposite my role was the same person I did the show with last fall, and he's wonderful -- so I had a basic idea of what he was going to do, and I knew he'd have my back. Which was good ... because the director walked backstage just before curtain and announced, "You've got a full house!" Grreeeaaaat.

Amazingly, it was a great show. All the hard work the cast had clearly put in came together with that magic stuff out there in the ether, and it was almost glitch-free. (For completely glitch-free, stay out of live theater.) Which led to much celebrating afterwards ... on an adjacent stage, since the main theater is rented out to an AA meeting, and they understandably don't like a bunch of drunken actors stumbling around. I didn't even over-indulge -- just 2 or 3 drinks -- but I did dance my butt off.

Which is probably why when I woke up this morning, I could feel the rotation of the earth. And while I'm fairly proud of myself for pulling it off, and it's enormously flattering that they're asking me to do the rest of the run ... I just don't know if I have it in me. Besides, I was already dragging myself to another Jack rehearsal, which at least allowed me to dodge that phone call today.

But hey -- at least I'm not bored.

{I promise to resume wedding-centric posts soon. I have things to report &/or rant about, really I do.}

03 June 2009

breaking my radio silence

Yes, it's been about a week since my last post. I've noticed an inverse corrolation between how busy I am and how frequently I blog. (The eternal conundrum: only having the time to write when you have nothing to say.) But some of that busy-ness has actually been quite productive. In the past few days we have:

1) made the official cake decision & put down a deposit

2) "paid" our lovely photographer

3) gotten almost all of the spelling/non-nickname/street address questions about our guest list answered, and begun printing the labels for our envelopes:
The red slash is marking one of the ones I had to re-do ... which is a surprisingly low number if I do say so myself. You can see the swirly design detail better here:
We always knew that hand-calligraphy wasn't right for us -- too formal and too expensive -- but we really like the wrap-around labels that so many people have designed. Problem: none of the free ones available were even close to working with our invite design. Solution: well, since I'd already taught myself how to use Photoshop in order to make said invite design, I just kept going & made these, too. I'm pretty pleased with how they turned out. They look really cool against the lined envelopes, too.

4) I've been working on a card box.
As you can see, it's still very much a work in progress. You can also see where I got the green paper on the wall to the left of it. I'm following a tutorial found on Once Wed here. (And how much do I love their new site design?!) The basic structure was pretty simple, once I got used to the smell of the mod podge (and opened a window). The "design" elements are proving to be a bit vexing. Oh well, there's no rush and so far I'm only out about $4 in materials, plus stuff I already had. Bonus: it's a pretty good echo of the real cake we're getting, minus one layer.

5) I've done all the reseach I can do to find the least expensive fillings for our candy buffet, so I've started to make purchases. I'm buying locally as much as possible, because anything that we have to get shipped will likely need pricey express shipping. So far:
Butterscotches are sleeping soundly in my fridge (it's not empty -- I cleared a shelf) ...

and gummi grapefruit & Hershey's kisses are nestled in the freezer. (Side note to my mom: if you come by my apartment before the wedding, I'm going to hide these. Just sayin'.) I'd intended to get almond kisses from a website, because they're gold. You know, fitting in with the uber-important candy palette. But those cost almost $60 + delivery, and these were less than $30. So our palette now includes silver, in addition to cream, white & gold.

All of these so far = $66, from Jack's Discount Warehouse in downtown L.A. (They don't have a website, so google 'em if you're local.)

6) I grabbed 6 gold frames from the clearance aisle of my favorite discount craft store, for $2.50 each.
We can use them to label the dishes on our buffet, and toss them into the stuff I intend to re-sell after the wedding.

7) We gave our deposit to the designer at our reception venue. She's already asking about stuff we intend to sell that she'll buy off of us/ take in trade against our balance. Woo hoo!

8) My friend Meg has agreed to make table runners out of the fabric I bought. That's 15 runners out of $5 worth of fabric + one round of drinks & girl talk at The 3rd Stop.

Oh, and this arrived ...
... and it was so beautifully wrapped that I didn't open it for two whole days. It's perfect. It's also my gift to myself for booking that commercial last week (aka outside the wedding budget.) Go and love its maker on Etsy here!