November 28, 2005

525,600 Minutes. Or, The Tango J.P.

Earl and I celebrated my first night of freedom (no on-call until the week of Christmas save for a couple of few hours nights as a favor) by going to see “Rent” at the local cinema.


We saw the show on Broadway a number of years ago. In fact, it was a birthday present for Earl. I thought I had purchased tickets to a Saturday night show. Wrong. I had purchased tickets to a Saturday matinee show. And we realized this at 8:30 a.m. that morning. 2:00 curtain. Not showered, not packed, not ready, four hour drive, just to get to New York, barring any traffic whatsoever. We jumped into the car, and literally flew down to New York with enough time to get checked into the hotel, shower and walk to the theatre. The show was absolutely magnificant, with many of the cast members that are in the movie. We both found the Broadway absolutely amazing.

Tonight, we found the movie equally amazing. The theatre had about 30 people in it, not bad for a Monday night in this neck of the woods, and everything was absolutely silent during the entire film. Except for the unmistakable sounds of tears from various audience members. Including Earl and I. I think I teared up at every musical number.

Seeing “Rent” on the big screen brought a whole new dimension to the show. Is it as good as the Broadway show? Absolutely. And thankfully, it’s just as good but in a whole, different way. The stage production has an intimate feel to it. The set is sparse, allowing you to focus on the characters. The movie feels expansive, as if it’s taken in a chunk of New York in 1989* in a big ‘ol bear hug, yet the intimacy with the characters is not lost.

We both highly recommend “Rent”.

* The geek in me noticed one of the smallest details hinting to the fact that this version of “Rent” was set in 1989. The vehicles on the street had the typical NYSDMV registration and inspection stickers on the driver’s side of the windshield. The registration stickers were true to 1989, using the old style color coded stickers with dot-matrix printed “large” numbers denoting the month of expiration. I’m probably the only one in the audience that noticed that!


This morning I awoke at 4:00 a.m. wide awake and ready to take on the day. Not being a morning person, I was completely baffled by my body’s decision to become an early bird, so I tried moving from the bed to the futon to fall asleep.

That didn’t work either.

On the rare instances I wake up in the middle of the night, I usually jump on the computer and read some obscure trivia, like how old Phyllis Diller was when she became a comedian or something like that. (By the way, she was 37). However, I always get a headache from the shock to my eyes from the monitor so I decided to just close my eyes and see what thoughts drifted in and out of my head.

First of all, I had “Never Ending Story” by Limahl stuck in my head, playing over and over. Just the chorus including the “whoa oh oh whoa oh oh whoa oh oh”.

I think I was all nerved up because my pager has not gone off in the middle of the night during this entire run of on-call. That’s unheard of. There’s always some sort of telephone crisis in the middle of the night, but not this time, the on-call gods were kind to me and kept it easy.

Now if the paranoia gods would show me the same kindness, I’d be all set.