Wednesday Wordplay: Bette Davis and her enemies

  

I do not regret one professional enemy I have made. Any actor who doesn’t dare to make an enemy should get out of the business.
            — Bette Davis, The Lonely Life, 1962

Vanity and pride are different things, though the words are often used synonymously…. Pride relates more to our opinion of ourselves, vanity to what we would have others think of us.
            — Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice, 1811

 

Hysteria is only possible with an audience.
            — Chuck Palahniuk, Invisible Monsters, 1999

 

Live in such a way that you would not be ashamed to sell your parrot to the town gossip.
            — Will Rogers

Do what you love, love what you do, leave the world a better place and don’t pick your nose.
            — Jeff Mallett, Frazz, 08-03-04

 

Jealousy is all the fun you think they had.
            — Erica Jong, Fear of Flying, 1973

 

Sooner or later we all quote our mothers.
            — Bern Williams

  
  

REVIEW: Lady X (Hell in a Handbag Productions)

This ‘Lady’ is the cat’s meow!

 

Lady X Production photo #7 by David as Joan

 
Hell in a Handbag Productions presents
 
Lady X
 
Written by David Cerda
Directed by
Derek Czaplewski
at
Mary’s Attic, 5400 N. Clark (map)
through June 19th  |  tickets: $15-$20  |  more info

reviewed by Katy Walsh 

‘These are laugh lines.’ ‘Must have been one hell of a joke!’ Hell in a Handbag Productions presents Lady X, a world premiere spoof on melodrama films from the 1930’s and 40’s. It’s like this, sister! Lady X Publicity Photo #1 by David as JoanA bunch of dames are hoofers looking for a pushover to be the darb for a swill of gin or a night of whoopee. The new big cheese  is a woman. And she is one tough broad sizing up their gams to turn the joint into the cat’s meow. But see, this hard boiled doll ain’t on the level and is giving everybody the heebie-jeebies. A stoolie gets bumped off. A tough cookie pinched. A flim-flam floozy takes it on the kisser. Horsefeathers! Lady X celebrates the zinger genre with a campy salute to Bette Davis’ lines.

After three years of comical reruns, David Cerda puts out an original Hell in a Handbag production. Cerda is the triple threat as producer, co-author and star in Lady X. Along with director Derek Czaplewski, Cheryl Snodgrass and Adrienne Smith, Cerda has brilliantly concocted a hilarious parody on Bette Davis’ movie, “Marked Woman.” The dialogue is a riotous string of zingers. Under Czaplewski’s influence, the banter is rapid-fire deadpan brilliance. Leading the impudent charge, Annie Gloyn (Mary Dwight) is dramedy heightened. Cerda says, ‘You’re a smart girl. What’s the capital of Montana?’ Gloyn responds with, ‘It’s Helena and the state bird is Western Meadowlark.’ Gloyn escalates the dramatic cadence to explode the comedic potential. Elizabeth Lesinski (Emmy Lou Higgins) is hysterical as the dim-witted dame in the gaggle of gals. Libby Lane (Gabby Marvin) is a snorting Judy Garland incarnate. Every time Handbag’s Ed Jones (Estelle Porter) steps on stage in a dress the laugh track goes off in my head. This time in a peach flowing ball gown and munching on nachos, Jones defines funny. As always, Cerda (Scarlet Fontanelli) is delicious as a diabolical ‘bitch in heels.’

Lady X 109 by David as Joan Lady X Production Photo #9 by David as Joan Lady X Production photo #3 by David as Joan
Lady X production photo #6 by David as Joan Lady X Production photo #8 by David as Joan

‘Clothes are the sugar that make the flies come down.’ Costume designer John Nasca has put together some sweet numbers. The task can’t be easy for Nasca with Jones and Cerda hitting the 6 foot mark. Nasca is up to the task and adorns the women AND men in dresses that would be the envy of Today’s hooker. The wigs (Robert Hilliard) top off the 40’s look with platinum blonde oomph. Lady X is a flashback to the days of elegantly dressed whores with coiffed hair. A time in movie history where the leading lady was brazen with one liners. ‘If I thought this was going to be a trip down memory lane, I’d brought my scrapbook.’ Hell in a Handbag Production takes the nostalgia, adds the humor, shakes it like a bad girl and serves it up like an Atlantic Hot Pocket. Be warned: laugh lines are a side affect! Applesauce!

  
  
Rating: ★★★½
 

Running Time: 105 minutes includes a fifteen minute intermission


Lady X Cast/Characters

Libby Lane (Gabby Marvin), Ed Jones (Estelle Porter), Elizabeth Lesinski (Emmy Lou Higgins), Annie Gloyn (Mary Dwight), Chad (Val, Surprise Witness, Casey), David Cerda (Scarlett Fontanelli), Michael Hampton (Ape), Michael S. Miller (Ralph Crawford, Radio Announcer)Joanna P. Lind (Betty Dwight), Megan Keach (Frank Graham), David Besky (Sheldon, Crandall, Louis, Man #1, Judge)

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Wednesday Wordplay – Oprah and South Park

Inspirational Quotes

It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.
            — Charles Darwin

We cannot really love anybody with whom we never laugh.
            — Agnes Repplier, Americans and Others, 1912

I love life…Yeah, I’m sad, but at the same time, I’m really happy that something could make me feel that sad. It’s like…It makes me feel alive, you know. It makes me feel human. The only way I could feel this sad now is if I felt something really good before. So I have to take the bad with the good. So I guess what I’m feeling is like a beautiful sadness.
            — Trey Parker and Matt Stone, South Park, Raisins, 2003

There’s no easy way out. If there were, I would have bought it. And believe me, it would be one of my favorite things!
            — Oprah Winfrey, O Magazine, February 2005

People who are ‘ready’ give off a different vibe than people who aren’t. Animals can smell fear; maybe that’s it. The minute you become ready is the the minute you stop dreaming. Suddenly it’s no longer about ‘becoming’. Suddenly it’s about ‘doing’.
            — Hugh Macleod, How To Be Creative

The moment we begin to fear the opinions of others and hesitate to tell the truth that is in us, and from motives of policy are silent when we should speak, the divine floods of light and life no longer flow into our souls.
            — Elizabeth Cady Stanton, 1890

If you would be wealthy, think of saving as well as getting.
            — Benjamin Franklin

God doesn’t require us to succeed; he only requires that you try.
            — Mother Teresa

To fulfill a dream, to be allowed to sweat over lonely labor, to be given the chance to create, is the meat and potatoes of life. The money is the gravy. As everyone else, I love to dunk my crust in it. But alone, it is not a diet designed to keep body and soul together.
            — Bette Davis, The Lonely Life, 1962

If you would be pungent, be brief; for it is with words as with sunbeams – the more they are condensed, the deeper they burn.
            — Robert Southey

If you limit your choices only to what seems possible or reasonable, you disconnect yourself from what you truly want, and all that is left is a compromise.
            — Robert Fritz

 

 

Urban Dictionary

Aside: Working at Northwestern University, I know all about this phenomenon. 

college morning

(noun) 1. Afternoon.

College Student A: "I don’t have the money right now, can I pay you back tomorrow?"
College Student B: "Sure, just come by tomorrow morning."
College Student A: "Okay!"
THE NEXT DAY, 9 AM
College Student A: "Hey, I have your money!"
College Student B: (waking up) "Goddamn it, I meant COLLEGE MORNING."

Wednesday Wordplay – Bette Davis and toilet mummies

Lots of intuitive quotes this week, including ones from Bette Davis, Victor Hugo, Mother Teresa and Mahatma Gandhi.  And a funny quote from Edith Sitwell. Enjoy.


[Mostly] Inspirational Quotes

There are new words now that excuse everybody. Give me the good old days of heroes and villains. the people you can bravo or hiss. There was a truth to them that all the slick credulity of today cannot touch.
            — Bette Davis, The Lonely Life, 1962

I have often wished I had time to cultivate modesty… But I am too busy thinking about myself.
            — Edith Sitwell, As quoted in The Observer (30 April 1950)

Good habits result from resisting temptation.
            — Ancient Proverb

An ounce of loyalty is worth a pound of cleverness.
            — Elbert Hubbard

There is always more misery among the lower classes than there is humanity in the higher.
            — Victor Hugo, ‘Les Miserables,’ 1862

Joy is prayer – Joy is strength – Joy is love – Joy is a net of love by which you can catch souls.
            — Mother Teresa

You can’t turn back the clock. But you can wind it up again.
            — Bonnie Prudden

Honest differences are often a healthy sign of progress.
            — Mahatma Gandhi

Don’t gamble; take all your savings and buy some good stock and hold it till it goes up, then sell it. If it don’t go up, don’t buy it.
            — Will Rogers

If I have learnt anything, it is that life forms no logical patterns. It is haphazard and full of beauties which I try to catch as they fly by, for who knows whether any of them will ever return?
            — Margot Fonteyn

It’s not your painting anymore. It stopped being your painting the moment that you finished it.
            — Jeff Melvoin, Northern Exposure, Fish Story, 1994

Real, constructive mental power lies in the creative thought that shapes your destiny, and your hour-by-hour mental conduct produces power for change in your life. Develop a train of thought on which to ride. The nobility of your life as well as your happiness depends upon the direction in which that train of thought is going.
            — Laurence J. Peter

It is a sadness of growing older that we lose our ardent appreciation of what is new and different and difficult.
            — Elizabeth Aston, The Exploits & Adventures of Miss Alethea Darcy, 2005

Just because you are blind, and unable to see my beauty doesn’t mean it does not exist.
            — Margaret Cho, Margaret Cho’s weblog, 03-23-06

Consult your friend on all things, especially on those which respect yourself. His counsel may then be useful where your own self-love might impair your judgment.
            — Seneca

Never chase a lie. Let it alone, and it will run itself to death.
            — Lyman Beecher

Do not listen to those who weep and complain, for their disease is contagious.
            — Og Mandino

I feel good about taking things to Goodwill and actually, I do like shopping at Goodwill. It’s so cheap that it feels like a library where I am just checking things out for awhile until I decide to take them back.
            — April Foiles

Nobody can give you freedom. Nobody can give you equality or justice or anything. If you’re a man, you take it.
            — Malcolm X, Malcolm X Speaks, 1965

We are rich only through what we give, and poor only through what we refuse.
            — Anne-Sophie Swetchine

Oh for a book and a shady nook…
            — John Wilson

The ornament of a house is the friends who frequent it.
            — Ralph Waldo Emerson

Whenever evil befalls us, we ought to ask ourselves, after the first suffering, how we can turn it into good. So shall we take occasion, from one bitter root, to raise perhaps many flowers.
            — Leigh Hunt

I have never been especially impressed by the heroics of people who are convinced they are about to change the world. I am more awed by those who struggle to make one small difference after another.
            — Ellen Goodman

 


 

Urban Dictionary

 

Toilet Mummy

When someone is so concerned about toilet seat germs, they cover the seat with half a roll of toilet paper, leaving it to appear like it has been mummified.

"I was going to use that stall to drop a deuce, but somebody left it looking like a toilet mummy."

Recrap

To sum up a discussion composed largely of useless bullshit.

Person 1: "Tell me how the staff meeting went."
Person 2: "Allow me to recrap…"

Wednesday Wordplay – Cher before Bette Davis

Inspirational Quotes

A sailor without a destination cannot hope for a favorable wind.
            — Leon Tec, M.D.

If grass can grow through cement, love can find you at every time in your life.
            — Cher

The real power behind whatever success I have now was something I found within myself – something that’s in all of us, I think, a little piece of God just waiting to be discovered.
            — Tina Turner, O Magazine, December 2003

I believe in God, only I spell it Nature.
            — Frank Lloyd Wright

In love, one and one are one.
            — Jean-Paul Sartre

Out of the strain of the Doing,
Into the peace of the Done.
            — Julia Louise Woodruff, ‘Harvest Home,’ Sunday at Home, 1910

America is a vast conspiracy to make you happy.
            — John Updike, Problems and Other Stories

It has been my experience that one cannot, in any shape or form, depend on human relations for lasting reward. It is only work that truly satisfies.
            — Bette Davis, The Lonely Life, 1962

We must accept that this creative pulse within us is God’s creative pulse itself.
            — Joseph Chilton Pearce

If you take a pill to make everything better, then you don’t know when things are fucked up. If you don’t know when things are fucked up, then you can’t fix it yourself.
            — Alexa Junge, United States of Tara, Snow, 2009

I used to think of all the billions of people in the world, and of all those people, how was I going to meet the right ones? The right ones to be my friends, the right one to be my husband. Now I just believe you meet the people you’re supposed to meet.
            — Diane Frolov and Andrew Schneider, Northern Exposure, The Quest, 1995

Do something every day that you don’t want to do; this is the golden rule for acquiring the habit of doing your duty without pain.
            — Mark Twain

 

Urban Dictionary

Elf-Esteem

The feeling of being overworked, underappreciated and like you don’t exist to others during the holidays while in actuality the season’s success depends on you.
The sense of being 3 feet small when others would view you in high stature if they realized all you do to make the holiday’s happen.

I think Hermey is having some elf-esteem issues. He’s pulling the stuffing out of all the teddy bears.

Short story long

Something that could have been told in a more concise way but is dragged out because the teller doesn’t know how to tell a story. It’s a play on the annoying clarifier, "Long story short," people use to sum up a digression, which really never seems to be that short anyway. So instead you say the opposite.

So I was walking into the store the other day, I wanted to get some aspirin because I had this massive headache and I walked down aisle four but they only had Tylenol but that doesn’t work and I went to the counter and short story long this guy was holding up the store!

Wednesday Wordplay: from Bette Davis to Oscar Wilde

Inspirational Quotes

This became a credo of mine…attempt the impossible in order to improve your work.
            — Bette Davis

There is only one admirable form of the imagination: the imagination that is so intense that it creates a new reality, that it makes things happen.
            — Sean O’Faolain

Help others get ahead. You will always stand taller with someone else on your shoulders.
            — Bob Moawad

Remember that fear always lurks behind perfectionism. Confronting your fears and allowing yourself the right to be human can, paradoxically, make you a far happier and more productive person.
            — Dr. David M. Burns

Charge less, but charge. Otherwise, you will not be taken seriously, and you do your fellow artists no favours if you undercut the market.
            — Elizabeth Aston, The True Darcy Spirit, 2006

The only way to get rid of a temptation is to yield to it. Resist it, and your soul grows sick with longing for the things it has forbidden to itself.
            — Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray, 1891

That best portion of a good man’s life,
His little, nameless, unremembered acts of kindness and of love.

            — William Wordsworth

I have found that if you love life, life will love you back.
          
Arthur Rubinstein

The human tendency to regard little things as important has produced very many great things.
            — Georg Christoph Lichtenberg

 

Urban Dictionary

man chair

A man chair is the chair that men sit in while their partner is shopping for long periods of time. They can be found in almost any clothing or shoe store. What can we, as men do while our gf’s or wives are shopping, we can sit in a man chair.

Honey, Ill go over here and sit in a man chair while you go shop around and meet me here when your done.

Wednesday Wordplay: Quotes by Bette Davis (and others)

Lots of great quotes:

I’d rather be a failure at something I love than a success at something I hate.
            — George Burns

I can resist anything but temptation.
            — Oscar Wilde, Lady Windermere’s Fan, 1892, Act I

Creativity is a drug I cannot live without.
            — Cecil B. DeMille

Fresh clean sheets are one of life’s small joys.
            — Takayuki Ikkaku, Arisa Hosaka and Toshihiro Kawabata, Animal Crossing: Wild World, 2005

This became a credo of mine…attempt the impossible in order to improve your work.
            — Bette Davis