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."

Review: Steppenwolf Theatre’s “Fake”

Strong performances fail to compensate for a less-than-compelling script

Photographer: Mark Campbell

Steppenwolf Theatre presents:

Fake

written and directed by Eric Simonson
thru November 8th (buy tickets)

reviewed by Richard Millward

Fake-09 Fake, Steppenwolf’s season opener, written and directed by ensemble member Eric Simonson, explores the well-known scientific hoax "Piltdown Man." Initially thought to be the "missing link" and a confirmation of Darwin’s theory of natural selection, suspicions about Piltdown’s authenticity cropped up almost immediately and continued to fester until, in 1953, with more modern dating techniques, Piltdown Man was conclusively proven to be a fake. The identity of the fossil’s forger has never been conclusively proven, although it is widely believed to be Charles Dawson, Piltdown Man’s "discoverer."

Simonson juxtaposes two stories, one set in the years following the fossil’s discovery, and a second at the time the hoax is confirmed. Both are fiction, although the earlier story does involve historical personages Dawson, Charles Woodward, director of the prestigious British Museum, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, a Jesuit archaeologist of some note, and author and amateur scientist Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

Fake-10 Fake-11
Fake-08 Fake-12

Unfortunately, neither story is terribly compelling, alone or in concert with its twin, despite the larger-than-life presence of Doyle. The more modern tale, involving a romantic triangle between the elder Oxford anthropologist charged with ascertaining the fossil’s true age, a female Lithuanian former student half his age who’s also his fiancé, and a young, go-getter specialist from UCLA, is certainly the weaker of the two – as certain as we are of the outcome of their testing of the Piltdown skull, there’s even less mystery how this ill-fated love story will play out.

Some of the Steppenwolf ensemble’s better acting talent is at work here, including Francis Guinan as Doyle and the jilted Oxford don, and Kate Arrington, as a Nellie Bly-type "lady reporter" who uncovers Piltdown Man’s creator and the young Lithuanian. The production’s design, by Todd Rosenthal (scenery), Karin Kopischke (costumes) and Joe Appelt (lighting) is both evocative and pointed.

But in the end, it’s the play itself that disappoints. Simonson’s theme of how and why we come to know what we call "the truth," and what role faith plays in arriving at it, is not uninteresting. But the uneven tone and murky philosophizing of Fake render an interesting idea into a somewhat less than satisfying evening in the theater.

Rating: ««½

Photographer: Mark Campbell Photographer: Mark Campbell 

Photographer: Mark Campbell

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