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for May 26, 2004

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Conflict Miserlution
by Your Diva, Robin Pastorio-Newman

Generally speaking, few things are less funny than being an adult. Life is tough, that's why human beings invented philosophy and lip liner, right? Right. After you've been old enough to buy your own Boone's Farm for a while, you may notice a strange shift in your understanding of who's who and what's what. When you were a kid, you thought you'd know what you were doing - eventually - or that other people knew The Big Secret but weren't letting on. Now you realize nobody knows what they're doing except your brother-in-law the financial planner, who kind of chuckles to himself a lot and hides out in the garage.
In your over-18 quest for - um - permission to be a grown up, you have two options:
1. Pretend you're not secretly waiting for Mom & Dad to come home, when you're surely gonna get it;
2. Pretend Mom & Dad are the long-awaited Ambassadors from the tropical and glorious Republic of Florida, the chief exports of which are palm fronds and white patent leather.
Okay, it's good to be flexible. With the right conditions, you can feel both immature and elderly. Your Darling, Your Diva, Your One True Love found recently after battling the dark forces of the insurance company and the credit union, she was now in a position to acquire corrective dental work. Yes, that means braces. If you wish to feel conflicted about your inner age and as hinky as when you realized Comcast fired the entire staff of TechTV, please join young adolescents and their parents in Wal-Mart couture in a waiting room and insist out loud that no, the orthodontic appointment is for you.
That's not all; last week's Philomusica concert brought with it a whole new reason to run away from home, even if you're paying the rent. Philomusica - mentioned in previous Altrok articles - is a sacred music choir peopled by profoundly gifted and experienced singers with a talent for making difficult classical pieces look effortless and sound like fun. If you grew up with parents and siblings warbling Bach in the shower, you might have a look at the concert schedule or audition, even. Either way, it's music, and you love that, right? Right.
Your Crumpet arrived early, bussed her sisters' and nephews' cheeks, sat in the back row by herself and spread her knitting supplies out on either side in a rather empty, very handsome church, where miraculously no lightning struck. After the first notes, most of the audience arrived, evidently against its will. Two teenage girls sat directly in front of Your Shortbread - a row behind their friends - and proceeded to talk and laugh through the concert. It took every bit of restraint Your Biscotte possessed not to stab those girls in the carotids with the dull but rigid knitting needles, though a delightful tossing of the yarn ball such that retrieving it meant "accidentally" elbowing at least one of them at the base of the skull might've proven tempting - if Mom hadn't been watching from the choir. But watching, Mom was. Drat. It might've been a blast to sik Our Mom on their Mom for a full-contact discussion of correct dinner forks and comportment in public. Wait - did Your Cupcake just go from zero to geezer in one minuet?
The best weapon against sudden maturity confusion may be denial. Please mix and match your new bold euphemisms:
∑ She's not a cleaning lady. She's the bully who keeps the big, bad health inspector from evicting you.
∑ That's not a duvet cover. It's a hanky for mopping sweat when your wife says, "Honey, I have something to tell you."
∑ VH1 is not an oldies video channel. It's bringing a much-needed dash of Bananarama to the kids.
∑ You're not paying your bills on time to prevent late charges or preserve a credit rating. You're sticking The Man for all the pennies you're worth.
∑ No way is your ride a family sedan. It's an understated tribute to the used automobile industry.
When in doubt, look around. Chances are very good someone in your immediate vicinity is giving a high-school rendition of knowing The Big Secret. Consider applauding and saying you've done the same show in summer stock, but musical comedy's passť. Or confront the fat liar where he lives: when Dad gets home, you're gonna tellllllllllllll...

©2004 Robin Pastorio-Newman

All material ©2001-2014 Sean Carolan, except as noted.


Today's NY/NJ Shows That Matter

Friday, May 29, 2020
Polaris at The Foundry, Philly (POSTPONED)
Connor Bracken & The Mother Leeds Band, Jaron Clemons & The Late Nights, Morningside Lane and more at House Of Independents (POSTPONED TILL AUG 21)
Lucinda Williams at City Winery (Pier 57) (POSTPONED)
Peter Wolf & The Midnight Travelers at Tarrytown Music Hall, Tarrytown NY (POSTPONED)
Bobby Cochran at Paramount Theatre (POSTPONED)
Bobby Bandiera: Runnin Down A Dream at Count Basie Center For The Arts (RESCHEDULED FROM MARCH 13) (POSTPONED)
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ALTROK Ordinals

ALTROK recommends music once a week; here's our most recent choices. Most links will take you to a place where you can buy the music; if there's no link, and you own a record company, consider releasing it yourself...

A Place To Bury Strangers - It Is Nothing
The Boxer Rebellion - Semi-Automatic
The Cribs - Cheat On Me
Datarock - True Stories
Everything Everything - Photoshop Handsome
HEALTH - Die Slow
Miles Hunt and Erica Nockalls - Catching More Than We Miss
Julian Plenti - Games For Days
Los Campesinos - The Sea Is A Good Place To Think Of The Future (Free download!)
Miike Snow - Black & Blue

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