:: Pedantic Platitudes ::

Greetings! My name is Sam J and I am a student at Harvard University. Perhaps this blog will present a little look into the mundane yet unique events that make up my life.
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:: Sunday, December 05, 2004 ::

Thanksgiving week in review:

Monday, November 22: 'Twas a crappy day, but it was soon remedied by the company of dear friends at dinnertime. Later in the evening, my spirits were lifted further when my friends and I put on the most amazing production ever. Inspired by a campy, 80s-style made-for-TV movie from 1996 called Poltergeist: The Legacy, we performed "Poltergeist: The Legacy – The Musical!" It was basically one huge inside joke, but my friend Laura, the director, wrote the script based on the movie and included all the inane dialogue and improbable plot elements and actions, including one scene in which the poltergeist (in disguise) impregnates an unwitting and lonely lady, who later gives birth in a dramatic scene where the "polterbaby" shoots out from between the woman's legs, drags the lady across the floor and up a wall by the umbilical cord, and breaks the umbilical cord by itself on a sword displayed on the mantle. It was amazingly hilarious because many of the actors had not seen the film before, so they were guessing how to portray the characters. They did an outstanding job because of the excellent stage directions (which utilized such wonderful adjectives as "creepily" and "orgasmically").

I played the role of Mr. Bear (the little girl's stuffed animal), as well as the poltergeist when he takes the form of an innocent-looking child. I got to say the climactic line, "Give me the key, bitch!" Much of the story is set in Ireland, so we all got to use fake Irish accents. We had a great time and enjoyed performing. A lot of people showed up to watch the show, too! Afterwards, we all headed up to my friend's room for a cast party, during which we watched the actual Poltergeist: The Legacy.

Tuesday, November 23: This was the unofficial beginning of Thanksgiving break because a lot of people didn't have classes on Wednesday, so my friends and I gathered to watch some Father Ted (a British television comedy about three Catholic priests who live on a small island) and Family Guy (a new obsession we all have ever since I got the school's library to procure Seasons 1, 2, and 3 on DVD for the students). Family Guy is such a wonderfully entertaining show. My favorite character is Stewie, who has the most amazingly hilarious lines. We stayed up pretty late watching the DVDs, but afterwards I worked on a paper that was due on Wednesday. I stayed up all night working on it, but I finished it by the time it was due.

Wednesday, November 24: After turning in my paper, I went to the last class I had before vacation! Afterwards, I finished packing and met up with my friend, who was being picked up by her dad, older brother, and younger sister. All her siblings go to school nearby, so my friend's dad just made the rounds picking everyone up. It was a long drive to Long Island, where my friend lives; traffic was horrible with everyone heading home for Thanksgiving. A normally four-hour drive took us almost eight hours. I slept the whole way because I didn't sleep the night before. When we got to my friend's house, we had a tasty dinner with lasagna and this wonderful salad made from spinach, dried cranberries, and feta cheese. I then went to bed early to get some more sleep!

Thursday, November 25: Thanksgiving! I got up early and did something I don't normally get to do because I usually sleep in on turkey day: watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade! After my friend's family got ready, we headed to my friend's grandparents' house, where we celebrated Thanksgiving with a big meal with wonderful turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, etc. There were a lot of wonderful homemade desserts, too. There was rice pudding, brownies, a special gelatin mold, and cheesecake! Yum. We enjoyed the sweets while watching the movie Elf, which was wonderfully hilarious. We went back to my friend's house afterwards and rented a couple of movies. We watched the movie "Saved," which is a satirical look at Christian extremism and people who are so obsessed with their religion that they are blind to reality. I really liked the movie because it didn't denounce religion; it denounced religious extremism.

Friday, November 26: A day trip to New York City!!! My friend and I got up early and dressed up warmly because it was a chilly day (a stark contrast to the unusually warm Thanksgiving Day). We got dropped off at the train station and took the train into Manhattan. It was so wonderful to be there again, but it was so busy in the city, considering it's the day after Thanksgiving, considered the "busiest shopping day of the year." We started on the posh Fifth Avenue, where we ventured into various retail establishments. We saw the new World of Disney store, which actually had a lot of cool items specific only to that one store in New York. We also went to FAO Schwartz, where there was a line to get in; I saw that cool giant floor piano that Tom Hanks dances on in the movie "Big."

My friend is a huge fan of fashion and designers, so we went into a few super-upscale boutiques like Chanel and Yves St. Laurent, where a dress can set you back $5,000. I can't imagine spending that much money for one item of clothing, but it was a special feeling looking at the designs. We then walked down Fifth Avenue and visited more stores, like Saks Fifth Avenue (where we saw some of the dresses by Alexander McQueen, my friend's favorite designer).

Funny exchange overheard in Saks Fifth Avenue:

Clerk: That dress will be $3,650.
Woman: And is it on sale?
Clerk: Ha ha ha… no, no. Nothing here is ever on sale.

It was funny because after looking at so many expensive clothes, we got to a point where we thought a $500 pair of pants was "cheap." We then went to H&M, where we did some real shopping. We saw the Empire State Building, Rockefeller Center, and the downtown Macy's, the one that serves as a backdrop to the big Thanksgiving parade each year. It was so crowded everywhere with shoppers and visitors! A sign indicated that the line for the observation deck at the top of the Empire State Building was over two-hours long!

In the mid-afternoon, my friend and I went to Chinatown to meet up with some more Harvard friends who were in town as well for the weekend. We had a meal at this little Chinese café, and then I got some bubble tea! I tried the watermelon flavor, but I wasn't too impressed. We then shopped around in Chinatown, and it was there where I saw a guy with spiky hair spikier than mine! I was in total awe.
Later, my friend and I headed to Times Square, which is so beautiful at night with all the billboards and lights! We wanted to get tickets to see a Broadway show, but all the ones we wanted to see were sold out because it was such a busy day in the city. However, we still managed to hang out a bit and also have some a fun elevator ride in this nifty glass elevator. We then took the train back to my friend's house, where we had Chinese food for dinner. It was a fun day! Even though I didn't buy anything, I still had a ton of fun.

Saturday, November 27: I went to New York City again! I got to see the musical Phantom of the Opera on Broadway! The singers really imparted the pathos of the characters. I really liked the melodies, too. It was such an amazing show. I was blown away by the lavish costumes and sets. I really liked the scene where the Phantom and the main female lead travel through the lagoon under the opera house. The two ride in a gondola onstage that floats above billowing smoke, from which flickering candles rise.

Later in the evening, I saw the musical Avenue Q, which is a more adult parody of Sesame Street or the Muppets. They had puppet characters discussing such topics as finding a job after college, racism, homosexuality, internet porn, and schadenfreude, each with a catchy, upbeat song. There were puppets having sex, too! I've listened extensively to the soundtrack, so it was nice to finally see the actual show. Such a funny production! With characters like Trekkie Monster, the Bad Idea Bears, and Lucy The Slut and songs like "What Do You Do With A B.A. In English?" "It Sucks To Be Me," and "You Can Be As Loud As The Hell You Want (When You're Makin' Love)," you know you can't go wrong.

Avenue Q has been sold out for a long time now because it is so popular, especially with younger audiences, but I got really lucky while waiting in the cancellation line when moments before the show was scheduled to begin a lady had a last-minute ticket to sell, so I got into the show for half price.

Sunday, November 28: We got up early and drove back to Boston. It was a much shorter drive; I slept on much of the trip as well. When we got back to Harvard, my friend and I had lunch at Quincy House. I then did schoolwork.

'Twas a great weekend and Thanksgiving break. Too bad I didn't get to go home, but my friend's family was very welcoming, and I had a fun time with them. The trips to NYC were wonderful, too.

Quote(s) of the Day: "It's having a 'poltergasm'!"

"I don't like it when the poltergeist cums."

"Give me the key, bitch!"

"Wow, her ambitions get more substantial each day!"

:: SL 5:42 PM [+] ::

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