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Friday, December 08, 2006

A Weekend in Corsets

My past weekend seemed to revolve around corsets a bit. Saturday afternoon, just before heading out to Dark Garden to model in the window, Nicole stopped by with my pretty new corset in hand. It's blue with gold and just gorgeous. But instead of lacing into that scrumptious new treat, I headed down to Dark Garden with many props in basket. Laura saved us that morning when I came to pick her up, having a lap desk, and not just any lap desk, but one that even had a slot (ostensibly for pens) which worked perfectly for stacks of coins. Michelle laced Erik and I into corsets, mine a gorgeous purple and black Princess Victorian. It's a good thing I'd just been handed my new corset or else they would've had me for sure.

While many others have complained about how long five minutes seemed to hold a pose, I found that the years of morning tableau had well prepared me for the task, and found my five minutes slipping away in bigger chunks. Our little tale of Belle trying to get Ebenezer to leave the office seemed to work well with several friends and family stopping by, and hearing familiar laughs outside the window. Sadly, I know of no photographs that were taken, save for the ones by the Dark Garden staff, so I've none to share here.

After that, the rest of the day wooshed by, and we headed to Watercourse Way to close the evening with Sherman, Alex, Laura, Erik, Rick, and I making a nice pot of friend soup. Laura wickedly suggested a slice at Pizza My Heart after hot tubbing and I heard from 3 people over the next couple of days that they were all craving more pizza. This pilgrimage may need to be repeated this week. We shall see.

Sunday didn't go quite as planned, but bless Frederik for still knowing his line. Erik was feeling rather poorly again. His illness from the prior week was winning, and he was miserable. On the way up to the Cow Palace he looked awful, and couldn't eat enough applesauce to take his ibuprofen. Sadly, he was carpooling from Davis, so he had to stay on site til his ride could go home. We started discussing other options - taking the train, finding another ride back, sleeping in a chair. I started doing the math. I could check in, sync up with Frederik, grab Erik's coat and scarf, and drive to Davis and back before my scene at 1:40. Heck, I could probably be back by 1. Erik caught me figuring and asked what I was doing. When I told him, he said, "You would do that?" Um, yah. I would much sooner do that than leave him sitting on a train platform for 2 hours waiting for a train or sitting him backstage in a folding chair for 8 hours. So, off we went.

So there I was, in my full costume, save for the hoops, in my new corset, giving it the trial run of four hours of driving. I can honestly say, it held up well, not pinching or biting me a bit. I made it back to Fezziwigs and slipped into my hoops backstage at 1:05. I talked to Arthur to learn that I'd not missed my shift on lead yet. We were scheduled for 1:20. So, missing four hours, I was still on time. Perfect.

I slipped away at 3 before the queen arrived to join the Dickens parlor for a few parlor games. Here again, I learn that I'm far more graceful when dancing than walking. We first played "This is my eye" and followed with "Blind-Man's Bluff". While not blindfolded, I stumbled into a sofa, slighly kinking my knee and back. All day long, I dance with inexperienced dancers and feel no ill-effects, but one gentle parlor game, and I found myself quite achey the next few mornings. Life is chock-full of irony.

The last set I was on lead, and Arthur had to head home early, so I led the set alone, with some wonderful assistance from Mr. Soake. It was fun, picking out the dances and balancing the set. We had a Duke of Kent and a Sellinger's Round for set dances, and the usual assortment of couples dances.

Finally the night finished with another long carol-out. I'm really thinking the Fezziwigs need to strike and force the carolers to do carol-out. Bob Crabb had the audicity to complain out loud in my presence that "the carolers are there working before opening and couldn't be expected to do closing as well." Ha! What do you think us Fezziwiggers are doing, eh? We're on from 10:30 to 7:30, working our butts off, and most of us are dancers rather than singers because we're not good singers. There are a great many exceptions to that generalization, but really, a lot of us shouldn't be singing in public, myself included, and definitely shouldn't be standing on dance-sore feet singing in public after working all day. Oh well. It's a battle I shan't win, but that comment from Bob made me resent it all the more. It was one of those nights where we were held hostage by a late show at Mad Sal's singing on well beyond a few carols to close the evening. During the Twelve Days of Christmas, Nicole walked up and asked after my first day of new corset. I promised that I'd strip down to let her see just as soon as carol-out closed. Finally, we headed back in and I started stripping down as fast as possible. This led to further corset modeling for the whole cast since I was now holding up notes. But the corset did beautifully and Nicole seemed happy and the cast liked it. I'm afraid I don't have any pictures of this corset either. Hopefully soon, because as Elizabeth said, "You positively disappear in that corset dear!" Oh yes, the tiny waist of my youth is back, and Nicole put it to its best advantage.

This weekend coming up is the traditional melt-down weekend for everyone. I'm ready for it. We're all getting a smidgen ragged around the edges, so I hope to be a calming force rather than someone stirring up trouble. Plus, I'm bringing chocolate truffles.


  • I played This Is My Eye and BlindMan's Bluff this week, at Dicken's house. They were both fun. This Is My Eye was fun. It can be tougher than it looks when you're already tired. Once, our belly button was "our eye". It came around to me, I poked my belly button and yelped "Ow My eye!" and gained positive laughter from others.
    Ohh, the hot tubs sound like an incredibly wonderful way to end the day. There are two a few blocks away from me in Berkeley, but neither are as upscale as Watercourse's website makes it sound.

    By Blogger Chrisfs, at 12:03 PM  

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