Good Grief, It’s OryCon Again!

Thanks to the astonishingly kind and forgiving folk on OryCon 39‘s programming staff (you’re better off not knowing the details), I will once again be a busy and active panelist this coming weekend.  For the four and a half people who may be interested*, here’s where I’ll be: Friday, Nov. 17 2:00 pm • Voice …

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Memo to TriMet: Street View Lies

Understand, I like TriMet.  The greater Portland area’s transit system is one of the best in the US.  Although it’s not perfect (the sooner we get more late-night service on my current primary route, the happier a lifestyle non-driver I will be), it’s generally very well operated. But at the moment, I am laughing at …

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Ashland 2017: Off the Rails

The advance descriptions of Off the Rails stress three points: the author is Native American, the script loosely adapts Shakespeare’s often-criticized “problem” play, Measure for Measure, and the story’s major concern involves boarding schools that Native American children were forced to attend in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. One of these is inaccurate, or at …

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Ashland 2017: The Odyssey

The annual pilgrimage to Ashland began this year with an epic production (3 hours 20 minutes, just as promised in the playbill) of The Odyssey, adapted from the Robert Fitzgerald translation by director Mary Zimmerman.  I can’t comment just now on the technical or literary quality of the adaptation — though I will be looking in …

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Summer Movie Report: Wonder Woman Beats Mummy Going Away

Herewith a quick take on my two most recent summer-movie visits: Wonder Woman is very, very good — and manages to be so by mostly being a World War I movie rather than a superhero movie.  I am, of course, much too young to have living memories of the WWI period, but one of my …

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When Free Food Attacks: A Tale of Darkest Suburbia

You’d think that two free restaurant dinners in one day would be grounds for celebration.  In practice, it didn’t actually work out that way…. It so happens that, after the closing went through on the condominium that’s now Lone Penman Headquarters, the realtor on our side of the deal sent along a respectably generous gift …

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Ashland 2016: The Winter’s Tale

Winter’s Tale has always been one of my favorite Shakespeare plays.  I look at its peculiar structure as a challenge rather than an obstacle, and when it’s well-executed, the finale involving Hermione’s “statue” strikes me as one of the most dramatically satisfying scenes in all Shakespeare.  And of course there’s that famous stage direction…. I’ve …

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