Calendar programs let you schedule meetings, and e-mail programs have long let you reply to messages and forward files. E-mail programs now let you follow conversations. But a more nuanced approach is needed for all of these. After years of calendar and e-mail programs, I can’t understand why the programmers haven’t gotten these very basic things right.
Am I not a panda? What is in a name? A panda by any other name would smell as...well, they would probably be just the tiniest bit whiffy, if you know what I mean....
Every once in a while, the pandas come to aid someone who has a project, be it on Kickstarter, or elsewhere, because we think it is worth supporting, and so we mention it to you, (some would say obsessively, but hey!
Greetings panda fans! I hope you have recovered from the exciting conclusion of Mr. Wu's most recent adventure, Bears in the Air! If you missed this exciting series, check in on Friday's post for links to the entire series.
Today, we have a exciting, new episode of This Olde Den, the show that helps your inner panda embrace your outer homemaker.
One of the things that always seems to trip people up when it comes to analyzing marginalized identities in stories is the difference between a story that has fucked up shit in it versus a story that says fucked up shit.
This is a very important distinction that everybody analyzing narrative media needs to understand.
So I'm going to help a muthafucka out right quick.
(Some of my plays include strong language. I don't normally put it in my blog. I'm making an exception here.)
This is something I wrestle with in my plays. It would be very safe for me as a white male, albeit queer, playwright, to write only white male characters. On the other hand, if I write female characters and characters of color - which I want to do to ensure there are roles for such actors and because I want to comment on our world and not a tiny subset of it - I have to try to get it right.
The Ars Marginal post by RVCBard is an outstanding analysis of what it means to actually try. The distinction of whether the fucked-upped-ness is that of the writer or the world of the characters is critical.
I want to share a guilty secret. All of my plays – my full-length plays, anyway – are about me. That’s probably not unusual; if my plays didn’t include part of me, they’d probably be pretty lifeless.
Well, here it is, Friday at last and I completely forgot to have something ready to speed you to your weekend, with dreams of pandas dancing in your brain. What was I thinking? To be honest, the cold that wouldn't die is still making my head a little fuzzier than usual, but fortunately, there are many pandas in reserve!
But I do like the Friday pandas to be relevant, so today I give you the prologue to the Shakesbear pandas, as I am getting ready (finally!) to start working on some of the…
I’d like to take this time to ponder something that might offend some of you, while others will applaud from their seats. I’m stuck on what has developed into the inevitability of the standing ovation.
A standing “o” used to be special; reserved for the outstanding performance. This once emotional and passionate show of appreciation has somehow turned into a reflex ‑ a quixotic gesture that now means about as much as a polite handshake.
When playwrights go to theatre, we presumably go to enjoy ourselves. We may be thrilled, bored, surprised, offended, delighted, so many possible reactions. When playwrights are called on to give feedback on other playwrights’ work, we suddenly become scientists, detectives, housekeepers. Scientist, detective, and housekeeper are honorable professions. Nevertheless, I believe the practice of bringing these outlooks into feedback sessions has become dysfunctional, even harmful in the age of contemporary theatre.
Spoiler alert: This post may briefly give away important plot points, surprises, and endings to 4000 Miles; The Ashes; Circle Mirror Transformation; Clybourne Park; Honey Brown Eyes; In the Next Room, or the Vibrator Play; The Internationalist; The Lily’s Revenge; and Se Llama Cristina.
In the January/February 2013 issue of Theatre Bay Area, Melissa Hillman, artistic director of the kick-ass Impact Theatre in Berkeley, writes about color-blind and/or non-traditional casting. This blog post is not so much a response to that article, “In the Land of the ‘Color Blind’”, as my continuation of the discussion. And continue it must.
I love iTunes, and I love the variety of songs I can purchase from the iTunes store. But sometimes I wonder what their computers must “think” of my varied tastes. I even wonder whether I might be messing up their recommendation software. And a similar question applies to theatres who want to market to me.
Several years ago, I had an experience at an Apple store that made me feel out of step with today’s technology. Upon reflection, I realized it wasn’t my being out of step; it was my knowing too much about modern technology. Now that feeling is back with the iPad and Square.
Pretty much everyone in the theatrical community, barring perhaps those lucky tech people whose expertise lends itself to more consistent work, works under the shadow of improbability. If fifty actors show up to auditions for a play, and the play has one male character, each actor has a 1/50 chance of getting the role. This may be even more difficult if…
One thing we webmasters have to worry about is the bad guys looking to install malware on our website. Fortunately, there are sometimes simple things we can do to find out whether we’ve been hacked.
We (the royal we) sometimes say “Google is your friend.” This is true here as well. Suppose your website domain is chasbelov.wordpress.com. Enter the following search:
If you’re lucky, Google will come back with no or one or two hits (unless you’re a pharmacy). But if you’ve been hacked by spammers, you might well come back with 2,000 or more such hits, as a major theatre I Googled yesterday did. No, I wasn’t (initially) looking to see if they were hacked; a drug-related result from their website came up as a result for a search I was doing for some special interest theatre. But once I got that result, I came up with the above search to test how bad their infestation was.
You can set up a notification at http://www.google.com/alerts
This is definitely not the only way hackers can mess with your site, and they can hide it from Google by telling Google not to index the page. But it’s an easy enough check so you might as well do it.
Hope this helps. (And yes, I’ve notified that theatre.)
Well, as you all probably know (and more probably are sick of hearing) here at the Institute for Contemporary Panda Satire, we recently (like yesterday) raced to the finish line of our Kickstarter project which we initiated to fund our first book, The Panda Chronicles Book 1: Your Brain on Pandas. If you were a supporter through Kickstarter, we shower thanks and blessings upon your sainted brows.
I always like September, well, at least now that I don't actually HAVE to go back to school, that is, but it still, oh these many years later, (don't ask) gives me a burst of energy to get back into the studio and actually get something done. The panda kindergarten is no exception and they absolutely PROMISE to be much better behaved this year.
We all want our work to have the perfect title. And we want to be able to market it. If I were to title a play Sibboleth, it might be the perfect title for the theme of the play, but if someone searches for it, Google will ask “Did you mean shibboleth?” although at least for now it does give the “sibboleth” results.
So when we give a blog post or Kickstarter page or some other page a title, it’s not surprising that, sometime after publication, we may find ourselves wanting to update it to make it snappier or catchier or more imaginative. And we may follow up that desire by re-titling the post or page.
Following that urge can have annoying consequences. Gory details follow.
In fact, we are chewing our claws down to their little nubbins! It is an all panda alert for our Kickstarter project! The panda kindergarten is in a neighborhood near you and no one is safe! Don't make us resort to whining and sniveling.
This could happen to you!
And have we mentioned the really cool things you get for supporting our project?
For some reason, the share buttons did not show up on the last post (AND I forgot my daily Kickstarter link!) so here is a repeat of the cartoon I included with the reblog from Exit, Pursued by a Lark) sorry if you are getting this twice.
Be the bear and visit
Bob T. Panda!
Not sure whether I can really call it richer, although it was fun. I was actually shooting for “So bad it’s good.” Some of them are probably “So bad it’s bad,” but such is the life of first drafts.
Yes, I wrote 31 short plays! 28 riffs on Shakespeare as performed by pandas and other animals, all set in Edinburgh Zoo (home of pandas Sunshine and Sweetie) and the Wolong Nature Preserve (home of the panda kindergarten), plus three framing plays.