Dogmouth, a play by John Steppling (Theatre for the New City) ... Off-off Broadway veteran, Stephan Morrow, provides a powerful performance loaded with energy and grit in this dark tale of dark men (Vietnam Veterans) living among Southwestern Rails in the Arizona desert. Morrow doubles as director and lead (Dogmouth) in this Spartan (as meant to be) production of the John Steppling play. Dogmouth is the leader of a hobo gang of vets and a former dog owner (the fighting kind) determined to take down a challenge from another gang leader. Morrow is relentless energy in this no holds barred/no curse unmentioned, play about a man with the worldview of an attack dog. Terry (Dogmouth) has a seemingly punch-drunk sidekick (Becker) wonderfully played by Ray Wasik and a way younger, naive and pregnant girlfriend (Nyah) played by Courtney Lynn Pierchski. There’s also a fight dog breeder, (Weeks) convincingly played by L.B. Williams) and a few of the railroad lawmen in constant search of Hobos they can bully, and worse, often hurt.
Wasik was particularly convincing with the nervous twitching and facial and body tics many a Vietnam Vet was left with after one too many shellings they can’t forget. Becker is sent to kill the competition gang leader, but his nerves get the best of him and he returns to the desert without having fully accomplished his mission; a wounded man/dog is not a dead one. An exchange about his having to head to Mexico after he’s failed and his dislike of all things Mexican (food and people) was a welcomed moment of genuine levity eventually disrupted by his strangulation.
Courtney Lynn Pierchoski’s riveting scene the night she’s taken to a hospital to give birth was the highlight of the night. A young woman fresh from the torment of an abusive father falls for an abusive man and carries his baby; one of life’s unfortunate ironies. Pierchoski delivers the final blow in straight narration from the hospital where she’s had her baby and (speaking of ironies) has named him after her abusive father.
Dogmouth is powerful stuff and although there’s no fairytale ending to send people home feeling better, they’ll go home thinking about all the open endings of the characters they’ve just been introduced to minus the one who doesn’t survive the bloodlust and paranoia of a man trained to kill. Poor Becker ...
There’s one more performance of Dogmouth tomorrow at 5:00 p.m. at the Theatre for the New City. 1st Avenue and 10th Street. Don’t miss it.
Little Charlie Stella ... okay, amici, it’s time to anti-up. Although this kid is not a relative of mine, he’s more than that; he’s a relative of us all. I keep a Google alert for my name for possible reviews to my dopey books and this one came about a month or so ago, but because I didn’t recognize the forum, I deleted it. Then it came again a few days ago and I opened it and this is what I found (please click on the link).
Please visit his site and give what you can if you can. This is my third request for donations for a charitable cause this year. The other two are here:
Charles E Stella Fund
North Royalton, Ohio
Do the right thing if you can ... give what you can and if not here, to someone in need somewhere (whether it’s food for the hungry or clothes for the cold). As our politicians cut off the need so many require in order to protect the wealthy, they leave it up to all of us to do what we can. Sooner or later, as we follow through on what the greedy refuse to acknowledge, perhaps we’ll all come to the conclusion that we don’t need a government to protect the wealthy at the expense of those most in need; that we don’t need the bastards at all. Giving is a good start.
Here now, end of pontification.
The Power of Pepper Spray ... it takes a real man to use pepper spray like the jerkoff in this video. Imagine one of your kids is catching that shit in their faces? Life has often proven arrogant nonchalant-tough guys like this cop are the same ones who hide under their bed once challenged without their gun, badge and backup. Just following orders, huh? Maybe it was time to grow a pair of balls and question the order. And weren’t the police fortunate to have their batons with them? Even if it didn’t look like a violent crowd, you never know (sarcasm intended). Was moving those kids really that important? Were they really upsetting the flow of foot traffic on campus. I’m 325 pounds and I think I could’ve found a way between those kids ... Should the chancellor and head of police be fired? Post-haste ... and so should the moron wielding the pepper spray like he was cooling off kids during a heat wave. And that last asshole posing with his baton ... something tells me he’ll make a fathead from that picture so he can admire himself through retirement.
Not all cops are bad guys, but like Ben Whitmer said in a terrific interview with the especially loquacious one, Len Wanner, over at The Crime of It All, “... I don’t ever again need to play subservient to some twenty-five-year-old with a head full of Jason Statham movies and three hours a year of range time.”
What a collection of storm-trooping punks too many of the cops at UC Davis appear to be; the kind that wouldn’t think of pulling any of that shit without their weapons, badges and brigade strength backup.
There’s no point in handicapping my beloved New York State Buffalo Bills tomorrow (or anymore for the rest of the season. Like one of the Fish (dolphins) said last week, “Buffalo gave up.” Fred Jackson is out for the season (not that they were using him the last two games), so the no huddle, no first downs, no touchdowns fiasco will continue ... and coupled with a defense that plays on its heels, we should run the table and lose the rest of our games.
Like Dandy Don used to sing: “Turn out the light, the party’s over ...”
Music (for Rolling Stones Ray Wasik) ... gimme shelter
And then there’s this version:
And then there’s my favorite Stones’ song ... gees, I wonder why ...