Last night was the best New Year's Eve celebration I've had since The Millenium. That year, Addy was in the hospital, and she ran us off to celebrate. We had made no plans (the year before, she had been in hospital, too, and we had smuggled vodka in and toasted the year), so we snagged a bottle of bubbly and drove out to a hill in the country. We counted down while we watched to see if the lights would go out or planes fall from the sky, or any of the other catastrophes predicted by the fearmongers of the day. We felt reasonably confidant that none of it would happen, but I had stocked up on toilet paper, just in case. We kissed and drank our champagne from paper cups. It was awesome.
Three years ago, when Sam Bass began having NYE shows, I was on board. That first NYE after Jim died was horrible, in spite of my family's efforts to help it along. Having something to do definitely takes the sting out of being alone and having no one to kiss.
The first year, I attempted a sort of burlesque lip-sync: "Gotta Have a Gimmick," from "Gypsy. I built a few costumes for the show, as well. It was fun. Last year, we did scenes from former shows...it was our 30th anniversary. There were a few songs thrown in, but it was mostly scenes, and I was in three of them. It was fun but hectic, with all the lines to learn in a short period of time.
This year, our rehearsal period was exactly two weeks...we had actually seven rehearsals, and I had four songs, three skits and a monologue to learn. Now, Dearly Beloved, you know I am very stressed about singing in public, and here are the songs in which I participated: "Comedy Tonight," "Big Spender," "Everybody Ought To Have A Maid" and "There's No Business Like Show Business."That last had choreography, the first has entirely too many words, the second, too few notes, and the third is Sondheim. Nuff said. The skits were pretty easy, as I could hide a script in a notebook for two of them...vaudeville classroom skits where I was the teacher. The third went well, as no one cared what I said, once they saw me kicking the baby basket around the stage. The monologue was kick-ass! Easy to learn, and people liked it both nights. If I ever need a comic monologue for anything, I now have one.
The evening wasn't even spoiled by being groped by an inebriated patron...after all, his wife came to his rescue before I could slap him and make a scene.
One thing performing a risqué monologue did was remind me that there truly is life in the old girl yet!
The very best part? Hoisting a glass with my son, who is now 21 and allowed!
So, here's to 2011. Lift a glass of the good whisky "in memory of those who passed above."
Here's to 2012. Pass the champers!