Archive for September 24th, 2007

Before attending to anything else today, before a word is written on any of my pro blogs, before I work out, shower, dress, before I do a thing other than get my kids off to school, I have to make a confession …

I hate mime.

From my days as a young child, I’ve hated mime. Clowns scare the crap out of me, and street mimes are more annoying than breaking a heel on a manhole cover. In fact, watching a mime is very much like a hasty navigation of busy sidewalks with a dire need to pee, no toilet in sight and one Jimmy Choo four inches shorter than the other.

Why does a well-loved art form (Who are those people?) bug the bejezzus out of me, raise my intolerance levels to just below the slapping point and set me spinning off in the opposite direction, even if that involves some Irish git blowing his lungs into a digerado?

First, we’ve seen it all. How many ‘walking against the wind’ impressions must one view in a lifetime?

Second, what’s with the whiteface? It’s cadaverous and grotesque. It freaks me out. And it looks SO greasy. Yes, I know it’s called GREASEpaint, but knowing the name doesn’t make it any less disgusting. Mouths surrounded by the stuff become revolting caverns of obscene pinkness is comparison, and those half-way-up-the-forehead painted eyebrows, although apparently intended to radiate expression and convey silent emotions, end up looking like a couple of over-enthusiastic punctuation marks in search of a sentence.

Third, as I tell my kids about twenty times a day, “You have a voice, so use it already!”

There are at least as many more reasons as stripes on a mime’s shirt to have the silent silliness of ‘man walking up stairs’ and such grate, but I’ll forego the lot to join the French … the French are big on mimes, well, French mimes, of course … and most likely Robin Williams, in noting the passing of Marcel Marceau who died this week at the age of 84.

Since the guy didn’t talk much, I hadn’t heard that he was big in the French Resistance and that his father died in Auschwitz, but I will admit that I’d never given much thought to where the world’s greatest mime came from.

Reading his obits, however, I have … too late, I know, but what would he care anyway? … come to appreciate much about Monsieur Marceau’s life, if not his art.

Wiseass that I am, however, my first thought on reading of his death was: How can they tell?

My second … wondering if he’s been posed in his coffin with his hands facing away from his chest, his palms forward in that “pushing’ position we all know far too well.

“Man in a box” has been done to death!

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