Lights, camera, action

I’m having a busy week. ‘So am I’, replies everybody on the grind on the 9 to 5, or anyone who has children or other people to take care of. So my busyness is  not anything noteworthy – it’s more of an on-going series of after-work evening appointments designed to keep me from my living room with my customary bucket of tea, a couple of fruit shortcake biccies and a book.

As already recounted Monday evening I went to see ‘Spotlight’ – I may have sounded a little cynical in my pre-viewing analysis of this film as worthy and Oscar-baity. And it undoubtedly is both of those things. But it is an extremely solid film – interesting story, well-acted, suspenseful. I suspect it will resonate with anyone who ever had a catholic education and who has since departed the church. I had a catholic education – well I am Irish so not many of us avoid that fate. However as I was in school mainly in the 1980s and didn’t attend a school run by a religious order. So I suspect that my education may have been catholic-lite – or of the ‘I-can’t-believe-it’s-not-catholic’ style. I was also a bespectacled altar boy for a few years, but again a more non-eventful, non-controversial experience it would be difficult to find (unless one counts the mystery of the missing Digestives – the parish committee stored the biscuits in for their weekly meetings in the room where the altar-boys changed – this was before the girls were allowed to be altar servers. And a big scandal broke when all the biscuits VANSIHED one Sunday morning. I’m not going to admit my involvement in this incident but I cannot tell a lie, so I cannot deny it either. All I can say is the biscuits were never recovered and a lock was placed on the pastry cupboard. )

I know a lot of people weren’t as lucky as we were, so I am sure that film is a painful reminder to several people who have been victims. Well worth seeing.

And I have already told the tale of my debut as a director for a short play that I wrote last year. A completely non-autobiographical piece – the lead male character having a different name to me after all.. I had the script, I had the cast, rehearsals were underway. And then life intervened. An exciting opportunity for the male lead has materialised, meaning that the role became available again. There is 4 weeks to show-time. So I took the executive decision to cast myself. Writer, director, star. I am the Woody Allen of the amateur, Irish, short-play theatre world – although I am not married to an ex-girlfriend’s adopted daughter, and I doubt somehow that I ever will be.  I need to learn lines.  Last night I met my leading lady and told her. She’s a good actress, so if her stomach lurched at the thought of appearing with me, then she hid it well. We did a run-through. I must not over-analyse this. Obsessive worrying it not your friend Murphy.
Tonight was meant to be book club – I am reading a novel called ‘A place called Winter’ by Patrick Gale. It is an excellent book, and I will do a review at some point. The problem is that I am on page 160 of 360. And I am enjoying it too much to read the crib-notes. So I have cancelled attendance at tonight’s group. I feel a bit guilty as I had a month to read it, but only bought the thing on Sunday. Get some focus.  Instead I will be meeting a friend for mid-week after work beverages. It’s a hard knock life.

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