Sunday, December 10, 2006

Recap 2: Friday Night: La Pastorela

Sometimes you've gotta get that QT in with your family, and that was the case for me on Friday evening. Still feverish and not feeling 100%, Andrea and I grabbed some happy hour appetizers at The Prado until it was time for my play and she borrowed my bike to get home.

La Pastorela is the oldest play brought to America, having been brought by the Spanish in the early 1500's. It has been adapted innumerable times and is a Mexican holiday tradition, with thousands performed every year in Mexico. This was the 16th year that Bill Virchis has presented the Pastorela to San Diego. It is well worth the $22 bucks.

La Pastorela is the story of the birth of Christ*. Two angels come to tell Mary and Joseph that they are carrying the son of God and are to head to Belén (That's Bethlehem to you). They are told that they will probably encounter obstacles, in the form of Lucifer who will try to tempt the travelling group with the 7 deadly sins in various forms. The angels decend to bring the group to safety as they arrive in Belén for the birth of Jesus.

*I was raised Catholic but kicked out of CCD in 4th grade. I consider myself an atheist but can still appreciate the overall messages of love and peace that are conveyed in this play. It is of my opinion that many people today use a veil of religion to further their own agendas. Love thy neighbor has all but vanished. Now I'll step of my soap box and get back to regular programming...

The cool thing about La Pastorela is that the writer incorporates modern pop cultural references to the play...Nacho Libre, Dick Cheney's hunting trip, The Blues Brothers, and a great moment when Lucifer is tossed down a well and his devil's scream down the well a la Garden State, among other pop references. The play is presented in English with occasional Spanish slang. Because it was opening night, Bill Virchis continued his tradition of reading the Mexican Twas the NIght Before Christmas. (posted at the end of this post)

After the play, I met Dave and crew for Dave's birthday at Shakespeare's. I haven't been there in ages and ran into Bullet, Kyle, Jon, and Ben, all random friends from totally different times in my life, so it was a bit strange. We played darts and drank and by about 12, everyone called it a night.

But not me, no. I went to the Ken Club where Electric Frankenstein drew a packed bar on both sides. I didn't go to the band side but people were happy that "a national touring band" was playing there. I guess the band had a following some years ago, they're from Jersey, and they're apparently the kind of band that you have to get really fucked up to watch, judging by the fact that pretty much everyone in the crowd was really fucked up.

After the bar closed, Scooter, Adam, Paloma, Flor and Jorge came over for a couple beers. When Paloma, Flor and Jorge left, Adam, Scooter and I watched Love Actually. (My drunk at Christmastime favorite movie) and before we knew it, it was 6 am. Shit.

I passed out until Kristian picked my up to take me to lunch at Hash House. I haven't been there in far too long but I won't make that mistake again. That food is amazing. The plates are like troughs. The food, well, instant food I came home and slept until it was time for the Hootenanny...that post to come....

A Mexican Night Before Christmas

'Twas the night before Christmas and all through the casa,
Not a creature ws stirring -- Caramba! Que pasa?
Los ninos were tucked away in their camas,
Some in long underwear, some in pyjamas,

While hanging the stockings with mucho cuidado
In hopes that old Santa would feel obligado
To bring all children, both buenos and malos,
A nice batch of dulces and other regalos.

Outside in the yard there arose such a grito
That I jumped to my feet like a fightened cabrito.
I ran to the window and looked out afuera,
And who in the world do you think that it era?

Saint Nick in a sleigh and a big red sombrero
Came dashing along like a crazy bombero.
And pulling his sleigh instead of venados
Were eight little burros approaching volados.

I watched as they came and this quaint little hombre
Was shouting and whistling and calling by nombre:
"Ay Pancho, ay Pepe, ay Cuco, ay Berto,
Ay Chato, ay Chopo, Macuco, y Nieto!"

Then standing erect with his hands on his pecho
He flew to the top of our very own techo.
With his round little belly like a bowl of jalea,
He struggled to squeeze down our old chiminea,

Then huffing and puffing at last in our sala,
With soot smeared all over his red suit de gala,
He filled all the stockings with lovely regalos --
For none of the ninos had been very malos.

Then chuckling aloud, seeming very contento,
He turned like a flash and was gone like the viento.
And I heard him exclaim, and this is verdad,
Merry Christmas to all, and Feliz Navidad!

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