Week Twenty-three: 2022

We went to the theatre last week to see Middle at the National.

As the name suggests, it’s the middle play of three. We missed the Beginning or the Start or the Commencement (I’ve not checked) which didn’t seem to matter. It’s a challenge writing something in parts and making each part standalone yet echo and foreshadow the other elements without overdoing the catch up. This managed it ok.

In this case the setting was domestic, the middle section of a marriage that was at a tipping point. The wife has decided it had come to an end, the husband wanted to avoid considering anything beyond the pork roast he planned on cooking the next day and so the jeopardy of the drama was established.

Some of it was a little stereotypical, trite almost, a lot thoughtful discussion belying the inherent difficulties in determining something had ended and having a neat explanation of why when the whys comprised nothing nuclear. Incremental breakdowns have no defining features, no stopping point. Sometimes, as here it seems that the lack of an inciting incident made it harder to handle than the crushing car crash of an affair would be.

The couple tried to talk but there was no territory that held firm long enough. It was painful and funny, too.

At one point the confused Gary despaired at his wife’s attempts to keep everything civilised as if such a catastrophe could be handled with grace. ‘We’re from Essex,’ he sighed. ‘We don’t do conscious uncouplings in Essex’… he looked wistful. ‘A few unconscious couplings, sure…’

At the end, as with the marriage itself, nothing was clear. Was it over or could it be saved? I’m guessing, as this was the Middle, it was the latter. Maybe not. It’ll make the Ending interesting if a little short, if it all finished in the Middle. In truth it was excellent and it didn’t really matter. They were muddled and they would keep on muddling.

Like so much in life.

Coming out of a play like that leaves me a bit discombobulated. I’m not sure what to think, I need to process things and so am not really in the frame of mind to be confronted by a new electronic barrier to exit the car park. I sat starting at the stand, looking where to put my ticket and failing to ascertain a slot while the peeps behind me told me to stop bring so senile. It was only as I moved my gaze to the mirror to glare behind me that I caught a glimpse of an open barrier. I drove through feeling (a) foolish and (b) nervous in case my delay caused the barrier to get bored and close on the car roof.

I was back hanging quilts on Saturday. The Textiliste will be curating another show in September but, meanwhile a charity she has worked for – Fine Cell – who teach prisoners to quilt enjoyed their 25th anniversary and hired Bell House, the venue of the Quilt Show, for a celebration. Naturally, given her knowledge of what works Mrs LP was inveigled into the organising which meant me and a ladder were called upon. I rather hoped that the quilt she managed from conception to completion as part of a V&A commission for their first quilt exhibition some years ago might feature.

One section; I’m sure our cats sat on this corner a fair bit.

Apparently, despite being manhandled by goodness knows how many clammed fingered cons while it was being made, now it has joined the V&A collection it costs several £000s to hire, you need to give at least a year’s notice and amongst other conditions when hung, it must be behind a Perspex screen. I am sure it’s absence was toasted.

It even made it into the garden…

Temperatures here soared into the low 30sC. To some that will seem chickenfeed. To we Brits, it’s Death Valley and Mercury rolled into one. Dog just can’t get it.

About TanGental

My name is Geoff Le Pard. Once I was a lawyer; now I am a writer. I've published several books: a four book series following Harry Spittle as he grows from hapless student to hapless partner in a London law firm; four others in different genres; a book of poetry; four anthologies of short fiction; and a memoir of my mother. I have several more in the pipeline. I have been blogging regularly since 2014, on topic as diverse as: poetry based on famous poems; memories from my life; my garden; my dog; a whole variety of short fiction; my attempts at baking and food; travel and the consequent disasters; theatre, film and book reviews; and the occasional thought piece. Mostly it is whatever takes my fancy. I avoid politics, mostly, and religion, always. I don't mean to upset anyone but if I do, well, sorry and I suggest you go elsewhere. These are my thoughts and no one else is to blame. If you want to nab anything I post, please acknowledge where it came from.
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33 Responses to Week Twenty-three: 2022

  1. willowdot21 says:

    The play sounds interesting and the quilt looks amazing! Dog …. bless!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Marsha says:

    It’s a good thing the play was a stand-alone affair – or in this case, marriage. It sounds like it could be a comedy if it weren’t such a serious topic. Your flowers are looking gorgeous, and your wife’s quilt looks like a lot of work and is very beautiful. Congratulations on your high temperatures from warm Arizona.

    Liked by 1 person

    • TanGental says:

      We spent an extraordinary August in Arizona about 12 years ago. We went to the botanic Gardens outsude Phoenix on Linda’s birthday in 120F and spent most of it in the missters to try and keep cool!!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. That looks like an excellent review

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Darlene says:

    I like a play that makes you think. The quilt is amazing, like everything Mrs. Le Pard does. Dog is being his awesome self as always.

    Liked by 1 person

    • TanGental says:

      Thanks. Play was a teaser leading to a few discussions. The quilt, helping the prisoners design and makr it was a huge achievement as was negotiating her way through V&A politics.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. A lovely quilt. Sorry about the heat since I know you are definitely not equipped for it. It is due to be at 37.7C or higher for the next seven days here.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. We most definitely are not equipped with the heat tolerating gene in the UK. I don’t know why the weather genies insist on sending us such temperatures! I reckon you could probably get six prisoners escaping behind the cover of the quilt as you carry it out of Her Majesty’s establishment.

    Liked by 1 person

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  9. Widdershins says:

    We’re about to have our first ‘summer days’ descend upon us with great vigour and raising of temperatures into the 30’s. After battling colder-than-average temperatures, (whatever that means these days) since October of last year, I’m both looking forward to basking in the heat, and dreading it whilst living in a very small space. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Jennie says:

    I love how prisoners are taught how to quilt. Some of the blocks were quite funny. Hats off to Mrs. Le Pard! Stay cool, Geoff. You aren’t used to such heat.

    Liked by 1 person

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