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I saw the new broadway musical “Passing Strange” with [ profile] quietchris and [ profile] salliesandbags on Thursday night. It was awesome. Tickets are still cheap, as it hasn’t been “discovered” yet. I highly recommend you see it.

It is the story of a young black man that grew up in a South Central Los Angeles neighborhood who leaves for Amsterdam to become a musician and artist. He later goes to Berlin to explore the very different scene there.

The story is semi-autobiographical. The “narrator” is “Stew” and he tells the story of his life as he plays guitar. People sing and dance and act out what he is saying. The main charactor (himself as a youth) often shares the microphone with him. The band is on stage and shares part of the acting duties.

I loved the show. While I enjoyed the music and singing, I thought the writing was the strongest part of the show. It was funny and somewhat self-referential. That is, the show didn’t take itself too seriously even though it was powerfully talking about important serious issues. You’d have to see it to understand what I mean.

Wikipedia: Passing Strange

Now playing on Broadway in NYC.
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(if you don’t have an HDTV and DVD player, it it on the big screen... see it at a discount matinée)
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Today [ profile] quietchris and I watched The Last Picture Show (IMDB, Wikipedia). This is one of those films that is mentioned all the time but nobody I know seems to have seen it. Well, now we've seen it.

It takes place in 1951/52 in a town in Texas that is about to become a ghost town. It's a sad movie, very long (2.1 hours) and slow (but typical for a film in 1971). If your NetFlix diet includes 10% older classics, make sure you include this one.

But the real reason to watch this movie is to see Cybill Shepherd and Jeff Bridges before they were famous. As the charactors are introduced you'll keep saying, "Wait! I recognize that person!" but not until you check IMDB will you realize it is Randy Quaid, Cloris Leachman (Mary Tyler Moore, Young Frankenstein, The Muppet Movie, etc. etc.), Ellen Burstyn (Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore, The Exorcist, That's Life (tv), etc) , Eileen Brennan (Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In, Murder by Death, Clue, Will & Grace, etc.) and others.
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I saw it last night and IT WAS AWESOME.
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Human Modem's blog is posting a chapter-by-chapter review of my TMSA book. You can read it via LJ here: [ profile] humanmodem_rss.

He wrote to me:

Hi Tom,
I wanted to let you know that I recently picked up your "Time Management for System Administrators" book and fell in love with it! I had previously read and enjoyed "The Practice of System and Network Administration" and I knew right away that I had to pick up this book. It seemed to magically come to my attention at a time when I was getting bogged down at work and really starting to feel the stress. The suggestions have really helped me out and I've taken to giving it a chapter-by-chapter review on my blog ( Check it out if you have a free moment, I would greatly appreciate any feedback.
Once again, this book has been a real lifesaver! Easily the best investment I've made so far this year.
Take care,
Phillip McCollum

December 2015

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