I checked my log and came across a post that I’d never seen before. On my own blog! It was guest-post , dated April 9, 2014, written by guest blogger, KatharineD, and here it is. She’s giving a heads- up on The Hobbit Lego Game. It’s quite charming, actually.
One might ask how it was that I didn’t know what was in a post on my own blog. The reason reminded me of something else I hadn’t thought of today: April 9 was the day that I moved from New York to Mexico. Yup, today is my 3 year anniversary as an ex-pat. While I was taking care of business and getting ready to move, Katharine was gracious and helpful enough to keep a watch on the blog for a few weeks. Nice surprise!
In 2015 on April 9, I posted a little news about the Olivier Awards here. The article suggested that the winner was too close to call. Another coincidence, and what I hadn’t realized, was that among the competitors in Richard Armitage’s category was Tim Piggot-Smith ( King Charles III by Mike Bartlett) , who, as we know, died this weekend, and who was in North and South with Richard Armitage.
Alas, no posts on this date for last year.
Without links, without pictures, without a lot of proofreading. I thought I owed readers here and fellow Richard Armitage fans some sort of explanation.
So, here’s what happened ( I think) because I’m not sure my conclusions are correct – to the extent I’ve been able to come to conclusions.
Oh, and this is not a “Farewell, I’m Closing this Blog” post. It’s just a recitation of a series of happenings and not happenings that have caused the silence. I think.
Just prior to learning that that,Richard Armitage was going to appear on stage in Love, Love, Love in New York City, I found myself cooling off with the whole Richard Armitage fandom thing. It had nothing to do with Richard Armitage, with any decisions he made, with anything he wrote, and certainly there is not another fandom crush I have or want to write about. But, for reasons, some I could identify and some I couldn’t, I was on the fence. I will say that some of the reasons have to do with segments of the fandom which annoy me. But that wasn’t it in full. (Although really, do you read his Twitter feed? I could go on for paragraphs about some of the nonsense I read there. I mean, could it be any clearer by now that he uses Twitter mostly only when he has to? And when he veers from that, he usually, in my opinion, the minority opinion, screws it up)
Still, when the #LLLPlay became a reality, I had a fangirl boost, and began making plans to go to NY to see the play. This was a good sign. The fact is, I was getting ready to schedule some surgery – not serious – but I was paying for it. Instead, I put the surgery off and went to New York. I wrote a few posts about the trip – before, during and after. I never got around to an actual review of the play or much detail about my #LLLPlay experience.
Once I was in New York, visiting with family and friends and exploring my city, I experienced this cross-over syndrome, and it confused me. Have you ever been in a situation, maybe some event, a party, a funeral, where folks from different parts of your life meet for the first time? It can be unsettling even when you love them all.
That’s a little bit of what I was going through in NY. I basically chose to “get the play out of the way” at the beginning of my visit, and move on to other things. Except, Berlin Station was also a factor, and I would have the opportunity to see the newest episodes without worrying about its availability in Mexico. ( I drove my poor brother nuts in East Hampton playing around with his Time Warner account and EPIX and all the rest of it) So this was just another example of that cross-over syndrome. Now he was involved in Armitagemania.
I went to the play two different nights with different friends – but they were (a) friends with whom I had gone to the theater with on a regular basis for years usually together – that is, we all went together, and, (b) in one instance I went with a friend – a good friend – who is or was completely unsupportive, even hostile, to my fandom activities once she learned about it. I had tried to explain it a number of times, both before and after she learned what the blog was about, but I don’t think I made any headway. To her, it was just ridiculous. And for that reason, on the second night, I found myself anxious and distracted before and in the theater – not to mention after the play when we discussed it. (First night companion, Positive Friend, is completely non-judgmental, or anyway, has never said anything negative about my blogging. She liked the play and we had lots to talk about afterwards. In fact, she lived in London or just outside it – could’ve been Reading for all I know, and was raising her sons during some of the time covered in the play.
I’m so tempted to go off track here and tell you that Negative Friend and her husband bought their son an apartment in the village ( that would be Greenwich Village) when he came home from college, and that his career decisions made about as much sense as Rose’s, so one would think parts of the play would have resonated more than it did, ( or more than she let on that it did) but that discussion will just get me off track. Suffice it to say that she, as a mother, is the absolute polar opposite of Sandra and Kenneth.
But I digress. My point was that unlike other fans who either lived in NY or travelled to NY for a short time just to see the play, meet up with friends and explore the city – for me it was different. I couldn’t really concentrate of fandom too much. I didn’t want to.
I was fortunate enough to introduce myself to Claudia Ludwig, who I recognized both nights, and to meet up with Guylty and Linda60 for a lovely afternoon on my last day in NY. And I did have fun, in my own way, observing the fandom from afar, although not all my observations were warm and fuzzy. I should say that at the last minute I booked a third performance at the very end of my visit to New York, and I should also say that I walked out of the play after Act II, never to return. Twice turned out to be enough. And anyway, I hated my seat.
I’ll also admit that I was a bit bummed out when I learned, after the fact, that some of my favorite bloggers were in the audience that very night, and I didn’t know it or meet any of them. I knew some were there, like Guylty, Zan and Judi, and one or two others who I thought I recognized – but I thought it was a missed opportunity not to have met or sought out the rest. But that was part of it – I didn’t seek them out and only one or two fellow fans knew I was there.
I’ll also confess that one of the reasons Guylty and I decided to meet up when we learned we would be in NYC at the same time, was that I was the winning bidder for the Empire Magazine, Thorin Oakenshield cover that Guylty auctioned off, and it seemed safer for her to hand it to me than for her to try and send it either directly to me in Mexico or to a Texas address for which I pay a service to a Mexican company that schleps mail back and forth across the border. ( I think I told the story previously of my unsuccessful efforts, in sub-freezing NYC winter weather to find the magazine in New York). I’ve yet to crack it open.
Anyway, long story a little shorter, Richard Armitage, even live, shirtless and figuratively, maybe even literally spitting in my face, took a backseat.
But, I decided that I would address those feelings, sort them out, back in Mexico.
I said this was a recitation of happening and non-happenings.
The key non-happening? President Hillary Clinton.
You see, I returned to Mexico early in the morning on the day of the presidential election.
And nothing has been the same since. Nothing. The world hasn’t been the same. My country hasn’t been the same. Probably you haven’t been the same.
I always took a lot of inspiration for posts from scrolling Twitter and Facebook for articles and news – but ever since the election, I find that most of the time, I skim the Richard Armitage stuff and go right for the news. I can spend an hour or more on Twitter just retweeting with comments some of the upsetting, incredible, harmful, even humorous stuff I read. I want to be heard about this, but who’s going to hear me? Well, there are a few Richard Armitage fans who respond to my political tweets or Like or RT. And oddly enough, even though I have hardly posted anything of note on this blog in months – I keep getting new followers, and I’m damned if I know why. But this is what I want to write about right now – and not Richard Armitage.
For a minute there, I got really excited about Pilgrimage being shown at the Tribeca Film Festival and thought I would go back to New York to see the film. Of everything on Richard Armitage’s horizon, Pilgrimage was the film I was most excited about because I like that genre. I will probably buy a ticket to the film, just in case, but I’m pretty sure I don’t want to go back to New York right now. If I did go, I wouldn’t want to stay more than a few days – less than a week would be my choice. But, there is only one airline that flies direct to New York from Guadalajara, and only twice a week, and not the right days and not the right times. I would have to stay longer than I wanted to, or choose a more expensive and less convenient flight with layovers. A 5 hour trip would morph into a 9 hour or longer trip at several more hundreds of dollars. I don’t want to do it. ( I still might do it)
There’s also the possibility that Richard Armitage will be on the London stage in 2018. I joked that I had to start saving – and then I thought about it and realized that, if I were to travel to Europe, I’d rather go to Italy than London. But why worry about that now?
I’m also mindful of something Obscura wrote on her blog about some of the reasons she hasn’t been posting as much – and she threw out the idea that maybe it has to with the roles Richard Armitage is taking – that what first attracted her and still attracts her may be the John Porter/Lucas North action hero roles. This could be true for me as well.
I was enormously disappointed in Berlin Station. Just gutted. I’m hoping that the writers and show runners took something from what fans and critics had to say and will do a better job for season 2. Daniel Miller was not engaging. I thought that character was almost a prop.
And BTW, have you noticed how little has been written about Romeo and Juliet? I haven’t written a word about it after having a listen.
So there you go. I’ll happily explain to you in 3,000 word posts, the details of every lawsuit challenging anything the Trump administration does, but beyond that, for now, I just don’t feel like writing much else. The hours I used to spend searching and reading about Richard Armitage are spent on the state of the union.
But P.S. Not sure what this means, but over the weekend I watched season 5 of Cold Feet. It did nothing for me ( well, embarrassment by proxy), so maybe I’ll move on to Moving On. That one always cheers me up.
It’s almost criminal to call this Part 2 of my Love, Love, Love impressions. Part 1 can be found here Perry’s #LLL Impressions So Far, Part I, and if you read the comments, it’s evident that I broke my promise of more to come soon. Jeez! It’s been over a month since I returned from New York. I’ve posted a few thoughts about my trip ( see links below), but I haven’t given much detail – for one, I haven’t mentioned the play at all.
But, first things first, in my post The Joys of October, when the trip to New York was about 6 weeks away, I posted what amounted to a bucket list of the things I wanted to do and see (and eat) while in New York. It almost all happened.
Also on my list, was a New York bagel. Had quite a few, including one or two from the dozen I bought on my last day, to bring back for friends in Mexico.
After 4 days in the city, went out to East Hampton. We didn’t go to Palm, but this was even better. Had my lobster, comfy, at home, preceded by a big bowl of great Manhattan clam chowder and accompanied by my brother’s special and best baked potato in the world. His secret is basically the secret to most Jewish cooking: overcooking it (in a toaster oven. Crunchy, crunch skin.) Could not finish that two pound lady. Brother got the extra claw, but I sucked and teased every bit of meat and juice out of the small claws. No roe, just some tomalley.
While in East Hampton, I took the opportunity to mail in my absentee ballot and send some Love, Love, Love Playbills ( and keychains) to fan friends in California, Italy and Australia who couldn’t make the trip.
Alas, the only Peconic Bay scallops available were frozen from last season ( they would have been delicious anyway, but I passed on them, and instead, had a delectable fine dining experience including local sea scallops over sun choke puree and something green at the Hampton’s hot spot, Nick and Toni’s. I paid homage to the restaurant’s Italian flavor with an appetizer of Vitello Tonnato, (Not my photo)
On the one hand East Hampton was very relaxing because we don’t ever do much. My SIL and I went shopping in the village. Except for the style of architecture, one might as well be on Rodeo Drive or Madison Avenue.
On the other hand, with the Comey announcement of further investigations into Hillary Clinton’s emails, the World Series and my angst about getting to see Episode of 3 of Berlin Station in real time, a lot was going on. ( Brother relented and we tried to use his Time Warner account, but in the end, Berlin Station worked for me on the laptop with just the EPIX free trial. The whole TimeWarner plan, my brother signing up for EPIX on his TWC account in NY, and watching away from home in EH didn’t work at all – not every show is available on your device when you’re away from home – they don’t tell you that, do they?)
Mother Nature wasn’t that cooperative about displaying her fabulous fall foliage, but I did manage to catch a few trees with color while in East Hampton, and then later in Central Park with fan friends Guylty and Linda60. (Hoping one or both will email me some of their shots)
A walk on the beach was also on my to-see list. It was chilly but calm. Just had to see the Atlantic. That’s actually Europe beyond the horizon
As for seeing friends and family – things could not have worked out better. I could not believe how everything fell into place. I managed to spend time with everyone I wanted to see. Friends and family were super cooperative in fitting themselves into my schedule, and still I had plenty of free time to be on my own ( a little more about that later.) Excuse the typos, but here are edited versions of the calendar I sent out to those I was meeting.
I’ve edited it slightly ( still some typos) to include a few meetings that were squeezed in. Almost everything, in terms of meeting friends and family worked out. It’t hard to tell, but on Sunday, November 6, that was a dinner at a well known soul food restaurant in Harlem. My plan of staying in or very far west on Marathon Sunday, and choosing a spot straight north to meet a friend for dinner, didn’t work out. Not only did I have to go out on Sunday – I had to get myself to the East Side to take care of an emergency, just about when the medium fast runners finished up, and then back to the west side to get up to Harlem. I was smack in the middle of just what I’d hoped to avoid, but in the end, I didn’t really mind. I got to eavesdrop on some runners on the cross-town bus, all wrapped tightly in their thermal blankets.
So, what did I fail to check off my bucket list? Would you believe – NO PASTRAMI! I had a few opportunities for pastrami at a Jewish or Jewish style deli – most notably on Marathon Sunday when I was walking my way up from 72nd street to 86th to catch the cross-town bus. I passed my old local deli, Artie’s, and I knew this was the last opportunity for pastrami ( I also passed on it in East Hampton and in Brooklyn) – but I just couldn’t face a 1/2 lb of meat, knowing that I would only eat a quarter of it, and with no opportunity to take the left-overs home and also knowing that I would be having a heavy dinner in a few hours, thinking I’d have fried chicken or ribs at Melbas , which, it turns out, doesn’t have ribs. Melba’s sure has changed. I don’t know what me laugh more: the fact that I was the only Caucasian in the restaurant, or the fact that my date and I were the only patrons who were over 35, or so it looked. The place was jammed with young people – and at every table, at least one person was sporting a Marathon medal. We had to give up on much conversation and settle for joining in the party. It could’ve been worse.
So, next up. A little more about my New York Experience, and yes, that play I was supposed to be writing about. Now, I have an hour to ready and battle with Sling TV and my frustration over Berlin Station.
I’ve been making notes on Berlin Station since Episode 1. I watched the first 4 episodes from different locations, so I have notes on all sorts of pads, loose sheets of paper, some front and back because the pads were almost empty, and in my laptop.
I also have unpublished drafts, which serve as notes.
And, I have managed to get a few posts up and generated some discussion in comments.
And, I’ve been commenting vigorously on a few other blogs where bloggers are writing about it – there aren’t many – but there is the Episode by Episode description with some only some editorial matter, posted weekly on Me and Richard. The comment section discusses fan theories and opinions. [Find these by searching on Me and Richard (link below)for Berlin Station Episodes and they will all be listed.]
But, while I haven’t ignored the series, I also haven’t written any coherent posts that encourage general discussions of the series and Richard Armitage’s performance and role as Daniel Miller.
I question why I’ve spent so much energy on following and analyze the series and all that goes with it as a Richard Armitage blogger – yet producing next to nothing for myself or those of you who read here. Am I afraid of writing about what I think about this? I think it’s pretty safe to criticize the show itself. There is so much wrong with it – but it’s not a total loser. I’m recommending that you read this latest post from Servetus on Me and Richard Armitage, if you haven’t already. I’m only a little sorry to bootstrap my own blog onto someone else’s (I’ve been doing it for years one way or another), but, although her reasons are a little different than mine – or anyway – she seems to have reasons, Servetus is also having some difficulty with Richard Armitage’s Daniel Miller -anyway, she’s not able, so far, to treat the character the same way she’s treated all his other major characters. You can decide for yourself, but I think she’s saying, there’s not enough there. Again, my own comparison is Gary Fuller (Into the Storm).
I’ve tried before to have similar or joint discussions on two blogs and it never worked really well. I’m certainly happy, even prefer, to discuss this here – what’s going on with the show and the role and, really, the waste of talent. IMO – it’s not so much Richard Armitage’s fault. It’s the series, the script and the character. It is the decision to take this role after seeing the script. But I’m also suggesting that my readers take a look at Me and Richard short title : Me and Berlin Station – Why I can’t get into the show much.
I can understand why she, and all of us have to get into the show a little – I mean, there are these and Servetus is the source:
There are probably 100 fabulous screen shots of Richard Armitage, if not more. Fans are enjoying some of the best eye candy and future iconic shots that we could want. For some of us, me, for sure, Daniel Miller is so on the mark of our favorite physical version of Richard Armitage. I can’t stop looking. But, there it is no coincidence that most of Servetus’s captions start with, beautiful shot of Daniel Miller [doing or thinking something]. The disappointment is that the beautiful shots are just about all the series has to offer us: not much to the character and not much range.
The title of this post, is from one of my unpublished drafts on Berlin Station, Perry’s Dark Secret and it starts of with the sentence,
Daniel Miller, please be dead.