Wednesday, September 26, 2012


On Saturday, I was offered tickets to the Monday night performance of Madonna's MDNA tour at the Verizon Center in Washington, DC. My desire to see Madonna over the years has been trumped by only one thing -- my desire to not sell a kidney to pay for the tickets to see Madonna. So with the offer of complimentary admission, I immediately said "yes." And I am so glad I did...this is the best show I have ever seen with the exception of G.G.Allin (but that's kind of an apples-to-coprophagia comparison, so it's not really fair...)

So, finally having experienced the Material Girl first-hand, I give you: My first Madonna concert...a timeline:

8:30pm - Babysitter arrives. Feel very hip and cool about going out on a school night before realizing that it took two cups of coffee to keep me awake enough to put on pants.

8:45pm - Smugly wonder why people always complain about DC the trip in is blissfully speedy. Granted it is 8:45pm, but we are smug nonetheless.

9:00pm - Walk around Verizon Center. Pop into arena occasionally to listen to DJ Benny Benassi and text club-music-loving-friends to let them know we are in his presence. Bask in return-text jealousy.

9:45pm -  Make new friends in the ladies restroom. (Both with women and those simply dressed as such). Note that it was really not imperative that I did put on pants. Love that new friends happily pose for pictures:

"Like a Virgin" Madonna, "Rock Hard Abs" Madonna, "Desperately Seeking Susan" Madonna
(as if you needed the caption...)
10:00pm - Enjoy great people watching. And by that, I mean a lot of great looking guys watching my husband as he walks by. Feel invisible. Try and convince husband to make out with one of these guys to get us into a sky suite. Unsuccessful in this endeavor.

10:15pm - Begin to fade. Mainline a jumbo diet coke.

10:25pm - Beeline to restroom after mainlining jumbo diet coke.

10:30pm - Show begins. Best described as equal parts Quentin Tarantino movie/church service/burlesque show/high school marching band performance. It is also part circus sideshow, considering how many triple-jointed dancers that look like living Giacometti sculptures are part of this extravaganza.

11:30pm - Become unclear about which presidential candidate Madonna supports, but understand that she wholly supports displaying her bum on a jumbotron:

Not judging. If my bum looked like hers, I would also display it on a jumbotron.
Although it's doubtful that so many people would pay to see it.
12:30am - Cannot believe show has been going on for two hours, as it feels like it has just begun. Watch the diva perform one of my favorite Madonna songs, "Like a Prayer," and assume she is serenading me personally. Break my own cardinal rule of concert-going by singing along with the artist. And at the top of my lungs.

12:31am - Notice husband mulling over earlier offer to temporarily switch teams, if only to get away from the lunatic next to him singing "Like a Prayer" at the top of her lungs.

Madonna...singing directly to me. From the jumbotron.
1:00am - After another easy drive home (seriously, commuters -- toughen up!), pay babysitter roughly the equivalent cost of a Madonna ticket.

6:30am - Grab iPhone off nightstand to turn off intrusive and jarring alarm. Inadvertently press reverse camera icon. Become instantly terrified of creature looking back at me and leap out of bed, fueled by pure adrenalin.

9:00am - Make it to work with hair in a ponytail, and after guzzling no fewer than three cups of coffee. Involuntarily "Vogue" with hands when describing show to co-workers.


A million thanks to Moss Building and Design for making this long-time Madonna fan's dream of seeing her in concert come true:

MDNA WNABE circa 1985 2007

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Eager Beavers

I am shocked – SHOCKED! - by the recent rabid beaver attacks in Fairfax County. One was random enough, but two? And in such short succession? It’s no wonder local real estate agents focus a lot more on the “school pyramid” and a lot less on the “increasingly frequent possibility of being attacked by a rabid beaver” when promoting the attributes of living in this County. While impressive creatures, what is impressive about them is also what is so scary. I mean, those are some serious teeth they have. It’s amazing to watch them fell trees with those things-- slit, slash, down they come. And with those felled trees, they industriously build dams which create rivulets, gullies and canals. I am in awe of any creature that can birth canals.

I love Beaver!
A couple of people have posted the news articles about these attacks on my Facebook wall, with juvenile references to the word “beaver.” And frankly, I don’t find this funny at all. It's actually terrifying when you know the details. A fit and trim 83-year old woman who was swimming in Lake Barcroft was the first victim, and when the beaver attacked, her screams were anything but muffled. Even when others came to her aid and continually banged that beaver with oars, it would not loosen its grip. She had many injuries, including large gashes on her arms and legs, and it almost left a gaping hole where her thumb was. But thankfully, she is expected to make a full recovery.

The second incident involved a rabid beaver launching itself out of the water and using the dock as a landing strip before chasing a group of children at Hidden Pond Nature Center. Talk about a hairy situation! They had just completed a fishing competition and noticed the beaver charging toward them. Fortunately, they were able to get away and no one was injured. Still...a very close shave.

I, for one, am concerned and think that it is time to stop beating around the bush and find out why these animals, that are normally as docile as pussycats, are savagely attacking people. It seems to me that figuring this out should be as easy as pie, and I'm planning on being pretty vocal about that if need be, and possibly even creating a Tactical Women's Alert Team. I'll keep flapping my trap until the authorities determine just how widespread a threat this is. Perhaps I’m being crotchety, but I think it should be fairly easy to snatch and analyze all the available data to prevent this from happening to others.

Thanks for letting me vent. Next week, we’ll be back to humor as usual. Which will hopefully put a huge vertical smile on your face.

See You Next Tuesday! (Er, Wednesday).

P.S. The preceding blog post was actually written and submitted as a column for Oakton Patch and Vienna Patch. My editor pushed to make it happen, but it was ultimately rejected by her supervisor on the grounds that someone was attacked and this is poking fun at that. (No, it's not.)

P.P.S. The most interesting part (heh) of all of this? This column ran last year. And it was one of my most popular columns to date. Something about this smells fishy... (You're welcome.)

P.P.P.S. Some of the references in the column above were provided by my friends, Dan and Kevin, who are nothing if not cunning linguists.

P.P.P.P.S. In researching this column, I sent two other friends an e-mail asking them for as many words as they could think of for "beaver." They both responded immediately with several great suggestions and neither one asked me why. We will be friends for life.