I’m liking these new “sent by satellite from Britain” things in the movie theatres. I saw War Horse some months ago and today I got to see Monty Python Live (or mostly).
I’ve loved the Pythons since I was a wee bairn, back when I was shocked and vaguely titillated by their sexy humour (all very naughty schoolboy, nudge, nudge) and didn’t understand a bunch of it, not having had the wide education the Pythons had.
They’re not everyone’s taste, but the theatre full of people of all ages were helplessly laughing along with me as the troupe went through their paces. They’ve brought so much to my own personal culture, I feel awash with gratitude just seeing them, let alone watching them fix up their skits for yet another on-stage show.
I want to hug them all. Crusty as some of them seem with each other at this point, they are part of my family memory – watching with my dad in our upstairs den, laughing and quoting endlessly. I learned the philosopher’s names from them, saw great works of literature mocked (“Salad Days”), heard about the Spanish Inquisition (I didn’t expect that)(but then…no one expects the Spanish Inquisition!)
Terry Gilliam’s animations still make me laugh, the strange juxtapositions, the gleeful old man feet when the baby carriage ate the old ladies…
Eric Idle’s songs have always been a delight, from “isn’t it great to have a penis”, (which was updated for this show to include female parts and the generic ass) to the universe song (which was sung here by Stephen Hawking, no less), to Finland, to Always Look on the bright Side of Life. Eric seemed to be having great fun in this production, along with Terry and Michael – in fact only John looked unhappy about everything and uncomfortable and unwell. I call them by their first names because they are almost friends, so much a part of my being I can (but I won’t) quote most of their skits off by heart.
As with so many things, a lady is someone who CAN do these things, but doesn’t.
I’m beginning to feel old, though. Most people don’t know about the Pythons these days. Hardly anyone remembers how the Catholic Church freaked out over Life of Brian – my mother forbade me to go so of course I went…
The other day I tried to describe a pelvic tilt by saying it was like the pelvic thrust in the Time Warp in Rocky Horror, and everyone under fifty stared at me in utter confusion.
And the death of James Garner today is being mourned on Facebook by people who remember watching it with their mothers (I did, too)…another fixture of my life growing up that my kids have no knowledge of.
Well, at least they know about Monty Python and Rocky Horror, to their everlasting psychic damage. Of that I am proud.
But a little lonely. I went by myself to the theatre today because no one in my current circles is as mad as I am about the Pythons. I’d put the requirement in my next personal ad but am afraid I’d get one of the ungentlemanly types who would do the parrot sketch at inappropriate moments. I need someone who would share my appreciation, maybe sing the songs with me on a uke accompaniment, and then share a laugh at their brilliance. Brilliant they were, brilliant they are. Thank you, you mad set of Brits. And one American….