A Few Great Men

24 May

I was lucky to spend this past weekend with all of my favorite men in my life — Zack of course, my younger brother Edward, my father Lance, and Scooby. All of us (except my dad) crammed ourselves into my car* on Saturday in the early afternoon, and made the trek down to San Antonio so that we could see my dad perform as both Sam and the doctor in a community theatre production of A Few Good Men.

*It was comfortable for us in the front seat, but Scooby kept climbing all over Edward in the backseat. That dog has no sense of how heavy his paws are when he’s resting all his weight on you. Sorry Edward!

The car ride was lovely, with Edward telling us all about his post-graduation plans (he just got his Radio/TV/Film degree from the University of Texas at Austin), and Scooby behaving himself shockingly well the whole ride to San Antonio, except for maybe the last 10 minutes when he sensed we were near and got antsy*. When we first got into the house, it was obvious that Scooby and my childhood dogs, Tinkerbell and Leo (Edward’s dog, Leonardo da Vinci) were not going to be best friends**. Scooby was scaring little Tinkerbell (a sheltie), and Leo is very defensive of her so, in all of his 12 years, he would yip at Scooby and follow him around the house. Leo is in declining health, with a huge tumor between his hind quarters, so it makes it easier for him to fall over and makes it harder for him to get up. It’s a heartbreaking thing, and he has aged so much in the few months since I’ve seen him — his coat is fuller, his hair grayer, and his face has changed. I made sure to spend time with him, telling him I love him and how wonderful he is. Edward did as well. It’s a tough thing and all we can do is shower him with love.

*He hopped up to the front seat and got his over-sized 40 pound body into my lap. 

**Total understatement. We had high hopes Scooby would be cool with them, but it wasn’t his best performance. I think he was jealous any time we went to pet Leo or Tink. 

As we all stood around, watching Scooby explore the entire house, the thought crossed my mind, “We should let him in the back to make sure he goes to the bathroom…” Not two minutes after I thought this in my head, Scoobs is squatting in the kitchen, pooping everywhere*. This is a dog who has NEVER had an accident (knock on wood) in our apartment before, so it was totally out of character. I have to think there’s some kind of alpha thing involved in him “marking” the kitchen, but….gross, Scoobs. Gross.


After we’d settled in a bit, dad, Zack and I headed to a Tex-Mex place nearby the house. I forget what it was called, because it was mostly forgettable. Not the worst enchiladas I’ve ever had, but certainly nowhere near the best. Mostly it was nice to catch up with my dad and watch the incredible Preakness* race.

*If Caitlin is more excited about a horse race than going out to dinner, you know it wasn’t great food. The queso was the worst I’ve ever had. It was runny and tasteless like Velveeta. The fish tacos were pretty solid.

Soon after we all headed out to Fort Sam Houston, the military base in San Antonio, and found the Harlequinn Theater, where my dad was performing. We had reserved seats, and even got complimentary iced tea and desserts! The way to my heart is always, always through desserts. The play was about two and a half hours, and I was honestly engaged the whole time. There were stand-out performers, with my father being the best (truthfully), and it was just a really interesting play (I’ve never seen the movie version).

I enjoyed the play very much. I’m honestly not the biggest theater person, but I’ve always loved “A Few Good Men,” so I had high hopes going in. I thought it was well-acted all the way around, and I’m confident that even if I didn’t know him, I’d have thought Caitlin’s dad was the best one on stage. He has so much confidence and presence and it’s clear he truly enjoys performing. He outperformed Kevin Pollack in the role of Sam, hands down. I don’t remember the doctor from the movie, but her father’s Russian accent was great and he did a terrific job of making each character stand out with just a fake mustache and quick costume change. Believe it or not, there are no Tom Cruises or Jack Nicholsons in community theater, though. The other actors were fine and I was certainly engaged for the full play, but I couldn’t help nitpicking the lack of intensity in the final scene. Regardless, we were there to see Caitlin’s dad and he was the highlight. I hope he’s in another play soon so we can come back. 

Zack and I capped our night with Saturday Night Live*, which my friend Melissa attended in person. I’m always glad to have her on the front lines of cool shit like that, texting me happy faces. The next morning, we got to do a photo shoot with Scoobs after walking him through my neighborhood, and then the little guy napped all the way home. It was a lovely little weekend and put me in a good mood to start my week.

*The musical performances alone made this one a must-watch. Mick was great with the Foo Fighters, Jeff Beck had a couple of other worldly solos and Arcade Fire was wonderfully charming as always. Even though neither of us are fans of Kristen Wiig, her farewell send-off dancing with the cast and Lorne as AF and Mick played “She’s like a Rainbow” and “Goodbye Ruby Tuesday” was touching.


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