Friday, September 15, 2006

Crazy Planets

Eris is the official name of Xena, that once could-have-been-but-eventually-dropped tenth planet. Last month, Eris was categorized as a dwarf planet alongside former planet Pluto and former "largest asteroid in the solar system" Ceres. In mythology, Eris is the goddess of chaos and strife, and the name was voted on recently by the International Astronomical Union. Eris' moon, Dysnomia, was named after the goddess' daughter.

Speaking of chaos and strife, I caught Dulaang UP's Shock Value last weekend. The play, written by Floy Quintos and directed by Alexander Cortez, pokes at that pointless imbroglio called the Network Wars. When a television showbiz host and starmaker (played by the ever-engaging Andoy Ranay) gets caught by the rival network in bed with a callboy, he pulls out all the stops to make sure his name remains untarnished at the expense of his dignity.

The play was a joy to watch because of the cast--Ranay, Stella CaƱete, Frances Makil-Ignacio, Dexter Santos, and a host of others--brimming with energy and snappy in cadence. Unfortunately, the unfolding events weren't enough to sustain the madcap atmosphere of the production, and what could have been a crazy and fun romp reminiscent of Noises Off slowed down in spots to explore the morality of it all.

The plot could have benefitted from more jawdropping shocks and off-the-wall revelations, or even dirtier and nastier ploys from the rival networks, if only to play on the premise that real life can be more shocking than what you see on the telly. However, after the initial shock of seeing two men in briefs doing stuff in bed at the beginning of the play--something that's not really so shocking by UP standards--there's hardly anything that kept me at the edge of my seat.

Moving on...One that may deserve plaudits from the gay community, ironically, is President Bush who last week signed legislation allowing retirement benefits to be transferred tax free to domestic partners. The tax benefit was once only reserved for married couples. Some wonder if Bush was actually aware that this legislation would also extend to same-sex partnerships. Same-sex domestic partnerships are recognized in California, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Maine, New Jersey, and Vermont. Only Massachussetts has legalized same-sex marriage.

Oh, I hope the Ladlad party list was able to file as scheduled its documents with the Commission on Elections. And let's pray that Pope Benedict XVI does the right thing.

On the personal side, nothing much to report. Have a crazy weekend everyone! (In a good way, of course) :-D

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