Matilda: fun but not magic


Last night was opening night of both Matilda and the season for Starlight Theater in Kansas City. This year is the first year we have attended on Tuesdays, and thus the first year for us to see opening night.

When we arrived they were still rehearsing on the stage. It was sort of nice to see some of that as we wandered from one side of the theater to the other, on our way to trying out the new dining experience, which was also having its opening night.

This year Starlight has taken its dining in-house, with two Applause Club options along with renamed and themed food vendors. The overall look and layout is well-thought out for the to-go spots, and the setup was generally good for the Applause Club.

We have selected the Best of Broadway upscale dining experience. It was nice, upscale, classy. But hopefully they are working out some of the kinks still. The foods on the buffet could be broken out into a few sections: salads, two types of entrees, desserts, yet they put them all together in one long buffet plus dessert buffet. If they had broken the salads into a separate section it would have decreased crowding and improved the flow.

The wait staff was attentive enough, but sometimes a little slow in clearing and refreshing drinks. A little more polish would go a long way.

The opening menu had some items that looked really good in print. I always enjoy a Waldorf salad; so I was slightly disappointed by this one. On the other hand, I am not a fan of Quinoa, but the serving of this with butternut squash was actually quite tasty.

As for the show, I didn’t come away singing any songs, much less the one that the program “predicted” we would. “When I grow up” didn’t resonate with me, though it played an important part of the theme of the show. And the first song of the second act, which is almost a part of the intermission, was a great comic relief.

But some of Matilda’s actions with her parents left us stumped. And I didn’t get the idea of the “Revolting Children” song at the end.

But the acting was good, both from the seasoned adults and the children in the cast. The smoothness of the scenes with the children is perhaps one of the best features of the show. It was well produced.

So, we had and enjoyable night, wasn’t our favorite show, but definitely one worth watching, and worth the price of the ticket.

Starlight Opens


This is the first year we have attended Starlight’s Broadway shows on Tuesday nights. As such, we are going to attend a lot of opening nights. Most of the Broadway shows open on Tuesday.

The first show of the season is tonight. It is Matilda, by Roald Dahl, author of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

It could be a good show.  We’ll find out and let folks know.When you read the copy every show is great.

Fitness Update: More Personal Milestones


And by milestones, I mean that literally, as well as figuratively. Though I may actually mean mile-markers along the running trail.

This week started out with the usual commuting to work, recovering from the past’s weeks physical examination. I kept my activity points up by the usual bicycling commute, and then had the accident incident on Wednesday.

Thursday got back into the swing of things with the first 5k of the week and another 1,000 yards of lap swimming.

The real milestones came on Saturday. I started the day riding to the Line Creek Trail to be there at the break of dawn. I then set my timer and started running north 6.6 miles before returning to complete 13.2 miles in an even 2 hours. I passed many mile markers on the run of my first half marathon distance.

I had started out a couple months before preparing — as a potential competitor in the Kansas City Corporate Challenge.  My company ended up with two other runners in my category, so I became the alternate. But I didn’t talk myself out of actually trying to run the distance. And run it I did.

That, along with the bicycling, and swimming at Oceans of Fun, accumulated me enough points to make Saturday my MisFit points record day.

I followed that up on Sunday by buying my first pair of running shoes. I know, seems out of order. But I finally had time to get to the Running Well Store and have them do a stride assessment and help me select new shoes.  We will see how well, better or not, I do with, actual running shoes.

I’d looked at three different pairs in my category, and finally tested and decided on Asics Gel – Cumulus 17. What a lot of numbers. Hopefully worthwhile!

Speaking of which, each lap of the Caribbean Cooler at Oceans of fun is 266 yards. So I swam (not floated) 2 laps each on Saturday and Sunday — or another 1,000 yards. Not sure how I’ll count them in my annual total, but decided it will be one more thing I will track.

#93: Hark! the Herald Angel Sing


(Part of a series singing through the hymnbook I grew up with: Great Hymns of the Faith)


Hark! the herald angels sing, “Glory to the newborn King;

peace on earth, and mercy mild — God and sinners reconciled!”

Joyful, all ye nation, rise, Join the triummph of the skies;

With the’angelic hosts proclaim, “Christ is born in Bethlehem.”

Hark! the herald angels sing, “Glory to the newborn King!”


Christ, by highest heav’n adored, CHrist the everlasting Lord;

Late in time behold Him come, Ofcfspring of a virgin’s womb.

Veiled in flesh the Godhead see, Hail th’incarnate Deity!

Pleased as man with men to dwell, Jesus our Emmanuel.

Hark! the herald angels sing, “Glory to the newborn King!”


Hail the heav’n-born Princec of Peace! Hail the Son of Righteousness!

Light and life to all He brings, Ris’n with healing in His wings.

Mild He lays His glory by, Born that man no more may die;

Born to raise the sons of earth, Born to give them second birth.

Hark! the herald angels sing, “Glory to the newborn King!”


Come, Besire of Nations, come! Fix in us Thy humble home:

Rise, the woman’s conq’ring seed, Bruise in us the serpent’s head.

Adam’s likeness now efface, Stamp Thine image in its place:

Second Adam from above, Reinstate us in Thy love.

Hark! the herald angels sing, “Glory to the newborn King!”

Anatomy of an Accident


I experienced an incident this week that shows how quickly things can go wrong, even when you are completely in the right.

Roughy Graphic

The above graphic is the intersection. Notice the two red stop signs on the cross street. The other street has no stop signs. The street from the left is much steeper downhill into the intersection than it appears.

I was riding my bicycle down the hill (see blue graphic) with a large iron mountain shredder truck in front of me (see purple graphic). The truck slowed and stopped at the intersection.

My assumption was it intended to turn left and was waiting for traffic to clear. Me, I was in the (imaginary) bike lane to the right of the truck, so I continued on down the hill, picking up speed to about 20 mph. Suddenly there was this grey vehicle directly in front of me. I put on the brakes, and managed to almost stop. My front wheel slammed into the bike and my hand scraped the side of the truck.

The unexplained piece in this movement is the green arrow for the Orange vehicle — the grey double-cabbed pickup truck. It did everything wrong. It pulled out in front of moving traffic when it had the stop sign and they didn’t. It didn’t turn or even go across the intersection, but made a complete U-turn. That is how I hit it in the side — where it didn’t belong and shouldn’t have been.

Only the efficiency of my brakes, and the slowness of its U-turn, kept the force of my impact down. And even though I had done everything as I was allowed to, legally, I was still endangered.

And yet I was fortunate. I was able to shake it off and ride off. No damage to the bicycle. Just a lot of rattling and shaking up.

The endangering element, beyond that of the illegal driver, was visibility. I couldn’t see around the truck to know the other driver wasn’t following the law. Visibility is always an issue. Usually the thought is the cyclist being visible to the other driver, but this shows that the cyclists visibility is equally as important.

So, lesson learned. Now to apply.

Sneak peak of the ocean



Today’s weekend roundup report starts with a look back. This week rained Monday-Wednesday, and the park closed earlier than published on some of those days. It was wet and cold. But today the weather is warming up —

Which will be good for this weekend. Oceans of Fun opens next weekend to the general public, but this Saturday and Sunday it is open for season passholders only. A high of 75 on Saturday will be barely tolerable to go into the water. And the water itself will probably be cold.

This Saturday is also the KCCC Half Marathon. I’m not competing in this one, but have practiced as an alternate for my company.

There is also the Avondale United Methodist Book Club meeting to discuss Orphan Train.