Tuesday, January 04, 2005

Jerry Orbach and "Right Hand" Diamonds

I forgot to mourn the passing of Jerry Orbach, best remembered for some police show ("Law and Order" I think) but cherished by Broadway babies for his creation of such characters as El Gallo in "The Fantasticks," Paul in "Carnival" and Billy Flynn in "Chicago." Jerry O. was so cool, and he looked like a real guy on stage; like some ordinary joe you'd meet on the street. He was so adept, so comfortable and so masculine without being overtly macho. His wasn't a voice you'd pick for its great technique or anything -- he just sang the songs straightforward, without any show-bizzy tricks. Of all the parts he brought to life, his role in "Carnival" is probably least well-known, as that show isn't often done by regional theatres, and I'd like to know why not. Get the CD and cry as you hear his rendition of "Her Face." Then switch real fast to his balls-to-the-walls version of "Lullabye of Broadway" as Julian Marsh in the 1980's revival of "42nd Street" and you'll be a convert. I promise. God bless you, Mr. Orbach. Thanks for the memories.

Meanwhile, I am admiring a really pretty $15 bit of bling on my left hand that I got at Filene's yesterday. There's been a campaign by the diamond sellers recently to encourage spinsters to purchase "right hand" diamonds for ourselves, to tell the world we're our own best friend or some such nonsense. Sister spinstresses,I recommend that you stick with the $15 version, wear it on whatever damned hand you like, and bank that extra few thousand in an interest-bearing account. You'll need the dough when you're old and getting ready to die alone.
Speaking of which, I've buried dozens of people and I haven't yet met anyone who didn't end up in that box alone, even if they had a devoted spouse.
And so far, I haven't seen any diamond rings go into the casket. You truly can't take it with you, but it's also true that old age is expensive, girls. Look out for #1 and let DeBeers rot in hell without a penny of your hard-earned cash.


Blogger K Minette said...

Oh! ima get me one a those things!

Blogger PeaceBang said...

If I see one of those "I love myself" diamonds on your right hand, Miss K, I will personally bite your finger off and swallow the finger AND the diamond.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I *heart* Jerry O.

And I will miss seeing him in person-- quite tall + striking. He and the multiple crews of "L&O" were often up here at Union Sem filming episodes. I can't tell you how many times this place has filled in for a prep school, a monastery, or the random judge's chambers...

Anyway, I had no idea about his B'way life until PBS one evening (clips of him in "Chicago"), and I was hooked. Too bad, perhaps, that they never got around to having a musical episode of L&O, what w/ him + Jesse Martin (from original "Rent" cast) on board...

-- theological rockstaaaaaaaaahhh

Blogger Lucy's Mom said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Blogger Lucy's Mom said...

Regarding Jerry O. - You are forgetting his most poignant and memorable role as Baby's father in the 1980s hit movie "Dirty Dancing" which also featured Jennifer-before-nose-job-Grey and Patrick-I-suffer-from-too-much-inbreeding-Swayze (I think that is how you spell his name). I can't remember Jerry's best line, but it was something along the lines of "No one messes with my Baby".

As for getting a "right-hand diamond", I don't want to comment because I don't want to give credence to the idea. As a fellow spinster, I find the notion offensive and patronizing.

I wish that this blogging included spell-check - I need it badly!

Blogger PeaceBang said...

Dear Lucy's Mom, The line you're forgetting is the famously kitschy, "NO ONE puts Baby in the corner!" I know, I forgot "Dirty Dancing" -- probably because I watched the whole thing with my hand over my mouth in embarrassment, peeking between the fingers occasionally and letting out little shrieks of vicarious humiliation for Miss Grey and Mr. Swayze. It also makes me so sad to remember how hot Patrick S. used to be, because -- due to the wonders of plastic surgery -- he now looks like a middle-aged Asian woman. See AwfulPlasticSurgery.com for evidence.


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