Tuesday, March 11, 2014
Jean Paul Smartre
You may have noticed, or you may have not, but months ago I changed the tagline on RoundSeventeen to L'enfer, c'est les autres.
If I know my audience, and I believe I do, none of you 14 lazy bastards bothered to Google the translation.
Allow me to enable your apathetic nature.
It's taken from the French existentialist Jean-Paul Sartre. I don't quote Sartre often. Mostly because I am not all that familiar with his work. And because I always mispronounce his name, which shouldn't embarrass me, but does.
L'enfer, c'est les autres means "Hell is other people."
And in most cases it is true. Unless the people in question are the performers who work at Cirque de Soleil.
Last week, we ventured into Santa Monica, an undertaking that requires more and more effort due to the overdevelopment and traffic. We entered the Big Top near the pier and for two hours we sat, jaws dropped, and immersed ourselves into this weird and wonderful world.
It's still in town for a few days so I won't do any spoiling, suffice to say the show is an end-to-end display of human beings doing things human beings cannot possibly do.
This is noteworthy.
I can go to Staples Center and watch the now-terrible Lakers and think to myself, "Geez I could have hit that free throw or made that lay up." Or I could walk the grounds at the Riviera Club and watch the Northern Open and think, "I could have birdied that easy Par 3 hole."
These are all within the realm of possibility.
But at Cirque de Soleil, I witnessed what can only be described as the impossible.
Of course that didn't stop me from my occasional flights of delusion. At one point in the show, I leaned over to my wife and whispered, "I could do that."
And then, as she often does, she rolled her eyes as if to say, "L'enfer, c'est assis a cote de mon mari."
Translation: Hell, is sitting next to my husband.