Peer Gynt at Gålå mixes fantasy with reality

High in the Norwegian mountains is a legendary theatrical experience worth the journey

Photo: Bård Gundersen / courtesy of Peer Gynt Festival
The natural setting is as much a part of the play as the actors and musicians. Characters enter and leave on boats and wade into the water, they chop trees apart, and of course they do it all no matter the weather.

The curtain cannot rise because there is no curtain, no proscenium arch, nothing but grass and a beach flanked by two shaggy hillocks between us and Lake Gålåvatnet. We are gathered here in the Norwegian wilds outside Vinstra to go on a journey with a character called Peer Gynt. Continue reading “Peer Gynt at Gålå mixes fantasy with reality”

Lit by poetry: Dinerstein’s “The Sunlit Night” illuminates

Frances grew up in a tiny New York apartment with her parents and younger sister, where they all still live even though both girls are in college. “Everything about my family was small,” she tells us, enumerating the smallness of their aspirations, physical stature, and living quarters: “Our apartment unfurled itself…the sofa bed opening up for my parents, filling the living room until it was nothing but a man and a woman in bed, with no room left, the foot of the mattress reaching just to the knob of the front door.”

One can just imagine a loving family surviving such conditions, but the love is gone.

Continue reading “Lit by poetry: Dinerstein’s “The Sunlit Night” illuminates”

Kvikk Lunsj v. Kit Kat: A comparative analysis

Photo: Emily C. Skaftun I decided to see how Kvikk Lunsj and Kit Kat stacked up, literally and figuratively.
Photo: Emily C. Skaftun
I decided to see how Kvikk Lunsj and Kit Kat stacked up, literally and figuratively.

Emily C. Skaftun
Norwegian American Weekly

Around this time last year I learned of the Norwegian Easter phenomenon that is Kvikk Lunsj. It seemed that the country went wild, yearly, for this… what was it? I’d never heard of it.

The name threw me at first. It’s a lunch thing? Like maybe an energy bar?

Coworkers scoffed at me. I did more research, turning up photos. Oh, it’s a Kit Kat! Continue reading “Kvikk Lunsj v. Kit Kat: A comparative analysis”

House: You’ve Gotta Shank Someone on the First Day, or They Don’t Respect You

If you missed even one episode of the previous season of House — the last one — you might not have recognized “Twenty Vicodin” as part of the same show. That guy looks like House, you might have thought, but what’s he doing in that blue shirt?

Some things change.

After the season finale cliffhanger that left us with House on the lam in some tropical place after smashing his car through Cuddy’s living room, it seemed like there was nowhere left for the series to go.

Except, of course, for jail.

Continue reading “House: You’ve Gotta Shank Someone on the First Day, or They Don’t Respect You”

Mythbusters: Of RPGs and MPGs

How do they come up with this stuff?

I’ve been watching Mythbusters since the beginning, and at this point I’m generally surprised and impressed that they can still find “myths” to test. “Bikes and Bazookas” half qualified, with Adam and Jamie comparing the idea that motorcycles are better for the environment than cars, and the junior Mythbusters testing a scene from a movie.

Continue reading “Mythbusters: Of RPGs and MPGs”

New Girl: New Guy, New TV, Silly Hats for All

Usually, you unplug it first.

After a pilot that was generally cute, funny, and almost as life-affirming as the end of Dirty Dancing, New Girl returned this week with the all-important second episode. The biggest change between this week and last is a change of roommates: the Black roommate from the first episode (who may have had a name but as far as I could tell was just called “Coach”) is out, and a new Black guy, Winston (Lamorne Morris), is in. It seems Coach (Damon Wayans Jr.) was unavailable, but I know a lot of viewers are out there scratching their heads over this one, wondering what was wrong with Coach or whether the show’s makers thought that viewers simply wouldn’t notice the switch.

Continue reading “New Girl: New Guy, New TV, Silly Hats for All”