Right Up My Alley

AlleyI spent most of Saturday at The Alley Theater in Louisville, Kentucky, at The Princess Bride Experience. I was channeling Rizzo the Rat in THE MUPPET CHRISTMAS CAROL: “I am here for the food.” I was supposed to be there to sell books, but — FOOD. ‘Nuff said.

AlleyProductionsThe Alley Theater is small and fairly out-of-the-way, but creative and ambitious. Here are a few of their productions. Their next one will be Kafka’s Metamorphosis. I would kinda like to see how they do a giant cockroach, and I would way kinda not.

I asked them if they knew about Habitat For Humanity’s ReStore, and they told me that was where they got all the doors they used for so many things, like this one masquerading as a display board. Others were fastened together to form walls.

The Princess Bride Experience was a fund-raiser, and I understand it did satisfactorily. The audiences certainly seemed to be enjoying themselves. There were two shows each of a fencing demonstration, a trivia contest, a quote-along, and a 30-minute version of the show.

ROUSThere were a pair of ROUS’s (Rodents Of Unusual Size) cleverly disguised as friendly cocker spaniels. They showed their true evil natures by scarfing any and all fries they found unguarded, on table, floor, or in hand.

HumperdinkThere was also a stuffed figure with a picture of the villainous Prince Humperdink taped to it, with innocent children being invited to slash it about with cardboard swords, which they did with vast energy and delight.

During the show, actors would come pelting out of one door from the theater, along Authors’ Alley, and in another door to the theater. So, naturally, four of the authors (~MA looks innocently at the ceiling and whistles nonchalantly~) linked hands and formed a human chain across the way. Being basically good people, we lifted our arms so the actors could get through, once we had relished the panic on their faces and the smothered exclamations of, “Oh, shit!” The show must go on.

Spence of SpadesAn extraordinarily cute talented magician named Spence of Spades did magic tricks. Alas, he doesn’t yet have a web page, although he’s on Facebook. I’m not sure what all kinds of tricks he performed, but the only ones I witnessed were card tricks, and they were astounding (to somebody who has no idea how they’re done). I told one of the other audience members, “Oh, he’s a big fake. He can’t do card tricks — he’s really magic!”

JamesDeanJust inside the door was a life-size cardboard figure of James Dean. In honor of the fact that someone found a box full of them, everything, including James, was decorated with plastic leis. It was very festive.

Across from James was this wall, decorated by children. At the time, it seemed charming, but now that I look at it, there’s something disturbingly Blair Witch about it. What do you think?Blair

Oh, yes, the food! I had some mead from The Louisville Mead Company. It was light and carbonated, and was more like dry white wine or ale than the sweet, honey-rich mead I’m used to. It was deceptively refreshing, and I stopped at one.

The French Indo Canada food truck was there. Oh. My. Goodness. Naturally, we all had to get a nice mutton, lettuce, and tomato sandwich, where the mutton is nice and lean, and the tomato is ripe — so perky — I love that!

Actually, I wasn’t so crazy about it, but the poutine was TO DIE FOR. Very crisp fries, topped with Kenny’s Farmhouse Cheese cheese curds, topped with a big glop of thick brown gravy. Ugliest big lump of food you ever saw, and tasted diVINE!

Also, Hi-Five Doughnuts was there — YES, I HAD A DOUGHNUT, TOO, WHAT OF IT??! How could I not have a doughnut from a doughnut company which spells doughnut “doughnut” and not “donut”? Okay, yes, they spell “high” “hi,” but you can’t have everything. The doughnuts were already made and one could choose one’s glaze(s) and topping(s). I chose the bacon glaze and the candied pecan toppings. Mmmmmmmmm.

I managed to lick the sticky off my fingers long enough to sell some books, more than paying for my table space.

And so, we bid a final farewell to The Alley Theater, waving aloha to the totally random Komodo Dragon on the wall, holding in its mouth a miniature ROUS, both of them bedecked with plastic leis.KomodoAlohaA fine time was had by all.

A WRITING PROMPT FOR YOU: Send a character backstage at a theater celebration.



I was born in Louisville, Kentucky, but now live in the woods in southern Indiana. Though I only write fiction, I love to read non-fiction. The more I learn about this world, the more fantastic I see it is.

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One thought on “Right Up My Alley

  1. Jane

    September 6, 2013 at 10:11am

    What a riotous place to stage such a riotous event!
    As you well know, backstage theatre celebrations are unlike anywhere else. Yes, they form a place and time divorced from reality. Don’t you agree? I mean, for one thing, everybody’s always kissing everybody else. In front of their fiancee’s! Because a kiss is a handshake in the theatre world. Good thing they don’t do the Bonobo handshake!

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  2. Terry Cramer

    September 6, 2013 at 1:05pm

    OhEmGee! (Sorry, I couldn’t resist).

    What a fantastic, fun time you had at this charming place! I love the idea of large rodents disguised as cocker spaniels. Thank you for including the listings of the Habitat for Humanity venues. But most of all, I love that you appreciated the spelling of doughnuts. I am with you there. Matilda agrees, although adds that it isn’t fair that she isn’t allowed to eat them. (But Matilda, what about the salmon jerky, pumpkin biscuits, and sweet potate’r chews)?

    Best, Terry, Matilda, Liv and Kes

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      September 6, 2013 at 5:30pm

      Mmmm! Matilda’s treats sound delicious! I would sit up and beg for them! 🙂

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      September 13, 2013 at 2:40pm

      Jen, we had SUCH a good time! Be sure to look for unusual but weirdly appropriate venues for book sales, not just book stores and libraries. 🙂

      Permalink  ⋅ Reply

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