My friends and I are putting on a musical: “Willy Wonka and the Tofu Factory.”

(FYI: making tofu is one of the ways we make money here on the commune, in addition to weaving hammocks and writing indexes for books.)

Last year we did “Little Hammock Shop of Horrors” and I played Audrey in the first act, while a man in drag played her in the second act. We take a lot of theatrical liberties here. Tonight in the hammock shop we listened to the audio from the movie of Willy Wonka while we wove unwaveringly (arghh! Too much aliteration for one night!). We sang along to Veruca Salt and said all of her snotty lines that we’ve memorized over years of repetitive watching. We changed the words to that horrible song “Cheer Up, Charlie” — in our version it’s now “Shut Up, Charlie.” In the end, when Willy Wonka tells Charlie he’s giving the factory to him because “who else will take care of the Oompa Loompas?”, instead of graciously accepting, Charlie tells Wonka how the Oompa Loompas can turn the factory into a worker-owned cooperative.

Theatrical liberties, yes. And it’s so much fun.

Working in the hammock shop tonight was great. A big group of us (maybe 15 people?) weaving and singing and laughing. A totally real experience of what most people view as unrealistic idealism. We’ve got a huge order of hammocks to fill by Sunday, so people are needing to spend a lot of time in the hammock shop. Today I was in there for 4 hours — and also did 4 hours of child care (and also slept until 10am!). On Sunday when we ship out the huge order, we’re having a rave in the warehouse. Black lights and pressurized stapleguns, the posters say.

It’s pouring rain and Paxus just ran out of his room (where I’m writing this) to go to the kitchen and make us some tea. He asked me if I wanted to come with him, but I promised to write about him in the blog if he got tea for me. Manipulation? No. Seduction. What’s the difference? It’s up for discussion… Comment away!

and so, as promised, a brief love letter about Paxus: I love that we stop conversation for three minutes to sing along to a random song. Tonight it was “Won’t Let the Sun Go Down On Me”, the whole “Ladies and Gentlemen, Mr Elton John!” thing. No major significance in either of our lives, as far as I know. It’s just on this mixed CD that a friend made for him. I don’t need things to make sense with him, we just run with whatever feels right. Giving into gravity, rolling down the hill, no brakes. He gives me permission to act weird, to be a little crazy (a LOT crazy, sometimes!)… and him allowing that in me helps me allow it in myself.

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