How apropos, that in the thick of Donald Trump‘s buffoonery tour, the recent fame of the clock boy, and the white soap star who took to Twitter to rant about how Viola Davis got it all wrong during her Sunday night Emmy speech, that the Goodman Theatre is dishing up Ayad Akhtar‘s Pulitzer Prize winning play, Disgraced.
Scrap “Never discuss religion or politics with those who hold opinions opposite to yours” — as Disgraced centers around conversations at an upscale Manhattan dinner party, where the rules of Emily Post have fallen by the wayside. The soiree is hosted at the home of Amir (Bernard White), a Muslim-American attorney working at a prestigious Jewish law firm (and working even harder at distancing himself from his Islamic roots), and his naive, Caucasian wife, Emily (Nisi Sturgis), a painter, and it would seem, a self-appointed “Quran interpreter for the uninformed living on the Upper East Side.”
Their dinner guests? Jory (Zakiya Young), an African-American lawyer who works alongside Amir at the firm, and her Jewish husband, Isaac (Josh Radnor), a museum curator.
What could possibly go wrong when cocktail conversation includes questions about how Amir gets through airport security?
As the booze continues to flow, what was supposed to be a proper schmoozfest takes a turn. Alcohol goes into Amir and his truths come out, turning the evening into a bona fide shitshow.
While Disgraced has a drowsy start, with White and Sturgis laying down the foundation for the main event, audience members will be completely engaged the moment the first glass of scotch is poured. Topics take on varying degrees of disgrace, from light conversation about Chicago’s own Steve Bartman, to unspeakable words surrounding the 9/11 attacks, to anti-semitism, to the treatment of the women of Islam.
Young (particularly so) and Radnor provide the authenticity–and just the right amount of comic relief–that rises to the level of the brilliantly written dialog.
A must see for all of us. Including The Donald.
“Disgraced.” Written by Ayad Akhtar; directed by Kimberly Senior. Goodman Theatre, 170 North Dearborn, Chicago. 312.443.3800. Extended through 10/25. Running time is 80 minutes, no intermission.
“Thank you so much to the Academy and to Oprah for this.
I need to shower my love and kisses on everyone who’s a part of our Imitation Game family. Morten, Nora, Ido, Teddy, Keira, Benedict, Billy, Alexandre, our entire cast, Maria, who’s back there somewhere. I love you guys so much. Thank you for this film. I’m so indebted to you for it.
So, here’s the thing: Alan Turing never got to stand on a stage like this and look out at all of these disconcertingly attractive faces and I do. And that’s the most unfair thing I think I’ve ever heard. So, in this brief time here, what I want to use it to do is to say this…
When I was 16 years old, I tried to kill myself because I felt weird and I felt different and I felt like I did not belong. And now I’m standing here and, so, I would like for this moment to be for that kid out there who feels like she’s weird or she’s different or she doesn’t fit in anywhere. Yes, you do. I promise you do. You do.
Stay weird. Stay different. And then when it’s your turn and you are standing on this stage, please pass the same message to the next person who comes along.
Thank you so much.”
Late Monday evening, it was announced that RadioShack is going belly-up. The technical term for said belly-up is called “Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection,” but the writing is on the wall. And it’s not that shocking. RadioShack’s business model is as outdated as mix tapes. Sure, they tried to freshen things 10 years ago by dubbing themselves as “The Shack,” but it never quite caught on. Add to that, brick and mortar gadget shops just don’t fit anymore.
But one thing RadioShack always got right was their customer service. Everyone knows that.
As Rachel Maddow said on The Rachel Maddow Show, “Here’s the thing about RaidoShack which makes it truly tragic. I have never, ever gone into a RadioShack and left without the thing I needed. And that is because the people who work at RadioShack were expected to help you.”
Chris Hayes of All In with Chris Hayes chimed in, “The model of the retail store in which there’s this embedded knowledge in the salesperson, that’s also going away.”
Oh, it sure is.
Lumpy is the manager at my local T-Mobile retail store. Well, her actual name is Mary, but she will be referred to as Lumpy from this point forward for reasons that are well known to anyone who has seen her preen around in her way-too-tight Pepto-Bismol-pink T-Mobile tee, claiming to be in charge of things.
Lumpy was to handle the exchange of a defective iPhone I purchased at her T-Mobile store. Lumpy insisted on returning the defective iPhone under “buyer’s remorse,” even though I was only remorseful about my phone not working.
“That’s just the way we need to return it,” Lumpy assured me, agreeing that my iPhone was indeed defective. “You’re going to get a new phone.”
Several days later, I realized I simply didn’t like the iPhone 6 Plus, even in perfect working order. I was well within the return time frame. When I called, the T-Mobile rep in customer care said I only had 5 days to return it, and that I’d better high-tail it over to a retail location before it was too late.
So, I did. I took time out of my work day to make the return.
The once cheerful face on the T-Mobile guy was making all sorts of contorted expressions as he was reading things on his computer screen, no doubt combing though Lumpy’s lengthy account of how I enjoy switching out phones willy-nilly so I can indulge in wanton iPhone orgies.
“Sorry, there’s nothing we can do….well, you can JUMP to the iPhone 5S.”
“You mean pay for the iPhone 6 Plus and also pay for the iPhone 5S?”
When I took my beef to Twitter, “T-Force” was all about it, until, they too scrolled through Lumpy’s notes.
After not helping me in any way whatsoever, and explaining how awesome Lumpy is for wrongly handling the return, the “T-Force” superhero guy asked me to complete a “short 4 question survey” so that they can be sure they are “maintaining their standards of excellence.”
An offer to jump to the Progresso phone would have been less offensive at this point.
T-Mobile. They are excellent idiots, I will give them that.
And hey, I may buy a RadioShack Walkie Talkie during RadioShack’s upcoming liquidation sale. Because I know that even in the height of their bankruptcy crisis, they’ll be much more helpful than Lumpy and her cohorts are on their best day.
So, what do RadioShack and T-Mobile have in common? Nothing.