Wednesday, January 23, 2013

les miserables monsters

I have created les miz monsters.

Let me back up.

When I was around 9 years old I saw Les Miserables at the Shubert Theater in Los Angeles and was smitten. I became obsessed with the soundtrack and memorized all the words.
Cut to 27 years later I think I was equally excited to see the movie. We ended up with a copy of the film and I vaguely explained the storyline to Mr. P. which intrigued him enough to want to see it as well.

So at 10 pm over winter break, when normal bedtime rules were obsolete, we snuggled in bed and watched it.
Before you judge my parenting, let me stress that yes, I fastforwarded all the scenes of prostitution, the bawdy innkeeper scene and the revolution scenes. 
I watched as my kids became smitten in the same way that I had.

But then things took a turn for the obsessive.

How have my kids become Les Monsters? Let me count the ways:

1. They spent an entire weekend recreating Lego sets of various scenes from the movie.

opening scene 

2. Upon retrieval from preschool, Doodle (age 3), when asked how his school day was complained, "Nobody knows how to play Mes Liserables with me!" Typo intentional.....he called it that for the first few weeks.

Javert walks along the Seine

3. The children like to re-create Javert's suicide by listening to his song, jumping off a chair and then "floating down the river" which entails lying on the floor on one's back and pushing their way across the floor. This can go on for a 10-minute stretch. At least the floor is getting clean.

about to jump

4. Mr. P. (age 7) made me sit in the car in our driveway with him for thirty minutes in order to finish listening to a Patty LuPone interview where she talks about her time playing Fontine.

5. The soundtrack plays all the time in our house. I mean, from the moment they wake up til after they're asleep. We wonder what the poor dog thinks through all this, maybe, "if I have to listen to I Dreamed A Dream one more time I'm going to run away and find a new family with a more varied musical taste."

6. They spontaneously bust out all 7? 11? 25? parts of One Day More.
the barricade is built

7. They have us googling when the next theater production will be coming to town. Sadly for them, it doesn't look like it's coming to L.A. anytime soon. Which leaves us with the following choices, Sacramento, Baltimore or Raleigh. Hm....

8. Did  I mention I am now forced to listen to the music 24 / 7? In the car? In Los Angeles traffic?? Adds insult to injury.

9. For some reason each child has a different version of the soundtrack playing in their rooms at bed time. Mr. P. listens to the original Broadway production, while Doodle prefers the original London cast. At night, there is a cacophony of sounds - dueling casts, emanating from their bedrooms, each more dramatic than the other. It's totally maddening! 

10. When leaving Doodle's preschool with both children in tow, we wondered why there were so many helicopters flying around, so we turned on the radio and learned that a high speed chase had just ended in a car accident and the men were now running away on foot in our exact location. (welcome to Los Angeles). I explained to the kids that those men must have done something to make the police want to chase them, to which they both responded with great glee, "Like Javert chasing Jean Val Jean."

I could go on, but I'll spare you. The music to Starlight Express is looking good at this point. Almost.


  1. This is awesome! Love the Lego creations :) And what a fantastic opportunity to discuss art, French history, ethics...

  2. Actually have a very nice blog, I wish I could see everything you have all the time, I'm really entertained by your comments, and best wishes for your blog

  3. OMG!!! Are you serious??? I haven't seen the film yet! But loved the Broadway show when I saw it 25 years ago and subsequently listened to the soundtrack nonstop. Maybe I'll treat myself here in Atlanta. Just me, myself and Anne Hathaway. xoxo, Robinne

  4. Its amazing, looking at the time and effort you put into your blog and detailed information you provide. I'll bookmark your blog and visit it weekly for your new posts.


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.