Milestones in My Life Interpreted for the Stage by Matthew McConaughey, Reviewed by Me (Denny Primrose Dinner Theatre, Uvalde, Texas)

('me' being Loren Victory)

Wow. The place is packed.
To the gills.
It takes a couple of moments, but I realize it’s not my life they’re here to see, it’s Matthew. I think back to 10 Things I Like About You and Sahara and remember this boy can open anything. If he was holding a can of tuna, people would pay $8.50.
Is it still $8.50?
Not for tuna. For a movie.
Does $8.50 still get you into a movie?
Shit. They’re barbequing a whole cow over there.
This is awesome.

I’m quite taken by the ambience, despite the fact that the floor is covered in sawdust and you could wipe clean the red and white checkered tablecloths with a sponge.
I’ve never been here before, so I’m not sure if they’ve spiced up the joint for this evenings festivities, but, it has a certain energy.
Kind of like the V.I.P room at a rodeo.
And who doesn’t love a V.I.P. room.
Like Kate Moss and Sienna Miller could walk in at any moment and start doing coke off each other.
Well, maybe not that kind of energy, but it’s pretty jazzy.

The luminaries are mingling pre-show, I can’t get over all the cowboy hats, and I’ve never seen this much powder blue eye shadow.
This is exciting.

The lights dim.

First up....

Driver’s License Test
I’m not sure why he’s starting with this one.
I’m already 15?
What about potty training and learning to tie my shoes?
Birth. That would be a good place to start.
But, it all becomes clear a couple of minutes in.
It’s action packed. A real attention grabber.
Sort of like the opening of a Bond film.
Of course, the art direction is not quite the same.
There are five classroom style chairs in the middle of the stage and McConaughey has brought in three lovely local girls who sit in, what I take to be, the back seat. He and the instructor are in front. I don’t remember there being anyone else in the car when I took my test, but the girls are quite attractive. And who’s to argue. He’s the Hollywood guy.
It opens with Matthew turning back to the girls and throwing out a classic, “Alright, alright, alright. Ladies, whadda ya say we see what this little colt can do.”
The girls dip their heads shyly, which I think is just because they’re non-pros. One of them I think forgot her line, as the middle one jabs her with an elbow.
But, Matthew doesn’t skip a beat and grabs the air in front of him like it was a steering wheel and takes off.
He aces hand signals and obeying traffic signs.
He asks one of the girls if she’s going to the kegger Friday night as he completes the ‘over the shoulder look’ while reversing.
From the look on his face you’d think he was doing the chase scene from Bullit, as he attempts merging in traffic. He really sells that one.
And, he even tells a quick joke during his three point turn.

End scene.

My test wasn’t much like this. I was actually pretty nervous and really fucked up the parallel parking bit. I did score an 83, though.
This was certainly more exciting. Thumbs up.

First Day of College
This should be interesting.
No one knew who I was in high school and there were only like 500 kids. I was so anxious walking on to a campus that had over 30,000 students that I think I stayed in my dorm room eating Hot Pockets for the first two weeks.
I’d hate to see this show fizzle after that great opening.

Matt enters stage left carrying a small duffle bag, and I don’t know if this was an improve or not, but he’s not wearing a shirt.
With shoulders thrust back, he enters a small area of the stage that has two twin beds and lamp on a stool.
There is a person sitting on one of the beds that I swear is Jake Gyllenhaal. I know they’re friends in real life, but why would Jake come to Uvalde? There is a bit of whispering from the audience, but I can’t tell if they’re just trying to get more wet-naps. The ribs here are really messy.

Matthew introduces himself, “Alright. Lookie here. We got ourselves another handsome hombre. Stellar pecs, my friend. (Jake’s not wearing a shirt, either) My name is Loren, but they call me El Don. I think I know where the ladies are going to be this semester.”

Jake reveals that he is Nhean Sok, my Cambodian roommate, and that he was just about to go for long bike ride. Just then another actor enters through the back curtain. I don’t believe it, but I’m sure it’s Lance Armstrong. “Did someone say bike ride?” and he promptly yanks off tear-away warm-ups and is wearing lycra biking shorts.

Matthew, “Boys, it looks like we’re gonna get acquainted over a workout. First one to break a sweat is a pussy.”

They leave the dorm set and Matthew stops for a moment in front a small group of girls that has appeared just at the edge stage, “ladies, party later in our room. Drop whatever geeks you have plans with and come party with us. Definitely see you there. Alright?”

End scene.

Nhean and I did really talk much for about the first month and a half. But, we did eventually form a nice friendship, though I have no idea where he is now.
This was also the first of a couple of different spans where I didn’t have sex for nearly a year.
Aside from the bro love, his version is much better. I’m kind of wishing I could go back and do this part of my life over.

The rest of the evening goes off without a hitch. Except for one moment when an audience member loudly complains that they’ve run out of corn on the cob. A double helping of baked potato seemed to calm him down.

Matthew portrays a number of other important moments from my life. Walking for the first time, getting my first real job working for the phone company, losing my virginity.
That last one he seemed to have the most fun with. Like the driving test, however, there were a couple of more people involved than the actual event. And I was 26. I think one of the girls in his scene was an Algebra tudor.

All in all, a great evening.
Matthew definitely knows how to chew through a scene and my life has never looked so good.
In fact, walking out out of the dinner theatre and down the street to my rental car, I couldn’t help but think how much better I might feel if I took off my shirt.


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