Friday, March 30, 2012

I'll Tumble 4 Ya

Since that 4th of July back in 2009 when I tripped on the sidewalk and smashed my face into the concrete, I've noticed a trend. I seem to be taking to taking a tumble every now and then.

A few months ago, I fell off the sidewalk in front of a Whitney Bank branch office on Veterans Highway, and last night I took a dive into the flower garden of a lovely home up on Saint Charles Avenue.

I do fall in nice places. I will say that.

I wish someone had prepared me for this aspect of the maturation process. I was reasonably prepared for the occasional random aches and pains that pass as the day wears on, the gradual hearing loss that brings sweet peace and quiet, the empty memory chambers in my desiccating brain that once held facts and figures and even names I no longer need to know and can finally be forgiven for forgetting.

But nobody ever told me that in my second childhood, I would have to learn to walk again.

I've been spending the day going over this and trying to figure out why this has begun to happen to me, and I think I've figured it out.

Each time I fell, I was doing something in addition to walking. The first time, I was taking a photograph and stepped into a hole in the sidewalk. At the bank, I was reading my ATM receipt as I stepped off a curb. And last night, I was skimming through emails on my android phone and didn't see the step up onto the path that led to the front door of that house on Saint Charles Avenue.

Can it be this simple that I can no longer walk and do anything else at the same time?

Now, if only I can remember that.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

A Toast to the Outlaws and Outliers

Taryn Vinet is a member of the Big Easy Theatre Committee of Gambit Magazine. Their annual awards ceremony is coming up soon; and she took the time to write the following note on Facebook:
The Big Easys are this coming Monday and I'm really looking forward to the awards. There are some very deserving nominees but there's also a handful of people/productions that I wish would have been acknowledged as well.

They are including (but not limited to):

Alan Payne for Best Direction of a Musical (Chicago.)
Leslie Limberg for Best Actress in a Musical (Chicago.)
Marc Belloni for Best Supporting Actor in a Musical (Chicago.)
Jaune Buisson for Best Choreography (A Chorus Line.)
Micha Desonier for Best Actress in a Musical (The Sound of Music.)
Andrew Antoine for Best Supporting Actor in a Musical (Fiddler on the Roof.)
Stage Door Canteen for Best Ensemble Cast (On the Air.)
Music Makers LLC for Best Ensembe Cast (Waiting Around.)

Inside Out Productions for Best Drama (Cat's Paw.)
Glenn Meche for Best Director of a Drama (Hugging the Shoulder.)
Eli Grove and Joe Seibert for Best Actors in a Drama (Hugging the Shoulder.)
Liz Mills for Best Supporting Actor in a Drama (Hugging the Shoulder.)
Veronica Hunsinger-Loe for Best Actress in a Drama (Sarah.)
Jonathan Mares Production for Best Ensemble Cast (Closer.)
Selena Poznak for Best Lighting Design (Marisol.)

NOLA Project for Best Comedy (Almost an Evening.)
Theatre 13 for Best Comedy (Play Dates.)
Ashley Ricord for Best Director of a Comedy (Play Dates.)
Lisa Picone for Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy (Play Dates.)
Jackie Freeman for Best Actress in a Comedy (Speech and Debate.)
Matt Standley for Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy (Future is a Fancyland.)
Andrew Farrier for Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy (Torch Song Trilogy)
Wendy Miklovic for Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy (Torch Song Trilogy)
Bob Murrell for Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy (Rumors.)
Kaleigh Leigh for Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy (Rumors.)

Michael Santos for Best Original Work and Best University Production (Race through Darkwood Forest.)
Eddie Cox for Best Set Design (Good Night Moon.)
I thank Taryn for her generous spirit; and I salute the artists who are marking their own footpaths, doing what some say cannot be done, while thumbing their noses at the theatre establishment and rejecting the dictates of the self-appointed lawgivers who presume to impose order on a bedlam they can neither control nor comprehend.

Chaos breeds life.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

A Glass Half Full

Photo by sussah, angels and people, life in new orleans
There is a lady blogger here in New Orleans (she uses the name sussah) who takes pictures, much like I do, obsessively—well, let's say, often. I believe we both have the post-Katrina fever of trying to capture images of a place we love so deeply before it vanishes like Atlantis beneath the foam.

We discovered each other some time back when she broke the ice to let me know she liked my pictures. I gradually got to know her, too, through her posts, and have been impressed by her visual spontaneity and the breadth of what she finds beautiful and worthy. I cannot imagine her looking through a viewfinder at any scene and saying, "No, this isn't a picture I want to save."

If life is a glass, she certainly sees hers as half full.

I, of course, if you know anything about me, see my glass as half empty.

Except when I spend some time looking at sussah's pictures.

It's like she shakes me by the shoulders while yelling at me to straighten up, all the time giggling because she knows I have a marshmallow middle.

No, that's not it, it's like she mixes her glass with mine, and, for a short (very happy) while, we both have one great big full glass of something wonderful like Barq's Creme Soda.

Well, at least, I do.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

I Saw the Time Change Sunday Morning

I'd gone to bed about eight the night before, so waking up at one in the morning wasn't so bad. Five good hours on the new memory-foam mattress cover that arrived on Thursday.

What to do?

Who am I kidding? It was off to the little room at the other end of the hall where my baby was waiting for me like she always does, my little PC. Soon I was back in the saddle and roaming the Internet range.

In no time at all, I noticed the clocks around me were indicating the one o'clock hour was nearing it's end. Soon it would be the moment when time would speed forward an hour in the first of the semi-annual time slips of the current year.

As the second hand clicked on the final 12 of the hour, I felt the silence descend around me as the very atoms in my body slipped their moorings, shuddered, and began to expand in a timeless explosion, carrying me out of myself into infinity.

In that nanomoment I saw wondrous sights that are impossible to recall to mind. The very hour that would not be was shown to me to be full of limitless possibilities. Worlds would rise and fall in that microcosmic bang, and seers and singers would extol their myths, myths we would never hear or seek to comprehend.

Then time brought me back, and it was three o'clock Sunday morning.

We had indeed slipped past an hour, but that hour lived in its own space and time, far away from us and hidden from our grasp.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Damping the Flames of Revolution

Once upon a time, I was a firebrand. I considered it my right and privilege, never mind duty, to right the wrongs I saw around me in the world. But I was older then when I was young.

Now, I'm old for real, wizened, and, I hope, wise. Wiser? Well, wise enough to recognize folly and foolishness. Wise enough to know that there is more that I will never know than that I ever will.

Wise enough to know we, all of us, are fools.

There is so much wrong in the world today; so much wrong in my country, in my state, my city, and around the corner from where I stay on Decatur Street.

And I do my best to lay low and out of the way and to keep my mouth shut.


Because I do not, cannot, make a difference. Can you? You'd be a fool to think you could.

A wise man—well, at least, a very smart one—once said to me, "The only thing that you can change is your own attitude."

I believe the passing years and my experiences have proved him right.

So I watch the passing scene in silence, while others skirmish and grow fat on a diet rich in righteous self-regard.

I tend my own nest now.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Soul Suckers

Got any soul suckers in your life?

Of course, you do. We all have them, those negative, destructive, and demoralizing figures out to put us—and keep us—down.

They're everywhere. They're in the house, the office. They're on the radio and on the television screen.

They tell us to think small—or, better yet, don't think at all; do what we're told.

They serve us cake. They watch us eat it, then they tell us we're as big as houses.

They snicker at our attempts to grow beyond the narrow and constrictive walls of who and what we were into that person we are becoming.

They make us feel bad about ourselves and sometimes make us want to die.

But you know what?

Soul suckers suck souls because they have no souls themselves.
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