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Throwback Thursday

Throwback Thursday

About 20 years ago, I had a terrible haircut and I used to like to pretend to sleep on the floor of the Dairy Queen where I used to work. This is yeah write’s nomo challenge Day...
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Please Remind Me.

Please Remind Me.

It’s just November.

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The Dancing Clowns.

The Dancing Clowns.

When I first began writing, I thought I possessed exceptional talent. For that reason, although I cannot remember one single detail about it, I still firmly believe that the two-act play I wrote in the summer of 1986 was absolutely brilliant. And it is for┬áthat reason that now, nearly 30 years later, I still get furious over what happened to it. The Dancing Clowns, A Play in Two Acts, centered around, presumably, clowns who danced. Something happened, there was an intermission, and then something else happened. The details aren’t really important here. I can tell you that I really worked hard to make the dialogue authentic, bring out evocative feelings, and to really make the audience identify with the clowns. I must have, because it was brilliant, remember? I auditioned members from my newly formed Community Theatre Program (kids from the neighborhood) and cast each in a role that I felt best suited to their talents (gave the bigger parts to the kids I liked most). As writer and director, I had a vision for this production that I communicated clearly and effectively during each rehearsal. Because I was working with a pack of amateurs, I’d go home each night frustrated and concerned. Still, because of my passion for the craft, I carried on. I sold tickets and used the proceeds to buy popcorn and iced tea mix. It was hard to convince my friends to buy these tickets because, as well as being cash poor, they also were in the show and didn’t know why I was insisting they pay to sit in the audience. I tried to explain about the popcorn and iced tea and even I can admit that in hindsight this may not have been the best approach. But some other kids who were not in the production bought tickets. None of the parents were interested in this which I found mildly disappointing. Even so, we were sold out in no time, due in no small part to the fact that I only had about six lawn chairs. One week before the show, a terrible thing happened: I came down with chicken pox. Rehearsals shut down on account of the fact that my mom wouldn’t let me go outside and the moms of my friends wouldn’t let their kids near me lest they also contract the pox. Without quality time with my actors, I was fearful they would forget their lines or just lose interest in the project. And because tickets were printed with the date of the show, there was no way to postpone. As my mother applied calamine lotion to my blistering skin, I complained about the terrible timing. As she drew me a bath with oatmeal, I lamented the difficulties of being homebound. I was miserable, and not just because having the pox in August when you don’t have air conditioning and it’s sweltering out is awful. I was watching my summer-long dream of becoming a playwright go up in smoke. I begged to be allowed to go outside and direct my production. I pleaded with my mother to believe, as I did, that I was no longer sick. “Fresh air will do me good!” I said. “No.” She said. When the day of the show arrived, I managed to convince my mother to let me stand by the back window, the one in our porch-turned-pantry, so I could see the yard. It was sort of like being back stage since the...
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Ebb and Flow.

Ebb and Flow.

Five years later and I still don’t know how to do this.

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Waste Not, Want Not.

Waste Not, Want Not.

A story in 42 words.

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Home Sweet Home.

Home Sweet Home.

Maybe I can go home again, but perhaps I shouldn’t.