22 August 2007

SO . . . MUCH . . .. BRAIN . . . 'ASPLODING . . .!


Hi. Hi. Hi.

That's kind of the rhythm of my life this week.

Hi. Hi. Hi. Very precise, slightly manic in pace. It would be mostly the good kind of stress (what "good" kind, you ask -- the kind that comes of having too much to do as a result of lots of stuff one loves...an important caveat) except that nobody's personal life takes a holiday without extreme measures, and I've had several reminders over the past ten days or so from said personal life as to how trivial some of my stress is. Which compounds it with a sense of guilt. Which is about par for the course for yours truly.

There was this week, back in college, when I essentially disappeared for several weekdays in a row. I think it was during my Junior year, and it was highly uncharacteristic of me, at least in one sense. That sense being about how I was Super Student in college. I dove into my work with untempered zeal, and didn't really start to surface until some time mid-Senior-year. In another sense, it was utterly characteristic of me, because what prompted my dive into working solitude (relative solitude) was a certain powerful emotional response to events in my personal life. So Junior year, having no increased work to dive into, I took a time out. It was quite unintentional, and I look back and marvel at how easily I did it . . . and how, even once I recognized I was doing it, the recognition didn't prompt concern for my own well-being. I finally came out of my room, and just went about my business as I always had before.

That's the kind of "extreme measure" I refer to, and it is not an adult option. Sure, everyone needs some time off once in a while, from work, from friends, etc., but short of entering an institution for the treatment of nervous breakdown there is no healthy way to rest from who one is, or one's current responsibilities. And really, I don't want to. I want to achieve, and change, and all that good stuff. Good stuff, nonetheless, can at times be overwhelming.

Another thing I did in college, a healthier and more repeated thing, was to make a B.F.L. in times of many goals, such as when finals rolled around. "B.F.L." is a reference to the PC game DOOM, which I'm not proud of, but thought I ought to own up to. It stands for "Big F'n List," and was essentially just that, comprised of everything I had to get done before a given period of time was out.

Now, for certain pragmatic reasons, I can't list all the to-dos here so, in the spirit of As Far As We Know's launching notice, I present the short list:
  • Work enough hours at day job to cover lack of pay at upcoming gig
  • Do laundry
  • Clean apartment
  • Pack for two months away
  • Forward mail to working address
  • Interview folks
  • Brush-up rehearsals for As Far As We Know
  • Two performances to "close" As Far As We Know
  • Write "closing-night" cards for As Far As We Know
  • Arrange dates to breach upcoming contract in order to perform in potential re-up of As Far As We Know
  • Figure out and arrange transportation for Pennsylvania-New York commute for re-ups
  • Plan curriculum for workshops launching Prohibitive Standards rehearsal period
  • Continue research for Prohibitive Standards
  • Contribute to Prohibitive Standards collaboration forum
  • Maintain exercise regimen, sleep schedule and sanity

I'm not trying to impress you. Okay, well, yes: I crave sympathy. But I have friends with a lot more on their plates--in school, for (a big) one--and I'm aware that all this comes from good tidings, not to mention said reminders of late about how trivial such concerns are in the face of issues such as life, death and family. So, more to the point, I list my pre-Sunday to-dos in order to set them down, make them seem more manageable and share a slice of my life when it's in this mode.

The keen-eyed amongst you may have noticed that I rather slipped in there the possibility of a re-up of As Far As We Know. (It being a mere possibility at this stage is yet another in a long line of inadvertent puns on our title.) I don't want to jinx anything, but the sentiment from our side of things is that when a show gets such press as ours has, it's a good idea to use that momentum whilst it is most momentous. This has long been the goal of our esteemed production team (read: Laurie and Kelly): to get the show supported or otherwise picked-up by a more major theatre. There's a very interesting double-motivation here--one for success in our creation, and one for success in spreading the story and awareness of the Maupin's struggle. That, I suppose, is the balance to all the hassles of creating one's own work: that you will really, personally care about getting it out there.

Which leads us to my present conflict--eager for resolution, but utterly lacking in information to resolve. Both shows are very personally important to me, and both rather rely on my presence. The Zuppa del Giorno shows have been my greatest priority, and my most evolved work, for close to five years. I love them: They are me as an actor, in so many ways. This project is far and away our most ambitious and exciting to date, with a cast of five plus student actors, and performing in two venues. As Far As We Know has been in collaboration for over two years, I've been with it since nearly the beginning, and it's also a creator/actor piece. Now it has the hope of reaching a larger audience than any of my work has to date, and I'm loathe to let go of it, even for a few performances. The two don't absolutely conflict, but decisions are on the horizon. Here's hoping the fates are pleased.

Why, you may ask, in the midst of this would he take time from his day to write here? It would actually be worse if I didn't. Somehow staying connected on the Aviary helps to keep me connected to myself, if just a bit more. Doing less has never given me more sense of peace. Doing more of what I love inevitably does.

So there's much to do before I leave. I appreciate my friends' understanding of that. Hopefully I can make it up to them before "Hi. Hi. Hi." becomes "Bye. Bye. Bye."

And not in that nice *NSYNC way, either.

Oh, get over yourself. You were right there with me.

3 comments:

Kim W. said...

Continue research for Prohibitive Standards

...um...there is help available for this, you know.

(Hell, a complete stranger emailed me two after finding the other blog and asked me for tips on fleshing out her Rudolph Valentino web site. My research-fu is mighty.)

Davey said...

Congrats again on a succesful run. Here's hoping you get to do more.
Also, a request. Alright, more than a request, not quite yet a demand, 'cuz I loves ya and I know your busy, so let's just call it a strongly worded statement:

More Fart Jokes!

That is all.

Jeff Wills said...

Kim, you are of course a saving grace in that effort. Davey . . . as you wish . . .