It’s actually kind of weird to think of myself as a playwright. I never did much theatre in school, aiming rather to do variety performance: juggling, comedy, magic, clown… I always thought of my performances as “shows.”
So now I have written a new show (God: The One-Man Show), and co-written two shows (“Delusions of Grandeur” and “The Heist” with Matthew Pauli and Karen Beriss) over the last 4 years. People keep referring to these shows as “plays.” I guess yes, since they have all have at least some semblance of a story arc, characters and drama mixed in with the comedy, but it’s weird to me to call them plays.
But if they are, then I guess I’m a playwright. I’m up there with William Shakespeare, Oscar Wilde, and that self-absorbed weirdo performing in the local church basement shouting about gender issues and hydrogenated fats.
It’s still strange to hear the word applied to my work. I just wanted to write funny shows about things that were on my mind. Now I’m a playwright. Go figure. Life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans. I didn’t know. I guess I wasn’t as omniscient as I thought.
Monday, I spent running around London, in a more “salty” part of town, to locate that stupid freaking *proprietary* Sennheiser microphone cable. Then down to Covent Garden for round two. Since I’m still new to Cups and Balls, I wanted to brush up, so I went back to the flat to run through it a few times. While practicing, Dave came back with two-year-old JJ, who was fascinated by my sorcery. I was good to go!
This time, I got into the rotation, then ran up to the rope store while Dan the magician finished up his show. The delivery had not come in. “Come back at 5:50, ten minutes before we close.” I ran back to the pitch, told the next guy to go on, and returned to the rope store at 5:55. “Nope; sorry. Sometimes the delivery guy doesn’t show, and he doesn’t pick up his mobile phone while driving.” I didn’t even bother asking, “well, if he’s not driving, he’s answering the phone, therefore not making the delivery. If he is driving, he’s not answering the phone, therefore making the delivery.” They closed at 6. *sigh*
Fortunately, now that I think about it, my Brussels host Christo runs a charter boat. I imagine he knows where to buy ropes.
I ran down to try doing a show: cups and balls. I got six teenagers to stop, another 4 people stopped, and as I tried to get a bigger crowd, they got impatient and walked away. A very fickle pitch. Very humbling. The guys on the pitch (sorry; “blokes”) made some recommendations: On a Monday at 6pm, people are more hurried; get to the substance faster… So a couple more people did shows; I tried one more time. Got a crowd of about 20. Did my cups and balls. Various things could have gone better, but I got through it. Passed my hat. For four show attempts, I only tried to collect money once. My take? £7.28. Tube fare plus an ale. Absolute crap money, but woo! If this keeps up, eventually I even might be able to pay for food!
Off to Brussels.