Monday, July 30, 2012

Adventures in HOLY SH!TTING

HOLY SH!T.  I just saw the craziest shit on youtube.  

What was it?  The greatest card trick ever?

No.  Something more pop culture.  Remember the year 1987?

Oh.  Was it the video of that Whitesnake song?

No.  Remember Adventures in Babysitting?

Oh!  It must be Elisabeth Shue, naked.

Er.  No.  Close.  Remember Brad from Adventures in Babysitting?

Is he the guy in the horned helmet?

No.  That's Thor.

Is he the the jerk who's two-timing Elisabeth Shue?


The one she falls in love with?

No!  Brad!  The one she's babysitting who has a crush on her.

Oh!  Brad!

Right.  So his real name is Keith Coogan, and he's an award-winning actor.

So?  He's on youtube?

He is.  For 191 days in 2010, he memorized, performed, and filmed a monologue a day. You can watch him perform work by such wordsmiths as Shakespeare, Sam Shepard, and Rebecca Black.

So I got four monologues published in a monologue collection about 8 years ago.


So look at whose monologue he learned and performed on day 34.
Holy Sh!t!

Now you get it.  I have published words that were memorized and publicly performed alongside Shakespeare, Shepard, and Black -- by an award-winning actor whose most famous movie incidentally was filmed in Chicago.


Oh, forget it.  I'm going to go have this imaginary conversation with someone who believes in me.  

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Lights (Down)

When the lights go down for the closing
Of my show about some trains
And I’m not even living there in that city
Ooh, ooh

So you didn’t see it?
Well my friend I missed it, too
‘Cause I no longer live in that city far away,
Ooh, ooh

It's sad, oh I’m in mournin, what will I do without it,
I followed it from afar,
Ooh, my, my, my, my, my

When the lights go down for the closing
Of my show about some trains,
I was not even living there in that city,
Ooh, ooh

When the lights go down for the closing
Of my show about some trains,
I felt it in earnest, from my city far away,
Ooh, ooh

Goodnight, sweet T.*

* Ha.  Sweet T!  Get it?

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Tenth Omen: Friggatriskaidekaphobia

Superstitious?  You should be.  The world is full of strange happenings and uncanny coincidences.  You meet someone as an adult that you grew up a block away from--but never met as a child.  You miss a train, then meet the love of your life while waiting for the next one.  You bump into someone on the street the day they post on your facebook wall.*  I'm told that in Jamaica, a man on a moped was struck and killed by a taxi driver at a certain intersection.  The next year, his brother was struck and killed on his moped at the same intersection . . . by the same taxi driver . . . carrying the same passenger.  How many black cats do you have to kick to earn that kind of car-ma? 

Maybe these things have nothing to do with whether you walk under ladders, break mirrors, or always set your television to channel 3 before turning it off . . . but then again, maybe they do.  With that in mind, is it coincidence that this Friday, the 13th, marks the final performance of "T: An MBTA Musical" at OBERON?

The origins of the Friday the 13th superstition are unclear.  Since the 14th century in Europe, Friday has been considered an unlucky day; the number 13 has been considered unlucky since Jesus chose twelve apostles and sat down to dinner with them.^  On Friday, October 13, 1307, hundreds of members of the Knights Templar were arrested in France, but only Dan Brown, who is still outselling me on, thinks this incident was the origin of the superstition.

Wherever the superstition comes from, Friday the 13th is still a real head-turner, and closing our show that day is, without a doubt, the tenth omen in a long series of signs foretelling my future fame.  Is it a good omen?  Who knows.  Is Fame good?  Let's say, "yes." 

But what if ticket sales plummet, lights fall from the grid, and actors get stomach viruses?  Well, then we'll take fate into our own hands.  If things are looking dreary for this weekend's show, if we can't overcome centuries of bad luck, divine misfortune, and Pech, then we'll just cancel the performance, take what actors we have left, and put on a different show 10:30 this Friday at OBERON. 
As a back-up, we're already in rehearsals for Macbeth.

You can get tickets here**, but only if you promise not to step on any cracks en route to the theater.

The omens so far:

1. My Zeitgeist Stage check
2. I Burned My Face
3. A Book
4. I'm on National Television!
5. I'm an inspiration to the young!
6. Prophecy!
7.The T Pays Off
9. Like New!
10. Friggatriskaidekaphobia
11. ??
12. ??
13. probably a giant check


* This, the most uncanny of all.

^ Also, how many letters are in the names of famed serial killers "Albert DeSalvo," "Charles Manson," "John Wayne Gacy," and "Jeffrey Dahmer?"

** For "T," not Macbeth.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Summer Reruns

It's July!*  Do you know what that means?  Do you remember?

July is the month of my birth . . . into Chicago.  Do you remember that? 

It's the month of successful musicals about the T.  Do you remember that

It's the month in which I perform at the Neofuturarium.  Remember?

The month in which I begin to volunteer my ass off?

In which Second City and I flirt but go our separate ways?

You don't remember much, do you?  C'mon.  It's only been a year.

That's okay.  You can catch it this time around.  Life is a big fat rerun.

Last year, Chicago welcomed me with fireworks and wild celebration.  This year, the city went all out.  On the day of my one-year anniversary, I was invited to a mysterious building in Wicker Park (a neighborhood I can now find "all on my ownsies").  I followed signs to the top floor, then to the roof.  I was handed a beer and engaged in pleasant conversation under a full moon that I'm pretty sure was fake.  Then, Rahm Emmanuel personally entertained me all evening with a fireworks display in four dimensions.

Is this a sign of things to come . . . er, that is, things to repeat?  If you don't think so, have a look at some other omens.^

- This month, I will again be performing at the Neofuturarium.  Sure, it'll be as part of a class, "Intro to TML," but performance is performance, and I intend to call a cigar a cigar. 

- Yesterday, I volunteered with Second City.  I washed dogs.  I did not dress up like one

- Speaking of Second City, after a year on the "in," I am once again, like last summer, "on the out."  Was it my overuse of quotation marks? Or was a year just enough?

- As I write this, I'm listening to "Living on Prayer" on repeat.  I'm pretty sure I also listened to that song sometime last July, too.  Weird. 

- And that musical?  Well, it seems to be speaking for itself again over in Beantown

Yes, any way you slice it, July is (give or take) the third most exciting month of the year.  And it's a great time to start all over again.  

"We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time."  - TS Eliot  

I first learned that quotation in July.  

Weird. Again.

*I don't know what an e-socialist is.  

^ Not official omens, mind you.  Haven't seen one of those for a while.