Wednesday, July 20, 2011


Last week, Larissa Dzegar of "Thoughts Simply Arise" honored me with a guest writing spot.  In case you missed it, I'm now publishing it here at home.  This one is close to my heart; it was very personal and timely, a joy to write and a joy to share on Larissa's blog.  This is what it says:

When reigning Artistic Director David Greenham invited me to spend my summer with Maine's Shakespeare Theater, I wasn't sure who was wooing who.  Clearly I was enamored immediately with the theater and desperate to be likable enough to warrant an invitation to join the company.  When I received an email for a phone interview my heart went pitterpat and I said okay, Joe, this is game time.  Put on the charm for this one.  Get a job.  You can do it.

On the phone, I was so stinking charming I believe I even chatted with Dave (who is himself charming and hilarious, with bone-dry sarcasm and a lifetime of theater experience to pepper his conversation) about house additions and contracting companies - which I know next to nothing about.  And then he offered me a job, and our roles seemed to reverse.  He said humbly, courtingly, "Are you SURE you want to step out of your life for 10 weeks and come to Maine?"  I remember how smiley my voice was.  It drew my roommate out of the kitchen to make sure I was alright (normally my voice is not exactly smiley).  "David," I said, "I would love to step out of my life for 10 weeks."

Calamity isn't gunshy
It's one thing to talk big.  I can talk big about a lot of things.  I can talk big about dropping everything for 10 weeks and build myself up to be some kind of gun-slinging desperado.  I can talk big about being a gypsy, eating three plates of pasta in one sitting, heartbreaking, moving on, adulthood, professionalism, double entendres, flirting; but when the rubber meets the road I find myself shrinking a little from my bold words, distracted and worried by ghostly whispers and flashbacks.  Last time this didn't end so well...I know where this is going....I was you're right I wasn't kidding..were you kidding?...damnYup, this is happening.

Gunshy.  Listen to this song and you'll know what I mean:

I've stepped out of my life for 10 weeks and into...still my life.  As my father likes to say, "You always take yourself with you."  Usually I'm pretty good with the confidence and risk taking, but sometimes I feel less like a sexy beast and more like a hot mess.  Leaps of faith can be hard to make and wisdom is hard to come by.

How do you know what - and who - to let in?  As artists I know there's an eagerness to be open, to live dangerously and fully and impulsively and I am ALL ABOUT THAT - for about 3 weeks.  Then I start feeling feelings and I'm afraid to pull the trigger.  How does one do all that, and still have a home inside oneself to rest in - a home that goes with you wherever you lay your head?
say yes?

I remember in my second year of graduate school I had the "Say Yes to Everything and Everyone" phase, where I let so many people and things into my heart I could no longer hear my own voice in my head.  After about 6 months I was dizzy and heartsick, but not very sorry.  It took me about a year to be sorry.  Now, sometimes I miss the extreme peak experiences I had back then.  Life out of grad school is a little more about surviving, which sometimes isn't as fun...but I'm a little hesitant to toss myself to the winds.  There's an element of maturity that wants to control and monitor a person, a performance, a self.  My pendulum doesn't seem to know how to fall to center: I'm always a freakish uber-marionette or a wanton will o' the wisp.  Was my mother right?  Are all things really moderation?

Honestly, I kind of hope not.  Ultimately, what do I got to lose by taking a chance?  It's just one small human heart.  As Beatrice says in Much Ado About Nothing, "Poor fool (heart), it keeps to the windy side of care."

with the skeletons
Every day is starting again.  Some days that's exciting to me - when I know my lines, when I know how I feel, when I know what I want to do - or when I don't know what I want to do and can't wait to figure it out as I go.  Sometimes the idea of starting again makes me not want to wake up, preferring my dream people and dream lives.  Sometimes when I hear a foreign voice say, "Let me in," I am running to the door or the window or the skylight and throwing back the shutters, shivering in sun, damning the torpedoes and racing full speed ahead.  Other times when that voice comes along suddenly I'm hiding in the closet with the skeletons, afraid to meet those green eyes or blue eyes or brown eyes or whatever color pleases God eyes.  Afraid to be unprofessional.  Afraid to be professional.
It's just one small human heart


What if...what if this time...

Today, I'm a bit embarrassed to report, I'm hiding in the closet.  You can come in too though.  We can share my flashlight and listen to this beautiful song again, and try to muster the courage to open the door.

For the record, since this was written several weeks ago and published last week, I DID manage to get up, open the door, and toss myself into some adventures.  More on that later...  :)


  1. I love this post, and your adventures. you are so creative and imaginative!

    I hope you had a wonderful time throwing yourself into many adventures... =)

  2. Thanks so much girl! So far I'm thankful for every adventure I've had. Thanks for reading! XOXO