Some takeaways from my recent New York trip for the American Theatre Critics Association annual conference and to research an upcoming freelance travel story. :
`1. I have a love of conferences, especially when I am working there or helping organize them. Need someone to moderate a panel? Drop me a note.
2. I had no idea my brother actually liked the novel that I co-wrote about 19 years ago. Nice to know. (I stayed with him in Jersey and commuted into town this trip.)
3. Top-tier playwright plus top-tier director doesn’t always equal top-tier play. It’s a challenging art. Related: An unsatisfying theater work is not a crime against humanity.
4. I’ve learned to accept that just because I’m not the target audience and don’t particularly enjoy a work doesn’t mean it’s not good.
5. I’m good at hosting trivia events. Need someone to run a trivia event for your group? Drop me a note.
6. There are some college friends I don’t see often but, when I do, it’s a joy. Bonus: One such visit may be leading to a short film project. Stay tuned.
7. After walking the streets of NYC, It’s strange to walk out of one’s downtown office in Indianapolis on a midweek afternoon and see not another human being.
8. Small kindnesses are their own rewards.
9. I was too quick to judge the new incarnation of the Drama Bookshop. Yes, it’s more B&N than I would like. And I miss the old one. But it still has a discount section. So there’s that.
10. There are more plays to see than can ever be seen.
11. Tap dancing makes me smile.
12. Pretending that I can tap dance also makes me smile.
13. For all its problematic elements, so much of the ability to stay connected with important people in my life would not be possible without social media.
14. I am hungry to get back to work on the next theater project. (Mark Dec. 11 on your calendars, folks).
15. Some moments and memories are easy. Some are hard.
16. I have huge gaps in my theater knowledge — and sometimes that’s a plus. In this case, I never read or even knew the plot of the
Pulitzer-winning “Topdog/Underdog.” Seeing it with virgin eyes helped make it one of the highlights of this trip. (More on other shows I saw later.)
17. The original “Battle of the Network Stars” is a fascinating time capsule. (It’s the only thing I watched while away, enjoying some silly downtime with my brother and his family).
18. I hope the guy on the train who was very excited about photographing the Brooklyn Bridge sends me the pics he promised. (Note: Still waiting.)
19. I saw Bill Irwin on the street, not working. That makes him my celebrity boyfriend according to Chuck Goad’s rules. (For the uninitiated: The last celebrity you’ve seen when they are NOT at work is your celebrity boyfriend or girlfriend…until you spot another in the wild. As such, I have had these “relationships” with, among others, Dr. Ruth, George Takei, David Hartman, Jerry Stiller, Richard Kind, and many others. Don’t judge.)
20. I am looking forward to going back. After my legs recover.