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  1. On Friday, I was part of Bob Quatrone's 4 Horse 22 Poetry Reading at Cornelia Street Café in the Village (NYC).  Bob curated and hosted and had fun with format.  I was so glad to be there right after work on a Friday.  It was a great way to end the week/begin the weekend.  I rode downtown from the Bronx with someone whose company I value.  Another woman who works at my day job and feels like a new friend was expecting to attend the reading.  I was looking forward to her arrival. 
    Since doing stand-up, reading my poetry feels so much easier than it used to.  I don't have to memorize it unless I want to.  I don't have to be funny.  Stand-up is truly the most challenging type of performing that I've done so far.  I've been in plays and films, posed for fine artists, read my prose and poetry at many venues over the years, teach adult returning students which really keeps me on my toes, but as far as being expected to perform for a group, I find doing stand-up like wearing ankle weights compared to most things. 
    I enjoyed the line-up of readers very much.  My friend showed up a little late, and I was so glad to see her.  By then I was on my second drink and a side of fries to help me be sure I'd be able to read.  A poet who I was consulting with on a project came over to tell me something, and, in that short conversation, I learned something about someone else (or at least what she had claimed about herself) that made my jaw drop.  It wasn't particularly negative or positive, just very surprising.  The poet who shared this didn't do it for the purpose of gossiping as much as to tell me why she'd be uncomfortable working with that person. 
    I enjoyed reading very much.  I had to notice that my hands were not trembling, my voice was clear, the audience was really listening and enjoying.  The ankle weights were off, and this was just fun.

    After the reading, there were many warm exchanges, support of my work, contact info shared, and I was reminded of why I should be doing this more often than I do. 
    One of the other features asked me to join him and his guests.  They were looking to have a drink somewhere else.  The poet who invited me is someone I only know from the poetry circles.  We know mutual people from the same circles.  However, this night I learned so much more than I knew.  Again, none of it felt like it was for the purpose of gossiping or bad-mouthing as much as it felt like someone needing to get a load off and perhaps get a reality check.  I know what it is like to be in an internal prison.  Just hearing reactions from the outside can be so validating and freeing.
    Aside from it being a night of poetry and of learning the back story on a few people, I was also struck by the two who, along with the other poet, invited me to join them.  The woman was from Hawaii and the man was from London.  I think they live together in Hawaii, not sure.  But they are indeed a couple.  There wasn't enough time to get to know each other well, but she definitely made an impression.  Before we even left Cornelia Street Café, she held me by my arm firmly.  It was as if we'd been connected before that night.  Then in the street, she held her man's arm on one side and me on her other side.  It felt fine to me.  I did wonder if she was bisexual and wanted an involvement of that sort.  Her man seemed to be a pleasant person upon first and only impression.  Frankly, I'm glad I don't have to think about all that (unless I want to think about it, of course), and that they were only visiting NYC.  I'd enjoy hanging out with them, but I don't know that I'd want to play that way. 
    At some point while we sat at a table in another place, she reminded my poet friend that she was a Reiki master.  Then she put her hands around my head.  I closed my eyes, and I could feel the heat from her hands though she didn't touch me.  After about a minute, she said that she felt blockages and removed ship nails from my head.  She said they seemed like long nails used in a ship. 
    In a metaphorical way, it makes sense how she described my blockages.  I know nothing about the Reiki practice.  She didn't directly do anything to my body and she didn't charge me, so I try to be open to different ways of feeling better, lighter, clearer, freer. 

  2. 6 comments:

    1. Canada Anne said...

      So true Standup is the most difficult and challenging type of performing there is. You have to be on point all the time and timing is everything to get it across to get the laughs.

    2. and you are up there alone and you wrote the material. plus everything you said.

    3. Canada Anne said...

      I did stand up for a bit there and it was brutal. There were times it felt like you were up on that stage and being interrogated. You felt like they were watching and examining you and they were saying "you are up there, now make me laugh I'm waiting!" Other times. you really hit it on target got laughs and applause and you felt amazing like you never wanted to leave the stage.

      The thing that discouraged me really about stand up were the "bringer" shows. When i first started doing stand up and was excited about it I took that course at Carolines on how to do stand up. I paid out of my own pocket for that, got zero feedback of how to improve and at the end of the course they wanted us to bring 20 people on a Sunday afternoon at 1pm to Carolines where its a $40 drink min.

      Of course I was new to New York at the time still and could barely scrape up 2 people with any money. I even offered to pay a bum on the street to sit for the show. Because I only had 3 people in total for that show they cut my act down to 3 minutes from 7. Such a slap in the face really. After you paid for it. Of course the guy from long Island who brought his entire offspring and ancestors down to watch him had 40 people and he got 20 minutes of stage time.

      I went up regardless and gave it my all. And I got a great applause. a big applause. they liked me and after the show I had stranger come sup to me and tell me I was great. That made me feel good. The guy who brought his entire family was not as good and i heard peoples comments about the show.

      Point is you are alone in doing stand up. It is by far harder than music or dance or poetry. If you don't hear the laugh or the acknowledgment of doing great, you really sink down. But when you do , its a great feeling. Really a hit or miss.

    4. I have my difficulties getting to comedy open mics but I need to do more if I'm going to make something happen. I did some bringers when I was new. Then I began producing some shows. Now I've been on pause with that but will get back in motion.

    5. RHC said...

      It's very tricky trying to explain why you may not want to "work" with someone. It's not gossip, when it's an exchange of information based on the persons's subjective criteria & objectives. Know what I'm saying?

    6. Rhonda, I think I know what you are saying.

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