Lights, Camera, Read...

Jan 20, 2013

With frozen, shaking hands, I approached the stage.  Heart racing, I felt like a character in one of my stories.  Don't screw it up.  Breathe.

On the one hand, I was glad to go second.  Get it over with.  On the other, I didn't want to be lost in the shuffle.  But everyone's story was so different, I felt like everyone stood out.  Family and friends are already referring to each of us by our story.  

"I really liked grandma glasses girl."  "The Starbucks banana girl, hilarious."

I won't give away my theme until the second performance is over but I think it was pretty memorable.

Now onto the surreal feeling of standing on stage in front of 80-some people, most of which I don't know, reading a story without really seeing the words and hoping you're not making a weird face.  What the hell was I thinking...  I'd tell you it was the narcissist in me that likes attention, or the comedian that likes to bring comic relief to situations.  But all I kept thinking was Do these jeans make me look, well...? Is this even funny?   Can I read this with the lights out possibly?  Can anyone prove to me there was laughter?  Because all I knew was the spotlight was boring a hole into my eye sockets and I will die if anyone sees my hands are shaking.

My story, all six pages, sped by.  As I ended, the warmth returned to my hands and I relaxed and laughed my ass off at the other stories.  All of the stories were so damn good.  It motivated me.  It inspired me.  It vindicated all the years I've been writing despite my inability to comprehend if my story was any good or made any sense at all.  

All I know is...I can't wait to do it again.

You're Being Ridiculous will perform once again January 26th at Mary's Attic on Clark in Chicago.  Once the second performance is complete, I'll post the story.  But really, come see the show if you can.  Hearing all of the stories read loud really does them justice.