Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Waiting

Sometimes, after I have missed several easy hucks or if I'm in a long line or at a school concert or listening to a boring speaker - in short, if I'm faced with a long and unbounded wait - you will hear me make a joke that goes something like this: "eventually, I will make an actual catch," and, "the potential longest we could have to keep doing this is until we die, right?"

The joke is just exaggeration, a way of expressing that terrible feeling when you are at a bad place and you could be there for much longer.

But it is worth mentioning that it is not just a joke. Sometimes what I am saying is that this wait sucks but that it will not be much longer and that things will improve, what I am saying was recently and expertly explained to me as Thorton Wilder's message in writing Our Town: that ordinarily life is beautiful, even if you've got a weird chorus of ghosts following you around, and I'm saying that there will be time for us after this wait that will have made it worthwhile, and that it will not be too much longer before this is over. Everything ends some time, and the wait was never that bad in retrospect. I heard this last song is pretty short, and you can take off your bow tie on the ride home if you want.

Sunday, April 18, 2010


I was accepted to nineteen schools.

The stage is suddenly lit brilliantly, harshly. The AUDIENCE winces and blinks. THE PROSPECTIVE STUDENT stands in the middle of the stage in front of a long, plain table with nineteen identical glasses of water in a row. He's holding a manila file folder.

I went to nineteen different sleeping bag preview weekends and stayed with nineteen RA's and listened to nineteen different presidents tell me not to come to their school if I only wanted the brand name experience and that I wouldn't hear that anywhere else. Nineteen tour guides told me to tell them if a car was coming, nineteen sets of people watched me awkwardly wander in late to the information session, nineteen College Prowler Off The Record books are on my bedside table.

THE PROSPECTIVE STUDENT walks upstage to stand behind the table. He places his fingertips on its surface.

I have nineteen glasses of water here. They're from nineteen different taps from nineteen different freshman bathrooms I visited on nineteen different college tours, and they're numbered.

A beat.

THE PROSPECTIVE STUDENT holds up his folder.

I also have a spreadsheet.

Another beat. He puts down his folder.

Then he starts drinking. The AUDIENCE realizes what's happening now, and they hate it. He drinks every drop from the first glass and then breathes and then puts it down and moves to the next one. There are no pauses, just bottoms up and for god's sake don't spill. It's clean. It's mechanical. The AUDIENCE's quiet murmuring turns into nervous chatter. Onstage, it is bright and still. THE PROSPECTIVE STUDENT is on his twelfth glass and shows no signs of stopping. People begin vomiting in the crowd, and then the screaming starts. It's chaos.

The PROSPECTIVE STUDENT finishes the last glass of water. He stares for a second, and then he opens the folder.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Kilmer? I Hardly Know 'Er!

I think that I shall never see
A poem as lovely as frisbee,

A sport with hucks thrown outside-in
find Steve, whose mark was fronting him,

A sport where swing cuts are divine
to get your handler off the line

A sport that I in summer play
A pick-up game most every day

Upon whose fun does not rely
On sunny days, e'en rain is fine.

Yes, poems may bring you fame and glamour,
But nothing ever beats a hammer.