Psychosis

Don't get me wrong, I enjoy exaggeration as much as the next guy—probably more, actually, but the subsequent tale is by no measure embellished. The contents of the following paragraphs are absolutely true and happened to me.

'How boring could a play with 'psycho' in the title possibly be?' I thought, considering "4.48 Psychosis," the name of this week's assigned show for my Drama in Performance class. "I mean, come on, the word 'psychosis' is rooted from the word 'psycho,' one of the ten most exciting terms in the English language."

Well, as it turns out, boring doesn't begin to describe how FUCKING HORRIBLY, WANT TO PULL MY HAIR OUT, SLIT MY THROAT and BURN MYSELF TO DEATH WITH LIT CIGARETTES, MIND-NUMBINGLY RANCID the "4.48" Psychosis experience was.

Let me count the ways in which "4.48 Psychosis" made me want to stab myself to death over and over again with a dull crayon:

One…

…the theatre provided me with two Everest-certified Sherpas and a three-day supply of oxygen for the mountainous ascension to my seat in the balcony.

Two…

…the American Red Cross fed the world's entire mosquito population, twice, with the collective nose-blood spilled following the sudden rise in elevation.

Three…

…the seats were essentially cheap Frisbees with two arms on each side and a vertebra-crushing back support that sat at an exact right angle.

Four…

…the play was completely IN FRENCH!

4.1…

…I DON'T FUCKING SPEAK FRENCH!

Five…

…the play's only character never varied the volume of her voice.

Six…

…the aforementioned character also never moved, not one single time, for two straight hours.

Seven...

…people were laughing, which means they A) understood French or B) were enjoying themselves.

Eight…

…the select few English subtitles rarely ended in punctuation, a fucking mortal sin in the eyes of an English Major.

8b…

…the unpunctuated subtitles contained phrases such as "I was caught in a web, spun by a doctor."

8c…

…there was actually no period after the word 'doctor' in the previously addressed subtitle.

Nine…

…half of my class left within twenty minutes of the play's commencement, but not I. Because I am a spineless bitch, I stayed in concern of being marked down by the professor.

Ten…

…the standing ovation lasted for eight minutes, although half of the crowd left an hour previous.

Ten and a half…

…THERE WAS A STANDING OVATION!

Eleven…

…come Monday, the students in the class who consider themselves intelligent and deep will pretend they could 'really relate' to the meaning of the production.

Although I could continue listing, I will not. But I do want to express the lone bright spot in an evening of eternal darkness.

From behind me, midway through the production, came a hand. The hand's index finger was pointed straight toward the actress on stage and its thumb was cocked back, ready to fire. The hand stayed this way for a noticeably long time.

Following the performance, I asked the person behind me what he was doing. His reply made my night:

"I kept wondering if I shot this bitch, would she finally vary the volume of her voice?"

END SCENE…

In a New York State of Mind

Never have I seen New York this collectively pleased, this awed, this…human.

As we approached the Promenade, Danielle and I, car alarms blaring, dogs sounding, neighbors audibly questioning the noise, we finally saw what beckoned us from our Sunday night routine. There, high up in the dark October sky, a boisterous series of reds, greens, whites and blues shook the hardness from this city’s armored shell, revealing, for the first time since I’ve been here, a heart. The most amazing fireworks display I’ve ever seen unfurled from a barge centered on the East River, the fireworks reflecting colorfully off the windows of mammoth Manhattan skyscrapers. We stood among a hundred of our Brooklyn Heights neighbors, wide-eyed and open-mouthed, watching the beauty unfold with each skyward shot of light and sound. I, in my bare feet and cutoff t-shirt, Danielle in her pajamas, stood and gazed with the people of New York City as a tradition typically saved for the Fourth of July pushed summer back up into the night sky if only for a moment. We held on tightly to each second, our breathless sighs rooting desperately for a big city in need of small victories. The end of a brilliant finale, worthy only of New York City, brought October crashing back down, and with it, reality.

And we applauded…

Brooklyn

Today I went shopping at some local stores (Goodwill, Salvation Army, etc.) for some type of furniture with drawers so that all of my things didn't have to sit out in my bedroom/living room. Needless to say, I found nothing in my price range and really nothing that I had in mind.

On my way back to my apartment, illuminated by the light of the gods, was an amazingly warn, slightly broken, completely free and somewhat usable filing cabinet. I didn't want to steal this treasure, so I sat on the stoop in front of the apartment nearest the cabinet and waited for the owner to return from work. Come to find out, there were several people living in the apartment (considering it was an apartment building), and, of the few people I saw, no one seemed to own the damn cabinet. Finally, a woman walked up to the door and, while she fussed with her keys, I stopped her.

"Uh, ma'am. Uh, umm, is this yours?" I asked meekly, pointing to the discarded piece of furniture.

"Dude, it's sitting on the sidewalk," she said.

I stared at her nervously, waiting for her to continue. Nothing. Then, noticing the puzzled look on my face, she decided to clarify her point.

"IT'S MOTHER FUCKING BROOKLYN, MAN, just take it," she finally blurted.

And I did.

Mother fucking Brooklyn, indeed…

Smoke

Once upon a time in a place called Evan's Backyard, three adolescent boys spent many a summer night in an invisible, soundproof tent that Cor...Morey found floating in Lake Michigan. The three boys, Morey, Lyle, and Kevin, spent the bulk of those nights smoking dozens of what they called Folgerettes (a poor man's cigarette made of coffee grounds rolled in Post-It Notes that Morey would roll under his basement stairs while his parents were at work and his sister was watching "Jenny Jones") and looking at pornographic magazines that they stole from Ste...Beve, Lyle's older brother. Morey, the handsome leader of the trio with a natural flair for reading smut aloud, would audibly present the adult entertainment publications as Lyle and Kevin giggled, pretending they understood that "bush" wasn't just a descendent of the plant family.

One night, when the moon was full and all of the Folgerettes had been smoked, the three boys ventured away from their bulletproof safe haven in search of a hidden (inside the driver's side door of neighbor Rob's unlocked car) treasure (cigarettes not made of coffee under Morey's basement stairs). The plan was simple…invite Brad over and make him do it. So they did and they all woke up with yellow teeth, stinky fingers, and numb taste buds.

The End.

P.S. To this day, Kevin (the 'K' is silent) can be found scouring the mean streets of East Lansing looking for smokes because he still really loves to smoke.

Class

For those of you who don't attend The University of New York University, I'd like to give you the 4-1-1 on what you're missing. This particular tale is 100% (well, close to) true and happened to have happened on Tuesday during my first ever Major Playwrights: Caryl Churchill class.

The scene: a quaint, well-lit classroom on the 4th floor of the Silver Center. 35 students, 1 professor.

As previously mentioned, 35 students attended the class, only 30 desks existed. As the (Ahmm...) less serious scholars trekked tardily into a room of occupied desks, they looked blankly at the professor who looked blankly back and said, in an ultra-thick British (or German) accent, "Pull up a windowsill." (Yes, 5 students sat in the windows. Not a good thing considering recent events involving unhappy NYU students and un-close-to-the-ground windows recently garnered NYU the nickname Suicide U).

(Side note) Actual NYU Nickname: The Fighting Violets (like the flower).

At any rate, after all were settled in, introductions were made.

(WARNING: Partial falsity to follow)

I, appreciating hilarity as much as the next guy, introduced myself as someone who thought they were attending a lecture about Carl (not Caryl) Churchill, Winston's gay little brother. Ten to twenty hours of deep, deep laughter ensued…

Following introductions, a video consisting entirely of one pair of human lips speaking to fast to understand played for 20 consecutive minutes. Tragically, I spent the same 20 minutes yanking and tugging at an annoying string that had come loose on my shorts, missing the movie in its entirety.

A 2 hour discussion followed, in which I had a difficult time participating (yup, another loose string). The highlight of the discussion came when one person interpreted the lips as "a human ass" and the lip's words as "diarrhea of the mouth." (I, incidentally, failed to make the connection.)

Although I found the class both stimulating and enjoyable and look forward to next Tuesday’s action-packed event, I somehow managed to end the class standing dangerously close to the window's edge...coincidence?