What I did on my sick days

Well, mostly I laid around and complained to myself about how much being sick sucks and how I really needed to get to work on those pies I wanted to make. But I also went to the video store and picked up Angels in America, six hours of gay fantasia, the theatre-adapted-for-television event of the new millennium.

Now, let me be up front in saying that I’m no huge fan of Angels in America – it just seemed like something I should watch, seeing as how I was incapable of doing anything but crying and making cup after cup of HerbaTussin tea. But there’s a larger story in the background, here.

Those of you who know me are probably aware that I spent my first year at college studying Stanislavski technique, using sense memory to try and make myself cry, and in the process slowly driving myself insane. That first year was a hard one – I don’t remember it in any sort of linear fashion, but rather in bursts of light and dark – and as I watched hour one of Angels, a forgotten drama memory revealed itself to me.

During the brief year I spent at Syracuse Stage, we had the pleasure of hosting not only a production of the then-new play Angels in America, but also the esteemed author Tony Kushner. All the theatre geeks were agog, even the straight boys, of which there were very few, and when he came to speak to the department at our weekly convocation, people took it very seriously. People were taking notes, people were rapt with attention, people were asking very well-thought-out questions about character motivation and the history behind the Work.

I was probably stoned.

How do I know this? Not only by process of elimination, my friends, but also because when the microphone was passed my way to pose a question to our esteemed guest, I stood up, cleared my throat, and asked him to a keg party.

No kidding.

I asked renowned playwright Tony Kushner to the department’s monthly kegger. And he blushed.

Afterwards, smoking Camel Wides in the Syracuse wind, everyone congratulated me on my cajhones (although the department head was less than amused). It was the only time all year that I ever felt accepted, and man, it was fucking glorious.

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