This spring I'm playing Nicholas Radzi in IN THE MATTER OF J. ROBERT OPPENHEIMER, directed by Fred Walton, for Northwest Classical Theater Co. It's a 10-12 page role--not large--but one with good opportunities. NWCTC is in a new, cozy and plush space in southeast Portland. The auditorium seats no more than 40 people and the playing area must not be more than 15' x 15.' The seats are wonderfully comfortable and plush. The room had most recently been used as a screening room for a film producer. Grant Turner, Artistic Director of NWCTC, Fred Walton, and Bibi Walton deserve credit and support for the toil they've put into giving NWCTC a permanent home, which promises to be a vital community resource. The first show of the season is ROMEO AND JULIET, which runs in November. Go see it.
Last week, I spoke with two of my cousins, my aunt Connie, and uncle David, all in or just outside of New Orleans. Hearing their voices, I remembered how much I missed them. These are warm people. They chattered on and on, with little urging, about the aftermath of Katrina and the emerging scope of the coming rebuilding effort. They were full of details I hadn't picked up from the news. Shelly told me of people walking into their homes to see their furniture looking solid and unscathed, until they touched it, when dining tables and chairs just dissolved in their hands. And every bit of green has been killed by the saltwater floods. It's a grim picture. My family seems to be enjoying their involvement in an epoch-making event in the history of the Gulf Coast, though, as I know I would be. I'll get down there in April, or there-abouts.
Chatting with my aunt Connie, I was SHOCKED to hear myself say, "Connie, I'm happy." It was true. For the first time in my life--I kid you not--I don't think any other word fits my basic state of being. All the usual shit continues to need shovelling, but that's life. To describe myself as anything but happy would be sheer ingratitude (the very act of admitting that I'm something like "happy" is, in itself, a release. Hunh.) Yes, you may congratulate me. This current-me has been a long time in the making, as sappy as that sounds.
Time to replace my head shot. The photo you see, at right, is me 20 lb.s ago. I've lost a chin or two, along with the angst. And my sleep apnea seems to have been cured. Ever since dropping below 210 lb.s, I've had both more energy and stamina. It took me a while to put together the weight loss and increased energy with better sleep, but there it is. After years of living with this gnawing and debilitating background fatigue I'd begun to wonder if it would ALWAYS be thus. Gratefully, it would seem not.