The Room’s Coming Together, and a Night with an Off-Broadway Play (9/7/18)

Today I woke up at 8AM, prepped to get a call from the temp agency, but to no avail once more. Since I had the day all to myself once more today, I decided to spend the first part of the day, (after a few hours playing League), setting up my printer. I was also very excited to have the chair for my desk delivered today, which is a very comfortable gaming chair. Unfortunately since I had to set it up, my room was cluttered with boxes upon boxes. It will all be worth it when my desk arrives on Tuesday. I am honestly so excited for it. I can’t wait to finally not have to be sitting on the ground anymore. As the time approached 6PM, I decided to pause the chair building process, and instead take a shower and look presentable; I wanted to go see an Off-Broadway show this evening. The show I had in mind is called “Backyard/Desert”, and I heard about it because the writer of the show actually came to Emma’s Torch to eat with her parents, celebrating the opening of her play.

I don’t want to give up too much information about the play, but I will say that the leading lady of the show was absolutely fantastic. It’s about a border patrol officer dealing with the death of an illegal immigrant who died in her arms, attempting to make it to America. Her emotional vulnerability throughout the show was breathtaking, and it was a pleasure to watch her perform. The other actors however, did not shine nearly as bright. There were five characters in all; the leading lady, her husband, their two close friends who were a married couple, and the dead Mexican, who only the leading lady could see. Out of everyone, I will have to say the weakest link of the show was actually the leading lady’s husband, Bobby. The actor was presented such wonderful emotions from his wife, but he responded very plainly and blandly. Almost all of his reactions seemed very rehearsed, or at least did not seem genuine or real. Even though he felt like he was losing his wife, who seemed to be dramatically changed from this event, I never empathized with him, and looked at him more as a whiny child, who would have a tantrum when he didn’t get what he wanted. The Mexican who died was alright, but there were some choices that I think took away from his performance, like at the beginning where he appeared to be crying during his monologue (which was done in Spanish). The words were heartfelt, but he kept sniffling, as if to show he was crying, but without actual tears, it came off as very fake. I also am not sure if I totally enjoyed just how happy go lucky he was throughout, though it did warm up to me as the play progressed. The married couple who were the friends were alright, but nothing to really write home about. They felt at times like they were overacting, which hindered their performance.

The things that ended up rubbing me wrong in the show was that the friends and the husband all seemed to be blanketed statements of stereotypical conservatives in the United States, talking about how the USA is the best country on Earth, and that Mexico is bringing in their drug dealers and their rapists, and how Mexicans are stealing our jobs. It just made me uncomfortable because the amount of ignorance that was there, although many in our country unfortunately think that way to begin with. The director also chose to have, when two people were having a scene separated from the rest of the cast, (and the cast is on stage), everyone in the background pantomiming. Although this can work for larger productions, with something this small it felt incredibly awkward. It was also an interesting experience because I ended up sitting next to the writer of the show, who was seeing the show once more with some of her friends.

When the show ended, I gave my sister a call to talk about the show. I waited a few blocks and thought I was good to start talking about it. Right as the first sentence left my lips: “It was okay”, I realized the actor who played the male friend was walking right in front of me. I very quickly veered the conversation in another direction. I eventually got home, finished putting together the chair, cleared the boxes and crap from my room, and am typing this blog post, ready to pass out; I gotta be up tomorrow around 7AM to get ready for work! Tomorrow evening I’ll be getting some margaritas with friends, so I am very much looking forward to that. For now, goodnight everyone.

Until next time,

-Michael Saunders

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