Friday, November 11, 2011

The Best Theater Experience Ever.

I've recently become obsessed with this show called Sleep No More. It's an interactive, dance/theater extravaganza staged in a 5 story warehouse in Manhattan, and the story is loosely based on MacBeth and Hitchcock's film Rebecca. The audience chooses its own adventure and decides what they would like to see (or not).

The first time i went, it was with a friend and we tried to stay together...bad idea. We were intrigued by different things and ended up having way too many pantomined conversations (no talking allowed!) about which way we should go and which room we should explore next. I now get why the organizers say it's best to experience this show alone.

So i went back. Alone. and with a different strategy. Your first visit is such sensory overload that most people end up wandering and just looking at everything...many times i'd end up finding a room just after something cool/amazing had happened there..i missed alot. and i entered at 8pm instead of 7 which made the experience shorter. (it ends at 10)

This time i bought the early ticket, and made sure to get on the elevator last, just like i'd read online. The actor who operated the elevator stopped it suddenly and yelled "Everybody off!". I stepped out first and noticed out the corner of my eye that he held everyone else back and pressed the button. I turned around as the door slid shut, and saw him smiling at me.

What he'd said earlier, in the elevator was ringing in my head:

"Fortune favors the bold..."

so i walked around the corner and found myself in a white hallway..there was a nurse pushing a wheelchair with her back to me. She turned around, then beckoned to me. I sat in the chair and she silently whisked me away into a dark room.

My heart was pounding with excitement but i wasn't scared. Afterall, this was a show that performs 8 times a week and actors are not the in business of harming the audience.

anyway, i don't want to give away what happened next but suffice it to say, it was fascinating and highly entertaining. After the nurse finished with me, she led me into another hallway behind an iron door, and i was able to rejoin the rest of the audience and continue my experience. Through continuing to be bold, I ended up having 3 other one-on-one experiences with other actors in the even gave me a necklace after sobbing on my shoulder over a lost love.

Overall, by choosing to specifically follow certain actors (which often required sprinting up (or down) 3-4 flights of stairs to keep up with them) i was able to see a completely different show/story arc than I saw the first time...the choreography, athleticism and passion of the actors was breathtaking.

If you are in NY and you love theater. Go. end of story.

Monday, September 15, 2008


DSC02779.JPG, originally uploaded by damali101.

He's the sweetest boy ever, but most times, he's got 2 left feet.

Our weekly outing to the Clifton Skate Zone seemed like a good opportunity to take an hour and go to the gym...usually i'm just sitting in the car doing nothing anyway. and they're old(er) and responsible with cellphones. they'll be fine, yeah?

but then intuition was like 'nah. skateboarding is dangerous. you never know what could happen while you're on the treadmill"

so i stayed. good thing i did.

somehow Frick and Frack get this bright idea to skateboard down a steep hill. Frick does it (cuz he's the better skateboarder) and makes it down with no problem. My sweet little Frack (pictured above) sees his brother do it, so he figures he can too. cuz he's older, i guess.

i see him go from kinda far way. then, i see him go DOWN. then i hear him scream. i run at top speed over there praying nothing is broken. one arm and hand scratched up pretty bad but basically ok. whew.

at least now i don't have to fight with him to put pads on anymore.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

US Open 2008

Serena Williams, originally uploaded by meslither.

As i've posted before in this blog, I love sports. American football has always been my favorite to watch but in recent years, i've really gotten into watching baseball, football (soccer) and tennis. Watching on tv is fine but there's nothing like the live stadium experience. The energy of the crowd just makes the games so much more exciting.

I recently got to experience one of the pinnacles of stadium sport: The 2008 US Open. Ever since i've lived in the NY area (almost 13 years!) i've dreamed of taking in a match at Arthur Ashe stadium. i think i always saw it as something only the rich or the elite get to do. I've never even tried to buy tickets...but as usual, Jehan makes dreams come true.

we went twice last week...Tues night to see Venus and Federer in their 1st round matches, then on Thurs night to see Serena and Nadal in their 2nd round matches. man it was so fantastic to be there...just walking into the entrance of the tennis village...seeing all the shops and food vendors and beautifully lit fountains...i was in awe.

the action inside the stadium didn't disappoint either. all 4 of the stars easily dismissed their opponents in straight sets. so effectively in fact that we almost missed the entire Serena match on the 2nd night! she wasted no time in taking care of the poor little no name girl she was facing...but we made it in time to catch her last 3 games. her post game interview was as gracious as her serve.

she faces her sister Venus in a quarterfinal match later today. i can't be there but i will be watching on tv tonight and rooting for her.

p.s. i want those arms!

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

What a difference 10 days makes.

Like Lauryn said: I was hopeless now i'm on Hope Road.

yes, i am. hope. for something different, better. i mean there will still be alot of pain in the meantime...alot of loneliness and tears but maybe....maybe. and i really do understand 'maybe'. i know he thinks i don't...that i think 'maybe' means 'definitely'. yeah ok i used to be like that but i'm good with 'maybe' now. at least i have a chance, you know? that's all i ever ask for.

but the 10 days were great. greater than great. like there ain't even a word great enough to encompass truly how great. maybe i even believe in love again...maybe.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

The Winds of Change

If I had no more time
No more time left to be here
Would you cherish what we had?
Was it everything that you were looking for?

If I couldn't feel your touch
And no longer were you with me
I'd be wishing you were here
To be everything that I'd be looking for

I don't wanna forget the present is a gift
And I don't wanna take for granted the time you may have here with me
'Cause Lord only knows another day is not really guaranteed

So every time you hold me
Hold me like this is the last time
Every time you kiss me
Kiss me like you'll never see me again
Every time you touch me
Touch me like this is the last time
Promise that you'll love me
Love me like you'll never see me again

This song has been on repeat for the last few days...Alicia Keys and Kerry Brother's Jr. wrote that. amazing. I wish more people would live their lives like this but people always take for granted what they have. They don't appreciate what they have right now until it's gone.

i was always one of those people who believed in love above everything else. i know it's cliche but we live in world where there is so much negativity. people live in it...breathe it...embrace it. most people don't hesitate to say something negative to some. a criticism, a cruel joke, a flipped bird, a fuck you here and there. But ask the average person to tell someone they love that they actually love them, ha. much more difficult. people even have the nerve to claim that if you say it too much, it doesn't mean as much. but yet they can say hurtful things all the time with no problem.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

It's Times Like These...

when i wish i had a female best friend. Someone i could call and talk to...all the females that i'm close to are scattered. dawn is in israel. stef is too busy to have time for any sustained contact most of the time. one sister is 1000 miles away. another one has basically pushed me away. so that leaves me with no one really. no one who really understands me and how i feel about things. no one to feel safe to be me with.

do writers have alot of close friends? i would imagine that they don't. that they must be lonely people because how else could they pour so much of themselves into their pens and pencils? wouldn't there not be time for that if they had people? i will do the same then. i will try to give to my pen what my people reject from me.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

I Am a Writer.

Hello, my name is Damali and I'm a writer. That may seem like a small statement but it's huge to me. To believe and know that about myself has taken many many years. People would say "you're a writer" and i'd dispute it because i am not published...because no one has ever paid me to do it. But i understand now that it doesn't matter. I write. I create. therefore, i AM a writer. and i do want to be published. scratch that, i WILL be published someday.

this writing thing has come along so late in my life's strange what we discover about ourselves the older we get. As a teenager, i HATED writing. It was my least favorite subject in school and i'm pretty sure i wasn't very good at it. i would tell people that i was a singer. that i was gonna do that for a living one day...i was gonna be famous and have an album and make videos like Janet Jackson. that's all i would think about. i entered any talent show i could and performed alot at school and in front of my family and in front of my mirror.

then somewhere in my early 20s, i'd decided that i was an actor (not an actress; i hate that word). i moved to the New York area in hopes of being in movies or on Broadway. i still enjoyed singing but i was all about going on auditions for plays and films. and i did get some small work...some paid even. i did extra work in feature and low budget films, got parts in musical theater shows, did a local commercial for Mercy College. It was just all so expensive though. And unless you had a good agent, you do not get much of a return on your considerable investment.

In my early 30's, i became a filmmaker. i worked as a Production Assistant on a few film sets. I agonizingly wrote (that pesky writing again!) a screenplay and tried to direct it. i produced a short film with my friend Guy that went to some festivals...i saw myself as having the potential to be this great filmmaker one day. perhaps that could still be true. i don't know. i loved filmmaking more than singing and just felt way more creative to me.

so then now here we are. ladies a gentlemen, a dream we all dreamed of. i write. i think this is the scariest one of all.