Out of Ink Next Two Weekends (innards edition!)

My kids and I attended the preview for the latest installment of Out of Ink last night and had a great time.

My piece (EMPOWERMENT) is sort of a horror office comedy and I really like it a lot, though there have been some technical challenges along the way, so I was really interested to see where they’d gotten to with it.

This is one of the actor notes the director sent out just yesterday morning:

…Tony/Karina to help clean up innards when it makes sense

Yep. You think it’d be common sense, but you should never clean up innards when it doesn’t make sense.

Anyway, I’ll be going again at least one more time to see how things evolve. It’s a fun, quality show with great actors and a terrific crew.

Tickets HERE.

Things to Look Back on When I’m 90

A couple of things for future (and present) posterity:

1) I stumbled on this photo someone took of me in Amsterdam when I was in my mid-20s, roughly 10 years older than my son is now. Quite the expression, Mr. Langert (and you’re looking a bit swarthy). Hair’s a bit longer and the stubble’s a bit darker, but not too unrecognizable from the current me.

2) While I can still brag about it, I just want to point out that I have the best batting average on my softball team right now (.600) with the third best slugging percentage after Marco and Alfred. This despite the fact that I’m one of the older guys on the team. Not bad, not bad. Let’s see if you can keep it up…

(that’s all; also, my back is being jerky again so I’m trying to give myself a boost)

May 29th: An Evening of Light

I’ve been tossing this benefit idea around with my friend Raul the last year or two, He’s on the board of VELA Families and has invited me to a couple of their annual galas.

The organization is great, doing wonderful things for families who don’t necessarily have the resources to know what’s available for their special-needs kids.

Since I’m practically an old pro at this benefit production stuff, I figured I could help pull something together.

It’ll be on Wednesday, May 29th at Ground Floor Theatre (same place we had the benefit last year).

So far we’ve got:

  • A photographer
  • A couple of musicians
  • A couple of comedians
  • A poet
  • A couple of storytellers
  • A raffle-basket-in-progress
  • A few very excited folks from VELA who are going to help us publicize and fill seats

Trying to project manage this one a little more efficiently than last time.

Hope to have a site for tickets up in the next 2-3 weeks. Would love to see you there!

(more to come, obvi…)

Highs and Lows

Spent last weekend at a softball tournament in Houston (my personal photographer followed me around).

It was a good experience overall. The team got to do a lot of bonding and we learned more about each other, which will help us out on the field.

We lost more games than we won, and the ups and downs of the tournament provided a lot of emotional highs and lows. Obviously the wins feel good, while the losses take the wind out of you. The last game in particular was a tough one for us and we all felt pretty dejected afterward.

It made me think about how these ups and downs are a regular part of my life. Playwriting is like this. You get a production or a good review and that feels great. You get a rejection or a bad review and it can feel like a punch to the gut.

I guess I like these events in the big picture because they make me feel things, which reminds me I’m alive (or something?). I’m also a competitor by nature and yearn for that desire to win or do well, despite the drawbacks when I don’t.

That’s all. I didn’t expect to get as much out of the tournament as I did, and I’m even taking notes for a potential short film or play about it. We’ve got a lot of real characters on the team which would make for some entertaining viewing. Do we need another movie about baseball/softball? Oh yeah, I think we do. Just gotta come up with a good title.

(and yes, our name is The Ball’rz; good gravy, maybe that’s the title right there)

Remembering Ian

I met Ian LeClair 10 years ago when Loaded Gun Theory was in rehearsals for one of my plays.

Ian didn’t act in this particular piece but was a pivotal part of the behind-the-scenes team, and I worked with him in the future in a series of overnight Slapdash events. He was always positive, always gregarious, never judgmental, and a really genuine, sweet guy.

I’d run into him occasionally in a grocery store (where he was sometimes working and sometimes shopping) and his positivity and earnestness never flagged. He always seemed happy to see me.

He’d just turned 40 a few days ago.

His sudden departure has really affected me. He’ll be missed.

A Little Non-Writing Bragging

I re-pulled some muscle in my lower back a few days ago and it’s super annoying and slowing me down, so I thought I’d cheer myself up (temporarily) by recalling a couple of nice things that happened earlier in the week.

1) I hit a home run!

Yeah, at the second game of the season with this new softball team I’m on, I saw a pitch floating out there in front of me. I was going to let it go by because I wanted to get a better feel for the pitcher. But it was so tempting, I let ‘er rip.

The ball flew over the center fielder’s head and I ran around the bases. At third, the coach waved me home. I couldn’t believe it.

First home run of the season on our team. Possibly the only one I’ll ever hit. I’m not really a power hitter. So trying to hold onto that feeling.

2) A colleague of mine left my workplace earlier in the week after a few years at the company and he sent a note to all the company’s leadership without my knowledge. It was forwarded to me later, and here’s what it said:

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Hope Versus Time

I’ve been thinking about this blog post off and on the last week or so because it frames climate change in pretty stark terms.

If you’re really serious, you should also toss out your air conditioning; only heat your house if temps are down in the 40s; never travel anywhere by plane; buy local food; and install rooftop solar.

I could probably have 100 hours of conversation about this in a week: why so few people are doing anything about it, whether doing these things would really matter in the first place, what it would take to actually have an impact, etc.

But just as a thought exercise, I tried to imagine different time frames for mass devastation.

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Home Improvement Accomplishment

I’ve been looking for some motion-sensitive lighting for a while now. It bothers me when I go out of town for several days that I leave my porch and carport lights on the whole time in an attempt at so-called security (so wasteful).

So I’m pleased as punch (punch isn’t even that good, why is that an expression?) to say that I put up these rad solar-charged lights in the front and back of my place which turn on once you get within 20 feet.

And they don’t need batteries, don’t need to get plugged in. They just work.

We’ll see how I feel about ‘em in a year or so (if they’re still as powerful) but I’m pretty psyched for now. I just went outside and waved at them and they shot on at full blast. Thirty seconds later they went dark again. I could do this all night.

It’s the little things…