I’m back. I had plays in two Fringe Fests (Orlando May, Atlanta in June). I performed my new piece TWENTY BLOCKS NORTH OF THE ROCK PILE in Orlando, Florida. And then I went off to Atlanta, where I shared my updated play PLANET PHUCKETT!!
I’m still pooped.
Response to my work was… mixed. Apparently, bringing up any question about the veracity of the 9/11 Commission’s work is still VERBOTEN. I found my audience to be composed of judges from the Fringe itself. Orlando is still very touchy about conspiracy theories, especially in light of the Pulse nightclub attack a few years ago. I find it difficult to equate what I’m doing with the kind of false flag narrative unleashed on the city by the likes of Alex Jones and other ‘fake news’ guys. I found it especially annoying that artists were in some cases condemning my work sight unseen. TWENTY BLOCKS NORTH OF THE ROCK PILE asks a fundamental question that the main character was not able to resolve. That question is at what point do you allow someone in your government to continue to lie to you? and if you find yourself in that position, what do you do? I’m submitting it to other local festivals. And if you were one of those upset with what my play had to say, please respond below.
But I was taken aback by Atlanta. The people who organize this festival are really nice and very helpful to the degree they could bring in audience (answer: they couldn’t). For me, Atlanta was a culture shock. My play PLANET PHUCKETT is about human extinction and what we’re doing that makes it more likely (as in ‘inevitable‘). Maybe the problem is me alone. I’ve lived in NYC for over 35 years, and I count it as a point of pride that I rarely use my car. But in Atlanta, it’s not uncommon for people to spend several hours in their cars every DAY. And the locals are voting AGAINST mass transit, so people spend a LOT of time sitting in cars. A true story: I was due to be at the Fringe theatre for an opening night preview, and I thought two hours was enough time to go 20 miles. Silly me. My directions apps crashed out when I asked for a quick route. THERE WASN’T ONE. Everything in town was in gridlock from 4:45 to 6. And there’s road construction along every major thoroughfare.
And attendance at PHUCKETT in Atlanta was almost non-existent. I’d done a lot of outreach, but none of it added up. Look, this is the summer when Extinction Rebellion is gearing up for a Mass Arrest event in September. Anchorage, Alaska hit 90 degrees on the Fourth of July. And there’s predictions that half a BILLION PEOPLE will have to leave India owing to extinction-level changes to its climate. As a result of fast-moving events on global warming, There’s a major worldwide labor strike scheduled for September 20. Are we going to have a discussion about global warming prior to our mass demise?
In the meantime, I’m available to perform these two plays–in your living room, if necessary. I need travel money, decent beer and a chance to pass the hat. We need to address global warming (and what we do about it) sooner rather than later. We’ve long needed to address the issues of 9/11. I travel light (except for puppets and a hockey stick).
Glad to be back. Thanks for asking.
PS: This is the second time I’ve called a post ‘You thought I was dead’. apologies. when you’ve done this 700+ times, you run out of titles.