Fathers and sons

I was the youngest of five boys that we know about from dad. Occasionally there was the possibility mooted that two more exist in Japan from when he was a young man out there at the end of WW2. He always explained his baldness with the fact that he was reasonably near Hiroshima when the bomb landed. Some say he had a wife.

I was a kid still when my ridiculous adventurer sportsman businessman hilarious angry beautiful bastard father fell out the picture. I knew enough to admire his humour and fortitude. I’d like to have stuck around and picked up some more of his business acumen. It’s only in the last couple of years that I’ve started to get a handle on my dangerously impulsive nature regarding fiscal matters. Still got a way to go in that regard.

This father’s day is the last day of the Crouch End Festival. The last of this run of Macbeth shows. It’s been an absolute blast. But it has been expensive. Beers afterwards. Travel after beers when it makes drunk sense to get a taxi. Food after travel after beer when it makes drunk sense to get a takeaway. Endless coffee to counteract all the beer.

Thankfully dayjob work has been reasonably fruitful. And I’m willing to work for nothing for The Factory (and only them) – they pay back with a deeper understanding of craft and a community that is nurturing and committed. I’m more skilled, more confident and more connected because of my work for that lot. I’d love it if there was cold hard cash on the table too. But with that company alone, I’ll do it for the stripes and the giggles. For anyone else I wouldn’t get out of bed.

This evening we’re in a great big assembly room in Hornsey Town Hall. I have no idea how it’s all going to fit together but that’s the point. I’m just going to show up and say yes, and play a lot of people’s sons. It looks like another reasonably low responsibility show tonight. Which is fine because I’m knackered and looking forward to an evening off.

But yeah I’m thinking about dad. It’s inevitable today. I wonder what he’d make of this existence I’ve carved out. He probably wouldn’t approve of me working harder in the evening than I do in the day, but then only being paid for the daytime work. Still, loads of driving coming up, I’m feeling valued and grounded in my acting work. Something is coming regarding that. I know it in a way I can’t quite understand. I’ve put the hours in, and kept my heart open. The cobwebs are clearing. Bring it universe. Bring it, dad’s ghost.

Meanwhile, one last show of the week in this cavernous possible space. We’ve got this. I’m looking forward to finding out how we end the week…


The only thing we are not insured to do in here is stand on the actual stage… Ridiculous and brilliant… Here we go.

Author: albarclay

This blog is a work of creative writing. Do not mistake it for truth. All opinions are mine and not that of my numerous employers.

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