Networkie

Oh God. Normally when i write drunk I try to pretend that I’m sober or at very least not make it clear that you’re reading the ramblings of someone deep in the throes of mindpoison. But tonight there are a load of people who read this nonsense reasonably often and who are actually physically here in the room with me right now. And I’ve been here with them for a while. And one of them just said “Here you go mate ” and passed me what must be my 8th pint. They don’t necessarily expect coherence, these friends. But they expect argument or image or wordnoise of some sort, surely, otherwise WHAT MADNESS IS THIS? Sentences… What have I got left? Not much. I’ll try. Subject verb object. Go.

I drove the Jag. Back from to London. Drive, Al, drive. Golfo and I were together. Golfo is 5 foot tall. Hello Golfo. I stayed at hers last night. Sleep, Al, sleep!

Sometimes beds can be evil. After too many times kicking the bedfooty wooden block thing at the end of my leg, I deliberately attempted to sleep diagonally. The duvet doesn’t like that though, so it punishes your ingenuity by falling off. So my sleep was hard and shattered and my fucking bizarre brain decided to dream that I was sleeping at the home of Procrustes. Of course.

In Greek myth Procrustes  would put you in an iron bed and would either stretch you if it was too long or chop you if it was too short. I woke repeatedly, lying diagonally across with the blankets falling on the floor, expecting a guillotine to take off my ankles. Who the fuck makes bed frames so short? It’s a double. I’m only six foot tall.

But to this evening… How did I get so drunk that it’s pointless pretending I’m thinking straight? Networking. I’ve been networking, mofos. HOo ah. That’s when a load of people try not to get their conversation destroyed by their social anxiety in the hopes that they’ll find collaborators. I met some people but I don’t have a card because fuck that. I also spent some time with very old friends who make things, and I laughed harder then I remember laughing for a long time. I laughed alongside people I didn’t know too but then I didn’t hand them a bit of cardboard with my name on it to tell them I’m available for weddings and Bar Mitzvahs.

The evening was organised by The Gunpowder Plot who are beautiful humans who care about this thing we have started to call “immersive theatre.” They described it as a “movement” at one point this evening. I like that feeling, to be part of a “movement”. I think back twenty years to when I was playing with people at BAC on this theme and was told by a man who ran a pub theatre that I should stop doing all that stuff because it’s never going to go anywhere. “It’s not acting” was his big one. But now it’s business. And maybe it IS “acting” mate. Maybe the onus is on the performer to abandon their shit. Art is what we tell you it is.

Now audiences understand that they can feel they’re part of the story because there’s a whole skillset that involves not having actors acting AT them. If you want to be part of the story, you can do that, on your own terms, and mostly you won’t have someone with blind eyes shouting at you – although that’s still occasionally celebrated because it is comforting. But here am I grinding an axe. Stop turning out your impressive performance.pStart listening. Grind. Grind. Grind.

I’ve ground out another 500 words, somehow. Now I’m genuinely going to try to watch The Return of the King, extended edition with Brian and Golfo, without falling asleep. It’s half twelve. We will all go sleep before it’s finished. But here we are in the uber.

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Oh God. It begins. “At dawn on the fifth day, look to the east.” etc

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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