Friday, September 23, 2005

Thom Pain and Late Night with David Rakoff

Last night my sister Miriam and I went to see the popular one-man, one-act play “Thom Pain (Based On Nothing),” which was originally produced by Soho Theatre Company in association with Chantal Arts + Theatre Ltd. and Naked Angels (NYC). I just copied that last bit from the program. Anyway, I had heard and read a lot of good things about it and was rather looking forward to seeing it, especially since my sister sprung for the tickets (Thanks again, Mir!). However, since I have the attention span of a puppy and I am also, well, kind of dumb when it really comes down to it, I’m not sure I quite understood the play. T. Ryder Smith, the actor and one man referred to in the first sentence, was very good and even broke down the proverbial fourth wall a few times during the show by speaking directly to the audience, walking through the aisles, and generally acknowledging that there were like 50 people in the room with him. This technique was especially effective when my sister’s cell phone went off about halfway throught the performance. I tried to evaporate when this happened, but in the end I only managed to strain a couple facial muscles from cringing so hard. Oh well, we got through it, didn’t we? Sorry about that, T. Ryder, the guy in front of us with the long gray ponytail and weird growth on top of his balding head, and anyone else who was all like “What the F?” when this happened. You think this sort of thing will never happen to you and then it does and then it’s like fuuu-uck. Well, if nothing else, the whole incident served to remind me and everyone else in the room that you should totally turn off your cell phone in theaters, proctologist offices, snakepits, and anywhere else where startling interruptions are unwelcome.

After seeing the exciting one-man, one-act play “Thom Pain (Based On Nothing,” I headed back to my apartment in scenic Brooklyn with a pint of Ben and Jerry’s coffee ice cream in tow (NOTE: As Ben and Jerry’s goes, this is pretty boring choice I know. It’s pretty much Coffee Heath Bar Crunch without the Heath Bar. It’s still pretty good but the whole time you’re eating it, you’re all like “God, I wish there was a Heath Bar smashed into this thing.” Life is crazy sometimes.).

Once I got home, I sat on the couch for a while, checking e-mail and slowly working my way throught the entire pint of ice cream (Here is something we can ALL relate to. Ha!), as I waited for the popular show “Late Night with Conan O’Brien” to come on because my close personal friend David Rakoff, author of the excellent new book “Don't Get Too Comfortable : The Indignities of Coach Class, The Torments of Low Thread Count, The Never- Ending Quest for Artisanal Olive Oil, and Other First World Problems,” was appearing on the show. I was pretty excited about it. For some reason or another, I never tire of that magical feeling you get from being able to point at the TV screen and say “I totally know that guy. What’s up with his hair? He will no doubt be hearing from me about this and a bunch of other things at some point in the very near future!” Anyway, finally, at around 1:22 am, Conan introduced David and he came out and was very funny and just really, really great in general. If you don’t buy his book, I will track you down and kick you right in the privates. So there.

Okay, have a super weekend. You seem really nice.

Dave Hill


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