Day 18- no photo, because I'm not feeling like sharing one, and a lot of words here... a lot...

It’s funny writing here sometimes, because I really have no way of knowing if anyone is reading any of these posts. On social media, I know when people are reading me, or looking at my photos, etc, but here, in my own, private space, I really have no way of knowing. I mean, maybe there are ways to find out, but I don’t know how to do any of that, and so, I just don’t know. But I find myself writing anyway. I don’t know if this is good, or if it’s bad. If it makes sense, or if it makes me weird. Or crazy. Who, exactly, am I writing to? What difference does it really make if I write anything, anyway? I mean, this is just kind of odd, right? Yeah. It’s a lot like being an independent artist.

I was in the music business for many years. Over twenty five years. Maybe more, I’m not even gonna try and figure it out, but it was “many”, I’ll say it like that. And now, for the past ten or twelve years, I have moved my energy over to the world of theater. I write plays now. I have been called a poet at times as well. I have performed in hundreds and hundreds of venues, participated in poetry slams, even won quite a few, even at places like the Nuyorican Poets Cafe. I have performed my solo plays all over the place. This city, this metropolitan area, all over this country, and even overseas, out of this country. I have sold out lots of shows, albeit in small theaters, but still, that’s pretty good, right? I have to say, I have done pretty well with that, but… at the end of the day, what does it all mean?

In music, I wrote hundreds of songs. Literally. Songs for me, trying for years and years to get a record deal with a major label, songs for other people, producing other artists in addition to my own productions, trying to place songs in films, I had one of the best bands in NYC for a while, we played some of the most important venues here in New York, I traveled with my band to other places, I mean, I did “OK” in music, but I didn’t really make any money. Didn’t really get any kind of acknowledgement from the people who would have made my life easier, at least in terms of paying my bills, and “advancing”, to put it in simple living terms. Being able to do things like buying a better car, maybe a house, you know, stuff like that. Okay, I had a publishing deal once that lasted a few years, paid me pretty well, but it didn’t sustain me. Just like everything else in music… But I never really cared. I knew my work was really good, and I think people around me knew that, too, that I was, at the least, at a professional level, but still, it just never connected for me. And so now, I’ve been in this theater world for over a decade, and pretty much the same thing.

I have done a lot. Wrote books of poetry. Wrote three full plays. Made a film, a mini series. Won a few grants, got accepted and performed in numerous festivals all over the world, had beautiful shared experiences with audiences in all kinds of different settings. Sometimes for a lot of people, and sometimes for one person. Yes, there was that show in London where one guy showed up and asked me to do my play for him, and I did, and it was awesome. I have performed in the streets, in parks, I have been “on my grind”, as they say, for sure, been true to myself with regards to what kind of art I create, at least I have tried my best to do that, to be my most authentic self, and I don’t know if that is something I can even judge, or say whether or not I have been successful at that, but I know that has always been my intention. I have had collaborators who are hugely successful people. Directors, producers, I have done fundraisers on my own and had great success with them, one of which enabled me to put up an Off Broadway production, which is awesome. I was in a feature film. I have connected with people in the world who I have written about. People who have inspired my art. Sean Bell’s family has embraced me. People from the adoption and foster care world. I have shared my work in homeless shelters, prisons, mental facilities, hospitals, group homes. I have done the solitary work that it takes to memorize two, two and a half hour plays, and I’m working on a third one now. The first play chewed up six years of my life. The second play chewed up five years of my life. I am already into the first year of this new play, and it’s not even at a workshop level yet.

I have had no social life to speak of. Not one that I would consider fulfilling. I have some really good friends, but I don’t see them really often. I don’t really spend time with anyone all that much. This doesn’t feel good to me. I had a beautiful marriage for seventeen years, and am grateful that we are still close. I wish we had found a way to work it out, but life is that way sometimes. I blame myself for that. I blame myself for everything. As hard as I work, I really look at myself as kind of lazy. I often take the easy way out, and create a harder way. I don’t know why I do this. I don’t do it on purpose, but life gets away from me, often times, and it has accumulated.

Sometimes, shit just keeps moving, and you’re just not smart enough to fix it, and before you know it, it’s ten years later and everything is simply what it is, meaning your life. I am in the exact same place in the theater that I was in, in the music business. Good work, not enough money to have a good life. I’m not complaining as if my life is so miserable, but as time passes, it feels less and less meaningful, which I think everyone probably feels like as they get closer to their end than their beginning. I notice that I have less energy in my spirit, although my physical energy is still good, but in my heart, my hope is not as big as it used to be. Life has fractured my belief that “something good is going to happen” too many times, and that hurts, to be honest, and makes it really hard to keep finding what it takes to do great work, in my body, meaning it’s hard to find that strength. Yeah, that energy, I’ll just repeat myself.

I’m going through something at the moment, and it requires a lot of me, and I find myself questioning whether or not I even feel like going through the painstaking process that this moment in my life requires, and that scares me. I have given so much to so many things in my life, but not enough to the important things. I didn’t used to feel that way, but I definitely do now. I created this moment. At least the accumulated life part. I could have been a better friend. A better husband. A better person. I could have been less filled with ego. Hubris. Confidence. Wow, “confidence”. Okay, I say “wow”, because confidence is supposed to be a really good thing, but it can also destroy you in certain kinds of ways, too. It can destroy your reality. Your decision making. I mean, I think it’s necessary to be confident in order to be great at something, but if you have too much of it, meaning confidence, it can certainly make you stupid, that’s for sure.

Anyway, I’m obviously not feeling all that awesome today, and I probably should delete this and not post something like this in public, but you know what? I’m off of social media, and most probably, zero people will read this long ass post, and so, I’m going to document it for myself, and who knows? Maybe one day I’ll come back here, read this, and think, “damn, I was in a f*cked up head space that day, and look at my life now. It all worked out so well. You just never know.”. Yeah. You just never know. And if you know me, using the * to keep that expletive “clean” is not what I usually do. Maybe this is the moment in my life where I won’t do what I usually do. Maybe that will bring some change. In any case, this is my body, this is my life, today is another day, and I have to keep it moving, as best I can. And I’m sure I will, because we all do. Anyway… Thanks for coming by, I hope this finds you well, happy and healthy, I hope you have a beautiful day, and as I always say, here’s to a better world, for all of us.



Be the first to respond!

Leave a comment: