February 1, 2012
EyeSight—Running in All Directions…


A great start to our reading & performance tour of Co-Creation. Our third event at Sebastopol Gallery went well, and a bunch of new bookings in process. We’ve put out the word for additional hosts in the Denver/Boulder and Los Angeles areas for trips in spring or early summer, and we’re now determined to drive East in summer or early fall.

Our Duo Show…

Currently untitled, but burning a hole in our heads. All we know right now is that (a) it’s the two of us; (b) it’s loosely inspired by Tennessee Williams’ Out Cry and by our own Action News, a strange caricature of the two of us; (c) it’s intended for living rooms and very small public venues; (d) most performances will be by donation; (e) it begins with a mad improv we just did, trying to recall the lines of a sketch we’ve performed about a thousand times; (f) it’ll probably start showings in late summer or fall; and (g) all props, puppets, costumes & tech will be only what can fit in two suitcases.
And the project after that? I’ll wait a month or so before broaching it. It’s a bit too scary for me to put out there at my tender age.

As I wrote last month, we’re exploring the “house concert” venue as a new theatrical story-telling form, forcing us into a yet-to-be-devised expressive vocabulary. From what’s now 40+ years of performance on the road and at home, we know how strongly people’s responses are shaped by the occasion of the story-telling. Are we playing for “consumers” or for friends? I love the big stage, the dazzlement of lights, music, set, the dynamics of a large cast, and wouldn’t likely pass up an invitation to those goodies if it were offered along with some bucks. But what’s calling our souls right now is to be in immediate presence of our fellow creatures, to offer an experience that’s as unforgettable as birth.

Heady ambition, and we don’t know quite what we’re talking about. But whatever we mean, we mean it.


Over the years we’ve written in many dramatic forms, about sixty shows in all, plus our radio series, plus four plays that’ve never been produced. From time to time we’ve ventured into other genres, accumulating an unpublished novel and two vagrant screenplays. Not our realm of expertise, and requiring an immersion in the networking mechanics of strange subcultures that have been beyond our horizon. Nevertheless, we’re back at the starting gate on multiple fronts.

With our friend Arturo Castillo, we’ve completed two new screenplays, Willing and Salvage—both serio-comic, both romantic with a mystery element, both with damned good actors’ roles and strong responses from people who know screenplays. We’ve not yet prepared our Oscar acceptance speech, but some contacts are developing, and in a world where it’s all a total crap-shoot, at least we’re in the game.

And Elizabeth & I have just finished a rewrite on our novel Realists. It’s based on a play we created during a residency at Juniata College about seven years ago—a dystopian comedy wherein the War on Drugs has evolved into a War on Dreams, with the US population on dream-suppressant medication, resulting in mass psychosis and severe warps in Reality. Possibly we’re channeling Kurt Vonnegut, though more likely the daily news. First trying some small presses, and then go from there.

And halfway through Chemo, another.

At Play…

Intensely looking forward to May, when we fly to Italy to visit our daughter Johanna. She and her guy are just in process of buying a 14th Century mill house and taking on the challenges that involves. And then Elizabeth visits friends in Zurich and Amsterdam, and stones in Brittany, while I spend a week in Spain, where I haven’t been since 1969. I’m studying Spanish, and my Spanish is very bad. But it gives me refreshed awe at the nature of language itself.

New Year’s…

Resolutions? Just to take more joy in the doing of the work, more connections with friends, more trips to the ocean and to our hot tub, and more gratitude for our incredible blessings.

Peace & joy—


Quote of the Month…

A word about laughter, from Co-Creation

We see movies where the lovers generate volcanic passion, but clearly the relationship couldn’t survive ten minutes in the presence of small children. It seems we all have a half-assed survival instinct to lock ourselves into an emotional attitude that passes for an identity, whether it’s fear, rage, frivolity, solemnity or humiliation. Laughter is an invitation to unzip the straitjacket, or to let the helium balloon loft us just out of the reach of the sharks, or to celebrate all being together in the same leaky boat.