March 1, 2012
EyeSight—In Perpetual Spring

Mistrusting Paradise?

Our plum trees and feral cats are confused. Our wall furnace is asking questions. It’s dry shirt-sleeve weather in February, when in Sebastopol it should be rainy and chill. What gives?

Well, can’t help but think “climate change” and expect the worst for the human race. And with the rumbles of election time, it’s hard to frolic out into the spring.

But let us not hold back from stepping out into the day, breathing in the air, and saying “Ye gods, what a gorgeous day!” We need those in-drawn praises of life to hold through the dark times. More and more, I hold the irrational thought that we have to feel the spring before it’s willing to come.


Our reading & performance tour of Co-Creation continues on. See the calendar to the right, and join us. Email us about hosting us in your living room, coffee house, arts center, gallery, or wherever you can assemble fifteen friends. Late June in Denver/Boulder, late summer or early fall in the Midwest and East, most any time in the greater Bay Area.

Our Duo Show…

First draft is finished, and we start rehearsals this week. First showings late summer. It might even have a title by then. Several old pieces are incorporated in it, including “Freeway,” which has reappeared in several shows, but now revisited in a new context. More as we go. MC-Freewaythumbnail.jpg

Strange Evolution…

How things catch fire. In 2003 I created a solo story-telling show, Survival Tips for the Plague Years. I played a couple of performances in Sebastopol, adapted it to radio, then canned it. It seemed to have strong audience response, maybe too strong: several friends found it highly depressing, especially one story, “Galahad’s Fool.” For all practical purposes, it was dead meat.

Recently, a friend who makes puppet films sent me a first-draft script for comment. It was on the theme of St. Joan, and as a framing device he used a filmmaker struggling to cope with that theme. Later, he went a different direction, but the spark struck. Now, I’m launched into work on a novel about an artist wrestling with a Sir Galahad journey, both of them on their quests for the Holy Grail, whatever they conceive it to be. Damned thing about novels: there are so many words.

Sometimes an idea lies fallow until someone empties the slop bucket, and suddenly it’s the magic catalyst. Right now what’s emerging is a big, messy tsunami, but a very personal one. We’ll see.

At Play…

Our daughter Johanna and her mate have just bought a 14th Century stone mill house in Tuscany, and now launched into the process of making it their own. Our son is beginning work illustrating a fantasy graphic novel to be serialized on the Web.

We gave readings of Co-Creation this month for the San Francisco Bay Area Puppeteers Guild and the Sonoma County Pagan Network—diverse audiences indeed—and performed short sketches for a local Valentine’s “Love Salon” cabaret and for Arcata Playhouse in Professor Willikers’ Puppet Slam, a thoroughly jovial affair.

We’re not wild social beings, but gradually we’ve evolved a bit more contact with the rest of humanity. We attend a periodic poetry salon and Shakespeare reading group, quarterly meetings of the SF Bay Puppetry Guild, a small full moon circle, Sunday morning coffee at Hard Core Espresso, and recently lots of friends’ parties, which have resulted in both of us gaining five pounds, despite faithful trips to the gym. Life is good.

Peace & joy—
Conrad Bishop


Quote of the Month…

From Co-Creation

Great demands require great patience. In a rehearsal, you learn gradually that the sudden breakthrough, the perfect solution, that moment of blinding truth won’t necessarily come today. Maybe it won’t come tomorrow or till you’re halfway through the run of the show. You push as far as you can, and then you lie back and wait. Sow seeds and wait for the sprouting. Truth, oneness, trust—they likely won’t come as lightning bolts. As the Christ-like space alien teaches in Stranger in a Strange Land, “Waiting is.” Meanwhile, celebrate.