tablesaw: -- (Default)
As I mentioned earlier, I was assaulted by one of the actors in the show I am (or possibly was) stage managing. Here's what happened . . .

When the producers rented this space, they agreed to a few very absurd provisions. The most annoying involves where we store our props and set dressing. When we are running the show, we have to keep our stuff backstage right, but when we're not, we have to keep it backstage left. So when we do the last show of the week, we have to move all of their stuff out of the way, so that we can move our stuff into its new home, then put their stuff back where our stuff used to be. All of which is lots of fun because, since the actors are generally out front networking (read "drinking wine and chatting with friends"), it's Rwth (my co-stage manager) and I who have to do most of the moving.

To streamline this process, Rwth and I decided to rearrange part of the back stage before the show, so that we wouldn't have to stay out for so long dealing with the movement. In the process, we apparently blocked part of the backstage area used by two male actors as a dressing room. I learned this when one of the two, (I shall call him "the Whackedor") complained about our positioning of a large table with several props on it. It blocked off the sofa they liked to use to relax (not ours, part of the theater's rotating set pieces), and made it difficult for them to reach a mirror. I explained to them why we had moved it where we had: we were going to be doing a lot moving after the show, and we we usually can't count on the actors to help, so we were doing as much before hand as possible. He asked if we could put it somewhere else, and I said that next time, I would think about it, but for now it was best to leave things as they are.

I should note that during this conversation, I said something I immediately regretted. I can't recall what it was, but I remember thinking that my voice and word choice had made the statement slightly more acidic than it should have been. It wasn't anything horribly bad, I didn't see (then) any noticeable effects, and I couldn't see a way to immediately backtrack to it, so I just moved on. In fact, that was my tone toward the entire conversation. I didn't really care to much about it. Everyone had been given a later call, so we didn't have much time to care about it, and there were plenty of other things I was going to have to do.

Now, the Whackedor is cold. Always. When we moved into the theater, we kept the heat on. We soon realized, though, that the only person complaining of it being too cold was him. Eventually, the director, Rwth and I agreed that we'd keep the heater on before the show in most cases, but we would turn it off before we let the house in. Between the hot lights and the large crowd we often got, there was plenty of heat for everyone else, and keeping the heater on occasionally made it sweltering.

At about five or ten minutes to house open, Rwth came into the office next to the booth and told me that she turned the heater off. She wanted me to make sure I double checked it, because the Whackedor had recently been turning it back on after she turned it off. I told her that I was going into the booth and that I'd keep my eye on it from there. If anyone tried to turn it on again, I'd tell them not to.

At about three minutes to house open, I was surprised to see the Whackedor leaning over the heater. I had expected that he might have earlier, but now, we were minutes away from letting in the audience, and he was minutes away from leaving the theater to wait in the office anyway. The booth had no god mike, so I opened the window and asked, "Are you turning on the heater?"

"Yeah, I'm turning on the heater."

"Can you turn it back off? We're about to open up the house."

"No, I'm not going to do that."

"Whackedor, you can't turn the heater on right now, we're letting the audience in in a few minutes. Turn off the heater."

"Hey, fuck you. I'm freezing up here, and I'm turning the heater on. So just fuck off, all right?"

At this point, I got pissed. If he wasn't going to turn off the heater, I'd go down the and turn it off myself. If I had to stand there for the next three minutes before Rwth returned to take him to the waiting area, so be it. But the climate control of the house was my responsibility, I was the stage manager, and I do not going to back down.

I came into the theater and turned off the heater. Because the theater was small, the thermostat was located on the wall at about the line where the stage ended and the audience began. The stage was not raised, and so I was effectively on stage. The Whackedor turned to me and said, "What do you think you're doing." "I'm turning off the heater." Then the Whackedor begna to fully live up to the name I have here given him.

I can not remember the stream of invectives hurled at me. They weren't interesting at all, just verbal standins for the primal primate yell of anger that it was. There were several witty things that shot through my mind. The one I remember most clearly, in response to the Whackedor moving mere inches away from my face then screaming, "You'd better get out of my fucking face," was "I haven't moved an inch in the last sixty seconds please get out of my face." I didn't, partly because I knew it couldn't help, but mostly because I never got a chance to even say anything non snarky. After each harangue, I would start to say, calmly and quietly, "Whackedor, I am responsible for this theater." Each time, I managed to get as far as "resp." I said I don't back down, and I didn't. I wouldn't. I didn't feel the need to match his insane anger, but I didn't move an inch. Not when he started yelling at me. Not when he moved within an inch of my face, not when he threatened me.

In fact, I didn't move at all until he grabbed my shirt and shoved me backwards, still swearing at me.

There had been several actors on stage preparing for the show. I don't know specifically what they had been doing up to that point, but when the Whacked grabbed me, they immediately ran forward to hold him back. He didn't calm down. In fact, at this point, he began insulting the other cast members as well. As far as I can tell, he never calmed down. He claimed that I had disrespected him so much, between the backstage conversation and refusing to let him adjust the heater that he had no choice but to do what he did, what he was continuing to do. He threatened that if they tried to fire him, he'd refuse to go and that they'd need to call the police to haul him out.

Eventually, the director, who had been out front covering for the missing box office attendant, entered the room. At this point, seeing someone higher in the hierarchy than either myself or the actor, I relaxed and let him take the steps necessary for the situation. I didn't try to explain my side of what happened. The Whackedor seemed to want to say much more, and it seemed that any case I might want to make was better made letting him rant and threaten everyone in the room. I did say, softly, to the director and to a personal friend of mine in the cast who was also a producer, that I refused to work with him. And that if he continued to be on the cast, I would quit.

They considered cancelling the show, something they were loath to do because it was full house and a benefit performance to boot. They considered spot-replacing the Whackedor, something I think most of them were frankly afraid to do. Ultimately, they decided to go on with the show, so I informed the director and producer that I was leaving. I believe the director took my place with Rwth in the booth.


So that's why I was shaken up yesterday. I'm still a bit shaken up, but it's getting better. Last night, I had a momentary flashback to the episode. I remembered the Whackedor screaming face in front of mine; I remembered the adrenaline; I remembered grounding myself and steeling my face. But I had to laugh when I realized what had happened. I was watching The Bernie Mac Show, and Bernie Mac's girlfriend had angrily called him a whiny baby. The flashback had been triggered by thinking about how insecure, whiny, and self-centered the Whackedor is.

Yeah, I think I'll be okay.

Sleep?

Mar. 29th, 2003 07:13 am
tablesaw: -- (Default)
It's possible I'll get a few extra hours of sleep. As part of the new deal between Rwth and myself, I may be able to skip tonight's show in exchange for covering for her a few nights. However, she's been feeling under the weather, so if she's still shaky, then I'll have to go over there, for a little while at least. Regardless, I'm hoping to get a bit more rested before I leave on Sunday.

SatNYTX: 38. Amazingly, both guesses appear to have been correct.
tablesaw: -- (Default)
The Dining Room as been extended for three more weeks. Rwth and I weren't looking forward to it all that much, but we pity the actors. So tonight, I go back, enter a brand new theater with no separate booth and a minuscule light board, and learn the cues from Rwth, who went to the Dress Rehearsal earlier this evening. Why do this, you might ask, when it costs me so much free time? I don't know.

But I can look forward to leaving town on Sunday to visit Wendy. Someday, perhaps, I will be able to convince her to move up to LA with my massive powers of persuasion. For now, though, I'm gonna get on a train and go visit her. I'm looking forward to it.

Before that, though, I have some jobs to squeeze in. I managed to launder my clothes yesterday, which is a big plus. I've got to drop by Costco to buy some bulk sodas for the April 5 puzzle party. I've got to get a slate of nonfrozen dinners for the next three days at work. I'd like to get some time on the The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker, which arrived at my doorstep via FedEx yesterday. Oh yeah, and sleep.

Speaking of the puzzle party . . . )

ThuNYTX: 17:30. Stumped by some theme entries, but they were very educational, nonetheless.
tablesaw: -- (Default)
LiveJournal seems to be doing better today. Hooray.

Unfortunately, work has returned with a vengeance. There is no hope of finishing everything before the third shift ends, so I hope that the day shift is ready for a workout.

I met with Rwth on my way to work and we talked about schedules and preparing for The Dining Room. Neither of us really has any idea what's going on. I only today learned where the theater was when I talked with my mother, who had a copy of the flyer. I don't have a flyer. (P.S. It's The Complex.)

I'm feeling tired, so I'm going to hit the sack once I get home. My plan is that this early bedtime will either (a) wake me up in time to catch some partying at Cramerica's or (b) catch me up on needed sleep. I will be pleased with either outcome.

FriNYTX: 14.
tablesaw: -- (Default)
Isn't it funny how, when one is feeling down about not getting out enough, someone often calls with an offer of stage management? I find that unusual.

So now, Rwth and I will be co-stage managing The Dining Room for the next few weeks. Lots of getting up early. Lots of getting out. This should be good.

Yay Friend.

Jan. 6th, 2003 11:45 pm
tablesaw: -- (Safety)
Rwth just stopped by. She called earlier because she still had some CDs of mine from forever ago, and decided to drive over for no good reason, so we got to do a lot of catching up. Apparently, my Christmas message got lost by her roommate (he really shouldn't be allowed anywhere near messages), and she didn't have my phone number. I just kept forgetting to call.

Anyway, she's developed a nice set of movie buddies, including a new boyfriend, who is apparently nice, though rather unfortunately named. There wasn't a whole lot of catching up, I guess, but it was still fun to drink tea and talk for two hours.

During today's way-too-long Scr(a)bble game, I told [livejournal.com profile] wintercolours that I'd try to make it to the Common Rotation show at the Knitting Factory on Friday. This may or may not happen since (a) I have much preparation to do for my trip, (b) CR doesn't go on until ten, which means I'd need to get a little bit of time off of work, and (c) it's my birthday, and other people may want access to the Tablesaw before he flies away. I think I'd like to go, though. I haven't been to a concert in a while. [livejournal.com profile] sineala, you've seen the band, do you recommend?

Time to chill out and try to fix my borkened sleep schedule. Hasta.
tablesaw: -- (Default)
I'm going to go to bed, wake up early, watch The Sound of Music, pop open my lone bottle of wine from Rwth, and toast the bestest ever teacher I ever had while reading her book, A Problem Like Maria: Gender and Sexuality in the American Musical.

Ah life. Why are the good ones always gay?
tablesaw: -- (Default)
With St. Stephen's Day over, most of the Xmas holidays are done for me. I've given gifts to all of my family, though I still have some for friends. Still sitting under the tree are gifts for [livejournal.com profile] cruciverbalist, [livejournal.com profile] senescence [livejournal.com profile] spacebanana, [livejournal.com profile] duchez, [livejournal.com profile] veek, and Rwth.

Speaking of [livejournal.com profile] veek, I keep hallucinating her name onto text where it does not exist. This may be some sort of psychic sign. Or it may be that I need to sleep off some of this holiday fatigue.

I'll do the full catalogue of what I got and what I gave (with the notable exceptions of the abovementioned) when I wake up.

G'night.

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