This morning, I walked past two men in colored bandanas, white wifebeaters, and distressed cargo pants. They were imposing guys, one of them over six feet tall, the other much shorter but more muscular - a compact, lean, dangerous silhouette against the cold cinderblock. Both wore black ski masks that obscured their faces, only their eyes and mouths visible in the dim blue glow from a nearby clip-light. Clenched in their fists were a crow bar and an iron pipe.
As I passed, the tall one said to his friend, in a gentle sing-song voice with a British accent, “You know, it’s my sister’s birthday today.”
The shorter one replied, in a congenial, matter-of-fact baritone, “Well, happy birthday to your sister, then.”
I was backstage preparing for show #4 of our production of Romeo & Juliet. These were my castmates, in the border town street-thug wardrobe of the show, looking for all the world like two terrorists … having the most innocuous of conversations. In the vernacular of the high-school kids who were then filing into the audience seating, “I LoL’ed.”
This profession can be frustrating and elusive to an infuriating degree … but it also provides some delightfully absurd moments not easily found elsewhere.
Moments like this make it worth it.