No. 61: Fun Runs.

We open the fall play this week, so it came time for our annual fun run. Our fun run is when I allow the students to make whatever crazy wild choices they want while still running the show.

This year, we had highlights such as a Trump-inspired Claudius, a Marcellus doing only a crab walk, and a prologue done to the opening number of Hamilton.

It was silly. We broke character. We barely made it through the show.

But the creativity was sure alive and well.

No.59: Live Theatre.

I took a group of our fall play cast and crew to Drew University last Saturday. (Yay Drew!) It was a really special trip – we saw the First Folio, which is on tour this year to every state in the US. The Folio was the first major collected publication of Shakespeare’s works: only around 700 were printed and just over 200 have survived. To see a four hundred year old book might seem boring, but it was riveting to our cast and crew: the book was open to the “to be or not to be” monologue!

We also enjoyed a matinee of Hamlet, which Drew happened to also be producing. One of my professors offered tickets to us at student prices and also offered a talk-back with the cast and crew following the performance.

The day as a whole was lovely, but it was the performance which made it so wonderful. The cast was quite talented, and the set and production were stunning. I couldn’t stop marveling that the cast seemed much more together than I was at that age!

It made me really proud to be an alum and to share a place, which means so much to me, with my students, whom I equally tresure.

No. 58: Cain’s Arcade.

Each year, our school hosts an annual cardboard challenge. Each lower school participates in the construction and running of an original game, attraction, or challenge.

This year I was asked to ice skate, whack a mole, go bowling, even watch TV: all created with supplies of cardboard, tape, scissors, and markers.

I am so grateful my students share their innate creativity with me. I hope I am smart enough to pay attention and absorb it.

No. 57: Theatre.

There are few things in this world that have given me more than theatre.

Since I was 10, I have treated theatre as a friend, a boyfriend, a therapist, a parent,  a secret keeper. It has taught me countless lessons, allowed me to become numerous different people, and provided me with some of the most loving supportive friends and guides anyone could ask for. 

Today, I hashed out a sword fight with my upper schoolers. I allowed my first graders to present folktales in their first public performance of the year. I plotted rehearsals of my own on my calendar.

I’m so fortunate to do what I love and be involved in a field which always has a job to be done. There’s always another opening, another show. It’s a gift beyond anything I could imagine. 

No. 56: Anniversaries.

My parents, Lori and Steve, were married 31 years ago today. The story of how they met is one of my favorites: they met at a restaurant and they sat at tables near one another with their separate group of friends. 

As with all good stories, however, it wasn’t that simple. 

My dad and his buddies had attempted to go their usual standby earlier in the night. It was closed- a handwritten sign hung on the door.

When the two groups of friends eventually started talking, my mom had to leave early. My dad, being both smooth and a bit clueless, asked my mom’s best friend (who I grew up knowing as Aunt Debbie)  for her number. Debbie gave my dad her number, and when my dad called wanting to know Lori’s, she was annoyed. But she passed it along anyway.

My dad called my mom. But there were two Steves in that group, and my mom didn’t remember which one it was. Luckily this other Steve wasn’t too much of a goon, and my mom said yes to a date.

She got sick. They rescheduled. 

For their third or fourth date, they went to a white party. (This was before Diddy made them popular in the Hamptons, I suppose.) My dad bought my mom a white dress to wear. 

They fell in love. They got married. She wore a new white dress, this time with a train and veil.  They had three kids.

The most enduring love stories may begin with delayed plans, unexpected turns, and a bit of humor on the part of fate.  What a beautiful reminder that at every turn, you never know what good fortune may befall you.  

No. 55: Ordinary.

This one is for ordinary. 

My day was average today. Nothing remarkable happened to me, I did not experience any profound transformation. It was quite boring in a way: routine, standard. 

And yet: it was just what I needed. Today, ordinary was a blessing. 

I love adventures but I’m grateful for the days when I can catch my breath and prepare for a meaningful one.