Thursday, May 18, 2006

i'm gone to auburn

i spent the last few days in nyc organizing my closets and changing out my seasonal clothes, picking up some last minute things (like stocking up my medicine bag), mailing things i'd need to my new address (like a humidifier -- so important!) and throwing things away. i was sad to leave my friend but i had to come back on saturday for a private party at the arts club in gramercy park and again on the following wednesday at the pierre hotel so of course we figured our way around how we'd see each other. very sweet.

on sunday, we went to a. bistro in brooklyn for a farewell dinner, sort of -- ralph and i closed the place down the night before, believe it or not (yes, the food is that wonderful) -- and ended up sharing a table with two people i hadn't seen in a long time -- kimson (i met him at ubo back in the day) and gabe (i met him through garland). kimson is directing the venture brothers, one of my favorite cartoons on adult swim. gabe is in film and he's bicoastal. both of them are as cool and as geeky as ever. we did all kinds of catching up and bonding. at the end of the night, gabe took a picture of all of us in front of the restaurant. it was beautiful. the only one missing (besides ralph, of course) was garland.

the benefit with the band on monday night, packing on tuesday. all of a sudden, there was no time left and i found myself on a six-hour train ride headed upstate, to syracuse. it was exhausting and i don't know why. there was plenty of room around me seating-wise but for some reason i was surrounded by several spectacularly overweight people who wouldn't stop eating and cracking jokes. i had nothing but a large flask of bottled water, which i sipped judiciously to keep my throat from drying out. it was also freezing cold and that meant no sleep at all. little did i know -- the cold was something that i'd have to get used to, and quickly. auburn is quite close to canada. it won't warm up until i'm ready to leave.

while awaiting my luggage, i met a fellow castmate chris who's also a drummer. almost everyone in the show plays an instrument, sings and acts. matt, our contact from the theater, was right on time and in no time at all, he took us to our living quarters. i'm staying in an old mansion that was built in 1840 called king's court. there's another building next door called queen's court that's just as arcane and stately. my room is sparse but roomy, with old otherworldly touches, like sconces, that dot the walls. ugly carpeting. lovely bathroom. and i can't argue with a kitchen with a microwave, no matter how old and tiny the oven is. the kicker? i live alone. completely and utterly alone. i can come home from the theater, pull the shades and watch adult swim naked while i practice guitar and eat raspberries. in my world, it simply doesn't get much better than that.

here's an interesting detail: auburn is a 35 - 40 minute drive from syracuse. there's no shuttle service. a cab ride would cost something like $60. the trip would have taken all of four hours from nyc, door-to-door. God, that train ride really wore me out. all of a sudden, probably for the first time in my life, i sincerely wished that i could drive.

i've decided to make the most of my time here. the role that i play is so small that i want to do something constructive with my downtime -- like writing more songs, practicing guitar, rethinking my goals and priorities and getting my body back.

by the way: i don't have body issues. i know the just right size and weight for me. a part of the way i maintain it is by fitting into my clothes every season. i simply don't have the money to buy clothes whenever i get too big for my britches. and when i do have money for new clothes, i buy the size i know that i'm supposed to be. i'm either fighting to get it back or fighting to maintain it but staying a certain size and weight is an everyday struggle. some people don't have to excercise. they can eat their way through a block of cheese and not gain an ounce. unfortunately, that's never been my story. it's hard work. it's not fun. i don't enjoy it. but the results -- good health, lower cholesterol, energy to spare and a leaner stronger frame -- are irrefutable.

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