Tuesday, December 28, 2004


I’m now back from New Hampshire, where I spent my Christmas break. I hope everyone’s holiday treated them well (as it did me).

I have no idea if Pete’s back, or if anyone else is, for that matter, so this may not get posted until after the New Year. Ah, well.

Right now I’m working on a new play and thinking about trying to push Nosedive into doing some silly TV spots for public access. After shooting our video, we’re now on a big kick to fool around with a camera again.

Also, Nadine Friedman from Stone Soup Theatre Arts pointed out that she was a tad offended at my suggestion in a previous Jamespeak that no one from the Community Dish can’t be bothered to read these pages, considering she had read all of them. Sorry Nadine. Color my face red!

* * *

A few people (well, okay, two) got the impression that Nosedive would be wrapping up its play producing after play #13. After rereading the last Jamespeak, I can see how one could get that impression.

No. Kronos Unbound is intended to be the Final Play of Nosedive (in a sense), but that’s either going to be Play #20 or #21 (I like the idea of each group of seven plays to be an “act”). I’m not fully-prepared just yet to go into the details of the play, but let’s just say it will be treating all the previous plays like chapters/acts of one long novel/play, with Kronos Unbound being the final chapter/act that ties everything together.

Yes, in my head, there is a connection between Ruins and A Very Nosedive Christmas Carol, between “Jiffy Squid” and Allston.

Will this connection be made clear by the time Kronos is finished? I hope so. But we shall see. It could be one overlong, pretentious incoherent mess.

But then again, it wouldn’t be a Nosedive show if it wasn’t.

* * *

I’ve always been more interested in adopting a more humanist slant with my plays rather than a political one. I mean, I suppose some of the shows deal with “Big Ideas” or “Political Concepts” (or so I’ve been told, and that’s fine; if people see a political slant in my plays I won’t try to convince them otherwise), but in general, I’ve never been particularly interested in writing about these things per se. Considering how much we obsess about the personal habits and characteristics of people we don’t know (Bush, Cheney, Hollywood celebrities), I think at least some time should be spent on understanding ourselves and people we do know.

In other words, when I know more about the skeletons in Rumsfeld’s closet than I do about some of my closest friends, when we care more about Bush’s DUI than our brother’s, that’s a little fucked up.

Overall, I’m more interested in writing about how much more greedy, cruel, short-sighted and stupid my colleagues and I are than our political leaders; how much more kind, charitable and selfless we are than Nobel Prize winners. I’m more interested in exploring how we (all of us) are the chief architects for the way the United States is run.

I don’t like writing about Others.

“I can't blame anybody for anything I do.”
—Max Cherry, Jackie Brown

Admittedly, I like to blame other people for my lot in life when things are tough (“tough” being a very relative word for an upper-middle-class white heterosexual male living in New York City) from time to time. But when I get enough “moments of clarity” I realize that that’s a bit too simple.

I could always refrain from buying a $2 cup of coffee.

I could always turn off the TV.

I could always quit drinking.

I could always work harder at my job.

I could always be thankful for how lucky, coddled and pampered I am.

So, when I have no external (i.e., “Big,” “Political”) issues to complain about, why do I still feel that anxious dread?

Well, I suppose because I have to confront the demons in my personal, internal world.

If I’m not worrying about the war, I now have to worry about my awkward interaction with fellow OOB theatre-makers.

If I’m not worrying about the current presidential administration, I now have to wonder if my friend’s forgiven me for my hostile outburst at her last week.

I now have to consider whether or not another friend is mocking and manipulating me.

I now have to agonize over my drinking problem (and whether or not it’s a drinking problem if my drinking pales in comparison to my peers).

I now have to fret if I am indeed making a connection at all with audiences through these silly plays.

I now have to contemplate how much of a fool I made of myself in front of that theatre reviewer.

Yeah, these anxieties are where I get my ideas for my plays.

Which may of course be more information than you all needed.


Anyway, I’m working on some longer, more coherent entries (I swear), but for now I have to watch my mountain of DVDs I received for Christmas before drinking myself into oblivion on New Year’s.

Scaring away his readers,

James “I Kid, I Kid!” Comtois

December 28, 2004


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