Another hit, a palpable hit. I love how people say after these reading events, “It was so moving and interesting!” as if they’re surprised. As if they think that a bunch of writers telling the most important true events from their lives, sculpted for a reading, would be dull.
Emphatically not dull.
Our topic today was Disaster, and we had a range of disasters: Andrew writing about bombing as a stand up comic and having to figure out if this difficult dream was worth pursuing; Phoebe, about her family’s beloved uncle, her godfather, who turned out to be a creepy predator and pederast; Sam, about teaching a young girl who loves music but who is forbidden by her Muslim father to participate in music classes or go to concerts with the other kids, reminding Sam of her own childhood; and then, just before the break, our wonderful MC Jason reading a breathtaking piece for Nahum from the Honduras, about being a 14-year old, homeless and penniless, just like the kids we hear about in the paper these days, trying to make his way to the States.
That was the first half. After the break, we heard a haunting piece from Elizabeth about her older brother Jimmy, who’s obviously mentally and physically challenged but in their rural community is just considered lazy and badly behaved and is punished accordingly. And then, most dramatic of all – all of us silent, clutching our chests, with tears – Mary, reading about living in New Jersey with 4 small children on September 11 2001, getting a phone call from New York that her husband Ron, who worked on the 84th floor of one of the towers, was in bad shape in hospital and that she should come. Heartbreaking. Especially as Ron was in the audience, listening.
And then yours truly, telling rather than reading the story of the big fire that transformed her home. I think it went well – I’m not sure. It’s harder to talk than to read, that’s for sure. I lost it a few times, but I think it mostly worked. I hope so. And then it was over until Sunday October 26th, when our new topic is “Working.” More great great stories. Check our website sotrue.ca.
I’m proud of these writers who are willing to step up and take their work to the next level, the public forum. And happy that the audience is 100% with us. Exciting. But I’m always glad when it’s over and I can have a glass of wine and say, “Phew.”