To-Day Is Wednesday, the 11th


The above is a phrase I'd like to coin, but one which will never come into common parlance. It's altogether too obscure. You, however, dear reader, will comprehend me when I speak it. You, and you alone, will have any clue what I'm trying to say. Bask in the glow of privilege.


In One Week (which, if my search criteria hasn't changed by now, you can see in its entirety in the video bar to the left), Buster Keaton uses inter cuts of a daily calendar to establish time in his movie, the central action of which is the construction -- and eventual destruction -- of a house. It's a DIY, build-by-numbers house, and a malevolent suitor switches some numbers on ol' Buster. The result is a great reveal, midway through the week, of a completed house that contains all the elements of "house," but is just awfully wrong. The roof is on the wrong way. one whole side seems pulled a la Dali out of its natural frame. And it spins.


The calendar page revealed just before this image appears informs us "To-Day Is / Wednesday / 11".


Sometimes you work on a show (or "project," for those of you less exhibitionist in nature), and you give it your all, and you're very excited to see it put together, because you know it's going to be some of your most impressive work, and the curtain goes up, and . . . it doesn't quite look like you thought it would. And it feels sort of false, especially for something you've put so much of yourself into. And you're not sure -- it could just be you -- but it seems as though the audience isn't being much more than overtly polite.


This, to me, is a "Wednesday the 11th." You can't figure where exactly you went wrong. You did everything you were supposed to, and, hell: you're a generally capable guy and/or girl. It's "Wednesday the 11ths" that bring us to those silent moments of questioning things like fate and the existence of God. You're not overwhelmed with grief, or shaking your rhetorical fist in the general direction of the allegorical heavens, but you are quietly talking to yourself in your mind. "Man, where did I go wrong? Am I being punished? How serious is this? Is this a sign? If it's mysterious in cause, it's got to be mysterious in significance, right? Man..."


It's really taxing to perform a show that didn't turn out even close to what you had hoped for, but the real long-term effect is in the questioning that can so easily result from it. Nine times out of ten, I'd say, you just missed something. It could happen to anyone. It doesn't mean we're less concerned with the virtues of our work if we accept this concept, and move on. Some days are simply Wednesdays, the 11th.
 
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