A couple of weeks ago, I woke up, grabbed my phone, and looked at my blog reader. One of the things settled in there, like a glowing taunt on the screen, was a little article about the fact that Baryshnikov was going to be doing a run of a recent show that he produced and starred in in California. I had read reviews of this show, and was fascinated with it in a way that I can only describe as an ache. Chekhov short story? Yes, please. Dance? Come on, who you talking to. Innovative staging? Yeah, buddy. Elements of film, music, and visual art, all woven together? Gimme. Themes of love and loneliness? YOU SPEAKETH MY LANGUAGE. Add freaking Baryshnikov to the whole thing? It is really too much. Too much!
I handed the phone to Nordic Boy and made some sort of whiney remark, and then we got out of bed, got ready for work, and went. It was a cold (ok, I know, east coast and midwest, I KNOW it’s not that cold), soggy, sloggy week. I just felt drenched and clammy, physically and otherwise.
A few hours after I saw that article, Nordic Boy rang me up while I sat desoggifying in my office. “That show? In California? We’re GOING,” he said. Plane tickets, show tickets, done.Whu-hutt!!
That very weekend, we jumped on that plane, we busted out into some glorious, delicious California sunshine (no coats!), we wandered around Berkeley, had a lovely dinner, and then went to the show. Front row, even!
I have had the privilege of seeing Baryshnikov perform in person many times in my life, as a child, as a teen, as an adult. I’ve even had the (absolutely nutso) privilege of having him see me dance one time during a rehearsal of a show he was affiliated with, once upon a time in a life that doesn’t seem like mine. So aside from the brilliance of the show (and it truly honestly for realsies was brilliant), I have a lot of personal nostalgic stuff all deep in my guts for that guy. Add onto that that my dad loved Chekhov stories. Add onto that that my sweet fella looked at me so tender as the lights went down at the start of the show. There were several moments that made me cry, a lot, during that show, because my feels were so feelsy. Too much.
After the show, we strolled the streets and then had drinks at the hotel bar and talked and talked about what we’d just seen. If there is something that’s better than seeing good art and then gabbing about it with Nordic Boy, I don’t know what it is.
The entire trip just makes me think about the things we talk ourselves out of doing. Granted, not everyone can afford to do shit like that, and we can’t afford to do it much either, but this time, instead of saying no, Nordic Boy helped me to say yes. And it was a weekend that I’ll remember forever. Art and love, my two favorite things. Perfection.