Saturday, February 11, 2012
Just a Teaser
A last minute dash through a yellow-turning-red-light forced Lisa to stop at the traffic light.
“Ah!” with a frustrated sigh, she looked at the clock again and tried to convince herself she wasn’t going to be late.
As though joining with the drilling raindrops, it seemed everything was set to stall her. A last minute “quick project” held her at work. The stained blouse kept her from leaving the house. An empty gas tank stole minutes from her drive to downtown. And now the light seemed to drag itself from yellow to red to green.
In the park to her right, a stand of trees glowing with autumn light despite the dreary night beckoned her attention. Oblivious, she fumed within.
Of all the performances to be required to see! She knew Minneapolis offered hundreds of venues for live performance … why this one? She was sure he would be there, gloating in his accomplishment. She wondered who had designed his set this time. Who had he found to watch site lines and perfect all the minutia of detail to make his show run smoothly? Would the replacement be better?
The adrenaline of an opening night had held them together long after good sense would have separated them. Neither could deny how well they worked together. But that wasn’t enough.
As her skills became acknowledged in the industry, more than praise, she drew respect, from her peers – their peers. His need to be recognized superior drove him to belittle her, criticize her publicly, and humiliate her. Privately the disdain was magnified. Piece by piece, he tore away her self-respect and identity.
As the light finally turned green, she shook her head and said aloud, “Opening nights are not the only thing you left behind. “
With plenty of time to spare, she arrived at the theater. She dawdled in the gift shop. Smiling to herself, she realized she had never been the customer, always the designer. She considered the handiwork of the PR pieces, and bought a handful of useless trinkets like any other star-struck novice might.
Carefully she timed her entry into the theater, so as not to accidentally coincide with a last minute house check. A handful of patrons sat clustered here and there chatting quietly. She made her way to the front row, checked her ticket, and settled in trying to blend.
Protected by the leather about her, she huddled in her seat hoping he wouldn’t know she was there. She wondered if her Day Class peers would fill the front row or be seated elsewhere. She hoped she would recognize the professor, so as to assure her attendance would be noted. She wished she could have been at the performance with her Week-End classmates, but she would be busy getting divorced when they were in the audience.
Lisa was startled by a deep bass voice suddenly beside her, “Good evening.”
“Hello,” she responded politely.