A ‘drama group’ (I use the term loosely, you understand) visited my office some weeks past. We were enticed to the ‘presentation’ (I use the term loosely) by means of morning tea, and, one surmised to oneself, someone’s child might be taking part, or the cake might at least be quite good. At the very least, one’s eyes could benefit from a rest from glaring screens.
Dear reader, though these seem valid enough reasons, I will never again be misled by the term ‘drama group’ which seems wont to be applied as loosely as a two-bit whore’s…never mind. One’s eyes were not rested, but were ravaged and ravished by the relentless failure that is the adult ‘hobby.’ And herein lies the fallacy of the hobby.
Our troupe was a collection of well-meaning psycho-something types with a message, or at least with a passion, or, well, with a passing interest but severe lack of skill in—
Playwright skills possessed they not, nor theatrical capabilities. What unfolded, after an unintentionally polyphonic rendering of a homemade tune whose many stanzas proved all alike, a very long explanation of how the group came to be about, who was in it, whose idea it was, the storyline, excuses for this being the first performance and apologies for half the cast being absent, what unfolded, was a slumping, screeching, gutted sewer-mutant of a play that seared my retinas and scraped my eardrums without mercy. Scene after pointless scene of prancing rainbow-mullet-wig characters wailing, ‘I’m your per-son-aaaal-it-eee!’ and ‘I’m your feeeeeeeel-ings!’ and ‘I’m your cre-a-tiiiiv-it-eee!’ as if hexing all present.
I waited, dodging marshmallows thrown into the crowd by gloved hands, for something profound to emerge from the chatter. But this was all that was offered, that personality, feelings and creativity are the key to relationships. But surely the three are incommensurable, thought I, why choose these three? Why not choose passions and love and ethics? Morality is surely integral to the interaction between moral beings? Why not honesty or trust? What about those whose personalities are destructive, or reactive, who seem unable to tap into creative sources?
But here the tale ended, with a brief iteration of the buzz words, some more screaming and marshmallow tossing and a final song sung inadvertently in canon thanks to the piano being at the opposite end of the chain of ‘songstresses’ (again, loosely) to the more highly revered tape deck. I was left to ponder over my cake, what had just happened? And why had my co-workers applauded, and why had certificates been handed out to grown people without disabilities who had acted in such a way as would humiliate a child?
The world is a mysterious place. We put up with the gaping inadequacies of others who should know better, for no reason that I can determine. Is it because we dare not mock their hobby? Is it because we all have our own secret half-baked pastimes that would flop like beached whales if they saw the light of day, and for this reason we admire the courage of those who would bare their ‘passions’ to which they devote a small slice of the few hours a day remaining to them after work?
This all points to the fact that if it means something to you, you’d better devote your fucking time to it, or your path will be lined with cringes.