Block 185: August 28, 2013



The end of August approaches, guys!

2013, therefore, is 2/3 of the way done? How can that be possible?

Date: August 28, 2013

Crane: 185

Days Spent on Project: 192

Location: Apartment, Washington Heights, NYC

Person I would have sent it to: Sara M.

Sara was the fourth flatmate in Kate’s London flat. She was from Hawaii.

Even though I would say that, of the four ladies in that apartment I was closest to Kate, Sara and I probably spent the most time together. She and I were placed in the same classes for the semester; we were later cast in the same final production. Hamlet.

(It’s funny to have just started rehearsals on a production of Hamlet that will tour the country. I’ve done this play before as an actor. Now I’m doing it as an assistant designer.)

A few notes on the London Hamlet: like all school productions, it had an over-reaching meta-theatrical level. The director told us that we would be setting our “Hamlet world” within an Insane asylum. He wanted us to think about Diane Arbus and One Who Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest. He wanted us to create a backstory of who our “patients” were, and make a connection to why they would have been cast as a specific “character” in a “drama as therapy” session. Our Nurse Ratched was Claudius. He was the Doctor.

A bit deep, right?

Dr. Claudius, as we called him, was my flatmate that I felt awkward around. Sara was cast as Gertrude. I was cast as one of four Hamlets.

Really deep, right?

Anyway, Sara. I have to say that she did figure as a big part of my time in London because I was always in that flat that became a home-base for us. I wish I remembered more about her, other than her being from Hawaii and fondness for stretching and yoga pants and her sister being from Hawaii. I have not reconnected with her on Facebook or seen her in life since then. That’s weird to think about.

Music I listened to while sewing: Went to bed with Peggy Lee’s “Is That All There Is?” going through my head. Woke up this morning with it continuing its loop.

I’ve moved on to the Pet Shop Boys now.

Thoughts/Feelings behind the block: I had an idea for something to write about last night. In fact, I wrote myself an email reminding myself of some talking points to hit along the way.

But, like pre-planning, it doesn’t always work out.

Let’s discuss, briefly as I have to get the day started, something I’ve touched on before.

I’ve mentioned how I worry that I haven’t met, interacted with, or personally connected with 1000 people throughout my 34 years of life on this planet; I’ve worried that one of the major goals of this project is, therefore, implausible to complete.

Eventually, as I go through my life in what is turning out to be consequential order, will I run out of people who I can remember “important” about? Like today, I know Sara was a big part of my London experience. I had class with her. I did a play with her. She was a part of the group that I hung out with daily. But anything specific beyond that…  has escaped me.

Will I be at Crane 884 and thanking the Starbucks Barista who gave me my morning coffee? How anticlimactic will this project be if it spins itself into something like that?

But then I’m reminded, oddly through Facebook (with which I have a very complicated relationship), that there are people out there that I remember vaguely, somewhat on the periphery of my past life, who remember specific details about me. They remember a play I was in or a costume I designed or a night out.

It makes me realize that our sphere of influence is so much greater than what we realize. It is NOT just about what I remember. It is NOT just about what I think my life, impact, past, actions have been; someone else, in their life history, sees me as a supporting character that has influenced or unimpressed or impacted them. If this were a project done by everyone, I could be Crane #1 to someone. I could be Crane #567. I could be Crane #884. Or I could be a Crane that was dedicated on a whim, with not much meaning behind it. I could be someone’s Starbucks Barista dedication, you know?

I could also NOT a Dedicated Crane. There are people out there who’s Crane Quilt will not include me… because I don’t know them. But, maybe they do know me, and I just didn’t figure in to their lives that much.


It also has dawned on me the weird importance of dedicating cranes. In the past, and even now, I think it might be exciting to tell someone that I’ve dedicated this Crane to you; your name will be stitched into this and a little description of you will be included on the quilt. That might be powerful. This gesture does have a weight to it, yes, but sometimes that weight can be stressful. What about Person X, who remembers having that really awesome conversation with me 10 years ago, but learns they DIDN’T get a Crane. Is that ruinous?

I worry at times that I don’t know 1000 people to whom I would dedicate a crane. But, honestly, the real worry might have to be that I have only 1000 cranes to make dedications with…

Remember how in grade school, we were told to bring birthday cupcakes or valentines for everyone so no one felt left out?

Anyway, choosing 1000 cranes is a big responsibility, and I hope I’m not perceived as taking it glibly. Because, you know, everyone deserves to get a crane of their own. Everyone deserves to be someone’s number #1 crane. Everyone deserves to be any one number. Everyone deserves to be recognized and remembered and included.



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