Welcome Mat Post
The default in my journal is to screen all anonymous comments, so no one sees them. I can remove that screening at my discretion, though, on an individual basis -- and I have only one criterium for unscreening things. If you are commenting anonymously, and you want your comments to be pubically seen, please sign your name in some way when commenting -- either with your real name, or give yourself a nickname. Otherwise I'll leave them screened. Thanks.
...Periodically, I re-link to an older "who am I" post as occasional new "friendings" turn up, but I've decided to just finally put it right up front here and just edit it as necessary. I am shamelessly stealing the idea of a "welcome mat" post from cadhla, because damn it's a good idea.
So, the FAQ:
Who are you?
My user info says "I live in New York, I work in theater, I own a cat, I'm bad at sports." Add to that: I'm a literary manager, writer, and stage manager. I sometimes think way more than I should.
Is this the only place you write?
No. I occasionally write reviews for nytheatre.com, a local theater-review web site; for a couple content-farms (I'm thinking of dropping that); and my other blog is about how I'm trying to fulfill my life list.
Can I friend you?
Feel free. There's no need to ask permission, either. It'd be cool if at some point you just drop a comment telling me you did, because I rarely look at my user info and there've been times when people have friended me and I just never noticed for a long time and when I finally did I was all, "wait, when did THAT happen?" It just spares me that moment of confusion, but if you don't, no big.
Can I unfriend you?
Sure. When I'm at work on some big project, my entries get very boring because my brain is working on the "fire bad, tree pretty" level, and it can make for dull reading in here and I totally understand.
Will you friend me?
.....Maybe. I can sometimes be slow to friend people back. I actually don't think of it as a "friends list," but as a list of "other people I don't mind reading." I tend to lurk and check you out a while first.
Why don't you friend me? Especially not right away?
I am sensitive to the rights of the other people I talk about not to have their business broadcasted to the world at large. I tend to err on the side of discretion with this -- if I'm writing about something that concerns another person and they might-or-might-not want the world at large to know about it, I tend to lock it. I may be slow to friend people back for similar reasons -- it's okay for y'all to know my-all's business, but I'm also deciding who gets to know some of my friends' business, and I'm a little more careful about that.
Also, there's the fact that I do a lot of reading of friends' lists at work, and time is limited. The attitude I take to this kind of thing is: imagine if everyone's blog is a magazine. There are some magazines you like reading now and then, and some you like reading consistently enough that you pony up for a subscription. Even if I haven't bought the subscription to your blog, I may still pick up a copy now and then at the newsstand or something. So even if I haven't friended you back, I'm still going to be checking in on occasion.
Why don't you post about topic X?
If "X" is a big world issue, then -- well, sometimes I form my opinions very slowly. I have been unconsciously trained by my father to see all sides of an issue and consider their validity; I'm grateful he taught me this, and proud of the fact that I do this. But I also know that it pisses people off because I tend to sit on the fence a lot.
If "X" is some entertainment issue -- i.e., the birth of the latest Jolie-Pitt, Lady Gaga doing anything, American Idol -- I actually don't pay that much attention, and rarely have anything more to say beyond "that's wack, yo." Which, if that's all I have to say, I probably won't. (Exceptions can be made, of course -- whenever David Tennant or Bono do anything of note I will probably be all over that. And sometimes even when they don't. Basically, if there's an excuse to talk about them, I will. Except if they ever offer to talk TO me, in which case I will be stealing away with them to a private corner and will keep that all to myself and...uh, sorry.)
Who are some of the people you talk about?
I generally try to introduce people I know as I write about them, but these people make frequent appearances:
* Zach was my cat; he lived 18 very active and healthy years before finally getting his first illness ever -- a tumor in his gut. He lived another few weeks, most of them good. Nursing him through that stage was one of the hardest things I've ever done.
* Colin is a friend and business partner; he founded one of the two theater companies I work with most often. We also occasionally indulge in geekery. (Once in a very rare while, he has commented here and there, under the name brooklyngreenie.)
* Liz is my current roommate (as of June 2010).
* Andrew was another roommate - he's a recent emigre from Philadelphia, and hadn't even been in the city for more than a month before he founded a film festival. And he is simultaneously continuing to run yet another similar festival back in Philadelphia. (I'm somewhat in awe.) Andrew is also first-generation Ukranian-American, and I have thus found my knowledge of Eastern Europe expanding very rapidly as a result.
* Richard is another friend; he is a writer, mainly for a business-related magazine and web site. He also is my go-to person for information about politics and has a very quick wits and an even more twisted sense of humor.
* Sue and Cliona are my two closest female friends; one lives in another state, another lives in another country. (sad face.) I have known them both since I was twelve, and if you know anything about female friendships that kind of says it all right there. Sue owns and runs a child care center; Cliona is a high school physics teacher in County Cork, Ireland (as she said once, when she was telling me about the experiments she does in classes sometimes, "My life consists of bangs and smells.")
* I know shogunsquirrel in real life; I met her through Richard, when we were more active in a particular pub quiz. Her team and ours were the Red Sox/Yankees rivalry at Rocky Sullivan's for a while; then Rocky's moved to Brooklyn and we both lost half our teams to "ewww, I'm not going all the way to Brooklyn", so we merged forces.
* The rest of my family all live in Massachusetts now; my parents out on the Cape, and my brother Chris's family (Chris, Laura, and their daughter Olivia) close by. Olivia is now two, and I have long since made up my mind that I'm going to be "the wacky aunt".
These people may turn up in older entries, but are out of heavy rotation:
* Alex helms the other theater company I've worked with, and the only thing I can think to say about him now is that he's the only man I know that has actually worn a sarong with a dress shirt.
* If you really go back far into the archives, you'll find references to "Michael" and "Tom," people I dated.
* "Jim B." is a neighbor whose family sort of adopted me for a while when I first moved to Brooklyn; we see less of each other now, but he's the one who introduced me and Tom (they met when they were both in college) so I'll still see him now and then. (I do use pseudonyms for Jim's family, to protect their daughter "Lucinda" -- who is one spunky kid.)
* beanish was a former roommate who moved away to Michigan with the love of his life, and has just moved back into the city and it seems we are occasionally freaking each other out with "remember this?" comments now and then.
* xochitl42 is someone I met through beanish, and was my roommate for two years (we both lost roommates at the same time, I decided to give my place up and she decided to keep hers, and we both learned that about each other and said, "...Hey, wait.") She is one of the few people that actually managed to pick up and hold Zach without him wriggling away ten seconds later. She now lives in Australia.
* Jacob was my roommate for a year, he's studying anthropology and raised the intellectual bar in the apartment by about 683 IQ points.
What are these "Conversations" that I see sometimes?
Snippets of dialogue that I just found funny. Sometimes they're stuff I overhear, sometimes they're stuff I took part in. Working in theater just trains you to think in script format sometimes.
And what about posts that talk about "WKAW"?
I don't do this often, but on occasion I'll collect and post snips of song lyrics around a theme. When I was ten, one of the things I toyed with being "when I grew up" was a deejay, and I've not really outgrown that; this is kind of an extension of that. I can't post mp3 files, so I post lyrics.
Anything else I should know?
I'm blonde, female, a New Yorker, and a gourmand. I know how to knit and make homemade jam and liqueur. I sometimes grumble about a bad back, but less lately than I did before I discovered that there's a reason some people exercise. I will read just about anything P.J. O'Rourke has written, even though I disagree with his politics. I will listen to just about anything Peter Gabriel records. I am rarely "patriotic" in the conventional sense, but if I do critique the government it is because I believe more in washing the flag rather than burning it.
I believe in freedom of expression in all forms and rights for all. I also believe that I have the right to defend what I have expressed. I can at times defend my position very strongly -- but this never means that I want you to give your position up. I'm only hoping to point out that I have a point too.
The furthest from home I've been has been Ireland. I have never broken a bone. I once drove to Vegas solo. I once walked 60 miles with a couple thousand other women. I rarely fit any stereotype about any demographic group I fit into, and sometimes I even get peeved when I start to. I consider myself a feminist and a humanist, even though you could probably easily find people who disagree with me on both points. And like everyone else, I'm making a lot of this up as I go along.