7/16/2000

Day Zero

Filed under:General — eric @ 11:06 am

It’s been one of those weeks
You know… one of those life-changing weeks that comes around every few years. This entry is going to be especially journally and introspective. This weblog is really a time capsule for me. It’s written for an audience of one, but it gives me great satisfaction to know so many people come back to see what I’m putting in it. As always, come along for the ride if you wish. If not, that’s OK too. Have a Kestrel’s Nest Recipe Idea instead:

Fry an egg until just set through, using as little oil as you can get away with. Season the egg with your favorite dried herbs. On an oven-proof plate, place a slice of bread, preferably a tasty whole grain bread. Put the cooked egg on the bread. Cover the egg with thinly sliced smoked gouda cheese. Cover the cheese with slices of ripe tomato and season with salt and pepper. If you can’t get a tomato right off the vine, do what you can. It’ll still be delightful. Cover the tomato with sliced cheddar. Place the entire stack under the broiler until the cheese is bubbly and just beginning to brown. Eat right away. If you wish, you can skip the gouda and tomato and still have a first-rate breakfast.

Sometimes things happen that seem insignificant, and they pass by without notice only to begin a chain reaction that changes everything. There’s no way to tell for certain if a specific event is the beginning of something huge, and that’s part of the joy of experiencing life. Not knowing. I have a strong hunch, though, that breakfast last Saturday was one of those sparks. I was introduced to someone, and I saw everything change. Like one of those fun moments in Run Lola Run where the camera suddenly focuses on a passer-by and we see a fast motion slide show of the future, I saw life unfold. I don’t know if my other breakfast companions, two longtime friends, saw any of this in me, but I felt a change from the pre-breakfast Eric to post-breakfast Eric, and my internal calendar changed itself accordingly. Day Zero and counting. It was exhilarating — terror and joy and wonder and excitement. It’s a wonder that I could talk or eat, but both seemed to happen without impairment.

The four of us shared each other’s company for nearly two hours, but that was far too short. Still, there was nothing to be done: I had to go to the theater for set call (to be followed by a cast and crew party there). We parted ways, but not before I invited all three of them to the party. My newly met someone did even better by coming to help with the set call. She painted. I beamed. The work was followed by the wildly fun croquet wiffleball cookout I wrote about last week. A good time was had by all, but I’d wager that no one enjoyed it more than I.

But I had some unfinished business to take care of. This spring, a mighty close friendship flared into romance. It wasn’t sudden; it wasn’t earthshaking. But it was very nice. The future looked rosy. But, despite effort and emotion, it wasn’t to be. After a strong beginning, things sputtered. We each knew the prognosis, and we each knew that the other knew, but for whatever reason, nothing was said. Maybe it was the fear of losing the friendship that started the whole thing, or maybe it was something else. I was there, but I can’t tell you why things happened the way they did. But, with the sudden appearance of Day Zero, the time had come. At the same time I was elated with other events, the prospect of this conversation terrified me. I didn’t eat for two days prior (sure, the Chinese buffet was filling and all, but that wasn’t what kept me from eating). I was a nervous wreck. When the moment came, I could barely talk. But when I did, everything turned out OK. All the “I know”’s came out, followed by all the “I know you know”’s. I destroyed a romance, but kept (and probably saved) a friendship. All of this would have happened anyway, and probably should have happened before, but The Breakfast set the spark.

The rest of the week (outside of work and rehearsal) was taken up by events set in motion on Day Zero. Phone calls into the wee hours. In-person conversations into the wee hours. Dancing into the wee hours. It’d been a while since I’d seen so many wee hours, but I didn’t mind.

And so here I am, a full week later. Already, my life has changed. I’m incredibly happy for the present and excited for the future. I don’t know where the chain of events sparked by The Breakfast will lead me, but I’m ready. After all, that’s part of the joy of experiencing life. Not knowing. And suddenly I have a whole new life to experience.