the backstage epiphany

where reality is so subjective it's entirely optional

Monthly Archives: April 2008

As __________ a time as any

Is there really a time and place for everything? For doing what we want to do, going where we want to go, saying what we want to say? And which is the most fragile of all: the words, the action, or the place? Lately it seems as though saying what we want to say relies the most heavily on this adage, because saying it not only directly affects us, but the people we say it to, and the fifty-percent chance of saying it at the wrong time and/or in the wrong place could change everything, and not necessarily for the better.

So if we have decided when the right time and place would be to say something, but something happens along the way and throws everything into a different light, what do we do? Do we hold our tongues and cling to our resolution to follow through with our initial plans, or seize an opportunity, however wrong it may seem, to get it out of our system? Following Plan A might just turn out the way we had intended it to, but we don’t know when, or even if, we would be able to carry it out; Plan B might help us get it over with sooner, but it could reflect — and possibly badly — upon the event(s) that led to having a Plan B in the first place. And then there’s the even more daunting problem of what the outcome of either plan could be, as there’s that fifty-percent chance of having it blow up in our faces. So then one might see fit to argue that if we know there’s a possibility of slinking into bed in mortification anyway, regardless of which plan we follow, why not just throw caution to the wind and say it?

Is there a Plan C?


Gale-force winds

The doors can stay open for days at a time, and then, just as suddenly as they’re flung open, they’re slammed shut again, going whichever way the wind blows, and going against whichever side the boundaries fall.

And once again, I’m standing on the outside, shut out of a world I could barely set foot in in the first place. To have come so dangerously close to breaking, and just like that, to be made to keep it all in.

Going back to the dream

Had received it from a member of the audience who had flown all the way from Québec to New York for the show. When he returned to Québec he had Googled the concert and found this blog, after which he contacted me to ask about the experience. Have not spoken to him in a while, but apparently this very avid fan surfs YouTube religiously to look for new videos and was nice enough to send this to me. And from the looks of this one, it might have been professionally recorded, which completely counters what the choir was led to believe about it not having been recorded at all. Hopefully more will appear soon.

The visible choir members are from Professor Rosenbaum‘s New York Virtuoso and Canticum Novum Singers. The University at Buffalo Choir was, quite literally, in the dark.

In memoriam

Yara Khoury
1966 – 2008

Sometimes we take for granted the people that we meet, no matter how significant or otherwise they were in our lives. It can be a very good friend, a family member, a colleague, or even the tailor who’s done all our alterations for the last ten years. We grow accustomed to their presence, and then when they leave us for some reason or other, we realize what an impact, no matter how small it might have been, they had made on our lives.

In my case, it was Yara, my belly-dancing teacher of two years, who succumbed to ovarian cancer yesterday after a nine-year battle. I hadn’t seen her in over four years, ever since I moved to the United States, and I never got the chance to tell her how much I appreciated and admired her for everything she had done, because and in spite of what she’d had to go through. This is to the brave woman who refused to let cancer beat her, and instead chose to fight it by throwing herself into and sharing her love for the exquisite art of dancing.

Thank you, Yara.

A reminder

Big decisions are the worst to make. We ponder for ages over whether or not to do something, seek advice from people, only to end up taking our own. Then we make our decision and we know that it was the best one (probably because there wasn’t really a choice to begin with), and we work towards it, trying to ignore any doubts we may have, and trying to keep the faith and hang on for dear life to the hope that no matter how (unfortunately) long it takes, everything will be all right in the end. And just when we start second-guessing ourselves and possibly start wondering — albeit a tad too late — if we really had made the right decision after all, that tiny little thing happens to make us reassess, regroup and remember why we did it in the first place, and why we thought it was the best thing to do.

This came today via Facebookmail, from someone whom I had gone to school with, but haven’t spoken to in what must be nearly two years:

Hey friend,

I’m procrastinating from a 10 page paper due in a a couple of hours, but I found the courage and curiosity to skim through your musings. I don’t claim to know much, except, I’m sorry to hear about all that has happened, and reading about how you aligned every fiber of your being to hold on… inspired me – in a different way, and that I want you to know that you’ll always have a friend here. Good luck in the future, I know you’ll shine.


The epitome of an oxymoron

a.k.a. my life right now

The Gift

When Becca said, “Reach around behind your seat if you can. There’s a box there,” I didn’t expect her to add, “It’s for you. From Greg.”

“Shoes,” she proffered. “I’ve been sitting on this for a month now, ever since before he moved to Singapore. That’s why I’ve been getting the abusive emails from him asking when I was going to see you.”

Shoes. Shoes. I’ve never received shoes as a gift before. And they aren’t the stiletto kind I usually wear, but the Ipanema by Gisele Bündchen kind. They weren’t what I would have bought for myself, but that someone (whom I have yet to meet) actually thought to buy me a pair of shoes — probably because he knows I’m a shoe person — as a welcome-home gift made them that much more endearing.

And the shoes aren’t bad either.

He bought me shoes. I guess I have to keep saying it until I believe it.

Baby steps

One day at a time

It’s Day 2. Except for the unrelenting heat and humidity, complete disorientation at all the changes made to the streets in Subang Jaya, and unadulterated disgust at the traffic and driving habits of the people here, have managed to survive being home. The flight was relatively bearable, probably because most of it was spent sleeping so that would not have to think about anything.

The belongings that had been shipped home from Buffalo were delivered today. Thank God everything made it, and except for one of the boxes that broke near the bottom, hence causing one of the Dior shoeboxes to tear, everything is more or less in one piece. Will now have to clear out all old and unwanted things from the bedroom and figure out where and how to fit everything.

Also discovered that ID and driver’s license had somehow gotten lost. Have vague memories of packing them to be shipped home, but then for some strange reason also feel as though they had gone along to Boston, which means they must have been in possession the entire time. In the end Dad just said to get a new ID so that would be able to go to Maxis and get a new SIM card and not be tethered to the land line any longer. So now am finally out of the wilderness with a new ID, a new cell phone number and a new car on the way (hopefully not too far into the future).