Friday, May 09, 2008

Happy birthday to me -- except from some people

Yes, I am 40 today. Four-oh. Any moment now Gary Merrill is going to come walking into my party while Marilyn Monroe comes up the stairs looking gorgeous and George Sanders waxes deadpan and lyrical. And, at the end of the party, as I stare into my fifth martini, I shall mutter the word "Liebestraum." Repeatedly.

What's amazing is how many people are coming to my soiree tonight. Amazing, amazing group of people. And then there's a person who just called me on my cell phone -- a high-ranking member of the Drama Desk with whom I've never, ever actually discussed the Drama Desk -- telling me that she couldn't attend my party tonight because in her mind it would justify, condone, give credence to, and/or validate my post of a few weeks ago regarding the supposedly dirty doings occurring within the organization, in particular some actions of perhaps questionable legality by a person I referred to as Said Chair. How extraordinary that someone would call me on the phone to tell me that they couldn't attend a personal, private, social event -- an event that has nothing to do with the industry, nothing to do with the Drama Desk -- because I exercised my right to an opinion and dared to state it openly. How dare someone!

I know, I know. After speaking to several people about this, I agree with their assessment -- that Said Chair might well have instructed this person, or implied to this person, not to attend my party. Gee, will the Drama Desk mafia wack me tonight, too? (I didn't realize the script to Glory Days was so heavy.) Well, this is redolent of the way Said Chair coerces people, for instance, into emailing letter upon letter to the Drama Desk listserv singing her praises -- as if "The lady doth protest too much" wasn't already a well-known phrase by William Shakespeare.

Well, tell you what. If you can't attend a social function without needlessly hauling in outside and inappropriate business, then that's quite right -- stay away. After all, if you need the permission of Said Chair before attending a social event, that says more about you (and Said Chair) than any insult you can hurl at me. What it proves -- or at least suggests -- is that Said Chair does indeed operate by coercion, intimidation, subtle or outright threats, cajoling, stealth, or by the implied retrobution for refusing to cooperate with Said Chair's demands and expectations. I suppose the test will really come later this summer, when I send in my 475 clips to renew my membership in the Drama Desk. I can assure you it wouldn't be profitable for Said Chair to target me, but then, she's really so consumed with frothing vengeance that I imagine she will.

Said Chair wants vengeance not for what I posted on my blog. That only added fuel to the fire, I'm sure. In fact, she's been hungry for vengeance for years. If only I had taken Said Chair's side when Said Chair and Said Chair's husband were fired from the publication where I am employed so many years ago. I won't even get into the reason(s) they were canned because it was all quite silly. The point is, Said Chair holds a grudge against me for not publicly, avidly, fervently siding with them when that took place. Said Chair never cared to understand, so huge is her narcissism, that when she forced me into a position in which I had to choose between my job and the Said Chairs, for the sake of self-preservation I had to do whatever I had to do to keep my job.

What really infuriated Said Chair, moreover, was the fact that I said at the time that I was not going to take sides -- not the side of my boss at that time, and not her side. I had no dog in that fight. But apparently neutral = bad, and thus I've been on her shit list ever since.

I am loving my 40th birthday. Anyone else want to call and try to turn my day into something that's all about them? Y'all feel free to go ahead. For I know who my friends and colleagues are who are genuinely worth my time. I'll be seeing about a hundred or more of them tonight.

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Nick said...

Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.

macrogers said...

Happy birthday, Leonard!