Thursday, February 24, 2011

On December 9th I was grabbing a meal at a cafe on 42nd street.  I decided to sit at one of the entrance-side tables, which were mostly empty except for one corner table where a man was talking on his cell-phone.  Something about his posture suggested he wanted his phone conversation to be kept somewhat discreet.  He was talking about a show of his; that it opened on January 11th; that ticket sales were going well, and in fact they had sold a million dollars' worth of tickets after the CBS special aired.  And although he never once mentioned the show by name, I realized by now he worked on "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark."

He sounded like he was coordinating travel plans, and when mentioning his show he would phrase it like: "My show opens on the 11th," rather than going with the more casual "We open on the 11th."  It was as though he were talking to a grandparent about some logistics, and wanted to keep things as basic and clear as possible.  Because if he said "We open on the 11th," a grandparent might be confused about whom the "we" refers to.  Presently he got up and spent the rest of the time pacing to and fro beside the tray and drink stations. 

I wanted to say something to him before leaving.  Saying "good luck" is considered bad etiquette in theater.  And it didn't even occur to me to say "break a leg," probably since I assumed he wasn't a performer.  So when I tossed away my trash and Snapple bottle I got his attention and said "I hope you guys do well," and he seemed to appreciate it.   

If I could see any show on Broadway right now, Spider-Man would probably be my second choice.

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