bekah brunstetter
Bekah Brunstetter I care deeply. About a lot of things. Like really, really deep. Ow
playwright in brooklyn, NY

SHREDDING IS LIFE

August 18th, 2019 by Bekah Brunstetter

EVERYTHING ELSE IS JUST DETAILS*

DETAILS INCLUDING THE FACT THAT DESPITE MY PHYSICALLY CAUTIOUS AND SAFETY-SEEKING NATURE, ALL I WANT TO DO FOREVER IS RIP AROUND ON A JETSKI, HUNTING FOR PONTOON BOAT WAVES; TAKE SMALL BREAKS FOR CHIPS

 

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Say Goodbye to These, Michael

August 11th, 2019 by Bekah Brunstetter

Sometimes you make a cake for a friend because she’s managed to stay alive X amount of years, and it’s the yearly commemoration of her birth, and sometimes you make her a cake because she’s  getting a double Mastectomy to prevent the spread of her cancer, so that she can be MORE alive, and for longer. My LA little sister Mackenzie has been facing this whole thing head on with HUMOR AND GRACE, ie, she threw a White Girl Witch farewell party for her breasts, featuring an actual rack of lamb and performances by her close friends, staged readings of earnest scenes from the Bachelor, stand-up, song and dance — all formed around this Arrested Development favorite:

Now that she’s safely on the other side of her surgery, I have to share the Lemon Cream Cheese cake that I put all of my love and worry  into. I offered a boob cake, Mack requested that the cake ‘maybe not look like an actual boob, but maybe have…boob WRITING on it?’ PLEASE NOTE THE LITTLE EYEBALL CANDIES THAT ARE MEANT TO TASTEFULLY LOOK LIKE BOOBS.

But mostly I have to share how proud of and in awe I am of this woman. Her ability to laugh at everything and anything. The fact that in the days leading up to her surgery, she was working on pitching her next show and got two job offers. Here’s to so many more years with her, more themed tragedy parties, more inflatable props.

 

Posted in a lot, CAKES, family, food, i am lucky, life, love, the future, what my friends are doing, women, YAY | No Comments »

DAD VIBES

May 25th, 2019 by Bekah Brunstetter

I wrote my next play, Public Servant, for many reasons, perhaps too many? Because don’t we change  as we live and so the play must change, as it Lives? But one of the main reasons was to humanize — not glorify, just humanize —  the Politician, not the US Senator, per se, but the local government Politician, specifically the County Commissioner, which my Dad served as for many years. It’s loosely based on  his early days in politics, the difficulties of raising a family while also working another job and also trying to run a county and please everyone (impossible.) The character is of course not fully my Dad, but inspired by. And so when I showed up yesterday, mid-tech, having had zero input on costumes, I WAS DELIGHTED TO FIND THIS:

I CAN FIND NO PHOTOGRAPHIC EVIDENCE BUT I SWEAR TO YOU MY DAD HAS WORN THIS EXACT OUTFIT. But just so we’re all clear, and just so we give respect and context where they are due, HE ALSO OFTENTIMES LOOKS LIKE THIS:

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Why to have Amazon

March 8th, 2019 by Bekah Brunstetter

 

Maybe it was the tiniest bit hard being around my super fertile lady cousins a few weekends ago, I’m all nervous uterus and declining ovarian reserve, while they are all mom goddesses with flowing hair and regular ovulation. But thankfully for all of us, we all have miraculous senses of humor and openness and a desire to include each other in our lives, and other beautiful sentiments that justify WHY THIS TURKEY BASTER SHOWED UP AT MY HOUSE YESTERDAY, courtesy of my cousin Persie:

THANK YOU COUSINS. GRATEFUL THAT I / WE CAN LAUGH AT THIS.

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Who it’s For

March 6th, 2019 by Bekah Brunstetter

HI DO YOU THINK I’M A PLAYWRIGHT WHO DOESN’T READ OR CARE ABOUT THEIR REVIEWS? HI, YOU’RE WRONG.  I read them with one eye open, one eye shut to the pain, the other hoping to learn something. I’ve never been a critical darling, I’m perhaps not cynical nor subversive enough,  so I wasn’t shocked to read the lukewarm reviews of Cake, tho I DON’T KNOW, I CAN GET DOWN WITH A LUKEWARM BATH, OR SOUP. But while in the past, I’ve felt devastated by bad reviews, emotionally hungover — this time, I actually feel kind of fine. Because this play is not for critics (hopefully no plays are FOR critics?) It is for these people:

A big reason I wrote this play was out of respect for my parents, their beliefs, even though a lot of them are different from my own. Last night, they joined me at opening, engaged with my ideas,  HEARD MY PLAY, AND SHOWED ME LOVE.   THAT IS WHO AND WHAT THIS WAS ALL FOR.

THIS COMMEMORATIVE APRON ALSO DOES NOT HURT.

 

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Beverly, Forever

February 18th, 2019 by Bekah Brunstetter

As I relish / writhe in this life phase I’ll call ‘pre-kid aware,’ in which I don’t have kids yet but want them, and so think of all life things in terms of having or not having kids — one of the thing that’s struck me is that once I create a kid, I create a Person separate from myself, who then grows and forgets me, for at least a little while. That’s one of the great big sad and strange things about being a human — you have your own brain and your own will that sometimes carries you away from the people that made you. But somehow, on my Mom’s side of the family, our matriarch Beverly has stayed a focal point if not GODDESS for all of her granddaughters, no matter where we are at in our lives. And so, when we were asked if we could make it to Maryland to surprise our Grandma for her 90th birthday, naturally we all said yes, and the result was THIS FACE, WHICH WAS WORTH A THOUSAND PLANE TICKETS, WHICH WAS THANKFULLY NOT ACCOMPANIED BY A HEART ATTACK:

Literally every granddaughter, daughter, and daughter in law made her way to Beverly’s surprise tea, except for two who are out of the country. She cried, we cried, we heard stories from church friends about how she could talk to a lamppost, how she opened her house to everyone and anyone, then we all went to said house, gathered around her like she was a Queen and listened to her regale her tales from a life as a young Flight Attendant, when we were all just dust.

I marveled at the individual attention she always gave and continues to give to each of us.  I think that’s her greatest trick, her greatest gift. I know I’ve made hundreds of grandchildren, Bekah, but right now, it’s just you and me. 

Beverly, Forever.

 

 

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Let’s all listen to Geri

January 2nd, 2019 by Bekah Brunstetter

One of the highlights of my 2018 was randomly connected with a retired therapist, Geri, who grew up with my Grandma Roberta, during an Ashkenazi immigrant cultural heyday in Brooklyn. Please let it never be forgotten that when I first moved to Brooklyn, I got an old bike, named her Roberta, and rode my Grandma all around her previous stomping grounds.  Roberta died sort of suddenly, before I got to know her that well, which is entirely my fault, as I had plenty of time, but we were so similar that I think we reflected ourselves back to each other, were too much like the south poles  of magnets. Geri saw my name in an article about the Cake, reached out via my agent, and we began chatting intermittently over email and phone. I received the below from her, yesterday — (she’s referring to an article I did in which I speak to feeling religiously, politically ‘split in two.’)

I just read the LA Times article from June/2017 and now the shrink speaks.  Nothing,  absolutely nothing can split you apart – that will always be  your choice, so never go there. You have every right to feel confused, conflicted, stupid, and so on, and that’s called growing, and grappling with who you are always becoming, enriched, smarter more humane where all that grappling takes us, so go with it, and always be exactly who you are, at that moment, because that is the reality of how we live, and eventually you’ll have it all worked out, and by then you won’t give a shit. Just be the who you recognize and if some of that is in confusion so be it, confusion and nuance are wonderful, they deepen us.  I am awed by the degree/depth of your productivity and probably are the object of enormous envy so relax and be Bekah, whoever the hell she is, she’s terrific.

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Love, the Nice Girl who Works Here

December 26th, 2018 by Bekah Brunstetter

The absolute best part of this Christmas has definitely been that my Grandparents, who I rarely get to see anymore, are down from Maryland. My Grandpa is deep in the throes of Alzheimer’s, and my Grandma, on the other hand, somehow gets sharper every day, and less filtered, like she will CALL. IT. OUT. Alzheimers of the genetic variety runs deep in my grandpa’s family, tho it affects everyone differently. We’re lucky that at this point, he  is  sort of joyfully forgetful, has a less dark version of the disease. He kind of has no idea what’s happening or where he is, but is basically always at peace, unless of course there’s no ice cream or a woman is driving him. He knows who my Grandma is, ‘The Wife,’ but that’s basically it when it comes to people. And so over the last few days, I’ve managed to become ‘the nice girl who works here,’ the nice girl who shows him where to sit to get the best view of the lake, where the bathroom is, who refreshes his coffee. I like to think he thinks he’s at some extremely hospitable waterside bed and breakfast, where the proprietors treat you like family, fuss over you, find your shoes, where there’s a Nice Girl who Works there, who seems familiar in a way that’s strange but comforting, but doesn’t everyone, at a certain point?

 

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6, scared of 7

December 14th, 2018 by Bekah Brunstetter

Today, on I CAN CONTROL THE FUTURE WITH MY FEELINGS: For whatever reason, 36 feels like a safe, good, young age to me. There’s a roundness to it, a lightness, a youth. But then I think about turning 37 next year, and it has a danger, a sharpness, an oldness. 38 feels round again, safe and young again, but in an old way. 39 feels like a cliff, 40 like campground at high elevation with built in firepits,  a stunning view. Even, odd. I now know that I will turn 37 and not yet be a mom (tho perhaps in growth stage?)  I keep fixating on that number and punishing myself for it. I also keep fixating on the ages of women younger than me, who already have their kids / are currently growing them, and I keep feeling behind, like I’m supposed to be ahead but not, which is another way to say behind, which I already said, because I feel it to the point of repetition. And so, I’ll remind myself here:

Things that are NOT competitions:

  • who breathes the most per minute
  • who grows their hair the fastest
  • Having Kids

Things that ARE competitions:

  • Races
  • The Great British Baking show
  • Competitions

 

 

 

 

Posted in a lot, family, ha, hmmmmm, how interesting, i am a grown up, love, MAWWAGE., the making of babies, Uncategorized | No Comments »

Fantasy or Fever Dream?

November 24th, 2018 by Bekah Brunstetter

This Thanksgiving will forever go down in history as That Time I Spent an Entire Year looking forward to hosting my own Thanksgiving in my own house for my Husband’s family, nearly a lifelong goal of mine, only to contract a cold from hell a few days before game time, but flat out refused to let it affect my fantasy plans or anyone’s holiday, and so I pushed through like a mad woman assisted by Sister in Laws and Sudafed, to the point of Fever, and SOMEHOW IT ALL HAPPENED, in fact I miraculously started to feel better an hour before dinner was served, and it still managed to be the most marvelous Thanksgiving ever, with two kinds of stuffing and family everywhere, or MAYBE I SWEAT DREAMT IT? A few of my favorite images from my Fever dream:

Morrison somehow arranged our dining room so it fit 14 people / WE GOT TO USE ALL OF OUR PLACEMATS / WHY IS THIS SO EXCITING TO ME / DO I NEED HELP:

 .  

With much advice and assistant from sister in Law Jacy and also the internet, I roasted my first turkey and no one (yet) died:

Tiny people literally everywhere:

SIL Anne with that portrait mode:

Featured dishes: my sausage, apple and fennel cornbread stuffing, and MIL Cam’s Chile Relleno casserole (cheese / eggs / sour cream / chile rellenos / ABSURDLY GOOD)

A large percentage of my favorite people, all in one place:

 

Posted in a lot, awesome, family, food, generally, ha, hmmmmm, horn tooting, how interesting, i am a grown up, i am lucky | No Comments »

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