February 22nd, 2017 by Bekah Brunstetter
There are plays you read in undergrad and grad school and watch scenes from and do scenes from, to the point where watching the play actually staged feels like a very long, hazy moment of deja vu. O’Neill’s Long Day’s Journey into Night is definitely one of those plays, and I even though I spent a summer at the O’Neill conference, did a three-night long, all playwright reading of it, visited the very house in which the play was set — I did not actually see the play until last night, at the Geffen (staring Alfred Molina and Jane Kaczmarek, who were both magnificent.) Even though I’ve read it so many times, last night it revealed itself to me as something new — not a play about brothers, about fathers, about grudges you can’t let go of — but a play about a very poetic addiction. It’s really Mary Tyrone’s play, the mother’s play. It’s actually about her withdrawing from and indulging in morphine, hiding it from her family. When she’s on morphine, she just talks and talks and talks, and says the saddest and most beautiful things:
None of us can help the things life has done to us. They’re done before you realize it, and once they’re done they make you do other things until at last everything comes between you and what you’d like to be, and you’ve lost your true self forever.
The past is the present. It’s the future, too.
Her addiction allows the playwright to speak through her. We have things we want our characters to say. They are the things that we want to say, but can’t. But you can’t just insert the things into the mouth of a character. You have to give them some profound reason to say them, a reason that ideally creates a story. This is something I already knew, but must be reminded of, every time I write a scene. A character is not a robot for your poetry. A character is a human being who must be cared for, who must be motivated, who is usually based on your mom (not really.) (but sometimes.) (HI MOM!)
Posted in a lot, family, famous people stuff, generally, hmmmmm, the writing of drama plays, theater, tout | No Comments »
February 21st, 2017 by Bekah Brunstetter
Very pleased to announce that we have graduated from crappy, flammable Ikea furniture to sturdy, maybe slightly less flammable, moderately priced CB2 furniture. I am also proud to announce that the bookshelf contains a great many old issues of the Babysitter’s Club, and that Morrison plays video games on the TV. ARE WE GROWN UPS YET?
Posted in YAY, a lot, generally, ha, hmmmmm, how interesting, i am a grown up, things that I Have, tout, trying too hard, where i want to live | No Comments »
January 28th, 2017 by Bekah Brunstetter
I spent most of yesterday grinning like an overjoyed idiot. It was one of the best days in recent memory, and lets remember that I have both BEEN MARRIED AND BEEN ON A HONEYMOON AND ALSO TO GOLDEN GLOBES recently, so that’s saying a whole lot. (Also, obviously, all of those things were also pretty great.) First, I got to meet and hold my brand new perfect beautiful niece Ruby, and be her mattress for a while:
And also spend some time hanging with Blaine and Jason, learning the bitter truth about what happens to ones lady parts when one gives birth, which in its own way, was quite joyous, as nobody describes crazy things better than Blaine Barbee. As if that wasn’t enough, I then hit the road with Julien to Kinston, NC, and dined at Chef and the Farmer, Chef Vivian Howard’s farm to table restaurant that I have been clinically obsessed with for months:
We stuffed ourselves silly with grits and turnip greens and collards and pork rinds and country ham and dirty peanut rice and guinea pot pie and rutabagas and apple moonshine cocktails and other things I can’t remember, as we ordered EIGHT THINGS. PS JULIEN ALSO BROKE HER FACE.
SEEKING TWO FACE CASTS / PLS CONTACT WITH DETAILS.
Posted in YAY, babies, food, life, love, mes amis, tout, wanting, what my friends are doing | No Comments »
January 8th, 2017 by Bekah Brunstetter
Yesterday, in one of the stranger Hollywood but not Hollywood afternoons of my life, I had the privilege of attending a Golden Globes ‘gift suite.’ Basically a bunch of jewelry designers, skincare makers, and charities gather in a penthouse and wait for celebrities to visit their booth, so that they can tell them all about their product or cause, in hopes that the famous person will then champion the face lotion / cause. The celebrity or out of place TV writer gets sort of marched around the room and handed free things, and a sort of stressed out ‘host’ has to introduce them to each vendor, and genuinely try but mostly mispronounce their name every time perhaps as Backah Brunsettler, and then hold the free things the famous person gets handed, because famous people and lower level TV writers cannot hold things with their hands. It was a strange glimpse into the life of a person who just gets given things for no reason. Highlights were the Vagina cleaner, the woman who gave me a sample of her perfume then pitched me her pilot idea, and last but not least, Viola Davis, who floated behind me with an entourage of what appeared to be granddaughters, generously thanking everyone, giving each person time and attention, showing the rest of us how it is done.
Posted in I write for television?, LA angst, YAY, a lot, famous people stuff, i am lucky, things, things that I Have, tout, wanting, women, working | No Comments »
December 31st, 2016 by Bekah Brunstetter
There’s a thing going around instagram, Best 9, in which people post a grid of their best nine pictures from 2016, summing up a year in their lives. Whenever everyone is doing something it kind of makes me not want to do it, as I am no sheep, by which I mean BAAAAAAAA I’LL JUST DO IT HERE INSTEAD but with 24 pictures because I LIVE MY OWN LIFE (IN GRIDS.) And so with no further ado, it has been a magnificent year! I:
Ate that chicken pot pie in a blizzard, wrote for American Gods, had a beautiful production of my Heaven play at South Coast Rep, found the perfect overalls and wore them approximately 170 times, washed them about 3 times, took a surfing lesson with Elizabeth, had a Dewey’s pink lemonade cake to call my own at my Easter pot luck thanks to my Mom, ran a 5K with a little girl Monet who ate gummy savers the whole way thanks to Blaine, celebrated 2 years with Mo at Red Lobster, patroned Ru Paul’s drag con, got after that no speaking above a whisper resort life in Joshua Tree, spent some time writing at Space on Ryder farm in upstate New York, went to Carrie’s Beyonce themed beybe shower (then later welcomed and met her dear little Sebastian who I am now calling Bash / 2017 let’s see if we can get that going), and then also:
Had the most perfect of bridal showers complete with hats and tiny sandwiches, spun for 3 hours in YAS-a-thon for cancer research, made Ina Garten’s flag cake, welcomed little nephew Mojo, worked on The Cake at the Alliance, Echo and Ojai, did Vegas so hard bachelorette style, tried on a bunch of white dresses / picked one had a bunch dress fittings / obsessed over its details and its accessories namely did I ever mentioned that Ferris Bueller cropped leather coat? / GOT MARRIED / cast my vote for a woman president for the first time, attended Blaine and Jason’s non baby shower baby shower, read Vivian Howard’s incredible cookbook, and started writing for This is Us. And so, a great many things.
Last week I started to have dreams that I was left out of something creative, being mocked for output or performance. Personal favorite: I dreamt I had to play a drunk dog onstage and the reviews were terrible (this dream brought to you by the first night in Hong Kong, surrounded by every stimulus possible.) I think the dreams stem from a feeling that I haven’t accomplished enough creatively this year, like I haven’t dug enough into my own heart / brain. I’ve been working, yes, but I feel, in general, sort of uninspired, like the questioning part of my brain has been numbed. It’s most likely because the majority of all extra time and emotional brainspace I had went to wedding planning. And so, I will forgive myself, hope that 2017 brings characters / moments / stories / questions, big new ideas, but ALSO, more cakes / adult onesies / trips / love, FOR BALANCE.
Posted in MAWWAGE., TV, YAY, a lot, life, love, memories, oh nooo, optimism, silly, the future, the whole world, the writing of drama plays, theater, things, things that I Have, tout, trying too hard, what I'm wearing, whining, words, working, worrying | No Comments »
November 24th, 2016 by Bekah Brunstetter
I got all kinds of merci today, but I will focus on the fact that Thanksgiving is a forever double happy day, our engagementiversary, and that my husband person likes surprises and making up words JUST AS MUCH AS I DO. Close second: you, for reading. HAPPY THANKS!
Posted in MAWWAGE., YAY, a lot, life, love, things that I Have, tout | No Comments »
November 10th, 2016 by Bekah Brunstetter
When you are a lady playwright raised to please and to apologize, and you get a series of bad reviews written by OTHER lady writers who write directly and bravely and without apology because they were perhaps raised THAT way, THE PROPER RESPONSE IS TO EMAIL THE REVIEWERS AND DEEPLY APOLOGIZE AT LENGTH FOR RUINING THEIR EVENINGS AND WASTING THEIR TIME AND GO INTO GREAT DETAIL ABOUT YOUR SHAME AND EMBARRASSMENT AND THEN MAYBE ALSO FIND A WAY TO SEND THEM BAKED GOODS? THIS IS RIGHT, RIGHT?
Posted in a lot, silly, sucking, the writing of drama plays, tout, trying too hard, whining, women, words, worrying | No Comments »
September 3rd, 2016 by Bekah Brunstetter
MOSTLY SOMEONE JUST SAVE POOR MORRISON
BUT WE NEED THIS GIANT FORK AND SPOON RIGHT?
Posted in MAWWAGE., Uncategorized, YAY, a lot, love, oh nooo, things that I Have, tout, trying too hard | No Comments »
July 3rd, 2016 by Bekah Brunstetter
Unless of course she made the bread herself with her own hands*, in which case she can feed off of her own self-satisfaction and breathe in her arrogance and shelter herself with her newly found inflated sense of superiority. IN CASE IT’S NOT CLEAR, I MADE BREAD.
*by which I of course mean the KitchenAid standing mixer which Blaine and Carrie gifted us off or our registry, but you know, measuring things and locating powdered milk and figuring out how to snap on the dough kneader attachment was truly a challenge.
Posted in YAY, a lot, food, tout, trying too hard | No Comments »
May 14th, 2016 by Bekah Brunstetter
There is all of the bad press that North Carolina is getting right now, there are vitriolic Facebook posts, and then nationally, and even globally, there is racial tension and people falling off cruiseships and there are bombs going off at Children’s hospitals, but then there is this picture of a Charlotte policeman, who was called to handle this autistic student, who had stormed out of school, threatening suicide:
…and there is the fact that he just sat down on the ground with him, spoke to him man to man, human to human, and calmed him down.
Posted in YAY, awesome, generally, hmmmmm, life, love, the future, the whole world, tout | No Comments »