Monday, June 26, 2017

No Good Ball Goes Without Emptiness

A look at the songs that have shaped
my life and ended up on my devices.
In 2006, before Hamilton hit Broadway, the hottest show ticket in New York City belonged to Wicked. I scored a seat by standing in the cancellation line on Easter Sunday and waiting... waiting... waiting for an hour and a half. The blinds in the cancellation window would go up, and somebody would hand out tickets a couple at a time. The blinds would drop again and as I got closer to the window, I kept hoping something would be left over. I ended up paying more than $100 for an orchestra-level ticket, but the show was absolutely worth it.

I knew I wanted to see it the moment I saw the show's breakout performance on an episode of Martha Stewart's daytime talk show:

I bought the cast album not long after I returned to Tucson and loaded "No Good Deed" into my iPod Nano. It got a lot of plays, but not as much as when I was driving back from Prescott following the We Make History Buccaneer Ball in June 2006, part of what was shaping up to be an epiphany year of wonderful balls and wonderful people. And this one came with some miracle moments before and after. After an intensely blessed experience like that, the afterglow is strong and the comedown from bliss even stronger.

I must've played "No Good Deed" at least a dozen times in my state of mourning over having to journey back into reality, in that long drive home. But why that song? Why not something else? I think it has to do with the theme of reluctantly accepting reality, doing what I didn't want to do. At that time, I was happier living in the past than in the present. It would take several more months before I would confess it before friends who would step in to make the save.

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