Illness and The Arts: “Parallel Lives”

Okay so I’m not a laugh out loud kinda girl. But this one did it to me!


How these two women carry this 2 hour play entirely ALONE, is beyond me. Their comedic chemistry was amazing. The women I’m referring to are actresses Samantha Beedle and Jennifer Starr Foley, and the play was “Parallel Lives”, by Mo Gaffney and Kathy Najimy .

 In the opening scene,  what could be funnier than two female angels deciding how procreation will work? Who would DO it they ask; the male or the female? Well, duh…alphabetical order! F comes before M, so BAM! the females get it. The guys might suffer from low self esteem now so we’ve gotta balance this out somehow. They’re gonna feel left out of this huge, glorious, wonderful life bringing event. To balance it better, the angels thought, OH…we’ll just make it messy, and add some pain so the guys won’t feel like they’re missing out. Now, they had to decide HOW this would actually happen. They started with the little human growing inside the female’s body for a human YEAR. They bantered back and forth, settling on 9 months. Now that gestation was settled; how will it get OUT? A brilliant idea hits them; a SMALL PORTAL!

Still worried about the guys self esteem, the angels agreed to dump LOTS, and LOTS, and LOTS of ego on them. LOTS! Whew… they are done.

Two Millennia Later

Angel 1 was asked: So…How’s that procreation thing working out?

Answer: its working great, the EGO thing was genius.

Angel 2 was asked: How are the females feelin that small portal idea?

Answer: Oh! They are PISSSSED!

In every scene the play portrays “parallels” that exist in life. How those parallels are intertwined, and what makes them work. I could never do it justice; pen and paper won’t do. These ladies served it well…they BROUGHT IT and then some!

Please enjoy the original actresses, Kathy and Mo’s Angel skit:

The other part of the evening was two things for me; educational and inspirational.

Educational: I learned that some people are just assholes when it comes to “not seeing” a disability. The seats were very tightly placed making it difficult to move through. A gentleman saw me with my cane, stepped aside and said, “After you”. Before I could move through the small space, a nearby wench darted between us. This surely would have caused me to fall if it weren’t for the stellar athlete that I am!

I also learned, that I am “okay” with my friends. They walk slower, just for me, even when it’s cold as shit outside. They carry my stuff when my hands are too full because of my cane. They even go with me to the ladies room and ask, “Are you gonna need any help in there?” Next time I’ll have to remember to STOP DRINKING liquids hours before the event. I can always re-hydrate later. And oh yeah! I learned to call ahead next time to find out about those THIRTY EIGHT steps from the street to the theater. You mean there is an elevator! SWEET! Only, I should have parked around back.

Inspirational: I got out of the house, and was, excuse me…CUTE! Both of those things felt great. Laughter if good for EVERYthing! Depression, back ache, low self esteem, weight loss, weight gain, you name it! Watching these two phenomenal comedians was also good for my “game”. My next performance, I’m going head first. No holding back!

So, I’m going to end this post with my favorite line from the play, (drunken Hank Williams voice) “Well hey there sweetmeat, you look ver-ah, ver-ah pretty tonight. When you gunna git rid o’ that bossman o’ yors  and marry me??”

Your Thoughts:

Please share. What art form most inspires you? What does it inspire you to do? Tell us.


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