We’ll Be There For You: The Play Wot I Wrote

Faced with a blank afternoon where I simply couldn’t get going on anything, I decided to make a list of short tasks I could do which might kick the arse of procrastination and actually achieve something. The list includes such activities as completing the Guardian Quick Crossword (done) doing a five-minute writing prompt (done), going through some mental exercises and writing a blog post. Hence this.

It’s time to move on from the election and allow its aftermath to unfold; as such, further comments on these topics are not invited and will not be approved. You can still post such comments on the two election-related posts below but please leave this one free for other topics. So: what else has been happening in the life of this blogger?

Well, Christmas shopping, for one. I have compiled an album of baby photos for my mother in law and have today bought other presents whose nature I cannot disclose because their recipients might read about them. I have also been visiting daughter and granddaughter in Doncaster where we did yet more Christmas shopping, but the main thing I’ve been up to is The Play Wot I Wrote.

About a year ago it occurred to me that Quakers are known as Friends, and that Ross, Rachel, Monica et al are also known as friends. Maybe comedy could be made! I started batting some ideas around and pretty soon a short skit was written. Set in Central Perk coffee house, it features all the characters dressed in 17th-century costume and saying things like ‘Greetings, Friend! I shall not doff my hat to thee as thou and I be equals!’ and ‘Hast thou ordered? I would not say no to a meatball sub,’ and other such Quakerly slogans. There are numerous references to fair-trade chocolate and Quaker oats (‘which are a marketing ploy and have nothing to do with Friends’) and I got a lot of fun out of writing it. When it was finished I began to wonder whether the local Meeting could perform it some time. It was too late for that year’s Christmas entertainment but in the New Year I sent it to a few people and they said they enjoyed it. There was an attempt at getting it off the ground in the summer but not enough people could commit to rehearsals so I gave up on it, but! thanks to the efforts of one Friend in particular (who ended up playing Joey) the performance was realised and it far outstripped my expectations. Everyone committed wholeheartedly to rehearsals and learning their lines and the wardrobe mistress dug out some authentic costumes including hats which, together with a Central Perk sign and the theme music played at the beginning and end, made for a brilliant half-hour (well, ten minutes.)

The other thing I’ve been doing is re-watching Grace and Frankie on Netflix. This is made by some of the same people as Friends, and it shows: imagine Monica and Phoebe living together in their seventies, having been married to Chandler and Mike for forty years, and having just found out that their respective husbands have been having an affair for twenty of those years and now wish to get married. Unlike the Friends characters, Frankie who is pure 100% hippie and Grace, undiluted work-driven WASP, don’t like each other at all to begin with but their friendship develops as the series goes on. There’s another series coming in January so I’d better hurry up and finish the first five.

So that’s me up to date. And how have you been?

Kirk out