Monday, December 21, 2009

My Mantra - I'll Share It With You

There are many ways that people deal with times when they are tested. Some people get mad, some people get sad, some people turn to friends, some have a favorite song, and some have a quote or motto - a mantra, that when uttered, changes their perspective.

As for me, I'm in the last group. I have a mantra. It comes from my absolute favorite Broadway production, the everlasting goodness that is RENT.

You can catch this production "off-Broadway" or you can rent/buy the movie, which features an all-star cast. I saw this production for the first time when I was a junior in high school. I was privileged enough to be accepted into Governor's School (a supplement to high school that truly changed my life personally in addition to academically). My G-School (as we called it) junior year field trip was to New York City, a dream of mine to begin with. When we all went to the actual Broadway, we didn't know what we were getting into with RENT.

I wish you could have seen our faces when we realized the depth and the meaning beautifully framed by the entertainment that the actors and actresses gave to us. There were tears, there were laughs, there were mostly smiles - we had all been touched, and I don't think a single one of us expected that reaction at all.

So, since that day, I've had a relationship with RENT. When the movie came out, I went to see it, and something surprising happened - I wasn't disappointed! I was ecstatic! Then, years passed. I got invited by a friend to see a local theatre's production of RENT. Mr. Chicken Wing (after I had forced him to watch the movie with me and he had decided on his own that he LOVED it) decided to come with me, and we made a date night out of it. I thought that there was no way our little city could produce the caliber of talent that I'd seen both through the Broadway production and the film. Boy, was I ever wrong. I got teary-eyed, I sang along, and Mr. Chicken Wing was equally blown away.

The cool thing about RENT is that not only does it touch the people who are watching - but it deeply affects the actors/actresses that step up to the plate and try to do the production justice. They have so much respect for the work that it's not even an option - they have to be great. And I think one thing that seeing this local production taught me was that it's not about the production as much as it is about RENT. The show is just that good, that profound, and that meaningful.

If you haven't seen it, I would highly suggest you do. I hope it changes your life as much as it did mine. I will forewarn you that it does touch on issues that people are still sensitive about today, so if you aren't open-minded, it might not do as much for you as for me. But, the songs, the characters, and the topics that this work touches on will stick with me forever.

I guess all that's left to do is to introduce you to the four words from RENT that changed the way I live my life.

Are you ready?

"No Day But Today." - RENT

That's it. And so you can get a sense of what those words mean in the movie (as they don't have workable footage of the Broadway production that I know of), I've included the last clip from the movie, when all the friends come together and remember what's important - each other, and life.


What's really awesome is that several of the actors and actresses in the movie were also in the Broadway production! (Some of you reading this blog may know that!) :)

So there it is: you have to live your life like there is no day but today. Don't wait to tell those around you that you love them. Don't get so caught up in the stresses of life that you don't enjoy life. Don't take the ones you love for granted. I know all too well that they won't always be around, and you have to cherish whatever time you get to have with them. Don't wait until tomorrow to start that project you've been wanting to do. Send your Christmas cards now. Stop and bake a cake with your family. Take your dogs outside and go wild! LOVE while you have the time. Make a difference.

Until next time (and SNOW posts!!!),
Miss Chicken Wing


J.F. Taylor said...

Isn't it amazing what reminds us of what's important! Thanks for reminding me! Merry Christmas Miss Chicken Wing! Hope you and your have the best Christmas and a great New Year!!!

Chicken Wing said...

Awww, thanks, Jeff!! I'm so glad I could remind you of the good stuff! If you haven't seen the movie, it really is incredible! I did have a fabulous Christmas and a great New Year, and I really hope you did the same!!!

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