Saturday, May 16, 2009

Joint Custody

This is more than likely the only entry to be posted simultaneously on the Saba blog and the camper blog. I just couldn’t decide where it was more appropriate, so it’s hitting them both.

Tickets have been secured for both legs of the trip to the Caribbean (JFK to St. Maarten; St. Maarten to Saba) and, even though it’s more than a week before I leave, I packed my bags. I’m the world’s lightest traveler; for three months away I’ve two carry-on sized suitcases. I figure sunblock and a couple of Speedos and I’m set.

I’ve been so focused on the Canned Ham adventure that the mere act of packing for Saba got me excited all over again for this part of the project. For that’s how I’m looking on the Saba trip, as the precursor to hitting the road in the fall.

But first I have to wrap things up here at home.

My last day at the Albany Damien Center was a day of keeping emotions in check. In spite of my brief tenure there, the place left a profound impression on me. The typical response when telling people about my job was, “it must feel great to contribute in that way.” When, in fact, the dividends from the job far, far outweighed my investment. I strongly encourage everyone reading this to find some not-for-profit volunteer position. Even if just a few hours a week. You will be amazed at what it does for your state of mind.

At what was my final staff meeting (cake… singing... the whole megilah) I was asked about my plans post-Saba, and if I would be coming back to the ADC. I said I would like to put in a few hours in September when I’m back from the Caribbean but that, no, I would not be returning permanently because of the Canned Ham tour I have in the works. The conversation turned to what that was all about and it was then my boss, Dorothy, wondered if I might be interested in giving a benefit performance of the show in Albany before I head out on the road.

The idea was so obvious I’m amazed I hadn’t thought of it myself. So “Canned Ham” has its first official booking: the world premiere of the show will be at a venue and date TBA sometime in September as a benefit for the Albany Damien Center. After that I’ll probably get a one-nighter gig in NYC so it can be billed as “direct from New York.”

So now there is a world premiere engagement, T-shirts, refrigerator magnets and a developing itinerary. Something’s missing, though. What is it….? Oh, yeah. The show. In point of fact, I’m already writing it. The way I work on a writing project is ideas gestate in my head and I move things around mentally before sitting down to a blank page. So it’s starting to take shape even if there’s nothing tangible.

Good thing I’ll have a project to work on while I’m on Saba. I’d sure hate to get bored there.

The photo below is my peeps from the Damien Center on my last day. This is a case of the gang’s not all here; a few key players are missing from the picture.


  1. Very nice, here too. I can't wait to hear about what you're doing in Saba. That's such a cool step in your life.

    And...who is that hottie in brown on the left? He looks to be just about my age.

  2. Great looking group. Just the thought of you with just "sunblock and a couple of Speedos"....WOOF! Post some pics of you from Saba please! LOL!

  3. I miss you already! Can't wait to see what Saba holds for you.