Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Out with Mark and Jake.

Jake did his daily run down to the Village to pick up Mark. We were to meet at the 42nd Street AMC to see "The Cabin in the Woods." Though I don't love slasher pics, I heard this one had a little twist, and I love surprises. I didn't realize how funny it would be, though. But definitely bloody.

Then, we went to the Polish Tea Room for soup and a sandwich. Then, over to the hot, new XL Club, which is at the heart of a "gay urban resort" called The OUT NYC. A very nice man took us around and showed it off. I can very much see it as a fun place to hang. (It has upscale hostel rooms, four beds to a room with privacy curtain -- and, at your feet, a wide screen TV with headphones. Hundred bucks a night. Not bad in a neighborhood where even the pod-room Yotel goes for over $250. Of course, you may have to fight off unwanted intrusions, but then, that's just life, isn't it?)

I mentioned before that he, like me, is by nature, rather bull-headed. So, he doesn't like to show weakness. None of us do. But I think if you've had brain surgery, it's not really showing strength to try to do too much. It just makes everyone worry.

He came to church this past Sunday -- I'm in the choir -- and sat with the choir master, Stephen Elkins, allowing Steve to conduct most of the hymns. But then Mark stood and conducted the songs we repeat each Sunday. And I could just see the energy of the music filling him. I think it's a great way to balance what he can do and what he should be doing. And Stephen gets conducting lessons from one of finest conductors in the city.

So, if you're worrying about Mark, I'm here to report that he's letting us do things for him. Carry stuff. Walk him up to his apartment. Pick up the cane when it falls from a chair. Yes, he can do all those things himself, but if he were to fall or get dizzy, it wouldn't be good for him to be alone. He knows this and he accepts it as part of the healing process.

Also, his partner, David -- who is a very creative artist and writer himself -- and Tanya Moberly are putting together a 60th birthday party for him. Venue still to be announced.  Everyone who ever knew him is invited. And instead of gifts -- no place in his apartment anyway -- there'll be a place where people can put a few dollars to help him in getting back on his feet.

 I hadn't known about the birthday party when I first announced my concert plan because we were just back from a trip. So, I'm relieved. We can breathe a little and take our time putting together the New World Waking tour.

And on that note, some really stellar talents are beginning to ask me if they can be involved. They like the fact that they can drift in and out of the performances, and that each one will be different. And no big boring group rehearsals. And all of them love Mark and want to help him in some way.

I'm also adding congregations who have heard about the project. As things become more formal, I'll give out specific news. In this biz, announcing things before they've come to completion is not good for the project cuz you never know what can happen. Luckily, with New World Waking, all I need is a piano and a few willing volunteers.

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