Monster in a Box


@postaday 279; #postaday2011.

Many years ago when John and I were living in Honolulu Tower, working at The Honolulu Advertiser, not quite married but just about there, we used to travel to the Mainland quite a bit. I loved that little Double-Income-No-Kids “DINKy” lifestyle. But now that we are married, and we have kids, and thankful we still each have an income, we don’t travel as much. That is fine. We’ll resume eventually.

The New York Times Magazine has a huge and meaty story about Spalding Gray that ran yesterday. I’m looking forward to reading it. Back in 1992, when John and I were visiting Boston for my first time, I did a little pre-trip research and booked us tickets to see Gray perform his monologue, “Monster in a Box,” at the Hasty Pudding Theater. Ever since, Gray has been a favorite of mine, and I was greatly disappointed when he committed suicide, in 2004, at the tender age of 62.

Troubled, tortured, conflicted.

Perhaps it’s my own latent, Catholic monsters that keep me from giving myself that same exit strategy. I cannot condemn it, but I always think that it means you didn’t have the right conversation with the right people at the right time. And maybe that conversation should be with ourselves. Maybe it should be with someone else. If you stay quiet, if you don’t probe, if you do not share your heart, then how can you say you’ve given life 100 percent?

I’m not judging, but I just wish that the people we know who have tremendous gifts would realize it, too. Maybe, just maybe, the rest of us should tell them as much.