So many of you--my friends, colleagues, peers--have been the victim of me sharing the Boston Public Works Indiegogo campaign with you and asking you to show your support and donate. I hate doing it, I really do. We all do. It’s like that time when your great aunt gives you money for Afikoman (see Jewish translation below), and you really want to sneak a peak inside the envelope, but have to wait until later, and you’ve cleaned up from a five-hour Passover seder to finally peek inside that envelope and look for dollar signs. It’s the same thing really, but just like you don’t want to humiliate yourself by greedily ripping open the envelope and slobbering on it like Cookie Monster would a chocolate chip, asking your great aunt Silva (name changed to protect the family) for $25 seems incredibly rude.
Even more so, asking best friend Jennifer (name changed to protect the grad student), is even more awkward and, let’s face it, terrifying, because that means you’re saying , hey, person who would never ever give me money as a gift, can I have money as a gift?
So… you know, it’s not easy. It’s even weirder when you message someone on Facebook, like your flat-mates from 2007 in Scotland (location changed to protect the ultimate playlist makers), asking them to support your dreams… they might even ask, who is this? We don’t like doing it. It’s not fun. It’s squirmy sometimes.
BUT in the past three years since this Indiegogo/Kickstarter/Crowdsourcing phenomenon began, I too have been broke, often unemployed, and constantly weighing theatre tickets over meals, playwriting books over cups of coffee, and of course, donating to your campaigns over a drink with friends. No, this isn’t I’ll scratch your back, you scratch mine… but wait, isn’t it? Isn’t that what the whole crowdsourcing phenomenon is about??? That’s what I always thought… Pretty much until now. I always thought if I gave 10 or 15 or even 25 here or there to your I'm-Making-My-First-Record Campaign, or Building-My-Own-Restaurant, or Starring-In-My-Own-Web-Series campaign, that I would one day, when I needed it, get some sort of “pay-it-forward”-cute-Haley Joel Osment-return of the favor. Was I really so wrong to think that? I support you, you support me? Maybe. But that’s besides the point, I support you because, frankly, I believe in you. I do. I really do. I’m still the girl sitting with my face glued to the TV screen watching the VHS tape of Mary Martin in Peter Pan clapping my hands off, screaming, “I believe in fairies!” (Many of you fairies turned out to be some of my best friends…) Look, for those of you to whom this rant applies, I believed in you. I had one less iced latte, whiskey drink, or, dare I say, ice cream (for those of you who really know me you know how serious that is) so that I could support you!
Regardless, it doesn’t mean that if I didn’t donate to your campaign, or if you never had a campaign to begin with, that this whole rant above doesn’t apply to you. It does. It applies because remember that time we went out for dinner and for whatever reason I took the bill? Or that time we went out for coffee and you needed two more bucks and they didn’t take credit cards? Or that time I got you, again dare I say, COMP TICKETS! (Sorry, I was loud just there). Or that time you were in a show and I came, or you needed a friend and some cookies and I was there with a bag of rainbow cookies form that bakery in Spring Hill (location changed to protect my co-kitty-mamas), or that time I met with you for extra time to run lines (you all know who you are)… It’s not because I wanted to be repayed someday, it really isn’t, that’s not the way the world works, clearly, but it’s because I cared about you, and believed in you, and wanted to support you.
Look, this whole blog isn’t about donations over $36, really it isn’t even about donations over $18, and actually it’s really about donations of $9. It’s about 9 bucks a playwright. 9 bucks! 9 smackeroos! That’s all I am asking of you. Because believe me, I do know what it’s like to be waiting for the next pay check, and boy do I really hate asking you guys who are in my shoes, but then I think about myself, and how many times I buy a beer or an iced chai latte, and how I can take that money this month, or week, and put it towards the first season of Boston Public Works, where my dear friend Cassie aka Frass aka Cashew aka Cah aka Cass aka Cassiopeia aka Nuk aka whatever you call me, will have her first EVER full length production (that runs for more than two days as a thesis project – all you Runners out there, no disrespect, H.D.C!) … get to the point Cassie! 9 bucks. Right?
Here are some things you can buy for 9 bucks:
- 2 Starbucks Grande Iced Caramel Macchiatos
- 1 sandwich at Diesel Café in Davis Sq.
- 1 frozen yogurt with a bunch of toppings if you go to a self-serve place and don’t realize how much stuff weighs…
- 2 small ice creams in cups at JP Licks
- 1 can of Lysol Disinfectant Spray, Fresh Scent - 19 oz. Spray Can
- 1 book at a book store (and a cheap book, most paperbacks are up to 12.99 these days)
- 1 HD download rental on iTunes!
Look how many things cost only 9 bucks! Here are some things we will need to buy for our shows that will cost 9 bucks or less!
- Small hand props – like a blue ball in FROM THE DEEP
- A bag of Ping-Pong balls also in FTD!
- A clock!
- A wrench!
- A wine glass!
- Costume pieces - T-shirts, shoes, most clothing from thrift stores like Goodwill are under $10!
- A hat!
If you can spare two Starbucks drinks, or one sushi roll, or make one sandwich at home this week instead of your favorite sandwich shop, the whole Boston Public Works gang will shower you with our undying gratitude. We really will. We are very good at playwriting, but we are also very good at showing our love.
I’m going to get back to stalking you all on Facebook now… Love the very awkward and kooky curly, Cassie aka P2
(PS: Afikoman, meaning "that which comes after" or "dessert” is a half-piece of matzo which is broken in two during the early stages of the Passover Seder and set aside to be eaten as a dessert after the meal.)