rec room home | wrecked

the listener
by miki howald

to begin with, i was wrecked. the night before the show i called erin teegarden in a panic. it was almost 7 p.m., she was late for a dinner date with della, and there i was, on the phone panicking because i was hungry but in too much pain to lift a knife and chop some vegetables. (while my plan to not have ready-made, processed food in the house seemed like a good one, it didn’t take into account intense and inexplicable hand pain which renders one useless at a writing job ((typing was totally beyond me)) or at preparing dinner. ((other activities at which i was suddenly useless: bike riding, basketball, laundry, dishwashing, and hair brushing))). erin teegarden, always breathlessly direct—often a little late—told me to order food, dude. so then, wrecked, on wrecked night at rec room (definitely wrecked—did i mention that my cat knocked a brand new roll of toilet paper into the toilet and left it there for me to discover at 5:30 a.m. that morning—after i’d already peed ((thank god for plastic bags, hallelujah))?). scott barsotti curated this show based on an idea of jen dickie’s, pulling together the wreckage of emotional dependency and mortality, of ships and records and language and lyrics. there was a lot of creative energy, a desire not just to read to, but to interact with, converse with the audience, the listener, the not-so-passive receiver. there was also the special treat of hearing della’s voice read through the mic, and not just through her trusty tape record (please don’t misunderstand, i love her tape recorder, but i love her unrecorded voice, too), and also the voice of new rec roomer, rebecca jane. beyond moby dick and captain ahab, wrecked by rage and torn out pages there were reconstructions of words and events, fictional, in homage, or not. someone later suggested that rec room do a wrecked night once a year, and i think it’s a great idea. bring us your wreckage, your debris, your chemical by-product of great effort. bring your intense and inexplicable pains, your horoscopes soaked in urine (to borrow an image from a worthier poet than i), the manuscript you ripped apart with your teeth then later taped back together in a completely new order. i hope see our wrecked faces in this again next year.