It was always inevitable, of course. You knew it from the moment the curtain rose and the familiar sense of this isn’t going to end well bubbled and gurgled up into your throat.
But you tried to enjoy the experience anyway, since everyone was so talented and objectively it was impressive.
Still, that nagging feeling of this is hurtling toward devastation wouldn’t go away, and while on the one hand, you wanted to just get it over with, on the other hand you wanted to stop time so you might never have to reach the instant everything goes so terribly wrong.
I’m actually not a big fan of Steinbeck in general, or this work in particular, but seeing it on Broadway agitated an emotion inside of me that was like the opposite of regret, and it played out in front of me last night in a strangely enjoyable way. It was like despite knowing exactly how things would end, in spite of the tale’s obvious path, and almost because of the clarity with which the writing was applied to the wall, I couldn’t look away.
And when it was over–when that horrible shot rang out–although I teared up for a second (which isn’t saying much since I also teared up while watching 13 Going on 30 the other day), I didn’t wish I hadn’t seen the story unfold.
Because even if you have the strongest hunch in the world that something awful is going to happen, there are times when you have to hold out for the slight possibility that the train will stop before it dives off a cliff, or the bomb will be defused before it detonates–even if you are 99% sure you’re heading straight for disaster.
Sure, later, when you’re climbing your way out of the rubble, one might be tempted to say, “I told you so.” But those of us who sometimes sleep naked know the only response to that is, “Yep. And I listened. Then I went forward with my eyes wide open, knowing full well I might not like what I see. Cause that’s the only way I know how to live.”