ICP #129 | On conversations with strangers

The bar is full so an older couple ask if they can share our table. We’re having an in-depth conversation about the day’s workshop and I can tell that the couple are listening. After a while they ask us if we’re actors. They ask us about our careers – what we’re doing, what we’ve done, if there’s anything they might have seen.

Then we ask about them.

They live out in the suburbs now but they used to live in the inner city. They refer a few times to their wedding, eighteen years ago, as the time they teamed-up. She already owned this house in the ‘burbs but they weren’t ready to live there yet and even now, they talk with slight bashfulness about their location.

They tell us about their division of domestic labour and gender equality in the home and we talk about our parents and role models and growing up. Occasionally they refer to themselves as we, but mostly they talk about each other. He likes this, she said that, he thinks, she wants

As I stand up to go to the toilet she says, So what do you think about all this Me Too business? and I sit back down. 

They have to get to their show but he offers to buy us a drink as a thank you for letting them share the table. We say it’s been a pleasure, but we accept the drinks, too. 

Before they leave, they get us to repeat our full names and take a second to commit them to memory. We say that it was nice to meet them and they say they’ll look out for us – for our faces on posters, for our names in lights.



A version of this post was sent by email on the 21st April 2019 as part of Internet Care Package – a weekly memoir project in the form of a newsletter. It also includes links to the best things I’ve found on the internet each week and occasional updates on my theatremaking. This blog is a select archive of those emails. Subscribe to get them right in your inbox.

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