Twenty-one years ago I dropped out of university. I was in theatre school, you see, and had just snagged a real job. A degree is useless in theatre - experience is what counts, and my work stage managing the university shows and at two local radio stations had landed me a job as the sound technician at a well-known summer theatre festival.
So off I went, ready to live out of a suitcase (actually, a hockey bag). The trick to making a living in Canadian theatre is to move. Every six months, if you're lucky. A long-term job usually runs nine months. When you're twenty-one and ready to see the country, it's pretty cool. Four months in Vancouver, two months in Calgary, four months in Charlottetown, six months in Toronto. Fun, no?
On the night of the first preview show in June, the call came to the sound booth - the House Manager's headset wasn't working. The stage crew uses headsets to communicate from the booth to the backstage areas and with the front of house staff. Headsets fall under the "sound" category, so I went downstairs to fix the problem. I met the House Manager and was, as they say, smitten. I don't mind saying that she was totally swept off her feet as well.
Three weeks later we were engaged. Suddenly I wasn't so keen on moving every four months.
We were married the following May, twenty years ago today, as a matter of fact. I am still smitten, and she is still swept off her feet. I still got it. Sometimes I forget where I put it, or what it's for, but I still got it...