Here's what's happening. I've decided that by hook or by crook, I am finishing up this story this week, and my last blogisode of the year will be Wednesday, December 22. Part of my decision is based on the fact that I can tell that people are busy (duh) and haven't been able to read as diligently as they usually do, so this is a chance to catch up. I will also be in Cincinnati over the holidays, and might have spotty Internet, not to mention an entire family to visit.
I will rejoin you all with a new story on Tuesday, January, 3rd, which is the day my kids go back to school. Now we all know that there is little I do better than break my own rules, so, of course, if something happens and I feel compelled to sit down and write a blog post about it, I'm going to do it. I'm just not going to start a new story until January 3rd. I'm still deciding between two stories...
Now onto our blogisode of the day. I promised you a great guest blogger, and I am going to deliver. Right now, right here, making his My Own Space blog debut: Bill Clinton.
Or as Nick Wyman and I call him, Rupert McFee. Someday (maybe tomorrow) I will tell you the story of why call him Rubert McFee.
Okay. Pause. Professor Rupert McFee is currently in the middle of writing his final exam for his Musical Theater History and Repetoire Class, so I will have to fill in while he is finishing up. (Whistling) (Crickets) (Snoring).
This could take a while. I will tell you--especially because the above mentioned Nick Wyman, on staff proof reader for My Own Space, Poker Shark and President of Actors' Equity--called me out on Friday and compared me to a slick literary character. This was the message: "Merry Christmas to all the McFees in their little house in the rodent village! I look forward to Rupert's version of things on Monday (or Richard Jay or whoever you've conned into into whitewashing your fence for you.)"
Am I Tom Sawyer? Is guest blogging my way out of doing work? Am I collecting the massive profits from this mega blog and conning my interns into writing for me?
But with my husband, there is a quid pro quo. (Get your minds out of the gutter). While he writes his version of being sick in Singapore and the events that transpired while he deliriously stumbled around Singapore, a version of things I can not possibly tell you because I was unaware of large plot twists in the making, I will be proof reading and taking the final exam for his class. So there you have it, President Wyman, there is a tit for tat (get your mind out of the gutter) and no cooersion involved. In fact, I will sign over today's blog paycheck to one Rupert McFee.
Let me catch you up. Rob had landed in Singapore and was madly in love with the entire flight attendant staff of Singapore Airlines. I'd moved to an apartment that looked like s Star Wars set, Rob and I had traipsed all over Singapore, going in Mosques, Temples, Malls, but mostly jewelry stores. We planned a non-refundable trip to Batam, Indonesia for our Monday day off. As I was once again talking about my miserable life-to-be as a spinster, Rob came down with a massive mystery flu, complete with shivering and every other ailment you can think of. The doctors couldn't explain it. It was the night before our trip.
And now.....Rob Meffe (entrance applause).
I really don't want anyone to get the wrong impression about me.
I'm really not sick all the time. I'm just always sick in Sharon's blog. I am actually a reasonably healthy man (and yes, my pancreas is fine now, thank you very much).
But this Asian flu thing that I caught in Singapore was really kicking my butt. But before we get to that, I have to tell you what it was like before I got this inexplicable bug. Sharon may have mentioned that she was, um, shall we say, hinting, that she might want to be the subject of a proposal of marriage, and I wasn't ready yet. For those of you out there that have ever been in this situation, you know exactly what I'm talking about and you can skip down a couple of paragraphs. For those of you who have stayed, let me put it this way:
I wasn't ready yet.
My commitment to the relationship was strong as ever, my commitment to the idea of marriage was something that I wanted, and I knew that I wanted kids as well. It's just that before you embark on the marriage journey you need to know deep down inside that you are going to be able to make something of your own life before asking someone to come along for the ride. Before Singapore, I had done a lot of different things; I was a pre-med major in college, I went to CCM to study conducting, and when I was eight I wanted to be an architect (who didn't at that time? Mr. Brady was an architect and you neversaw him working at all! He was always home playing with the kids!). I was working, but not at high professional level. I had a watershed moment when (unfortunately) the conductor had to go back to the US because his mother was ill and they asked me to play keyboards for Les Mis tour while they were in Singapore. It was a realization that I had that I was good enough to do this; good enough to do this for a living at a high level.
I don't think there is enough importance given to the connection between work and fulfillment. I mean, it's no coincidence that the villain of about every made-for-TV Disney movie is some over-worked father who crabs at his kids and eventually has an epiphany that work isn't important and that all we should do is just drop everything and go fly a kite (it's no surprise that my favorite character in Mary Poppins is Mr. Banks). What I'm saying is that work is good, and the real goal is a balance between work and home. Also, in this case, this offer was that acknowledgement that I could work that made me confident enough to take the next step.
So, on one of the thousand trips to jewelry stores in 1994, Sharon saw a ring that she absolutely fell in love with and I made some excuse that I had a doctor's appointment and went down to the Singapore jewelry market and bought it.
Except that then I actually got sick. I mean like out-for-the-count couldn't lift my arms up or get out of bed feverish blue in the face sick. But I couldn't sub out of the show! I didn't have a sub! I was the sub!
I went to doctors (in Singapore, they are in malls) and they gave me many pills that I would line up on my keyboard at the show (all timed out, so I would take the blue pill just after "Master of the House" and the red pill after "On My Own," etc). The idea of getting on a boat and sailing to Indonesia was not something that I was looking forward to, but there was this gorgeous sapphire ring burning a hole in my pocket.
So I did what any young man in love would do...
I faked feeling better and got on that boat.