The Friendly Neighborhood

I really should be working on the video backdrop for Seme’s dance piece this coming Wednesday at Jump-Start, but, really, I am the king of procrastination. Well, actually, I’m not completely useless. I’ve put in a good three hours tonight. Get back to it tomorrow.

Ah, but today–a fine San Antonio Saturday in January. Finally, a reasonable day. Pleasant, warm even. This is what I expect from winter in South Texas. The iPhone promised 78 today, but I doubt it ever got over 73. There was a big wind in from the north, bringing all that cold down from the arctic realms of Wichita Falls and Anadarko. The wind served me well on my bike ride this afternoon. I was flying. Could have gone all the way to Laredo. But, I had to turn around and pedal back–slowly and gruelingly….

But, really, the bottom line is that out at Mission Espada I was flopped out on the grass, just above the river, basking in the sun. How wonderful!

Last night I was meeting with Seme at C4. As we were winding down, Anglea from Slab Cinema stopped by. She wanted some help with a quick video edit. After saying goodbye to Seme, I checked out the video job. It seemed absolutely simple and doable … but there were a few weird things in the codec of the video file. My antiquated version of Final Cut was faltering. I hate to confess this, but I turned to iMovie to get the job done. And it got the job done. iMovie is a quirky little program that, at times, can do amazing things.

Angela invited me to meet some of her friends over at the Friendly Spot, that outdoor bar and eatery adjacent to Tito’s on South Alamo. René Guerrero of Madhatters fame is running the place. Everyone seems to love René–and why not? He’s the best! The Friendly Spot has a playground, so it’s popular with families with kids–such as Angela and Rick, who were so kind to buy me a couple of beers. This couple seem to know everyone in our neighbor. I thought I was connected. Nope. I’m a novice in the King William / South Town networking realm.

I was bemused and charmed to see that René had a large selection of ponchos and blankets so patrons could bundle up and keep warm while sitting outside and dining and drinking and keeping an eye on their kids. But, really, it was a fairly mild night. I had a nice time meeting some new people.

Tonight I met Rick and Angela again. Deborah and I attended a site-specific performance produced by Jump-Start Performance Company. Basically it was a one-woman show starring ST Shimi, staged at her home. She’s married to the artist Oscar Alvarado, and their next-door neighbors are Rick and Angela Martinez, of Slab Cinema–and Rick and Angela were also in attendance tonight. San Antonio is essentially a small town.

The piece was mildly avant garde. Very watchable. All in all, a top notch production. Small and intimate. The audience was about 15. A cozy group of people and a bittersweet (actually more sweet than bitter) voyeuristic experience.

One of the great strengths of Jump-Start is that they’re a family. To see the company members together and interacting is a wonderful thing. They are all good people doing extraordinary work. Twenty-five years, and still going strong. Wow!

When Shimi asked me back in December if I had some video to provide for the annual Jump Start anniversary party (which I always attend), I had to say, Yes! I’m huge fan of so many company members (as well as the fringe folks): such as Steve Bailey, Monessa Esquivel, Annela Spector, ST Shimi, Billy Muñoz, Dino Foxx, Max Parrilla, Micheal Verdi, and add the amazing Amber Ortega-Perez, the sublime Daniel Jackson, and the entirety of the Renaissance Guild (who have moved on to the Little Carver–we all wish them well). Damn, that’s a shit-load of goodness, eh? And for me to be asked to add my creative voice to this chorus…well, fuck yeah!

Oh, shit. How did it get to be three in the morning? I gotta hit the sheets. There’s still a lot of video editing on the morning…..

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