Milton and I recently saw the Broadway debut of a play written by one of my favorite playwrights, Stephen Adly Guirgis, The Motherfucker With the Hat. It’s a dramatic comedy about Jackie, an addict in recovery who is certain that his longtime girlfriend, Veronica, has cheated on him, but before falling off the wagon he confesses his woes about his relationship to his sponsor, Ralph. Bobby Cannavale, at the top of his game, plays Jackie, Chris Rock, in a solid Broadway debut is Ralph, and Elizabeth Rodriguez, a member of the LAByrinth Theater Company (where Guirgis is co-artistic director with Yul Vázquez) is spot-on as cynical recovery-averse Veronica. Film veteran Annabella Sciorra effectively plays Victoria, Ralph’s unhappy wife, and Yul Vázquez, rounds out the excellent cast as Cousin Julio, Jackie’s wise cousin.
I loved it. Milton did not. I thought it was a thoughtfully written piece with brilliant dialogue and plot twists throughout about how we perceive ourselves to others, how we deceive others, and how we have philosophies that often conflict with others that get us through life, “one day at a time.” Milton disagreed. He thought:
Milton (thinking out loud): It was about nothing.
If this fast moving, wonderfully written play is not considered a homerun, in my opinion, it was at least a triple that scored the game-winning run.
Note: Milton loathes baseball.
Possibly the title of this post might imply that Milton and I have suffered a friendship-ending argument following this play. We had nothing of the sort. Who I finally did get around to dumping was my flabby, freeloading longtime cell phone carrier, AT & T, for buff, “I’m there for you baby” newcomer (for me) Verizon.
I was under the false impression that Verizon, what I always assumed was the Cadillac of cell phone service, was out of my league. I thought it would cost me more, offer fewer perks, and only carry smart phones, a gadget I cannot afford on my measly laugh-out-loud wages. When my rent increased last fall, I was forced to disconnect my landline of 27 years. Psychologically, sacrificing my 212 area code was demoralizing, but saving that extra $600 a year eased my financial pain. Yet, my ancient cell phone had given me a new source of mental anguish.
When I tried to make calls from home on my AT & T dumb phone, it often took up to four tries before I could get a signal. Usually, when I did get a signal on my AT & T dumb phone, the call would drop. My 84 year old father, who has a heart condition, and considering the fact that he is 84 makes any issue with any organ including a wart on his thumb a serious issue, has complained to me about having to call up to three times to get through. The last thing I need hanging over my head like the sword of Damocles is the idea that my crummy cell phone might expedite my dear old dad buying his rainbow.
While dining in a noisy restaurant a few weeks ago with Coco, I needed to make a call. She let me use her Verizon iPhone and that was when I had my Verizon epiphany. I decided that somehow, some way, I was going to make the switch. When my AT & T service for the month was a day away from completion, I entered my neighborhood Verizon wireless store, explained to Angel, the very helpful customer service rep, that I only use my phone for talking and texting, and what I could afford to pay. Within an hour he had given me a free Samsung dumb phone (that is smart phone capable), and the same package of minutes and texting that I had before for what I was paying with AT & T.
Verizon may not have rollover minutes, but I never used a single one of my AT & T rollover minutes so I did not care about that. What I do care about is reception and dropped calls in my apartment. Both problems are now eliminated. Joy.
Recently I received an email notification from AT & T the Jilted about my final bill:
Meanwhile, I’m still familiarizing myself with my new dumb phone. The one thing I have not been able to figure out is how to shut it off. This was a concern during the play, but I know how to silent it, so I buried it deep in my satchel. Before curtain, I made Milton test call me. It didn’t ring, but it did vibrate, so I had a quick foot massage before the play began.