Salvage Strike; or, “Thank you, baby!”

Mercena Closeup(Why am I naming days?)
4/26/15, Day 14,235* (Mercena Day 255): Salvage Strike; or, “Thank you, baby!”

I have been a long time away from this naming of days. Mostly, I’ve been a breakneck kind of busy, and behind on so many projects I felt I should always be doing rather than remembering what I’ve done. You can only receive so many emails that begin, “I know you’re busy, but…” before every spare second feels double-or-triple mortgaged.

That feeling hasn’t gone away, but with the closing of Salvage it felt necessary to at least try and take more regular stock about the sum of all this frenzy. So much has changed in so short a time, especially with Mercena, and while I know that all will be lost in the inevitable heat death of our universe, these precious moments of her first year don’t need to disappear in quite such a hurry.

And this daily blogging has never been so much about remembering the past as situating my soul in the present; to find a presence of mind in this daily discipline to notice my life as it’s happening.  So here I am, dusting myself off and hopping back in the saddle.

There’s no way to cover in a single blog post the events of the past three and a half months, but I’ll try to weave in little moments over the next few weeks (before the TCG Conference totally consumes my life again). Mostly, my focus will continue to be on the day that just happened, and yesterday happened to be a beautiful day.

From basically 10am to 10pm, I was at Flux’s strike for Salvage. My legs ache, my feet are sore, my hands are cut up with splinters…and I couldn’t be happier. It seems absurd to call the logistical clusterfuck of strike sacred, but in spite of all the trucks stuck in traffic and the compounding stress of deadlines missed, it has become a cherished ritual for me.

Mostly it’s the people. We were short-handed but not short-hearted, with Alisha, Jodi, Kia, Heather, Isaiah, Matty V, Rachael and Sol putting our bunker to bed. Mercena was there for the first half of tech, and the stage manager-like cry of “Baby on the floor!” was appropriately met with the response, “Thank you, baby!”

Mercena loves rehearsals and tech and strike especially. There’s so much to see, and so many people to interact with for this blessedly social baby. She was content to roll around on her blanket, banging her empty orange juice bottle (her odd new favorite toy), for hours at a time. For her nap, I wheeled her around in the courtyard of The Loisaida Center (she naps best in motion) for over an hour, breathing in the beautiful day and thinking about how lucky our family is to be a part of this theatre family.


We were short-handed because so many of our Creative Partners were involved in other shows, but we still found a way to involve them, with Sol finding an old headshot of a young Chinaza and affixing it as a guardian spirit to the door. Balancing the abundance of opportunities our Creative Partners are finding outside the ensemble with what it takes to keep Flux moving forward always been a challenge for us, but this process felt healthy and full of love throughout.

Because we were running late, we missed our window at The Sand Box and waited for a rehearsal to finish before we could load everything into our storage space. This was our most environmentally responsible production, with almost all of the set pieces productively reused or recycled. As Alisha and I waited for the Sand Box rehearsal to end, I remembered all the other late nights of Flux strikes, driving with Jason in the truck on various late night misadventures…

Maybe that’s why strike feels sacred to me; at twenty one Flux productions now, this strike struck the memories of the others and they rung out in an exhausted harmony, marking the passage of time and the loss of something beloved, and reaffirming the life of the community. And what’s a few splinters or sore feet to that?

*I have not actually begun reversing my age like Benjamin Button; because of a typo my day count got off track. If there’s ever time, I’ll go back and correct the mistaken posts…but there probably won’t be time. I’ll be picking up with the other pieces of this daily blog tomorrow.

Published by CorinnaSchulenburg

Artist and Activist

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