Susanna Salk


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Monday, January 30th, 2017

Barnhouse Blog #6 There’s a moment when you’re deep in the middle of rehearsing a play where the joy of beginning is as far away as the euphoria of opening night, that a director once told me was called “Uglyville.” Our neighbor’s new construction and now - surprise! guest house garage - doesn’t seem to be getting any nearer to completion and the near constant echo of their hammers has become taunting. Each cold day unfolds with gray uncertain skies that seem more symbolic of the mood of much of this country rather than seasonal. And in my tiny corner of it, the reality of ripping out old cabinets, shag carpet, cracked yellow tile and filling dumpsters with the detritus of someone else’s discarded life before building my own, definitely feels like Uglyville. I know it’s a deep privilege to be in the middle of a creative process with the common goal being pleasure. So I turn up the music to cover the sound of bulldozers and I go on Pinterest and pick images I want to transform the now empty rooms in to and feel a little closer to opening night. The demo guys who started this morning in the guest house handed me two tarnished brass trophy labels they found on the floor. One was from 1965 and the other from 1975. I took a picture of them and asked the former owner if he’d like them sent to him. He emailed back with much surprise and appreciation that I would take the time to ask about his “mediocre baseball career” and that I could toss them. I keep thinking how I was a baby in crib near Boston while he was running bases here in the fields of Connecticut. As they peel back the old linoleum tile in his kitchen and I am deciding what kind of floors I want to put back down, it occurs to me that I’m as much creating a future archaeological site as renovating. Who will find what of mine long after I’m gone? I am keeping the plaques not necessarily because I think he’s going to change his mind but because they will remind me of this question. #barnhouseblog

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