On the Road

October 6th, 2005

There are things that a middle-aged man should not have to endure, at least not while he is unclothed. One of the worst of them is facing a really big, wall-sized bathroom mirror. And yet this is exactly what happened to me this morning, here in my hotel room in Austin, Texas. It's past midnight now and I still haven't gotten over it. I mean, Yecchh! Maybe next time, on top of "no smoking," I'll specify "no mirror."

Ironically, the stage monologue I'll be performing at the University of Texas at Austin this weekend -- Ben Franklin: Unplugged -- was inspired by my looking in the bathroom mirror while shaving one day and realizing I looked like Mr. Franklin. This superficial little insight led me down a rabbit hole of history and heartache, and it's always a delight to have the chance to recount this adventure to audiences. Though I have to say that, after spending the past bunch of weeks taping our TV show, it feels kind of weird going cold-turkey from interviewing for a week or two.

Maybe I'll interview the incredibly loud cricket that's hanging out somewhere in the theater. We don't know exactly where it is yet, but it started chirping during today's rehearsal -- huge, booming chirps -- and each time we thought it was gone, or asleep, it would start up again. It seems to like some light cues but not others, and it isn't bashful about voicing its opinion.

One of the crew members suggested that if the cricket is still around tomorrow (when we do the first performance), they might send some bats after it. Austin apparently has the largest urban bat population in the world. (At least, that's what it says in the magazine in my room. Sadly, there's no listing of the largest suburban bat population; I guess you'd have to seek out a really high concentration of chirping Subaru Outbacks.) I really want to see the bats come out at dusk -- it's supposed to be an amazing sight -- but it seems that the bats' showtime coincides with my own. Everyone's a performer here!

Entry Filed under: let's digress

2 Comments

  • 1. pogblog  |  October 7th, 2005 at 3:01 pm

    I hope you do get to see the bats sometime. Amazingly under-appreciated creatures. I myself, for instance, would like sonar.

    But the big deal is that they’ve gotten trashed as handy horror creatures by Hollywood when indeed they eat tons upon gadzillion tons of nasty insects that would plague us mercilessly. Heart bats.

    ps. You probably didn’t look so much unlike Mr. Franklin in the startling full-length either & look how much more history loved him than, say, Tom Cruise. So stand proud, Mr. K. Heck with the stick-insect people.

  • 2. Josh Kornbluth  |  October 15th, 2005 at 1:50 pm

    Thanks, as always, for your comment, pogblog! I do feel it’s only fair to mention, though, that, while I do look like Ben Franklin, I look like Ben when he was in his seventies and eighties (that is, when most of the portraits were made)! (Maybe I’d look better in a bat costume. … Actually, probably not.)


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