Livin’ on the Edge With Joe

Halloween hands w rll ej & joe f

My stage director/mentor/friend Joe Ferrell is a fellow geezer.

Who cares?

I gather he’s getting old.

Who cares?

Well…

I kinda do.

I’ve read a bunch of Joe tributes from various actors and students and friends. I am impressed by their reminiscences and the life-changing echoes of those reminiscences.

I have some reminiscences of my own, of course…some might get us arrested…

May I share a silly one?

The year was 1984.

For some inexplicable reason (at least to me) Lily Tomlin came to the Guignol Theatre at the University of Kentucky one evening and practiced a reading of the beginnings of a new one-person play. She was the “one-person”…go figure. It was free and the house was packed…go figure. I was on the front row. Thus, Lily Tomlin spit on me. I didn’t shower for two weeks. My social life plunged from pitiful to non-existent…go figure.

The next day, Ms. Tomlin held a q&a in the Laboratory Theatre (now the Briggs) for the Theatre Department students. I took the day off from work and lurked in the back of the house (sans shower remember). Joe Ferrell was the moderator of the session.

Commenting on the barrenness of the stage – nuthin’ – no chairs, no stools, — nuthin’, Joe introduced Ms. Tomlin and suggested that they simply sit on the edge of the stage. Ms. Tomlin’s eyes twinkled a challenge echoed by her voice; “I’ll sit on the edge if you will.”

I knew Joe and I knew the answer to that challenge from anyone, anywhere, anytime, in any theatre.

They sat on the edge.

I’ve always suspected that Joe maintains a discreet pied-a-terre there…on the edge.

That’s my Joe, and I’m standin’ by it and him……on the edge.

1 thought on “Livin’ on the Edge With Joe

  1. You know I would get arrested with you anytime anywhere(except the Middle East)! I wish to offer you a heartfelt thanks for including me as a warm memory for June’s Boy—very honored! In fact I sat and played that memory in MY mind—I have thought of it periodically, especially remembering your “on the edge” observation. I am always so impressed with your memory and the wit and grace with which you relate those memories or lines from scripts, books, songs! I have stirring and warm memories with you, would surely like to experience more. And you are right, I am old(geezer is the word I think), but who does care—it is always “In boca al lupo”, and I love to “eat the wolf”!—-thanks for the mamorys— uh memorys🤠

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