Thank you everyone who came out last Thursday and supported all the people who got onstage. The stories we heard that night will stay within the walls of Roy St Coffee forever since I forgot the tape recorder. I feel bad that I can’t give any of the tellers a copy of their story but in a way it made the night feel a little mysterious, like we were all sharing secrets that we’ll never repeat.

Because I don’t have a recording I can’t pull any quotes for you but some of those stories were so memorable they’re still bouncing around in my head. Rebecca, a first-timer, told a heartbreaking story of driving her son to rehab. There are few things comparable to the helplessness you feel when your son or daughter is fighting addiction. There’s nothing you wouldn’t do for them and there’s nothing you can do for them. Except drive them to rehab.

Rich, one of our new regulars, told us how he ended up in Vietnam despite being against the war. It was unlike any other story I’ve heard about combat. It wasn’t a story about that particular war as much as it was about the inevitability of how young men and women end up in war. I can’t possibly recreate the poetry of Rich’s story here but I’ll remember this line for a long time, “The system works.” No matter how strong our will and firm our resolve, we still live within a system that can carry us away to places we don’t want to be.

One of the biggest surprises of the night was another first-timer, Min. Halfway through her story, I was kicking myself for not being able to record the show. Her story was about how her high, child-like voice has shaped her life. She had me from the first minute of her story when she admitted that she was on a first date with a young man in the audience who probably didn’t know that he was on a date. This is the best opening line I have ever heard! I saw her date afterward and I think he was still a little stunned. He was smiling but that could also be a symptom of delayed shock. I hope he appreciates how lucky he is. Min’s story was absolutely wonderful. Many people in Min’s life think her voice is something that needs to be fixed but she see’s it as her superpower. I’m solidly in Min’s camp on this one. It is a superpower and I’m glad we got to see her in action.

Lastly, I want to thank our special guest, Sam Blackman. Sam closed the show with the story that he won the Moth Grand Slam with last month. After that, he he shared a story from his early years as a young doctor. It was one of the most touching stories we’ve ever had at FGS and I wish everyone could have been there to hear it. I hope I never have to ask a doctor to do what a young woman asked Sam to do for her and her young daughter. But if I do, I hope that doctor is just like Sam.

Because I am perpetually disorganized, I’m sure I don’t have all the slips of paper with the tellers’ names. I want to thank each of you individually but I also don’t want to leave anyone out. So I’m just going to thank everyone who walked up to the mic that night and shared a story. I’m sorry we couldn’t get to everyone who threw their name in Mr. Coffee. I do my best to get as many people up there as possible. I hope the folks who got bumped can work their story into upcoming themes.

And speaking of upcoming themes, our next theme is Risk: Stories of taking a chance. I’ll get the invite out as soon as possible.

Take care everyone. Do what you can to stay cool this week. I’ll see you at our next show on August 24th 🙂

Paul
freshgroundstories@gmail.com

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