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A monologue from the play by Rich Orloff
Oh, who am I kidding? It’s a terrible painting. The colors create neither the illusion of ﬂesh nor an imaginative commentary on the essence of the body.
Not only does the painting lack dimensionality, it doesn’t compensate by providing the sort of creative perspective which bypasses literalism to provide hitherto unseen or unnoticed truths.
The painting isn’t even bland—it’s lifeless, as if the painter felt neither the power of paint nor the awe of nature.
Oh God, oh God, for years I yearned to create, and now my biggest fear has come true: I have no talent! My mind questions if life is worth living.
I’m ﬁnally consumed with pure, unendurable torment!
But wait! Wait! Even though this is the darkest moment of my existence, as I let go of my lifelong dream, a thought begins shyly to take form . . .
Yes. Yes . . . An incredible thought. Suddenly I feel a brilliant clarity about how I should spend my life.
I will become . . . I will become . . . I am becoming . . . a critic . Suddenly my life has purpose! To become a critic!
If I can’t feel torment, at least I can bring torment to others!
Oh, to wake up each morning ready to use my God-given gift of pointing out ﬂaws that people might not otherwise notice.
To mock and humiliate in a way that makes rejection entertaining. To dole out approval with such scarcity that anyone creative will yearn for a kind word from me.
What other life could compare to that? Thank you, Pops. If you hadn’t pushed me to paint this monstrosity, I would’ve never reached this moment.
Whoever I become I owe to you. And by the way, you need to spruce this place up. It lacks conceptual unity, and it’s drab.
God, I love the sound of my own voice! Here I come, world; those with fragile egos should hide!
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