On Saturday, I was honored to be the host for the 'Trans-Action Open Mic' fundraiser, to support a dear friend's top surgery. More than 50 people came out to the event, there were about 23 people on the open mic and we raised more than $1000 for the cause. It was so amazing!
Being at this fundraiser made me remember how generous people can be and how wonderful and supportive people are. It was lovely to hear people on the mic before or after they performed sharing short, loving anecdotes about my friend. It was a heartwarming experience.
But most of all, I was reminded of what an open mic can be. I've been co-running an open mic for 13.5 years. It's called OUT OF THE BOX and it happens once per month. And, somehow, after 13 years, even though the magic is still there, there could be more magic. There could be more warmth and it could be more exciting at our open mic.
I wondered after Saturday night's show if the issue is with me. If I'm kind of on "auto-pilot" with Out of the Box. I wonder if I just don't put myself out there the same way because it's such a familiar space with familiar people... I suppose it might be true. I'll have to see when I run the open mic this Friday. We'll see how it goes.
I definitely think that preparing new material is a huge challenge, but also a real necessity to keeping this fresh as a host. I have a new piece now that I wrote about 3 weeks ago and I'm trying to memorize it. It's hard, but I'm trying. It's a piece called Let You In about my relationship with the audience. It's fun. I think I would have fun getting it up off the page. I'm going to work on that this week.
One thing that was amazing for me at the Trans-Action open mic fundraiser was that my co-host from Out of the Box came with his amazing husband and they brought their PA gear and lights and just helped make the whole show look so professional. It was great that my friend's support network came out to support him - and it was wonderful that my support network came out to support me. We definitely need more of that supporting happening at our open mic.