Carried Away

You mean to tell me

That I get no preparation

I just say the lines as written,

And I pray that I don’t cough

Or lose my place,

Or drop my sword

Or else my hat?

Tell me, why is it that no one

Had the foresight or the simple human kindness

To explain it

Long before I got this far?!

—From My Favorite Year

“Ladies and gentlemen, this is your half-hour call. Half hour, please.” The disembodied voice crackling over the intercom strikes fear into my heart, but here in this little dressing room, brightly lit, heavy with perfume and very, very hot, the announcement seems to have no effect on my three “roommates”—the musical actor Carolee Carmello, the Broadway dancer Donna McKechnie, and Kathie Lee Gifford, the television personality. For them, this is business as usual—another opening, another show.

People on couch
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