I have news:
I can hear, pretty well, with my left ear.
This afternoon about 2 p m a Dr. Vernick who is an Ent --- not a woody individual out of Tolkein, but an Ear-Nose-Throat expert --- put a tiny hole in my eardrum and then with the tiniest but the LOUDest vacuum-cleaner I have ever heard sucked out of my eustachian-tube the fluid which has kept me half-deaf for more than a month now. And since the right ear has been a little better, I elected to wait a month to see if the fluid there gives up the ghost of its own free will, before I have my friendly Ent do his little and Greatly Appreciated trick.
But I will admit that when he said he could give me my hearing back I burst rather embarrassingly into tears, admitting that I had not, till then, let myself know how incredibly sincerely I missed hearing.
"I will hear that play," insists Theseus, and I can once again agree with him. There are actors who can make two or three decks of eager auditors stop breathing to catch their whispers; for me that stopped when I heard my head-cold draw, as it were, across first one ear, then the other, a muffling curtain that made such subtleties impossible.
Still, hearing plays is What I Do, isn't it?
Unfortunately, I still cough. Actor-friends love me most because a healthy diaphragm means my laughing rolls around the room like grumbling thunders and often permits, as they say, a silently smiling house to join me invoicing reactions. But no one smiles when it's a cough-hacking noise is equally stentorian. I can only promise to try stiffling the outbursts till a pause, where the rest of the crowd is allowed to think, where I can loudly clear my passages without stepping on anyone's lines. I am, I think, the theater's and the actors' friend, not a noisy adversary claiming unworthy distraction. I will make appointments tomorrow and, shouild I still be barking through your most tender soliloquys a month hence, send to one Doctor Molina at Beth Israel and complain --- get in line behind Me.
Till then, "I will hear that play"
Praise be to Thespis!
( a k a larry stark)