Fresh Ground Stories – Being Humbled

Fresh Ground Stories: Being Humbled

 

So far this year I think I’ve been humbled about 173 times. That may seem like a lot but it’s less than my personal record setting pace last year where I ended up being humbled approximately every 15 minutes for 365 days straight. This includes sleeping. If there was a bump in Pfizer stock last year it was probably from my personal intake of Zoloft.

 

The good thing about all this is that I made it. A big part of making it was deciding I had to tell the story. I knew the last step was to try to make something beautiful out of the worst time in my life.

 

And that is what I’m asking you to do. Dig down into your secret stash of comeuppances and tell us about a time you were humbled. Tell us how you got through it and what you learned from it. I know this is a hard one but it’s going to be worth it. Every story you tell at this show will make it easier for someone in the audience to deal with their own humbling experiences. There’s nothing like shared embarrassments to make us all feel better, right?

 

Let’s hear it for the learning things the hard way! Humblefest 2014!

 

The rules for stories are below but you know the kind we’re looking for: true stories that happened to you that still mean something to you days, months or years later.

 

I hope to see you at our next show on Thursday, July 24, 7:00pm at the Roy St Cafe.

 

Rules & Guidelines: http://freshgroundstories.wordpress.com/2013/01/22/storytelling-rules-and-guidelines/

 

Feel free to email me if you have any questions.

 

Paul

freshgroundstories@gmail.com.

Fresh Ground Stories: Confrontation – Stories of facing up to it

This may not come as a surprise to anyone but I’m pretty non-confrontational. In fact, if I had a superpower it would probably be my ability to pretend something isn’t happening. Relationship going off the rails? Oh, we’re just going through a rough patch. Car sounds worse after I get it back from the mechanic? Oh, it’s probably just a rock in the tire. People often mistake this attitude for some kind of zen-like acceptance. Nope. I just have a special talent for emotional procrastination.

 

Luckily, you guys get to show me what I’ve been missing all these years. April’s show is about confronting something or someone in your life. Was it the neighbor whose dog won’t keep it in his yard? Was it the idea you got when you were a kid that you weren’t good enough?

 

Every day we have to decide if we should confront something we’d rather not. Think back to a time when you just couldn’t take it anymore and did something about it.

 

Whatever your story is, come by Roy Street April 24th and tell us about it.

 

Don’t forget, in an effort to get more people onstage, we’re shaving the time down to 8 minutes. So practice your story on friends and pets to make sure it’s somewhere between 5-8 minutes long.

 

The rules for stories are below but you know the kind we’re looking for: true stories that happened to you that still mean something to you days, months or years later.

 

I hope to see you at our next show on Thursday, April 24, 7:00pm at the Roy St Cafe.

 

Rules & Guidelines: http://freshgroundstories.wordpress.com/2013/01/22/storytelling-rules-and-guidelines/

 

Feel free to email me if you have any questions.

 

Paul

freshgroundstories@gmail.com.

Fresh Ground Stories: True Love – Lost and Found

Lynda Barry said, “Love is an exploding cigar we willingly smoke.” I don’t know how many exploding cigars I’ve smoked but I hope there’s at least one more in my future. I keep telling myself THIS time it won’t blow up. THIS time it’ll be different. Fortunately, Lynda also said something else I try to remember, “If it is your time, love will track you down like a cruise missile.”

And that’s the theme for next month’s show. Love, in all it’s thunderous glory. Is it weird that both quotes describe love as something that blows up? Oh, well. Better to blow up than fizzle, right?

Bring a story about love. Did it work out? Did it blow up in your face? Did you embarrass yourself trying to hold onto someone you should have let go? Did you stumble into love just at the moment you had given up?

Whatever your story is, come by Roy Street March 27th and tell us about it. Remember, love is lovely but in order for it to be a story it has to have a beginning, a middle and an end.

Also, in an effort to get more people onstage we’re shaving the time down to 8 minutes. So practice your story on friends and pets to make sure it’s under 8. I had to bump 4-5 people last time and I’m hoping next time we can everyone onstage who wants to tell a story.

The rules for stories are below but you know the kind we’re looking for: true stories that happened to you that still mean something to you days, months or years later.

I hope to see you at our next show on Thursday, March 27, 7:00pm at the Roy St Cafe.

Rules & Guidelines: http://freshgroundstories.wordpress.com/2013/01/22/storytelling-rules-and-guidelines/

Feel free to email me if you have any questions.

Paul

freshgroundstories@gmail.com.

Thank you!

So many beautiful, sweet, funny stories last night. Thank you all for coming out and sharing your lives with everyone. I don’t know where all the new people came from last night but I’m happy you found us and hope you keep coming back.

Kimball, Lany, Tim, Becky, Steph, Bill, Raleigh, Kris, Aimee, Danielle, Scot, Graham, you guys were fantastic. I hope I didn’t forget anyone! The meetup site doesn’t let me write enough to thank you individually but each one of you helped make this a special evening. Thanks for having the courage to go onstage and tell your stories.

Even though we went half an hour longer than we’re supposed to we still didn’t get to everyone who put their name in Mr. Coffee. I’m feel bad every time that happens. Sometimes I wish we could do a three hour show but I think that might push the limits of the human spine and bladder. But maybe that’s just me. I hope the folks who didn’t get their name called will come back.

I’ll get next month’s show announcement (Feb 27th) out later this weekend. The theme is Spontaneous Combustion.

Thanks again to everyone who came out and special thanks to those who shared a story. I haven’t listened to the recording yet but if it all went well I’m happy to send anyone who told a story the audio of their performance. Write me at freshgroundstories@gmail.com if you’d like that.

Paul

Thank You

Thanks to everyone who came out and supported the show this week. So much vulnerability onstage that night. It made me want to go home and work on stories of my own that I’ve been too scared to write.
I feel terrible that I forgot my tape recorder at home and didn’t get to record the evening and give everyone a copy of their story. I’m telling myself that maybe it was just supposed to be a special night that you had to be there to appreciate. Yes?

Jerry, thank you for going up first and telling your story about the gumball mafia in San Diego. I always wished I had the guts to get out there and publically confront shysters and con artists. Thea, what can I say except I’m glad you survived. In fact, you’ve done more than survive. You may not know it but telling your story made a difference. At least it did to me.

Anne-thank you for surprising me with that story. I never would have guessed that was in you. Will you come back? I hope so. Surprise us again! Bill W-you did great. I hope I never have to experience what you went through but I sure am glad you got up there to tell me about it.

Wes-I’ve been there in that doctor’s office just like you. Your story echoed a lot of what I’ve been dealing with this year. Thanks for reminding me I’m not the only one.

Chris, Gardiner, and Broc-thank you for being there so often for this show. Whether you’re onstage or not it’s good to see my regulars in the audience. It makes me feel like I’m hanging out with a bunch of friends and helps keep me steady during the show when I look out and see you there.

Tim, my friend, this show wouldn’t be the same without you. As long as I have gas in my car to get to that coffee shop you’ll have a place to tell your stories. Baron-the energy you put into learning how to navigate in this world is inspiring. Like you said in your story you have some amazing friends in your life and I think you made some more last Thursday.

Shmuel-I’m pretty sure time stopped while you were on stage. The cafe was unearthly quiet while you told that story. I think you hypnotized us. Or me anyway. Thank you also for coming up to me after the show. I wasn’t able to put my words together very well but what I wanted to say was that it meant a lot to be able to talk to you personally.

Lastly, I want to thank Mark for a perfect ending to the show. You are right. Sometimes the best thing we can do for someone is just to listen. You said it better than I could have and it made everything just right.
I’m sorry this email is so long but I wanted to let everyone know that your stories matter and that I think of them long after the show. I hope everyone who was there that night comes back on Nov 14th for the next show. The theme is Best Laid Plans. I’ll send out the official invite later today.

My apologies if I’ve forgotten to thank anyone. I try to save all the slips of paper so I can thank people later but sometimes things get lost between home and show. I’m sorry we weren’t able to get to the two folks to put their names in the late tin! We were already 30 minutes over and I didn’t want the Roy Street people to worry about how long the show was running. Keep those stories fresh in your mind as I know there will be a theme coming up they’ll relate to.

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