is once again due.
Yes, four months have come and gone since the last time I sat down with my landlady and handed over rent for the next four months. I signed a rent agreement for one year, and that was one year ago. I’ll have to do that once again. My fear is that the landlady will want to increase my rent. Anyway, I’ve been a great tenant—the best one she has—so I don’t think it will be difficult to persuade her to keep things as they are (stick to the status quo). Nonetheless, I’m still apprehensive that our next meeting might get a little sticky. I’ll let you know.
I’ve been in a real Rent mood lately. I mean, I’ve been listening to the Rent soundtrack a lot lately, and I’ve had a strong desire to watch the film. Unfortunately, I lent my copy to a friend of mine about a month ago, so I didn’t have it handy. Well, I got it back today, and I’m fresh from watching the movie for the umpteenth time. I watched it like five times the first weekend it came out on DVD last year, and I cannot tell you how many times since then. Rent means many different things to many different people. To be fair, some people despise it. The play is in its 12th year on Broadway. I remember first learning about the show in the spring of 1997 when I was at university. One of my housemates went to New York over spring break, saw the show, bought the soundtrack, and that is all we listened to for weeks after he got back. I saw it for the first time in January 1998 with my friends Travis and Jeff in Orlando at the Bob Car theater. To date, think I’ve seen it on stage four or five times. When I finally saw it on Broadway in 2001, I was beside a woman who was watching the show for the 77th time.
If you know me—or simply read my blog every now and again—you know that friendship is something I really value; I put a lot of effort into my relationships with others. Friendship is one of the major themes of Rent, and that is one of its many appeals to me. A line in one of the songs is, ‘Friendship is thicker than blood.’ One of my friends at university, Keri, used to say something like that all the time. She’s always said that when you were so far from home, your friends truly became your family. That’s true, but it is also true that sometimes, your friends become closer and more important to you than your family even when your family is not so far away. We all need unconditional love from someone, and we do not always find that love and acceptance from our families. Who do you turn to when your family rejects you or turns its back? Those friends.
The no day but today theme of Rent really influenced my life during my 20’s, and I’m still trying to hold on to that idea. Just being who I am compounded with the way I was raised makes me an overly-cautious, neurotic person. I’ve really worked hard to ‘let go’ of so much and enjoy each day, and it has made me a happier person. I’ve not reached the point where I can ‘live each moment as my last’. However, that’s what I aspire to.
Forget regret or life is yours to miss.
Give in to love or live in fear.
These are just some of the messages from Rent that inspire and motivate me. Some days I need more inspiration and motivation than others.
Rent, even though it is a work of fiction, rejuvenates my optimism for finding love in this crazy, crazy world. Hopefully I won’t have to go broke, get strung out on heroin, have AIDS or be beaten on the streets to find it. Strip...maybe.