Oh Look – It’s Boo Radley!

Friday night Teresa and I went to Trustus which is a small local theater known for its emphasis on productions that are entertaining, yet relatively avant- garde.   The play was Collected Stories by Donald Margulies and directed by Milena Herring.  We aren’t reliable patrons for the arts in Columbia, South Carolina, but we both enjoy the Trustus experience with its comfy chairs and intimate surroundings.  Adult beverages are available, and I bought a Corona Light at the bar simply because the woman in line ahead of me bought one.  I’m also an unreliable beer drinker.  When we found our seats, I was delighted to find the free popcorn baskets were still conveniently placed for our happy consumption, and I sat back with popcorn and beer to enjoy the play.

Not so fast my friend, as Lee Corso of Espn says.  As Teresa and I took turns munching on the popcorn, an attractive woman walked over to us and said, “Oh Look!  It’s Boo Radley!”  I must have looked surprised when she and Teresa laughed together at the remark.  The woman looked familiar, but I didn’t know who she was.

Teresa spoke up at that moment and said, “This is Melina Herring who’s directing the play tonight.”  I made an appropriate response to that news flash and told her how much we were looking forward to the play.  “Why Boo Radley?”  I asked.

She was still laughing at her own joke.  “Because whenever we go out with Teresa, she always says she has a partner who’s in Texas on family business.  The invisible partner.  Boo Radley.   As a matter of fact, I think I remember someone asking Teresa if she’d considered the possibility you’d left her?”

Normally I would be flattered by a comparison to a character in my favorite novel To Kill a Mockingbird, but maybe Boo Radley wouldn’t be my first choice.  I picture myself as a Scout-Atticus combo on my better days and now had to reconsider my self perception versus the perceptions of others regarding self.  I added a twinge of guilt to this observation and felt like I did when I was caught eating Christmas candy before Christmas.  Strangely unsettling.  I’d been too long gone.

Other than that, Mrs. Lincoln – how was the play?

I am giving it a two thumbs up.  The dynamics between the two actresses playing the older author and her successful protegé were excellent, writing fabulous, and of course, directed beautifully by the woman who called me Boo Radley.

About Sheila Morris

Sheila Morris is a personal historian, essayist with humorist tendencies, lesbian activist, truth seeker and speaker in the tradition of other female Texas storytellers including her paternal grandmother. In December, 2017, the University of South Carolina Press published her collection of first-person accounts of a few of the people primarily responsible for the development of LGBTQ organizations in South Carolina. Southern Perspectives on the Queer Movement: Committed to Home will resonate with everyone interested in LGBTQ history in the South during the tumultuous times from the AIDS pandemic to marriage equality. She has published five nonfiction books including two memoirs, an essay compilation and two collections of her favorite blogs from I'll Call It Like I See It. Her first book, Deep in the Heart: A Memoir of Love and Longing received a Golden Crown Literary Society Award in 2008. Her writings have been included in various anthologies - most recently the 2017 Saints and Sinners Literary Magazine. Her latest book, Four Ticket Ride, was released in January, 2019. She is a displaced Texan living in South Carolina with her wife Teresa Williams and their dogs Spike, Charly and Carl. She is also Naynay to her two granddaughters Ella and Molly James who light up her life for real. Born in rural Grimes County, Texas in 1946 her Texas roots still run wide and deep.
This entry was posted in Humor, Lesbian Literary, Life, Personal, Random, Reflections, Slice of Life, The Way Life Is and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to Oh Look – It’s Boo Radley!

  1. Millie Miller says:

    Well at least she didn’t pee on your shoes and tell you it was rain!!! She as you have said: “called it as she saw it”. Glad you took the hint. Indeed…you have been too long gone. Welcome home Boo.


  2. Bob says:

    I know you, girl, and you are definitely the Scout/Atticus Finch combo.


  3. Hmm, I wouldn’t have thought it either ;). Actually, you can keep Atticus as your role model. I am 100% Scout, and I already claimed her.


  4. Hmm…it’s never a comfortable thing seeing yourself through another’s eyes. This makes me thoughtful, and I have little else to add, but glad you are home, spending time with each other.


    • Yes, it’s been good to be home with Pretty and the Pack. And no, sometimes the feeling we have when we see the vision of ourselves that others have is much the like the feeling I have when I look in the mirror and wonder who that old woman is instead of the carefree twenty-something who was such an intrepid adventurer and idealist and has been replaced by this impostor.


      • Boy do I recognize that feeling. It’s unreal! I ask the reflection, “Who are you, and what did you do with my smooth skin?!!!”

        But also, with regard to the playwright, this appears to be the case of someone stirring a pot that was fine on simmer. I do believe you and Pretty were intentionally made uncomfortable. That being said I will mind my business and be glad you two are happy. That’s all that matters! 😀


  5. Stirring a pot that was fine on simmer…now that’s a great line! It must be a wise saying from the Pennsylvania Italians!
    We are all chuckling at the thought of Miss Poppy and Madame Cassie and their Ma at full speed…Pretty is hard at work at the Mast General Store today and the old woman Slow is, well, hardly working. Have a fun weekend!! 🙂


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