Crash Pad: A Monograph?

This is the post excerpt.

My new monograph delivered over the internet in installments.

Yeah, it’s a blog.

In the Red River Gorge

I don’t own a house. My van is thousands of miles away. My crash pad is my aunt and uncles place in Park Slope. Rough life, I know. Like so many actors I know, my life is itinerant, traveling as my career directs me. Like so many climbers I know, I have very little income, and make do with as little as I can so that I can spend as much time climbing as possible. It’s these two parts of my life which have conspired to bring me to New York City, exploring both the theater scene and the climbing scene in this enormous metropolis.

A crash pad is a protective device used by climbers when they boulder. CrashpadBouldering is a type of rock climbing which derives its name from the practice of finding difficult ways up small pieces of rock, say 6-20 feet tall. Some boulders will have many different problems on them, fun trials of skill and strength that tend to include five to 20 distinct moves, muscular bursts of energy, and tricky body positions. There is no right way to climb a route, and no certain body type that excels. One of the defining characteristics of bouldering is that it does not involve the use of a rope. Instead, to protect oneself from the harsh realities of often stony fall zones, boulderers use thick pads which they carry around from rock to rock, and friends to spot them. Both are subject to availability.

Coming to New York as an actor has not been easy. I’m not going to talk about the past few months and the wallowing, though–I’m going to talk about the present and my active struggle to figure out what exactly I’m doing here. By that I don’t mean find the answers, I mean the act of finding, that’s what I’m exploring in this piece. And of doing. And through that, you’ll hopefully get a window into my being.

One of the reasons I love climbing is that it welcomes failure. This is something that’s a lot more complicated in the theater. The intersections of those varying perspectives on crashing and burning will be a major topic of exploration in this monograph. I’m hoping that you’ll find this an interesting inquiry whether you are a climber, an actor, or neither.

The other result of this piece will be a real time compilation of moderate bouldering possibilities throughout the New York metro. I won’t have much to say about problems harder than V6…because I probably won’t be able to hold myself off the ground on them. So welcome, moderate boulderers, this will be a guide targeted toward you!


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