Saturday, September 27, 2008

Talking Gaslights



This photo shows off what makes Wellsboro famous....or at least one of the things....and that is the Gas Lights. Two of our main streets feature old fashioned working gas lights down the center of Main Street and Central Avenue. It is that bit of nostalgic charm that invites tourists to come back again and again and adds to the beauty for those of us that live here to enjoy.

A few years ago I was a judge for a play writing contest. The entries were all submitted anonymously and the top vote winners were presented in an evening presentation of ten minute plays. A true favorite of mine was a play about two talking Gaslights, named Grace and Gus. Grace was an effervescent light that just loved all of the charming activities that occurred in town. She was a truly joyful light. Gus, on the other hand was the opposite. He was a curmudgeon of a guy light that only saw the negative aspects of everything. For instance, Grace loved the beauty and the visitors that came to town for the Fall Foliage Festival, and Gus complained about the itchy corn stalks wrapped around him for weeks, and those pesky tourists that insisted on taking his picture.

As it turned out, I got to actually perform the part of "Grace" and my husband played "Gus". When the identifies of the authors were revealed, I was delighted to learn that a friend, Cindy Davis Meixel, was the playwright. It was truly a joy to bring her creative work to life.

The basic way of being for the two featured gas lights mimmicks the same type of differences seen in the real life variety of characters that live here and everywhere. The character of Grace chose to see the good in everything. She was so grateful for the beauty of the town and to be able to serve by lighting up Main Street and greeting people happily every day. Gus, on the other hand, chose to focus on everything that was uncomfortable or not to his liking. He totally missed the beauty of the town that Grace could see.

As their dialogue transpired, Gas Light Grace did not lose her enthusiasm or her joy, even though Gus contradicted every positive point that she expressed. As the story developed, eventually Gus came around. Grace's love for the town and all of the wonderful celebrations that occurred on the boulevard gradually touched Gus and inspired him to change. By the end of the play, these two gaslights were both proud to be of service in this community.

Although this story centers on Gas lights, I am sure you can think of people that live life like Grace does.....enjoying all that happens around them. In comparison, you are also likely to know people that only focus on the negatives and choose to spend their time complaining, being Gus-like in living.

The good news is that negative thoughts can be exchanged for positive ones, one by one. Each positive thought and each item for which gratitude is expressed, takes us one step closer to JOY.

In reading this story of Grace and Gus, which one would you think represents you? How bright is your light?



3 comments:

Gram Peach said...

Kate,
What a lovely inspirational thought. It's also a blast from the past, remembering Cindy's delightful play performed by you and Skeet. It's also a great testament to our lovely town... an easy place to find joy. Yes, choosing joy is the only option.
Love, Pat

Ivory Lady said...

Kate,
What a lovely inspirational thought. It's also a blast from the past, remembering Cindy's delightful play performed by you and Skeet. It's also a great testament to our lovely town... an easy place to find joy. Yes, choosing joy is the only option.
Love, Pat

Donna S said...

Kate:

What a wonderful and well written play by Cindy. I truly enjoyed it and I love Wellsboro, PA so much. I am from Upstate NY so I do not get down that way as often as I would like.

I am more like Grace always happy and cheerful. Thank you so much for the article.