Beware the Angry Young Playwright | Letters | Chicago Reader

Beware the Angry Young Playwright 

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To the editors:

Re: John Bliss's letter (January 15) concerning the cover story "Look What They've Done to My Play" (December 18):

What a sight! It's not every day you get to read an angry young "playwright," spewing streams of bile at the contemptible masses who just don't understand the theater. You think they only really exist in the movies, and then, every once in a while, they pop up in the letters pages of the Reader--the real thing, a true specimen of the self-important, long-winded, red-faced angry young "playwright."

Warning: the really angry young "playwright" is not a pretty sight. Its criticism is overblown and petty, the lectures on aesthetics would be arrogant if they weren't irrelevant, and the bitter attacks on writers, actors, and theater companies alike sometimes reach the level of "your mother wears army boots," but not always (Reader critic Anthony Adler is strangely spared in this diatribe--looking for a job, John?). And then, gums flapping and extremities shaking (from too much cappuccino), this strange creature lumbers off, leaving behind a trail of advice, as if after this display someone somewhere will care.

I suppose enduring this sort of rubbish now and again is the Price We Must Pay for free press, free speech, etc. However, in the name of decency, I for one intend to commit John Bliss's name to memory so I can avoid his plays, should he actually write one and get it produced. Stupidity should not be without consequence.

It's like my mother always used to tell me: "If you're going to say something ignorant, you're probably going to say it anyway, but try not to make a public ass of yourself, dear."

Alan Blair

N. Lincoln

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