About five minutes into my adventure some guy came running out of the shadows choking and I lost my wife.
At this point I felt weird and toyed with the idea of returning to the bar area. Not that it happens to me often, but I feel awkward in crowds of people in scary masks attending an experimental play. I started to worry that I was becoming another silly New Yorker who suffers through “performance art.” – one of those insufferable dunderheads who stare at some crap abstract painting and barf up pretentious nonsense about its true meaning. I really don’t want to be those people.
But then I figured, fuck it, I’ve got a scary mask on. I wandered around the dark “street” pining for my wife and eventually found myself looking into a funeral parlor. A gentleman was seated at a desk writing something, so I figured I’d wander in and stare at him. He was surrounded by several of us – people in creepy masks – watching him write a note. Then he got up, looked out the window, and left. Some folks ran after him. I decided to rifle through his desk (you’re allowed to).
After that I was enjoying myself. I wandered in and out of stores and houses, watching scenes unfold, looking through drawers, reading correspondence and trying to find my wife. It made me realize that it’s hard to find my wife when she and everyone else is wearing a creepy mask. The mask is pretty liberating too – in a brief bout of extraordinary optimism on my part I looked at masked women and assumed that every single one had attractive faces underneath.
I eventually stumbled into my wife again. We found ourselves watching a pregnant woman clearly in distress. She apparently took a liking to me. She held my hands and guided me to a door. She opened the door with a key and led me in to a tiny room with an altar – then closed and locked the door. It was just us. She caressed my cheek and asked me if I was okay. I nodded yes and started to wonder if my wife was standing outside wondering what the hell was going on. Then the woman took off my mask, hugged me, rubbed my hands and generally made me wonder if she was going to make out with me. She gestured for me to kneel at the altar, then reached around me (very close – I thought she might nibble on my ear), tore a page out of a book and folded it into a pocket. I stood back up and she dipped my hand in a goblet of water, ran my wet finger down her face and put the “tears” into the pocket, which she handed me. Mask back on, door opens and next thing I know I’m standing in a room alone realizing everyone had taken off. Apparently my wife wasn’t too concerned that a woman dragged me into a closet. And I’d lost my wife again.
Anyway – weird. But good weird. Really well done. After the grand finale I found my wife again and we compared notes: I’d seen a wonderful pair of breasts and my wife had seen two penises. A most unusual evening indeed.
From Brian’s review of Sleep No More on Yelp.