Though Tangents continues for at least two more weeks, Jess and I are off on a trip overseas in just a few days, which means my final show for the run was last Sunday.

And what a final show it was! It's not especially useful to dwell on your successes in improvisation, because the very next week could very easily see you crash and burn, but hey---we freakin' rocked.

The final decision of who would play "the couple" wasn't made until moments before we stepped on stage, but Leah Gabriel and I ended up the ones cast. Jenny (Leah) and Ted (me) were socially awkward types meeting at what turned out to be a "Desperate & Dateless" ball. The horror of making small talk about making small talk almost spelled their doom, as did an overabundance of caffeine in Ted's system, but after bailing on the party to grab a decaf, the pair quickly discovered their common ground. The romance seemed set to blossom until the subject of Ted's mother came up.

Jenny and Ted's tale was intercut with many entertaining tangents provided by the rest of the cast. A just-turned-eighteen debutante (Jess) flung herself at the school jock (Dan), much to the dismay of her confidant (Andy). A troubled girl (Katherine) wrestled with increasingly insistent hallucinations of her playthings (Dan et al) speaking to her, leading to a final confrontation with Mr. Potato Head (Tess). A young boy (Danny) came face-to-face with his fear of animals when his mother (Katherine) took him shopping for pets. A palm reader (Andy) revealed to a client (Jess) that she was the spawn of Satan, and was forced to accompany her as she toyed with an innocent bystander (Danny). A checkout boy (Dan) confessed his longing for a checkout girl (Tess) and not even a price check for condoms could keep them from dancing the night away. And so much more...

After revealing (in heartfelt song, no less!) how his horrible mother had poisoned every one of his romances, Ted was ready to give up on a future with Jenny, when an offhand remark planted the seed of a plan: they could kill Ted's mother! Thankfully, this disastrous course was averted by Jenny rushing to her flower shop, grabbing every bouquet in sight, and presenting them with Ted to her mother-in-law-to-be (Tess). The final scene, the mother-in-law's speech at the wedding reception (“She almost couldn't be here tonight..."), was deftly executed by Tess, who played to perfection the disgruntled-but-powerless old widow.

The lights came down and the applause came up and didn't stop. Tangents as a form had proven itself, as had we as an ensemble. Thanks, Simon, for coming along to see us. As for the rest of you, sorry you missed it.