Today, February 4th, 2006, is Jonathan Larson's birthday. He would have been 46 years old. All of you who read this have met him. You have met him through the words or RENT. I wanted to take this time to tell you what RENT means to me and how it has changed me, as a tribute to Jonathan. Feel free to do the same if you so wish. Have a great weekend, and listen to RENT for Jonathan.
"How do you measure, measure a year?"
How do you? You could be technical and measure it in exactly how many days, hours, minutes, and seconds there are. You could be scientific and measure it in distance from the sun, seasons, and galactic readings. Yet, how can you say exactly what a year is? RENT taught me to look at a year not as 365 days, 8760 hours, or (dare I say it?) 525,600 minutes, or 31,536,000 seconds. RENT has taught me to not look at a year as four seasons (Spring, Summer, Fall, and Winter) or Summer Solsticce and Winter Solstice. My conception of a year is the moments that are dear to my heart, the memories that will live with me forever, the things I'll look back to in 50 years and laugh at. Those moments aren't always fun and games, but have certainly shaped who I am today.
It was almost exactly two years ago that I came out to my parents. February 2, 2004 was the day that I sat down and had a very long, hard, uncomfortable converstation with my parents...of course, that was after they found the note that I had written to them explaining my feelings. To my shock they accepted me fully and understood that this was not some fase I was going through (later I found out that my mother had been suspecting it since I was a little lad).
The things that gets me, though, was that my parents and I have been brought much closer since that dreadful day. Mom and dad have grown to like many things they didnt like before, simply because I'm being me, and not masking over myself with some "straight" facade.
I thought it was weird at first, but my parents started to like RENT because they saw how emotionally attached I am with it. I love RENT...I truly do. It will be my favorite musical until the day I die. There are so many little messages and sayings that we Rent-heads have from RENT that we apply to everyday life. "No day but today," "Fears my life," and "Today for you, tomorrow for me" are the most common ones with some of my friends, but I'm sure y'all use those and others within your own cliques and close friends. It's these sayings that have taught me lessons. I have adapted the way I look at the world because of how RENT portrays things that happen. People do get addicted to drugs, people do live on the street, or get forced out by their landlord, or dont have enough money to buy the medicines that could save them. These things happen in real life and are aknowledged in RENT.
If anything, RENT has taught me to live everyday to the fullest. Even though, as a student, I hate getting up at 5:30 in the morning, and starting school at 7:30, then being there until 2:45, and then staying after school until 8:00 pm for the musical, I enjoy it and respect it. I understand it's the way I have to live right now because I'm not in college and I'm not living on my own. I respect everything that happens because I know things happen because of my actions, and that what I do today could drastically alter my future. I live everyday to the fullest I can so that if my life were to take a wrong turn I'd have no regrets.
"Forget, regret, or life is yours to miss."