Mary Panza

I have been the only girl in lots of situations. For years, I have preferred the friendships of men over women. It was just easier dealing with men. They are less catty and usually I could get what I want by the simple fact that I have boobs. Don’t get me wrong; I am a smart girl. It does take brains to know how to work an average set of boobs. Sorry gender revolution but it is my truth.

With all that nonsense said, this is my favorite week of the year. Thom Francis as you all know is the President of Albany Poets. He is a computer master, creator of this website and all around idea guy. This is his least favorite week of the year. This is the week before Albany Word Fest. The calm before the storm you would think. Let me explain mine and Thom’s relationship. Thom is not a phone person. I am. Therefore, I make Thom answer his phone or I just keep him on a constant call loop until he answers. (Don’t try this at home. It only works with me) during my favorite week or “Heart Attack Week” things change. I am the one getting the phone calls!

Thom has had many many “Heart Attacks” over Word Fest. Drunken performers, locked venues, performers not showing up or showing up on the wrong days are just a few examples of things not going our way. Then there was the “chair incident” of 09. All matters resolved by quick thinking and generous friends. He has his “heart attacks” over things going right. Starting on time, finishing on time and what it means to the community. This is the week I get to calm him down. I get to be the voice of reason. I get the phone calls. This year we are having a week of events. This has been Thom’s dream from the beginning. In 2005, when he and I were sitting at the end of the bar at the real Lark Tavern deciding to do this a different way, I can remember him saying, “Let’s see how far we can take this.”

Next week is a week of poetry. Next week is a week of “heart attacks’. Growing this community and have a great week of events. A week of me getting the phone calls. My favorite week.