The Six-Word Memoir Blog

The Feb. 14 Six-Word Story Show Recap (a Love Story)

Wednesday, February 15th, 2012

By Larry Smith

Talk about love. SMITH Magazine’s annual Six-Word Story Show on Love & Heartbreak, “Relighting Old Flame With New Match,” was our biggest show to date. Nearly 200 of you came out to help us solve a timeless problem: how do you deal with February 14? Our answer was with the oldest trick in the book: great storytelling. The evening’s stories took us through real estate and relationship dilemma’s in New York City; a cave in Afghanistan; the weird world of online Indian dating; to near-tragedy inside Harvard dorms and the often terrifying heights of the Golden Gate Bridge; and even an enema in South Africa (you sort of had to be there; and you will once we’ve posted video in this space soon). The one and only Tara O’Grady end the show with a song composed entirely Six-Word Memoir lyrics.

Thanks to everyone who came out to the show, many of whom shared a little piece of their own story during the Six-Word Slam which ended the evening. And extra special thanks to each and every storyteller who worked so hard to bring their heart and soul to 92YTribeca this Valentine’s Day. Here’s a recap of our cast (in order of appearance) with his or her Six-Word Memoir. We’ll add links to more videos just as soon as we have them ready.

Robin Gelfenbien (”I swear I can be trusted.”) is a writer and performer whose solo show, My Salvation Has a First Name: A Wienermobile Journey, premiered at the 2008 New York International Fringe Festival. She has written jokes for Rosie O’Donnell and appeared on VH1 and in a commercial directed by Spike Lee. She’s also the creator of the storytelling series, “Yum’s the Word,” that features her homemade ice cream cakes.

Mark Lukach (“Whatever you do, don’t always look down.”) is a writer living in San Francisco with his wife and bulldog. He is working on a memoir. He recently wrote a lovely essay about love in The New York Times.

Shubha Bala (“Outsourcing husband hunting to Indian mother”) works for a nonprofit investment firm in New York City after a career as a public radio producer at WNYC and MPR. She’s also SMITH Magazine’s cherished video and podcast producer.

Saïd Sayrafiezadeh (“What’s wrong with men these days?”) is the author of the critically acclaimed memoir, When Skateboards Will Be Free, and a 2010 recipient of the Whiting Writers’ Award. His short stories and essays have appeared in The New Yorker, the Paris Review, Granta, and The New York Times.

Robert Joseph Levy (”Blood magic only goes so far.”) is an author of strange stories, books, and plays whose work has been seen Off-Broadway. Trained as a forensic psychologist, he lives in Carroll Gardens/Gowanus with his husband, son and daughter.

Paul Miller, aka DJ Spooky (”“Follow site unseen the night unbound.”) is a composer, multimedia artist, and writer. He’s the author of three books, Rhythm Science, Sound Unbound, and The Book of Ice. His essays have appeared in Artforum, Aperture Magazine, The Wire Magazine, The Village Voice, and The Source.

Rachel Shukert (”Our love comes out all ends.”) is a playwright, novelist and author, most recently of the bestselling memoir, Everything Is Going To Be Great. Her work has appeared Vanity Fair, New York Magazine, the Wall Street Journal, Slate, and on NPR. Her play, Eight Days More, a Broadway tribute to Hanukkah, recently played the 92YTribeca.

Deborah Copaken Kogan (”“Hungered for war, sated by love.”—video above) is the author of Shutterbabe, the bestselling memoir of her years as a war photographer, the novel, Between Here and April, and Hell is Other Parents, a book of humorous essays. Her next novel, The Red Book, will be published in April.

Tara O’Grady is a singer/songwriter who has been named one of Irish Voice’s Most Influential Women of 2010. Her debut album, Black Irish, is a collection of traditional Irish songs she arranged in her unique jazz and blues style.

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