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Be Careful What You Wish For

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/By / Jul 8, 2016
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It’s not every day that someone asks you to name your top three wishes. Especially a stranger. But in the spirit of Be Careful What You Wish For, and out of curiosity, I asked some people involved in the play this question: What three things would you wish for?

Some answers were general, like love, longevity, and health. Some were specific: the perfect cup of coffee. Many people had global wishes such as ending world hunger, and fantastical wishes like mind reading or super powers. Half wished for the continuation of wishes.

be careful what you wish for

Vesna Radenkovic and Mandy Roveda in Be Careful What You Wish For at Covernotes Cafe in February (Photo by Greg King)

There is a warning weaved into the title: “be careful…” It suggests wishes should be crafted in a mindful and unselfish way. In the play, the main character, Katie, says that greedy wishes always turn out wrong. I think there’s some truth to this. Though no one I spoke to had malicious wishes, out of the fifteen collected, only a few were completely unselfish.

Here are some of the answers:

  • A forever puppy
  • To live to be 102
  • To be with my lover for the next twenty-one years
  • A cup of perfect coffee that never gets empty or cold
  • Giving everyone a wish—imagine being able to make everyone happy
  • To be a celebrated artist
  • To have good health for my whole life
  • To have a huge lake in my tiny backyard
  • For everyone in the world to put the environment first
  • A free pass to Hawaii, to use anytime
  • A dokomedo, which is Japanese for “anywhere door”
  • To end world hunger, especially for children
  • To read people’s minds
  • Never-ending wishes
  • To give the third wish to a worthy organization that would put it to making the world a better place. Either that, or a pony.

What do these wishes say about artists? About humanity? I wonder if similar results would be reflected from a bigger range of wish participants. It seems we consider our own perceived needs and wants before considering the world as a whole. I’m certainly guilty of this. All my wishes were about me. I got completely excited about imaging my singular life enhanced with three wishes, and it wasn’t until I asked others and heard universal wishes that I looked at the bigger picture. I had forgotten to consider that my wish or intention could have a greater impact if it includes others.

Vesna Radenkovic and Mandy Roveda_crop

I realized that we tend to look inwards at first, then outwards. We all want to experience a greater sense of happiness. Though we all have our imaginative ways of arriving there—anything from a dokomedo door to a large lake in a tiny backyard—the end result is the same quest for happiness. Next time, I’ll wish for the ability to realize and appreciate that I already have a lot to be happy for, and a forever puppy.

What three things would you wish for?

Be Careful What You Wish For is a short play by Sheila Toller featured as part of Plays In Cafés at Free Times Cafe during the Toronto Fringe Festival. It is presented alongside two other plays: The Nudes by Alex Karolyi and Roaring Robert by Chris Whidden.

For tickets or more information, click here

Alex Karolyi
WRITTEN BY

Alex Karolyi

Alex wishes often. She lives in Newmarket where she runs her theatre company, Shadowpath Theatre Productions, which offers arts and culture experiences throughout the York Region. When not creating for the theatre, Alex teaches pilates and yoga. She enjoys sunshine, meditation, travelling, and guacamole and has a fondness for guinea pigs, of which she has two.

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