A Comic Journey Through Infertility in “Inconceivable”

Lead Article, Reviews

By Austin Kaiser
 
The first thing Meirav Zur did was ask the audience for synonyms for the word “vagina.” “Cooter,” someone called out. “Whooha.” “Taco.” “Cave.” “That’s a new one,” she said. The audience giggle‑gasped through the back‑and‑forth, and I got the feeling that the walls would talk throughout the next sixty minutes. Ms. Zur explained how long ago, her Sex Ed teacher set her up by warning her and her classmates that all sex would result in pregnancy. What a surprise it was, then, when her husband stopped using condoms and she flushed her birth control, that a conception failed to materialize. So much for “education.” Ms. Zur soon began self‑administering daily treatments with a needle. Her belly muscles tensed involuntarily, and I with them. No intimate detail was spared in Ms. Zur’s vivid, candid and painfully funny descriptions of what many women undergo in order to conceive. She performed stupendously, in one scene emoting and undulating like a wild, egg‑crazy sperm. The audience often interrupted the show with enthusiastic applause, like when Ms. Zur sang a song about the time‑passing game she invented to distract her mind during invasive gynecological exams.
 
A half hour earlier, while waiting for the show to begin, a woman sitting next to me explained that she was a practitioner of traditional Chinese medicine. Over half of the women she treated saw her for fertility‑related issues. They were distressed because Western medicine had succeeded only in emptying their wallets and wasting their time. “I can’t stop thinking about my physician telling me there is only a 1% chance,” she said, relaying the words of a patient. In light of the physically, emotionally and financially draining experience of so many women, bless the fertile imagination of Ms. Zur for introducing levity and community‑bonding laughter to the subject. “Why not adopt?” a friend suggested. “I totally forgot! That’s not at all expensive, difficult, or complicated!” Ms. Zur exclaimed. “Drink more water.” “Don’t drink too much water.” “Maybe something’s in your water?” Unsolicited opinions and solicited second opinions came endlessly from everyone around Ms. Zur, and she masterfully deployed her smile‑and‑nod technique.
 
Hormone treatments came next. They increased chances of conception as well as insanity, nausea, fatigue and mood swings. To demonstrate, Ms. Zur pulled out five illustrated faces with different emotions and performed a rapid‑switch, one‑woman conversation to show how quickly her mood could spasm while on the juice. Funny songs, sketches and asides kept delivering insight into these rarely discussed but altogether common experiences. Hail the storytelling and imagination of Ms. Zur. Hail “Inconceivable.” See it and be edutained.

 
Inconceivable
Written and Performed by Meirav Zur
September 22th at 6 PM
​Photo Credit: Courtesy of the Production
2019 United Solo Theater Festival
Theatre Row
410 West 42nd Street
New York City
 
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AUSTIN KAISER, currently writing a book called, “100 Questions Every Artist Should Have The Answers To.” His other book, “How To Go Viral & Put Wings On Ideas: A Book For Content Creators & Young Artists,” explains how ideas travel and which ideas travel best. More at www.medium.com/@KaiserMane.
 

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