Lost At Sea

There’s an incredibly sad story in today’s Post about brilliant monologuist Spalding Gray, who apparently has been missing for over three weeks and is feared to have committed suicide by jumping off the Staten Island Ferry.

If you’re not familiar with Gray’s work, you should be. His brilliant monologues are a combination of memoir, comedy, and philosophy; they’re among the best one-man shows I’ve ever seen. Several of them were filmed and are available on video, including Gray’s Anatomy and Swimming to Cambodia, so you can see what I’m talking about if you don’t know already.

Apparently the last few years have been pretty tough for Gray; he and his wife were in a terrible car accident while traveling in Ireland, and it took him quite a long time to learn to walk again. He’d battled depression all his life, and the stress of physical disability combined with those depressive tendencies led to several suicide attempts after he left the hospital. Finally, three weeks ago he went out on the Staten Island Ferry and was never seen again, leaving his wife and three children to wonder what has become of him.

It’s hard to read the story and believe that there could be any explanation other than suicide. But I really, sincerely, hope that there is one. The world needs more Spalding Grays, not fewer.