“The past is never dead,” William Faulkner famously declared. “It isn’t even past.” Though he was speaking in national historical terms, our personal lives are just as haunted by distant events that might seem, on the surface, to be benign or insignificant. That’s one of the themes of playwright Will Eno’s celebrated one-man show Thom Pain (based on nothing), which receives a staged reading from Amphibian Productions (120 S Main St, FW) 2pm Sun Sept 22 and 7pm Mon Sept 23. Tix are $5-$15.

Thom Pain features an anxious, sarcastic narrator trying to make sense of his young life while his attention (and his monologue) wanders all over the place. The play concerns itself with the meaning (or lack) of random incidents and the possibility of using painful emotions to find clarity and purpose in life’s disappointments. If the show doesn’t exactly sound like Beach Blanket Bingo, that’s because it’s not. But it is frequently very funny, and the ‘Phibs’ reading stars the prolific North Texas actor Cameron Cobb, who’s lately given intense and critically lauded turns as the leads in Hamlet (pictured above left), Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, and The Grapes of Wrath.