Saturday, May 31, 2014

May 31 - Social

I've noticed lately that I'm doing great on my own, but not so much when subjected to other people. Other people are making me very tired of late, and some of them even make me really angry. But when given time to spend on my own, doing what I need (or want) to do, I'm great. It's like a really big introvert rut or something. 

Honestly, I don't mind it. I'm getting a lot done when spending time alone. I only bring it up because tonight I have a fundraiser to go to for this film I'm working on and I'm (supposedly) going to meet cast and crew and probably friends of cast and crew and this prospect is giving me anxiety. I'm going to be working with these people so I want to make a good impression, but if I force myself to be "friendly person" just now, I'll be false and exhaust myself. If I just park myself at a table with a beverage, I'll be the weird one. I know - this is very much a first world problem, but this is very much how social anxiety goes. I just have to remember that I don't have to stay any longer than I want to, I don't have to drink alcohol at all (and likely won't since I'm driving quite a way), and if I walk away from the evening branded "the weird one..." Well, there are worse things that could happen. 

I wish I had done laundry today so I had a better t-shirt to wear. 

Friday, May 30, 2014

May 30 - A Day

Sometimes, I am amazed at my ability to take care of myself. Procrastination comes so easily, but when I really want to or really need to, I can bring it. I can be a grown-up. 

I mopped my floors today. We're talking move furniture to other rooms and use the Swiffer twice and get all of the stray cat hair off of the things I'm moving around before mopping and then mopping. All of the floors in my apartment. And it felt oddly wonderful. Like, people could come over to my apartment today because I managed to clean it. A lot. Not totally - I still need to do bathroom and kitchen surfaces, but still that's the easy stuff. I even made a trip to get more Swiffer cloths because I ran out, and I picked up a lilac candle so my apartment smells like spring. Spring cleaning. At the end of May. Because we finally have spring-like weather. 

And through all of this cleaning, I managed to make myself a healthy breakfast and a healthy lunch to boot. Like a real person!

I know I'm a real person every day. But after those really long months when I'm not home much and the "mundane chores" start piling up, it feels good to have the time to do them and to actually get them done. 

Now for some Thai food and a beer, to undo all of the grown-up-ness I built up today. Hopefully it won't fully derail my plans to be productive for the rest of the weekend. 

Thursday, May 29, 2014

May 29 - Hamlet

Hamlet: The Series is available in its entirety on YouTube. I put all of the videos into this playlist so you don't have to go searching for them.

I want to say, really quickly, that what probably gets me the most about these videos is that when it gets to the end credits, the special thanks and list of supporters are full of people I know. It melts me every time.

Thank you, guys, for supporting this project. Without you, it would not have happened. I enjoyed it quite a bit, and for the rest of my life, I get to say I was Hamlet once. I could not think of a nicer gift. So thank you!

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

May 28 - #YesAllWomen

This particular #YesAllWomen story of mine is not as egregious as some, but I am going to tell it anyway. Because the point of this hashtag, as I understand it, is that while not every man has treated a woman like she exists purely for his pleasure, every woman has been treated like that by someone. At least once. Often times it feels like at least once a day. 

A few years ago, I was taking the train with some friends after work to go to a speed dating event. We went straight from work, so the train was crowded with rush hour commuters. I had worn a skirt that day - not extraordinarily sexy, but a skirt nonetheless. It was a small, almost-houndstooth-but-not-quite pattern in gray and black, knee length, pencil skirt, not overly form-fitting. I think I was wearing it with tall boots and a black top. My thought in putting the outfit together was that it was something appropriate for work in an office that with the addition of some lipstick would also be appropriate for a speed dating event. In retrospect, I was probably underdressed for the speed dating event (read: not sexy enough).

So my friends and I were on this very crowded train, smushed in among dozens of other commuters, standing near the doors because that was as far into the train car as we could get. And suddenly, from behind me, I felt a hand lifting up my skirt to gain access to my inner thigh. I smacked the hand away, turned, and gave a very stern look to the guy standing behind me. I could only guess which guy it had been. At the next stop, we got off the train. I would like to think we would have done so even if it hadn't been our stop. I told my friends, they agreed that the guy was a creep and out of line, and we went to our event. 

Like I said, the story I just shared here is not as egregious as some. I was groped by a stranger on a train. Nobody was physically hurt and the psychological trauma for me was minimal. But seriously, who sticks their hand up a strange woman's skirt on a train? Who thinks that is okay? Who thinks that it's really not that big of a deal?

In retrospect, I wish I had done something louder and more obvious than give the guy a stern look. I wish I had shouted at him, "What makes you think you have the right to touch me without my permission?" so I could have embarrassed him in front of everyone on that train. Because that is what he did to me by touching me inappropriately, he embarrassed me. He made me self-conscious about my perfectly acceptable office attire. I think you would be hard pressed to find even a mysoginistic jury that would say I was "asking for it" in that outfit. The groper made me uncomfortable, he invaded my personal space in a public forum. And really, who does that on a crowded rush hour train? Was he counting on the fact that I wouldn't want to make a scene? If he was, I am even more annoyed that I didn't. 

I have ridden the train hundreds of times since then. I've been stepped on and whacked in the head with oversized purses, but I have never been groped by another man like that. Meaning, I know that not all men grope strange women on trains. Not all men are rapists. Not all men are mysoginistic asshats. Not all men think they are owed sex. Not all men think women exist purely for male gratification. I know these things, you know these things, we all know these things. That's not the point. The point is that there are enough of them out there who do, and they are bold enough in their life choices, loud enough with their hoots and hollers, strong enough in their physical demands, that every single woman has had to deal with them on some level at some point in her life. Every. Single. Woman. 

So I would ask, those men defending mankind against the "online onslaught" of female empowerment, even if you, personally, are not the aggressor, how would you feel if your mom told you she was groped on the train by a stranger? How would you feel if your girlfriend was attacked walking to her car one night? How would you feel if your sister was shot and killed at school because some guy was pissed that she didn't want to date him? 

Not all men are aggressive and violent toward women. All women have been targets of violence and aggression. Something needs to be done about that second statement. 

May 28 - Tired

I'm tired of living in a world full of so much fear and blame.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

May 27 - Nothing

I have nothing interesting to say today. It was a day. I went to work, I came home, vacuumed my bathroom, I'm pretty sure my vacuum has choked to death on the volume of cat hair I have asked it to consume over the past year and a half, I made some really yummy fishless fish tacos for dinner with my new favorite Gardein product and an Isa cole slaw recipe, and I worked out. Because as good as my intentions were, I did not lose ten pounds in May. Nowhere close. I didn't gain ten pounds either, so that's good, but I lost nothing in May. So it's time to get back on the wagon. And in my post workout stupor, I have nothing interesting to say today. 

Sorry about that. 

Monday, May 26, 2014

May 26 - Change of Plans

Happy Memorial Day!

My plan was to do all the things today. Bring my life back to normal, after too long not eating right, postponing simple chores. I was going to clean and make things and prep food for the week. 

I managed to make it to the grocery store and got food to make some interesting and healthy salads. I've made two of three recipes already and will make the last one soon. But my body has also been telling me to take it easy today. I've spent too much time running around, I've not been sleeping well. So part of my day off has been spent reading a book and napping with my cat. Because as much as my floors need to be vacuumed and my refrigerator stocked, I needed to get my body back to it's normal balance, too. I am going to have a lot going on in the next couple of months and I won't be able to do it if I don't have energy. Sometimes plans need to change, and that's okay. 

Sunday, May 25, 2014

May 25 - Endings

I just realized that I have not one, but two projects coming to an end today. The play I am currently in is closing and we have the premiere party for the second half of Hamlet: The Series

I'm sitting backstage just now, listening to my cast mates say these words for the last time and it is a lot sadder than I thought it was going to be. Granted, it is very likely that these people will do this show again, but not with this exact cast, not in these roles, not in this space as this group. So while it may not be the last time we say these words, it is the last time we say them in this setting. We will all go on to other projects and many of us will stop hanging out, as happens when shows end. Back to our regular routines. Back to making new friends in new shows. 

And Hamlet...that one has been on my plate and part of my life for about three years. I get to see the final installment tonight and then it's all done. Maybe some time spent harassing people to watch it, but no more audio commentary recording sessions or rehearsals or shoot days or anything. My days of being Hamlet will officially be over. That's kind of a big hole. 

So if I'm a little quiet for a couple of days, it is because I am mourning not one, but two projects, and I am doing it without my usual coping mechanisms. I'll be fine. But I will miss these people and these projects. 

Thanks, guys! It's been fun!

Saturday, May 24, 2014

May 24 - Almost

Whenever I finish a show, or am close to finishing a show, there is a mourning period involved. I have to get used to not seeing the same people four times a week who I have spent so much time with for the past few months. I have to re-develop a "normal person" routine that doesn't involve hours of rehearsal, strange make-up, and hair styles that involve product and bobby pins. There is always a let-down period after every show and it can be very sad. 

For the last three-ish years, I have dealt wth the mourning period by jumping right into the next project, so it has been coping through denial. After this show, I'm just going to have to mourn because I don't have the next project officially lined up yet. So I have to find another way to mourn this show. I think I'm going to do it by focusing on the things I will not miss. 

I will not miss putting my hair in jelly rolls.
I will not miss covering my tattoo. 
I will not miss scrubbing eyeliner off of the back of my legs. 
I will not miss being the angry character in the show. 
I will not miss using make-up to try to make myself look older. 

I will miss the people, though, and the language of Shakespeare. I'll just have to get into another Shakespeare show soon. 

Friday, May 23, 2014

May 23 - Almost

You know that feeling when you're just on the verge of something amazing and you don't want to jinx it by talking about it but you need to acknowledge that things are different and they are likely (hopefully) going to become more different?

Yeah. That. 

Thursday, May 22, 2014

May 22 - To My Future Husband

I have several guy friends who have written blog posts to their future wives, talking about what they hope and dream and making promises for what their lives together will be when they finally meet and fall in love. I even have one guy friend who set up a website taking applications from women who would like to be his wife someday. And I came to a realization today about what I am currently finding ridiculously attractive in men, so I thought I would write a little note to my future husband. If I ever meet him. Or something. This may be terrible; please bear with me. 

To my Future Husband:

Thank you. It amazes me every day that you have managed to hang in there through my highs and lows and ups and downs. I know there are those who would rather avoid extreme emotions in favor of a steady calm, but we're not middle of the road people. We fight. We love. We share. We celebrate. We rage. And I think another man would have turned around and run away by now, so thank you for not doing that. 

In return, I promise to always be honest with you. I promise to face my fear of vulnerability and weakness so we can grow closer. I promise to never judge your weaknesses, but to hold your hand as we deal with the low moments together. I promise to encourage your silliness and celebrate your joys. I promise I will never tire of your adorableness if you promise to never hide it from me. I promise to maintain a healthy physical relationship that includes the appropriate amount of space, both physical and emotional. I promise to let you geek out in my general direction about whatever you want to geek out about, and I promise to at the very least try to enjoy those things with you that you would like to share with me. I promise to not get squidgey when you need time with your guy friends, or with other people who are not me. 

My dear, future husband. I hope you know I find you most attractive when you are doing what you love, so I hope you don't feel the need to hide those things from me. I love when you play with our kids, and I love you for throwing all dignity aside to make them smile. And I love that through all of this, you still surprise me and challenge me and excite me. Thank you for letting me be part of your life, and for taking the time to be part of mine. 

To many, many happy years together!
Your Future Wife

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

May 21 - Addiction

Hi. My name is Kitty and I'm an addict. 

It has been about two hours since I last did theatre and I'm already jonesing for more. I can't get enough of making people laugh and cry and feel things and think about stuff. It is a high like no other. 

Fortunately, my addiction is detrimental to no one but myself, and even then, less detrimental than beneficial. So I'll not be seeking help at this time. Just more auditions. 

Monday, May 19, 2014

May 19 - Sexism

So as I was setting up this trade show booth last week, I was reminded of the rampant sexism that occurs in such situations. It's not surprising - I mean, I get it. There aren't a lot of women who do things like trade show set up and heavy lifting and industrial electrical work. So these guys, like many construction-type workers, are used to spending their days talking to other guys and may or may not know how to behave properly when a woman shows up. Not that they're rude, but they do pull out the "sweethearts" and "honeys" and they make comments about the woman's appearance. My guess is that they think they are being proper and polite, when really these comments are micro-aggressions of a sexual nature. "Let us lift that for you, sweetheart. No need to break your fingernails." That kind of thing. 

But what I noticed working in the booth during trade show hours today was that these micro-aggressions are not limited to the men who set up the booths, and they are sometimes not even limited to the men. Other women were calling me sweetheart and darling and commenting about the pretty girl in the booth (meaning me). And while I know none of these comments were made with malicious intent, they all still served to make me uncomfortable. 

I don't know if I'm receiving more of these comments than I used to, or if I am just more aware of them than I used to be. Either way, the end result is approximately the same. And because of that end result, I would just like to remind people that the proper way to treat a woman is as if she was an actual person. Because she is one. If she goes to lift a heavy box without thinking about it, let her lift it. She likely can. If you are talking to her about something specific, there is no need to remind her to smile more when the conversation is over. And for the love of all things holy, please remember that she is more than set decoration - she has a brain and most likely enjoys using it. 

I don't think sexism will ever go away completely. But maybe we can curb it a bit by remembering that we're all just people. Maybe. 

Sunday, May 18, 2014

May 18 - MV

I knew an amazing woman many years ago, with a brilliant laugh and an infectious smile. She always signed off, "love and laughter," and those who knew her picked it up, too, her life motto. She was love and laughter in a brilliant human package.

I say "knew" and "was" because she passed away about a year and a half ago. I find myself missing her on the oddest of occasions even though I didn't get to see her very often. Today, I find myself missing her laugh and her hugs in large part because it is her birthday. And though I am not a religious person, I can't help but think today is beautiful and sunny and warm in her honor. 

Happy birthday, Miss Vicky. I love you to bits and miss you terribly. Love and laughter always. 

Saturday, May 17, 2014

May 17 - Over

I knew I would see you and I was afraid of what seeing you would do to me. My heart still skips when we talk, like it did a million years ago when my love for you was young. But I saw you, and felt nothing. 

I don't know how to feel that. It's probably good that my heart did not skip, that I did not feel the old compulsion to touch you. But it also makes me a bit sad, knowing that I will always love you, to know that the love has gotten older and is more comfortable. The kind of love that simply allows me to be happy for your success, not the kind of love that requires I see you every day. I kind of miss that passion. 

It's probably healthier that I felt nothing. Given where we will never go. Perhaps I can actually find someone now who I will not compare to you, with whom I can have a healthier relationship. 

It was good to see you. And I'm glad you are doing well. And I'm happy in my settled-down love. 

Friday, May 16, 2014

May 16 - Yay

Mmm...I love the rampant sexism amongst people setting up for trade shows.  


Thursday, May 15, 2014

May 15 - Stuff

The one major down side of doing theatre is that you miss out on a lot. I'm not just talking about standard "fear of missing out" type things; I'm talking about actually missing out. I have missed family weddings, friend's birthday parties, reunions, all sorts of events that I would have liked to attend, all because I have had theatre to do. Most of the time, the people involved understand and I don't think there are hard feelings. Or if there are, they haven't told me. But I do feel bad about it from time to time. Am I missing out on LIFE because I'm pursuing my career?

I apologize if this offends anyone reading, but I am going to say that nine times out of ten, no, I'm not missing out. This is my life and I love it. I've already written a half-dozen posts on why I love theatre so dearly, so I won't get too gushy today. But this is my life. This is what makes me feel alive. This is when I get to be most alive and most happy. 

I do sincerely apologize to those who's events I have had to miss in the name of theatre. If I have hurt you with my absence, I am truly sorry. But I do not regret the time I have spent following my dreams. I can't. And I would love to say that someday, it will all slow down and I'll have more free time, but in all truth, I hope that days is many years off. And if you ever start to miss me too much, come see a show and we'll get a drink afterwards. 

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

May 14 - Revolution

There is no such thing as a comfortable pair of high heeled shoes.

I don't care what you say, I don't care how many years you have been wearing high heels to train your feet and your body to do things they're not supposed to do, I don't care how much you pay for your shoes; there is no such thing as a comfortable pair of high heeled shoes.

I keep finding random cute heels that I think will be fine, and that often times are fine. For a little while. But after actually wearing them for any period of time - to a wedding, to work, to an audition - my feet end up screaming at me, begging for soft, cushy socks and sneakers. The heels I wore yesterday were not particularly high, and have the extra cushioning in the ball of the foot for comfort, but they ended up rubbing off about four layers of skin at about the sesamoid bone (where bunions form, if one has bunions - do I have a bunion?) that is still screaming bloody murder at me. And I only wore the heels at work, and I didn't walk around very much at work yesterday, so that is, what, nine or ten hours of mostly sitting while wearing heels and I'm limping today because of it? And these are supposed to be comfort-designed high heels. Really?

High heels, though they are considered a symbol of female oppression by some, are cute and fun to wear from time to time. I like being taller than normal on occasion. But I honestly think they are little more than a torture device designed to make women look a certain way and to lessen a woman's power. It is harder to walk in high heels, it is virtually impossible to run in high heels, and in order to ever get used to wearing them, one has to wear them all the time to the point her feet are calloused and mangled and hard and numb to most kinds of pain. Wearing high heels too often can lead to back problems and knee problems and foot problems. And yet we wear them so we can be a smidge taller from time to time and have kick-ass calves. Which begs two questions:

1) Why?
2) In all the time we've been doing this to ourselves, why has no body taken comfort and wear-ability into account when designing the super cute high heels?

I get it - a lot of high heels are designed by men who don't actually wear them. So they don't know that while all of those little strappy things are cute, making them out of plastic means a woman is going to have all of these hard-edged plastic bits digging into her foot all day. And he doesn't realize that while cute and dainty, putting all of a woman's weight on the ball of her foot and supporting the ball of her foot with what amounts to a quarter-inch of plywood is not really comfortable. And he doesn't realize that the cute open-toed shoes that you really can't or shouldn't wear pantyhose with, but that are lined with leather (or a leather-like material that doesn't really breathe) induce foot sweat, which induces stickiness, which induces chafing, which produces blisters. And he doesn't get that while the heel of a shoe needs to narrow a bit so it will stay on a woman's foot, the joints in a woman's ankle need to move in that general area, too, so making that part of the shoe really stiff will lead to chafing and blisters, as well. And he doesn't get that pointy shoes are just ridiculous because nobody's foot is shaped like that.

So here is what I would like to do. A lot of people, once they become rich and famous and have all sorts of disposable income, start a business of some sort. Some sell perfumes, others clothing, other food stuffs. I would like to put money into shoe research and development. Make shoes out of flexible, breathable materials that don't make you look like a hippie. Change the design of high heeled shoes to encourage a more even weight distribution so that the wearer is not walking en pointe all day. Offer support and cushioning where it is needed. Place straps where they don't cut up the foot. And with any luck, even make them affordable. Because everyone loves a cute pair of shoes, but nobody loves the blisters and Band-Aids that follow.

It is time for a shoe revolution! Who's with me?

Monday, May 12, 2014

May 12 - Hot

It is hot and muggy and humid and I love it. My skin loves being outside and feeling the air. The wind on my skin is just about the most glorious feeling in the world right now. Especially on the walk home from an amazing rehearsal with brilliant people. I love it. 

Thank you, Mother Nature. 

Sunday, May 11, 2014

May 11 - Mother's Day

I think it has been well established that my mother is one of my favorite people on the planet. As it is Mother's Day, I feel the need to say it again, though. I can't be an easy kid to have - artistic, occasional depression, always wanting more and dreaming too big for myself. But every curveball I throw in my mom's direction, she figures out a way to catch it. And then she polishes it up and tosses it back so we can keep playing. She always has a kind word, always offers support, and is always thinking of ways she can help with my crazy schemes. 

Thank you, Mom. I know you'll say it's your job because you're my mom, but thank you just the same. I love you!

Saturday, May 10, 2014

May 10 - Experiment

I tried something today which was rather out of character for me, but an important step, I think, in embracing my new self-image of "cute little thing" - I wore shorts. Outside. In public. For about half an hour. 

Granted, now that I am home, I am wearing full trousers again, but I had to give it a shot. The last time I wore shorts in public was when I was in Las Vegas, so almost exactly a year ago, and it was nighttime in Vegas for a white party and I wore the shorts instead of wearing a dress so it felt more like a costume than a fashion statement. Prior to that...I'd have to dig through this blog to find the last time I wrote about how weird it is for me to wear shorts in public. 

I used to wear shorts a lot when I was younger. It didn't seem like such a big deal. But then the summer I spent in LA, it just became weird to wear them. I think in part because an actress I was sort of working with didn't wear them to make sure she wouldn't sunburn her legs. Or some such thing. Seemed like a good idea to me - save on sunscreen and avoid skin cancer by staying covered up. And then, when I did want to try wearing shorts again, I couldn't find any that we're flattering - they were all exactly the wrong length or style for my body shape. So I got frustrated and disappointed in shorts and just decided that I don't wear shorts. That's fine. 

But today, in part because of the long-overdue gorgeous weather and in part as part of my self-image re-shaping therapy, I decided I would do my morning errand on foot and I would wear shorts. The same shorts I wore in Vegas, white denim, paired with a green v-neck t-shirt and my Converse sneakers. 

It was weird stepping out into the bright sunlight looking like...everyone else. Honestly, I looked like a high school senior or something, except with less-cool headphones. The first human I saw was a rather good looking, well built man, and I thought, "Welp, there's no turning back now." Amazingly, he did not go blind at the sight of my porcelain legs, nor did he even really seem to take note of me at all. I passed a couple of women, older than me, on the sidewalk and they smiled but didn't seem to notice anything out of the ordinary. I saw two young girls outside, one coloring, one trying out her pink and purple rollerblades on the uneven sidewalk. I wanted to give her a high five for being able to skate on that, and tell he she could grow up to be a badass derby girl if she wanted to be, but I didn't. She sat down as I passed, looked up at me and smiled. I smiled as warmly as I could back at her. I think we both knew she could take me in a derby bout. 

By the time I got to the first major intersection I had to cross, I was feeling pretty good. So good, I sort of danced to the Frank Turner song in my headphones while I waited for an opportunity to cross. Nobody was looking at me. Nobody thought this was the least bit odd. I crossed the street and kept going. It wasn't until I had nearly reached my destination, just shy of a mile from my apartment, that I encountered my first gawker - a dude on a skateboard. But by that point, I didn't care. 

I did my errand and headed home along a slightly busier road. More cars, more pedestrians. I noticed more people wearing shorts, more people wearing colors, and realized that as a person wearing shorts and a color, I was drawing absolutely no attention to myself. I looked normal. Until I had to wait at a major intersection for a moment to cross along with four men. Each of them, in turn, took note of me and then did something that could have been a subconscious tick to make themself look more attractive to me. One guy made a phone call to indicate popularity. One guy ate a breath mint to draw attention to his mouth and show he would taste good. One guy moved slightly to allow me space to cross the street, showing manners. It is entirely possible all of this was nothing, but in my own head, it was hysterical. 

Just about half-way home, as my skin was singing with glee for it's exposure to the brilliant spring air, a guy on the sidewalk gave me the full up and down look-over and smiled and nodded approvingly at me. I nearly burst out laughing. On the one hand, I did set out in my shorts to get some sort of public validation that there is nothing weird about me wearing shorts. But on the other hand, seriously? This was my own self-imposed therapy homework; I wasn't out trolling for men. Not to mention what a load of crap things like catcalls are anyway. They never work, they only show the cat-caller as an ignorant buffoon. But today, I felt so good, I got a giggle out of it - once I was out of earshot because I didn't want him to think I was flattered. 

I even stopped at the drug store before going home to pick up a couple of things and the older gentleman in front of me in line struck up a conversation. I chatted with him and the cashier about the gorgeous weather while I paid for my things and then I came home. 

Nobody exploded. Nobody went blind. Nobody shouted mean things about how a woman my size should wear shorts that short. I was out in public for about half an hour in shorts and nothing terrible happened. On the contrary, something wonderful happened. I felt good about myself, about my appearance. And my skin loved getting some fresh air and sunlight. My body loved getting some exercise. It was, all in all, an empowering experiment. 

And now I am back home wearing long trousers, back in my comfort zone, with plenty of things to think about. Happy spring, everybody!

Friday, May 09, 2014

May 9 - Stuff

There is this funny division between "actors" and "improvisers" that I don't necessarily think should be there. Now, keep in mind, I've done improv and I've done scripted theatre, but I've done more scripted theatre than improv. I've not studied improv as intensely as some - I kind of know what a Harold is, but I likely couldn't do one. Granted, some of the troupes I've seen performing Harold's can't really do them either, but that is beside the point. But I have done two fully improvised films and I used to be part of a short-form improv troupe when I was in college. Anyway. 

It seems to me that improvisers think actors do really weird stuff and actors think improvisers are crazy. I could be wrong in both assessments, but that is my impression of the two groups. I also think this is unfortunate because I think both art forms have elements that the other would benefit greatly from if each side didn't spend so much time thinking the other was crazy. 

For example, I improvise all of the time when I perform. The way my lines come out, how I move through the space, how my scene partner's words effect me - these things all change from performance to performance depending on all sorts of things. Maybe there is something in my way on the stage, so I have to change a traffic pattern to make my cross. Maybe my scene partner is really angry one night, so I have to step it up or we'll look like we're in different plays. There are all kinds of things that can effect a performance and if I am going to live truthfully on stage, I have to be open to these changes. I have to be open to going with what is in front of me. Yes, I do it in the context of the show, but it is still a form of improvisation, and one that can be invaluable to straight-play actors. 

And I think improvisers can benefit from the idea of working within a certain framework. Whether it is a short form game or a long form show, there are certain things that happen on stage that you have to go with and stick to. It's just like working within the world that the playwright created for you, except you and your fellow performers are the playwrights. 

Which is all to say, it kind of bugs me that performers have to split themselves into various performance style camps. I think learning all of them allows us to be more well-rounded, versatile performers. 

Or something. I don't know. I have a show to do now. 

Thursday, May 08, 2014

May 8 - Blank

I have no idea what to talk about today, which is why I'm writing this at twenty to eleven. Which also really isn't fair because I have a lot going on in my life and in my brain, but I can't seem to put it into a blog properly just yet. So today is a placeholder blog, just filling space until I take the time to actually write about my thoughts on playing traditionally male roles or the importance of improvisation in scripted acting. I'll get there, I promise. It's just a busy week. 

Wednesday, May 07, 2014

May 7 - Little Things

I think I'm also going to stop referring to myself as a "bigger girl" and start thinking of myself as a "cute little thing." See what happens. 

Tuesday, May 06, 2014

May 6 - On My Way...

So this happened today.

I know the who and the why and the how and I think it is really flattering and lovely, and I wish I had said more interesting things about being a woman playing traditionally male roles because I think that is an interesting conversation to have. But in any case, it happened and it feels absolutely lovely. As do all of the comments on various social media outlets congratulating me.

Thank you!

Monday, May 05, 2014

May 5 - Quote

I'm not going to remember what we were talking about just beforehand, but I know it was something delicious because I was just at rehearsal for this short piece I'm working on and there were three other brilliant women in the room and one brilliant man and we could have all talked for days about stuff that would have made all of our dendrites grow. But my reaction which made perfect sense at the time was, "Theatre is the best revenge."

Again, "Theatre is the best revenge."

The man in the room picked up on it and liked it as a quote, and the more I think about it, the more I do, too. I'm not going to try to explain the eighty-seven levels on which I feel it is appropriate to various things, people, and situations in my life, I'm just going to sit in and enjoy them for a little while. 

"Theatre is the best revenge."


Sunday, May 04, 2014

May 4 - Balance

To hold and be held
Weakness can sometimes be strength
Adam to my Eve

Saturday, May 03, 2014

May 3 - Dreams

I had a dream last night that I was at the very beginning of a relationship that some people didn't necessarily think I should be in or pursue. In my dream, the part of my love interest was played by an actor I know, with whom there is no real-life potential for anything, so that part of the dream was a bit odd to begin with. And most of it took place on a group outing to some Disney theme park in general, a candy store on the property in particular. People just kept buying more and more candy and I kept pretending I thought the candy sounded delicious even though as a vegan, I knew I would eat none of it. But this guy, my potential boyfriend kept holding my hand, or putting his arm around me and giving me a squeeze. I remember at one point in the dream, a friend who I hadn't seen in years called me over to ask if I honestly thought it was a good idea to date him, and I replied that even if he turned out to be just a "trip boyfriend," that was fine and I was having fun. Because I was. In my dream I loved him holding my hand. 

In real life, I am not a big hand holder. Hands tend to get sweaty and then you have to coordinate footsteps or else your arm gets jerked around and then there's the whole issue of whose hand is on top or whether or not you intertwine your fingers. But in this dream, I loved this guy holding my hand. I think it was the sweet, non-threatening physical contact, and the feeling that someone wanted me around in that way. It was lovely. 

I wonder if the realizations I came to a week or so ago about not putting so much weight on the opinions of those who will never approve of me had something to do with that dream. If I am no longer seeking their approval, maybe I can be more open to believing a potential boyfriend does approve of me and I can have a healthy relationship someday. 

In any case, it was a lovely dream about a boy holding my hand. Hopefully I'll find a real boy who's hand I like to hold just as much. 

Friday, May 02, 2014

May 2 - Vague

I made a decision a month or so ago and it's a doozie. It's one of those big, life-changing decisions that will either be the best decision I have ever made or the worst decision I have ever made. I've thought a lot about it, and about the alternative, and while the alternative is not bad, it feels less right than the choice I've made. So I'm excited. 

But that doesn't mean I'm not also terrified. Absolutely terrified. Because during this sort of transition period, I'm not doing some of the things I normally do in preparation, and there are a lot of big daunting tasks ahead that I don't normally have to worry about. I feel a little off as I forego some of my regular routines to make room for new ones. So lots of thinking and planning and preparation for something that could just as likely fail as succeed. And I can only do what I can do to try to make it a success - at a certain point, it's out of my hands. But I'm going to do what I can, everything that I can, and hope for the best. 

So if I seem out of sorts for a bit, it's because there are big things ahead. For real this time. 

And no, I'm not getting gender-reassignment surgery, though reading this over, it almost sounds like it, doesn't it? It's not that. If you don't already know what it is, I promise I'll tell you later (or offline) with more clarity. 

Thursday, May 01, 2014

May 1 - Back on Track

Rabbit rabbit! Happy May, everybody!

So as you may remember, I was doing pretty well there for a while in terms of eating right and working out and I managed to lose some weight - somewhere between seven and nine pounds, which is not too shabby. But then tech happened and the show opened and my schedule went kablooie again and I started slacking off. It happens. One good thing about it, though, is that I've not been beating myself up for slacking off. And I've not gained all of the weight back, either, which is nice. I was just sort of looking at it as a little bump in the road on my way to my goal weight. I don't know that I have a magic goal weight in mind, but there are still a few pounds I wouldn't mind getting rid of, if I can.

So today is the day. Today is the day I buckle down and start again. I'm going to track calories and exercise daily, whether or not I want to, and I am going to do what I can to lose ten pounds this month (or as close as I can get to losing ten pounds this month). I started the day with fifty crunches and ten pushups, and I did some leg lifts in the ladies' room at work. I'm going to do this.

Of course, if I do this, if I am successful in losing ten actual pounds in the next thirty-one days, that will be the skinniest I have been in probably ten years or better. I'll have to change the way I think about myself. I'll have to stop seeing a "bigger" girl and see a "healthy weight" girl, or even a "skinny" girl. I think I can do that. At the very least, I'd like to give it a try.

Off we go! Ten pounds in thirty-one days. I can do this.