Feb 22, 2011

Now what?

And just like that, here we are.

"The Persian Quarter" is nearing the end. We're about to embark on the final week. Starting tomorrow, running through sunday and that's a wrap. The last week is always different. You go back to how you felt in the beginning. The love returns, the exhaustion leaves and you don't want to say goodbye. You realize all over again how lucky you are, how lucky you've been, how much you love what you do, how special this moment is and how much you'll miss your cast.

This one ranks a little higher on the magic meter. It's been quite a time. It's a rare one, loved by those who see it and talked about quite a bit. It's been kind of...well...a big deal.

It's been a year for me. A year since I was asked to do the reading. That led to the phone call to make sure I was interested and available to audition, and available during the rehearsals and run. This led to the call I was cast, to reading with the potential other women who would play opposite me.

It was always meant to be.

It's the straight play version of when we did "Tommy". After learning the hardest musical score of my life, I felt like I could do anything. We will all come out on the other end of "The Persian Quarter" marathon runners.

I've lived my life for "The Persian Quarter" (and for that alone) for the last two months. I had to, it could not have been any other way.

A few blogs ago I talked once again about why I act, what it means to me right now vs what it meant to me a decade ago. Even five years ago. I take away from this, right now...that acting is the one time when I'm able to and forced to live in the moment. That's a good thing for me. Two quotes I came across from two fellow actors in the last few weeks seemed specific to me for this one:

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

Acting is happy agony.

The first let me walk onto the stage with a little more security, the second let me feel okay with the way I felt about this particular piece.

People asked me along the way if I was having fun, if I was loving this. Those aren't quite the right words...but I'm not sure how to describe this one.

Passion, poetry, scary, impossible, strength, joy, conquer, explosion are words that all come to mind.

Now that it's over comes the now what?

March will hold a couple of little projects. A reading, photo shoots and play time. Time to see my friends, go out and do things ending with my birthday in Vegas.

After that?

Big changes. Really big and amazing changes. The problem is...I can't tell you what because I don't know!

There are a few things I'm waiting to hear on. This will dictate what happens with my life for the next few months.

I should know soon. In the meantime I can only try my hardest to be patient and wait to see what direction these winds of change take me...



Feb 21, 2011

Putting things into perspective

Last night I couldn't sleep. I was up tossing and turning all night and finally decided to get on the computer.

I came across a girl on facebook that I remember from high school. We weren't friends. I don't think I ever even had a conversation with her, but I remembered her name and face because I always thought she was so pretty.

A perfect looking girl that you assume will grow up to have a perfect life. As I looked a little closer I saw in her profile picture that she was missing a leg!


I googled her and found that she'd been hit by a car, suffered an internal decapitation (which was *thank god* fixed by bone and metal) and an amputated leg.

Oh. My. God.

I can't even explain how that made me feel. Super sad. Super sorry. Then impressed and inspired by all the things she's done since then. She's in the gym every day, hiking and climbing mountains. Then I felt like an idiot for stressing about or being scared of the things that I am scared or stressed about.

Holy shit. I don't know where that strength comes from or if I'd ever have it like she does...she's still as beautiful as ever, if not more so. What a fucking inspiration.

God it really puts things into perspective like a slap in the face. It makes me want to hug all of my loved ones a little tighter, enjoy the moment a little more, be grateful for all I have. You never know what life has in store.

Feb 17, 2011

The Love/Hate Technology relationship.

I have had a lot of trouble with my phone. I'm phone clumsy. Phone cursed. They always break on me. Sure I've dropped them...once...or twice. My current phone's the WORST it's been by far the most sensitive. Lately the screen goes black. The charge isn't the problem, the battery isn't the problem. Usually I turn it off, pop out the battery and memory card, but it back together, reboot and whala! Not such luck last night. All I did was SET IT DOWN and it went black. It's been black ever since. I can hear people texting or calling and I have no idea who it is, what it says and it's DRIVING ME CRAZY! I checked it first thing this morning, hoping for a miracle. The next thing I did was hop out of bed to facebook for the second time that I was still phoneless. We don't have a landline. Does anyone have a landline? Being phone - less is killing me.

I don't even want to think about what would happen if I was computer-less. I check my facebook, twitter, email and other various sites all throughout the day.

Sometimes I'm blown away at how I ever lived without all of this. In a good AND a bad way. Life was so much easier without all this nonsense. What's the point? Really? Sure I was able to build a name for myself. I was able to build a fanbase and entertain via the internet and only post the snippets of my life I wanted to. But then there's the other side.

Why are we so addicted to it? Why DO we have to check our sites 8 million times a day? What will happen if I don't? I'll stress, I'll tell you that. I didn't always live this way. I think to myself, THANK GOODNESS it wasn't this way when I was little. I played outside. I played dress up. I played barbies. I talked to friends on a LANDLINE or IN PERSON.

It's only going to get more and more so. What will it be like to raise a baby in THIS kind of world? And what will the healthy balance be between a kid now wanting to fit in and having no life OTHER than social media?

Anyone out there got the answers? I don't!

Feb 16, 2011

Body Image - AGAIN

I feel obnoxious writing about this, AGAIN, but this morning as I was having my coffee and watching "The View" I saw something that pissed me off. AGAIN.

They were discussing actress in magazines who they consider "thin" or "skinny" who talk about what they eat and say they can eat a lot or don't watch what they eat. The ladies of "The View" (Joy & Whoopi) basically don't believe them. Joy made bulimia references and they all discussed that it's quite possible these actresses say (or exaggerate) the truth.

The little 20 year old from "Modern Family" was on as guest co-host. She said she eats whatever she wants, she doesn't work out and stays thin. They told her that's because she was young and "you can do that when you're young".

I have to defend those on the other side of all this because I've been accused or not believed way to many times. It's ignorant and makes me super uncomfortable.

There are people who have high metabolisms. There are people who can eat a lot, or whatever they want and they don't gain weight. There just are. It does NOT mean that you are lying or have an eating disorder.

I'm not in my early 20's anymore and I can eat the same as I always did. I don't count calories, I don't gain weight, I don't need to worry about it. There are days when I'm amazed at my own metabolism. No, really. I'm not trying to be an asshole (and I shouldn't feel like I AM being one. Thanks, society for making us on the other end of this argument feel guilty). By all means there are some days I think about what I've consumed that day, that week, whatever, and on paper I should not look the way I do. I have a killer metabolism. I just do.

To tell you the truth...I've only gotten slimmer as I've gotten older. I can't tell you why, other than I assume I've "lost my baby fat" over the years.

There are people in my family who have remained tiny forever, and others who haven't. Will I wake up in five, ten, thirty years from now in a different body? I don't know. At this point I'd be surprised.

The only time I ever gained weight was when I first moved to NYC and drank way to much way to often and ate huge meals at 3 am way to regularly. When that stopped? The weight went away.

I only started working out, Zumba, five months ago. I go quite a bit. It had absolutely no affect on my weight. Nor was that the reason why I started going.

I hear girls around my age complain that their bodies changed as they started getting older, that it just happens to everyone. But it doesn't. I hear girls say "I'll never be that size zero", in a negative way. People assume if you're thin you have no rhyme or reason to complain but when people are negatively speaking about your size, not believing or accusing you? It sucks.

I should be able to eat my fucking meal without someone commenting that I'll never be able to finish that, no way do I eat like this all the time, etc. I shouldn't have to read in my YouTube comments that my body can't possibly be "normal", that I'm an "anorexic bitch", that I need to "eat a sandwich". Give me a break.

I have no idea what someone should eat or not eat to be or not be a certain size. I'm not a good gauge. I don't know why some peoples bodies completely change. I see some people complain about their bodies changing or gaining, but maybe some don't work out hard enough or stop drinking or eating what's making them gain weight. The truth is I don't know. It would be ignorant of me to guess or assume when there are so many things to take into consideration, like thyroid or other heath problems. It would be ignorant for me to try to say what they should or should not be doing. Every body is so different, I'm more aware of how specific weight and health is to each individual now more than ever. I see Jennifer Hudson and Christina Aguilera's transformations and could not begin to tell you why or what or how.

I'm aware there are all sorts of eating disorders out there. Anorexia, bulimia, overeating, binging, etc. But assuming anything makes an ass out of U and Me. ;)

All I want to say is that some people are naturally thin. Some people have high metabolisms. Some people don't have to work as hard as others. I also want to say that by no means is one body type right or wrong. By no means do I think I'm perfect. By all means I wake up with good body days and bad body days just like anyone else. I have what I like and what I don't like. I have things I worry about that others don't and vice versa.

I just want the assumptions to stop. It's not fair to clump people together, to accuse or to assume. Ever.

*hops off soap box* ;)


Feb 15, 2011

Tiny Beautiful Things - what would you tell yourself?

Yesterday my friend Erin posted this link on facebook. I read this blog, teared up. Didn't think I could read it again. Read it again, cried. I re-posted saying all women should read this. My sweetheart read it and was the first to comment. Last night we talked about it and he said not just women, but everyone should read this. It makes you think.

Knowing what you know right now in your life, if you could go back in time and talk to your younger self, what would you say?

I don't think it matters how old you are, it's important to read words like these to put things in perspective every now and then. It also made me think about how powerful a blog is and what an inpact someone elses thoughts and experiences can have on you. We are each others teachers. It makes me want to continue sharing mine here.

She's inspired me. Next month on my birthday, I'm going to write my letter to my younger self.

I spent most of the day yesterday reading through all the older posts on this advice column. I'm so happy I know about her, Sugar, now. Her writings are wise, funny, sweet, hip smart and real. Enjoy!

"Tiny Beautiful Things"

The above link will take you to the full blog. Here's a snipet to entice you:

"You cannot convince people to love you. This is an absolute rule. No one will ever give you love because you want him or her to give it. Real love moves freely in both directions. Don’t waste your time on anything else.

Most things will be okay eventually, but not everything will be. Sometimes you’ll put up a good fight and lose. Sometimes you’ll hold on really hard and realize there is no choice but to let go. Acceptance is a small, quiet room.

Your assumptions about the lives of others are in direct relation to your naïve pomposity. Many people you believe to be rich are not rich. Many people you think have it easy worked hard for what they got. Many people who seem to be gliding right along have suffered and are suffering. Many people who appear to you to be old and stupidly saddled down with kids and cars and houses were once every bit as hip and pompous as you."

Dear Sugar on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/SugarontheRumpus
Dear Sugar on Twitter: twitter.com/Sugar_TheRumpus

Feb 14, 2011


Happy valentines day! Today and tomorrow are days off from the show. Sundays are our two show days and they kill me. By the time we're done I'm pretty much delirious. Until our big Valentine date tonight, I'm spending today in my pajamas, watching tv and possibly napping.

Last week we watched "127 Hours". I loved it, I can't stop thinking about it. I had images from it all through my head that night and first thing when I woke up. What amazing camera angles. What clever use of music and silence. I have always bee fascinated by "one person shows". Like "Castaway"...even "1408". What an actors dream. I also realized how (maybe more so with the one person performance) we like to live vicariously through others. I mean, I know we all do, to some extent. But it hit me more simply and clearly watching "127" that this is the very reason why we go to movies and to the theatre. It's especially felt in a one person performance. They are designed to do just that.

Is that why I act? To live vicariously through characters? To experience, be and do a zillion things I'd never get to?

I feel my reason(s) for why I perform are in transition. I used to answer that it was because I loved to play pretend, dress up. I felt the most beautiful onstage. It's where all is right in the world. It's where I am most connected to my emotions. An escape? Maybe. I was never sure.

Maybe right now it's simpler. To get to do what I'd never do otherwise. Hmmm. A lot to ponder.

The ancient greek word for actor ὑποκριτής (hypokrites), means literally "one who interprets".

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

I feel the winds of change. The beginning of the year has started off with a bang. With a lot to do. A lot to go through. This show has been huge in every sense of the word. In two weeks it will be done. After living this for two months straight, it will be a shock and a heartbreak to end it. Always.

I keep getting hit with waves of excitement. I feel something big coming this spring. I feel something could happen at any moment. I keep getting butterflies in my stomach that not only take me by surprise, but reassure me.

Some of this is the idea of potential plans, but some of it is the unknown. A great unknown I feel just about to reach out and grab me.

I've never felt like I was on the threshold of so many changes and different directions my life could go. And yet it's not scary, each one is okay with me.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

First things first, my birthday is next month. I don't usually do anything big. I go back and forth between the should I have a party or shouldn't I have a party. Always resulting in the latter. Yesterday morning my sweetheart suggested we go to Vegas. Whoah, really? YES! Not only will that be a birthday to (for once) remember, but a mini vacation is long overdue for us.

I truly don't know what I'd do without my sweetheart. My true partner. We're attached at the hip. My favorite person. My perfect one.


Feb 10, 2011

Just before I start to dream...

I don't like taking naps, but every now and then I have no choice. My eyes will hardly stay open and all I can do is crawl under the covers for an hour or so. Just before I fall asleep (I don't know if it's a dream or a memory) I get the sensation of being a little girl laying in the grass looking at the clouds in the sky. Probably deciding what the clouds look like. I know the exact spot I'm laying, by the basketball court of the condo's I grew up in and lived in until I was 19. I can feel a summer breeze, it's warm. I can smell the grass. It's late afternoon and everything is truly great. Not a care in the world. No sense of time, no sense of responsibility. No knowledge of what it's like to be a grown up. This has happened to me for as long as I can remember. Not at night, only a daytime nap. I love it.

Feb 8, 2011

The Dream Pie

"This is a pie that you dream of...the dream pie, this pie of childhood. We all dream of this pie. I dream of this pie...only in my dream it is rice".

This is a line from my current play that I speak. Substitute pie for anything precious from your childhood. When I'm saying this, I'm picturing Melissa. I had two bunnies, Melissa and Gina. Melissa was my first and I always loved her more (don't tell Gina). She went everywhere with me. See?

One night she had to go to be dry cleaned. I was without her for the night. I can remember that night clearly. Longest night of my life. I didn't know how I'd survive it without her. Now she lives in my parents storage, with Gina and from time to time I think of the day I'll get her back.

She is the ultimate toy of my childhood. The one I had, the one that was my favorite, the one I remember most. But there was also the one that got away.

Have you seen "The Santa Claus"? I don't know if I saw it in the theatre, or tv, but what I remember most about it is the mom getting the toy at the end (a game, I think). She never got it when she was little but she never forgot.

When I was little somehow I ended up with a book called "Noelle of the Nutcracker" by Pamela Jane.

I don't know what grade I was in, but I still loved dolls. Wait a minute. I STILL love dolls. I still collect them, want them, ask for them.

I don't even remember all that much about the book...but it's about a little girl and her dream doll. Every Christmas brought the anticipation of a new doll. Every year I had my dream doll. To a little girl it's the longest wait and the most important thing that will happen all year.

The doll in this book, Noelle, was a dream doll. A big doll. A beautiful ballerina with dark hair and a pink dress. I used to draw her, dream of her, pretend I was the little girl in this book.

I'll never forget the day I saw her in real life.

I don't know if she was modeled after the doll in this book, if she came before the book, or if it was all a coincidence, but I saw her. Only once.

Right after I saw her? She was discontinued.

I was heartbroken. She was a Madame Alexander doll. I remember writing a letter (years later) to the company asking about her and telling them how badly I needed to find her.

She's always been in the back of my mind. Sometimes a few years go by without thinking of her, then something sparks the search once again.

The last few years it's been online. Lots of Ebay. I have gotten so close! But the hair color or the dress will be wrong, and while I've almost bought her because I think it's the closest I'll get, it's not her.

MY Noelle.

Today was different. She was there.

In just a matter of days, I'll have her!

2011 just keeps getting better!

Feb 7, 2011

No way!

Sometimes cool things happen. You know, unreal, crazily perfect timed things that make me take a step back and wonder how in the world...?

Last week was one of the hardest and greatest weeks. Nonstop monday through sunday with the show. Final dress rehearsal monday, previews tuesday - thursday with opening on friday. A show on saturday with a two show day sunday.

This play is hard. Really, really, really, hard and just as amazing. The structure is so different, my two scenes are almost the bulk of the play, with the first one running over 40 minutes alone. The material is so heavy. But with funny moments and beautiful poetry, it's hard to even try to do it justice when "explaining". But it's pure magic.

Friday's opening was wonderful. My sweetheart though it was the best opening he'd ever seen. I get the impression people are really enjoying it. I've yet to read any kind of review, and won't until we've been closed awhile. But the bits of feedback I hear are great. This one has taken all of me. I've basically been in hibernation since we started rehearsals, knowing I wouldn't have the brain space or energy for much else. I was right.

So opening day came and happened to be the same day I was in two full pages of a national magazine. Every model dreams of that! It's "Pregnancy & Newborn" magazine february 2011. There are three pics, and of the three two are full pages. It's so surreal to see my face in a magazine like that. I can't believe it! It very well may be the first and the last time, so I'm going to enjoy how crazy this is! It's also really funny to me, my "sexy" pics accompany an article about mojo ha ha ha.

What timing. With the ups and downs of this business and life itself, I almost couldn't believe what a day friday was. What timing, that's all I can say.

The rest of the week went great, with the show. Now two much needed days off to be with my family and start seeing my friends again, and then wednesday we're back at it.

I know the next three weeks of the show will go fast. We know we are part of something very special, very big. These moments and experience are fleeting, and are to be savored! So lucky, so grateful. So, so, grateful!