Friday, June 29, 2012

Guilty as Charged

Guilt and I go way back.  I suspect if I were hypnotized deeply enough, I would feel guilty for being conceived.  Sorry, Mom and Dad, stupid rubber!

Being an Irish Catholic raised by an Irish Catholic raised by an Irish Catholic, etc., etc., my mother used guilt as her one and only disciplinary tool.  Oh, that and calling me names. (You Little Snot was her favorite.  Awww!)  But I routinely got, "When I drop dead like your Aunt Mary Jayne and your father marries the Young Sexy Blonde she'll make you clean up your room."  Which did not make me clean up my room, by the way, I just figured I'd wait till the YSB showed up. Never put off till tomorrow what  you can put off indefinitely.  Sadly, for my father and my room, the YSB never showed up.  But the threat was effective in that I felt guilty for not cleaning my room.  And pretty much anything else that I did when I was conscious.  (Well, wait--I had a recurring nightmare every night from the ages of 3-5 and I always woke up yelling for my mom; so, actually, I felt guilty for being unconscious, as well.) 

Anyroad, being the Gullible Gertie that I am, I believed all the Irish Dogma my mother fed me and guilt soon became as much a part of me as my curly hair and extreme shortitude. 

Now, 150 years later, my hair is still curly and I'm still short (and shrinking by the minute, thanks Osteopenia!), but I am slowly and surely divesting myself of the guilt.  I kinda feel like Christopher Reeve trying to walk again, only I hope I don't die before I lose the guilt.  (I'm debating whether to apologize for that last sentence, let me know if you think I should.  This is a Democracy, after all.) 

NOW for the actual point of this entry.  Last evening I was working the door for Theatre Downtown (don't ask), which is a fairly solitary duty.  I was thinking about my new job and how they basically pay me for doing pretty much nothing and what a sweet deal that is and I should be really happy about it.  But I'm not.  And I was trying to figure out why.  And in one of those rare, nicotine-induced moments of clarity, I realized it's because I feel guilty for getting this job.  What right do I, Little Snot Debbie, have, holding down a sweet job for quasi-decent pay? 

Well, I know the correct answer is:
A:  Every fucking right in the fucking world, motherfucker!!!  but I went with:
D:  No right at all, You Little Snot. 
Pavlov's Deb, or should I say, Peg's Deb.  So maybe the divestiture is more slow than sure. 

At least I realized that I was being haunted by guilt; in the Olden Days (last week), I would have accepted the feeling as Just The Way Life Is.  But, in the words of the great inventor, Thomas Edison, "Fuck the Olden Days".  I now have a job that basically pays me to read and play Yahtze and do whatever else I want (barring checking out porn sites, you can't have everything).  That's pretty sweet.  And so am I, so therefore I deserve it. 

And as soon as that YSB shows up, I promise I'll clean up my room. 

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Penny for My Thoughts

So my new job allows me plenty of time to think.

Thinking has always been problematical with me.  I tend to overthink things I should just let go and avoid thinking about things I need to think about.  (Like how I could have improved that last sentence; I guess I could have. . . .nevermind, I don't want to think about it.)

But with all this free TT  (ThinkTime), I'm now rethinking how I think I should think.  I began by thinking up some rules:

1.  Don't think about the future.  It never goes the way I want it to, and then I just get depressed.    I mean, when I was younger, I figured that by the time I was this age (your guess here), my career as a Nuclearthermal Hydrodynamic Engineer would be peaking and and my two husbands and 5 kids and I would be relaxing in our Italian Villa, while Barry Manilow serenaded us on the balcony.  But who cold have predicted Barry Manilow's career would tank so early?   So it just didn't happen that way.  Rather than thinking about what I want to happen in the future, if I just go with the flow instead,  I still get fucked over, but I'm not expecting *not* to, so I'm not disappointed.  Okay, that sounds depresessing, so let me edit that (without actually editing it, cause I don't want to think about editing).  If I just go with the flow, I take each minute as it happens and I don't have time to think about the future.  That's better.  It doesn't make much sense, but it's not as depressing.  And there's a whiff of Deepak Chopra in there somewhere.  Too bad about that whole Barry Manilow thing, though. 

2.  Think creatively.  As this blog entry shows, I have a lot of work to do on that one.

3.  Think happy thoughts.  Hahahahahaha!!!! What do I look like, a fucking Rogers & Hammerstein libretto?   Go ahead and cry for me, Argentina, I'll join you.

4.  Think up as much funny shit as humanly possible.  I'm trying!!

This is only my third day on the New Job, so I (hopefully) have a lot of time to work out the kinks of this thinking thing.  If you have any thoughts, dear reader, please let me know.  I think I could use them.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Millstones vs. Milestones

So this is my last day at Job That Must Not Be Named.  I have mixed emotions, of course, but overall I'm looking forward to moving on to someplace that really wants me.  Let's hope that infatuation lasts.

Some days you know are Uber Important and will live in your memory forever.  Other days you think should be UI end up being surprisingly (and sometimes disappointedly) *meh*.  The best/worst are the days you don't expect anything at all and they turn out to be either fantastically or horribly memorable.  Sometimes the day seems pretty "meh" at the time and then, looking back at it,  becomes memorable.  Or maybe that's just senility. 

I won't bore you with personal examples (private screenings by request), but I'm sure you've all been there.  Suffice it to say, I'm thinking this day will be pretty memorable but won't be surprised if it's "meh." 

I remember my first day here.  I remember the day they offered me a full-time position.  I remember the day we first merged.  I remember the day we merged again.  I remember the day I came in and told my boss I was getting divorced.  I remember the day a client's drug dealer came in looking for her (that was a fun day!).  I remember that feeling every year at 5:00 on April 15 (or whenever the deadline was that year) that tax season was Finally Over.  And I will miss the delightful air freshener they use in the ladies' room.  Good times. . . .

Anyroad, time to make new memories.  And, hopefully, new blog entries, but I won't know if I can keep up this frantic (ha! ha!) pace till I get the lay of the land at New Place.  Stay tuned. . . .

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Write On.

Today I will write about writing.

I like to write.  I started writing when I was in 7th grade.  I was a HUGE Beatlemaniac and particularly a John Lennon fan.  He wrote a couple books of humorous essays and I quickly copied his style.  I doubt if they were any good (mine, not John's, his were great), I can't remember any of them, but I enjoyed it and my friends were amused.  The next thing I wrote was, for lack of a better term, a "porn" story.  Which was funny, considering I had no idea what I was writing about. (After all, I was only in 7th grade and, much like today, not sexually active.)  It got passed around a lot in class but, luckily, never made it to the authorities.  (Who probably would have just laughed at it and said, "She has no idea what she is writing about."  And then kicked me out of school.)  That ended my writing career for a while.

When my kids were little, I wrote a children's book and my best friend drew the illustrations.  I sent it to one publisher, who rejected it.  That discouraged me, so I gave up; cause that's how I roll.  (Hence, my lack of an acting career.)  I still have the book/illustrations and look at it every so often.  It ain't no "Where the Wild Things Are", but it's cute.

As much as I love to write, I find it intimidating.  Or maybe because I love to write so much, I find it intimidating.  I would love to write a play or short story or, dare I say it, a novel, but I'm afraid it won't be Pulitzer Prize winning quality, so why start?  Also, I have no idea what to write about, so there's that.  And I'm starting a new job.  And the sky is blue, etc., etc.

Actually, I'm kinda enjoying this whole blogging thing.  It's very stream of consciousness (Really?? We had no idea. . . .) and I enjoy that--impetuous, semi-senile, free spirit that I am.  It's a way of communicating with people without talking to them face-to-face, cause, frankly y'all scare the shit out of me.  (Not because you're ugly or anything, I'm just frightened of social contact, I don't do it well.  Really, it's not you, it's me.)  So, until blogging becomes blah, I'll just stick to that.  And thanks for reading.  I couldn't do it without you.  (Well, I could, but it wouldn't be any fun.)

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Geeky Theatre Post #859

I love opening up a script for the first time and highlighting my lines.  It's like getting a big box of chocolates, helping yourself to the first few pieces and then looking forward to sharing it with your friends so you can all taste how delicious it is.  I feel obligated to mention that you are probably right now comparing my metaphor to Forest's mom's metaphor.  Fair enough.  She said, "Life is like a box of chocolates", and to me, theatre is life, so. . . . yeah.  I can't be original all the time, and this is my third day in a row to write my blog, so give me a break. 

In spite of the not-being-able-to-cry thing, I am a very emotional person and I think that theatre appeals to me because it is so very emotional.  Answering the phone for a living, whether at an accounting firm or a legal firm, will never somehow pack the same emotional wallop for me. . . go know.   But it looks like theatre will never pay the bills, so everything in its place.  I am very aware of how lucky I am to have both, please know that. 

Of course, it is not just the script that makes theatre a joy for me, it is the people involved.  With the exception of my amazing, wonderful, loving, smart, kind, funny and incredible children (I'm not too proud, or anything), I have no family.  That is related to me by blood, I mean.  But thank God I have my theatre family.  And I love each of them unconditionally and forever, even if I hardly and/or never get to see them.  But I really love it when I do to get see them.  Because they feed my soul.  And, in spite of my advanced years, my soul is hungry. 

Well. . . .I certainly seem to have gotten off topic here.  I would probably not get a good grade on this if I turned it in for English class, but, ha! ha!, Work Rules and School Drools, as the Bible tells us, and Debala is done with school (!!) and can now write as she pleases.  And she is now also very pleased to highlight her lines as she opens her script for the first time.  :)

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

I Gotta Lotta Nerve

Nerves.  I gotta million of them.  (So do you, I'm guessing.)  Right now, mine are very much on edge.  Meh.

I suppose it's the leaving of this job and the starting of the new job that is responsible for my Nervous Nellie Routine, but that just aggravates me and makes me even more nervous.  (There's that cycle thing again.)  When I was a kid Way Up North, we started school the Tuesday after Labor Day.  I absolutely dreaded the start of school, and was so nervous that every year for the entire month of August I couldn't eat anything but peaches.  Everything else made me sick.  I am not to the Peaches Point yet, but check with me again on Friday.  And I'll take a bushel of your finest Georgia, please.

I have tried a lot of things to calm me down, including blogging my butt off.  (It's going to be a full week, Dear Reader.)  I'm drinking tons of water, doing numerous breathing exercises (Thanks, Kathleen!), and talking myself down from ledges.  I *know* that being nervous is silly, unneccessary and detrimental, but I also *know* that *knowing* those things won't stop me from being nervous.  Maybe I should just go into a medically-induced coma till Monday morning.  I doubt if anyone would notice; it certainly wouldn't affect my current job performance. 

Anyroad, I expect this week I'll be pushing out blog entries like Michelle Duggar pushes out babies.  If they tend to get more manic as the week goes on, please forgive me.   (My blog entries, not the Baby Duggars.)  And hand me a peach.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Cry Me a River. . .please

Did you ever wish you were stupid?  I do, often.  My life would be so much easier if I didn't think about it so much.  Or feel so much.  Or worry so much.  Or be so paranoid. Or. . . .well, the list is endless and my patience isn't.  (Nor yours, dear reader, I suspect.)

It's not that I believe myself to be Albert Einstein (the scientific one, not the Albert Brooks one, that would be *awesome* if I were Albert Brooks!), but I question everything, spend way too much time mulling over shit I should just take at face value, and invariably end up making the wrong conclusions about things, which makes me start the whole cycle over again.  (Side note:  My blogs seem to be heavy with cycles lately.  I must have listened to too much Joni Mitchell in my youth. Or maybe it's my body's way of  making up for menopause.) 

The upshot of 357 years of thinking, worrying, paranoying myself into a frenzy is that I can no longer cry.  That might not seem like a big deal to you, but I was the original model for the Tiny Tears doll (please tell me someone out there is old enough to remember Tiny Years!).  I cried at everything.  A few years ago there was cotton commercial with a blind girl wrapping herself in a sheer curtain to feel the fabric and I went through an entire box of tissues every time I saw it.  Forest Gump and The Green Mile rated two tissue boxes apiece.  I'd sit in the bathtub to watch Unstrung Heroes and hope I wouldn't drown.   Three legged puppies??? Forgetaboutit. 

This does not mean I do not have emotions.  I still get upset, depressed, worried, sometimes even "happy" (whateverthefuck that means), everything but angry, which, for some reason, I can't do.  Okay, I know the reason, but it's not for public consumption and I'm being TMI-ish enough in this post, agreed? I feel things, I just can't cry about them.  I am emotionally nauseous.

The Universe has, once again, conspired to throw a lot of shit at me in a short space of time, sending me into a cornucopia of emotions that I am struggling to identify and separate (unsuccessfully) and I think if I could just sit down and cry about it, I'd feel better.  But no dice.  I just stare into space in a zombie-like trance.  Perhaps if I ate people's hearts instead of their brains it would trigger the tears.  No, I'd probably just throw up. 

Well, it's Onward Agnostic Soldiers, as the old Bob Dylan song goes.  There's not much I can do about the situation except ride it out and know that I will eventually come through to the other side, much like a Black Hole. And,  like a Black Hole (I also watched too much Star Trek in my youth), I have no idea what the galaxy will look like on the other side.  But I like to think it will be full of unicorns and rainbows and good, cheap beer.  And dogs who have all four legs. 

Monday, June 11, 2012

Ch, Ch, Ch, Changes

Change is inevitable.  The only constant is change.  Embrace change.  (Stop me if these never-before-heard phrases become too shocking.)  Guess what the topic of today's blog is?  Good for you!  More than just a hatrack, heh?

Anyroad, I am coming up on a big change in my life, with starting a new job in two weeks.  I have been at my current employ (aka: Job That Must Not Be Named) for ten years, so it's going to seem pretty weird not to show up here on the 25th.  But I do weird things well, and I actually do enjoy embracing change.  (And anyone else willing to embrace me.  I'm currently accepting applications.)

I think theatre people go through more change on a regular basis than civilians do.  Although it is cyclical:

Find out about audition
Prepare/get psyched for audition
Prepare/get psyched to hear about results of audition
Embrace results of audition (and celebrate or mourn, accordingly)
If not cast, return to  step 1
If cast: rehearse; open show; run show; close show; strike (and celebrate or mourn, accordingly)
Lather, rinse, repeat

Though I must add that it never feels exactly the same way twice (kinda like pregnancy, though I don't usually throw up at auditions so much).

Have 438 years of being in theatre in any way prepared me for dealing with my upcoming Major Life Change?  Of course not.  (You just lost your points earned in the first paragraph, sorry.)  I am still excited, nervous, elated, scared, anxious, trepidatious and slightly nauseous, aka:  Monday.  I sort of know what to expect and I have no idea what to expect.  It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. . . . . you get the picture.

One thing I have learned after being alive 440 years (I started in theatre very young), is that I am an incredibly strong woman.  I spent the first 50 (Actual Number) years of my life being emotionally abused, but I have fought my way through that past shit to realize that not only am I not an incapable, next-to-useless human being,  but I am, in fact, a phenomenal, amazing and fabulous human being.  You have no idea how hard it was to type that last sentence.  Wow.  Okay, I think I'm getting too maudlin (not to mention ferklept) here--time for a fresh paragraph.

Anyroad, so I am blundering my way through all the above-mentioned emotions and going to do this thing on the 25th.  And do it well.  

Change I can believe in?  Maybe.  Change I can handle?

Absolutely.  I Am Debbie, Hear Me Roar.