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2:15 pm - Fri 8/6/04
\"Nature Lovers\" And Other Dysfunctional Types

"Nature Lovers" And Other Dysfunctional Types

Weds 8/4/04 (10:14 p.m.)

I don't know how I've neglected to write about this up till now, cause it's pretty noteworthy: A couple nights ago, on the way home from work, I happened across a true "nature lover".

I was riding my bike, going down 4th street--maybe two thirds of the way home–when I saw a man's silhouette in front of a tree on my right. And as I got closer, I saw the silhouette was moving.

My first thought was that someone was watering the tree. Which seemed a little strange–I've never seen anyone water a tree before (And it wasn't on someone's property, but on a section of grass right by the sidewalk)- but what the hell? Maybe he just really liked that particular tree.

Turned out I was more right than I realized...

As I rode up to where the guy was, I saw that he was not "watering" the tree.

He was humping it.

He had his clothes on–Thank God!–but he was thrusting vigorously against the tree, head thrown back, with a big smile on his face.

Was it wrong to stop and stare? Should I have just rode on, and let the man have a little "alone time" with his tree? Cause I feel a kinda bad about what I did...

If he'd had his pants down around his ankles, I probably would have rode on, but as things stood, I just found it really, really funny. So I stopped, and started laughing.

And that pretty much "broke the mood". The guy made this surprised little noise, then scurried off (Oddly enough, he didn't have to "adjust himself" where you'd think he might've had to adjust himself. Instead, he fumbled at one of his shoes, that I guess had worked itself loose as he made sweet love to his tree).

So anyway, that's how I met the one guy in L.A. who's harder up than I am.

____________________

Bought The Godfather on dvd with my most recent book credit (I had it at one point on video, but jettisoned it, along with all my other videos, when I came out here to L.A.). I watched it last night after I got home from work.

The only "extra" on the dvd is a commentary track by Francis Ford Coppola (If you're going to only have one "extra" on The Godfather dvd, that's probably the one I'd pick).

A lot of what he had to say I'd heard before (How the studio wanted to fire him for weeks into production, how they didn't want him to cast Brando because he was "box office poison", etc), but it was interesting to hear him talk about how things were shot; for example, part of the wedding scene was actually shot at night (The conversation between Al Pacino and Diane Keaton), while another scene (Again with Pacino and Keaton) was filmed almost a year later.

I thought this was pretty cool: Lenny Montana, who played "Luca Brasi", was not an actor, but a professional wrestler. And when he just couldn't get his dialogue right--in the scene where he thanks "Don Corleone" for inviting him to his daughter's wedding--Coppola added the scene where "Luca" nervously rehearses what he's going to say before he goes into the room.

Pretty ingenious, if you ask me.

Another thing I didn't know–Abe Vigoda, who played "Tessio", was cast in an open call, without an agent or any credits to speak of.

This was a little factoid that gave me a lot of hope; I don't know how old Vigoda was at the time, but he had to have been at least in his late 40's, and he went on to do Barney Miller and Fish, and probably a number of other things I can't think of right now.

So it's not impossible, even at my age, that I could get a big break (Unlikely, yes. But not impossible).

(Vigoda doesn't actually do very much in The Godfather, but I love the scene he has towards the end of the movie–"Tell Michael it was nothing personal. I always liked him...". I love how subtle the scene is. "Tessio" has betrayed the family, and is going to his death as a result, but no one even raises their voice, since everyone understands the rules about this sort of thing.)

Fri 8/6/04

Well, I thought I was doing people a favor by installing that "Notify" list, but Jane and Cathy have both emailed me to say they never got any notice when I updated, and I've updated twice since putting the list up.

I'm a little troubled that the people who were most interested in following my journal are now probably just wondering where the hell I've gone to

(So, if you signed up for the list, assuming you're reading this, could you let me know if you've ever gotten a notice when I've updated? Thanks!)

(Post Script: Just figured out what the problem is: You need to click on a link in order for people to get the message. Oops!)

The "Back To Work Blues" is hitting me pretty hard today...

I was thinking about it recently...I think I've said in here, more than once, that it's kind of a mystery to me, why I get so depressed on "Monday". After all, Borders--the majority of the time, anyway--is really not that bad (And if I have a particularly "lonely" weekend, like this past weekend, it's actually nice to be amongst people again).

For awhile, I thought it had to do with the quality of my weekend. I thought if I had a particularly shitty weekend–If I didn't do anything fun and didn't have any auditions–that the upset was like "Dammit! I didn't have any fun, and now I have to go back to work...!".

But for a couple weeks there, I had some "fun weekends". There were auditions, movies (Spiderman II with Brad W.), and a fun karoake outing with the JS gang.

And I still felt shitty on "Monday". Maybe not as shitty as I do when the weekend is disappointing somehow, but shitty nevertheless.

But I think I figured it out–the start of the work week doesn't represent to me what a shitty job Borders is (Not exactly), but rather, a cycle of general unfulfillment starting over again.

I think I'd feel much the same if I worked at Blockbuster, or in an office, or did whatever I do in various alternate universes. I'd feel "trapped", like I wasn't doing what I wanted to be doing, what I thought I was meant to be doing.

But here's an interesting question: Do I feel that way in the alternate universe where I'm a successful actor?

____________________

Speaking of Borders, there's some big news (Not "bombshell" news, since I've seen this coming for awhile, but big news nevetheless): John A. is leaving is two weeks.

He's leaving to be G.M of a store that's nearer his house (They really need to stop hiring G.M's who have to commute hours from their homes to get here. We're averaging one GM a year at this store, which is ridiculous).

Recently, John O. started being kind of a "co-GM" with John A. (Being a bright guy, I picked up on how that might mean John A. was on the way out). But apparently, that was just something the two Johns were doing "in-store"; notice for the position will be put up throughout Borders, so it's anyone's guess whether John O. will be the new "for real" GM when the dust settles.

But if he's not, my fear is that he'll see himself as having no choice but to leave. He's tried for the GM position a couple times now, and if they tell him no a third time...well, how much more clear a message could corporate send?

It wouldn't be the end of the world, mind you, but it would be a blow, no doubt about it. I think I've made it pretty clear that John O. has been maybe the person that's made Borders as palatable as it is (And it doesn't hurt that he not only understands what I'm trying to do out here, he admires me for it).

I guess we'll see what happens...

____________________

Saw Bourne Supremacy yesterday.

I enjoyed it a great deal, but found myself, once again, getting kind of depressed after the movie.

I guess I relate, to a degreee, with a guy who doesn't know who he is, whose past is just fragments he can't piece together, and who finds out towards the end of the movie that "Jason Bourne" is not even his real name.

(Yes, I'm still bothered by the fact that "Hoffmaster" is not a name that actually "connects" to anything. But "Jim Roberts"–"Roberts" was my mother's maiden name–just sounds too generic. And "James DeHaven"–"DeHaven" was my first foster mother's name–sounds too much like a soap-opera star. Besides which, I have a vague feeling there's already an actor named "James DeHaven" out there.)

And this next part is going to sound stupid, but I think I was depressed over the notion that, unlike comic books and action movies, where the screwed-up guy is at least possessed of great abilities and/or heroic qualities that accompany his "screwed up-ness", this "screwed-up guy" is just screwed-up. I have some "abilities", to be sure, but they seem way overmatched by the damage that was done to me. It's like I have a trunk full of "abilities", and someone threw away the key.

What a gyp!

And that, somehow, got me to thinking about acting (Maybe since that's the closest thing I have to a "great ability").

(Oh man, I should have tried to sleep more today. I'm dead on my feet and now I've got to head out to work in about fifteen minutes...)

I think my being an actor is essentially proof of a massive dysfunction–Needing the whole world's love and approval, being more comfortable being "other people" than being myself, etc. and so forth–but as Popeye might say, at this point "I yam what I yam".

(I thought I had some great point to make about me being an "actor"–at least I thought I did last night–but it eludes me at the moment...)

I guess the "point" is that I really want the "consolation prize" of being a successful actor. Cause if I'm not going to be a real person–and I'm afraid that ship has sailed–and I don't end up being a successful actor, then what the fuck am I going to be?

 

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