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11:15 pm - Tues 3.03.2009
Acting - Front and Center

Acting - Front And Center

I guess the top story tonite, considering my #1 concern for awhile now, is that I paid March rent earlier this evening.

So I've got at least another month of living the high-life here in my little K-town luxury pad.

To keep the good times rolling, I'm probably going to be cashing in my IRA for whatever I can get, and selling off my small-but-choice dvd collection (Interesting note: When contemplating the latter move, the only dvds I told myself I couldn't part with were my Fred Astaire movies).

(I'm also going to be taking a serious look at my CDs - But I have a feeling the ones I'll want to keep - that I actually listen to - are the only ones anyone would want to buy. But anyway...)

By and large, I've been in a pretty good mood the past number of days.

So far as I know, nothing particularly "game changing" has happened over those past number of days, just little things that have given me hope.

It's been nice, for one thing, to have a veritable wave of auditions - The Mentalist on Thursday, the commercial audition yesterday, and a last minute audition for a short film this afternoon.

The Mentalist has already come and gone, and didn't go my way, while today's film audition would be for "deferred pay" (i.e. no pay), and wouldn't do me any good, at least in the immediate "Jim needs money sense.

But at this point, I'm thinking the commercial audition is still "in play" (And that's the "money gig" of the three); beyond that, I'm happy that all three auditions went well.

(And while The Mentalist was kind of a "face lottery", the other two auditions actually allowed for a little acting, which was fun.)

And last night was the first night of my improv class at IO West.

I could write about how we did this or that exercise, how I'm the oldest by a substantial margin (I probably have at least ten years on the teacher), how there are immediate opportunities to perform if we wish to take them, etc.

But the thing that struck me hardest after the class was what a steep "unlearning curve" I was going to have.

I wanted to feel like I "kicked ass" afterwards, like at a good casting workshop, but I didn't.

And that's when I realized I haven't taken an "acting class" of any kind in at least 20 years, and have never had a straight-ahead improv class.

And the point isn't to "kick ass", the point is to learn - If I were "kicking ass" at the first class, what would be the point of being there?

The fact that I was scared and uncomfortable and more than a bit "at sea" after last night's class suggests that I'm doing exactly what I should be doing...and challenging myself.

That's pretty alien territory for me, so it'll be interesting to see what happens

(A fun note - one of the "class requirements" is to see eight IO West shows, which we see for free. So I'm getting more "bang for the buck" for my tuition than I realized; In addition to the class - and the book Truth In Comedy - I'm getting eight free shows.)

Another thing that's lightened my spirits was getting my WW Direct Deposit stub in yesterday's mail - which means my food stamp case can now proceed (And will be processed within a month's time).

So I guess the past couple days have felt good (After the crash and burn of late Thursday night) because, while things might not be firing on all cylinders, clearly a couple cylinders have been firing; I've gotten a chance to act a little (And been given the possibility of making some much-needed money), things are moving forward on the food-stamp front (Which will be helpful until the aforementioned "much-needed money" starts coming in), and I'm challenging myself as an actor.

I think one of the things that's been so upsetting and frustrating to me lately is the pervasive fear that I'm going to be pushed, by circumstances, into focusing on what I don't want to focus on (Having to get some other/some additional "straight job"), while what I want to be focused on - acting - retreats into the background.

I didn't come to LA for acting to "retreat into the background", so it's been nice, for the past few days, to have auditions, and an acting class, and to feel like "things are the way they're supposed to be".

But more later...


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