10:49 pm - Sun 10.16.2011
Last Sunday, while riding my bike to work, I saw an injured pigeon in the middle of the road, flapping its wings, but clearly unable to fly or even get itself off the road.
I stopped a little ways past it, feeling sorry for the bird, but not quite sure what to do.
There was a young African American man sitting at a nearby bus stop bench who had also noticed the pigeon, who seemed very relieved, and very interested, when I got off my bike and approached it (Discovered, when we started talking, that he was "developmentally challenged").
I ended up getting it off the road, squeamishly trying to scoop in onto the copy of "LA Weekly" I happened to have with me - eventually setting it on the grass by the sidewalk - before continuing on my way.
It was one of the many times I've wanted to do something in a situation, but didn't really know what to do, and realized, really, there wasn't much to do.
Clearly, my intent was to be kind, but I wondered afterward if it might not have been kinder to either leave it where it was - where it would be killed, hopefully sooner rather than later, by an oncoming car - 0r, awful as this sounds, to kill it myself, rather than have it die a slow death in the grass.
While I don't know if I "did the right thing" by the animal in question - I hope I did - I think I "did the right thing" for myself in listening to my heart.
I'm not sure about the execution, but the impulse was sound.
(Grossness Alert: This next bit might offend those with delicate sensibilities. Read on at your own risk.)
On my way to meet Howard on Monday afternoon (To see "Ides Of March"), I saw a homeless man who had just shit his pants.
The back of his shorts were very clearly stained and wet, and some the mess had dripped down one of his legs.
I felt sorry for the man, but really, there was even less I could do for him than the pigeon on Sunday (I guess I could have called Howard and cancelled on him, because I was taking a homeless guy home for a shower and a fresh pair of pants...but that was never gonna happen. Maybe if I'd been driving instead of riding my bike...but still, probably not).
Mostly, I wondered, in practical/pragmatic terms, "This homeless guy has shit his pants - What does he do now?" (And, being me, it turned into, "What if I were homeless, and had just shit my pants? What would I do now?").
He didn't have a cart or anything, and he seemed out-of-it, so it was hard to imagine he had some makeshift housing set up somewhere, where he could clean himself up and change pants.
I hope he got to a mission or something, or that someone helped him out at least, and that he's not still walking around in his shitty pants.
For the past three weeks, things have been very slow, acting-wise.
I had a commercial audition one week, then nothing the following week, then a commercial audition on Thursday for Progressive (At Kathy Knowles, a casting office that probably brings me in more than any other commercial office).
So I haven't been in very good spirits the past couple weeks - Anxiety about a dearth of auditions leads to anxieties about money and, before you know it, I'm envisioning my self as a homeless guy walking around with a full load in his pants.
Neither of the commercial auditions felt very good, truth to tell, and nothing happened with the first one.
But the Progressive one on Thursday was kind of interesting...
I was going in for the roll of a "toll booth operator", who was on the receiving end of a drive-through spiel from the Progressive spokesperson (Not "Flo" - I'm assuming it's the guy who looks, to me, like a 70s-era porn star).
The audition involved looking into the camera and listening to the camera person, in relatively deadpan fashion, as he, playing "Progressive Guy", literally went, "Progressive...blah blah blah...good thing about Progressive...blah blah blah", etc.
Afterward, clearly approving, the camera guy said something along the lines of "some actors just 'get it', and some don't" (Regarding how to handle an audition like this).
That was interesting to me, because in the moment, I had absolutely no idea whether I was "getting it" or not, and wasn't convinced even when the camera guy gave me the thumbs-up.
It's made me think, once again, that I may be confused about what the point of acting is - I tend to think that if I'm convinced I did something good, I've succeeded, when in reality, I've only succeeded when you're convinced I did something good (i.e. something "funny", or "moving", or so on).
Anyway, I didn't feel very good about the audition, but nevertheless, I have a callback tomorrow.
So there you are. Long story short, what do I know?
So, I haven't had any tv auditions in three weeks, which was starting to make me nuts, since this is supposed to be "the busy season".
But the same day I got called for the Progressive callback, I got a call from Brett - For an audition for Southland on Tuesday.
And it's a really good one; no "recurring" possibilities here, but a very splashy, two-scene role that's exactly the kind of thing I've been looking for.
Till now, if I had to describe the type of things I've gotten to do, or the "emotional range" I've played, I'd say I've played characters who range from "somewhat disgruntled" to "mild-to-moderately depressed".
I can do more.
Actually, I was thinking about it earlier, and it's kind of cool that these two auditions are happening back-to-back; The Progressive audition basically involves doing as little as possible while still doing something, while the Southland audition is one of the most "out there" things I've gone in for.
And if I can show people I have both extremes in my "arsenal" - and anything in between - I think that will be a big step in my having a capital-c "Career".
Mon 10/17/11 (10:52 am)
Just got a call from my theatrical agent - I'm back on Shameless for the season finale!
This answers a question I've been wanting to have answered for weeks now, which was "Is Shameless still shooting?".
(I wanted to know because I hoped they'd call me in again, of course, but also because I haven't been able to get a haircut - short, freshly-cut hair doesn't fit my character - and it's been driving me crazy.)
So that's certainly happy news...and hopefully I'll be getting more happy news after today and tomorrow's auditions.
(I was going to write more, but this seems like a good note to end on. Besides, I've got to get my ailing bike to the bike shop, and time's a wastin'...)
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