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10:09 AM - Sun 7.13.14
More Vacation Notations

More Vacation Notations

It's been almost a week since I've been back in LA...

I knew it was a lot to hope for, but as I left Michigan on Monday - feeling pretty miserable, to be honest (I wasn't quite ready for the return to "real life") - I comforted myself by imagining a smooth transition from the fun of vacation to the excitement of auditions, maybe booking a gig, or perhaps getting a call about shooting my first episode of Shameless for the new season (Shooting started on Monday).

None of those things happened.

Things basically just picked up where they left off, to my chagrin.

I did go to a couple movies with Howard (Saw Snowpiercer on Tuesday, which neither of us liked, then the documentary Life Itself - about Roger Ebert - on Friday, which I enjoyed a great deal, but Howard found boring).

And I had some fun moments at Weight Watchers (Though I also had moments where I was just flat-out bored, and one awkward encounter/conversation about my work that I'm still trying to process in a productive fashion).

But mostly, I've spent the week trying to ward off a profound depression, as I went from a magical place where people like me and want to spend time with me, where I'm perceived as a person of some note, where I am a "success", back to where I'm basically a tired, stressed-out, lonely nobody.

I've only been back to Michigan a handful of times since I moved to L.A., and I've told myself that's primarily because of money, and a fear of "missing out" on auditions (And sure enough, I missed out on a commercial audition that happened on Monday....even though I 'booked out', so "my team" should have known I wasn't available, and thus shouldn't have been annoying & upsetting me with news of auditions I wasn't able to do. And if you sense I'm annoyed about this, you are sensing correctly).

But since being back this past week, and feeling a terrific letdown, a veritable tsunami of depressing, anxious thoughts, I'm now wondering if the reason I don't "get out of town" more often is it's then really fucking hard to come back.

Thinking about my latest trip back to Lansing, I'm realizing I go through the same "character beats" every time:

1. I'm initially afraid to go - anxious about spending the money and missing out on auditions, but also worried about more intangible things once I get there (Like "Will people really give a shit that I'm back?", "Will I be sufficiently entertaining/'on' when dealing with more socializing than I do in LA in any given year?", and so on - then I have so much fun, I don't want to come back to LA.

2. Because of all the fun and nice attention, I start getting "grass is always greener" feelings about being back in Lansing, and have to remind myself "This is a vacation. If it's "a big deal" that you're around, it's because you went away (And have actually had a little success in Hollywood); if you still lived here, you'd be lonely and bored, working your dead-end job - not very well - thinking to yourself, "Is this it?", and people would be too busy with their own deals to pay you much mind.

3. I start worrying about going back mid-way through the trip, and have to tell myself to "be in the moment", and enjoy Lansing the whole time I'm in Lansing.

I think about "who I am" in Lansing - for example, I'm much funnier in Lansing - versus "who I am" here in LA (And again, have to tell myself that who I am in Lansing, while on vacation, is me in a very special circumstance).

And because I've only gone back a couple times over the past 13 years, going back always brings up issues of aging and mortality and the general "passing of time" - From babies being born and toddlers now being as tall as their parents, to a group of people who do theater in Lansing who wouldn't know me from Adam, to "the old guard" of Lansing theater either being gone, or heading out the door.

(I determined at one point that I can't represent "The old guard" of Lansing theater, because I'm not there anymore, so decided instead that I was an "alumni".)

That's a lot to pull out of a simple one-week vacation...

I didn't get laid.

(I never do...but it always optimistically crosses my mind as a possibility.)

And as much as I've written about, there's still more I can't write about - because it's the personal business of other people - that pushed other "buttons" while I was in Lansing, and still has me thinking about how we all have "hidden depths", and our own "crosses to bear"

Let's just say it was quite a week.


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