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8:48 am - Tues 1/25/05
I've Already Paid For The Class
Tues 1/25/05 (6:08 a.m.)

I've Already Paid For The Class

My last entry really did feel like "half an entry"–I didn't write about any number of things I might have, given more time and energy.

Like Johnny Carson, for example.

I felt a definite loss when I heard news of his death, though it's hard to say exactly what that "loss" was all about.

I guess it goes back to that issue of "groundlessness"; Carson was always there, part of my cultural landscape, so in my mind, he's always supposed to "be there". He might not have been a friend or relative, but he was an important figure to me, nevertheless. Whether it was as a signpost of adulthood (Staying up late to watch The Tonite Show), wishing I could be as "at ease" as he always seemed to be, or fantasizing about someday being a big movie star and being a guest on the show, he had a distinct impact on my life.

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Day before yesterday, Aysia approached me at the bookstore, very excited, to tell me she'd seen my Time-Warner Cable commercial (The "Dish Police" spot).

(I think she said she'd been watching TBS.)

I was pretty tickled. It's been fun to have the Jack-In-The-Box spot running here in L.A., because people have been excited just to see me on tv, but it's not as if I'm actually doing anything; I'm basically just a glorified extra.

But in the Time-Warner spot, I'm "The Man", and how much cooler is that?

(I was thinking yesterday that what I'd like to do now is combine the satisfaction of the Time-Warner spot with the payday of the Jack-In-The-Box spot, and start getting union commercials where I actually have lines and do stuff. You know, kind of like actors do.)

Speaking of commercials, a couple of people have mentioned being excited about seeing me in the G.E. spot, the one that's apparently going to debut at the Superbowl.

Now, I'm happy people are taking such an interest in what I'm doing, but I have to caution you–If you're looking forward to pointing me out and saying "Hey, I know that guy", that's probably not gonna happen. I was just one actor amongst some 180 or so actors, I was mostly in the back, and half the time, I was basically in "blackface". I'll be very surprised if I can actually find myself in the spot!

(Which reminds me–I think I'm going to call SAG and see what's what about this "upgrade" business. I'd be very surprised if I actually were "upgraded"–I can only think of one shot they did where I could have been front-and-center in the frame–but if I do deserve an "upgrade", I don't know if I should be just assuming everyone's going to "do the right thing" and hand it to me without my having to ask.)

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I mentioned to the people on my "Notify" list that I've been watching the first season of The Shield (John C. at work loaned it to me). I've watched all 13 episodes, and now I'm going through again, and watching them with the "commentary" (And I can't wait to get the box set back to John, so he can then loan me Season 2).

I was tempted just now to write a very declarative statement–"This is exactly the kind of thing I want to be doing right now..."–but I don't want to create the impression that I only want to be on a gritty police drama. It's just great stuff, top to bottom, the kind of thing I love as an audience member, and the kind of thing that's exciting and scary as an actor (It's the kind of work you hope you're capable of as an actor).

Now that NYPD Blue is winding down–Only six episodes left–my fantasy of having "Sipowicz" kick my ass in the interrogation room is shifting to wanting Michael Chiklis's "Vic Mackey" to work his scary pit-bull act on me (Or...now that I've played a cop in commercials, maybe I could get myself in shape, come in as another precinct's "Vic Mackey" and show him he's not the only badass in town).

(I was saying at work yesterday that maybe I don't want to play a "perp" on The Shield: On Blue, the worst thing that happens is that "Sipowicz" smacks you around a little, while on The Shield, they kick your ass, piss on you, and plant some drugs in your car for good measure.)

I have a great deal of admiration for Michael Chiklis, and this amazing transformation he's done. He obviously wanted people to see him differently as an actor, and he just made it happen.

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I recently bought a "drying rack" and some clothes pins at the K-Mart down the street from where I work (With the $50 Cary and Kay gave me for Xmas. I also bought some action figures–"Iron Man" and "Captain America"–which I'm still feeling guilty about, for some reason).

The "drying rack" was so I could see if the mini-washer Mark and Jane bought me for Xmas would be a reasonable replacement for the laundry room in my building.

Long story short? It won't be.

It's very "labor-intensive", and "labor-intensive" is not really "The Hoffmaster Way" (You have to fill the tub with water, dump it out when the wash cycle is done, wring out the clothes by hand, fill the tub with water again, go through the rinse cycle, wring the clothes out again, then hang them up to dry. And the tub is pretty small–maybe four gallons–so it took me an hour to do a single change of clothes).

But all that said, I can definitely see it coming in handy. I could do a week's worth of socks and underwear, or just do that shirt or pair of pants I need for the next day's callback. If the laundry room's on the fritz, I'm still good, and even if the water is cut off for the day (Something that happens semi-regularly), all I have to do is head down the block to the water machine, and I'm back in business.

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Didn't realize the Oscar nominations were being announced today.

I only caught part of the story on the news–I guess The Aviator got the most nominations (Which means I'll have to make an effort to go see it)–but the one "crime against nature" I heard was that Paul Giamatti was not nominated for Sideways.

How the hell do you do that? He's the center of the movie, so how the hell do you give everyone else and their brother a nomination, but not him? It's really quite outrageous.

(I'll probably have more to say about the Oscars when I check out my favorite entertainment websites...)

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Well, more rats are abandoning the sinking ship that is the West Hollywood Borders.

(Erin, our bookkeeper, and Amy D., our inventory supervisor, have both given notice, and it looks like Jack, another supervisor, is soon to follow.)

And this rat would like to "abandon ship" as well, but the time is not yet right.

Yesterday I got a call from City College, telling me where my Notary class is going to be held.

It occurred to me recently that I need to sign up for the next class as well (It's actually part of the same "Winter Term", and if I wait till I'm done with the class next month before signing up, it's likely to be full).

It's interesting...even as I write about this, I'm feeling "butterflies". It's a big step, to be sure, and the "negative voices" in my head are starting to come out in force, planting little "seeds of doubt" in my mind.

But I can't think of anything else I could do, with five hours of training, that could possibly allow me to make a decent living.

And besides, I've already paid for the class...


 

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