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1:30 p.m. - Mon 9/01/03
When I Grow Up, I Want To Be Creative

When I Grow Up, I Want To Be Creative

I'm really not very creative at all. I want to be, but I'm not.

I was thinking about it the other day; I don't do anything that shows much originality or creative thought.

And I seem to be getting duller with each passing day.

Thinking about acting; I was worrying (We know how I like to worry!) that my writing about acting in here has just fallen into a rut where it's all about "making it"; I want to make it, and I'm frustrated that I'm not "making it" yet, and the commercials and blah blah blah could I be any more boring about something that's actually kind of interesting? I want to succeed because I want to be rich and famous and be loved and have women want to have sex with me.

How dull.

And of course, there is that--I can't lie--but there's more as well.

But it's hard to write about the "more" part, because it gets very amorphous and hard to explain.

Why do I want to act? What do I get out of it? What does it "do" for me?

I think a part of it, a part I don't acknowledge too often, is the fact that I'm not particularly creative; When I'm acting, if I'm acting in something good, I'm borrowing the words of smarter, more interesting, wittier people, and I get to pretend that I'm a smarter, wittier, more interesting person. I don't really have anything to say, any big "statement" to share with the world--beyond "Here I am!"--so I leech off what those smarter, wittier people have to say, and I get to pretend that I thought of it.

It's pretty cool.

If you couldn't already guess, I'm currently leaning towards the "Actor as Craftperson" theory. Actors are "interpretive artists". And I guess you could say there's some measure of "creativity" within that, but it ain't writing a song or the "Great American Novel" or what have you.

Acting is not something everyone can do--Actually, I'm not convinced of that, but for the point I'm trying to make, let's just say that's the case--but then again, neither is teaching, or brain surgury, or fixing a car.

Acting is interesting, to me, over and above and beyond the "approval" thing, for how you seem to both escape from yourself and escape into yourself. I'm not "me" when I'm acting, because I'm trying to make you believe in the "reality" of my "character", but on the other hand, all I have to work with is "me".

Whether I'm more or less like the character I play, I'm my primary "frame of reference".

I've said, at different times, that I act to escape from myself, and that I act to give parts of myself free rein that don't get much "play" in real life.

It sounds contradictory, but it's not (I'm not a good enough writer to explain why it's not, so you'll have to just trust me here).

Actually, when I was thinking about how un-creative I am the other day, you know what stood out to me as an area where I'm at least "sort of" creative?

Diaryland.

What I choose to say in here, how I choose to say it, it's all me.

And the occasional flashes of humor; Sometimes I borrow from my comedic betters, but often, it's just me.

So I should give myself a break--I'm not the most creative, smartest, funniest guy that ever got up on a stage to basically say "Hey, look at me", and I'm certainly not the most profound thinker who ever sat down in front of a word processor, but in either case, you could do worse than to be me.

But this un-creative, un-profound guy has to go down and get his laundry out of the dryer...

 

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