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8:16 pm - Thu 5/08/03
A Word From America's Newest Charismatic Cult Leader

A Word From America's Newest Charismatic Cult Leader


Wed 5/07/03 10:10 pm

The following is from Basil Hoffman's book Cold Reading (The overuse of italics is my little quirk, and not the fault of Mr Hoffman):

"How can I focus on getting the job?"

Expending any energy at all towards the goal of getting the job is a waste of valuable time, since getting the job is the only element of the reading process over which you have absolutely no control.

If your goal is to get the job and you give a great reading but don't get hired, then your reading will have failed. If your goal is to give a great reading, and you give a great reading but don't get hired, your reading will have been successful. Don't give others the power to validate your work. If you do good, interesting, truthful work, you can expect the jobs to come. And they will come. If you focus on getting jobs, the rejections will destroy you.

You must be absolutely certain the job is yours before you read the script. Having that certainty will free you to give the best reading that it is possible to give.

He's 100% right, of course. But it's very easy to lose sight of that true-ism (Particularly if you're me, a guy who's been in the "Getting Validation From Others"-business since childhood).

I know I have had a serious craving for the "validation" of booking a job, that's for sure. But that's really not a validation of your ability, since the person who does the best reading may or may not get the job. Other factors come into play, and you're not likely to ever know what they were. That's just how it goes.

I want my choice to come out here "validated" by some success. But that's a pretty rough way to go, because there's going to be way more failure than success (Once again, that's just how it goes).

And anyway, if you're being "validated" by people who don't know shit from Shinola, what exactly does that mean?

It just makes more sense to look to yourself for validation. To know you've got the goods, to do your best to deliver each time out of the gate, and have faith that it's just a matter of time before people start getting on board.


Got called for my first commercial audition of the month this afternoon (It's tomorrow morning at 10:45).

It's for Disney World. And I'm going in...for "Grandpa".

Now the picture up in the left-hand corner is my current headshot, so be honest: Do I look like a "Grandpa" to you?

But who knows? Maybe they're just looking for the youngest, sexiest "Grandpa" ever.

Or maybe I'm not holding up as well as I think I am...

But anyway...

Saw the new X-Men movie yesterday afternoon.

I thought it was great fun. And like the first Matrix, the effects made me feel like a kid again (Found myself watching some of the stuff and thinking, "This is so cool...").

I'm just happy these sort of movies are being taken seriously now, with real directors and actors, and scripts that, if not exactly Shakespeare, at least don't actively kill brain cells while you're watching; for a time, I was getting pretty depressed over how I'd go to whatever the big summer movie was, and inevitably hate myself for getting suckered into paying good money for yet another piece of unadulterated crap (Armaggedon, Independence Day, and Batman & Robin immediately spring to mind).

I'm excited about the new Matrix next week (It opens on my birthday; I've amused myself by imagining all the Matrix posters, which just have 5/15/03 on them, are actually announcing my birthday to the world). In fact, I've been so excited about the movie that I've actually started kind of talking myself down, so as not to be disappointed.


In the current issue of Time, there's an essay by Tom Shales on the lousy reporting of our recent war with Iraq.

In the essay, he speaks exactly to what disturbed me about the war "reportage"--There was no criticism of the war in any mainstream media. Just a giant rubber-stamp.

And what he suggests as the reason for that rubber-stamp is pretty depressing, and in my opinion, right on target; The major media outlets were all gung-ho and totally uncritical of the war because that's where the ratings were.

With the majority of Americans for the war--And that's an interesting topic in-and-of itself--the media went where the ratings were.

Welcome to "Lowest Common Denominator News"...


I read recently, with some interest, about William Bennett's gambling.

According to some accounts, Bennett's lost over eight million dollars at various casinos, while staying in "high roller" suites, and enjoying whatever amenties typically offered to morality cops with millions to spend at the crap tables (Though maybe he prefers blackjack. I don't know).

Now, I'd probably be at least a little judgemental about this, regardless--If you've spent 8 million at the casino, I think you officially have too much money--but your money is your money, and I guess you can blow it as you see fit.

But when you're Mr. "Book of Virtues", it seems the height of hypocrisy, to begrudge people a joint or a porno movie while you spend your off-hours pretending to be a member of the Rat-Pack.

And where's the "virtue" in spending millions getting your jollies, money that could have changed lives, maybe even saved lives?

Granted, I've got vices of my own. But on the other hand, I never appointed myself "Morality Czar" for the nation.

I'm more the "Charismatic Cult Leader" type...


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