10:43 AM - Thurs 11.09.23
Well, it took longer than I expected - or maybe just longer than I'd hoped - but the SAG-AFTRA strike is finally over!
(Tentatively at least - The deal still has to be approved by membership. But I'm guessing, being very eager to "get back to work", that unless it's surprisingly terrible the membership will overlook any disappointments with the deal and vote "yes".)
Joking on Facebook yesterday, I made it sound like I was happy the strike was over because I was relieved to "get out of picketing".
But while I really was relieved to get out of picketing (I hadn't gone so far this week, and today would have been my last chance since nothing was scheduled for Friday), that's not the main source of my happiness.
While the strike ending has no immediate personal effect on my life - it doesn't mean auditions and bookings are going to immediately start pouring in - it does add a certain hopefulness to life, a sense of "possibility" that I haven't felt for the last number of months.
And that's nice.
And while I've felt guilty for not participating more, the fact is I've taken more interest and have actively participated more in this situation - on behalf of myself and others - than in...well, than in anything, ever.
To be honest, I don't know that this strike will ultimately mean that much to me (Though I certainly hope so - for example, it would be nice if it means I'll get a little more money from Shameless being on Netflix),
I've been struggling, partly due to the strike, not to feel like my "career" has peaked, and now I'm just scrabbling for whatever crumbs I can get, hoping I can stay afloat until "the sweet release of death".
But thinking of myself as a fairly selfish, self-interested guy, it was a big surprise when, more than once on the picket line, I found myself thinking, "I don't know if all this will do me any good, so I guess I'm doing it for my fellow actors and for those coming up behind me".
It's nice to think that, thanks in small part to my efforts, acting might continue to be an actual, possible career for a while into the future, and not just a hobby (It may continue to be a challenging dream, but it won't be an impossible one).
And feeling not just like a selfish guy, but a "solitary" guy for most of my life, it felt good to be a part of something that mattered - This period of time hasn't just been about actors (Or writers before them), but working people in general, labor reasserting itself as a force across the country.
(I don't think I'm overselling things here - This is "history book" stuff. And I was a teensy weensy part of it, which is kind of cool!)
And while I'm feeling all good about being part of future American History, this seems like a good time to break for lunch...
(Till next time...)