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11:45 AM - 02.26.21

Life Moving Forward

(Watching an "Atheism vs Christianity" debate on YouTube. Probably should do one thing or the other - I'm not a great multi-tasker - but for now, here we are.)

In my last entry - I didn't go back to look at it before starting this - "Life moving forward" was the big thing on my mind, focusing specifically on the pending end of Shameless (Because Shameless ending is the biggest thing that's happened to me in a while, but also just to keep the entry "manageable").

But there was life before Shameless, so it feels safe to assume there will be life after Shameless (Though, in all likelihood - since I'm months away from my 60th birthday - there will be less life moving forward than there was in the lead-up to Shameless).

And what's that life going to be like?

It feels all-but-impossible to "separate out"..." financial concerns" when thinking about my life moving forward because it seems like a monolithic thing that impacts everything else.

But while "financial concerns" are a worry of mine - and I think a pretty understandable one - they aren't necessarily a given (I don't want to trot out imaginary scenarios where I happily get to live out the rest of my life in financial security, but I can certainly think of them, scenarios that range from "astronomically unlikely" to "not completely implausible").

So, at the moment, I'm not thinking about "life moving forward" as a struggle to keep a roof over my head and food in my stomach - I worry that could be a problem but I don't know that's going to be a problem.

I'm thinking more along the lines of, "What would I want my life, from now till...whenever, to be like?".

While I fear "The Business" is going to "retire me" against my will, my desire is to continue working as an actor - Not just out of imagined necessity, but because "it's what I do". I want to continue doing the thing that's comprised the lion's-share of my identity for most of my life.

To be honest, if I'm not an "Actor", I don't know who the fuck I am.

Another reason I want to continue working - and particularly hope I land on another long-running series - is realizing, some years back, that my"work-life" is my "social life".

I made long-term friends in community theater "back in the day" (That's how I met Cary, Jane Z., Tom H., etc). And those shows, which I'd do a couple times a year, for five or six weeks at a time - comprised my social life. And that, and my work-friends at Schuler Books, where I worked for 11 years, provided just about all the "social contact" I needed.

But when I moved to LA and community theater faded away (And acting became a thing I did every so often, usually for one day at a time), my social life consisted entirely of hanging out with some core group of coworkers (First at Borders, then at ArcLight - At Weight Watchers, I worked with one or two other people and not a "group", so that was a somewhat different kettle-of-fish).

So knowing "that's how I roll", part of my desire to land another series (One where I am a "Series Regular" and not a "Recurring", which is a rung or two down the acting food-chain) is, quite simply, so I can have a group of people to "hang out" with (Though I imagine the days of hitting the bar after work, or planning a day trip to Chinatown, that sort of thing, are long past).

But barring a long-running series, where hanging out with my fellow cast members on set for 12-14 hours a day would be all the friendship/social contact I needed, I would like to figure out, moving forward, a way to be less socially isolated than I am right now. I don't know if I feel the same need for friendship/social contact that I used to, say, twenty years ago. But I do have concerns over becoming even more socially isolated than I am now - currently I have Jane R. and a once-a-week phone call with Mark and Jane Z., and that's pretty much it for my social contact "in real life" - and those concerns involve my ongoing happiness and general mental health, in addition to my physical health and safety

I worry - quite a bit, actually - about ending up another old person whose dead body isn't discovered for months because no one gives a shit about them (Though post-Shameless, and even post-Jane R./Jane Z. - a thought I really don't like to think about - as a life-long renter, I assume a landlord/apartment manager would find me within a month or two of me not paying my rent...because of my being all dead and shit).

I want to continue developing/enjoying my non-acting talents, writing in here, Podcasting (or whatever podcasting becomes in the future), etc.

It's very difficult to imagine being...with someone at this stage of the game - the last relationship I was in ended half my lifetime ago - but I still harbor a desire to be special to someone, and to have them be special to me. It would be nice if that were to happen again before I die.

And undergirding it all, I'd like my brain and my body to hang together as long as possible.

I don't know how much longer I have left to live, but however long it is, I'd like it to be a quality life for as long as possible.

And having a brain to think with and a body to do things with seems pretty pivotal when it comes to a "quality life".

...but that's going to have to be for another entry, because I have a dinner date with Jane R. and I needs get ready.

So, till next time...



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