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11:24 AM - SUN 11.05.23

Whatever You Think You Are

(Don't usually write with music on in the background, but for some reason, I'm feeling the urge this time out. So let's see what happens...)

Last time I wrote, I was sick with what the Doctor "virtually" assumed was bronchitis.

At this writing, while I still have a bit of a "rattle" in my cough, it's back to being largely non-productive and is not nearly as persistent/insistent as it's been. So I'm going to consider myself on the road back to full health...or at least my usual level of health.

(So far, the music seems to be working out - A request for "Instrumental Music" seems to have been translated to "smooth jazz", which is fine - though I did have to reduce the volume to half.)

I'm feeling free to resume my normal activities this week, which so far means having lunch with Josh on Tuesday, going back to GenSpace (Which I've skipped for about a week-and-a-half, out of an abundance of caution on behalf of my fellow elderly people), and perhaps picketing with my fellow striking/out-of-work actors.

There was some recent reporting that we were on the verge of a deal with the AMPTP (The last communique from the union said they were looking over the most recent counter-offer from the producers). But since I've been disappointed once - our strike was "supposed to" resolve quickly after the writers settled, and here we are - my thermostat is currently set at "cautiously optimistic".

Knowing myself as I do, I strongly suspect that getting word of my first post-strike audition, whenever it happens, will cause me to reflexively groan and feel a wave of disappointment over what a nothing part it is - Which means things will have returned to normal in Jim's world.

It'll be nice getting back to GenSpace - In a world with no day job and no acting, it's nice having somewhere to go a couple days a week (Even if I still feel a little embarrassed about the whole thing). I don't know if I'll be able to get back into my classes this week (The movement classes I mostly do now are quite popular), but it hardly matters - If I don't, I'll just bring my art stuff and draw.

(They have some art books there - Renoir, Van Gogh, DaVinci, Modigliani, etc. - that I like to draw from. And since I'm copying the work of the masters, a number of the resulting drawings have been, in my own estimation, pretty decent.)

While I've been enjoying the "artistic renaissance" I've had these past couple years - and my drawings are markedly better than when I started - I still sometimes wrestle with feeling like I'm "not doing it enough", not "challenging myself enough", am not a "real artist", etc.

I think the first two things are worthy of some genuine thought - "Not doing it enough" for what? What would constitute "challenging myself enough"? - but the "not a real artist" thing is kind of silly, because I've had a pretty clear view on this kind of issue for years...

Many years ago, when I was working at Schuler Books, I decided to read The Bridges Of Madison County, which was a NY Times Bestseller.

In the book - which is terrible, btw (The movie is appreciably better) - the photographer character at one point refers to himself as "the last cowboy".

And that just came off as insufferable to me.

First off, the guy is not the first, last, or twenty-fifth "cowboy" - He's a photographer.

But beyond that, "the last cowboy" isn't going around telling people he's "the last cowboy".

You know why?

Because he's too busy being "the last cowboy" for that kind of bullshit.

If you're really whatever-you-think-you-are, you don't have to tell people - They see it - so just do your shit and let people think what they're gonna think.

And if that isn't a good place to end this, I don't know what is.

(Till next time...)



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