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3:31 pm - Sun 1/29/06
The ArcLight Snackbar Blues

The ArcLight Snackbar Blues

Sun 1/29/06 (1:34 p.m.)

Sometime, doing concessions just robs me of the very will to live.

Just how unhappy was I last night at work?

Here’s some stuff I wrote in my “pocket journal” during some down time (When you close concessions, as I did last night, you typically have a fair amount of down time between getting your closing stuff done, and the last movie letting out):

Some proposed titles for my next d-land entry:


“My 5-Year Suicide Plan.”

“This Doesn’t End Well”


Imagine you somehow never managed to move beyond the after-school job you had in high school. Now it’s 26 years down the road, and you’re trying to live a full-fledged adult life on a teenager’s income.

How do you think you’d feel about work?

How do you think you’d feel about yourself?

Welcome to my world...

I don’t think I could hold up if my life got any worse than this. And that’s the terror that grips me–As poor as I am, as tired as I am, as lonely as I am, as bored as I am, as unfulfilled as I am, I’m deeply afraid the bottom is going to drop out any second, and things are going to get so bad that I’ll long for “the golden years”, when I had a roof over my head, and ate on a regular basis. When I actually had a dream that had a vague chance of coming true.
Feeling again that I came out here 20 years too late. I don’t have the juice to do what I need to do. I just don’t.
Sometimes I fucking hate myself. I just want to smash my face in.

I read somewhere that people with traumatic childhoods often imagine having some great destiny. It’s a way to make sense of the pain they feel, as if to say “All this pain has to mean something, has to be preparing me for something...”.

When actually, it really doesn’t.

All my life, I’ve wanted to overcome the “adversity” of my bad beginning.

Now I realize that’s not gonna happen.


Yeah, yeah, I know–Whiny, self-pitying bullshit. Boo-hoo, oh poor, pitiful me. A lot of people have it worse than I do, I have to keep my sunny side up, things could change at any moment, etc.

But these are “the bad thoughts” I sometimes wrestle with. And I’ve been editing myself way too much in here lately

But lest you think that I’ve given over completely to “the dark side”–Even in the midst of a fairly “dark and stormy night”, I was able to think of a number of good things that have happened recently.

1. The major cause of this downward spiral–after a small, all-too-brief, “upward spiral”–was doing my bills recently, and realizing that I’m back in “Am I going to be able to make my rent this month?” territory (Which is right next door to “Nope, I’m definitely not going to be able to make my rent this month” territory).

Okay, that’s not “the good thing”. The good thing is that the next day, after thinking, “This would be a really good time for the Universe to hand me some extra money”, I got some mail from Borders: Now that I no longer work there, the stock options I was given when I started (Something Borders no longer offers to new employees) are about to expire. So if I want to “cash them in”, the letter said, this would be the time.

I don’t know how much money that’s going to be–I’m thinking not as much as I’d like –but I have to say, that’s a pretty quick response from “the Universe” (And I’m thinking, not for the first time, that I really need to get better at being specific about what I need. It’s not the fault of “the Universe” if I’m too vague in what I’m asking for).

2. I’ve felt very good about how the casting workshops went this month (The last one was disappointing–I was given a scene I thought was the lamest of the bunch. My scene partner said the same thing, without any prompting on my part–but even then, I felt I did the best that could be done with it).

(The continuing frustration I feel about these things is that without the “breakdowns”, I don’t feel like I can really make hay out of these contacts the way I should be doing. But this is supposed to be the positive part of this journal entry, so I’ll save crying about that for another time.)

3. Someone in my building left a bakers-dozen worth of Buffy The Vampire Slayer videotapes in the “giveaway area” of the lobby. Yay!

4. Jane recently sent me a dvd of a high school production of Jekyll and Hyde, with my former “ Artful Dodger”, Dale Powell, along with a video of the Riverwalk Theater’s “black box” production of All In The Timing II, starring Jane and a cast of Lansing theater notables (I’ve only watched the beginning of each one–I’m not currently feeling good enough about myself to watch other people acting when I’m not–but from what I’ve seen, I’m already very impressed with both projects).

5. This past Wednesday, I got a voicemail on my cellphone. It was from a woman whose name I couldn’t catch, no matter how many times I listened to the message (It sounded like “Merlin”), who knew me in Lansing, had thought of me over the years, and was acting on the impulse to give me a call (She now lives in the Dominican Republic with _______, whose name I also couldn’t catch, re-designing golf courses).

Honestly, I have not the foggiest idea who this person is. As I said, I couldn’t catch her name, and she gave me no other hints as to how we knew each other (I lived in Lansing on-and-off for over 20 years, so that’s a lot of history to sift through).

But be that as it may, it was nice to know that I live on in someone’s memory, and for once, in a good way.

Well, I guess that’s enough for now.


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