Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Sorry, this one is kind of emo.

I don't understand this habit I have of INTENTIONALLY keeping people in my life who long ago should have been allowed to drift away naturally. In part, I blame the internet for convincing me that because, for example, I am facebook friends with someone or they are on my IM list, I still have a reason to talk to them. Even if you block someone on facebook, facebook still gives you the totally open option of unblocking them, which I can't see as logical.

Mostly, however, as is characteristic of me, I blame myself. Why I would want to keep some of these people in my life is beyond my comprehension. It probably has a lot to do with my constantly thinking that I am stronger than I actually am, and being so tough on myself as to expect that I can relate to a person almost immediately as if they never hurt me, or embarrassed me, or disappointed me. I end up hating them because they continually deny me and deny me again and again and again. But I let them do it. I call them immature and crazy and all manner of things ...... but really, what does that make me? Someone who frequently ends up hating herself. Which is too bad, because I am pretty awesome.

So I am making a vow to quit making it easy for people to hurt me in the same way over and over again. I will takes hints better. I will read situations better. I will walk away from anything less than naturally spectacular more quickly. If someone really wants to get my attention, it can be 20% more difficult for them. Whatever. I'm done.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Geoffrey Rush, Jeremy, and the City.

I went to New York on Sunday and saw 'Exit the King' with Jeremy. Although I saw it at my lowest energy point in a 14 hour trip, I was still captivated by what it did, overall. Although there were some inconsistencies, I thought the translation (co-authored by Geoffrey Rush and the director) was wonderful and timeless, in the sense that although it felt written for a modern ear, it wasn't the kind of Terrence McNally modern that talks about danishes and car phones -- it was simply elegant and to the point, and in a pacing that we are accustomed to. It was such a fully realized world that created dramatic tension but also made larger comments situationally at the same time. There was also a real sense of design synthesis, probably because this production has been workshopped and produced and workshopped and produced a million times, here and in Australia. Susan Sarandon was a little oddly-cast and reticent to make big choices in her "normal one" mold in the middle of all the absurdity. Geoffrey Rush was frigging amazing to watch. I could watch him go through that play 2 or 3 more times. It was like his body was made of liquid, and his voice was right up there with Alan Rickman! I briefly considered stage-dooring Lauren Ambrose, but I think I may save it for Allison Janney.

Seeing Jeremy was nothing short of fabulous, despite his frequent assertions that he automatically injects any situation with a prescribed dose of nebbishness. First of all, it was amazing to realize that I had met Anne and Jeremy at Berkshire Theatre Festival not one, but TWO years earlier, and it seems like no time has passed at all, even though we barely ever see each other. It sounds corny, but I think that is what is meant by 'kindred spirits'. I had a great time walking up and down and around 9th Ave. with Jeremy, talking dramaturgy, comparing notes on our jobs, and what not. It reminded me that I can actually have a great time, and an intellectually fulfilling time, just TALKING to someone smart about theatre. I really needed that reminder, as Saturday was a tough day for me, having lost out on two directing gigs and wondering, once again, where exactly in theatre I belonged. I am starting to feel more secure now.

I am reading Jon Krakauer's 'Into the Wild'. It is beyond fascinating .... the only time I've been able to put it down in the last 24 hours has been to write this, sleep .... oh, and wait, to watch 2 hours of 'Sex and the City' episodes that I have already seen. Oh well. Everyone needs a hobby.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Holy Carp.

Somehow, the Brown/Trinity MFA in directing consortium decided it would be a fabulous idea to allow prospective students to read the resumes in full of the current MFA class. I don't think I can wait 10 years to go to grad school, and I'm pretty sure no one would hire me for the 35 professional directing gigs that these people somehow weaseled their way into. Also I'm not sure if there's time to be the Artistic Assistant at Steppenwolf and become a Suzuki expert and member of SSDA and AGMA.

I have really just gotten to a point where I want to go back to school. So it's probably time to start studying up for the GREs and hoping that my midling GPA does not keep me out of anyplace worth going to.

I had a chat with myself the other day about sticking with dramaturgy, as that seems to be what fate wants me to do and what most people will pay me a decent wage to do. It also makes my brain a lot less insane and my eyes a lot less baggy ... but am I "passionate" about it? Some aspects, yes, but I haven't been a student of it for long enough to be able to know if an intense study of say, Brecht, it worth it for the sake of said intense study, or only for the purpose of improving my own small attempts at producing him.

And as for teaching ... well ... who the fuck knows if I would be any good at that? I certainly have no desire to teach "kids" under 18, and the teachers that most inspired me -- well, I can't really put them into perspective -- it was like they were my servants of learning or something, particularly in early college and high school. I didn't really care what they did outside of the classroom, as long as they facilitated a rewarding learning experience for me. Because I do like learning. So that's convenient at least, when thinking about school, right?

Friday, May 8, 2009

You Food.

Apparently this has become my self-righteous food sociology blog. I know, can it get more riveting? ;)

I've already ranted enough about the orders I heard in Dunkin' Donuts this morning, so I won't repeat them here.

OK, I will.

Who can possibly drink an extra large iced coffee extra light with five sugars without barfing? It's revolting. What have we done to our stomach lining so that it can tolerate such disgusting abuse? And it's iced too, so they're in there drinking it down in record time.


I've also noticed something about healthy fast food chains of late. Their particular brand of marketing is really tricky; the claim upon which they hinge being that everything, EVERYTHING in their restaurant is healthy for you, so you don't have to think when eating. What a load of crap. Sure, a thirty year old male body-builder in peak physical condition probably doesn't have to think too hard when ordering, as they are right that they use only lean meats, low fat cheese, and whole wheat wraps. However, he is not trying to lose weight, only to put healthy things in his body. However, that's how they get the dieting 20 and 30-something women to slavishly consume their food day after day. These women think that everything in there will help them lose weight; they really do. I have met them. But, the nutrition facts for U-Food, which are hard to find on their website and nowhere to be seen in their stores, will clearly tell you that the Chicken Parm and Chicken Meatball marinara wraps contain upwards of 800 calories -- only about 100 fewer than a Qdoba burrito minus cheese and sour cream. Sure, it has less saturated fat, but that only induces side orders of "unfries", which, while better than fried fries, clock one's meal in at about 1100 calories. For lunch.

I mean, whatever. I have an odd shaped body and will probably never be "skinny" in the conventional sense. But why do healthy fast food chains have to go making us fatter than ever?

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Thought for Food

Recently, I have the developed a healthy obsession (no pun intended) with reading books on why the way we eat food now is terrible for us and the environment. I'll be the first to admit that I approach my reading with somewhat of a evangelical zeal, having lacked a religious upbringing, it's always nice to have something you believe in that (you feel) actually affects the fate of humans. I am now a convert in the truest sense; I can no longer stomach 100 calorie packs (100 chemical packs), cheetos made by other brands than 365, or anything out of a can that didn't grow on a tree. I actually understand the term "Whole Foods", and why a handful of almonds (which is one. whole. food.) is a better choice that just makes more sense than a small part of a food combined with 16-18 chemicals which twist the whole food around in order to make it taste like something else. As a result, my cravings for things bad for me have actually gone way down, which is a refreshing change. I'm still not good with portion control (at all), but I guess when you get right down to it, I'm not exactly trying to lose 20 pounds. Cake is great. Pizza, great. FOOD IS GREAT. But not the fast food kind, and not the processed kind!

As for the vegetarianism, it is coming along, slowly but surely. I haven't eaten chicken now in almost a month, but that's not the first time I've made it this far. I think it might stick this time, and I've even spoken to my parents about how I'd like their help with this, as opposed to their constant offer of a roast chicken.

It's fascinating to consider the trajectory of food culture in America. So much of what we eat has been forced on us by big business, who have worked tirelessly to convince us that we need expensive meat to be healthy, and that processed corn syrup tastes the best (because it's the cheapest to produce). I've really tried to keep an eye out for the size of my coffee, too. If it doesn't seem like they'd be seen on the street with it in Europe, I try not to drink it. This is definitely an adjustment.

Anyway, the point of this post is not to self-righteously label myself as "cured". I just urge you to take a look at books by Michael Pollan (not a vegetarian), Mark Bittinger (not a vegetarian), Peter Singer, "Fast Food Nation" and "The End of Food". I'm not saying "Change the way you eat, now' because that takes time and, like weight loss, it's something you have to find in yourself. But at least take a look at a variety of opinions on the subject -- after all, we get the opposing view shoved down our throats every day, along with pictures of unreasonably shiny sandwiches.

I don't know, I feel pretty good these days.