Archive for March, 2012

Rage and withdrawal and a heart shaped mirror

March 14, 2012

As I’ve mentioned before, my friend Dorothy Black blogs “random hearts”. Well today I found an accidental one, on my way to my car. It had been a terrible day. Not the worst day. But I managed to live up to my enemies’ image of me and get into an argument with someone, which left me more depressed and exhausted than I can say.

Losing my temper feels righteous. For about five seconds – after which I realize what I’ve done. Then, coming off the rage is the worst feeling in the world. Having seen people fail to come down off meth, I find myself comparing the withdrawal to what I feel the moment the anger abates, leaving me empty and ashamed, dying for a reason to believe I acted fairly, wanting to cry.

Someone would have driven over it. It's hanging form my rear view now.

So it was one of those days, and when I found this heart shaped mirror lying on the tar mac in the school parking lot, I took a picture of myself reflected in it and hung it from my mirror. I can’t afford to be defeated, or hate myself, or give up. I’ve come too far and pissed off too many people to stop now.


March 13, 2012


What on earth made them think I would get it? The worst thing is that the advertiser is getting fundamentally screwed here. The conversation we were having was a humorous one about story principles, acting methodology, etc. I don’t know what the ads are about. And White Rabbit has nothing at all to do with ice cream. Nothing at all. I wouldn’t dream of clicking.

Positive post-it notes and practical advice for actors

March 9, 2012

Your smile is a gift! Unless you’re a shark, or you never had braces.

Someone decided to put these up all over school. Instead of making me feel good, I the one about "are you a model" triggered an avalanche of suspicious thoughts. I nearly wrote a response post-it saying "Are you mocking me?"

I’m reading a book that’s meant to be for actors: “A Practical Handbook for Actors”. It’s one of the best self-help books I’ve ever read. In the first couple of chapters it covers something I struggle with in day to day life: what most people call “living in the moment”. See most of my problems are caused by this weird disjuncture between what is going on around me, and what I suspect is REALLY going on around me. In other words, while for many people life goes on, I spend most of my life with subtitles running around my head.


HIM: Hey mama.
(My inner voice: “I’ll never get used to being called Mama. In the US it’s a sexual compliment. At home it means literally, ‘mother’, Or at least ‘old enough to be respected as such.’ AWKWARD. I wonder if I should tell him? No, fuck it. Maybe on facebook chat, or in a blog, or something. Not now, I’m late for class.”)
ME: Morning baby.
(My inner voice: “In the light of what I think ‘mama’ means, this is creepy. Well at least he’s not really a breast man.That’s okay, I’m not mad about them either. But it’s a pity they have to be there all the time. Useless… specially since I’m never having kids. I wish I could just make them small and bouncy instead of big and annoying. I really need to consider whether my money would be better spent on plastic surgery than film school. Then again, maybe I’ll need them for something in future. I could live off them in a canibal situation, maybe. Is that gross? Not as gross as someone eating my leg. I guess I could remove them and freeze them, but that would cost a lot of electricity, so it’s probably cheaper just to buy something in a cannibal situation. Or eat someone else. Jesus. I’m so weird. I wonder if everybody has these thoughts. I wonder if he’d still love me if he knew how crazy I am?”)
HIM: What are you doing later?
(My inner voice: “I’ll probably go home planning to rewrite my short film but wind up watching a few films on netflix instead. Then later on I’ll wish I’d done something with him, because it’s not like trying to write actually achieved anything anyhow. Then again, he’s probably just asking cause he’s curious. He’s probably busy. Doesn’t he have class til 10?)
ME: I need to study. You?

Yes, no wonder I have trouble in relationships. When I was forced to act in a scene for Directing class recently, this problem became even more apparent. I had to seduce someone but was having trouble smiling because I was afraid of showing my teeth.

Maybe your smile is a gift if you're American - in other words, wore braces for four years and have a perfect movie star smile. It's impossible to tell who actually has good teeth here, cause everybody does. My smile is more of an invitation to laugh. Commentators on a news24 column recently spent a few hours discussing my smile and how it needed serious dentistry. Since then I try not to smile too broadly.

Erm. Stop it.

Anyhow, it’s not like I’m planning to do anything about my skew teeth, or anything else. So I’m going to try to take the advice I’m reading in this book. Be motivated positively. Don’t be manipulative. Do one thing at a time. Make sure your goals are clear. And remember to breathe. Just remember to breathe. Not too heavily or people will think you’re creepy. Also: “Don’t eat human flesh” should probably be in there somewhere. I guess it comes up in later chapters.