Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Polly McPositive

I'm really sick and tired of having a positive attitude. Generally, life is pretty good--but I'm really sick of a lot of things and I feel the need to explode a little.

Here are some of the things I'm most tired of:

I'm really tired of men giving credit to skinny girls for being skinny. I had a conversation today that just about made me want to tear my eyeballs out. There is this assumption that if you're skinny--you've worked hard to deserve such a blessing--and so skinny girls are somehow more deserving than girls who are not.

Having lived with girls of all sizes and shapes, I will tell you, we eat basically the same amounts of food. But when I overeat, I gain ten pounds. When they overeat, nothing happens. But somehow because they've worked so hard to keep themselves fit, they are more deserving.

This line of thought from men only serves to cause a larger riff between me and my skinny friends. I love my skinny friends. They're wonderful people, and they don't walk around thinking that they're better than me. So why must men say these things that make me want to rip their skinny little necks open!

Second point of gripe:

I'm tired of finding myself in a position where I must rethink my whole life plan--or better yet--come up with one. I'm sick of it. I just want to be able to be happy and pay all my bills on time. Such simple wishes!


Today a friend, we'll call him Spanky, talked about how he wants a girl who is passionate and artistic. No Spanky, you don't. You want a girl who is unavailable, uninterested, tall and skinny. Let's just call a spade a spade. Passionate and Artistic are such nice words, and could be used to describe lots of people.


I had a wonderful conversation with another friend tonight-- a boy-- about social responsibilities and the role that arts have in enriching communities. I loved it. I really enjoy spending time with this guy. But alas, I told this guy I liked him ages ago and he ran screaming like a little girl into the night. Tonight is the first time we've chatted in ages.


I'm desperately upset for a friend of mine who is facing marital woes because her husband is an asshole. I just want to drive down there tonight and kick him out for her, but I can't because I can't afford the gas money.

Suffice it to say, if I had a hammer--I would hammer his head right into the ground.

And this is me being Miss Polly McPositive!

Ciao bitches!

My desires!

I get to play Queen Margaret in Queen Margaret.

This isn't that big of a deal, since it's only a staged reading and we only have 1 performance--but it's still a title character. And it's still a GREAT part.

I'm so excited to sink my teeth into it!!!

I wish I could figure out where my life was going. I enjoy teaching. I enjoy performing, but I feel completely stretched and my car is about ready to fall apart.

It's going to take a bit of a miracle to help put me on a solid path. I need something concrete right now. I think my priority right now is finding a full-time job with benefits. I love acting--but I need a constant right now. And acting does not provide that at this moment in time.

I keep going back and forth between jumping off and really going for acting, and wanting to pay the bills. The thing is, I'm happiest acting--but it's just so fickle! I don't know what I'll end up doing. Spencer was talking about running a theatre workshop this summer for kids. He's got everything set up and we would partner on it and split the proceeds. That would work out great, but then what? I could continue teaching at the university, which is fine--but eventually I'm going to want to teach acting.

Good things are happening. I am continually rehired to teach as an adjunct at Stratford, and that's a blessing. I get to work as an actor continually. And opportunities continue to arise, but it's just a little scary, and I would like to feel like I'm using my resources well. I want to stop driving everywhere. I want to live somewhere where I can teach, act, and walk everywhere. This might be a pie in the sky dream, but it's my dream! And I want to be able to have health insurance that i don't have to pay for out of pocket!

It's the little things that make me the happiest.

These are the desires of my heart.

And finding love and having babies would all be great too!

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Artist in Residency

During the past week, I've had the opportunity to work with 7th graders at a school in Maryland. Spencer and I team teach during the day, and then Bridget and I co-direct them in the afterschool program. I think 7th grade has got to be one of the most interesting times in a child's life.

The children are energetic, entitled, fun, crazy, smart, sweet, open, vulnerable--and crazy. The girls giggle over Spencer. They've all got massive crushes on him. And the boys want to be able to tell their friends that he's their buddy. And Spencer of course knows this, so he'll very coolly high five them as their friends are watching and treat them like adults, rather than acting like he's the teacher and their his students. It's been very fun to watch.

As for me--I'm not quite as cool as he is--but I still have my adoring fans. I have such powerful memories from 7th grade. Our boss told us that we would find ourselves in the crowd and that we had to be careful not to favor ourselves--but I honestly haven't found me yet. I was the new girl, who was pretty and awkward. I was smart, but sort of shy--but not. I never ever felt pretty, but as I look back at pictures, I see that I was at some point in my life, pretty good looking.

Basically, I'm the same now as I was back then.

It's just easier for me to be the teacher and try and learn everyone's names so that I can say hi to them in the hallway.

I'd like to paint some brief portraits of these students, just so you can see how my life has been enriched this past week. I won't call any of the students by name for fear that I say anything that might embarass them.

Josh--the little goth. He never comes to school. He missed the first two days of the residency, but when he came, Spencer immediately had him play Puck. He understood everything. He came everyday after that. The teacher told us that it was a miracle that he was there 3 days in a row. He struck me as a brilliant child, so innocent and so filled with wisdom. Spencer and he looked like brothers, since Spencer has this gothish black hair going on right now. He looked happy to be at school. And that was a little miracle.

Jenny--girl in the wheelchair. You can see her smile from a mile away. I noticed the first day that she had a difficult time operating her wheel chair, so i wasn't sure if she was able to speak. We found out later that she was in the paralyzed condition because of a massive stroke. I waved to her in the hallway, and she said hi back! So we cast her as Titania, Queen of the Fairies during our last day of playing. She was wonderful and she floated across the room in her wheelchair with a beautiful smile on her face. Her radiant happiness in the face of such a trial was my own personal miracle.

Harry and May--so much talent in such tiny packages! Harry is so small and kind of reserved. When I think about it, Harry is the child that reminds me of myself. He's so serious, but when he acts--he puts his whole heart into it. He's from Brazil. We cast him as Oberon and he will go off and work by himself and perform his scenes memorized for us. He's wonderful! And soooo small! His Titania is also a very small girl, but she takes her part so seriously. They have such giant personalities. It seems like everyone else has this awkward teenage thing going on--but these two are timeless.

There are so many wonderful stories to share. It's been such a joy to work in the schools with the kids. And don't get me started on these wonderful teachers. They are saints!!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Ingrid Michaelson

I went to see Ingrid Michaelson in concert last Friday night.


It was too wonderful for words. My favorite song is listed below. The woman is divine. I love her. I love life now that I've discovered her music.

And you will too!

In other news--I'm directing 7th graders in A Midsummer Night's Dream, teaching classes during the day and at night, and trying to be good in my calling on the Stake Cultural Arts Committee. On Sunday night I performed in As You Like It. I had a great time. So much going on--so much to talk about--and sooooo little time. Suffice it to say--things are going splendidly.

Die Alone

I woke up this morning with a funny taste in my head.
Spackled some butter over my whole grain bread.
Something tastes different, maybe it's my tongue.
Something tastes different, suddenly I'm not so young.

I'm just a stranger, even to myself.
A re-arranger of the proverbial bookshelf.
Don't be a fool girl, tell him you love him.
Don't be a fool girl, you're not above him.

I never thought I could love anyone but myself.
Now I know I can't love anyone but you.
You make me think that maybe I won't die alone.
Maybe I won't die alone.

Kiss the boys as they walk by, call me their baby.
But little do they know, I'm just a maybe.
Maybe my baby will be the one to leave me sore.
Maybe my baby will settle the score.

I never thought I could love anyone but myself.
Now I know I can't love anyone but you.
You make me think that maybe I won't die alone.
Maybe I won't die alone.

What have I become?
Something soft and really quite dumb.
Because I've fallen, oh, 'cuz I've fall-fallen, oh 'cuz I've fall-fall-fallen
So far away from the place where I started from.

I never thought I could love anyone.
I never thought I could love anyone.
I never thought I could love anyone,
But you, but you, but you, but you, but you
But you make me think that maybe I won't die alone.
Maybe I won't die alone.

Friday, April 11, 2008

dancing days

I miss dancing. I was never the best in the class. I remember dying inside as I watched my pregnant modern dance teacher with her outrageously perfect body move effortlessly. But despite my own body image crapola--I love to dance. I love to move. I love feeling my muscles contract and lengthen and I love the feeling that you can create beauty out of the most specific moments.

Yesterday Spencer came over to just work monologues and hone our craft a bit and I decided to introduce him to some Laban. I turned on some music and told him about effort actions. We both spent the afternoon wringing, floating, gliding, punching, dabbing, flicking, slashing, and especially pressing. I love pressing. (If I'm missing an action--sue me later--I'm in the middle of something!)

Even though I'm in a show right now--I haven't had a day dedicated to movement in far too long. I spent this summer working with amazing movement scholars--Tom Leabhart, Antonio Fava, Colleen Kelly, Kate Norris--wonderful people who have spent their lives dedicated to studying the human body. But it's been so long since I've really dived into this stuff. I can't describe how wonderful it was.

The music played and the two of us just moved throughout the house. Most of the time we were off in our own worlds, but sometimes the worlds came together and we created some great physical storytelling. There was one time where I was pressing towards the ground, taking my body towards the floor--when Spencer came over and pressed his back against my back--pressing me down faster, I took the pressure and morphed myself into another shape and snuck up out from under him into a whole new creation. It's really hard to describe--but suffice it to say--it was cool!

Then we did some mirroring and some ball exercises.

I am so happy today. Between the dancing yesterday, and the great show today--I'm a happy girl. And I'm teaching 3 classes next quarter so hopefully I'll be able to pay the bills!

After this afternoon's show--I got home in time to catch some sun.

Dancing days are here to stay.

Friday, April 4, 2008

I hurt my foot

I have a hurt foot.

This sucks because I have been trying to either walk or run every day--and today's walk was a pathetic excuse for walking. I hobbled about 2 miles than gave up. I'm not an invalid--I think I just broke a teensy weensy bone in my foot and it's making walking a little difficult. It's stupid. But it's driving me crazy!

This is my last week of vacation. I'm trying to make the most of it. But, I think I've done a good job of visiting new places and experiencing new things over the course of the past few weeks. I feel vacationed. I'm ready to get back to the business of doing theatre. We've been on a hiatus while the schools we're performing for are testing. It's a nice treat because we still get paid--we just don't have to work. Hence, Spencer (my co-worker) and I have been gallivanting about the countryside.

But today, I was bored. My day was filled with things to do. I went on my turtle walk, then attempted to do sit-ups. My main event of the day was going to the Washington DC Temple! It was beautiful! The front lawn of the temple was sprinkled in red tulips! It was cold and wet, but the temple was radiant!

I haven't been in too long. I enjoyed my time there. I had plenty of time to ponder and pray and just enjoy being in the temple. I could feel my head clearing while I was there.

I had Crystal and her family in my prayers throughout the day. She spoke at her nephew's funeral today and I was praying that everything would be all right.

I wish I had more interesting things to report. I'm kind of just waiting for something exciting to happen today. Tomorrow, Aja comes into town and General Conference is this weekend!! And next week, I'm back to working all day and night. So I guess I should enjoy tomorrow.

But I'll probably just be bored and complain some more about my hurt foot.

I'm such a baby. I'm going to totally take advantage of tomorrow's nothingness and sleep in until noon!! I shall not squander my vacation!! I vow to be as lazy as humanly possible tomorrow!!! This is my quest!!