Tuesday, February 27, 2007

The Reason I Will Die an Early Death from a Massive Coronary Explosion

In-N-Out Burger offers their fries "animal style." For a while, I had thought that this process, which involves adding grilled onions, extra cheese, and extra special sauce, could only be done to their burgers.

But no. Just say the word, and you, in an act of cheesy delicious gluttonous goodness, can get your fries animal style.

With this in mind, I will be updated/creating my will accordingly. If anybody wants any of my stuff in particular, leave me a message in the comments.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Grad School Audition, Or, Why I Didn't Get Much Sleep the Last Couple of Days

I had an audition for an MFA program for acting this morning. In case you don't know, an MFA is much like an MA except recepients of this degree tend to have slightly looser wrists.

Jokes in poor taste aside, the program that I'd sell at least one kidney to get into is small, and, due to the fact that it is run in conjunction with a regional theatre that every couple of years sends shows to Broadway, I suspect that this program would even make a happy man out of perennial sour-puss Richard Milhouse Nixon.

The audition itself went well. I had to prepare a couple of monologues, which wasn't a huge deal, and I think I played them pretty well. They said that they'd let me know in a couple of weeks, which is, of course, theatre-speak for "Your acting just threw up in my mouth a little bit," or, occasionally, "We'll let you know in a couple of weeks."

However, what did bring on a bout of existential angst was the few minutes I spent in a room with another auditioner prior to both of our auditions. I had been told to wait in a specified room, and upon my entrance, I noticed a woman in there, who was probably in a similar age range as myself. We said hello, and then went back to our respective personal bubbles.

Or at least I did. The woman got up and started to stretch, which I found to be a reasonable use of time. Stretching is a good way to loosen up so that you're at your best for all types of stressful circumstances, such as athletics or running from the law. While she stretched, I went back to going over the words of my monologues, hoping that I wouldn't have some kind of bizarre black out, and look like a goober in my audition. However, in her stretching, I noticed that she had bent over at the waist, which I just assumed meant that she had had some good dance training, because she was obviously very flexible, but before I could think any more about it, the woman did a somersault in the middle of the room.

As you may have guessed, I wasn't quite sure what to do with this, and this is where the angst enters this narrative. All of a sudden, I began second guessing myself. Should I be doing somersaults? Am I a bad actor because I do not do somersaults before auditions? Would I be a better actor if I did somersaults in rooms that have people that I've never met while wearing fairly nice clothes? Etc.

This is a definite point to ponder. I wonder if my gym offers tumbling classes. Perhaps that's what I'm missing.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Something I Don't Get About Myself

Nearly every day, I come home late at night, because that's just how I roll. Invariably, I am exhausted and seeking the sweet comfort of sleep. Nevertheless, lately, I have found a new addiction that robs me of my sleep.

Why is it that I find myself drawn, like moth to flame, to the History Channel? Seriously, can anyone answer me this question?

And, the thing is, I would understand this obsession if I were drawn to the supposedly "cool" shows that that channel has to offer. For example, if you were channel surfing, and you came across a show that had to do with secret societies, many of you would stick around for a few minutes to learn something that is fairly entertaining.

This is not the case with me. When I roll past the History Channel, and I see that it's a show on secret societies, I keep on a-flipping, because Lord knows I just don't much care about things that normal people find interesting. However, if I'm changing channels and I happen upon a show about the Presidency of Richard Nixon or just how was that the reconstruction of the South happened after the Civil War, brother, you've got my rapt attention for the better part of an hour.

I've found that the History Channel can only be trumped by something funny on Comedy Central late at night (which is unlikely), heavily edited for tv horror movies from the early nineties starring people who are famous today (see Leprechaun starring Jennifer Aniston in tiny shorts), or, if the mood hits me, any movie that I already own. Now, when I say that last bit, I don't mean the "good" version that I have on dvd; I mean the crummy version that has been edited for tv. It can be a movie that I haven't seen or wanted to see in years, but if I find it on television, I am compelled to watch it as well.

Ah well. At least I'm getting my money's worth for the cable.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Complainy Monday

1) Blogger just forced me into switching to the NEW Blogger as opposed to just keeping the old blogger. The biggest difference so far seems to be that instead of being able to log in with the name analystcatalyst, I must now log in with the email address analystcatalyst@gmail.com (please do not write me there unless you like that fact that I will likely not get back to you until the next time I check that address, which will likely be around the same time as the next ice age). I think that this is a genius tactic on Blogger's part because it has taken my login, which was already long to begin with, and made it longer. Because if there's one thing that makes a consumer happy, it's providing the SAME SERVICES UNDER SLIGHTLY MORE DIFFICULT CIRCUMSTANCES.

2) The door that leads to the stairwell on my floor was, for a short time, repeatedly opened and slammed shut, and the handle was repeatedly turned with great force. Based on this evidence, I can only conclude that my company was providing an outreach on door-opening to the unfortunate people of the community who, for whatever reason, never learned how to open a door. Failing this, my only other theory is that mentally-handicapped rhesus monkeys have been let loose in the afore-mentioned stairwell.

While I'm on the topic of rhesus monkeys, please remember that:

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Understudy Rehearsal Today

This afternoon, the show that I am in is holding an understudy rehearsal to enable the understudies to go over the music with the musical director.

I am the understudy for two roles, neither of which have solos, and one which is an entirely non-singing role.

I find this situation profoundly humorous.

Monday, February 05, 2007

The Return of Heartless McCrymeariver

This afternoon, NPR's local affiliate station, KPBS, ran a feature on economic inequality. That is, they talked about the fact that some people are poor and some people are rich, and how, they wondered, can the poor be helped into having more money. They offered opinions on a spectrum of ideas from tax breaks to improving and expanding the education that lower-income households receive.

Immediately after this segment, a KPBS reporter went on the air saying (to an audience that is, likely, primarily made up of upper income, leftwards leaning folk) that if you liked the previous program, please consider making a contribution to KPBS, as it is pledge week.

Man, KPBS is getting as good at making people give money as most churches.

Friday, February 02, 2007

You Know What's Funny? Pretending to Punch Women

There is a part in the show that I'm in where a large group of the cast gathers behind a see-through curtain and sings a little bit at the end of perhaps the most serious scene in the show. We enter to stand behind this curtain about forty-five seconds before we actually sing, and during this time, we are expected to stand quietly frozen while looking at the ground.

A few nights ago, a buddy of mine in the cast who is not a part of the group that stands behind the curtain was trying to make me giggle by whispering things like "AC is a sexy man," and various other items that are not necessarily repeatable in this context. This is what is affectionately referred to in theatre circles as "being a jackass." I managed to keep myself composed pretty well.

Nevertheless, our group sang our bit which was followed by a blackout that ends the scene. It was during this time that I decided to, on my way offstage, playfully pretend to punch my buddy in the stomach. I did so, and continued to pass the person who I had punched, smiling to myself at the playful banter. I continued smiling until I noticed that my friend who I had punched was in front of me. I found this peculiar largely due to the fact that I had passed the person who I had punched.

It was at that moment that I realized that I had just pretended to punch the midsection of the woman who plays the main mother in the show, who had also been waiting in the wings to make here entrance. My heart immediately sunk a little bit, and I figured that I had had a good run at that playhouse, and that my check would be in the mail.

The woman ended up being amused by the whole incident, especially after I explained what had happened, and, at the next performance, actually hit me back, which I guess was fair. In any case, all of this just goes to show that the old saying is true: when you pretend to punch someone in a blackout, you will sometimes accidentally punch the wrong person, and you will feel like you will get fired, but then that person will be okay with it.

Feel free to quote me on that saying. I might make t-shirts of it because of its inherent wisdom.