Monday, March 13, 2023


Sweet Hubby is very -  one might even say extremely - conscious of security.  He is always scoping the landscape or situation for what might go wrong, and takes whatever preventive measures he can.  Stepping from our kitchen onto our backyard deck, for example, entails getting out a hidden key, unlocking two locks on the door, then unlocking the screen door.  

I know I should be grateful for being kept so safe, and I am to a certain degree.  But I also rebel, sometimes inwardly, sometimes outwardly, against all this attention given to what can go wrong.  That's not where I want to focus my thoughts.  I once lived with a gunsmith who had 3 large dogs, a gun in his fanny pack, a gun under the pillow, a gun in the glove box.  I should have felt supremely safe, but instead I felt uncomfortable and stressed, not because I was concerned about a gun accident  but because all those security measures seemed to shout out, "The bad guys are going to get us!  We have to protect ourselves every moment!"

I'm no cock-eyed optimist wearing rose-colored glasses.  I've been mugged 5 times, my car has been broken into and my tires slashed.  And I've experienced my share of non-malicious dangers as well.  I've had my missteps and falls; I was once concussed while crossing the street by a stop light a driver had knocked over.  I know there are criminals.  I know gun violence is on the rise in this country.  I lock the house when I leave home and my car when I park.  This isn't me closing my eyes and stopping up my ears, singing, "Lalala, the world is safe, nothing bad will ever happen to meeeeee!"

What I rebel against is focusing on what's bad and dangerous.  There is a worldview encouraged by political leaders and given a megaphone by the media that we, the public, have a right to be safe and that our safety is under imminent and constant threat.  This kind of thinking is both ugly and ridiculous.  Ridiculous because of course we are not safe in this world, and have no reason to think that we ought to be.  There unquestionably are dangers galore, from microscopic germs to melting glaciers to outright war, slippery surfaces, hard edges, falling branches, drunk drivers, thieves, etc. ad infinitum.  And ugly because this worldview is fear-based, and people make very bad decisions when choosing from fear.  TSA is one big fear-based mess of a waste of time, energy, and resources.

I believe there are those who want me to feel afraid so that I will look to them to protect me.  That is what I rebel against.  I simply don't want to buy what they're selling. Bad things may happen, will happen.  But I decline to be thinking about them all the time.  That's just not where I want my thoughts and energy to go.  I'll take my chances, thank you very much, and I'll just  handle what comes.  

Friday, March 10, 2023

Whose sensitivies?

This is a time of super-sensitivity in American culture.  A lot of our leaders are proclaiming they want to protect (white) students from any uncomfortable feelings, even to the point of banning books, which is always an alarming omen of a possible theocracy or dictatorship on the rise.  One political party seems much more interested in and disturbed by what bathrooms and pronouns people use than in coming up with, let's say, affordable health care.

I've been thinking about this topic a lot lately, and of course am distressed and disgusted by the trend toward censorship and the imposition of supposedly Biblical standards in schools.  And it has occurred to me that it's not really children these political leaders are trying to protect.  It is themselves; it is their own discomfort they are trying to legislate away.

It is an uncomfortable and disturbing time, after all.  Four years of Trump and the ensuing political rancor and divisiveness, the normalization of lying, mass shootings on the rise, Covid still and permanently among us, technology becoming more a more pervasive, invasive part of our lives, racial tension, sexual identity tension, the glut of information, disinformation, lies, rumors, and gossip available on the Internet.  It can feel for us elders as though everything we're used to is being upended.  I certainly feel it, the bewilderment of navigating a world that isn't mine any more, a world so changed as to feel almost unrecognizable.

During the late 60's and early 70's, when the women's liberation movement was right up there with the antiwar protests, the gay rights movement, and the social justice movement as a vehicle for change, I remember my dad saying that he didn't know if he was going to insult a woman by holding the door for her or not holding the door for her.  The etiquette he had learned was being torn to pieces.  Language was changing ("It's fire fighter, not fireman!"), mores were changing ("Why shouldn't two men get married?"), and it must have felt to my parents like an upside down world.  And let's face it: change is upsetting.

The trouble is that some of our elected leaders, rather than helping the rest of this through these changes with grace and wisdom, are instead using their positions of power to make laws and pass bills meant to make the world more comfortable for them.  They don't really care about kids (although they are wildly fond of fetuses); they just want to feel better themselves, want the world to feel safer and more familiar.  It's kind of sad, really and I could feel sorry for them if they weren't such power-hungry imbeciles.

Thursday, March 2, 2023

What's my motive and why am I suspicious of it?

Sweet Hubby and I alternate which one of us gets to decide what movie or series to watch when we settle in at night.  Last night was my turn, and for some reason, I really wanted to see a documentary chronicling the history of racism in this country.  And I found myself wondering: why do I want to watch this?

I know racism exists, was actually written into this country's Constitution because it was written by slave owners.  I know it's rampant still, and appalling and disgusting and wrong.  I am aware of many of the cruelties inflicted by racists, past and present, the vast majority of whom suffer no consequences.  So what was I hoping to get from watching this documentary?

Did I want to gawk at all that unspeakable cruelty, the way drivers gawk at even the most minor car accidents?

Did I want to be informed?  Certainly there is a lot more for me to learn, but nothing that could make me more sad or angry or horrified than I already am.

Did I want to test myself, check myself out for my own unrecognized prejudices?

Did I want to feel just and righteous, as though I have proved something about my virtuous character by watching it?  To feel superior to those people who stand under a lynched person with smiles on their faces?

Did I want to feel inspired to action?  But to what action?  What am I supposed to do?

Maybe I just want to understand, on the most visceral level possible, this horrible disease which infects my country down to its very bones and nerves and cells.  I don't know.  A lot to think about.  I wish I were braver.

Sunday, February 19, 2023

The price of satisfaction

I have experienced just enough moments of greatness to realize that, on the whole, I am a disappointment to myself.

Believe me, I'm not unhappy or depressed about this.  And I know that every day, every second, offers the possibility of a new start.

The trouble is that my greatest wish has been granted.  My greatest desire has been fulfilled.  And that has considerably softened my drive.

What I have wanted most in life was to be loved, securely loved.  To be with a partner with whom I don't have to try to be any way but exactly the way I am.  Somebody I can be as strong with as I am, can go toe to toe with.  To be in a happy, relaxed home, free from tension.  To have someone to go through old age with, because it looks as though some of that is going to be really hard.  To have someone to share my sense of humor with, to get gooey over kittens with.  Someone to help me with (meaning handle) technology so that I can remain a Luddite.

And now I have all that, all that and more.  My drive (except for those big honkin' O's) has diminished.  I'm so content just hangin' out, being domestic, taking walks, getting together with friends, being with my husband and kitties.

Yes, Sweet Hubby, if I'm a disappointment, I'm afraid it's your fault.

I wonder if this is why women haven't taken over leadership of the world. Is it possible that our maternal drive (not universal but certainly common enough for generalization) becomes fulfilled by children (or by pets for some of us) and so we simply don't feel the urge to fight and conquer and lead and be the warriors we could be?  We outnumber and outlive men.  We fought for and got the vote.  Why are we not in charge?   Surely it would be a sweeter world if we were.  Hmmmmm.

Wednesday, February 15, 2023

Following up

Thank you to everyone who posted comments of enthusiasm after the most recent entry about the two auditions.  Here's the latest:  The morning of the day I was scheduled to audition for the second, larger role, I got a text from my agent letting me (and her other clients) know that the role had been cast and we would not be auditioning.

So now I'm waiting to hear if I get the smaller role.  But if one role has been cast, there's a good chance they both have been, so I'm not harboring any expectations.  Still, it was nice to have the opportunity to strut my stuff, and nice to read the casting directors comments. I don't much mind not getting a role when I know I've done my best.  That just means I'm not what they were looking for.  There will be other episodes of the show, and other roles needing actors, so fingers crossed for another chance in the future.  

Now, back to putting my focus on writing. 

Friday, February 10, 2023

Something happened and it's big - to me

I have always wanted to be a professional actress.  I mean always.  I cannot remember a time when I didn't fervently, hungrily, rather desperately want to act.  For a long time I also wanted to be famous, but that fever dream died when I matured enough to understand how ghastly fame can be, what toll it can take on a life.  But still, I wanted to be an actress.  

I dropped out of college to go to Hollywood to pursue a career, and had just enough success to stay hopeful, never enough to be satisfied.  Fortunately, at some point I discovered that I have a talent for playwrighting and began to put my focus on that.  In a lot of ways, writing is much more satisfying than acting because I don't have to wait for someone to give me a job; I can write any time, anywhere, about anything.  I've had more success with writing, and even thought I was giving up my acting career when I moved to Seattle.  I had no idea that my career would be revitalized here, that I would have even more success than in Los Angeles.  I think I'm a better actress now, and I certainly do better at auditions, because I no longer have that youthful, desperate hunger.  I do my best, and then I go home and write.

To cut to the chase, I recently auditioned for a nice little role in a TV show.  And it turned out the audition went so well, I now have an audition for a different, bigger role on the same episode.  My agent shared with me that the casting director had texted her, after my first audition, "She is beyond lovely.  Such a beautiful soul and great read."  This second role I'm reading for is substantial.  The character has a name (not all my small roles have had), several scenes, a tragic background, a story arc.  And if I don't get this role, I feel pretty certain I'll get the first one I read for.

In my world, this is huge.  This is fantastic news.  This is incredibly affirming, tells me that I may actually have some acting talent.  The  prospect of getting a  role like this at this point in my career is terribly exciting, like jump up and down exciting.

What feels strange is that I don't really have anyone to tell about this.  Sweet Hubby is happy for me and proud of me, of course, but he's not a jump up and down kind of guy.  My non-acting friends will also be happy for me, but won't really understand the significance of this chapter, and if I tell my acting friends, who would understand, it would feel like bragging or lording it over them.  So I'm saying it here.  I'M SO EXCITED!!  I DID A GOOD JOB!  THEY LIKE ME, THEY REALLY LIKE ME!  I'M GOOD AT THIS!!  And always the thought in the background that I don't like to admit but can't ignore: Maybe this will lead to something even bigger and better.  It probably won't.  Heck, I might not get either role.  But I've never been one to avoid getting excited just because I might be disappointed later. So right now I'm just going to go ahead and be thrilled. 

Monday, January 30, 2023

A plopping problem

I am not getting nearly enough exercise these days, and it's all the kitties' fault.

Every time I set up the living room for a workout, Bandy and Angel show up, no matter where nor how deeply they have been napping.  Bandy is a pretty good sport; she just sits on the sidelines looking at me with an expression of "Here I am, aren't you going to pet me?".

Angel is much more assertive.  She will come right to my feet, even if they are moving, plop on the rug, roll onto her back and show her belly.  How can I resist?  Of course I immediately go down to the floor to scratch and rub and stroke her until she is in a fair ecstasy of purring.  And, since I don't ever want to favor one over the other, I'll then go to Bandy, whose ecstasy consists of wrestling with a peacock feather.  

Having satisfied them both for the moment, I'll start my workout or dancing again, but before long, there is little Miss Angel at my feet.  Even if I wanted to resist, I couldn't ignore her completely because I would surely step on her.  It's a terrible dilemma, and I'm losing a lot of workout time.

I could put them both into another room and shut the door, but that would feel to them like a punishment, and they aren't really doing anything wrong.  When SH is downstairs in his office, they are very happy to go down with him and sleep together in the big, fluffy bed on his desk, but his time downstairs doesn't always coincide with my workouts.  Of course I can take long walks, as long as it's not raining too hard, but I like more variety in my workouts than just walking, such as resistance training with weights, and yoga, and step, and all sort of other fun routines.

To people without cats, this might seem like a faux problem.  "Just keep pushing them out of the way until they catch on, or do that locking them in another room thing.  For heaven's sake, don't be a victim to your pet."  But anyone who is a cat lover/owner understands that a belly-up cat is virtually impossible to ignore.  It is a sign of such trust, and it's just so darned adorable.  

I suppose it's possible that at some point, they will both come to be uninterested in my moving feet and not bother to show up for the workouts.  And you know what?  At that point, I will probably miss them terribly and wish they would get underfoot again.

In the meantime, I'm going for a walk.