Saturday, January 30, 2010

epic fail

Yeah, that once-a-week blogging thing? Not going so well.

I have an excuse for two weeks ago: I had an audition four out of the five days of the week, all of which required preparation; I had to go to my great-uncle's funeral; my parents came into town for said funeral; a friend showed up at my door on Wednesday afternoon and stayed until Saturday. There was a lot going on, so I'm not going to beat myself up over that one.

This week, though? No excuse. I thought I was going to be working a temp job Wednesday through Friday, but it ended up getting canceled Tuesday afternoon, so I had three free days. And while I was able to accomplish a wide variety of things (laundry, signing up for a gym membership, getting my hair cut, cleaning my bathroom), this blog sat, untouched.


Maybe there's just not a lot for me to write about. I'm waiting to hear if I'm getting an acting job in the spring (I already have one lined up for late March/early April). I have a date on Sunday. I'm starting a hardcore push to push my career to the next level. Otherwise...not a heck of a lot to report.

I promise, though, that there WILL be a post next Wednesday. It's my anniversary. I have to celebrate that with a post, right?

Wednesday, January 13, 2010


Last night I went on a date. (Ah, the excitement of single life.) The date was with a young lady who...well...let's just say that she deserves her own post. We saw Up In The Air, which is a fantastic movie - but maybe not one you should see on a date. One of the central themes of the movie is about connections, and whether or not a person really needs a partner.

This movie really hit home for me for several reasons - it's essentially an exaggerated version of my lifestyle - but especially because of this idea of partners. I've been thinking a lot about partners lately. I kind of had a horrifying breakthrough in therapy last week:

I want to be in a relationship.

I was actually kind of shocked by that discovery. I mean, I just got out of an on-and-off situation that lasted for almost eight years! I've been single for only a few months - well, eight...but that doesn't seem like that long! Shouldn't I be on the prowl every night? Shouldn't I be sleeping with everything that moves? Shouldn't I be looking to hook up with young women who don't have a care in the world? Sure, those things are all fun...but I want more than that.

And that makes me feel incredibly weak.

My therapist, when I mentioned that to her, reminded me that human beings are designed for companionship. And, logically, I know she's right. And I also know, logically, that while I do want a female companion - a "plus one", if you will - that I'm not ready to jump into marriage and children and all that stuff right now. But emotionally I feel like they're all interconnected.

I'm in an interesting place right now.

I feel like there's more to share about this, but I can't really form the words right now. Let's come back to this after I've had some food...

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

New Year's meme 2009

OK, as we've established, 2009 sucked big fat donkey balls. But before we forget about it forever, why not get a little bit more in detail about the (occasional) ups and the (numerous) downs of the year? I mean, I didn't share a lot of it here. So consider this like the recap of 2009. You know, before we start 2010.

Here we go. Thanks, belle chanson, for giving me the idea.

What did you do in 2009 that you'd never done before?
I flew a plane and steered a boat in consecutive days. That was pretty awesome.

Did you keep your New Year's resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
Well, here's the list, if you're so inclined. I did pretty well, actually, except for the debt thing.

Did anyone close to you give birth?
Melissa did! And her baby is awesome!

Did anyone close to you die?
Yes - my friend's father, unexpectedly. Very sad. My heart goes out to her and her family.

What countries did you visit?
I stayed home in 2009 - but I went all over this grand country of ours. So I think that counts.

What would you like to have in 2010 that you lacked in 2009?
Oh my God, this list could break the internet. I'll oversimplify this and say that I'd really like a bit more consistency in my life.

What date(s) from 2009 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
Probably the two worst days: April 16 and September 24. But I do have fond memories of February 1 (the Steelers, people!).

What was your biggest achievement of the year?
I'm tempted to say, "Getting up in the morning," but that would be overly flip. Probably moving into my own apartment...that was really exciting. I also think that walking away from my relationship was a really difficult - but necessary - decision, and I have to continually remind myself to give props for that.

What was your biggest failure?
Obviously, the relationship is up there, and all of the stuff around it. Funny that it can be both.

Did you suffer illness or injury?
Um...yes. A bacterial infection severely disrupted my life for two months, culminating in a four day hospital stay in late September. Turns out that it's really been affecting me for years; just not to this degree. I had a wicked sinus infection in January. I also pulled a hamstring for the first time, strained a quad, and injured my shoulder (the last two thanks to flag football). Good times.

What was the best thing you bought?
Since I don't actually own my apartment, that can't be it. I'd say the flat-screen I bought on December 29...except that it arrived broken on the 31st.

Whose behavior merited celebration?
My family and my close friends. They got me through the year.

Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
Personally, I don't really have an answer for that. How about all of those angry people who emerged AFTER the election? The time to have an effect on the process, people, was during the Presidential election in '08.

Where did most of your money go?
Probably to coffee shops so I could get online, and booze.

What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Doing my show in the first few months of the year. Moving into my new place. Spending lots of quality time in Sleepy Hamlet. Coming back to Brooklyn at the end of the year.

What songs will always remind you of 2009?
John Legend & Kanye West - "It's Over"
Keri Hilson & Lil Wayne - "Turnin Me On"
Jamie Foxx - "Blame It"
Black Eyed Peas - "I've Got A Feeling"
Drake - "Best I Ever Had"
Jay-Z - "Empire State of Mind"
Owl City - "Fireflies"

Compared to this time last year, are you:
I. Happier or sadder?

This answer kind of shocks me...but I think I'm happier.
II. Thinner or fatter?
Thinner, but not by much.
III. Richer or poorer?
Poorer, because I'm unemployed.

What do you wish you'd done more of?
Working, I guess!

What do you wish you'd done less of?
Spending time online and at home.

How will you be spending Christmas?
I spent Christmas in California with my family - very nice.

Did you fall in love in 2009?

How many one-night stands?
Zero. I'm not really a one-night stand kind of guy.

What was your favorite TV program?
The Wire narrowly edges out Mad Men. They're like 1A and 1B.

Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?

What was the best book you read?
I read this play that literally left me sobbing at the end of it - and, of course, I can't remember the name of it. I also really loved a book called Free For All by Kenneth Turan and Joseph Papp, about the creation of the Public Theater in New York.

What was your greatest musical discovery?
Maybe Drake? I think he's really great.

What did you want and get?
Independence, I guess.

What did you want and not get?
Several jobs I really wanted slipped out of my grasp, or just blew past me. I didn't land a new agent.

What was your favorite film of this year?
Up. So great. Pixar is highly underrated.

What did you do on your birthday, and how old?
I turned 32, and I had a fantastic day. Had some one-on-one time with a few good friends and my brother. It was low-key, and totally awesome.

What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
I think landing a summer job would probably have done the trick. This is a tough question to answer.

How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2009?
Growing up slowly.

What kept you sane?
My friends. The Steelers and Penguins both winning championships.

Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
I have a major-league crush on Kristen Bell.

What political issue stirred you the most?
I guess health care? After the excitement of the 2008 election, I didn't emotionally involve myself too much in politics in '09.

Who did you miss?

Who was the best new person you met?
Haha...this is a tie. I met several people while volunteering this summer, and as a group they are kickass! But I also have to give props to the woman I dated this fall - she is super fun.

Was 2009 a good year for you?
In a word - no.

What was your favorite moment of the year?
I don't know that I have one. There are certainly a few that I treasure:
- arriving in Old Village with the rest of my cast, and stepping out of the airport into near-perfect weather on New Year's Day
- getting In-N-Out Burger at midnight after the Steelers won Super Bowl XLIII
- seeing my mother like a little kid at the Grand Canyon
- moving into my new place
- volunteering and getting to "work" at the beach for a week with a great kid
- meeting a girl I really liked and feeling flip-flops in my stomach for the first time in ages
- seeing my best friend in her biggest production to date - and watching her crush the role
- going back to my Alma Mater and being put up in a ridiculous hotel
- my friend's wedding bringing so many Sleepy Hamlet cohorts together
- being congratulated by dozens of kids after a week at a high school and seeing that we had made a difference for them

Despite it being a lame year, there were some great moments.

What was your least favorite moment of the year?
It's a tie. The night/morning that I broke up with Maxine was horrific. And going to the hospital after throwing up all over myself (I don't know how I didn't get the paramedic) and laying in a bed in the ER feeling the worst pain I've ever felt in my life.

Where were you when 2009 began?
At Melissa's house.

Who were you with?

Where will you be when 2009 ends?
I was at the Flying Squirrel's house.

Who will you be with when 2009 ends?
With my friends.

What was your favorite month of 2009?
January and February were pretty good, but October was the best, despite feeling like crap.

How many different states did you travel to in 2009?
Twelve. But I won't tell you which ones. (Nice try, but I'm not ready to blow my cover yet.)

How many concerts did you see in 2009?
A couple of small ones, but nothing huge - which was nice for a change.

Did you have a favorite concert in 2009?
I went to a fun one in Sleepy Hamlet in October.

Did you do anything you are ashamed of this year?

What was the worst lie someone told you in 2009?
Ooooh. I don't know...probably something from my agent.

Did you treat somebody badly in 2009?

Did somebody treat you badly in 2009?

If you could go back in time to any moment of 2009 and change something, what would it be?
I'd probably end my relationship with Maxine sooner, honestly.

What are your plans for 2010?
That's an excellent question! I'm still figuring it out. I know that I need to put myself out there personally and professionally. I guess I just want to continue the healing process, live a healthy life, and continue to make myself happy.

Thanks for reading.

Friday, January 01, 2010

my 2009

I started this post on the subway last night, thinking that I would put it up online once I got to my friend's house, before we began our low-key New Year's celebration. I figured that, for once in '09, I'd follow through with something I'd said I'd do on the blog.

Didn't happen.

I suppose that's kind of fitting, because 2009 was not the best year for me. I'm reminded of the '80s children's book, "Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day".

OK, maybe I'm being a little dramatic. But I did have a rather dramatic breakup, ending an almost eight year relationship. I also suffered from declining health all year, resulting in a four day hospital stay the week of my birthday. I went through the worst financial crisis of my life - I actually had to borrow money from my parents to pay my rent more than once. And the father of one of my best friend's - someone who I considered a friend - unexpectedly passed away. And that's just the big stuff.

On more than one occasion last week, I mentioned that I just wanted to get out of 2009 "without anything else bad happening to me," which is why I wanted to wait until the year ended before writing about anything. I thought I was going to make it through unscathed...until my brand new HDTV died yesterday afternoon at 3pm, ONE HOUR after I hooked it up.


It just wasn't my year.

I have cause for optimism, though.

Yesterday, on the subway, I was listening to my iPod, which was shuffling through my top rated songs, and up popped an old jazz tune by Charles Mingus, called "Freedom". It's one of my favorites, and it's the only song on the album that has lyrics. The words are actually pretty depressing - but the song struck a chord for me. Even though all of those bad things happened to me last year, I managed to free myself from some unhappy and unhealthy situations.

And I suppose that's what's got me feeling the tiniest bit of optimism for 2010. I feel like an astronaut on a spaceship just launched into orbit. Everything familiar to me has fallen away behind me, like the earth disappearing behind me in the rear view mirror. Ahead of me: the beautiful, great unknown of space, in all of its splendor and majesty. My future feels like a blank slate - anything is possible. If I wanted to pick up and move to Kenya tomorrow, I could. Sometimes when I think about that fact, it makes me sad, but most of the time I just have a sense of excitement and possibility, because I know that I can fully take advantage of any opportunity that comes my way.

One last note. I don't know how this blog factors into my future. The quasi-anonymity that I've got going on here can actually be stifling at times, and, even though I love writing, I hate feeling like I'm obligated to post here, especially when I'm not sure how many people are still reading. But I'm so close to the five year anniversary of the creation of this blog, and I feel very strongly that I should follow through to at least that mark. I'm going to go back to the attempted model for 2009: one quality post a week. I'll post on Wednesdays, with an occasional something in between. I make no promises for anything past February 3.

Hope that you all start off this new decade in a positive way. See you in a few days.