Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Do It Well

I don't remember when I decided I wanted to be a writer, but for as long as I can remember, it has been my ultimate goal.  Even as a kid, I would write stories all the time and my imagination was crazy and huge.  I would always read books and get jealous that it wasn't me who wrote them (actually, that still happens all the time.)

I started performing as a creative outlet and a way to come out of my shell and it just stuck.  I love improvising and I love performing a whole lot.  I don't like stand-up or performing alone, but acting and improvising I can totally get behind.  But I don't love it nearly as much as writing.  That's just the truth. And the truth is, I never feel as confident performing as I do writing.  When I'm writing, I know how to execute exactly what it is that I'm trying to execute.  I feel confident with jokes and plot and all of that - and I love being able to put it down for a little bit and coming back to it and finding NEW jokes and NEW stories.  You can't do that with improv, which is the beauty of it.

But I love writing.  It satisfies and fulfills me.  And I figured out that when I really put time and effort into it, I do it pretty well.  (Also, I'm not exactly talking about this blog, although I do put time and effort into it as well.)  I feel REAL good when I finish writing something.  When I get in a "writing zone", it's like being on crack.  (Not that I have any idea what crack feels like.) (I MEAN IT, I DON'T KNOW WHAT CRACK FEELS LIKE.) When I'd get a sketch into a show, I would get really happy because that was a bigger victory to me than just being in the show.  Writing was what I cared the most about and what I spent hours working on outside of being down in that theater.  And when I submit something to a website (be it Thought Catalog or HelloGiggles or whatever) and I get that email back that says they'd like to submit it - I am completely overjoyed, even if it's not that big of a deal.

I'm glad I moved to L.A. because being here forces me to do shit.  I made a decision and moved somewhere to chase a dream and now I'm forced to do it.  And I've got to do it well.  Or, at the very least, I have to learn how to do it well and get better at it and spend all the time that I have available honing that craft and making it happen.  When you're good at something, or at least when you feel confident in your abilities, you've got to do it.

I know that I won't be happy if I settle and get comfortable doing a job that I don't love.  I don't want to settle.  Settling is terrifying.  I got to spend a year and a half doing what I loved for a living.  It was a total dream and I would have done it forever if there wasn't something MORE that I wanted.  All I know is that right now, I'm doing what I have to do to make a living and get settled here in California, but I will spend every other available minute doing what I want to do and making sure that I do it well so I can get exactly where I need/want/have to be.

Let's get 'er done.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Podcasts and Being Mean

image found here

With all the driving that I’ve been doing (and using Spotify at the same time), I’ve decided to finally come around to podcasts. 

Yes, it’s 2014 and I’m finally coming around to podcasts.

I have a really horrible attention span… huge focus issues.  Talking does not keep my attention!  Even if you’re looking at me in the eye and speaking DIRECTLY at me, chances are I’m practicing dance moves in my head or wondering what I’m going to watch on Food Network later on.  (The answer is probably Chopped.) 

But, I got bored listening to my Spotify playlists.  In the two-ish hours that I’m in the car every single day, it gets kind of old listening to The Supremes sing “Can’t Hurry Love” that many times.  I figured, I should make the time worthwhile and learn something.  And by learn something, I mean listen to my favorite comedians talk about their comedy stories.  Not like… math or something.  I don’t want to listen to math podcasts.  DO NOT SEND ME MATH PODCASTS.   

I started with Dick van Dyke’s WTF (with Marc Maron) because, well, I’m me.  I’m a 27 year old who’s in love with an 88 year old man who was way before my time.  But who didn’t grow up with him?  Who didn’t watch The Dick van Dyke Show on Nick-at-Nite?  Who didn’t watch Mary Poppins as a kid?  I read his book a couple of years ago and I just fell head over heels for his charm and his career.  I cried at the end of it because I was just enamored with him and how gracious he was for all the opportunities he was given in life.  And when Marc ended the podcast, he was in total disbelief that he got to experience that.  He literally said, “That happened.”  And I cried.  (And then I Google’d how to send Dick van Dyke fan mail and found his address and found out it was 30 minutes from my work and freaked out.)

And then I listened to Amy Poehler’s WTF.  She said something great that really spoke to me.   She was talking about how people didn’t like how mean other characters were to Leslie Knope on Parks and Recreation, and she said nobody realized that was the case because “nobody wants to be mean to anyone, they just want to be funny.”

Whoa.  THAT’S RIGHT!  I think of all the times I would get frustrated or annoyed with people for throwing me under the bus in scenes (or, in life when people make jokes at other people’s expense.)  I still do think they’re cheap jokes at times, when people are real desperate for laughs.  But, at the heart of it, they’re not TRYING to be a douche; they’re just trying to be funny.  That’s their only goal.  They’re not looking to hurt you and they’re certainly not out to get you – they’re just trying to be funny!  That doesn’t make it any better, sometimes, but I guess it’s a nice little reminder to shake things off and take mean jokes a lot less personal.   

So, there you have it folks – my goal to make my driving time a little bit more productive was accomplished.  I learned something during my drive!   I learned that all those times the audience begged me to get off the stage, they were just trying to get laughs. 

Just kidding.  That never happened.  At least, oh God, did it?  Were those jeers towards me?  I have to go re-evaluate my life. 

Monday, April 14, 2014

Things to Love on a Monday

1. i absolutely love this shirt and katie's style is so perfect!

2. working on my night cheese! blerg. found here.

3. love this floral letter from kate and stripes.
i wonder how my boyfriend would feel about a huge floral letter on the wall.

 4. this tiny sailboat tattoo is the most ADORABLE.

 5. this color combination.

6. but, for real though. don't give up.

7. we have swan boats in boston... they look nothing like this. 

8. pony drink stirrers. we all need those, right?

9. vintage girls are the coolest girls.

10. because mad men has returned!

happy monday!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Yelling at Strangers

Driving home from work has been a new thing for me.  Even when I lived in Boston, I never did that.  My work was ON MY STREET.  (And my previous job was around the corner!)  The only time I ever drove to and from work was in high school when I worked at Build-a-Bear Workshop.  (Funny, right?  I got fired.)

My favorite part of driving home is listening to music... because what else am I going to do?  DRIVE?  I don't want to listen to the radio.  I want to listen to all of my carefully curated playlists!  (They just happen to all consist of every Michael Jackson album.)

And the other day, as I was at a red light and bringing up my Spotify app, the light turned green.  And I didn't catch it within the first second.  I caught it on maybe the second second.  Oh boy!  Someone got mad.  It wasn't the person behind me.  Or the person behind that person.  It was just some guy on a bike on the sidewalk who was in no way affected by my lack of going on green.

Should I have been on my phone?  No.  But should this guy have been so crazy offended and angry?  No!  As I started driving, I heard (and excuse my language here) "GO, DUMBASS. GET OFF YOUR FUCKING PHONE, YOU FUCKING BITCH."

I didn't even turn and look at him because my first reaction would be angry yelling when I know that wouldn't fix anything or make anyone's day better.  Then I felt bad for him.  Why was he so mad?  What kind of day did he have?  Why did he feel the need to SCREAM at someone that wasn't affecting his commute whatsoever?  And then I just wish I had said something super corny like, "Hey, I'm sorry you had a bad day, we all make mistakes, right?" and then laughed it off... because it would have been honest... and it would have pissed him off!  I get that I was in the wrong, but did he have to be so aggressive?  It was really weird!  Like super offputting.  Like, I couldn't stop thinking about it after - and not even because I was upset.

Moral of the story?  Don't use your phone while you're driving, even at a red light.  (That's just common sense and I was absolutely in the wrong.)  Also, calm down everyone.  Calm down!  Don't yell at people!  If someone does something stupid and you've had a bad day - don't scream at them.  At least try to understand that they just really wanted to hear the song "Baby Be Mine" off the Thriller album.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

The Joy of Boobs

Hi friends, old and new.  Today I want to talk about boobs with you.

I’ve wanted to write this post for a while, but I never worked up the courage.  I thought, “What a weird thing to write about” or “People are going to yell at you for complaining about big boobs” or… various other things.  But, the truth is, although I am quite fine with what I’ve been given – they’re really frustrating some times.

Take, today, for example.  I went through my closet before ultimately picking up whatever was on the floor and throwing it on.  And then I thought, “Hm, this shows off my chest a little too much though.”  And then, as I scanned the rest of my closet, I realized that EVERYTHING DOES.  If a neckline is too high, it shows off too much.  If a neckline is too low, it (obviously) shows off too much.  Sweetheart, V-neck, scoop neck… EVERYTHING SHOWS OFF TOO MUCH.  Even if I wear an oversized men's BUTTON DOWN, well guess what?  There's gaping and everything pops out! What do I wear?  A Hefty bag?  Because I have one and will!

In high school, my friend Janine wore a white tank top (commonly referred to as a “wife beater”) to school.  She wore it with jeans, or something low key, and they were in during that time so everyone was ALWAYS wearing them.  However, Janine was blessed with big boobs.  She’d always had them.  In fact, when I first met her in 8th grade, it was the first thing I noticed about her.  (I mean, I’m sorry Janine – but your boobs are huge!  You’re also very pretty and your hair is red no matter what you think.) Well, when an administrator saw Janine, she was pulled out of class and got into trouble for wearing revealing clothing.  Her argument was, “Everyone else is wearing the same thing.” And they basically said, “Yeah, well, they’re not as revealing on other people.” Which is RIDICULOUS.

So, today, after feeling empowered and ultimately deciding to just wear the dress (I’m really running out of options nowadays – I need new clothes) – I started feeling really silly.  Even as I was driving to work, I started pulling my sweater over my chest area and holding it closed, as if other drivers were appalled by my chest all of a sudden.  I got to work and held the sweater closed and now still, I have one button done while I sit down so that if I slouch or something, it doesn’t offend anyone (or get me in trouble… although I highly doubt that happening.)

Big boobs are a blessing and a curse.  They’re mostly just annoying.  It’s hard to buy clothes without trying EVERYTHING on because you have to make sure it’ll be the right fit for your chest.  A dress or shirt will fit everywhere else – and be too big in most cases – and then stupid boobs ruin everything.  EVERYTHING!  They just do not work in today's fashion world.  Even this cardigan over dress combo that I'm awkwardly rocking right now would look cute and demure on anyone else, but on me... I look like a porn star trying to pretend she's not a porn star.  

And don't even get me started on the back problems and issues with finding bras. 

I know, I know... "grass is greener" and stuff.  I'm sure if I had smaller boobs, I'd be annoyed too!  All I'm saying is, they're not all they're cracked up to be.  Don't go wasting your time wishing you had them, or thinking they'll fix all the problems in your life because while they may get you some (usually unwanted) attention... they will add more stress and pressure.  That's just a literal, physical fact.

And that was today's boob talk with Patty Barrett. 

Monday, April 7, 2014

Things to Love on a Monday

1. loved this quote.  i would love it drawn on my wall.

2. i'm debating going that color real hard. i'll probably chicken out. but i love it.

3. i want a vacation and i want to do this on it.

4. truth.

5. retro eye make-up is always awesome.

6. draper media console. yes please.
Urban Outfitters has the best furniture!

7. i kind of want a tattoo in that spot.

8. then again, i also want a tattoo everywhere.

9. bando is perfect. every time.

10. just about the PERFECT striped outfit.

happy monday!
i used to run this series a while ago.
and now... i want to bring it back. having a day job does that to me.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Rad Gal, Rad Gig!

I shared a little story about how my life as an improv comedian on Kaelah's blog, The Clueless Girl's Guide and it was published today as part of her "Rad Gal, Rad Gig" series.  If you'd like to check it out, please do!  And if you don't read her blog yet, I highly encourage it.  She's wonderful.

I've been reading her blog for a long time and as soon as I saw the first post in the series, I jumped at the chance to get involved.  Of course because I want to share my story - but also because I think it would be awesome for more women to get involved in comedy.  I also want people to realize it's more attainable than they think.  There are improv groups and theaters everywhere these days!  Anyways, I wrote it my first week in L.A. and it was just the perfect time.  I got to reflect on my past that I had just left behind while simultaneously pumping myself up for what's to come - whatever it may be.

To all the people who got here by viewing Kaelah's blog post, hello!  And thank you for coming by!  I promise you will sometimes be disappointed.

Now, how creepy do Cavan and I look with our faces joined together?  Real creepy!  You know what's funny?  Richie, the photographer who took the pictures, didn't have to do anything to our teeth.  They really look that similar.  A couple of tooth buddies.


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