Saturday, June 24, 2006

The secret of success is to go through life as someone who never gets used up.

Warning: Ranty blog commencing now.
This all is probably somewhat exaggerated, and I'm probably just grumpy, but it's been a frustrating night. I have this stupid suspicion that people do not or will not trust me with things that they all feel I lack the ability to do. Maybe they're assuming that I don't want to or can't, but I'm sitting here writing this e-mail, because of the four or five jobs I've been offered or volunteered to do, every single one of them has been taken by someone who is no more able than I. It's just been stupid like that all day. "Hey Liz, don't worry about pre-show tonight, Rachel's doing it." I LOVE doing pre-show now. "Hey will you be the Plaid girl tonight? Oh nevermind, Andrea's doing it. No, actually she can't because she's doing attic tech. Melissa will do it." Considering the fact that I spend "Plaid" sitting around and I have friends in the audience tonight, I would have loved that one line. Would you like me to do attic tech tonight? "No, Catherine learned all of it so you actually don't have to worry about it anymore." It was MY idea to learn that stuff in the first place so that Andrea could watch her husband. "Here, I'll count the money, Liz. I have to count it all anyway, so it doesn't really need to be sorted first." Not that I can't be trusted to help bundle the ridiculous amount of one's into twenty-five dollar bundles.
I AM PERFECTLY CAPABLE, IF NOT GOOD AT ALL OF THE THINGS THAT I WAS ASKED TO DO OR TRIED TO DO. And yet here I am, in Roger's office, nearly in tears at the fact that I do not feel at all like I'm meeting my full potential. If anyone has ever had a job where they felt they didn't have the opportunity to use all of their needed abilities, I know how you feel. I came here to the Playmill because I feel like I have so much to offer! Not only in performing, but I can do so much more that would be of value! I am experienced and in many cases talented in tech, cashiering, etc. etc. etc.! Grumble grumble grouse grouse!

Um, while I was writing all this, Christian came in and said hello, and apologized for kicking me out of the money, saying he felt bad, then came and gave me a hug and a kiss on the cheek. And also on the bright side, I'm not sick or in the hospital anymore. I'm surrounded by wonderful people I love and who love me, even if they don't realize that the Liz they love is a Liz who is still half in the shadows.

Monday, June 12, 2006

We are all born mad. Some remain so.

Rock on, Samuel Beckett.

So I'm not sure what happened to one of the three audio blogs I posted a few days ago. It's floating around in must have gotten lost somewhere between my phone and this site. Sorry.

I'm here at the theatre, with a few friends, and I got antsy, so I thought I'd do a little blogging. We came here to watch a movie on the big screen we can set up...the others are watching "Escape From Alcatraz," which is a great movie, and one that I highly recommend, I just wasn't in the mood for it tonight.

The other night, after we successfully opened "Plaid," the Merrills got us pizza (according to opening night tradition) and as we were sitting there, eating and talking and laughing, I looked around and thought "I am so happy and blessed to be here. There is nowhere else in the world I would rather be right now than right here, doing what I'm doing, with the people I'm with." Of course, I miss the other wonderful people who are a part of my life, and I miss the fun of school and the green of Oregon and the laughter of my family, but there is so much joy to be had in being in the right place at the right time. And I really feel that for me right now, that's here at the Playmill. I learn so much every day that I can't even keep track of it all; my journal is this random assortment of half-written entries and revelations. I'm making new friends, and growing closer to old ones. I love discovering who a person is, and to find myself caring about them and learning from them and finding ways to serve them.
I love looking into the faces of audience members every night and watching their expressions. I can't believe how many opportunities I have to touch people's lives EVERY SINGLE DAY. Everyone has that opportunity, but to do it in a theatre setting is such a different experience, and so thrilling.
And in some ways terrifying. I sort of talked about the whole "pretty" thing in the last entry, and it's a continual process of gaining confidence in myself, but its certainly coming a lot further than it was before. I had another growing experience some of you may know, I love to play the guitar. But I'm self-taught and don't have much theory knowledge, so I only play in front of friends. Well, J.D. is in charge of pre-show for this summer, and I told him I was scared to sing a pre-show song, and he told me to go for it. I told him that I really didn't want to sing, but if he asked me to, it would be good for me and help me overcome my fears. So for the first time in my entire life, last week I played the guitar in front of an audience. I sang "Maxwell's Silver Hammer" and accompanied myself on the guitar and it was terrifying, but wonderful in this surreal sort of way.
Tonight J.D. asked me if I would play/sing a pre-show number for "Plaid" for the rest of the summer. I accepted, and I'm excited for the challenge! I still get really nervous, but as is typical of me, I get more nervous after performing. Tonight when I got offstage and was putting the guitar away, J.D. came by and said "Liz, thank you. You have a great pre-show voice. It's just this really unusual, old-time radio-type voice that is PERFECT for pre-show. It's just really good, and it's a voice that people want to hear, and that audiences want to listen to. It's great." It meant so much to me, and I thanked him and told him as much, and Davie Walker added that he loved my preshow and thought it was so cute and didn't know why I was so scared. Anymore of this and I'll be a diva before the summer's over! No, I'm not nearly there yet.
In all honesty, I don't share these compliments I receive because I want to brag or justify my behavior or decisions. I'm just so thrilled and honored by them, and they mean so much to me that I want to record them as a way to better preserve the memory, and to remind myself of them, because more often than not, I forget or don't believe them.
We've had a few interesting conversations this summer about compliments. A lot of us really dislike "fake-y compliments." You know the kind...the kind that are hollow and rather insincere, but sugar-coated to have the appearance of kindness. Or the kind that you know are not true in the least, but sound cute and nice..."You're my favorite person," or "I will love you forever," or "You are the most wonderful thing since sliced bread." Those kind of compliments are really irritating and make the real thing less meaningful if you give those out all the time. However, I had to explain that I'm guilty of the words "You're my favorite person" sometimes, too, but for an entirely different reason. There are times when I'd like to say "I really respect and admire you and I'd like to you know that I share your sense of humor or your opinion and I'm glad we're friends and I really appreciate what you said or did just now." But I feel like I can't say THAT, and even if I do at a later time or more appropriate moment, I still want to express my love/appreciation to that person. So all I know how to do is to exaggerate and hope they understand. I'm that way with flirting too...I can't for the life of me pull off tossing my hair and whimpering "Do I look all right?" I can, however, grab someone's jacket and say "Marry me!" Underneath my exaggeration is always either sincerity or sarcasm.

Sambelina (one of Sam's affectionate nicknames...being at the Playmill makes you an automatic aunt or uncle to all of the Merrill's kids) just came out and reprimanded me for not watching the movie, so I guess I better go.

Au revoir!