My partner HATES pretentiousness of any kind. Therefore she often hates the world of theatre, where people are always remembering that the next gig might come from whoever is right in front of them, and are therefore to-your-face nice most of the time.
My partner is also not terribly ambitious. She loves a daily life, and a sense of meaning, and the idea of making a difference, but she has never dreamed of being rich and famous.
But then, this spring, she had an acting role for the first time. In Saint John the Divine in Iowa. We couldn’t find someone 40+ who was truly butch and could play the comedy and the heart of the scene, and when she read it with me she did really well (surprisingly, since mostly she sits there and reads everything in a monotone trying to get me to let her off the hook (she doesn’t enjoy being the line-learning helper)). So she ended up in the play. Shaking, on opening night, with the cast being sweet to her and teaching her how to handle the nerves we all get. And then she got her first laugh. And her second. Then she got her own private round of applause at the end of her scene (which began to happen regularly). Then she figured out how to make the scene better, how to keep it alive. In other words, she sort of became an actor.
Then she’s all like, “It was fun, and I liked the laughs, but I wouldn’t do it again. I didn’t get hooked or anything.”
Then she’s like, “But I was good, right?”
In other words, she sort of became an actor.
Then, this weekend, we’re driving home from our weekly date night, and she tells me she wanted to go down to the Sandra Bullock set and just walk around because she had a fantasy that they’d like her look and offer her a part, and then she’d talk them into giving me a part and we’d both be in a Sandra Bullock movie.
I was like, “OH MY GOD! YOU ARE SUCH AN ACTOR! I AM GOING TO DIE!”
So, lesson #7 is that no one is immune to fantasies of Hollywood. Not even my neurotic love of a partner. This is so disappointing, on one hand, since her hatred of pretentiousness is really kind of great. On the other hand, it does give me endless get-out-of-jail free cards when I start obsessing about myself and my performances.
Do not doubt I will use all of them, even if they are endless. I will be dead and still using my get-out-of-jail-free cards. Watch me!
**The end of 7 blogs of partner lessons. My partner had a topic she wanted to suggest, but I told her to go get her own blog. But since I’m about to start a theatre gig, and will be heavily unavailable, I may give her a guest appearance on this one. No doubt this will also lead to unforeseen consequences. I’m starting to have 2nd thoughts. Right now.