Real Close


“Oh, I don’t do anything without getting paid.”

Erm…screw you, you twenty-something dyed blond from some eastern european country I can’t remember. You can barely speak English; I was only asking you as a courtesy.

Last night: second audition night for the theatre group. I was dead tired after swimming and broke my habit of a life time of not having coffee after noon by sipping a cup of terrible machine joe at 7 p.m., looking for that caffeine oomph to pull me out of my haze and get me through the evening. It was, again, a poorer turn-out than I expected after seeing how many people showed up at the group’s general meetings. But I put my request out there, announcing to everyone I was looking for help right away, at the start…and I was met by a few smiles and nods, but no immediate volunteers. No! They made me do it the hard way: approach each and every one of them individually, explain myself and my script, and half-beg half-ask for their help. Most were very willing (or so they appeared to be, in that one-on-one scenario). The above comment really did come from a 20 something bleached blond out of I don’t know what country (her English was terrible) – a newbie to the group. I laughed; couldn’t help it – and then I broke the news to her that the group was amateur, no one got paid, and in fact if she won a role she’d be asked to pay dues to help cover the group’s costs. Did my best to study her in that short time I had available (certainly she won’t be coming back) because she really was a colorful character; very full of herself (her introduction to the group took five minutes as she listed out every play she ever did as a child), very cocky, very un-appealing despite her tiny size and her full head of bleached hair.

Best news: the organizers of the theatre group told me to just use one of the rooms at the University, like they do. They’ll pass the word (if they don’t actually show up for the night); apparently, those rooms are just open for use after 6 pm. That’s excellent news: the place is centrally located, I know the building, and we can have access in the evenings when, I suspect, most of the adults will be available.

Now all I need to do is finish the script.

Finished Anna Karenina. Must admit the final 80 pages dragged. While some sort of wrap up of the other characters is needed after that long of a tale, I’m left with wondering why Tolstoy called it Anna Karenina when more than half the book doesn’t deal with Anna at all. Better to have pitched the book from Levin’s viewpoint; that’s the true central character. And…Tolstoy’s final chapter is too rarified in its language and ideas to fit the rest of the story. While he (Tolstoy) began addressing Levin’s faith right from the beginning of the book, it was not the driving force throughout the tale. Perhaps it was meant to be, but as is so often in life, every day concerns and problems overtook it and became the story. A few paragraphs here and there, adding in some sort of religious or faith centered reflection of the characters over their earthly problems would have brought that central theme to the fore.

Still! He wrote it long hand. I wouldn’t want to make a few corrections and have to re-write the whole thing; can’t imagine he would, either.

Got a day off today. No appointments, no lessons, no exercise. Just in time to catch my breath for the rest of the week. Need it. Need the rest and need the time to try and start hearing Dutch again. Been keeping up with the pace well, and I don’t want to screw it up now. Things are beginning to happen for me. I’ve experienced a little luck, a little back from the big, bad Universe that usually just takes, takes, takes from me.

I’m close. I’m real close.



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