Wednesday, September 23, 2009

This One is About Me (Again) and Change (Again)

I turned down a job offer from Quentin Tarantino's producer today. I've also decided the time has come for a blog-reinvention.

Granted, it was an offer to be his personal assistant (not even his first, his lowly, grocery-shopping second) but still. It took me a long time to come to this decision, and I think I can still feel a phantom leg kicking myself subconsciously. This ties into the renovation of this page because I could've so easily and happily taken this job, because I wanted it. I really did. I could feel my lips forming the vowels out, "yeeeeees," without a breath behind it. I would get a paycheck. I'd work hard, and often, and want to work well. I would do a good job for him, and be proud of it.

But I would change, and become the other Teresa, the one who goes out to bars and shops intensely at Express, and carries clutches. The one who is confident in how the world works: wake, work, play, sleep. Sometimes I wish I was that other girl, the one who sees movies only for fun, and sees manila envelopes without envisioning headshots inside of it. I would tell every person I meet to be that other me, rather than this one, because this Teresa struggles, and lives twelve lives at once, on a good day. I highly suggest living just one, if you can help it.

I never said this blog would be about anything other than me. I've only ever written here for myself, but it's gotten all messy, because I forget what I'm writing about sometimes. Just like I forget what I'm working for sometimes. And, in the case of rent jobs, it's not to afford pretty, pricey things, it's for that paycheck, so I can pay for the other things I really want more than a purse: classes, websites, pictures, networking events, bla bla bla. (Sometimes I really loathe all I know how to write about is myself. BOR-ing.) So. Tdawg4eva is getting a makeover, in the effort, that I too will give myelf one. I've gotten lost in the mess, and have stopped working for what I want, and have gotten caught up in working for...stability.

I think it was St. Augustine who said you should cherish your poverty, and love it, because it keeps the artistic drive alive. Then again, St. Augustine is a saint, and completely dead, and I'm neither of those things. So I'm not being too mean to myself about sometimes cherishing designer handbags over my lofty artistic poverty. This blog will now be about another actor's life, not to write a witty internet sensation that might get me Julie Powell's good luck, but to keep me on track. Because if I'm going to give up a job I could've loved, betrayed my other self once again, then I better make this poor girl's life worthwhile.

Sigh. I really loved Kill Bill 2.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Last Time:

Clearly, I suck at this daily writing thing seeing as I write every other day, if Blogger is lucky.

So. What have you missed out on? EXCITING STUFF, my friend! Ah, yes, exciting stuff, indeed!

- Checked out some bizarre photos on facebook of a guy I went on one date with in New York. He is really buff now. Like, scary buff.

- Lamely agreed to an apartment. Still not very happy. I excuse myself by saying I should be uncomfortable. It'll keep my artistic nature flowing. Or some shit.

- Drank coffee every morning this week. Starting to feel nast.

- Sat for an 8 week old yesterday, and about to go do it again. She hated me. Her parents hated me. I hated me. I'm sure it wasn't that bad, start having really dark insights into your life when an infant is screaming at you and you can't figure out why.

- Became obsessed with Not sure if I'm ballsy enough to follow through.

- Got drunk at 4 PM. Watched Inglorious Basterds. Ate too many Puffens.

- Panicked, lied, smiled, cried. I didn't mean for that to rhyme. Sometimes life does it anyway.

Monday, August 31, 2009

I See You Have an Oscar Too

I wonder if celebrities, when they go to Starbucks or wherever, when they see other celebrities who they don't know personally, but who they recognize as fellow famous people, will go up and say, "Hey. Looks like we're the only two household names in here." Or whatever.

I think I might just leave quickly. Less awkward.

Sunday, August 30, 2009


" are in the midst of transitions and you wished for nothing so much as to change..."- Rainer Maria Rilke

I read "Letters to a Young Poet" the summer after my freshman year at college. I was reeling from my first year living in New York, working with professional actors who had such cynicism and experience backing up their talent, hazy from the tumultuous end of my first serious relationship, and back under my parents' heavy wings. (Heavy from love and decade-old rulebooks, but mostly love.) Truthfully, I'd been assigned the book at the beginning of the year, bought it, and hadn't read it. When I finally did read it nine months later, it was if the world halted and started rotating in a different direction. It had all been written for me, somehow. I read and reread the letters as I sat outside the district library in my neon-pink summer concert series Staff t-shirt where I worked for minimum wage. I copied whole paragraphs down in my journal in flowing lettering and doodles of stars. I felt really connected to that dead German guy, and very included in the adult world.

The second time "Letters to a Young Poet" crossed my path was two years later. I was in the early days of my second very serious relationship, and living the half-crazed life of the actor-in-training. Everything in my life was about art, except the part about living, which was about stress and panic. Perhaps feeling that same angsty pull all twenty-year olds feel, a dear friend of mine became very, very sick, and couldn't see the next steps in her path. I packed her off one weekend to see her grandmother, and slipped her one of my most cherished snippets from Rainer Maria.

"So you mustn't be frightened, dear Mr. Kappus, if a sadness rises in front of you, larger than any you have ever seen; if an anxiety, like light and cloud-shadows, moves over your hands and over everything you do. You must realize that something is happening to you, that life has not forgotten you, that it holds you in its hand and will not let you fall."

She said it saved her. I don't know if the written word can save anyone, but I suppose it must have for someone at some point, so it very well have done the same for her.

Over the years, I've trucked my copy of "Letters to a Young Poet" all over the country. I don't always open it, but it's a comfort knowing it's there, with my underlinings and highlights in my 18-year old handwriting, stained and bent from years of prayerful readings. I don't particularly love Rilke's poetry, it's a little too pious and rambling for me, but so are his letters. Maybe what touches me is that these are letters to a young person, so familiarly lost and hopeful to please and confused, and it came two hundred years before my own bumblings through my artistic life. Rilke's advice applies to my own plight just as much as it does to Mr. Kappus'. And beyond the similarities of our paths, there is also the extraordinary honor of a correspondence between an amateur and his hero; furthermore, the wholly special joy it must have been to receive life lessons and advice from Rilke, and not just critiques to his work. I would've killed to have had a mentor. I still would. A good one, I mean. No use committing murder for a crappy mentor.

I didn't mean to write a post about a book we've all been assigned to read at some point. It's just, when I'm worried, or unsure of how I've come to a particular crossroads and even more uncertain of where to go next, years of reading and rereading Rilke has ingrained itself in my brain. His words flash through my brain, and I'm reminded I've felt this all before, and so have long-gone Europeans, and words and letters probably can save you.

I could go on, and delve into my cheesier feelings towards Mr. Rilke, but I won't, because he always ended his letters rather abruptly after a long and winding shpeil about life and art and bla bla bla and sometimes it's better just to leave it at that.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Caffeine is the Devil

I really hate the idea of being dependent on anything on a daily basis, but it seems to be a losing battle with caffeine. I've had a true love-hate relationship with diet coke the past few years, especially when it comes down to the fact I just feel better off it. And now I'm leaning towards becoming a coffee drinker, strangely enough. I like the idea of it, just like some people like the idea of living in a dingy Paris apartment overlooking the Seine and smoking for breakfast and feeling depressed about life. People are weird.

I'm thinking about moving to a one bedroom apartment. I worry that I'm not good living alone, that I wouldn't go out and I'd be a hermit, but that's a bullshit response. It might have been true a year ago, but not now. I worry also that if anything goes wrong the only person who pays is me. I also worry some strange man will follow me home and accost me outside my door. I worry too that if I die in the bathroom no one will find me and I'll rot for weeks until someone downstairs complains about the smell. But really, I mostly worry about the strange man.

I've decided to go get a cup of coffee on my way to work today. I'm really, really looking forward to it. Also, I'm not looking forward to work. Sigh. I have to find another job because this one isn't giving me enough hours. Stupid job.

Things will get better. Coffee will fix it all.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009


I left my apartment about an hour and a half early tonight, because I was abruptly reminded how much I hate the place. The physical space is not bad,'ll have to imagine what it is about the 2 BR+2 B I don't like. I'd like to, but I won't name names. But just now I'm doing it in my head right now. "IT'S BLANK BLANKYBLANK'S FAULT I HATE MY HOME! BLANK BLANKYBLAAAANK!!!"

Moving on...

After ample consideration this past week, here is a rough idea of my ideal home. Sums me up pretty well. As it should.

- Lots of light, lots of windows, lots of windowpanes.
- Older is better, but not so old I fear ghosts after dark.
- Hardwood floors.
- A sunny breakfast nook.
- Built-in shelves.
- A record player next to a comfy rug.
- Basil plants. Heck, a whole damn herb garden. (Rosemary, mint, thyme)
- Plush carpets you can sink your feet into.
- A lemon tree. I'll settle for a lime tree, it's not a deal-breaker.
- A big, private yard with lots of old, big trees. Favorites include weeping willows, ginkgos, dogwoods, cherry trees, elms, oaks.
- Creeping vines that hug the outside of the house. The ideal would be if they were spotted with flowers. But only spotted! I want to SEE the vines.
- Exposed Brick walls. One will do.
- A library! A room full of books! Books, books, books! If I had my way, there'd be two stories, with a rolling ladder and a circular staircase, just like Henry Higgins. (Who also had a record player. Oh, well, a Victrola, if you want to be picky, stickler.)
- Old fixtures a la Anthropologie. But if they were actually old, rather than faux old, that'd be better. No ghosty fixtures though. I don't want any spirits stuck in my doorknobs.
- Good china. Good china I use. Old china. See above.
- Flowers! Magenta flowers!
- Fireplaces. If that can't be arranged, a wood stove will do very nicely. Something to toast the toes that doesn't require batteries or a plug.
- Quilts. Quilts for every room. Handmade and flawed and warm.
- Nooks, nooks, and more nooks. Each painted a different color.
- Big closets. Places for little children to hide and play.
- Walls in every color. Deep burgundies, golds, bright blues, warm greens, happy oranges and reds.

It's amazing, because the things I seem care about in my current apartment search don't even make this list. Who gives a fuck if I have a dishwasher? Or a garbage disposal? I mean, I am actually worrying about ghosts, but that was just the one place, and she'd died, like, yesterday. I don't want to have to call Ghost Hunters. Although, I do want to be on, still don't want to have to call Ghost Hunters. I don't do well with the paranormal.

The important thing here is that my old apartment had none of these things. None. Not one. Except for the quilt I brought with me, and some shit rug. I want so much from the world, I want love and happiness and fulfillment and an agent and national health care, but I want a good home too. If there was ever an American Dream, I think that would be it. A home, a bit of earth, a place to want to be, a place that carries my name. When I get tired of fighting to find a role and/or a film to carry my moniker, I'll remind myself of the home I want just as badly, and maybe that will carry me through, until the day I come home.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Moving Sucks

Moving sucks, from start to finish.

You pack, you heave, you hem, you haw, you haul, you unpack, you sleep, you live, you despair, you pack, etc.

I'm not particularly happy with where I live now. I wasn't when I moved in. I'm currently in that apartment, in the room I never go, the living room, and find the irony embarrassing at this point. I did a bad job of living here.

My first year in LA could be summed up that way. Not that I haven't seen so much of what this city encompasses. I have a rough idea of how to get around Silverlake and Los Feliz. I have climbed the hills, driven Mulholland at Sunset, cursed the 10 and 101 and the 405, cursed the 5, found some beauty in the Valley. I have California plates and a California driver's license. I've gone to a club. Gone to the beach. Driven the PCH. Corrected foreigners on the correct pronunciation of "Wilshire."

Not home yet.

I don't have high hopes for this next apartment either. After a certain point, they all start looking alike. White walls, whitish carpets, oh look another toilet. Great. I always think I don't need very much, but maybe I'm wrong. Maybe I'm as high-mai as any other girl, and I just like to pretend I'm not until I realize I'm miserable.

Moving sucks. The only thing is, I can't stay here. I really, really can't stay here.