I had a birthday last week, and I am giving myself the present this year of blogging. Every week. At least. Even if its silly or short like this one will be.
These are my top 5 memories of 24. They may mean nothing to you, but they mean everything to me.
Improv comedy is weird. Making the right choice is impossible. Making a great choice is invigorating. I performed a scene, where I was vandalizing Shamu’s tank. A friend walked-on with a gun ready to shoot things. I chose to be afraid of guns, and I started crying. Real tears, none of this “high-schoolers performing Checkov” B.S. My friend comforted me, the stranger put the gun down and we got back to vandalizing, only to have the gun come out more and pushing me farther. It seems awful reading about it. When does improv not? But, the crowd loved it, and I felt very comfortable and had a blast doing it. I start my memories with this one because it was a moment, if not the moment, when I felt studying improv was an asset to both my profession and being.
4) “Tim, you made me cry.”
As an actor, the smallest things go incredibly far. A compliment from a stranger can be all you need to get you out of a slump. And that’s what the above is. I performed an emotional scene in my scene study class, and had a grad director approach me with red eyes and laid this one on me. She said that she had been in a similar spot and could feel what I was going through. It was all i needed. This is a bit of a braggy memory, but I don’t much care.
3) Ghost Ride the whip
Memories with friends from Camp are endless. However, a time that comes to mind that really defined our relationship and the sense of belonging I felt with these fools, happened the moment before taking the picture below. I wanted to ghost ride the whip, she didn’t know what that was, so I showed her with this rent-a-Spark. I forgot to unlock the doors, so we couldn’t stop it. I did remember to keep the windows down. Just before it hit the wall/fell off a 5k ft cliff, I lake-dove in and slammed the break with my palm. My body twerked, the car stopped, and I fell down laughing. It was a good day.
2) Receiving letters from campers after they left camp.
Wow. Asking myself to pick 1 memory from camp: From the amazing theatre program? From the weeks I lifeguarded? From the kids performing evening activities? From the hilariousness in my cabin with the program heads? From the nights off? From the days away from camp? Unfeasible. I can, however, sum it up with 1 photo. This is a shot of some letters I received from campers. To me, this is a favorite memory because it means I actually impacted the life of a child. I may have had a blast with these campers and lived each day trying to make a few of them laugh, but deep down, I wanted to make these kids leave camp a better person than they came. I did not attend camp growing up, and its a huge regret. Camp for a child is a sure-fire way of shaping them into men and women. The experiences they have and friends they make are for forever. If you’re a kid, ask your parents to send you. If you’re a college-age/young adult, apply for a job at one. If you’re a parent, send your kid to one. I cannot stress enough how an experience like camp can benefit a child. I’ll stop blabbing, and probably post a longer “pro-camp” blog at a later date. Anyway, I got letters and it meant that the kids were inspired by me and, especially from these kids, that gave me a real feeling of self-worth. Also, they’re artists.
1) Dancing pretty naked at Mustache Riots.
Like every other human ever, I’m nervous about body-image. Whaaaaa. Boo hoo. I’m not perfect. Whine. So, I performed as naked as they’d let me and in front of as many people as could fit in a cramped indy theatre. And I completely loved it. It was comedy, a character piece, but I danced like no ones business. I felt alive. That sounds nutty and cliche, but its the truth. A year ago, I did not have the courage to do that. Add the realization thats its my body and im stuck with it, the support of my best friend and her puppy dog, and a few MMA classes, and I’m stripping. I also added stuffing to my underwear, but thats neither here nor there.
So yah. 24 was cool. If none of the above meant anything to you, thats ok. But, I do hope that you can look back at your years and find things you loved about yourself or things you did. I hope you take note of times when you are emotionally high. I hope you hold onto these and remember them (or read your blog where they’re written) when you’re feeling down like you/we eventually will. Also, I hope you dance naked. Invites welcome.