Monday, August 30, 2010

Dear Charlie:

Now I'm more than ever tempted to delete the last post, but I don't think I will. Why? I dunno. Maybe because it's true and from the heart. Maybe because I sometimes think people think I don't have problems just because I don't talk about them more than I strictly have to.

Whatever.

But for right now, the Geeb's jolly is back in full force. Why, you ask again?

SO glad you asked.

Just watched The Expendables.

Now, maybe it's just because I've had such a crap week. Month. Year. Decade? Anyway, maybe it's because I was in such a crap mood, but I honestly think this may be the shining epitome of what a movie should be -- 100% escapist entertainment.

Seriously. Having a bad day? Watch a movie. If it's a good movie, it'll make you feel better even if it makes you cry. If it's a bad movie, you'll be pissed you bothered popping it in.

Next time I'm having a bad day? SOOOOO watching The Expendables.

All my favorite action folks, both old and new, in one flick? Check. Lots of stuff blowing up? Check. A kick-ass gun that sounds like a cross between a grenade launcher and a tommy gun? Check. Cheeseburger Eddie? Check. Equally kick-ass soundtrack? Check. Tons of fight scenes where everyone having their own fight is absolutely spendin' the money on their opponent? Checkity-check. Scene where an old and grizzled retired battle master repents of the one chance he had to save a piece of his soul? Check. Snarky remarks? Double... no, triple check.

I love this movie. It has everything I need. And I really, really needed that.

And honestly. It's got both Stallone and Schwarzenegger. I'd line up to watch the First Annual "Kyutest Widdle Kitty in the World!!1!" Contest if I thought Sly and Arnie would show up. My ticket was sold just based on that.

Yes, it's action porn. Yes, it's almost two hours of blowing shit up and being both muscle-y and cheeky at the same time. I ask ya: what's wrong with that?

Answer? Nothing. They ain't nuthin wrong widdat.

So, to the revered Stallone, Statham, Li, Lundgren, Willis, Schwarzenegger, Rourke, Austin, Crews, and Couture crew, thank you. Thank you for giving me exactly what I needed exactly when I needed it. You don't know me from Adam, but seriously. Keep doin what you're doin. I love you guys.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Troublesome Update:

Okay, I try not to weep and wail and rant here, right? So I can totally make the occasional exception to that rule, right?

Yes or no, I'm gonna make an observation that might have a bit of both weep and rant to it. Sorry. You've been warned.

So, back in 2000 (ya know, when dinosaurs roamed the Earth and dirt was new), I graduated college with a BA in English. Supposed to be a gateway major. You can do just about anything with it, right?

WRONG.

Admittedly, if I lived in a bigger city (as friends and family point out ad nauseum), I'd probably make at least $3 more an hour just having any bachelor's degree, but hey. I live here. Not changing soon. At least not changing up, though I'm usually willing to move to a smaller town. Ha.

But yeah. BA English ain't gettin me doodlysquat here. So, gee, I guess I'll try to better myself and my currently crappy situation by going back and finishing that pesky BSE I changed to that pesky BA back in the day. Shouldn't be too hard, right? They're just throwing money at people who want to be teachers, right?

Wrong. AGAIN.

Because, see, both college-type places I've been to in the past week for even the slightest, most remote chance for an possible option have told me... get this... that I'd have been better off dropping out, rather than changing my major and graduating.

No lie.

Okay, they didn't use those exact words, but that's what it boils down to. Because anyone who already has a degree can't get financial aid, grants, scholarships, you name it. Because I qualify (at both locations, mind you, and glowingly qualify, at that) for full-ride scholarships. Just can't get one.

Hell. Couldn't even get one back in the day. Why am I surprised now?

Now, don't get me wrong. I know good and well that the no-loan-no-grant thing is to prevent people being "professional college students" at the government's expense. It's to make sure everyone gets at least one fair shot at affording college. I get that. I understand. I even approve.

But it sucks hairy, sweaty donkey balls when you're just trying to be a teacher.

Right now, I can't afford a stick of gum, but they want me to finish my BSE (or get an associate's degree from a community college) out of pocket? Shyeah, right. Let me also pull a bowling ball, three parrots, and a diesel truck outta my ass.

See, I was told -- yeah, back in the day -- that even with just a BA in English, I could get a teaching job with a provisional license, and the school I worked for would... get this... pay for finishing my education. I was told -- I know, I know -- that money was pretty much falling out the government's ass for the training of good teachers. I was told... well, you get the idea.

I was lied to.

That's fine. I'm used to it. I'm used to everything being hard. Fine.

And I could go get my Master's degree. I can get funding for that. Oh, not grants, of course. But I can totally put myself even deeper into debt to earn yet another degree that has no guarantee of being applicable to real life and that I also can't afford to pay back. Gee. Why haven't I leapt at that particular brass ring yet? What am I waiting for?

Sorry. I really am. I'm just so tired of running into road blocks everywhere I go. Beating my head against every brick wall in sight.

How the hell am I supposed to ever break even if I can't get a better job? I would really enjoy teaching, and the high-school-aged kids I know both at work and at Stone's Throw tell me they'd love having me as their teacher. I know literature. I know composition and grammar. I even know how to relate those things to kids who are more likely to ROFL than compose a sonnet.

But God help me when it comes to actually making a living at it. Apparently, I'm doomed to never being paid for any modicum of talent I might have been given.

Guh. This is one entry I might just delete. Someday. When I feel better.

If I feel better.

I have to go fill out applications now. Dammit.

Oh, yeah: play's going great. We've broken records for ticket sales. Packed house almost every night. Nothing but great comments from the people who've watched it. Rave reviews. And I already have my music for the next one. I'm not acting in it, but I'm singing during the scene changes, which should be cool.

Heh, and because I'm feeling particularly contrary today, I feel obliged to point out that all of that is completely voluntary. Yet another way I manage to use my minimal talents for no gain whatsoever.

'S a good thing I enjoy it so much, eh? Not all dividends have cash equivalents.

Saturday, August 07, 2010

Dear Charlie:

Sorry I've been incommunicado lately, guys. Between rehearsals, job-hunting, working, set painting (yes, again; I can't help it!), trying to help out some friends, and trying to get in any little speck of writing between running lines and such, I just haven't had a lot of spare time.

Heh, and what spare time I've had, I've used to play hidden object games. Yeah, I know.

Sosumi.

It's been crazy, but we're pulling this show together. Our director keeps us feeling good about ourselves, and I'm feelin the energy. It's fun to be singin these quirky ol' songs and spoutin these priceless lines in that ol' hick accent. Good times, and I can't wait for the actual production.

Which, by the way, is next week. *gnaws fingers down to the bone*

That darn auction scene! I swear it's the bane of my existence. I can get the first part, but for some reason, my internal Aunt Eller seems to object to auctionin off her precious niece -- okay, her hamper, but it's one and the same, metaphorically -- and just doesn't want to keep track of all those bids.

But I'll get it. By gum and by gosh, it shall be done.

I think I may have to put my tentative writing on a couple of things off until after the show, though. Or at least until after opening weekend. I gotta keep my mind on what I'm doing. Living in my head is a welcome diversion from the real world right now, but I can live in my head on the stage for the nonce.

Aunt Eller. Aunt Eller. Be the cranky ol' biddy. You are the cranky ol' biddy!