Monday, November 27, 2006


Okay, so I had this *brilliant* idea that was going to be SO FUNNY.

After all of the comments in the previous post about the blue shirt that I used to wear almost every day in high school (I probably didn’t wear it quite as much as I’m making out like, but I certainly got my money’s worth with the shirt) (“as I’m making out like”??? is that phrase even English?) (I think I should have written "as I'm making it out like I did," but now everything looks like gibberish), I decided to find a bunch of old high school photos of me wearing the blue shirt. I thought it would be funny to be like, “look at me! I used to wear this shirt all the freaking time--and here's proof!” Also, I thought it might be a nice segue into a post about my high school reunion.

So then I started looking through my box of photos (I stopped putting photos into photo albums in 1991, so all of my photos from the last fifteen years are just in boxes) (lots and lots of boxes) (and there’s no rhyme or reason—pictures from junior high school are mixed in with pictures from college are mixed in with pictures from last week), but I couldn’t find a single picture of me wearing that blue shirt. Which is crazy because I seriously did wear it all the time. I must have avoided cameras when I was wearing the shirt, so that no one would be able to accuse me of wearing the shirt as often as I wore it. That’s bunk, I honestly don’t know what the deal is. It should be easy to find pictures of me wearing the shirt. But alas, I can’t.

Instead I found something better. A picture of me in pseudo-drag, wearing a red dress. Since I can’t find any of the blue shirt pictures, I figured I might as well post something, and it might as well be this because (a) it’s a funny photo, and (b) check out my legs.

Ooo la la, right?

This picture was taken in the upstairs bathroom at the Actors’ Gang’s old Santa Monica space, back in the summer of 2001. I haven’t actively been involved with the Gang for several years (because I stopped acting and the place is called the, um, Actors’ Gang), but there’s still a lot of great people at the Gang—lots of people I love. The summer of 2001 was the beginning of an intense, crazy-fun period with them. I had done a few “Style” workshops in their El Centro space and then I got a call out of the blue from Cynthia Ettinger asking me to participate in a three-week Style Workshop that was, like, every day from noon until midnight (maybe I’m remembering this wrong—maybe it didn’t start until later in the day—but for now I’m just going to say that it started at noon because it certainly felt like we were there all day, every day). The Gang’s “Style” workshops consisted of spending an hour creating a Commedia Del ‘Arte inspired character, getting into costume and make-up, and then a director would sit in the front row of the theater (they were “in the chair”) and they would guide small groups of us through improvised plays, essentially. I’m not describing this well at all. Basically, we’d get up onstage in groups of about eight (I think there were about forty of us in total) and we’d take turns making entrances and exits, and then we’d evolve into improvised scenes, and I know this is going to sound hokey, but some of the theater I witnessed during those three weeks of workshop was some of the best theater I’ve ever seen.

I usually played sorta dandified male lover characters, hence the costume. (I don’t think I was trying to be a “woman” in that outfit at all—I think my character’s name was Bruce.) (Or maybe it was Sandro.) (Whichever, I was supposed to be a dude who just happened to be wearing a dress, hence the lack of cleavage.)


Oh, and the reason the woman in the photo is smelling my armpit is that this photo was taken as part of a photo project that I used to do. (I still do the photo project, it’s just been very sporadic the last few years.) I wrote an essay about the photo project, which I was going to post on the blog about nine months ago, but then I submitted it to Fresh Yarn and decided not to post it on my blog in case Fresh Yarn wanted it, but I haven’t heard from them it's been a really long time, so I’ve decided I want to finally go ahead and post the danged armpit essay. So that’ll be coming soon.


Anonymous said...

firsty first
firthy firth

Anonymous said...

also, your hand is missing in that photo. maybe scott caan was using it that day?

Jesse said...

Dorthy, tell Rose to stop eating all the cheesecake.

aimie said...

you actually just made me homesick for the gang. i think i'm going to check out some of brent's workshops either next week or the week after.

ahem, date?

ps: instead of making a phrase out of my word verification, "zupzsti", i'm going to use it in a sentence because it's a great word. like:
"it took a lot of zupzsti to post that picture of you in drag. next, post the pictures of you with a huge body rash from all the condiments we poured on you in your survivor audition tape. now, that was zupzsti-cal."

Erik said...

Firthy (I like calling you "Firthy," by the way):

you're totally right. i didn't notice that my hand was missing. Scott Caan was totally behind that. totally.

Erik said...

Jesse, I love being compared to Dorothy Szbornack.

Erik said...

aims, i rarely miss acting, but every once in a while i'll get a yearning pang to do another style workshop.

yes, date soon.

oh, and we really need to start using zupzsti in every day conversation.