My life has been unusually balanced lately.
In the past, it has seemed like there were hardly enough hours in the day to get everything accomplished – even being out of work. I’d felt like I was too busy online to watch any TV, too busy watching TV to read a book, too busy reading a book to sleep, too busy sleeping to get online. It was a vicious circle from which there was seemingly no escape. This dates back years, and it was worse when I had a job, because then I was too busy working to get anything done. For whatever reason though, lately it feels like I’ve been branching out and getting lots of things done without spreading myself too thin, leading to a strange but welcome sense of harmony. I feel all Zen-like and at peace, like no goal is too distant or out of reach. Like I can take on the world, even.
I feel like there is nothing I can’t try. Never heard the word “impossible.” This time, there’s no stopping me. I’m gonna do it!
Good lord, did I just channel the spirit of Laverne & Shirley?! Schlemeel, schlamazel indeed.
Take yesterday, for example. I woke up after a solid eight hours of sleep. Brewed a pot of coffee, read the paper. Watched some TV. Made a killer sandwich for lunch. Applied for a whole bunch of jobs while listening to music. Put away dishes, cleaned the kitchen, topped off the aquarium, scooped the litterbox, watched a little more TV, headed to my parents’ house for dinner, came home, chatted with my girlfriend for more than two hours, read a couple of chapters of The Hunger Games (which I finally picked up and started the other day, and became instantly infatuated with), and then went to bed. That, my friends, is a full day. And very balanced.
Oh, and I also applied to be an extra on a TV show. That came right after dinner with my parents but before the phone call with my girlfriend, if you’re keeping track.
Earlier in the day, I’d checked out Grimm for the first time. It’s a drama on NBC centered around a homicide detective who learns he is a descendant of the brothers Grimm, whose dark and sinister fairy tale characters weren’t just figments of the imagination, but real-life creatures who have preyed on humanity for centuries. This guy can see through their disguises and must protect the citizens of present day Portland, Oregon from their maniacal plots. Pretty cool concept, though in truth I was drawn to it mainly because it is set in Portland. I enjoyed the first episode very much, and intend to get caught up since the rest of the season is available for viewing On Demand. My tastes in television have definitely evolved over the years; I’ve dropped a lot of reality TV and standard issue procedurals (like C.S.I.) in favor of darker and quirkier programming. Think The Walking Dead and Dexter and Breaking Bad and ABC’s new drama The River. So in that regard, Grimm is right up my alley.
After finishing the show I got on Facebook and, coincidentally, there was a link from one of the local news stations – a story about how Grimm was putting out a casting call and looking for extras. They’re shooting episodes around Portland from now until April and are looking for a good mix of people to fill a variety of different roles, including stand-in, speaking, and non-speaking extras. The article went on to state that “ALL ages are welcome; ALL body types; ALL experience levels; and ALL roles are paid.” Well hell, I thought. Why not throw my hat in the ring? Might as well take advantage of this still-unemployed situation while I can.
Maybe it’ll lead to bigger and better things. Question: do they hand out Emmy awards for Random Guy Walking Down The Street? What if I’m a really convincing stroller?! I’m willing to practice, you know. I’m a firm believer in “method acting.” I’ll spend all day walking down the street if I have to, just so I can really nail the role. I can mix things up a little, too. Have a newspaper tucked beneath my arm in one scene. Maybe hold a Starbucks cup in another. And I’m willing to improvise. Whip out my phone and hold a fake conversation. Pretend to hail a taxi. Jump away from the curb in order to avoid being splashed by a bicyclist careening through a puddle. I can’t wait ’til they seat me next to Bryan Cranston at the awards ceremonies (I won’t let fame go to my head, I promise, but I’m going to insist on this arrangement; he is so fantastic on Breaking Bad that I’d like to pick his brain on future walking-down-the street ideas, like for instance, could I get away with skipping if the scene was in need of a little levity? What about impromptu hop-scotching?). I’ll do whatever I need to, because we actors take our craft very seriously.
I draw the line at nudity, though.
Unless it’s tastefully done and central to the plot, of course.
So, we’ll see what comes of this! The application process was straightforward and simple. I had to answer a few questions (height, weight, shoe size, make and model of my car, do I own a dog and would I be willing to bring him on the set (okay, that one was a little odd, but aren’t those Hollywood folk a strange lot to begin with?)) and submit a couple of photos. Done, and done. Now I’ll just wait for the president of NBC to call me personally and tell me I’m hired.
Or, you know. Some assistant of an assistant to an assistant.
- Grimm (lifesmaze.wordpress.com)
- TV Review: Grimm…When a TV Series Hits Too Close to Home! (blogcritics.org)