January 25, 2007

21 degrees farenheight, but "RealFeel" is -1

There comes a time in a man's life when he realizes that he has to turn on the gas in order to survive. So, in honor of surviving I write to you, friends and stalkers.

The topic for today is, What has Trey been doing? More specifically, What has Trey been doing for food?

The obvious answer would be using the skills he learned as a Boyscout and foraging in the back yard for squirrels and pine nuts. But contrary to logic, I have been working instead.

Since the AT&T Atmosphere fiasco, I have returned to The PlayHouse to continue my illustrious career as a "member of the production staff" (as I put on my resume). My first show there was Christmas Story, which you already knew... But I'm going to actually tell you about it.

Christmas Story was much fun. It made me really regret my time away from the PlayHouse (not to mention the increasing financial burden "Atmosphere" turned out to be, but more on that later). As you may or may not know, I really don't like kids. Much less child actors. I had the worst assumptions going into this show that you could possibly have. I thought by the end of it I would hate Christmas on the whole and that I would have at least scheduled a vasectomy. On the contrary, I really enjoyed my time with them. They were smart little buggers and most of them were cool. My favorites were between the "smart girl" (I'm talking about characters here) who spent most of her time knitting and being adorable, the "lead kid" who the other kids didn't really like that much so bonded with me, the "bully" who was as mean as his character and therefore delightfully wicked, and the understudy, who was a tiny scrawny white kid who said the phrase "Playa Hata'" way too many times.

This was a cast that was particularly bond-worthy. Sometimes you get the uppity, angry-at-the-world, the-only-gig-they-can-get-is-in-effing-Cleveland. That was not so with these people. The Dad is a local Clevelander, a great storyteller, and a fan of Guinness. Pretty much everyone was friendly on top of being professional and were very nice to work with / drink with after the show.

The show itself went really well. i think I like it better than the movie. It has more heart and well-rounded characters. It was not easy. There are many shows that you just kind of set up and let go. This one I was constantly doing something: spinning a sconce, turning on the smoke machine, flying snowflakes in and out, moving an entire schoolroom (with children on it), making that school room look like a tree lot (as quietly as possible), and handing out cocaine to the little ones (that one is a lie). I really only had 7 minutes of sitting. But it kept me on my toes.

The stage manager was a trip. And not the good kind like you get from stale portabellos. It was like tripping over an electric fence and landing in a sewage refinery. Yeah, not a fan. First of all, the man has a horrible stutter. Normally, I wouldn't think twice about people with this disability. They are certainly as intelligent as the next person, they just have trouble expressing themselves. My trouble starts when the main part of their job is TALKING IN MY EAR! He couldn't call cues on time, he called them different every time, he tried to shift the blame onto the run crew, and was generally unlikeable on every professional level. On a personal level: he would turn on his com and leave it on the entire show. So when he wasn't stumbling through his calls, he was chewing on Now and Laters and breathing through his nose IN MY EAR!!!

Then there is the certain run crew member who just stood around watching you. This was disconcerting on two levels.
1. It is one of my biggest in-the-office pet peeves for someone to stand/sit and just watch you do something that they clearly could and should be helping you do.
2. He's creepy. He has a child-molester beard and all the social graces of Sweeney Todd.

But overall it was a truly enjoyable experience that compelled me to continue working there on the next show: Of Mice and Men.

That's going on now. Well, not RIGHT now... at least I hope not...
No. Mice and Men isn't quite as fun as Christmas Story, but I like it a lot. The material is so compelling that even after 4 weeks of performances I still tear up at the end (if I feel like watching). The actors are decent. Lenny is amazing, a better retard than what's-his-face in What's Eating Gilbert Grape. The downside is that they are the people that assume you're beneath them because they're "ACTORS!"

But I love the people I'm working with and I've yet to grow tired of the show. There are a lot of performances, so I'm getting more hours and they serve us breakfast before every student matinee.

But speaking of student matinees, I hate kids again. There's nothing more offensive to me than rude people in the theatre. Nomatter what crap you're watching, pull yourself together for a couple of hours, will ya? These kids talk through the entire show, then they laugh at the most inappropriate moments. It makes me want to bleed from the ears, these kids.

We have about two weeks of performances left, then I will (regrettably) be looking for work elsewhere. There's simply too much off time between this and the next show. I've actually signed up with a temp agency, and they seem relatively excited about my abilities. So I'm looking forward to having steady hours, regular paychecks, nights and weekends. But I am going to miss backstage.

I feel this post ended abruptly. But that's okay because I feel like my posts look longer with the slimmer column that accompanies the new format. But I like the format too much to change it now. Tune in next time for my reflections on my Holiday season.

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Comments on "21 degrees farenheight, but "RealFeel" is -1"

 

Blogger Cap'n Ganch said ... (2:43 PM) : 

This was a blast to read, but I'd also recommend that you delete it immediately to keep from losing your job.

 

Blogger Trey said ... (5:26 PM) : 

I'm not worried about it. The people from Christmas Story are already gone for those very reasons, and actors, in my opinion, have chosen their profession demanding public scrutiny.

 

Blogger Yax said ... (12:09 PM) : 

I just want to say that I wrote a post about how cold it was in my apartment before I read your intro.

I also wasn't sure about certain words linking to pictures until I got to the bleed from the ears one. That sold me on the concept.

 

Blogger the suzerain said ... (11:00 AM) : 

the picture of you completely cracks me up. When I happen to look at it I have to refrain from spontaneously bursting out into laughter and alterting the rest of the office environment to my existence. thanks for making me laugh.

 

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