Sunday, December 12, 2010

And a little Vons will lead them.

Downtown Long Beach is giddy, GIDDY, at the grand opening of our brand new fancy Vons. It's right next door, but luckily doesn't block my mountain view, even tho' it's the size of the Death Star. All of my neighbors are excited. It's like Trump bought up the real estate and turned it into a casino. Yesterday at second Saturday art walk, it's all anyone could talk about. In fact one guy I spoke to was waiting for his shift to be over so he could go and sample the food. He said to me, "I am so glad, this means we are moving UP."
Yeah I live in an urban center. But this grocery store opening feels like the time I got corrected by a young girl who I was teasing for being from the sticks, "There's a MERVYNS in Porterville, now."
The old Vons was not so affectionately called the Crackhead Vons. And every Friday and Saturday night there would be a PARADE of guys peeing on the side of the wall, in full view of my apartment building. I really wanted to take their pictures and post them online in a blog-of-shame. This new one is so FANCY. A service Deli and ooohhh a sandwich counter! Still doesn't explain the party mood surrounding the opening. But I have to confess I've been there everyday since it's opened. I am drawn to our East Village oasis just like all of my neighbors. Eh. It's probably just the free food.

Monday, December 06, 2010

Mi fecha de cumpleaños esta envolatada un poco. by guest blogger Emiro Burbano

Mi fecha de cumpleaños esta envolatada un poco.

Yo nací quizás en Diciembre 6 pero mi biógrafa autorizada, la única que tengo, mi mamá dice que fue en Enero 6. A quien creer.

Antes de casarme fui a Garzón, Huila y personalmente leí los documentos en el libro de bautismos en que la fecha establecida es Diciembre 6 de 1943. Desde que mama recuerda una fecha diferente, se abre una oportunidad para especulación.

Que habría pasado, que un momento tan estelar en la carrera materna de Doña Abigaíl (como era conocida en esa época) la hubiera llevado a proclamar y establecer mi fecha en el día equivocado. Podría ser Diciembre del 43, del 44 o Enero de 43 o del 44. Quizás hijo de la vecina ?. Bueno no tampoco.

Papá era tan probo ( su honestidad es legendaria

) que él hubiera sido incapaz de ser cómplice con esta falla de.... memoria ?. Mamá es mayor que yo escasamente 19 años y su amigas le animaban a que me pusiera uno de los nombres de los Reyes magos, especialmente cuando ella me escondía para que no me vieran, desde que en esa época yo era feo ( arrugado, moreno , peludo y definitivamente un panorama diferente de los otros niños de sus amigas que eran, ojiazules u ojiverdes, blancos y hermosos) y aquí estoy citando las palabras de mamá, una por una. Mario era el de mostrar. Mario es mi dulce hermanito mayor. El mayor, mayor, Carlitos habría muerto antes de cumplir el año en Florencia donde papá era juez de la República. (Su primer puesto)

Volviendo al cuento. Papá era legendariamente honesto, con múltiple anécdotas para demostrarlo a través de su carrera administrativa y judicial que creo yo, nunca se atrevería a ser cómplice de este "crimen"?. Fue Juez en Florencia, Pitalito, Garzón y al final de su vida ( murió a los 44 años) era Fiscal del tribunal Superior de Neiva y probablemente en línea para la Corte Suprema o el Consejo de Estado de la época. (1958) Alberto Lleras Camargo asumió el poder un mes después de la muerte de papa. (Referencia histórica)

Total o tengo 66 o tengo 67 o quizás es solamente un mes extra de pa’arriba o de pa’abajo. La única ventaja del asunto es que mi mujer me hace ponque el 6 de Diciembre y me da regalo el 6 de Enero.

Si lo que dice el refrán es cierto, yo tengo 35 años que es la edad que yo siento que merezco a pesar de que siento dolor en las "coyunturas" de vez en cuando y el espejo me muestra el paso lento del tiempo. Mi única ventaja a esta edad son mi nietos , que de verdad me hacen sentir joven porque no tengo otra alternativa cuando los estoy cuidando.

Gracias por su bienaventuranza y que el Dios de todos y cada uno los tenga saludables por recordar mi nacimiento.

Gracias por el cake

Sunday, November 28, 2010

I was a Korean Taco.

I am not shy about my body. I was even less shy when I was, ahem, "Smokin'" but even now with the sags and the bags, I like wandering around in the all together.
Which leads me to the happy nakedy joy that is a Korean Spa.
I was craving some cheap beauty treats and I got what I wanted and more. For $45 a small and powerful woman clad in black bra and panties scrubbed me cleaner than Martha Stewart's fridge.
And none of that idiotic fancy-pants sheet over your private bits, that only serves to make me feel like a dork trying to turn over while getting a massage and trying not to flash and offend the masseur, it was all naked all the time. I don't think the neonatal nurses scrub a baby as well as these ladies will scrub the dead skin off-a you.
It's strictly no robe in the wet room. There is a super hot spa, a steam room, a salt bath, a freezing cold pool, and little shower stalls all over. What I love is looking at the myriad of different kinds of bodies, even though I know I'm not supposed to stare, I do peek a little. It makes me feel good about my body, for which I have ISSUES (right, I'm a girl?!) 'Cause most people's bods are lumpy and bumpy and odd and still pretty darn cute.
And one of the most amusing things: My scrub lady took a break in the nude and then put on her regulation bra and panties to get back to work.
I'm always cold, and the delicious HEAT from a hot salted spa is divine.
Just what I needed to survive Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 01, 2010

We laughed so much at lunch today. We gorged on meat at a Brazilian Churrascaria, and chatted and rehashed and laughed. He is it for me. I love him so much. He makes me shout with laughter.
and for gifts:
a bike for ADVENTURE, of which we don't lack. For every episode of puffing, climbing, cursing up a hill there is the sweet WHEEEE of the flight downhill.
Kisses on a silver chain for sweet, sweet, sexy, delicious kisses.
Love in a locket. where I will hold my boys tight.
Crazy kittens and spiders on a chain, essentially me.
Japanese dishware, in the Queen Mary's colors, make me think, "we soon will be able to put this on a shelf in our house and bring out the Super Chief dishware," delightful domesticity.
Sweet, weird sexual vase? Sake cup? Weird and wonderful
A light to light up our nights. A trip to Tokyo?
and I love you too, sweet man.

Thursday, October 28, 2010


It's one of those insanely beautiful SoCal days today. The winds have swept the basin clean and you can see details on the mountain range, and Catalina looks like it's 20 feet away. This kind of day is responsible for our staying here in spite of being sick to death of the traffic, the politics (at work and everywhere) and our tiny little apartment. Of course, in NYC this apartment would be considered huge, but we are chaffing at the bonds and ready to find a house with a yard.
Which is where I would be typing this right now. Actually, I should be working, but I can't concentrate with this pretty day outside my window. Tom and Susan's play, Caddie W, is about a week away from being published and T and I have been frantically editing, rewriting, formatting, Sibeliusing. He has contracted a phenomenal graphic artist to give us a recognizable logo/brand/cover (the talented BM, an old friend and a huge talent.) My back aches from sitting on the couch, on the bed, anywhere possible, to try and find a comfortable place, as I clack away on the computer. It's pretty fab to see the proofs with the venerable Samuel French logo right under the names. Actually it kinda makes me sick to my stomach with excitement. T and I are suffering from major stress, but neither of us can pin down why. Everything is on track. We weren't able to get the rights to the original drawings, which led us to get a better one, that will reflect SleepTillNoon's brand. The piano score is almost perfect, even if I did go crazy when his Highness demanded proofing and re-proofing and re-editing, but damn it, he was right. So why the stress? Maybe because it feels like a huge door is about to open, and we are gearing up for the challenge.
I have to get back to work, deadline is a week away. Once more unto the breach.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Not so lovely Rita

"Tell the truth, if Osama bin Laden and a meter maid both came strolling toward your car, you'd probably think, "Oh no, here comes a GD meter maid."
The parking Nazi bastards have done it again. But this time... bwahaha! This time Officer Hoohaw has got another think coming. He came around at 14:37, he tickets me at 16:23. Getting past the bloody annoying military time, that means I had 14 minutes to move the car! Oh over-eager donut eater, the sign says 2 hours. 2 complete hours. Not 1 hour and 46 minutes. My vengeance will be swift and terrible.
What must it be like to be the most loathed of the service sector? What does a meter maid or daddy have to redeem hisself? Nuthin'. They save no kittens, escort no old ladies across the street, earn no teary smiles of gratitude for forcing one to move ones car.
My street is not a particularly busy one, especially during the day. There is no great NEED to move the car every two hours, when the majority of the parking is taken up by the apartment dwellers. But as someone pointed out, two tickets is nearly $100 for the city of LB. You watch a street sweeper and the army of PNazi's cruising in front of 'em. "Writing" a ticket (they come spitting out of a dear little machine) takes 2 minutes and I once counted 10 cars on a 3 block stretch of Belmont shore. $500 in 20 minutes.
Maybe instead of hating them, we should come up with a bribe scheme. I'm willing to slip The PN $20 a month to leave Alfie alone. C'mon, you know they are making a sad little just over the minimum living! Who's in? A new campaign, learn to LOVE the meter maid.
Ah, who'm I kidding. They must hire sadists for that job. They get a frisson ticketing the over worked mom with 2 baby seats in the car outside of the hospital. Or the guy who is at his first job interview in a year, who had to dig under the couch for enough quarters to get a gallon of gas.
Well Officer Hoohaw, I challenge you to a duel. Or at least a lesson in telling time.

Saturday, October 09, 2010

Food Hood

The best thing about living in the 'hood, is the availability and variety of INCREDIBLE food. We have had Cambodian, Salvadorean, Vietnamese, Korean, Armenian, Lebanese plus a Mexican roasted chicken that puts Pollo Loco to shame. All of it great, and all of it cheeeep.
There is a little Pho place on Anaheim where we get change back from a twenty for 2 HUGE bowls of soup and 2 iced coffee (Another smackdown for a chain, these coffees would kill Starbucks)
I had Pupusas for breakfast from our farmers market. And the place I got the roast chicken also makes fresh tortillas and salsa. I found the place by following the huge cloud of smoke, and found a man cooking in a sketchy looking parking lot, but the smell was pure heaven.
T and I always say that we are going to let ourselves get fat and happy and eat our way around the world.
I don't really trust people who don't love food. Food = love, sex, joy, happiness. Mind, I mean good food. I would rather eat dry chicken and overcooked quinoa than put myself through fast food restaurants.
And before anyone gets all hoity toighty about food intake and calories and blah blah blah, I do control my portions, and I go to the gym every day. I'd rather run on the treadmill an extra 45 minutes than forgo something delicious. Those days where I have dieted, I have been grouchy, irascible and impossible to put up with. Besides, the joy of the kind of food I am describing, is that generally the portions are MUCH smaller than, say, your average TGIFridays, the ingredients are fresh, and there is so much fun in trying something new.

Monday, October 04, 2010

RIP Tony Curtis

It started at his funeral. The girl in the iconic white dress, the too blonde hair and the overdone makeup found herself weeping. She had come to Vegas as a lark, put her wigs and shoes in her car and hurriedly picked out the white dress with the pleats. She loved Marilyn, and the guy had been the blonde goddess' old flame. But the old 8 x 10 of the beautiful lips, the eyes, bluer than rainwater knocked her in her tracks. The loud Bronx accent. The old Hollywood glamour, that was dying every day. Studio stars were almost all dead. The TV people from the 70's were going, so that meant the real glamour was almost all gone. And for HIM to be dead. Well, it was the end of Hollywood. When Liz Taylor goes, it's gone for sure and if Hollywood was gone, there was nothing left to live for.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Another day, Another loaf.

Today I am making kitchen-meatloaf. As I'm sure you can imagine, it's ground turkey with every leftover in the kitchen but the sink. Sometimes it's sublime, sometimes... a smidge of baba ganouj, a dollop of HP sauce, roasted tomatoes, and yellow bellpepper. Who knows? That's how I like things. Improvised, mysterious, and sometimes dodgy.
A couple of days ago I tried Roger Ebert's recipe for fragarant chicken in the rice cooker. Ebert swears, The Pot Knows; i.e. bung all you ingredients in the rice cooker and the pot will know when it's done. I'll be damned it it DID know and was quite yummy, altho' it definitely needed a lot of sriracha sauce, cause I like things hot.
Talking about Ebert reminds me that he is ill with jaw cancer, and one of my favorite flies in the ointment, Christopher Hitchens, is ill with throat cancer. Bunches of Christians are praying for him, but you know That even the most enlightened, sweet, nonjudgemntal types are thinking, "HAH, God gotcha Hitchens!" He says that if he is raving about accepting Christ on his deathbed, give him the dignity of understanding that at that point he will be a raving lunatic. Touche, Mr Hitchens!
One of my other favorite atheists, Drew Dalzell is also ill and in the hospital. He is a smart, funny guy and I hope he gets some laughs in the next few weeks as he is stuck in the joint for a long time. Who knew gallbladders could be so trecherous?
And THAt reminds me of my friend Johnny, who had his spleen removed, and my mum who had an appendix that pointed in the wrong direction, both of whom are recovering nicely thank... er...god, I guess.
Which takes me to my topic statement: Dog strollers are stupid. Yes, yes, I know the arguments about sick dogs, and how it is easier to get them to the vet and blah blah blah... but yesterday, at the Irvine Spectrum, duck lipped, pneumatic blondes in teetering Louboutins were pushing their teacup yorkies in hot pink carriges, and they looked unspeakably stupid. STUPID! Why do women want to look stupid? Plastic surgeons haven't perfected the lip puff. It always looks bad. Boobs are not meant to look like concrete grapefruits, and dogs should be big and sloppy and have the ability to WALK next to you on a LEASH. I HATE pushing a GD stroller, HATE it, why in hell would you push one, at the mall, in heels, if you didn't have to? WHY? Sometimes Irvine makes me want to scream.
Oh, the transition for that was nessecary surgery vs unnessecary surgery (boobs, lips,etc)
Dog strollers. OY.
And back around to my meatloaf. They are victims of kitchen-sink plastic surgery. And sometimes... you just have to throw the meatloaf out.

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Isle of Lesbos

Pulling clips from the vaults: Watch out Fred Phelps!

More on my YouTube Channel including such hits as: Lesbian Rock! Same-Sex Love and Homosexuality! (See a pattern?)

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

A funny short film about Gay Marriage courtesy of Josefina Lopez:
Starring Diana Burbano, Minerva Vier and Fabrizio Imas.
We made this after the LAST marriage ban. No on H8.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Was rifling through my beloved Vogue yesterday after a long and crunchy day at the beach where I was VERY naughty and crisped up like bacon. Read the article about inflammation, which posited that said inflammation was the cause of all our ills. The writer wrote about her hip, bleeding gums, and swollen eye. I HAD ALL THOSE! PLUS: An inability to lose weight, chronic neck pain and visible wrinkles. I immediately squeaked, "That's me!"
For the record, I have a terrible reputation for hypochondria, at least where T is concerned. On the AIDS ride I got stung by a bee for the first time in my life, T took me to the med tent, and as the EMT asked me questions like, "Are you short of breath?" and "Is your throat swelling?" I panicked and was convinced I was going to Anna Chumlsky right there. T nearly fell over laughing and I have never recovered from the indignity.
Anyhow, the whole inflammation idea is that somehow your cells are over compensating for injuries by rushing to the scene and throwing a comfy chair at a space that only calls for a pillow. Hence the swelling.
Now that I write it out, it's obvious to me that inflammation is just another word for aging. And while it sucks, there is really nothing I can do about it.
I would like to de-inflate my tummy. I did an "art" shoot. (You know, "ART" shoot?) where a plastic surgeon took a magic marker to my body and outlined what he would do to fix me. This was post-baby. I don't know, I must be a masochist. He got to my belly, and said, "The only thing that will fix this is a tummy tuck." I've been trying to prove the bastard wrong for three years. Damn it he may be right. And there is no way I can afford a tummy tuck. I bought a one piece bathing suit, and am looking into girdles. The fat tummy is just so icky, and matronly. Yuck.
I had better just become friend to my inflamed self. Or take up Belly-dancing again.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Strange and difficult week(s). Culminating in paying a plumber to fix the sink that overflowed into a 90yo lady's apartment. At 4 in the morning.
Things are looking up, however as today I bought a gorgeous painting at the thrift store, and got a pedicure. And sprang for a manicure. And only ruined the pinkie, so better than usual.
I wish I could figure out how to get the bank or the universe or hollywood to give us $300,000. We have our eye on the MOST eccentric Victorian house. It's so bizarre, it's perfect.
There is something about Lady Chatterly's Lover that is following me around. It seems to be the key to a riddle. Wish I could figure it out.
I love my boys. Tom is a beautiful, wonderful, talented, funny and argumentative fellow, and so is our son. I hope they get the things they deserve. People shouldn't underestimate either of them.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Teacher, Teach!

It's weird being and ED-U-CA-TOR. I work as an acting teacher for one of the most well thought of regional theatres in the country. I happen to work for a woman I consider a muse and a mentor and someone who kept me from slitting my wrists when I was kicked out of Acting School. For not being able to ACT. 20 yrs later, I am vested in my union, getting a pension, working constantly. Anyway... I think it is important to struggle, to be told you suck, to have dark days early on. If you have to push through,you take nothing for granted. I suffered a lot, but I always said to myself, "I'm good. I'm solid. I know what I'm doing." And I do.
To quote Sondheim, I'm still here.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Ridiculous interview

What are some of your favorite Disney Films?
The ones where the dog dies
Why did the chicken cross the road?
to avoid the Campero recruiter
Juice and crackers or milk and cookies?
Gin and Tonic
Favorite fruit?
The Lady Bunny.
Are you a cat or a dog person?
Cats. Dogs smell.
Would you rather be blind or deaf?
I'd rather be rich, thanks.
Define yourself in 3 words...
arrested development ADHD

Kill the spider or let it out?
Spider on the wall signify success
Do you shower every single day?
No. And I wash my hair like once a week. AND I use prescription deodorant, wonder why?
Walking past a beggar, spare change or ignore?
Ignore guiltily, unless it's a busking musician
Where do you want to travel next?
What is your favorite food?
Do you read harry potter books?
I have 1st eds of all of 'em.
What is your favorite place?
San Fransisco, or the RNT of Great Britain
If you could have one super human power what would you choose?
X ray vision, ya know what I could do with Xray vision?
Have you had a beer in the last week?
It was up a chicken, does that count?
Vitamin Water or Gatorade?
Diet Coke or Syrah
Flip flops or tennis shoes?
High heels
What do you do on fridays?
work if I am in luck, if not I mope.
What is your favorite song of all time?
At the moment it is "We Won't get Fooled Again"
Do you like bananas?
no. Mushy yuck.

Saturday, July 10, 2010


So this is how pathetic the acting biz is: yesterday I went in for a tiny part in a feature film; Latina Nurse, accent, 7 speeches, 2 lines.
I knew EVERY one of the other 11 girls that had been called in. (We were sent straight to callbacks) The ONLY thing we had in common? We were Latina. Most of us had been in the business over 20 years. A lot of us are classicaly trained theatre actors. Some of us were VERY pretty, some not so much. All of us are no longer in our 20's. Some of us have had success. All of us were fighting for a role that was basically exposition.
I should call my agent...

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

A tribute: The stupid things actors hear....

Things "civilians" say to actors (and probably shouldn't):

How do you know what to do with your hands when you're up there on stage?

How do you memorise all those lines?

Wow, that was really "something."

After a show, a woman comes RUNNING into the Green room, grabs my face and says, "I can FIX your nose!"

You should get a "real" job so you know what it's like to go to work every day.

My favorite..."so what DOES the Director do anyway?"

Well, to we voice over folk, a least favorite phrase is "Do you act, too?" *sigh*

Once I did a show in age make up, a lead. After I came out I was asked "Were you in the show, too?"

Oh! Or the ever popular... "Were you ever in [fill in the blank]? Now THAT was a show!"

That costume makes you look fat.

You sure sweat a lot .

The one that makes me crazy, "I've always thought of trying that."
Sure, it's easy. Give it a try.

"i did a play in high school!"

Or the ever popular, "What have I seen you in?"

I guess the camera doesn't add 10 pounds.

Wow you ARE smaller in person...

Nice costume!

"Why don't you just do a bunch of commercials at least to make some money"......yeah duh! why didnt I think of that!

Ha ha ha ha!!!! This is friggin' hilarious! After a performance of Caberet & strutting around on stage for over an hour in little more than a bikini, a little old lady approached me, during the lobby meet & greet we were required to do after the show, and she said "You were really nice." I stayed skinny to wear that & dry hump a chair so I could be nice.

Oh, where to start.
"What movie have I seen you in?" "Actually, I do theater." (very apologetic in her misunderstanding) "Oh, I'm sorry, I thought you were an actor."

(Gushing) "You were soooo great. We loved it. Everyone looked like they knew their lines."

And in interactive theater where we deliberately create "Harvey Korman" break the 4th wall moments -- "It was real good. (in a hushed tone) But not everybody stayed in character."

AND MY ALL TIME FAVORITE: "Is that your real butt?"

acting is not a real job, its a hobby, right?

To a director: You should tell the actors to speak louder.

"How do you get so funny?" As if that's answerable.

"So when are you going to get a REAL job?"

"What TV shows have I seen you in?"

Unfortunately, I've gotten this one a few times: "So, uh...heh heh heh...are those tits real?" Sigh.

I recently told a friend that I'd quit acting and she said, "Wow, R! That's like me giving up scrap-booking!!"

oh! Or once my Mom suggested that I come with her to meet Glenn Close so she could see if I "have something!" (like herpes?)

I always get...Why don't you just go be in a movie?

For the first ten years of my marriage, my husband kept waiting for me "to grow up."

Have I seen you in anything?

For Actors: Uh huh, yeah, but what's your other job?

And I have to throw one in for Stage Managers of course!

-What do you do?
... See More
-I'm a Stage Manager.
-Oh, so like... you want to be an actor?

I remember, we're doing the Scottish play at PAC and as Hecate I'm holding my arm out like Darth Vader and across the stage Di is very dramatically choking and rising up....very scary. And they asked ME how I did that.

Various Contributors. Please keep adding!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

It's A Bird, It's A Plane, It's.... My Dad!

My father is an extraordinary man. His public face is that of SuperDR, efficient, brilliant, able to soothe a patient in a single visit. His family face is a little bit more Clark Kent. Fun, kooky, slightly nuts. Abuelito is adored by his grandchildren and children alike.
His main interest in life is his family. He might follow sports, or TV shows, but he drops everything when his family needs him. Come to think of it I don't think he follows sports.
He IS obsessed with the French language, and watched movies with the French turned on, which can be terribly disorienting while watching action films, where most of the dialog consists of grunts and groans. But those are French dubbed grunts and groans, which can elicit giggles from the less advanced of us in the family.
He is also a poet, and I hope he publishes them, or at least puts them up on a blog like this one so they can be read by the wider public. Writers need an audience too, dad!
One crystal clear memory of my Dad that made a huge impression on me: We were at Disneyland waiting to get in, impatient, excited, and in my case, surly since I was a preteen and desperate to be cool. An elderly woman had a fainting spell, her family panics, my dad puts on his cool, collected Doctor face, assists the woman, calms the family, makes sure the situation is well in hand as paramedics arrive, then gets back in line with us, shedding his SuperDr persona and going back to being our beloved, befuddled Papi.
I love you, Papi. We are a better place for you and your superpowers.

Sunday, May 30, 2010


I just dropped a wine glass, which since it was on my super cool industrial loft concrete floor, shattered into a zillion pieces. I was washing the dishes and was so distracted that I simply dropped it onto the floor. I have been obsessed with the recent murders that have rocked the OC acting community. A local actor, Dan Wozniack confessed to murdering 2 people, dismembering one, a war vet, and flinging pieces of his body in a local LB park, luring a woman to the apartment of the guy he murdered and shooting her to throw suspicion on the dead guy. And before anyone I love panics, (I'm looking at you Ma...)I didn't know the guy. He had worked for Tom's Gourmet Detective and at the All American Melodrama, I know plenty of people who know him, who counted him as a pal, but I myself didn't know him.
Here is one of the grand Guignol grotesqueries I can't stop thinking about. He murders and dismembers a human being, then continues to his performance of "Nine" that night at Hunger Artist in the OC. THEN the next day he murders the girl... and performs in his closing night. With his fiance, who is in the cast. Jeeeeesssuuusss.
The way I figure it, (and I promise I am obsessing) he decided since the guy he murdered (for a paltry $2000) was an Afghanistan war vet, he would be an immediate suspect for the girls murder because of PTSD, or what have you. So this poor, innocent girl, lured to the apartment of a guy she tutored, died in what to me was the coldest most calculated and horrifying part of the story: The murderer needed a prop. She was set dressing for his own personal Murder Mystery.
I have worked with plenty of weirdos, psychos, pathological liars, and addicts. The theatre can be a dumping ground for the walking wounded, who use it for their personal therapy session. Plenty of people need psychiatric help, not a two year conservatory degree. But what drove this guy to murder? It had to be premeditated. He lured the soldier to a theatre, probably because the prop shop had all the proper tools to dismember and dispose of a body. (I'll never look at load out the same way again.) My god. He needed money, he was about to be evicted. He was arrested at a Hungtington Beach restaurant... something as prosaic as Hooters perhaps? The Mundane Murderer; murder most foul? Even Shakespeare would have found it implausible.

Friday, May 21, 2010

I am sitting here fairly bored, chomping on one-half of a banana. I am on a diet, but my body hasn't seemed to have gotten the news. In spite of working out HARD 5 times a week the scale hasn't budged and neither has the oatmeal that is residing on the formerly flat little plain known as my belly. I feel betrayed by my metabolism. I don't get it... nothing is working... Even the miracle that is Pilates hasn't gotten the job done.
On top of THAT annoyance, is the fact that I am CRAVING to work on something. Adult. Nudity OK. I think I am done with kiddie shows for a while. T's publishing deals are all in the machine, so I have been working on my own scripts and I vacillate between pleasure at their cleverness and sheer unadulterated loathing of my use of the cutesy-poo.
On top of THAT, We NEED to get ourselves into a house somehow. With a nice yard. Otherwise someone is going to murder someone here in the secret annex. (which for the record was 200 sq ft smaller than our little hovel) T, L and I get along splendidly, but in the heat of the summer, with builders drilling and screwing and hammering next door, and one episode of "Thomas" too many.... I'm pretty sure I will be the sacrificial lamb.
We have tons of cash, our only debt is our very small mortgage. We are PARSIMONIOUS to a ridiculous degree. We could go to many states in this country, plop down our suitcase full of $100's and buy a nice house. It's so freaking' tempting. We have looked at Minnesota, Biloxi, Seattle. But NOOOOO.... here we are, in SoCal... It's so BORING! I am done with the traffic, the heat, the traffic, the lack of greenery, the ruination of the land by developers, the bloody TRAFFIC! Why the heck does anybody want to live here anyway? It's not that nice. Look at Newport Coast, ugly look-a-like houses, peopled by Real Housewife types and their spawn. Beaches overrun by tourists,and Frat boys. Bleah. And anyway the last commercial I shot, I shot in my own home on my own computer. So do we REALLY need to live here? Maybe we should move to Arizona... Oh no wait, the cops would assume I was Lilo's nanny, ask for my passport, I would mouth off and get hauled to the pokey...
Seriously universe... gimme something interesting to do!

Friday, April 30, 2010

No matter how often I try to convince myself that, "It's not you, they decided to go a different way..." it feels like a rejection of my soul.
Most auditions I brush off, I really don't care, I've trained myself not to care. But sometimes... you think it's a sure thing, you are told it's a sure thing, you plan around said sure thing... then not a phone call, or an email to let you know, "They've gone a different way." I know I'm not the first actor nor the last to have this happen, but it's shabby.
I almost didn't renew my Equity card this year. But hell, I've been told I suck by very fancy people, so here I am, putting on the big girl panties and shellacking the armor and going out to get the work.
The worst part for me, is I am teaching some really talented kids, and it breaks my heart, but I can't tell them the truth: You are going to be judged first by the way you look, your ethnicity, and THEN by your talent. It never gets any better, or at least I haven't seen it yet. Color blind casting has not happened, tokenism casting has, and that is that.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Boo! Hiss! Aw!

"Join us for an evening of great food and family-friendly entertainment as our teens perform The Paper Bag Bandit, a melodrama. This is a fundraiser night for GO-FAME to support our scholarship program. Please print out a copy of the flyer from our website,, and give it to your server when you are seated."

These kids absolutely rock, like back at SJCMT. I am so happy to be their director. They have embraced the form and really grown as performers!

Join Us!
Click the image and print.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Step up the steering wheel, CA!

Tami Turner is a long lost, now found, dear friend from my conservatory days. She is a great actress and a cool human being. She is in a wheelchair due to an accident suffered, I believe, as a gymnast when she was very, very young. (The pictures of her recovery in the hospital are heartbreaking and inspiring to see) She needs a van to get around, but now she has lost her only form of transportation and has been frustrated every step of the way by the CA dept of Rehabilitation
In her words:
"a month after stating that I'm not allowed to drive due to being an unsafe driver, and not being able to hold up their decision with any facts, they discovered a sling I put in the van to rest my arm when it fatigued when driving long distances. I used it once, when i drove to LA for a required wheelchair evaluation, that could only be done in LA through DOR. Under DOR regulations, I'm not suppose to modify the van. I modified the van and used the sling once in 2007, so I actually did something wrong. The engineer has not discussed it w/me to know i used it once. Basically I'm doomed! I have to wait for a new wheelchair,a new driving evaluation & new steering. Probably another 6 months or so. I made 1 mistake, once, 3 yrs ago."
It seems draconian to take away her transportation for 6 months. Why not give her a test NOW and have her prove herself? Her record should stand for itself, right?

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Teach. Learn.

Today a mom of a kid with pretty severe learning disabilities made me cry. She came up to me before the demo and told me how much my encouragement meant to her son. She grabbed my arm to emphasize her words. "He Feels Valued, Loved" ... He did a monologue last week, was word perfect, and FUNNY (my ultimate goal) I have to say, the kid stepped up to the plate and knocked it out of the park on his own, all I did was facilitate. But Damn. I'm proud.
Good week. A. My big project (The C project) is finally coming into fruition. In fact it is SO fruitful, that I have to decide whether the Inc or LLC.
I am directing a play at Go-Fame and the ghost of George guides me, and directing kids has never been so much fun.
My acting career is on the tracks again..
My sis sent me a link about "Luck" and "Lucky People"... hell, I have always been one lucky girl, a luck magnet, and I seem to have found that luck once again...
Go 2010! I am here and available!

Saturday, March 06, 2010

Small (minded) Town

Lilo and I went to a party today. Our hosts were the writer Joan Claire Graham and Tom Butsch, designer. Joan and Tom also hosted us in Albert Lea MN. But the story I'm going to tell is of another guest, Susanne Crane.
Susie is an accomplished artist, and for the past 5 years she has tried to restore the historic Bessesen Building Opera house, in down town Albert Lea. Beatrice Bessesen was an Albert Lea native and her husband built the opera house for his wife in 1916. She was an internationally famous opera singer, sang for the royal German Opera Co. in Berlin and performed at Carnegie Hall and the Metropolitan Opera, There are several buildings in downtown Albert Lea that somehow involve her or the name of Bessesen.
Susie took us through the building when we were there. It was in a sad state of disrepair, crumbling, like a lot of historic buildings. She is passionate about fixing it up, but she has been stopped at every stage of the restoration by small minded people who regret selling her the building. I would never presume to tell someone else's story, but these people have slandered Susie in the local paper, revoked her charity money and tried to foreclose on her. I read a hate filled and slanderous letter calling her a psycho, and worse, and belittling her skills as an artist. Unsigned. Cowards!!!!! And this is just ONE letter posted on the door of the building.
Poor Susie is the victim of a hate campaign, and has nearly been driven out of town. I hope SOMEONE with some power reads this on google and steps up to help her. The building should be covered by Preservation Magazine, Historic societies in MN should help her hold on to a piece of history. And her critics should man up and sign their names. The anonymity of their attacks is beyond contempt.
If you read this and you can help leave a comment and I will put you in touch with Susie.
Story about Susie

Friday, March 05, 2010


Usually teaching acting to young-uns is an endeavor where you try very hard not to smack your forehead with your hand as you stare at your student in disbelief. However there are those kids; talented, funny, smart and driven, that make you look forward to going to class. I have a private student that is a rare bird. Not only is she a darn good actor, but she is a joy to be around. She invited me this evening to see her in her Middle School play, and damn it, the kid is GOOD. She was in character, playing beat to beat, enjoying herself, and reading the audience like an old pro. What a great kid! Makes me proud to be her coach.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Proustian Pizza.

Ah! So, I am very young, maybe 16. I have been invited to the home of a producer for my first original musical, "Surferboy." I know that when one has been invited out to someones home, one must bring something to the hostess. So I break out a box of Ritz crackers, some Cheeze-Whiz, and god know what-all assorted garnii from our pantry. My Apertif' are hooty at best.
I drive some where glamourous: Los Gatos, and present myself to my host, as well as to my beloved director, George Costa. George takes one look at my crumbling and gummy offering and pulls me aside. "Kid," He says, " Food needs to look good, as much as it needs to taste good." Then he pulled me into a half arm hug.
I thought of that today as I pulled a hideous pizza monster from my oven. I tussled valiently with the pizza stone and lost. Thus I made Calzone/Chone. So ugly, but so yummy, and so lovely to remember George.

Monday, March 01, 2010

Blah blah.

Lionel is marred but lovely, like a Greek statue that was dinged on purpose so as not to anger the gods. He has an angry little line on his forehead that will likely fade BEFORE he needs Botox. 8 hours in a less than fun ER on Valentines Day really put a damper on events. My T was so strong and comforting to Lionel. Through the Papoose Board, Daddy behaved with fortitude and grace, even though he confessed to wanting to throw up.
I had a delightful little job this month, wherein I never left the house but auditioned, did the call back and shot, all on Skype using my own camera. It's a Charter commercial in which I apparently feature prominently, so if you see it LMK.
And T is in the final stages of talking to the publisher. He is due to publish his first piece this year and I am sooooo happy! He deserves it and I deserve a vacation.
I am working like a Phonecian. Kids. Why MUST they be so difficult? And so lucrative?
Trader Joes better look to it's Laurels, Fresh and Easy is cheap, delicious, and infiltrating Long Beach. Good product, easy check out and sparky stores. I am a huge fan.
What I am NOT a huge fan of is my bloody fat gut. Blech. I guess it's karma.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Lilo is OK but....

I am mad and can't write a damn thing because I just can't. So now I am madder.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Fences at SCR

I had an evangelical experience last Friday at the Rep. I saw August Wilson's "Fences".
At the end I turned to my friend Brad and I said, "It was like seeing a production in London or New York.", truly spectacular, breathtaking theatre. Here in LA, the theatre suffers from either the 99-cent production quagmire, where there is no money, too much/little rehearsal and often uneven or slipshod productions, or the throw massive money and TV stars school of production, which is often bland and unsatisfying. When you can pay actors what they are worth (and I mean actors, not celebrities) give them a beautiful set and have the good luck and foresight to give them the gift of a truly great script. Alchemy. Gold. A thrilling night of theatre.
But what really got to me about "Fences", and I know I am coming late to the game here, was the WORDS. My god, those words, that come out of the actors mouths, are gifts. Shakespearean topics, the best kind of universality. I am not black, I did not grow up with the experiences these characters did, but it doesn't matter. The WORDS are so compelling, the story so well woven, you can't imagine what comes next. I'm not an old King either, but I bet Troy could give Lear a run for his money.
Going to the theatre should always be thrilling, exciting, compelling. This is why jukebox musicals and the like don't hold any appeal to me. They are concerts, a different beast, not particularly universal and like cotton candy, forgettable the second you've consumed them.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

If You Seek... Wha???!!!

Good year so far! My prize student gets the role of her dreams , my beloved Tommish gets a publishing offer for his murder mystery, Darling You Slay Me, Caddie W is in the hands of the TOP publishing houses, Lionel is kicking preschool A$%, and my cat has stopped biting me. In the yuk zone: Garage is flooded, I drove in a tornado today, I'm not in THAT show. I'm still overweight.... But at least I'm not Britney.
I think poor lil' Miss Spears is SERIOUSLY, developmentally disabled. I watch her videos, and she is so BLANK!? I really wonder if she knows what she is auto-tuning about. Or does her sicko dad put her into BDSM mufti and let her sing about Amy, take all her money, and hope she doesn't do a Flowers for Algernon on him? She seems too dumb to be real. And what happened to her neck? Does childbirth distort the jaw so much that she now looks out of proportion? Britney! Your weird neck and short arms disturb me!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

And in the end....

Lilo and I had Pho today. We had spent a good deal of time at the park today, dealing with the horrid mommies. (So many people have told me all my new friends will be the mommies I meet. Yech. Fussy, awful, stick up the bottom ladies. I have NO desire to seek them out. Unless they are covered in ink. And that's only contingent on it being ink I like.) Anyhow the Pho was had on Anaheim St in LB across from McD's on the corner of Redondo, Pho Hong Phat, where Lisa Jacobs had taken me for my first taste of Pho years before.
Pho is heavenly. Especially when I am on THAT time of the month. Make of it what you will, but Vietnamese food is all I crave. So L and I stopped into this tiny, hole in the wall shop, 10 minutes before closing and slurped from soup heaven. L loves the noodles and the atmosphere. I love the fishy soup, the rare steak and the citrus.
Thinking of Lisa, I realize, she's been dead 2 years. She fought cancer for so goddam long. And today is the anniversary of T's sister Polly's death, 3 years ago. Polly didn't fight death, exactly. She danced with it.
I munch long noodles with my long limbed boy, and long for old friends. And connection. I love my old friends. As for making new friends...I'll wait till someone comes along who is interesting and funny and dry. Someone who will come eat Pho with me, with no hesitation.