Saturday, September 29, 2007

Gender Roles in Advertisement

...oh Harvey.

The Good and the Bad

As my theatre teacher always told me to do, I'll start with what's positive:

The people I work with are great. They all responded super fast to my plea to switch work shifts, and most people wished me luck on my audition. That was so nice. Also, no one has punched me in the face for asking one million questions. So that's also really good.

The people in my play seem pretty cool too. I've only had two rehearsals, and one was just a reading, but they seem like a good group of people. I'm excited to really start to get into it.

Alright now what's bad:

My audition today was all over the place. The songs I ended up doing went fine, but I was somewhere else. I'm pissed that I let myself get so flustered, but they told me about five minutes before I went in, that they actually wanted a different genre than they had said on the phone. Great. Good things I had my book, but I still wasn't totally prepared. The piano player was super nice, and she made the audition bearable.

I am unmotivated. I haven't been working on new monologues, reading plays, or doing any movement work (yoga, exercise, combat, or dance). When I have more free time, I tend to let things slip. Someone needs to just come and organize me a bit and give me deadlines and goals... although I suppose I'll just be proactive and figure it out myself.

Talent alone won't make you a success. Neither will being in the right place at the right time, unless you are ready. The most important question is:
'Are your ready?'"
- Johnny Carson

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Across the Universe

This movie made me mad. It made me mad because it had all the right elements to make a great epic movie (The Beatles, Julie Taymor, and young new actors with distinct voices and looks) and yet it didn't work. So here is the list of what didn't work:

1.) There was no focus. What was was the story about, whose story was it, and why should we care? Also, the concept was also all over the place in style.
2.) There was no character development. We get snippets of the different main characters for the first ten minutes of the movie cutting into each other and then we are into the movie. So when things happen to all the characters, we don't care. We don't know anything about them. We are still waiting for our introduction.
3.) The cinematography was boring. I expected every shot to be beautiful or interesting. A lot of it was just boring realistic looking medium shots. Why would you do this in a musical? Musicals have an inherited sense of fantasy, which was ignored by the filming of this.
4.) The tone of the piece was confusing. Was it supposed to be funny? Was it kitchy? Was it making a serious point? Who knows.
5.) Julie Taymor reused lots of things she has done before. She used music from Titus, masks from other shows, and that deer image and dog head from Titus too. It was as if someone else made the movie and decided to throw in some Taymor style just for the hell of it.

There were some scenes where fantasy was explored. Those were more successful and could have been even more crazy. It seemed like the purpose of this movie was to somehow fit Beatles' songs into a plot, however awkwardly, just to do it. It wasn't done with purpose or style. The whole thing reminded me of a horrible ripoff of High School Musical meets Moulin Rouge thrown in with some Titus aesthetics. In fact Baz Luhrmann, would have really made this story sing. I think he has a better understanding of pop music and it's purpose.

The main character is an artist. Only once did his art get used in a song sequence. Why didn't they tie into his drawings, and show how the world around him influenced his art which influenced the songs?

This is one of those pieces where you just want to take all the good ideas of it and remake it yourself. Maybe in ten years I will.

A to the S grade: C
Teacher Comments: This was average in every way. The only things that saved this were the actors and the music.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

A Discussion On Loneliness

An artist is always alone—if he is an artist. No, what the artist needs is loneliness."

-Henry Miller (1891-1980)

I don't know that I agree with this. Shouldn't an artist be someone who is the most connected to other people and the world? Don't you need to be so in touch with the world around you, that you can comment on it?

Maybe an artist needs that distance in order to comment on life. Or maybe, since most everyone feels alone now and then, an artist's constant loneliness is really being very connected to a universal feeling.


Monday, September 24, 2007

NPR: All Things Considered

Beating Charges Split La. Town Along Racial Lines

by Wade Goodwyn

All Things Considered, July 30, 2007 · As at hundreds of other high schools across America, black and white students at Jena High School in Jena, La., rarely sit together. The white students gather under a big shade tree in the courtyard, while black students congregate near the auditorium.

But last year, a few days into the first semester, a new student, a freshman African American, asked the principal at an assembly, if he, too, could sit under the tree. He was told he could sit anywhere he liked.

Three white boys on the rodeo team apparently disagreed. The next morning, there were three nooses hanging from the shade tree in the courtyard.

Anthony Jackson is one of two black teachers at Jena High School. He laughs ruefully, as he recalls watching the nooses swaying in the tree.

"I jokingly said to another teacher, 'One's for you, one's for me. Who's the other one for?'"

Many in Jena's black community wanted the three white students expelled. But when the white superintendent and other school administrators investigated, they decided the nooses were a prank. Instead of expulsion or arrest, the three received in-school suspension.

Blacks called the punishment a double standard.

"White students can do things and receive a slap on the hand," Jackson says. But authorities "want to throw the book at blacks," he adds.

An Incident Escalates

A few of the black athletes, the stars of the football team, took the lead in resisting. The day after the nooses were hung, they reportedly organized a silent protest under the tree.

The school called an assembly and summoned the police and the district attorney. Black students sat on one side, whites on the other. District Attorney Reed Walters warned the students he could be their friend or their worst enemy. He lifted his fountain pen and said, "With one stroke of my pen, I can make your life disappear."

That evening, black students told their parents that the DA was looking right at them. Walters denies that. Billy Fowler, a member of the school board, doesn't believe it, either.

"He said some pretty strong things," says Fowler, "but I don't think he was directing it to anyone in particular. I think he just wanted people to calm it down."

But things didn't calm down. Some whites felt triumphant; some blacks were resentful. Fights began to break out at the high school. But that year, the football team was having an unusually good season and the black athletes were a major reason why. So while there were fights throughout the fall, nobody wanted to take any action that would hurt the team.

When the season was over, so was the truce. On Nov. 30, somebody burned down Jena High. Whites thought blacks were responsible, blacks thought the opposite.

Charges and Public Outrage

The next night, 16-year-old Robert Bailey and a few black friends tried to enter a party attended mostly by whites. When Bailey got inside, he was attacked and beaten. The next day, tensions escalated at a local convenience store. Bailey exchanged words with a white student who had been at the party. The white boy ran back to his truck and pulled out a pistol grip shotgun. Bailey ran after him and wrestled him for the gun.

After some scuffling, Bailey and his friends took the gun away and brought it home. Bailey was eventually charged with theft of a firearm, second-degree robbery and disturbing the peace. The white student who pulled the weapon was not charged at all.

The following Monday, Dec.4, a white student named Justin Barker was loudly bragging to friends in the school hallway that Robert Bailey had been whipped by a white man on Friday night. When Barker walked into the courtyard, he was attacked by a group of black students. The first punch knocked Barker out and he was kicked several times in the head. But the injuries turned out to be superficial. Barker was examined by doctors and released; he went out to a social function later that evening.

Six black students were arrested and charged with aggravated assault. But District Attorney Reed Walters increased the charges to attempted second-degree murder. That provoked a storm of black outrage.

"Jena has always been a racist town," says Bailey's mother, Caseptla Bailey. "We've understood that….It has been that way since I've lived here."

But school board member Billy Fowler disagrees.

As far as racial problems, our community is no different than any other community," Fowler says.

Fowler is one of the few leaders with the school administration or local law enforcement willing to talk to the media. The principal, the school superintendent and the district attorney all declined repeated calls for comment.

Fowler says he is appalled at reports by outside media outlets that he claims portray Jena as a racist community. But he and many other white leaders agree that the charges are unfair.

"I think it's safe to say some punishment has not been passed out fairly and evenly," Fowler says. "I think probably blacks may have gotten a little tougher discipline through the years.

"Our town is not a bunch of bigots. They're Christian, law-abiding citizens that wouldn't mistreat anybody."

But the black students and their families feel mistreated. The first to go to court was Mychal Bell, the team's star running and defensive back. Bell's court-appointed lawyer refused to mount any defense at all, instead resting his case immediately after two days of government presentation. An all-white jury found Bell guilty.

A talented athlete, Bell had a real shot at a Division I football scholarship. He now faces up to 22 years in prison. The other five black students await trial on attempted murder charges.

Over the weekend, Jena High School had the big shade tree in the courtyard chopped into firewood.

Sunday, September 23, 2007


Okay, so either no one has been reading my blog this week or you are all cowards! The poll had only 3 votes after extending the end date. Perhaps you were all embarrassed to expose your spelling skills. The final results were:

Alright, I am going to think of a good one. You better answer up people.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Regina's Words

I really like the images that Regina Spektor uses. Here are some off her older album Soviet Kitsch:

"They made a statue of us
And it put it on a mountain top
Now tourists come and stare at us
Blow bubbles with their gum
Take photographs for fun, for fun"

Ghost of Corporate Future
"Well maybe you should just drink a lot less coffee,
And never ever watch the ten o'clock news,
Maybe you should kiss someone nice,
Or lick a rock,
Or both.

Maybe you should cut your own hair
'Cause that can be so funny
It doesn't cost any money
And it always grows back
Hair grows even after you're dead

And people are just people,
They shouldn't make you nervous.
The world is everlasting,
It's coming and it's going.
If you don't toss your plastic,
The streets won't be so plastic.
And if you kiss somebody,
Then both of you'll get practice."

Poor Little Rich Boy
"Poor little rich boy, all the world is okay
The water runs off your skin and down into the drain
You're reading Fitzgerald, you're reading Hemmingway
They're both super smart and drinking in the cafes

And you don't love your girlfriend
You don't love your girlfriend
And you think that you should but she thinks that she's fat
But she isn't but you don't love her anyway
And you don't love your mother
And you know that you should
And you wish that you would
But you don't anyway

You're so young, you're so goddamn young."

Ode To Divorce
"The food that I'm eating
Is suddenly tasteless
I know I'm alone now
I know what it tastes like
So break me to small parts
Let go in small doses
But spare some for spare parts
There might be some good ones
Like you might make a dollar
I'm inside your mouth now
Behind your tonsils
Peeking over your molars
You're talking to her now
And you've eaten something minty
And you're making that face that I like
And you're going in, in for the kill, kill
For the killer kiss, kiss for the kiss, kiss

I need your money, it'll help me
I need your car and I need your love
So won't you help a brother out?"

"Some days aren't yours at all,
They come and go as if they're someone else's days
They come and leave you behind
Someone else's face
And it's harsher than yours
And colder than yours

They come in all quiet, sweep up and then they leave
And you don't hear a single floor board creak
They're so much stronger than the friends you try to keep by your side"

Thursday, September 20, 2007


A good friend of my family passed away tonight. She had been fighting cancer for over ten years. I grew up in her home with her kids, and we shared at least a few Shabbats a year together. She always supported my acting and was a positive energy to have around even until the very end. It is truly amazing how long she fought and with a courage I have never experienced before.

The funeral is tomorrow, and it will be an extremely tough day to get through. That's all I can really write at the moment.


Yeah, things have finally started to settle down for a bit. I've started working more, and well... that's about it. I start rehearsals next week, but that's only once a week for a while. Life is kinda boring actually. Everyone else is working. We meet up for dinner. We go home. We work. Luckily, the people are pretty interesting at my new job. There haven't been any auditions I've wanted to go on lately. So... I guess... that's why I haven't posted in a while. 'til next time.

-A to the S

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Raise Your Hand If You Are Sick

Is everyone sick this week? I have had a horrible headache and a sore throat. It seems every other day I feel okay, but then I want to crash around 9PM. Someone suggested it is the weather change that is making everyone not feel so well. I think it might be, because it doesn't feel like I have a cold... I just don't feel good. To feel better I will post one of my favorite paintings:

Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte
by George Seurat

Thursday, September 13, 2007

First Poll Results

Rachel Ray is the big winner with 75% of the votes! Tied for second is Martha Stewart and Bobby Flay for the cook we hate the most.

Don't forget to vote in this week's poll.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

L'shanah Tovah!

Happy New Year!

Being Jewish, I get two New Years to reflect on my life. Taking a look around right now, I am thankful for where I am and for the people who surround me. Although I get frustrated with my progress, I realize I am in a transition period in my life.

I wish everyone a year full of positive and productive change.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Hot Mess

Hot Mess a.k.a. Britney Spears. About two minutes ago, I saw the VMA opening. This reminded me of the drag queens in the drag show I recently saw. Was she hung over or drunk? She just marked through the whole thing, and barely even did the lip syncing. She had no energy, and her ratty hair didn't help her out at all.

I'm not writing about this to diss on Britney Spears. I am just confused as to who saw that and thought it was worth putting on the air. It was boring and sad. Someone really needed to do her a favor and not let her perform. I mean it was cruel. They just exploited how much of a disaster she is now for ratings. Sad.

It's weird to watch MTV, the station I used to watch all the time in high school, and think how stupid it is. The people on the shows are my age. When I was younger it must have been cool to see the older people doing all that grown-up stuff. Now that I am that age, I realize it's all the stupid people that are on those shows. It's like when you grow too old to be the kids that Nickelodeon is talking to in their commercials. You are the adult that thinks kids don't know anything and can't do anything.

When I was a young kid, I thought I could do anything, and didn't get why adults were so negative. Well, we aren't negative, just realistic. Maybe we need some of that optimism though. Whether Nickelodeon was marketing to kids for financial reasons or to hold up some greater ideal to change the world, I think they were on to something.

Sunday, September 9, 2007


michelle: indiana jones is actually my dream man
michelle: he's so smart
anna: yeah
michelle: and so sexy
michelle: and brave
anna: and he is harrsion ford
michelle: exactly.


I found a perfect apartment for me in every way, but thanks to an idiot friend, we won't be moving into it. Thanks for wasting my time, and making me lose the apartment. Please give me money from the credit check back soon, thanks.


Paula Deen is crazy. Sometimes she seems just off-her-rocker, but sometimes it is endearing. She loves to eat and everything extravagant. I think what it is, is she is a unsophisticated lady with money and fame now. It's interesting to watch. This is just plain ol' cute and funny:


Also, I just watched Walk the Line and it was pretty good. Overall it felt a little flat... like I had seen it all before in Ray. I thought I would hate Reese Witherspoon in this movie, but she was the best part of it. No full review of this one, though, because I missed the beginning of it.


Friday, September 7, 2007

Cleaning Up

Look what I found:

Yep. My pager, circa 1997. Remember typing codes that meant "pick us up at the mall" or "call me back"?

I also found my first phone:

I still think it's kinda cute.
Here's my new phone:

I don't really like it at all. It doesn't have a soft/silent setting. I have to manually put the volume all the way down, and the reception isn't great. Also, the volume is too soft for the ring and talking.

Here is my dream phone, which I hope to make a reality soon:

A girl can dream can't she?

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Some Minor Improvements

So, just like Apple updated their iPod line, I updated my blog. While there aren't cool things like touchscreens, videos and streaming music from Starbucks stores' Wi-Fi... I did change the light gray sidebar font to a more purple/blue/gray color. I've added a description to my blog, and combined my links into one section. I also changed my archives to a drop menu, and the most new fun thing is that I've add a poll! Yeah! So, it's right up top there on the right. Just check your choice, see the results, and next week there will be a new one! This should entice you to check back in with my brilliant writing at least once a week.

As far as life goes, I am psyched about my job. I hope I am good at it. Also, had a pretty good audition today. I hope I get that.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Walking in the 'Burbs

Today I dropped my car off to get a full cleaning. This was very important to me, and you know this if you have ever been in my car. I used to keep my car so clean that it looked and smelled new for over a year. I was that person who didn't let you eat in the car... or at least not without wincing. However, as soon as graduated, I used my car a lot more. It became my home on wheels. I keep things in there for: work, shows, voice lessons, auditions, the gym, and going out.

Anyway, I was very excited to finally have a clean car. So I dropped it off and I had three hours to kill. I needed some jeans, so I walked to the mall in the blazing heat. As I did so, I noticed how un-walker friendly my town is. There are sidewalks that stop in the middle of the block, are only on one side of the street, and some that are half the width of normal sidewalks.

At school, I loved to walk... everywhere. In fact, I would call people up to just go for a walk. However, in my town, no one walks. I saw maybe four people in the time it took me to walk to the mall, walk home, and walk back to the car place. The crosswalks are unfriendly to walkers. I also hate being objectified by men who think it must be flattering to be yelled at by a stranger whizzing by in their dirty truck. I was whistled/yelled at about three times by obnoxious males. I guess my ripped-up jeans, green t-shirt, sandals, and greasy pulled back hair looked really sexy from inside their shitty-ass, dented-up cars.

This is the reason I normally avoid walking around here. You are stared at by everyone who must be thinking: "What happened to that poor girl's car?" or "Man, I want me a piece of that!"

So I arrive at the mall, and then I remembered: I hate the mall. I was hot. I was alone. I had been stared at for the last twenty minutes while I walked. I was not happy. The mall is so depressing. All of the consuming just reminded me of every American cliché.

I felt trapped. It was so odd. I mean, I've not had a car for more years than I've had a car. Somehow though I felt like I was trying to survive... in a mall... with no car with which to leave. After buying my jeans, I tried to relax by having some frozen yogurt in the even more disgusting food court. I couldn't sit still. I was too anxious. I decided to take a stand. I decided to leave the mall.

On my walk home, I passed by some lawn maintenance men who all gawked at me and one whistled. It was worse than the car people because they were just across the street from me. I took a different way home than I intended just to avoid walking by another group of maintenance guys I saw down the block. I made it home, collapsed, and waited around until 3:50 when I walked back to the car place.

The good news is, my car is nice and clean. I had dinner with three of my good girlfriends. I saw The Producers with Will, his parents, and Michelle. I got offered a job doing something I think I will like for alright money...and I guess, I also got a nice little workout from all of my walking.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

What Time Is It?

Flavor of Love 3? Oh, hell's no. The shock appeal is gone, and it will just be as boring as "Rock of Love."

Also, my best friend just got married on Sunday. More on that later.