choose your own belly adventure!

The best part of my bellydancing class tonight was:

a. listening to the instructor go on about the corruption of classical belly dancing by Belly Dancers These Days (also, The Goddess, but this is another discussion)

b. watching the class expert dance with a sword on her head

c. learning about this:

new goal for 2011?

dancing with wacky props, some possibly on fire, on my head?  If that isn't theater, tell me what is.


a lifetime of dubious futures

After months of auditions and interviews, an anxiously-awaited email just came from my cousin:
Just got the call. [Massive corporate account] is going with some dude in [other state].

Don't know what else to say. Other than thank you thank you thank you. I'm very disappointed it didn't work out. 

I think you have finally reached Professional Actor Zen when you can read that and know that another job will come.  And bonus points if you can realize that this is the real score:

If it's possible, I have even more respect for you now than when this thing first came up. Thanks for your patience and talent.
In the absence of paying work, I'm proud to have patience and talent.  Or at least to be capable of convincing other people that I do.

here comes some hoity-toity bullshit, yall:
Trusting that it's going to be okay means not constantly fretting about it being okay, second-guessing its okayness, or obsessively asking other people for affirmation that it's going to be okay. I know that's not all this blog is, but it's a big part of it. So that's why I've been feeling okay about stepping away from this blog, although I have missed you super people who benevolently waste your time over here.  You telling me you miss it has been flattering, appreciated and encouraging.  Don't worry.  I'll be back around.


thoughts on finally doing the show in front of an audience for the first time

1. holy shit!  we did it!  AUGHHHHH!!   WE DID IT!!!!! I LOVE YOU GUYSSS!!!! HOLY CRAP I CAN"T BELIEVE IT!!!!!!

2. wait. we have to do it again?


my advice to me in tech week.

actually, when doing a play, it's probably best not to focus on the play.
1. enjoy the process.
2. even if no one ever sees the process.
3. let's be honest, no one ever sees the play either
4. except for your friends and loved ones
5. and they really just want you to be happy, which you won't be if you're so damn worried that your play will be too long or too heavy handed or not credible or unpleasant in anyway.
6. so seriously, just enjoy the process.


mascot rage

I've done some mascotting in my time.

Let's just say that people treat you differently when you are dressed as a completely anonymous gigantic costumed character with no face.  or a fake face.   People walk up to you and punch you.

let me repeat that.

Grown men walk up to you and punch you.

But this isn't about that. This is about this:

Rufus the Bobcat suffers lifetime ban for brazen attack on Brutus Buckeye

Rufusattack04.jpgDuring my famed tenure* as Mr. Bronco, our high school mascot, I would often go over to the other team's sideline [in my gigantic jumpsuit of brown fake fur with a 3-foot-tall horse head] to do a skit or two with the other mascot.  Here is the basic script:
1. Mr. Bronco and other mascot get in a slapsticky fight involving a wacky prop.
2a. If we are at the other team's sideline, Mr. Bronco loses fantastically.
2b. If we are at Mr. Bronco's team's sideline, the other mascot loses fantastically.
3. The end.

I know what you're thinking, and yes, in many ways it IS reminiscent of Stanislavsky's early work. Anyway.

One day I go over to their side to propose this Formula For Entertainment Gold to the other mascot.  We chat. it's fine. Their school flag happens to be there. I accidentally step on it.

People respond.  I back off and apologize, not there to put on a show, just trying to talk to the mascot about timing and stuff.

But something made me STEP ON THAT FLAG AGAIN.

AND AGAIN.  The only time that any shadow of disapproval has actually fired me up with some crazy adrenaline. Suddenly there was a lot of disapproval. And some pissed off male cheerleaders.

I still can't tell you what took over me, but something really, really did.  I was representing my school (which I hated. WHAT?). And I felt it was my duty to make this absolute stupid point, completely outnumbered, in enemy territory, in a way that no one from my side would ever even KNOW about.  Man it was weird. Man it was stupid.

So I just want to say, Rufus the Bobcat, that Mr. Bronco understands.  Mr. Bronco has been there.  And if your path is anything like mine, you will go on some meds to moderate your moods, move to the East coast to study theater and get some distance from your family.

It's gonna be okay, Rufus.

*I was a good mascot. for reals. 

my inbox can be a delightful place sometimes.

a casting notice forwarded from my agent: 
RATES: We are casting for five primary characters and five secondary characters. Rates are $6000 for primaries and $3000 for secondaries.   THIS INCLUDES THE SESSION, USAGE AND EXCLUSIVITY FOR SCHIZOPHRENIA DRUGS.  THIS MEANS YOU COULD NOT DO ANOTHER JOB FOR A DIFFERENT SCHIZOPHRENIA DRUG MFG COMPANY FOR THREE YEARS.  
well that's hardly fair. you're only casting one of my personalities and the others are going to get hella jealous. 



you never know if the play you are working really, really, REALLY hard on will suck for reasons beyond your control.
And this is what tempts otherwise sane people to write, direct and/or produce their own material.


it's a stretch

In my current play, many friends are somewhat amused to hear that I am playing a Lebanese woman.  It's kind of hilarious. I'm about as Anglo-looking as you can get.  I've even been pronounced "the whitest person I've ever met".   BY MORE THAN ONE PERSON. 

However, the greatest stretch is not that the character I am portraying is a 22-year old Arab.
It is that she is also a PhD in Pure Mathematics. 

This has led me to research some very interesting* blogs, which have comments like this:
Computing e^{-U(x)/T} takes polynomial number of parameters, computing \sum {x is in n-cube} e^{-U(x)/T} in k-SAT is #P-complete, and hence we all believe (but do not know how to prove) that exponential number of steps is needed, but counting is #P-complete even in polynomial problems like matching. So I am still confused about the definition of “parameters”.
Which apparently someone FREAKING UNDERSTANDS
because they responded with this:
parameters are not x_1… x_n, so in computing sum e^{-U(x)/T} he more likely counts number of terms – basic potentials;
Complexity of the problem Z(T) is not so relevant – it might be #P complete in general, but he uses it to determine (if I am right) the number of parameters/terms, does not need to solve it. It is the other way around – when he CAN compute Z(T), then number of “parameters” is small.
People.  And that was an explanation

Did your brain just explode?   Or is my massive ego short-circuiting this to prevent me from admitting that I feel duuuuumb?

*in the abstract


This week's paychecks

Theater Work.
Thirty hours of rehearsal, 4 or 5 documentaries watched outside of rehearsal, additional research about play context.  Commuting time: 12 hours, commuting costs (via public trans) around $25 - 27. Emotional wear and tear as we discuss war atrocities, rape and genocide.

On-Camera Work.
9 hours of actual physical presence, 1 hour of fully catered gourmet lunch (including but not limited to steak, seafood as well as vegetarian options, 3 kinds of salads and 4 kinds of cakes), various snacks and beverages throughout the day.  Hang out and chat with friends.  Read an entire (very good!) novel.  Drove to/from set (20 - 25 minutes each way) with validated parking.

So, tell me again why working in commercials compromises my integrity as an actor? 

*this is sort of glamorizing it. That's gross; after taxes and agent's commission it's down to 651. But STILL.

Transcontinental feline indignation.

Will this make you laugh endlessly as it does me? Oh, who knows.

I mentioned to my Argentinian pen pal, whom I FREAKING ADORE, that yesterday was Bowie's birthday.  Well - it's the day we brought him home from the pound.  We observe this holiday by kissing him slightly more than usual and feeding him many treats from the "Catty Shack" carton that my cousin nobly contributed when she house/cat-sat for us while we were traipsing through SE Asia (I still srsly owe you, hks). 

Gabriela sent this from Buenos Aires from her cats, Kathy and Joy:

This is the most openly hostile birthday wish I have ever seen in my life.

DIOS MIO how it cracks my shit UP. 


drunkblogging leads to prolificnessciencyhood

never mind, I thought better of this post.

you should be happy about that.
I should have another drink.

Questions to ponder, at 1:27 on a Wednesday morning.

1. WHY DID I DRINK A DIET COKE AT 7:30??? I KNEW IT WOULD DO THIS TO ME. I knew it. But I drank it. I think it was because it was free. 

2. Elfa closets

3. Does my director like me?

4. the end.

5. Today, for the first time, I used "b'oKAY????" in a voiceover audition as an adlib. Will they love me for my cultural relevance? PONDER.

AND BEFORE YOU JUDGE ME, just know that I will outlive you. 


well, I think this is successful.

I have had 2 boyfriends in my life, not counting Brandon, and I am facebook friends with both of them.

I frequently look at their statuses/notes/whosits and think: 
What a funny, very smart, exceptionally interesting guy!
I am SO glad I didn't marry him!

Also they are cute, but I do not wish to bone them. I guess it's the same thing.



travel changes you

Last month on our trip, we spent over half our time in Cambodia.  Once there, we resolved to learn what had actually happened with the Khmer Rouge.  We knew it would be grim, but it seemed irresponsible and disrespectful to just sort of know that some kind of genocide had happened.

So we bought and read a few history books.  We went to the Genocide Museum in Phnom Penh to pay our respects.  We hired a private guide.  She was in her early 40s, a survivor of the regime.  She broke down in tears by the end of our tour.

Here's an awkward situation:
"I'm so sorry.  I see that I should leave you alone.  ...Should I pay you now?"

Here's what feels tacky:
Handing four dollars to a woman who is sobbing over the death of her father, brother, and 1/4 of her country.

Okay, here's the point:
that was horrible.
Learning about the regime. Seeing its immediate effects. Standing in the rooms, walking past the graves, seeing the bones.  Seeing the victims.  Their faces in their mugshots after they'd been hauled in and they knew it was just a matter of how much pain before they died.
Hanging out with girls my age, then learning they grew up on the streets because their parents were murdered.  I could go on. There are things we saw that neither of us has been able to mention again, to each other, certainly not to other people.
It was horrible.

Here is my point:

I don't know how to deal with this. 

The play I'm in is set against the Lebanese civil war, and we're doing a lot of research on it. One actor brought in this image:

No one reacted very strongly.  A girl next to me said she loved his pants.
I wanted to puke, the violence and the reality of it upset me so much. I hate looking at it.
I do think that two months ago I would have known, in-my-brain known that it was real, but I still would have processed it as a scene from a movie.

The artistic director of this theater company I'm working with spent time working in refugee camps in the Middle East. I know I could never stop any of the suffering that's out there, but at least I could push back against it somehow.
or am I just trying to figure out how to deal with this in my brain?


sometimes failure is a relief.

I was on hold all weekend to shoot a national commercial.

A really, really bad commercial for an unnamed fast food seafood chain.

In this commercial, there are two women. One is extolling the virtues of the fast food chain's Super Family Deal to the other, with the emphasis on fried things included in meal.  Stupid but straightforward.

So I get paired up with another actress, a talented smart gal and friend of many years. We go in together.

Director:  Okay, I want you to get REALLY excited about this, especially the [fried things].  I've been telling ladies all day: it's like you're really excited, because there's a really great shoe sale! It's that exciting.

Me and Other Capable Actress Friend: (...shoes?)  oh, okay. Sure. 

We do the scene. We get really excited about the fried things.  REALLY excited.

Director: Good. But, I mean, you're telling her: Hey! They have these really GREAT shoes!  Or... you know, something you'd get really excited about. (he thinks for a moment) Like purses or something.  Great purses over here! Don't buy this purse, there are these BETTER purses and these are Prada! or whatever.

Me and Other Capable Actress Friend: More enthusiasm, no problem. Got it.

We do the scene again, this time reaching what I find to be a pretty ridiculous, borderline satirical level of joy at the prospect of getting a good deal on fried things.

Director: Okay. Better.  But you really want to tell her - hey!  Don't get these shoes!  There are these really great shoes you should know about!  Or the purses, think about purses!  Or... or... I don't know, great clothes, or like, makeup---

Me: or, say, LEGAL JOURNALS.

Female casting director: (involuntary snort of laughter)

(Director stares at me, baffled. Because 'legal journals' wasn't really the best comeback, FINE, but I at least made my point and I was kind of over having my intelligence insulted by a man hawking FRIED CRISPYNIBBLETBARNACLES)

Director: ...uh. yeah.

(a beat)

Director: oh you mean like those little moleskin journals. Oh, okay, yeah.

(I did not make my point.)

We do the scene again, calling to mind a world where no one has fried anything for seven years and the long wait is over, to be celebrated with days of feasting, games and possibly a large effigy of fried nibblet barnacles, which we will all eat and then smear each other with the oil thereof.

THAT is how we did the scene. 
He seemed mildly satisfied.

...Later I was paired with another friend.  When it came to the line about the fried things she closed her eyes in bliss and sang the name of the fried food.  The director looooooved it.

I hope she booked it (she earned it), and I also hope that director eats a dick.  Not booking that job was one welcome failure.

first day

Tonight is my first night of rehearsal. 

My pencils are sharpened, my script is highlighted, three-hole-punched and clamped neatly into my binder.  I haven't started agonizing over what to wear, but that's definitely next.  I only know one kid in my cast.  I hope the others are nice.  I hope the director likes me.  I hope this is fun and good. 



I guess I could try to make this about something bigger, but I may as well skip the boring allegory.  Here's what happened:  my real-life-flesh-and-blood cousin just lost her 6 month old baby, who was shaken to death by my cousin's (hopefully ex by now) boyfriend.

Everyone in the family keeps trying to find a logic for it.  For example, my mother keeps reminding me that the (hopefully ex by now) boyfriend has a lot of tattoos.  Or, tonight "that poor girl doesn't need anyone pointing fingers at her right now, but she really made some bad choices." My grandmother insisted she didn't have her address, pointedly stating that "I have no idea what her name even is anymore."  (My reaction seems to be avoiding the situation by pointing out my mothers' bad behavior.)

In my brain as I do housework and think about my poor poor cousin, who also lost her father just 6 months back: fair and unfair.
About the tragedy itself.
About people's reactions to the tragedy.
About what we can and can't control and why we respond how we do. 

My metaphorical-larger-sense cousin Scott lost someone earlier this year.  Emotions run high. Old grudges surface.  He said 'there is a window of time where anyone is allowed to say anything, and it has to be okay.  You chalk it up to grief.'

I think that's fair. Sort of a supreme fairness.

It doesn't help my cousin much right now, though.  Neither does my stupid card.  Or the nightmare I had last night where I witnessed miles and miles of slaughter and carnage and could do nothing but cry and keep walking.


hi, welcome back to my blog, my trip was nice.


I planned this poorly.

This is a pretty lousy post to put this blog on pause, but, well, I'm leaving for Thailand in a few hours.
I'll check you in August.
Stay gold.


boss bossa

My cousins are getting married tomorrow and invited all the guests to be the wedding band.

So I said hey Brandon.  You wanna play sax and I'll sing this song?

So we got our cousin (who is an amazing professional musician) to play that and another bossa nova standard with us.  I stressed it all week. Finally Brandon said*: you are not allowed to be insecure about your voice this weekend.  Being insecure is not going to help you.  It will not make you sound better or have more fun.  So no more. 

Last night I made dinner and we had FOR REALS BAND PRACTICE.  I was a singer at a FOR REALS BAND PRACTICE.  Guitar, sax, vocals.  And it sounded just lovely.

I couldn't wipe the smile off my face.  I wish we could have just gone all night. I can't wait for tomorrow.

*after I asked him for the 37th time if he would tell me if I sounded terrible


also do not underestimate the depth of my hypocrisy!

Now I'm asking YOU to please, please vote for my theater company to win a half-million dollars.

We teach creative writing workshops in severely underfunded (and, soon, 35-kids-to-a-classroom) Chicago Public Schools.   In some cases we're the only arts programming the kids have.  You want a mission statement, tough guy? I got your mission statement right here.

Mission Statement

Barrel of Monkeys (BOM) is an ensemble of actor/educators who create an alternative learning environment in which children share their personal voices and celebrate the power of their imaginations. BOM accomplishes this through creative writing workshops and in-school performances of children's stories. BOM also engages the broader community in support of the visions of children through public performances of their work.

We teach self-expression, promote literacy, boost self-esteem and rock some communication skills.  It's good.  Will you vote for us?

Vote here.

Also, if you do, I'm casting you in my next show, where we perform something as rewarding as this:

'cause I think you. have got. IT.


I'm going on a trip.

I know this will come as a blow, since I've been SO DILIGENT about posting for the past few months in particular, but..
I'm going to be gone for a month.  Backpacking through Thailand, Laos, and Cambodia.  It's going to make me a better person! WHEEEE!

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.”

Also? Sometimes you lose weight. Score. Thanks for the quote, Mark Twain.


Mark Twain: You're welcome, Lacy!  Are you packed?

Me: Whoa! Hey, Mark Twain!  ...Or, should I say, Samuel Clemens?  ...Or, should I say, Hal Holbrook?

Mark Twain:  You just love that joke, don't you?


Hal Holbrook: Laugh it up, sucker, no one's going to make a career playing you in one-woman shows long after YOU'RE dead.

Me: SPEAKING OF FUN TRIPS, look at my totally rad international vaccination card!

do not underestimate the depth of my resentment

Dear Theater Company:

After I spend 3 hours auditioning (read: waiting to audition) for a role that you do not cast me in,
do not ask me to go to a website, register my name and email, and vote for you to get a lot of money.

I am just not that nice.


ps. I mean come ON.  


man, do I love this story.

Sir Ian McKellen Mistaken For A Tramp While Taking A Break Outside Rehearsals For Waiting For Godot

Alexander Technique? More like Alexander TechNOPE.

For the first time in my life, I qualified for the SAG deluxe insurance plan.  

You have to earn a certain amount within one calendar year to qualify.  Holy moly, I finally earned enough.  I WIN.  I WIN ...an insurance plan I don't need since we're covered far more reliably by Brandon's work.

But! I did think it was worth pointing out a few interesting tidbits about the Screen Actors Guild health insurance plan.  For example: right off the bat, they want you to know not to try any of your newfangled voodoo newage bullshit hijinks.

And check out the last sentence in this one:

No Feldenkreis. No Rolfing. In short, most of my BFA acting curriculum is not eligible for coverage (even if Emerson College had been in-network). 

It's not a terrible plan, though.  Robert Downey, Jr. and I were both pleased to discover that the mental health and chemical dependency coverage is quite generous.

Presumably sober actors in therapy don't try to file claims for the don't-even-ask plastic surgeries listed on pages 34 - 47.


good work if you can get it

Not too long before he died, I was with my grandfather in his backyard.  We saw my grandmother walking out from the house to come talk to us, and he looked at me and said with uncharacteristic gravity:   Lacy, I want to tell you something. I love your grandmother more every single day.  And I don't mean every week or every year. I'm telling you, every single day my love for her grows.
By the look on his face and the tone of his voice, he seemed overwhelmed by it, like he didn't know how to explain it to me or to himself. 

I got married in that backyard. Two years ago today, actually.

So two years ago, our marriage became the most important thing in my life. Officially demoted: money, friends, auditions, weight obsessions and high-profile theater projects. My first priority and my #1 Job In Life became: love. 
My job is love.
The way to do my job well is to love more every single day.

Not that I'm always successful at it, but if my perpetual goal is to love as much as I can and then love even more, surely that's a good way to live.
Congratulations to my cousins getting married this month, next month, this fall.  Your job is love.  Work hard.


further perils of a life of acting (for you, Chloe)

As if poverty, instability, egomania and liver damage weren't enough:

ASPEN, Colo. — Attorneys for Charlie Sheen have approached a Colorado nonprofit theater about having the actor do public service work as part of a plea deal in his domestic violence case, the theater's artistic director said Friday.
...now you're dumping abusive husbands off on us????

Or at least buy a season subscription first! GAWD!

And YOU KNOW he's going to hit on the interns. Pun not intended.

And of course this would be the show that you're like: oh geez, I just don't know that I'm comfortable doing all this stage combat opposite Charlie freaking Sheen, but I really could use the gig.  (pause) and it's a good part. (pause) well, it would get a ton of publicity. (pause) OMG PLEASEPLEASEPLEASE LET ME GET IT
Sheen's duties, if the deal is approved, would include teaching a class and helping with Theatre Aspen's three summer shows, Paige Price said.
Make the fucker do prop design.  HAHAHA.


more wins!

Today needs no boxing videos, GOOD SIRS, for today I was not soundly rejected. 

In fact, I was lovingly selected (you may use the standard industry term "booked," but I'm going to go with "lovingly selected") for a national campaign and beat out all y'all punk actors on both coasts! BOOM! What's up NYC? Y'all ain't got what I got! In your face, actors of San Fran!

I win a trip to San Francisco, one tv commercial for a major cellular network provider, and a much-needed boost of confidence!   Huzzah, bitches. Huzzah. I smack my booty in your general direction.


mother's day

Strange success, but: I started therapy this past week, y'all.

That's actually a huge success for this girl, who, last time she attempted therapy (at a free clinic through college) was told that she had "some really major issues to work through... more than we can really handle here." The time before that? Therapy involved drugs and hospitalization. 

So I found a guy and started on a good journey.  He was an actor for a while, too.  How's that for luck? I can tell him why my career makes me nutty too. He'll get it.

First dubious success: writing that letter-you-never-send to your mother the day before mother's day. it's a total Therapy For Beginners exercise, but dammit, that shit works.  Sometimes the most remedial assignments are the hardest.


fight! fight! fight!

I knew all these auditions with their impending rejection and judgment were making me feel all anti-establishment and slightly nihilistic.

And I was on the red line headed to ANOTHER DAMN AUDITION, when I looked up and realized that there was a wall-to-wall, train-to-train freaking BRAWL erupting on the entirety of the Southbound Belmont platform.  And I watched these kids dart, sprint, shove, punch, dive and slap and I realized another word that suits me just fine today:


ohhhhhh it feels so good.  punchpunchpunchpunch.
oh sweet illusion of power through violence.

Ooooh girl.  I'm gonna pour a cocktail and watch this whole thing.  You BEAT that Cuban commie, Sugar Ray.  I'm gonna watch you do it.

Hi, thanks for seeing me! My name is Lacy and I've prepared two contrasting monologues not to exceed 3 minutes; one is classical and the other is MY FISTS


General auditions happen once a year. Each theater company holds their own set, and they usually ask for two contrasting monologues.  I challenge you to find me a single actor who ENJOYS doing monologues.


Greetings, young orator! 
It is, I, Demosthenes (384 BC 322 BC), generally considered the greatest of the Attic orators. 

Hey Demosthenes.  I'm going to ignore how annoyed I am by all the stuff you accomplished by age 20 and just get right to it: MONOLOGUES.  Man, I hate them. How did you get so good at them?


I was orphaned at a tender young age, and my guardians squandered my entire inheritance.  Eloquent and persuasive speech was the only way I was going to get my paper, you heard?

Amazing, Demosthenes. You still know how to talk to the current generation.


I'm just saying it was a matter of survival, not a half-hearted wish to make $500 a week.

but... I'm following my dreams?


I think we both know that these kinds of shows aren't your dream, Lacy. They are jobs, and good jobs, and ways to gain status and admiration from your peers.  But adaptations of Jane Austen novels in the Northern suburbs are not your dreams.  Your dreams are bigger.   And waaaaay less marketable. 

True dat, Demosthenes. True dat.


Demosthenes out. 

Just pointing this out: Demosthenes was NOT an actor.


the wisdom of insecurity, part 78 of 91894

hang on, this is a long one.

I used to carpool to work with an actor who was otherwise a really sweet guy, but was a SERIOUS dick about exactly one thing:

parking attendants.

Specifically, the parking attendants in the very large tourist trap that houses the theater where we worked.

SOOO mean. So derisive. "what a waste of space" and "stupid fucking jackasses" "lazy assholes, they don't even deserve a job."

OMG and srsly? and why? WHY? Here's my best theory: I think it was because they are bossy (understandably, since 99.9% of the motorists there have no idea where they are going, but show up in frighteningly large numbers and ALL IN SUVs) but this actor, he KNEW where he was going and didn't like getting bossed.

Grow the fuck up or get over it or whatever. We all get bossed. Deal.

As it so happens, this actor got awfully drunk at the closing party of our show. I drove him home, but even the ride through the parking garage was too much and he grunted at me to stop the car so he could open the door, lean out and heave out his stomach like a 16-year-old on homecoming night... at the feet of a parking attendant.

I am sorry he got sick.
But it was kind of awesome.

I wish he had been sober enough to register what was happening.

This is part of the wisdom of insecurity.
This is why you shouldn't call people assholes like it's a bad thing.
You are an asshole too.


Kiss me, I'm gentile.

I stopped posting for a little bit because a cousin made several comments about the narcissism of blogging in general and I was convinced they were directed to ME IN PARTICULAR.
So in order to stop acting so self-absorbed, yes, I took the most self-absorbed possible view of the situation and acted accordingly. Welcome to my vortex of ego.


I had a hard time with Easter this year, which was always a big holiday growing up. New dresses, new hats, huge family get together, huge quantity of candy, hugely improbable places where we kept finding rogue Easter grass strands for weeks following.

So now that I don't really subscribe to Christianity, I feel like a fraud trying to celebrate a holiday that I can't truly claim to observe.
me: it would just be me celebrating Easter for the sake of Easter, not because I actually believe in its origin and meaning.

Brandon: But that happens to every single holiday. What about St. Patrick's Day?

me: okay, well THAT's different. That's not a religious holiday at all. That's just about drinking and nationalistic feelings, and---

Brandon: and it started off as...?

See how he got me???
He GOT me.

So I guess I'm Christian for Easter like everyone else is Irish for St. Patrick's day. I officially broke down today and bought a chocolate cross. All Easter candy 50% off?! What a deal!

I'd make a crack about it representing half the salvation, but if you look on the back there are actually TWO servings of chocolate in this cross, and I gobbled up both. So I technically got the full dosage. of meaning, easter, or Easter. Who knows.


This happens far too often for my own comfort.

I will be out shopping, see something and think:
This is adorable! This is sexy! This is great! This is totally the style I love that I want to emulate! ... This is designed by Jessica Simpson.


unbelievably stupid thoughts I actually catch myself having:

Oh my gosh, everyone booked a pilot this season except for me.  How embarrassing.

oh Lacy.
you moron.

For the record, in the past week, in reverse order, I :
  • Set up 3 shoots for 2 projects for the coming week
  • Directed a Barrel of Monkeys show that went over FREAKING GANGBUSTERS
  • Had a power meeting with a friend who wants me to direct his show
  • Had a superexciting idea for my next project
  • Had a callback for a pilot
  • Was invited to create an environmental theater role for decent money with a company I love
  • Did a great show Monday night
  • Did a great show Sunday afternoon
  • Performed in a really real live rock concert as part of a staging of a Frank Zappa concept album
  • Performed a show I wrote, created, designed and built for a very appreciative audience
  • Was asked to write another piece to develop the first one into a full evening of theater
  • Was way too damn busy to blog. 

(slap) (slap)




Grendel ... is a little stressed out.

It's cool, Grendel.

Chill your shit out.  People will come to see you and THAT TOTALLY AMAZING PLAY YOU DO called Beowulf vs. Grendel at Hugen Hall at Strawdog Theater (3829 N. Broadway) on Friday, March 19 at 11pm.

Here's the thing. Last time we did the show, the place was paaaaaacked.  I fear we will not be able to replicate this success. It fills me with fear.  It does.         I mean.

It fills Grendel with fear.

Grendel has a lot on his plate right now.  He would tell you about it, but it sounds like whining.
Come see his show. Make him drink a beer. He will feel better.



family + politics =

oh, you know right where this is going.

I like my grandfather a lot.  My dad's dad.  Not the other one, the one who I love and miss every day and shaped my life in seventy bazillion ways.  
But this one I love and like a lot. He has a truly fascinating life story about growing up in Oklahoma too poor to own shoes, brainiacking his way through WWII and using the GI bill to become a mechanical engineer and work on oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico in the 50s.  Also, an award-winning bowler.

Also, I happen to be named after him.  He's Carl Lacy [last name] Senior, my dad is junior, and I narrowly avoided Carla Lacy (say it out loud if you don't understand why this is such a blessing) and ended up with Lacy.

He also emailed me this today:
Fwd: FWD: OMG!!!


The name of the book Obama is reading is called: 

The Post-American World,  and it was written by a fellow Muslim. 

  "Post"  America means the world After  America ! Please forward this picture to everyone you know, conservative or liberal. We must expose Obama's radical ideas and his intent to bring down our beloved America ! 
The guy isn't dumb.  He's old, and he's very Republican, and he is definitely racist, but he isn't stupid. 

...I realize the last part of that sentence is a little self-contradictory.  IN ANY CASE we can assume he was already aware of the meaning of the word "post."

As with previous racist family emails, ... well hell, what DO you do? In that case, before, I wrote a revoltingly preachy and way-too-long response including my disgust, objection, and love.

It went over pretty well!

Here's how I deal with it a year and a half later. 
(we call my grandfather Grandpere. GM/Grandmary is my grandmother)

oh, Grandpere.

Come on.
Don't make me send you records and articles about the Bush family's Saudi oil interests and the "true" causes behind the Gulf and Iraqi Wars.  My side has idiot propagandists too.

Lots and lots of love to you and GM.  We had a wonderful time in Portland over the weekend.
Talk to you soon,
your flaming liberal namesake

Unwritten PS:

creative process

30 seconds' worth of thoughts:
This veggie mu shu I made is so so damn good. 

Maybe I should do a cooking-blog component to my blog.

I could start with blogging about this mu shu.

Except I just ate all of it. 

So, no. 



Shopping for mannequins online (for PUPPETS, people, for PUPPETS) ... will make you feel like a pervypervPERRRV.

Example 1:

Very Good! Used 14 Year Child Mannequin with rod and basic wooden platform (not shown). Please click on Details/Pricing. 1 Available **Buy 2 or more used items and receive a 10% discount!**   
Display Item

EW EW EW she's supposed to be 14 and I'm looking at her NAKED.

Example 2:

Brand new full size, fiberglass made, Flesh tone colored female mannequin. Detailed face make-ups and gorgeous looking. Consisting 5 major parts. easy to set up and put the clothing on. Heavy duty temper glass base and calf support rod (stand for the mannequin) are included. the arms can move up and down only, not bendable.

Flesh tone.
Am I prude for getting the willies from "face make-ups and gorgeous looking"?   I'm imagining this ebay seller breathing too heavily to construct sentences.  FACE. (ragged breath)  MAKEUPs.  (ragged breath) FIVE MAJOR PARTS.

Example 3:

Female Torso, Mid-Size



How I Spent My Long Weekend

Long weekend in Oregon with the in-laws.  
On Friday, Brandon and his mother and I went to a sushi restaurant and smashed maki into our faceholes with great joy.
I've never been to this kind of sushi place before, where you take it off the track.  Then again, I would like sushi if it were just slid over to me on the floor in a cardboard box.  Edgy.

We piled up our finished plates like three gorged, proud cats depositing mouse remains at their owners' front doors.

Later we drove around, admiring the early spring, the beautiful trees and majestic Mount Hood.

Brandon: Mt. Hood.
Me: It's so beautiful.
Brandon's mom: Yeah.     Lot of frozen dead people up there.


jaw on desk

(this morning.  Lacy, Brandon at respective computers. There is coffee.)

Me: Geez. Everybody is really losing their minds over this OK Go video.

Brandon: mmhm.

Me: are all your friends, like, losing their minds over it too?

Brandon: yeah.  Maybe they should stop losing their minds.

Me: 'you guys, quit losing your minds'

Brandon: 'Yeah, quit losing your minds already!'

Me: have you seen it?

Brandon: uh uh. You?

Me: nah.



file under: the false assumption that my consumer activity actually matters

AMAZINGLY unflattering but actual photo of me closing my one account with Bank of America.


Holy crap, I actually look toothless

ps, thanks for the bonus points gift certificates that I've used for makeup and rental cars, BofA, and you're welcome for zero interest paid to you evvvaah!!!!

Yeah, I bet they're really sorry to see me go.

But I closed it!  Using a smaller bank now!  You should do it too!


I gotta tell ya:

This site is just about killing me lately. 


Seemingly randomly-collected photos of puppies in postmodern getup accompanied by blurbs that secure their hipster cred.

a choice sample of what awaits you:

ari stayed up all night drinking beer and playing old 7”s, so he’s gonna have to sit out this month’s critical mass
[photo via kari g] ari stayed up all night drinking beer and playing old 7”s, so he’s gonna have to sit out this month’s critical mass


SERIOUSLY Morgan Freeman.

DO. YOU. REALLY. need every voice over account on television right now?
you don't.
you don't.


bloopers: when failure = success

I love bloopers.

That is an understatement.
I love bloopers soooooooooo much. 

I grew up watching old black-and-white movies.  (My parents didn't let us watch anything produced after the mid 1950s.)  So these are the stars I grew up watching ... AND HERE ARE THEIR BLOOOOOOPERS!!!!! 

Bette Davis Blooper Reel (who I always thought was kind of a stuck up bitch, but I do appreciate her pretty consistent mutter of "awwsonofabitch")

I keep trying to write something eloquent about art and it's all lame, so I'll just transcribe these big sloppy delighted thoughts I have:

OH MY GOSH! BETTE DAVIS!  My wig got stuck on a guy's costume once toooooooo! 
SPENCER TRACEY!   I say that when I forget lines TOOOO!!!!
RANDOM CHARACTER ACTOR FROM 1936!  I bet you are nervous having a scene with Humphrey Bogart and that's why you can't spit that damn line out! I know what that's like TOOOO!!!!

and combine it with this expression, if it could fit on my face:



midday gchat

Brandon:  hiii.   you gonna get us some groceries?
me:  done it boy!  got you some tortillas!
Brandon:  booze?
me:  didn't get any booze. 
Brandon:  wwwhhhhhhhyyyyyy nooootttttt?
me: I got us some TEA.
Brandon:  what's HAPPENING to you?
me:  I'm trying to DRINK LESS
Brandon:  WHO ARE YOU?


working actor blues

I have something to tell you about booking jobs as an actor.
I'm going to say this is true at least 85% of the time. 

Getting a callback means you are a strong actor who could play the part.

Getting cast means you had the right color hair.

Anyone who frequently sits in on castings can't argue.
With a few exceptions here and there, callbacks are full of fantastic performances. That really annoying thing they always tell you is true: everyone is good, but in different ways.

My agent tells a story about running a casting session years ago and listening to the producers/director/writers debate which actor they'd cast in a massive campaign.  Finally they decided on one guy because -get ready for it- the other actor looked like an asshole landlord the director once had.   He told me that story 8 or 9 years ago when I first started doing this to try to impress on me how very, very much it was not. about. my acting. 

I was very excited to get called back for this:
Scale - multiple spot package (may or may not include, but not limited to 3x :30 TV, 3x :15 TV, 1x :30 radio spot to be recorded at later date.
•1 yr buyout for print photography taken on shoot day. Content includes unlimited versions of stills taken from TV shoot day to be used in Direct Mail.
• 1 yr buyout for internet only content taken on shoot day.
• 1 yr buyout for New Media usage of TV spots.
And I am pretty bummed I didn't have the right hair color to get the job.




For college, I moved from a small town in Texas to Boston. I felt overwhelmed and terrified.
Freshman year -no, freshman WEEK I befriended a guy named David who lived on my floor in our huge dorm.  He was from a small town.  He was very gay.

With nothing to do on an early fall evening in a terrifying big city, we walked down Newbury Street together toward Tower Records, chatting and staring.  Suddenly David quit talking, turned around, staring at couple we had just passed.  It was two men, holding hands.

David's voice was sort of trembling. And he called out to them: (not yelled, called, loudly, specifically) You guys are beautiful.  I love you.  I mean it.  You're beautiful.

I don't think I'll ever forget that.

To have grown up, knowing that you're gay for years, in a small town where men don't walk down the street holding hands.  He had just seen his first happy, openly gay couple, walking down the street just like everyone else.

He cried.

Later he scandalized me with tales of all the guys he hooked up with in the Public Gardens.  David got a job designing displays at Filene's.  David did alright with the fellas.   David made up for some lost time.

Tonight on the train ride home, the two benches behind me were occupied by two teenaged African-American lesbian couples, cuddling and smooching on the train just like every other teenage couple.

I was so damn happy for them I felt creepy.
And I thought of David.


brunch ull poop it out

made belgian waffles from scratch using delicious recipe for husband.

not successful:
after dousing all sweet, golden, crispy waffles with syrup, a sheet of pistachio-colored mold also plops out of the bottle.

Yahoo Answers search for "I ate mold on accident. Will I get sick?"

Best Answer - Chosen by Voters

no ull poop it out
this was auspiciously NOT chosen as a good answer: 
Eating molded food is not healthy, but is not a severe threat either. Most bacteria and molds will not survive the acid in your stomach, and the disease-causing bacteria would have to compete with other bacteria that feasted on your meal.
Possible immediate effects are: an upset stomach within 24 hours, or diarrhea and cramps.
Nothing too serious! hope that answers your questions... Source: http://www.newton.dep.anl.gov/

... again, most successful answer:

no ull poop it out


Don't get SAD

I think winter is getting me down.

I mean.
It can't possibly be the unemployment, the empty days, the identity crisis of learning a new skill, the weight I can't seem to shake for the life of me, the sinus infection or the lack of auditions so

Also, the weather does suck.  As my cousin Laura said: it's bleak.  It's just been bleak.
She insisted on the word bleak.  

Is winter getting you down?
Do not let it!  Do not. freaking. let it.  Being down sucks a lot.

Time to mobilize.

Watch this!
SO CUTE!!!!  Webcam of polar bears sunning themselves and frolicking at the San Diego Zoo!

Go to Google Images and do a search for: tahiti
The turquoise is good for you!

Assignment for tomorrow:

go to the store!
buy tropical fruits!  I know it's expensive and not entirely environmentally responsible.  Let me ask you a question.

Is the environment taking care of you right now?
I don't think it is!
I think the environment is being a serious bitch at the moment!
I think I can have a fucking banana in the middle of winter, environfuckingment.

Also, maybe my body would enjoy some vitamins that don't come from an Emergen-C packet. OKAY?

tomorrow: fruit salad.
Listen up, midwest:
I am NOT getting depressed by your interminable winter and resulting sedentary lifestyle
and I do not
being depressed, bitch.


How to hurt my feelings

I invited two new friends to come to my house and have dinner and play games.
Neither even bothered to respond to the email.

I think it's fair to say:    that is personal.

not even worth responding to. [It's self indulgent to allow it, but] it [still] opens the door to some really awful feelings and memories.


...and then sometimes, everything feels so completely freaking overwhelming, it is really really hard to know where to even start on any of it. 

It's a thin line between exhilarating and terrifying. 


The CTA sign has been drinking

I ask you,
  • If you are hanging out with your friend,
  • If you have just gotten to the party and the party is ending but you just got there so you're still ready to hang out,
  • If your friend says, 'I gotta go, I'm headed to this Prince vs. Michael Jackson dance party,'
  • If this party is only 3 blocks away and ON THE WAY to the train, 

don't you HAVE to go?

I had to go.

I DIDN'T have to make that mistake of getting to the open-bar party late, then making up for lost time by drinking all the free liquor I could in 45 minutes.  In fact, I really know way better than that.   Prince-vs-Michael-Jackson dancing is a lot more fun when you are actually in control of your equilibrium, genius. 

Sigh.  Still fun.   Still successful. 

Good things about living in the city:
You can take the train home like this

and the other people on the train are not going to judge you.



Why I have a blog? maybe?

Quote of the day.  Thanks Tea Party, via Brandon.  Thanks Brandon.  Thanks Tea Party.  Thanks Ira. Thanks moon.
Most everyone I know who does interesting creative work, they went through a phase of years where they had really good taste and they could tell what they were making wasn't as good as they wanted it to be...and the thing I would say to you is everybody goes through that...you gotta know it's totally normal and the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work...because it's only through actually going through a volume of work that you're actually going to catch up and close that gap, and the work you're making will be as good as your ambitions.

-Ira Glass

the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work


it's okay to make work that you know isn't perfect.


my justice system can put your justice system in the ground

I have some beef with China.  I won't go into it, but a lot of it is summed up in the first 2 paragraphs of this article:
Beijing gave its first public response to the whereabouts of human rights lawyer Gao Zhisheng on January 21, saying that he “is where he should be.”

The whereabouts of China's most famous human rights lawyer Gao Zhisheng, often called the “conscience of China,” has been the subject of intense inquiry since a Beijing police officer recently claimed that Gao “went missing” while in police custody last Sept.

Gross, China.  I'm not always proud of everything my country does, but seriously, that's gross.

I had jury duty yesterday, which some regard as an inconvenience.

(friend's comment on facebook:  Don't do it! Act crazy! I just did jury duty and it sucked. Jurors are idiots. Especially the overly educated ones! Good luck.)

Luckily, as an actor, I'm accustomed to spending entire days sitting around waiting on other people's whims, so I was well prepared.  I read the first half of a nice brainy book, sketched out the script for my next piece of theater I'm writing, and crocheted up a storm.

I was happy and proud BECAUSE IT'S MY CIVIC DUTY AND RIGHT, CHINA.  A good old American trial by jury of my peers. 

Also, I got paid $17.20 for my trouble!

And I got an hour and a half lunch break!   Where I got these great earrings for $3!

Suck on that, China!



post script, or, that went as well as possible.


[Lacy finishes her monologue from the show. It goes well. ]

LA Important Guy:  ...that was lovely.  Just absolutely lovely.

Lacy: Thank you.  (turns to go, almost makes it out of the room)

Chicago Casting Woman: ...but you're not fat.

LA: No, you're not.  And I'm not sure how I should really tell you that, but...

Lacy: Oh, you can tell me that ANY TIME, AS MUCH AS YOU WANT.

LA: (laughing) You're a wonderful actress, and you will have plenty of work on your doorstep.  But you aren't fat, and we need someone fat for this role.


I [heart] my Badditude

Thanks for the hollas yesterday, big poppas.
I am feeling better, way better. Thanks.

Today at 5:30 I have a pilot audition to play the lead in a sitcom.    IN FRONT OF the actual producers, flying in from LA, no less.  This is Opportunity Gold.  This is the stuff.  Landing auditions for series leads in the room with network producers = success.

I've had these sides for over a week and I've looked at them twice.

A. the script is wretched, and
B. I'm auditioning to play a really fat woman.   A fat woman who makes fat jokes about herself.  Who connects with her romantic interest (also fat) by making fat jokes. NOT FUNNY fat jokes. Believe me, I loooong to share them with you, but that's a little too imprudent even for me.

So, there you go. Career milestone ... and I dream of going in with both hands flipping off the entire room for writing such a bad script and for casting a woman with a 100% healthy BMI (and believe me, I check obsessively) as GROTESQUELY OBESE.

AND: I just have to say this, the fact that I think the script is mind-blowingly horrible means that it's going to be one of the few that actually makes a full season next year.  Mark my words. 
I was equally as down on the show concept when I had two callbacks to be the cohost of American Idol (no shit) ten years ago or whatever. 

In a way though,
it feels kind of awesome not to care.


also [my turn to panic, Discover Card. My turn.]

I can't even commit to posting this on facebook because part of me feels so humiliated and ashamed.

Right now this feels like accepting, and even embracing failure.  Hell. Feels like freaking SEEKING IT OUT. What, I'm scared of being broke? So is everyone! No one is prepared for retirement!  No one has enough savings! 


.. . I knoooooooow.  GAWD.
I know.
But still.

You could leave me a nice comment if you feel like it, and tell me you don't think I'm giving up on myself.
If you feel like it.

I'm not crying.

falling back.

I did it. 
I committed to a fallback career, and I don't know if I feel totally proud of or utterly disgusted with myself.
I authorized a $799 paymet to JER Online Learning, otherwise known as www.techwriter-certification.com for
The Basic Certificate in Writing
TWC 900 is for those seeking new career paths. We introduce you to the field of Technical Communications and provide a number of practical writing projects and assignments that will get you on the road to success. Average completion time, 15 weeks.

...prompting, BY THE WAY, a panicked blitzkrieg of Fraud Detection calls to both my cell and home phone, accompanied by a full freeze of ANY account access whatsoever from Discover Card, until I called them back [from an authorized number] and promised them that yes, I meant to do it, yes, it's me Lacy, and no, it doesn't mean that I'm giving up on myself as an artist, in fact I've never felt more confident; I'm just finding a more realistic and responsible way of living.

Oh lord. Why am I doing this?

Here's why I'm doing this:
  • Freelance technical writing will allow me to work as much as I want/need to, based on whatever Artistic Exploits come my way.  
Sudden offer to do puppet theater in Guatemala for 2 months? No problem. I won't take any writing gigs for a while.  Onslaught of boring shows, botched auditions or just plain Sick Of Theater? Great. I'll lay low, write, and build up some funds. 
  • I'll have a marketable skill that can command a livable wage.  
A livable-like-a-normal-person wage, not livable-like-a-broke-ass-artist wage.  Otherwise, what am I qualified for? I've been an actor for so long that all my other skills are totally outdated. And I am a shitty, shitty waitress. No lie.
  • I can do it anywhere.
Since I love Chicago, but I don't want to feel forced to live here.
  • Sounds like it would be good for someone who enjoys writing and organizing.
...And organizing their writing with bullet points.  And the occasional outline.

Stay tuned for 15 weeks of learning to write software instructions, training manuals and FAQ's.
I have to say, I'm excited about using these sort of boring, dry formats to deal with balancing art and life. Which I'm going to have A LOT OF ISSUES ABOUT.  

...Also I'll hopefully learn not to end a sentence with a preposition.


giving it away.

I think we would all agree that part of a successful life includes providing for those less fortunate.

After staring at a mind-boggling list of immensely worthy and reputable channels for Haiti relief (you can find a very good list here), I just donated to these guys:
I like the simplicity of their mission: "Our work will be finished someday when every needy person in every distressed corner of the world has a pair of shoes."  It seems like one of those small, practical things that is easy to overlook, and these guys make it their entire focus.

I guess we're all trying to do what feels right.

Like Shaq.  He's organizing too.
Shaq wants Kobe and LeBron in dunk contest
"Half the money go to the people of Haiti and the other half go to the winner."

... half.


the best thing I did in 2010

I really hope you see it.
Monday, January 18th at the Black Rock Pub.
7:30 sharp.

more info, pictures and terrible adventures in html at www.beowulfvsgrendel.com.


couples that game together

We got a Wii for Christmas.
It's hard for me to imagine playing video games together as quality couple time, but I understand that it is. Can be.

Last night:

Later, in bed:
Me: I'm sorry I called you a motherfucker. When you won and I crashed.
Brandon: 'sok. I'm sorry I called you a bitch.
Me: Well. I did 5-star Truck Smash you.
Brandon: zzzz


quoting a quote

From my cousin Hilary, while I'm in this rut of getting up after getting punched down:
"And I recall an account of Trollope going up to London to pick up a rejected manuscript from a publisher, getting on the train to return home, laying the bulking bundle on his lap, and beginning a new book on the back pages of the rejected one."--unknown

A bold attempt is half of success

My fortune-cookie fortune that keeps floating around my desk:
A bold attempt is half of success.

(followed by the Chinese word for 'gooseberry' and my Lucky Numbers)

You may remember how awfully I mangled this poor blog when I tried to upload a new template to make it look snazzy.  I have had better success my second time, this time even stabbing html a little, with my new site I bought and now run:

You can read all the news and about the next showings of my ridiculous [awesome] toy theater spectacle, Beowulf vs. Grendel.  (Next one is Monday, January 18!) The site still needs plenty of work, but at least it actually conveys information now.  Phew.

I've been feeling awash in the failures lately, and trying to take comfort in the "making a bold attempt" part.

I'm going to try to post more about the failures to take the sting out of them a little more. I think I used to do that, and it was part of the delight in this blog. It also made posting about success not feel so gloaty.

more career issues.

A letter from Oscar Wilde, posted on Letters of Note, shared by my cousin Heidi.


My dear Sir

Art is useless because its aim is simply to create a mood. It is not meant to instruct, or to influence action in any way. It is superbly sterile, and the note of its pleasure is sterility. If the contemplation of a work of art is followed by activity of any kind, the work is either of a very second-rate order, or the spectator has failed to realise the complete artistic impression.

A work of art is useless as a flower is useless. A flower blossoms for its own joy. We gain a moment of joy by looking at it. That is all that is to be said about our relations to flowers. Of course man may sell the flower, and so make it useful to him, but this has nothing to do with the flower. It is not part of its essence. It is accidental. It is a misuse. All this is I fear very obscure. But the subject is a long one.

Truly yours,

Oscar Wilde