Tuesday, May 30, 2006

A Drink in the Desert

After my weekend whining, I finally have an audition! It's not for an agent, but it is for a paid industrial. I'll put on my best "young mom" outfit and hit the casting studio in Santa Monica on Thursday. Even if they don't cast me, they at least want to see me. Perhaps my dry spell is coming to an end.

And on the opposite end of the spectrum, I've lost nine pounds on this diet so far. Today is Day 14. I think most of it is water because I'm always dashing for the john. I have three more pounds before I contact them for my "re-feeding" diet so I can eat cheesecake and hot dogs from The Stand and apple "punk tarts" from Fred 62 without stretching my pants.

Following the sand & surf motif of this post, the person who loses the most weight between our last weigh-in (about a month ago) and Monday for this infomercial gets a free trip to South Beach. I think I actually stand a chance.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Temporary Desperation

Okay, I've been without an agent since three days after my birthday, two days before my dog died, the day my father-in-law decided to divorce my mother-in-law, and eight days before my friend killed himself. This is starting to suck.

I had one interview and one reach from a commercial acting school that has an agency branch. I know, it was pilot season so everyone was tied up getting work for the people they already represented and who has time to meet with someone new? It's just a little frustrating.

Agents don't do everything for you. In fact, I didn't stop busting my ass when I had an agent. I just had someone legitimate that potential employers could call to schedule an audition with me. The last few auditions I got before he retired were from my own submissions. The last job I booked was from my own work. But I got a lot more phone calls when I had an agent.

Anyone wanna walk my picture into an agency?

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Baby Teeth!

I know. I'm a little puppy obsessed. Since the phone ain't ringin' with big jobs, I gotta blog about somethin'.

Felicity ("The Doodlebug") has been losing puppy teeth and getting in her adult teeth. I've documented the arrival of some new teeth as I've noticed them. This is the first time I got to observe the puppy tooth coming out.

She was playing with a Pound Puppy poodle I got for her on Friday night. I'll refer to this toy as The Poodlebug. She was gnawing on it and dropped it on the floor. I noticed there was some blood on it, so I thought she was getting a new tooth. We opened her mouth and there it was -- the loose tooth about to come out. Her mouth was a little bloody. I didn't want to force the tooth out (pulling it), so we opened her mouth a few times to get a good look. Then Andrew opened her mouth and she had the baby tooth on her tongue. I grabbed it and was about to give it to her to recycle (since that's what dogs do) but he told me to save it. So I now have a puppy tooth stored in a little box in my house.

She was fine after she lost the tooth. You can see the little naked red spot where the puppy tooth was. This happened Friday night, and I think the adult tooth was arriving Saturday.


You have to be a little bit vain (at least) to be an actor. A lot of the work is all about how you look. If you aren't at least a little into how you look, you may be keeping yourself from getting work. As you may recall from an earlier posting, one girl got bumped from her role and another one got her role all because of a look thing. This is the reason I'm doing this special diet (down eight pounds since I started last week on Tuesday) -- so I can book younger (and maybe even sexier) roles.

It is to this end that I went under the knife three weeks ago. No, I did not get a boob job. I got three moles removed on my face. I got another one removed a few years ago, but I just recently had the money to complete the job. Don't get me wrong -- I don't think there's anything wrong with facial moles on other people. I was watching different films and television shows and I saw some women with facial moles. In most cases, you could tell that the makeup artist was trying to cover up the mole so it wasn't so obvious. In most cases, the mole cast a shadow on the face. I thought about it, and I don't want to have to work past the mole to get a role. I don't want a shadow in my audition to cost me the part. I'd rather lose the part because I'm too short or have a bad attitude than because of a couple of poorly placed moles. Sure, you can get cast if you have shadowy moles (obviously), but getting someone to see past those moles can be tricky.

The dermatologist I saw a couple years ago is very busy. I had to schedule that appointment at least one month in advance, and it cost a pretty penny. I went cheap this time, and I was practically a walk-in patient. I called the day before, got pricing, then went to my appointment at the scheduled time. It was this doctor in Koreatown, just a few blocks from my house. I went in, it was relatively fast and painless. It cost me $150 total for three moles and the office visit. Hooray! I figured it would cost at least $500 since I had three moles I wanted removed.

I had to treat the open wounds with ointment. I put bandages over them for my infomercial class and my first day back in the office, just so I didn't get ointment all over. That was back when my lip was busted so I looked really terrible. Now I just have three pink spots on my face where the moles once were. I'm treating them with ointment and vitamin E so they heal.

Dieting and surgery. Welcome to the world of actors.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Stop and Taste the Flowers

I was reading this amazing book by this amazing veterinarian last summer. At that time, I was taking Holly to Dr. Pepi to examine her breast lumps and handle a severe ear infection. My boss recommended I read this book since the doctor has helped handle cancer in animals. I never realized how much information I could get from the book.

One of the natural remedies he recommends (for any kind of injury, life change, stress, etc.) is Bach Flower Remedies. He's used it on himself to good result. There are 38 different flower essences, each applicable to an emotional state. There's also one called Rescue Remedy, a blend of a few different essences designed for any random stressful situation. I took some Rescue Remedy after an assault last summer, and it made the whole thing easier to deal with. I used Rescue Remedy and gave some to Andrew and Piper when Holly passed, and we gave it to Piper and Felicity when Felicity came home with us to ease the transition. I think it helped.

It doesn't solve all of your problems and it doesn't make injuries disappear, but it eases things emotionally so those things are easier to tackle. Felicity took a nasty spill off our front steps last Friday. She hurt her elbow and skinned her chin. When she was first injured she yipped and howled for some time. I put ice on it and "discussed" the injury with her, but she wound up clinging to me the rest of Friday and most of Saturday. It was like I was the only thing that would comfort her. It was sweet, but I had things to do. I picked up some Star of Bethlehem (good for grief and trauma) and gave her two doses at night and one in the morning. By Sunday afternoon, she was running through the house (with the hurt elbow) and barking and playing. I've seen this stuff really work. Great for actors, computer gurus, parents, anyone on this planet. And you can't really overdose.

Both Piper and Felicity are a little jealous of each other, and that leads to a little too much aggression on both parts. I looked up the essence they need. It looks like I'll be giving them the essence of Holly. Funny, isn't it?

Monday, May 22, 2006

Good Times (or Another Reason I Love Andrew Moore)

The place where we're doing classes for the infomercial three times a week and I'm doing the other pole class held a sort of open house yesterday. I love this studio and I adore my teacher, so I went to support both and help out as necessary. I brought Andrew along to help out and check out the facilities.

We got there as they were doing dance demonstrations and they pulled people from the audience to get up and dance with the instructors and other "volunteers." These are photos of Andrew doing a bang-up job of Greek dancing, a class they're going to offer late in the summer. I got pulled up for the belly dancing but Andrew doesn't have a camera phone so he didn't get to take photos of me.

Anyway, their annual "Body Shake" was a great way to generate more interest in their classes. Perfect place for actors to study. I love this place because it's so clean and friendly. I think Andrew may be interested in taking a class, and I'm sure I'll sign up for something when I wrap up this Flirty Girls infomercial. We even got free goodie bags!

Saturday, May 20, 2006

New Version of Me - New Diet Day Four

Okay, yesterday was Day Four, but I haven't gotten around to sharing until today. Today I weigh the same as yesterday. Hell, five pounds since Tuesday isn't bad. I'm not complaining.

So I made it through the rough part of the diet -- the first three or four days are supposed to be the most difficult. I went to the movies on Day Four with a bottle of water, four saltines and a baggie full of apple slices. Yes, I love popcorn. Yes, I missed eating the popcorn. (In fact, I shovel down popcorn like I'm at a popcorn-eating contest and I'm neck in neck with a really fat guy with a stomach the size of my car.) But I survived. I didn't find myself yearning for it or obsessively forcing myself not to buy and eat it. That was nice. I enjoyed my little picnic.

I almost cheated today without realizing it. I was at the spa getting my waxing done, and they had these beautiful lemon cookies at the reception desk. (They always have treats there.) My appointment was in four minutes so I decided to wait on the cookie until I was done. Didn't even think about the diet. Forty-five minutes and two varieties of wax later, I stopped at the counter to pay. I almost grabbed a cookie and started eating it. That's when it hit me. I'm on a diet! Cookies aren't allowed until later. Bummer. I know they'll have cookies next time, so I'll have one (or two) then.

I'm enjoying the food I'm eating, and my wallet is a lot fatter than it would be if I weren't on the diet. I do miss having sauces for my meat (especially veal) and I miss potatoes. At least I don't have to give up those things for the rest of my life -- just until I get down to 105 lbs.

Friday, May 19, 2006

New Version of Me - New Diet Days Two & Three

The first three or four days are supposed to be the toughest. Days Two and Three were fine.

Day Two I had veal for dinner. I haven't had any major and horrible body reactions to the diet. I pee more, and I have gas in the morning before lunch. I don't know if that's from all the cauliflower and zucchini I'm eating or if it's just some crazy body reaction. I did get dizzy at one point, but that only lasted about ten seconds. I really enjoyed a Hansen's diet soda for the first time (because it was cold). And I got my own scale for the house. All in all, not a terrible day.

Day Three was about as exciting. I discovered that if I cut up my lunch chicken and added the allowed 1 teaspoon of Miracle Whip and some dry mustard, it makes a really tasty lunch. I wasn't hungry all day. And I weighed myself. Oh my God!

Let me explain on the weighing part. Since I didn't have a scale at home until Wednesday night, I weighed myself at pole class on Tuesday night (the day I started the diet). I weighed 119 lbs. (and now the secret is out). When I weighed myself yesterday morning at home, I weighed 113 lbs. So that seems like five pounds of weight loss, right? I weighed myself at home last night right before class and I came in at 115. As soon as I got to class, I weighed myself again (to compare my scale to that scale) and was 115. Now, it makes sense that the body weighs a couple pounds more in the evening than in the morning -- more food has been taken in, there's greater blood volume from working the muscles. So if we take 2 lbs. off my Tuesday night weight just to be fair and compensate for the 2 lbs. that would be gained during the day, then I started the diet at 117. That means I lost 4 lbs. in two days. DAMN! I haven't worked out any more than usual, and I'm not starving. I GAINED 4 lbs. during the course of my infomercial program.

Of course, I can't go out to eat. That's taken some getting used to. Andrew and I are both taking the day off work, and I was thinking about all the places we could go to eat then I'd squash them since I have to follow the diet until I reach my goal. Guess I'll hit Urth Caffe after I finish the diet, where I will devour a very black-looking chocolate cookie with white chocolate chunks.

I began today, Day Four, waivering between 111 and 112 lbs. To be really fair, I'll call it 112. That's 5 lbs. since Tuesday. W00+!

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

New Version of Me - New Diet Day One

I've eaten a few sandwiches since college. The weight didn't start sticking until I lived in St. Louis and was pretty far from acting. I moved to L.A., cut all sugar, corn syrup, pasta and bread from my diet. That's when I got down to 93 lbs. and my boobs started to shrink. So I started eating again. When you're skinnier, you can play younger on film & TV. I thought I might lose some weight working on this infomercial, but it's a calorie-counting diet and those usually have more food than I normally eat in a day. I've gotten long, lean muscles and my waist is more defined, but I haven't lost any weight.

So I decided to try a new diet. I've heard of blood-type diets before, but those would prevent me from having beef and I ain't gonna give up cheeseburgers for good. This gal I work with did this diet and lost twenty pounds, and now she eats Oreo cheesecake and has caramel macchiatos but hasn't gained a lick of the weight back. With this diet, you go to a lab and they take a blood sample for a whole metabolic evaluation. Then the results are sent to a doctor in South Africa who has worked with thousands of people on this. He sends you your ideal weight (based on shoe size and height) and a diet plan. You get different choices of food, and the key is that you have to weigh it before you cook it to the gram. I tell you, it's a lot cheaper than getting take-out all the time.

Yesterday was my first day. I had plain yogurt and apples for breakfast (because I found out after I went to the store that I couldn't have strawberries), chicken and veggies for lunch and dinner. They say in the diet instructions that the first three or four days are the toughest, and I agree. Last night I was ready to nosedive into the handful of Twix singles I have in my refrigerator. But I resisted. I know that once I get five pounds from my ideal weight (100 lbs.), I can email them and they'll send me what they call a re-feeding program. It's a way to introduce the crap foods that are so tasty (and other foods not on the diet like cheeseburgers and strawberries) without throwing the system into shock and adding the weight back. It alters your hormones so the food doesn't automatically become fat in the body. It's also a way to lose fat and gain muscle WITHOUT working out. I'm not going to stop my current plan of action, so I would think the weight loss and muscle gain would be even faster since I work out four times a week.

Anyway, I had few moments of weakness yesterday. I'm doing better today. Yogurt and apricots for breakfast tasted a lot better than yogurt and apples. I met a guy who lost 43 lbs. on this diet, so I hope I can lose what I need to pretty fast. I'll post updates of my progress.

Here's to being skinny as a rail without the pirate's treasure (sunken chest)!

More Adult Teeth

This is a picture of Felicity's new teeth. (I think her nose is at the bottom because it was the only way I could hold her lips back and take the picture.) She has one adult tooth coming in on either side before the big canine fangs on top. It hasn't taken long for these new teeth to come in. I noticed the missing teeth on Thursday of last week, and this is a picture I took of them Monday. If she didn't swallow the baby teeth, maybe the Tooth Fairy would come and bring her a Gap hoodie for dogs.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Dry Spell

I haven't had an audition since the day before I left for my mom's wedding. I didn't do a ton of submissions right before I left since I had a lot of preparation to do, and I haven't done a lot of submissions since I returned. My life has been so packed with other random activities. I just started doing heavy catch-up with my submissions this weekend. My Shelley Long movie is showing on Lifetime tonight, but I can't get another job. Ugh.

I was talking with this girl Tracy from my infomercial pole class and she said she's had a dry spell as well for about the same amount of time. She said she never gets auditions when she's in really good physical shape. I've got these long, lean muscles that are going to waste. Maybe she's onto something. Or maybe she just hasn't done her submissions either.

Puppy Love

Yes, I know I keep posting about this dog. I can't help it. She's irresistable.

Felicity is my third puppy. I knew that puppies lost their teeth, swallowed them, then grew adult teeth. I never saw the "change" part of the process; I saw the baby teeth then all of a sudden they had adult teeth. I'm really working to enjoy puppyhood with Felicity, so I made an effort to observe the entire process.

Felicity was gnawing on Andrew's hand when I decided to peel back her gums and look for missing teeth. I found one when we snapped the picture with this phone. I found another last night. The new tooth is coming in behind the three white bumps (front teeth) and before the tiny fang. It was below the gumline but visible on Friday, and now it's grown in so it's barely above the gumline. Very cute stuff.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Take Me Out to the Ballgame

One of our clients gave us tickets to a baseball game. It was last Tuesday. (I'm so crunched for time that I've only gotten around to blogging about it now.) I love baseball, but it was a game of the Anaheim Angels vs. the Oakland Athletics. As a Los Angeleno, I'm a little bitter that the team's owner changed their name from Anaheim Angels to Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in a lame-ass attempt to pass them off as an L.A. team, like they're the other L.A. team. I liked them fine before that. Here's the problem: they're not even in Los Angeles county. They're in Orange County with all of that Disney money. I want to tell the owner not to piss in my glass and tell me it's lemonade.

But anyway, I went to the ballgame with this attitude, wearing my Dodgers shirt. I was pleasantly surprised with how cordial the staff were, how clean the stadium was, how nice the seats were. I found myself admiring the Angels, the team I rooted against in the last World Series. (Andrew and I found ourselves on the couch watching every game, a first for us.) We had really great seats and Andrew liked the beers, although they didn't have Kosher hot dogs.

What really made the game for me -- other than my yelling through a popcorn container megaphone to bring back the rally monkey -- was the fight on the mound. It started between the Angels pitcher and the Athletics batter, but it cleared the benches. Both instigators were kicked out of the game. No one was really hurt. It was cool. This is the photo I took with my phone.

I gained an appreciation I never thought I could have for the Angels since that asshat changed their name.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Great Eats

I love Clearman's. Every time we drive down to Orange County, we try to hit Clearman's North Woods Inn in La Mirada on the way home. They have lumberjack food in lumberjack-sized portions. Right after the dental convention, Andrew and I stopped there for a bite.

My favorite thing is their soup. It tastes like the hamburger soup my dad used to make when I was growing up. They give you a huge soup tureen and a salad for about $9. The first few times I got the soup I had enough leftovers for two more meals. This time Andrew and I split the soup and got an extra salad. They have green salad with bleu cheese dressing and red cabbage salad with vinaigrette (surprisingly good). We also got some of their famous cheese bread with the meal. Wow! We were so full from these things that we didn't even get around to the potato skins we ordered. This is a picture of me with our bounty.

Speaking of lumberjack portions, we had enough left for lunch the next day for both of us.

The North Woods Inn feels like you're eating in a really big log cabin or Josie's house in "Twin Peaks." They have animal heads on the walls and rococo paintings of naked women. The tables are lit with these stained glass pendants like the ones they used to have at Pizza Hut in the early 80s. When you arrive, you have a bowl full of peanuts waiting at your table for you to munch on (and be sure to throw your shells on the floor).

It's a really charming place. I highly recommend it.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Andrew Moore: All-Around Good Guy

Andrew Moore is really the nicest guy. He lets people in front of him in traffic, says "please" and "thank you," puts his napkin in his lap and opens doors for people. Friday was a lesson in how nice Andrew Moore is.

Andrew had an audition for a paid puppetry gig. He rescheduled from a day when he and the filmmaker didn't catch each other. They met in a Starbucks, and the audition consisted of discussing the project.

So the filmmaker tells him how the puppet will require someone to operate the puppet, someone to do the hands (like the Swedish Chef), and someone to do the animatronic face. Cool, huh? So Andrew Moore (all-around good guy) says how cool that sounds and how fun it would be. He also talks up our puppet builder for The Felties, this really nice guy who Andrew said is great to have around to do maintenance on puppets. (Dude studied puppet building in school.) Oh, he details, this guy is great and neat and swell (and he really is) and the filmmaker should really have him around because, wow, what a guy! Then Andrew Moore asks how many people he's planning on hiring for the project. Well, says the filmmaker, the guy who built this puppet is flying in from Europe to do the animatronics, and there's only one other paid puppeteer position.

Andrew Moore comes home and tells how he probably talked himself out of a job. I've heard about the same kind of thing happening to other people, like a guy who went out for the lead old guy role in the Police Academy films. Personally, I'd want to work with the guy who talked up his friends. Of course, I do the same kind of thing but I usually know what they're looking for so I don't volunteer a friend for my potential gig. I pimp my friends for other roles in the same thing. But he didn't know what the guy's plan was until after he touted his buddy.

What a nice guy!

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Girly Dog

(As crazy as it may seem to about two or three of my dedicated eight readers, I believe in past lives. I know Holly is back on my couch with a new body and the name of one of my favorite TV shows of all time. I had a moment of missing the old Holly this morning complete with tears. These moments come and go, never predictable, so I decided I'd give an update on the new version of Holly for all eight of you.)

So this is Felicity. Also known as The Doodlebug. Don't ask why I chose that as the nickname. It just fits.

She's been driving around this body for four months. Her spots are the same color as my hair. She has that one blue eye that we've labeled the crazy eye. (When Andrew and I draw pictures of her, we're sure the crazy eye is facing the viewer.) Yes, she's a dalmatian. She holds her ears straight up most of the time. When she's tired they droop a little, when she's happy she folds them down to the side of her head, and when she's running she tucks them behind her head. She hasn't gotten any puppy uglies yet -- everything is in proportion as she continues to grow.

Felicity is a really girly dog. I don't wear pink (except underwear), but this dog demands pink. Look at her. Could you imagine her wearing any other color collar? She even has the little pink heart nametag. I'm going to get her one of those ridiculous pink and orange hoodies from the Gap. Piper's not a girly dog. She's more like a bachelor's dog who would be just as happy lounging in garbage as she would curling up on the couch for a ballgame. But my dog looks frou-frou.

Her behavior, on the other hand, is not girly. She poops everywhere. Seriously. She eats cat turds she finds in the yard and drags in sticks to devour (and later poop out kindling). She walks on our faces to wake us up in the morning. She knocked over one of Andrew's beers while I was out of town and drank it as it showered her in its amber richness. She eats cardboard, receipts, tissues, paper towels, toilet paper, and gas bills. Last night she tried to eat a twenty dollar bill off the coffee table. Hell, she licked the drywall patch in the kitchen and cleaned the crevices in the bathroom with her tongue. Grody!

But she sure is cute.

Friday, May 05, 2006

I'm Not a Monster!

It's not every day that I can say I got a fat lip because my husband threw his dog at me.

However, I can say that today. Piper and Felicity had a scrap between them last night right before we were going to hit the sack. Andrew dove in to split them apart and I headed in to extract Felicity from Piper's jaws. Only problem was we didn't coordinate. He pulled Piper up and flung her away from Felicity, but I was standing where he was flinging so I got a forty or fifty pound dog in the face.

This is one time that I'm really glad I don't have an audition.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

California Dental Association Convention - Excuse #2

I make my money working for a consulting company that works with doctors and dentists to improve their businesses and their personal lives. I do a lot of office stuff, but I also get bonuses when they attend seminars I produce and sign up for our paid services. Good job, flexible, I get to help people using L. Ron Hubbard's technology (which I know pretty well).

I don't get my hourly wage when I go to CDA, but as Junior Partner in the company I want to make sure we make money. That's a big reason for my attendance. I sit at the booth (with Andrew for the past two years) and smile at people and answer questions. This year I was hit on by an old man from another vendor's booth and asked about employment opportunities by a financial advisor. And I wore a skirt and 3" heels. (I usually wear pants and loafers.)

Another great reason to go is the Crest and Colgate presentations. You stand in line for about 20 minutes for each one, watch a cheesy presentation, then walk out with goodies. This year Colgate gave me a nice canvas bag with a full-size tube of Colgate Total and the 360 toothbrush (my favorite manual toothbrush). Crest gave out Oral-B soft toothbrushes, alcohol-free mouthwash, and some random toothpaste. Since Andrew goes to the presentations with me, he gets the same stuff. I know the presentations are intended for the doctors and staff, but they haven't kicked me out yet.

You can also see celebrities there. If you buy so many boxes of rubber gloves, you can get a free baseball, bat, basketball or football (depending on who is there) that's autographed right in front of you. This year Reggie Jackson was there. We didn't buy gloves, but Andrew shot his pic with my camera phone. He's the wearing the orange blob in the photo.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Victim of Divorce

I know how it feels to be the child of a divorced family now. Even though my parents have been divorced twice (from each other), this was the first trip where I really got to experience the pull of two families.

I love my dad. He's one wacky MF, but he's still my dad. He wanted to spend a lot of time with me. (He hasn't seen me since November 2004, and that was a twenty minute visit.) We went out to dinner at my favorite pizza place, Rocky's Corner on Central Avenue in Hot Springs. (Incredible pizza, best I've ever had, Bill Clinton loved the place.) Then he wanted to take me somewhere else, and he just wanted to hang out at my sister's and visit the whole time I was there. We went through old albums and packed them into my suitcase. I let him check out my iPod. He wanted to spend more time and I felt really negligent on Saturday when I was doing other stuff all day.

The reason I flew into town was for my mom's wedding. My mom's great. She was a fantastic teacher and homemaker when I was a kid. I liked her cooking better than Dad's. Of course, Mom thought the mark of a slut was hoop earrings (which is why I tend to wear hoop earrings today). I had to spend some time with Mom and help her with wedding stuff. Saturday morning I hung out with Bryce, then we went to Mom's and then to the church. There was no Dad time available. Of course, I spent Friday night with Dad so there was no Mom time available then. Then Sunday morning we rushed into town to have breakfast with Mom and Ed since I didn't even get to greet them after the ceremony. I would've liked to spend more time with Mom, but I didn't have the time available.

My parents have been divorced this second time for about four years. I'm wondering if it ever gets any easier.