I'm learning to be more patient at these things...not letting folks rattle me, and in general becoming more numb to the situation. Definitely less nerves. Of course it helps to be surrounded by a group of actual friends. Not "new audition friends," but people I have known and worked with for years.
So with Deidre, Katherine, John and Eric, UC Irvine had a little alumni reunion in halls of Pearl Studios. We were not all there for the same show, but to have a home base where people could leave and come back was very nice. It was actually kinda like when we travel out onto the playa at Burning Man. A fortress of backpacks. thinking on it now, these people are the creme of the crop from my time at Irvine, people who I had tremendous joy spending time with, lots of memories with...this was the community I missed upon moving...and as we commented upon, it is here at auditions where we can all run into each other kinda on accident, or at least unplanned, and spend a whole day together...
I was waiting to audition for the non-equity "Wizard of Oz" tour. Not my show per se, but my goal currently is to learn how to audition, which entails going to every call that I can...another benefit is to audition for a casting director who I haven't yet sung for, and who casts a lot of non-eq tours.
Eventually I had nearly forgotten we were auditioning. it felt more like play time, with some nostalgic story telling sprinkled in. these are people that I have played with....a few stories and many laughs later, I decide to practice my headstands. recently took my first yoga class in a long time and at the end of class I went into my head stand three times without even using a wall, just straight up...so as I had nothing better to do with my time, I might as well...
Using the training wheels, I started against a wall. Tried a few times, wasn't really happening, I think the jeans were the problem, yeah, the jeans were definitely constricting me...then I tried again sans watchbracelet/vest and tie...I got up and was holding it, remembering the little tips that the teacher gave me last week. and soon I heard someone hollering about, just as I was finding my zen place, total focus.
"Hey you! Hey! Hey you!" the voice was getting closer. I wondered if this voice was aimed at me, but as my eyes could only capture a bench, I had no idea what was going on.
Soon John had picked up this guy was talking to me, and said, "Hey, Mitch."
At which point this genius calls my name, "Hey Mitch! Whaddaya doing? Get down from there!" in one of those lovely Long Island/Jersey/Brooklyn accents...(I can't really tell the difference, but who cares, right? They are all really attractive.)
I stay up up for just a few seconds, so as to take my time coming down gracefully. And as I do and stand up to this man, he says, and I quote, "That doesn't work...C'mon man, use your head!"
Really? did this guy just set me up like that? I mean, that is sit-com material. So I respond in the only way appropriate.
He mutters a "not like that" and strolls back into his "private office" talking and shaking his head at someone like he had just confronted some idiot in the hallway who was wrestling, or punching the walls or running around naked. But no, I was practicing a yoga pose.
At this point everyone in the hallway busts up laughing as the tension releases. And I take my cue to go on a stand-up-esque tirade about the absurdity and audacity of this man to come out so angry at me. With quips about how dangerous it was for him to distract me in such a vulnerable position, and adding that he might actually benefit from a little Yoga himself with that temper problem, I was really wondering what the hell was so wrong with a headstand. Of course all of this came at a volume just loud enough so that he could probably hear me, and I tended to send them in his direction, "Is warrior one alright?" I called out to his office...
There are people littered all over this place singing God-awful trills, stretching, sleeping, gossiping...I mean if anything I was contributing a little good energy to the collective. I was not shouting, or running, and I was only taking up as much room as I would have if I was standing up...minding my own business.
I debated walking into that office and asking him, but my better mind saw that he had probably suffered enough. Everyone in the hallway was now looking at him like he was the village idiot. Even our "new audition friends" Jeff and Morgan had watched the scene and got a kick out of it. Not only had he disrupted a good vibe, but he laid down a total bonehead line, bringing out the original smart-ass in me that had me flipping cards so often in grade school. What can I say, I am a clever cat. and I don't mind making a grown man look foolish after he nearly paralyzes me.
But, I should be thanking this man. And I will now. Thank you balding man who works in a private office in a studio in New York who sits around all day doing God-knows-what other than giving people people perfect punchline opportunities. With your help, our group of friends now has a ripe new inside joke, one that will probably get years of use. So I appreciate your humility, and if you'd ever like to learn that headstand, just let me know.