Tuesday, September 26, 2006

I'm ready for my closeup!

There are couple of things I learned last night at the last of my introductory writing workshops at The Second City--I'm a terrible actress, and I haven't done nearly enough drugs over the years.

After running through about a dozen sketches that we beginners attempted to give an actor-like reading, some obligatory drinking was to be had at the Old Town Ale House. I was dead tired, but I hadn't self medicated at all over the weekend, and a couple of beers seemed to be in order.

As usual, only the strongest survive these things, so around midnight it was just me and about a half dozen guys--a few of whom actually moved from far away places like Baltimore and Seattle solely to attend Second City. Sitting next to them, I thought, shit, these guys might actually become famous. They're fucking funny, most certainly weird, and they have some major drug creds. I'm not sure where the instructor hailed from (he's just a 27-year-old pup) but he told a funny story about first moving to Chicago to get into comedy. He didn't know a soul and felt like an idiot going to a bar alone. So he spent the better part of two weeks in his tub drinking whiskey and listening to his clock radio until his classes started.

Seattle guy then started talking about "corporate types" who take Second City classes because it was either comedy writing or yoga. I was like, uh that's kind of me, dude. He immediately acknowledged that I clearly could hang, because I was such a good sport when he cast me as the patient trying to get pap smears from two bogus gynecologists in his scene (I'm a method actor, fyi). We also acted together as husband and wife in Baltimore guy's sketch. Totally killed.

The conversation turned to drugs. Seattle guy recalled his days in high school when he was heavy HEAVY into psychedelic drugs. Baltimore guy said he got his best weed as a Marine in Desert Storm. Another guy maintained that everyone should shroom and take ecstasy at least once, and I'm like, well I do take an awful lot of ibuprofen when the ol' cramps start getting bad. That was my contribution.

After some more stories about following the Dead, and things of that ilk that I knew it was time for me to call it a night. Some of the guys decided to go on to worlds that beer alone couldn't take them--I'm certainly not one to judge--since I went on a little self destructive binge myself. This one involved a phone and a gentleman who should know better thant to answer his phone after midnight.


Iwanski said...

Ahhh...I remember my Second City days. Good times, and yes, lots of time spent at the Old Town Ale House. (And the bar called "The Last Act", which is now gone.)

I learned some good stuff, figured out my strengths and weaknesses in the improv/comedy field, and met friends I still have today.

One of the best moments was when we did a show on the Mainstage, and seeing the names written on the walls backstage. It was humbling and inspiring to see all the people who signed the walls. Hope they haven't painted over that.

Good luck. I'm sure you will be much better at improv than I was, but it was fun either way and someday, hopefully I will look back on it as one of the things that made me into an Oscar-winning writer/director.

SarahReznor said...

LOVE the new look! sorry i havent been by in so long. looks GREAT!

t2ed said...

Maybe you just were a little self-conscious during your scenes. You might want to try self-medicating like a real actress. I know that's what Katherine Hepburn always did.

There are not nearly enough funny women in comedy so I hope you keep it up.

e-tard said...

i didn't get a call. you must have dialed the wrong number! haha..kidding!

SuburbanMom said...

So....are you going to let us know, who was it that you drunk dialed?