Block 695: June 19, 2015


I’ve been emotionally under the weather for the past two days. I need an emotional pick-me-up right now.

It’s hard to believe that only a week ago, I was running around on an Oregon beach with my dog, perfectly content and excited to be here.


Date: June 19, 2015

Crane: 695

Days Spent on Projects: 850

Location: NW Portland, OR

Person I would have sent it to: We had 12 actors who agreed to work with us for two weeks on The California Project.

The second one to thank is Dan S.

We gave him a more central role in the production; it’s a character that takes off in what I call the second chapter, and manages to stick around almost until the very end. He’s an important figure in The Backstory, yes, but I still haven’t worked out all the details of the majority of his storyline.

Strangely, I know how he effects the women around him and how they are forced to react to him more than anything.

Dan was really up for the challenge. He always had questions and thoughts about the work we were attempting to do, and the character we were trying to create. Watching him work through the outline of events, I did uncover some directions and ideas for the character.

It’s still not 100% fleshed out yet, but I do know how he gets from point A to point Z at the end.

Music I listened to while sewing: Back to an old and trusted favorite this morning. I put on Fort Fairfield’s album, “Prenzlauer Berg.”

The song “Buildings Explode As You Pass” still gets me.

Thoughts/Feelings behind the block: Staying home from work today. There wasn’t anything to do when I left yesterday, so I’m giving myself a day off… and I doubt anyone in the theater will know.

I took my dog to the vet this morning. He needed his annual check-up and I found a place in the neighborhood that everyone seemed to agree upon. I would like to take a moment and remind myself to be thankful that I could make this vet appointment, get the heartworm and flea/tick pills, get the blood work and shots, and have any and all questions answered AND then be able to pay for it. I used my debit card to pay for everything. I didn’t use my credit card. I paid for it then and there.

Back in November of 2013, I was just celebrating my first anniversary of living in Washington Heights. I could still take the subway easily to the same Vet I had been using in Manhattan. It was time for another vet appointment, so I made one.

That appointment cost over $300 with the visit fee, the shots, and so on. At the time, I didn’t have a spare $300 to spare for this, so I pulled out my credit card and swiped it and added another few hundred dollars to the credit card debt that was growing exponentially in order to support the freelance career I had chosen.

I walked out of the office and texted my friend Mikey G. that I couldn’t afford my dog and stay in New York and keep pursuing theater. I don’t know why THAT moment made me question my owing a dog, but it did and it scared me and I was so confused about what I was doing and would continue to do.

So, today, I had a vet bill that was more than $300. The dog had his check-up, got a blood test for a full set of tests, had his poop and urine tested, got a year’s supply of heartworm and flea/tick pills, and a bit more. And, you know what? He may or may not be getting to be “that age” for a French Bulldog where problems and issues need to be addressed. Certain issues might be explained by the blood work and, while I hope he’s okay and healthy, if something does come back flagged… at least certain things would make sense.

But, still, I agreed to the tests and they were done and I paid for it. And I didn’t panic because I couldn’t afford my dog. (I panicked because I was worried about what might be wrong with him, instead.) It wasn’t about me. My anxiety was about him.

In a way, that’s where it should be.

So, again, my year anniversary of moving to Portland is approaching and I am struck by how much my life and my perspective and my abilities have shifted in the past almost-year.

Fingers crossed.

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