Block 899: January 9, 2016


I had the day off!

Date: January 9, 2016

Crane: 899

Days Spent on Project: 1053

Location: NW Portland, OR

Person I would have sent it to: TBD

Music I listened to while sewing: Currently one of Ellie Goulding’s new songs from her new album. I remember being introduced to her back in 2011 by my friend Stephen, who was so proud to have discovered her before she got big.

I’m glad to hear she’s still making good music.

Thoughts/Feelings behind the block: I need a hobby.

A new one.

I know I think I don’t have enough time for new interests, but I need to get over that and make time.

Today, an honest-to-goodness day off for me before we go into tech and previews for three different productions, back-to-back, felt great. I had trouble sleeping last night- not unusual- but did manage to finally get to sleep at 2 or 3… and woke up at 8:30 when I felt guilty about The Dog needing a walk. (For the record, he was more than fine under the covers on the bed curled next to me and a pillow.) I made coffee, watched a few episodes of Nurse Jackie on Netflix, made a Crane, walked the dog again, went to the gym, and then ran some errands to feel prepared to start the week. The Dog just took his third walk of the day, has eaten his dinner, and is now on a pillow devouring a large, new chew bone.

Knowing that I’ll be working on Sunday, tomorrow, and will have to work 15 hour days for the next seven days after that, I think this is okay. Right?

A friend of mine sent me a posting about a job opening in Pittsburgh, managing the costume shop at Carnegie Mellon. I’m tempted. I don’t think I’m *completely* qualified (they want someone to teach/instruct draping and tailoring in addition to the management duties, but…

My brother lives in Pittsburgh with his wife and their almost three month old baby, my newest nephew. My parents enjoy visiting Pittsburgh; they can easily do the drive from Richmond, VA. One of my sisters lives in Richmond as well. I think one of my good friends from NYC just moved to Philadelphia with his boyfriend. One of my Yale classmates teaches at a different college in Pittsburgh.

Maybe I wouldn’t feel so alone in Pittsburgh?

And it would be a university setting. I have liked teaching in the past. I do like working with students.

It’s something to think about, quickly, and maybe act upon, quickly.

Although, I do think there still is possibility here in Portland and at this theater. I do think there is potential to grow and develop the shop, but some hard choices need to be made first. I do think they might be willing to invest in me.

I feel like I’m going to learn a lot as January winds down and February starts. They’ll announce next year’s season. We’ll start talking budgets and labor numbers for real. I’ll learn if they’ve decided they’re willing to work with me as a designer. I’ll learn if I’m getting a raise and, if I do, it would be a significant one.

I feel like I should play both fields, try to keep making progress here now and in the future but also see if opportunity might be elsewhere.

A few days ago, I asked: How do you create opportunity?

I want to work on immersive theater. It’s crazy and weird and improbable to fit into a regional theater’s schedule (and the Pacific Northwest doesn’t even seem to know about it yet), but it’s something I’m drawn to as a designer and a creator and a former actor and a former dancer and a curious playwright and a casual director.

I want to design. PERIOD. NO DISCUSSION. I know I can. I know I have the ability. I know directors have liked my work. I know shops have liked working with me. I know I can get along with actors. There’s no reason for Portland to keep snubbing me.

I want to make more money. It’s greedy. It is. But if I’m expected to work 6-7 days a week, a minimum of 50 hours a week or a maximum of 70-80 hours, I don’t understand how my salary is fair.

I want a life. I want to love Portland. (So many people love it! I think it’s quaint and cute, but imperfect. I still want to like it because it isn’t terrible and, again, there *might* be opportunity here.) I want to enjoy Life here.

I’m starting to believe I am good at managing a costume shop. I do have the skills. I do have the drive. I do have the intelligence. I do have the abilities… to schedule and crunch numbers and budget and delegate and work with personalities and organize and advocate and think ahead and plan. I am good at this.

I just hope there’s more to this than This, you know?

If This is My Life, okay… Okay? Okay! But, I just want a little more.

I love my dog. I love that I’m still working in theater. I love that I feel a sense of purpose with this job (how do I save them and also push them?). I love that I get a paycheck every two weeks! I love that I can go to a doctor and get my inhaler prescription filled without hassle. I love that I don’t feel bad about going to the grocery to buy food. I love that I just bought my dog a $9 bone to chew on… just because.

My life is so much better, on paper, than what it was in New York. I understand that. But. But? But… it’s lacking the drive that I enjoyed in New York.

I guess.

Anyway, happy Saturday night, everyone. Tomorrow is number 900. The countdown is starting to The End.

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