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Thursday, 27 October
Where Are They Now?

In the following, I remember--poorly--some of my fellow acting students from college. Suffice it to say that, like me, none of them ever amounted to shit. (We're talking fame-wise. Some of them may actually feel fulfilled with their careers, but if they are like me, they are mostly embittered and hate Hollywood for failing to take the time to come up and discover them in their regional productions of Lost in Yonkers. Stupid Hollywood!

Well, one of them eventually did get a Rogaine TV ad. And another has a IMDB credit as "jacuzzi girl" in some terrible 80s skin flick.)

Anyway, these guys were all fellow acting students in college. I couldn't pick on anyone I actually currently know, because, well, they would beat me up.

B.

Where to start with B.? She was about 5'2" and was generally likened to Betty Boop. For good reason. She had a helium voice and a molybdenum body, that one. She was given to wearing all black, right up to her eye shadow, and it was really entertaining to watch her during winter when the streets would ice up. There would be B., tottering around gorgeously in her four-inch heels, bobbling at a low simmer. Think Jennifer Tilly without the poker skills.

I naturally decided that I really needed to sleep with her, which I eventually did. I'd like to say that this was a monumental achievment.

What was a monumental achievment was . . . well, I should set this up.

We got together in a neighbor's dorm room, as my roomie was inconveniently in mine: my neighbor was out, and helpfully lent me the key for this assignation. At some point as we writhed, she requested music. I knew that neighbor's boombox was above the bed on a shelf, and I slapped at it blindly in the dark as I continued my project of thoroughly groping B. No music at all. Eventually we forgot about music.

What I didn't know at the time was that I had hit the RECORD button on the boombox. And neighbor-boy had a tape in. I swear I'm not inventing this.

You know where this is going.

The next day, G. (neighbor) dropped by. "You want to hear something really great?" he said.

"Sure!" I replied.

He put the tape in.

Look, here's all I'm going to say: I pulled out the tape and violently unspooled it once I heard myself breathe, "Oh my God."

G.

G. was an actor in our program, one year older than me. G. had been a football player until he destroyed his knees, but then moved over to lesser calisthenics like fucking the back teeth out of most of the women on campus. G. was good-looking and burly and pretty funny.

G. predictably liked to discuss these things with me. We got cast in a lot of shows together, he as the leading man, and me as the not-leading man. (It took me a long time to realize that character actors totally have the best jobs on earth.) He told me of the time that he and his girlfriend fucked so aggressively that some of her spermicide had worked its way inside his penis and had started eating away at the lining. He went to the ER after a screamingly painful attempt at urination, and the doctor clinically squeezed the head of his penis, making bilious-looking foam come out.

"Your girlfriend uses sponges, huh?" he said.

"AAAAAAAAAAAHHHHH!" replied G.

G. also had his single days. Not that that meant that G. went unfucked. He just picked up women in bars. And would tell me about them . . . or at least his Penthouse Forum versions. And I would believe him.

"I got this chick home last night? Man. She was just kind of hanging out. (Pause.) Anyway, I got her home. And she just flips over and gives me her pooper."

The word "pooper" is going to stay with me all my life. I might have it etched on my gravestone. "He Knew This Guy Once Who Said Pooper."

You know, it should be noted that he gave me some hilarious advice once. I had fallen hopelessly for this girl a few years older than me. In fact, we ended up going out for three years. But at the time of this conversation, we had slept together just once.

"I just don't know if she likes me!" I moaned to G.

He responded laconically, "Well, Skot, you've fucked her. And now you're wondering if you can ask her out? It usually goes the other way around for me."

And so.

C.

C. was, in pretty much every way, the definition of Diva. C. was frequently sick, like consumptively sick. COUGH COUGH! But no, the show must go on! She would always somehow summon her innermost reserves to actually act in front of an audience. They needed her!

C. was a fainter. I lost count of how many times she fainted. Her excuse? (Again: I AM NOT LYING.) She "forgot to breathe."

"I forget to breathe sometimes," she would cry. You know? Sometimes I forget to grow my hair.

There was a show we did one time that C. got cast in as the female lead. Lucklessy for her, it was a Sam Shepard show, so nothing good was going to happen to her. I was--get this--doing the costume duty for the piece, fulfilling one of the requirements for my major. So I wasn't even part of the cast.

In this particular show, there is a rape scene. C. was the rape victim. And so it came about that the rape scene--which was staged really strangely in that you never saw the rapist, who was down in a trap, so he became known as "the rapist in the hole"--would largely be dictated by C.

"Who would you like to do this?" asked the director. And by "this," he meant, "tear off your velcroed clothing and grab at your tits"?

C. picked me. The guy who was doing the wash. I had acted before with the woman, but . . . uh?

This, incidentally, really pleased this OTHER guy in the cast who had an incredible crush on C. Which I could never figure out. Did he think that he was going to get lucky with this dreamgal by simulating rape four nights a week? He hated the shit out of me, but then again, he was really dumb.

Anyway, it all fell to me. And for a few weeks, Thursday through Sunday (what happy matinees!), I did my job: as the smoke machine churned and C. sang high C, I would rip off her tearaway dress and grab at her mercilessly. I swear I will never forget certain scenes where I would be eveloped in smoke, tearing this woman's dress off, and seeing suddenly, out of the mist, this pale breast in front of my eyes, like an attacking kraken. Needless to say, it damaged me.

And after every single scene, she would climb down from the trap and break into tears. "I'm sorry," I would whisper before climbing down the ladder to fling dirty costumes into the washing machine. She would just keep sobbing.

At the end of it all, C. had only one comment for me. "You were a good choice. Thank you."

So if anyone out there needs a qualified stage rapist, you know who to call.


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Comments

I... ummm... went to acting school with Taye Diggs. But being a stage rapise is so much cooler.

Comment number: 005666   Posted by: Mir on October 27, 2005 02:40 PM from IP: 69.163.36.140

Well, so where are they now? And, you know you that you totally want to do the Blog Swap....Totally.

Comment number: 005667   Posted by: Mike on October 27, 2005 08:51 PM from IP: 206.170.148.183

your life is baffling, man. is all of this sort of thing normal?

Comment number: 005668   Posted by: aikan on October 27, 2005 08:55 PM from IP: 66.118.242.5

Thank you for encapsulating so neatly why I do not work in theater any more.

Comment number: 005669   Posted by: Kate on October 28, 2005 09:38 AM from IP: 70.132.51.221

I didn't even read past "molybdenum" - your f**king vocabulary pisses me off. I am going to kick your ass even though you didn't talk about me.

Comment number: 005670   Posted by: Peggy on October 28, 2005 10:02 AM from IP: 128.95.169.35

I used to be on a tv show and I know a few people, maybe I could hook you up. yeah right. as if....

Comment number: 005671   Posted by: Lala on October 31, 2005 03:45 PM from IP: 67.68.18.161

Eeeesh. I wrote a screenplay that got bought and turned into a failed sitcom pilot. I had zero control, but seeing as how it was my first big sale, I asked if I could hang out on set anyway. I left the set no less than 3 hours into production... Not because they were butchering my screenplay (which they were). Not because the food was terrible (which it was). But because I couldn't handle being around the actors. I originally thought that they were insufferable because they were two-bit hacks that had been brought in for practically nothing to act in an obscenely bad pilot, when in actuality, it had more to do with the whole actor breed. If possible, they have even bigger egos than me, which is completely and utterly not to be tolerated...

Comment number: 005672   Posted by: Gypsy on October 31, 2005 08:47 PM from IP: 70.162.79.180

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