Wednesday, November 28, 2012

I'm A Loser, Baby

So it's Monday morning and I have a splitting headache because my stomach doesn't remember how to drink coffee and I'm focused on eating this piece of toast in front of me because whether I should be attempting to eat a piece of toast yet is still a matter of debate.  And I haven't slept because David and I apparently can't tell time and don't realize we're only going to get a few hours before the school alarm until it's too late.  Also, I really, really need some Advil due to a certain little visitor but--again, with the stomach, so instead I'm just in a lot of pain.

And I'm reading the paper, trying to catch up on all the ones I missed while we were away and I was poisoned (really, is there more of a fool's errand?  The damn thing is different every day anyway) and I open to an article about a show I auditioned for a while back, the one where everyone laughed merrily and everyone said I was hilarious in Pippin and I was clearing my schedule for the callbacks when I got one of those stock e-mails that said my talents wouldn't be needed for this production and I got this email before the auditions were over.  Meaning, they had no idea yet who they were going to see before the callbacks but I, in particular, personally, ME, was not needed.  And now there's this big article about how the show is a world premiere and everyone is so, so excited, yada yada, and I grimaced.

Then, on the next page, is a big spread about a lovely woman who is currently the Big Kahuna of American poets.  I mean, she's gone as far as you can go with that title, let's just say that.  She's also the director of a creative writing at a major university and has about a million awards for her books.  She also seems really smart and interesting.  Which I don't really remember because I knew her a long time ago.  When we were both in the same MFA program and graduated at the same time.  And since then?  The book I wrote?  Well, it's in the library at UMASS, but if I want to see it, I'll have to visit it there because the only copy I have is on a floppy disk that stopped being viable around 1996.

In the afternoon, my child was furious with me because her playdate's parents picked her up too soon, which was apparently my fault.  She packed her American Girl accessories and her pillow and left a note on the bed which read "I just don't feel like I fit in here, so I'm moving out.  I'll write you a letter if you want."  She then set up camp in our driveway for the rest of the afternoon, occasionally sneaking back inside to steal snacks.  No matter what I did or said, I couldn't make her do her homework, take a bath, clean her room or do anything I said.  My threats and entreaties were either met with "No." or "I can't stand you."  I was the most useless parent ever put on the planet, even that's supposed to be, like, my main job.  And I hid in my room and I cried.  I hid from a seven-year-old.

Then I have this meeting at my house in the evening, a meeting where I've put out coffee and cupcakes but I can only stare at these things because my stomach is saying "no, no, no" still.  And one of the people at this meeting was there when I auditioned for a show very recently that turned me into Miss Havisham, waiting by the phone day after day in my lacy wrap for a call that never came even though I had a callback where I felt like I totally killed.  And finally I can't keep deftly sidestepping her mentions of this show and when I say I never head ANYTHING she says that the director loved my reading, yes he did, my reading was amazing, what an incredible reading.  So I just had to say, but not my SINGING? And she said, oh so delicately, well, he felt the part needed a really particular kind of belt voice, so...

...which was apparently the particular kind of belt voice that is not mine.  And that smarted.  A lot.  Because I thought I did my best.  And I've never had an audition where I thought I did my BEST and they didn't like it.

And then they all left and I cried.  And then David and I watched "Dancing with the Stars" and I cried some more because it would be so cool to be on that show but I'm not a star but also because they are just so good sometimes and it's a triumph of the human spirit.

And after that?  I was tired.  And, like Scarlett O'Hara, I figured tomorrow was another day, and I'd never be hungry again.