This blog post was originally posted over at This Is Jasmine.
Things that have been on my mind and I swear on Imelda Marcos's bouffant I will write about. Here. On this blog. Maybe even today.
Every year, I look forward to the Emmys until I see that the nominated writers are overwhelmingly White and male. I ranted a bit on Twitter about this and then I wondered if I'm jeopardizing my own aspiring tv writer ass by doing so. I then got slightly depressed when I remembered that I'm in my 30's, in not great health, and also so risk-averse it's almost paralyzing. Seriously — who's still an aspiring thing in their 30's? I feel pathetic and small and petty.
But the fact that Kater Gordon, who split the best writing for drama prize with Matthew Weiner for "Mad Men", is credited as a writing assistant on IMDb and looks like a normal lady, gave me hope. Also that the "Mad Men" writing staff is a big old ladyfest and I liked that, too. Mindy Kaling is a writer, and a lady, and not White! So I felt hopeful, if not exactly clearer on how I should proceed. I want advice, but I hate asking for it, even though I clearly need it.
I wonder, though, if my tweets about my dissatisfaction regarding the lack of diversity behind and in front of the cameras are as articulate as I'd like. Do people understand my concern or do I end up sounding like a bigoted asshole?
So when do I stop complaining about the absence of diversity on television and start working on how to fix it? Am I terribly foolish and naïve in thinking I can make a go of this? No, but I have to do the work. I have to make good on my threats and promises to start and complete writing projects. I have to WRITE. While I write, I have to watch. Listen. Rinse. Repeat.
This whole Emmys/question of my personal failures question really got going in April when I attended my 15th high school reunion. While I had hoped to see more members of my class in attendance, I was glad to not have to say the same thing over and over: "Yeah, I like to write on the side. I'd like to write for television. I have no idea how to do that." A classmate mentioned that she used to work in public television, and that I should get in touch if I have questions. Have I contacted her yet? Oh of course not. God forbid I actually go forth and do something I actually want to do.
But back to tv. I'm going to start a tv viewing project. Hopefully I'll recap it here. But then again, maybe I won't. I'm trying not to make any writing promises I'm not sure I can keep.
PS: "Mad Men" this week? Fucking epic. If you're not already reading recaps of this and other shows over at A.V. Club, I suggest you do.
Bruce died last month. His memorial service was last weekend. My guilt about the disintegration of our relationship has subsided — people outgrow relationships more so than even I thought— but am I angry? At shutting myself out of his and Joan's lives for the last few years? At cancer in general? Oh, I think everybody should be angry at cancer. Cancer, you're an asshole.
PS: This is wholly inappropriate but I have to note that the night of Bruce's memorial, after the thing itself and the after-party (yes!) at Jimmy's with Joan and Joan's family and me and Maria and Clancy and Jacinda and Joe and Hyacinth (baby in a bar!) in one room and Bruce's Wiccan people in another (hmm), I went to Corinna's surprise birthday party at The Tasting Room. I don't know Corinna super-well, but I've always had pleasant times with her and her husband Rodrigo, so I was glad to be able to participate in her birthday festivities. Especially when birthday festivities includes open bar and a really delicious buffet. But that's not the inappropriate part. The inappropriateness was the dream I had that night I went to bed. Maybe it was the fact that I drank all day, or that the day was a bit warm, but I had one of those rare but entirely welcome sexy dreams that happen, like, once a decade. Naturally, just as things got going, my alarm had gone off, it was Sunday morning, and I had to get up for...
Vocal Techniques 1
I started taking a voice class at the Old Town School of Folk Music. This class makes me happy. We do a lot of breathing exercises and scales and think about our posture. We sound like kazoos, Marilyn Monroe, or the AFLAC duck when we do scales. A big part of the fun is the instructor, Gwen Pippin. She is hilarious and fun and helpful. Yesterday was her birthday so she came to class wearing all sorts of sparkly things (which she says she loves). A green plastic tiara. Rhinestone necklaces and bracelets. A rubbery ring which flashed different colors. If you're interested in taking Vocal Techniques 1 or any other voice class, the next cycle appears to be starting the last week of October.