Did I Do You Yet?

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Out of all the gyms, in all of gay San Francisco, I pick a gym owned by a straight guy, so I now have to pay, like a chump, it’s awful carry on. This gym, however, posed a very important question for me to mull over today – What is gayer: the couple (guy and girl) who both times I have been there have worn identical matching outfits (different matching outfits too, first day mostly made up of blue, I thought it was a strange coincidence, today mostly black and white, confirmed my ape suspicions), who wont stop walking around the gym with their arms around each other’s lower back so they’re waddling in sync, OR; the gay couples in the gym in West Hollywood. Both are pretty, pretty gay. OR, me, seeing as I probably trump them both for noticing and taking the time to write about it. Plus the fact I’ve used OR twice so far and keep saying it out loud as I do. I win.

Moving on, while I am on my week or so away from L.A, I have been given writing assignments to do, to assess and reflect on the time I have been there so far. Different writing and organisation exercises to see if I am serious about writing, can I work in a time frame, how has the acting side of things gone for me, or I am just in L.A to party. I have worked hard all day, procrastinating, thinking about which one I should do first. As of yet, I am still undecided, so I’ll hold off until tomorrow to start. I think I will plough ahead with the one I must write about what I have done so far while in L.A to achieve my goals, and what then is it that I need to do when I go back.

First thing I did to perfection in L.A, was to finely hone the art of procrastination whilst on Craigslist, thinking I was being productive. Craigslist is one of the most helpful, frustrating, useful, annoying, time saving and time consuming websites there is out there. It is a complete paradox. I have had many hits, and double the misses from the website. The good: I found a place to live with cool roommates; the website indirectly got me playing soccer in Robbie Williams’ house. The bad: got me excited about a job that never seemed to really exist (hired at about 3 in the afternoon, company disappeared off the radar about 11 that night); had me walk around the city of L.A to open interview jobs where hundreds of others would also show up before me (might have been handy if I brought a C.V along with me to those interviews, although making out a C.V for myself might be a good starting point too); the whole Bucket fiasco (go read the plentiful posts on that if you need a reminder, I miss her still). I’m sure there have been many more misses, they are just the main ones off the top of my head. I won’t even mention what happens if you try to get free Sigur Ros tickets from someone off the website, lets just say nothing is free in this day and age!

Anyways, for the first few weeks in L.A, I was convincing myself that looking for a job and car on Craigslist, or posting ads offering soccer coaching, website design, accent coaching, translation, pornogr…photography lessons etc, was a way of me being productive. Nay, nay, nay. Complete waste of time, although at least it got me out of the house!

On the acting side, I have probably not done enough, but I have made some sort of progress. I am still agent-less, and my phone has yet to start hopping with calls about auditions. No SAG card or head shots either come to think of it. However, at least now, when an acting teacher asks me “Have you studied Method, or Meisner, or theatre, or E-Business, or whatever before?”, I no longer reply sheepishly “Eh, yeah?”, but instead confidently reply, with a wink, “All of the above really”. Progress has been made! 

My ramblings are being put on paper, so to speak, so at least the writing is flowing. I have Craigslist to thank for a good bit of that, so that is another hit really. And now that I have been given assignments, and even asked to do an article, big time Charlie, hopefully more structure will come to it. Sitcom on!!!

All my galavanting on nights out has led me to make a few contacts, which is a plus. They might not remember me too well, or my many names, but I’m sure they will be delighted to learn that I have put them on my speed dial. Lucky them. Plus I now know who to call if ever I want to get scammed into buying a broken down truck, always handy. It’s all about who you know really, ha.

So, from the gibberish above, I see that I have done a few things ok, to an extent, and the rest, eh…yeah. I haven’t even made out this list or post well, the random ramblings are kicking in. Ok, focus, what’s the first thing on my to do list when I get back to L.A… what to do… to do… to duu… I thought of something! Here’s hoping my hot neighbour wants to do it too!

Here’s a great song to pound the streets of L.A to while on the job hunt, although it has yet to bring me luck in finding a job…Punkrocker by the Teddybears ft Iggy Pop.

Brad, I Feel Your Pain…

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I now know how Brad felt when he left the set of Mr & Mrs Smith and had to leave Angelina to go back to Jennifer. I am in almost the exact, exact same situation. Almost. L.A is my mistress, Angelina, San Fran is my Jennifer. I used to love San Fran, my favourite city in America by far. There are only two people I know that liked San Fran more than I did, a scone and a rink. Now, all I think about is L.A. I wonder what I’m missing out on. Why did I not stay put. Will it be the same when I go back. A lot can change in a week, what have I done?!!!!

I’m walking down the street in San Fran, waiting for someone to pretend to be my friend and con me out of something, or potentially give me a big break. However, unlike L.A, no one glances twice, they don’t look to see if you might be famous, they don’t care. There are no mishaps waiting around the corner, or famous people to bump into. Just boring, regular, sound people, tut tut, for God’s sake, what a crap city. The only people who are off kilter are the millions of homeless people but what good will they do me (the movie I was thinking of has been done, apparently). Where have all the fake smiles and fakes boobs gone to?!!!

The weather in L.A is perfect. Hot during the day so you know you’ll be wearing shorts. At night its cool enough for you to wear a new jacket that you want to show off, as if though you personally hand stitched it and deserve credit for it, or not wear one at all.The weather in San Fran is almost to a tee like the Irish weather. Cold and raining at night, humid and windy during the day. The wind is blowing in all directions here at the moment as well, ruining my well combed hair, what a crap city!

People get my name right in San Fran too, I’m mumbling more than ever now just to bring back the memories of Omar and Merrick. Why doesn’t anyone Google my name here as well by the way?!!! Pardon me, who am I? Thats more like it, oh, you asked how am I? Tut tut, not so good! Tissue anyone? I have a load to spare!

Where have all the perks of a gay neighborhood gone as well? I’m in the gayest city in the world now but there are no free gym perks here. I’m paying like everyone else. There is no Common in the gym for me to chin wag with, only commoners like myself, pink heads and sweaty machines, tut tut, what a crap city!

I presume L.A is struggling to cope just as much as I am since I had to leave, obviously she is. I wonder if she is moping around watching Scrubs and drinking tea all day, not thats what I’m doing or anything. Speaking of which, I no longer even have a Coffee Bean to mosey on up to if my day was going slow, I don’t want a cheap tart like Peet’s Coffee replacing her! I might text L.A, see what she’s up to tonight, see if she’s up for a quick chat on Skype later on.

Here’s the song I have lined up to play once I get to fly back down to L.A, sorry San Fran, its just no longer the same this time around, we’ve grown apart, I’ve found someone else. Apparently Brad played this for Jennifer as well as he drove off…I’m Leaving You Because I Don’t Love You by Jens Lekman.

…With Colin Farrell Playing The Lead!

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For technical reasons, which I shall not get into, I have to leave L.A for a week or so and head to Mexico. Conveniently enough, spring break is on at the same time, actually a total coincidence in timing for me, but, wuu duu. I also have to fly there from San Francisco, I shall not bore you with the details as to why. I was wondering if I would continue on with this wonderful blog while I am gone, but as long as stupid stuff keep happening to me, I say blog on!

Firstly, I would not recommend wearing baggy shorts, which require a belt to keep them from falling off, while going through security check at the airport. The whole point of the trip was to keep it innocuous, up, down to San Fran, in & out of Meeheeko, back to L.A, happy days. Low profile, say nothing. Good plan.

It’s my turn to go through the metal detector when the first beep pops off and ruins my great plan. “Please check your pockets sir and try again.” I pad the outside of each of the 6 pockets in my shorts, nothing in them, go through again…beep, beep. “Please check your pockets sir and try again.” I actually check my pockets this time, metal pen in one, notepad with metal coil in the other, two batteries in one of the back pockets, I should’ve checked first time really. So, through the detector again…beep, beep. The security guy repeats himself again, adds in to take off my belt if I’m wearing one. Ah, the belt. Off with the belt, shorts almost fall down. So, I try again, getting annoyed with the annoying security guy doing his job (instead of with myself for being dumb)…beep beep beep. “Security check on row 5″. 

So another guy comes over with his big beeping wand, takes me to the side for a quick pat down. He asks me to hold my arms out, shorts close to falling off as I do, bend the knees quickly to keep them up. He’s wanding me up and down, asks me to stand up straight, I tell him I cant really, what happened to this being innocuous and low-key?!!! So after seeing his glare and dirty look, I stand up straight, arms held out to the side, shorts slide down, leaving me standing there in my nice orange pair of American Eagle boxers. Like a fool. Turns out the chewing gum pack in my back pocket was the problem. It was an empty pack too, well worth all that.

So on the flight up to San Fran, I met my first random Irish guy since I have been in L.A, so close to getting away with it. He’s sitting next to me on the aisle. While he makes small talk about seeing the incident, I notice that he has an Irish accent masked underneath an annoying American one. When he realizes I too am Irish, out comes the Irish accent in full bloom, one of those gimps. “Alright man, you’re Irish, I didn’t think you were…” and so on, as his American accent fades into an over the top Irish accent.

When he asks what do I do, I tell him I’m here trying to act and write. Trying being the key word. He tells me he lives in L.A, traveling to San Fran to meet his wife’s parents, his wife is sitting next to him, American, hi, how’s it going, all that. So where in Ireland are you from by the way, I ask him. “Dublin man, yeah, I’m an actor”. The job, I think, he might be able to give me some tips… so, are you getting much work? “Yeah, my agent has lined up a good few auditions for me next week, can’t wait, it’s going really well.” Which agency are you with, if you don’t mind me asking, I need an agent myself! “Well, it’s a friend of mine, he’s not an agent as in with an agency, he’s my agent, he’s my buddy.” Oh right, what stuff have you been in so far? “Nothing yet man, good few stuff lined up though” Are you going to acting classes? “No man, you don’t need any of that really though, my buddy was telling me, he knows people.” Your buddy sounds like an ape. And you sound like a gimp. A complete spoof.

I start to change the subject, however, every time I do, and the more he speaks, the bigger kind of spoofing ape he becomes… What part of L.A do you live in? “Well it’s more Santa Barbara than really in L.A man” SB? That’s about 2 hours north of L.A, you spoofing gimp! I ask if he’s in L.A much at all so or what? “Well I will be now, if my buddy can set up the auditions. I’ve gone out there a few times with herself.”

I go off the subjects of acting and L.A, and ask him about his visa situation, how did he sort it out? “I got married, she hooked me up”  – nods to his wife. I know people who do that, good work, at least you’re good to stay here now. But this is when he truely blossoms as a gimp. His wife, technically she is anyways, goes to the bathroom. When she leaves, he swoops in with the comment of how she is usually hotter looking, you should’ve seen her when he first met her, she’s put on a bit of weight since, but she looks so hot when she slims down. What the funk?!!! Why would you say that to me??? Well done, I believe you, good work. When she loses the (good) few pounds, and is looking great, ask her to call me. Until then, she’s all yours.

So I change the subject completely, ask a straight forward question about what part of Dublin he’s from, buddies living up there, and so on… he tells me Kildare!!! What a funking gimp, Kil-funking-dare?!!! Why bother to tell me Dublin so at all first time around??? My laughing at him at this stage throws him off a bit, he tries to change the subject this time by telling me he’s writing a screenplay, it’s going to be great. He then describes his movie which is the exact same as You, Me & Dupree, except in his version, he’d cast Colin Farrell as Dupree. I ask him has he seen You, Me & Dupree, no? Go rent it. He tells me he has more, describes another movie he’s going to write, which is the exact same as School of Rock, except in his version, he’d cast… guess who? I mention School of Rock to him, his bubble bursts, tells me he has more, pity we’re close to landing, we should talk more. I tell him I’ve no American phone yet, so I give him my Irish 088 number, an oldie but a goodie, call me, man. I was looking forward to hearing more about his new screenplay as well. The one about some big ship that crashes into an iceberg, the premise sounded good, and original. Hopefully he’ll call.

So anyways, I’m in San Fran now. I had forgotten how many homeless people there are in San Fran, while I was in my gay neighborhood bubble in West Hollywood. They are everywhere! Although, can’t knock them, they just looking for happiness like the rest of us. In the pursuit of it, you could say. Maybe there’s a good idea for a movie. I can think of a good story line already. Now, if only I could find a black Colin Farrell to play the lead role!

Song of the day is this savage chilling song, Blood Bank by Bon Iver

In The Shower. Singing. In French. Crying. Go!

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I feel the blog has wavered off the acting and writing track a tad lately, so I must write a post about the first Lee Strasburg class I went to last week. Not that it has been on that track much anyways, but the class was pretty nuts to say the least so worth a mention.

It was last Thursday, and I had just been informed by Aaron Speiser’s people that his class was going to be $50, instead of free like I thought, plus the $40-$50 round trip in the cab ride, good duckaduu to that, does he not know I’m homeless and unemployed! It was 7 on the button when I rang the Lee Strasburg school and the class started at 7 until 11. I could come along if I hurried and came straight away. I’ll be there in two minutes! So I had a cup of tea, changed out of my blue t-shirt (remembering the last time I was hungover in class and wearing blue), had another drop of tea, hurried as fast as I could and went to class. 

So I get there about half 7, go to the reception, tell guy at the desk about the flat tire in my imaginary car, had to walk, sorry for being late, sign up for the class, then sign in for the class for some reason, get given a few pages of a scene and get told I might get do to a scene with one of the girls at the end if there’s time. Not too shabby, could be good. So I’m brought upstairs to one of the rooms, the teacher is expecting me, have fun! I surely will. I walk into the big enough room, and immediately I’m worried and freaked. Everyone is crying and making weird noises. This is going to be great fun.

A guy who looks a bit like Woody Allen, glasses and accent included but with black hair, sees me at the door – freaked and wondering why everyone is crying, is this a cult? – and starts to walk over to me. When I say walk, I really mean pirouette. Seriously, he does about 4 twirls across the room, swivels through 2 crying, wailing people in his way, and comes over to me. With him in a ballet stance (on his toes with one foot, arms up in the air, other foot wiggling around gracefully, like a posh little tea cup stance), he introduces himself “Hey, I’m Robert, we’re warming up, have a seat, take it all in, I didn’t get to dance without the practicing, essential, absolutely essential, warming up and practicing, have a seat”. He points, with his toe thats in the air about neck height, to where I should sit. Cheers Robert.

While all of that was going on, everyone is still chanting, wailing and crying. Some are staring at the wall, some are walking around, some have their arms out, fists clenched. There are about 12 in the class, the majority are crying, pausing only to say “HUUUUHHHH, HHHUUUUHHHH. HHHUUUHHHHHH”, then politely crying on. There’s one guy sitting on the floor in the corner saying and doing nothing, just rocking to himself. He must be newish too. There’s a girl with a massive afro, shaking her head, spitting out random bits of French, crying and rubbing her hands all over herself. This is freaky as funk, reminds me of a voodoo scene from a movie. I notice as well that the majority of the girls in the class are extremely hot. Even amongst the tears and wailing, they are still top dollar. Maybe I’ll stick around for a few more minutes at least. it’d be rude not to.

The layout of the room is two stages either end, and wooden floor in between, with seats scattered here and there. I followed the teacher’s toe and sit in the corner. As I’m realizing to myself it didn’t matter what colour t-shirt I wore to this asylum, and realizing how hot the women are, this Australian dude, old enough as well compared to the rest (I’m guessing 37 and a half maybe?) sits two seats down from me, huhing away to himself. Softly at first, eyes closed, arms out like a cross. Ok, huh on buddy, this is normal. So while he is huhing to my left, an extremely hot girl sits two seats to my right (people were walking around the room, changing places). So I forget about the dude, decide to see how good an actress the girl is, do I really believe that she is crying, is she really as hot as I first thought. She’s sobbing away, looking well, when I hear the huhing getting louder next to me. I turn back towards my left, and see the guy is looking at me, or into the distance and through me, not sure, and huhing for dear life, getting intenser and louder with each one, veins popping out of his neck. What is going on, is that his chick next to me, should I move seats, this is fun alright, surrounded by nutters!!! 

The girl next to me gets up, eyes closed still, starting to laugh now – Good, you’re getting better, did I tell you I’m Irish? She then does a big “HUUUUHHHH”, wacks me in the head with her arms out cross motion, reverts back to laughing straight away, and goes on her merry way. What is going on, good God this is freaking me out. 

The teacher must’ve seen this, starts to pirouette over to me, explains how he is getting the students to see what emotions they are overcome by today, strip them down bare so they can work off an empty canvas, blowing on. He also liked to start every single sentence with “Dahling…Lee used to say that to me…Dahling…” then say whatever it was he was going to say. 

The first hour went on like this. Good laugh. Just sitting there watching this. The second hour involved them doing a daily activity with a twist. So the students were still spread out all over the room, doing a daily activity, such as showering, cleaning the dishes, making breakfast etc, when the teacher would say a different twist to each… “Showering drunk” or “Cooking naked” or to the girl with the afro, “Making coffee, singing a song, your national anthem, at the top of your voice”. And she wouldn’t or couldn’t stop crying while doing it for some reason. She was the most disturbed I think.

The teacher goes around asking them how they are feeling while doing their daily activity. One feels sad (no way!), one feels explosive(is that even an emotion?), the really hot girl feels sick. She then reveals too much while she’s cooking her eggs, in the freezing cold, with her eyes shut, and half crying… Dahling, why do you feel that, tell me more… my stomach feels sick, I don’t want to eat these eggs… tell me more, what happened today that made you sick… I was using the bathroom all day, my stomach is upset… Dahling, tell me more, were you getting sick all day… no, the other way, it was really bad… good, let it all out, now you’re ready to act, open your eyes! 

Too much info for my liking. Thankfully it was time for a break. I found out during the break that the French girl was in fact from the Ivory Coast (she didn’t care or seem impressed when I threw Didier Drogba’s name into the converstion, thinking we shared common ground about a soccer player). The Aussie dude told me he was at make or break time, if he didn’t make it in LA his wife and kid were not going to be happy. He also let slip that he had being going to this class for 9 semesters which I’m guessing is a long enough time so his family might not be happy with him. I didn’t see the really hot girl, probably in the bathroom the whole time.

The second half started with two students doing a scene they had prepared. Ah, here comes the good stuff, a 15 minute scene where you get to see if they can act or not, then the teacher gives them pointers. Except it went on for about 40 minutes. And the guy was from Argentina I think, somewhere in South America anyways, and the girl was Spanish I think, and I had little to no clue what they were saying, or what scene from what movie it was meant to be, so was completely lost (it was actually a scene from a play, one with only 3 long scenes, and they were speaking English apparently). I went to the bathroom after their scene and forgot to go back, it had been a long, tough few hours.

The weird thing is, when I went home and thought about it, I actually think it was a good class. It was highly bizarre and full of nuts, but I could see where ballet man was coming from with what he was saying and the logic behind it. I might go back for another audit or two. I’ll bring some Imodium for the hot girl next time as well.

I must go now and practice my “Hhhhhhuuuuuuuuuhhhhhhhhhs”, while staring at the wall. Naked. With an upset stomach. Song of the day is Silent Shout by The Knife.

Ehhh, It Depends, Who’s Asking?

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Paddy’s day got off to a tremendous start. As a result of being hungover, trying to remember the words of my karaoke song from the night before, but mostly, pure dumbness, I somehow turned on the blender without the top on. Which ruined my t-shirt. Which was green. Which I wore to remind the hot girl at the front desk in the gym that it was Paddy’s day, in case she forgot. There went my ice breaker and smoothness. 

I still wasn’t sure when or if they really celebrated Paddy’s day in LA as much as other parts of Emerica. I’ve yet to go to an Irish bar at night, only during the day once when the Mexican dude couldn’t understand my accent. As a result I wasn’t able to go to my local and suss it out. So I was underprepared to finding out the extent they celebrate it, especially in a gym, in a very, very gay area.

I walk in to a complete sea of green – green balloons, green streamers, green banners, green flags, green hot pants, green sweat bands, green shamrocks face painted, green grass, green everything. They wasted some amount of money on turning the gym into the Emerald Isle. I think I was the only person in there not wearing at least one item of clothing with green in it as well. And I was the only Irish person in there. I get to find this out later. 

There’s no sign of the hot girl at the desk who usually greets me with a nice, enthusiastic, fake “Hey Eric, have a great one!”. My icebreaker would have been wasted either way. I’ll have to give her a toor-a-loor-a tomorrow instead. However, I’m still greeted, just now by a hyper “Yippee, its Merrick, the Irish man, on Ireland’s day, high five!!!” I had forgotten, in my dumb state, that seeing as it was so early in the morning, about half 12, my buddy who hooks me up with the free gym would be working. And he is delighted that I’m here on this great day for Ireland. And he’s wearing an Irish jersey of some sort from the 90’s, but for what team or sport I have no clue. He keeps telling me its from Ireland, actually bought in Ireland. Good work buddy, I believe you, it’s horrendous looking, looks Irish alright. So we chew the fat for a while, ha, small talk about the calories in green beer, how my leprechaun farm is coping without me at home, how big my herd of lepri are (I tell him thats what we call leprechauns if there’s more than 100). This is making his day. So excited, hands clapping, high fives, wait until he tells the guys, have a great workout Merrick, cheers.

That chat should’ve got me another few months of free gym anyways. Happy enough with it, I go see if Common needs me to spot him again. So I lethargically go upstairs, wander around by a few machines, mull over which one I would do if I had the energy, and get stopped by another guy who works in the gym. “Hi, are you Irish? You are!!! Thats awesome, I met an Irish guy on Patrick’s day. Great. Thanks”. And that was it. My buddy, free Jim downstairs, must’ve told the guys. Word was around. 3 more of the guys came up asking the same. “Are you Irish” Yes. “Thats so cool, good for you”. Thanks? It’s my new one talent. From now on if any girl asks the immortal question of who are you and what do you do, they will no longer hear “Homeless and unemployed”, but instead “I’m Irish”. Unless she’s not my type. Then I’ll just ask her for some spare change.

So the gym wasn’t working out, decided I’d head home, must make a quick pit stop first. So I get into the bathroom, all the cubicles and stalls are taken. Have to wait I suppose. So I lean against the sink, my mind wandering off contemplating important issues, such as do I have another green t-shirt to wear that night, I do I think, is it clean, I hope it is, it is alright, might need to be ironed though. Thinking deep thoughts. I’m still feeling shook from the night before, tired, not at my sharpest. I’m being friendly at least though, hi, how’s it going, what up, just waiting for the stall. Plus there’s a savage song on my iPod that Im bopping along to. So, at this stage, I’m more or less hanging around the guys bathroom, saluting randomers, chilling, almost loitering, practicing dance moves in my head, at the busiest time, and probably as a result, with more than the usual ratio of gay guys there. This clicks, I give the guys highs fives and scuttle home. No more early morning gym sessions for me if that was anything to go by.

So I’m looking forward to round two of celebrations that night, if the gym was that crazy about the Irish thing, any bar or club I go to will be sham-rocking (ha, horrendously good). My accent and Irish authenticity will be golden, “I’m Irish” is all I’ll have to say, in like flynn, out like a trout, I’m pumped. Plus, even better, the green t-shirt is clean. Tonight is going to be brilliant!

I am invited to a Korean restaurant (as you do on Paddy’s day), where my roommate’s friends were having a party. Everyone is decked out in green, accents are being put on and thrown around everywhere, actually good Irish ones for a change, actors and all, green beer is flowing, no-one’s on the dance floor yet, too sober, everyone’s at the bar or outside in the smoking room, its just like being home in Ireland! So, Im introduced to some girls by a buddy, tells them how I’m actually Irish, he’s trying to use me to get in, use on! They don’t believe me, stop putting on that accent, where are you really from? No, seriously, I am Irish, look, I’m wearing a green t-shirt, just like everyone else, and listen to my accent. They still don’t believe me. Where are you really from? I stoop to the low of whipping out my passport. Thats not you – it is, my hair was shorter in the photo – no, its not, where are you really from? At this stage I’m almost pleading with them to believe me that I am Irish. One girl has even lived in Cork for a year and still won’t buy it that I’m Irish. What the funk?!!! This wasn’t part of the plan. I am Irish, please believe me, ring my Irish phone number, I am Irish, look, here’s my Irish credit card, go, use up the last €24 on it, just believe me that I’m Irish!!! 

This put me on the defensive for the night. There was no sham-rocking. When one girl replied with an innocent, yet questionable, “No, really?” after she asked where I was from, I just reverted back to being homeless and unemployed, not sure where I’m from really, any spare change? The dream was over. The only person to get excited about me being Irish was Hyde from That 70’s Show, sound dude. He too was Irish, part anyways. Part Hungarian, Bulgarian, Welsh, Scottish and American too I think. 

So if you’re Irish and happen to be in Hollywood next Paddy’s day, be prepared that you’ll impress the guys, and drive the girls away. Happy days.

Song of the day is the song that had me jiving around the bathroom in the gym… You Made Me Like It by the 1990s.

Who’s Your Paddy?!!

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Yesterday was a highly confusing day. I was lost as to when to celebrate Paddy’s day. I was looking forward to it, purely to utilize my Irishness once to the max. However, I found out that most of the celebrations were on Saturday, it wasn’t a national holiday here too, there was no day off on Tuesday for the big parade. Or the boozing the night before. So I went to the gym to clear my head, I could decide then when I’d celebrate it.

The gym I’m getting for free is getting better and better, it’s brilliant. The talent is funbelievable, and the women aren’t too bad either, wahey boss. Plus now I’ve a new gym buddy. I was trying to hog two machines yesterday when a guy asked if he could use one along with me. Alright, fine, but don’t hold me back, I’m working here. I recognized him from somewhere, not sure where. He was a big dude, and as I’m almost doing my back in using the same weights he just used on the machine, I see its the rapper/actor Common. So now, instead of purely doing my back in and making whimpering, grunting noises because of the heavy weights, I’m also trying to be cool and pretend like I don’t recognize who he is. I’m sure he’s doing the same. He moves onto the bench press and asks if I’ll spot him. He just made it official, we are gym buddies from then on in. He even wishes me a Happy Saint P day maaan when he finds out I’m Irish. I was going to say “Thanks, who’s your Paddy?!!!”, using my cheesy line I had saved up, but thought he might not fully get it/understand my accent. Plus it’s not a good place to get mistaken asking a guy who’s your Daddy, highly gay gym and all. I let it go.

So after I shared a protein shake with my new gym buddy, had lunch, recorded a new song with him, discussed how he prepared for American Gangster, did the Riverdance for him, I went home (only one part of that was true, surprisingly). My roommates told me to get ready for karaoke, it was time for the Paddys day celebrations!

I felt cheated by karaoke this week though. The crooner was back, singing the same song. The Asian dude and R Kelly were back, singing and rapping the same song. The two random girls dressed up in hockey outfits were back, rapping the same song. It was all a sham, they came every week, I was gutted! There was, however, a new guy who not only sang a Meatloaf song superbly, but also managed to do the robot while singing, highly impressive. Plus I think Justin Timberlake was in the place boozing on, but I wasn’t fully sure so can’t say for certain. He looked the spitting image of him and dressed like him and was in Hollywood so more than likely was him.

I decided my voice was in flying form to sing (I was drunk). I intended on singing Common People by Pulp. It was probably a subconscious shout out to my gym buddy. I flicked through the big, big, big book of songs they gave to choose from, looking for that song’s code to hand up and get my name on the list. However, while flicking through the book, I was getting distracted by 80’s classics. Will I do Bette Davis Eyes?!! 99 Red Balloons??!! Vienna?!!! Take On Me?! Addicted To Love?!!

In the end I’m not sure what song I murdered and pillaged. I think it was She Drives Me Crazy by Fine Young Cannibals. It took them so long to call me up, and with the green beer flowing for free, being Irish and all, I had no clue what song I had picked when it was eventually my turn to go up and sing. So, up I go, thinking I can sing whatever song it was without looking at the words, mumbling along “You and I, 99…You’re going to have to face it I’m…Take oooooooooon me…”. All wrong. I was so bad to start with, my roommate had to come up and sing along with me. Once I had my back singer in place though, transformation time, I blossomed, I was like Tina Turner, or Joe Dolan, someone like that. I was strutting and slurring. I managed to belt out the chorus, hands over the head clapping, broke it down, acoustic version, lighters lit up in the crowd, people crying, encore encore! Oh, what’s that, I can’t stay up and hog the mike, my turn is over? Just one more song, I’m warmed up now. No? Seriously? Just one more, maybe two? Ok, sorry about that.

I was horrendous. In a good Irish way. I even managed to finish off with a “Who’s your Paddy?!!!” to the crowd. A collaboration with Common is in the works, I’ll keep you posted.

Song of the day is the song I think I sang last night, who knows. Either way it is a savage song, and an odd video…She’s Drives Me Crazy by Fine Young Cannibals

Any Spare Change, Boss?

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Today has been a day of chats, stories and getting information, some meaningless, the rest highly useful. 

Here’s a highly useful bit of information I got today, which will definitely benefit me further down the line. Apparently Matt Damon lived in the same place I live now. Very useful to know. At least now if I ever meet him I have a good ice breaker. A great story.

This nugget of information was followed by a mighty chat today with one of my neighbors. Mighty altogether, I was smoothness personified. One of my neighbors is ridiculously hot, an Australian actress. I found out today she was in Neighbors. I could try to make up a horrific joke about my neighbor being in Neighbors but I’m too tired, and thats all I could think of anyways. She’s the reason David Spade has been hanging around my place now and again, they’re working together. She’s not that famous or anything, but she promised she wouldn’t mention me in her blog if I did the same, you know how it goes. The bad news was that one of my roommates told me she lives here with her husband. Great. I was well in there too before I found this out. I felt the spark the one time I said hi to her, although I’m not sure if she even said hi back. 

So while I’m watching t.v, I see her outside my window, messing around with her dog or something. The sun was shining, she was dazzling in it, looking savage. As I said to my other roommate, knowing she wouldn’t get it, she is a weapon. Strangely at that exact time, more or less, I thought to myself, now is a good time to dump the bins, and while I’m outside, I might as well say hello. So I throw an empty can into an empty bin-bag, the rubbish was overflowing, really important I dumped it at that time, and go outside. I should mention at this point that my roommate’s dog was sick today, so puking out of both ends. This will help my smoothness later on. 

I head out, make some small talk with her about it being a great day, dazzling, weapons, all that jazz. I then tell her how I have to empty the bins again, so much rubbish, where does it keep coming from, you know how it is, throw my eyes to heaven, tut to myself, all that jazz. She doesn’t care, and I realize I shouldn’t literally talk rubbish to her, my regular small talk is bad enough. So I go dump the can into the trash shute, come back, ask her what type of dog does she have. It’s a bulldog but I ask anyways. I’m good at small talk. I then think to myself, I should really tell her how my roommate’s dog is sick out both ends, and how I’ve stepped in it a few times already today, tut, throw my eyes to heaven. So I’ve now moved on to the subject of s**t with her. Rubbish and s**t, same old small talk as usual so. 

Our spark is interrupted by her husband popping his head out their window and asking her would she get his drying from downstairs. Hang on buddy, we’re sharing a moment over dog s**t. So I go back inside, tell my roommate its a pity she’s married, I think she likes me. I know these vibes well. My roommate, who has lived here longer than my other roommate, then tells me she’s not married, that’s a gay guy who lives in the same house. The other roommate had got it wrong! No wonder so David Spade was over there all the time, trying to move in on my woman. I’m thinking of inviting her over to check out the dog’s puke stains, always a banker to seal the deal.

So they were two highly useful, informative stories I heard and had earlier in the day. I also heard how Brad Pitt got the agent, who got him his big break, to represent him in the first place. My roommate had all the good stories for me today! Apparently, he went to her office with his resume, photos, reel etc. She said no thanks. So he kept showing up every day at her office, with cakes, flowers, mixed tapes, homemade stuff, being nice and pleasant, and eventually, she said yes. Talent, good looks and the ability to bake tasty cakes and deserts seems to be the way to get your foot in the door. I’m letting the custard on my trifle set as we speak.

On my way to a meeting I had today, I stopped by the good old Coffee Bean for a coffee, surprisingly enough. Its a sit wherever, share tables, kind of place when its busy. So I’m busy scribbling stuff down in my notebook about something, a shopping list I think, when a girl asks if she can sit at my table. Work away, pull up a chair. I thought she was Irish first, had all the tell tale signs, pinky skin complexion, colour of bacon, iPod on, green top and a white skirt. The minute she asked me what do you do and who are you, however, I knew she wasn’t. Here we go again. Luckily, I pulled a George Kastanza moment out of the bag, that will be used in future when needed…”I’m unemployed and kind of homeless, things are looking bad.” A great way to nip something in the bud early in LA it seems. Plus I called over Amadeus and introduced him to her, she probably believed the homeless comment more after seeing he was my buddy.

I then met a literary agent, who had read some of my writing. That turned out to be the most useful out of all my chats, as he gave me unreal helpful information about LA, getting into the business, and taking things to the next level. Basically you need a plan. Then you need ten more plans. Then you have to be open to ten more possible plans. So the more you put yourself out there, try different routes, network, and work hard while making it look effortless, the bigger chance you have of getting a foot or hook in somewhere. I know that can be applied for a lot of things, and might seem obvious, but when you’re being told by someone in the business you want to be in, by someone who knows what they’re talking about, and thinks you have a good chance if the necessary hard work is done, its good stuff to hear and have laid out in front of you. Its a bit much to take in all in one go too, so by the end I was processing it through my head and was a bit lost for words as to what responses I should give “Eh, thanks?”. Stand-up comedy could be another option now too, boo on!!! At least now though, more direction has been given to me, it no longer feels completely alien being here, and I have set things to start doing. Either that or I’m banking on my homemade trifle!

A great song to finish the day is Road To Joy by Bright Eyes