In the waning days of 2006 I started this here 'blog in the interests of exerting a bit more control over my online presence. It probably speaks volumes to my misconceptions about the Internet that I imagined I could "control" my online presence, but at the time I had just had a website put up for me, and simply wanted to contribute to that effort in a more personal way. After a short time, I found a guiding principle for the 'blog, which I decided would be used to explore and expound upon my efforts to live what I called "The Third Life." That is, a life lived outside of conventional norms and perspectives, one that aspires to be about more than just home and work, that incorporates something else (see 12/19/06, but also, and perhaps more interestingly, 2/21/08).
low-budget sci-fi film and several original collaborations, traveled to and performed in Italy four times, and performed an extended-run NYC Fringe show that I helped develop. I got to play Romeo, well past my freshness date for that particular role. I moved three times, once between Brooklyn and Queens, and I took up aerial silks. Friend Andrew and I dared to experiment with a performance collective. I've acted, written, choreographed, directed, curated and devised. In that time I also changed day jobs and taught in various capacities, including joining a UK-based corporate training company. Most significantly, my sister moved out of the city, and I married a woman I've known and loved since I was seventeen.
Sacred Ground. It was written by my fellow As Far As We Know collaborator, Christina Gorman, and is the first time I've worked with her since we departed that show. Sacred Ground also represents the first naturalistic drama in which I've acted in the city since Lie of the Mind - which, as some may recall, did not garner me the most magnificent of notices. Well, it's only taken me about four years to get over that, and so I've been dutifully applying my craft to a rather down-to-earth, straight-forward drama. And I've enjoyed it. And I'd say I've even done a fairly respectable job.
The Puppeteers. During that process, I continually found myself vacillating between the perspectives of a new director doing his best to make something a little daring and different, and that of myself as an actor in a Zuppa del Giorno show. It's often said that the best quality an actor can have is the ability to access a child-like self or state. I have to wonder if actors are given any choice in the matter, really. Every scrap of their work is entering an unknown world head-first. They are effectively forced to make mistake after mistake after mistake, and surrender themselves to forces they've no hope of fully comprehending.
Nearly five years on from my first post - and on this, my five-hundredth - the landscapes of many things have changed. Not the least of which is the landscape of the Internet itself. I've succumbed somewhat to the more-visual and less-verbal style of the "tumblelog" here and there, posting tiny entries that do nothing so much as capture (and attempt to render somewhat less temporal) brief moments of contemplation. I thought, however, that I'd return to a bit of my former style for this post. At least the length and varied direction is a return. My tone, however, has undeniably altered. Well, it's still pretentious and overwrought - don't get me wrong. It's also less immediately gratifying, I think, and looks a little farther into the horizon.
When I examine my life now, I've got no true regrets. That was one of my goals as a college student, about to venture into adult life and trying to make sense of what I wanted from it - to have no regrets. At the time, that meant pursuing a life as a professional actor, heedless of anything else. Now, my personal "Third Life" has more in it than that, and some potential for a greater richness of experience. It's taking a certain amount of courage to embrace that, to embrace everything I want. But I've done it before. I'll do it again.